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Myfanwy 2

July 2018

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Myfanwy 2

Ways of Light and Darkness - Chapter Eight

Ways of Light and Darkness - Chapter Eight
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
Spoilers:  Some could be for Torchwood S1 "Cyberwoman"; "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.


 
Chapter Eight

Jack made his way down the main street of Utopia, not really paying attention to where he was going. He couldn't believe how badly Master John – no, he had to start thinking of the man as the Doctor, although he still really didn't know why he'd adopted just the title – had gotten to him. The Wizard was just so insufferable, thinking he knew everything, and not accepting that perhaps he really didn't. The memories that he could recall were now tainted by what had occurred, and Jack wanted nothing more than to go back to being ignorant of the Doctor's existence.

More than that, he wanted Ianto.

He stopped in his tracks. It was in that moment that the mercenary realized just how dependent he was on the younger Wizard's good opinion. He'd never really felt that way about anyone before, and in ways it scared him. Jack had always had a very healthy sense of self-worth, not really caring how others saw him…well, except for the whole Deathless thing. If there was one thing guaranteed to take large chunks out of his self-esteem, it was someone rejecting him for being immortal. It had happened too many times to count, until Jack had finally come to the conclusion that it was just simpler to move on before it became too obvious that he wasn't aging.

Certainly that had changed, first with Ianto's belief in him, and then his own team's acceptance. For the first time in so very long Jack felt like he was home.

He wondered how his team back in Canary's Wharf had taken his sudden disappearance. If he knew them at all, then they'd be doing everything they could to search for him. One of them would also try to get to Ianto; the Brigadier deciding to send for the young Wizard would have meant they would have had good reason to go. Jack put good money on it being Toshiko going to Cardiff. She and Ianto were close; in fact she'd confided in Jack, telling him that she thought of Ianto as a brother.

That would have left Tommy and Owen to the defense of the town. Owen had been busily turning the large meeting hall into a makeshift infirmary, in case it did actually come to fighting. Tommy – his newest recruit and, if he was any judge, sweet on Toshiko – had decided to work with the village militia that Jack had wanted set up, and the young soldier had quickly gained the respect of the older men of the town. Jack knew that things would be in good hands, but he couldn't help but feel like he'd abandoned them, and that rankled. He never wanted his family to feel that way, because it wasn't a good sensation. He only hoped that they'd realized he hadn't done it on purpose.

But that thought led him to consider just when he was. Now, that was an unsettling thought. The past would be fairly easy to deal with; he'd just have to wait until he could catch up with his own timeline. The future though…Gods, he hoped he wasn't in the future. That didn't bare thinking about.

Jack shook the thoughts away, finally taking a look at where he'd stopped. He was at the edge of town, in front of what seemed to be a derelict shop and a line of trees that marked the natural areas of the island. The breeze made the leaves rustle, and to Jack's suddenly overactive imagination it sounded as if someone was rubbing two pieces of dried skin together. He shivered, deciding to get back to where there were people around.

The thing was, he was fairly certain there was something off about the place. That was something else the Doctor wasn't listening to: his and Martha's instincts. While Jack didn't know the Swear-Sword at all, he could see that she was a highly trained warrior, and with that came a certain sense of what was around them, and for possible danger. Jack suddenly wished for Suzie to be there; his former Second might have been able to help him pinpoint what was wrong.

He stifled a sigh. Might as well wish for the stars.

Which meant wishing for Ianto to be there – if just to show up the oh-so-arrogant Doctor – was a waste of time, as well.

He let his feet take him back into the heart of the town. The people of Utopia smiled at him, but no one stopped to speak to him. Jack couldn't help but feel that this wasn't normal. After all, he was hardly a shrinking violet, and more often than not just his smile alone would get people to chat with him. Here, there was nothing. It was like walking among solid walls.

He had no problem finding the inn, but really didn't want to go back up to their rooms, not feeling in the mood to deal with the Doctor. Instead, he bellied up to the bar, looking around for the innkeeper. He sincerely needed a drink.

"Hello."

Jack turned toward the greeting. The innkeeper – Evan – was standing at the door to what were obviously the kitchens. He gave the man a smile. "Can I get an ale, please?"

Evan returned the smile, and once again Jack was struck with that feeling of oddness. "Absolutely, sir. You won't find a better ale anywhere, I reckon." He came forward, getting a mug from the shelf against the wall and decanting Jack's requested beverage from a barrel under the bar. He set the golden liquid down in front of the mercenary. "Hope you like it, sir."

Jack really wanted to get him to stop calling him 'sir'; that was something Ianto did, and it wasn't the same. "Thanks," he said instead, lifting the mug and taking a drink. One side of his mouth curled upward. "You're right, this is really good."

"It's brewed by my nephew Daffyd. I'll tell you him enjoyed it."

