Disclaimer: Owned by the BBC
Author's Notes: Ianto's thoughts after the episode, assuming they went to the hotel mentioned in BBC America's Captain's Blog
Spas had never been Ianto's thing. Gwen seemed almost as enthusiastic as Jack about some of the treatments he was describing, and although Owen and Tosh were a bit more cautious, they were both happy to go along with Jack's plan. So Ianto had excused himself and come back to his room; he'd been aware of Jack's eyes on him as he'd left but after the way he'd been singing the praises of the treatments they were about to have, he couldn't very well follow him.
He sat down on his room's small balcony with a bottle of beer and a packet of mixed nuts from the minibar. It wasn't a warm night and the view wasn't particularly good, but he needed the fresh air to help him think.
Jack was back.
God, Jack was back.
And he'd clearly wanted to take up again where they'd left off, except that he wanted to take him out on a date as well. A date. With Captain Jack Harkness. No matter how he tried to think about it, he couldn't quite imagine it.
Ianto had known since he'd turned round to see Jack, gun smoking in his hand with that infuriating, sexy grin plastered over his face, that he'd take him back in an instant; he tried to blame the 51st century pheromones but he was uncomfortably aware that Jack didn't have this effect on Owen or Tosh, even if Gwen seemed pretty much in his thrall as well. Only his pride had made him hesitate earlier that day in the office, and as a result he'd seen a new, vulnerable side to Jack that he'd never seen before. Ianto smiled to himself at the memory.
But best not to dwell on that. He took a swig of beer. Jack may still be irresistable, but Ianto was different. Before Jack had left, he'd thought that he needed him, and maybe he had in the early days, after Lisa. After she'd died he'd clung to Jack - to the hatred at first, and then to the lust - and Jack had pulled him through. Showed him that he still had a reason to live, and in his mind Jack had become inseperable from this new Torchwood, so different from
Thanks to Gwen's insistence that they all had at least one day off per week, Ianto had finally furnished his flat beyond the basics, unpacked his books and DVDs, and sorted through the small amount of Lisa's stuff that they'd brought with them. His flat felt like home now; like somewhere he could relax. Until he had it, he hadn't realised how much he'd needed some time to himself, without having to think about Lisa or about Jack; he felt as if he’d found himself again, after the nightmare of the past year. Ianto had resisted Gwen's attempts to get him to Talk About Jack; he really hadn't needed to, no matter how much she ambushed him in the tourist office with cups of Starbucks coffee and sympathetic smiles. She'd seemed to feel pretty bad for monopolising Jack when he’d been dead, but Ianto had tried to reassure her that it wasn’t important.
“Why d’you let me do it?” she’d asked him one day, perched on the edge of the tourist office desk.
“Really Gwen, it doesn’t matter - it wasn’t like that between me and Jack.” Ianto looked up at Gwen with a small smile, but she’d looked far from convinced, so he’d played his trump card. “You know, after everything that’s happened, I think the one thing he’d have hoped I’d have learnt was when to let go,” he said softly.
Gwen had looked at him hard for a moment, then, but he’d known she wouldn’t pursue that line of questioning.
At work the team were all pulling together now; it felt like another betrayal, but Ianto sometimes thought that Gwen was a better boss than Jack. She didn't have the alien experience, but she understood things like the need for sleep far better. Maybe it had just been her days-off rota which had ensured they were all more refreshed and better able to deal with each other and the threats which had come through the rift, or maybe being short-staffed had forced them to put aside their differences, but he and Owen were no longer antagonising each other at every opportunity, and his working relationship with Tosh and Gwen had improved as he'd gained confidence and come out of his shell. He was a vital part of the team now, and there was no way he was going back to being the coffee boy and part-time shag now that Jack was back. The eye-candy, he thought with a grimace.
So… Jack. Ianto undeniably wanted Jack, and had no intention of turning him down - he just had to remember that it was casual; he knew perfectly well that Jack wouldn’t be interested in anything else. He’d have Gwen too in an instant, Rhys or no Rhys, and any other pretty young thing he could pick up in a bar, or… or a dancehall, or anywhere really. And that was fine. Ianto ignored the warning voice in his head which told him he didn’t do casual. And as for the rest of the team – well, what he chose to do with Jack was none of their business. So what if they thought that Jack was using him for sex, or that Ianto was using Jack for promotion or for forgiveness for Lisa, or any of the other motivations they might suspect them of. In fact, the team probably wouldn’t find out; they’d always been discreet before and there was no reason for that to change now. It would be fine.
Decision made, Ianto went back into the room for another beer. He felt much more cheerful now he’d thought it all through, even if he’d basically come to the same conclusion he’d come to the minute he’d turned around and seen that smug grin, those sparkling blue eyes, that coat. Looking around at the room, he decided he wouldn’t mind avoiding himself more often, if it always meant five-star hotels. He’d just opened the fridge when he heard a hesitant tap on his door. Ianto froze with his hand towards the bottles.
But no, Jack wouldn’t tap hesitantly; he’d knock loudly and then probably just barge straight in, whether the door was answered or not.
Then there was a slightly louder tap, followed by an extremely carrying stage-whisper: “Ianto?”
Trying to ignore the fluttering in his stomach, Ianto went to answer the door.