Chapter 1: Happily Ever After?
Disclaimer: I own several things...however, I do not own Primeval or Torchwood. If I did, bad things would happen. Both Primeval and Torchwood belong to the BBC and their respective creators. I make absolutely no money off this.
Spoilers: Torchwood spoilers for all seasons. Primeval spoilers for seasons 2 and 3, maybe some for season 4. Takes place during Torchwood season 2 and Primeval season 4.
Word Count: 1,557
Oh, Captain! My Captain!
Chapter 1: Happily Ever After?
I came back for you.
Ianto didn't miss how Jack's eyes flickered away and landed on Gwen. The longing sentiment didn't cause a flitting of butterflies in his stomach, or a warming of his soul. Instead, it felt like a weight, hundreds of kilos of anxiety and doubt descendant on his shoulders and crushing him through the floors. It should have been a wonderful realization, but ruined in the knowledge that his words were complete and utter rubbish.
I can tell when he's lying. His lips are moving. Ianto understood the nature of Jack Harkness better than most.
Even after a year fending for her life against some of the first predators, Abby Maitland loved her job. Working with the bizarre and fascinating creatures that had been plucked from their own time into hers gave her an adrenaline rush akin to sex. The partially colorful teammates, especially the man who had become the love of her life, solidified her loyalty to the ARC. However, like when Connor used to go patrolling alone, 'love' did not stop her from wanting to kill said teammates every once and a while.
The situation at hand: Jess Parker, the ARC's young field operations manager with enough brightly colored shoes to fill an Olympic swimming pool. Flirty pin-up make-up, neat hair, and fashionably professional clothing, gave the accurate impression of someone with a romantic outlook and desperation to prove her worth. She recognized herself in her newest teammate, Jess Parker.
Taking a second look at this evidence, Abby resolved NOT to stab Jess with her scalpel. However, as the woman had not shut up for the last two hours, mooning desperately to the point of obsession over the ARC's own Captain Becker, her willpower was steadily dwindling.
She had humored the younger woman; listening to tales of the roguishly handsome Captain and how he would bring her chocolate once the team had returned from a mission, or how he always looked pristine and debonair. Many times, Jess repeated the same characteristics on her endless "why-Becker-is-perfect" list.
Abby supposed it was normal. Being the only girl on the team had never bothered her much, but she had never been able to gab with her male colleagues the way she could with her girls at the pub. Jess's rapid-fire delivery of gossip proved that Jess had been feeling the same way. Her train of thought was interrupted.
"So was it romantic there? I know it must have been difficult but obviously something happened," Jess asked.
Abby looked up from the body of a future predator, shot dead on site. Near her was a tray of supposed vital organs and she was up to her elbows in abhorrent black ooze, which in her belief was the equivalent of stomach acid.
"You're asking me about romance when I'm up to my ears in sludge?"
"Well the timing was a bit off, I admit."
She smiled, peeling off her gloves with a satisfying snap that made the other woman flinch. "Connor is a born romantic. When we got trapped, he started doing little things to brighten my mood. You know, a bouquet of extinct flowers, tidying up camp while I was on a food run."
"And what else?"
"What else what? All those little things add up and a month in I snogged his brains out," she laughed. "I had to make the first move, he never would have."
"But do you love him? Really love him?"
It was like telling her child of a great, whirlwind romance with a disappointing ending. Abby smiled, hoping to elaborate her story a bit more when that time came. She did, however, know the ending.
"I do. After all, he gave me a happily ever after."
Of course they had rushed off to combat Jack's deranged, ex-lover. Simple wasn't what Torchwood did. Though, Ianto had enjoyed the Star Wars reference.
Captain John Hart was a hedgehog, in Ianto's opinion. He laid the heavy tray of weapons on a nearby desk and wondered how on Earth the man had managed to conceal everything and feel nothing, figuratively and literally. Maybe he didn't want to know. No, he most certainly did not want to know. But it did leave him with a sweltering envy.
He confined himself to the surveillance closet. There was a morbid satisfaction being able to see the inner workings of the Hub. Tosh using a fine tip laser to repair something not of this world; Owen rolling around the med-bay with headphones in his ears; even John Hart lecherously staring at Tosh's modest cleavage. However, seeing Gwen and Jack scurrying through the tunnels dropped his heart to the pit of his stomach.
"What kept me fighting was the thought of coming home to you."
Ianto watched as Jack took Gwen's hand through the security camera. His body went numb as he heard the man he loved practically confess his love to someone else. Whispers of not enough rang through his rattled frame over and over again.
