'This wasn't me!' he roared out in actual disbelief at what she was commenting. He could feel his blood physically boiling inside of him. One more push and all of his emotions were going to blow over the edge. She smirked at him and then shook her head,
'This was exactly you. All this, all of it. You make them so afraid,' she shouted, her voice straining with the sheer passion of what she was saying. She looked him directly in the eyes and she scared him with that look, that look of utmost disgust and hatred, 'When you began, all those years ago, did you ever think you'd become this? The man who can turn an army around at the mention of his name. Doctor?' she spoke his name like it was poison, and she spat it, begging it to be quickly removed from her lips, 'The world for healer and wise man throughout the universe. We get that word from you, you know?' she continued, almost conversationally. She did not glance at him again, but she knew that soon he would be getting very, very angry, 'But if you carry on the way you are, what might that word come to mean? To the people of the Gamma Forest, the word 'Doctor' means mighty warrior. How far you've come,' her voice carried on, never losing volume, the words spewing from her mouth, every word piercing his flesh, 'And now, they've taken a child,' she began to walk towards him, all pretences dropped, emotion flashing in her eyes, 'The child of your best friends. And now they're going to turn her into a weapon, just to bring you down. And all this, my love,' she raised her hand and stroked his cheek softly, 'In fear of you.'
Her words were sincere and angry and he believed every single syllable, each piercing his heart like a knife. Stab, stab, stab, knife in the heart, killing him over and over and over again. And the words, they were true. The words, they were filthy and contaminated and dirty, but they were the truest words anyone had ever dared to speak to him. And she wasn't afraid of him. When he was angry, oh he could make Daleks run away and hide out of fear, but he could not wipe the grin from this woman's face.
He grabbed her upper wrist, wrenching her hand from his cheek. He gripped it tightly, his fingers curling around her veins, cutting off her circulation. His nails seared into her flesh and for one brief moment, he wanted to scream at her. Why wasn't she telling him to stop? Why wasn't she mumbling and whimpering in pain? Why the hell was she still smiling? He yanked her arm even tighter, in a kind of desperate attempt to make her hurt. But her eyes were speaking faster and more deeply than she ever could; they were glinting in an almost daring kind of way. Dig tighter. Why don't you dig deeper? Come on, see how long it takes for me to give in, they seemed to say, a perfect smirk still etched across her lips. She hooked an eyebrow and he almost growled viciously at her. 'Mighty warrior' he reflected, and 'how far you have fallen.' He thought deeply and sincerely and then took a step back, released his grip on river and slumped desperately to his knees. He stared intently at his fingers. How had he even thought of doing that? He wasn't violent, he was anything but. He was dirty, tainted with the mark of a torturer.
Slowly, reluctantly, he glanced up at her. She was crying, oh no, she was crying. She hadn't even shown the slightest expression of being hurt when he had almost ripped apart her flesh, but now that he had realized what he had done, what he had become, and now he was hurting, she was sad. He didn't understand her at all. He stole a look at her right wrist and another pang and wave of guilt washed over him. Four deep nail marks were clearly visible on her pale skin, and bright crimson blood was slowly oozing from one of them. Hurting your enemy is one thing, but one of your friends? He was ruined. He was ruined the moment he had clutched the wrist, the moment he had made her bleed, the moment that he made her cry and not even for herself, but for him.
'River,' he choked out, almost inaudibly, all moisture in his mouth drying up immediately, 'River, I'm s-so sorry.'
She shuffled forwards towards him and collapsed down onto her knees next to him, so she could be on his level. She took one of his hands and placed it to her cheek, like earlier. She motioned to try and hug his hand with her cheek and silently, she let a few more tears spill from her cobalt blue eyes. He raised his other hand, which was free from her soft touch and wiped away the fresh tears still imprinted upon her cheeks.
She smiled at him and gazed into his age old, but still so young, so fresh, eyes. She got that sensation, the same feeling she got every single time she looked at him; the ringing and muffling in her ears, the drop of her stomach and the increased rate of her heart. In those eyes, they were like a mirror for all of time and space, she saw everything; the citadel of the Time Lords, the Medusa Cascade, the collapse of the Nightmare Child, and Death. She saw Death. It ripped her to shreds; his hands were stained with the blood of a thousand species and so were hers. The accidental murderer and the one who does it on purpose; the trigger happy woman who had killed so many and could only remember and care about him.
'Don't be sorry my dear,' she murmured lovingly into his ear, and she let his hand go and stood to her feet and went to walk away, to leave, just to escape from his sight. She knew she had to tell him, but she couldn't. She couldn't. She COULDN'T. She felt like her brain had been put through a shredder, and she couldn't think anymore. Everything was collapsing around her.