"Please do." He took another drink. "Is it always this empty?" He made a motion around the room.

"During the day, yes," Evan answered. "But when the sun goes down…well, it does get a bit more lively, if I do say so myself. That's when I do most of my trade."

Jack pulled a gold coin from his pocket, but the innkeeper pushed it back. "No, sir. That's not necessary."

"But you have to make money – " Jack protested.

"Our Master says you're to be looked after. He'll take care of everything."

The mercenary reluctantly put the coin away. "Who's your Master, if you don't mind me asking?"

Evan grinned. "It might be better for you to see, that way you'll believe."

"Believe what?" Jack asked warily.

Evan's pale eyes practically gleamed. "That he's a God."

*****

Jack wasn't able to get anything else from the innkeeper, but just the idea that the man thought this Master person was a God disturbed him more than he wanted to admit. Jack had seen a lot of strange things on his travels, but the only time he'd run into someone claiming to be a deity was in one of the far Eastern realms, where they worshiped their rulers as Gods. Jack could actually accept that, but the matter-of-fact way that Evan had said it – with the accompanying manic light to his eyes – sent a shiver down the mercenary's spine. He wanted, more than ever, to get away from this island. It just wasn't right there.


Of course, he had to convince the Doctor, and Jack didn't think that was going to happen. He'd have to find a way to leave himself. The idea of a boat was looking better and better, even though he had no idea when he was, and what would happen once he got back to the United Kingdom. He's tried to get the date from Evan, but the man just shrugged and said they didn't count time like anyone else, since their Master claimed it didn't matter.

Jack wondered just what sort of mind control magic this Master was using. It made him more than uneasy that they were supposed to eat supper with the man.

He sighed. No, he wasn't going to leave. He'd be leaving both the Doctor and Martha in the lurch, and he wouldn't have their possible deaths on his conscience. They'd just have to get Tardis back here, and Jack was convinced that the Wizard knew exactly why the dragon had stranded them there.

Thinking of the devil…

The Doctor and Martha came in from outside, from the opposite direction from Jack had expected. They must have gone out exploring. Martha's eyes lit up when she saw him. "Hey, Jack,' she greeted, joining him at the bar.

"Hey yourself," he answered, automatically giving her one of his smiles.

"Stop it," the Doctor said; he'd gone to stand at the fireplace, on the opposite side of the room from them. From him.

Jack completely ignored him. "Did you see anything interesting while you were out?"

"Not really," Martha replied, glancing in Evan's direction, then back at Jack.

He could tell she wanted to talk to him, but didn't dare in front of the innkeeper. He was about to suggest they go up to their rooms, when someone else entered the inn. All three turned to look at the newcomer…who was a woman, perhaps in her fifties, who smiled when she saw Jack, Martha, and the Doctor.

"Welcome to Utopia!" She seemed genuinely glad to see them. "I'm Vivian, and I was sent to escort you to our Master's home for supper."

"Nice to meet you, Vivian," Jack grinned. He did it this time just to piss the Doctor off.

It seemed to have worked, judging from the snort in the general direction of the fireplace.

 *****

They were taken up the mountain, along a well-tended path and up to the house Jack had seen from the village. It was a two floor affair, with a red-shingled roof and a small front porch; it seemed to have been built into the actual mountain, the lower floor vanishing into the rock beyond.

"Please, come in," Vivian invited, throwing the large front door open for the three travelers. They stepped within, and Jack had to blink several times to adjust his vision from sunlight to the dim interior of the house. When he could see, he found himself not all that impressed by the foyer they found themselves in. The floor was done in a red tile that looked like it matched the shingles of the roof. A deep red carpet – it clashed with the tiling – lined the ornate staircase that went up to the floor above. There were doors on either wall; one on the left, just in front of the stairs, and three on the left. Richly carved tables flanked the front door, with vases of flowers and knick knacks placed strategically on their surfaces.

"May I take your cloak?" Vivian asked, standing just behind Martha, who was once again wearing Jack's cloak.

The Swear-Sword let her take the garment, and Vivian hung it on a dark wood hall tree. "Please, the dining room is this way." She ushered them toward the single door on the left, opening it for them and gesturing for them to enter. Once they had, she bid them good evening and left.

The dining room was about as fancy as the foyer. A long, dark wood table took up most of the room, and a buffet lined one wall. A large china cabinet took up another wall, and a grand chandelier hung over the table, casting soft light over the surface.

Five places had already been set. The cloths might have been white, but the plates themselves were black, as were the enamel handles of the eating utensils. The wine goblets were clear, with a single etched 'S' on them. A black stone had been set within the stems.

"Welcome to Utopia!" a boisterous voice greeted them.

Jack was getting heartily tired of hearing those words.

