Title: Watch Us Run
Fandom: Doctor Who
Characters/Pairing: River Song/Eleventh Doctor
Summary: River's history with the Doctor.
Warnings: character death
Notes: I wrote the majority of this six months ago, and then decided it wasn't any good and left it alone. Last night I reread it and decided it wasn't nearly as bad as I had thought, so decided it should be posted.
His eyes never changed, no matter the incarnation. Sometimes they were brown, sometimes blue, but that depth was always the same. It was the agelessness of someone who'd seen all of time and space a thousand times over.
It was his twelfth incarnation she met first. His face was scattered with freckles and he was very proudly ginger. They even managed to meet in the right order the first few times and she was stupid enough to let herself fall in love with him.
She kissed him once, and he kissed her back. She'd kissed other men before, but he was the first one who'd tasted so alien. She'd have gladly let it last all night, but for the fact that his presence was required to save the world. Again. She leant against the wall to regain her balance as he tore off into the distance, screwdriver in hand.
Thirteen was next, in that ridiculous tail coat. She'd poked fun at him; he insisted tails never went out of fashion. She watched him die. The offending laser beam had been meant for her, but he'd taken it instead. He always was doing stupid things like that.
The powers that be didn't understand; they just saw the smoking gun in her hand and the corpse growing cold in front of her. They hadn't heard the anguish in his voice or seen the pain in his eyes as he pleaded with her to put him out of his misery. They didn't hear her heart break as he used his last moments to whisper to her that he loved her. It was the first time he'd told her in her timeline.
She went quietly. She wasn't feeling up to fighting, now right now. She was just hoping that this wasn't going to be how she remembered him.
It wasn't, as she was soon to discover.
The Pandorica was next, and she nearly thought she'd lost him again. Then there was the Byzantium and the Weeping Angels. He wondered how many more of him she'd manage to meet before their incessant adventuring became the death of her.
He sought her out once Amy left, and she admired the fact that he'd made sure he found the same place in both their timelines. It was his turn to kiss her this time. He somehow knew and remarked up the fact that this wasn't her first time kissing him. She simply smiled, placing a finger on his lips and whispering, "Spoilers."
He never asked her to travel with him, and to be honest, she wasn't sure she'd have said yes it he had. In one way or another, his companions all left eventually and River didn't want to add her name to that list.
Regardless of timeline, she was always there when he needed her.
It was the Twelfth one again, who turned up with the suit and the new haircut. She hadn't seen this one in a while. She asked what the occasion was, and he responded by asking why he needed one. There were no worlds needing saving (to his knowledge) and no pending alien invasions (again, as far as he knew), so he thought it was high-time they got to spend some quality time together. There wasn't a great deal of opportunity for that sort of thing when one was a time travelling saver of worlds.
He told her to spruce herself up; that they were going somewhere special, though he wouldn't say where. The entire trip in the TARDIS, he wouldn't let go of her hand. When they rematerialised, she was the first out the door, but stopped in amazement upon looking up at the Singing Towers, a place she'd always wanted to visit, but never really got around to. As the Doctor joined her at the door, he took her hand again, and ran down to a clear patch of grass, where he spread his jacket for them to sit on.
For a while, they sat in silence, listening to the Towers. River had her head on his shoulder, and the Doctor sat with his arm around her. It wasn't until she felt a drop of moisture fall on her cheek that she looked up and realised the Doctor was crying. Quickly, she sat up and cupped his face in her hands, wiping away the tears with her thumb.
"Doctor, what's wrong?"
She knew he was brushing her off when he replied, "The music's very moving, isn't it?" She didn't ask anymore, but she did continue to look at him, eyes asking for the truth.
The smile he gave her was twinged with sadness. "Spoilers," he said quietly, taking her hand from his cheek and kissing it, before adding, "I've always wanted to say that to you." River smiled back, knowing that this was something that couldn't be discussed any further and left it at that.
As he saying goodnight after returning her home, he pressed his sonic screwdriver into her hand. She looked from it to him and back again, but didn't ask any questions. It was clear this was all to do with the same event that had caused him to cry earlier in the evening. She told herself she'd find out soon enough what it was all about.
It was as she was attaching the handcuffs to the younger Doctor's wrist and preparing to strap herself into the Library's database that she understood that final meeting. The Doctor had known about CAL and the Library and that this was the way it was going to end the whole time he had known River.
Well, he had taken a bullet for her once before, now it was her turn to repay him. It was all completely backwards, like their lives had been all along.
He argued with her, of course, and wanted to take her place, but she didn't weaken, just assured him that he had so much to look forward to. He told her time could be rewritten, but she couldn't imagine a world where she hadn't spent all those times with him.
"You and me," she smiled through her tears, "time and space. You watch us run."