Title: The Doctor's Son ~ No Longer Star-Crossed
Characters: Jack/Ianto, pre Doctor/Donna
Disclaimer: I do not own Torchwood, it belongs to RTD (sadly) and the BBC. Neither do I own Doctor Who.
Spoilers: For Doctor Who series Four The Doctor's Daughter.
Rating: PG13 (in case I forgot about something)
Summary: Two varying numbers of years have passed for Jack and Ianto, they’ve continued to live their lives, one in mourning and the other in search. But fate it seems is finally set to give them a break. Second story in The Doctor's Son Verse.
Written for the longliveianto Cliche Bingo challenge.
Cliche Bingo Prompt: Beauty
No Longer Star-Crossed
Somewhere, on some planet in some Galaxy, 3013-08-01
It had been two years for him, since he’d left the Doctor. Two years since a man he’d only known a few hours, a man called Ianto Jones, had died. Ianto Jones, the Doctor’s son.
After Messaline, he’d tried to forget about him but he just couldn't. In those few short hours Ianto had burrowed into his heart and he’d refused to be dug out. He didn't even know him that well.
Ianto had been born out of a progenation machine, in the middle of a war. He was automatically aged up to be of use to the army and given information and memories that would help him to fight. That was all.
They’d confused him, at first. Acted different than how he thought people should act. Told him things that he didn't know and couldn't understand. The Doctor had been dismissive at first, he hadn’t wanted a son and poor Ianto was left feeling unwanted. But despite all that he’d helped them escape when they were captured and stuck with them, even sparing a life when everything in him was telling him to kill. But luckily for him, he had come from the Doctor and it was that part he listened to. And he’d gotten the Doctor’s approval. That hard won approval that every companion strived for.
After that Ianto seemed to change, the longer he spent in their company, the more he learned about the world and the more he reverted to a more natural state. As he lost the programming Ianto became more innocent, like a sheltered youth. He forgot about wars and instead set out to learn all he could, like his Father.
He didn't know if it was the innocence or the curiosity, or something else, but whatever it was he fell in love because of it.
It was an awkward situation to be sure. Ianto was literally hours old, though he appeared to be in his mid-twenties. His Father was the Doctor, a man that Jack used to have a century long crush on. Not to mention, Ianto wasn’t exactly sure who he was yet. Throughout their time together he’d seemed to shift personalities, copying behaviours and mannerisms from the Doctor, from Donna and even him, once or twice.
Ianto had been trying to find himself, he’d only had hours, when they’d had years in which to do it. They’d grown up and become the people they were, he hadn’t had that chance. And even if the Doctor hadn’t asked him to wait to ask Ianto out, he still would have done. No matter how much he might have wanted to ask him, he would have given Ianto that time. Because if he didn't it would be taking advantage, no ifs, ands or maybes about it. No matter how many times Ianto flirted, or even the one time they’d kissed...
It had been magical. As cliché as that sounded.
Jack had been around a long time, he’d had a lot of first kisses but he’d never had one quite like that. He didn't know whether it was something to do with the Time Lord in Ianto and the Time Vortex in him, but whatever it was, when their lips had connected it had been like bombs going off. Not fireworks, he’d had fireworks before, what he’d felt had been so much more than fireworks.
And Ianto had felt it too.
He’d known then that he’d give him all the time in the world, he’d step back and let Ianto find himself and once he had...
But that was all gone now.
Ianto had sacrificed himself for his Father.
If only they’d told him about the Doctor’s regenerations. They’d been waiting until they were all safely on the TARDIS to explain Time Lord physiology to Ianto. None of them had thought they wouldn’t have that time.
He’d had two hearts! Why couldn't he have everything else? Why couldn't he have regenerated? Why? Why? WHY!
The world had become gray after that. After seeing Ianto’s beauty, seeing it fade, everything else in the world was just as dead. Just as gone.
