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12 February 2009 @ 12:03 pm
Get Jones, Jack/Ianto (PG-13)  
Title: Get Jones
Author: valderys
Pairing: Jack/Ianto
Rating: PG-13
Word Count: 5,342
Notes: AU for the Age of Steel Whoniverse, this is just one take on what other paths Ianto and Jack may have taken :)
Summary: JACK: Ianto Jones, born August 19th 1983. Able student but not exceptional, one minor conviction for shoplifting in your teens. But what if crime had suited Ianto?

There's fog on the river tonight, and Ianto Jones pulls his collar up before he shivers, and then hawks and spits into the black water. The city is all right in good weather, or up the West End where there are lights and music, with a club or two, and a fit bird to sit on his knee, yeah, it's good then. But he can do without freezing his arse off here by the river in a much less salubrious part of town. He stares out, looking for the boat, and then smiles grimly, as he sees a hint of a light struggling to pierce the gloom. Can't deny that this kind of weather does all right for him and his sort though. Can't deny that, at all.

Bit like him being here at all. Picking up shipments personally - that's a bit below him really, except he likes to keep the help on their toes. He glances over at the lads, all huddled by the wall, muttering to themselves as they share round fags and blow into their cold hands. That is the point. They all know he does this sometimes. Turns up out of the blue, checking on them, getting his hands dirty. He thinks they respect it, that he still isn't too proud. Although frankly, he doesn't really give a rat's arse if they don't - he needs loyalty, sure, but he doesn't need respect, or love. If fear does the job, then that will do just as well, or greed, that works too. Although it’s the least reliable, and Ianto tries not to keep men on who have nothing else to lose - let's face it, there's always a richer scab around the corner who could up the price. Ianto wouldn't even blame them. But they'd still feel his boot in their face when he catches them. Fair's fair.

The small boat is coming in cautiously and Ianto respects that - can't see a bloody thing in this murk, and isn't that the point. He watches the boat coming in and frowns absently, huddling deeper into his cashmere coat, as he thinks about how far he's come. There aren't many who could make it from two-bit sneak-thievery in Cardiff, to running an operation the likes of this one in the Big Smoke. He sniffs, nose running slightly in the cold, and then gets out his own packet of fags. Just time for a quick one, he reckons.

He lights the cigarette from a gold lighter, and takes that sweet first drag, before he puts it away. Bought that lighter with the payout from the Whitechapel job, Ianto remembers briefly. His first as the boss - it was a boss-type lighter, after all, and he's kept it ever since. Because, let's face it. There aren't that many out there like Ianto 'Bloody Bastard' Jones. Ianto feels his lips curling up into another smile involuntarily, even though he doesn't really do pats on the back, or arse-licking. Not him. Not when bloody-mindedness and determination gets you places. He's been called the Terrier too, in the past, although he likes that less. He calls no man master, and isn't a puppy dog to be kicked around. He can hold his own. Only one arrest to his name, and that was a juvie offence, shop-lifting a birthday present for his Mam. Oh, he can turn on the waterworks if he has to - he remembers the sympathy the police officer had shown him when he'd explained. Got away with a fine and a suspended four month sentence, and he'd been after high-end cameras for Dodgy Gwyn all along. He could have been born to this life, Ianto knows, and, if nothing else, he was never much cut out for a tailoring career like his Dad, now was he?

The shape in the fog resolves itself into a smallish vessel, a motorised boat, with its bow light on and shining, and Ianto rubs his hands in their black leather gloves. Just a minute more. The lads have obviously realised it too - which is fair enough, he doesn't employ morons. But as they come up to the edge of the dock, shifting in a dark mass of donkey jackets and ragged jumpers, leather coats and hoodies, Ianto catches sight of a quick metallic glint. It's Big Pete, not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but has he really been the kind of stupid idiot who...

"What the bloody fuck are these?" Ianto snarls, before ripping the gleaming silver earpods from Big Pete's head, ignoring the whine of pain. "Didn’t I tell you, all of you, no earpods! We can be tracked by these, we can be tracked anywhere by these, and I don't want the filthy things anywhere near me, get it!"

