Rory peeled his hands off the center console, shaking them to bring back feeling and to dry his sweaty palms, while Amy adjusted her jacket. Beside Rory, the Doctor jumped to his feet, laughing and smiling per usual.
"Honestly, Doctor, you need a better floor. Glass is pretty and all, but for a time machine? Either fix the shocks or get a floor with some traction," Rory grumbled good-naturedly.
"As I recall, you like the glass," Amy whispered to him. He blushed furiously.
"I tried putting shocks in her once, but the old girl spit them back at me. Picky thing, only will accept ones made of rare tridium, and the last deposit I knew of was on an asteroid guarded by the Judoon- no, wait, the Carrionites took it, wanted it for- but anyways! No, I can't install shocks without either starting a war or winning an impossible bet," the Doctor prattled happily, spinning around and hitting buttons and levers.
"River got it to go smooth," Amy muttered.
"What's that?" the Doctor asked. Amy smirked.
"Nothing. Then you'll fix the floor?"
"Good heavens, no! Glass is far easier to clean because it's smooth, and you have no idea what passes through here- great big drippy Arkan, and old whats-'er-face, sluggy woman, great time at parties until you had to clean up her mucus trail."
"So you'll just fall on your bottom for an eternity of travelling," Rory laughed. The Doctor shrugged. "Anyways, so, um, where are we?"
"Not sure!" the Doctor beamed, like a child about to open a Christmas gift, spinning around once before he reached the door. "I think we might be somewhere in the Corian galaxy, close to the quartz asteroid belt. They have great cuisine here-," the Doctor threw open the door and froze. "Oh."
"Oh?" Amy repeated, walking over to peer over his shoulder. "Oh!" she gasped. They were in a massive, beautiful building with a pearly tiled floor and a high translucent ceiling, giving it an airy feel. Small groups of two or three crossed the room, entering and disappearing in multicolored doors. Everyone smiled and laughed. Some were wearing thick, fluffy white furs, while others wore comfortable looking cotton sweats and tanktops, and still more wore swim suits. A tidy looking woman in a blue skirt-and-suit combo walked over, smiling as if blue police boxes appeared all the time.
"I think we ought to go elsewhere. Maybe the other side of the quartz belt…" the Doctor said uncertainly, eyes never ceasing moving. Amy pouted.
"But look at this place! It's incredible!" she protested, ducking under his arm and stepping into the room. Rory followed hesitantly, smiling at the Doctor.
"It is pretty nice. And we've spent the past two weeks or so saving the universe. A break would be great," he shrugged, looking hopeful. The attendant stopped in front of the trio and the TARDIS.
"Welcome to the Midnight resort!" she said demurely. "May I assign you rooms?"
"No, thank you," the Doctor said, stepping in front of Amy and Rory, still scanning the room with a look in his eyes that Amy had seen only rarely before. Uncertainty, tinged with fear. But it was a resort! And everyone was happy- not brainwashed happy, but genuine laughter, and she heard a pair of girls arguing (but happily) over whether to go to the beach room or the spa.
"But Doctor," she moaned. "Can't we stay? Just for a couple of days- we've been through hell, and a resort is perfect! You always promise to bring us somewhere nice but always get sidetracked, anyways."
"No. We aren't staying here." Amy was so awed by the room that she hardly noticed the way the Doctor had drawn inside himself, as if preparing to be attacked. His voice was sad.
"Why not? What's wrong here?" Rory asked, siding with Amy.
"Everyone is happy here. Peaceful. And it's not zombie-peaceful, unless zombies can argue. They're all normal people enjoying a vacation," she put in. "I don't see anything wrong."
"Neither do I," their bowtied friend muttered.
"Then let's stay! Pleeeease?" Amy begged, blinking bambi eyes and pouting.
"Yess! Oh, thank you, Doctor, I promise we'll behave! And after, we'll go wherever you like, those slime pits or that dull monastery or the library thing you talk about," Amy said delightedly. She grabbed Rory's hand and turned to the patient attendant. "Two rooms, one for Mr. and Mrs. Pond- Rory, shut up- and one for… Mr. Smith. And they both must have Jacuzzi baths. And the one for Mr. Smith needs to have bunk beds," she requested happily, smiling at the Doctor as she asked for the bunk bed. A tentative smile crept onto his face.
"Well. Maybe just a few days." He frowned, and added, "No tours. Whatsoever. Stay off the bus system. I don't want you leaving the building, not for anything. Ever."
"Yeah, sure," Amy called, already following the attendant, half dragging Rory.
"Take care of her, Centurion!" the Doctor shouted after them. Rory gave him a thumbs up.
It is short. But there will be more, and soon:
I've already got the whole thing written, so (unless I have brain-fail and forget to update) you shouldn't have to wait too long to get a new chapter. HOWEVER- I won't update until I get at least two reviews. But I'm very receptive to creative criticism- how else can I improve? If there's something that bothers you or that doesn't seem right, PLEASE share with me so I can improve and you can be less bothered. So more than 2 reviews would be delightful.
Background: (the Doctor doesn't belong to me). MIDNIGHT is one of my favorite episodes- one of the few that we see weakness in the Doctor, where he is actually afraid and doesn't understand. But then, in a very un-Doctorlike move, he leaves without solving it. Mistake, Doc! Unfinished business will find him eventually. And a mystery beckons- he can't just leave it alone twice.