Wild, Wild Torchwood

CONTENT:

Rating: Teen

Flavor: Humor

Era: indeterminate

Canon: no

B&Z Spoilers: none

Language: bad

Violence: a little

Nudity: none

Sex: some innuendo

Other: none

Gratuitous Jack Deaths: 0/0 (nah, he was just unconscious or something)

Author's Notes:

This is a totally made-up nonsensical interlude that is completely ripped off from my favorite scene from "Wild Wild West." Why? Cuz it's funny!

Bannon is my city elf character from Dragon Age, who got dumped through the Rift and got stuck working for Torchwood.


Wild, Wild Torchwood

===#===

Jack gasped and sat up, his hand going to his throat. There was some huge metal collar around his neck. "What the hell?" He looked around at the dusty verge at edge of the cornfield. No one else was here, except Bannon, who was busy trying to pry off his own collar. Jack levered himself to his feet. "Where is everyone?"

"He took them."

"Well we can't sit around here all day!"

"We're trapped inside this circle"

Jack looked at the dusty ground. There was a line drawn in it, in a circle around them. And that's all there was. "What, this?"

"Don't cross the line!" the elf insisted.

"This? This is what has us trapped here?" It looked like some kid with a stick had made it! Jack scuffed it with one boot. "Oh, look, I dug us a tunnel out of this prison."

"Don't-!"

Jack stepped over the stupid line. "Now I am escaping. This was some prison." He turned and glared at the useless elf.

Then his collar started beeping. Something rumbled behind him, shaking the ground. He looked back to see a door slide open in the earth, pebbles and sand drifting into the black rectangular hole. A flat-barreled cannon rose out of it and swiveled to target him. It revved like a rail gun preparing to launch a projectile.

"You know, maybe we should ru- Bannon?" Jack turned, but there was nothing but an elf-shaped gap in the cornrows. "Oh, shit!" He tore off after the elf.

Something whistled through the air behind them, gaining rapidly. There was a wet buzzing as cornstalks were sheared off. Jack dared a glance over his shoulder. Two manhole-cover-sized metal disks were flying after them. His collar beeped faster. "Duck!" He followed his own advice and one of the disks flashed over his head. He heard the other one behind him, cutting low. He dove to the dirt, face-first. "Do you have to be so short?" he yelled in complaint.

Bannon scrambled to his feet and cocked an ear. "Shut up. They're coming back."

"They're homing in on us!"

"Split up!"

The captain and the elf broke and ran in opposite directions. This was not helping. At least the things weren't silent, and the beeping in his collar warned him when they were close. Jack ducked and switched directions again.

He skidded to a halt when he found himself on the edge of a steep ravine. He saw green stalks flying up on the other side. "Bannon! Over here! This way!" He glanced back, trying to figure out how many seconds he had.

His attention was drawn back by a shout. The elf almost pitched into the ravine. "What the hell?"

"Quick, leap into my arms!"

"Are you out of your fucking shem mind!?"

"They'll collide; just do as I say! On three..." Jack hoped he had the timing down right. He counted to three and leapt across the ravine. Bannon gamely jumped out towards him. They collided in mid air; Jack had aimed a little low, so he caught the elf's chest in his face.

They plummeted together and landed in a sluggish river of mud with a mighty SPLUT. The two disks collided and fragmented in a small explosion. A huge chunk fell and cracked Bannon over the head. "Ow, dammit!"

"Well, that's what you get for landing on top."

===#===

They managed to get out of the mud and found a dry, rocky gully. They trudged along beside the low river, hoping there was a way out sooner rather than later. They still had to figure out how to catch up and rescue the others. If the others weren't already on their way to rescue them.

Jack was caked in mud up to his eyebrows. He'd managed to clear most of it off his face, though his cheeks bore long diagonal streaks. His coat was soaked through and had dried in the hot sun until it seemed to be made of stiff cardboard.

Bannon had doggedly kept his top spot in the muddy river and had used Jack to climb out of the muck, so his head and shoulders were clear, except for the crimson streak of blood down the left side of his face. The lower half of his long hair was clumped into muddy dreds.

Jack looked over at him. "So what's your plan for getting this thing off my neck?"

"Excuse me?"

"You know, that's why I keep you around. Since you're the Master of this Escape Artist stuff."

Bannon stopped and turned to face him. "Oh? Now I'm the 'Master of this Escape Artist Stuff'? As opposed to five minutes ago, when I was calmly and rationally trying to figure out how to spring these things, but then, oh, I don't know, something happened... somebody, some poor, sad, idiotic fool who shall remain nameless-" and here, he belted out Jack's name until it echoed off the ravine walls: "JACK HARKNESS...! -just didn't listen to me, and he went tippy-toe, dancey-dance over the line I told him specifically not to, which precipitated our vigorous romp through the Cornfield of Doom, ending in the death-defying leap into the Pit of Infernal Muck!"

Jack scratched his nose for a second. "You know, I think you need to calm down."

