Disclaimer: I do not own, nor ever will, Torchwood and the characters within
Notes: Written for the LongLIveIanto Holiday prompts. Dreidel, Gift of The Magi, Shapeshifter Ianto and Twelfth Night
I have relied on Google and Wikepedia for the Welsh geography so hopefully there aren't too many mistakes in here...
Summary: On Twelfth Night Ianto runs.
and a big thank you to bookwrm89 for the banner... :)
The dreidel moved in a slow circle in mid-air and Ianto Jones let his breath out slowly. His hands curled into ever-tightening fists.
“Stop that,” he told the seemingly empty room. Soft laughter swirled around him as the small four-sided top lifted and dipped in invisible hands.
“Play, play with us,” the air whispered and he shook his head slightly.
“No,” he replied, his jaw working for a moment before he held a hand out. “Give it back now.”
“No, we want to play.” The top came to a halt about four feet away and he stared at it. “It’s Twelfth Night. You always play on Twelfth Night.”
Ianto closed his eyes and took a deep breath. His eyes opened. “Not this year.” His hand shook slightly as he forced his voice to remain steady. “And not with that,” he added. “Give it back.”
“She doesn’t need it.”
Ianto swallowed. “It’s all I have left of her.” Lisa. They never spoke her name and Ianto refused to say it in return. He knew too well the power in names.
The air blew past him in a huff of reluctance and the dreidel dropped into his palm. His fingers closed over it, tightening to feel the corners dig into his palm. He stared across the room and the air twisted through his hair and tugged at his clothes for a moment before curling away from him.
“You owe us,” the air told him and Ianto nearly smiled at the audible pouting and ignored the threatening edge.
“Next year,” he said.
“Next year,” the air agreed and between one breath and the next he knew they’d left.
His phone rang and he answered it left-handed, unwilling to open his right from around the top.
“Yes, Sir? ... Kidnapped? … A weevil? ... How do they even know about them? ... Yes Sir, I’ll meet you at the Hub… Yes Sir, I will have coffee waiting.” He hung up with a sigh and ten minutes later he left his flat, dressed for work and not too upset at having his night off cancelled. Someone kidnapping weevils was just the distraction he needed.
The large black hound howled as the bullet entered his thigh. With a vicious rush of claws and snapping jaws he turned on his attacker, ripping through fabric and flesh with ease. The smell of blood hung thick in the air and screams echoed through the small room before everything was silent again. The dog limped from the house and padded carefully through the deserted streets until he came to the bombed and burnt out remains of the Millennium Centre.
He curled up in the shadow of the rubble and looked out across the ruins to the large hole in the ground that had once been Torchwood Three. He licked at his thigh, the bullet hole already half closed and tasted the sticky blood matting the dark hairs.
“We play now,” the wind said and the dog’s ears twitched.
“No,” Ianto said as worked at his tangled fur. “I need to get this healed up and then try again to get onto the Valiant.”
“You promised,” the air tugged at his fur. “It is Twelfth Night.”
“I know, but I think the world ending comes first don’t you,” he remarked.
“You can not stop what is,” the air told him. “You can not hurry it.”
“I know, but I can’t just sit and watch either,” Ianto replied. “I need to be doing something.”
“Play with us. We can play while Time is trapped.”
Ianto let his breath out, resting his snout against his thigh. He was tired and he hurt. He closed his eyes and wanted nothing more than to sleep. Invisible fingers slipped through his dark fur.
“Play with us. There is nothing to be done for the humans. Their path is written.”
“He is up there. The others are dead and he’s all that’s left. I can’t give up.” Ianto spoke without opening his eyes.
“Why do you chase futility?”
“It’s a human thing,” Ianto said whimsically.
“You are not human.”
“You have stayed too long in their skin.”
There was a long silence. Something small landed in front of him and he opened his eyes to focus on the small wooden spinning top.
“He will not die as she did. As they did.”
