AN: Inspired by James Moran's new series, Girl Number 9, this fic refused to go away. Rest assured, people reading my WIP, the next part is coming soon. This has just been stealing most of my time recently...

Anyway. Enjoy!

*

Four months, three weeks and three days.

Ianto Jones heaves a sigh of relief and starts counting back through the calendar one more time, right back to April 5th when the investigation had begun. He marks the date with a large red circle, adding two dots for eyes and an upturned mouth as an afterthought.

He can hardly believe it. Four months, three weeks and three days since the first girl went missing. Another had followed only five days later on the tenth, followed by another on the twenty first until a pattern had begun to develop. Ianto had been tracing that pattern since the beginning, only for it to lead himself and the team right back to square one.

Well, not this time. This time they have a suspect, and Ianto is feeling confident that they've found their guy. Of course they've had suspects before, but Ianto could always tell a fake from a mile off. This one though... this one is different. He can feel it in his gut.

He looks back over the reports once again, memorising every detail about the suspect and the missing civilians in preparation for the interrogation room. If there's one thing Ianto will not tolerate from himself or anyone else in the station, it's a lack of planning and preparation. With his job in particular, he cannot afford to make mistakes; especially after the months of hard work he's put into this case.

Draining the last of his coffee, he arranges the reports into a neat pile and slips them back into their folder, just as a quiet knock sounds at the door to his office.

"Come in," he calls; popping the red marker pen into his top pocket as Gwen Coopers head appears around the door. She smiles and gestures over her shoulder.

"Suspect's ready. Cameras are set up. Do you want me to send Owen in first?"

Ianto stands and draws a breath, considering the offer. Gwen watches him expectantly until he eventually shakes his head and tucks the folders under his arm.

"We've all worked hard on this one, but I think I'd like to take it from here." He squeezes her shoulder as he steps past, lips quirking into a smile. "Might see you later though?"

Gwen blushes and tucks an imaginary strand of hair behind her ear. "You might, if it all works out."

"Oh, I'm counting on it." Ianto grins, but moves back to put some space between them as he spies Owen heading down the corridor, muttering insults to nobody in particular.

"How'd it go?" Ianto asks as he draws closer, though the question doesn't really need an answer if the scowl on Owen's face is anything to go by.

"Don't even go there, mate," Owen snaps, shoving his hands into his pockets as he slumps against the wall behind Gwen. "Cocky little bastard, that one. It took at least an hour hunting him down, not to mention getting him over to the station. We're gonna be here all fucking night."

Ianto shrugs, biting his lip. "Not strictly true. I was just telling Gwen that I'd like to go about this one alone, if that's alright?"

"Suits me, mate. If I never have to see that bloke again it will be too soon." He huffs and pulls a cigarette packet from his bag, picking one out to tuck behind his ear. "So you're not gonna need me again tonight?"

Ianto shakes his head. "I think we'll be alright for now." He looks to Gwen, who is shuffling a little uncomfortably on the spot, eyes dropped to the floor. "I believe Miss Cooper will be staying here until we're done, in case I need back-up."

Gwen glances up and smiles. "Whatever you say, boss."

Owen takes that as his cue to leave, dismissing himself with a nod. "In that case, I'm gonna head on and make the most of it. Phone's on if you need me."

"Cheers, Owen. Have a good night," he pauses to grin, before adding, "don't get yourself into trouble."

Owen snorts, responding with a mock salute before he takes off back the way he came. Ianto watches his back until he vanishes through the automatic doors, and turns back to Gwen.

"Suppose I better get a move on," he says, anxiously fiddling with the files in his hands. "Room B, is it?"

"Yep," she smiles and chucks him the keys. "Want me to come down with you?"

"No, no. It'll be fine. Just... mind the CCTV, would you? As soon as we've got what we need, I'm out of there."

Gwen nods her understanding and reaches out to adjust his tie, smoothing a hand down the silky black fabric till she reaches his belt. Ianto catches her hand and raises it to his mouth, pressing a soft kiss to one knuckle.

"Wish me luck," he whispers, placing another kiss to the palm of her hand as he watches her cheeks pink. Gwen laughs softly and gently prises her hand back, tilting her head up to meet his eyes.

"You don't need it," she tells him, and crushes their lips together.

