Beta: The amazing, wonderful and fabulous jooles34
Characters: Ianto/OMC, mentions of Ianto/Lisa, Ianto/OFC and Janto
Rating, Warnings: I'm bad with ratings, urm, possibly Mature-ish. Some rude words. Some allusions to self harm. Extremely gentle D/s
Disclaimer:Whilst I do claim to own my ocs, I don't own the world or characters of Torchwood, but they all play so well together that it would be mean to split them up!
Summary: Ianto decides to use his suspension to reconnect with himself
Spoilers: None that I can think of. Unless you've never seen TW or Who.
Huzzah! It's another update! And this one has Jack in it (and blink and you'll miss him Owen!).
Enjoy! And remember, comments feed my writing ego *grin*
Jack put the phone down and returned to the screen, staring blankly at the Torchwood One logo in front of him. How had he not noticed? The more he thought about it, the clearer it became. He had been too caught up in “see pretty boy, see pretty boy fight weevils, see pretty boy with amazing coffee, see pretty boy with pteredon, see pretty boy in suit, snog pretty boy for ages in the archives”. He’d been thinking with the wrong brain and, as usual, it had got him into trouble. At least none of the team were dead or injured, although Gwen had had a really nasty scare. It was a shame about the pizza girl though. He should have done more. He pinched the bridge of his nose and looked back at the computer screen. A tap at his door jerked him out of his reverie and he looked up to see Owen standing in the doorway. “Yes?”
“Just checking how you are.”
“I’ve been better.”
Owen raised his eyebrows and gave a wry grin. “No kidding. So have you decided what you are going to do with him?”
“I’ve suspended him; he’ll be back in four weeks”
“So no retcon, no bullet?”
“I don’t want this to be a copy of One.”
“You did the right thing.”
Jack looked up at Owen; the hard lines of the doctor’s face had softened
“Jack, there isn’t one of us that wouldn’t rip the world apart for those we love,” Owen said and Jack nodded looking down. “Anyway, I’m off home, I’ve been up to my elbows in weevil guts this afternoon, and it’s not like we have our friendly butler to clean up after this. I’m desperate for a proper shower.” And with that he ducked out of the office.
Jack flicked back to the CCTV at Ianto’s house, sighing when there was still no change.
“Oh, if you tell Ianto I’m going to miss him, I’ll make sure that I lose the good drugs when you next have a run in with short, loping and toothsome,” Owen grinned as Jack jumped a foot in the air. “And stop staring at those screens, it’s not healthy.”
Jack huffed as he watched Owen bounce off towards the office, completely missing the CCTV screen showing the motorbike that had pulled into the Plass. But Jack had seen and was bracing himself for what was coming.
Jack took another glance at the screen displaying the evidence he was still unwilling to believe that he was seeing. It had taken him all day to find the file as it had been buried deep in the heart of Mainframe, he doubted even Tosh could have known it was there. And it meant that, yet again, he had underestimated Ianto. He should have twigged something was different about the young man when he had taken Ianto down to the shooting range. The fact that nothing he had done had managed to distract him from shooting. It was a stark contrast to Gwen; her heart rate had soared when he was showing her the correct way to handle a weapon. Ianto’s heartbeat had remained steady, even when he had breathed instructions into his ear and released his pheromones a little. Ianto’s hand had never wavered, his aim remained true.
“Well done Ianto, obviously One knew a thing or two about target practice.”
“Thank you, sir,” Ianto replied, a slight grin thrown over his shoulder.
“You’re able to keep focused, too.”
“Yes, sir.” Ianto turned so that he could face Jack. “I find it more beneficial to concentrate on the job in hand.” His eyes flicked down to Jack’s lips and then back up again, the grin still in place. “Was there anything else you wanted?” One eyebrow quirked up.
“Um no, no I’m fine.” Jack took an uncharacteristic step back, oddly wrong footed. He would have sworn based on Ianto’s behaviour earlier that the young man definitely wasn’t interested; now, now he was fairly sure that there was flirting going on.
“Well, in that case, I’d best get back to the clamouring hordes, they’ll be wondering where their coffee’s got to.” A brief flash of a wry smile and a shoulder slump, gone so quickly Jack wasn’t sure if he really had seen it.
