Fandom: Doctor Who
Rating: G? Maybe actually? I feel like its probably PG just cause I'm not sure I've ever written anything G before, but I dunno.
Characters/Pairing: Rory/Amy, Rory and River
Summary: Amy was everything that mattered to Rory, and the sounds she made his favorite sounds, until the day he became a father. Also OMG I love these two together, and I am trying to figure out how I can write more about them with how little we know about the timeline. I'll probably write some stuff from River's point of view, but I don't know what else to do. Also, note: somewhere in here there's a reference to the Little Mermaid. That reference comes from a story I'll probably post soon.

Notes: This is so incredibly spoilery for A Good Man Goes to War it is not even funny. Also, I didn't have a beta (which I pretty much never do cause I'm awful like that) and I'm not sure about it, so please, please give me concrit.

The first time he heard Amelia Pond laugh, he thought that that was very possibly the best sound he'd ever heard. It was high, and clear, and joyful, and it sounded like it didn't happen enough. The fact that what she was laughing at was Rory made it all the better, from his point of view, because it meant that he got to make that sound happen.

He didn't really know Amelia then, they had never met properly before, but he had heard some of the stories she told, and he knew that she was very sad. He watched her sometimes, sitting on the edge of the playground, drawing pictures. That day he had decided to go up to her, and ask her what was wrong. He had been a little afraid she might bite him, to be honest. He'd seen her do that sort of thing. Before he even had the chance to introduce himself, however, he fell out of the tree which he had been waiting in, and landed on his face in front of Amelia.

And that was when he heard her laugh. "Are you okay?" she asked, helping him to his feet.

He nodded, grinning. "Hi."
"I'm Rory Williams. You're Amelia Pond, aren't you?"

She glowered. "I bite, you know. It says so on my school report."
"I know. I mean, I'd heard. I saw, actually. I don't mind. I mean, I do, I'd really rather you didn't bite me, please, but- look, do you want to play with me?"

Amelia looked at him, suspicious. "You're weird."
"So are you."

"I know I am! Why do you want to play with me?"

Rory shrugged. "I dunno. You seem sad. You have a pretty laugh, though. And you tell cool stories. So, do you want to play with me?"

Amelia looked him up and down, appraising. Then, after a minute: "We could play Raggedy Doctor."

And they did.

He spent the next fourteen years of his life dedicated to making her laugh again.

Fourteen years later, Rory Williams died. Amelia Pond cried and cried, and would have cried a great deal more, except that Rory stopped existing, and she didn't remember. Amelia Pond forgot him.

Rory didn't forget her. Because on that same day (or, actually, two thousand years before) a man who wasn't quite a man woke up, and he had Rory's heart and Rory's mind and all of Rory's memories. And, just like Rory, he loved Amy more than anyone or anything else in the entire universe. But this time Rory was a centurion, and even though he had all the memories he'd made in his life, he had another lifetime's worth of memories telling him the first life was a dream. Which left him with two dreams, and no waking, and no Dreamlord to trick him into choosing one.

And he wished beyond wishing that his love would come back. He wished, also, that the Doctor would come, and make everything make sense again. Mostly, though, he wished for Amy back.

And then, one day, he heard that Cleopatra had come to the camp, and that with her she had brought Caesar. And then he heard that it wasn't Caesar, and it wasn't Cleopatra either, and that with them they had brought a red-haired girl. And he knew, without having to hear another word, that that man was the Doctor, and that that red-haired girl was his red-haired girl.

But she didn't remember him. She looked him in the eye, and did not remember his name.

Until she did.

And as he fought to keep control of his body, to stop the strange, alien consciousness from using him for...whatever, as his name rolled off Amelia's tongue like water off fish scales, he thought that maybe, just maybe, those words were the most beautiful he'd ever heard.

Rory had lived two lifetimes, one as Rory Williams from Leadworth, and one as Rory the Roman from Rome. By the time he married Amy Pond he'd lived another. It was quite a lot like the first in some ways, but in others it was completely different. Amelia Pond had a mother, and a father, and a hundred thousand wonderful stories about the Doctor, even though in this life he wasn't real, and she still bit her psychiatrists when they told her that. And Amelia Pond still mattered more than anyone or anything else in Rory's life.

