Pairings: Jack/Ianto, Ianto/Lisa
Disclaimer: Torchwood is not mine. No matter how much I sometimes wish it was.
Spoilers: Better say everything through s2, just to be sure. Begins pre-S1.
Summary: Owen performs an operation...
Thanks to: My beta cazmalfoy for all her wonderful work, and my cheerleaders angelzbabe1989 and piper08 for putting up with me when I whine about being stuck.
Author's Notes: Voting is open at Children Of Time - Brokeback Manor is nominated in the AU category - go vote!
I made it back from my holiday safe and sound (but tired), and here is your belated Sunday chapter!
Fic starts here
Previous chapters at my master list
“And you’re sure?” Ianto perched nervously on the corner of Suzie’s desk. The contraption sprawled across the majority of the surface beside him didn’t look like much to him, but his colleagues were insistent that this was the device that could give Lisa back the power of speech.
“We’re as sure as we can be, mate,” Owen told him, awkwardly reaching out a hand as if to pat Ianto’s arm, but drawing back before he made any contact.
“And how sure is that?” Ianto persisted, his fingers clutching tensely at the edge of the desk. “If you’re not really sure, I can’t, we can’t…” His voice faded out, his eyes closing momentarily as he regained his composition.
“We’ve done every test we can think of,” Suzie answered. “And it’s passed every one.”
“We couldn’t test it any more thoroughly unless we had an actual human body to try it out on, and unless you’re volunteering…”
Although Owen’s suggestion was clearly in jest, Ianto knew that, if he truly thought it would help, he would be seriously considering it.
“Okay,” he began shakily, “so what’s next?”
“We put it into action,” Owen replied simply. “And, all things going well, your girlfriend gets her voice back.”
It was another day before Owen was satisfied that everything was adequately prepared for him to perform the surgery. Lisa’s small room and all of the equipment had been thoroughly scrubbed again, and sterilised where possible.
Lisa herself had been monitored very closely. Owen was recording the readings from the machines almost every hour, and had taken multiple blood samples for simple tests. If there was even the slightest sign of infection, he’d told Ianto, the surgery wouldn’t be going ahead. She was already at increased risk, and he wasn’t going to exacerbate that by cutting into her chest.
Owen’s thoroughness in preparing for the operation did little to calm Ianto’s nerves, although he was grateful to the doctor for taking so many precautions to reduce the chance of failure or complications.
When the hour arrived for the surgery, the whole team assembled in a corner of Lisa’s room, kitted out in sterile scrubs as per Owen’s orders.
The scrubs were actually a compromise. Owen had, initially, tried to ban them completely from the room, citing the infection risks introduced by their presence, but Ianto had refused outright to stay away. Anesthetised or not, Lisa needed someone there, and he needed to be there for her.
Owen wasn’t entirely sure how he’d gone from reluctantly agreeing to one person in the room to allowing all four of them to watch. The other three had insisted on being there to support Ianto.
“He’s going to need someone there for him if it doesn’t go as planned,” Jack had murmured quietly. “We just want to help.”
Owen had agreed, and somehow that had morphed into the current situation.
He glanced over self-consciously at his audience as he located his incision point. In an ideal world, he would have much preferred to make the incision lower in the chest, but the breastplate encasing much of Lisa’s upper torso prevented it.
Taking a deep breath, and muttering a few indecipherable words under his breath, he got to work.
It wasn’t an easy task; nor was it a fast one. It was well over half an hour before Owen found a point on the lungs he was happy to attach the stimulus cables to, and almost another hour and a half before he was ready to insert the oxygen boosting tubes. The insertion itself took a good hour, as Owen was carefully taking every precaution to avoid collapsing a lung.
He was painfully aware of the team watching his every move, especially Ianto. If he hadn’t already been convinced, this one act would shown him exactly why it was that hospitals kept the relatives of surgery patients safely several corridors away in a waiting room.
Ianto almost cringed at his every movement; Owen had never been more nervous performing surgery in his life.
He could feel the sweat trickling down the back of his neck as he eventually pulled back, drawing the incision closed and sealing it shut with a total of 63 stitches.
Leaning over, he looked back at Ianto as he flicked the switch to activate the lung-support device. His pale expression was a cross between fear and anticipation, and he was only remaining upright with the help of Jack and Tosh.
Moving swiftly, he removed the tape holding it in place and pulled out the intubation tube.
Setting it down behind him, he waited with the rest of the room for Lisa to take her first breath.
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