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Myfanwy 2

December 2017

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Myfanwy 2

Ways of Light and Darkness - Chapter Twenty-One

Ways of Light and Darkness - Chapter Twenty-One
Author: Milady Dragon
Rating: PG-13
Pairing(s): Jack/Ianto; Gwen/Rhys; one-sided Lisa/Ianto; past Master John (Doctor)/Rose; other canon pairings.
Warning: Fantasy Violence, horror, angst
Spoilers:  Some could be for Torchwood S1 "Cyberwoman"; "Countrycide", "They Keep Killing Suzie"; Doctor Who S1 "Bad Wolf" and "Parting of the Ways", S2 "Army of Darkness" and "Doomsday"; and S3 "Utopia";"Sound of Drums", "Last of the Time Lords" and possibly other episodes, although they have been warped into a fantasy setting.
Disclaimer: I don't own either Torchwood or Doctor Who, although I wish I did....
Author's note:  This is the sequel to The Immortality of the Deathless, the chapter list to be found here.   It's Torchwood and Doctor Who twisted into a fantasy setting, where everything that could be considered alien is actually magical.

Summary:  When mercenary Captain Jack Harkness vanishes while on a mission, Wizard Ianto Jones has to choose between his lover, his duty...and quite possibly his destiny.

A/N2:  I meant to have this up days ago, but real life happened...sorry about the delay. We also get to see just what got changed when Saxon went back in time...


Chapter Twenty-One

Master Archivist, Lord of Torchwood Castle, and Grand Cardinal Wizard Ianto Jones didn't want to wake up.
 

He was warm; even though it was spring in Cardiff, it had insisted on staying cold at night, and the blankets Ianto was currently curled up under were making his 'nest' nice and toasty. It didn't hurt that the body of his lover was splayed across his back, head burrowed in his neck, one heavy arm holding him close and a long leg wedged between Ianto's thighs. The Wizard sighed in contentment, turning slightly into his bedmate's embrace, his own arm looping behind him and over the firm arse in order to pull himself even closer.

Ianto dozed a little longer, his lover's soft breathing ruffling the hair behind the Wizard's ear. The duty-bound part of him knew that they were expected to be rising, to start the business of the day; but he just couldn't find it within himself to care. He was feeling uncharacteristically lazy, and simply wanted to stay in bed all day.

Eventually, his lover stirred. Ianto felt the Magic within him awaken before he actually physically moved, and he stifled a yawn as he, himself, came fully awake. He gently disentangled himself in order to turn to look at the man who'd been his lover for four years, smiling slightly as sleepy blue and gold eyes met his own.

Ianto found himself smiling. "Good morning, Jack."

"Morning," came the quiet reply, accompanied by a kiss that had Ianto's tongue tingling with Magic and his body with need.

Jack pulled the Wizard closer, melding their bodies once more. Ianto luxuriated in the closeness, wrapping his arms around the other man, one hand playing with his dark hair.

"Are we being slug- a-beds today?" Jack asked, his fingers tracing along Ianto's spine.

"I wish," Ianto answered, disappointed. "We have a guest coming."

"Too bad. I would have liked to've spent all day in bed with you."

"So would I."

After another long, languorous kiss, Ianto braved the chilliness of the air to climb out of bed. He shivered, grabbing his robe from the floor where they'd knocked it last night and fishing around under the bed for his fleece-lined slippers.

Once bundled up against the cold, Ianto made his way to the facilities; it didn't take him long to finish his morning ablutions. At one point Jack came in and joined him, and they finished in companionable silence.

They'd dressed, and Jack had just finished tying Ianto's hair back into its customary Wizard's braid – Ianto loved having him twist it into the intricate plait, and it served his lover's hair fetish as well – when there was a soft knock on their chamber door.

"Come," Ianto called, knowing who would be on the other side.