There's a chorus of 'yes, boss' and Big Pete looks suitably guilty. The others subtly move to form a rough circle round him, and Ianto flexes his right hand in its glove, toying with the idea of a more immediate lesson. The cigarette he’s holding stops him – he’d have to waste it, and that’d be a crying shame. Not to mention he might ruin his coat. Ianto likes this coat. Instead, he takes another drag, and then smiles. The lads relax. He pats Pete's cheek, a bit too hard, and then very deliberately grinds his heel onto the fallen earpods until there's nothing left but wires and sad fragments of plastic.

"There," says Ianto, all teeth, "No harm done."

They’re interrupted by a thumping sound, muffled by the tires hung around the sides of the boat, as it bumps into the quay, and Ianto turns his attention to the important part of the evening. The cargo is in boxes, nestled in the gunwale, and the lads quickly form a chain to pass them hand to hand and into the nondescript van that’s drawn up as close to the quay as possible. It’s smooth and practiced, this part, as it should be. This isn’t the first time Ianto’s had goods shipped this way. Better than driving cross country – no checkpoints. Certainly better than using zeppelins – what with filed flight plans and all that flimsy traceable tech needed to control them. Ianto’s heard himself described as paranoid, but he prefers to think of it as meticulous. Careful, even. And he’s still here, isn’t he? Which is more than you can say for Bent Fred McGill, or the Kolchev Brothers.

There’s a flashed torch and a mutter, and the van’s doors are banged shut. Swiftly, Ianto moves forward and begins to dole out plain brown envelopes. The boat’s crew first, and there’s a cough or two and a muttered ‘see you next week’, before the engine is turned back on with a splutter and a roar. A couple of his most trusted lads will come with Ianto in the van, but the others will disperse, until the next time Ianto has need of some casual labour, no questions asked.

“Noses clean,” he says, friendly-like, “Don’t want you lot disappearing, do I?”

There’s a chuckle or two, but their hearts aren’t in it. There’s too much truth in the joke to make it truly funny, and besides, Ianto meant it – they’re his lads. He wants them safe. Although there’s no such thing as safe in this business, really.

And that’s when it all goes to shit. There’s a siren first, wailing fit to burst, to disorient and confuse, and then there’s lights, great spotlights exploding from the shadows, on the roofs, on the river, and they’re all blind and running in circles, like rats in a trap. Like they’re meant to be, of course.

Ianto stands still, in the centre, as he stares through narrowed eyes, getting some sense of things. There’s no cops moving in yet, but they will, soon. The chug of his boat – his boat, and his boys – sounds desperate in its strain for more speed, as they try for their own getaway. There’s the shouting of someone on a loud-hailer now too, but Ianto can’t hear what the bastard’s saying for all the rest of the chaos.

It’s enough. He knows where they are. The enemy. He knows that his lot, still milling like sheep, have given him cover, but it won’t last. Doesn’t matter though. Seconds are all he needs – and the chance that he won’t be shot down like a dog. He’s going to assume there’s a sniper, because it’s stupid not too.

So when he moves, Ianto does it in one flashing pin-wheeling motion. He draws a gun from the shoulder-holster under the cashmere coat and sweeps it round, a lovely shooter, big for a handgun, automatic, smooth, and he shoots quickly, blam, blam, blam. There’s a tinkle of glass and the lights go out. No-one can see anything any more, but Ianto still smiles.

Then he runs. He knows where the van is, and he’s bloody dammed if he’s going to let the stuff be taken if he can stop it. Not to mention the van is probably his best means of escape. He’s sure his lads will have thought of that too, but he has something they don’t have. The keys.

There’s shouting now, he can hear it because the siren’s been turned off at last, and there’s the barking of a dog, more than one even, and Ianto has a brief thought that those on foot are going to have a harder time of it than he thought. He considers the bail he’ll have to post, if he’s lucky, in the jagged seconds that he’s running across concrete, before he wrenches open the driver’s door and throws himself in. The seat is all over glass which he notes in a tiny corner of his mind. It means he was right, they’ve got shooters, maybe even that sniper. He keeps his head low as he turns the key in the ignition and revs the engine, pushing it up into second, then third gear before the van’s barely started moving. He doesn’t turn on the lights.

