Rory landed flat on his bum in the middle of a field, and it took him a few moments to realize what had happened. He'd been standing in a graveyard, looking at Amy, so ecstatic to have miraculously made it out of that crazy mess alive and then – he caught sight of the gravestones in the distance, less worn that they'd been in the future that had been his life, and he knew. The damned angels. It wasn't over.
He scrambled up, circling – but there were no menacing statues to be seen. The world wasn't suddenly dark and ominous. He hadn't landed in the middle of his adult daughter getting kidnapped by gangsters. It was a bright, sunny day – the way most of his adventures started before the middle gets all hairy – but he was obviously too far in the past. Not in that awful hotel, thank God, but maybe in the same time. Still, it didn't seem too bad a place to wait until the Doctor showed up in the TARDIS. Seriously, they were going someplace boring next time, he decided. Someplace absolutely dull where nothing dangerous could happen. Perhaps it was time to visit the little café in Leadsworth he used to love that had closed when he was at University where he took Amy for their second date.
But then the Doctor's voice was in his mind, clear as if he was standing beside him – but he'd never be again. "I can never take the TARDIS back to New York. I'd cross too many timelines."
He was stuck there.
The reality was so jarring he sunk to his knees, legs unable to hold him. The ground was solid beneath him, too solid, because this is like all his nightmares where he and Amy get separated somehow – except this is truly, awfully real. There were no happy endings, not for him.
When the sobs start he doesn't stop them. He spent most of the day confused and terrified, with a few moments of elation – but Amy had been there through most of it to hold him together, with the way she grasped his arm and swore the Angels wouldn't take him, and then clambered on that ledge to fall with him together. But he'd never been worth much without her by his side, and she's gone now, forever. Despite all her bravery and her brilliance, they'd taken him anyway.
He cannot fathom the pain of not seeing her again, even as it squeezed his heart and pushed the air from his lungs. He was always the one dying on their adventures. She'd been in trouble plenty, and there were times he'd had to don his armor and go and save her – and alright, the time he had killed her, but the doctor had come shortly after that to promise she'd be fine if he could just wait. He'd gotten good at the waiting, even gotten decent at wielding a sword even though it went against all the oaths he'd sworn at nursing school. But he could never wait long enough now to see her again. For the very first time he missed his plastic body.
He'd escaped that damn hotel but would this really be much better? He wouldn't die locked in a tiny room but he'd still die without her. That version of himself had died seeing her one last time – had lived with the hope that maybe she would come, and she had. But he didn't have that hope. Not now. They could never come back. The Doctor said.
At least she'd have the Doctor. He'd whisk her away to someplace to cheer her up. Spice Girls concert in the 90's or Space Florida like they always joked about. She'd have a fantastic life ahead of her. He was glad, so very glad, that she was safe but the thought of her living without him was worse than the pain when he'd dragged the Pandorica through the London fires and half melted himself.
And so, with no one there to see and no hope left in his heart, Rory buried his head in his hands and wept.
"So what year is it then? 1938 again, or maybe sometime earlier?"
He jerked his head toward the voice a few feet to his right and there she was, a ghost of everything he'd never have again. But she looked so solid. Surely he wouldn't imagine her with blotchy eyes and smudged mascara because Amy rarely cried. And her voice didn't tremor like that when she teased him.
"Where's the Doctor?" he asked once he could make his throat work, because her answer would break the illusion and send him back to his hellish reality.
"Couldn't come. Weren't you listening? Too many timelines for the TARDIS. New York would explode – or something."
"Then how did you–?"
"The Angel was still there. One way ticket to the past. So I blinked."
"You're really here." The truth of it hit him so hard he felt slightly ill, but also elated – like watching the stars zip by while hanging out the door of the TARDIS.
"I'm just glad it took me to the right time." She held out her hand, so uncharacteristically shaky, and he stared at it a moment, terrified to take the chance that this was all in his head, but Amy was sniffling and God how he needed this to be real, so he grasped it and let her pull him upright and into her arms.
She didn't disappear. Not when he wrapped his arms around her and buried his face in the crook of her neck, losing himself in her glorious red hair and the scent that was distinctly Amy – time and adventure and scones. He could hardly believe it but here she was, come for him again, another reunion in the graveyard just a few minute after their last.
He wasn't sure how long it was that he couldn't say anything at all, couldn't do anything but clutch at her desperately, but adventures rarely afforded the time for prolonged embraces. Surely they'd be running from something soon enough. "If the Doctor can't get here by TARDIS, how is he going to pick us up?" he asked, still not pulling away.
He pulled back to see her face but kept his hands on her shoulders, unwilling to move any farther than that. "Then why are you here?"
"Stupid face! I couldn't let you live your life here alone. Did you honestly think I could watch you disappear and not follow?"
Then he was kissing her, desperately, as if it was some law of physics he couldn't break, because she had come here, stranded herself here, for him. It was the moment on the ledge all over again, except this time her devotion didn't mean flinging themselves to a highly probably demise. And she was real and solid beneath his hands and his mouth and her tears were mixing with his and when he finally pulled away to breathe he was acutely aware that he was covered in snot and tears.
"I'm a right mess," he whispered, swiping at his face with his sleeve.
