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Myfanwy 2

November 2017

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Myfanwy 2

Gypsies of the Rift - Chapter Five

Gypsies of the Rift - Chapter Five
Author: Milady  Dragon
Series: Dragon-Verse
Rating: PG-13
Pairing(s): Jack/Ianto; Gwen/Owen, Owen/Diane
Warnings: Language, Violence, Suicidal Situations
Spoilers: Up through S1 E10, "Out of Time"
Disclaimer:  I don't own Torchwood, I would have treated it better.
Author's note:  This is the Dragon-Verse version of "Out of Time".   As usual, the dating for this was taken from several fan-made timelines and the TARDIS Index File.  The information on the de Havilland Dragon Rapide (yes, that was the actual plane in the show, I didn't make this up!) came from a sudden spurt of Google-Fu and the ever helpful TARDIS Index File. 


Summary:  Three victims of the Rift come through from 1953, and it's up to the team to help them fit into the current year.  Jack and Ianto find themselves sympathizing with John Ellis, and they take it upon themselves to help get integrated into his new time.




19 December 2007

 

Jack was furious.

He wasn’t mad at Ianto, who sat in the passenger seat of the SUV, looking pensive.  A bit disappointed maybe; but then, how could the dragon have anticipated that John Ellis would duck out of the Hub?   Yes, Ianto had explained what had occurred on their drive back from the market, but there wasn’t any way to have known that the man would have just left like that? 

No, Jack was mad at himself, for not realizing there wasn’t an alarm on the garage entrance.  He could have sworn there was…well, there would be, from now on.  He and Toshiko were going to take the time to go through all the Hub defenses, and see what needed upgrading.  He and Ianto had already taken care of the Retcon store, installing a motion sensor camera inside the cabinet.  But they were catching things after the proverbial horse had left the stable, and that couldn’t continue.

He was also angry at Ellis for pulling such a foolhardy stunt.  Didn’t the man understand that this was a new world for the three Rift victims?  That things were very different than they’d been in the 1950’s?  Cardiff was a more dangerous place, and that didn’t even include Weevils or other alien detritus.    Ellis was so set on having his way that he couldn’t see the forest for the trees.

“You got anything on him, Toshiko?” he asked into his comm.

“He managed to get a cab on the corner,” she reported.  “I managed to get the number from the CCTV, and traced it back to the company.  The driver hasn’t reported in yet, but I’ve been able to track it in the general direction of Grangetown.”

“He’s heading home,” Ianto answered, before Jack could ask.

That made sense.  “What’s the address?”

“John said 14 Park Place,” Toshiko said.  “I’ve downloaded the directions to the SUV’s Sat Nav.”

“Thanks, Tosh.”  He thumbed off the comm., turning the vehicle toward their destination. 

“He’s looking for his family,” Ianto murmured. 

“He’s not going to find them there,” Jack said.  “Toshiko already checked that particular lead out.”  He slammed his hand into the steering wheel.  “Why didn’t he trust us to find them for him?”

“He feels helpless and thinks he has to be doing something himself,” Ianto murmured.

Jack opened his mouth to say something cutting, but he realized that Ianto was right.  From what he’d seen of Ellis, the man was someone who was used to being in charge, who did things for himself instead of letting others do them for him.  Having to sit and wait for news would have galled him.  “He still shouldn’t have snuck out on his own.”

Ianto didn’t say anything, and Jack snuck a look over at his lover.  The dragon looked upset, absently chewing on his lower lip as he watched the scenery roll by.  He didn’t apologize though, and Jack was grateful; he didn’t think what happened needed an apology, although Ianto had a right to be bothered by it. 

The rest of the drive was made in silence, but it wasn’t at all uncomfortable.  It gave Jack a chance to think about John Ellis, and how best to help him.  He knew his own unique experience with time travel could be used to draw a parallel between them, and perhaps it would be worth a shot.   Jack figured that John would settle once they had some sort of idea what had happened to the man’s family, and he only hoped it wasn’t bad news.  Either way, perhaps John would be able to move on, no matter what they found. 

