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Myfanwy 2

November 2017

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Myfanwy 2

Brothers and Enemies - Chapter Ten

Brothers and Enemies - Chapter Ten
Author: Milady Dragon
Series: Dragon-Verse
Rating: PG-13
Pairing(s): JackHarkness/Ianto Jones; Jack Harkness/John Hart (Past); Toshiko Sato/Kathy Swanson (Mentioned)
Warnings: Language, Violence, Temporary Character Death (Jack, of course), some Torture.
Spoilers: Both series up to S2, E13, "Fragments" and "Exit Wounds", and the audio play, "Lost Souls". 
Disclaimer: I don't own Torchwood, I would have treated it better.
Author's Note:  This is the Dragon-Verse version of "Fragments"/"Exit Wounds".  I've gone with one story to cover the two episodes, since a lot of "Fragments" was flashback, and I do plan on writing those into longer stories at some point so I don't see the need to add them here. 


Summary:  John Hart is back, and with him is Jack's long-lost brother, Gray.  But not all is what it seems...and Jack has to deal with consequences of actions that happened so long ago...and far into the future. 




Circa 27 AD

Cardiff

 

Jack had come back to find his hands cuffed in front of him.

He just couldn’t believe it.  His brother had killed him. 

Crushing guilt overwhelmed him, the half-forgotten words his mother had spat at him so many times coming back to him.  She’d blamed him for losing Gray, and she’d been right to do so.  He’d let go of his brother’s hand, and he’d been taken by the raiders that had attacked their colony. 

He really was to blame. 

A hole had been dug; it was too much like a grave to doubt what it was for.  He was surprised that the notion of being buried alive didn’t frighten him.  In fact, he felt as if he deserved it, for abandoning his only brother to the raiders.  Jack deserved to be punished, but he couldn’t help the last plea he could give.

“I searched for you,” he cried. 

Gray wouldn’t look at him.  He stood with his back toward Jack, and the immortal couldn’t blame him for it.  Hart stood nearby, his expression one of horror.  He wished he could tell John not to worry, that everything was fine, but he couldn’t spare the man any sort of pity.

He was using it all up on himself.

“I searched for you for years,” he went on.  “You were my first thought, every day.”

Gray spun back around at that, his eyes dark with hatred.  “What are you expecting? A loving reunion? Absolution? Me to say, ‘It's alright, brother, I forgive you.’?"  He stalked forward, face twisting with rage.  “Those creatures…they lived to torture. They kept us just on the verge of life. I'd lie there, hemmed in by corpses, praying to become one. Because you let go of my hand!”  He was shouting, spittle spraying from his lips in his rage.  “Remember?”

Jack’s chest hurt, too full of guilt and despair for his heart to work properly.  “I’d do anything to have traded places with you.”

He would have, too.  Anything to have kept this from Gray, to have protected the baby brother he’d failed so utterly.  Not even his Year in hell could match the agony he was feeling in that moment.

Jack remembered that day all too well.  It was one of the things that had never quite faded for him, as much as he’d tried to push the memory deep in his mind.  The feel of the heat of the sand through his boots as he ran; the coldness of Gray’s hand in his as he pulled his brother toward the trees; the soft slide as Gray’s hand left his.  Jack hadn’t even known that his brother hadn’t been right behind him until he’d reached cover, and then it was horribly apparent that Gray was gone.

He hadn’t kept himself safe after that, running out onto the beach to find Gray and take him away from the carnage.  He’d been desperate to locate his brother, but his little body hadn’t been among those that had died that day…including their own father.

It was no wonder both his mother and brother hated him so much.

“I believed you'd come, but you never did,” Gray went on inexorably. “How long before you gave up, Jamys? Months? Years? Decades?” 

Jack felt the words pound into his soul, tearing huge chunks away.  “What do you want from me?” he asked in defeat, knowing he’d never be able to make this up.  There was nothing in the entire universe that could make this right.

Gray got right up into Jack’s face.  “I want you to suffer.”  His eyes lit up with unholy glee. “I want your life.”  He stepped back, throwing his arms out to encompass their surroundings.  “This is Cardiff. 27AD. The city will be built here, over the next 2,000 years. Your grave will be the city's foundations. Your blessing of life becomes a curse.”

There was a near-soundless breath of dismay from Hart, but Jack couldn’t look at him.  He’d guessed this was what was going to happen; the grave had been a giveaway to Gray’s plan.  But knowing it for certain still didn’t make Jack afraid. It was his penance for abandoning his brother, even though Jack had meant to go and look for him again once he’d gotten to the proper time. Ianto had promised to help.

Now there was no help. 

“Each time you revive, with a throatful of earth,” Gray whispered, “each time it chokes you, and you thrash on the edge of death, you think of me…”

“Okay,” Hart interrupted, “I’m calling a halt to this right now.  I can’t let this happen.”

He took a step forward, but Gray didn’t even let Hart get close before he was pushing Jack backward, shoving him into the hole in the ground.  The immortal hit the bottom hard, the breath knocked out of him, and as he lay there all he could do was stare up at his brother, who was looming at the side of the grave, a strange smile on his face. 

“Fill the grave.”

Jack could just see John, standing next to Gray, shaking his head.  “No way.”  His words were choked with emotions that Jack doubted his ex-partner had felt in a very long time.

But then, John understood.  He’d realised just what Jack went through with his immortality from the moment he’d found out about it.  He might not be able to sympathise – because, face it, there wasn’t a sympathetic bone in John Hart’s body – but somehow he just got how terrible it all was. 

It was almost enough to make Jack forgive him.

“Then the detonator on your arm gets activated.”

John reared back, his hand unconsciously going to the wrist strap bonded to his skin.  He actually looked as if he was going to keep fighting Gray on this, but Jack couldn’t allow him to do that.  It wasn’t worth it…he wasn’t worth it.

Jack had done this to Gray.  It was his fault.  And no one else should have to pay the price.  Cardiff had already suffered enough. 

His team had suffered enough.

Patrick could be dead, as could Deborah.  And how many innocents had been hurt or killed when those bombs had gone off?  No, it was time to put an end to it.  For Gray to get the revenge he wanted.

Jack was ready.

He mourned his lost mate.  Ianto would of course do everything in his power to find him, but Jack knew he never would.  He’d be buried forever. 

They would never get their eternity. 

A single tear tracked down Jack’s face, and he didn’t bother to wipe it away. 

John was staring down at him, indecision warring with determination.  He was actually considering taking his chances, Jack knew.  He couldn’t allow that. 

In that moment Jack truly loved John Hart despite everything he’d done.  He couldn’t let the man suffer because of him.

From his position within the grave, Jack nodded once, giving John permission to do what Gray wanted.  John didn’t like it, that was obvious from the surprise on his face, but Jack couldn’t let him take the risk that Gray would really do what he threatened. 

Then a small, private smile crossed John’s lips. 

Jack watched as John removed a ring from his finger.  He kissed it, then tossed it down to land on Jack’s chest. 

Jack knew what it was. 

John Hart really as a sneaky bastard.

Still, it wouldn’t negate the need for Jack to commit to this act of penance, but for the first time since Gray had stabbed him Jack felt a sliver of hope.

“What was that?” Gray demanded.

“It…has sentimental value,” John answered somewhat flippantly.  He then reached for the shovel.




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