River Song was dreaming. She wasn't dreaming of anything in particular, but she continued to sleep and to dream. A familiar sound was ever present in her dreams, but when she woke, she was always still in her cell, alone. While she could break out whenever she wanted to, she generally chose not to. She'd been locked away for long enough that she knew she shouldn't leave unless absolutely necessary. Unless, of course, the Doctor arrived to take her out. But those days were few and far between. River awoke slowly, and blinked in the darkness. There was a dim glow from the lights outside her cell, but beyond that, it was dark. She lay back, staring into the darkness above her where she knew the ceiling was. This cell was her reality, and had been for many, many years. She was used to it, but still, sometimes, it made her sad. If only she could be out there in the universe, travelling with the Doctor for more than one trip at a time. Sometimes River wished she was just an ordinary person, someone who hadn't been raised as an assassin and then imprisoned for a murder she didn't technically commit. But then, if she was ordinary, she might never have the Doctor, and then what would her life be? He made her a better person. He'd accepted her as she was, assassin and all, and helped her to grow. And she loved him, oh how she loved him. She may play with her sexuality sometimes, and use it as a weapon, but there was only one man to whom she could ever open herself up to fully. And it was ever getting closer to the day when he wouldn't recognise her at all. But sometimes, just sometimes, he would surprise her. He would come to her, not a younger version of himself, but her Doctor, her husband, her lover. Sometimes he would come, just so she wouldn't be all alone. But this wasn't one of those times. River sighed, and rolled over, closing her eyes. She went back to sleep, and dreamt of the Doctor.
When River awoke next, it was a bit lighter. The sun was up, she figured, though with the artificial lighting and lack of windows, she never knew for sure. She cracked open an eye, and then yawned, stretching out her stiff limbs.
"You are certainly a sight to behold in the morning," a voice said, and River sat up in a hurry. She knew that voice.
"Hello, Sweetie," he replied, using her favourite phrase.
River looked up at him, examining him closely. He was leaning against the TARDIS, wearing his usual tweed and bowtie.
"When are you?" River asked.
"Late enough," he replied, pushing himself off the TARDIS, and taking a few steps closer. River stood up, and walked into his embrace. They stood for a few moments, revelling in the feel of each other, before the Doctor finally pulled away. "So, are you coming?" he asked.
"Of course," River replied, brushing past him to enter the TARDIS. She walked up to the console, and smiled. "Hello, old girl," she murmured, rubbing the console fondly.
The Doctor closed the door behind him, before bounding up to the console, and setting her into life.
"So where are we going?" River asked, as she held on to stop herself from falling over.
"Do you know what day it is?" the Doctor responded, also holding on.
"I do know that if you let me fly her, we'd not be clinging on for dear life right now," River shot back, giving him a look.
The Doctor rolled his eyes, and ignored the comment. "It's New Years Eve! Do you know how many parties are held all over the universe?"
"Plenty, I assume. Which one are we going to?"
"You'll see!" The Doctor whooped happily as the TARDIS shuddered to a stop.
River let go of her handhold and shook her head at the Doctor, her hair bouncing as she did. "You are still such a terrible pilot."
"I am not!"
"You are. Now, where are we? I need to know so I can get dressed appropriately."
A look flashed across the Doctor's face, and River grinned.
"Unless you want to stay here and I can dress down..."
The Doctor gulped, and scratched his face nervously, like he always did when he was in a potentially sexual situation and didn't know how to respond.
River laughed, and walked over to him. "We can do that later," she said quietly, before pecking him softly on the lips and heading off towards the wardrobe.
She rifled through some clothes, before deciding on a pair of her favourite jodhpurs, and a nice shirt. Beauty of a good pair of pants, you can dress them up. She slipped on a pair of heels, before making her way back to the console room. The Doctor was still in his usual outfit, so obviously they weren't somewhere fancy.
"Well?" River asked, turning in a circle.
"Yes, very nice," the Doctor replied. "Good choice."
She smirked a little, before heading to the TARDIS doors, and opening them. She stepped out, and smiled. "Oh, you nostalgic idiot," she whispered to herself, and she went and knocked on the door of the house in front of her.
There was a bit of commotion inside, and then, "Get the door, you idiot!" yelled a woman.
"Yes, dear!" a man replied, and River chuckled. The door swung open, and she gave her father a big smile.
"River!" Rory Williams seemed a little shocked, but then he smiled. "What a surprise. Is the Doctor with you?"
