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Myfanwy 2

July 2018

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Remember - Chapter One

Remember - Chapter One
Author: Milady Dragon
Series: Dragon-Verse
Rating: PG-13
Pairing(s): JackHarkness/Ianto Jones, Toshiko Sato/Kathy Swanson, Rhiannon Davies/Johnny Davies (Mentioned), Jack Harkness/Estelle Cole (Past), Adam Smith/ Toshiko Sato
Warnings: Language, Violence, Non-Con, Mind Control, Amnesia, Memory Alteration, Horror, Angst, Body Horror
Spoilers: Both series up to S2, E5, "Adam" and the radio 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 "Adam".  Please be aware that this story is dark in places and does contain elements of non-con (if you're familiar with the episode then you know what I mean) and other instances that might be triggery for some people.  I beg you, watch the warnings and read at your own risk.

This story took me a long time.  My original outline had it shorter and actually lighter than what eventually became "Remember", but when I re-watched the actual episode I knew it had to be different than what I'd first came up with, and the material called for something much darker.  This is going to be hard to write, and possibly hard to read for some of you.  If you can't see it through, I certainly understand.

SummarySomething was wrong at Torchwood.  Kathy Swanson knew this.  What she didn't know was who the strange man was spending time with her fiancee, what had happened to Ianto, and how she was going to fix things....



Unknown

There was something wrong with his head.

His mind was muddled and dark, thoughts refusing to surface from the miasma that had become his inner eye. His brain felt far too large for his skull, as if it had been stuffed into something that simply couldn’t contain it. There was bright pain and black terror; grey mutterings of half-felt emotion and golden sparkles of power, and he didn’t recognise any of it even as it sank back into his deeper sub-consciousness like pebbles tossed into a midnight-tinged lake.

There was music as well; disjointed, words strident and unknown to him, echoing within the damaged mind in ways that were impossible to block out. At first, he’d believed that this music was outside of his body, however using his hands against his ears in an attempt to block it out didn’t work. There was a certainty that this should be familiar, but anytime he’d tried to embrace the disharmonious sound he bodily flinched away although there wasn’t a physical component to the horrific noise.

It wasn’t right, he was certain of that even if he could no longer recall what it should sound like.

There was cold, hard stone under his hands, and somehow he felt this should be comforting but it wasn’t. Other objects surrounded him, and this also should have been reassuring but for some reason these felt as if they belonged to someone totally different, although he was positive they were owned by him. He didn’t know how he knew that, however this dark place was familiar to him, his eyes picking out details in the blackness in a way that he was certain was unusual for anyone but him.

But he didn’t recall.

He realised he didn’t know his name, or where he was even though there was something submerged within the deepness of his mind told him that he should know this place, that this was a safe haven for him…and for someone else, but there was also no name to accompany that certainty. There was blue, the colour alive in ways that colours shouldn’t be, and it was connected in some way to this other person who shared this space with him.

Just as he associated green with his true self…whoever that would be.

He rose to his feet, kicking something in his way…it was soft, and with hesitant hands his felt for it, tangling his fingers up in soft cotton. A blanket, perhaps?

He hadn’t known what was blanket was until he was holding it, but once that identification surfaced it stayed with him tenuously, as if it was a sensory ghost that was haunting his muddled thoughts.

That was when he recognised other objects…pillows, shelves, and things flowing into his mind and then disappearing within the darkness that choked off the rest of his memories and vanished like a morning mist burned off by the rising sun.

He paused, his head cocking unconsciously as he considered that. Did he know what that was? He must have, if the comparison had come to him like that.

But then it vanished as well, and he found himself making his quiet way toward the door of the room he was in. An instinct was yelling at him that, no matter how safe he considered this place, he had to get out. He couldn’t stay there, because whoever had left him there meant him harm, and would be returning.

He didn’t know how he knew that.

The music in his head jangled and screamed at him, and while he couldn’t make out what it was trying to tell him he let it guide him.

