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Myfanwy 2

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Partners in Every Way - Chapter Five

Partners in Every Way - Chapter Five
Author: Milady Dragon
Series: Dragon-Verse
Rating: PG-13
Pairing(s): Jack/Ianto; Toshiko/Kathy (mentioned); Gwen/Rhys (mentioned); Jack/John Hart (Past)
Warnings: Language, Angst, Character Death (temporary)
Spoilers: Up through Torchwood Series Two, "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang"
Disclaimer:  I don't own Torchwood, I would have treated it better. .
Author's note:  This is the Dragon-Verse version of "Kiss Kiss, Bang Bang".  Dates on this story are from Ianto's Desktop and from the TARDIS Index File. 

Summary:  Jack and Ianto are back to work after their time off, just as Jack's ex-partner, John Hart, arrives on the scene.   Just what is Hart up to, and just what are they going to do to stop him?




15 June 2008

 

“Jack.”

Jack turned at Ianto’s call.  They were in his office, and the rather large collection of weapons was on his desk, waiting to be put away. 

Ianto was standing by the safe, the door open, a frown on his face.  He didn’t look happy, which didn’t surprise Jack at all; he knew his mate had seen what had occurred at the bar, and he’d have serious issues with Hart’s presence in the Hub.  Not that Jack blamed him; he knew his former partner very well, and it was dangerous just to breathe the same oxygen that Hart did, out of concern for airborne poisons.  “I know what you’re going to say,” he answered.  “And no, I don’t trust him one bit.  But if there’s just a small chance that he’d being honest for one of the few times since I’d met him…”

“I understand that,” the dragon said.  “We can’t allow even the possibility that there really are some forms of bomb out there.  But I don’t see why we can’t put him in a cell for the duration of our search.  We certainly don’t need him to help us, and I don’t trust him not to hurt anyone.  I also don’t’ trust him not to use the bombs himself.”

Ianto might have just met Hart, but Jack knew he had a very valid point.  “Honestly?  We put him in a cell, and I can guarantee he’ll break out on his own, and it doesn’t matter what our security is like.  It would be better to keep him fully in sight than leave him here, alone.  So taking him with us is really the only option.”

The dragon regarded him closely, then nodded.  “You do know him best.  But, he knows you, even though it’s been over one hundred years since you’ve last worked with him.   Which is why I think I should be the one to watch him, if we decide to split up to make the hunt go faster.”

Jack shook his head.  “That’s precisely the reason why I should be the one to partner with him, because he does know me, and he knows what I’m capable of.  I’ve also changed a lot since then, and he doesn’t know about my immortality –“

“And he doesn’t know I’m a dragon,” Ianto said.  “He won’t be expecting me to be tougher than I look.  Plus, I can distract him…flirt a bit…he already has his eye on me.  Perhaps I can distract him enough to get something out of him.”

He didn’t like it, not at all.  Jack didn’t want his mate anywhere near Hart.  But he could also see Ianto’s point.  Hart wouldn’t be as open with Jack himself as he might be with someone else; he would dance around the mission and do his damnedest to distract Jack away from what needed to be done.  Not that he would necessarily succeed, because Jack would be on the lookout for such behavior, but Hart wouldn’t be lulled into letting something slip around him.  

Ianto was the logical choice.  Any of the others would, of course, be wary of Hart, but the dragon was the one who would be able to more easily hold his own against any of Hart’s tricks.  It was just the idea that Ianto would be with his very dangerous ex-partner, and he didn’t want to take the chance that anything could happen…

Jack sighed.  He knew he’d be doing it Ianto’s way, since he also knew he didn’t dare leave Hart alone in the Hub, even locked down in a cell.  His getting free and getting his hands on things he shouldn’t was a very real danger.

As real a danger as letting the man anywhere near his mate.

“Okay,” Jack capitulated.  “But there are a few ground rules, okay?”

Ianto nodded gravely.  “You know him; and I trust you.”

Jack smiled quietly.  “And I trust you to take a chunk of out his ass if he so much as touches you.”

The dragon looked innocent, which was somewhat ruined by the wink that he threw in Jack’s direction. 

“Okay, there are actually three rules.”  Jack ticked them off on his fingers.  “First one:  don’t believe anything he says…which I think is somewhat obvious.”  Ianto nodded.  “The second one is always keep him in front of you.  You’re tough, and he doesn’t know where to hit you to do the most damage, but he could get lucky.  And three…never let him kiss you.”

