AN — Takes place immediately prior to The Waters of Mars. I still haven't made up my mind whether I think River slept with Ten or not, but I wanted to write more River and Ten and thought the lead up to Time Lord Victorious shenanigans would be an interesting point to get them interacting.

Falling Out

She sat up out of bed and fastened her bra behind her back.

"Off so soon?" he ventured, taking in the toned lines of her back while he still had the chance.

She slipped the straps up onto her shoulders and then freed a curl that had become entangled in the process. "Yep."

"Sure you don't want to cuddle? Round two? Is there nothing I can tempt you with?"

Her shoulders dropped a fraction and she inhaled deeply before answering, "No thank you, Sweetie."

"Careful, you could hurt my feelings," he said, half in jest.

"You have your notch, what more do you want?" She flinched at her own words then quickly gathered herself again, bent over and pulled her knickers on.

Startled by her brusqueness, the Doctor blinked. "My notch? You're not a notch, River," he said, incredulous.

She turned to stare down at him with her hands on her hips, making him feel all of a sudden very naked. "Spare me the bullshit. Please, do that much."

He dragged the sheet up over his waist. "Do you regret it now? Is that it? You didn't exactly seem to be filled with remorse five minutes ago."

"You're uniquely insufferable like this."

"Like what?"

"This. Arrogant. Reckless."

"This is how I always am."

"No, it really isn't," she said through clenched teeth. "Did you even see yourself back there? It was like you thought you were invincible; do you have any idea how dangerous you make people to themselves?"

"What are you talking about? I saved all those people; they're all going home to their families because of me." He sat up.

River swiped her skirt from the chair and tugged it up over her hips, then yanked her blouse on over her arms and began to fight with the buttons. Her fingers were trembling with ire. "I honestly don't know how to talk to you. It's like you're an entirely different person."

"Well, Sweetie, it didn't stop you dropping your knickers, now did it?" The words burned at the back of his throat; it might have been a bit harsh but she had been trying to provoke him. What did she expect?

She scooped up her shoes, snatched her battered old diary from the dressing table and stormed towards the door. She paused with a hand on the doorframe but didn't look back around. "No, I don't regret it. I'll take whatever of you I can get." There was a tiny catch in her voice as she spoke.

She slipped on her heels and walked out, not slamming the door behind her.