He didn’t have a choice.

His questing fingers found the door, and while he wouldn’t have been able to say what was that moved them – because it wasn’t his consciousness, since that wasn’t working at the moment – they flitted over what was the locking mechanism and, somehow, the door opened under his touch. There was barely a noise as the door swung open just enough for him to look out into the darkened corridor.

No one was there. He wasn’t certain if that was good or bad.

His mind was telling him something, and he couldn’t interpret it properly. It was like a sense of roughly knowing which way to go, but it was puzzling him because there was the notion that he should be able to read the impressions he was receiving without the pain and darkness and despair that soaked through him like icy water.

There were golden sparks in his vision. He could just make them out in the corners of his eyes, but if he looked fully at them they disappeared, only to reappear once more like glittering ghosts of lost souls coming to haunt him. He felt them on his skin, cool and yet prickly; solid and yet amorphous, whispering things against the darkness of his damaged mind, explaining what was happening and yet he was unable to interpret the message.

He glanced down the corridor; both ways he somehow knew were dangerous, but the way to his left moreso. That way he’d been carried from, of that he was absolutely certain, his antagonist laying in wait for him to emerge through that direction.

His feet turned him the opposite way.

Deeper and deeper he slunk through the darkness like a wraith, not knowing where he was going but moving anyway. At some point his mind switched off, and his body followed its own instincts as he travelled farther and farther away from the room he’d been trapped within…no, not trapped; although that music within his mind, as discordant was it was, was attempting to communicate just how very wrong it had been for him to have been locked within what should have been his place of rest.   That should not have occurred, of that he was certain, but just how that certainty registered was beyond him in that moment.

He had no idea how long he stumbled along before he came to a door. He would have missed it, except for the acuteness of his vision, which he knew shouldn’t have been that sharp in the pitch blackness, and yet was. Some innate knowledge told him there was a light, if only he could find where to turn it on, but he didn’t even try. He didn’t want to give himself away; his enemy would search for him as soon as it became obvious that he’d left his safe place. A shiver went through him, and his injured mind shied away from recalling just why he had an enemy that would be seeking him out.

Remember

He gasped as the pain hit, sharp and sure as a blade. He crumpled to his knees, pressing his hands against his head as hard as he could, keening softly as he collapsed. That word was taboo; something that he absolutely could not say, even if he had the ability to speak it aloud. Those were gone as well as his very identity, and nothing would bring them back to him.

That word sank back again into his shattered mind, and he breathed deep, biting his lip and hoping that the noise he’d made wouldn’t draw anyone to him. His instinct was still telling him he had to escape, to get away from that place, wherever he was, that should hold some modicum of peace for him yet frightened him beyond anything he could name.

Not that he could name much.

The words were not there, not anymore, and he mourned them.

Getting shakily to his feet, he ran his hands over a particular place on the wall, and his fingers encountered something that he didn’t recognize in his hazy recollection.

However, trembling fingers had their own minds, and he found himself working at the box as if he’d always known what to do. And maybe he had; he couldn’t tell, not anymore; everything was lost to him, including language and thought and all that he had once been.

There was a sound – and he glanced back the way he’d come, because noise was to be avoided and he was afraid – and the door opened slowly, revealing more darkness and a smell that made him gag. There was a dripping of water; and he was so very glad that he knew what water was…or was he? Was that gladness?

He didn’t know.

Without a single thought about what he was doing – not that he could have, honestly – he took his first step into yet another unknown passageway, only knowing that he had to escape, that it was almost a physical imperative to get away from what had trapped him in what should have been a place of peace for him and the other he could not recall.

He stepped into water.

The smell grew worse, but he had to ignore it even though it brought back half-thoughts and illness and what he realised was decay. Water seeped into his…his shoes, yes, that was it, and it was cold and uncomfortable and then even that was gone as he made his way forward.

His mind shut itself off once more, only the movement of one foot in front of the other and the smell and the harshness and the black surrounding him. Nothing broke through either darkness…the one in his mind and the one slowly suffocating him.

