I wrote this a bit after A Good Man Goes To War. Might as well put it up, too... Theoretically done AFTER Let's Kill Hitler, as young Melody is with Rory and Amy.
I own none of the characters in this story- written for fun, not for profit.
I heard a crash from outside and ran to poke my head out the door, but Amy held me back.
"No! You can't go out there, it's bad luck!" She said.
"Says the woman who went time traveling on the night before her wedding and almost killed her fiancé!" I said, throwing my arms up. "Doctor? Everything alright out there?" I asked.
"Yeah, we're…fine." Rory replied. "Just had a bit of a… well, you really don't need to know." I groaned, slapping myself in the forehead and slipping down into a chair.
"Remind me again why I let you plan my wedding?" I asked. She sat beside me.
"Because, as strange as it is to have a daughter my age- I'm still your mum. And I've done this before." I opened my mouth to speak, but she immediately shushed me. "Not a word. Not one word." She walked around the back of the chair and started messing with my hair.
"Is it odd to have your mum be the matron of honor?" I asked. She shrugged.
"It was this or have me walk in as your mum, and then what would they think?"
"Good point. Though… you know, life with a time traveler." She stopped for a moment and then began twisting my hair into some kind of complex updo.
"I can't imagine what it's like for you. I guess you never really had much of a normal life, did you?" I laughed.
"Normality is defined by the norm, and if what's not normal is the norm for me, then you could say I've had a perfectly normal life. I did grow up with you two." Amy pulled a confused face in the mirror.
"You did?" I nodded.
"So nobody else takes you away?" They had ten year old me at home with a sitter just to avoid any kind of paradox that might come up. I thought for a moment about what to say.
"Well… yes. And no. But then I come back, don't worry."
"Why are you telling me this?" She asked. I sighed- nobody really understands living a puzzle pieces life.
"So when the time comes you'll know what to do. Whether to come and find me or just… let me go. Because you'll need to do both." She finished with my hair and sat down again. "Tell me, how often has the Doctor been around since I came back?" I asked.
"The Doctor? He's not been around at all. I don't really mention him much, actually…" I nodded. That's the way I remembered it. But he wasn't gone, he was around. He would meet me in the park on days when the sitter took me and fell asleep on the bench, and tell me all sorts of stories. He'd walk me home from school some days when I didn't feel like taking the bus for a grand total of eight blocks. Whenever I had nightmares about the Silence and the Astronaut, he'd be there when I woke up, to hug me and hold my hand until I fell back asleep. But he'd always be gone before anyone saw… When I was 17 I ran away to try to find him… but that didn't go so well. So, I wound up getting a job, going to school, running a small bookshop on the side, and letting him find me.
"Then things are working themselves out like they should." I glanced at the ring on my finger. It was silver with blur stones set into it- always like the Doctor to be flashy.
"That's good." Amy said. "I wouldn't want to rip a hole in the universe or anything." I laughed and slipped into my dress.
"No, I think you'll be fine." She zipped up the back and I gave myself a once-over in the mirror. The dress really wasn't my choice- long, white, and strapless with tiny beaded detailing stemming from the left hip. I refused to have a long train or to wear a mask of makeup, but I couldn't haggle with her enough to let me shake the veil, which she pinned over top of my hair. If I'd had it my way we would have been married in a small chapel with just Rory and Amy as witnesses, but no. It's apparently against the law for that to happen.
"You know, aren't white dresses supposed to mean innocence?" Amy asked. I scoffed, indignant.
"I may not be innocent, but I most definitely am a virgin." I said. "That still counts." Amy rolled her eyes and muttered something under her breath.
"Something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue." She said, louder.
"What, has he parked the TARDIS in the middle of the sanctuary?" I asked, laughing. She smiled. "Really, though- I've borrowed your veil, I assume the dress counts as something new, and my ring is blue." Amy pursed her lips.
"But we don't have anything old." There was a knock at the door just then.
"Yes, you do." Rory called from the hall. I opened the door and he walked in with a TARDIS key on a long chain. "It's the original key- the template for all the copies, according to the Doctor. He said the TARDIS veritably chucked it at him." I laughed and slipped it around my neck.
"Thanks, old girl." I whispered.
"You look beautiful." Rory said. He was still walking me down the aisle, even though he wasn't listed as my father. Amy and I decided we couldn't deny him that right.
"Thank you." Then my calm suddenly disappeared as I realized the gravity of the situation. "How is everything? Is everyone here yet?" 'Everyone' meaning Jack, Martha, and Mickey. I'd met them a few times and frankly, we really didn't have enough people in on the whole 'time travel in the wrong order' thing to have enough for the wedding.
"Well, I don't know, but considering they're all regular time travelers I'd say there's a safe bet they'll be here."
"The man has a point." Amy said, gesturing to him.
"Well, all I need now is for aliens to crash my wedding and my life will be normal again." They burst out in stunned laughter at the thought of it. After that things sort of passed in a blur.
I remember walking down the aisle and seeing the Doctor with that goofy grin on his face. I remember the ring being slipped on my finger. I remember saying my vows, and I remember the kiss. I remember glancing at the faces in the congregation as we walked out, and then it sort of comes back into focus. We walked down the hall towards where the reception was supposed to be, but as soon as we got to the door the Doctor pulled me around a corner and kissed me.
"What was that for?" I asked.