“I know.” Ianto shifted an inch and shimmered. A human hand reached out to pick up the dreidel and he held it close to his heart as he curled up, eyes closed against the prickling of tears. “I know,” he whispered.
Ianto yawned as he entered his flat. He closed and locked the door behind him and yawned again as he headed for the bedroom. It had been a long day and an even longer week and all he wanted was a bath and bed. He took two steps before stopping and staring at the room. As if it had been waiting for him the air shifted.
Ianto let his head drop back on his shoulders, staring at the ceiling for a long moment before straightening up and looking at the seemingly empty room again. He was exhausted and his arm still ached from the weevil-inflicted injury he’d gotten three days ago. He put his hand into his trouser pocket and pulled out a small tablet. He rolled it between his fingers.
“I’m supposed to take this and sleep,” he said. Owen had been most insistent when he’d forced the sedative on him. And given him a medical leave to go with it.
“Play now. Sleep later.”
“And its Twelfth Night,” Ianto added in a resigned tone.
“It has been too long. We need to play. You need to play.” The air was insistent and Ianto couldn’t disagree with them. He had been the one to refuse to play the last two Twelfth Nights – one of which had never happened. They had been patient with him and he owed them for that if nothing else.
“Alright. We’ll play,” he said and was immediately assaulted by a wind that pulled him around in a dizzying circle. Laughter followed him and he shook his head. Their obvious pleasure made it hard for him to deny the small thrill that ran down his spine and he wryly smiled.
“And what will be the prize?” he asked as he loosened his tie. He stopped as he saw the dreidel appear. “Why am I not surprised,” he muttered with an almost long-suffering edge to his voice. “I wish you’d leave that alone.”
“Play, changeling, play,” the air urged instead of answering and Ianto wasn’t surprised at that either.
“And when the Captain decides to call in unannounced and doesn’t find me here sleeping?” Ianto asked idly as he pulled his tie off and shrugged out of his jacket.
“The others will play with him.”
Captain Jack Harkness looked at the pile of paperwork on his desk and sighed. Paper fluttered lightly and he sighed again, watching a loose page shift further. He pursed his lips and blew gently and the paper lifted enough to skim across the other reports. He grinned and then looked up suddenly. No-one was there and he sighed again. This time the paper remained still. Jack pulled it close again and grimaced at it. With a quick movement he signed his name at the bottom of the page and then leant back in his chair. One down and only several dozen more to go he thought as he surveyed his desk. I want coffee.
But he knew there’d be no coffee unless he either made it himself or got one of the others to get some. Neither idea appealed. Ianto Jones had spoiled him for all other coffees, and Ianto Jones wasn’t here. He pouted at his waiting paperwork. He should go and see the young Welshman. Despite the impending deadlines on some of the paperwork he was sure that he could talk his way out of any consequences being late might incur. It wouldn’t be the first time and everyone knew it wouldn’t be the last. It was more important to make sure Ianto was alright. He nodded at his paperwork with a wide smile and stood up intent on getting his coat and leaving.
“Jack!” Tosh’s call had him pausing with his hand on his coat and he let his breath out.
“Please don’t tell me the weevils are restless,” he said as he stepped out of his office with his coat over his arm and found them huddled at Tosh’s desk.
“I wish,” Tosh replied without taking her eyes from the screens in front of her and Jack stiffened.
“What is it?” he asked.
“Weather patterns of the bad kind,” Owen Harper told him and he shouldered his way between them to look at the screen as well.
“Are you sure?” he asked as he studied the swirling patterns on the monitor.
“Yes,” Tosh replied. “It’s almost exactly the same as… as last year.”
“Bloody fairies,” Owen grumbled under his breath.
Jack studied the scans running and watched as Tosh brought up satellite images on other screens.
“They’re in Splott,” she said.
“Bloody Splott,” Owen grumbled again.
“Get the SUV ready,” Jack told him. “You and I will go and check it out. Tosh can direct us and Gwen, I want you to start going through the local news and police logs and see if there’s any clues as to who they could be after.”
