Author's note: I can't give you a final wordcount, because the NaNoWriMo wordcounter has now been taken down, but my official final score was 59647, and I have passed 60k. It has been an amazing ride, I have enjoyed it so much.
Dedications: To every single one of you who has reviewed this story - especailly to those who submitted anonymous reviews who I couldn't thank personally. More huge thanks to my Twitter friends, who poked and encouraged me through it.
And a dedication for the whole story to Lizzy, who I love to bits and without whom the last year and twenty one days wouldn't have been nearly as much fun.
I have two sequels planned (well, I say planned) and also two spin-off stories, which I am hoping to get written to a standard where I can get them published. Keep an eye out for the stories of Rupert and Pablo and Captain Ward and her missus. Huge huge huge thanks once again for all your support, and I'm now going to go sit in a darkened room and come to terms with the fact that it's over.
Ianto knocked on Jack's door nervously and ran his hand through his hair. Jack had left the ball firmly in his court, walked him to his bedroom door and kissed him goodnight, holding him so close and so tight that Ianto knew that he wanted nothing more than to stay. And yet he had promised to wait for Ianto, so when Ianto had slowed the pace, pulled away and said goodnight, he'd still walked away happy. And Ianto had stopped, stared after him and disappeared into his room for five minutes to change into black jogging bottoms and a gray T shirt and padded through the corridors to Jack's room. Now, standing outside it, he felt as nervous as he must have on his first date.
Jack opened the door with a toothbrush in his mouth and beamed around it when he saw Ianto. He pushed the door open further to let Ianto in and held up a finger to indicate that he would be just a moment, then disappeared back into the bathroom to get rid of it. When he reappeared, toothbrushless, Ianto was sitting nervously on the edge of the bed, looking around. "It's bigger," he commented. "Than it was, I mean."
He leaned casually in the bathroom doorway, shirtless now, and Ianto couldn't help but stare. The easy smile, the sparkling laughter in his eyes, the broad, muscled planes of his chest, strong arms bent because of the way he had his hands in his pockets, showing his muscles. Ianto could feel Jack's arms around him and craved that feeling again. And Jack still waited there, watching him.
Ianto pushed up from the bed and covered the short distance to stand in front of Jack, resting his hand tentatively on Jack's chest. He didn't take his gaze from Jack's, except to flick it down to his lips occasionally, so he felt Jack's large, warm hand cover his own, and felt his thumb stroke across it gently. "I've never slept with a man before," he admitted quietly. "Should I be nervous?"
"Would you be nervous the first time you slept with a woman?" Jack asked gently, raising his hand to his lips and kissing it. His lips were so soft, nothing like he'd ever imagined a man's kiss would be.
Who was he kidding? Ianto had never imagined kissing a man until he'd met Jack, he was a twenty-first century boy through and through – he knew that two men could be as crazy about each other as Pablo and Rupert were, that two women could be as loyal to each other as Captain Ward was to her wife, that any number of people could love each other as dearly and as much as they could love one person. But never had he imagined that he could fall this hard for another man.
He pulled their hands out of the way and leaned in to kiss Jack gently, starting at the corner of his mouth and moving in to kiss him fully, opening his lips and flicking his tongue against Jack's lips. Finally, Jack moved, his arm snaked around Ianto's waist in that familiar way and he pulled Ianto against him fully, opening to him and kissing back with equal fervour. Ianto groaned and released Jack's hand, reaching around to tangle his fingers in his hair and gripping onto his hip with his other hand. He opened his mouth further and ran his tongue along the back of Jack's teeth, grinning when the action made Jack growl and press against him harder. He pulled Jack backwards towards the bed, bending his knees when he hit the edge of the bed and pulling Jack back on top of him.
As he braced himself above Ianto, Jack pulled away from his lips and kissed across his cheek, lacing his fingers in his hair and pulling gently to angle his head for easier access to his neck. He licked, bit and kissed at Ianto's pulse point, and Ianto melted underneath him, tipping his head back further with a groan. "Jack," he gasped. "Oh fuck."
"If that's what you want," Jack's lips moved against his skin as he teased, and then Jack was pulling away. Ianto followed him desperately, and Jack chuckled lightly as he reached down to tug at the bottom of Ianto's T shirt. "Gorgeous," he muttered when Ianto got the message and lifted his arms to help him.
Ianto flushed warm and pulled Jack back down to him, with just enough distance between them that he could run his hand down Jack's chest and feel the muscles moving beneath his skin as Jack supported himself above him. Jack squirmed to the side and lay beside Ianto, trailing his hand down Ianto's chest lightly, bending his head to kiss him lightly and then more determinedly, sucking at his skin and marking him. His hand, roaming across his stomach now, teased and tickled gently, and Ianto squirmed desperated until Jack's hand strayed below the waistband of his jogging bottoms. He fell absolutely still at that, barely even breathing, and Jack pulled back quickly. "Ianto, are you..."
"Jack, don't stop, please don't stop," he whispered as he reached up to Jack again, pulling him down to meet his lips. Jack acquiesced, and his hand stroked lower, those same teasing, gentle movements interspersed with firmer pulls and strokes, driving Ianto to distraction.
