Time is the Best DoctorAuthor:
Since I am a poor chickadee with no wealth to speak of, I think it's safe to say that neither BtVS nor Doctor Who are mine. ^^;Written for: Pick From a Hat ChallengeSummary: The clothing was different, and the body, the build, the hair and the face, but his eyes... they held a
spark that she knew all too well, and- pain. So much pain.Author's Note:
The fifth pick from a 'Pick From A Hat' challenge, and the fifth and final part of my 'Four Time Travelers She Loved, and One Time She Time Traveled
Time is the Best Doctor
The clothing was different, and the body, the build, the hair and the face, but his eyes... Buffy would have known those eyes anywhere. They were green now, rather than the steely blue in her memory, inset further in his face, and larger, but they held a spark
that she knew all too well, and- pain. So much pain. It was a different pain than he'd held so close to his hearts last time, but no less deep; something new, something that had ripped him to pieces inside, shredded him from within, and he didn't hide it as he had before. No, this time he wore it openly, those oh so familiar eyes red rimmed from crying, and when he opened his mouth to speak to her, for the first time in years, she dreaded what words would leave his lips.
Her knees gave, and he caught her in unfamiliar arms, long and gangly, and brought her to his chest, and he held her. Because there had only ever been one other woman between them, one person he could possibly mean, and it didn't matter that he hadn't known her yet before, or that Buffy hadn't seen her in even longer than she'd seen him, because she'd known that she was still out there somewhere
. With him
"Oh Buffy," he whispered, and the tweed jacket she fisted her fingers in was so different from the leather of before, and oh god River must have hated it, hadn't she made comments about tweed in the past, and Buffy had always thought she was just trying to ruffle Giles' feathers, but no, it must have been about him
, about the Doctor Buffy hadn't even known yet, about this
Doctor, who even now held her heartbroken form in the cradle of his arms. Long fingers pet through her hair, so much more touchy than he had been before, and she had a thought that this wasn't just for her, because it was just as much for him. Red rimmed eyes...
"What happened?" Her voice was thick, and she tried to pull away, to look up at him, but he didn't release her, not yet. Long hair hid his eyes in shadow now, and she could see him swallow thickly.
happened..." He laughed, and despite the new voice, there was a hint of familiar manic to the sound. "She sacrificed herself to save me... when I didn't even know who she was. We- we'd only just met." He paused, unable to continue for a split second, and then found his voice again, and Buffy almost didn't want to let him continue, but he was speaking once more before she could stop him. "I sent her off to her death. I knew
what would happen, because I was there
, and I sent her anyway."
"Oh god, Doctor..." Stricken, and now she held him
, because she couldn't imagine what that must feel like... except that she could. Memories of a stone statue and a sword, and the light of a spell working through Angel's eyes when it was too late... The Doctor was too tall for her to cradle, too lean and lanky to her small frame, but she did her best to pull him down into her arms, and her face buried into his hair, eyes closing tightly. They both trembled, and she pressed a kiss to the top of his head, even as his fingers now fisted in her
blouse. "It's alright, she- she would have wanted that." She didn't know this Doctor, and River had never given her the full story (spoilers
), but she knew enough to know that much. "And I doubt you would have been able to stop her from saving you even if you'd tried."
"I did try," he managed, his voice raw. He wasn't crying, not now, but he had been, before he came. "But I couldn't save her- not all of her... It took me years to even manage what I did, and I saved what made her River
, but- she's gone to us."
Hazel green eyes slid closed, tears falling down her cheek, and she wasn't sure for whom they were for; for herself, for this new Doctor, or for River Song. Maybe for all three of them. Inhaling deeply, and a little shakily, Buffy carefully pulled them both up, to face each other, and to face the loss of the woman they'd both known and loved, at different points in their lives. Her lips parted, to speak-
"Come with me," he said, and her heart stopped. He'd never offered before, and she'd never asked; he had been too angry and hurt still, and she had had so much to do, but now...