“Is it really them back again?” Gwen asked as she moved to her desk. She, and all of them, remembered all too well how upsetting and devastating their last encounter with the faeries had been.
“It looks like them,” Tosh said. “I re-wrote the old weather tracking program to pick up any disturbances that matched the patterns we saw last time in addition to the usual weather patterns it keeps track of. This is the first time it’s found anything. And last time it was the weather that was the first sign.”
Jack didn’t tell them otherwise. At the time he’d never mentioned the red petal he’d found on his desk, nor the nightmare that had woken him that night. There had been no dreams or petals this time and he stared at the screen with foreboding. It didn’t seem right to have them reappear so soon. Not when it had been nigh on eighty years between their last visits. He wasn’t naïve to think they simply disappeared when they weren’t claiming their Chosen Ones, but he’d never known them to show themselves so obviously at any other time.
“Keep an eye on them Tosh,” Jack ordered as he straightened up.
“CCTV’s not listing any problems but it’s not showing anything visible so I’ll see what I can pick up from the satellite networks.”
“Good girl. Keep us informed,” Jack said. “Right Owen, let’s go.”
Ianto ran. Hooves pounded almost silently beneath him as he balanced himself between the realities and galloped further and faster westwards. His mane and tail streaming in the wind that rushed and raced with him and he began to gloat in the freedom he hadn’t felt for so long.
He crossed the Ely in a smooth leap working his way into the Leckwith Woods. He slowed only slightly as he wove through the trees. There weren’t too many places close to Cardiff where he could run freely and while he might have preferred to run to Snowdon he felt the need to remain close to Cardiff. The Vale of Glamorgan would do nicely this year.
“We go home next year,” the air told him and he nodded in agreement. He’d even put in for some leave so he could spend more than just the one night there.
“Let’s play,” he said and he burst out of the trees with a wild cry and cantered madly across the open land.
“Jack, it seems to be centred on the Salvation Army building on Walker Road.”
“Okay, thanks Tosh,” Jack replied.
“Ten minutes away,” Owen announced as he used the portable GPS.
“There’ve been no reports either to the police or the local press about anything out of the ordinary happening around there,” Gwen reported.
“Check the hospitals, Gwen,” Owen directed. “Look at any kids that might have come in. Especially those through emergency. We know they don’t take kindly to anyone hurting children.”
“Right,” Gwen’s voice agreed with a hard tone.
“They don’t protect all children, Owen. They’re only interested in the Chosen Ones.”
“And we don’t know where the Chosen One is, but from what we saw they interact with the kid for some time before they take them. They were following that Jasmine kid around and there must have been incidents before we got involved. Only small things granted but enough if you know what to look for and this time we do know what to look for. So, hospitals to start with and then the schools and any other places kids go,” Owen stated with a quiet authority that had Jack hiding a smile.
“You sound like Ianto,” Tosh said. “All polite logic.”
“I am nothing like Teaboy!” Owen spluttered in outrage. Jack could hear Gwen’s giggles through the com and was about to join in when he looked ahead.
“Owen, scanner out,” he ordered quickly.
“What?” Owen asked even as he dragged the scanner onto his lap. He looked in front of them. “Shit.”
“What is it?” Tosh queried. “I can’t see anything on the CCTV but the weather disturbance is still showing on the system.”
“It looks like a tornado,” Jack said as he brought the SUV to a stop.
“It’s ten foot tall,” Owen pointed out as his eyes flicked from the scanner to the swirling wind in front of them. “It’s not registering on the portable scanner.”
“It’s gone,” Jack said as the small tornado suddenly vanished. He and Owen stared at the now empty road. “Tosh?”
“It’s gone here too. Nothing on the scans at all.”
“What’s that?” Owen asked and pointed to where the tornado had just been. He got out of the SUV and Jack hurried to follow.