"No!" Bannon flapped his arms emphatically. "I can't calm down! Because I'm the Master of this Escape Artist Stuff! And I have to help you! You- the Master of the Stupid Stuff!" He cast about a moment, looking for any type of helpful tool. "I- Well, I can't shoot this thing off you, because I don't have a gun! And I don't have my knives, so I can't whack your head off and pull the collar off your neck; that would have worked fine!" He twisted and pounced on a brick-sized rock. He lifted it beside his head. "Here we go, I'll just bash it with a rock!"

Jack held up his hands. "You really don't want to do that."

"Oh, yes I do!"

Jack tried to backpedal, but the elf leapt at him and smashed him in the neck with the rock. The projecting lip of the collar sheared the stone in half, and the metal rang with a mellow tone. Jack flinched as a chunk of rock bounced off his head, then suddenly, Bannon jumped up against him. The collars clashed together with a dual metal clang. "What the hell are you doing?" Jack backed up further, but the elf was stuck to him.

"What did you do?" Bannon demanded, face reddening.

"I didn't do shit!" The elf was so much shorter than he, that his feet weren't even touching the ground. Jack kept dancing around, off balance, until he leaned forward and bent his knees, so the elf's toes at least could touch down. "You're attracted to me."

"The hell!"

"Look, you dumbass, you hit my collar and reversed the polarity of the magnets, and now we're stuck together!"

The elf's eyes flew wide, and he actually shut up for a second. He looked up at Jack in trepidation. "That had better be part of your coat poking me!" He shoved against Jack's stomach, and the captain shoved him back, but they were stuck fast at the neck.

"Wait a minute," Jack insisted, grabbing the elf until he stood still. "Look. Get your knee up between us and push off."

Bannon's eyes narrowed.

"Don't you even-!"

SCHRUNCH!

"AUGH!" Jack's legs buckled as the elf brought his knee up alright. "You son of a...," he managed to squeak out.

"Oops," Bannon said, completely unapologetically. The elf wriggled until he got his right leg folded up between their bodies. He tried to straighten it, while Jack pushed against his shoulders. Little by little, the magnetized collars separated. Jack shoved a hand between them, hoping he didn't lose any fingers.

With one last heave, the two men managed to fling themselves apart. Bannon fell on his backside in the dust. Jack swayed backwards, caught himself, then overcompensated. He pitched forward, his head dragged straight to the elf's midriff. His collar clanged against Bannon's hip as he fell between the elf's legs.

"AOW!" It was the elf's turn to groan in agony.

"Sorry," Jack lied unconvincingly. He tried to get up, but found his neck stuck to the elf's pelvis. "Who," he complained, "has a steel belt buckle? You couldn't just have brass, like everybody else?"

"I do have a belt knife hidden there," Bannon grated, still wincing. "It's a push-knife built into the buckle."

"Well, great." Jack fumbled under the collar to try to reach it. "Hold still, I'm going to unbuckle your belt, then I think I can get away from you. I hope," he grumbled.

"Will you watch where you're putting your hands!"

"Don't get excited."

"Trust me, captain; getting fondled by you is hardly enough to get me excited."

"Well, we don't have time for anything else." Jack leered a moment just to annoy the elf. Then he grimaced, trying to get the tongue to come loose from the prong. "It's stiff," he complained. "The leather, I mean."

"Jack... when we get back to the Hub and we're telling this story... leave this part out, wouldya?"

"Hah! I might just have to hold it in reserve against your good behavior." With some more cursing, and the captain got the belt to come free from Bannon's pants.

"Give me the knife," the elf said. "We can use it to cut off your head."

"You're not cutting my head off with a push-knife!"

"Why not?"

"Because! Besides, it's thoroughly stuck to my neck." Jack stood up, careful to back away from the elf. The belt dangled from the collar like a bizarre couture necktie. "Now get up, and don't get too close to me."

Muttering and grumbling, the elf did so. They stumbled a little further along the riverbank. "Oh, look," Bannon said, pointing into the mud a couple yards away; "there's my spare toolkit. It must've fallen out of my pocket." He looked around. "Find some stick or something to reach it with."

Jack edged a bit closer. "What about that?" he said, pointing across the elf's line of sight, more towards the river.

"What?" Bannon turned, and Jack- careful not to get his head or neck anywhere too close- planted a boot in his backside. He kicked out and launched the elf into the mud. "AIAGH-glack!" He shouldn't have had his mouth open when he hit. Bannon reared back, sputtering and spitting out muck.

"Can you reach it now?" Jack asked him mildly.

"You sonofabitch!"

"Well, can you?"

In fact, he could. Bannon grabbed his kit and slogged back out of the mud, muttering imprecations. Now he was properly mud-packed from head to toe, and Jack could feel smug that he'd come out marginally cleaner. Even if the margin was so slim as to barely exist.

===X===


End Notes:

1000 Bloodsong Points if you recognized the "Don't get excited" exchange from 'The Empire Strikes Back.'

5000 Bloodsong Points if you know where the stiff leather belt joke is from... especially since I'm not sure. I *think* it's from 'Ice Pirates.'

PS: You know, after Gordon and Jim's leap of faith into the Pit of Infernal Muck, I don't recall them being muddy as they have this argument in the ravine. Score a point for me for realism!