"For the same reason I asked you to marry me. I love you." I kissed him softly and a tear slid down my cheek, catching on his face and wetting it as well. "Don't cry." He said, wiping it away from my cheek. "Crying is for all the other days. Not here, not now. Not today."
We walked into the reception room to find that a few people had started to trickle in. I looked around at all the faces- a few family members who knew, though probably didn't believe, the truth, and a few friends who knew and had experienced it. Martha walked up to me, a smile on her face.
"Congratulations! He's a handful, that one." I laughed.
"Tell me about it."
"Oi! Standing right here!" The Doctor said, indignantly. We laughed and she went off to talk to Mickey and their little boy, Blane.
We sat with Amy, Rory, and their parents during dinner and attempted to explain everything to them… which didn't work out so well.
"You mean to tell me that this woman is my beautiful little granddaughter about twenty years in the future?" Amy's mum asked. We shrugged, nodding.
"Yeah, it's a bit…" I began.
"Wibbly wobbly-" The Doctor said.
"Timey wimey." Amy finished.
"Exactly." Said Rory. "But he really does time travel, we're not joking. He could walk through the door right now if he wanted to, but then again he probably won't because that would cause a paradox… right?"
"Well, probably not, so long as I don't touch myself." The Doctor said. A second or two later the Doctor- wait, the Doctor? Another Doctor popped his head through the reception hall doors and waved at us. We laughed and waved back. Rory's mother and father looked completely and utterly shocked. If I recall they left shortly afterwards to go home and lie down… Amy's mum and dad took it well, though, probably because they had to cope with the Raggedy Doctor all while she was growing up.
"On another subject," said Amy quickly, "I have something to give you." Amy handed me a small wrapped package tied with a ribbon. What was inside surprised us all.
"The Time Traveler's Wife?" I said, laughing. It was the book I'd always wanted to read but never really dared to, knowing it would probably end happily and the end of my life with the Doctor would be anything but. I guess now would be an appropriate time to start reading, though.
"We thought it fit. You should really read it." She said. I nodded.
"I think I will." The Doctor stood and cleared his throat.
"Would you like to dance?" He said. Amy laughed at that.
"Be careful, he's a horrible dancer!" She said.
"I've got a few tricks up my sleeve." He said, pulling me out onto the floor.
"Amy?" Rory asked me, watching them dance to the slow song.
"Do you think… do you think that…"
"Oh, don't tell me you're worried." I said. "I mean, I know you're her dad and all, but sometimes… sometimes you've got to let go. We have all those years with her to get through before she gets to this and more afterwards to look forward to." I watched them slowly turn on the dance floor, simply hoping that she would be happy… but knowing she never truly could be.
Later that night, when they got home, Rory went into Melody's room to see her fast asleep. He stroked her hair gently, not really aware that I was watching him. I put a hand on his shoulder and he turned.
"You know, I think our girl's in very, very good hands if the Doctor loves her half as much as you do." I said, kissing his cheek.
I sat on my bed in the TARDIS, wrapped in a fluffy robe, reading The Time Traveler's wife. It was really good, actually, and eerily similar to my story, though not quite as bad because he still got to come back and have a relatively normal life with her. The Doctor came in and I sat the book down on top of another I was reading, a book of retold fairy tales from Rory. "He was always a fairy tale to us." He said when he gave it to me. So far it was great- especially one called "The Red, Red Rose."
"How is it?" He asked.
"Incredibly strange. Mostly just because it's so similar to our story."
"How so?" He sat beside me.
"Well, the man meets her when she's a little girl after he's met her as an older woman."
"But the strangest thing is that when she sees him as an older man, do you know what she tells him?" He raised his eyebrows. "She tells him 'I've been in love with you my entire life.'" I whispered.
"Now that," he said softly into my hair, "sounds extremely familiar." I leaned my head into his neck, remembering. So long ago- 17 years old. Some long lost quote from somewhere in the small bookshop I ran came to the surface of my mind: "When people ask you how old you are, always say 17 and insane." That was me, alright.
I probably would have been content to stay there all night, wrapped in the Doctor's arms, but we all know that's not how things typically go- the way we expect. When I said I was a virgin before, I wasn't lying, but I would be if I said it after that night. He kissed me, and kissed me, and soon enough I managed to forget that my ending would probably never be happy. I forgot about all the pain I had probably caused him and all that he would cause me. I forgot about everything in the world except being there in the Doctor's arms…
However, in that moment of utter fatigue that comes before sleep after such things I remembered something from the fairy tale book:
"And so they lay together, on the mossy bank of the running stream, and found they were not so weary as might have been expected… And so, when the pain came, and with it her virgin's blood spilled on the forest floor, that too was part of the wildness, and so the joy." The only thing about that story was that when she woke the next morning she found her lover dead.
I couldn't… didn't dare to believe that everything that had happened to me was real until I woke up the next morning exactly where I'd been before. I kissed his neck and he stirred. Time Lords didn't actually need sleep most of the time, but they could sleep if they wanted to.
"Morning." He said.
"Good morning." I awkwardly slipped into a robe and walked down the hall to the closet, actually a bit sore. A minute or two later he appeared in his usual dress shirt and black pants.
"Erm… River?" He asked. "Can we-"
"Never talk about that again?" I asked. Clearly we were on the same page.
"Talk about what?" I smiled and he chuckled, a cheeky grin still on his face.
"Spare me, my beautiful wife." He said.