Here’s the thing about Ianto. It’s something that others mostly don’t realise about him, although maybe they should. People underestimate him. People have been underestimating him all his life – he’d rely on it, except that he doesn’t rely on anything. He plans. He plans for every eventuality, all the time. He can’t help it. His mind is always ticking away, sorting, cataloguing, labelling, planning. For instance, he knows that the van is at forty five degrees to the quayside, facing away, and that there is an alley not fifty yards away on the left hand side, and that no lights have sprung from it; it looks empty, unguarded. Ianto’s suspicious, but he’s counting on the fact that the alley seems to be a dead end, for it to have been either ignored, or only lightly manned. In fact, he’s counting on it, but you have to take your chances somewhere, and it’s a calculated risk.

He guns the van down the alley, only picking up speed, and Ianto thinks he can see a few dark figures scattering before him. There’s a thump, a body glancing off his bumper, but he’s not going that fast, and they won’t be hurt. Much. His smile stretches into a rictus grin as he floors it, engine roaring, so he must be going nearly fifty when he smashes into the large double doors at the end. Planning, you see. Ianto plans ahead. He knows there’s only a flimsy padlock keeping them closed. He knows that they’re painted green, and that the paint itself is doing as much to hold them together as the wood itself. He knows this, and he also knows that the warehouse behind them is empty, that the doors at the other end are boarded up, and not well. He knows they’ve been pried carefully apart so local gangs can use this warehouse for shelter, for trouble, for a quiet place to smoke. He knows they have all the structural strength of a snotty hanky, and as he bursts through, both sets, bumping over whatever detritus is left on the floor in the dark, and disappears into the night – he laughs. He loves it. This life. Sometimes he can’t imagine being or doing anything else.

The adrenaline’s almost stopped pumping by the time Ianto makes it most of the way back to his lock-up. He’s driven without lights for a while, before finally turning them on and heading for the Blackwall Tunnel at a sedate pace. Other cars and vans on the A12, he can mingle with them, and then he changes lane too in the tunnel itself, to accompanying honking, but it means if they’ve got an eye in the sky, tracking him by infra-red, then they’ll have lost him by now. Probably. Calculated risk, remember? And Ianto’s exhausted, coming down from his high like any junkie, feeling the ache of it settling into his bones.

He’s also annoyed, highly pissed off, because it’s since occurred to him that one of his own lads must have talked. One of them has betrayed him to the pigs, to those bloody-handed bastards, and when he finds out who, the slag is going to pay. Which is a warming, if not entirely productive, thought.

So it’s dawn, and he’s tooling along, just beginning to wish he’d had time to brush some of the glass off the seat, and contemplating the damage done to his beloved coat, when he crashes. Into thin air. It’s lucky really, thinks Ianto, with a muzzy anger. If you have to crash into thin air, then it’s better that it’s at dawn, and there are no other morons about, not to witness your own embarrassment, nor to be horrified at the unnaturalness of the whole accident. But really, Ianto thinks, as he wipes blood from his nose and looks at it. Really, it’s just as well that there’s no-one here to see him kill something.

He gets out of the van, pulling out his gun, and shoving it in his pocket. He walks round to the front, just glancing at the crumpled metal, smelling the steam that’s slowing escaping into the fresh morning air. Mostly Ianto’s waiting to walk into something. Stands to reason. Only a tenth of his attention is taken up by the accident, and less than one percent on his neck, which will feel the whiplash soon enough, or his other various aches and pains. Grangetown breeds them tough, he jokes with the lads sometimes. It’s not entirely a joke.

Which is why he can whirl, and drag his hand out of his pocket in a blur and be facing down the man he heard – heard, and, of all things, smelled – appearing behind him, all in a second. In less than that. It means they have a gun to each other’s head, at the length of their arm, and it means they can smile at each other in this Mexican stand-off, and know they’re each an instant away from death. The adrenaline is pumping again, Ianto’s teeth itch with it, his muscles jumping, and that’s a very, very bad thing when a wrong move could cause everything to go extremely pear-shaped indeed.

