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25 November 2009 @ 04:57 pm
Torchwood Fic: Fingertips Touching Reality's Face Part 1  
Written for kink_bigbang Big Bang 2009
Crossposted to torchwoodslash


Title: Fingertips Touching Reality's Face Part 1
Pairing/Characters: Jack/Ianto, Gwen, Owen, Tosh, OCs
Rating: R
Spoilers: Season 1
Summary: Ianto is fascinated by Jack's body's ability to heal wounds without scarring, only Ianto doesn't heal as easily as Jack does
Notes/Warnings: Read the disclaimer on my LJ

Other comments are housed at kink_bigbang.



I walk in the timeless sadness of existence,
tenderness flowing thru the buildings,
my fingertips touching reality’s face,
my own face streaked with tears in the mirror


- My Sad Self by Allen Ginsberg


Day, Month, Year, Century... There were so many constructs for time, so many labels people created to compartmentalize, analyze, organize like photographs in an album, yet then forget.

Jack liked moments.

In a moment a recent sigh still lingers in the air as a reminder of the past, hearts beat – always in the now, lips move and begin to form words that will bring the future into being.

“What are you thinking?” Ianto asked.

Propped up on his elbow, hand possessively low on Ianto's stomach over the sheets, Jack smirked down at him.

"Haven't you learned your lesson from the last time one of us asked that question?"

"Well, to be fair," Ianto cocked his head slightly, "it was true that Myfanwy wasn't getting enough fiber in her diet." He rolled onto his side, letting Jack's hand slip to his lower back, automatically curling him in closer as Ianto twined their legs together. "But I agree that was hardly an appropriate topic for bedroom conversation."

Jack chuckled. "I'd imagine the words 'post-coital' and 'pterodactyl' in the same sentence would be unique to the Hub."

"It's never boring here," Ianto agreed.

Jack shifted his hand to thread it through Ianto's mussed hair. He was always so prim and proper on the job; it pleased Jack to see him in a more natural state, more human.

The thought of it brought him back to his musings on time. It had been enough years since he let himself get involved in a real relationship he'd forgotten the ache that came from knowing their days together were numbered, that at some point Ianto would be - like all the others - a mere memory he carried with him, more like an old war wound that flared up at times than a heirloom treasure.

Each person he'd loved had left their mark on him like a scar. Despite his unblemished skin, he knew where everything had been: exactly where Suzie had shot him, where the Daifai alien had run him through with a sword, where Ianto had sunk his teeth into his shoulder just after the first time he saw Jack come back from the dead - both of them so desperate for each other despite Ianto drained from three days of grieving and guilt and Jack drained from, well, being drained of life - literally.

A nudge from Ianto drew him out of his reverie.

"Hmm?"

"Now I know for sure you've got something on your mind." Any trace of playfulness was gone from Ianto's face. "You never look like that."

"Like what?" Jack asked, trying to sound light.

Ianto scrutinized his face for a moment and Jack was struck at the notion that no one ever looked at him like that - that closely, that unselfconsciously - save Ianto.

"Worried."

"Worried?" Jack shook his head with an effortless shrug of the shoulders. "No. Not worried. Don't know why you'd think that."

Say what you might about Ianto, mock his status as a mere junior researcher for Torchwood One, but he had a rather astute eye for a lie.

Shifting, Jack pressed Ianto down to the mattress, covering his body with his own, marveling that - as always - Ianto followed his lead without question, molding his body and his will to Jack's demands.

"Let's see if I can drive that silly notion from your head," Jack whispered as his lips ghosted up Ianto's neck and his hand skated down Ianto's hip.

"Yes," Ianto agreed with a cocky smirk. "Let's."

||

"I wouldn't go in there," Gwen warned as Ianto approached Jack's office. At his questioning look she gestured behind her. "He's been going through the obituaries again. Don't know why he does it; he's always going to find someone he knew in the past who's died. Bloody morbid if you ask me."

"Has he said anything?" Ianto asked, "Or is he just doing the silent glower?"

Gwen gestured at the latter as being spot on. "Though he did growl at me when I asked if he'd like to be left alone."

"All the same," Ianto said. "I'll risk life and limb to bring him a sacrificial offering of coffee."