Somehow, his hand had been placed against the wall, and his fingers trailed through muck and dirt, slipping along the curved stone-like substance…he knew it wasn’t true stone, although once again the knowledge left him almost as soon as it came to him.

There was no way his brain could keep track of the time, so there was no indication how long he’d been in the inky blackness before his hand hit something. He automatically grasped it; it was some sort of metal…yes, metal…and it was connected to the wall. He used his hands to interpret what this was, even as his eyes made out the shadows of it against the unnatural stone. A glint of something caught his attention, and he looked up.

Light was streaming through a couple of holes in what looked like a metal roundel in the ceiling.

It was bright enough to blind him although it was very weak; but then, he’d been in the darkness for what could have been years as far as he was aware. He blinked, and let himself get used to it, before grasping what his mind was telling him was a ladder.

The awful song seemed to be encouraging him upward. He leaned his head against the ladder, breathing in the foetid air, gathering what strength he had left in order to climb.

He had no idea what was above him. Only that his instincts and the song that wouldn’t leave him be was coaxing him into moving toward that light, the glare that was stinging his dark-sensitive eyes in ways that were almost harsher than any pain he’d been feeling so far. It was as if he was a creature of the black, and that this brightness was burning away his sight…

But that consideration left him as he put his foot on the first rung of the ladder.

He had to get out. Something within him knew that staying in that tunnel was a bad thing, dangerous in ways that he should have understood but the recognition would not rise out of the black lake of his injured mind. His ears were echoing in the silence, and he couldn’t decide if that quiet was natural or if the tunnel was holding its breath, waiting for something to emerge from the total darkness.

The closer he moved to the light, the heavier his head became. The urge to go back down almost overpowered him once, but that vanished back into the depths of his consciousness, pushed there by the irritant music that wanted him to go higher. The light grew brighter as he approached the top of the ladder, beaming down upon him from several small holes in the ceiling…

No, it was a metal barrier of some kind.

And, suddenly, panic overwhelmed him.

He could feel his heartbeat grown louder in his ears and his breathing became shorter as he slammed one hand into the metal above him. He had to get out…he couldn’t stay within the darkness; both the one in the tunnel and the one within his mind, drowning him in cold inkiness that wasn’t natural and he had to get out…

His fist pounded against the ridged metal, and it moved slightly.

Relief flooded over the panic as he realised he wasn’t trapped, that he could escape, and maybe once in the overbright light he could regain some part of himself that was missing, lost within whatever had attacked him and had hurt his thoughts and memories…

Remember…

The panic swamped him once more, and he pushed against the metal above him. A loud noise assaulted his ears as the metal moved, a loud screeching that had him flinching away even as his body demanded that he get out and into the light.

The metal flipped up under his physical assault, landing with a clang as he sprang out of the hole that was revealed. He blinked furiously as his eyes tried to adjust; kneeling on the ground, he breathed deeply, the panic subsiding just a bit.

He felt far too exposed. He needed to move, to find a place where he would be safe from the light and from something he hadn’t a clue about. Would his enemy come looking for him? And yes, there was an enemy, of that he was certain; a danger he should be fighting but was far too afraid. He didn’t even know what this was, this…whatever it was, that had hurt him. It was lost in the blackness and the discordant inner music and the terror of what had been done to him…

There was a sudden squealing, accompanied by a strident sound that he thought he should recognise but didn’t. He couldn’t see properly; there was only a reddish blur that seemed to come closer, and he scrambled backward, away from whatever it was that was closing in on him.

His hands slammed into something hard, and he nearly tipped over before his body seemed to adjust on its own. His rump landed on whatever it was, and he was moving back, unable to make out much and not paying attention to where he was going. He only knew he had to get away from the noise and the sound and the light that exposed him to danger that he could not identify.