The door pushed open, revealing his Steward, Gwen Cooper. She was dressed in Ianto's personal colors, red and gold, her own dark hair pulled back in a plain tail. She bowed to the two men. "Good morning, My Lords," she greeted.

"Good morning, Mistress Gwen," Ianto answered, standing. "Is the usual room prepared for our guest?"

"Yes, My Lord," she said. "Also, I've taken the liberty of opening the reading room off the main Archive, and to restock the wine rack there as well."

"Thank you." Ianto was grateful for his Steward; Gwen's family had served his own for almost two centuries, and she did her job extremely well…although sometimes her attitude got the better of her, especially where his relationship with Jack was concerned.

"Mistress Heather has breakfast ready," Gwen went on. "You'll be eating in the kitchens as usual?"

She did her best to hide it, but Ianto caught the slight edge of disdain in her voice. Another issue Gwen had had was Ianto's blatant disregard for protocol and station, except in an official capacity. Hells, he'd have cut his hair years ago if he could have gotten away with it, and if Jack didn't like playing with it so much.

"Yes, we will. Come and get us when the Lady arrives, please."

Gwen bowed once more, then departed to her duties, leaving the two men alone once more. "I'm starving," Jack said, taking Ianto by the hand. "Being with you always gives me an appetite." He waggled his eyebrows suggestively even as he was pulling the Wizard toward the door.

Ianto laughed. "And not necessarily for food?"

"That goes without saying!"

"Your lines don't get any better with age, My Lord Deathless."

"But you love them anyway, My Lord Wizard."

"That I do," Ianto admitted, letting his lover lead him toward the extensive castle kitchens.

Mistress Heather had their plates set out on the small table Ianto had had moved into a corner of the warm main kitchen; he'd never seen the sense of setting up the dining room for every meal, since it was simply Jack and himself. It also gave the matronly Head of Kitchens the opportunity to comment on both men's eating habits. She often swore that Jack learned his manners in a barn, and would usually wheedle Ianto into eating "just a little more" thinking that the Wizard was far too skinny for his own good. It had led Ianto to once comment it was like having his mother back, and Mistress Heather had blushed at the compliment.

They were just finishing the excellent egg casserole that Mistress Heather had made, when a shiver made its way down Ianto's spine.

He dropped his fork, focusing on what he'd just felt. He reached out with his magical senses, trying to find the source of his sudden unease. There…his eyes narrowed, and he cursed.

"What is it?" Jack asked.

"We're going to have a second guest," Ianto growled, pushing his chair back. "I'm going to kill her for not warning us."

Jack stood as well, his own breakfast abandoned as the golden flecks in his blue eyes began to glow. His lover didn't have the same magical senses that Ianto had, but the Wizard had no doubt that he'd be able to feel what Ianto had.

Judging from the curses Jack let out, he did.

Together the two men left the kitchens, bidding good day to Mistress Heather as they did. Passing up into the main areas of the castle, they made their way to the immense foyer, even as Gwen was heading toward the door.

The Steward turned at their approach, looking just a bit surprised. "There are two guests," Ianto told her. "We'll greet them if you'll see to preparing a second room."

"Yes, My Lord." The woman turned on her heel and left, not bothering to hide her irritation at her master's taking on doorman duties.

Ianto would have chuckled at her expression if he wasn't so irritated himself. He went to the large double doors, flinging them open even before the person on the other side could knock.

Lady Donna Noble had her gloved hand up, and she quickly lowered it as she was revealed in the open doorway. "Ianto!" she greeted him, dragging him into a hug whether he wanted one or not. "Good to see you again, Gorgeous!"

"Donna," he returned, pulling himself gently from her embrace. "You could have said you'd be bringing a plus one."

The woman rolled her eyes. "You gonna let us in, or not?"

Ianto stepped back, giving Donna and her companion room to enter. The Great Wizard hadn't changed: her long red hair was styled into a messy Wizard's braid, her riding clothes all in shades of brown and green. She was a handsome woman, a bit older than Ianto himself, brash and vocal and a real pain in the arse.