He, the Doctor, and Martha all turned in the direction of the voice. A man stood behind them, just within the door. He was shorter than either of the other men, with brown hair and dark eyes. He was dressed in a black tunic and trousers, which seemed to bring out a certain paleness in his skin. But it was the creature on his shoulder that caught Jack's attention.

It was a dragon.

The dragon was small, about the size of a hawk, its claws daintily caught in the cloth of the man's suit and its tail looped around his neck. It was black…so black it seemed to suck light into it, capturing it within its inky skin. Blue eyes gazed at them, and wings flapped slightly as the creature settled.

"I'm Harold Saxon," the man introduced himself. "This is my familiar, Toclafane. He's a little skittish around newcomers, so please don't be offended if he doesn't say hello."

The Doctor was staring at the dragon perched on Saxon's shoulder, and didn't look as if he was about to do any of the introducing. Jack took it upon himself, not being quite as stunned, since he'd been halfway expecting to find a Wizard there. "Captain Jack Harkness. This is the Doctor, and Second Swear-Sword Martha Jones. Thank you for your hospitality." That last part was wrung out of him, because honestly he didn't want to be there.

There was something unsettling about Harold Saxon, and once again there was nothing he could put his finger on, to point out what exactly was wrong…besides the fact that the man seemed to have convinced the villagers that he was some sort of God. He seemed friendly enough, so Jack decided a wait and see attitude was the best thing for the moment.

"As I said, welcome. Please, take a seat at the table, although if you don't mind would you leave the chair to my left vacant? My wife, Lucy, will be down presently."

They did as he asked. Martha and the Doctor took one side, while Jack put himself next to the empty chair reserved for Lady Saxon. "Thank you for inviting us," he said, trying to be polite.

"It's my pleasure." Saxon sat himself at the head of the table, careful not to dislodge Toclafane. He leaned a bit toward Jack. "Your friend seems to be staring at me. Could you tell me why?"

Jack felt strangely insulted by someone calling the Doctor his friend. "I think it's your dragon."

"Ah. Toclafane can be a bit odd if you're not used to him, but I could have sworn you all arrived with a dragon yourselves. I was a little surprised it hasn't been seen."

"She left. It was…a bit of a misunderstanding," Martha offered, speaking for the first time since they'd arrived.

"Well, I'm certain it can be worked out." Saxon glanced up toward the door. "Ah, here's my Lucy."

Jack looked toward the door, standing out of habit. The woman who walked in was striking: long blonde hair, bright eyes, and porcelain skin. She was dressed all in red, her dress lightly swishing about her ankles as she walked to her place at table. "I'm sorry I'm late," she said, her voice soft.

"It doesn't matter, when the end result is perfection," Saxon said gallantly, taking her hand and kissing the back of it. He introduced their guests, and then Lady Saxon went to take her seat.

Jack pulled the chair out for her. "Thank you, Captain."

"My pleasure, My Lady," he answered, taking his own seat.

Saxon was glaring a bit, but his words didn't show his obvious irritation. "Thank you as well, Captain. It's good to know there are still manners in the world."

"My mother taught me to be polite, Master Harold."

"She did a fine job." Saxon clapped his hands. "Now, let's see about getting some food in here! I hope you like roast; Evan Sherman – the innkeeper – does most of the smoking and preparing of meat in the town, and I must say he does a wonderful job."

Servants came in, bearing trays of meat and various vegetables. The smell was heavenly, and Jack found his stomach growling faintly in response.

Once the wine was poured and everything dished out, conversation waned for a bit as everyone ate. The meat was indeed very good; nice and tender, but Jack couldn't quite place what it was. Some sort of beef, perhaps.

After a short silence, Saxon began to regale them with stories about Utopia. There were apparently one hundred and twenty-five people currently living on the island, and Saxon seemed to know them all by name and trade. Despite himself Jack was impressed, but somewhere in the back of his mind all he could think was that this man was some sort of control nut, needing to know just what his people were up to. It sent a bit of a chill down his spine, and the mercenary fervently hoped that it wasn't a bad sort of control.

"Where did you get your dragon?"

Jack's head snapped around, surprised that the Doctor actually spoke, He'd seemed withdrawn since Saxon's arrival, and all Jack could think was that he was rethinking the whole 'I'm the only Wizard' thing.

Saxon seemed just as surprised. He reached up, feeding Toclafane a piece of meat. "He came to me," the self-styled Master answered. "I was a child when he came to me in the forest. My parents wouldn't let me have him, so I took care of him myself, hiding him in a cave up the mountain. Isn't he beautiful?" He stroked the dragon's head, and the creature hummed in pleasure. "How did you find yours?"

The Doctor barely managed to hide the shock at the question. "Why do you think she's mine?" he demanded.

"Well, no offense to your companions, but they're obviously warriors, and not likely to have a familiar of their own. You have the look of a Wizard."

