A/n: Special thanks go to Gemini Willow for all her help and thoughts concerning the story. :)
The only sound that could be heard at that time, nearly midnight, was the constant pattering of the rain as it kept bucketing down. The main streets of Cardiff were still filled with cars circulating about, but there was hardly a mouse stirring in the dark alleys. Or so most of the citizens in Cardiff believed. If anyone happened to look out the window, they would be surprised to see a strange form run as fast as its feet could carry it (for it was hardly human, if its growls of dismay were any indication), while a man in a heavy military overcoat gave chase.
His boots splashed on the puddles of water that formed on the ground, and the element of nature kept whipping him, almost blocking his vision. Nevertheless, Captain Jack Harkness still gave pursuit, determined to catch the Weevil at all costs.
"Owen, it's heading your way, are you in position?" he asked, activating the bluetooth.
"Still waiting," Owen replied from the other side of the link. "And freezing."
Jack smirked at the answer, then tapped his bluetooth again. "Gwen, how are things from your end?"
"Marvellous," Gwen answered sarcastically, panting heavily; she was obviously trying to catch her breath. "I was looking forward to a romantic dinner with my dear husband-to-be tonight, but I got myself a date with Mr. Weevil instead!"
"Don't worry, Ianto will make sure your date behaves," Jack said, still running. He was getting tired, admittedly. But, if his plan worked, the chase would be over pretty soon. "Where are you now?"
"By some abandoned flats," Gwen replied. "The Weevil went inside one of the buildings, and Ianto went after it."
"You didn't go with him?"
"I believe I'm the goalkeeper."
Jack understood what that meant, of course. Ianto was supposed to chase the Weevil out of the building, where Gwen would be waiting and throw the bag over its head. Not a bad plan and it did do the trick… most of the times.
"Alright, fine," Jack conceded. "Let me know if you need help."
"You already have your hands full, Jack."
Jack grinned at that moment, for he saw where the Weevil was heading. "Not anymore," he declared, and he slowed to a casual walk. There was no need to worry anyway. Owen had already sprung from his hiding place, the Weevil spray in one hand and a syringe in his other. The Weevil roared, realizing that it had run right into a trap, but the doctor silenced it with a quick jab on its neck. A few seconds later, the Weevil was on the ground, heavily sedated and quite harmless.
Jack walked up to Owen, letting out a light whistle of approval. "Nice work."
"Thanks," Owen replied. "Now, if you'll excuse me, I'll go bring the SUV while you watch over Sleeping Beauty here."
"Sleeping Beauty, huh?" Jack said and he looked at the unconscious Weevil. "Seems fitting."
Owen rolled his eyes with a groan. "You can call it whatever you like, just don't decide to kiss it awake," he stated in a matter-of-fact tone, and he turned on his heel, leaving a very amused Jack behind.
He never saw the mirth vanishing from the former Time-agent's lips almost instantly, though. He certainly didn't see him lean against the wall in a tired manner either, a sigh leaving his lips.
One down… One more to go, Jack mused.
He didn't want to admit it, but he had needed that kind of adrenaline rush today. If anything, it put his mind off things that he didn't want to think about presently, for they were simply too many, too much and too distracting. In fact, if it was in his hand, he would never have to think about them at all.
The Weevil let out a snort and twitched, but that hardly fazed Jack. He knew that the creature was just sleeping without a care in the world.
"You sure are better off than me," Jack murmured, and he lifted his gaze up in the sky, letting the rain fall on his head as if it would somehow cleanse him.
Ianto walked slowly, his steps echoing hollowly in the corridors of the abandoned building. His torch illuminated the way, but that was hardly helpful as the young man tried to catch any sight of the Weevil at the same time.
Then again… he didn't have to. Remembering that two sets of eyes were better than one, he tapped his bluetooth, activating it.
"Tosh, are you there?"
"Always," the woman replied, and Ianto was sure he detected a smile in her tone. "What do you need?"
