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Myfanwy 2

December 2017

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The Dragon and the Nightingale - Chapter Nine

The Dragon and the Nightingale - Chapter Nine
Author: Milady Dragon
Series: Dragon-Verse
Rating: PG-13
Pairing(s): Jack/Ianto; Toshiko/Kathy; Rhiannon/Johnny
Warnings: Language, Angst, mentions of torture
Spoilers: Up through Series One, also "Children of Earth" (as pertains to Alice Carter's background), and Doctor Who S3 E11 and E12, "Utopia", "The Sound of Drums", and "Last of the Time Lords"
Disclaimer:  I don't own Torchwood, I would have treated it better.  I also don't own Doctor Who.
Author's note:  This story tells how the Year That Never Was ended.  There really isn't any timing in this, because of how things end. 

A/N2:  Here is a Valentines Day gift for all my friends.  You have all been a wonderful support for me, and I love you all.  Thank you, everyone!

Summary:  Things are coming to a head in the fight against the Master.  Ianto and Martha Jones are  in the final leg of their journey, and have come home to Great Britain for the end of the paradox...however it should end.




The Year of the Toclafane Ends (continued)

 

“I forgive you.”

Ianto growled at the words.  He’d expected something like this; that the Doctor would put his own needs over the fate of an entire world.  That he would accept the Master, and everything that he’d done in that terrible year, and think that he would have the right to simply forgive that bastard for his actions against the races of the Earth, and that it would be just fine.

He glanced at Martha; she didn’t seem happy about it either, judging from the way she was worrying her lower lip with her teeth.  The dragon couldn’t blame her; the pair of them had seen hells the Doctor couldn’t dream of, all caused by the monster that the Time Lord rocked in his arms like a child.

And then, the Master called for the Toclafane.  The child-like voices cried out as they answered the call, and Ianto could see from the large front window that the orbs were flying straight for the Valiant.

Without turning, Ianto knew that Jack had left the deck, just from the fading out of his presence in the dragon’s awareness.  When he’d felt the power that kept Jack immortal scratch at his mind once more as he’d been escorted onto the control deck, Ianto had wanted to rejoice; it had been far too long since he’d felt that close to his mate, and it had been all he could do just to glance at Jack for the very short time he’d had, before his attention had gone back to the Master. 

But what he’d seen of his mate…Jack had obviously lost weight, and he’d been filthy, covered in dirt and old blood and yet still looking defiant.  It had made him both angry and proud, and he’d sworn he’d take his mate home and look after him once things were done.

He could guess where Jack was going: to the heart of the paradox, to destroy the machine that kept the Toclafane in the past.  He would trust his mate to do what was needed, while Ianto took care of his own business with the Doctor and the Master.

He stepped forward.  “Stand away from him, Doctor,” he ordered, sickened by the display before him.   The Master had apparently completely collapsed under the strain of the Doctor’s renewal; and Ianto was angry that this supposed plan seemed to have been simply to help the Doctor regain his strength.  All that time, walking the planet, and it had only led to this.

So much for that.   At least Ianto could trust Jack to set things right. 

The Doctor looked up from his position kneeling beside the cowering Master.  “I’ll take care of him now,” the Time Lord said.  “He’s my responsibility.”

“No, he isn’t,” Ianto answered.  “He stopped being that the moment he set the Toclafane against the Earth.  Now he must face justice for what he’s done.”

The Doctor glowered at him.  “And you think you’re the one to carry out that justice?”

Ianto narrowed his eyes.  “No, not me,” he countered.  “But I claim the right to become the avenger of my mate, and what he has done to me and mine.”

His statement seemed to startle the Doctor, and he took a harder look at Ianto.  It was evident the moment that he realized the ‘man’ standing over him wasn’t a man at all.  “You’re not human,” he all but accused.

A smirk slid over Ianto’s face.  “Let’s just say that my Resistance alias was more than just a codename.”  He let his eyes take on their draconic appearance, and he was gratified at the Doctor’s shock as he put things together.

“But there aren’t any of you left!” he exclaimed.