“Um, yes, Owen’s like a bear with a sore head if he doesn’t get regular injections of caffeine. I’ll tidy up here, don’t you worry.” Another quirked eyebrow questioned Jack’s statement. “I will!” he insisted.
Ianto spun on his heel and exited the target range. Jack’s enhanced ears picked up a muffled “fuck it” and then he was suddenly slammed against the wall, arms full of Welshman who was snogging the life out of him. And he was good, really good. It was only that pesky human need to breathe that meant they parted.
“Wow,” Jack managed.
“Where did you learn to…?”
“Oh sir, surely you know by now, you should always watch the quiet ones.”
Jack was jerked out of his reverie by the sound of the alarm going, ‘Yeah’ he thought with a twinge of bitterness, ‘I really should learn to watch the quiet ones’. He heard the cog door roll open and pulled a second glass out of his drawer, pouring a generous amount of scotch into both. He set them on the desk and waited, listening as the sound of heels tick tacking along the metal walkways. He steepled his fingers and tried to look like he was concentrating on the screens in front of him. The footsteps came closer and closer until a familiar head popped round the door of the office and blue eyes met green.
“You know, you really should redecorate.”
Cat walked into the office, threw herself down on the available chair and kicked her legs up onto the desk, sending a pile of precariously balanced paperwork flying. Jack looked at her and sighed. She quirked her eyebrows at him.
“What? It’s not like you were ever going to get round to completing it,” she said.
“It was on my to-do list.”
“You have a to-do list?” Cat was incredulous at this.
“Yes, it’s right here!” Jack rifled through the papers littering his desk, seizing one and waving it at Cat with a look of triumph on his face “Ianto drew it up for me.” A shadow crossed his face.
“He’s a good kid, very…” Cat paused, searching for the right word, “Thorough.”
“Yes.” Jack’s tone had gone flat and he swung the screen round to face Cat “Thorough is definitely one word for him. I’m also trying out lying, deceitful, secretive.”
“Oh, you finally found it then.” Cat cut Jack off mid-tirade.
He stared at her, open-mouthed. “You KNEW about this?”
“Have you even READ the damn thing? Or were you so proud of your own cleverness at finding it that you’ve just been staring at it for the past few hours.” Jack shut his mouth with a snap. “You have, haven’t you?” Cat rolled her eyes. “If you’d actually bothered to read the damn thing, you would see that it states, quite clearly, ‘Ianto Jones - joined Torchwood Four at 17, transferred to One to increase knowledge of Torchwood with a view to acting as a liaison for the various branches.’
Jack jerked the screen back to him and scanned the information.
“Why didn’t he tell me?”
“Oooh, I wonder why?” Cat’s voice dripped sarcasm. “It was bad enough getting you to hire him knowing he’d worked for One, would you honestly have done it if you knew he worked for us too?”
Jack shook his head, he’d never have taken Ianto on knowing that he had previously worked for Four; relations had been strained between them for decades and he would have always been distrustful of Ianto’s motives. He knew how persuasive both Cat and Lucca could be.
In an effort to lift the mood, Cat gestured to the tumbler in front her and Jack nodded, and she downed it in one.
“Gods that’s awful!” She shuddered and made a face.
“It’s not that bad,” Jack pouted slightly.
“What the hell is it?” Cat asked and Jack pulled the bottle out of the safe. “Jack Daniels? No wonder!” She looked at him for a second. “Jack, why are you even trying with this rubbish? The only person I know that drinks this gut rot is Ianto” Jack blushed slightly and looked away. “Are you drinking this because Ianto does?”
“No!” Jack’s blush deepened despite the vermence of his denial.
“You are!” Cat laughed. “What is it about that boy?” She looked back at Jack. “Oh, you’ve got it bad.”
Jack hung his head and sighed. “Fine, yes, I like him, I really like him. He’s funny and clever and smart and organised and…”
“And is a great snog and has a fantastic arse,” Cat finished for him “Jack Harkness, you are the only man I know that puts ‘organised’ on a list of someone’s attractive qualities.”
Jack’s head came up again as Cat had spoken, and he stared at her, mouth open
“What’s the reason for the goldfish impression now Farmboy?” Cat asked.
“H-how do you know?”