"Suit yourself." Gwen stood aside in the walkway to let him pass. "If anyone should be unafraid of the big bad wolf, it would be you."

There was music in the office when Ianto opened the door - one of Jack's old big band recordings. Nostalgia. Always a bad sign.

Jack's face was hidden behind the newspaper and he didn't lower it even as Ianto put his coffee down in front of him.

"New coffee beans," he ventured. "I'm told they're the latest thing in London."

"Yes, because England's the arbiter of gourmet cuisine the entire world looks to," Jack muttered, voice dripping with sarcasm.

"Can't argue with a place that thinks of bangers and mash as a national cuisine." Ianto's effort to join in the insults fell flat when Jack didn't respond, didn't even turn the page on his paper.

"Is there anything..."

"That will be all, thank you."

Ianto stood there for a moment. He had to choose his battles wisely with Jack. Sometimes he needed to have those walls brought down forcibly and sometimes it was just a matter of waiting him out.

Inevitably he'd emerge from his cave in an hour, a day, a week at worst, smiling and joking as if he hadn't been in a black mood at all.

Only after those episodes, those times when Ianto let him alone, they never spoke of what happened to spur those dark periods. No prodding on Ianto's part could get Jack to say anything; what was past, was past.

On the other side of the equation, they'd had some of their worst fights when Ianto pushed too hard, asked for too much, denied Jack his private grief.

Those fights hurt and in the choice between possible hurt and annoying patience, this was a battle Ianto chose not to engage in.

"Very well then," he said formally and let himself out of the office.

Once on the other side of the door he rested against it, letting his head fall back, hoping he'd made the right choice.

||

"We should go somewhere. What do you think of the Greek Isles?"

Jack rarely caught Ianto completely unawares, but the stunned look on his face - in the middle of unpacking a new box of sweeteners and stirrers for the coffee bar - told him Ianto really had not expected that announcement at all.

"You mean like a trip. A vacation."

Ianto still looked confused, as if Jack had spoken in a foreign language, but then vacations and Torchwood went together about as well as a Spice Girl and a weevil in Owen's words.

"Yes," Jack said slowly. "Away. From here. I figure the world won't end if we take a week or two off."

Ianto rose, dusting himself off. "I'd think you of all people would have plenty to say as to why it's highly unlikely the world would postpone ending until we're on duty."

"Contrary to popular belief the world ending doesn't always begin in Cardiff," Jack intoned.

"Only 94.2 percent of the time," Ianto stated. "But that's only if you believe Tosh's statistical analysis. Cardiff's rather the prat of the universe, isn't it? What with all the Riff troubles and the smoking," he mocked.

"Nah, Talarus Five holds that honor," Jack scoffed, playing along. "And really civilization being snuffed out on the Earth is a far cry from total destruction of the known universe, so Cardiff's not much of a player."

"Well, that's rather depressing, isn't it?" Ianto pretended an affront. "We'll just have to try harder then."

He went back to putting the coffee supplies away as if nothing had happened.

"So what about a trip?" Jack waited, hands in pockets, for Ianto's answer.

"What? Oh, sure," Ianto said, as if the request was nothing. "I'm sure someday we'll meet a reliable psychic who can tell exactly which ten days in a row we can spend sunning ourselves on the French Riviera when there won't be any weevil attacks."

"We've gone ten days before!" Jack protested. At Ianto's arched eyebrow he amended his tack. "At least a week, you can't deny that. Last February..."

"Face it," Ianto said, a sudden weariness in his aspect as he finished up his task. "We'd be lucky to manage a weekend in Bath."

||

"I'm just saying!" Owen all but dropped the equipment in his hands once he got inside the Hub. "You've been bloody running us ragged for weeks! It's bad enough fighting weevils when they pop up, but all this rousting them? What's wrong with letting sleeping weevils lie, I say?"

Ianto watched as Jack just sailed past him, Gwen in tow carrying the rest of the gear.

"Catching aliens is part of the job description," Jack said brusquely. "You don't like it..."

"Yeah, yeah," Owen huffed, grumbling. "It's just, you're pissing them off, mate! I thought we were supposed to protect people from weevils, not lure them out of their hiding places to cause more mayhem."