“I am the last,” Ianto admitted.  “And I have claimed the right of vengeance against the Time Lord calling himself the Master, for the crime of injuring my mate and for harming and killing my Named dragon-friends.  If you know anything about my culture you will know how serious my claim is.”

Before the Doctor could respond, Ianto felt something twist in the air around him; it was as if he were sensing an extremely powerful Rift spike approach.  He knew exactly what it was, even before the Doctor shouted, “Everyone down!  The paradox is reversing!”

Ianto could feel the sheer wrongness of the paradox as he was tossed to the deck, and he grabbed ahold of Martha to keep her from being thrown about.  She clung to him as Ianto tried to keep them from being injured, the power of the vortex screaming around them, time feeling like pins and needles along his every nerve ending.  Ianto clenched his jaw to keep from crying out in pain, and blackness nibbled at the edges of his vision.  He tenaciously held on to consciousness though, knowing if he gave into the darkness he would lose whatever advantage he had.

His pride in his mate grew, knowing it had been Jack to reverse the paradox. 

Just as quickly as it had begun, the time storm was over, and the Valiant ceased its shuddering.   Ianto gingerly picked himself up, helping Martha to her feet.  One look outside showed a clear blue sky, and no sign of the Toclafane. 

Time had rewound, and things were back to how they were before the coming of the Toclafane.

The world was alive once more.

“The paradox is broken,” the Doctor proclaimed, getting to his own feet.  “We’ve reverted back one year, to two past eight in the morning, just after the American President was assassinated.  None of it ever happened.”

“But I remember it,” Francine Jones spoke up.  Ianto turned to look at her; she would have been a handsome woman if not for the worn look about her. 

“We were at the eye of the storm,” the Doctor explained.  “We’re the only ones who will remember what happened.”

A flurry of movement caught Ianto’s attention, and he spun, reaching out and grabbing the Master as he tried to dart past him.  “I don’t think so,” he snapped.  He spun, slamming the fleeing Time Lord against the large conference table.

He let himself take on his dragon form, keeping his grasp on the Master.

The dragon towered over the Time Lord, pinning him to the table with one large hand, his claws digging into its surface and forming an unbreakable cage.  The Master’s face was twisted in rage, but his eyes showed only fear.

“I claim the right of vengeance,” the dragon roared, his anger soaring high.  Everything that his mate had endured…that his friends had endured, called for it.  “As the Great Dragons are my witness, I demand it!”

“And you shall have it,” the voice of the Earth Dragon echoed throughout the control deck.

They were there, the four Great Dragons and their Named Friends, each Dragon coiled like thick smoke around the forms of their chosen.  Toshiko and Kathy both smiled at him; Alice looked fierce, as if she wished she was the one holding the monster down onto the table – and she most likely was thinking that very thing; and Rhiannon was stern, her arms crossed over her chest as she surveyed the scene before her.

Just beyond the Dragons and their Friends, the dragon saw Jack practically careen back into the room, stopping and staring at the sight.  He could tell the moment he recognized Alice among the Dragon-Friends by the incredulous expression that crossed his too-pale face.

“Greetings, Doctor,” the Earth Dragon said.  “We are the Dragons of Air, Fire, Water, and Earth, and we have existed on this world for longer than recorded history.  We remember the dinosaurs and the great explosion that destroyed them; we welcomed the race humans have called the Silurians, but are known by an older, more honourable name; we befriended the ape-creatures who would, one day, become the dominant species on this planet.  We raised the dragon-kind out of barbarism and into the light, and watched as humanity slowly killed all but this last one.  We made the Pacts that balance the Earth and keep it from complete chaos.  We also remember this last year, and felt the Earth dying around us as you waited for the moment to strike.  Your inaction has lost you any right to the Master that you might have had, if you had reacted immediately to stop what was going to happen.  He now belongs to our son, and to the Earth.  It is they who will pass judgment upon him.”

“He’s a Time Lord,” the Doctor argued, “my own kind.  If anyone has the right to pass judgment, then it’s me.”

