It was hard to say how long they'd been here, now.
A few years (a few minutes), it felt like.
No, no, it was certainly over a year. Possibly sliding into two.
The Doctor leaned out of the TARDIS door, watching the few flurries that fell at this late hour. He sighed, then tossed his cane back and forth between his hands. It was new, wooden. Sturdy and strong, and a little more classic. Still, just another sign of how much had changed in two years.
How much had changed in a moment, really.
He looked back into the silver TARDIS that was his and Reinette's home. The black walls were still dull, the lights in the console still dark. Not only had two years passed, but now they were trapped again. Who knew for how long. Trapped here while the stars were out in the sky.
He looked up at the vast emptiness. One might think it was clouds covering the light of the rest of the universe, but no. No, there was no other universe. Just this little part of the universe that had been saved. Everything out there was quiet. Everything out in that night was quiet too.
Everything but the beeping. Wait, what beeping?
There was a beep behind him.
And another. The Doctor spun around and looked at the console to the TARDIS. Lights started going on. The familiar hum of the machine came back.
"Reinette!" he cried, limping back inside. "Reinette!"