As promised, the next chapter! The real one this time. I promise. Thanks to IndigoXSoul for the name suggestions - I loved them all, but I guess you'll see which one I loved the most! Kerjen - thanks for your suggestions too - wonderful scene suggestion - would you mind if I used that in a separate story sometime? Anyway, on to the good stuff! I upped the rating a bit for language use, but nothing major.
As always, the adventure had been good. Better than good, actually. Great. Fantastic. Heartbreaking, frightening, amazing, brilliant, and a trillion other adjectives in a trillion other languages. But nothing, not even those, could ever express how wonderful River Song had felt when she was with him again, saving the world, fighting the bad guys, and simply living.
It was difficult to remember how to do that when life consisted of just one town.
But now came the hard part.
Good – bye.
As she had expected, he was still younger than she would have wished, but she wouldn't have minded if it weren't for Alexander. She would have to go home without a father for her son yet again.
On the bright side, though, this Doctor was far enough along to know how to love her. He insisted, of course, that he loved her every time he saw her, even when he knew only that she was important to him. But she wasn't sure she believed him.
At least, though, this Doctor had no qualms about kissing her and holding her, and wasn't frightened by the few tears that lit her eyes. An earlier version of him would have been scared and wary of his ever – so – strong River Song crying. But, at the end of the day, she was still more human than anything. Human plus, for sure, but still human. A mother, a wife, a time-traveler, a professor, an assassin (occasionally), a lover, but still human.
She got to keep that title wherever she went.
He told her then that he loved her, and for a second she considered telling him that he loved more than just her. He loved their son too. The words were on her lips, pushing their way out. She knew she shouldn't, that this wasn't how it was supposed to happen, but she was exhausted, physically and mentally. She had watched some die today, and others realize the kind of power that broke her heart, and she needed him to tell her that it was going to be okay. He would, even without knowing everything that he should, but she needed to be told that things would be okay not just for her, but for Alex, too.
She knew that if they hadn't been interrupted then, she would have told him. She would have hated herself later, but she would have explained to him everything, and then taken him back to her son. She would have dragged him by the arm to the console of the TARDIS and let him see for himself. He wouldn't have believed her at first, but then he would, and the recognition would have dawned on his ruggedly handsome face, and he would have taken them both in his arms and told them he loved them, no matter what.
God, she was sentimental sometimes.
That didn't happen, though, because something else did. The TARDIS began to quake and move then, the way it did in-flight, but that, of course, was impossible, because the only two people who could pilot the machine were entwined in the bed sheets of their room aboard the ship. Impossible.
Unless it wasn't.
River never would know what set the TARDIS off, but something convinced her that she should move herself all the way through time and space to River's front door.
"I don't understand! She can't just – that CAN'T happen!"
"Well it obviously did, sweetie, so stop going on about it." River's voice shook, and her mind whirled as she tried to think of the best way to keep him away from what lay outside the TARDIS doors. The TARDIS must have figured out what she was thinking, because the ship promptly went dark and refused to respond to any of the Doctor's frantic button – pushing.
"And now she's just – how River!"
"I don't know." River was still staring out into the world beyond the doors, watching her son play, oblivious, in the grass of the hill behind their house where Mrs. Daly's home stood, the old woman sitting on the porch drinking sweet tea. It looked like a scene out of a fairy tale.
"River? Are you alright? River."
"Hmm? Yes… of course." She turned slightly towards him, not wanting to miss even a second of seeing Alexander play. He was so happy. And how she wanted to tell her husband, now. At the moment, she didn't give a damn that he was too young. He was freaking 900 years old, and he could handle knowing that he had a son. He could.
He had come up behind her and put his arms around her waist, probably just to keep himself from running back to the console to find the problem, but River melted into his warmth anyway.
She loved how he said her name. But this wasn't the time to be distracted. She had made up her mind, and nothing would change it. She would tell him. She would have a family, a real one, even if it was only for the day, or however long he stayed this time.
The Doctor, River, and Alexander Song.
"There's something you need to know."
So? Was River to OOC or did I do okay? I'd like to think she has a pretty strong emotional side to her, but not sure if I went overboard. Thanks so much for reading! Oh yeah - this was supposed to be the last chapter, but if I get enough encouragement, I might do a bit more. I have a couple of ideas that would work as an epilogue.