“And what would you do with him?” the Air Dragon demanded.

“The only safe place to keep him is in my TARDIS,” he answered, lifting his chin in defiance.  “He and I are the only Time Lords left in existence.  I should be the one to hold him.”

“You would keep him prisoner on your ship?” the dragon scoffed, his claws gouging deeper into the tabletop.  The Master lay quiet under his hand, but he didn’t think that would last long. 

“I would.”

“And if he should escape?”

“He won’t,” the Doctor answered assuredly.

“You cannot guarantee that,” the dragon responded.  “He will eventually escape, and more innocents will suffer.  Are you willing to risk more deaths just so you would no longer be the last?”

The Doctor’s expression turned pleading. “You’re the last of your own race.  Certainly you can understand the loneliness of being the only one left.”

“I can,” the dragon answered.  “But what you do not understand is that I have had to make that choice: to save one of my kind, or to protect innocents.”  He swallowed hard, memories of Lisa’s madness resurfacing.  He pushed them back down, needing to focus on the here and now.  “I chose to be alone instead of the destruction that would have been unleashed if I had chosen to save her.  Can you do the same?”

“There’s always another choice!” the Doctor argued.

“Then tell me what that choice is?” the dragon challenged.  “The Master…or innocent lives.  Tell me, Doctor…give me that third option.”

“Let me deal with him,” the Time Lord urged.  “I’ll make certain he never harms anyone else.”

“That’s not an option.  Or have you not been listening?  The Master cannot be trusted into your keeping.  If he should escape and regain control of your TARDIS, then untold damage could result.  You simply cannot guarantee it in any way that we would believe you.”

“There is still the matter of the vengeance for your mate,” the Air Dragon reminded him.

“I haven’t forgotten,” the dragon assured her. 

“But if you’re the last,” the Doctor said, confused, “then how can you have a mate?”

The dragon looked over at Jack.  “My mate is Captain Jack Harkness,” he answered proudly.  “I have sung the Song of Commitment to him.”

“Jack?” the Doctor scoffed.  “He can’t be your mate.”

“And why is that?” the dragon inquired, anger overtaking him once more.   At the corner of his eye he saw Jack stiffen in outrage.

“For one thing, he’s not even a dragon!”

“Jack Harkness has been the destined mate of our son for over fifteen hundred years,” the Water Dragon answered. 

“Have you not looked into his future?” the Fire Dragon asked.  “Have you not seen what he is destined to become?”

“He’s wrong,” the Doctor refuted.  “It wasn’t any sort of mystical destiny that made him into a fixed point…it was a teenaged human with a head full of time vortex and not enough control.  He should never have been made immortal.”

“You will not speak about my mate in that manner,” the dragon snarled.  “I have dreamt of him ever since I was a young dragon.  He is mine and I am his.  You know not what you’re talking about.”  He’d seen Jack go pale at the Doctor’s words, and he wished he could wipe away the Doctor’s disdain. 

He looked down at the Master; the monster was grinning up at him, as if he’d been given a great present.  “You’re mated to the freak?” he chortled.  “Oh, this is priceless!”

“Be quiet!” The dragon leaned just a bit of his weight against the trapped Time Lord, and the Master choked a little.  “You will not speak.”

“The fate of the one known as the Master is no longer in your hands,” the Earth Dragon said, bringing the conversation back on track.  “It is in the hands of our son, and of the humans he injured.”

“Time has been turned back,” the Doctor answered.  “No one remembers that year.”

“We do.”

All eyes turned to Francine Jones.

She looked at the Doctor defiantly.   “My family and I remember it all,” she went on.  “We’re the witnesses you’re looking for.”

“Francine,” the Doctor said, his eyes widening.  “What are you doing?”

Clive stepped up next to her, almost at the same time as Tish did.  “We remember it all, Doctor,” he echoed her. 

“We remember all the deaths,” Tish added.  “We remember what Jack sacrificed for us.”  She turned to smile at Jack, who promptly walked over and put his arm around her in support.  “What did you do, Doctor?  What did you do to help anyone?”