“How do I know what?”
“How do you know all that stuff about Ianto?”
Cat sighed “I told you, he worked for us. With us. You were part of my team, still are to a certain extent; you know how we encourage ‘team building’. Have you even looked at that damn document, or have you been brooding over the CCTV feeds from Ianto’s house?” Cat fixed Jack with a hard stare as he mumbled something. “What was that? I didn’t quite catch it.”
“I read the first few pages.” Jack’s tone was sullen.
“And it was full of Hartman’s standard passive aggressive prose, equal parts vitriol and double speak.”
“So you gave up.”
“Well, it didn’t seem like it was going to be any different the further I got into it, so yes, I gave up.”
“Right, in that case, I’d best give you the edited highlights. You’re probably going to need a drink. Not that!” She almost shouted as he reached for the bottle “I’ve got some proper stuff with me.” She pulled a flask out of her boot. As she uncorked it, a thin vapour escaped from the neck, Jack leaned forward, eyes sparkling
“Uh-huh,” Cat nodded and concentrated on pouring the colourless, shimmering, viscous liquid into the glasses.
“Where did you get it?”
“Where do you think?” Cat rolled her eyes and resealed the flask, sliding it back into her boot. She picked up her glass and rolled it in her hands so that the liquid started to glitter and lose its thick consistency.
“You’ve had it all this time?” Jack was mirroring her movements with his own glass.
“No, you idiot, that didn’t last us until the twentieth century. Got this last week.”
“Last week! How? Is your wrist strap working? Did it come through the Rift? Is it safe?” Jack’s agitation had spread to his hands and the liquid appeared to boil.
“Relax, you great lummox, you’re burning it up.”
Jack calmed his hands and the liquid slid back to its glittering state.
“The trading routes have changed.” Cat explained “Sol Three is now a potential shopping mecca. Traders are starting to buzz past, see if there’s anyone’s interested in doing business.”
“Oh! Why didn’t you let us know?”
“Would’ve thought you already knew, after all, you did actually study for all those exams, put us to shame.” Cat grinned softly.
“That was a long time ago.”
She rolled her eyes. “Do not get maudlin.” She pointed her finger at him and sipped from her glass, an expression of bliss on her face “It’s been far too long since I had this. And as for you, if you get all, ‘woe is me’, I shall go home and you’ll have to go through Hartman’s report all by yourself.”
“It’s over 200 pages!” Jack bemoaned.
“So I’m here as Cliff notes?”
“Maybe,” Jack grinned, the tension leaving his shoulders as the drink’s effects took hold.
Cat rolled her eyes at him again. “And you used to be so thorough,” she sighed in mock disappointment. “Oh, nearly forgot, you’ll be needing one of these,” She pushed a small pink pill over to him.
“Harper’s Hangover Cure,” Jack acknowledged.
“Does he know that’s his lasting legacy to the universe?”
“Nope, I try not to mess with timelines if I can avoid it. Besides, he would be utterly insufferable if he found out.”
Cat gave him a disbelieving look over the top of her glass which Jack pointedly ignored.
“So, Mr Jones,” she sighed “I’d best start at the beginning. Try not to interrupt too much.” She sighed again, knowing that last bit would be impossible for Jack. “It was Lucca who found him.”
“Jack, what did I say about interrupting?”
“Sorry, it’s just…Lucca?”
“I know, but just occasionally he demonstrates what he was hired for. May I continue?”
Jack nodded and Cat began again. She explained how Lucca had told her about this boy and how she thought it would fade like all Lucca’s crushes, except that the more Lucca opened up, the more Ianto accepted. How he had been dragged back to the house by Lucca and how he’d managed to impress and charm her, despite her misgivings about his age. Ianto had moved in when he was 17, his father had thrown him out after seeing Ianto and Lucca together. How Lucca had sworn blind that they weren’t having sex until she accidentally walked in on them, and how it had been Ianto that had jumped on Lucca and not the other way round.
Jack had been stunned at this, but Cat stated that Ianto was a very focussed man, and when he saw something, he went for it. Jack was reminded of the flirtation that Ianto had initiated and nodded. Cat went on to explain that as Ianto was merrily flunking his way through college, they decided to have him work for Four, and he had excelled. “We trained him the way we were trained,” she said looking at Jack who realised that explained the shooting range. “He’s fantastic with a pulse pistol, anything bladed and razor wire, but he prefers a stun gun.”