Jack turned on his heel, stopping on the way to his office to address Owen. "It's time we got proactive about the weevil menace. Their numbers have to be finite. The more we deal with now the less that can surface later."

He strode briskly into his office, coat flowing behind him, and closed the door behind him with an air of finality.

"The more we deal with the less chance we'll survive," Owen growled under his breath.

Ianto looked from Gwen to Owen. "I take it I'm going to have to raid Torchwood One's real estate holdings to arrange yet another holding facility?"

"Forget that," Owen ranted. "Why don't we rent the bloody football stadium! Oh wait, that won't be big enough either because Fearless Leader over there's got a bug up his arse so bad I bet if we ran out of weevils he'd open the bloody rift to get more!"

"He's not that bad," Gwen offered, even if she was stifling an amused chuckle. "Anyway, I don't think it's a bad thing, getting ahead of things on the weevil front. I just think Jack's gotten a bit..." She glanced towards the glass walls of the office.

"Overzealous?" Ianto supplied.

"I was going for masochistic, but that works," she said with a cock of the head.

"More like sadistic," Owen grumbled.

Tosh came in, looking rather bedraggled. "Well, the inventory's done and I'm afraid..."

"I'm already looking for another facility," Ianto interrupted.

"Thank you." She let out an exhausted sigh. "A few more raids like this and weevils will outnumber humans in this part of Cardiff."

"How do we know they don't already?" Owen said pointedly before stretching. "I'm off for a pint. Anyone care to join me?"

"But there's all the equipment to put away still," Tosh pointed out, glancing around to confirm all of it left where it had been dropped.

"You going to tell the boss?" Owen snarked as he passed by her. "Odds are he won't come out of that office and notice any time soon and I?" He put out his arms. "I worked hard today. I bloody well deserve a night off."

"I'll phone Rhys to meet us there," Gwen said as she followed.

Tosh looked at the equipment then looked longingly after Owen.

"Go," Ianto told her. "I'll put everything away." They both cast their eyes towards Jack's office. "Someone's got to stay and look after him. Might as well be me."

"Thanks."

Tosh grabbed her bag and ran off after Owen and Gwen, calling out to them. "Hey, wait for me!"

Ianto headed for the stairs to get a better look into Jack's office. One glance told him there was a black cloud, chance of thunder. Best to stay clear - for now anyway.

He went back down and picked up the first piece of equipment. It would take a while to get it all put away, but he had nowhere more important to be.

||

"If you have a moment?"

Jack looked up to find Ianto hovering uncharacteristically timid at his office door.

"Of course." Jack gestured him in, noting Ianto's stiff bearing, a body language he hadn't seen since Ianto had first come to work there. "You know you can always talk to me."

"Would that were true," Ianto said, almost under his breath before straightening, his voice almost professional. "I have a question to ask you, a rather uncomfortable one at that, and I would very much appreciate a frank answer."

Jack got up from his desk, eyeing Ianto warily as he came around it. "Did Owen send you? Because if he doesn't have the balls to come bitch to my face about all the work..."

"Owen didn't send me," Ianto interjected. "No one sent me. No one would ask what I'm about to ask you."

Jack put a hand on Ianto's shoulder and was taken aback by the rigid tension there.

"Sit," Jack told him, guiding him to a chair, watching him carefully. "You've got my attention," he said, lowering himself into the chair beside his. "Let's hear it."

"All this work, this ferreting out the weevils where they hide? I know you said it's proactive, which I understand, but it's also dangerous. We don't have the vast resources of Torchwood One with dozens of trained field operatives whose sole job is tactical in nature." He gestured to the Hub's main work area where his co-workers normally sat. "Gwen was just a beat cop when she was recruited, not even SWAT. Owen's a bloody doctor and Tosh is just a computer geek. These are not people trained to be battling for their lives on a daily basis."

"Are you saying they're not up for it?" Jack felt his hackles rising, his voice taking on a tinge of anger despite his desire to stay calm. "Because we are going to have a serious disagreement... These people! These people stand between the city and destruction on a regular basis and..."