Ianto adored her.

The person who entered with her…well, calling him a person was stretching the term a bit. Lord Omega Patrexes was Ianto's opposite, a Void Wizard…but the being hidden under the indigo robes and magic spells was hardly a man any longer. He appeared as a man in his thirties, with long blond Wizard's plait and blue eyes. His adopted features were handsome, if a bit sharp.

They were accompanied by their familiars. Donna's Ood was actually twenty-four tiny green dragons, each no bigger than Ianto's hand, with a group mind that allowed them to function as one creature. All of them had been born from the same egg, and they were the most unusual of any of the dragons ever born.

Omega's Harmonia was like her master, under the illusion spell that Omega always wore when traveling. She appeared to be a blue and indigo dragon, about the size of Ianto's Myfanwy. Unlike Ood, who flittered around the hallway looking for things to get into, Harmonia settled at her master's feet, her long head moving sinuously as she took in her surroundings.

"Ianto," Omega nodded in greeting. His voice sounded almost sepulchral, which fitted him perfectly. "I did try to warn Donna that she should tell you I was coming with her."

Ianto shook his head. "She never listens, does she?"

"Oi!' Donna exclaimed. "Standing right here, you know!" She moved around Ianto to grab Jack into a hard hug. "You keeping himself in line?" she asked, as she pulled away.

Jack grinned. "That's what I was hired to do."

Donna laughed. "Honey, they don't pay you enough!"

Two of Ood's bodies came to settle on Jack; one in his hair, the other on his shoulder. Donna went to brush them off, but Jack stopped her. "They're fine," he said, stroking the one on his shoulder.

Omega took his turn to greet Jack. He bowed slightly, almost stiffly. "My Lord Deathless," he intoned.

Jack returned the bow. "My Lord Death." Then he grinned. "Your cloaking spell needs a bit of work, you're a little fuzzy at the edges."

The Void Wizard laughed. "That's only because you can see through the disguise, Jack. You're the only one I've found who can."

"Let me hang up your cloaks," Ianto offered, "then we can take this somewhere more comfortable than my drafty hall."

That took a bit longer than usual; Myfanwy flew into the foyer, chasing one of Donna's Ood. She greeted their guests with demands for attention; even Omega got one, and the red-gold dragon didn't usually let Void Wizards get that close. Ianto knew, though, it was because he himself actually liked Omega, even if his presence irritated Ianto's own magic and he liked time to prepare for it.

Once that was done, Ianto led them all toward the Archives, even though he'd already guessed that Donna had used that as an excuse to show up at the Castle. Gwen had readied one of the reading rooms; they were shielded and protected with many levels of spells, and no one would be able to eavesdrop if they were so inclined.

Because Ianto understood the implication of both Donna and Omega's arrival on his doorstep, without official warning.

He ushered them into the room. It was well-appointed and comfortable, with overstuffed chairs and dark wood tables scattered about. A thick burgundy carpet covered the flagstones, and a fire blazed in the grate, warming the chamber to acceptable levels. The velvet curtains had been pushed open, revealing the castle's garden beyond, just beginning to bloom toward its summer glory.

Jack offered refreshment; Omega refused – although that was no surprise - but Donna accepted a glass of wine, and Ianto asked for one as well. He wished Gwen had instead stocked the room with coffee-making supplies, but the Steward hadn't known that the room was going to be used by anyone except Lady Donna.

"I take it this is an unofficial visit?" Ianto inquired, after everyone was settled.

Omega and Donna glanced at each other. "Unofficial," Donna confirmed, "although it'll be official soon enough."

"Then I have to ask why you're coming to me, instead to the Head of Cardinal Wizards." Anything official should have been taken to Sarah Jane Smith, the Head of his Order.

"Because," Omega answered, "we simply don't trust Sarah Jane to do what's needed."

"Yeah," Donna said. "And it's no secret that you're far more powerful than she is."

