Fandom: Doctor Who
Rating: K+ (9+)
Words: 4, 336
Summary: Rory and the Doctor do something they live to regret, due to an inexorable chain of events. This includes the Doctor being provocative, Rory not being able to sleep, and making tea - not in that order. Rory/Doctor mild slash/friendship/bromance.
Spoilers: Set during series 6 of Doctor Who.
Disclaimer: If I owned Doctor Who, the Doctor and Rory would cuddle a hell of a lot more.
Written for my friend PalindromeIsntOne's birthday! This has done very well on fanfiction.net and
deviantART, (at the time of writing, it has received 16 favourites in under two days) and I would like to thank all those who read, reviewed and favourited it. I hope you enjoy it too.
Rory Williams could not sleep. He’d been lying awake for hours, utterly exhausted, but unable to drop off. He tossed and turned, hot and bothered, and in the end he was so fed up that he decided there was nothing for it but to get up. He slung on a t-shirt and jogging bottoms, and left the room.
The Doctor was at the control deck when Rory found him. He was sitting on the floor, a bundle of wires on his lap. He looked truly ridiculous. Bowtie round his neck, hair flopping over his face, goggles covering his eyes, red braces hanging limply by his sides.
“Ah, now…” he muttered distractedly, “Let’s see if we can’t get you babies up and working…”
God only knew what he was doing. The Doctor had a way of hopping around the place, making so much noise and fiddling with so many objects that it always looked like he was doing something incredibly technical and important. The cynical side of Rory doubted that this was the case. Honestly, the man looked more like a kitten playing with a ball of wool than a nine-hundred-and-something year-old alien fixing his spaceship. It was kind of cute, really.
Rory found himself watching him. The Doctor hummed a jaunty little tune to himself as he twiddled with the wires.
“Hmm, you should be good to go!” he said after one final adjustment.
He stood up, brushing himself down, wires slung over one shoulder. He took hold of a few seemingly random wires and started blithely plugging them into one of the panels on the control deck.
“How are you, sexy?” he asked, rather suddenly.
Rory started. Did the Doctor mean him? There was no-one else around. He felt embarrassed for just standing there, watching him now. Now he thought about it, it was a bit pervy. Not that he was, like, masturbating over him or something. OK, that was an inappropriate thought. Well, to be fair, it was very early in the morning and the Doctor may have just called him sexy – it was only understandable that he wasn’t thinking straight. (So to speak.) Rory opened his mouth to speak, trying to figure out something to say that wouldn’t make him look weird/awkward/gay.
“Erm, I’m alright…” he said tentatively, shuffling a little.
The Doctor spun round on his heel to face him.
“I wasn’t, you know – I wasn’t spying on you or anything,” Rory said very quickly, “I was just – I couldn’t get to sleep, and you were here, and – yeah.”
The Doctor pushed his goggles up onto his forehead.
“Ah, hello Rory!” he greeted him cheerfully, “Didn’t realise you were there!”
Rory bit his lip, feeling rather like an idiot.
“Fancy a spot of tea?” the Doctor asked, untangling himself from the electronics, “I was just about to have a tea break – nothing keeps the tank topped up like a bit of good old English tea, does it? – and I always find it’s just the thing if I can’t drop off to sleep myself.”
Rory nodded weakly. He always got a bit lost when the Doctor started rambling. He’d found it was usually best to nod like he knew what he was going on about and let him just get on with it. He hadn’t managed to work out how to make it stop – yet.
“Tea then, excellent!” the Doctor exclaimed, lurching forwards in the direction of the kitchen.
“Erm, yeah, good,” Rory muttered, trailing along after him.
He couldn’t for the life of him understand how the Doctor had so much energy. It was – well, who knew what time it was in outer space – but it was definitely what Rory called sleepy-weepy time. But that didn’t seem to bother the Doctor, who was bounding about like an eager puppy. Rory made a mental note to stop comparing him to fluffy baby animals.
“Just connecting up the manual operator processors,” the Doctor wittered on, springing along the corridor, “Bit of a boring job but I thought I really ought to do it – had it on the back burner for the last, oh, seventy years. But that’s the thing with repairs – you put off doing something once, and before you know it, it’s been over half a century, and it’s too late to do anything about it. It’s stuck like that forever.”
