When I wrote this, I was just starting to watch season 6. So there are probably some errors about River and the Doctor's timeline. I was originally planning to delete this story, because it didn't turn out the way I wanted it to. But then I posted it because, well, I can obviously use the constructive criticism.
SPOILERS FOR SILENCE IN THE LIBRARY, AND FOREST OF THE DEAD, AND PANDORICA OPENS.
Funny thing is, this means you've always known how I was going to die. All the time we've been together you knew I was coming here.
The last time I saw you, the real you - the future you, I mean - you turned up on my doorstep with a new haircut and a suit. You took me to Derillium to see the singing towers.
"Why, you're home early, sweetie," said River, opening her door to the Doctor who was waiting at her doorstep. Then she stared. The [Twelfth] Doctor's was wearing a suit. He never wore a suit. It was usually just a plain old tee and a pair of jeans, loafers, and his trademark unkempt hair – and speaking of his hair! He got a haircut!
"Look at you," she almost breathed in disbelief.
The Doctor grinned. "You like the haircut?"
"You do. Oh yes, you do."
River rolled her eyes, but behind her flirty, unworried façade, the Doctor could see she was a bit suspicious.
"I'm taking you somewhere special. Someplace worthy of all the pages in your diary," he told her.
She followed him inside the TARDIS, excited as always.
"Is this because our journals were completely in sync last time we met?" she guessed.
"Yes, it is mostly because of that."
Something about his tone of voice made her feel obliged to not push. Yet. The Doctor knew best. Ufsually.
"That's why you're taking me somewhere 'special.'"
The Doctor smiled and looked distant.
"Have you heard of Derillium?" he asked. She had, but she had never been there.
"Me neither," he said. "But I hear it's an enchanting place, even more awe-provoking at night. And there are towers that 'sing.' I don't know what it means, but I want to check it out. If it's no good, we'll leave."
River opened her mouth to ask why it had to be so special, but changed her mind.
What a night that was. The towers sang and you cried.
You wouldn't tell me why, but I suppose you knew it was time. My time. Time to come to the Library.
"Well, would you look at that," exclaimed the Doctor in awe. River, also amazed, gazed around them as they stepped out of TARDIS.
It was nighttime in Derillium. And the sky – the sky was ineffably stunning.
Although it was night, and the canopy of the sky glittered with stars, there was still a dim sun in the east just above the horizon, giving them candlelight's worth of light. Comets seemed frozen in time as their streaks appeared to stand still in the sky. Wind swept through River and the Doctor's hair.
The beautiful sky was emphasized by glassy pools of liquid varying in sizes in the grass below their feet. Unaffected by the wind, they were mirrors reflecting the magnificence above them.
Aurorae borealis, colored ribbons of light, were also in the sky and they danced with the music. Oh, and the music. It was not the sights alone that took their breath away. In fact, it was the songs that made the beauty more hauntingly serene.
The towers were tall, four-sided, cow-bell-shaped structures. The walls had slits in them that opened up as flaps when the wind blew in that particular direction. Some of the tones harmonized and others were dissonant, but in a way that was beautiful. The songs pierced the soul, and in the very tones were colors and emotions.
River wrote in her diary before she left for the library: "The sight was one you could feast on for millennia and never grow sick of it. And if we someday go back, which for some reason I doubt, and the wind was blowing another direction, a different song will be sung. It was a rare paradise, surprisingly not much known among the universes."
River and the Doctor laid on the soft grass.
"See those flaps?" he whispered to her. "Interesting how the people of Derillium (most of whom live in a different part of the planet) were able to do that. The towers are made out of Derillium stone. The flaps open up to pipes. They work almost like organ pipes. When the wind blows in, part of the pipe retains the air, until the pressure is high. Then it releases the pressure, causing the flap to open, letting the note out. That's basically how it works. The rest is a bit techy and too spacey to explain."
"Oh, you think you're so smart," teased River, gripping his hand. She waited for his usual cheeky reply. Maybe "Oh, but I know I'm smart." It never came.
She looked over at him.
One couldn't blame the Doctor for crying at that moment. He returned her grip with a squeeze from his own hand.
River's head, by now, was buzzing with questions.
"What's wrong, Doctor? Doctor, what's going to happen? Why are you so upset? Why am I here? What's the occasion? Are you –?"
"River, shh," he hushed.
River raised her voice, "Well, sorry, but in our most recent adventure together, you barely knew me, and then you come to my doorstep and suddenly, we've done everything together, which has really never happened before. Then you whisk away, and then return immediately, saying you're going to take me somewhere special, which you did, and now you're crying and I'm confused and a bit freaked out. So don't you dare hush me, Doctor. Don't."
The Doctor grimaced, then looked back up to the sky.
"Listen, River. Listen to the music."
A silence fell, in which the Doctor struggled with himself.
"River, do you trust me?"
He turned to her.
"Do you trust me with your life?"
"You know I do," she answered quietly.
He closed his eyes.
For a while they just lied together in silence, listening to the music.
"I love you, River Song."
This was his last time.
"And I love you, Doctor."
So he stored and treasured those words in his hearts.
He again turned towards her and they kissed for the last time.
This time, River's tears fell. After they were finally done, the Doctor wiped them away.
You even gave me your screwdriver. That should have been a clue.
The wind died down. The Doctor and River stepped back into the TARDIS.
"That was lovely. Thank you, Doctor."
"After we synced journals last time and I left in a rush, I updated this to give you so you're ready for your next adventure." He pulled out his sonic screwdriver.
Her eyes widened, and then narrowed.
"You're giving me that. You never give people your sonic. You love your screwdriver."
The Doctor didn't tell her he had his own in his pocket.
"Like I said, you'll need this."
"Well, then." River took it. "Thank you."
The Doctor pressed some buttons on the console. The whooshing sound was heard and the TARDIS was flying.
"You know, Doctor, last time we kissed, I thought it was the last…for me."
The Doctor blinked in surprise as, gradually, realization hit him. How painful it must have been for River, believing it was the last time. And now, he had just finished his last date with her.
River saw pain in his eyes. She changed the subject.
"Doctor, I think there's something wrong with my psychic paper messenger. Would you take a look at it?"
Travelling through time. So many responsibilities. Fun but with the consequence of pain.
"Sure, hand it over."
He pretended to observe it for a while, but really, to his keen eyes, it was quite obvious – the transmitter was faulty. So tempting. How he ached to fix it and let the message come to him instead of the previous him.
However, a Time Lord was a Time Lord, and as usual, the laws of time could not be lax.
"Nope, all good," he smiled the most genuine smile he could manage.
"Really? I was sure I broke it when I accidentally rubbed it against my inter-dimensional tesser bomb…" her voice faded as she walked further into TARDIS.
The Doctor stared after her.
"Oh, River Song," he whispered.
"Time can be rewritten!"
"Not those times!"
So, that was my first Doctor Who fic. Ugh, I just can't get River's flirtiness and sass right.
I may add another chapter to this one.