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Myfanwy 2

December 2017

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The Breaking - Chapter Eleven

The Breaking - Chapter Eleven
Author: Milady Dragon
Artist: Madbottoms
Beta: Totally4ryo
Series: Dragon-Verse
Rating: PG-13
Pairing(s): Jack/Ianto, Toshiko/Kathy, pre-Alice Carter/Patrick Delaware, Martha Jones/Tom Milligan
Warnings: Language, Violence, Child Endangerment, Temporary Character Death
Spoilers: Up through S3, "Children of Earth".
Disclaimer: I don't own Torchwood, I would have treated it better...and so I rewrite it so it might make more sense.
Author's note:  This is the "The Breaking", the Dragon-Verse rewrite of "Children of Earth".  I have changed the date to reflect the fact that school doesn't start in Great Britain until September, and not the original airing date.  This was written for the Long Live Ianto Big Bang Round Two.


SummaryThe Fae are watching.  The children are chanting.  Can Torchwood stop the end of the world?



17 September 2009

Toshiko was working, when she knew she should still be sleeping.

She couldn’t help it. Whenever she tried to sleep, the idea that Jack and Ianto had actually stayed within the line of fire would come back to haunt her. She’d also think of Kathy, her spouse doing her duty to the city of Cardiff, and being alone without her.

She had to do something.

And so, Toshiko found herself at the terminals she’d set up as Torchwood’s back-up Hub, doing everything she could think of to hack into the Thames House servers, knowing that they’d need whatever she’d found in order to counter whoever was determined to keep them out of the loop.

She was quite proud of the work she’d put in on this extension of the Hub. It was in one of the smaller houses in the valley, one that hadn’t had any residents in it for years. Behind the ancient stone façade of the two storey home was now a fully-equipped command centre, with server that was remotely connected to the mainframe back in Cardiff, a small armoury, and a medical bay where Owen had been busily setting up all of the equipment he’d brought with them. She was now alone in the house; everyone else had taken rooms at the Green Dragon Inn, Rhiannon happy to have them all staying there once more. It was almost like a reunion of the Resistance from that Year, although there was some missing, including Kathy, and a couple of new friends as well.

She really missed Kathy. It was one of the reasons she’d been unable to sleep all that well; she’d gotten used to not sleeping alone, and it was difficult to go back to that. Certainly, there had been times when Kathy had had to work an overnight shift, but those were easy to weather when they were in the same city.

Toshiko sighed, rubbing her eyes. She took a sip of the coffee she’d managed to scavenge, and she made a face when she realised it was ice cold. There was a fully stocked kitchen in the house, but Toshiko didn’t want to get up and get anything. She needed to be working, so that was what she was doing.

She really had no idea how long she’d been sitting there, threading her way through firewalls and defences that kept changing on her, but a fresh cup of coffee suddenly appeared on her desk.

Toshiko glanced up. Patrick was standing there, smiling as he sipped his own coffee. “It’s nowhere near as good as Ianto would make,” he apologised, “but sometimes you just need the caffeine.”

Patrick was right, but it worked. “Thanks.”

The American pulled up a chair, settling in beside her. “How’s it going?”

“This is so frustrating!” she exclaimed. “Every time I think I’ve gotten somewhere, another thing pops up. I can hack into anything, and this is getting to me.”

“Take a deep breath,” he suggested, taking her hand and spinning her around in her chair so she could look at him directly. “You’re going to get this, okay? I know you’re the best at this, and while I barely know the difference between a disc drive and Sunday drive around the park –“ Toshiko laughed at that – “it seems to me that you might be putting too much stress on yourself. You’re overthinking things. Just relax a second and take a step back, okay?”

He had a point. Toshiko was so focussed on getting in, maybe she was trying too hard? It was too important to slack on, but at the same time she couldn’t afford to mess anything up by rushing.

So she inhaled, held in the breath, and then exhaled, wanting the tension to drain away. It didn’t, but she did feel a little lighter. “Alright. I need to do this, but messing up is not an option either. I can do this.”

“Yes, you can,” Patrick said. “I have no doubt in you. The others don’t either. You just have to do what you’re best at, and don’t let it stress you.” He squeezed her hands. “Now, get back into the game, sister. You can do this.”

“You know,” she said, turning back to her computers, feeling just a bit better than she had before, “you should really ask Alice out on a date.”

“Not you, too!” her friend sighed. “I once got the shovel talk from Jack, and I haven’t even done anything yet!”

“He’s just letting you know that he approves of you,” Toshiko said, letting her fingers do what they needed to do while part of her attention was on Patrick. “Ianto does, too. And, if you want to go the easier route, ask Ianto for permission. He’ll give it to you without all the drama that Jack would. In fact, Kathy went to him to ask his permission to marry me.”

Patrick laughed. “I would have loved to have seen that!”

“Kathy said she’d never been more nervous in her entire life.”

Toshiko and Patrick kept talking, keeping it light and sticking to subjects not having to do with what she was attempting to do. Keeping part of her mind off her work and onto her teammate made things go quicker, and by the time she’d had a little progress the sun was just rising over the mountains.

She made a small, satisfied noise and sat forward, all conversation ceased. “I think I might have something…”

Patrick didn’t say anything; he simply rubbed her shoulder in encouragement as Toshiko put another crack in a particularly difficult firewall. She wondered vaguely if this was what the hackers who tried to get into mainframe felt, and she grinned knowing that she’d never allow anyone into her systems.

