Before they could reach the lift Harry stopped and looked at Hart expectantly, making him look behind himself for a reason.
"Well, you have the coordinates and Torchwood only got two SUVs."
"So we use your car." Hart said somewhat confused.
"Don't have one. I was thinking more along the line of that wrist strap you have on your arm." Hart raised his eyebrows. "Teleport us."
"How do you know about that? Human teleportation won't be perfected until the 37th century…"
"Jack can be a little impatient." Harry said, it wasn't a lie, but it wasn't the answer either.
"So because he wanted to get it on he teleported you?"
"I'm that good." Harry replied easily.
"You're lying." He didn't sound convinced.
"Maybe, now do you want to go and get that capsule?"
Hart's teleportation device wasn't any better than Jack's, Harry didn't really know why he had convinced him to use the teleport… they could have asked to borrow one of the others' car. Regardless, it got them to the docks faster than a car ride would have. Never the less after an hour at the docks with no success in finding the capsule or to get Hart to start opening up about himself Harry was getting tired and tried a more direct approach.
"The woman, the one you claim to be doing this for, who was she?"
"Claim?" Hart echoed with mock offence. "You're as bad as 'Jack', doesn't trust a thing I do."
"You're a habitual liar. I never dealt with one of you before but I think there is one rule I have to remember and I'll be safe; not to trust a thing coming out of your mouth."
"Then why ask questions?"
"Every good liar knows that the best lie is rooted in some kind of truth. I believe there is a woman, I believe you might have been lovers, I also believe she sent something here using a rift storm, but I don't believe that you'd come all this way to fulfil her last request. This is about something else and I want to know what."
"Beauty and brains." Hart said, giving Harry another once over. "I'm beginning to see what he sees in you. But just so you know, he is not going to stay. Him and I shared something."
"Maybe you did, maybe you didn't. But Jack isn't going to leave me, because I can give him something no other being in this universe can."
"What? Love?" Hart asked sarcastically as he continued searching the containers.
"No, I'm the only one who will be here as long as he will. I won't leave him behind and he won't leave me. We might not always be lovers, but I will always be very, very, important to him."
"Yeah, well, maybe that won't always be the case." Hart easily dismissed. "Listen to me, kid, he won't ever stick around forever. Find someone else."
"Are you going to tell me what you are really looking for or not?"
"Does it matter? You've already found it for me anyway." He said, opening another container. "Aha!" Yelled out as he walked inside and picked the small capsule up from the container floor. "One down." He declared, pressing his lips against Harry's before Harry even had a chance to react.
"What did you do to me?" Harry demanded as he pushed the time traveller off of him. Hart only laughed.
"That was a kiss, if you don't even know that I wonder what 'Jack' is doing to you."
"Why?" Harry all but hissed, "There has to be a reason Jack told me not to let you kiss me. It's already done, so tell me why."
"Paralysing lip-gloss." Hart said cheerily. "You have about two hours before your inner organs are going to start shutting down, and any second now you'll loose your ability to move. It will give you just enough time to consider the choices you made in life." As the last word left his lips Harry felt his legs give out and he fell to the floor, unable to move. "And you're right, he does feel something for you, and the others. But without you here to hold him back there won't be anything keeping him here."
Then he was gone, leaving Harry alone on the floor feeling completely powerless. It was the astronomy tower all over again, as he stood frozen while Dumbledore sacrificed himself. People say your life flashes before your eyes the second before you die, this was the first time Harry felt it might be true. Little over two hours later he heard Ianto and the others' voices from the other side of the door, they were looking for him. But there was nothing he could do, instead he laid there on the brink of death and the only thing he could do was remember, worry and think.
They were still there as Harry felt himself take what should have been his last breath if he hadn't been the Master of Death; instead it was the breath that returned his ability to move.
To keep up appearances soon after Harry started banging against the door, letting the others' know he was there, instead of drawing his wand. When Ianto threw the doors open Harry hissed in anger; Tosh, she had been shot.
"What were you thinking bringing her here? She should be in a hospital!"
"We needed to find you!" Owen all but yelled back defensively from his spot next to Tosh.
"I can't die, she can!" Harry disagreed.
"I'm fine, Harry." Tosh assured him. "But now we need to get to the hub and stop Captain John. Owen can fix me up better there. Don't worry."
"Where is Jack?" Harry asked when they sat down in the SUV. Strangely enough he hadn't noticed his absence until that moment.
"With Hart." Ianto answered, his eyes on the road, refusing to look at Harry as he spoke. "If I didn't leave him the others' would have died."
Driving to the Hub they caught sight of Jack walking towards the harbour entrance, a rarity in itself. On closer inspection Harry noticed something missing, at first he couldn't place what or where, but Jack caught his expression and showed his left wrist, no strap.
"Hart?" Harry guessed, receiving only a nod and a dry smile in confirmation.
