Notes: The full oneshot for #23 out of 'Snapshots of Smiles'. Requested by JohnKB and ancientmaverick.
Disclaimer: I do not own Torchwood and I am not making any profit from this work.
The Deepest Confessions
When Jack turned over, it wasn't so much the resistance he met that woke him up, but the warmth of that resistance. Something very warm - and thus, presumably, very alive - was in his bed with him, and that woke him up faster than the threat of no coffee.
Upon bleary-eyed inspection in the gloom, Jack reached out and flicked on the bedside light, and realised with a jolt that Ianto had somehow appeared in his bed. Which raised a problem. A) Why was he there, promptly followed by B) how did he get there without rousing Jack?
After calming down and realising that the world wasn't going to implode because Ianto Jones had turned up in his bed, Jack settled to watching. He'd never actually seen Ianto sleep before, despite having been in a clearly defined relationship for a good eight months now. He had never been to Ianto's flat before he'd run off with the Doctor, and Ianto had certainly backed off any possibility of living together after that little shock.
At the time, it hadn't upset Jack too much, but it was beginning to tear at him a little. Ianto obviously didn't trust him any more - if he ever really had - and it was too easy for Jack to think that he should. After all, he trusted Ianto, despite what Ianto had done. But therein lay the problem. Jack knew what Ianto had done. Ianto didn't know much more about Jack than the rest of the team, and they didn't trust him either.
So to find Ianto in his bed, half-dressed at most, fast asleep and very vulnerable was...unnerving.
And he couldn't really let that go.
Despite what Gwen and Tosh seemed to think, and rather more in favour of what Owen seemed to think, Ianto was not an especially affectionate man. Jack had expected the behind-closed-doors nature of their relationship from the start, because Ianto really didn't seem to like other people knowing much at all about his affairs, but he hadn't really counted on Ianto being reclusive naturally. He was reclusive even when it was just the two of them. So this behaviour was out of the ordinary, out of character, and worrying.
Because out of character behaviour in Torchwood was often a mark of something dangerous. Out of character behaviour in Ianto more so, simply because Jack knew he could be a very dangerous man, if he wanted to be.
So he elected to find out.
"Yan," he murmured, shaking his shoulder a little to rouse him. It didn't get any further response than the arm slung over Jack's waist tightening very slightly, but nowhere near enough to indicate consciousness, so Jack tried harder. Eventually, Ianto grumbled and gave Jack a swat in return, but it wasn't enough. Jack persisted until a sleepy blue eye cracked open and scowled at him.
"What?" Ianto snapped irritably.
"What's this for?" Jack asked softly.
"What? God, Jack, lemme sleep," Ianto mumbled, closing his eyes again and wriggling into a more comfort position.
"Why are you sleeping here?" Jack insisted. "Did something happen?"
"No," Ianto snapped, burying his face in Jack's shoulder. "Just felt like it. Now shut up."
"You...felt like it?" Jack asked, a little awed.
"Jack. Shut. Up. Mortal sleeping here," Ianto groused, and performed a very Ianto-esque trick by heaving a great sigh and falling asleep again. Jack had seen that ability, to drop asleep whenever he felt like it, but he'd never seen it performed so trustingly before.
Just felt like it.
Jack felt like his heart was going to burst. Ianto had just felt like crawling into Jack's sleep space with him and curling up. Ianto had just felt like sneaking into Jack's bed and falling asleep on him for lack of anything better to do. He hadn't wanted sex, or had a nightmare - because then, Jack knew, he wouldn't be sleeping at all - but had just felt like it.
Ianto was warm, radiating out the kind of heat that only came with restful sleep, and it pierced Jack's skin and massaged its way right down into his bones. The arm across his stomach felt heavy, but comforting and secure and trusting, the hairs on Ianto's arm reminding Jack of its presence every time either man breathed. Ianto's head was a weight in the crook of his shoulder, but he didn't care that his arm was going to fall off if he left it there.
Because Ianto had just felt like it.
It was perhaps better than a confession of love. Jack had never really expected to get one from Ianto - he wasn't sure Ianto loved him, he wasn't sure Ianto trusted him enough to tell him if he did, he didn't trust himself to react properly or say it back...
But 'just felt like it' was somehow better, somehow more meaningful, somehow deeper than all of that.
It meant Ianto trusted him.
And he wouldn't give that up for the universe.
Pressing a kiss into Ianto's sleep-rumpled hair, Jack curled towards the younger man and settled again, inhaling his scent deeply and ingraining it in his mind in case this turned out to be one amazing dream.
"Love you too, Yan," he mumbled into the darkness.
Briefly, Ianto's arm tightened, and then relaxed.