“Mum…Dad,” Martha said, moving toward her family.  “Tish…what are you saying?  The Doctor had his plan all along, and it worked.”

“You saw it, Martha,” Francine said.  “You spent a year seeing what the Master was doing.”

“The Master treated us like dirt,” Tish added.  “He tortured and killed Jack, over and over again.”

“You weren’t up here,” Francine went on.  “You don’t know what we went through, while the Doctor sat and did his whatever it was, and he didn’t raise a hand to help us.  The Master was given free rein to hurt and humiliate us.  And the Doctor does what?  Chooses that bastard over the ones he held captive?  Over the world that suffered under his rule?”

“You’re all better than this!” the Doctor exclaimed, his eyes wide in surprise. 

The dragon realized then that the Time Lord wasn’t used to having people question his motives like this.  He might have gotten some joy over that fact if the situation wasn’t so awful.

And then, Alice stepped forward, the Air Dragon accompanying her.  “Jack Harkness is my father,” she announced.  “I saw over the Master’s broadcasts what he did to him, and it was sheer evil.  Nothing will ever make me forgive him for what he did to my dad.”

The look of pride on Jack’s face shone like a beacon.  He released Tish, and in three strides was pulling Alice into a fierce hug, tears running down his face.  “I love you, so very much,” he murmured just loud enough for the entire group to hear. 

“I love you too, Dad.”  She hugged him just as fiercely.

The dragon’s heart wanted to expand out of his chest with the joy of his family being back together after so long.  He hadn’t been certain that any of the Dragon-Friends would remember the year, and he was so very glad they did, if just for this reunion.

It was Toshiko’s turn.  “I work with Jack at Torchwood,” she said.  “He saved me from a horrible place, and he’s like a brother to me.  I witnessed the Rift storm that destroyed Cardiff from my computer and through CCTV, and it was caused by the activation of the paradox machine.  And the Master laughed about it, in one of his broadcasts.  He laughed as people died.  How can you expect me to forgive that?”

“Sounds like Torchwood to me,” the Doctor snorted.

“Yeah, well you don’t know anything then,” Kathy argued.  “I might not get along with Harkness all that well, but I know the good that Torchwood does.  I’m just an ordinary copper who got caught up in all this mess, but it was the ordinary people who suffered the most under the Master’s rule.  How many died in his work camps?  How many did the Toclafane murder just because the Master ordered them to?  How can you excuse that?”

The dragon nodded.  He’d seen what Kathy was speaking of, and while he hadn’t been near Cardiff he’d heard about the Rift storm from both Owen and Toshiko. 

“The Earth was dying under the Master’s rule,” Rhiannon was next.  “We could feel it, fading a little each day.  If time hadn’t turned back, this planet would have been dead within months.  And what about the rest of the universe?  What about trillions upon trillions who would have been killed by the rockets?  How can you condone destruction like that on such a scale?  Do you even care about the innocent? Because it certainly doesn’t seem that way to me.”

“It seems as if the victims have spoken,” the Earth Dragon said.  “What have you to say about these charges, Doctor?”

“How can you all remember?” the Doctor asked, avoiding the subject.  “Time turned back; you should all have forgotten!”

“There are more who know what happened than what you might think,” the Fire Dragon answered, laughing. 

“Our power shielded those who came to our valley,” the Water Dragon added.  “There are many witnesses to what had been wrought.”

“You should have let them forget,” the Doctor charged. 

“No,” the dragon said, angry that the Time Lord was being so cavalier about the people in Ddraig Llyn.  “You have no right to make that sort of decision.”

“Our son is correct,” the Earth Dragon declared.  “He has demanded the right to avenge his mate.  That right will be upheld.”

“Jack,” the Doctor pleaded.  “I’m begging you to let me handle the Master.  Don’t let this happen.”

