Rating: PG-13 (for now)
Characters: Ianto, Jack, Rhiannon, Tosh, Owen, Gwen, The Doctor (10th), Others
Spoilers: Starts beginning of TW season 1 and DW season 3
Summary: Ianto Jones has been searching for information about who he is his entire life. Canary Wharf gave him some answers and a whole new set of questions.
Disclaimer: BBC drew them, I just like to color outside their lines.
A/N: I am mortified that I posted the unbetaed version of chapter 4 on accident and didn’t catch it until a day later. No more posting at 1AM for me.
Four months ago...
Susie welded the last support beam into place and cross-checked the mainframe to ensure that the obedience processor had fully integrated. Crossing the room to the stasis chamber, she verified that the specimen remained dormant. When she had first made her discovery amongst the rubble of Canary Warf, she had been amazed that not only was it intact, no one had noticed it during the previous sweeps of the 45th floor. Securing it in a stasis field container amongst the myriad of other items heading to a new home at T3 had been child's play. Convincing the others that the contents the scanner had shown were merely 'proto-type sentient armor' and that it needed to be secured in the vaults for further study was easily done as well.
The rest of the equipment required a little more finesse. They had always kept a homing device inside the storeroom on sublevel 3, allowing for anything in the field bigger then the SUV to be easily teleported back to the hub for offload and study. While the team knew about the device on sublevel 3, they had no idea about the second one in her personal vault on sublevel 9. She had secured quite a collection over her time at Torchwood, taking it upon herself to study and catalogue items she knew the others wouldn't have the stomach or the knowledge to understand. Her find at Canary Warf would be the jewel of her collection. She had known that the others would force her to destroy it, but she knew that the technology had it's uses and they were just too narrow minded to see the possibilities. Harkness was too cautious, and too soft to handle hard science. She had needed to study this on her own and show them that she was right. With a renewed sense of purpose and the thrill of making a new discovery driving her on, she had made her way through the remnants of T1, scavenging bits and pieces until she had enough undamaged parts to recreate the fully functioning unit before her.
Wiping her brow and glancing once more over her work, she put away the welding gear and gave the unit a final systems check before placing it online. Everything was ready. Now all that remained was to wake up the specimen and secure her within. According to the container readouts she had suffered no damage and was still viable. Susie smiled to herself. This was the start, the beginning of a new era for Torchwood. She would study the specimen and adapt the technology, making it into something useful and beautiful and uniquely hers. Maybe once Jack saw the potential that she would unleash with her work, he and the others might finally give her the respect she deserved.
Jack stood atop the Millennium Center staring out at the sunset over the bay. It had been a month since he had last seen Guardian and if it weren't for the pterodactyl flying through his base, he would assume he had imagined it. The dinosaur had actually settled in quite well. It had taken to Ianto right away, almost as if it was protecting him from the others. Anytime Owen yelled at or made fun of him, the prehistoric beast would swoop down and claw at his head or knock over his chair with a screech. It was probably mostly due to the fact that he had begun feeding her a treat of dark chocolate and cautiously scratching her beak. No one else could get near her, but for some reason Ianto had her trust. Just this morning, Jack had watched with awe as she landed gracefully on the third story railing, only to take the lamb shank that was her breakfast directly from Ianto's hand. Owen had taken to calling him the 'dino-whisperer' and muttering under his breath about tea-boy having a dinosaur fetish and how he was probably lacing the chocolate with obedience drugs and trainning the beast to shag him. He smiled. Just when he thought he was going to have to step in and say something to Owen about teasing Ianto, the man had beat him to it.
"Well Owen," he had said in a tone that made grown men feel like immature schoolboys. "Seeing as you are as motivated by my coffee as she is by chocolate, you might want to rethink having that second or third cup today. You never know what responses you might have from drinking it." Owen had stared at him open mouthed for a moment before Ianto had winked at a giggling Tosh and headed to the archives.