“He’s seen enough death,” Jack murmured.
“Possibly now, but not then. If you render the enemy unconscious and incapacitate them, then you can interrogate them or use them for bargaining. That’s page one of the Manual Jack, you know that off by heart, do not come the innocent with me.”
“But that would make him…”
“What Jack? It would make him what?”
“Like us, cold, unfeeling, not human.”
“Is that honestly how you see us? Cold and unfeeling? Jack, you cannot hide yourself away forever in the hope that you can avoid interacting with the world? That lot up there, they’re not that different. Sure our DNA has been jiggled about with, but fundamentally we’re the same as them. And Ianto, Ianto grew up on an estate that makes parts of the homeworld look positively benign.”
“But the Doctor…”
“Oh shut up about that self-righteous Time Lord with a God complex.”
Jack took a deep breath. When he’d ended up in Cardiff and discovered Cat and Lucca there, he’d been delighted. But when the decades had rolled on and there was still no sign of the Doctor, he’d grown increasingly despondent and thrown himself into Torchwood, losing much of his optimism and exuberance in the process. Cat placed the blame firmly with the Doctor, and they had long ago agreed not to talk about him. It usually ended in a shouting match and years of the silent treatment.
Cat returned the conversation to Ianto and told Jack how she had organised the transfer to One, and how they had buried his past with Four. Then she got to Lisa and her face shuttered.
“And we all know how that turned out, don’t we?” she said.
Jack nodded miserably. “I don’t understand why he didn’t go back to you. You’re every bit as equipped as we are. Ianto could have hooked that thing up at yours.”
“A few problems with that. One, we’re still a house; it’s a lot harder to hide things. Two, we are still a part time operation, and three, Lisa was the reason we didn’t speak for a good couple of years.”
“Exactly.” Cat leaned her head back and looked at the ceiling.
“What happened with Lisa?” Jack’s curiosity had got the better of him.
“I think you know that one.” Cat turned her head to look at him.
“Well, I know how it ended; fire, metal, screaming, Ianto punching me and calling me a monster.”
“Ianto punched you?” Cat giggled.
“I had just set the bird on her. He’s got one hell of a left hook.”
“If you think that’s bad, steer clear of his head butt,” Cat muttered and Jack raised an eyebrow. “Told you, bad estate, none of that came from us.”
“I’m more surprised that you didn’t train him out of it,” Jack replied. Cat and Lucca were both very elegant fighters. Sure they could get down and dirty when they wanted, but generally they preferred the less hands on method of combat.
“It’s a useful skill, you never know when you might need it, besides have you seen him fight?” Cat sighed happily. “All long limbs and purpose.” She grinned, lost in her memories.
Jack recognised the distraction for what it was. “Lisa?” he prompted.
“What about her?”
“What happened between you?”
“Something and nothing.” Cat sighed as Jack kept looking at her until she continued. “Picture a combination of youthful naïveté, deep-seated prejudice, some incredibly ill thought-out statements and about half a dozen of the best aimed bread rolls I’ve ever experienced.” Jack raised an eyebrow. “And that’s all you’re getting. It wasn’t anyone’s finest hour and as far as we know, we are all still barred from the restaurant.”
Jack opened his mouth to say something, but she cut him off by raising her hand. “I’m not going to say any more kiddo, just be glad I’ve said that much. None of us have mentioned it since and that should be the way it stays.”
Jack backed off, despite burning with curiosity. People who upset Cat and survived intact were few and far between, which meant that Lisa had either won the battle of wills or…
“Ianto really loved her!” he realised.
“So we thought.”
Jack looked at her, surprised by the sharp tone in her voice. Cat looked levelly back at him, and sipped her drink, smiling slightly.
“You’re not going to elaborate are you?” Jack asked.
“Nope. You want any more info; you’re going to have to go to the source.”
“Yeah, like that’s going to happen now. I killed the love of his life. I’ll be lucky if I get even civil conversation out of him.” Jack leant on his elbows and slumped forward. “I really like him,” he said in a small voice, not caring that it made him sound like a love struck teenager.