Something small glinted as they walked closer. Owen held the scanner out as they closed in on the small object.
“What’s happening?” Gwen demanded over the coms.
“It’s gold,” Owen said as he looked at the scanner.
“Gold?” Tosh repeated.
“Yep. A small gold cube. Doesn’t look like a box,” Owen described as he walked around it.
“There’s no rift energy or any radiation about it but I’m not going to take any chances,” Jack said as he scanned it with his wrist strap. He headed back to the SUV for a containment kit. It didn’t take long to return and carefully place the small cube into a special container.
“It’s rather heavy. It must be solid,” Jack remarked as he closed the lid.
“Yes Tosh?” Jack replied to the almost hesitant query.
“I’m picking up the weather disturbance again.”
“Where, Tosh?” Jack and Owen began to look around but could see nothing.
“The Royal Infirmary.”
“We’re on our way,” Jack replied and they ran to the SUV.
“Two to me,” Ianto said with a grin as he left the little village of Michaelston behind.
“We had two also,” the air replied.
“Only one counted though.”
“Not our fault,” the air retorted as hands pulled at his tail and he ran faster to dislodge them. “The woman was old and faster than she should be.”
“Old women are always faster than they look,” Ianto laughed. Small hands held onto his mane as he galloped easily.
“So few had the bells out,” the air echoed melancholically in his ear.
“No-one believes in fairies these days,” Ianto replied. “Even those who still hang bells out don’t really believe that we exist.’
“We’re not fairies!” the air scolded him indignantly and Ianto laughed.
“Just as well, because then we wouldn’t be able to ring the bells now would we?”
Jack brought the SUV to a screeching halt in the car park of the Royal Infirmary and looked around.
“Where is it Tosh?”
“It should be in front of you, Jack.”
“We can’t see anything.” He got out and circled the vehicle, his wrist strap open and scanning the area. Owen joined him with the portable scanner held out.
“No wind or tornados here,” he said.
“No, but there’s some rain,” Jack announced and Owen turned around and his eyes went wide. For a moment he thought he was looking at a fountain until he realised the water was just falling from out of nowhere. Water puddled and ran into a nearby drain in a steady stream.
“How …?” he gaped at the sight before pointing the scanner at it. And it vanished. “What the fuck?” he exclaimed.
“It’s gone again. Scanners all showing normal now.”
“Yeah Tosh, we know. It just disappeared on us,” Jack responded.
“And it left something behind. Again.” Owen frowned as he looked at the scanner.
“I’ll get another containment box,” Jack said.
Once he had the box the two men approached and looked at the small golden box sitting squarely in the middle of the puddle.
“It’s not quite the same as the other one,” Jack said as he slipped on the thick gloves. “This is definitely a box.”
“It’s reading differently,” Owen informed him. “There’s something there as well the gold.”
“And its lighter too,” Jack noted as he picked it up. He frowned slightly. “Something’s moving inside it.” He shook off one of the gloves and picked up the stylus from the scanner. With a quick flick he opened the box lid.
“Its oil of some sort,” he said as he peered into the box. Owen came close to look as well and sniffed cautiously.
“Looks thick and smells a bit bitter. Makes my nose itch,” Owen said and stepped back.
“Another disturbance has started,” Tosh interrupted and both Jack and Owen frowned.
“Whereabouts, Tosh?” Jack asked.
A large black hound padded silently and almost invisibly through Wenvoe. Disembodied hands ran over letterboxes and doorknockers in his wake. He could hear raised voices and the occasional angry curse which only made his companions laugh with glee. A dog barking had him growling an instinctive challenge. A hand tugged at his ear.
“Where shall we go now?”
“Race you to Llancarfan,” Ianto responded as he shifted.
The sleek black stallion vanished westward.
“Something strange is going on,” Jack said as he and Owen drove towards the Cathedral. “It has to be more than a coincidence that the disturbance stops almost as soon as we get there.”