And in those few seconds, as they size each other up, while Ianto has a fleeting desire to see how this bastard will like messing with him, he also has an arrested feeling that things aren’t quite lost, not yet, not quite. This man has a grin bigger and cheesier than Ianto will ever know, and yet there’s a certain twinkle in his eye. He’s not a killer, at least not by desire, not by instinct, any more than Ianto is. Of course, it probably won’t matter, Ianto’s killed, when he’s had to, and so’s this man, unless he misses his guess. But, still… There’s a good chance they’ll both walk out of this alive, and maybe even intact.

“What,” Ianto snarls, teeth grinding, “The bloody fuck do you think you’re doing?”

And the man laughs. “I’m robbing you, of course. What does it look like? Nice move, by the way.”

American accent. Ianto stares, not letting his arm waver, disbelief warring with fury. “And what makes you think I’m going to let that happen?”

“You’ve got no choice?”

Ianto cocks his head and raises an eyebrow. The man’s arm isn’t wavering either, and he’s pointing an old-fashioned handgun, a Webley, Ianto thinks, of all things, right at Ianto’s forehead. It crosses his mind that an old-fashioned gun like that might be slower than his own, although, probably, unfortunately, not slow enough.

“No chance,” he says, and knows it to be true. He doesn’t want to die in such a pointless encounter, but he will, if he has to. The goods are important enough for that.

Perhaps the guy sees it too, but either way, his finger is beginning to ease off the trigger, before Ianto is even finished speaking. “There’s a better way to settle this,” he says then, and there’s a pause, made bright with tension and nerves. Until, at last, in mutual unspoken agreement, they both take a step back and lower their guns. Ianto discovers he can breathe deeply after all, and the other man is still grinning, with some genuine amusement this time.

“Damn, but this is fun,” he observes, “Captain Jack Harkness, at your service.”

And, fuck, the lunatic almost goes to salute him in some overgrown boy-scout kind of a way, before remembering the gun, still in his hand.

Ianto snorts. “If you’re going to arrest me – oh, and I’m flattered that the Army? The CIA? Has got involved in my little operation, by the way – but if you’re going to arrest me, you’re going to need a fuck of a lot more than a popgun and a good ambush technique.”

Harkness just shrugs.

“Nope. I’m nothing to do with your quaint little law enforcement agencies. And I was Air Force once. A long time ago.” Harkness smoothes down his long grey greatcoat without taking his gaze from Ianto’s face. His eyes are ridiculously blue. “Not to say that I didn’t tip them off to your little party though. I had a feeling you’d get away.”

Ianto can sense the red mist descending, and fights it off. He’s dammed if he’s going to lose it now, when he can sort this, if only he can think straight. And it’s good, isn’t it? That it’s not one of his boys? That he doesn’t have to hunt someone down, kick in the appropriate kneecaps? He knows precisely who he has to knee in the bollocks, and that stupid smug bastard is standing right in front of him.

“I’m glad I came up to your exacting standards,” he manages, through gritted teeth. “To what do I owe the pleasure of such particular attention?”

“What you’ve got doesn’t belong to you,” says Jack, with a hint of seriousness, but his smile is still wide.

“So?” says Ianto, quick as a flash, “It’s not yours either – it’s flotsam and jetsam, it’s salvage. Nothing more. And it is mine.”

He glares at Harkness, his finger still on the trigger, for all that the gun is by his side. It’ll only take a second to bring it up again, his eyesight feels preternaturally sharp, he can see every pore in Harkness’ skin, every hair of the careless lock that falls into his eyes, and Ianto’s looking for tells, a ripple as muscles tense, a flick of the eyes that will make him move.

“Look,” says Harkness, his body relaxing even more, “I don’t want to do this. I like you…”

Ianto laughs, one quick huff. Yeah, right. He’s heard that one before.

“It may be that you don’t even have what I want. It may be my information is wrong. Can’t we be… civilized about this.”

That’s what makes Ianto laugh for real, the situation is serious, and yet seriously absurd at the same time. Harkness is using lines, yet he doesn’t even seem to believe them. It’s like he’s pretending, testing Ianto out, like he’s in a film or something. Like his old-fashioned gun, and his military coat, it just doesn’t – quite – add up.

