A/N: This was just a random piece I thought of a while ago, well I only had the first bit planned then I expanded on it. I wanted to do a bit of reversal here since we saw River save the Doctor, I thought let's see the Doctor save River and out came this...
Really sorry about lack of updates I've had lots of exams and I have more coming so no promises of the next update to 'Only A Matter Of Time' being soon, considering I can't even find the file that I started it on! I've had this ready for a while but as I'm sure a lot of you are aware that the site is having uploading problems, so apologies for the delay. But please enjoy...
The TARDIS was floating around in space on a quiet day whilst the Doctor was casually tinkering with parts of the great time machine. He needed something to do since he was on his own. Amy and Rory were on a holiday, he could use the peace and quiet- speaking of which it was bizarrely quiet, well when River's not around things are very low tempo. She hadn't even tried to call him in a while. This caused him to stop and think for a minute, where River could be right now, what she was doing? Probably getting into trouble, or breaking out of prison. He resumed lying on his back under the console happily adjusting some of the settings when he was thrown off balance hitting his head on the panel due to an unusual surge of energy.
He pulled his head out from under the panel rubbing it with his hand. "Ow... what was that?" he questioned standing on his feet walking up the staircase to the console.
He checked the computer screen and saw he was picking up a distress call from a nearby planet. He set the coordinates then began his rough journey. "...I'll save this until later." He tossed his regular screwdriver back under the glass floor carelessly. He gripped the sides of the panel tightly as the blue police box hurtled through space. This was the first adventure he was going alone on in so long, he had no idea what to expect- after all the companions do come in handy a lot more than just people to talk to when he gets bored, surprisingly they can help him out of sticky situations sometimes or even stop him from getting into them in the first place!
Once the TARDIS had calmed and materialised on the surface of the planet, he checked the environment- night time, heavy rain. "Ooh, now that's not good!" he set off down to a closet to hunt out something very useful. Within minutes of closet raiding, he found what he was searching for and then returned to the console room. Before opening the door he placed his ridiculous rainbow sectioned umbrella hat on top of his shaggy brown hair. He grinned cheekily knowing this one was safe, River was nowhere in sight. After straightening it out he skipped down to pull the door open then he poked his head out looking either side of the TARDIS.
Across the land were fields of grey rock and on the horizon lights shone, illuminating the night navy sky. A city perched behind the rock landscape- but the shining lights of the urban city didn't attract the Doctor's attention one bit. It's who was staggering over to the TARDIS, presumably the one who sent the distress call that caught his eye...
She was drenched from head to toe from the rain; her breathing was shallow and frantic. She was slumped over in pain, both her hands on the right side of her body, one of which had a gun and her finger was placed on the trigger. It hurt her to breathe or even move but when she saw that blue box materialise a few metres ahead of her she grew hopeful he could help her, just the one she needed- not only a doctor but the Doctor.
However, she was growing dizzy, her head was spinning everything around her was going blurry. Emerging from the blur she noticed the familiar man in tweed with yet another outrageous piece of headwear. He was running towards her, concerned greatly, it was unclear how well he knew her but he knew she was in trouble.
"River!" he gasped as he recognised the beautiful woman, who may be in pain but she was still beautiful, make her way uneasily closer to the TARDIS. She was wearing a white, tight tank top with black trousers and black boots, her usual adventure scouting gear- it was almost a uniform that she wears when she's out causing trouble.
She groaned heavily before her shaky legs finally gave way and she keeled over collapsing. The Doctor sprinted even faster once he noticed how much pain she was in just in time to catch her before she fell to the water-coated floor. He was on his knees cradling River's head on his lap, she had blacked out. He rocked her gently, stroking her face with one hand whilst the other remained securely around her body. He brushed her wet curls that stuck to her face behind her ear then kissed her forehead. "What happened River?" he sighed knowing trouble is drawn to her just as much as it is drawn to him, he smiled down admiring her for a moment- the tank top provided him with a good view of her busty chest. A cheeky smirk painted across his face as he admired the view for a moment, before refocusing on what happened to her.
He caught sight of something. He moved her hand that was draped over her torso to one side and saw red liquid, a large stain on the side of her top which had a large rip in it. It was her blood; she had been shot and lost a lot of it. The Doctor sprang into action, scooping River up in his arms and running her back into the TARDIS. Now this was serious...
He laid her on the glass floor carefully setting her head down. Knowing exactly what to do to stop the bleeding he grabbed a cloth that was conveniently draped on the rail and applied pressure to the wound before reaching to a drawer on the console that was within arm's reach. His hand was digging around the various items in the drawer until he found a bottle of Huon particles to heal the wound. However it was a large wound and the bottle was quite small so it would take a while for them to heal her, he knew that, wishing he had more.