"I'm not saying that!" Ianto had to raise his voice over Jack's escalating rant. "But this weevil hunting is more danger more often than the job requires and I fear..." Ianto faltered, staring at his hands a moment. "I fear it's only a matter of time before one person - and it only takes one - to be a split second too slow or to have one too many opponents on the other side... And something will go wrong, something we'll all regret..." He raised his eyes to Jack's, pleading. "Something not even Owen and alien medical technology can put right again."

"That won't happen." Jack's voice was firm. Doubt was weakness and the weak didn't survive. "It won't."

"I know that's how you feel about it," Ianto said. "But my question is..." He took a deep breath, clasping his hands together. "Are you on this weevil crusade because that's what you think needs to be done in order for us to go away on vacation?"

Jack stood up so fast his chair rattled.

"How can you even ask me that?"

Ianto held his eyes long enough to see Jack's inability to deny the truth of the matter.

Ianto rose, as if weary, eyes robbed of their normal glint. "It's late. I'm going home." He headed for Jack's office door, dragging his feet.

"You could stay," Jack suggested, softening.

Ianto just shook his head, but before he left he turned at the door - not looking at Jack, but making sure he heard him.

"I don't want any of my co-workers, my friends, hurt over this. It's not a price I'm willing to pay."

Jack opened his mouth, but Ianto had already closed the door behind him - discussion over.

||

"How about a weekend off?"

Jack's proclamation was met with a sea of gaping mouths, save Ianto who was too busy watching his co-workers' reactions.

"Who are you and what have you done with our boss?" Gwen asked, half serious despite the giddy grin on her face.

"You've all been working hard, you deserve a break," Jack said graciously. "It's Friday, we have no open reports of weevil activity..." He made a sweeping gesture towards the exit. "I'll see you all back here on Monday."

"Don't have to tell me twice," Owen muttered, grabbing his coat and making for the door. "I for one will be very happy to forget this place exists for a few days." He did pause for a farewell at the exit however. "Enjoy your weekends, everyone, and whatever you do? Don't call me."

Tosh was still blinking, though if it was at Jack's offer or Owen's hasty exit, Ianto wasn't sure.

"Are you sure?" she asked. "I mean, something might come up and if we're all gone..."

"I'll be manning the fort," Jack assured her. "I ran this place before I hired you all. I think I can manage." His face softened as he smiled at her, almost paternal. "Go. Get out of town. You've earned it."

"Thanks." Tosh's shy smile spoke volumes about how the praise meant more to her than a few days off. "Bye all!"

As she grabbed her bag and headed out, Gwen approached Jack, gaze intent on him.

"If anything goes wrong, if you need help, I want you to call me, understand?" she said, her tone solemn. Jack didn't even get his mouth open before she gestured at him not to even try. "I will only go on that condition."

Ianto watched Jack hesitate then flash one of his bright smiles at her. "Understood. Now go take Rhys somewhere far away from here. He deserves a weekend off too."

"So he's been telling me," she tossed back with a smirk on her way out. "Repeatedly." She gave Ianto a wave on her way. "Til Monday then!"

Ianto just stayed seated where he'd been, waiting for Jack to approach him.

"You know that means you too," Jack said, looking encouragingly at him.

Ianto shrugged. "Got nowhere to go, no one to go with."

"You could at least go visit your sister," Jack prompted. "Spend a little time with the family?"

"The kids have soccer camp this weekend. I know," Ianto made a little face. "I helped pay for it."

Jack let out an exhalation of exasperation, clearly gearing up for another round of convincing yet another person to leave.

"Ianto..."

Ianto simply stood, looking him in the eye.

"I'll go. But there's nothing you can tell me to convince me this isn't some sort of dry run test for a vacation."

"Call it what you will," Jack allowed. "And when you come back on Monday to find me bored stiff and playing Tosh's computer games, you'll know it is possible to take a few days off."

"More like raiding Owen's porn stash," Ianto teased.

"Oh, giving me ideas, are you?" Jack moved in close and straightened his tie, making the innocuous gesture intimate.

"You know, it is Friday afternoon," Ianto mused. "It's not the weekend yet, so I don't have to leave right away in order to comply with your wishes for me to take the weekend off."