But it amuses him, that Harkness thinks he can be fooled like this. Ianto’s smarter than that, he’s had to be, but he can put on an act, same as Harkness. And something’s got to give – he’s going to make damn sure it’s not him.

He backs up, not quite turning away, but it’s enough, if Harkness is going to jump him, it’s going to be now. But he doesn’t move. The doors of the van have a hole or two punched in them and Ianto fingers the edge of one in a thoughtful kind of a way. Harkness joins him, hovering, but not saying anything, not yet, and Ianto lets that go too. He’s not dead, after all. Forgive and forget. Or not.

He twists the handles and opens the van doors. The boxes are packed in tightly, strong cardboard packing boxes, a couple of wooden crates. Ianto arches another eyebrow at Harkness, but he only gestures at Ianto to go ahead.

Who takes a breath, and tears off the parcel tape, throwing open the flaps of the first box. There are lumpy objects, a couple of bumpy-looking rocks, a curved stick that might a flute of some kind, and an obviously broken metal device that glints with specks of mica. Ianto steps back a little so Harkness can see, a smile curving his lips.

“See, rubbish. What did I tell you. Never know what you’re going to get with salvage, let’s face it.”

Harkness steps in, his coat parting, allowing Ianto a glimpse of shirt and braces. There’s a waft of scented air, spicy and strange. Ianto rolls his eyes, Harkness seems like a man who’d slather himself in aftershave. But he doesn’t step away.

There’s a sideways glance, and another grin. Does the man never stop grinning?

“A Mark 2 Methuselah device, a Formian modulator, in pieces, several Terirbia eggs and a skin brush, probably for a taarg,” says Harkness, “Flotsam all right.”

Ianto tries for unimpressed, and is not sure he manages it. “Told you. It’s worthless crap, right? So why this charade?”

Harkness is staring at him speculatively, and Ianto wonders if he’s miscalculated. Should he have been more surprised? Been amazed at the knowledge on display. He puts his chin up and glares some more – if Harkness knows enough to set him up, there’s no point in pretending. He doesn’t like hiding if he doesn’t have to.

“Oh, you’re a find, you are,” says Harkness, and Ianto wants to punch him. Or at least do something to him… He blinks a bit, surprised at that. Surprised at his own body’s betrayal.

Harkness smiles wider, if that’s possible. “Did you know that stealing from Torchwood carries a death sentence? It’s still on the Statute books along with burning down the Queen’s dockyards. Old-fashioned, but that was Vicky all over. She didn’t handle a joke too well either, if you must know.”

Ianto shrugs. Harkness is just trying to put him off-balance with a load of rubbish, and it’s not going to work, so he says, “They’re an arrogant bunch in Torchwood, and their security’s for shit. It’s nowhere near as good as they think it is. Anyway, it doesn’t matter – we need this stuff.”

“We?” Harkness looks intrigued, and Ianto wonders if he really doesn’t know. He’s shown he has all sorts of other information, but is it really that piecemeal, or is he trying to play Ianto again?

“I don’t pretend. I know what I am,” says Ianto, “But I also know there’s far worse out there than me, Captain Jack Harkness, and you probably do too.” He weighs his options and decides he has nothing to lose by offering a slice of the truth. “People have been disappearing from the streets. Promised a hot meal and a place to sleep and then never seen again. But because of who they are, no-one’s looking for them. Well, there are some idealistic twats who are trying their best, but they need help. My help. Someone who really knows how the game is played.”

“So actually you’re stealing from Torchwood out of the goodness of your heart?” The sneer in Harness’ voice might be imagined but Ianto’s ready enough to hear it there.

“Some of the disappeared were my people, ok? And nobody fucks with what’s mine. Nobody.”

Ianto realises his voice has steadily been rising and that his hands are clenching so hard that his knuckles are aching on the stock of his gun. He fucking hates having to explain himself. He wants to smash the ever-ready smile off Harkness’ face.

“Look, I’m fed up with this. Have we got to kill each other, or can we come to some sort of deal?”