At one point Toshiko interrupted to say that the cab had, indeed, let John Ellis out at 14 Park Place.  Jack thanked her, pressing down a little harder on the accelerator, wanting to get there as soon as possible.

**********

He didn’t know what they’d find, but a boarded up house wasn’t it.

Jack climbed out of the SUV, Ianto at his side.  The building that had once been the Ellis residence had long ago been abandoned; the entire neighborhood looked to have fallen on hard times, and it was reflected in the overgrown and ramshackle house.  A garage with flaking paint was attached, and Jack had a sudden flash of John returning home from work, and parking his car in that very garage; of having a home life that was now gone and dust.  He felt very sorry for the man, and hoped that they could somehow help him.

“Jack.”

Ianto’s quiet call brought the immortal from his reverie, and he turned to look at his Second.  Ianto was staring up the street, and Jack could make out the familiar form of John Ellis, standing at the front door of a neighbor’s house, speaking somewhat animatedly to the owner, who was standing out on the stoop. 

As they watched, the homeowner stepped back inside and shut the door, and from the slumped shoulders Jack could tell that the news hadn’t been good.  He strode toward John Ellis, with Ianto at his side.

The Rift survivor saw them as they approached, and the defeated body language suddenly changed, becoming confrontational.  “I had to do it,” he snapped as they neared.  “I had to find my family…find my son.  You don’t understand what it’s like to lose everything you’ve ever cared for.”

Jack felt Ianto bristle beside him.  “You have no idea,” the dragon answered quietly.  “Your family is simply missing at the moment; I had to see my father, my mother, and my sister murdered before my eyes, before the killers left me for dead.  So don’t you dare judge us, John Ellis…don’t you dare judge me.”

Ellis recoiled from the intensity of Ianto’s declaration.  The dragon might not have raised his voice, but the sheer emotion that roiled through his words was enough for Jack to forgo any sort of restraint and put his arm around him, trying to comfort his lover.  Jack, of course, knew the entire story, and knew how much more there was to it. 

“Let’s go somewhere else, somewhere less…open,” Jack suggested.   “We passed a pub not far from here; let’s all get a drink.”

Ianto nodded without hesitation, leaning into Jack and taking the comfort that was being offered.  John glanced between the two, then stepped past them, heading toward the SUV.

Jack took that for assent.  He reluctantly let go of Ianto and followed, with the dragon just a step behind him.  John made it to the vehicle first, and practically yanked open the passenger side door then climbing inside.  Jack rolled his eyes at the rather infantile behavior, getting behind the wheel as Ianto took the backseat.  He glanced back into the rearview mirror, and saw that whatever anger Ianto had been feeling seemed to be gone, if the blandness of his expression was any indication.

As well as he knew Ianto Jones, Jack realized this was no sure sign of anything of the sort.

It was quiet on the drive to the pub, and this time it wasn’t a pleasant silence.  Jack was glad when they finally arrived, and he jumped from the SUV with alacrity.  Ianto and John Ellis were with him as they entered the pub, and he ushered his companions to a secluded booth where their conversation might not be overheard.  

Ianto volunteered to get the drinks in, leaving Jack and Ellis alone at the table.  A football game was playing on the telly over the bar, and Jack found John’s eyes tracking to it more than once as they waited. 

A look of melancholy crossed the man’s features.   “Blackpool were 3-1 down,” he said, apparently lost in a memory.  “Then Stanley Matthews worked his magic – scored two goals in the last twenty minutes.  Bolton lost 4-3.  My boy was on his knees, punching the air…” he sighed.  “The FA Cup live in my own living room.  I charged the lads a shilling each to come and watch.”

Jack didn’t know whether to laugh, or roll his eyes.  “Ever the business man.”

John looked at him closely.   “I don’t think I noticed before…that’s an American accent, isn’t it?”

The immortal was well aware that his accent resembled what was now North American; in fact, he’d been told it had more of a Midwest United States sound.  It really wasn’t; while English wasn’t his first language, when he’d learned it he’d unconsciously given the tongue a Boeshane accent, and it had stuck.  Jack just felt lucky that it wasn’t any more exotic.   