Ianto’s nose wrinkled in disgust.  “Not hardly.  Although I could make the same warning to you.”

Jack instantly felt guilty.  “What happened back at the bar –“

“Jack,” Ianto stepped up to him, resting a hand on his chest, “it’s all right.  Hart kissed you; you didn’t kiss him.  But you should follow your own advice, you know; it’s obvious he wants you, and you should watch yourself as much as you watch out for us.  He could easily pull something on you, as he could on the rest of us.  And, to be honest…I’m not sure it would be a good idea to let him know you can’t die.  If I don’t trust him with everyone’s safety, then I certainly don’t trust him with that particular secret.”

Of course, Ianto was speaking sense.  Jack had been so concerned for his team that he hadn’t even considered his own personal safety, knowing that he would snap back from anything that might be thrown his way.  And yes, letting Hart in on his immortality could be a costly mistake, one that Jack knew he couldn’t afford to make.  While he didn’t know what his former partner would do with that information, Jack wasn’t about to take the risk. 

“You’re right,” he admitted.  “I hadn’t planned on telling him anyway, but he could easily find out if he tried to kill me.”

“And I heard that crack about ‘murder rehab’.  There’s such a thing in the future?”

Jack nodded.  “Rehabilitation is different in the future than it is here.  Every possible step is taken to cure someone before they’re proclaimed too dangerous to let out into society.  And, of course, some do manage to slip through and bluff the system.”  He’d seen the difference between the past and the future forms of reform, and he couldn’t honestly say either one was better than the other.  Neither seemed to have the best success rate, even though in the future they were a little less inhumane about their methods.  And in the time Jack was from they let criminals get away with a bit more than they did in the 21st Century.

“Let’s get these weapons locked up,” Ianto said gathering up the tray and heading back over to the safe.  “I’m not sure leaving the team alone with Hart is such a good idea, even if Owen is inclined to shoot him.”

“You’re right.”  Jack grabbed Ianto by the arm, pulling him to a stop.  He leaned over the tray and brushed a barely-there kiss across his mate’s lips.  “I don’t have to tell you to be careful, do I?”

“Only if you be careful, too,” the dragon smirked.

“Deal.”  Jack began stacking the confiscated weapons into the safe, standing the katana up next to the sword that Ianto had given Jack; the sword that Ianto had used to kill Lisa. 

He shivered and hoped it wasn’t some sort of omen…not that he actually believed in omens.

**********

They joined the rest of the team and Hart in the boardroom, the atmosphere so thick Jack knew he could have cut it with a laser scalpel.  Toshiko was the only one actually doing anything; she was seated, her fingers flying over the keyboard of her computer, frowning in concentration.

Owen had his gun out and lying on the tabletop, obviously watching John Hart…who didn’t seem at all bothered by the scrutiny.  His feet were up on the table, and he was leaning back in his chair, looking extremely bored with it all.  But Jack could make out the tells in his former partner: the slightly stiff set of his shoulders, and the sharpness in his gaze.  Other than that he was the perfect model of uncaring looseness, and Jack wanted nothing more than to shake that up.

Gwen sat next to Owen, and she was also watching Hart like a hawk.  Her gaze was calculating, and Jack wondered just what she was seeing.  He might not agree with a lot that Gwen did, but she could be discerning when she wanted to be…as long as it didn’t have anything to do with one of her teammates, of course.  Then she could be blinkered, and to Jack that just didn’t make any sense.  He would be interested in hearing what she might have to say about their unwanted ‘guest’.

Ianto took his customary seat next to Jack’s but Jack himself didn’t sit; he stood next to the screen in the far wall, his arms crossed.  “What have you found, Toshiko?” he asked, getting things started.

His technician looked up from her terminal.  “Seven hours ago,” she reported, “we logged in a very minor surge of Rift energy in three different locations.”  She touched a control on her keyboard, and a map of the city came up on the viewscreen.  Three glowing red dots appeared on the map: one north, one west, and one obviously in the dock area of town.

Ianto frowned; Jack was too familiar with the dragon, and knew he was second-guessing himself about not sensing the Rift spikes.  However, if Jack was right they’d just been getting into Cardiff from Ddraig Llyn at that point, and if they really were minor spikes then Ianto could very well have missed them. 

“Six of us,” Hart spoke up, his feet coming down off the tabletop, “three locations.  Two to each location.”

