Disclaimer: I don't own Doctor Who.


Since the Doctor had (grudgingly) (finally) wholehearted(x2)ly accepted that River could, in fact, program, manoeuvre and talk to the TARDIS in all the correct ways, life had become – well, so much harder. 'Whoever can fly the TARDIS decides the destination' had been such a delicious, succulent rule, and, like most things, he didn't miss it till it was gone. He ought to pinch himself so hard in the future for teaching her.

He folded his arms and leaned against the console, conveniently blocking the handbrake. "Stargazing. The Plaine Plains. I. Want. To. Do. It."

"Well, I want to go swimming. There's a world of dust in your library. Literally."

"Swimming pool."

"Database, recordings in the. All the stars in the Universe."

The Doctor stared at River. She stared back.

Twenty-four seconds later even the Doctor's capillaries itched with standing still is so boring don't want to do it and can't take any more of standing still.

River smiled, with just a touch of smugness.

"Let's compromise!" The Doctor shouted, exactly two seconds after that.

"Go ahead."

He shook of his discomfort (literally, and with delight) and leaped around the console with more gusto than what was perhaps necessary.

She watched him set the coordinates with a cool appraisal he was certain was very useful when she was being all Professory at the University. It was not so hot now, though.

The TARDIS rematerialised. "There!" he stated. "A compromise!"

River opened the door slowly, looked out. "And what's the TARDIS teetering on?"

"Something. That's all you want to know."

"Where are we?"

"The Plaine Plains," he said, quite arrogantly.

"When they were a sea."

"100 000 years before they're famous."

"You think you're so clever."


Water pressed against the TARDIS at all sides, silent but present.

They sat shoulder to shoulder in the doorway. Her bare feet were tucked under her. His right elbow, third and fourth rib and lateral malleolus were jammed against the frame. Of course.

The sea was dark as ink and smooth as a mirror, reflecting the night and every star in the sky.

"Gaze, dear," she said. "You have the stars twice over." She eased a hand into the water, and when the ripples stilled, she was cupping a hundred of them.