Cat stood up and came round to Jack’s side of the desk. She bumped against his shoulder and then lent back against the desk.
“I think the feeling is mutual,” she said.
Jack looked up at her and she smiled warmly. “Ianto knows a million and one ways to hide anything in this place without having to whore himself as a distraction. Trust me, if anything happened, he would have wanted it because he liked you.”
Jack stared at her as if she had grown two heads “You didn’t hear him, he hates me, and he said that he wants to see me suffer. And now he’s disappeared.”
“Disappeared?!” Cat’s voice dripped with disbelief. “You have all of Cardiff on CCTV and you can’t find one lanky archivist? Really?” Her eyebrows disappeared into her hairline.
“He was about earlier, and then he vanished.” Jack pouted “He’s not taken his car, or his phone, so I can’t track him.”
“You utter moron.”
“Ow!” Jack exclaimed as Cat had smacked him on the back of the head. “What was that for?”
“Did you listen to anything I said? Ianto has been working for Torchwood since he was 17, he is well aware of the trackers that are placed in cars and phones. You really are a prize idiot at times, kiddo.”
Jack rubbed the back of his head and looked sullenly at her. Cat grinned unrepentantly at him, her grin widening as she caught something over his shoulder.
“If you’re worried about him, go to his house. He’s got to come home sometime. I’d have a quick nap first though, you look like hell,” she said.
“I’m fine. I’ll go and wait for Ianto. Like you said he’s got to go home and the night air will wake me up.”
“Oh, but I insist.” Cat had produced a thin silver tube from her other boot and was smiling a feral smile down at Jack.
“Cat, I’m fine, really, there is no need for that.” Jack pushed back on his chair, trying to scoot away from her but was stopped by her right foot shooting into the chair, the heel just missing a very tender part of his body.
“Tut, tut,” she tsked, tapping the toe of her boot on this crotch. “This won’t hurt a bit.” She fiddled with the slim tube. “About four hours should do it.”
“What?” Jack tried to get away but was held in place partly by the strength of the foot in his lap and partly by the fear of getting a piercing that he hadn’t considered.
Cat slid into his lap and in one smooth movement aimed the tube at the back of his neck and fired. Jack slumped against her shoulder and she absently ruffled his hair and sighed. She hadn’t wanted to do that, but as soon as she had seen the screen, she knew that she would have to distract him somehow, and this was the least destructive how.
Jack snuffled into her shoulder and started to snuggle. She rolled her eyes, slid out from his embrace and picked him up in one easy move. Cradling him like a child, she carried him through to the ratty sofa and laid him down on it. She gazed at him, her expression soft, and brushed his hair away from his face. Jack leaned into the caress and she smiled.
“You’ve been shutting yourself away for too long kiddo; it’s about time you started living and not existing. And you need to redecorate.” She straightened and looked around “This place hasn’t changed since Alex. Except for that watery phallic tribute. Freud would have a field day.” Sighing she walked back into the office, downed the remainder of the glowing alcohol and popped two of the little pink pills.
Glancing over at the CCTV feed, she saw two figures peel themselves off the darkened wall of the alleyway by a nightclub. As the taller of the two dragged the other inside, Cat clicked the delete button.
“You guys so owe me for this,” she told the screen.
She then deleted all the footage of her in the Hub. Picking up the two glasses, she rinsed them in the sink, grabbed a bottle of water from the fridge and headed back to the office. There she double-checked all the CCTV footage had been deleted and scooped up Jack’s coat before heading back to the man on the sofa.
She gently drew the coat over him like a blanket and gave him a quick kiss on the forehead. He looked so young when he was asleep and she was again reminded how innocent he’d been when he joined the Agency. Smiling ruefully, she wrote a short note and left it with the water and two more pink pills. As she turned to go, there was a loud screech above.
“No girl, I haven’t forgotten about you either.”
Cat unwrapped a bar of chocolate and tossed it high into the air. The pteranodon caught it mid-flight and swooped back to her nest.
“Thanks for looking after them.” Cat called to her.
Cat took one last look round the Hub and left through the cog door, the sound of her footsteps growing fainter and fainter. There was a brief roar from the motorbike and then silence reigned over the sleeping man and the dinosaur.