Ianto frowned. "You're not suggesting some sort of coup?"

"Gods, no!" Donna exclaimed. "Look, you should just let us explain, okay? It'll become clearer once you have the entire story."

Ianto nodded. He could already guess that he wasn't about to like what they were going to tell him, because after all one didn't get a visit from both the Heads of the Void and Great Orders just every day.

He glanced at Jack for support. His lover was seated in a chair by the door, his sharp eyes watching everything. He caught Ianto's gaze on him, and nodded slightly. The Wizard relaxed, knowing that Jack had his back no matter what happened.

"Do you mind if I lower my illusion?" Omega asked. "Your spells on this room are making it harder to hold onto it."

"No, please." Ianto really didn't want him to, but it wasn't something he hadn't seen before.

The blond haired façade faded out, revealing Omega's true shape. There was literally nothing left of the Lord Omega Patrexes but an animated skeleton, the indigo robes hanging from exposed clavicles and shoulder blades. His skull permanently grinned at them all, and he nodded his thanks. "Thank you," the voice was even more otherworldly than before as the Lich spoke.

Ianto could never figure out why Omega had done it. Why he'd tried to become Deathless like Jack, only using the Void energy to accomplish it. Yes, the Wizard would live forever, but he'd do it as a corpse, unable to enjoy anything that true life offered.

He often wondered if that was why Jack and Omega seemed to get along so well, despite being diametrically opposed. Even though Omega had existed only about half as long as Jack had, they had the curse of immortality to give them common ground.

"As I was saying," Donna put in, "we'll tell you what we suspect, and then you can decide if you want to join us in an official sanction or not."

The Cardinal Wizard raised an eyebrow in surprise. An official sanction didn't happen all that often, and only in cases of Wizard malfeasance. "What's going on?"

"We've received reliable word that Harold Saxon is trying to release the Devastation," Omega answered.

"What?" Ianto almost came up out of his chair in shock. "Is he insane?"

"There's some evidence of that, yeah," Donna said. "He claims to have found the door."

That sent Ianto back into his chair, the strength leaving him in a rush. If Saxon had found the door…"Why haven't you done anything?" he demanded of Omega. "You're his Head of Order!"

"I ordered him to cease any research into the Devastation," the Lich answered. "He assured me he had, but the rumors I've heard from Argestyn Devastal suggest otherwise."

'Does he want to bring about the end of the world?" Ianto asked hectically.

"He claims he can control it."

"And of course you didn't believe him."

"Of course not," the Void Wizard said. "I may be ancient, but I'm not senile."

That comment drew an inadvertent snort from Jack.

Ianto ignored it. "You're right, we do have to do something."

"You know," Donna said, "I understand the danger here. But as Head of Great Order, I have to say that this would give my order just enough ammunition against the Cardinals and Voids to demand that your orders be disbanded."

Now Ianto saw just why they'd come to him. "You're not asking me to speak to my cousin – "

"No. Jenny wouldn't listen to anything you have to say." Donna sighed. "She's too against the idea of you to even give you the time of day. You know how she feels about your orders."

Ianto did. Jenny Smith wasn't technically his cousin; they did share a common ancestor, and at one point their families had been close. But there was far too much enmity between the two branches now to even think about rational discussion.

"You should also know…she said she's found the spell."

This was getting worse by the minute.

"How?" Ianto asked, his voice strangled.

"I have no idea," Donna answered. "As far as I knew, the only partial copy was here, in the Archives."

Ianto nodded. As the Archivist to the Wizards' Quorum Council, he had control of Torchwood's Archives, and knew pretty much everything in it. Wanting to do research in the Archives had been Donna's story in order to get to see him. "It's here," he confirmed. "In fact, it's locked in the Secure Archives. Only I have access there."

"She's threatening to use it?" Jack spoke up.

Donna nodded. "Luckily for us, she'll never get permission. But, if it gets back to her that Saxon wants to release the Devastation…" She faded out, not really needing to finish that sentence.