He hopped into the kitchen, Rory not far behind, and filled the kettle.
“Oh, it’s not broken, is it?” asked Rory, who had managed to keep track of at least part of the conversation.
“Nah,” said the Doctor breezily, putting the kettle on the hob and flicking the gas on, “Should be fine.”
He perched himself on the kitchen counter, pulling off his goggles and running his hands through his flappy hair so it stuck up a bit.
“I’m just always worried about leaving things too late, see, losing a chance to do something. That’s what you regret in life – the things you don’t do. I’ve let things slide thousands of times. All those missed opportunities, such a waste.”
Rory worried that this was getting a bit deep for so early in the day.
“Everyone has regrets,” he said lightly, folding his arms.
“I guess so,” said the Doctor, “It’s just when you live for nine hundred and thirty six years you’ve got a hell of a lot more of them than most.”
Mercifully, the kettle started whistling, and Rory hurried to switch off the gas.
“What about you, Rorybear?” asked the Doctor, passing him the tin of teabags, which was next to him on the counter, “Any regrets?”
Rory looked at him, unimpressed, as he took the tin.
“Rorybear?” he repeated.
“Yeah,” grinned the Doctor, “I think it’s cute.”
Rory didn’t like to admit it, but his smile was infectious. He didn’t really mind being called ‘Rorybear’ – not when the Doctor was looking at him like that.
“Well, I’ll probably regret letting you give me an embarrassing pet name when you use it in front of my wife,” he said, popping two teabags in the pot.
“Oh, come on. I’d call you something far worse if I really wanted to embarrass you.”
Rory grunted in agreement as he poured the boiling water into the teapot. The Doctor looked at him thoughtfully and abruptly said,
Rory spilt the hot water.
“Ah-h-h!” he cried, half-dropping the kettle on the hob.
He pulled his left hand away in shock and shook it furiously, as if that would somehow do any good.
“You should be careful with boiling water,” the Doctor observed unhelpfully.
“And you shouldn’t distract me when I’m handling it!” Rory retorted, clutching his burnt hand.
He swore under his breath, angrily eyeing the Doctor, who was nonchalantly finishing the task of filling the kettle.
“Rory, you are a nurse. I think you really ought to know the correct way to treat a burn.”
Rory swore again for good measure before putting his hand under the cold water tap. The Doctor casually put the lid on the teapot and plonked a knitted tea cosy on it. He caught sight of Rory, who was practically giving him a death stare.
“Don’t look at me like that,” he said, his voice hurt.
“A little concern wouldn’t hurt,” Rory pouted, “Especially as this is your fault.”
“Awh, I’m sorry,” he said, somewhat patronisingly.
Then he hugged Rory from behind, arms wrapped around his waist, head on his shoulder.
“Poor little Rorybear,” he murmured into his shirt, “Getting burnt ‘cause I called him sexy…”
“Hey, I only wanted a bit of sympathy,” Rory protested, “Not Rory-Doctor snuggle times!”
The Doctor turned his head to face Rory.
“Really?” he asked flatly.
“Yes, really!” Rory said crossly, elbowing the Doctor away.
The eccentric man seemed unfazed by this, reassuming his position on the kitchen counter and idly swinging his legs back and forth. There was an uncomfortable silence. Or at least Rory was uncomfortable. The pain in his hand was ebbing. It wasn’t a large burn at all, more a patch of slightly reddened skin. Already he felt bad for snapping at the Doctor.
“You’re not sexy,” the Doctor said absently.
“Now the TARDIS, she’s sexy alright. But you…”
Rory caught on. The Doctor hadn’t been talking to him earlier – he’d been talking to the TARDIS. He didn’t know which was weirder; the Doctor finding him good-looking, or the Doctor feeling something other than just friendship towards his blue box. OK, it would have to be the latter. Rory might not have considered himself exceptionally attractive, but he was definitely hotter than an inanimate object.
“I’d give you cute,” the Doctor continued, considering the options seriously, “Oh, without a moment’s hesitation. Adorable at a push, if I was feeling particularly affectionate towards you that day. But I’m afraid you can’t do cute and sexy at the same time – never seen it myself. Hope you don’t mind, it’s nothing personal, Rorykins.”