Harkness turns away, apparently to think about it, and Ianto watches his hands, watches the movements of his gun carefully, ready to respond. It means he’s unprepared though, because when Harkness swings round, he doesn’t raise his gun, he doesn’t threaten at all, instead he surges into Ianto’s personal space, pushing him up against the van’s open door and then he kisses him, hard, all teeth and tongue. It’s odd, because Ianto should push him away, he’s dangerous, and a stranger, probably an alien, and shows a disturbing amount of knowledge of Ianto’s own operations, but he doesn’t. Ianto doesn’t move, he even kisses back, for a split second, the taste of Harkness intoxicating, like a drug, his hands lifting to hang on to Harkness’ coat.

Before realising that suddenly he can’t move. Can barely breathe. His gun falls from suddenly nerveless fingers. Harkness is holding him up now, his palms warm on Ianto’s back and arse as he gently lowers him to the ground. All Ianto can see is the sky, flushed with a rosy dawn, until Harkness looms over him, and then he can’t look away, or ask what the bloody fuck, or even blink, he can’t…

“Sorry about this, but I could tell you weren’t going to be reasonable about things. You’re the possessive type, and it’s just my luck, but I always seem to attract them.”

Harkness grins down into Ianto’s unmoving face, and Ianto wants to smash it in even more strongly. Next time, if he’s lucky enough to survive until a next time, he won’t hesitate. He’ll kill Harkness. Kill or kiss him again, anyway. And that’s inexplicable treachery, but he thinks it anyway.

“Paralysing lip gloss,” says Harkness, “Since you asked so nicely. A trick I learnt from an old friend. And don’t worry, I’ll leave you enough artifacts. You can fight whatever battles you think you need to with your flotsam, or do whatever else you want.”

His head moves out of Ianto’s vision, but he can still hear him rummaging around. And it seems that Harkness likes an audience because he’s still talking.

“The fact remains that there are things that fall through the Rift that shouldn’t be allowed to float around in this century. But you know all about that, don’t you, Ianto Jones? Brought up in Cardiff, and sharp as a tack, you must have seen something growing up. Been involved in something? Am I right? And here you are, absolute ruler of your little kingdom – and don’t think I don’t admire that, I really do – and then one day you decide, well, what’s needed is something a bit different, something more unusual – something that won’t gain your other operations more scrutiny than they can handle. How am I doing so far?”

There’s a shadow and then Harkness is staring down into Ianto’s open eyes once more. At least this time he’s not grinning. He’s looking… fond. Ianto’s reminded of the look owners give their pets, and remembers darkly his other nickname. He strains to move even his eyelids, and fails.

“Then, of course, Torchwood Three’s security is easily compromised, and there’s so few of them, not to mention that cute technical wizard they have is so lonely. Am I getting warm? It wouldn’t take much effort to set up a shell around their systems, siphon off a few of the lovely items that the Rift spits out. Would it? Am I hot? Yeah, I thought so – but I’m always hot.”

Harkness leans forward then and smoothes his palm down Ianto’s cheek. Ianto can feel the rough push of one day’s beard snagging at Harkness’ skin, the soft pads of his fingers as they circle the shell of his ear. He objects to it, to the intimacy, and yet loves it too, on some fundamental level that has nothing to do with his conscious mind, and suffers one shiver of truly primitive fear. Then he feels a prick, sharp and sudden, in the soft skin of his neck. He wants to swear, but of course, he can’t do that either.

“Don’t worry,” says Harkness, grinning again, “That’s the antidote. Can’t have you dying of major organ failure, now can we? Not when you look so edible in that suit of yours. And I love the coat.”

There’s tingling in his fingers, in his toes, and Ianto supposes he should be grateful that this antidote of Harkness’ is fast-acting. Not fast-acting enough, he’s willing to bet, but he tries anyway, and ends up groaning something unintelligible and flailing an arm in an undignified way.

“Yeah, that’s about what I thought,” Harkness disappears from Ianto’s field of vision, and there are more noises, boxes shifting, the van door being slammed shut.

But he’s back, in a few seconds, it seems, and then abruptly Harkness is grasping Ianto’s arms as the feeling comes back to his limbs, and fuck, it hurts, even as he’s being hauled to his feet. His legs still won’t hold him up though, so Harkness has him clasped close, his breath huffing warm on his cheek, his spicy aftershave enveloping them both. Somehow Ianto doesn’t want to fight, even if he could.