It was moments like this where Ianto envied Owen. The wiry Londoner was easily engaged in casual sex with multiple partners simply because he could. He didn't ask for commitment or fidelity, just a hard fuck in the back alley. No, Owen would never have fallen for the Harkness smile, or flirtatious innuendo. Owen would never have allowed himself to become a part-time shag.
He turned to see Tosh standing in the doorway. "Yes?"
"We're meeting in the conference room, just waiting on you," she smiled and walked away.
"Right. Of course," with one last look at the monitor he was gone.
"So Jess, she's decent on the eyes, yeah?"
"I suppose. Not really my type."
Connor Temple was brilliant. Ask any employee at the ARC and they would tell you. He was exceedingly handsome, argue that and Abby would shove you into a pen with a raptor. Most importantly, Connor was a persistent little fucker when he wanted to be. Just ask Captain Becker.
After enduring Jess's constant admiration for their Captain, Abby would be short tempered and exhausted. Conner wanted Abby's happiness and believed if Jess had someone else there to occupy her time the two could be free to be a proper couple. Abby wouldn't go in a mood after work, and they could finally have well deserved rest and relaxation.
This proved to be a pain in the Becker's beautiful arse. Days after returning to the ARC, Connor had started in. He asked questions, offered to set the two up, offered to double date, begged, threatened murder, gotten Abby to threaten him, threatened to cut Sid and Nancy loose in his apartment, and a variety of other proposals. Soon, he was sure, Becker's resolve would finally snap.
"Well, maybe she is and you just don't know it yet because you never got to know her outside the ARC," he reasoned.
"She just isn't my type, Connor. Please, let's just leave it at that."
Becker was laying out various weapons. Ranging from hand-held stun guns to the larger, more dangerous inventions Matt had commissioned. Connor had proven capable of cleaning and the general maintenance of the guns, but after shooting Becker several times, and once tazering himself, the two had resigned their practice for the day.
"And why not? She likes you, and she's smart. So why not?"
"She's a she, Connor. That's why not."
Becker had gone flush, his willpower finally broken. Connor stared slack-jaw. The tough and stoic military captain was a literal man's-man.
"So, I'll never have to worry 'bout you and Abby?"
Ianto didn't say a single word from the Hub to the large office building. Jack had made several attempts at conversation. "You should have seen", "Who did this?" "Who did that?". He made only few remarks, cutting off Jack's fetish to copiers, and a small welcome back. But this was one time where he had to give Jack a real answer.
"No, Jack. I'm sorry."
The worst of it all was that he truly had been. If not for overhearing Jack and Gwen earlier that night, he knew the outcome would have been different. He just knew that he would have been in the captain's arms tonight, trying desperately to retain arousal when Jack called for someone else over his climax.
"When you say no," Jack began.
"No rarely means other than just that, Jack."
"But why?" Jack had been positive that a few dates would have him back in Ianto's graces, but he had not considered Ianto shooting him down flat.
Instead of an answer, Ianto turned from him, checking another desk.
"Was, I mean, were you? Damn," he ran a hand through his hair. "I shouldn't have just taken off and I know I didn't do anything like bring roses but I missed you and-"
"Missed me?" Ianto scoffed. "Fuck you. Do you think I'm an idiot? You didn't miss me. You missed having someone bend over your desk and not care that you weren't calling their name. You miss no demands made on you. Do you think I don't know what you look like after sex? That I didn't know it wasn't me who made you look like that?"
The swell of emotions pricked his eyes with tears, and god knows he was sick of crying over Captain Jack Harkness. "I will not be a part time shag." He reminded himself. "Not anymore."
Jack didn't know if it was more frightening to know Ianto was angry enough to curse, or that he hadn't needed to yell. His voice had kept level but in Jack's mind had reverberated off the walls and shattered the windows. Ianto's tirade had given Jack a rare look into the younger man's thoughts on their former arrangement.
"Check the roof. Don't want you getting overexcited," Ianto said definitely.
He had wanted to say so much, to tell Ianto about the year-that-never-was, to apologize for his past infidelities, to beg to be held so that his nightmares would go away. But in shock, he nodded and walked away.
The night passed in true Torchwood fashion, with a little blood, a little sex, and no sense. That was how his life was now, Ianto lamented. As he once again found himself alone in the Hub, clearing away clutter, his mind raced.
Nothing was right anymore. Not by Ianto's standards. During Jack's time away he had been unofficially promoted to field agent, he had been more to the team than a coffee boy and glorified janitor. He had felt alive for the first time since he met Lisa. He was almost whole again. Maybe, he thought, it was time to find those missing pieces.
IT LIVES! Wow, so I'm an asshole. I recently revamped and rebeta'd this fic for myself. Hope you enjoy the changes!