Title: With The Rain
Disclaimer: I do not and never will, own Torchwood or the characters within.
Characters: Ianto/Lisa, Jack
Notes: Written for the Redisourcolour Challenge 17: Weather. The prompts were dowdy, chocolate wrapper, vituperate and the phrase that night, (insert name here) drank the last of the (drink of choice) him/her/itself.
This is the third fic set in my Au where Ianto has succeeded in saving Lisa which began in The Season Between and continued in The First Day of Spring.
Author’s Notes: It’s been a tough week with mum passing away and the funeral and all, and I should be doing so many other things but I need to time-out in a completely different place for awhile. So I wrote this.
Summary: AU after Cyberwoman. After saving Lisa and leaving Cardiff, Ianto Jones has always known this day would come.
With The Rain
The sudden darkening of the sky occurred the minute Ianto heard the knock at the door. He spared a glance out the window and was not surprised to see the heavy clouds appearing and closing in above. Harried twittering pulled his attention to the two small birds that nested under the thatched eaves. They were huddled close together for warmth against the approaching storm – the male protecting his dowdy mate. Ianto felt a small amount of sympathy for them as he headed towards the door to face his own personal storm.
“Hello Jones, Ianto Jones,” the man at his door said when he opened it. Ianto had known, had expected this, but he hadn't thought it would happen today. Not more than five minutes ago he had been dancing with Lisa in the garden celebrating the first day of Spring. And now… Ianto took a deep breath.
“Captain,” he acknowledged politely, calmly, even as his heart raced and died within him in the second it took to reply.
“It’s about to rain,” the Captain said. “May I come in?” It wasn't quite a question and Ianto stood back to let him in.
The Captain made the small cottage seem even smaller as he followed Ianto for the three steps it took to reach the lounge.
“We have a visitor, Lisa,” Ianto said quietly and the dark-skinned woman seated at the window turned to face them. The darkening light did not hide the scars that bracketed her face or the unnatural stillness that held half her face in stasis.
She didn't know who the tall dark haired man was. His eyes were a vivid blue and his outfit could have come straight from the war-time movies that Ianto loved so much, but he was handsome and he was looking at her without the pity she was so used to seeing.
“Lisa, this is Captain Jack Harkness. Captain, Lisa Hallett.” Ianto gave no sign that anything was wrong as he played the consummate host. “Let me take your coat Sir and would you like a coffee?”
“I'd love one, Ianto. It's been an age since I've had one of your divine brews,” the Captain replied with a grin that didn't quite reach his eyes as he gave his greatcoat into Ianto’s hands.
“You know each other?” Lisa queried curiously looking from one to the other as Ianto hung the coat on a hook near the door.
“He was my boss for a while,” Ianto said at the same time as Captain Harkness replied, “Ianto used to work for me.”
“I'm sorry,” Lisa said. “My memory isn't the best since the accident.”
Ianto smiled, stepping close to her and brushing his hand across her cheek in a gentle caress. “You never met him before. I'll get you a tea,” he added, collecting her cup and removing a chocolate wrapper from the small table beside her.
“Thank you,” she smiled at him, the half-smile he loved.
“I won't be long,” Ianto told the Captain.
“Do you need a hand?” Captain Harkness offered and Ianto shook his head.
“Thank you, Sir, but it's really not necessary,” he demurred and left the room without looking back.
“Please have a seat, Captain,” Lisa said and the Captain sat on the bright florally patterned sofa. It was rather comfortable and he settled easily into it.
“Thank you. It's a quaint little place you have here,” he said with a look around at the matching furniture and wallpaper.
“It is, isn't it. It was part of a deceased estate sale. Fully furnished as well.”
“The village is nice if a bit isolated though.” The Captain didn't quite question her but Lisa heard it as one.
“The doctors said that living in the city would be detrimental for me.” She smiled a lopsided half-smile towards the kitchen before turning back to him. “And Ianto loves the country. It suits us both.”
“Ianto never spoke much about your injuries,” the Captain prompted gently with a careful smile in return.
It was raining outside now as the coffee dripped slowly, its aromatic bitterness going unheeded as Ianto stared blindly out the window at the earlier shovelled snow becoming slush.
