Notes: This is the first fanfiction that I've written since before the birth of my first daughter. My brother has been pushing me to write a new story for months now, and lets face it short little drabbles are a great way to get our feet wet.
The title of the story is quote by George Henry Lewes.
This takes place after Journey's End but also has spoilers for The Angels Take Manhattan
Disclaimer: Doctor Who is the property of the BBC.
The Doctor walked back to the TARDIS with heavy hearts, after leaving Donna with her family, memory-wiped of all the wonderful things she had done. He sighed heavily, the universe wasn't fair. Every time he had something good in his life, it slipped through his fingers. Oh but hadn't it been nice a few short hours ago, when the TARDIS was filled with friends, a full crew for the first time in centuries.
He unlocked the TARDIS and walked in, and realized that he wasn't alone. Standing by the control console, running her hands lovingly over her buttons and switches, was River Song. He froze, wide-eyed as he recalled that the last time he saw her. She had sacrificed her life to save the thousands of people trapped in the memory of the Library's computer.
"Hello Sweetie!" She said brightly.
Of course she wasn't the same River Song, this one was younger, although he wouldn't be able to tell you how much younger. She had told the Doctor that they never encountered each other in order.
"How did you get in here?"
"Really, you think that I don't have my own key?" She laughed, and then made her way over to him.
"Alright then, what are you doing here?" He demanded.
River reached out and took his hand in her own. "I know what happened, and I came to help." She gave his hand a gentle squeeze, but he just shook free and strode over angrily to the control panel. Using it to distance himself from her. She was just another example of how everyone always left him in the end.
"I don't need any help."
"Really, well then maybe you can help me." Her air of confidence slipped and he saw a look of defeat pass over her features.
"What's happened?" he asked.
She tried to give a smile but her heart wasn't in it. "Spoilers." Her voice cracked, and she started to cry.
He didn't really know her, not like she seemed to know him, but if his suspicions were true then one day this vibrant, confident woman would one day be his wife. So forgetting his own pain for a moment he walked back over to her side and wrapped him arms around her.
She returned the embrace and he was barely able to hear her mumble. "They might be gone, but at least they're still alive."
Was she talking about Donna, Rose, or was she referring to what ever it was that was making her cry. He started to rub circles on her back and then squeezed her a little harder and gave into the grief of losing Donna, and Rose all in one day.
"I'm sorry. I'm so sorry." And he was, for her and himself.
It was River who pulled back first, wiping her tears as she did so. "Well I think we've had quite enough of that. You know what they say, the only cure for grief is action. Time for you to go have another adventure, get back on the horse as it were."
"Come with me?" He asked, suddenly not wanting to be alone.
"I can't, not yet. Just you wait though, the next time you see me, oh how we'll run."
She gave him a peck on the cheek, then held his eyes for a few seconds longer, her gaze filled with promises of things to come. Then she walked out of the TARDIS.
The Doctor turned back to the control panel this time with a smile, perhaps there were things in the future to look forward to after all. He flicked the wibbly lever and entered into the time vortex, and into adventure.