“And the little boxes?” Owen queried.
“I don’t know. Faeries don’t leave things behind. They’re attracted to children. They don’t usually interact with adults. Especially not benignly like this.”
“What about all the legends of them needing human women at fairy births and changelings?” Gwen asked.
“Fairy tales usually have some basis in myth,” Tosh added.
“I’ve only ever known of these faeries having contact with humans when they take a Chosen One or to protect a Chosen one. There are no stories or tales about them,” Jack said.
“Are we sure that these disturbances are caused by the faeries then?” Owen asked.
“It’s the same patterns as we saw last time, Owen,” Tosh replied.
“The rift is quiet,” Gwen said before anyone could ask.
“Check the rift logs for the last few weeks Gwen. See if we missed anything coming through,” Jack ordered. “Tosh, skim the archives and see if anything matches.”
“Ianto would be quicker than me,” Tosh demurred.
“But Ianto’s not here,” Jack pointed out.
“And we are not calling him in either,” Owen said firmly. “I know Teaboy had trouble with the phrase ‘twenty-four hours enforced medical leave’, but I thought everyone else understood it,” he snarked. “Besides he’d be completely out to it right now. That sedative I gave him will ensure he sleeps at least twelve hours.”
“I was surprised at the twenty-four hour part of that,” Jack remarked. “Didn’t think you could last that long without his coffee.”
“Well it was that or miss out for longer when the idiot collapsed from overdoing it,” Owen commented. Jack nodded in agreement. The last week had been long and busy and Ianto’s already impressive workload had nearly doubled. It was no wonder that he had become so exhausted and Owen had literally thrown him out of the Hub with strict orders not to come back. “And Ianto wouldn’t want anyone else but you going near the Archives anyway Tosh,” Owen added.
They heard Tosh’s small giggle over the coms. “He is most particular about them.”
“That he is,” Jack said.
“Rift logs are coming up blank,” Gwen interjected. “Although the village witch in Michaelston rang the police half an hour ago to complain about the brownies ringing her bells.”
“Her what?” Owen laughed raucously.
“Her bells,” Gwen repeated. “Apparently the bells are supposed to keep the fairies away, or so she’s told the local constable.”
“And the brownies?” Jack grinned.
“She says she saw what she thinks were several brownies but could have been boggarts ringing them and she chased them off with a broom. She says they left on the back of a large black horse.”
“What are the police doing about it?” Jack asked with bemusement.
“Ignoring it. They think she’s over-imbibed on her local brew, which the constable notes is ‘good but mighty stuff’.”
“I wonder what she thinks the police can do about brownies anyway?” Owen remarked. “And what’s with the horse?”
“Pwca are said to take the shape of black horses,” Gwen informed him. “But I’ve never heard of them mixing with brownies.”
“And neither are faeries of either the fun or evil kind,” Owen said.
The longer he ran the more Ianto realised how much he had missed this. His exhaustion faded as he was filled with the delight of absolute freedom. He loved his job and his place with Torchwood but nothing compared to being able to roam wild without any direction at all.
“You have stayed in their skin too long.” The air repeated the words he’d heard during the year that had been turned back.
“Stay with us.”
“No,” Ianto refused them gently. “I like being human.”
“They are so small,” the air complained.
“They only seem small because they don’t live very long,” Ianto pointed out.
“Except for him,” the air seemed to pout at him and he smiled.
“Yes, except for him.” Ianto lengthened his stride, flickering between the realities. Several miles were covered in a single step and a sweet scent of Summer swirled around him for a moment. “Thought you wanted to play?” he asked with a smile as he flickered again.
The disturbance at Llandaff cathedral was immediately apparent as soon as Jack and Owen arrived. Ice stretched upwards, catching the moonlight and looking like molten silver as it twisted in endless circles.
“How soon do you think it’ll disappear?” Owen asked as the SUV came to a stop.
“As soon as we step out probably,” Jack replied.
