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, although it takes place pre-S1.
Summary: Why didn't you tell us? We could have helped you. - Well, what if he did?
This chapter: Tosh has some news for Ianto about the attack.
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 Note: Voting is now open at Children of Time. This fic is nominated in the Jack&Ianto WIP category - it's up against some very tough competition but every vote counts!
Fic starts here
Previous chapters at my master list
Ianto looked around blearily when he woke up, wondering who it would be today.
He’d been stuck in the hospital for six days so far – well, six days that he had been conscious for – and he had yet to wake up without at least one of the team being there. They never stayed all day, usually just popping in and out to visit with him for a little while, but they had apparently decided that they didn’t want him waking up in the morning alone.
Sure enough, as his eyes scanned across the window, they found Tosh’s back as she gazed out at the morning sun, for once undimmed by thick cloud.
Almost as if she had sensed his gaze on her, she turned around, smiling to see him awake. “Hey,” she said, crossing the room to take the seat next to his bed. “How do you feel this morning?”
Ianto lifted his shoulders slightly, and Tosh helped him raise the head of his bed so he could rest comfortably in a semi-upright position. “Pretty much the same as I did yesterday: thankful for this,” he waved weakly at the morphine drip that was still dispensing doses at regular intervals, “and looking forward to being able to get out of here.”
Tosh nodded sympathetically. Ianto had been fairly open and blunt in his dislike of being stuck in a hospital bed, unable to even get up to visit the bathroom yet. She assumed it was all part and parcel of the ‘doing, not waiting around’ part of his personality. “Owen’s been talking to your doctors; says that maybe you’ll be allowed up into a wheelchair in a few days.”
“Fantastic,” Ianto replied, deadpan.
“I know you hate this,” Tosh said, “but please, just this once, let the doctors have their way. For the sake of my peace of mind – and Jack’s, and Owen’s – if not for your own health. You gave us all quite a scare.”
“I know. I know.” Ianto had been the recipient of this speech several times over the last days, in various forms, and from all of his colleagues - even including Suzie. “Are you any closer to working out what actually happened yet?”
While initially, even when his post-coma amnesia had receded, he had been unable to recall any of the attack, flashes had started to come back to him after a few days. Unsatisfied with these tiny snippets of information, he had made Jack tell him the whole story.
Tosh had spent quite a bit of time in the last week running scans and searching for data to explain how the creatures had found their way inside the Hub. She would have started sooner, she explained when Ianto asked, but they had all been a little preoccupied with waiting to see if Ianto would make it.
Once he was awake, and seemingly out of immediate danger, they had been able to channel their efforts into finding out how, and why, it had happened.
Owen had autopsied one of the creatures to look for anything particularly unusual in their physiology that might make a difference, as they weren’t of a species any of them recognised. He had a few tests still left to run, but he hadn’t found anything spectacularly unique thus far.
Tosh had been running endless diagnostics and simulations, scraping every morsel of data she could from the period shortly before the attack from the mainframe. Just the day before, she had finally come upon some potentially illuminating information.
“Actually,” she told him, “I think I have it. I can’t prove that it’s what happened – yet – but it is definitely a plausible scenario.”
She turned the chair around so she could sit comfortably while she launched into her theory. “Okay, so the only feasible explanation for how the creatures got into the Hub was that they came directly through the Rift, since Owen hasn’t found anything in the autopsies that would suggest they had any way of getting in from outside in Cardiff.”
Ianto nodded weakly when she checked that he was following her so far so she continued. “We’ve been acting under the assumption that the Rift manipulator prevents anything from coming through the Rift inside the Hub. I’ve been doing more detailed scans and tests this week than I ever have before, and that just isn’t true. The Hub itself sits on a very quiet portion of the Rift, but there’s nothing actually stopping things from getting through there.”
“Why didn’t the Rift alarms go off?” Tosh finished for him. Ianto nodded again.
“Now that is down to interference from the Rift manipulator. It warps the readings the monitor picks up ever so slightly for an area that almost entirely encompasses the Hub. We haven’t ever recorded anything coming through the Rift inside the Hub, so we had no reason to suspect anything was wrong until now.”
She leant forward and grasped hold of the hand closest to her. “I really wish it hadn’t taken this - you getting hurt so badly - for us to discover the problem. I’m so sorry…”
“Hey, stop apologising,” Ianto interrupted quietly. “It wasn’t your fault. I’m going to be okay, and we know for the future, so everything worked out in the end.” He didn’t sound particularly convinced by his own argument, but Tosh appreciated his effort.
“It’s not going to happen again, that’s one thing I’m determined about,” Tosh told him. “Suzie and I are working on some modifications to the manipulator hardware that should let it retain its current function, but will stop it interfering with the monitor. It’s just too dangerous not to have the Hub under monitoring.”
Ianto nodded, and was about to reply when something in Tosh’s pocket buzzed at her. Pulling out her PDA she checked the message on screen and looked up apologetically at Ianto.
“Sorry, Ianto, Rift alert. I’m going to have to go.”
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