Whenever he went somewhere new and saw something that in the past would have awed him, he remained unmoved. Unaffected by the universe, all he saw, all he thought about and remembered was Ianto’s beauty, his smile, his laugh and that hint of a wondrous emerging personality. Like a butterfly first emerging from a chrysalis. He’d always loved life, loved exploring and loved what he could find, now before that feeling could fully develop he would see Ianto’s face in his mind and he’d forget about everything else. There was no beauty in the world for him anymore.
Travelling with the Doctor had always been amazing but after Ianto’s death everything had changed. The Doctor was grieving, he was grieving, Donna and even the TARDIS were grieving. The Doctor threw himself into adventure after adventure, Jack had lost count of how many times he’d died saving the Doctor’s regeneration. It was on one particular planet called Triski where the Doctor once again recklessly risked his life and Donna’s that he realised he’d had enough.
He couldn't go on like that. He couldn't watch the Doctor self destruct and he couldn't go around helping people, saving their lives when he felt like his own had been destroyed. Hadn't he suffered enough? His life, his death, both had been taken from him. Family, friends, team mates, loves, acquaintances, hell, even enemies were long dead and buried and here he was, suffering all over again. He’d needed to get away for a while. He knew he’d go back eventually but at that moment he’d just needed a break. So he’d left. Knowing that with his manipulator he could return just moments after he’d gone.
So he wandered. Hopping from place to place, not really seeing, never really stopping. He’d travelled like that, on his own these past two years. He’d had drinks in bars, got into a little trouble, ran into old acquaintances from his days as a Time Agent and done any number of other un-important things.
But now he was headed back to Messaline. He didn't know why he was going, except he had a sudden need to find out what last rights they’d given Ianto. Maybe he was finally ready to move on?
Maybe if he saw a grave marker, a resting place... he’d be free of his ghost.
More importantly... did he want to be free?
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Planet of the OOD, 6016-11-14
Ianto Jones had been on his own now for what he believed were four galactic years, in linear time at least. Though he wasn’t sure, hopping about in the time stream didn't make calculating age easy. Whatever their number, the number of years he’d lived did not actually correlate with his adult body. But he’d gotten used to that now. If someone asked how old he was he told them he was twenty six, it seemed like an acceptable number. So as far as he could figure he’d been on his own for four galactic years in linear time, or five and a half Earth years. Sometimes he couldn't believe it had been that long since his birth and death on planet Messaline. At other times it didn't seem long enough.
He’d been impulsive that day, locking himself into a rocket that he had no idea how to fly. But as he’d hoped it was all set up for flight. All in working order in case something went wrong with the colonization and the people decided to leave the planet. It was an easy system to learn. The screen responded to touch, all you had to do was tap a planet to get information on it and then tap it again, twice in rapid succession to choose it as your destination. Then a new screen appeared with instructions, it simply said ‘press here to launch’. So he did and off he went, into space. He’d save time for a later journey.
His first stop had been a place called ‘The Library’ built in the 51st century. According to everyone he spoke to ‘The Library’ was the place to find out everything and anything. And he needed to find out a lot. First he decided to find out more about his father and time lords in general. Once he’d done that he decided to brush up on a few other things, like time travel, galactic law, the shadow proclamation, Earth and anything else he could think of.
He read for information but he also read because he loved it. He loved stories, he loved places and times that didn't exist anywhere now but in those stories, for other people at least but not him. Not a Time Lord. He wanted to travel, to see all these places and times. He wanted to dance in Vienna, travel the high seas on a pirate ship and see a medieval joust. Like his father it was Earth history that interested him the most. And funnily enough when he did travel he ended up with a lot of the same people and in the same places as his father. The apple did not fall far from the tree, as an old Earth saying said.
Though, as he was told he didn't have quite the same knack for trouble as his father did, just mischief. It was a man named Shakespeare who told him that. He visited the man’s theatre and saw one of his wonderful plays. Romeo and Juliet. He couldn't help but love it. There was a beauty to the language, to the story and in the character’s that captured him. Star-crossed lovers, words that span the whole of time, enduring until the end, still read and performed after years beyond counting. Sometimes, in his darker moments, he couldn't help but wonder if he and Jack were star-crossed, forever to be sundered.