"I like where you're going with this," Jack murmured, his breath ghosting over Ianto's neck, his voice dropping to a suggestive whisper. "Because I have some other wishes it might be fun for you to comply with before you go..."

||

They hadn't even made it 24 hours.

Early Saturday evening two weevils showed up to ruin Jack's plans.

And when he got there four more showed up to ruin Jack.

The spray was enough to drive them away, back down underground, but not before they'd taken a few chunks out of him, leaving him bloody and staggering.

He made it back to the Hub, intent on laying low until he healed, more worried about how to clean the blood from his coat so he could hide the fact that he'd almost gotten himself killed letting them take the weekend off, not to mention six weevils getting away.

Jack heard soft Welsh swearing under breath and looked up to find Ianto staring at him, blinking at the mess of his ripped up shirt and bloody torso.

Before Jack could come up with a retort, Ianto was by his side, helping him to his bed.

Jack let Ianto peel off each bloody layer and take it away, let him wash away the blood, let him settle him back onto the pillows, the wounds already starting to close up.

"I think we have to state for the record your little experiment didn't go so well," Ianto said quietly, fussing with the blanket once he tucked him in. "Did you die?" he added in a tone barely above a whisper.

"No, I didn't." Jack screwed up his forehead. "You know I seem to heal faster when I die. Not sure why it's like that. Not that I'd die to speed up the healing process."

"Don't joke about that." Ianto turned away, busying himself with cleaning up.

"I'm sorry." Jack waited, but Ianto didn't turn back to him.

"For the joke or for the unnecessary risk taking?" Ianto finally shot back. "Because you know this is all nonsense, this idea of taking time off? We're damned if we try to get ahead of things because it's too dangerous to stir up trouble and we're damned if we go and leave behind too small a crew because it's too dangerous to be outnumbered." He picked up Jack's coat and folded it carefully, almost reverently, over his arm to take it away. "So how could we ever enjoy any time we did get off? We wouldn't. Not if nights like this were the cost."

Ianto turned to leave, but Jack called out to him. "Wait!" When he paused but didn't come, Jack's voice softened. "Please."

Ianto came to the bed and, without looking at Jack, sat on the edge - coat on his lap covering his hands.

"This needs to stop." Ianto rarely gave Jack the orders, but this time he was clearly serious.

"Okay." Jack reached out and rubbed a hand over Ianto's arm, feeling him fold just a little under the soothing touch. "I'll stop it."

Ianto nodded. "You and I will be on duty tomorrow," he said. "The others don't have to know anything happened this weekend."

"If that's what you want." Jack leaned over to try to get a look at Ianto's expression, but it was closed off, almost stony.

"No sense ruining their one weekend off," Ianto said. He stared down at the coat on his lap. "I have to get to work on this before the stains set."

He rose and walked out, leaving Jack with still unspoken apologies on his lips.

||

It didn't take long to get the stains out of Jack's coat, or to place another order online for more of those blue shirts he liked so much yet kept ruining. What took a while was Ianto forgiving Jack enough to return to his chambers.

Things had been strained between them for a while now and Ianto found himself missing their easy banter and, truth be told, Jack's bed. There were few opportunities in his life to just turn off - stop trying, stop pretending - and just be. Turning himself over to Jack was more than a physical release, it was a complete letting go of who he tried so hard to be during the day. Jack didn't expect him to be anything or anyone when they were together, just alive and breathing and responding - something that was easy under Jack's touch.

He missed that peace of submission, turning himself over into another's full control. He'd never slept better than with Jack and right now he craved a night's respite.

Hitting upon the ideal solution, he pulled out a pad of paper and wrote down every admonishment he felt like saying to Jack, telling him off for being so reckless, selfish and stubborn, yelling at him for putting himself at risk and putting all of them at risk as well. He let it all pour out and three pages later he was done.

He sealed it up nicely in an envelope and labeled the outside with Jack's name, lest it get misplaced. Ianto could just picture Owen finding it and delighting in reading it aloud while Gwen ineffectually told him to stop without much force behind it, Tosh blushed and he rued ever writing it all down on their behalf. If he hadn't already sealed it, he could have added a final one joking about how it would have been quite all right as long as it was only Owen he was risking, but he'd have to enjoy that bit of humor in his head instead.