"Yes! I'm here!" The Doctor arrived behind River. "Was just locking up. You never know what could happen in this day and age. Rory! Rory the Roman! How are you?" All was said in one breath, and River had to laugh. The Doctor shook hands with Rory, and then looked around him into the house. "So? Where might Mrs Williams be?"
"I'm here," Amy Pond was behind Rory in an instant, a smile lighting up her face. "River, Doctor, good to see you both! Come in, come in. Rory, move."
Rory did so, and stepped aside to allow River and the Doctor to enter the house. He shut the door, and followed them to the living room. They all sat down on the couches.
"So," Amy said, "River, when are you now?"
"Well, I'm about to head off on a mission that could earn me a pardon. I'm supposed to lead a team into the wreck of the Byzantium." River replied. "So we'll see how that goes." She saw Amy shoot a glance at the Doctor, and she smiled. "Oh, so you're there? How nice."
"Spoilers," the Doctor said, and River had to smile.
"So, anyway, New Years Eve. You could be anywhere in the universe, and yet you're here," Amy said. "Why? Or did you not realise it was New Years Eve?"
"Of course I know it's New Years Eve," the Doctor said, a little grumpily. "And why wouldn't we spend it here?"
"I'm glad," River said. "Any chance to come and see you both." It was strange, sitting across from her parents, who were still years younger than her, but it was also an opportunity that River relished. She knew that, come a certain point, she would meet a Doctor who didn't know her, and also didn't know Amy or Rory. She would lose her husband and her parents to the effects of a random timeline.
"We're glad to see you, too, River," Rory said. "You're always welcome here."
"Thanks, Dad," River replied, no hint of sarcasm or humour in her use of the word.
"Well," the Doctor jumped in, "It's New Years Eve. Let's party!" He jumped off the couch with a flourish and held a hand out to River. She took it and he pulled her to her feet. "What do you say?" the Doctor said to Amy and Rory. "You up for a trip?"
Amy glanced at Rory, and then smiled. "What do you have in mind?"
"Follow me!" the Doctor said, rushing off, back out of the house and across the road to the TARDIS, still dragging River with him. Amy followed at a slightly slower pace, and Rory locked up the house.
River went and leant against the railing surrounding the console, and Amy walked in behind her. She smiled broadly as she looked around. "Well, some things never change, do they?" she asked. "You'd think he could redecorate sometimes."
"Well, you know the Doctor," River said. "Once he's found something he likes, he doesn't like to change anything."
Amy walked up the stairs, and came to lean on the railing next to River. "So how are you?"
"I've been in prison long enough to have accepted my life, Amy. At least I have the Doctor to keep me in trouble."
Amy smiled, and wrapped an arm around River's shoulders. "It can't be easy though."
"Not always. But tonight, let's put all that aside and have fun. I don't know what he's got planned, but knowing the Doctor, it's bound to be fun."
River chuckled as the Doctor and Rory walked in.
"What?" the Doctor asked.
"Just talking about you, dear," River replied.
"Seems like you always are," he grumbled in reply.
River just smiled.
The Doctor set the TARDIS into motion again, and laughed happily. River and Amy held on to the railing, and Rory held onto the stairs where he'd sat.
"So, Doctor," Amy said, "Showing up again and whisking us off in your spaceship. Were you lonely again?"
"It's New Years Eve, Pond. I thought you'd like a night out."
"How did you know we weren't already at a party?" Amy replied.
Amy rolled her eyes. "So where are we going?"
"Go have a look." The Doctor landed the TARDIS, and gestured towards the door.
Amy grinned, and ran down to the door. "Coming, Rory?" she asked.
"Yeah," he replied, getting up, and following Amy out of the TARDIS.
"So, Doctor. Where are we now?"
"Come see," the Doctor replied. He wrapped an arm around River's waist, and they left the TARDIS.
A few hours later, Amy and Rory were happily dancing together to some loud music, surrounded by partying people, human and alien. River had been mingling and dancing with various people all night, but now she was standing at the side of the room, watching her parents.
"So, having a good night?" asked a quiet voice at her side.
River leant into the Doctor, and closed her eyes. "Yes," she replied. "Thank you."
"Anytime, Dr Song."
"It's almost midnight!" someone called, and the crowd buzzed in excitement. The countdown started soon after.
The Doctor took River's hand.
River squeezed the Doctor's hand in return.
She smiled at him.
He brushed a stray piece of hair from her face.
She leant closer.
He pressed his lips to her forehead.
She closed her eyes.
He let go of her hand to cup her face with both hands.
River opened her eyes, and the Doctor smiled at her.
