Genre: Angst, Romance, Hurt/Comfort, Drama
Word count: 14,134
Disclaimer: Unfortunately, I do not own the wonder that is Torchwood or its characters. No infringement is intended.
Summary: Jack's plans for a romantic break with Ianto don't go quite according to plan.
“You know, Gwen, you really didn't have to go to all this trouble,” said Jack as he wheeled Ianto into the conference room. Two weeks had passed since Ianto's minor relapse and although his physical wounds had healed beautifully, he was still thoroughly exhausted - a side effect of the drugs Isobel Wyatt had forced upon him Owen had said. Still, emotionally, he was healing well too, apart from his occasional frustration at being Hub bound. The doctor had teased him mercilessly about behaving like a teen-aged spoiled brat, but Ianto had given just as good back and it brought smiles to those all around - even Gwen, who had started to come to terms with all that had happened. She had even reported to the team that she had gladly given her aunt a piece of her mind and that as far as she was concerned she no longer wanted anything to do with her. Both Ianto and Jack had appreciated her sentiment but had said that she need not alienate her family on their account. She had told them that she was not just doing it on their account , it was for her own peace of mind too.
“Oh yes I did, Jack. I owe you two an apology. If it wasn't for me Ianto wouldn't, you know.”
“I thought we'd gone over this, Gwen?” said Jack as he looked at Ianto and took a hold of his hand as the Welshman tensed.
“Gwen, you really shouldn't blame yourself. Now please, can we leave it?”
“Of course, I'm sorry, Ianto.”
“OK. I'm going, I'm going, and I'm not going to apologize again.”
“Can we have that in writing?” asked Jack as the former police officer left the room.
Laughing, he turned back to his lover who was now sitting at the elaborately decorated conference table. “You have to admit, she knows how to put on a spread.” He indicated the food, candles, napkins and finery not unlike a page out of Good Housekeeping.
“Yep!” he said as he listened to the soft music in the background. The brief look of wistfulness across Jack's face caused him some concern, but he realized that the music was a favorite of Jack's from a time in his life that meant so much to him. He recalled the nights by the fire in his flat when Jack would regale him of his time in the Tardis; of his adventures with the Doctor and Rose. It had worried him at one point that Jack wanted to relive those days again but he had told Ianto that his time with the Doctor was in the past and his future was with just one man – the man he loved beyond words.
Jack moved towards him slowly. He took his hand. “Would you care to dance with me, Mr Jones?”
“I might. I will have to think about it,” he replied as though seriously considering the offer.
Jack just laughed and ignoring his lover, pulled him into a tight embrace. Ianto muffled a yelp as the captain held him close.
“Shit! Sorry I forgot.”
“It's OK, Jack. I won't break.” With that, Ianto moved in to kiss Jack deeply. It was a hungry kiss. A kiss full of passion, of love, of need. It was so full of the life he had fought to hold on to.
Sensing weariness in his lover, Jack led him back to the table. He remained standing when Ianto sat down. “Jack?” he questioned.
“Ianto. I know you have been through hell these last coupla weeks and I'm so sorry for that. I'd do anything to go back and change it but I can't. So I'd understand if you said no, but I am kinda hoping you will say yes again.”
Catching on to what Jack was getting at, Ianto just looked at him expectantly. He was attempting to act calmly but his insides were doing somersaults. He sensed Jack's discomfort at having to ask the same question again. He knew his lover had found it difficult the first time so he decided to put him out of his so obvious misery.
“It's about time you made an honest man out me, Jack Harkness.”
“Just what we were thinking,” came a chorus from the team eavesdropping at the door. Gwen, Tosh and Owen peeked around the doorjamb, all wide grins and mischief.
“Hey! Get outta here.” Several bread rolls found their surprised targets as Jack and Ianto laughed heartily.
Satisfied that they were indeed finally alone once again, Jack continued, “So, where were we?”
“I do believe you were about to get down on bended knee and propose to me again.”
“Was I now? The only reason I usually get down on bended knee for you is when I'm gonna...”
“OK. OK!” Jack delved into his pocket and retrieved the Eternity Stone. Ianto looked at it for a moment. “I thought I'd lost it. Where? How?” He was too overcome to continue.
“Gwen," replied Jack as he wiped the solitary tear that had fallen down Ianto's cheek. "I asked her to go look for it for me. She was determined to do something to make things up to us so I asked her. I didn't think she would actually find it though. I mean it coulda been anywhere out there.” Feeling himself well up, Jack just took a hold of Ianto's hand and placed the stone within it. It glowed brighter than ever before. Then, unexpectedly, Jack went down on one knee and said, “Ianto Jones, will you do me the honor of becoming my official partner. I love you more than life itself and although I know we can't have forever, I want to share every precious moment that I can with you.”
Ianto placed the stone in Jack's hand and covered it with his own. The vibrations he felt were stronger than ever before. He smiled and without hesitation, replied, “Yes, Jack, I will. Every moment we have together, I will treasure as though it were the first.
Gwen squealed and hugged them tightly as Jack and Ianto relayed the good news. Tosh offered her little more reserved congratulations and Owen gave one of his now famous eyes rolls and said, “Yeah, congratulations and all that. You make a lovely couple.”
“Thanks, Owen, for everything.” Ianto pulled him into an uncharacteristic hug and Owen jerked back and said, “Alright. No need to go all girly on me.”
“So when's the wedding then?” asked Gwen ignoring Owen.
“Give us a chance, Mrs Williams. Ianto has only just officially said yes.”
“Well you need to sort these things early you know, Jack. To make sure you find the perfect venue. Oh and the honeymoon. You have to have a honeymoon.” She began rummaging in her bag that had lain abandoned on her computer station. “Yes, here it is,” she said as she retrieved a slip of paper from her notebook.
“My cousin has a beautiful hotel up in the Highlands. I could probably get it for you cheap if you are interested.”
“NO!” came the definite reply from the rest of the team.
“Oh you are something, Gwen bloody Williams."
“Shut it, Owen! Bollocks! Ianto. I'm so, so sorry. I didn't think.” she was horrified at the mere thought of her suggestion.
“Gwen. GWEN! Calm down it's fine really," said Ianto as he fell into a fit of giggles. "I just think we'll be staying at home from now on."
"Yeah, home," replied Jack. "Home, where we belong."