He was saved from answering by Ianto’s arrival with their drinks. Both John and the dragon had pints, while Jack had stuck with his usual water.  Ianto slid in next to Jack, and he couldn’t help but think it was to show a united front to their guest.

“John,” Jack began, “you can’t go wandering off.  This is a new time for you, and there are things you don’t know.  Just let us find your family; we have the most advanced technology on the planet.  You can trust us…if your son is out there, we’ll find him.”

The man looked like he wanted to argue.  Instead, he took a swallow of his drink.  Jack could practically see the cogs rolling in his head, as he considered Jack’s words.  “I’m not the kind to sit back and let someone else do what I should be doing.”

“We certainly understand that,” Jack answered.  “But just running off isn’t the answer.”

“I wouldn’t have had to if I’d been let off at the Millennium Center like I’d asked.”

“No,” Ianto snapped.   “No, you still would have run off, only you were using looking at the stadium as an excuse to get away.”

“Ianto was perfectly right in not letting you leave,” Jack said.  “He was only watching out for your best interests.”

“My best interest is to find my son!”

“And you’re not going to do that going door-to-door in your old neighborhood,” Jack pointed out, resting his hand surreptitiously on Ianto’s thigh, to try to calm his lover.  It didn’t help that he was angry himself, and Ellis was insisting on using the same arguments when they patently weren’t going to work. “We want to help you,” he went on.  “We have experience in this sort of thing; let us do our jobs.”

“But that’s just it,” John argued.  “This is your job.  To me, this is my life.  There’s no possible way you can understand what this is like!”

“But we can,” Jack said.  He took a deep breath and plowed on.  “Both Ianto and I have experienced what you’re going through right now.  We know what it’s like to be somewhere – and some time – completely different from what we’re used to.  So, we can sympathize with you, John.   Believe me, we can.”

Ellis’ eyes darted between the two of them, as if sizing them up.  “Did you fall through the Rift, too?” he asked suspiciously.

Jack glanced at Ianto; the dragon was once again wearing that bland mask that didn’t give a thing away.  But then, he wasn’t exactly denying anything, either. 

He turned back to Ellis.  “Not exactly.”  He held his wrist out, showing his Vortex Manipulator.   “I’m from the 51st Century,” he admitted.  “This used to be a time travel device…until it shorted out.  I’m trapped here, just as you are.  I’ve lost everything, just as you have: family, friends, home…all of it.  But I’ve had to adapt to this time, just as you do.  It’s not going to be easy, but it can be done.  You just have to trust that we know what we’re doing…because we’ve been through all this before.”

John looked a bit skeptical, but Jack thought he believed the story.  He certainly hoped so; the only other person who knew the truth about him was Ianto, and it went against the grain to share so much with a near stranger.  But Jack also realized that John thought he was completely alone; that no one could possibly sympathize with his own plight.  They had to make him understand that that wasn’t the case, and that they would do their best to get him acclimatized to this new time. 

“And you?” John looked at Ianto, almost accusingly.

Jack felt Ianto tense up.  “My story isn’t important,” he answered.  “But what I told you was true: I lost my entire family to vicious killers, who also attacked me and left me for dead.  I was found by my sister’s ma – husband, and he took me home where I was able to heal.  I’ll never be over what happened; I remember the blood and the horror of that day, and the terror-filled screams of my mother and sister as they were butchered.  And my father…well, they killed him first, knowing that he’d be the strongest of us all.  He didn’t have much time to react.”  Ianto took a shaky breath.  “But I also remember the good times, like my sister’s wedding, and my mother’s singing, and my father’s teasing Marc – my brother-in-law – about his terrible fashion sense.  They’ll always be with me…in my heart.”

A single tear tracked its way down Ianto’s cheek, and the dragon scrubbed it away roughly.  Jack squeezed his thigh under the table, trying to transmit comfort through that touch.   He knew how painful it was for him to talk about what had happened, even though it had been almost a thousand years ago. 

