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: What will the results of the scan be?
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.
Fic starts here
Previous chapters at my master list
Tosh hesitated, looking worried.
“It’s not good news, is it?” Ianto asked before she could even say a word.
She shook her head slightly. “I’m so sorry, Ianto. Lisa.”
“How…” Ianto cleared his throat. “How bad is it?”
Tosh looked back down at the screen on the small scanner and stepped around to the side so that when she looked back up she could meet Lisa’s eyes. “I can’t say precisely - I’ll need to do a few modifications for that - but right now.”
She sighed. “Right now, only around 80 to 85% of your brain activity is completely human.”
“Which means there’s up to 20% that isn’t,” Lisa said dully. “Twenty percent of me isn’t me any more because of all this.” Her voice got higher and louder as she spoke, verging the edge of breaking. “It just isn’t fair!”
Although her movement was limited by the support unit, Ianto could tell by the way her fingers tightened around his that she would have been flailing in frustration if she could, gesturing angrily at the metal casing around her body.
“I know it isn’t,” he said helplessly, as he leant over her and caressed her cheek. “It really isn’t, but I promised to do whatever it takes to help you, and I’m not breaking that promise. I won’t stop until I find a way to fix this.”
Jack stepped forward and rested a hand softly on Lisa’s shoulder. “None of us will.”
* * *
It had been late in the evening when Ianto left Lisa’s side, and she had long since fallen asleep before he reappeared in the Hub. Jack had finally convinced the rest of the team to go home an hour or so ago; they would be no use to Lisa if they didn’t get some rest.
Jack had been minutes away from hunting Ianto down to tell him the same when the younger man had appeared, seemingly out of nowhere.
He looked haggard and Jack found himself hopping down the steps from the office area, quickly crossing the Hub to meet him.
“Hey.” He reached over and rubbed a comforting hand down Ianto’s arm. “You should go home. Get some sleep.”
Ianto grunted an assent and nodded. However, given the faraway look in his eyes, Jack wasn’t entirely sure that he had comprehended – or even heard, really – the words.
“Ianto?” He gripped him gently by the shoulders, trying to bring Ianto’s gaze back to him, bring him out of his daze.
When Ianto’s eyes cleared a few minutes later and focused finally on Jack, the unmasked pain in them almost made Jack wish he hadn’t.
“Ianto…” The name was a sad sigh on his lips as his hands dropped uselessly to his sides. “I am so very, very sorry.”
He’d hoped the words would be comforting, but he wondered if that had backfired when he saw Ianto’s eyes begin to shimmer a little as he bit his lip as if trying to stay in control of his emotions.
It didn’t last long. “She’s right, this just isn’t fair,” he burst out moments later. “Why her?” A single tear escaped and tricked down his cheek. “Why her?”
For once, Jack was stuck with nothing to say. Ianto was right. None of this was fair, and nothing he could say would make it so. Another tear leaked from Ianto’s eyes and Jack did the only thing he could think of; he pulled him into his arms.
At first, Ianto resisted, his body stiff and tense as Jack rubbed a hand over his back comfortingly. And then, as if a dam had burst, all of the tension flooded away and he sagged against Jack, hands gripping his shirt loosely.
His shoulders shuddered as he finally released the tight rein of control he’d been keeping on his emotions all day. Jack just held him, letting him bury his face in his shoulder as, at long last, he allowed himself to sob.
Jack rested a hand on the back of the younger man’s head, trying to provide what scant comfort he could. He found himself absent-mindedly murmuring comforting noises in Ianto’s ear, encouraging him to just let it all out, like one would with a small child.
Barely even realising what he was doing, he pressed a kiss into Ianto’s hair before resting his chin on top of his head. He closed his eyes and rocked slightly, one thought repeating in his mind; this wasn’t fair on any of them.
He had no idea how long they stood there, swaying very gently, before Ianto’s sobs began to subside. Ianto pulled back slightly; not far enough to slip out of Jack’s hug, but enough for Jack to see the shaky expression on his tear-stained face.
“I’m sorry, I…” Jack shushed Ianto gently before he could complete what was, at least to Jack, a completely unnecessary apology.
Dropping his arms, he carefully turned Ianto around, steering him towards the Hub sofa.
Ianto sank onto it gratefully, looking drained. Jack dropped down close beside him, and was surprised to find Ianto wearily leaning into him a little. Glancing down again and noting exactly how wiped-out Ianto looked, he realised that the young Welshman simply didn’t want to lose the comfort of human contact quite yet.
Shuffling closer, he wrapped an arm back around Ianto, who slumped against him even further. He suspected Ianto was half-asleep when he drew him closer and rested his cheek on Ianto’s head.
He took a deep breath, trying to repress the little voice in the back of his mind that was jumping up and down and rejoicing at the sensation of Ianto relaxing in his arms. It had been a guilty fantasy for months; one he thought he had done a good job of quashing.
He’s upset over his girlfriend, Jack told himself firmly. You should not be enjoying this.
Nevertheless, his arms tightened fractionally around Ianto, holding him protectively close and guiltily savouring the feeling.
He would be there to hold Ianto and comfort him for as long as the younger man needed him to, even if that meant sitting there all night.
All comments and concrit welcomed! (Comments = Love <3)