He thought about Jack a lot, stories of love and loss bringing him to mind most often. He couldn't help thinking that in that way at least they were always together. That is, if Jack thought of him also. He liked to think he did but Jack thought he was dead, maybe he’d moved on? He hoped not because he wouldn’t stop thinking about him, even if that were so, he didn't think he ever could. Strange, that such an impact could be made in so short a time. He could have lain with any number of men these past few years, but he hadn’t, he only wanted Jack.
All in all he spent a year and a half of his linear time line in that library, he could have stayed longer but he wanted to put his knowledge to good use. Though it wasn’t uncommon for him to drop in to try and find the answer to some question or other and more often than not to borrow some new tale to read.
He’d realised along the way that he’d never find his Father, Jack or Donna by sticking to one time. Not when they had all of time and space to travel in. So he needed his own time travel device and those that had them weren’t willing to trade for them so he would have to make his own.
He’d noticed that the more he read about time and mechanics and physics and things the easier it became to take that knowledge and improve on it. All the books on Time Lord’s he’d read said that was normal. That the Time Lord’s brain worked differently than a human one. Pretty soon, he’d created his own vortex manipulator based off the plans belonging to the Time Agency, which had made their way to the Library after it’s decommission.
He travelled back and forth across the universe, never staying too long in one place. Always searching, learning and improving. Like his Father, his favourite place was Earth, all the different times and places of Earth. But he never saw them anywhere. He’d always believed that it was a good thing he’d been left behind, he had a chance to be himself, to learn who he was without the machine’s influence. He learned to be independent, to look after himself. Something he wasn’t sure he would have learnt travelling with his Father and Jack, he could see them both being very overprotective and mothering. In fact he wasn’t sure he’d have ever gotten out of his childlike innocence with them. Sure they’d have shown him things, taught him things, but they’d have done their best to shield him from the bad things that were out there. And so when he finally came face to face with something evil, as he no doubt would have at some point, then he wouldn’t have known what to do. He’d have been vulnerable.
But by living on his own, by seeing the universe and all its problems, all its wonders he’d become an adult, fully. Not just in body, but in mind and experience.
There was only one aspect of life where he retained that innocence. In love and sex he was still a novice.
Well not exactly a novice, he knew of sexual desire, had felt it for a particular someone. But at the time he hadn’t truly understood what it was he was feeling. There was no time for reproduction in the machine’s programming. Sure on a basic human level they’d recognised that desire and even responded to it in some small way. But that was all. Sure he’d flirted with that soldier and the man had been responsive but neither of them had had any knowledge on what they would do after. Only that it had felt good to be spoken to like that, even if that was all you ever got.
Now he had that knowledge in abundance, even though he still lacked the experience. And there was only one person in all the known galaxies who he wanted to have that experience with.
Now if only he could find him.
He’d been travelling for years now without a sign. It was time to move on again.
He looked around the snowy landscape and nodded to the Ood who had been kind enough to show him around and tell him of the Doctor Donna Jack that had saved them several years before. He knew he couldn't go back to that time when they were here, knowing from the Ood’s descriptions that it had been before his birth. From all the studying he’d done he knew he had to be careful about creating paradoxes. Although at one time he’d considered it, knowing it would draw his Dad to him. But the Time Lord in him just couldn't intentionally create a paradox. No matter how desperate he was.
He needed to leave.
“Thank you again, Ood Sigma.” He said. “I am grateful for the story of my Father and friends and hope that your people continue to flourish in their freedom. I just hope I can find them one day and tell them of your people’s happiness.”
“I think you shall find them soon.” Came Ood Sigma’s voice, the artificial brain lighting up with his words.
“I believe you shall find them soon. I believe you should retrace your steps.”
He just stood in shock for a moment, Ood Sigma’s words reverberating in his mind.
‘Retrace your steps.’ ‘Retrace your steps.’ ‘Retrace your steps.’
But where to start?
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Jack walked down the street, marvelling at the change in the planet.