“I know it’s hard,” Jack said, “but you need to let us help you.  We’ll do everything in our power to find your son, you have our word. “

Jack didn’t add, that if the news was bad, then they would also help John Ellis grieve.

 



Comments

Lovely update. If anyone can help John it's Jack and Ianto
Thank you! We'll see if they're able to help...soon. :)
DAMN YOU MORE!!!!
More soon, don't worry... *laughs*
Good stories are always worth the wait. I love your work and will always be waiting for the next part.
Thank you! I'm really glad you're enjoying this. Next part should be up soon. :)
Lovely chapter. I think it's time that someone told (in a softer manner) John to stop being stubborn and self-involved. Falling through time into 21st Century Cardiff is not the worst thing that could have happened. As evidenced by the revela of Flat Holm Island in Adrift. John could have ended up on an alien planet where he was enslaved - or worse. So I think he does need to get a grip. We feel sorry for him, but there is a limit because if he doesn't try to improve his situation why should we continue to feel sorry for him. I have a feeling that the coversation that the boys just had with John is no where near enough to make him better. They may have to get rough! I look forward to the next installment. :)
Thank you!

And yes, it really isn't. He does really need to let them help, until he can start to help himself.

Next up soon! :)
I love this chapter if anyone can help John it is Jack and Ianto. As I have said times before I really wish that this could have been the canon series.
Thank you! They're certainly going to try to help. I'm really glad you like it. :)
Oh I like the way you've done this, it could have worked better in the episode as well, if Jack had sat John down and talked to him, I've always felt it's just so incredibly tragic that he let him kill himself.

I never really like this hierarchy of suffering thing, where people start competing for who has had it the worst, it can get very Monty Python (that brilliant sketch where they end up having grown up living in boxes on the side of the road etc..) However I think if it's done with empathy and not "You think you've got problems" then I think it can be supportive and I like the way you've had Jack say that to John, that they will support him and help him.
I agree. I think if Jack had been just a bit more open, things could have been avoided.

Thank you. I do agree with you, that the whole "You have it bad?" thing bothers me, so I'm glad you liked this. I didn't want to get so very heavy handed. :)
eep! can they change john's fate? can they show him that life goes on or will this new world break him?
We'll see... :)
*Huds Jack and Ianto and you lots* I love this story so, so much. Poor Ianto, and poor Jack. If John weren't being such an arse I'd have some sympathy for him as well, but he's taking it out on the people who deserve it least :(
Gxxx
Thank you! John is a bit like that, and we'll see if the boys' words make it any better. :)
Wonders if John will now cope. Poor Jack and Ianto have lost everyting as well but at least they have each other. More needed as always.
*hugs*
K
xx
We'll see how John copes with it all. You're right, the boys do have each other.

More up soon. :)

*hugs back*
I guess anyone in John's situation might react the same, but just assuming no one in the world has suffered as much, or lost as much, as him is totally wrong. Having obviously been an in-charge business type, I can understand him having a hard time sitting and letting someone else do the work. He has to realize though, that he's over five decades into the future. His son is no longer a child but an elderly, man in his sixties at least. He's going to need help.
John is an independent person, so we'll see how he decides if he wants help. He's really stubborn, though. :)
I really hope John listens to Ianto and Jack.

Wonderful chapter, and I liked the bit about Jack's accent.
We'll see if he takes it to heart.

Thanks! Jack's accent has always been a bone of contention for me, with everyone assuming it's American, even when they know he's from the future and another planet. :)
Great update..I am so behind with reading all the beauties on my friends page..
Glad you liked it, hon. Hope you get caught up!
Another excellent chapter! Hope John listens to Jack and Ianto and allows them to help him.
Thank you!

We'll see if John listens or is still determined to go his own way.
It is hard John Ellis. I think you have adequately explained his reaction: in his time, he is a man of decision. It can only support others to do for him!

Ianto seems very reactive
Thanks, I'm glad you liked how John's attitude is explained! :)
Let's hope John won't be so pig-headed anymore.

Poor Ianto... *hugs him*
We'll see... *grins*