“Rory, duck!” the Doctor yelled, sprinting towards him. Rory barely had time to turn around before something collided with him, the wind knocked out of his chest as he hit the floor hard. Wheezing, he opened his eyes, jumping violently when his eyes met the Doctor’s, straddling him protectively. He had one leg on either side of Rory’s waist, and one hand on either side of his chest, their faces only inches away.
Slowly, the Doctor turned his head to look around. The busy alien street was in panic, the inhabitants terrified at the sound of the gunshot. He sighed and turned back to Rory, shaking his head in dismay. “He got away.” Rory coughed awkwardly, trying to shift around a little as a signal for the Doctor to get up. He didn’t.
“Uh, you can get off now,” he murmured, blushing. The Doctor stared straight into his eyes and blinked.
“Ah, yes. Sorry, Rory,” he answered, and jumped to his feet. He offered a hand to Rory, and hoisted him to his feet. Rory dusted off his clothes, his cheeks still burning. “You okay?” Rory scratched the back of his neck.
“Yeah, fine. Where’s Amy?” The Doctor waved vaguely in the direction of the shops in reply.
“Inside. She’ll be fine.” Rory nodded, coughing again. The Doctor’s brow creased. “Are you alright, Rory? I know it’s a bit dusty here, but...”
“Fine. It’s just — ” The Doctor shoved him into a nearby wall as another gunshot rang out, before crouching down to the floor. He turned to Rory, panic in his eyes.
“Run!” he yelled, on his feet and ushering Rory towards the nearest shop before he’d even had a chance to breathe. “Quickly, go! Don’t worry about me, I’ll catch you up!” Rory stammered, like a deer in the headlights. “Run!” the Doctor bellowed, pushing him through the doors. All around him, alarms started to go off, and an automatic bolt slid through the double doors, blocking the only entrance and exit. Rory banged on the doors with both fists, trying to squint through the filthy glass. His heart sank as he heard another gunshot. A cry rang out.
“Rory, what’s going on?” Amy stammered, suddenly appearing next to him, her eyes wide.
“The Doctor’s out there!” he growled, pounding on the glass. He stopped as he realised that there was silence all around him. No sound came from outside. The bolt on the door slid back into place.
Rory pushed desperately through the doors onto a silent street. Amy followed seconds later, and together they scanned the street. There was no sign of the attacker. Rory’s breath caught in his throat as he spotted the Doctor, propped up against a bin in a small cranny in the wall. His eyes were closed and his teeth clenched. His hand was pressed over his upper arm, and blood ran down his fingers and jacket. Immediately Rory was at his side, prising his hand away from the wound. It was bleeding hard. Thank goodness he was a nurse.
“Amy, give me your jacket,” he urged, reaching out for it. As soon as the soft cloth was placed in his hand, he began to wrap it tightly around the gouge, biting his lip. It was okay for the time being, but he’d have to fix it properly later. “Stay with me,” he muttered, only half speaking to the Doctor. Being a nurse, it was just a kind of reflex to say that in that sort of situation. Besides, it calmed him down. The Doctor groaned in response, his eyes still closed. “Sorry, nearly done,” Rory panted, tying the final knot.
The Doctor moaned as Rory put his good arm around his shoulder and started to try and walk him down the street, back in the direction of the Tardis. Amy joined him, a horrified expression on her face. Sweat was already running down Rory’s face — the Doctor was heavier than he looked, and he wasn’t using his feet. Rory was carrying his full weight, the Doctor’s feet dragging on the floor.
He jumped as they turned a corner and came face to face with the Tardis, her doors already open. She must have known that they were in danger. Rory pulled the Doctor up the steps and lay him down on the floor, wiping the sweat from his face. The Doctor was sweating, too, and hadn’t yet opened his eyes. Rory leaned down beside him and slapped him on the cheek a couple of times.
“Come on, Doctor. You’ve lost a lot of blood, you need to stay awake.” He grinned half-heartedly as the Doctor’s eyes flickered open, and he looked up into Rory’s face.
Smiling weakly, he simply whispered, “Thanks, Rory,” before closing his eyes again and letting his head fall slowly to the floor. Amy panicked.
“Rory, he’s going to die, we have to — ”
“Amy, it’s fine. He can sleep for now, I’ll just have to get to work as soon as he wakes up.” He looked down into the Doctor’s face, slowly becoming more peaceful as he fell asleep. And felt grateful that the Doctor had done this for him. If he hadn’t pushed him to the floor, he would surely have been shot — and being human, that wouldn’t have ended well. With a concluding nod, he grabbed a blanket from a nearby chair — also provided by the Tardis — and placed it over the Doctor’s body.
Rory reached down and planted a kiss on the Doctor’s forehead, ruffling his hair. “Sleep well, Doctor,” he murmured, before sitting on the chair to keep watch.
“Doctor, look out!” Rory barrelled into the Doctor with the force of an oncoming storm, sending him sprawling to the ground. He hit the floor with a small ‘oof!’ before opening his eyes to look up into Rory’s, looking down at him with immediate concern. The Doctor realised with a smile that Rory was using his technique of ‘arms-and-legs-either-side’. He grinned. Rory grinned back. “You okay?” he asked, making direct eye contact.
“Yeah, fine.” He started to chuckle to himself. Rory nodded, still grinning. “Just wondering why I’m on the floor, that’s all.”
“Knife,” Rory answered casually, looking around. The Doctor nodded, sighing with a smile. There was a slight pause. Rory wasn’t going anywhere. The Doctor raised a bemused eyebrow. “So, I guess I replace you in this situation,” he said. The Doctor frowned, confused. Rory laughed. “I’ll be stabbed at any minute no-” His face convulsed in pain as a dagger slashed into his shoulder. The attacker was gone in seconds.
The Doctor slid out from underneath Rory and inspected the damage. It was quite a deep cut.
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