Jack glared at him.  “I’m in charge here,” he snapped.  “I give the orders.”   Ianto had called it, them splitting up to handle separate targets.  It had made sense then, but he wasn’t about to give Hart the satisfaction of seemingly bending to his whim quite so easily.

“Then give some, big boy!”  Hart rolled his eyes.

“There’s something else,” Toshiko butted into their posturing.  “If these canisters are radioactive, then why haven’t I picked up any radiation surges?”

Hart shrugged.  “The canisters could be holding integrity at the moment.  But trust me…that won’t last.”

He seemed quite nonchalant about it, but Jack couldn’t help but wonder if there was any radiation involved at all.  Hart had made such a big deal about the canisters being deadly, and yet there wasn’t a sign of that danger he’d tried to use to motivate them.  It was one more notch against Hart’s story, but it wasn’t enough to make him call the man a complete liar.

“John’s right,” Gwen said, giving the man a small smile.  “Sorry…do you prefer John, or Captain?”

“With eyes like yours,” Hart leered, “you can call me Vera.  I won’t complain.”

What was Gwen doing? 

Jack opened his mouth to call her down, but she spoke right over him.  “Tosh and Owen can take the north; Jack and Ianto, the west.  Vera and I can take the docks.”

Hart made a kissing gesture in her direction, and Gwen practically batted her eyelashes at him. 

“As much as I appreciate the suggestion, Gwen,” Jack said sharply, “you are not in charge of this team.  I am.  It’s my decision to make who teams up with whom…if there’s any splitting up at all.”

He could see Hart taking everything in, and Jack swore silently.  His ex-partner was making mental notes of the weaknesses within the team, possibly to exploit for later.  This was what he’d been hoping to avoid: to give Hart any ammunition to work with, to keep him from setting any wedges within his family.

But then, Jack considered that he might have been a bit naïve that Gwen would just fall into line.  She was an opinionated woman, and in ways he’d completely forgotten how to deal with her.  It had been well over a year since he’d last seen her, and while Ianto had said she’d seemed to have integrated with the team over the four months between Jack leaving with the Doctor and Saxon taking over, he should have seen that she’d push back against his authority. 

But he had forgotten, and had had it thrown back up in his face twice so far since he’d come back.  This was the third, and as far as Jack was concerned, it was going to be the last.

His eyes scanned the group.  Owen was actually stroking his handgun, and Jack would have normally made an innuendo-laden comment about the action, but kept it to himself.  His medic was watching Hart as if he was looking at something under a microscope, distrust written all over him.  He thought back to his conversation with Ianto in his office, and realized that, while Owen wouldn’t let Hart get away with shit, he would be too tempted to give in to needling the man…and that could give Hart an opening into Owen’s mental processes that Jack didn’t want to give him. 

Toshiko seemed calm and collected, waiting for Jack to tell them what to do.  She and Ianto made the best team at the table, but Jack knew that he would split them up this time.  Ianto had been correct; the dragon was the best fit to watch Hart, and that meant teaming them together.

“All right,” he said, resting his hands on the table and leaning forward, “splitting up seems our best option, but the teams are going to be a bit different.  Owen,” he turned toward the medic, “you and Gwen will take the north.”  Gwen looked as if she was going to argue, but Jack simply glared at her.  “Toshiko, you and I will head west.  Ianto, you take Hart and head toward the docks.”  The open spaces would give the dragon the best chance to transform if he needed to.

“Me and Eye Candy,” Hart purred.  “It must be my lucky day.”

Ianto simply rolled his eyes, not rising to the bait, which made Jack’s decision that much easier to deal with. 

“I can program some PDA’s to help in the search,” Toshiko volunteered.  “Since we don’t have any idea beyond general location as to where the canisters are.”

“Good idea,” Jack agreed.  “How long will it take?”

She shrugged.  “A couple of minutes.”

 “Get on that.” 

Toshiko nodded, getting up from the table and leaving the room. 

“Captain Hart,” Ianto said coolly, standing.  “Shall we go?”

Hart practically bounced to his feet.  “I’m all yours,” he answered, almost gleefully. 

Ianto motioned him ahead, not answering the comment.  But Jack could see the suspicion coming off of his mate in waves, and knew that Ianto could handle Hart, if anyone could.

“C’mon, Cooper,” Owen said, getting up and holstering his gun.  “Let’s get this show on the road.”