As she had expected, River felt a hand press down on her shoulder with just the right amount of pressure to detain her, and restrain her from moving anymore. The wild curls that were resting on her shoulder were pushed to the side and he whispered softly in her ear, his voice trembling; he knew this would be the day when he found out who she was. But did he really want to know? Really? It was a question inside a question, and unanswerable paradox. This had been her secret and disguise for so long, did he really want to rip it away and leave her bare? But he had to know,
'Who are you River?' he asked flatly, breathing the question into her ear, causing a sudden chill to run up and down her spine, all her will-power being used not to tremble and convulse in his sight. Once again, she was in his grip, but this time it was different, he didn't want to hurt her anymore. The blood in her system rushed around at an incredible speed, pounding and streaming through her veins. She could still tease him though, one last time; spoilers, for a few more seconds.
Wrenching herself free of his grip, she ran childishly over to the beautiful, ancient cot. When she ran, he reached out his hand and grabbed hers and attempted to reel her back in, anger once more rising inside of him.
'Your cot, it's been a few years since I've seen this!' she cried out cheerfully, kind of clapping her hands together.
'River,' he snapped out viciously and vehemently, all pretences dropped once more, annoyance sinking in his stomach like an anchor to the bottom of the sea. He reached where she stood; her shoulder slumped in a lifeless and hopeless manner. He swivelled her around by the shoulders so she was facing him and pierced her with his now shallow, unforgiving eyes. Those eyes, like fuming pieces of coal, 'Who are you? Tell me!' he demanded, shaking her slightly, returning to his previously insane demeanour.
She carefully removed his hand from her shoulder and gasped out in shock when he grabbed her wrist malevolently once more. Her eyes pleading, where her mouth just opened and closed repeatedly, the forbidden and secret words wanting to be released, but something was still stopping her, principle being the most obvious choice. She had kept it a secret from him for such a long time that it was difficult in persuading her mind to release the words from her lips.
'But I'm telling you,' she whispered, 'can't you read?'
And a part of her, the mysterious, secret-keeping, almost devilish part died as his eyes widened in shock, as his eyes scanned over the Old High Gallifreyan carved into the wood at the end of the cot. She breathed out in defeat and bowed her head in exhaustion. It was all over.
Looking around, sweeping the area for any other life forms, he saw no one. Amy and Rory were gone, weeping and convulsing over the apparent loss of their child. He and River were totally alone, in the middle of a battle-field, surrounded bu the bodies of the dead and murdered.
'And we…' The Doctor trailed off, and he pressed his fingers to his lips and made strange choking (meant to be kissing) noises. A smile she had not wanted invaded her lips, and was mirrored on The Doctor's face. He started laughing madly and joyfully and yanked her into a huge hug. He let go of her soon after and started almost dancing around. He straightened his jacket and bowtie and, rather vainly, asked her, 'How do I look?'
An enormous beam spread quickly over his lips, like butter on toast being spread with a blunt knife. He was fidgeting, resisting the urge to lean out and hug her once more until she needed to breathe once more. 'Amazing,' she replied confidently, complimenting him quite truthfully this time. He began to stroll to the TARDIS before she anxiously called out, 'Aren't you forgetting something?'
Last time she had asked him this kind of question, it had ended in heartbreak for her. Time, he thought, to be The Doctor, the proper Doctor; the one who fixed things instead of destroying them.
He turned around on the heel of his boot and smiled the widest he had for many a century. He stormed right up to her, and stared intently. He pulled her forwards, gently and gracefully this time, via her waist and brought her body close to his. Slowly, he placed one hand on each of her cheeks before mumbling quite confidently, 'Doctor Song, sorry, I'm pretty sure I have.'
He laughed inwardly at her expression and leant in and kissed her. It was a victory kiss, and he wasn't sure if he was kissing her because he felt something for her, or because he had conquered her and overcome her barrier. Turning off his thoughts, he concentrated on the kiss, making sure that she did not draw away. She held him close to her by grabbing the collar of his jacket, her tongue running around in his mouth. His lips changed direction against hers, and he continued, although he kind of needed to breathe. Who cares about breathing when you can spend the rest of your life kissing your love of it? Hang on. Rewind. Love of his life? Well, no he was just getting confused.
He moved his hands form her face to her waist and intensified the kiss. She entwined her fingers through his hair, meshing their faces even closer. Passion, love, the sheer romance of the situation hit her like a tonne of bricks. Oh how she loved to kiss, especially with him.
But one thought was nagging her, and as she continued kissing this incredible, magnificent, strange terrifying (sometimes all at the same time) Time Lord, she thought sadly, True love lies when a good man goes to war. And as much as she wanted to believe he was kissing her because he loved her, she knew that he was lying. The way he caressed her cheeks so tenderly, she almost convinced herself he cared. But he didn't, because what is love, but a lie that only you can speak?