Captain Jack Harkness. Here in his lounge room. Ianto closed his eyes. He had often wondered what would happen if anyone found out but he had never been able to fully imagine how it would go. He knew it had never included making coffee and it had certainly never included leaving Lisa alone with anyone from Torchwood. His hands shook as he straightened the waiting cups again.
“Are you okay, Ianto?” The Captain appeared and Ianto jumped. China clattered as the cups rattled and the Captain’s large hands were suddenly there steadying them and stopping them from slipping to the floor.
“I … I’m fine, Sir. Lisa…” Ianto stuttered to a halt and looked beyond the Captain.
“She says she’s a bit tired,” the Captain replied with a reassuring smile. Ianto’s eyes narrowed and he chewed at his bottom lip. It wasn’t that he didn’t believe Captain Harkness but the Captain was Torchwood and Ianto knew all too well how Torchwood operated.
“Did you…” he started to say even though he knew that Lisa always napped at this time of day and that the earlier fresh air would have tired her even more so.
“No.” The Captain’s voice was flat and unsurprised.
“Sorry,” Ianto apologised before he realised what he was doing and then found himself wringing his hands as he struggled to regain his composure.
“There was no accident was there? She was partially converted, wasn’t she?”
Ianto closed his eyes against the sudden dizziness and held onto the sink. “Yes.”
“Why didn’t you tell me?”
“Because you would have killed her,” Ianto stated without opening his eyes. “If London hadn’t been destroyed, Lisa would have been experimented on and tested before being killed. It’s the Torchwood way.”
“My Torchwood is very different to how Yvonne and London worked.”
“Not that much different,” Ianto replied, opening his eyes and turning to face the Captain. “Up to six years ago anyone affected by the Rift in Cardiff was either imprisoned or sent to London for study. Now they just disappear. ‘Appropriate measures’ I believe is what you said in the report you sent to Yvonne when she queried it. Everyone knows what that means in Torchwood.” Ianto sighed. “I couldn’t trust any of you.” He was surprised at the angry expression that appeared on the Captain’s face.
“Did you learn anything in the months you were at Cardiff, Ianto Jones?” There was a hard vituperate edge to the Captain’s words and Ianto leant away from the irate man. “What about the weevils we return to the sewers rather than shooting them? Or giving Myfanwy free reign of the Hub instead of locking her up and experimenting on her? Do they sound like standard Torchwood operating procedures to you?”
“No, but everyone said you changed the weevil containment measures to piss Yvonne off,” Ianto replied with surprising calm. “And do you honestly think you would have thought twice before shooting Lisa and me if you’d found her? I don’t think so. You might not have done the butchery UNIT did after the Battle or Torchwood One did every day before it, but she would still have died without a second chance.” Ianto held the Captain’s gaze for a heartbeat before turning to pour the coffee.
“And what about now?” the Captain queried. “Are you expecting me to shoot you both today?”
Ianto turned with a laden tray in front of him. “Not until after you’ve had your coffee, Sir.”
“The day you disappeared, the day you went to lunch and never returned? You left one pot and that night, Owen drank the last of the coffee by himself as he rang the hospitals expecting to find you in one of their morgues because he thought you’d topped yourself. He thought – he still thinks – that he failed by not diagnosing and treating your depression and post-traumatic stress from Canary Wharf.”
“Tosh spent several days rewriting her visual recognition software and then searching every airport and train station for you. She didn’t sleep for four days.”
“Gwen called in her contacts with the police and had a search organised for you. I believe she still talks to your sister in case anything comes up.”
Ianto blanched as his grip tightened on the tray and coffee sloshed over the side of a cup. “You went to Rhiannon?” he asked in a strangled voice.
“You disappeared, Ianto. What did you think we would do?” The Captain asked bluntly.
“I expected you to do what you always did and ignore me,” Ianto snapped and pushed past the Captain walking back into the lounge. He heard the Captain murmur as he left the kitchen.
“And you hid yourself from us.”
The Captain’s comment echoed in his ears as he tried to raise a smile for Lisa.
Continues in And All The Clouds.