Messaline was truly beautiful now. Gone was the gaseous air, the dark clouds, the volcanic rock. In its place was a tropical paradise. The Hath village he’d just left reminded him of Venice, with as many walkways as canals between the buildings. He was just walking into the human township where he’d been told he’d be able to find Cline, the young soldier who’d become de-facto Leader after General Cobb’s arrest.
Asking a passing man gave him the correct building. He was quickly shown into the Mayor’s office, a position the man had held for decades apparently and found himself face to face with Cline.
By Earth’s standards Cline should be an old man now. He still looked remarkably young for someone of his advanced years. Cline was regarding him silently, taking in his unchanged appearance.
“I’d have thought, being a time traveller that you’d have come back long before now.” Jack nodded but that was all the answer he gave, he was only here for one thing. His earlier sightseeing had been done on the way here, that was all.
“I sent out many messages over the years.” Cline continued. “But no one ever responded. I didn't know if it was the lack of names I had or lack of interest on your part but you would have done well to come and see me earlier.”
“And why was that?” Jack asked, quite surprised at the reprimanding note in the old soldiers voice.
“Because he didn't die.”
His mouth opened, but no sound came out. He felt like he’d been hit by a Silairian Freight ship.
“Well, technically he did die.” Cline went on hurriedly, his confusion evident even after all these intervening years. “He just didn't stay that way. Not long after you’d left, there was this golden light that came from his mouth and then he was up and awake.”
Before he knew what he was doing Jack had taken a step forward, his hands planted firmly on the desk, leaning forward in anticipation.
“And is he still here?” He asked eagerly, his heart skipping a beat at being able to see Ianto again.
“NO?” He repeated.
“Yes, he left.”
“As soon as he woke up.”
“Why didn't you stop him?” Jack almost yelled in frustration but managed to stop himself.
Cline snorted, then chuckled softly. “You wanna try stopping that boy from doing anything. He was off like a shot before I could stop him. Took the colonist’s rocket and was gone. Haven’t had word from him since.”
“Nothing at all?” Jack asked again, hoping for anything. Any clue that might tell him where Ianto had gone, to think the other man had been out there all this time. Alone. Anything could have happened to him.
“No. Not unless he-“
The two of them stared at each other for a moment, not quite daring to believe they’d heard that voice. Stealing himself against disappointment and wishful thinking Jack turned on his heel to face the doorway, Cline leaning to look around him from his seat behind the desk.
They both continued to stare dumbfounded at the man in the doorway.
Jack had always known Ianto Jones was beautiful and he thought he’d remembered every little detail about that face and that smile. But now faced with that pale face, so alive with that same sense of curiosity and innocence he’d fallen in love with but now with a glint in the eye that spoke of experience and a mischievous side he couldn't wait to explore. Now faced with all that, he knew he’d never known true beauty before this moment.
Ianto Jones was wearing more clothes than the last and only time he’d ever seen him, his wonderful muscles covered by a high necked tight black shirt with military style fastenings that buttoned diagonally from shoulder to hip. His jeans were very dark blue, kind of loose with a lot of pockets. He wore heeled boots in the style an old-fashioned gentlemen would wear in Earth’s past. He had some sort of weapon strapped to his hip, a stun gun he believed. And a homemade vortex manipulator strapped to his left wrist.
He’d gotten leaner on his travels, his clothes fitted him well. He didn't know whether it was deliberate on Ianto’s part but every item of clothing he wore, in some way highlighted one of his features. They made his sparkling blue eyes pop even more, his pale skin glowed like crystal, it was smooth as silk with not a blemish in sight. It even seemed to help the natural highlights in his hair pick up the weak sunlight from the doorway.
All in all Jack knew he’d never seen a more beautiful man in all his life. And even though it wasn’t strictly correct to compare Ianto to a woman, he didn't think he’d ever seen a woman of any species that could compare with him either.
There was no comparison in all the known galaxies.