“Just a second,” she answered, her eyes not leaving Jack’s.

He really shouldn’t have been surprised that Gwen would try to get the last word.

Once Owen was gone, Gwen put her hands on her hips and glared.  “I was the logical choice to go with Hart,” she argued hotly.  “You weren’t in here to watch him flirt with me.  I could have gotten him to open up to me.”

 “No, Gwen,” he said.  “He would have eaten you alive.  He would have ditched you at the first opportunity, and chances are his methods would have been fatal.”

“And you think Ianto can handle him?” Gwen shorted.

“I know he can.  Hart doesn’t know about him, doesn’t know that Ianto is a dragon.  He’s tough and very difficult to kill, plus Hart was flirting with him as well…but then, he was flirting with everyone, so that doesn’t make one bit of difference in this situation.  No, Ianto has the best chance of coming out of any confrontation with Hart relatively unscathed, and I honestly think he’ll be able to get information out of him better than anyone else could.”  He didn’t want to think that there’d be any sort of dust-up between his mate and ex-partner, but Jack wasn’t ignorant of Hart’s failings.  It was a good chance he was lying about the canisters, and Jack was willing to bet whatever immortality he had that, once Hart and Ianto found that first canister, that Hart would try to dump his ‘companion’.

“You have done nothing but question my decisions since I got back,” he went on, “that will now stop.  I am in charge, and that isn’t going to change.  What you did in front of Hart was dangerous, and it could have played into his hands.  Make no mistake, Gwen…that man is deadly.  He will not hesitate to kill to get what he wants.  And, right now, he wants those canisters, no matter what’s inside them.  Pairing you with Owen is the best chance to save your life.”

Gwen’s eyes had widened as she processed what Jack was telling her…which, in Jack’s opinion, was a good thing.  Gwen was headstrong, and thought she was in the right.  She needed someone to show her that she wasn’t, and quite honestly he didn’t want to get her killed to prove that point. 

“Now,” he finished, “go with Owen and see if you can find that canister.  The sooner we get them all, the sooner we can finish the rest of this conversation.  Because, don’t think I’m going to let you get away with questioning me in front of a possible enemy combatant.  That was more shades of wrong than I can even list.” 

Jack didn’t give her a chance to respond.  He turned and left the conference room, hoping to catch up with his mate before the mission separated them.



Chapter Six



Comments

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ARGH. GWEN. *shakes her* Seriously, dumb move to top all dumb moves. I get a bad feeling about this. I'm all tetchy on behalf of the characters. Brilliant update, as always! :)
Yep, Gwen does it again...

Thanks!
Sheesh! Finally, someone has yanked Gwen's chain about her behavior. The canon scene always bothered me for several reasons, not the least of which was that she assumed once again that a man would find her attractive and spill his guts because of it. All her flirting w/John Hart got her was almost dead. I also didn't like her arguing w/Jack in front of someone outside their group. It was bad enough she challenged Jack in front of the rest of the team, but especially when others were involved it was essential Torchwood act as a team and follow orders. She could never be counted on to do that and i am so glad she finally gets straight, even if I had to wait for fanfiction to do it.

Jack handled this instance of disrepect, but there is still lingering disrepect toward the second, Ianto. I'd be much happier if Gwen were made to leave the team if she really can't behave. I've been in the classroom and its almost impossible to maintain control when one or more students is constantly pushing the limits. Unless you handle it swifting, using carrots and sticks, you're likely to lose control at some point and its hard to get that repects and discipline back once its gone. I've found it to be the same among the "pencil-pushers" with whom I spend my days.

It will be interesting how Ianto handles Hart. I doubt dragons can be felled by anything as simple as poisonous lip gloss, but we don't really know, do we? And if Ianto gets waylaid afterall, who's going to run about saving everyone else? I love John Hart 'cause he's a bad boy and all bad boys need love, but I wouldn't mind him getting a bit scorched if it keeps him from doing any real harm. Yep, I said it - let Ianto toast him a bit!!! That would be fun, though I think if it comes to that, Gwen will be right in the middle of whatever goes wrong.

Sorry to write so muc, but your updates are always so much fun. They're like weekly installments of the show we can chat about just like the canon episodes. Bye for now.
Oh, that's our Gwen...thinking she's always right! *laughs*

Hart will have a surprise, that's for sure. *winks*

No, I love your comment! It's fantastic! Please write them as long as you want. Thanks! :)
Mmm Interesting, I like how Ianto and Jack handle the team is very professional.