“Okay then,” Owen said and opened his door. Jack did the same and the ice shifted, spreading out into a lacy pattern. It hung still for a moment before it crumbled into a flurry of cold snow that whirled around them before disappearing completely.
“Well, that was different,” Owen said as he shook himself. No trace of the snow or ice remained and he was not surprised to see something small and shiny on the ground where the ice had been.
Jack already had a containment box ready and they studied the small item.
“A gold box again,” Jack said as he picked it up with a gloved hand. “Lighter than the last one.” He shook it. “Doesn’t seem to be anything moving inside.”
“No radiation or rift energy,” Owen said as he checked the portable scanner. He handed the stylus to Jack and watched as he opened the box.
“It looks like little stones,” Owen remarked. Jack stirred them with the stylus.
“They seem a bit softer than stone and they’re quite aromatic too,” he said. “Not as bitter as that oil.”
“Tosh? Where’s the next disturbance?” Owen asked as he watched Jack stow the box away in the SUV.
“Nothing showing yet.”
“We’ve picked up the box, Tosh,” Jack said. “We’ll head back to the Hub so we can get these tested and find out what they are. Tell us immediately if anything happens.”
“I’m a bit surprised nothing else has appeared,” Owen said as he got back into the SUV.
“You and me both,” Jack replied. “Keep an eye out just in case.”
Ianto came to a stop just outside the village of Llancarfan. His breath was a warm cloud against the chill night air. He shook himself, a dark ripple of muscle shifting under his sleek black coat. Hands stroked through his wild mane and smoothed over his tail. He felt more relaxed than he had for months, if not years as he let them groom him.
He lowered his head and closed his eyes. It was nice to let someone else take care of him for a change. He had missed this.
“Time to go home soon,” he murmured as he concentrated on the silence around him. He found himself looking forward to going home and curling up in a warm bed to sleep for as long as he wanted.
“There are bells in the village,” the air tempted him and he laughed.
“Very well then. We ring all the bells and then home.”
“Extra points for doorknockers,” he said and shifted. The black hound appeared briefly and then flickered towards the village with his companions close behind.
Jack and Owen brought the three little boxes into the Hub without incident.
“No more disturbances?” Jack asked as they carried them to the desk.
“No,” Tosh said. “All the scans are completely clear. Not a blip anywhere.”
“And in the Archives?”
“I can’t find anything there either. It doesn’t seem to have happened before.”
Jack frowned. “I really don’t think it was coincidence.”
“It’s like someone was playing a joke on us,” Owen said as he brought in several scanners. “At least they gave us gifts.”
“What’s in the boxes?” Gwen asked as she came closer. “By the way, I haven’t found anything at the hospitals or schools or anywhere that could be the faeries again.”
“I don’t like mysteries like this,” Jack grumbled as he set the first box in front of the scanners. He put the heavy gloves on before opening it and bringing out the first item. “We think this is solid gold,” he said.
“It is,” Tosh breathed as the scanners beeped. “Remarkably pure Welsh gold at that.”
“Welsh gold is rare,” Gwen said as they all stared at the small cube. “We were looking at Welsh gold for our rings but it’s just so expensive.”
“There’s a couple of kilograms here. It’s worth a bloody fortune,” Owen remarked.
“Next box,” Jack said as he brought out the gold box containing the oil. He dipped a small swab into the oil and placed it in a scanner.
“Myrrh,” Tosh announced.
“What?” Jack blinked as he looked at the screen. “Myrrh?”
“It used to be used in embalming,” Owen said. “It’s used in some liniments and creams but it’s mainly used in Eastern medicines.”
“This is oil of myrrh?” Gwen shook her head. “You’ll be pulling out the frankincense next,” she said.
Jack and Owen froze and then Jack slowly pulled out the last box. “What are the odds?” he asked quietly as he opened it and brought out one of the stone like contents. In the Hub lights the ‘stone’ was light in colour and looked almost like a crystal.