When they got inside the hub they found Hart standing next to the blowfish-alien's body, leaning over one of the tables clearly having. Swearing as he saw them enter, Jack lagging behind. Mostly for effect, Harry was sure. After all it wasn't everyday Hart would get to see someone he pushed him off a 8 story building get up and start walking without a scratch. At least not human.
"Pretty and resilient." Hart commented more to himself than them, his eyes moving from one member to the other, their guns ready and aimed. "Is that even fair?"
"You can beat, shoot, threaten and even poison us, but we will always come back stronger than ever." Owen proclaimed.
"Your move." Harry said.
"Well, I think you oughta know your boss is splayed out on the pavement." He informed them with a hint of condescension, and Jack took that as his cue and walked into Hart's line of vision. The expression that graced Hart's face after that was one of pure disbelief. He tried to play it off, but it was a weak attempt and his nervousness was showing. "Now, that's impressive. Seriously, you could make a fortune in the Vegas galaxies with an act like that. Go on, how does it work?"
"I can't die." Jack said with a smile.
"No, but really."
"No but really, you can't kill me. No matter how many times you try. I can't die. Ever." He added, walking towards his former partner.
"How much does that cost you? Every time you have to drag yourself back here? How does it feel? All that pain and trauma, plus you are reborn into this godforsaken mess. I pity you."
Jack laughed with a cold amusement. "These people, this planet, all the beauty you can never see, what's what I come back for."
"Well, goody on you." Hart dryly, it seemed Jack had finally pushed him over the edge and the shock of seeing him alive had subsided, instead anger and annoyance shone trough Hart's eyes as he spoke.
"Wanna tell us what's in the capsules now?" Harry asked from behind them, he really didn't need to see any more of this.
"Alright." Hart agreed glancing over at Harry briefly before looking back at Jack. The story that followed was vastly different from the love story had originally told, yet a few key element remained the same. The woman he had 'loved' had merely been a lover. The capsules contained the location of a jewel, a Cascadian diamond to be exact, rather than a danger to human kind and the woman had been dying as a result of him, he had killed her. None of this surprised Harry in the least, what however did surprise him was the events that followed Jack's go ahead to ensemble the device the woman had sent out in the rift storm.
There was no diamond or anything else of value, instead a small explosive device assembled itself and attached itself to Hart's chest, latching on to his DNA. That was something Harry could not have predicted in a million years, much less Hart's decision to suddenly shackle himself to Harry in an attempt to force the team to find away to defuse the bomb after Jack had refused his first 'plea' for help. Anyone else would be panicking as they saw the timer of the bomb ticking away, not Harry though. With 8 minutes 52 seconds left he calmly turned to Tosh.
"Tosh, this explosion is going to be big. Any rift activity in the next few minutes?" Before Tosh even got a chance to respond Jack spoke.
"No way." While Hart was looking back and forth between Tosh, Jack and Harry. "What the bloody hell is going on here?"
"If we are in the rift when the bomb explodes the city will be safe." Harry said.
"You don't know where you'll end up!" Jack disagreed. "You might not even survive!"
"Of course he bloody won't survive!" Hart agreed annoyed, glaring at Harry. "How the hell does this save us?"
"It doesn't." Harry said almost flippantly just as Tosh informed them that there was residual rift energy where Hart had stepped through time the evening before and before anyone had a chance to react Harry was out the door.
With Tosh and Ianto in the back, trying to find a way to block the frequency of the bomb Harry drove them towards the parking lot they had been called to less than 24 hours earlier to investigate a murder and rift activity. There was nothing they could do.
With less than two minutes to spare they reached the spot and Harry couldn't help but find something about the rift both comforting and familiar. It was strange; he never pegged himself for having a death wish even if many in the wizarding world would claim differently. But maybe he was.
For a second Harry contemplated staying until last moment, hoping to get a chance to say good-bye to Jack before he jumped into the rift. But then again there wasn't really any point in doing that, death wouldn't have him no matter what so Harry was sure that one way or another he would meet Jack again. Turning to face a teary-eyed Tosh and a strangely neutral Ianto Harry smiled.
"Thanks for everything and tell Jack I will find him no matter what. Okay?" He stepped towards the rift, dragging a resisting Hart with him, then he turned around and looked at Ianto. "Don't let Lisa stop you form living your life, if she is worth even an ounce of what you feel for her she would want you to be happy." And with that he ran into the rift, not even glancing back as he heard a car pull up behind them and Jack calling out for him.
The next thing Harry knew was a pain, worse than the curciatus curse, worse than walking though the veil, worse than anything he had ever imagined and then it all went dark. His last conscious thought was that maybe, just maybe, death had decided to claim him after all.
Well for now anyway…. I have a sequel in mind though it will be a Harry/Doctor Who crossover, not Harry/Torchwood. And then there will be some answers about Sirius and all that too =) But I don't know when it will be up, school and job hunting is taking up most of my time right now…. Sorry.