River: DelaysMature

Matthew had spent plenty of time exploring the ship after we left the Monk behind and so I hadn't seen him much since. The Doctor had spent longer than ever labouring at the console and it worried me.

"Doctor?" I asked as I descended the stairs. I had been asleep in my room and had forced myself to do that.

"Yes?" He shouted from beneath the console, sparks flying everywhere. "Wasn't my fault."

"Have you fixed it yet?" I hesitated, wondering if it would be safe to join him down there.

"I'm getting there!" His yell was accompanied by even more sparks, this time from the console itself. He released himself from his harness and came up to me, smiling weakly. "It's tearing the ship apart." I could see that he was close to tears. He was losing his home to save his daughter and it was tearing him apart as well.

"It's ok, sweetie." I said, pulling him into a hug. "I know you're doing your best."

"But it isn't enough!" He shouted, pushing me away. "Kovarian." He stuttered. "She will not beat me." He leapt at the console, trying to get where we needed to go again but was thrown away when the ship turned. I picked him up and dusted him down. "Can I help you?"

He looked me in the eyes, not having it in either of his hearts to say no when he saw me. "I don't know. I don't know what to do in the first place." He bowed his head in shame.

"Well explain the problem to me." I offered him a smile.

"Kovarian has set up a time bubble around her base. It means that nothing can get in since they are separated from us by a barrier in time that is more or less indestructible. It means that we can't get to Serenata until the barrier starts to weaken. I've calculated it and it seems that the days match up." He lowered his head again.

"What do you mean?" As he looked at me, I suddenly knew that he was hiding something. "Tell me."

"He means that Sere will have already given birth by the time we get in there." Matthew declared from the top of the stairs.

"Given birth?" I asked, turning to look at him. "Given birth?!"

"He's right. By the time we get to Kovarian it will already be too late. She'll have Sere's baby." He moved over to me, trying to hold onto me.

"Who is the father?" She asked me, looking at Matthew.

"Yes." He whispered in my ear. I swivelled around to face him, tears flooding down my face.

"No." I said, falling to the floor. "This can't be happening."

"If it means anything, I think I can help." Matthew said but I didn't care. He came down to the console and joined the Doctor in his work, moving around me.

A couple of minutes later, the ship landed. "Did it work?" I asked, pulling myself up.#

"I bypassed the shield by landing quite a way outside the base." He sounded confident.

"Still did a bit of damage to the ship though." The Doctor muttered, gently stroking the console.

"Are we in time? Can we still save her?" I asked.

"One way to find out." The Doctor replied, racing over to the door with the widest grin I had ever seen. As he opened the door, I felt the cold flood the room. "Shut the door!" I shouted but he didn't.

"Rikavis." The Doctor muttered as we all froze in place, unable to move. In seconds, I could feel my lungs aching for oxygen. It was too cold. Unless the Doctor could do something quick, we were going to die and it was all Matthew's fault.

And somewhere out there on that planet my Sere was alone and about to have a child and that was all Matthew's fault as well.

I just wanted my family to be together again.

The End

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