A/N: This isn't the first fanfic I've ever written...but it is the first Torchwood fic I've ever written. Don't mind any OOC-ness that might crop up. I'll do my best to keep it down, but no promises : )
Now...onwards with my one-shot of doom!
Disclaimer: Suing me will be a useless enterprise, since I already owe the government far too much money. So BBC and Mr. Davies, don't get all pissy because I'm borrowing your characters/show. You either, Disney. It's a harmless bit o' fun and should be treated as such.
Spoilers: Probably. It's definitely set in second season, because Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang has been referenced. No other specific events have been mentioned, so use your imagination.
Pairing: Jack/Gwen (yes, I'm one of those : ). Really, it's more like 'Jack/Every-Living-Thing-With-A-Post-Code', but for this story, I'm narrowing it down to Gwen. And possibly Ianto. With a dash of Owen/Tosh.
Warning: This story is complete cheese.
Rating: Is there one for 'a lame story that'll make your brain explode'? Because there should be. This would be it, if there were. Other than that...I think it merits a PG-13 or equivalent. Which is a T on ffdotnet, I believe...
Author: Super Spazz Attack. You may call me Spazz, if you like.
When Gwen arrived at the Hub, there was a small brown object on her desk.
"This what we found yesterday?" she asked, picking it up. It was encased in worn, brown leather, and appeared to be a box: a line bisected it horizontally, there were hinges on the back, and the front was held closed by a small, tarnished clasp. The bottom of the box was smooth and roughly square. The corners had been shaved off to give it a more polygonal look, and the top bubbled upwards in a small dome.
"That would be it," Jack said as he strolled past Gwen and the others. "Give it a once over, would you?"
Holding her breath, Gwen opened the box. She had been worried that there might be something dangerous inside, even though she knew Tosh had scanned it to make sure before it was left with Gwen. The small hinges creaked as the lid fell back and revealed...
"It's a compass," Ianto remarked, pausing on his way through the Hub. He held in his hands a tray of mugs filled with steaming tea. He sounded somewhat surprised and disappointed that the box hadn't yielded anything more interesting than a worn compass.
Gwen smiled gratefully as Ianto handed her her favorite mug and she inhaled deeply the aroma of freshly brewed tea. She turned back to the compass. It's needle was idly turning, not pointing at anything.
"It's a broken compass," Gwen said flatly. "It doesn't even point north."
"Huh." Ianto continued on his way.
Because it had been a slow day, Gwen took the compass down to Archives herself, photographed it, tagged it and logged it in the catalogue. By now it was lunch time, so she brought the instrument with her up to the kitchen so she could make notes.
She was in the middle of noting that the interior of the compass lid was painted with a crude rendering of a night sky when the others came down for lunch. Jack was in the middle of a particularly raunchy story about some alien or other that he'd shagged – as usual. At least it hadn't been further elaborations on the vices and virtues of John Heart. That had been bad enough the first three times.
"So I said to him, 'Three? Are you sure? Well, we'll just have to try them all out!'"
Tosh burst into giggles, while Ianto and Owen exchanged resigned looks behind their boss's head.
The story continued. Gwen put down her pen and listened. It was certainly more interesting than taking notes about a broken compass. She wasn't even upset that her work had been interrupted by the ruckus.
Ianto took the seat to her right, Tosh to her left. Jack and Owen were sitting at the other end of the small rectangular table,
"So tell us about the compass," Jack said some time later, after his outrageous story had wound down.
"Nothing much to tell, really," Gwen said, savouring her second cup of tea. "Apart from that it's broken." She picked it up. "And this," she added turning the compass over.
Etched into the bottom was PRPTY CPN. JACK, followed by a crude drawing of a bird.
"Looks like it's yours," Gwen said with a grin. She flipped it back over. "And see that? It's even pointing at you."
"It's not mine," Jack said with a happy smile "I'm sure that there are plenty of Captain Jack Blobby-Bird's out there."
Everyone had a giggle at that.