He removed the cloth from her side to carefully lift up her shirt, he stopped just before her breasts, her skin was soaking wet with a tinge of red. The Doctor ran his hand over her toned stomach that was sticky from her blood, admittedly wanting to do more but he knew she needed to be healed. He felt around the wound before unscrewing the bottle and pouring the particles onto it. The glowing particles spread over the deep bullet wound securing it in a shell of fine orange dust.
"I'll only be gone a second." The Doctor whispered down to her stroking her cheek quickly before leaping up making his way to the Med Bay.
A few miniature moments later he returned with a bucket and wet sponge that he placed on the floor beside River. He dabbed the sponge gently around the wound cleaning off all the blood that stained her. He gently rubbed the sponge over her body a little more, ringing it out occasionally. The water in the bucket was now dyed a faint red as more blood trickled in. He sighed at the amount of blood in the bucket, on the sponge, on his own hand, the blood still staining her and now the small pool of it on the glass floor- which he'll clean once River was better. As he cleaned her body, he felt how icy cold her skin was. Panicking, he threw the sponge into the bucket to dry his hands trying to get a more reliable temperature. He just thought that the water was too hot so it made her feel colder, but she was freezing, her whole body was like a block of ice as he felt for a temperature on her head which was dangerously cold for any human so he had to act fast.
In attempt to warm her up, the Doctor grabbed another towel hanging on the rail dabbed the water off her then slid her shirt off. He un-buttoned his own shirt to wrap around her, he tried to resist the urge to glance at her bare chest. He carried her to her own bedroom and set her down on the floor, he searched for some warmer bottoms and changed the trousers she was in before setting her down on the bed so she wouldn't be lying in cold, wet clothes.
He pulled the quilt over her body smoothing it so gently taking extra care of her while he still could. An idea struck that would both make him happy and help warm up River. He pulled the cover up a little, just enough so he could slide into the bed next to her. He draped his arm over her torso whilst his other was around her shoulders pulling her body into his. Her golden curls which had now dried were lightly brushing on his chest tickling him.
"Get some rest, River..." the Doctor breathed into her hair, kissing her head. "I want you to get better soon."
Just as he pulled his lips away he felt her stir ever so slightly. He looked down at her watching carefully in case she done it again. He leaned back slightly, as he did River moved as well and a slight groan slurred in the back of her throat. The Doctor moved so he could see her face to check that she was ok. Her eyelids fluttered before slowly opening. Those tranquil emerald pools of mystery gazed up at him, shining like the gems that they are as her warm smile melted his hearts. He had missed seeing her smile seeing her happy, seeing those all-too-knowing eyes gleam at him.
"...You and your silly hats..." was the first thing she mumbled, but with a smile as she nuzzled into him, burying her head in his torso.
"Pardon?" the Doctor questioned, glad she was alright and still had her sense of humour.
"It's the only part of you I remember seeing... apart from your charming face." She ran her slender hand across his cheek, under his chin and down his neck before stopping in between both his hearts.
"It was raining and I needed both hands free!" he chuckled pulling her into a tight hug.
"You looked ridiculous!" she laughed, leaning into the hug as his arms enveloped around her body.
The Doctor laughed with her. "Oh, cheers!" he replied sarcastically. He hugged her tighter, never wanting to let go. Reminding himself she was so important to him, he brushed her curls to one side to plant a kiss on her neck, taking in her sweet taste. She smelt divine too, despite everything she had been through that day. No other human ever smelt as delicious as River did.
There was a moment of blissful silence as they enjoyed being together once more. "...Sweetie?" River asked her tone had changed to a more alert yet confused one.
"River..." he responded, showing he was listening but playing around.
"Did you undress me then put me in your clothes?" she raised an eyebrow knowingly.
"You were soaked and freezing!" he defended. "I wasn't going to let you die of hypothermia." he added kissing her neck again. "River, I love you and you are the most important person in the universe to me and if I lost you I don't know what I would do." He looked down at her beautiful body, 'that shirt suits her more than it suits me,' he thought. There was also the bonus of it being loose around the top so he once again had a lovely view down River's cleavage. "Oh, and don't worry, I didn't peek." The Doctor added half honestly- he may have admired her chest but he didn't go any further.
"Of course you didn't..." she replied sceptically.
"I didn't, I'm a more decent person than that River. I'd only look if you wanted me to." He planted a third kiss on her, this time on her clavicle.