He carried the envelope to Jack's chambers, knocking lightly before entering.

At Jack's silent yet expectant look, he launched into his planned speech.

"See, I really should be telling you off about now, going on about how all this risk was unnecessary and all, but honestly? I haven't the energy for it tonight." He held up the envelope to show Jack then put it in one of his drawers. "So you'll just have to read it tomorrow."

Jack smirked. "Consider it done. One telling off, postponed, not forfeited."

"All right then." Ianto put his hands on his hips, looking satisfied with himself then. "So," a wry little smile finally made appearance on his face, "are you healed enough to shove over or am I going to have climb over you to get into bed?"

"Plenty healed," Jack told him, smiling widely in encouragement. "Though you should probably check to make sure." He moved over to allow Ianto room to get into bed beside him.

Ianto pulled off his jacket, shoes and socks then loosened his tie before sitting down on the edge of the bed.

"Why does it seem like a long day when I was barely here four hours?"

"Time's like that," Jack murmured, helping Ianto out of his shirt. "Slow or fast, it slips through our fingers all the same."

A quick strip and a slip beneath the sheets and they were back together, Jack drawing him in close and kissing him dizzy.

"I want to see you," Ianto breathed, when Jack finally let up. "I need to see you."

Jack released him, laying back for inspection as Ianto drew the covers aside to reveal Jack's now flawless skin.

Ianto bent over him, fingertips skating over the same spots where he'd earlier mopped up blood from gaping wounds: nothing. Not a sign of damage at all.

"It's remarkable..." His fingers grazed up Jack's chest to inspect the area near his neck that had been badly slashed. "If I hadn't seen them before you couldn't have convinced me they existed."

The pads of his fingers almost sparked as they skated across Jack's body, the passion that ignited whenever they met electric. Touching Jack was like nothing else, like the rush of a live wire making Ianto's own skin crackle and hum in tune with Jack's frequency. Smooth to his touch yet bristling with so much life, it seemed a human form could barely contain Jack's energy.

He let his lips replace his fingertips, skimming them over Jack's neck, inhaling Jack's unique intoxicating scent, planting little kisses as he went. Many people fell under the spell of Jack's pheromones, but few knew the taste of Jack's skin, how addictive that salty sweetness could be.

By the time he reached Jack's abdomen his hands were roaming, soaking up the heat building in Jack's skin, creating more with friction, hungry for touch. When they'd gone this long, Ianto craved it, needed to feel Jack's naked body against his, to sate that skin hunger nothing else could fulfill.

"See? I really am okay," Jack murmured. He reached for Ianto, pulling him up into a kiss. "Touch me all you want. I'm not going anywhere."

He pushed Ianto onto his back, covering him with his body, taking command.

With a sigh - a little more out of relief than contentment - Ianto surrendered.

||

Jack stormed into the Hub, Ianto breathless behind him.

"What happened?" he demanded as Tosh met them, gesturing them towards the med bay as she led the way there.

"You'll have to ask Gwen the details, but she said it was two weevils attacking her, not anyone else... Just her."

"What?" Ianto exclaimed in shock.

The headed down the stairs into the med bay where Owen was stitching up a nasty gash on Gwen's arm.

"Gwen..." Jack rushed down to her side, putting a hand on her shoulder - half to steady himself.

"It was weird," Gwen said, almost pensive. "There were plenty of people about, typical evening - people coming home from work, the market, kids at play..." She turned to look up at Jack. "And then there were screams. I watched them, Jack. I watched them run up the street, bypassing all my neighbors. They came straight for me."

She let out a breath and Jack squeezed her shoulder gently.

"It's okay."

"I had my spray out," she continued. "And I sprayed them - which did slow them down - but I ran out of spray. We've been using it too much and I'd forgotten to make sure it was refilled." She shook her head at herself. "So since I was at my car anyway I got in to get away from them. They got in a good swipe..." She cocked her head at where Owen was bandaging her up with gauze. "And then I hit them with my car and drove here before I lost too much blood and passed out."

"I checked the CCTV footage," Tosh supplied helpfully. "As soon as Gwen drove off the weevils ran back to the manhole cover they'd come out of and went back underground. No sign of them since then."