The Doctor touched him under his chin, not without an amount of fondness. Rory felt his cheeks growing hot, and stared down at his hand, as if he could heal it through sheer force of will alone. It was numb now, but he had to keep it under the tap for ten minutes – that was the rule.
“I didn’t think you’d think I was sexy,” he fumbled, “Just – there was no-one else around and – I thought you were saying it sarcastically, you know, in that funny way of yours – I didn’t, er, yeah.”
He snatched a glance at the Doctor. He looked quietly amused, hand leaning against the overhead cupboard. Rory stuck out his bottom lip. There was nothing funny about being seriously (possibly sexually) confused by an alien your wife used to (and still probably did) fancy.
“I regret getting up,” he said huffily, “I wish I’d just stayed in bed, staring up at the ceiling.”
Stuff the ten minutes. Rory turned the tap off and dried his hand with a tea towel. He couldn’t feel it now anyway.
“Oh now,” said the Doctor, patting him on the shoulder, “You’ll feel better once you have a cup of tea.”
He started rifling through the kitchen cupboards for mugs.
“Isn’t that the saying? Good saying that, it’s very true, you always feel better after some nice tea. And maybe we’ll throw in a biscuit as well if you’re a good boy, eh?”
He poured the tea, adding a little milk to each mug.
“No sugar for me,” said Rory automatically, as the Doctor reached for the sugar bowl.
“I know,” the Doctor said defensively, giving him a I-know-you-better-than-you-think-I-do-Ro
He put about ten teaspoons of sugar into his own tea.
“Cheers,” he said.
They held their mugs aloft.
“To no regrets,” the Doctor said.
The mugs clacked together. They were silent for a moment, sipping at their tea.
“Hmm,” said Rory thoughtfully, “I guess I do feel a bit better.”
The Doctor smiled jubilantly.
“You see, my friend, that’s the power of tea!”
Rory set his mug down and traced his finger around the rim.
“But there’s something I think I really ought to do. Had it on the back burner for the last, oh, few months. Repairs, of a sort. I put off doing it. I don’t want it to be too late to do anything about it. I don’t want to be stuck like this forever.”
“Mmm?” asked the Doctor, gulping his tea, “What is it?”
Rory shuffled a little.
“I wanted to say sorry. I haven’t trusted you – not like I should have. It’s all been quite a lot to take in – I mean, you were just an imaginary friend, and then you were real, and then my fiancée was kissing you the night before our wedding, and then you were nearly getting me killed – well, we didn’t exactly get off to a good start.”
The Doctor shrugged.
“Mph. I don’t think I’ve really been dealing it very well. I’ve – well, I’ve been acting just like a child. It’s time to be grown-up about this.”
“Grown-up, yes, exactly.”
The Doctor nodded, pursing his lips. Then he looked up at Rory inquiringly.
“Rory-Doctor snuggle times?” he asked.
Rory didn’t answer. He slowly stepped closer, and tentatively embraced the Doctor.
“Hey,” the Doctor said soothingly, returning the hug.
He put a hand to the back of Rory’s head and kissed him soundly on the cheek. Then he grinned.
“I knew you’d regret turning this down.”
“Oh, shut up.”
“But then I can’t call you sexy…”
By the time they were finished, the tea had gone cold.
It was several hours later when all three occupants of the TARDIS found themselves in the kitchen, with the only female crew member standing with her hands on her hips, looking at her male counterparts, unimpressed.
“You boys,” Amy scolded, “You need to learn how to tidy up after yourself. Look at this tea, you hardly drank any of it!”
“Oh, er, yeah, sorry,” mumbled Rory, “We – got distracted.”
“Yes we did,” said Rory mechanically.
He turned to the Doctor.
“What was it we were doing?” he asked furtively.
There was no way that Amy was going to find out the truth about this. It was far too embarrassing. They were full-grown men, for heaven’s sake – they couldn’t very well tell her that they’d been cuddling on the sofa for a good part of an hour! (Rory had fallen asleep, and the Doctor woke him up a while later with a fresh mug of tea and a “Morning, sunshine!”)
“Oh, you know,” the Doctor blustered, as Amy looked at him expectantly, “This and that.”