And what made it even better was the expression Ianto wore now. The corner of his mouth was cocked in a slightly unsure smile, but he didn't blush. He watched as Ianto let his eyes travel down Jack’s body in appreciation and there was a glint of want in his eyes that hadn’t been there before. A look he knew would be mirrored in his own eyes. Seemed that on his travels Ianto had learnt a few things about the world and wanted to try them out with him. Or at least he hoped he did.
He remained silent and still for another moment, debating whether to make the first move or not. Ianto seemed unsure about his next move. He didn't know how to greet him. Maybe Ianto remembered their kiss and now didn't feel the same as he had back then. Or maybe he did but was afraid Jack didn't want him anymore. If he took action with either thought in mind he could easily make a mistake and scare the other man off. But there was one thing he’d wanted to do ever since he’d first seen Ianto. And now that he had the chance he wasn’t going to hold back.
Before he thought too much more about it he moved quickly towards Ianto. He didn't take his eyes off Ianto as he did, so it was easy to see Ianto’s sudden nerves which then gave way to anticipation. There was something about the look in his eyes and the way that he bit at his lip which assured Jack he was making the right decision.
He came to a stop in front of Ianto, who was now looking down at the ground shyly. Seeing him like that halted him, he’d been about to sweep him off his feet and kiss him senseless but he couldn't, not until he knew Ianto understood why they hadn’t been waiting for him.
A light touch of his fingers beneath Ianto’s jaw got the younger man to lift his head.
He lost himself in Ianto’s eyes, it seemed like the whole of time and space were reflected in those eyes.
He didn't know what he intended to say, he just found himself saying the first thing that came to his mind.
“I thought you were dead.”
Ianto smiled faintly. “I know. That’s why I went looking for you.” I crossed the stars for you. He left unsaid.
Though Jack smiled like he’d heard it anyway. The hand that had been resting on Ianto’s chin moved to the back of his neck and stroked the smooth skin there, softly. A hint of red covered Ianto’s cheeks at the touch.
“If I’d have known-“ Jack’s voice broke.
“You’d have stayed.” Ianto said softly. It wasn’t a question, he was so sure that that’s what would have happened. And he was right.
“I would.” He agreed.
Ianto bit his lip again and looked down at his own hand which neither of them had realised had come up to rest in the centre of Jack’s chest.
“Do you remember when...” He paused to wet his lips and Jack nearly broke. “I kissed you.”
Jack swallowed. “Yeah.” He breathed huskily, he felt his heart skip a beat and his cock twitch in his trousers when Ianto let out a small gasp.
“Did you like it?”
Jack almost groaned aloud at that. He knew they hadn’t really had chance to talk after the kiss but he thought his enthusiasm during that kiss had been obvious.
“Would you er... wanna do it again?”
Ianto’s eyes widened at how quickly, he’d answered that. Slowly Ianto began to smile, the smile got wider then he began to laugh and Jack was laughing with him. The situation suddenly seemed so funny. And somehow Jack knew Ianto wouldn’t be quite so shy with him anymore, not now that he was sure of Jack’s interest. He had the funny feeling that if and when they did start a sexual relation he’d be propositioned in the most unlikely of places.
The sudden sound of a throat clearing, reminded them that they weren’t alone in the room. They turned to find Cline regarding them with an indulgent smile.
“Nice to see you again, Ianto.”
“And you too, sir.” Ianto chuckled.
Seemed he’d been right. Ianto didn't seem anywhere as nervous and shy now, not now that he was sure of Jack’s interest. The Ianto he’d glimpsed that first day had come back. The one who’d jumped him and almost literally snogged the life out of him in the middle of a hostile situation. He was so glad to see that Ianto, not that he hadn’t loved the shy and blushing Ianto too, but he preferred to see Ianto confident. He just hoped that every so often he’d be able to make Ianto blush like that again.
Cline was looking between the two of them knowingly. “Why don’t you two lads get yourselves out of here? Go have some fun.”
They chuckled and said their goodbyes. As they were heading out the door, Jack took Ianto’s hand and didn't let go.
They had a lot to talk about.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
A/N... Okay I have no idea why it's posting like this but I'l try and sort it out later. For some reason it refuses to post normally.Anyway hoped you liked it.