"I think it's supposed to be a sparrow," Tosh said, squinting at it from her place on Gwen's left. There was a suggestion of a forked tail, but Gwen's arm was in the way and Tosh couldn't make it out.
"May I?" Ianto asked. Gwen handed it too him. Shaken loose, the needle spun a little. And then jerked around until it pointed back at Jack.
"Hey, Jack! You're magnetic!" Gwen said.
"It's my personality," Jack said, with mock gravity.
They all laughed. The pun was too good to pass up.
"Can I see?" Tosh asked when they had all calmed down a little. Ianto reached across Gwen and handed Tosh the instrument.
The needle spun lazily for a second and then did a rough, thirty degree turn. Everyone leaned over the table. Everyone frowned.. It was pointing at Owen.
"He's not the only magnetic one," Tosh said with a slightly forced grin. She put it down on the table. The needle resumed its lazy spin.
"That's odd," Owen said. He picked the compass up from where Tosh had left it. The needle swung again. Now it pointed to Tosh.
"I think it's off balance," Gwen ventured. She reached for it, and took it gently from Owen's hands. She shook it slightly. The needle spun in its lazy arc. She looked up at the others.
"I think it's..." A tingle ran through her, and she could almost feel it tugging her towards... The needle stopped. She looked down, but she already knew where it was pointing. It was pointing at Jack again, quivering from the effort of not flying off its bearings.
"Let me see," Jack said. He took the compass from Gwen.
The needle went wild.
"Fantastic," Jack murmured, unconsciously quoting his favourite Doctor. The needle continued its wild revolutions for nearly a minute before it began to slow. Another thirty seconds and it had begun to bounce back and forth from one point to another. Thirty seconds more, and the needle was pointing, ramrod straight, between those two points. Between Gwen and Ianto. Jack raised an eyebrow.
"I know what this does," Jack said smugly. He closed the compass with a snap and pocketed it.
"What does it do then, if it's not broken?" Gwen asked. "The only thing it's pointed at more than once was you."
Jack stood, and walked around the table until he stood between Gwen and Ianto. Placing one hand on each of their shoulders, he leaned down, putting his face close to each of their ears. He smiled again.
"The compass doesn't point north," he said in a husky whisper, "because it's not meant to find north."
"What's it meant to find?" Tosh asked. She was already dreading the answer. Something in the feral way that Jack was grinning was making her hair stand on end.
"Your heart's desire," Jack said with a smirk as he straightened. He sauntered out of the kitchen, back to his office, hands in his pockets and humming in a clear tenor.
When Jack was gone, Gwen and Ianto turned and looked behind them. Tosh and Owen leaned over the table to see too. The needle had pointed directly between Gwen and Ianto, and everyone was curious to figure out precisely what was in that direction. Myfanwy's nest was much too high. They looked at one another again. Not even Jack could be that horny.
Everyone sat down again.
It gradually dawned on each of them where the needle had been pointing when they had each held the compass.
They shared a look of panic, though the table bore the brunt of it.
"Well, I think I need to be getting back to work," Gwen announced, a little too loudly and a little too quickly. She pushed herself away from the table.
"Yes. Things to clean." Ianto said. He was watching Gwen with narrowed eyes, as if trying to sum her up. She caught him looking and his face flushed red. Gwen wasn't particularly concerned. Her own face was a matching colour and she was doing her best not to cast similar looks at Ianto herself. They practically had a race to see who could get out of the kitchen first. For the rest of the day, they circled one another like two strange cats, each unsure of where the other stood on matters of territoriality.
"And I've got that...thing...to log. With the CCTV and the time and the..." Tosh fled.
When they had all gone, Owen stared down at the table, where the compass had sat, and then up at Tosh's recently vacated chair.
"Bloody hell," he muttered. "I'm going soft."
Back in his office, Jack pulled the compass out of his pocket again and opened it. This was going to come in handy. He grinned. It probably even had more uses than Ianto's stopwatch.
A/N: Soooooo...good? Bad? Any awkward phrasing? Was it as funny as I was hoping it was? I'm guessing no...but hoping yes. Review and let me know...