Author's Note: EXTREMELY IMPORTANT. There is a charity fan auction going on at Livejournal to benefit Haiti. I'm offering to write fanfiction tailored to you for your donation. For more information, look at my profile. It's an EXCELLENT cause, and a great platform. And a great way to get me to write you something. Also, my proper auction offering is actually pretty cool, I think. Please check it out.
This was written for LJ user Lefaym, for her donation of $10 AUD to Medecins Sans Frontieres.
The streetlight hovering above him wouldn't come into focus, but Ianto sort of liked it that way. It flared out in all directions, like an explosion caught in a shutter click, or like time was stopped, and the droplets of light from the sodium lamp were suspended there forever, a glowing orange rain.
He was vaguely aware of a pain in his abdomen, but the light was better.
The sound had cut out a few minutes before. Minutes? Maybe seconds. Time was acting strangely. When had that started? There were short snippets of distorted noises; someone yelling, a woman. Running. Boots. Gunshots? That was an interesting thought. Ianto thought that maybe he had been shot. He certainly hadn't been lying down before. What had he been doing?
Jack's face appeared above him, blocking out the unfocused streetlamp. Ianto frowned and tried to move his head to see the light again, but the motion sent a gasping shock of pain up through his body and the situation slammed back into him as he shrieked against it, with the rewind-sound of hearing and feeling returning – feeling. Jack's hand was pushing his chest down as he screamed and tried his best to crawl out of his own body, rip his soul out of his head to get away from whatever had happened under his ribcage, because never in his life had he felt pain like this, and it didn't look like it would be ending any time soon.
Jack was saying something, but Ianto couldn't hear it over the sound of someone screaming. Who was doing that? Jack's hand covered his mouth for a moment, and the screaming stopped. Oh. Ianto stared up at him, drawing ragged breaths through his nose that with every rise of his chest dragged hot pain up from the mess of his abdomen. Jack was breathing hard, too, he saw, and there was blood trickling from a cut on his forehead. He looked completely terrified, and that was something new, Ianto thought. Jack's hand let go of his mouth and moved down to slowly peel back what had once been a nice white shirt but now, Ianto saw as Jack lifted it, was a wet red rag with a hole in it. He could patch that, he thought, probably, but the blood would be a – another screamed ripped out of him as Jack's fingers prodded the wound.
Jack was shoved out of the way then by Owen, and Ianto closed his eyes because somewhere along the line of working for Torchwood, Owen had perfected the art of filling a syringe with painkiller while running. The small, sharp pain and the sudden sensation of flooding was unendingly welcome, 'small prick' quip foregone for asphalt triage. The pain dulled, deadened, and soon Ianto was aware of nothing lower than his bottom ribs and Jack's hand on his shoulder as he stared down at Owen's work.
"I was shot," Ianto said, calm. Maybe a little sunny. He could see the streetlamp again. It haloed around Jack's head, which almost made him laugh. Jack was no saint.
Jack nodded, grip tightening briefly on Ianto's shoulder. "Yep," he said. "You were shot."
"How bad is it?"
"Pretty bad." Jack was craning his head to see what Owen was doing. "But it looks like you'll be okay. Great scar."
Ianto attempted to grin, but it didn't really work with all of the muscle relaxant in the painkiller, so it came out a little twisted, and he could feel it. "Did you get the thing with the gun?"
"Shot it right after it shot you. It isn't quite as lucky."
"Couldn't have been a little quicker on the draw, could you?" Whatever Owen was doing down there, it felt really weird, and he didn't want to think about it, really.
"My Wild West training is wearing off."
Jack in a cowboy hat, boots with spurs, chaps. Not that he hadn't imagined the latter before, of the 'assless' variety. They needed to try costumes. "We need to try costumes."
He heard Owen make an affronted noise somewhere. Jack laughed. "I thought we already did. Why else wear the suit, Mr. Bond?"
"Bond doesn't get shot."
"Sure he does."
"Bond doesn't get shot by aliens."
Owen was saying something about moving and the SUV, and the whole suspended brightness of the streetlamp came back when Jack moved around to grip Ianto's shoulders while Owen gripped his legs. The ground was suddenly not on his back anymore, and the world started to move by at a bit of a clip. He knew he'd be in horrible pain right now if it wasn't for Owen's handy syringe. Sometimes Owen wasn't an absolute prat. "Where are we going?"
Jack, somewhere: "Hospital."
The corners of Ianto's vision were dimming a little. It made the world look a little like a very old film. Nosferatu. "Was it a vampire?"
"Nope. Too many limbs."
"Have we ever done vampires?"
"I've done a few vampires."
Ianto laughed. He heard a car door open, and he was jostled a little as they transferred him to the back seat (and oh he felt that), but the world was slipping away a bit more, so it didn't really matter. It came back faintly when his head was settled on Jack's thigh and the thrum of the engine vibrated the seat. He could see lights moving past in the windows. Jack's face with washes of blue from the windscreen flashers.
"Need you to stay awake, Ianto, okay?"
"It's important. Tell me about vampires."
Ianto told him about vampires.