Other sounds accompanied his escape; somewhere in his mind he knew they were words, but he couldn’t understand them. They were a language he should be able to translate, and perhaps he would have once before his thoughts had gone dark, and all he could do was twist out of the way from the tall creatures that flowed around him; they were people, but he couldn’t see them properly, like ghosts floating around him and attempting to drag him down with horrible, cold fingers.

His heart raced, and his pulse thumped in his ears and in the eyes that were betraying him, colouring what small bit of vision he had in shades of red and grey. He couldn’t trust these strangers, whoever they were; they could alert his enemy, and he didn’t want to go back to that dark room with the odd things in it where he should have been safe but that safety had been perverted by whoever it had been to destroy his mind…

Somehow he managed to retreat somewhere cool and dark, between two walls that were of yet another strange material that was like stone, but wasn’t. His back slammed into a metallic object, and it was all he could do to pull his knees up to his chest and wrap his arms about his knees, making himself as small as possible. He had to stay hidden, and safe, and to keep the enemy from finding him.

He had no idea how long he sat there, letting the blackness within crest over his already agonised and battered thoughts. The thundering of his heartbeat drowned out all sounds, including the tiny whimpers he knew he was making but couldn’t stop. It was all too much, he couldn’t handle whatever was around him, it all threatened to drive him deeper into his damaged mind where he could hide from whatever was around him, despite that horrific music urging him to get up and run. He just couldn’t do it. Movement was beyond him.

All he could do was curl up and await for whatever was next in store.

It was a gentle touch that aroused him from the fugue state he’d fallen into as he awaited his doom.

He jerked away, his head snapping upward to see what had approached him. His eyes betrayed him once more; and he hissed sharply, clutching his knees tighter to his chest and the thought that this was the end, that his enemy had found him, floated through him and then vanished along with the rest of his cognisance.

However…

Whoever it was standing over him glowed.

It was warm, and friendly, and he felt he should know this power but once again his memory failed him as it had since he’d awakened back in wherever he’d been imprisoned. He wanted to bask in that light and warmth, to let it flow over him and trust it to protect him. He had no idea what it was, and it didn’t matter. Something deep within him, past the blackness in his head, called out to that fiery light, and he longed to low but he felt far too weak to even move.

There were words. Caring words, even if he couldn’t understand them, the tone sure and sweet and strong. A shadow reached out, and he thought this must be a hand, glowing as the rest of this being was, and he trusted it because the awful music within him changed, going softer and actually becoming soothing instead of terrifying.

He reached out and touched that hand. It was cool and he suddenly felt calm.

He felt safe.


Chapter Two




Comments

Wow. Whatever the warnings, that was great. You really do have a way with words and you wrote that beautifully. I could really feel it.
Thanks! I'm glad you liked it. It took me forever to get the tone right. :)
*thud*

(sound of my jaw hitting the floor)
This
This is why I come back to your stories every time.

wow
*Picks up jaw and hands back*

I'm so glad you liked it. It was really hard to write so this makes it worth it.

More up in a bit. :)
Awesome as always. You made the reader FEEL what Ianto was going through, even better than the TV episode that let us see it. I'm assuming the glow is due to the person being one of the four Dragon friends. And the damage to Ianto`s mind is because he isn't human? I can't wait to read the rest.
Thank you! That's such a compliment, and this was so hard to write so it really makes me happy.

We'll see what's going on, but let's just say there's more going on than just Adam messing around. *winks*
Whoa, what a mind-blowing opening!
Thanks! Glad you liked it, because it was so hard to write so this means a lot.

More up in a bit. :)
Creepy!!!
Thanks! Just what I was going for. *grins*
That was amazing
Thanks so much! I'm glad you liked it. :)
Whoa. That was ... Yeah. No sleep for me tonight, I don't think!

So glad you're back :-)
I do hope you eventually got some sleep!

So am I, thanks. It's been a hard couple of months, that's for sure. :)

in light of your warning, I'll wait until the end to read.
Otherwise, I feel that this will be too hard to wait for the next chapter!