Jack had the distinct pleasure of seeing the Doctor go red. "But you don't," he snapped angrily.

Saxon shrugged. "I never claimed that I was."

And again, the Doctor was shocked into silence.

"You aren't a Wizard then, Master Harold?" Jack inquired.

"Since you asked so politely…then yes, I am." He fed Toclafane another morsel. "I just didn't claim it until now."

"You can't be a Wizard!" the Doctor denied.

"And why is that?" Saxon asked. "I don't think you have the monopoly on magical powers."

The man was perfectly calm, while the Doctor seemed on the verge of losing his temper. Jack thought it was a bit like watching a sporting match.

"Toclafane found me when I was eight. By ten, I was animating my own toys. It simply went from there. I've been attempting to learn more about my heritage, but let's be honest…this island is far too small and my resources limited. I won't get very far if I stay here."

Jack found himself comparing Saxon's circumstances with Ianto's. Both were stuck in untenable positions; both didn't have the sources needed to gain their full strength. The only difference being is that Ianto didn't give him the screaming creeps like Saxon did.

There was just something too polished about him. He was a bit too perfect. And Jack wasn't about to get into the power-trip thing. Everything Saxon was, Ianto wasn't. And this was a very good thing indeed.

"And what do you think I can do about that?" the Doctor asked pointedly.

"I should have thought that was simple: I want to go with you when you leave here."


Chapter Nine

Comments

This is my familiar, Toclafane.
ASDFGHJKL

The meat was indeed very good; nice and tender, but Jack couldn't quite place what it was. Some sort of beef, perhaps.
D8 D8 D8 D8 D8 D8 D8

Oh Doctor... Love this chapter, and I can't wait to see more.
*does some more innocent whistling*

Oh..you're not buying the innocent thing, are you? Crap...

Glad you liked it!
I'M SORRY, THERE WERE NOT ENOUGH EMOTICONS THERE
D8 D8 D8 D8 D8 D8 D8 D8 D8 D8 D8

::friends you::
Haha! I have earned an overabundance of emoticons!

LOL!
Just waiting for more. More more more.
There evil lurking near by....shivers
Oh yes, evil is lurking...

And more in a couple of days.
Oh dear *twitches worriedly*
I made you twitch! Then I'm doing my job. :)

And you really should be worried...
Oh there's no way this is good....
Nope, no good at all... *laughs a bit maniacally*
EEP...
That about sums it up...
Hmmm - goings on!! What have you planned for us with your little clues?
Toclafane the dragon!!! And what sort of meat? The Doctor being sniffy. Does Mr Saxon have a watch as well? Can't wait for more and now I must get typing myself.
Meat? Why would you think there was anything wrong with the meat? *whistles innocently*

There's no watch involved, but there are other things...
Yay Saxon! ^_^ I love the way you're reinventing everything it's just awsome. And yes Jack have the heebie jeebies.

Got a guess about the meat. I just(as in while writing this)got Evan and his wife's names!I knew I knew them and it was bothering me! I supose it's no longer a guess.

Can't wait to see Ianto and the team's reaction to Jack's disapearence.
Ianto will be back next chapter. And yes, he's not going to be happy about Jack...

The meat? I don't know what you mean... *whistles innocently*
If you are trying to completely creep us all out I think you are succeeding, or at least you are with me.
it sounded as if someone was rubbing two pieces of dried skin together.
how did you even come up with that? It made my skin crawl just thinking about it.
The meat was indeed very good; nice and tender, but Jack couldn't quite place what it was.
combine this with Evan Sherman and I am very concerned about what that meat is :S
Love this chapter, but am finding it a bit difficult that it's been so long since we had any Ianto. *misses Ianto* I want to know how he reacts to Jack disappearing from his map!
Yes, I was aiming for creepy...glad it's working...

As for the skin thing, the scariest noise I've ever heard was when I was standing in a cornfield late at night, the corn so dry it practically whispers to you in the wind, and yes, my first thought was that it sounded like zombies' dried skin rubbing together. It's really gruesome, and worse than anything you can hear in any of those horror movies that take place in cornfields.

And I don't know why everyone is on about the meat... *whistles innocently*

Ianto next chapter. And he won't be happy...
*Chewing nails worridly*
You should be worried...but please don't take it out on your nails...
I just started reading this. (What can I say, I like diving into long stories. Usually I wait til they're completely done.) What I really like about your world is that you bring in people and situations from the shows, but in ways that make sense and really work beautifully. Case in point - this sections crossing the Brecon Beacons cannibals with the Master is just brilliant.
Thanks! Your icon is perfect, BTW...

Well, if the Master should have creepy followers, they should be cannibals. He just sort of attracts that kind of crowd sometimes!

Glad you're liking it!