A/N: (Feel free to skip my useless rambling) So I got some requests to continue this, and my feels weren't satisfied, so here you guys go, a slightly bittersweet ending. Hope you enjoy, and please leave a review! They make me happy! :)


Never Let Him See

II


It took him a while, but the Doctor finally found it in him to heave himself off the ground. His long legs carried him to the kitchen and he made himself a cup of tea.

As he stirred the aromatic liquid, his eyes busied themselves following the swirl of the tea as his thoughts brought him back to that bedroom. He was glad he couldn't hear River's tears, seeing her cry might possibly be the most painful thing about this whole past couple of days. Not because she was pained, but because she wouldn't let him ease her pain. It confused him. Wasn't that what marriage was about? Helping each other? Didn't the humans call it a 'helpmate'? He needed to do something. To save someone. Couldn't she understand that? The only way he knew how to deal with his overwhelming pain was to fix other things. He was the Doctor. That was his job, and River wasn't letting him do it.

In a way, though he had to be thankful to her. His preoccupation to the hows and whys of River Song was keeping his mind from wandering down the dark void that used to be called Pond.

His thoughts were interrupted by the sound of repeated gunfire. He nearly catapulted out of place and followed the offending noise. He found the source in the flowing, powerful body lines, wild hair, and a pair of green-blue eyes that'd hardened to jewels as River fired round after round into a row of targets in a room that he certainly didn't remember being a part of the TARDIS.

He covered his ears and winced. "River!"

"What?" She bellowed over the sound of the gun.

He took a cautious step forward, "What are you doing?"

"Practicing." She lifted the gun and took aim. The gunshot rang through the room, causing the Doctor to jump violently.

"River, can't we just…talk?"

"About?" Another deafening gunshot.

He took another step forward and River whirled and trained the gun right at his left heart, glaring, cold fire burning behind her eyes. He flinched and raised his hands. "Why won't you let me help."

She get the gun trained on him as she circled the room like a prowling cat, walking over to switch guns. She finally put it down on the table and began taking it apart mechanically as she spoke. "I already told you, you can't."

He sighed and rubbed the back of his neck, "River-"

"No."

"Please, River, I'm the Doctor- that's what I do. I help- I fix things, that's my job!" He was pleading with her now.

Something inside River flared and she whirled to face him. She walked up to him and grabbed him by his bowtie. "Don't you try to fix me, Sweetie." The pet name sounded like a curse. She began to push past him when she felt him catch her wrist. She tried to wrench it from his grasp, her temper rising as she fought to keep control of her grief. Whipping around, she was infuriated to find him staring back at her, those old/young eyes filled with pain, and hurt, and confusion. She could see the wheels in his head turning. He was trying to work out some massive puzzle. "Let. Go." She demanded through gritted teeth.

"Not until you tell me the real reason you won't let me see what's really going on with you," he replied quietly, those cobalt eyes seeming to sear into her mind.

"Why don't you just find out for yourself?" She snapped, "You're psychic."

"Because I want you to know that you can tell me," he replied back.

River bit her lip. She couldn't tell him. She couldn't. But she was tired of mothering the Doctor. She was tired of being strong for him. And yet she needed to, because she couldn't force her grief on him too, her pain, it might drive him absolutely mad and she couldn't do that to him, no matter how much he begged. She had to protect him. She had to take care of him.

She needed to run, to twist away, to hide. She needed to go somewhere where she could cry without worrying about him. Why couldn't he just see for once that she was trying to help him? She hit him on the arm, pulling away frantically, feeling ready to burst with emotion if he didn't let her go. Again, she hit him on the chest, and he grabbed for her other wrist. She twisted, ducked, trying to break free so she could be alone with her thoughts. She couldn't let him see, but she was terrified, Godammit, and she just wanted to be comforted. She wanted to be able to stop being strong. She was upset and she just wanted her Mum and her Dad to hold her tight and tell her everything was going to be okay.

She hiccupped and collapsed against him, a sob escaping from her lips. She couldn't do this, she couldn't be strong, not for this. She'd tried and there was no way she was going to be able to hide her grief for her parents.

She felt the Doctor's hands release her wrists and his arms wrap around her shoulders and back as she cried quietly into his shoulder. His hands wound in her hair and he pressed kisses to it. She felt his shoulders shaking as he began to cry as well. Her fingers grabbed great fistfuls of his tweed jacket, needing to find something solid to grab onto, to anchor herself as her carefully crafted mask of strength fell away. She was vulnerable.

"Shh," she heard him whisper, "There you go, love. It's okay to cry. I know it hurts…but we have each other right now and Amy and Rory wouldn't want us to be fighting like this." She felt him swallow, "I know you probably blame me for their death…and I am so, so sorry, River- but please don't block me out of your hurt. I need to be able to help you. Neither of us can do this alone." He then pressed a finger under her chin and cupped her tear-stained face in one hand, wiping gently at her tears with the other, "Now do you want to tell me what all of that nonsense was about?"

She sniffled. "I was trying to protect you, Sweetie," she admitted.

He pushed her curls back, a trembling smile on his face. "River- you never cease to amaze me. You're brilliant, you are, but I'll survive. I won't have you trying to protect me at your expense more than you already have to." She hiccupped again and nodded, straightening his bowtie. He smiled and gently caught her wandering fingers and brought them to his lips. "You Ponds, always looking after me."

"Mum did tell me to, Doctor," River reminded him quietly. She looked up and saw darkness in his eyes at her words. She bit her tongue, old instincts rising in her.

He swallowed thickly, his hands rubbing circles on her fingers. "C'mon." He pulled her back to the kitchen, setting her down. He poured her a cup of tea and then walked over to the fridge. He opened it and pulled out two cups of custard and some fish fingers that were somehow still warm.

He sat down next to her and handed her one cup of custard, peeling the top off of hers and then his and opened the tuppaware of fish fingers. He pressed a small, trembling kiss to her forehead.

"Fish fingers and custard?"

River nodded, sucking in a breath. "Fish fingers and custard."


Fin.