A week had passed since John's departure and everyone was just starting to get back on their feet again. They had managed to round up most of the weevils that had escaped and now everything was almost back to normal…well as normal as things could be. Jack sat in his office after just having gone over the CCTV footage of the day John left. He wanted to know what had happened during Gwen's time alone with John, why she reacted the way she did when he let her go?
"Jack?" Gwen said suddenly, interrupting his thoughts. She was standing at the door and for the first time in weeks...she looked hopeful.
He smiled warmly at her as she came to sit across from him. "You look good Gwen" he complimented her.
"I made an offer on an apartment today" she explained. "So we can get my stuff out of storage now."
"Anything you want Miss Cooper" he replied. Rhys had never recovered from his amnesia. It was obvious that he was missing years, but as far as he was aware he had missed nothing of great importance and was eager to go out and make his life mean something. Owen had taken care of those who saw the disappearing act and the receptionist who knew of Rhys' wife...and with her old identity back, Gwen was slowly beginning to heal.
She looked dejectedly out the window at the others. "How is he?" she asked softly, watching Ianto as he tidied up. It reminded her of how he was when Lisa died.
"He'll be ok" Jack said confidently. "We've um, talk it through...he was absolutely amazing" he said admiringly. "He would trade away everything to see us both happy…"
"It's not fair" Gwen said angrily.
"Honestly Gwen, he's fine" Jack said assuredly. "Trust me."
"I think I'd feel better if he were angry with us" she muttered.
Jack thought carefully about what she had said. "There is no reason for him to be angry with you, however I would understand if you were angry with me" he said shamefully.
"Why would I be angry with you?" she asked softly.
Jack looked at her stunned. "What John said, the way he said it!" he whispered harshly. "Even I almost believed him, and yet you…" he trailed off.
"I did believe him, at first" she admitted shyly. "It's not like it didn't make sense or anything. Why else would you suddenly be so desperate to be with me" she said.
"Because I love you, Gwen. And I made you a promise" he said fervently, shocked to find out that she thought so little of herself…so little of him, although he couldn't blame her for that. "I'm so sorry about what he said, but you have to believe me that it's not true" he said desperately.
"I know" she said simply, decisively. "You didn't let me finish."
"How did you find out?" he asked.
"I didn't have too" she said smiling. "Because every time you say that you love me, you make my heart skip a beat, and I know…that you're the only one who could ever make me feel this way" she said quietly.
Jack didn't say anything. He stared at her with a peculiar look in his eyes.
"So…" she began. "What do we do now?" she asked, filling in the awkward silence.
Jack stood up silently and walked around to where she sat. Then, he helped her to her feet and stare deep into her eyes with that same unfamiliar expression. Suddenly he smiled at her, the most beautiful and sincere smile she'd ever seen. He was happy, the happiest she'd ever seen him. He picked her up and swung her around in his arms. She laughed. How long had it been since she had actually laughed? He set her down and crashed his lips into hers, kissing her so tenderly, yet so fiercely that she became limp in his arms. He pulled back and held her closely to him.
"Well…" he began. "I think you should show me this new apartment of yours, since I'll be spending most of my free time there" he said.
"Will you?" Gwen managed to ask, amazed by his sudden commitment.
"As long as you want me" he whispered passionately.
"Well in that case…you should probably just move in" she replied cheerfully.
"Anything you want Miss Cooper" he said sincerely, and leaned in to kiss her again.
"Eh-em" someone cleared their throat from the doorway.
"Owen" Jack said pleasantly, without letting go of Gwen.
"I've um…made a decision about something" he said nervously. "I want you to know that I'll go through with it no matter what you say, but I'd rather I had your permission."
Jack's face turned serious as he let go of Gwen keeping only her hand. He said nothing.
"You and I both know I should have died a long time ago" he continued, speaking only to Jack. "I have been very lucky, been given far much more time than I deserved, which I have you to thank for. If she were still alive I would never have considered this, I wouldn't have allowed myself to hurt her anymore than I had. But she's gone, and I'm still here!" he said angrily, looking so sad…the way someone looked when they were crying.
"She would be happy you're still here" said Gwen anxiously.
"You can't give up now Owen" said Jack. "You can still do so much good here."
"I guess I'm still a selfish prick then" he said lightly. "You've got Gwen now, Jack" he said seriously. "Things are different for you. But say you didn't…if you could die, would you do it?"
Jack thought long and hard before answering, but he knew there was only one answer he could give. "Is this really what you want?" he asked.
"No" Gwen said sternly.
Owen nodded. "Thankyou" he said.
"Owen you can't do this!" Gwen shouted. "We need you, please."
"Now look who's being selfish" he whispered jokingly, and walking across the room he took Gwen into his arms and hugged her tightly. "We can't all be as strong as you are" he whispered into her ear.
Gwen cried freely as Owen released her and kissed her on the cheek.
"How would you do it?" Jack asked.
"Jack, no" Gwen said firmly.
"How we always planned to" Owen replied. "Formaldehyde solution injected into my veins. You won't have to do anything."
"I won't let you do it Owen" Gwen said determinedly.
"Gwen" Jack said softly. "He's already decided. Just let him go" he begged.
"Owen, please" she begged.
"Say goodbye to Ianto for me" he told her. "Jack, look after her."
"I will" he replied.
"And Gwen, don't give him a hard time, alright?" he said and turned to leave.
"Wait!" Gwen called after him. If this was the last time she was ever going to see him, she was going to do this right. He stopped and waited for her to speak. "Thankyou…for coming back" she said. "I'll miss you."
"Thanks Gwen" he said warmly. "Jack" he said nodding his head.
Jack nodded back and then he was gone. On his way down to the autopsy bay, they heard him say, "Ianto, you should really find a nice girl mate."
"You ok?" Jack asked Gwen. "Thankyou, for letting him do this. He knew it was a lot to ask from you."
"You knew about this?" Gwen asked.
"He mentioned it to me once but I talked him out of it" he said. "The only thing left that was keeping him here was Tosh."
"We should be with him" Gwen said. "We can't let him do this on his own."
"Are you sure?" he asked.
"Yeah" she said. "We're a team, right?"
Jack, Gwen and Ianto all stood around Owen and watched as his system slowly shut down.
"No more revelations, agreed?" said Jack.
"Don't worry, I've had enough revelations to last me a lifetime" said Ianto.
Gwen thought guiltily about what he had said as she tenderly placed a hand on her stomach. She would tell him when the time was right…