But in this life Amelia never had to hear the Doctor say he'd be back in five minutes. She wasn't raised by her aunt who didn't want children and left them alone all night and who's response, upon finding them sitting outside talking of a mysterious man who'd come to visit, was to complain that the house was ransacked, and send the child to a psychiatrist for an overactive imagination. No. In this life Amelia Pond could trust, even if she couldn't always say "I love you", and in this life Amelia Pond married him (because he had known, really, or at least did now, after having 2000 years to think about it, that she wouldn't have married him before. After all that waiting for the Doctor, she never would have run off with him if she had really meant to get married in the morning).

But in this life Amelia married him. And it was the happiest day of his life. Should have been the happiest day of his life. Except that at the end of the day, Amelia cried, and she wasn't crying because she was happy. She was crying because she was sad.

And Rory couldn't be happy if Amelia was sad.

So he sat there, not knowing what to do, his wife (and it should have made him happy beyond belief that he could call her that, it really should have) crying next to him. Then he gave her the journal, the beautiful, blue journal, and she remembered.

And oh, how she laughed.

She laughed when the Doctor danced (and so did Rory because really, it was fairly ridiculous).

She laughed when Rory fed her cake (and so did he, as he licked it off her nose).

She laughed, too, soft and gentle and sleepy, when his breath tickled her neck as they were dancing at the end of the night.

Later, she laughed as they ran through the Orient Express (in space!) and as she and Rory attempted (successfully) to consummate their marriage in the bunk beds which the Doctor had oh so helpfully furnished their brand new bedroom with.

And he thought, again, that that laugh was the most beautiful sound he'd ever heard.

When the Silence took Amelia, Rory thought his heart might break. He was terrified, and the only thing he knew, as he listened to her scared ramblings through the recorder, was that he had to get her back.

When he thought he heard her say that she loved the Doctor more than him, it broke his heart again.

And when he realized that she hadn't, it made it whole.

He thought, then, that the words "stupid face" were the two best words in the English language.

If you counted all their lives, he and Amy had lived a total of five lifetimes, and just over two thousand years. He'd lost her four times, but he'd never given up. She was all he wanted in the world, to be with her, his family. The Doctor was right when he said that Rory was Rory Pond. Not because Amy was bossy or bitey or really really scary (although she was all of those things) but because she was his family. She was all his family, and she was all he needed.

Until she wasn't.

Until he found out she was pregnant.

Until she had a baby, and he was a dad, and they were parents.

And, quite suddenly, she wasn't all his family. She wasn't all he needed. Because now he had a daughter, and she was tiny and beautiful and he loved her so much. And as he stood there crying, he knew he had to protect her, to protect them both. Whatever it took.

That night (or day, or whatever it was), after the Doctor left, Amy helped Vastra and Jenny with the wires they were doing...something with so that they could get...wherever it was they were going (Rory didn't know. He only knew he needed to get his daughter back, and after so many days of being the lone centurion, assembling and leading and fighting an army, that was all he knew). Jenny had given up trying to comfort her- after River's earlier revelation, it seemed that Amy didn't know what to feel.

Neither did Rory. He knew that he needed his daughter back, and he knew that he had his daughter there, and she was safe and beautiful and strong. He wanted to cry, out of joy and sadness and confusion and exhaustion.

But he didn't.

Instead, he leaned his forehead on the overhang of the weird ship console which he was helping River assemble.

"Hey," he said, looking at her.

She stood, quickly, turning to look at him. Her eyes were damp. "Rory. I am... so sorry. I am so, so-"

"Shut up," he said.

"Shut. Up. Seriously, just shut up for a second."
River shut up.

He took a step forward, ducking under the overhang, and took her hands. "River Song. You're my daughter."
"I'm sorry."
"I said shut up. You're my daughter."
River nodded.

"You. Are my daughter. My amazing, wonderful, beautiful daughter." He smiled. "You're my amazing, wonderful, beautiful daughter, you're River Song, and I get to be your dad. 'Cause do you know what? You're exactly how I'd want my daughter to turn out. So why are you apologizing?"

