Grant my last request,
And just let me hold you.
Don't shrug your shoulders,
Lay down beside me.
Sure I can accept that we're going nowhere,
But one last time let's go there,
Lay down beside me
- Paolo Nutini, Last Request
The Doctor, last of the Time Lords, raced around the console of the TARDIS, pulling levers and pushing buttons as he was wont to do, his bowtie firmly in place. Amy sat watching him, a smile quirking her lips as he dashed hither and yon, a boyish smile on his face.
The phone rang shrilly, making Amy jump in surprise. The Doctor ignored the ringing, too intent on the TARDIS, so Amy crossed to the console and picked up the phone, excitement surging through her at who could be on the other end. “Hello?” she said, pressing the phone to her ear.
There was a pause before a quiet, weak, woman’s voice answered, “Hello. I’m looking for the Doctor.”
“Hold, please,” Amy trilled, before turning to the man in question and saying, “Phone’s for you.”
He waved a distracted hand at his companion and said, “Yes, yes, just put it on speaker phone.” Amy did as requested and the Doctor called, “Hello, this is the Doctor. How may I help you, whoever you are?”
A quiet laugh came from the phone and Amy watched in fascination as the Doctor stilled and his gaze snapped to the phone. “Hi there, Doc,” the woman said, pure pleasure in her voice.
“Buffy, darling, is that you?” the Doctor asked, creeping towards the phone as if it would explode if he got too close too fast.
“Yeah, it’s me. Listen, Doc…” The woman trailed off and hesitated before saying, “I need you to come see me. It’s time for you to keep a promise.”
The screwdriver clattered to the floor after sliding out of the Doctor’s suddenly limp fingers. The blood drained from his face, which had crumpled into an expression of shock and anguish. “No, Buffy, darling,” he choked out. “Please don’t be saying what I think you’re saying.”
There was silence from the phone for a moment save what could have been the sound of a stifled sob. “I am,” Buffy finally said. “You need to come see me now. Before it’s too late.”
After the Doctor had agreed and strained goodbyes had been exchanged, he went immediately back to work.
Amy was shocked to see tears sliding down his face and couldn’t resist her curiosity any longer. “Doctor, who was that? What’s going on?” she wondered.
The Doctor was quiet for so long that she thought he wouldn’t answer. “Her name is Buffy Summers,” he finally said, not meeting his companion’s eyes. “She’s a hero, a champion, and the woman I love.” Amy stared in astonishment as the Doctor took deep breaths, as if to prepare himself for what he would say next. “She’s dying.”