"Ok then I believe you." She surrendered. "Well... you can have a look now, maybe get around to exploring the rest of me too?" she offered now sitting upright sliding the Doctor's shirt off her shoulders before un buttoning one of the three middle buttons that was done up over her chest.
"River... you're still recovering, you need rest. Although, I do like that offer..." The Doctor was speaking seriously, but he couldn't help being cheeky too.
"I'm fine! I feel fine, I look fine so therefore, I AM fine!" she declared. "If you don't want to then... your loss." She didn't sound too cheerful; she sounded somewhat annoyed as she tossed the cover off her and shifted to the end of the bed.
"You were just shot deeply in the side and you were pretty damn lucky that plasma energy bullet didn't hit anything important, otherwise you may not be here now!" the Doctor snapped at her remembering the pain he went through when he lost her the first time and he was determined to not let anything remotely close to that ever happen to her again.
"Well thank you very much for helping me but I only called you so I could get outta there!" she yelled at him, her temper was boiling. He had no right to shout at her.
"If I hadn't have helped you, you would have died River!" the Doctor shouted back trying to get through to her.
"I was just tired from all the running." She argued, not agreeing with him anytime soon. "I'm better now anyway, so why does it matter?" she folded her arms across her chest, refusing to face the Doctor still.
"You lost a lot of blood today; if I wasn't there I would have lost you and not even known. Do you have any idea what it feels like to lose the one person you love more than anything when you could have saved them? I can't go through that, not with you!" his eyes were watering as he remembered the pain he felt. But he only just now realised the mistake he made at taking his anger out on her when she didn't deserve it.
"I know exactly how it feels; you don't have any idea what I do for you. I risk my neck so many times for you and half of those times you don't even know about- no matter how far in your timeline! And today was one of them..." she defended. She too was fighting back tears as she remembered all the hard times they've had.
The Doctor paused, he had no speech left. Today was one of those times River risks herself for him and it nearly cost her life, he only had himself to blame for today. He wondered why he would even let her do something so risky, and potentially fatal- there had to be VERY good reason! He thought, hoping that it wasn't because of his own stupidity. There was no reason to yell at her considering he didn't even know what happened. He crawled across the bed closer to her but she just moved away, standing up quickly. She flinched then almost collapsed again, a groan of agony escaped her mouth as she hunched over trying to subdue the pain.
"River... take it easy," The Doctor threw himself off the bed to her side, holding her hand in his whilst his other wrapped around her waist ready to catch her if she falls. "...I... I had no idea. I'm sorry." He whispered feeling ashamed, poisoned by his own actions. He pressed his forehead to hers in the hopes of forgiveness.
River knowing she was safe relaxed her body in the Doctor' hold, embracing the safe feeling he creates. She let out a heavy sigh easing her eyes closed in the process. "...Guess I'm not ok." She opened them again to face the Doctor, a glint of apology shining through.
"The Doctor is in and he shall make you better." He smiled to her, his hand that was holding hers squeezed it lovingly whilst his thumb rubbed on the back of her hand. "...Providing that you will listen to me and do what I say." He added implying that he wanted a yes.
River smiled and nodded her head. "I will..." she agreed leaning her head on his shoulder.
"Ok, first things first: Get some rest Missy!" the Doctor waved an accusing finger in front of her.
He walked her back to the bed remaining at her side in case she collapsed again. He lifted the quilt then helped River lie down on it before he pulled it back over her. "Come into bed with me Sweetie." River patted the pillow next to her.
"I can't, you need rest, rest and more rest!" he said sternly, slightly regretting it seeing as she was offering.
River frowned like an unhappy child, her eyes pleading him to join her. She was just waiting for him to respond, there was a moment of silence as the Doctor's mind considered whether he should please both himself and River, or wait so she can recover properly.
"Don't look at me like that. You are a very tempting woman but you need to rest so you can get better sooner." The Doctor decided.
"Fine then..." River pouted grabbing a pillow and throwing it in the Doctor's face. "Spoil sport."
"...Cheeky!" he laughed shielding his face from the pillow.
He held the pillow in his hands carrying it back to the bed sliding it onto the mattress. River lifted her head so he could place it under then she leaned back resting her head on the pillow. The Doctor kissed her forehead before standing upright again. "I hope you get well soon." He walked over to the door and slowly pulled it closed so River could have an undisturbed rest.
One thing still played on the Doctor's mind, what he done that made River risk her life to save him, and nearly lose it. He wandered around the console pondering that thought for a moment; he wanted to stop it from even happening- seeing River in pain made his hearts ache, he didn't want to lose her again the first time was painful enough.
He constantly checked on her to make sure she was healing well. This was now at least the hundredth time he'd opened that door since he left her to rest a couple of hours ago. He twisted the door handle slowly nudging it open then poked his head inside.