Jack stared at the Doctor, so many emotions in his expression that the dragon couldn’t describe them all.  “Doctor,” he said, “I waited so long for you, only to find out that you abandoned me and can’t stand the sight of me.  Ianto is the only person who has accepted me for who I am; he’s loved me despite everything and wants to commit his eternity to me.  No one has ever wanted to protect me…to avenge what was done to me…and I can’t help but love him all the more for it.  It may not be in your nature to exact revenge on a monster who’s hurt someone you love, but it is in my mate’s.    And, after suffering for an entire year under the Master’s so-called mercies, I can’t help but want that revenge.  I know that disappoints you, but then you haven’t made how you feel about me a secret.”  He turned his gaze toward the dragon, his eyes smiling.  “I love you.  I swear to honor you, to protect you, to avenge any wrongs done to you, and to love you for eternity.”

Jack’s words echoed the vows that were given in any dragon mating.  His gaze softened as he said, “I love you.  I swear to honor you, to protect you, to avenge any wrongs done to you, and to love you for eternity.”

“So it shall be,” the four Dragon intoned, echoed by their Friends.

The dragon could feel the magic in the binding, and could see that Jack did as well.  This was a mating in everything but the flight, and if that never happened he could be completely content.

“Well, that’s just so sweet,” the Master drawled, his voice a little breathless from the weight of the dragon’s hand pinning him to the table.  “Do we get the honeymoon now, or are you going to kill me and get it over with first?”

The euphoria of the mating broke suddenly at the nasty tone.  The dragon looked down, baring his teeth.  “Are you so quick to die?”

“Seems like I don’t have much of a choice,” the Master answered, wriggling as much as he could…which wasn’t a lot. 

“Don’t you see?” the Doctor tried one last time.  “He wants to die.  You’d be giving him what he wants.”

The dragon glanced up, seeing the Doctor’s appalled face staring at up at him.  “Then perhaps I should do exactly that.”

It only took a simple flex of a single claw, and a year of hell was finally over.



Comments

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Wow vengeful Ianto. Love what you did about the Doctor. He needed telling after the way he treated Jack. Great chapter as usual.
And thanks for the lovely v-gift.

Edited at 2012-02-14 09:04 pm (UTC)
Glad you liked it. Ianto had every right to be vengeful, after what the Master did. Thanks, hon.

I'm happy you liked it. :)
Right! That's the Doctor told!!!!! Finally! Now I hope he learns something from it.
It is! And while Ten might not learn, don't count Eleven out. :)
great episode! I love the supporters of Jack and the Ianto's right to punish the Master!
It feels good that Doctor hears the truth!
He has sacrificed so many people still.

awww, the vows exchanged between Jack and Ianto. romantic, despite the situation!
Thank you! The Doctor needed a dose of truth.

Glad you liked the vows. It wasn't the most romantic time, but it was the best. :)
BOOYEAH! WAY TO GO IANTO! I always thought that the Doctor was way too soft on The Master. Some things are just unforgivable.
Glad you liked it! Yes, I agree...some things just can't be forgiven. :)
You made Ianto stomp over the Master O_O... :D

This is awesome and I'm really glad that the rest of the Dragon friends remember the year.

Also, was that Ianto and Jack's mating? Not very romantic but so like them to do it this way. I will wait the next chapter.

...

...

...

Ianto stomped over the master muajajajaja ;P
I did, and it was very satisfying. *grins*

Well, it was kinda their mating, but just remember in the future story that Jack has turned into a dragon once before them. That time hasn't come up yet, so there's still the true mating to come.

But yes, it wasn't at all romantic but it was heartfelt.

I take it you like the fact that the Master got stomped? *laughs*
a. Please please tell me Eleven in this verse will be better

b. YAY they remember!!!!!

c. YAY Alice!

d. It's almost over....*thinks*

*EVIL LAUGHTER*
a. Oh yes, much better. In fact, he'll be around in my LLI BB story and will do his best to make amends for Ten's behavior.

b. Yep, they do!

c. I love Alice. *grins*

d. One more chapter, and then a short interlude before Series Two begins...

