Prompt/Inspiration: D.E.B.S. (2004)
Characters: Ianto Jones, Jack Harkness, Gwen Cooper, Owen Harper, Rhys Williams, Toshiko Sato, Yvonne Hartman, John Hart, Lisa Hallett
Summary: There is a secret test hidden within university entrance exams. This test doesn’t measure a student’s aptitude at reading, writing, and arithmetic; it measures their innate ability to lie, cheat, fight, and kill. Those with high scores are recruited into the world's top secret paramilitary academies, with only the best being chosen for Torchwood. Some call them scoundrels and seductresses; some call them spies, the naive call them innocent. They call themselves T.I.E.S.
A/N: Sorry this is a little late. Real life and stroppy internet connections thwarted my posting attempts.
Torchwood Institute for Extraterrestrial Surveillance
08:00 the following morning
“There he is!” called out one of the junior agents as Ianto walked through the doors. Ianto’s eyes went wide as a group of underclassmen surrounded him.
“Oh my god is it true?!” one asked. “Did you fight Diamond Jack?”
“I can’t believe you survived!” one of them gushed.
“I heard you cut off his hand. Did you keep it?” another asked.
“No, I don’t have his hand, it’s still attached,” Ianto replied flustered.
“Everyone’s talking about it,” Tosh quipped as she grabbed Ianto by the arm and pulled him out of the throng. “Calling you a hero, when really you’re just trying to get in Jack’s pants,” she added tartly.
“Okay, still mad about last night,” Ianto observed.
“Damn right I am,” Tosh answered. “Good luck with Hartman,” she added before pushing her way into the briefing room.
“Hartman?” Ianto asked confused. “Tosh?” he called after her before entering the room.
The sign filling the digital display stopped him in his tracks.
JACK & IANTO GET TOGETHER
IANTO SURVIVES ENCOUNTER!
“Oh, for fuck’s sake,” Ianto cursed under his breath as Tosh shot him a look.
“Hartman is on her way down,” Suzie gushed as she took Ianto’s backpack and tossed it onto a nearby chair. “Time for us to show her what Alpha Squad is made of.”
A beam of light filled the room and Director Hartman, her assistants, and a photographer arrived.
“Director,” Suzie stepped forward to greet her. “I would just like to say-“
“Who are you?” Hartman demanded cutting her off.
“Suzie Costello,” Suzie greeted.
“Well Costello, my time is precious and you are wasting it,” Hartman dismissed her. “Where is Ianto Jones?” she demanded pushing past her.
Suzie turned and watched in annoyance as Hartman pushed Ianto around the room and took a succession of pictures with her at Ianto’s side looking like a proud parent until she decided it was enough.
“So, Ianto,” she said shooing the photographer away. “It’s lovely to meet you. I can’t tell you how proud I am and how envious the rest of the intelligence community is over this,” she added with glee. “Umbago over at U.N.I.T. nearly wet himself he was so jealous.”
Ianto blinked back at her unsure of what to say.
“But we still need your help,” she said giving him an earnest expression. “No one has ever been this close to Diamond Jack before and we need a full profile. Every word, every bit of the encounter needs to be documented for the archives.” Ianto swallowed. “You, for all intents and purposes, are our leading expert.”
“I don’t think-“ Ianto tried to protest before Hartman cut him off again.
“Don’t underestimate yourself,” she said with a smile before taking a file from her assistant. “I took the liberty of accessing your private files,” she said as she pulled out the folder holding his thesis on Diamond Jack. “The Lone Diamond: Building a Criminal Mastermind Through Abandonment,” she read as Ianto sunk lower into his seat. “Jack’s eternal search for someone to love is embodied by a life of crime,” she continued. “The more he steals, the deeper his feeling of emptiness grows.”
Hartman turned and sat down on the table beside Ianto’s seat as she closed the folder.
“Ianto, I think you empathise with this Diamond Jack,” she said not noticing as Ianto paled. “I think he sees your pathos, you have some kind of dangerous symbiosis going on. We can use that to our advantage.”