River was lying blissfully under the white quilt; she looked like a sleeping goddess. Her curly locks lying astray all over the pillow untamed, they were always so silky soft. He longed to touch them but he didn't want to wake her- especially since she was quiet and out of trouble plus the fact that she needed rest to heal fully.
He stood in the doorway, leaning his shoulder on it, grinning at her. He watched her dream peacefully, the hypnotic rising and falling of her chest with every breath, her content face and her melodic and somewhat provocative groans. He walked over next to the bed and kneeled down resting his arms on the edge of the bed. River's head was tilted so it was facing him whilst her body was facing upwards; one arm was draped over her stomach and the other next to her head.
The Doctor very carefully lifted up the cover to check the wound. He slid up his shirt that she was still wearing, still resisting the urge to look further up then examined the wound which was just above where the lace of her knickers rested on her hip, she had discarded the trousers and now they were creased up on the floor. His fingertips ran over the wound, it was healing slowly. There was still a deep opening where the bullet struck but it was much smaller, looked cleaner and wasn't as deep. He rubbed around the wound soothingly for a moment enjoying the feel of her satin soft skin before placing the shirt over the top of her thigh then covering her with the quilt.
The Doctor resumed his place just at the side of the bed in front of River watching her sleep- he was genuinely fascinated by this beauty of a woman. He reached his hand out towards her letting it caress her cheek, his thumb consolingly and lovingly stroking it. She was such a beautiful, brilliant, brave woman and the Doctor will protect her forever.
She shifted slightly, making an adorable little groan as she moved her body on its side, now fully facing the Doctor. The Doctor stopped, thinking he might have woken her, he felt guilty but smiled at her cuteness.
"Don't stop..." she purred deeply and seductively. Her eyes were still closed but she was smiling, knowing he would be too.
"Sorry, did I wake you?" the Doctor asked with a slight chuckle at her knowingness.
"No, I just knew you were there." She exhaled, still having her eyes closed but she shifted slightly closer to the Doctor.
"How long have you known I was in here?" he questioned.
"Um... since you stood in the doorway watching me." River's smile widened.
"So I did wake you then?"
"No you didn't."
"No... then how'd you know?"
"I dunno I just have... a feeling."
River inched closer to the Doctor when she felt him wrap his hands around her. Her head was tucked under his chin with one hand placed at the front of his shoulder- almost like a half hug. The Doctor had his arms around her body, one around her shoulders and the other just above her hip. He grew puzzled when she said 'a feeling.'
"What do you mean 'a feeling'?" he asked.
"I can't really explain it but, it's like a sudden sense of safety, love and security I get whenever you're nearby." She opened her eyes, but remained where she was as her fingertips skimmed across his skin.
"But how did you know when you were sleeping?"
"I just felt your love radiate in the room and I knew I was safe and secure with you watching over me." She explained trying to make it sound easy to understand.
"It's great seeing that you know me so well." The Doctor laughed complimenting himself as he rubbed his hand up and down her shoulder.
"...Well, I have to disagree with the safety part in some cases..."
"Hey, now that's not nice!"
"It's true though, you are prone to trouble!"
"Ha! Says you..."
"But... when there's no trouble, I feel safer with you more than with anyone else."
"That's because I love you so, so much and I'll treasure every moment I spend with you forever."
"Not as much as I love you."
"No. I'll just win anyway!"
"I just love your optimism..."
"It's not optimism when I know I'll win."
She laughed confidently; it was infectious so the Doctor laughed with her. He pulled her close to him and kissed her forehead for a long moment, her warmth had returned. He stroked the side of her face with his hand, glad to feel her natural warmth melt him in a pool of passion.
She grew silent and her breathing evened out becoming shallow and relaxed. She was comfortably leaning her head on the Doctor's chest, under his neck as her body was curled up close to him. Her eyes were closed as she rested contently in the safe hold of her husband.
"...River?" he whispered.
He looked down at her and saw she was sleeping peacefully again. She had had a busy day and she was worn out, but who could blame her? After all she was shot and fleeing in the rain in the middle of the night. The Doctor very carefully released her from the embrace setting her head down on the pillow making sure not to wake her. He gently moved her closer to the middle of the bed so she wouldn't fall off, pulled the quilt over her then kissed her on her nose tenderly.
He stood and walked to the doorway just about ready to close it before looking back over his shoulder at her sleeping form lying peacefully and smiling at her all-round brilliance. One day in her timeline she'll repay him, but in his timeline it was all square. He saved her like she saved him, so it was fair.
"Now we're even, Song..."