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14 February 2010 @ 07:25 pm
Whatever Remains 2/3  
This is Part Two of Children of Earth in the Immortal Ianto Jones series. You can read Part One here.

Thanks again to silvercobwebs & aeron_lanart for their invaluable help.

Disclaimer:It is still not mine, not one little bit.

Whatever Remains - Jack and Ianto

He'd been an idiot. A stupid idiot, spurred on by a mixture of guilt and defiance to make this ridiculous gesture and now innocent people were paying the price of his bravado. As he and Ianto walked into that room, their greatcoats flaring out behind them like the cloaks of superheroes, safe in the knowledge that neither of them could die here today, Jack had felt invincible. In that moment he truly was Torchwood.

Idiot.

He should have known better than to call the 456's bluff. Because he should have known it wasn't a bluff. Sure, he'd dealt with a lot of alien cultures who thought that a few theatrics would make the human race kowtow to them but who didn't have the ballistics to back up their threats. But he'd also faced the Daleks, had witnessed what the Cybermen could do and had grown up in terror of the creatures that took Gray. He should have known that the 456 weren't the type to make empty threats or to worry about skulking in shadows.

*-*

Panic gripped Ianto's heart as he realised that they were all trapped inside Thames House. Only a few moments ago, stood beside Jack, he had felt invincible but now he saw how wrong he was. He and Jack would walk out of this mess, but they would be the only ones and everyone else in the building was going to die because he had bullied Jack into standing up to the 456. He had gone from invincible to helpless in less than a minute.

Amanda had trained him well, and he had grabbed his long coat and the sword concealed within on automatic as he left the warehouse, so he tried one last, futile attempt at breaking the glass. He drew his sword and took a swing at the reinforced glass protecting the 456 in its tank. It had withstood fire from both his and Jack's guns, so he really didn't think 14th century hardware would even scratch it, but he had to try something. Because if everyone in Thames House was about to die, he at least wanted to take one of these bastards with him.

"It's no use," Jack had a penchant for stating the obvious. He let out a growl of frustration and hit the tank with a fist.

"Well that certainly won't do any good," Ianto commented, sheathing his sword again. Jack raised an eyebrow.

"Where exactly do you stash that?"

"Jack, it's not the time," Ianto admonished, but he couldn't help but smile a little bit.

"Hey, come on, we're dying, when is the time?"

Suddenly, a loud noise like a shriek began from inside the tank.

"What's it doing?" Jack asked.

"I don't..." Ianto began, but suddenly swayed on his feet, feeling dizzy. The virus was kicking in. "I..."

*-*

As Ianto slipped to the floor and into unconsciousness, Jack grabbed him and lowered him gently down. He still wasn't used to Ianto coming back and a tight ball of fear settled in his stomach as he watched the Welshman die in his arms. He couldn't do anything for the poor people outside that room; if he tried to open the doors he risked unleashing the virus on London. As he succumbed to the virus, he lay Ianto gently down and then lay down beside him, still holding him tight.

"Please, come back," he whispered in Ianto's ear.

*-*

They all sat in the canteen of Thames House, staring at the table, at the walls, at the ceiling. They stared anywhere but at each other or the body bags that were lined so neatly on every available floor space. So many dead and it was all his fault.

He, Ianto Jones, had caused this when he guilt-tripped Jack into confronting the 456.

“I need to fix this,” he said quietly.

“How? How do we fix this?” Gwen asked, waving her arm to indicate the bodies nearby. Ianto hung his head in shame. He felt a hand on his shoulder and looked up to see Jack staring into his eyes.

“We can make it right,” he said. “For a start, you can take Gwen and Rhys home and save your sister’s children.”

“How?”

“Find the fastest car you can. I’m pretty sure the M4 will be empty, and the police have better things to do than chase speeders today. You can be there in an hour.”

“But they won’t just let us leave, Jack,” Ianto protested. He looked to Gwen and Amanda for confirmation and they were both staring at Jack.

“Trust me, they will.”

*-*

Jack asked Amanda to stay with him as Gwen and Ianto slipped away to meet with Rhys. The UNIT soldiers had obviously been ordered to keep an eye on him alone as they didn’t even flinch when the other two left the table.

“What are you planning, Jack?” Amanda asked.

Jack let his shoulders slump. He really had no idea what to do next. All he could think of now was protecting the people he loved and the people they loved.

“He’d know what to do,” Jack muttered. He didn’t even realise he’d spoken aloud until Amanda responded to him.

“Well he isn’t here, Jack.”

Any further conversation was forestalled as Frobisher came and sat down opposite. Jack hadn’t had time to let Amanda know what he was planning and he hoped she would forgive him.

*-*

Ianto huddled with a group of children, playing a quiet game of Incy Wincy Spider to keep them occupied when Gwen approached him.

“Is someone coming?” he whispered, ready to either run again or stand and fight. Gwen shook her head.

“I needed to talk to you. We might not get out of this. Or rather Rhys and me might not, and I need to know, Ianto,” she said, and even though she was whispering Ianto could hear her pain in her voice.

He wasn’t sure which was the worse betrayal: lying to Gwen about his Immortality all these months; or that he did it so readily. Apart from one objection to Jack, he’d been happy to keep yet another secret from a woman he supposedly trusted and who trusted him with her life.

“Now is not the time, Gwen,” Ianto frantically whispered, keeping one eye on Rhi.

It didn’t look like she had heard, she seemed too focussed on the children, but Rhi had an annoying habit of overhearing exactly what Ianto didn’t want her to hear. He couldn’t bear the thought of having that conversation with his sister. Rhi and her children might not be his blood but they were still his family, and he needed that connection to humanity; he sensed that it would be all too easy to lose himself in Torchwood and Immortality without someone ‘normal’ to keep him grounded.

“We are all going to get out of this alive, Gwen, and I swear I’ll explain everything then.”
She glowered at him, giving him the stare that seemed to be the inheritance of all Welsh women when they became a Mam. But she seemed to accept what he was saying and returned to her own spot near Rhys.

Ianto couldn’t begin to think how he’d make this all up to her and he hoped that one day she’d forgive him.

Concludes in Part Three
 
 
 
Rhi: bloody torchwoodvipersweb on February 14th, 2010 07:53 pm (UTC)
Wow. Lots of guilt felt by everyone all around. Don't really agree that Ianto needs to apologize to Gwen for keeping his immortality a secret, but I can understand why he might think so. I'll be curious to see what happens next.
But, I don't want to be a pie,: iantoidontlikegravy on February 19th, 2010 04:08 pm (UTC)
Thanks. I don't agree that he should feel guilty either! But I did think that Ianto might, given everything Torchwood has been through and all the lies they've told each other in the past. Part three will be up in about 30mins :)
Marcus L. Rowlandffutures on February 14th, 2010 08:06 pm (UTC)
Well, that went well...

All sorts of guilt there, I think. More angst to come?
But, I don't want to be a pie,: immie iantoidontlikegravy on February 19th, 2010 04:09 pm (UTC)
Did you doubt it? *g*
The other Weird Al: Torchwood - Ianto bwaeron_lanart on February 14th, 2010 11:54 pm (UTC)
Double helpings of guilt for Ianto and Jack. *hugs them* Jack's question about the sword at least gave us a smile part way through.

I love this verse.
But, I don't want to be a pie,: immie iantoidontlikegravy on February 19th, 2010 04:10 pm (UTC)
Thank you! :)