“And I hope you’ll think seriously about this, but when I pass this way again, I want to take you out to dinner. Preferably without being shot before the entrée – what do you say?”

The arrogance is breathtaking. He’s inches away, and Harkness isn’t looking fond, or even grinning, he seems to be in deadly earnest, which has got to be a first. Ianto wants to shout that he wouldn’t piss on him in the street if he was on fire, but he doesn’t. He doesn’t even try.

Ianto likes competence. He always has. He likes blue eyes too, although wild horses wouldn’t get him to admit it.

Ianto makes his hands reach up, until he’s grasping Harkness’ coat collar and hanging on, but moving finally under his own power, coming closer, drooping a little, but still firmly himself, and then at last he’s kissing Harkness, mouth slightly parted, greedy, and it’s as intoxicating as the first time, as wild a rush, the taste of him just amazing. Harkness groans into the kiss, a barely audible vibration, and opens his mouth, deepening it, and shifts, just enough. It’s not the blow that Ianto would like, he’s still too weak, the leverage isn’t perfect, but he does what he can.

He promised himself this, after all, and Ianto Jones is a man of his word. And he’s got it coming, this Captain Jack Harkness. He’s got it coming and more. Ianto brings up his knee as hard as he can, and then falls as Harkness sucks in a huge gasping breath, eyes bulging wide, and drops him. It’s worth it. Unbelievably worth it.

Ianto lies almost paralysed, half on the tarmac, half propped on the kerb, and finally grins a wide shit-eating grin of his own.

“Dinner at eight. And I don’t like Italian, ok?” says Ianto ‘Bloody Bastard’ Jones.
fatchickengirl: gdl&jb suck face!!!fatchickengirl on February 12th, 2009 12:51 pm (UTC)
pefect end interesting alt...
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 13th, 2009 07:48 pm (UTC)
Thank you! Not quite my first AU for Torchwood, but close...
gogogrenadegogogrenade on February 12th, 2009 01:13 pm (UTC)
That was really fantastic. I'm going to have to read the other age of steel stories now :)
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 13th, 2009 07:50 pm (UTC)
Umm. I don't have any others... Sorry! The Age of Steel is the Doctor Who episode which has this AU.
frakkin_addict on February 12th, 2009 01:29 pm (UTC)
That was fantastic. I wish there was more to the story. Any chance of a sequel?
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 13th, 2009 07:52 pm (UTC)
Maybe? There's other fics I could write in this universe, but it won't be for a while - I've just signed up to the tardis_bigbang :)
tiki b.: TW countrycide iantotikiaceae on February 12th, 2009 02:02 pm (UTC)
This was what you were writing at the con, hunh? Ianto as a crime lord is awesome! I love him so. :D
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 13th, 2009 07:54 pm (UTC)
This indeed was what I was writing at the con! :) Ianto is still the same, let's face it - it's just his profession that is different. I think he'd make a fantastic crime lord actually, given his skill set...
prochytes: Tosh Discworldprochytes on February 12th, 2009 06:49 pm (UTC)
I enjoyed this a lot. I very much like the way you evoke the whole Get Carter/The Long Good Friday ambience of Alt!Ianto's world with the mixture of ironically high-falutin' diction and colloquialisms (he can do without freezing his arse off here by the river in a much less salubrious part of town). And the irony that he cannot imagine things being different is nice as well. Nice suggestions about the place of Torchwood Three in Pete's World too, and how some things do not change: (that cute technical wizard they have is so lonely.).
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 13th, 2009 08:03 pm (UTC)
Ooh good - I'm glad someone spotted the riff on the title! :) And you know it's funny, I wondered about that salubrious - thought it was too fancy a word for this Ianto, and then I decided he was a mixture of worlds. He still writes a diary, although it's in code, and he reads, just like our Ianto. I should have thought more about Tosh - without Jack, I'm not sure how she got to Torchwood, but I bet I can sort it if I think about it!
(no subject) - prochytes on February 14th, 2009 07:41 am (UTC) (Expand)
Queen of Preenmrsinfuture on February 13th, 2009 05:56 am (UTC)
I love your Ianto. Fabulous work!
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 13th, 2009 08:05 pm (UTC)
Thank you very much - I find his mind very easy to write from, as it were! :)
dil_deal: Torchwood Gareth bfuldil_deal on February 13th, 2009 10:20 am (UTC)
Adored this. thanks for sharing.
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 13th, 2009 08:06 pm (UTC)
You're very welcome - thank you!
cageyklio on February 13th, 2009 02:03 pm (UTC)
What a fabulous AU. Great meet cute, wonderful internalization, and the hard-boiled feel is cracking. One tiny edit:

Ianto discovers he can breath deeply after all


Thanks for sharing!
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 13th, 2009 08:08 pm (UTC)
Ooh excellent! I was trying for that London-gangster-film sort of hard-boiled, so I'm so happy it came across!

And edited!
Nobody said it was easy: work ninja officeboycopperbadge on February 13th, 2009 03:49 pm (UTC)
Oh my god this is brilliant. You have to write more.

Normally I like to leave something constructive here, but I got nothin'; this is top-notch, and I love a good antihero. Goin' on the recslist next time I update it -- mind if I link from my LJ in the meantime?
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 13th, 2009 08:15 pm (UTC)
Not at all - rec away... A rec is always incredibly flattering - thank you very much!

And there may be more to write in this universe, but I've just signed up to the tardis_bigbang which I suspect will take all my energy for a couple of months, but after that, maybe...
(no subject) - copperbadge on February 13th, 2009 08:22 pm (UTC) (Expand)
hazelayeshazelayes on February 13th, 2009 04:28 pm (UTC)
This is brilliant! :D I love it. Great atmosphere and pacing as well as a sure use of language - just the right mix to make your characters suit the story (which was also very believable). I must look for your others in this 'verse. I also second the call for a sequel or three!!!
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 13th, 2009 08:19 pm (UTC)
Excellent! I'm so happy you like it! The language was something I was trying to tough up, and add swearing to, without it becoming too top-heavy or too unbelievable. So I'm really happy it worked for you!

And sequels may get written but not immediately - I'm just signed up to the tardis_bigbang...
Mrs Darcy: Jack and Jones by skittlesnfrankelisi on February 13th, 2009 09:10 pm (UTC)
Oooooh clever! (Am too tired to offer better fb I'm afraid, but really loved it.)
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 15th, 2009 12:24 pm (UTC)
Thanks! It was a thought that popped into my head when I was thinking of prompts for The Stopwatch - but it didn't get written. So I took my bunny back and wrote it myself, in the end :)
Champagne and Racing Stripes: john GLEEEEEEEathousanderrors on February 13th, 2009 10:34 pm (UTC)

Oh please, please let there be more of this. I haven't read Torchwood fic in a while, and you've just sucked me right back in. Damn you.
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 15th, 2009 12:25 pm (UTC)
Excellent! *rubs hands* And for my next eveil genius plan... :)
Gummo Bergman's "Silent Strawberries": TW - Eyerollmarginaliana on February 13th, 2009 11:53 pm (UTC)
Awesome. Love the ending especially.
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 15th, 2009 12:26 pm (UTC)
Hee. I couldn't let Jack have the upper hand *all* the way through, now could I? :)
Procrastination Station: Butch/Femmecapulet_rose on February 14th, 2009 02:15 am (UTC)
As great of a stand-alone this is, I would really love to see how this relationship might evolve. The fact that it's also set it in the Age of Steel universe has me on the edge of my seat hoping for it to grow into a series!

I'm so in love with this fic, that I might just ask it to be my Valentine.
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 15th, 2009 12:28 pm (UTC)
Aww, that's lovely! And, as I've said elsewhere, it depends... I might write some more, but I've got this huge tardis_bigbang shaped commitment - but after that, who knows?
Grey Bardgrey_bard on February 14th, 2009 08:24 am (UTC)
This is absolutely *brilliant*. Obviously, it stands alone, but if you ever wrote more, I'd be right on board for it. Great fic!
Valderys: Ianto with gunvalderys on February 15th, 2009 12:30 pm (UTC)
Thank you! I might write more, but it won't be for a while, I'm afraid - as I'm committed elsewhere...