- tenacious_err jokingly demanded "DOCTOR/RIVER RAINBOWS AND UNICORNS!" and I was shamefully inspired. Please don't judge me, lol.
The Unicorn and the Custard
"Unicorns!" The Doctor declares, twirling as he exits the TARDIS.
River blinks against the bright sunlight and raises a hand to shield her eyes. "What?"
"Unicorns, River!" He gestures to the expansive field in front of them, the greenest green; unicorns pepper the landscape, their bright silvery manes nearly reflective in the sunlight. "I give you rainbows, silver lakes, trees so tall they can touch the stars! - not actually, but there are actual stars here! Tiny little menageries made out of the dusts of a thousand different burning stars and planets; you can buy them in the market place!" Grabbing her hand, he pushes her in front of him and toward the nearest animal. "But most importantly - unicorns."
River rolls her eyes as a few of the creatures look up, appearing almost as if they're glaring at the Doctor for interrupting their solitude.
"I can see that, dear, but why-"
He silences her with a finger over her lips. "In the last week, we have been chased by Sontarans, shot at by Cybermen, stepped on by Adricaracks, narrowly evaded two murderous plots-"
"-technically they weren't for us, sweetie-"
"-jumped off a cliff - handcuffed! -"
"- don't tell me you didn't enjoy it-"
"-and I was forced to eat beans." He leans in conspiratorially. "Beans, River."
Hiding a grin, River lets him tug her back to the TARDIS where he's left a picnic basket just inside the door. "Today, we are going to have a nice lunch, do a little shopping, and hang out with the unicorns."
He nods vehemently as if to emphasize his point.
"Have you cleared your schedule with them?" She motions over her shoulder to the small herd of unicorns slowly but steadily approaching.
The Doctor waves one hand carelessly while trying to fan out the picnic blanket with the other. It curls in on itself in the soft breeze, and River reaches out to help him ease the blanket to the ground. Grinning, he flops down and giddily rips into the picnic basket - bigger on the inside - and pulls out a large container of custard, a large container of fish fingers, and a baguette.
"Seriously?" she glares.
Having already opened the second container, the Doctor looks up at her with a fish finger half-way to his mouth. "What?"
River laughs, a brilliant sound, he thinks, and smiles at him fondly. He blushes, and she sighs in amused exasperation before flipping herself around and laying back, her head on thigh.
Eyes closed, River wriggles slightly into a more comfortable position, letting the sun warm her face. Hands folded beneath her breasts, legs crossed, the grass soft on her bare skin.
"Um." The Doctor gulps. "River?" he squeaks out…gruffly.
She opens her eyes and peers up at him. "Yes, Sweetie?"
He swallows tightly, shifting awkwardly. Her hair moves across his lap, and he freezes.
The Doctor huffs, shuffles his legs obnoxiously for a moment, then sighs. "You are impossible."
"Says the man who only eats fish fingers."
"Oi! They're delicious."
"Prison food is more palatable," she teases.
He 'harumphs' maturely and dips another piece in the custard. "More for me, then."
"Whatever you say, my love," she murmurs, her eyes closed again, a light smile decorating her face.
Licking his fingers, the Doctor leans back on one hand, brushing his other hand through her hair gently. She hums quietly, contented, and he tells her stories of Gallifrey, of her heritage and language and all his years, just a lonely mad man with a box.
"Not anymore," he murmurs, dropping a kiss to her forehead impulsively. River snakes a hand around his neck and pulls him into a chaste kiss. He moves to deepen it, suddenly less concerned with talking and more concerned with hands and lips and the slightest bit of her hair in his mouth, when a commotion startles them apart.
Glancing up, the Doctor comes nearly eye-to-eye with a foal.
River sits up with a start and the Doctor grins. "Hello, there!" he greets. The unicorn tilts its head and makes a sharp, breathy sound. "Oh, no, no, we're just having a picnic - " A trill from its throat. - "Ah, breakfast! Food. Lunch." The little unicorn cocks its head to the side, and the Doctor scratches his head. "Ehh…grass!" The Doctor declares, pulling up a handful of grass and proffering it to the baby.
The unicorn gives a little lopsided jump and dives on the food in the Doctor's hand. River laughs, shaking her head.
"Reminds me of someone I know."
"That's not-" The unicorns butts him in the face with her snout. "Oi!" Another trill. "It's not funny! I like fish fingers! You want to try one?" He holds out a fish finger. The unicorn eyes it warily, then takes a small bite out of it, leaving the rest in his palm.
Stepping back, the unicorn chews thoughtfully for a moment. Then, without warning, attempts to rear back on its tiny legs, shakes her head furiously, and spits the food out in the Doctor's lap.
Two weeks later, River continues to tease him about it.
Two weeks after that, he still can't stomach the sight of fish fingers.