In the months that Ianto had been with them, Jack had found himself more and more impressed with the young man. At 23, he knew more about Torchwood then even Jack did. He had long suspected that Ianto had a photographic memory given his knack for reciting years old files word for word. While most archivists were introverted, stuffy bookworms, Ianto enjoyed a good pint and had no problem spending time with his coworkers. The fact that he could almost keep up with Tosh's techno-babble and could take on Owen's snark without battling an eyelash, made him all the more endearing. Only Susie seemed to keep her distance. She had told Jack early on that she had no time for T1, and did not want to sully herself with their 'antiquated imperialistic ideals'. Ianto had ignored her rebuffs and kept any interaction with her polite and professional. She had ignored him completely in return. Jack had noticed her becoming more and more withdrawn of late, spending far too much time with the glove. He'd seen the fallout from becoming obsessed with artifacts before and he knew the signs. He would need to have a talk with her about taking a day off soon before she cracked.
Today's retrieval had evidenced how the dynamics of his team were changing. Ianto had directed them from the hub and his knowledge of Graxian trading rituals from the archives had helped turn a demand for human slaves into an Edwardian style tea party and a payoff of 100 pounds of loose leaf Earl Grey (apparently a luxury on Graxious 9). He may not be in the field as much as his teammates, but his knowledge of alien culture and diplomacy made the entire operation run a lot smoother. The suits though were the one thing that Jack could not figure out. Archiving was dusty, dirty work, and yet Ianto somehow managed to end the day as clean as he began. He had only seen him out of them twice. Once during that long ago night in Bute Park, and the other during his first day physical. Jack had watched from the CCTV, for purely educational purposes of course. He needed to know if he was fit enough for field work, and had liked what he saw. He had flirted with the man occasionally, and Ianto seemed to respond, smirking at him and citing the harassment section of the employee handbook in a way that almost seemed like he was flirting back. Thus far though, he had not acted on Jack's obvious invitation, and he was getting frustrated. He had even tried turning up his pheromones around him, and still nothing. He was almost ready to write him off as not interested. Not many people could hold out against his charm and it made him want to know more then ever just what kind of a man that suit was hiding.
Pondering the conundrum that was Ianto Jones, he didn't hear the throat clearing behind him until the noise was made for a second time.
Jack whipped around, webley at the ready, only to encounter the very man he had first came up here in the hopes of finding; Guardian himself. The man smiled at him and raised his hands in mock surrender.
"We aren't going to have to go through that again are we?" he asked raising an eyebrow above his goggles in question.
Jack holstered the gun and smiled back at him. "Sorry, force of habit. I'm not used to anyone else being up here."
Guardian removed his goggles and lowered his hands, stepping towards him. "Good to be cautious. It's good to see you."
Jack's smile widened. "Well it's not like I am that hard to find. You on the other hand..."
"Keeping hidden helps protect my identity and keeps my family safe." He responded crossing his arms and rolling his eyes. "It's not like I can just run about flashing my wings all over town letting everyone know who I am."
He had a point. But part of what he said made Jack wonder, where would a man like him hide? And who was this family he spoke of. Was he with someone?
The thought of someone other then him being with the enigmatic man in front of him made Jack bristle. Great. He was probably just one of a string of people that this Guardian fellow kissed and flew away from. What the hell was he doing fawning over the alien flyboy anyway?
"If you keep thinking that hard, you are going to cause your head to implode."
Jack looked up from his musing to find Guardian grinning at him. He couldn't help but return it. "Sorry a lot on my mind today. Having a few staff related issues and my head was all over the place for a moment there." Play it cool, he told himself. Nice save.
"Nothing too difficult I hope. I hear good things from PC Davidson about your team. Well other then that Doctor of yours. Seems to have a mouth on him that one."
Jack chuckled in response. "Yeah, if I didn't have Ianto to take him down a peg now and then, I don't think he would ever shut up."
"Ianto? Which one is he then?"
Jack thought a minute. How to describe the man that had taken over most of his thoughts this evening? "He's our sexy Welsh archivist. Looks good in a suit and brains to match. Don't know enough about him yet, but I think he might be just what my team needed to finally start working together." He spoke without thinking and when he was done found it to be true. Hunh. Did he actually think Ianto was sexy? Maybe he needed to spend more time with him after all.
"Well, we Welsh are known for being sexy. When in doubt, bet on Wales I always say," Guardian responded with a wink. A moment later the cheeky grin had disappeared and his face turned serious. "But as much as I would love to hear more about your archivist, it's your second in command that I need to discuss."
Jack’s face hardened as he stared at him. What did he want with Susie? "I don't understand. What do you want with her? Are you using me to get to Torchwood?"
"It's not to do with Torchwood. It's to do with Miss Costello," he responded. "How much do you know about her research on the glove?"