She looked down, and he thought he saw a tear run down her cheek. "Rory Pond. My father. You're the greatest man I've ever known. They thought they were safe, you know, because the Doctor was such a good man. There's a poem, they taught it to me when I was small, called a Good Man Goes to War. And its true, every word of it is true, at least so far as I can tell. But the Doctor isn't the good man. He is angry and dangerous and he tries so very hard, but he is not a good man. But are. You are such a good man. And me? I've never been very, well, good at being good.

"And do you know, the thing is, I'm not even sure what that means anymore. Of all the people I've ever known, the two greatest were you and the Doctor. One of you is good, and one of you is not, and both of you would go to the ends of the universe to protect your family. And maybe that's it. Not the going-to-the-ends-of-the-universe or the killing to protect your family, because that's love. Love has nothing to do with good or evil, its far more important than that. But when the Doctor looks at the men who hurt the ones he loves and the voices in his head tell him to tear out their hearts and burn their souls, he listens. I doubt that there's a single person who isn't in more pain for meeting him, even if they are better off. But you...I know you've killed people, trying to protect your family. I know that. But you're the only one you ever hurt."

Rory nodded, considering. He dropped her hands and crossed his arms. "Alright. You're going to have to forgive me, I can't quite keep up with you, or the Doctor. Can we go back to the part where you explain why you're apologizing?"

"It's not the killing that I'm sorry for. It's not even the lying. I'd apologize for all the trouble, but I can't quite guilt myself into making that my fault. But I hurt people. And I did things which I can't tell you about, not now, some of them not ever, and I need to apologize for those. Even if you can't forgive me, because you don't know what you need to forgive, and even if I think you shouldn't forgive me because I do." River's voice shook. He'd only heard it shake quite that way the once before, though it had come close in the tunnels with the Silence. But it hadn't shook like that, not until he met her in Stormcage, breaking back in. It occured to him now how much that must have hurt, to see him standing there so close, her father, and not be able to call him 'dad'. As she talked about her birthday, nothing more than an excited, lonely little girl, he realized now, her voice had shook like the leaves in the wind.

"I forgive you," he said, quickly, as soon as she had finished speaking. And he did, with all his heart.
"What?" she asked.

"I. Forgive you. Look," he said, grabbing onto the overhang again and leaning forward, "Obviously I made a mistake when I was raising you, or maybe I just wasn't there, but either way you seem to have missed out on a rather crucial piece of information. So let me make something really astoundingly clear, right now: Whatever you did, I don't know if it was bad enough that it needs forgiving, and I don't know if I'm the one to do that forgiving, but I forgive you. I will always forgive you, and I will always love you, and I will always, always be proud of you because you are my daughter and you, River Song, astound me."

"Yeah?" he asked, tilting his head a little.

"Sorry, just...been a while. Don't get to call you that enough."

Rory put his arms around River and held her close. He kissed her hair, holding onto her blonde curls the same way he did Amy's bright red locks.

"I'm sorry." he whispered.
"What for?" she asked, resting her forehead on his shoulder, the tears which lingered in her eyes making his red sleeve wonderfully, fantastically damp.

"For not rescuing you sooner. I'll never stop looking for you, and I've no idea when I'll find you, and I know that you can't tell me, I do. And I'm not asking you to forgive me, because making me feel better isn't your job. But I'm sorry. Just...for what it's worth."
She nodded. "I know. And, for what it's worth, you were a fantastic father. Are. You are a fantastic father."
He smiled into her hair. "That, River Song, is worth everything." Rory stepped back. "Well, Amy was right about one thing, anyway," he said.

"What's that?"

"Melody Pond is a superhero."

She laughed. It sounded like rivers in the forest singing lullabies and fairy songs, like dew drops tinkling on silver leaves. It sounded like Leadworth and the TARDIS and the color blue, like Amelia and The Little Mermaid. It sounded like joy and petrichor and stardust, and two thousand years of memories. It sounded like six lifetimes lived in a second, and all of time and space distilled to sound. His daughter laughed, and Rory smiled, because that was very definitely the best sound he'd ever heard.