It was obvious what would happen. That one of the Void Wizards was trying to bring about the end of the world by opening the door to the Devastation's prison…it could conceivably give her enough votes in Quorum to allow the spell to be read.

"Does she think she'll be immune to it?" he asked. "Because if she does, she's wrong. That spell will wipe out all Wizards, not just Cardinal and Void."

"I don't know what she's thinking, Ianto. All I know is, she hates both orders enough. You know she blames you all for her ancestor's death."

"He was my ancestor, as well," Ianto argued. "And he's been long thought of as a traitor, for even trying to use that spell."

"Jenny doesn't think so. She thinks he was some sort of hero, for standing up against the Wizards' tyranny."

"Can't you control her, Donna?"

"Don't you think I've tried? There's something seriously wrong with that girl, and nothing I say or do seems to work. I'm really surprised she hasn't used the spell anyway, without waiting for permission. I hate to say this, but you're another reason she's so gung-ho on reading that thing."

"Me?" Ianto's eyebrows went up. "Why me?"

"You're the most powerful of the Cardinal Wizards," Omega answered for her. "In fact, I shan't hesitate to say you're the most powerful Cardinal Wizard ever, and you're only in your twenties. Just how powerful will you become? And then there's your relationship with the Deathless. You haven't kept that a secret at all."

"Just because I'm in a relationship with a man – "

"It's not because Jack's a man, love," Donna continued. "It's because he's the Deathless. You know how my own order sees him. You're the most powerful Wizard of our age, sleeping with…I'm sorry Jack…"

"It's fine, Donna," Jack answered coldly. "I'm well aware of the word they use."

"You know I don't feel that way, right?" She was practically begging.

"I know. Like I said, it's fine." He favored her with a smile, and she relaxed.

"Damnit!" Ianto swore. "There's no way I'm giving up the man I love just because of a bigoted, small-minded…shit, there isn't a word strong enough to describe how I'm feeling about her right now."

"Which is why we need to stop Saxon, and take that excuse away," Omega said. "He's the primary issue. He's the one we need to take care of."

"Omega's right," Jack said.

"I can also see why you brought this to me, instead of Sarah Jane." It wasn't that the older woman was a bad leader; but she was a pacifist, and Ianto knew she wouldn't be able to take any of the stronger steps that may be needed to stop Saxon.

"Then we should figure out just what he's up to, and stop him," Ianto declared. "I assume you two have some sort of plan?"

Donna smirked. "Too right. But first I'd like another glass of that really good wine…"

 


Comments

Wow lots of information in this chapter and new people. I loved the little Ood dragons and Donna gets to be a wizard too. Don't take any s**t Ianto and keep Jack safe. Lots of wizards with lots of agendas. Can't wait to see where this goes next.
There are quite a few agendas, yes. And I adore Ood, all those little dragons just make me squee.

And you're doing reel_torchwood, I see! Can't wait to see what you do with your prompt!
oooohhh wow talk about having to realign things. Can't wait to see this play out
Things will get a bit complicated, but it will work out in the end. :)
I've finally caught up with this, I'd kept a few chapters to one side! Brilliant! I've probzbly said this before, but I'm not that keen on science fantasy/ fantasy stuff- you may well have converted me.
Did I convert you? Wow...

Glad you liked it!
Great chapter - can't wait to see how this plays out
It does play out...eventually. :)

Thanks!
Wow, what a fabulous chapter, so much going on, love it :)
Thanks!

It was a bit strange, creating a whole new world within the whole new world I've already created...I think I just confused myself...

Whoa... I prefer this world, apart from the 'Harold Saxon is about to destroy everything' bits.
Gxxx
You say that now... :)

*laughs evilly*
I actually bursts out in a laugh when I saw the Steward Gwen.:)

Like this new world.

I know, I had to do it, it made me chuckle too...

Well, you like this now...