*

Ianto doesn't pause or hesitate as he reaches the interrogation room, instead striding on through the door and kicking it shut with a bang. He steps up to the desk to arrange his files out in a careful order, before checking and double-checking the CCTV is on in the corner of the room. Only once he's sure everything is in place, does he move to sit and pull the files out for another read-through.

A quiet cough alerts him to the suspect's presence, but he doesn't glance up or pause in his reading. He hears the suspect sniff and shift in his seat, and seconds later a pair of black boots appear on the desk in front of him, catching and crinkling the edge of one of the papers he's reading.

"Look," Ianto says with a heavy sigh, placing his hands down on the desk as he finally lifts his head from the file. He's barely opened his mouth before the words die in his throat, and he's left gawping shamelessly at the man in front of him.

Jack Harkness blinks, raising an eyebrow quizzically. "Is there a problem?"

Ianto keeps staring, physically unable to tear his eyes away. It's not like this is the first time he's come across the man. He's heard the stories, he's seen the pictures; tonnes of bloody pictures. But there's an air about Jack Harkness that just can't be caught through a lense, and nothing has quite prepared him for the reality.

Jack clears his throat and taps Ianto gently on the arm.

"No!" Ianto practically shouts, and then snaps his mouth shut in embarrassment. "No. No problem." Jack keeps watching him, a small, knowing smile forming at the corners of his mouth. His eyes are startlingly blue, almost captivating. Ianto swallows and forces himself to look away, back to the safety of his files.

"You're just not..."

"What you were expecting?" Jack finishes, removing his boots from the table so he can lean in closer. "Don't be embarrassed. I get that a lot."

Ianto clears his throat, uncomfortably trying to maintain a sense of control. "Remember who's in charge here, Harkness."

"Ah, that's right. You are." He chuckles softly and stretches his arms out above his head, arching his back like a cat. Ianto tries his hardest not to stare. "And just why do you have to be so hostile?"

Ianto snorts, feeling his earlier confidence rushing back. Questions are always the easy part.

"That will become clear, I'm sure." He leans back in his chair, flicking through the pages of the file in hand. "So, how about we get to the fun part?"

Jack cocks an eyebrow and reaches for the hem of his shirt, pulling it halfway up his chest before Ianto snaps out a hand to stop him, face burning with humiliation.

"Harkness, if I have to strap you to the chair, I will," he tells him sternly, leaning in closer in the hope he's coming across the tiniest bit intimidating.

"No you won't," Jack props his feet back on the table with a smug grin. "You're not allowed."

"I--" Ianto starts, and then kicks himself as he realises his mistake. Get a fucking grip, Ianto.

"Just... sit still and answer the questions," he snaps, glaring Jack down until he removes his boots from the desk and straightens up in his seat. "Now, tell me. Where were you on the night of Friday fifth of April?"

Jack shrugs, toying with a piece of thread hanging from his shirt. "It's August. You expect me to remember?"

"You're going to have to try if you want to walk out of here tonight."

Jack laughs mockingly. "Very threatening, detective, but we've already established that you're not allowed to chain me up for the night. Although if you were planning on joining me, I can't say I'd mind."

"If you don't keep your mouth shut, I can't say I'd mind throwing you in a cell for the night," Ianto snaps, though he's sure the comment won't dissuade Harkness in the least. Sighing, he glances up to find Jack miming a zip over his lips and decides the best course of action is to just move on from the subject completely.

"April tenth," he begins, flicking through the folder of the second victim. "Jennifer Canton. Does that name ring any bells?"

Jack sits back in his chair and runs a finger along the underside of his chin, seemingly deep in thought. Ianto's sure it's all for show, but waits patiently for an answer all the same.

"Maybe show me a picture?" Jack says eventually, peering over the files as Ianto slides a photo across the table to him. Jack eyes it for a few long moments, holding it up to the light to get a better look.

"Well?"

"Never seen her before in my life," Jack concludes, grinning as he drops the photo back to the table. "Pretty little thing, though."

"You're sure about that?" Ianto asks, and at Jack's nod of assurance pulls another picture from the file, a CCTV shot. "So tell me, what about this man?" He points to the man in the picture, walking out of a club hand in hand with the girl in question. Jack recognises him almost instantly.

"Oh yeah! I know him," he chuckles quietly to himself, clearly reminiscing about the past. "John Hart, his name is. Not seen the bastard in months."