Rory gave him a is-that-the-best-you-can-come-up-with? look. Amy wasn’t buying it.
“Did you break something?”
“No, no, no,” the Doctor said strongly.
“The Doctor was doing some repairs,” Rory burst out, “On the control panel. Connecting the manual operator processors. I – leant him a hand.”
Amy looked at him, intrigued.
“I never thought you were interested in mechanics?”
“Oh, well, I thought I ought to help. I learnt quite a lot, I think.”
“He was a good help,” the Doctor said.
Amy smiled at her husband.
“Well, aren’t you a man of many talents?”
She picked up the barely-touched mugs of tea and emptying them into the sink.
The Doctor smiled at Rory, raising his eyebrows.
“What?” asked Rory.
The Doctor ruffled his hair.
“I might need some more help later, Rorybear,” he said quietly, and strode out of the room.
“Did he just call you ‘Rorybear’?” asked Amy, turning round from the washing-up.
“No. No he did not.”
“It sounded like –”
Rory hurried forwards, propelling his wife away from the sink.
“Would you like me to do the washing-up?”
“Oh, er –”
“Good, good,” Rory said quickly, turning on the taps in so much haste that he got a blast of hot water to his injured left hand.
He grimaced at the sudden pain.
“Ah-h – well, I’ll do this, and you go relax or something, dear.”
“OK…” said a somewhat suspicious Amy.
Rory breathed a sigh of relief when she left the kitchen. Rorybear. Stupid Doctor with his stupid affectionate pet names. He’d said he’d live to regret that. Rory sucked his hurt hand, and groaned as he looked at the washing up. It was turning out to be a bad day.
Amy left the kitchen and went straight to the Doctor. He was at the control panel, connecting up a mangle of wires.
“Hello, Pond,” he said without looking up from his work.
“What are you doing?”
“I am connecting up the manual operator processors.”
“Right,” she said slowly, “I thought that’s what Rory said he was helping you with earlier?”
The Doctor let go of the wires, and they tumbled to the floor in a heap. He straightened himself up and looked at her unblinkingly. The few wires that were balanced on his shoulder unravelled themselves and joined their fellows on the floor.
The Doctor stood there, motionless.
“It is,” he said, “It was.”
“So… why are you still doing it?”
“It still needs some work – just a few finishing touches. It takes a while. And I had to teach Rory, and, well, he’s not very good at it.”
“I heard that!” came a shout from the kitchen.
Amy narrowed her eyes at the Doctor.
“I don’t believe you.”
“With all due respect, Pond, Rory is talented at many things, as I’m sure you’ll agree with me, but mechanics isn’t one of them. It’s not his fault – this is all very complicated stuff, interdimensionary physics we’re talking about here, so it’s no reflection upon –”
“Doctor.” Amy said sternly, cutting short his ramble.
The Doctor shut up instantly.
“What have you been doing with my husband?”
The Doctor scratched the back of his head.
“Well, I –”
“Doctor!” Rory said severely, shooting out of the kitchen.
He hurried down the steps to the Doctor, staring at him pointedly.
“You can’t tell her,” he said intently as he reached him.
“Tell me what?”
The Doctor looked at Amy, considering the situation.
“I think we might have to,” he said gently.
Rory shook his head furiously.
“What happened?” Amy asked, growing impatient.
“Nothing!” Rory said indignantly.
“Oh yes, like she’s really going to believe that,” said the Doctor, unimpressed.
“Well, you weren’t exactly helping!”
“Tell me,” said Amy, looking at the pair expectantly.
“Well, we’re going to have to tell her now, aren’t we?” the Doctor said bluntly, “We can’t exactly explain this away. It’s obvious you’re hiding something, Rory, you shouldn’t get so defensive.”
“And you shouldn’t give up so easily!”
The two men faced each other squarely, faces close as they argued, completely oblivious to everything outside of their argument.
“I do not give up easily, Rory, I just know when to accept defeat, and this happens to be the when that the defeat should be accepted!”
Rory glared at the Doctor, at once furious and utterly bewildered.
“I have no idea what you just said, but I have decided that I really don’t like it!”
Amy cleared her throat.
