Stand Outside (Women's Work Remix)

by Lady Mercury [Reviews - 3]

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  • All Ages
  • None
  • Fluff, Hurt/Comfort, Vignette

Author's Notes:
If I were better at html I could make this more elegant....but alas. Here is the URL of the original, "Mad Nursing Skillz" by Sahiya.
http://www.whofic.com/viewstory.php?sid=37606
The title comes from the song "This Woman's Work" by Kate Bush.

Amy knows he makes trips without her while she sleeps. Once she woke to find the console room empty and the door carelessly ajar, opening onto a steep bank of pure blue grass. At first she tried to sleep as little as possible, but the sandman has a way of catching up with her. Sometimes she has no choice but to surrender.

Tonight (if you could call it night) she’s rubbing her eyes and stumbling down the hall, and she could’ve sworn the kitchen was this way. But when she pushes through the door, she finds herself at the top of the glass staircase. Something is wrong, but her drowsy mind can’t seem to find it, can’t get past but there isn’t any tea in here. The room is dim and cool, lit only by the console. The Doctor is nowhere to be seen. The TARDIS hums obediently, and Amy can tell by the sound that they’re in the vortex. But if they haven’t landed and he isn’t here, where can he possibly be?

Somewhere below, she hears a soft groan.

She’s down the stairs in an instant, taking them two by two by two, all the way to the lower deck where she finds him slumped against the steps. He’s pale and breathing heavy, his collar torn open, bowtie nowhere in sight.

“Doctor!” She seizes his hand and his fingers curl reflexively around hers. He slits his eyes open, watching her from beneath his eyelashes.

“Amy,” he finally manages, swallowing hard.

“Are you all right? What happened?”

“I–” Something is wrong with his eyes–she watches them focus and refocus and still he seems not to see a thing.

“Doctor.” Her voice is unsteady and too loud. “What happened?”

“Oh, Amy,” he chokes out. “I’m sorry–”

And then he’s sick, retching violently, and it’s all she can do to hold his head. When it’s over, he leans against her, chest still heaving. For a moment, they sit like that, quietly.

“So you’re pretty sick, huh?” Amy says finally.

“I don’t think so, no,” he answers weakly, patting down the pockets of his blazer and producing a small metal dart. His hand trembles as he holds it out to her. “Careful,” he says, slipping it back into his pocket as she reaches to take it from him. “Can’t have you getting poisoned, too.”

She gives him a savage little poke in the ribs, and he winces.

“That’s for getting yourself poisoned while I was sleeping.”

She bites her lip, feeling tears burning at the corners of her eyes.

“You don’t have to tell me.” He smiles ruefully and shifts his position against her. “But I’ll be all right in time.”

“If you’re lying to me–”

“Shh.” His eyes are closed, his head resting at the curve of her neck. He fumbles for her hand and strokes it idly. “Shh. It’s okay, Amy. I promise.”

Amy takes a deep breath, feeling the weight of him on her chest and her side. She runs her free hand up and down his back and he relaxes a little.

“So how’d it happen?”

“Mmm…I had a bit of a…misunderstanding with a very nice fellow who was selling some rather nasty drugs. His friend took offense.”

“Oh, Doctor.” She lays her head against his. “Do you know what it was?”

“Not really. Nothing I can’t metabolize, though, so I’ll be all right–ohhh,” he groans, clutching his belly. For a moment, he seems not to breathe, but then he settles. “Well, eventually.”

“I wish Rory were here,” she murmurs. “He’d know what to do.”

“What did you say?” His eyes pop open and he sits straight up to look at her.

She’s suddenly very confused, as if she’s woken from a dream and lost it entirely. “I–I don’t know.”

“Amy, did you say you wished Rory were here?”

“I don’t know who you’re talking about.”

“Oh, Amy.” His grip on her fingers tightens. “You have to remember. Think.”

“I can’t.” She’s crying, and she doesn’t know why. The Doctor lets out a deflated-sounding breath and sags against her. After a moment, she realizes he’s unconscious.


He doesn’t weigh so much more than she does, but still it’s not easy dragging him up the stairs. His boots catch on the edges of the steps, and he lets out a little gasp when she cracks his head on the banister. “Sorry,” she whispers, staggering under his weight.

Mercifully, the trip to her room seems much shorter than it did on her way out. By the time they get there, she can barely raise him to her bed, where she drops him in an unceremonious heap. She stops to catch her breath for a moment before unlacing his boots and easing off the jacket. Unclipping his braces, she drapes them over the bedpost, loosens his trousers, untucks his shirt.

He opens his eyes as she pulls the floral quilt over him.

“Hey,” she says. “Feeling any better?”

He shakes his head, but he’s smiling faintly. “Worse. But your bed’s a sight more comfortable than the stairs.”

“You picked a fine time to pass out. You’re heavier than you look, you know.”

“I know. I’m sorry, Amy.”

“Don’t be.” She bends to kiss his forehead, smoothes the hair out of his eyes.

“I’ll make it up to you when I’m better.”

“Oh, shh.”

She holds his hand as he drifts off. His breathing is shallow but steady, and his skin is cool. She really does believe that all he needs is time.