She stood up and straightened her suit jacket. “It’s because of that I am putting you in charge of this investigation,” she announced causing Ianto and the rest of Alpha Squad to gasp in surprise. “You are hereby promoted to squad captain.”
“Excuse me ma’am?” Suzie asked stepping forward. “But I am the captain.”
“And Suzie is doing great,” Ianto added, trying to salvage the situation.
“This is no time for egos,” Hartman chastised as she gathered her aides. “There is a killer on the loose. This is not the girl guides or the boy scouts! This is espionage! We have a chance to do something here people!”
She turned to Ianto, “You have a chance to do something. Don’t let us down.”
Giving the rest of the squad a nod she joined the rest of her team inside the teleport beam and smiled. “Good luck,” she said with a steely gaze before they beamed away.
“Screw this,” Suzie muttered before running out of the room. Ianto hesitated for a moment before chasing after her.
“I didn’t mean for this to happen,” he tried to explain. “I don’t even want to be captain.”
“That’s just it!” Suzie yelled back. “You don’t even want it. You get the perfect score without even trying, the whole of Torchwood kisses your arse, and now Hartman makes you Alpha Squad Captain.”
Ianto opened his mouth to reply, but Suzie charged on.
“The crazy thing is that you would be just as happy drawing in your stupid little book,” she added in defeat. “All my life it’s been nothing but shit, abusive dad, and then one foster home after another. I don’t understand why you have to take the only thing I have going for me…” she trailed off close to tears.
“Suzie-“ Ianto tried again.
“Whatever,” Suzie answered ignoring him. “Just promise me one thing,” she said with a glare.
“What?” Ianto asked, hoping to somehow make amends.
“Promise me you’ll catch the bastard,” she replied as sirens started to sound throughout the building.
“Code 99, Diamond Jack is on the move!” announced a voice over the loudspeaker. “Robbery at the Tower of London, he’s attempting to steal the crown jewels!”
“Lead the way, captain,” Suzie said, pushing Ianto towards the armoury to meet the rest of their team and head out.
Commander Williams briefed them on the way over, via the SUV vid-screen, letting them know that there were hostages and Jack and his cohorts were still inside.
Tower of London
“Torchwood is on the move,” called out a voice over Owen’s comm..
“Copy that,” he answered before heading back over to the men’s room to get Jack.
“T.I.E.S. in route, two minutes," Owen announced as he saw Jack splashing on a last bit of cologne and checking his reflection in the mirror.
“Do I look okay?” he asked turning away from the mirror to face him.
“This is retarded,” Owen said unable to believe that they were robbing the bloody crown to get Jack a date.
“Incoming,” came the update over the comm..
“Showtime!” Jack said clapping his hands together in excitement as he spun away from the mirror.
Owen just shook his head, hoping that Tosh and the others wouldn’t get caught in the crossfire of Jack’s backhanded attempt at romance.
“Formation Alpha-Gamma,” Ianto directed Alpha Squad as they made their way inside.
“What was that?” Gwen asked in fear as shadows danced across courtyard.
“We’re being watched,” Suzie said scanning for the source of movement.
Ianto glanced to his right as Jack leaned out of an alcove and gestured to him.
“Come here,” he mouthed.
Ianto stared at him wide-eyed. “I can’t” he mouthed back.
Jack rolled his eyes in annoyance and disappeared again as Suzie glanced in his direction and asked what was wrong.
“Nothing,” Ianto replied trying not to look back, “Let’s make our way across the green to the Waterloo Barracks where the hostages were being kept.”
After directing Gamma Squad to help get them out, Alpha Squad continued on to the jewel house, the last spot where Diamond Jack and his crew had been spotted.
As they drew closer to the vaults beneath the public viewing area they found the area deserted and the door to the main vault ajar.
“Hold up,” Suzie warned, causing the others to halt behind her. “It’s a trap.”
“Whatever,” Gwen said before starting forward. “Ianto is the leader now, not you.”
“Why are you giving me such a hard time?” Ianto demanded.
“If you’re going to do the job, then do the job right,” she answered. “No bad guys, enclosed space, therefore trap,” Suzie observed turning to Ianto as if daring him to argue. “Unless boy wonder here has any better ideas?”