"Can you spot the Weevil for me? I'm currently…"
"In an abandoned building, on the third floor and… in a corridor next to a series of rooms located to your left," Tosh answered. "Unless the blueprints I've downloaded were designed very sloppily."
"Let's hope not," Ianto said, happy that a woman like Toshiko worked for Torchwood; she practically did wonders even from her comfortable place in the Hub. "What about the Weevil?"
"I need to set the detectors to--"
Ianto never heard her. A roar tore through the air, sending a chill in his heart.
"Ianto?" Tosh sounded perplexed, and she didn't bother hiding it.
"Did you hear that?" Ianto asked, keeping his voice low.
"I'm sorry, no," the woman answered. "What was it?"
"The Weevil," Ianto said. "Something's wrong. It almost sounded as if…" Feeling his mouth dry, he continued down the corridor, to the direction he heard the creature's cry.
"As if what, Ianto?" Tosh asked worriedly. "Talk to me!"
But Ianto couldn't answer. He had gotten too shocked at the scene that unfolded before him. The Weevil was on the floor, yet its blood was covering the walls and its chest was slashed open. Ianto could see its innards exposed under the meagre light that was shed through the windows.
Heart pounding rapidly against his ribcage, Ianto touched his bluetooth. "Tosh… The Weevil's dead."
Stunned silence followed for a brief moment. "How?"
"I don't know. But something's killed it."
"Are you sure?"
"Yes! Tosh… what else is in here?!"
"Hold on, I need to run the scans."
Ianto stood still and waited, swallowing hard.
"Yeah?" he whispered, already not liking the sound of her voice. He could still detect the slight tremor in it, even though she spoke confidently.
"The scans came clean. Whatever is in that room, it's not…" she paused, and Ianto heard her trying to calm her breathing. "Get out of there. Quick."
Quick… That was easier said than done. He could still be heard. Not wanting to take that kind of chance, Ianto took a small step back, meaning to make a silent retreat.
The floor boards creaked loudly under his weight, making him wince. And then, a snort echoed in the room, the sound an animal makes when alarmed, only for more boards to creak, accompanied by claws scratching the floor.
"Shit!" With every chance of escaping slipping away, Ianto could only take out his gun and start firing repeatedly in the direction the sounds came.
Gwen paced the pavement up and down, trying not to think of the pouring rain that messed her hair and makeup. She didn't dare think what she looked like right now. One thing was sure though: Rhys was going to end up on the floor laughing when he saw her. Her only consolation was that he would then have the decency to prepare a warm bath for her. She already had to deal with aliens on a regular basis, after all; the last thing she wanted was to catch bloody pneumonia.
"Come on, Ianto, hurry up," she murmured under her breath. The sooner they were over and done with, the sooner she would sink in the bathtub and in the warm bliss that she was already daydreaming about.
Her thoughts were cut off, however, when she heard the unmistakable sound of gunshots above the continuous pattering of the rain. She looked up, aware at once that that was Ianto's gun.
That wasn't supposed to happen, not by far. Concerned, she took out her own gun and got ready to rush inside in the hopes of helping the man, but everything went awry in that very moment. The sound of shattering glass penetrated the pounding rain, and Gwen was horrified to see a familiar form flung out of the window above her. She crouched by instinct, protecting herself from the falling debris. Yet she couldn't take her eyes off Ianto as he fell to his doom, a cry tearing off his chest.
After moments that felt like eternity, he landed with a sickening crash on the top of a parked car. The car alarm went off, filling the air with its deafening wailing, but Gwen never registered it. She simply stood where she was, staring in disbelief and shock at the perfectly still body and slackened face of Ianto. For the young man actually… looked dead.
"Jack..." she whispered, voicing the first thought that came to mind.
As if the name alone had the power to wake her from the spell of numbing confusion that had grabbed hold of her, Gwen instantly activated her bluetooth.
"Jack!" she cried, "Ianto's hurt!"
The rain just kept pouring down on the broken man, doing a miserable job at washing away his blood.