Dear Mr. Doctor: Chapter Two
(Subtitled “Those Days Are Behind Him” and crossposted to A Teaspoon And An Open Mind.)
“Handcuffs? How quaint! I haven’t been in these since I last met River at the be… ulp.” The Doctor would have done a facepalm, but there were the handcuffs. “Oh, that’s clever — she requested these, didn’t she?”
“Yes, sir,” said a bodyguard who had been standing there the entire time.
“Well, don’t you have something a little more…high-security to put me in? ‘Cos if you don’t, I’ll be a little miffed,” sighed the Doctor.
“I am a great criminal, aren’t I? One of those great breaker-outers? Cheaters of death? Crafty thieves? I avoid execution, am found guilty in a trial but still manage to become Lord President no less than 6 times!” Saying this, the Doctor felt almost as arrogant as in his sixth incarnation. Which, he told himself, couldn’t be possible.
“Anything you say will be used against you,” huffed the bodyguard in a practiced tone.
“Ahh, but it’s the truth,” the Time Lord said, in a very weighty, Time Lord-y manner.
“Nothing? Just going to chain me up to a wall? Rather lazy isn’t it, especially when I still have my… sonic…” The Doctor strained his neck to see if it was still in his pocket.
The bodyguard held up the screwdriver in a rather showy way.
The Doctor was rather puzzled.
“You’re not the only one good at slight of hand, sir,” grunted the bodyguard humbly.
“No, but I’m the only Time Lord good at…” the Doctor cut himself off.
“…actually, I’m the only Time Lord, period.”
“Oh yes,” said the bodyguard rather too empathetically.
“Want to cry for a bit?”
The Doctor sniffed, seemed to consider the idea, but then remembered his past self. He’d had enough of that.
“Nah, those days are behind me,” he said rather too cheerfully.
“Oh, but I insist. Have a good bawl. You know you want to.” He was convincing, the Doctor had to admit…or was that just his weak willpower?
The Doctor sighed wearily, then swallowed. The bodyguard was staring at him sadly. Because he thought he was done, but he never really would be. He hadn’t dealt with it all, because he wasn’t the kind of man who did that. He remembered.
“I know I should probably examine your motives,” he paused to swallow, “…why are you doing this, anyway…” he swallowed again, “but you’re right…I do want to…” A tear dripped down the Doctor’s cheek. More followed.
River strutted in, mysterious as ever. In one swift sweep of the arm, she pushed the President and the bodyguard out of the way.
“Because I have a plan, a marvelous plan, that will require you to be in rather a softy, angsty, sacrificial mood,” she said, looking at the Doctor’s wet face with a glowing smile.