Chapter One – beginning of the nightmare.
To Ianto It looked like Cardiff, but not the Cardiff he knew or was used to. Everything felt familiar, but at the same time felt different. With no memory of how he got there or what happened. The sky was dark and ominous with a hint of rain.
Stopping in his tracks, he saw two women, one with short brown hair while the other a blond haired woman, were staring very fixedly at him. He smiled tightly turning to go, and almost collided with a chestnut haired woman.
A mix of shock and terror washed over him as the two women grabbed hold of him, while the red head ran a black object over his body.
"What are you doing, let me go!" Ianto cried out.
"He's clear," the red head said replacing the black object. "Release him".
"What the hell was that all about?" His voice rose in pitch.
"Sorry but we have to make sure your not wired"
"Wired? I'm not bloody wired to anything!"
"For all we knew you could have been a spy sent by her", the brown head chipped in crisply.
"Who? I'm not spying for anyone, what the hell is going on here?"
"We need you to come with us," she said ignoring the question.
"To where, who are you?"
"Torchwood, but!" He stopped himself.
"I don't believe you!" Ianto replied backing off, fear appearing in his sharp blue eyes.
"Please, I know this sounds strange to you but you must come. It's not safe for you here."
"I'm not going anywhere with you!"
"I'm afraid you must," replied the redhead pulling out a revolver. The young Welshman stared at her, shock and terror washing over him.
"I'm sorry". The redhead mumbled, there was a bright blue flash of light as electricity burned through into Ianto's body.
He woke to semi darkness; rubbing his eyes he sat upright trying to find his bearings. A dreary and tiny cell, he realised where he was; except that the walls were stained in different, odd colours to the one's they kept the Weevils in. Standing up, he walked towards the glass wall, faltering as the fist waves of a headache nagged at his brow.
"Glad to see your awake" He heard the familiar American voice, except that it didn't sound familiar, almost feministic.
"What do you want with me?" Ianto shouted in irritation, He remained leaning against the cool glass partition trying to make out the figures in the shadows.
"We need to ask you some questions."
"Well can I at least see who I'm talking to?" Two women came out standing under the light, he gave an inward gasp.
He couldn't believe his eyes it was like looking at a feminine version of Jack, even so she reminded him of the actress Lucy Lawless, or better still, known as Xena warrior princess. Studying her face, she could have been his sister if things hadn't of been so weird, even right down to the RAF coat. The only difference was the long black hair and gender of course. The red haired woman hovered in the background, arms folded.
"I'm Julia Manson head of Torchwood and my colleague Emma White. We're investigating very powerful Rift activity, which led us to you. What's the last thing you remember?" She asked him very carefully.
"Blinding light, as bright as the sun. Why are you keeping me here?" He snapped looking at each in turn.
"I'm sorry we had to shock you, but you had to come with us. Who are you, and why were you in the park?"
"I just woke up there." Ianto replied realising how lame this probably sounded. "These are holding cells, aren't they?"
"Yes they are. What do you mean you just woke up?'
"I have no memory of how I got here, now I just want to go home, I don't belong here."
"No you don't, but you're a long way from home". His brows furrowed confused, then another thought dawned on him.
"Where are all the men?" A hint of fear crept into his voice, he was sure he wasn't going to like the answer. Both women exchanged looks making him shiver.
"There aren't any men, I mean one's that are free anyway".
"I don't understand, where are they?"
"Gone! Where? You seriously expect me to believe that crap do you?"
"We wish it was crap, but it's not. Ever since she came to power she's been enslaving them."
"What do you mean by that?"
"This world is very different from the one you came from Mr Jones.
"Oh my god" he whispered almost to himself raking a hand through his hair "What sort of place is this?"
"The sort of place where women rule and men are no longer in charge"
The SUV pulled up at a dingy tower block, which looked like it, had seen better days. On the second floor at the end of a very long corridor was what seemed to be a front door. Emma vanished with another woman within the hall; coming back she nodded towards Ianto to go in.
Heather was maybe about her late fifties, early sixties and reminded him of his gran.
"My god, can it be true?" The old lady whispered encircling his face in her weathered hands, startled he gave an inward gasp as she examinined him closely. There was kindness in the old ladies eyes.
"How old are you sonny?" She said standing back to look at him
"I'm twenty eight years old". Worry flashed over Heather face, which she tried to hide.
"What?" Ianto asked
"That's what they like, young stock like you". So", she said trying to change the subject. "What is it you do where you come from?"
"I was an archivist. Miss nothing exciting, are you going to really tell me what's going on?" Ianto looked at her carefully meeting her serious gaze. "Who are these people?"
She brought forth a very old looking book that looked like it had seen better times.
"I can take it you can read, young man" he opened his mouth to say something but Heather continued.
"This explains about our history, from the time of the Crusades to what you see today when alien technology was discovered through the Rani". Heather watched as Ianto read through it carefully, the eventual the horror unfolding before him.
'He's a sweet boy' she thought, and became determined that she wasn't going to let them fall into the hands of the ghastly Kangs for them to use
"I've heard the Rani's name before" Ianto eventually said closing the book with a soft thump. The Rani, why did that name sound familiar, but before he could focus on it had gone.
"The Rani is an evil scientific genius who has spies everywhere in a world gone mad" Heather replied, "You must be hidden until this can be sorted out".
"What sort of women, are they?"
"The sorts of women you don't want to know about."
"Does this Torchwood have computers?"
"Yes, but it would be dangerous to stay on for too long. The Kangs have monitors, and would detect any frequency".
"Not if I scramble it".