Funny I like your Gwen more that the canon, she IS being racist but is honest enough about it and she seems to be able to get past that and do her work well enough if not perfect, I think with time she could get over all of it.

Does John really start the flirting with her? I always had the impression that she was the one that started making eyes at him. Which would made sense, she is used to men doing what she wants if she flirts with them.

I can't wait to see your substitute for the office scene; I'm really excited about it

:)


Edited at 2012-04-19 11:04 pm (UTC)
Thanks! I had such an issue with Jack not being professional, when he had experience at leading.

Do you? I just see Gwen like that. She sees the things she wants to, and she's upfront about it, even if she's wrong. And she does, on the whole, love her job.

Well, since Jack hadn't been there, he doesn't know who actually started the flirting...

More up soon. :)
Can't wait to see how this plays out :)
More up soon. :)
Great chapter - shivers all over with the sword/katana comparison. Love that your Jsck is smart enough to pull Gwen up when she's disruptive & stupid; it's so annoying to watch the way she gets away with nearly everything in the show. How did she manage with that attitude while working in the police?

Edited at 2012-04-20 12:33 am (UTC)
Thanks! Glad you liked that part with the swords. And Jack is very competent in my universe. *grins*

WAY TO GO JACK! *shakes fist at Gwen* WHY YOU LITTLE.... Bart Simpson! That's who you are! GRRR!
Bart Simpson? I love it! *laughs*
Loved the update, glad Gwen has to face the consequences the attitude and disrespect she shows in this episode.
Thank you! Yeah, it did bother me that Jack didn't come down on her harder than he did.
It's definitely interesting to see how Ianto deals with Hart. John has no idea who he's dealing with.

Ah, Gwen. I can deal with questioning authority, as long as there is a legitimate concern and it's done with tact. Unfortunately, Gwen fails on both counts. I find it funny how in canon we're told that she is an awesome leader, but on the first case, she almost dies. *headdesk*
Oh, Hart won't know what's going to hit him. *grins*

Yep, that's our Gwen...and yes, I agree with you on Gwen's leadership skills. *nods*
Great chapter! I can't wait for John to try it on with Ianto and get the smackdown! I think that it's a very good point that Gwen did something very dangerous when she challenged Jack's authority in front of an outsider. It will be very interesting if John finds out if Jack is immortal, because that specific knowledge greatly impacts how the season concludes...

I can't wait - I love possibilities! :)
Thanks! Oh yes...Hart and Ianto... *winks*

And that's our Gwen.

More up soon. :)
Great chapter. Interested to see how the new teams pan out together. Do we get an office scene? And my fave when JOhn runds the gun around Ianto's jaw with just that moment of hesitation. How I loved writing that scene in Torchwood High. I suppose I can even feel sorry for Gwen a bit. Still looking forward to the John/Ianto banter.
*hugs*
K
xx
Thanks! The new teams...well, Hart will certainly have a surprise, that's for sure. Well, the office scene will be drastically changed, sorry to say...but don't worry, I'll make up for it later. *winks*

Thank you! I absolutely hate that in the show Jack lets Gwen walk all over him. This is much better.
Thanks! Glad you liked it. I always was disappointed that Jack didn't call Gwen on her crap. :)
Swift kick up the behind..that's what gwen needs..
But I do have a soft spot for Vera,even though he's bad as bad can be
Yep, you're absolutely right!

Well, Hart has some surprises in store. :)
so glad that jack didn't let gwen run over his authority in classic overbearing 'heart of torchwood' way.
Thanks! Glad you liked that. :)
I hope Jack gives Gwen a good talking to. I really don't like her lol. I wonder if John still wants Jack like he did in the series. If he does anything to Ianto Jack will kill him. Lookikng forward to the next chapter :)
We'll see what Jack says to Gwen. And yes, John does still want Jack, I can promise you that. And if he does anything to Jack... *winks*
Yay, another lovely installment! I love that Jack called Gwen out on her bahavior. Everytime I watch the show I want to slap Gwen for her attitude and then slap Jack for letting her get away with it. I can't wait to see how Ianto handles John, the man won't know what hit him. Looking forward to the nest update!
Thank you! It always bothered me that Jack let Gwen get away with that sort of thing. And yes, slapping Gwen is something I usually want to do as well.

Next up soon! :)
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