"Crying Roman with his wife," she whispered. "Very cool."
She'd never made a joke about Demon's Run before, but he laughed before he remembered where she'd first said such things. He tilted his forehead against hers, watching the teardrops caught on her eyelashes. "But we're stuck here now. Good and properly stuck here. New York. Who knows what year. You'll never see the Doctor again. Never go traveling."
Her hands were back around his neck, fisting in his hair, and her voice was filled with Scottish fire. "You're my husband. I didn't want that life – not if I couldn't have it with you. Besides, we don't need a spaceship to go traveling. There are boats, and airplanes – well, maybe not now, but in ten, twenty, thirty years."
"I love you so much." It was impossible to say anything else. Impossible to mean anything more.
"I know. I love you too." There had always been some part of him that had doubted that. Felt that he could never live up to her imaginary friend, who was not so imaginary at all but an ageless, practically immortal hero with godlike power and a childish delight at all the wonders he could show her. It made more sense for Amy to love the Doctor more, and he'd accepted that, because at least she brought him along for the ride. It truly was magical, all the things they had seen, and the best part was watching how much she loved it. As they'd gotten older he'd finally begun to realize that she'd chosen him, but the Doctor was a part of her past too important to abandon. But now she'd given up everything for him, and he'd endeavor to never doubt her again.
"We thought about giving it up," she continued, tracing patterns into his neck that set his blood racing. "To have a normal life. So now we will."
Her makeup was a mess, but her voice was unbelievably strong. Amazing Amy, wrapping her mind around the situation far better than he could. "Everything in that normal life is gone. Our jobs. Our friends. Our parents."
She shrugged. "We'll get new jobs. Think of all the medical stuff you'll know here that no one else does. Someone will hire you for sure."
"And what will you do?" She'd never quite been able to figure that out back in London. Six different jobs in the time between adventures, and nothing ever stuck more than nine months. The options were sure to be slimmer here, in whatever year it was. They weren't even on the right continent.
"Well, once we get settled. Figure out the decade we're in. Perhaps we could … adopt a baby. Or two. Start a family."
His imagination wasn't great but damn if he couldn't see it, his family at a picnic, a little girl in Amy's lap and another by her side, and him the luckiest man in the world. "You're incredible," he proclaimed, before kissing a line up her neck and licking behind her ear until she squealed.
"Wasn't feasible before, the way the Doctor would just show up and we'd go swanning off. But no running now so … you'll be an amazing father."
He felt like he might start crying again. What a mess he was. "I don't know what to say."
"You don't have to say anything. But if you keep looking at me like that soon we're going to be doing things in broad daylight we probably shouldn't do twenty feet from a graveyard."
He laughed, but she'd planted the images and now he couldn't get them out of his head, just as she'd intended. Wicked Amy.
And because she expected him to be the respectable one, and they'd been interrupted by the Doctor while they were in the park, and he loved her more than anything in the world, he pulled her down into the grass and snogged her quite silly until he let good sense take over and drag him away.
Afterwards they laid side by side in the grass, hands clasped between them, staring out at the city skyline that was far less grand than the last time they'd seen it.
"It's a new beginning," Amy declared, far more okay with all of this than he could comprehend. "Not one we expected. But we're here, together. That's all that matters."
He rolled to face her. "Won't you miss it though? Won't you miss him?"
"Course I will. You will too. I barely got to say goodbye – I had to keep looking at the Angel, and he didn't want me to go. But I told Melody to look after him. She'll make sure he's all right."
He studied her face, and could finally see she was only putting on a brave front. She was so much stronger than him, but she felt just as deeply. "You're worried about him."
"Yeah. You saw how he was at Mercy. It's no good when he travels alone. He gets mean. Forgets everything he taught us. I think he'll miss us even more than we miss him – and he'll do it for longer. But there's a whole universe of people he could take with him. He'll find someone even if River doesn't stay."
"I didn't think you'd follow me," he admitted. He remembered the hurt in her eyes, on the Dalek prison planet, when she'd slapped him for claiming she didn't love him as much as he loved her. If it was really going to be the two of them, without the entirely of time and space and a madman in a box to distract them, they'd have to start being properly honest.
"Rory Williams, I'll always follow you," she promised, and he could hardly believe how this had gone from one of the worst days of his life to one of the happiest in so short a time.
"Well, Mrs. Pond, as much as I've come to enjoy this lovely graveside field, if we don't want to spend the night here perhaps we should go into the city and try to find some lodging."
She didn't smile as widely as he'd hoped at his affected tone. "Probably best to go by Mrs. Williams now. They're probably not so forward thinking in whatever time this is."
The comment broke his heart and swelled it simultaneously. He'd never make her give up the girl she had been. They'd never forget the Doctor and all he had done for them.
He'd never been able to deny it. He'd always be Mr. Pond.
Haven't written fanfiction in ages, and I dashed this off quickly because I just had to deal with all the ridiculous feels after Angels Take Manhattan. I'm sure Amy would be a bit more devastated than this, but I felt these two needed some fluff – and I don't think Rory gets enough attention. Basically I just couldn't sleep tonight until I imagined a happy ending for everyone.
On that note, there might be a second part if I can't let go of my feelings. We shall see.