Chapter Four

"Rory, stop it!"

The Doctor looked over his shoulder while they followed Khassstra. Rory was shoving his torch in Amy's face while turning it on and off repeatedly.

"I'm gonna grab it and break it in half if you don't stop it," Amy said while Rory giggled.

"Rory Williams!"

Everyone froze when the Doctor stopped. He turned to Rory and held out his hand to him. Rory put the torch into his hand with a sheepish look on his face.

"While we are here, I expect you to act like an adult and not resort to such childish antics," the Doctor said sternly.

Rory nodded. The Doctor grinned.

"Besides, I'm the leader which means I get to irritate Pond," he said before he shoved the torch in her face and clicked it on.

Rory laughed when Amy flipped him off and tried to wrestle the torch away from him. He passed it to River and grabbed Amy from behind and held her tightly. While this was going on, Khassstra was watching in confusion. River noticed the odd look on his face and put a hand on his shoulder.

"This is normal for them. They like to tease each other," she said to him.

"Tease?" Khassstra said to her with a confused frown. "I'm afraid I don't understand the word."

"They like to play pranks and joke around and be silly sometimes," River said. "Don't you do that?"

"No, my kind are very serious and intellectual," Khassstra.

"He thinks he is but he's really more like this," River said, pointing to the Doctor. "He likes to think he's high-minded but he's more like a big kid."

"I would not have guessed that from the legends," Khassstra said.

"Don't believe everything you read or hear about him," River said to him while the Doctor let go of Amy and walked up to River.

"Speaking of me behind my back, dearest?" the Doctor said to her.

"Only good things, sweetie," River said, patting his head. "Our new friend is shocked that you have the maturity of a nine month old fetus…and the looks of one as well."

"What? I thought I looked older this time around," the Doctor said, patting his cheek. "As for acting my age, I do that often enough so it's nice to act like a child at times. Besides, you have to do that with this lot," he added, gesturing to Amy. "Not everyone is of the higher species so sometimes one must bring oneself down to the lower one's level in order to communicate with them."

He grunted when Amy kicked his bum.

"And sometimes one must kick one's friend's arse to make one's point," Amy said to Khassstra.

"I must admit this is not what I was expecting from you, Sssra-khan," Khassstra said while he watched the teasing.

"Yeah. Wouldn't be the first time someone said that to me," the Doctor said to him. "Don't believe the hype, my friend. I'm not as godlike as people like to believe."

"I'm glad, it makes you more approachable," Khassstra said.

"Yup, we can kick his arse and get away with it," Amy said, coming up beside the Doctor.

"And I can shove them out an airlock and get away with that," the Doctor said to Khassstra. "They just don't realize that yet."

Khassstra chuckled. He had heard stories about Sssra-khan growing up and admired the man but meeting him in person and observing his playfulness made him more likable. He thanked the gods he had a presence of mind to approach him in the first place. He was about to suggest something else they could do when a series of high-pitched shrieks got everyone's attention. They turned and watched while Sissshak came out from behind the trees. They wore cotton, human skeleton costumes that covered their body except for their head, hands, feet and tail. Their faces were covered with white and black greasepaint that resembled human skulls. The lizards began to dance around for the tourists while they threw their arms up and shrieked and howled. Amy made a face while she watched them.

"Yeah, you were right when you said Earth costumes don't look good on your people," she said to Khassstra.

The dancers spun around, clapped their hands once and spun back round again. Then they dispersed throughout the bystanders and grabbed some so they could dance with them. The Doctor was delighted when one came up to him and held out his hand. The Doctor took it and they walked over to an open hand and the Doctor and the Sissshak danced together, spinning around and clapping their hands while his friends watched.

"Hey, do your weird dance," Amy called to the Doctor.

"What weird dance?" the Doctor said, looking back over his shoulder.

"The wavy arm thing you did at our wedding," Amy said.

"That wasn't weird, it was interpretive dance," the Doctor said while he and his partner spun around.

"Yeah and I interpreted it as being weird," Amy said.

The Doctor ignored her and finished the dance. He shook his partner's hand and the lizard went off in search of someone new to dance with. The Doctor came back over to his friends.

"That was brilliant. What else is there to do here?" the Doctor said to Khassstra.

"Well, we have a spook house if you'd like to tour it," Khassstra said.

"Brilliant, lead on," the Doctor said as he took River's hand.

"Wait!" Amy said.

Everyone stared at her when she yelled and held up her hand.

"What?" the Doctor said.

"Just indulge me a moment, yeah?" Amy said, walking over to River.

"Indulge you in what?" the Doctor said.

"Look, I didn't get to raise Melody properly so just let me be a mum for a moment, okay?"

The Doctor shrugged. Amy took hold of River's hand and led her back to Rory.

"Melody?" Amy said to River.

"Yes, mum?" River said when Amy stopped beside Rory.

"Look, I've been watching you for awhile and I know you really like this boy," Amy said, pointing to the Doctor. "But do you know about safe sex and proper protection."

Rory sniggered at the shocked look on River's face while the Doctor's face turned a deep crimson. River chuckled.

"No, mum, what is safe sex?" she said in a childlike voice.

"It's learning when to say no to lecherous people," Amy said while Rory giggled. "We're about to go inside a haunted house. Haunted houses are dark which means it's a funfair for sexual predators."

"Pond…" the Doctor said while River gave her mother a bemused look and Rory giggled hysterically.

"This man may look innocent," Amy said to River. "But he could be a serial rapist and you wouldn't know it."

River looked back over her shoulder at the Doctor.

"A serial rapist?" River said, looking at her mother. "Are you sure? He looks so harmless."

"But that's the problem. Rapists can be anyone and look like anybody," Rory said in a melodramatic voice while Amy giggled. "One minute you're enjoying a ghost train and the next moment your skirt's up over your head, your knickers are off and you're being thrown across a giant jack-o-lantern so the rapist can have a go at you. You must be cautious, daughter. Perverts are behind every corner."

"Will you two belt up?" the Doctor said while River laughed.

"Yes, he could be Jack the Ripper and he'll slit you up a treat the moment you stop to look at Frankenstein," Amy said, wagging her finger at River.

"What is this?" Khassstra said to the Doctor.

"It's called winding me up, my friend," the Doctor said. "Just two cheeky gits having a laugh at my expense."

"But…what if I want to have a go at him?" River asked in her childlike voice.

"Then you must force him to wear a condom," Amy said. "You're too young to have alien babies. You're just a child and therefore inexperienced in the ways of the world."

"Not to mention if he's Jack the Ripper he could perform an unwanted cesarian section on you that will leave you slit from neck to navel."

"Besides, he smells weird, he has shifty eyes and he has a daft fashion sense. And that bow tie…"

"Okay, heard enough," the Doctor said, walking up and taking River's hand. "Pretend Parent Time is over with for now. We want to go into the haunted house."

"Just remember, Melody, no means no!" Amy said to River while she and Rory followed the others across the open area towards a large black building.

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