He grasped Jack's arm and turned his face into his shoulder, breathing heavily and slightly starry-eyed. "Not yet, not now," he gasped and rolled on top of Jack to kiss him, one hand pressed to Jack's warm chest and the other cupping his face. Without breaking the kiss, Jack held him tight and sat up, pulling Ianto up with him, and slid his hand down Ianto's side, slowing and becoming almost tentative as his hand slid under Ianto's waistband.
Ianto sighed against his mouth and pushed further into Jack's hold, rested his hand on Jack's hip and then pulled it down. At the action, Jack gasped and tightened the grip he had on Ianto's waist and thrust his tongue into Ianto's mouth, plundering and possessing him. He melted further into Jack's arms and shifted off him to push Jack's pyjama bottoms down, leaning in as much as he could so as not to break the kiss whilst he and Jack between them removed his bottoms as well. As soon as they were both naked, Ianto pulled Jack against him and explored Jack's body, first through touch and then through taste, trailing this hands along his smooth skin and following them with his mouth, biting, kissing and licking.
He had long ago stopped making comparisons to women, giving in to the sensations and emotions raging through him, but this, now, was very different. He'd taken Jack by surprise, he knew (a good surprise, apparently), and he smirked slightly as he bent to his task and felt Jack's fingers tangling in his hair. Through lowered lashes, he looked up at Jack and pulled back with a hand resting on his hip and rubbed it with his thumb gently. "You okay?"
Jack laughed breathily. "You're asking if I'm okay?" he asked slightly incredulously. "Come here."
With a slight wiggle, he slid up Jack's side and pressed his hands against his chest, leaning in to kiss him passionately. Jack held him gently, with one hand on his shoulder-blade and one between his waist and the small of his back, and he shifted his legs so that Ianto rested between them, opening himself to Ianto and inviting him in. His consciousness closed down to just Jack below him, the way he writhed and whimpered when Ianto moved his fingers, and then the way he felt around Ianto as he slid into him carefully. He was hot and tight, and when Ianto was settled fully inside him and Jack's arms were tight and strong around him, Ianto had a feeling that he had never felt more protected and safe. When he came apart in Jack's arms, Jack put him back together again with gentle caresses and kisses and then, wonderingly, Ianto did the same for him.
Jack didn't want to move – ever – Ianto was warm and comfortable against his side and his fingers tickled lazily against Jack's side, but they were both sticky and sweaty and one of them had to be proactive before they fell asleep, so he pushed gently at Ianto's shoulder and rolled away, then tugged Ianto upright. "Come on," he urged apologetically. "Long hot bath sound good?"
Ianto smiled at him slowly. "Long hot bath sounds like bliss," he agreed.
Jack pushed the bathroom door open and stopped suddenly, slipping his arm around Ianto's waist automatically as he stepped up beside him. "Wow."
"Your bathroom's grown too," Ianto commented, leaning in to look. The tiny room, just big enough to fit a full sized bath long the left hand side with a shower above and a sink and toilet opposite, not contained a walk in shower in the far corner, a counter stretching right along one wall with three sinks set into it and an elaborate Art Deco mirror above it and, in the middle of the room, a bubbling hot tub set into a similarly Art Deco tiled floor.
Jack stepped into the room and looked around in amazement, reaching out to touch the thick, fluffy towels over the towel rail and confirming that they were warm, then bent and dipped his hand into the water. He gave Ianto a 'come hither' glance over his shoulder and flicked water at him. "Well, are you coming?" he asked teasingly.
The tub was deceptively deep, but a ledge around the edge was wide enough to sit in comfort and set deep enough for the water to come up to their shoulders, whilst their legs could trail out in front of them and rest on the bottom. Jack leant against Ianto and rested his head on his shoulder, looping his arm across Ianto's waist and sighing contentedly when Ianto's arm wrapped around him and the fingers of his other hand trailed up and down his arm idly. Ianto's ankle hooked over his shin and he chuckled and turned his face further into his shoulder to kiss against his skin. Outside, the TARDIS was probably rearranging his room to be big enough and comfortable enough for both of them, and soon they would need to start looking for somewhere to live permanently in Cardiff – he wasn't going to put Ianto through life in the Hub... again. He swallowed and kissed Ianto's shoulder again, harder this time, and Ianto squeezed him lightly. "What are you thinking, Jack?" he asked softly.
"Don't put up with crap from me," he said sadly, "Ianto did too much, and I let him, and..."
"Jack," Ianto chided, anger flashing in him. "I'm not here just so that you can correct the mistakes you made before."
Jack shook his head desperately as Ianto pulled away from him, withdrawing the warm strength of his arm. "I didn't mean it like that!" he insisted, dropping his head back against the side and turning his face away from Ianto. "I just don't want to forget how important you are to me when Torchwood comes crashing back down on us. I let it take precedence too often."
Ianto had half stood, but he settled back down again and pulled Jack into his arms so that their heads leaned against each other and he could kiss him repeatedly. "I'm sorry, Jack. I promise, I won't take crap from you – my temper's far too short, but you've got to promise the same. If you just take it whenever I snap at you, I'll just keep doing it. We have to be equal," he finished gently.
Jack pulled back and framed his face with his hands, leaning in to kiss him. "We're going to fight," he admitted, insisting, "but we're worth fighting for, don't you think?"
Tilting his head to the side, Ianto drew Jack into another slower kiss. "I wouldn't be here if I didn't, Jack. And, you know, I'm finally glad that I'm immortal."
Jack chuckled. "It has its moments," he agreed softly. "So, so many of them."