“And yes, it frankincense,” Tosh told them as the scanner finished.
Jack lined the items up. “Gold, frankincense and myrrh. Weird weather disturbances.”
“Tomorrow is Epiphany, when the Wise Men supposedly gave their gifts to Jesus,” Tosh offered.
“The Gift of the Magi?” Jack queried almost disbelievingly. “Are we going to have three kings knocking on our door tomorrow demanding their gifts back?”
“That doesn’t explain the weather,” Gwen said. “I wouldn’t have thought that fairies would be religious anyway.”
“Which makes me think this is someone’s idea of a joke,” Owen replied.
“It’s a very expensive joke. And I’d like to know how they managed to fiddle with the weather like that.” Jack stared at the three gifts for a long moment. “We’ll lock these up for now. Tomorrow we’ll run through every scan you can think of and then some we can’t. When Ianto comes back he can go through the Archives. Tomorrow Tosh, can you hack UNIT and copy anything relevant?”
“There’s nothing we can do at the moment. Time to go home,” Jack said as he looked at them.
“And if this happens again?” Gwen asked.
“Then I’ll call you in. But there’s no point hanging around here all night just on the off-chance.”
“You don’t need to tell me twice,” Owen said and headed to grab his keys.
“I’ve tightened the parameters on the tracking programs. It should pick up smaller deviations so we’ll have more chance of early detection,” Tosh informed Jack as she picked up her things.
‘That’s good, Tosh. Thanks.”
Jack picked up the small boxes and headed towards his office.
“Will they be back?” Gwen asked as she slung her bag over her shoulder. Jack stopped and shook his head.
“I don’t think so. I think this is something else altogether.”
“But you don’t know what?”
“No, I don’t know. But I have faith that we’ll figure it out eventually.” He smiled at her. “Go home, Gwen. We can worry about it tomorrow.”
“Okay. Good night Jack.”
“Night Gwen,” he said and then continued into his office. He heard them all leave as he was placing the items in the safe. Once they were secured he sat at his desk and leant back in his chair. He closed his eyes and let his breath out slowly.
The night’s events had been puzzling. He was worried about a re-occurrence but he was more worried about the intent behind this sudden aberration of faerie behaviour. If the faeries were responsible. If they weren’t, it was more imperative that they find out who else could have done it.
Jack grumbled low in his throat. He was tired and didn’t want the complications. He looked at the empty Hub and his eyes narrowed in thought for a moment. With a quick smile of self-satisfaction he stood up and left.
Half an hour later Jack let himself into Ianto’s flat. He moved as quietly as he could, shrugging out of his greatcoat and hanging it over the lounge couch. He eased out of his boots and his eyes widened as he saw Ianto’s clothes on the other chair.
He made his way to Ianto’s bedroom and peered in cautiously. By Owen’s calculations, Ianto should still be under the influence of the sedative but Jack was cautious. Sedatives didn’t always work as they should when it came to Ianto.
But this time his caution was unnecessary. Ianto was sound asleep, snoring softly into his pillow, the covers pooled at his waist. Jack moved closer and looked down at the relaxed expression on Ianto’s face. Lax with sleep he looked incredibly peaceful. Jack had never seen him look so at ease.
Jack frowned. There was something loosely held in Ianto’s hand. Jack reached out and carefully pulled Ianto’s fingers open. A small dreidel appeared before Ianto closed his hand again and curled up holding the dreidel close to his chest.
Jack cast a glance at the bedside table. A glass of water sat there and beside it was a small brass bell. Jack couldn’t remember seeing that there before. He shook his head. It wasn’t anything that couldn’t wait.
He walked around the bed and lay down carefully. Ianto shifted closer and Jack could reach out and run his fingers through Ianto’s dark hair. With a whispered sigh Ianto seemed to relax even further and Jack smiled. This was the best gift he could have asked for.
He settled himself comfortably, his fingers caressing the sleeping man and waited for the morning.