Story: Stories, songs, and gallant girls
Word Count: 9219
Author's Summary: River Song rights a wrong, and finds herself rather charmed in the process.
Characters/Pairings: Donna Noble, Jack Harkness, Jenny Flint, Madame Vastra, River Song, The Doctor (11th), The Ood
Warnings: Explicit Sex, Alternate Universe
Recced because: I'm a sucker for fix-it stories, and one of the biggest things to fix in New Who is the problem of Donna. This story, by an author who hasn't been recced here before, romps through that via a relationship between Donna and River Song. Along the way it visits Oodspace, Victorian London, 1920s Germany, and other fun locations. I'm not sure it says anything especially profound, except that the Doctor should fix his own problems, it's just a lot of fun.
There was something in her head. Something smothering, and blank, and thick where thoughts might be, and made her feel more like Cheryl’s ridiculous, paranoid not-so-good detectives than she’d ever wanted. The night before, she’d seriously dreamt of giant bees. Wasps? Things. And her dream-self had thought it was beautiful–thought it was important–while the rest of her screamed for flypaper. The headache that morning? Worse than a hangover.
“Okay.” She stood, knees popping, and let herself drift to the bar. “I’m thinking about bees. Time for another drink.”
“Make it a whiskey.”
The voice was light, but as richly warm and worn smooth as the wood panelling on the old pub’s walls. A small, strong hand came down to tap at a coaster, and Donna blinked as Ed–worked here five years; a year younger than her in school; played a tree once in the local play because his mum had begged him, and was usually only half awake as he poured pints–blushed all over his rather unfortunate face and reached up for spirits.
Donna looked over her shoulder, following the hand up a bare, tanned arm to take a woman who might have looked at a hair-straightener once, only to point and laugh. Green eyes narrowed in turn, and Donna felt the muscles on her face tighten as she watched the woman’s lips curve up in a half smile.
“Oh, yes,” she said, winking at Donna. “One for me, too.” The two glasses slipped in before them, faint trails shining on the sides from Ed’s shaking hands.
Donna glared. She had to glare up, because the woman was wearing louboutins as if they were tennis shoes, and the hair added at least a school-ruler’s length in height.
“Oi, you,” she managed. “Who says I drink that muck?”
“Who says you don’t want to? Rule 32. If you’re going to have a drink, it should always be a good one. Especially when you need it.” Donna watched as one glass was raised in a salute. “I’m River Song.”
Donna felt a laugh rise, raucous and bright, from her throat. “You’re mad, that’s what you are.”
“Aren’t we all, dear?”
“Mad,” said Donna. “And… raised by hippies?”
River Song laughed at that, soft and yet strangely wild, as leather gleamed in the belt at her waist; the shoes; the bag slung over one sleek shoulder.
Donna shook her head. She felt the thickness inside her rise and grow, and she struggled to keep her curiosity bright and hot inside her mind. “Bad ones? Look, do I know you?”
She hissed surprise as River’s hand fell warmly about her own, pressing it around the remaining glass. “You might.” River shrugged. “Some other time.”