Jack's eyes narrowed. Where was he getting his information? Either Torchwood had a mole, or his systems had been compromised. Whatever was going on, he didn't like it and needed answers fast. "How do you know about that? It's official Torchwood business and no one outside of our organization knows about the glove."
"I spoke to a certain PC Cooper last week after she saw you use it. She happened across me at the car park next to the crime scene on her way down. At first she assumed I was responsible for Tucker's murder, but Davidson soon set her straight. Good man that one. Make sure you don't retcon him. It's good to have someone who thinks for himself at the precinct." Jack calmed down a bit. Davidson was their main contact with the Cardiff police, and a valued one at that. But what did this have to do with Suzie?
"I ran across her last night near Capital Tower. I've seen her out alone before, but for some reason this time she seemed like she was out alone for a purpose so I followed. She talked to a group of rather inebriated young girls near the Purple Door, and then followed the one that decided to walk home instead of getting a cab. When the girl turned into the alley behind Baumen’s Deli, she pulled a knife from her purse and followed her in." Jack swallowed. No. This had to be a lie, he didn't want to hear the rest, but he had a feeling he knew what was coming next.
"Jack I hate to say it, but I heard the girl scream, and by the time I could land, she was bleeding out from a stab wound in her back and Susie was gone. I called it in to Davidson, and took off after her. She just disappeared. I searched for hours but she was gone without a trace."
Jack closed his eyes. "You're certain. Absolutely certain that it was her?"
"Yes. I'm sorry Jack. I wish I wasn't." Jack just nodded numbly in response. Suzie had called in sick today and wasn't answering her phone. Ianto had been running a trace on it all day in hope of finding out where she had gone. He had told him it was no big deal, but the archivist had been adamant. Maybe he had somehow known something was amiss. He needed to get back to the hub and ask him. He also needed to check on the glove. Jack hadn't checked this morning, but he had to assume it was missing as well.
"Thanks for the information. My team can handle it from here." He turned and started walking towards the access elevator. Guardian reached out and grabbed his hand as he passed.
"I'll keep an eye out as well. Be careful. Don't let yourself or anyone else get hurt," he said giving his hand a squeeze.
Jack nodded absently. "I need to go. Stay safe yourself. Hopefully next time I see you it will be under better circumstances." Letting go of his hand he didn't look back as he raced to the elevators. Clicking on the comm he put his team on alert. "Owen, Tosh, get armed and meet me in the boardroom. Ianto, Tesco's can wait, get back to the hub as quickly as you can and be careful. We have a situation on our hands."
PC Gwen Cooper had taken it upon herself to return to the scene of last night's murder. Andy had said that this Guardian fellow had called it in, and she didn't buy it for a minute that he wasn't somehow involved. He had been at both crime scenes and being excused as a suspect just because he had rounded up a few thugs in masks didn't sit right with her. Andy had told her to leave it alone, but she needed to see for herself that there was no evidence of him at the scene. She pulled out her torch and lifted the crime scene tape to get access. Forensics had done a pretty thorough sweep, but there had been no rain and the blood stain was still visible in the corner of the alley. She crouched down to get a closer look and the light from her torch reflected on a glint of metal under a nearby dumpster. Reaching under it, she pulled out an oddly shaped tri-bladed knife. Giving it a cursory glance she started to pull an evidence bag from her jacket pocket to bag it, when she heard a loud pop behind her and a clank of metal.
"PC Curious decided to nose around again where she doesn't belong," called a voice behind her. Gwen turned around to see the Torchwood woman who had used the glove staring down at her. Realizing that she was alone in a dark alley with the woman she tried to reason with her.
"You're Torchwood right? Maybe we can work to-" She didn’t get a chance to finish the sentence before being struck to the ground. Dazed she raised herself on her hands and knees, glancing up to see a pair of slim metal encased legs. Suddenly another voice filled the alley, an odd double voice that almost sounded like it had been filtered through a bad intercom system.
"Would you like me to delete her Mistress?" the voice asked, and Gwen was suddenly very aware that Andy was right, she should have left it alone. The sharp sting of a needle pricked her neck and the world began to grow fuzzy and dim. Just before she blacked out, she heard the Torchwood woman respond.
"No thank you Lisa. I think it's time we tested how well the glove's new cyber upgrade works don't you? Let’s get her back to the hub."