*joins in the EVIL laughter*
*sighs with happiness*

Now this is how that episode should have ended. It always nauseated me, the way the Doctor was so willing to forgive the Master for everything he'd done. And somehow, I don't think Ianto will give a damn if the Doctor hates him for killing the Master.
The reunion between Jack and Alice? Absolutely beautiful.

Thank you so much - you just made a dreadful day so much easier to cope with.
Glad you liked it!

Yeah, I do agree with you. I always thought the Doctor could have forgiven the Master for what he did to him, but for what he did to the rest of the world? What he did to Jack and the Joneses? Nope, sorry. He had no right.

Oh, heck no. Ianto doesn't care at all...as we'll see in the next chapter.

Sorry you had a bad day. *Hugs* Hope it gets better.
Great as usual. There's the Doctor told! Loved it. I think that's one reason I really didn't watch DW that often. I thought 10 was rather whiny and emo too much. Also the "I'm right and everyone else has to do everything I say" especially when he was in the wrong was irritating. The Great Dragons and Ianto are all older than the Doctor. I'm glad they told the Doctor some home truths and that Martha's family sided with them. I noticed Martha didn't have anything to say. Very proud of Alice, Tosh, and Kathy as well. Also proud of Jack. I couldn't never understand the blind faith he always has in the Doctor.

Great chapter.
Ten was also a bit more arrogant I think. I do love Ten, but there are times when I really wanted to smack him. His behavior toward Jack was one of those times.

Well, there wasn't much Martha could say, but she'll speak up a bit in the next chapter, and we'll see how she really feels about what happened.

Thank you! :)
Ohh - I loved this chapter!!!
Thank you! :)
what ana amzing chapter and being able to tell the Doctor all those things was just priceless!
Thank you! Glad you liked it! :)
Go Ianto! Totally awesome. I am so glad that you made the connection between Ianto and the Doctor and how they are in a very similar position.

My heart just flutters at how much Ianto and Jack love each other. Ianto isn't a killer but he would do anything for Jack and to avenge the wrongs done to Jack.

I like that the Great Dragons asked the humans that remembered what they wanted done with the Master. I remember reading about a tribal tradition whereby the family of the victim of a crime (murder presumably) would be the ones to decide the fate of the perpetrator. I don't necessarily think that is right but it is more right than an alien speaking for a race and offering forgiveness.

Happy Valentines Day!

I can't wait for the next chapter, maybe Jack could get a long overdue hug from Ianto and then Alice - again. He must be so proud of her! (I know we are!) :)

Edited at 2012-02-15 03:32 am (UTC)
You're right, Ianto isn't but this is Jack, and he'd do anything for him, up to and including killing someone who hurt him. And Jack would do the same thing.

Yes, I always thought that those who'd suffered should have had some say in what happened to the Master. He did more to them than he did to the Doctor, if you think about it. I'm glad it worked for you.

And Happy Valentines to you, too!

Next chapter should be up tomorrow, I think. :)
OH HELL YEAH!!!!!! That was fucking AWESOME!!!!!!!

YES, YES, YES, YES, YES!!!!

As far as I'm concerned this is now canon for this ep!

ummmm...yeah, I may be just a tad excited about this chapter LOL

Great job on it. This is exactly what I wanted to see.
Thank you! *grins*

I don't know, you don't sound like you enjoyed it all that much. *winks*

*laughs*
Doctor gets a smack-down - sweeet!
I wish that had happened in the series.

"mating in everything but the flight" Yes! finally!! :)

so does the Master play the "my consciousness is in a ring and when combined with a mystical ritual I'll be back" cardlike in the series or is this actually the last we've heard of him?
I know, I do wish it had happened that way, but it's the Doctor...

As for the ring...that shall be addressed. *winks*
Thank you! I had to have everyone putting their two cents' in, something that I wish had been done in canon.

Glad you liked it. :)
Brilliant as usual. I love vengeful Ianto. I really loved how all the Dragon Friends spoke their piece.

And thanks for the Glass Heart - my second one today!

Thank you! Ianto had to get back a bit for Jack. Too bad the Master only had the one death, isn't it?

You're welcome. Glad you liked it. :)
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