"1! Happy New Year!" everyone cried, and the Doctor bent down to kiss River. He held her close, one hand on her waist, the other tangling in her hair. She kissed him back, her hands holding onto the front of his shirt, pulling him closer. They eventually pulled apart when someone cleared their throat behind them.
"Are we interrupting?" Amy asked, looking bemused.
River smiled sheepishly. She and the Doctor usually kept their displays of affection private. "It's midnight," she said.
"Yes, it is," Amy agreed.
"And we're married. You can't get mad at me for showing affection with my husband."
Amy just shook her head. "I still can't believe I'm your mother-in-law," she said to the Doctor.
He pulled a face in return.
"Well, it's officially... well, what year are we in?" Amy asked.
"7256," the Doctor replied.
"Well, it's officially 7256, then. Any chance we can go back home?" Rory asked.
"In a hurry are we?" the Doctor asked.
"It's been a long night," Rory replied.
"Okay. Back to the TARDIS then."
They all wandered back to the TARDIS slowly. Amy had an arm around Rory's waist, and his was over her shoulders. The Doctor and River trailed behind them hand in hand. It had been a fun night. They all entered the TARDIS, and again the Doctor sent her off into the vortex.
River and the Doctor were alone again. They'd seen Rory and Amy off, and then returned to the TARDIS. River was sitting on the jump seat while the Doctor ran circles around the console. He was talking excitedly about something, but River wasn't really listening. She was watching him work, but mostly she was thinking about him. How happy he made her, but how sad she was going to be. It ate at her sometimes, and with each passing year, she knew she was closer to the time when he wouldn't recognise her.
She looked up when the Doctor stopped in front of her.
"Everything okay?" he asked.
He held out a hand to her. "Follow me," he said, and he led her through the TARDIS. He gently pushed her inside, and shut the door behind him. "Sit," he said.
River sat down on the edge of the bed. The Doctor knelt down on the floor in front of her, and started to remove her shoes. River sat quietly and watched as he did. He put the shoes aside, and ran his hands up the outsides of River's legs. He stood up, and his hands settled on her shoulders. He gently pushed her backwards, and she pushed herself up the bed, and the Doctor scrambled up over her. He gently pulled her shirt up and over her head, tossing it aside. In turn, she began to undo his bowtie and shirt, eventually pushing the shirt over his shoulders. He shrugged it off, and threw it aside. He leant in and kissed her. They spent some time lazily kissing each other, and enjoying the feel of being together. The Doctor was caressing River's skin, as though he could never get enough of her. River wasn't idle either, running her hands over the Doctor's chest, and down to undo his pants. She pushed them down over the Doctor's hips. He finished the job, and his pants joined their other clothes on the floor. They were getting more urgent now, mouths fusing together and exploring each other's bodies. Hands were everywhere, and the Doctor made quick work of River's remaining clothes, and then removed his own underwear. They were soon naked, and the Doctor sat back on his heels, still straddling River, and admired the view. River smirked up at him, and he grinned back. She reached up, and pulled the Doctor back down to her, kissing him deeply. He broke away, and reached down between them.
"You're already ready for me, are you?" he whispered roughly in River's ear.
"I'm always ready for you, my love."
The Doctor grinned, and rubbed his hips against River's. She groaned, and closed her eyes. "Enough teasing."
"I can never tease you enough," the Doctor replied, but he gave in anyway, pushing into her in one stroke.
River arched up against him, and they both groaned. River would never get over the feeling of being joined with the Doctor. She loved it, and no matter what happened, this always made her feel better.
They moved together, both wanting to be in control, but both giving and taking in return. It wasn't long before River was arching off the bed, and the Doctor was laying open kisses on her exposed neck. She shuddered as she came, breaking under him, moaning his name. He came soon after, whispering her name into her hair over and over again.
They ended up lying next to each other, River snuggled into the Doctor's side. He was playing with her hair, and she was playing with his free hand.
"This is a trip backwards for you, isn't it?" River murmured. "By now, I'm meeting younger versions of you, and you don't know me. Not like you do now."
"I know," the Doctor murmured back. "And I'm sorry. For anything I might say or do. River..."
"It's okay. You were younger then," River said.
"River, I just want you to know, no matter what I might say or do, I love you. Please, don't ever forget that." The Doctor buried his face in River's hair. "I love you so much."
River wrapped her arms around him and held him tight. "I love you too, sweetie. Whatever I might do, I love you."
"Happy New Year, River."
"Happy New Year, Doctor."
And they fell asleep in each other's arms.
A/N: Happy 2012 everyone. Here's hoping we get more Doctor/River goodness!