Same Ianto, Different Jack
Chapter 45: Endings
Posted: July 7, 2015
A/N: Here is the final chapter of Same Ianto, Different Jack. Enjoy, and thank you for all the reviews, likes, follows, and PMs. I really appreciate how so many of you stuck with me while I worked on other stories until my muse for this one came back. Thank you!
Jack sank to his knees on the ground where a moment ago his lover had been lying. He checked to make sure that the chewing gum-coated bullet he'd lobbed at the Sontaran still blocked its windpipe, then examined what he could see. Blood. Sick. No sign of Ianto. The Vortex Manipulator had done its work and taken Ianto from him.
Jack cursed, fighting angry tears.
"Now is not the time, Harkness," he told himself. "He's hurt, but he'll go somewhere I can find him. He's still invested. He still loves you. Believe that. Believe him."
"Captain!" a voice called behind him, and Jack looked up to see Marta Johnson and two of her men come into the clearing. "Where's Jones?" she asked, looking around. In her hand she held a Vortex Manipulator. "I found this in the woods. Did you get the last of them?"
Jack blinked back the tears and surged to his feet, grabbing the leather wriststrap from her hand. It was brown, his, the well-worn leather soft and supple in his hand. "I got them. Take care of cleanup," he barked. "I'll meet you back at the Hub." After strapping it back on his wrist Jack pressed a series of buttons and let it teleport him to the Hub so he could find Ianto.
Ianto wasn't at the Hub, Jack's first guess. He wasn't at their flat. He wasn't at Gwen's, or his sister's, or anywhere on Earth, for that matter. Ianto had disappeared without a trace.
People started filtering back by sunrise, some on stretchers, some in body bags, and far fewer than he would like healthy and mobile. He had to find Ianto, but he had men and women to take care of first. He had a team. Yes, Ianto was his lover, his partner, his everything, but Ianto had left with a plan in place. It was obvious. And Jack had time travel at his beck and call, so he didn't have to leave immediately. He would see to the others. Ianto would want it that way.
When he had enough peace to think, Jack growled as he wracked his brain to think of where else Ianto might have gone. He was injured… he probably needed complex healing… one of the hospitals of the future Jack had told him about? He took care of the administrative parts of his job, reassured his men, updated Gwen, and settled Torchwood in for a few days without him.
He activated his Vortex Manipulator.
All Ianto knew was pain. Pain from the waist up, that is.
He felt the nausea of teleportation and vomited, covering the white floor under him with bloody sick. He groaned.
A pink light bathed him, increasing his nausea.
"Mauve Alert! Mauve Alert! Unauthorized Time Agent detected. Initiate Lockdown," a male computer voice declared. Metal bars clanked down around the walls of the small room. There wasn't a door that Ianto could see from where he was lying, but that didn't mean there wasn't one behind him.
"Medical treatment necessary," a female computer voice countered. "Emergency medical protocols engaged." The voice sounded like Mainframe, giving Ianto a little comfort. "Analyzing injuries."
"Genetic anomalies detected," a third computer voice informed Ianto. "Genetic splicing and restructuring required."
"Complete medical treatment necessary prior to genetic manipulation," the second voice argued. "Releasing nonogenes."
"Error. Error: DNA on file for this Time Agent does not match current biology," the third computer said. "Delay nanogene release."
"Lockdown confirmed," the first voice said.
"Medical treatment of immediate necessity!" the second voice said, more firmly that before. "Releasing nanogenes."
"Error! Error! Unable to release nanogenes with genetic anomaly present!"
"Analyzation complete," a fourth voice said. "DNA match with Ianto Jones, 98% accuracy. Reanalyzing."
Ianto groaned again, struggling to move through the pain. He dragged the dead weight of his body to the wall and grabbed one of the bars.
"I'm Ianto Jones," he croaked. "You know my name! Fix me! Jack always said you'd fix me if I needed it!"
"Analyzing voice print," the first computer said, sounding, if possible, confused.
"Medical analysis complete: Punctured lungs, broken ribs, spinal cord injury and paralysis," the second computer said. "Secondary injuries to immune system, digestive system and cardio-vascular system. No brain injury indicated."
"Fix me, damn it!" Ianto said with a groan. "You can't let me die! Jack needs me!"
"DNA analyzation complete: subject is Ianto Jones, 99.9997% accuracy," the fourth computer said. "Initiate emergency medical treatment," it added.
"Yes! Yes, fix me!" Ianto gurgled, coughing up more blood.
"Lockdown rescinded," the male computer barked. "Mauve Alert cancelled." The sickening pink flashing stopped, and Ianto was left in a white room. A door appeared in the wall in front of him as soon as the bars raised out of sight.
"Releasing nanogenes," the second computer said, sounding smug.
Ianto heard a hiss, and suddenly the room was filled with a yellow-golden smoke of some kind. It coalesced into a distinct cloud and began moving towards him. He froze, watching in fascination.
A bright blue light flashed.
"Genetic anomalies still detected," the third computer said. "Genetic restructuring —"
"Cancelled!" Jack shouted from behind him. "Computer, just heal him! Ignore the Vortex Manipulator data! It's Ianto!" Jack knelt beside Ianto, taking his head in his hands to give him a thorough once-over. "Let the nanogenes do their work, Ianto," he said softly. "They'll have you back to baseline soon," he added.