Ianto raises an eyebrow at the last comment, scanning over the page. "Well, it's funny you should say that actually. Because we had Mr Hart in for questioning only a few weeks back, and do you know what he told us?"

Jack just shrugs again, keeping his face infuriatingly blank. "Do tell."

"He told us he was playing a poker game with you, the same night he was seen leaving the club with Jennifer Canton," he pauses to watch Jack's face, searching for a reaction. "And you're sure you didn't see her that night?"

Jack nods again, distantly this time; his attention now focused somewhere above Ianto's head. It's somewhat unsettling, and Ianto feels a small knot forming in the pit of his stomach as Jack's gaze returns to him. There's an almost evil glint to his eye, something Ianto's sure wasn't present before. He shifts uncomfortably in his seat and presses on regardless.

"Right. Well, why don't you tell me a little more about your relationship with John Hart?"

Jack drops his eyes to the desk, his fingers tapping a quiet rhythm against the wood. It does nothing to ease Ianto's nerves, and when Jack glances up at him again, his eyes are dark and fearless.

Ianto swallows. "Answer the question."

"What's it worth?"

"It's-- what?"

"What's it worth?" Jack repeats. "I don't give out those kinds of answers for free."

Ianto laughs, his earlier anxiety replaced by disbelief. "This is an interrogation, Harkness. If you don't answer the question, it may lead me to believe you've got something to hide."

"Maybe I have got something to hide," Jack responds simply, his expression remaining neutral. Ianto slowly lifts his head as Jack's words sink in, fighting to keep the grin off his face.

"Then maybe we're getting somewhere."

"You think?" Ianto frowns and Jack inclines his head towards the CCTV, gesturing for him to look. Ianto peers slowly over his shoulder, heart sinking as realisation dawns on him.

"Shit," he mutters aloud, wandering over to get a better look. The red light is off and the camera is pointing away from him and Jack, towards the floor.

That can't be good.

Sighing heavily, Ianto moves back over to the desk to collect his folders, ready to go find help. "I have to go and sort this out," he says, tucking the files under his arm as he makes his way over to the door. "Someone will be coming down to keep an eye on you, so I wouldn't try anything while I'm gone."

"You might not want to do that," Jack interjects, pushing himself up as Ianto pauses by the door and spins back around. Jack perches on the edge of desk and watches him silently, waiting for Ianto to figure it out.

"What... did you do?" Ianto says finally, cheeks paling. Jack just sniggers and crosses one leather-clad leg over the other, hands resting in his lap.

"It's not what I did exactly, but I'm still not sure you'll like the consequences if you go ahead and open that door."

Ianto keeps hold of the handle, raising a speculative eyebrow. "How do I know you're telling the truth?"

"You don't," Jack shrugs one shoulder. "But do you want to chance it either way?"

Ianto inhales a breath and lets it out slowly, his hand falling away from the door. He hates to admit it, but Jack has a point. He can handle the situation himself for now, just until someone comes to get him.

Because someone will come to get him.

"If this isn't your doing, someone could be down here any minute."

"But they won't be," Jack tells him as he drops down into Ianto's abandoned chair, spreading his legs shamelessly. "My men will see to that."

"Your men?" Ianto folds his arms with a snort of disbelief. "That's impossible."

"So you'd risk the death of one of your colleagues?"

Ianto goes to reply, but finds himself stumped for an answer. Once again, Jack's right. Although he's sure the man is bluffing, there's no way of knowing for sure and he's not about to risk the life of anyone in the station.

"What do you want?" He asks eventually, heart thudding in his chest. Jack considers the question for a long moment, dragging the silence out until Ianto can't bear it anymore. He throws the files down onto the desk, grabs Jack by the collar and roughly slams him against the door, fingers tight around his pulse.

"Tell me!" he hisses through clenched teeth, ignoring the thrill of excitement as Jack lets out a strangled laugh, his breath hot and heavy on Ianto's face.

"Oh, I can do better than that," says Jack, waiting for Ianto to relent before he trails a hand down to land against his hip. Ianto starts to protest, but is hushed by Jack's finger against his lips, thumb brushing over rosy soft skin as a hot tongue probes at his ear. Ianto whimpers quietly despite himself, hearing distantly the click of the lock as Jack flicks it shut.

"See, Ianto Jones," Jack whispers, voice low and dripping with lust, "you can play nice."

TBC