"I want you to keep monitoring the area..." Jack started towards Tosh, but Gwen grabbed his arm.

"They came straight for me," she repeated, her voice low and intense.

"It's only fair," Ianto mused aloud. "We targeted them, now they're targeting us."

"No!" Jack said, his voice sounding a bit more harsh than he'd planned. "That's not it." He started out of the med bay only to have Gwen call after him.

"Then what is it?" she demanded. "Because it bloody well looked like the weevils followed me home and if one of them comes anywhere near Rhys..."

"That will not happen!" Jack stood at the top of the stairs as his team stared up at him, all looking for answers. "But for now," he admitted cautiously, "a little preparedness doesn't hurt. Everyone carry two sprays and Ianto? I'm putting you in charge of making sure they're topped off and tested daily."

"Consider it done," Ianto said briskly.

"I want a spray for Rhys," Gwen called out as Jack tried to depart again, making him halt. "He's not us. He'd be defenseless against a single weevil and you know that."

"Fine," Jack said. "Tell him it's an experimental kind of Mace or something. Don't go telling him it's anti-weevil spray."

He got clear of the med bay and waiting until he was out of earshot before letting out a long sigh.

Weevils had never been this smart, this organized, this retaliatory.

But then Torchwood had never routed them quite so hard in the past.

His campaign against the weevils might be over, but their campaign against Torchwood looked like it was just beginning.

||

Ianto did his final walk around of the Hub, satisfied that it was clean and tidy, all equipment put away for the day, then headed over to where Jack was going through an armload of files from the archive at his desk.

"I think I'll be off now," Ianto said. "I'll see you in the morning."

"Hold up!" Jack called out as Ianto turned to leave.

"Did you need something?" Ianto asked. "Did you want help with the files?"

"No, the research can wait." Jack ran a hand up Ianto's arm. "Why don't you stay over?"

"Hmm... Because I have no suit for tomorrow here, because I've got leftover Chinese that will go bad if I leave it too long," he started ticking things off on his fingers, "because I hate using your razor to shave with in the morning, because as good as the air circulators are in the Hub I still prefer to breath actual oxygen above ground from time to time and..." He made a pregnant pause. "You only want me to stay because you're worried weevils might attack me going home so late, am I right?"

"I think the air is fine in here," Jack said, mocking sounding defensive.

"Good night." Ianto turned to go only to find Jack following him.

"So perhaps I am a little concerned. It is late, we don't have an explanation for what happened to Gwen last night..."

"She got attacked by weevils in front of her flat," Ianto said plainly. "That seems to be enough of an explanation to warrant more than a little concern." He slipped his fingers beneath one of Jack's braces. "You could come home with me? Strength in numbers?"

"You know I feel weird about leaving the Hub overnight unnecessarily," Jack protested.

Ianto let his hand drop. "Right then. What do you suggest? You see me home safely then I have to worry about you making it to the Hub back in one piece. Or you could see me home and then I could see you back to the Hub and we could spend our entire night traveling back and forth until daybreak and we can hope then that the weevils won't show up during daylight or that we'll drop from exhaustion in one place or another - preferably not somewhere in between."

Jack let out a little huff. "So I can't convince you to stay?"

Ianto winked slyly. "I never said that."

The smile dawning on Jack's face truly was a thing of beauty.

And then he was pushing Ianto up against the nearest wall, crushing his mouth against his, pressing that long lean body against his and Ianto's brain just shut down, letting Jack swamp his senses, overloading him with touch, taste, scent and a devilish whisper in his ear - a tantalizing tease for what was to come if he remained.

"Why did we stop doing this?" Jack asked, breathless as he ravaged Ianto's neck, shoving his suit jacket off his shoulders.

"Must have gotten distracted somehow," Ianto managed, trying to weasel his hands between them to get Jack's shirt unbuttoned only to have Jack bat them away as he undid Ianto's pants, shoving his hand down the front to stroke him fervently.

There was something about Jack's skin touching his that was irresistible. Ianto had relished skin on skin contact from the time of his first girlfriend, who complained that he always seemed to be touching her. Starved of affection from his parents, he had such a strong desire for touch, real human contact, that it could rarely be quelled.