“You think that I can’t handle it?” Ianto asked frustrated at both Suzie and Jack for distracting him during his first mission as captain.
“I know you can’t,” she replied smugly. “And I don’t care if you are the perfect score or whatever, you wouldn’t know Alpha-Gamma if it was tattooed on your forehead.”
“This is stupid,” interrupted Tosh. “We are all going to die if you two keep this up.”
Ianto stood up straight and stared Suzie down. “As your senior officer, I order you to secure the vault, agent,” he directed.
“You order me?” Suzie replied with a glare.
“You heard me,” Ianto answered.
“Fine,” Suzie said as she and the others moved forward to secure the vault. Once inside they cross-checked and found the space empty.
“See,” Ianto said as they lowered their guns. “I think you guys owe me an apolo-“ he started to say as the floor beneath him dropped out.
Alpha Squad turned as the vault door slammed shut and the floor clicked back into place.
“See, trap,” a very put-upon Suzie observed as the handle turned to lock them in.
As the rest of Alpha Squad looked for a way out, Ianto found himself sliding down an ancient dumbwaiter shaft to land atop a pile of gold coins.
“Hi,” Jack smiled as he sat up.
“What are you doing here?” Ianto demanded.
“I just wanted to apologise for last night,” Jack said moving closer to pull Ianto to his feet, only to back off at the other man’s glare. “I was out of line.”
“You have to release them,” Ianto demanded.
“Who?” Jack asked not following.
“The rest of my squad,” he said exasperated. “This thing between us, it has to stop before someone gets hurt!”
“I thought you liked me?” Jack asked, confused.
“I do,” Ianto answered. Jack smiled and Ianto realised that he might have gotten the wrong idea. “I mean I really like you,” he added stepping closer to Jack. “But I don’t like you in that way.”
“Of course,” Jack replied, trying to play it cool. “I gathered. That’s why I brought you here, so we could clear the air between us.”
“I mean it’s really sweet of you to go to all of this trouble,” Ianto continued taking another step forward. “I mean the chute was actually kinda fun, but my friends are going to wonder where I am.”
“Maybe not,” Jack replied trying not to meet his eyes.
“Why?” Ianto asked noticing the shifty look.
“No reason,” said Jack trying not to look guilty.
“What did you do?” Ianto asked, grabbing the PDA from Jack’s hand that showed a group of spikes coming down from the ceiling of the vault towards where Tosh, Gwen, and Suzie were on the ground desperately trying to find a way out.
“Oh come on! It’s not like they are gonna die or anything,” Jack answered.
“Let them out Jack, I’m serious!” Ianto ordered.
“Alright! Gods you’re hot when you are angry,” he muttered under his breath. “Booby trap deactivated. Happy?”
“That wasn’t funny,” Ianto said.
“It was a little funny,” Jack prodded as Ianto’s lip twitched fighting back a grin.
Realizing how close they had become, Ianto decided it was time to leave before things became even more complicated.
“I gotta go,” he announced, trying to step around Jack.
“No,” Jack said stepping to block his path. “I’ll go. I mean I understand I misinterpreted this whole thing between us. Twentieth century cultural norms are not my strong suit. But I want you to know that last night was the most alive I have felt in a while, and I wanted to thank you for that.”
Ianto’s eyes went wide, and Jack pressed on, trying not to dwell on how long this latest rejection would take for him to get over.
“I guess I’ll see you around then Jones, Ianto Jones,” he said with a sad smile as he turned to go.
Before he knew what he was doing Ianto reached out and grabbed Jack’s arm and pulled him back, turning him to face him, Ianto reached up and captured Jack’s lips, pouring all that he didn’t know how to say into their first kiss.
“Come with me,” Jack begged as the came up for air. “What do you have to lose?”
“Everything,” Ianto answered with a lopsided smile before following him out the door.
“Down here!” Suzie ordered as the Alpha Squad made their way into the lower part of the building.
There beside a pile of unsorted coins lay a scattering of diamonds, and in the middle of them lie Ianto’s striped tie.
“He’s taken him,” said Suzie as she picked up the tie. “Diamond Jack has kidnapped Ianto.”