Pain. There are two types of pain, emotional and physical. Physical pain affects the body, causing it to ache. Emotional pain, however, is much more complicated. It can be derived from a vast amount of reasons and emotions. But there are sometimes, in extreme cases, where emotional pain can cause physical pain.
The Doctor had experienced so much emotional pain in twelve-hundred years of life. Loss, so much loss, had consumed him, making him colder as the years went by. Being the good man he is, however, he always forced a smile and continued saving the universe.
This time he wasn't so sure.
The Doctor lay on the floor of his beloved TARDIS, curled into a ball and crying like a small child. Only mere hours had passed since the end of the Doctor's last date with his beloved River Song, and emotionally he had fallen apart. His emotional pain was so great that he felt as if his hearts had stopped beating. He couldn't breathe, he couldn't move, all he could do was lay there and cry from the sickening pain.
The TARDIS hummed to him in comfort, but it was no use. Not one thing, not one person in the universe could calm him. He just wanted her, his River Song, his beautiful Melody Pond. Now she was gone.
Thoughts raged through the timelord's mind. He could have stopped her, right then and there. He could have saved her, stopped her from going to the library where she would meet her death. He had given her his screwdriver, just like he had known he would for three hundred years. Sure, she would be saved, but as a memory in a database-never to see her husband again. Three hundred years to think of a way to save his beloved and this was the pathetic solution he came up with.
The worst part is, he never got the chance to say goodbye. He knew the entire time he was sending her to her death. Someone who loved and trusted him, and all he could say was "goodnight."
"Don't let it be too long before I see you again, sweetie," she had told him as he walked back to his TARDIS.
He had turned to face her once more, forcing a smile as he forced back more tears. "I won't. You will see me again very soon...goodnight, love."
How painfully truthful that was. He couldn't tell her goodbye. He couldn't tell her that would be the last time she would see that version of him.
His thoughts lingered to past versions of himself. His ninth incarnation had crossed his own timeline just to allow Rose to say goodbye to her father. His tenth incarnation burned up a sun just to say goodbye to Rose. Now that his dear River Song was on her way to her death, he could not bear to not say goodbye... even if he had to cross his own timeline and risk his own life to do so.
The Doctor dragged a large spotlight from the TARDIS, using it to shine the area in which he stood so that he would be safe. He placed a perception filter necklace around his neck so that he would go unnoticed, and stood behind a corner as he peered out to the scene before him.
River sat in front of his tenth incarnation, who she had chained up. Eleven watched as Ten pleaded with her; but River, his strong, stubborn River wouldn't much.
"Not those memories. Not a single one, don't you dare," she told him painfully. Tears streamed down Eleven's cheeks, and he knew she was right. The funny thing was that after all these years, he still wanted to do the same thing now that he wished to do then, even more so now that he knew who she was. He wanted to rip her out of that chair and take her place.
He knew that couldn't happen.
The strong, beautiful woman took her life, her body completely incinerating.
Eleven pressed his back against the wall, sliding down until he was perched on the ground. He put his head between his knees, sobbing quietly to himself.
His attention returned when his former self rushed back in to "save" River's mind into the computer system. When Ten left, he walked to the console where she had been saved. "I'm sorry, my love. I am so, so sorry..." he breathed brokenly.
River sat in her bedroom in the virtual room, pondering what had just occurred. That man was incredible. She loved him so much, and she would never see him again now. Tears fell from her eyes as she realized this. She could almost hear the sound of crying amidst her sadness.
Then, she realized it was the sound of crying-and not her own. She heard words, his words, her Doctor's words. She rose to her feet. "Sweetie?" she asked, and suddenly the world around her changed. She saw her husband in the control room, crying as he traced his fingers over the console.
Eleven heard his wife's all-too-familiar pet name, and he turned completely around, laying his eyes upon one of the spoon-like servers. His wife's face stared back at him. He ran to her, clasping his hands around her face as if making sure it was real.
River gasped in surprise and joy to see her husband. "You came back..." she said happily, but her mood quickly changed as she realized what danger he was putting himself in. "You shouldn't be here! It's dangerous!" she then scolded.
"I know, I know," Eleven sobbed quietly. "But I h-had to s-say good...goodbye. I'm so.. I'm s-so sorry, River," he trembled.
River's face softened. She wished she could reach out and touch him, but she was just a face inside of a server. "It's okay, sweetie," she cried with him. "It's really okay. I'm fine. I will be happy here, my love."
"But y-you'll n-never s-see me a-again. I'm such a sorry...sorry ex-excuse f-for a husband. I..I made you wait..so much and...and s-so long f-for me all those years. And now you can never see me again," he sobbed.
She closed her eyes painfully. "I will be okay."
"N-no you're n-not. You're just s-saying that so I ...so I can go about my life and ... and be alright but River I CAN'T. I have lost so many and so much. I can't lose you. I CAN'T!" he shouted, staring into her eyes. "I...I love you."
She smiled sadly though her tears. "I love you too..." she replied, as golden light emitted from her mouth.
The Doctor's eyes widened. "What...what is that..." he said, as the bright light began to consume her.
"I...I think I'm regenerating..." River said from within her virtual reality, glowing brightly. "Doctor... that's impossible...I'm in a computer system, I gave all my regenerations to you..." she looked at him, confused.
The Doctor stared, then after a few seconds he smiled brightly. "OF COURSE!" he exclaimed, punching his fist in the air victoriously. "Of course, River! That night I healed your hand, I gave a regeneration away! The computer must have still stored your timelord DNA in its database and used the regenerative code to restore the physical body encoded in its system! Melody Pond, you have been saved!" he shouted excitedly, twirling and jumping in the air.
The light shone brighter than ever, and within seconds there she was- same body, same curly hair, same beautiful face-the very last image that was saved of her.
The lovers smiled bigger than ever, holding one another tightly and laughing. The Doctor then pulled away from their embrace, kissing her passionately. River broke the kiss, staring at him, astonished. "I can't believe it..."
"River do you know what this means?!" the Doctor exclaimed, taking her hands. "Our timelines are caught up! You can travel with me! You, me, time and space! Husband and wife on the TARDIS. Come away with me?" he asked.
River Song smiled, tears welling in her eyes. She nodded, touching his face and saying, "I suppose we can make an acception to the 'one psychopath per TARDIS rule,'" she joked.
"As long as we are happy... and I can honestly tell you, Melody Pond, I have never been happier in my life than I am this very moment," he said, leading her away on their ship.
The TARDIS greeted her child and the mad man she stole, emitting a series of loud noises as they flew away from the library.
This idea is pretty out-there and farfetched, but I think it would be cool and it would give the chance for River to actually be a companion. Which I would love personally because River is my favorite character. Hope you enjoyed! Reviews are always welcome and appreciated!
DISCLAIMER: I obviously don't own Doctor Who.