He'd loved to caress Lisa's body, loved the shock of his pale white hand against her gorgeous dark skin and even though Jack lacked that stark coloring, there was still a jolt that hit him at first contact, no matter how many times they'd been together.

He hastily untucked Jack's shirt at the back and snaked his hands up beneath, seeking warm skin, flexing muscles, the heat of life. This was what he needed as much as sex, to feel his lover's body, to make the circuit complete with contact. He drew Jack nearer, feeling him move against him - friction making heat, building their need for each other.

Another shift of his clothing and Jack had a fist around him, pumping him as he stole his breath with open mouthed kisses until he shuddered, stiffened and let sweet release claim him as Jack whispered endearments in his ear.

He sagged, half held up by the wall, half by Jack pressing against him, trying to catch his breath.

"So, bed?" Jack asked, cocky. "You are staying right?"

"Seeing as how you've seriously impaired my ability to use my legs," Ianto snarked. "I'd say it's in my best interest to walk the shortest distance possible to a horizontal position."

"Horizontal." Jack sounded out the word as if it was a novel concept. "Now there's an idea. And here I was just planning on folding you over my desk."

"You always did like the classics," Ianto teased right back.

Jack laughed into his neck, his breath in warm huffs, a comforting and pleasant sound Ianto had missed.

"Ah yes," Jack taunted. "But I have you to make sure I stray into the truly avant garde every once in a while to keep things fresh."

Ianto, mostly recovered, cocked his head to the side. "Yes, I believe that bit with the net and the rope was rather inspired."

Jack slipped Ianto's tie off his neck slowly and seductively. "We could go old school?"

"Eton?" Ianto teased.

"Blindfold," Jack replied.

"Your eyes or mine?" Ianto fired back.

"Split the difference?" Jack tossed out, laughing. "I'll get two eye patches instead of a blindfold and we'll role play some pirate sex."

Ianto all but collapsed in helpless laughter.

"Oh, I can just see it now..." Ianto gestured as if it was on a movie marquee. "Captain Jack and his cabin boy Ianto!"

"Sounds like the ingredients for a good porn movie if you ask me." Jack tugged him close. "Bed," he ordered.

"I've heard of such things," Ianto retorted.

He got himself together enough to walk and let Jack lead him to his chambers.

"I was kidding about the pirate role play," Jack said as they walked together, arms around each other. "You know that right?"

Ianto nodded then glanced at him sideways with a little wink.

"Good, because I was hoping you weren't kidding about the desk."

||

Part 2


 
 
 
Emma DeMarais: BlueEyeemmademarais on November 26th, 2009 12:58 am (UTC)
Confession
Another Big Bang bites the dust!

I signed up for a slew of them this year. (My SPN one already went up and I have a Criminal Minds one, a Miracles one and a Numb3rs/Firefly fusion due out before the end of the year.) It's been interesting learning how to write longer fic after spending so many years being primarily a drabble writer. Having completed two Numb3rs novels (plus in the throes of writing my third for NaNoWriMo this month) I'm finally starting to feel comfortable with long form fic. I blame Wilderness Bound - the 31K in 7 days behemoth novella that taught me that my muse apparently had an unsated hunger for longer pieces.

Credit for the opening poem excerpt goes to My Sad Self by Allen Ginsberg. I don't normally do those pretentious titles well so it paid to go to the expert and borrow. I had also written another long Jack/Ianto H/C fic that started with an author quote so I guess I they're twins! (Once The Chill That Steals comes out people will see the similarities, even though Chill came first by almost a year. I just sucked at polishing and publishing it.)

You know, I normally have copious author notes for a fic this length where I expound on inane things like how laverbread sounds really gross or admit I don't know jack about UNIT (but I do know Mack of The Unit! LOL), but I think NaNoWriMo has sucked my authorly blood dry so I'll have to leave readers to ask about anything they want to know my thoughts on. Then again, the three of you who read these Confession posts usually do anyways. /grins/

A big thank you to my Big Bang assigned artist tessykins for providing lovely cover art for this project.

Very special thanks to First Reader silverfire475, beta melissima and canon betas umbralillium and tayla36 for their assistance with this fic.

Thanks,

Emma DeMarais