“Er, excuse me,” she said, exasperated, “I’m waiting.”
Rory and the Doctor’s heads both snapped round towards Amy, then back to face each other.
“Well, go on,” said the Doctor.
“She’s your wife, you tell her.”
“It’s your fault, you tell her.”
“I’m not –”
“Oh both of you, stop bickering like children and tell me what’s going on!” shouted Amy.
The two men froze, glowering at each other.
Then Rory sighed, turning towards his wife.
“It only happened once,” he said pleadingly, “Honestly. It – it doesn’t mean anything!”
Amy’s eyes widened.
“Rory, what happened?” she asked, some alarm in her voice.
Rory put a hand to the side of his head and squeezed his eyes shut. He took a breath and looked straight at her.
“Alright,” he began, “You know how we both went to sleep in our room last night?”
Amy nodded slowly.
“Well, I didn’t,” Rory admitted, “I – went to the Doctor and we –”
He stopped, finding it hard to finish his sentence.
“We had a cup of tea,” he finally said.
Amy looked from Rory to the Doctor.
“Is that a euphemism, or did you really just have tea?”
“Oh we had tea alright!” said Rory indignantly, “We certainly had tea!”
“OK, I’m still not quite sure what your answer is,” Amy said.
“I made a pot of tea,” the Doctor said hesitantly, for clarification.
“Actually, I made it,” said Rory, genuinely infuriated.
“No you didn’t, because you weren’t being careful enough with the boiling water and –”
“You deliberately distracted me whilst I was handling said boiling water!”
“I did not!”
“OK, you had some tea!” shouted Amy, just trying to get them to be quiet.
Rory stopped himself before he started attacking the Doctor (he could have done it – honestly, he was this close to punching him in the face), and struggled to regain his composure.
“Then what happened?” Amy asked.
“Then,” Rory began, sighing, “We were talking, and I realised that – the Doctor and I – we’d got off on the wrong foot. So we thought we should – put our differences aside.”
Amy stepped closer to her husband.
“Rory, what did you do?”
“We – oh, do I really have to say it?”
“We had a cuddle, alright?!” Rory cried, “A big, mushy man-cuddle! We had Rory-Doctor snuggle times! There, I said it.”
Amy said nothing, staring at them both in disbelief.
“That’s why the tea went cold, that’s why we got distracted!” Rory went on, “Yes, it was in the kitchen!”
“And on the sofa,” the Doctor added cautiously.
“And on the sofa! And I fell asleep on it.”
“No stamina,” the Doctor mouthed to Amy.
“And it was the best nap I’ve ever had!” Rory continued, confessing all.
There was a silence.
“There you have it,” Rory said sulkily, “You know now.”
Amy blinked, finding the entire experience incredibly surreal. She looked at the Doctor, who had been quite quiet up to now.
“Is this true?”
“You mean…” Amy said slowly, “You two really had a snuggle on the sofa?”
The Doctor and Rory nodded seriously.
Amy looked at them both. And laughed.
“Aww,” she crooned, “That’s quite sweet, actually!”
“Don’t,” Rory whispered, “Just don’t.”
Amy came forwards, still laughing.
“Oh, come here, you,” she said, and embraced a rather reluctant Rory.
She pulled back to look at him.
“You know,” she said, her voice light but not free of seriousness, “For a moment there, I really thought you two had…”
She was treated to two looks of utter revulsion. Then both men were suddenly extremely animated, both zealously expressing their horror at the thought of them – well – having a cup of tea of a different kind. The Doctor made a gagging motion, pulling all kinds of grotesque faces and making a wild array of hand gestures, seemingly unable to speak yet still making some very expressive noises of disgust.
“What, him?” Rory scoffed, “Ooh, that’s just – wrong!”
“Pond, really!” said the Doctor, once he had regained the power of speech, “I do have standards, you know!”
“Hey, I was cute a few hours ago!” Rory complained.
“Yes! Cute but not sexy! I think I made that quite clear, Rory!”
Amy pulled the Doctor into a hug, and everyone (a word which here means the Doctor and Rory) managed to shut up. Amy put an arm around Rory too, so they were all three of them in a slightly awkward group hug.
“D’aww,” she said contentedly, “My boys.”
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