The firewall shattered, and a few squirts of data flashed on her screen. She leaned forward, pushing her glasses up onto her nose. “Looks like the maintenance protocols,” she murmured, her fingers now flying over the keys. She traced back through the programs she found herself in, sneaking past several internal firewalls that simply weren’t made to keep anyone out once they were inside. She knew what she needed, and it would still take some time to find it.

Over the next hour, a plate of fruit and another cup of coffee ended up on her desk, and Toshiko made a mental note to thank Patrick once this was all done.

“Wait,” Patrick suddenly said. Toshiko automatically paused her scrolling. “Can you go back a bit?”

She did, confused at what had caught his attention.

“There!”

Toshiko frowned. She was looking at a single white page, empty except for four names…one of them being Jack. “What is it?” she asked.

Patrick sighed. “That’s a Blank Page order.” Obviously seeing her look of confusion, he continued. “A Blank Page is something used by the various intelligence agencies to order the termination of someone without putting a name on the actual order, that way no one has to take responsibility.”

Toshiko’s heart skipped a beat. Someone wanted Jack dead? “But how is that even possible? They know he’s immortal; he can’t be killed…at least not for long. What would be the sense?”

He looked very worried. “Your guess is as good as mine, Tosh. What about the other names on the order? Can you track them down?”

“You bet I can.” With those words, Toshiko began following the three other names on the Blank Page, now angrier than what she’d been when Jack and Ianto had talked her into leaving Cardiff. Someone in their very own government wanted to hurt her family, and that was something she would not allow.

No one went after her family like that and got away with it.

She managed to bring up three pictures onto her screen. “Says here, Colonel Michael Sanders was retired military, Ellen Hunt was a secretary with the Home Office, and Andrew Staines was a teacher from somewhere called Hollytree Lodge, in Scotland.” Her brows furrowed. “What do these three people have to do with Jack?”

Without waiting for Patrick to say anything, she dived back into the data that she now had access to, following these names deeper into the lines of code Toshiko was scanning. She tracked each name, including Jack’s, back to an original file with an encryption that, after all the trouble she had getting into the system in the first place, only took her five minutes to crack.

What she saw there had her feeling slightly faint as all the blood ran from her face.

“Shit,” Patrick whispered from over her shoulder.

“You’re not kidding,” Toshiko replied. “We need to contact Jack and Ianto.”

She collapsed the windows she’d been working in, in order to bring up the connection to the Hub. The subwave network – a gift from Harriet Jones before her unfortunate death – was the main communication line between this computer and the mainframe back in Cardiff. Toshiko had had no problem converting it to a completely secure network and to set it up to link with the once-defunct Archangel Network…which then gave her an idea to on how to tighten up security on Torchwood’s comm system and mobiles.

Another window popped open, revealing the inside of the Hub from Toshiko’s own station. The lighting was up, which gave her hope that Jack and Ianto would still be there. Toshiko knew there would be a chime announcing an incoming signal, and she just had to wait for someone to hear and to show up on camera.

It was about a minute before Ianto appeared on her monitor. To Toshiko’s surprise he was wearing a casual pullover and his hair was wet as if he’d just gotten out of the shower. He smiled. “Toshiko! Patrick! So you’re both in Ddraig Llyn?”

“We are,” Toshiko answered. “I’ve finally managed to get into the MI5 servers.”

Something in her voice must have tipped him off that something was wrong, because he lost the smile immediately. “Let me get Jack.”

He stepped away from the camera, leaving Toshiko and Patrick to wait.


Chapter Twelve






Comments

I'm perched on the edge of my seat and trembling with anticipation :)
Please don't fall off your chair! That could be painful! :)
Oooooh Jack's not gonna be happy about the blank page order! This just keeps getting better and better!
Nope, he won't be. Thanks! :)
Some seriously nasty stuff here with that Blank Page; wonder if Patrick, Ianto and Jack will get to play with some really nifty 'toys'? :D Going after Jack just isn't a smart idea and someone hasn't learned that lesson...

I got no nails left!
Taking on Jack and his Torchwood isn't a good thing to do, and they're ready to teach 'em all about it. *grins*

Pool nails! :)
Great update!!!
Thank you! :)
Nails!!!I need more fingernails....
Poor nails...I don't think there's such a thing as a fingernail transplant. :)
At least now their getting somewhere. I love that Ianto is the sensible reasonable parent and Jack is the gun waving, shovel-toting potential partners nightmare. I concur, Patrick needs to get on with it, however when the whole population of children are chanting in unison, that might not be the best timing. :)
Hey, don't mess with Jack's daughter...and it's worse if you want to date her! It's a darned good thing he already likes Patrick. *grins*

Well, it's Torchwood...whenever is the timing all that good anyway?
*gulp* The poop's about the hit the fan...
At least it's not poop with knives sticking out of it. *winks*
I'm so glad I didn't have time to read this until you'd posted chapter 12, because I want to KNOW ...So no proper review for this one, sorry!
Oops! Sorry... *grins*
No worries there!! I got used to perching on the edge of a chair for better posture while playing clarinet. It's actually pretty comfortable once you're used to it :D
LOL! I'm sure it is! *grins*