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In The Theatre

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River reaches across the gap in between catwalks, carefully slides her fingers between the Doctor’s chest and his left brace, pulls it towards her, and lets go. He yelps ever so slightly as it snaps directly over a sensitive bruise.

“What was that for?” he demands, scowling a little at her. She smiles cutely.

“For trying to sneak away down another catwalk while I wasn’t looking, sweetie.” He tries to look stern but just ends up pouting, which makes her grin all the more.

“I don’t even understand why you think the theatre troupe are aliens,” he says, grumpily, as he climbs over to join her on her catwalk. She sighs with exasperation.

“I already told you, sweetie, I saw one sucking someone’s soul of their mouth. I think that qualifies as alien, yes?” He grimaces with defeat and follows her down the catwalk.

“There’s not quantifiable evidence that beings have souls…” he calls weakly behind her.

“Do you really believe that?” she asks with a smile, turning to flash those familiar bright eyes at him. He’s not sure if he does. He reaches out a hand that just barely brushes against the back of her curls as she moves out of reach, farther along the catwalk. He follows her at a slightly more sedate pace. There is a loud creak and they both freeze.

“Quick, they’re coming,” she whispers urgently as she scrambles back to him. “We have to blend in!”

“Wha—?” he barely has time to look down at the couples below, kissing intensely behind the stage, before she is upon him. Her lips brush against his, softer than he might have expected. Her fingers are fumbling with his jacket, and he finds his arms—against his will!—moving back to allow her to slide the jacket over his shoulders. She fondles his braces then and slowly, delicately runs her tongue along his lower lip. Involuntary, still—really, he would never take liberties like this!—his mouth opens and she deepens the kiss. His eyelids flutter shut and she runs her hands down his braces to the line of his pants, her hands warm against his chest. His skin tingles in the wake of her touch.

“You,” she whispers against his lips as she unsnaps the left brace with a harsh click, “had better—“ she pauses briefly to unsnap the other brace—“look like you’re kissing me or—“ she runs her hand around the line at the top of his pants until she reaches the back, where she can tug the braces down behind him—“they’re going to guess that something is wrong.”

Half-startled by the memory that they’re not merely doing this for fun, he awkwardly brings his hands up to rest on her shoulders. It has been so very, very long since he’s done this.

With a weary sigh that blows a puff of air into his mouth, she pulls his hands down to rest on her hips. His fingers convulsively tighten as she carefully licks his tongue, and soon he is lost in the feel of her mouth against and in his own, the knowledge that the firm flesh of her hips is just a breath of thin fabric away from his fingertips. Vaguely, he notices someone jangling past them, but she moans into the kiss and he loses all coherent thought. Entirely too soon, she pulls away.

“There,” she says with satisfaction, and she actually brushes her hands off as if to say ‘job well done’. “They didn’t even notice us. What are you looking at me that way for?” She gives him a disapproving look and turns around to walk away. He’s left fumbling with his braces and gaping after her.