"Jack," Ianto managed, blinking rapidly as the golden haze enveloped him.
"How on all the Earths did you manage to find this place?" Jack demanded gently as soon as Ianto woke from the enforced sleep of the rapid-healing process. He lay on a comfortable bed, in a room that screamed them. Everything about it was a blending of their two styles, an homage to their relationship. Jack sat on the bed, leaning against the headboard, a futuristic data pad of some kind in his hands.
Ianto stretched, feeling the tenderness of newly-healed lungs and muscles. He flexed his toes, smiling slightly when he felt them move. "New Jack," Ianto answered. "I prayed that the code he gave me was the same as yours. I wasn't sure it would be, but it was all I could do in an emergency."
Jack grunted. "I'm glad he told you about it. If you hadn't come here, you wouldn't have made it," he said darkly. "How dare you put yourself at risk like that?"
"I'm Torchwood, Jack. It's in my blood to protect people." He lifted a hand towards Jack. After a brief hesitation, Jack accepted the gesture, raising the hand to his lips.
"I know," Jack whispered. "I was so scared."
They sat in silence for a few minutes.
"It took me weeks to find you," Jack admitted. "I went everywhere I could think of. I trolled the future. I stalked hospitals. I got the Doctor involved again."
"Sixteen days," Jack admitted reluctantly. "Compared to before, it was nothing. I checked in at home every night. Gwen's been running the place with Esther as her second. Rex isn't doing well."
"How long has it been for them?" Ianto asked.
"About five days," Jack answered. "I try to time my jumps for twice a day there. It makes them more comfortable. Plus, everyone's worried about you." He put his data pad on the table by the bed. "Once you were asleep, I zipped back there to let them know I'd found you, so no need to worry about that."
Ianto grunted. "And how have you been?" he finally asked.
Jack shifted, looking uncomfortable. "I've had a lot of time to think," he started. "While I waited for patient manifests. I think —" he broke off. He looked away from Ianto. "You were right," he finally said. "About almost everything. I didn't trust you. I didn't trust myself. I hurt you."
Jack turned back to Ianto, his expression hopeful and defeated at the same time. "Will you give me another chance? I'll work on my issues. I won't go on solo missions. I'll take you with me whenever I go out."
Ianto waited. It didn't seem like Jack was finished.
"The Doctor says that you fix me, fix this trauma of mine. So, please. Please, Ianto, help me?"
Ianto pushed himself into a sitting position so he could embrace Jack. "Of course, Cariad. Of course I'll help you."
"Then we'll start here," Jack declared, jumping out of bed. "I have so much to show you. So many lives to show you." He held out his hand to Ianto, who took it.
"This is Boeshane," Jack said, opening a door. "Where I grew up."
Ianto gasped, clutching at Jack's arm. The desert was beautiful. The beach and ocean was beautiful. He looked over at the city across the bay.
"My brother and I would play here for hours," Jack continued, stepping into the room. He drew Ianto in with him. "Sometimes Dad would come with us."
"It's lovely," Ianto said.
Jack smiled wistfully. "Yeah."
"Do you miss it?"
"Sometimes. I don't think of it often."
"It turned into a bad memory for you," Ianto commented.
"Too many people died here."
They stood in silence for a few minutes before Jack tugged on Ianto's hand and led him out of the room and down the hall to another closed door. It opened on a scene of decadence and slothfulness.
"This is where I spent five years with John," Jack explained.
Ianto examined the room, noting the sex toys carelessly left out, the empty food containers, the tech, the weapons.
The only rooms Jack wouldn't open for Ianto were the rooms that looked onto the boiler room of the Valiant and the room that showed the cage where he'd been imprisoned and tortured for 60 years. Ianto didn't blame him. Nor did he ask to see.
Eventually, they found their way to the workout room, where Jack had the computer clear away all the equipment so that they would have space without worrying about bashing into something as they worked on his issues. They sat down next to each other and talked about Jack's problem, how it had started, what he'd been noticing, and what Ianto had seen of it. They went over cases Ianto remembered from the JB-X files.
They began a rehabilitation program for Jack. Slowly, over weeks, it started working.
Knowing that they were safe, out of time, away from the pressures of leadership and friendship and everything else they had to deal with on Earth and at Torchwood, they were able to talk more frankly and openly than they'd been able to do in months. They talked about their relationship, and the trust that had been broken from both sides, and how much they wanted to rebuild it. They made love.
Ianto commented one morning as they lay in bed that the story seemed to have come to an end, at least for now. All the loose plot points had been tied up, Jack was back to normal, they were on good terms with each other, he was home, with His Jack. Maybe there'd be a sequel, but there didn't have to be. They had thousands of years together to write it. Jack looked at him with a puzzled frown.
"It's nothing," Ianto murmured, kissing the top of Jack's head. "Just something I was thinking about when I got together with New Jack. Just silliness."
Jack grunted. "Huh. Well, in the meantime, should we think about going back home?"
"You're my home, Jack," Ianto said in a voice full of seriousness. "Wherever you are, whenever you are."
"And you're mine," Jack responded. "You're mine."