FanFic_50 Prompt: Fight
Rating: This part pg13, over all pg13.
Summary: A chance visit to a bar and the unexpected arrival of an old acquaintance raises a lot questions for Jack and creates a dangerous situation for Ianto.
Notes: This is set during the first series after 1x06 Countrycide, but before 1x08 They Keep Killing Suzie.
part one part two part three part four
Crawling to his hands and knees, his stomach is still aching slighting from where the bullet had hit and presumably still is, as there hadn't been an exit wound, Jack looks groggily around.
He’s been left outside the fenced off area around the warehouse, a spot where in the morning he would have been quickly found. That Jubel has chosen to cover him with his greatcoat is a fact for which Jack is grateful as gets unsteadily to his feet and puts it on.
Reaching into his coat pocket Jack’s fingers curl around cold, hard metal and he smiles, the Webley is still there. It had been too conspicuous in its belt holster to wear in the bar and he hadn’t wanted to be responsible for some safety conscious customer calling out the armed response unit. Now that really would have ruined both his and Ianto’s evening.
He supposes that he could have left it behind in the Hub, although that would have meant going back to Hub and retrieving it if a case cropped up unexpectedly. Something, that depending on the type of case it was, he might not have had time to do. So he'd opted to keep it in his coat pocket instead, hoping that nobody would notice it.
The fact that the greatcoat has pockets large enough to hide the Webley is just one of its advantages. One of the others, Jack notes as he buttons it up, is that it covers all his blood stained shirt should anyone see him.
Jack is half way back to the warehouse when he notices them and he starts to run. He doesn't know how Jubel has managed to get Ianto there and he doesn’t much care, he just needs to stop him before they get on the ship.
“Hold it right there!” Pulling out his gun, Jack levels it at Jubel who is walking Ianto, who is still dressed in the same clothes that he had on in the bar, and coatless despite the near torrential rain, towards his ship. Ianto moves stiltedly, like a sleepwalker, his eyes unfocused and distant as Jubel walks beside him, a hand on his arm.
Jubel’s head snaps round at the sound of Jack’s voice, staring pale faced and wide eyed at him, “How? Y…you were dead. I killed you.” He stammers, clearly terrified at what he is seeing.
“Let’s just say I picked up something on my travels that means death isn’t quite as fatal to me as it would be for you.” It’s a threat and Jack gestures ever so slightly with the Webley just in case Jubel had misunderstood.
“W…what about him?” Jubel is still staring fearfully at Jack as he steps behind Ianto shielding himself against a direct shot. “Is he like you?”
“No, he’s not.” Although Jack is beginning to suspect that there may be more to Jubel’s idea that Ianto is an empath. After all why would Jubel go to all this trouble if he didn’t have some really good evidence that Ianto was?
“Then stay back.” Jubel sounds desperate as he produces a knife and holds it to Ianto’s throat.
Ianto is still strangely compliant despite everything that is going on. Drugged is Jack's best guess, he can think of no other reason that Ianto would let Jubel to hold a knife to his throat without struggling or fighting back. Jack knows how nervous Ianto is now of anything getting too close to his neck, the memories of Brynblaidd cutting far deeper than the villager’s knife ever had.
Jack swallows hard passed a lump in his throat and tries to ignore how cold and numb his fingers feel on the trigger. “Don’t be an idiot. I know you want him alive. He’s worth nothing to you dead. Just let him go.”
“I’ve nothing left to lose, Jack. You’re not going to stop me.” Jubel starts to back away, still mostly protected by Ianto.
"Jubel, I'm only going to warn you once. Let him go." Jack still feels horribly cold and dizzy as he aims the Webley at Jubel, the blood loss and the remnants of the drug in his system affecting him more than he would like to admit. Normally he'd be fairly confident about hitting a target at this distance, but it's taking nearly all his concentration just to stay on his feet and the consequences of missing, of hitting Ianto instead, don’t bear thinking about.
"I can't. I need him." He looks pleadingly at Jack as he continues to back away, Ianto held in front of him.
"So do I." It’s only now with the threat of losing Ianto such a very real prospect that Jack is beginning to realise just how much that need might be. Despite all their difficulties and differences Ianto has rarely been anything other than a professional, calming presence amid the chaos, always providing just what is needed, whether it is a sympathetic ear, an obscure piece of information or a cup of the best coffee in Cardiff, he would always be there. He makes life at Torchwood, and by extension Jack’s life, that bit more bearable.
"No, you don't. You spy on him, you lie to him."
"That doesn't mean kidnapping him and selling him to the highest bidder's the way to go."
"Have you any idea what he's worth?" Jubel steps backwards onto the access ramp of his ship.
"More than you can imagine.” Jack can’t keep the desperation from his voice. “Please, Jubel, you aren't like this, you were never a slave trader or a killer. You don't have to do this."
"There isn't another way, there's not enough time. They'll kill her, Jack. He's going to make me enough money to pay off the Devor."
"If you need money, I'll help you get it. Just let Ianto go and we can talk about it." It’s just words now, anything to stall him, anything to buy enough time for Jack to have the opportunity to take the shot.
"I'm sorry, Jack, I really am." Jubel reaches behind him for control panel, opening the ship’s door.
"Just tell me how much you need."
"As much as class three empath will get me. You don't have that sort of money Jack, you never did."
Whatever sedative Jubel has given Ianto is starting to wear off and Jack can see the panic begin to rise in Ianto’s eyes, growing to become a look of complete terror as he becomes aware that his hands are tied and that there is a blade against his neck and he starts to struggle, trying to twist out of Jubel’s grasp.
It’s the opportunity that Jack has been waiting for and he takes the shot. He doesn't want to kill Jubel, not unless there's no other choice, he's lost enough friends through the years not to have to want to lose another. He also wants some answers, like how the hell had somebody like Jubel been forced to resort to this? Answers that he definately won't get if Jubel is dead.
The bullet hits Jubel high on the arm and he staggers back, the knife scraping across Ianto's collarbone before he drops it and it clatters to the ground.
Jack glares at Jubel. “You try anything and it won’t just be a warning shot.”
Jubel nods dumbly and tries to staunch the flow of blood now running down his arm.
Keeping his gun trained on Jubel, Jack runs the few feet to where Ianto has fallen to the ground in his haste to get away from Jubel. He's panicking, struggling again the restraints that hold his hands pinned behind his back.
Kneeling down beside Ianto Jack pulls him into his arms, trying to calm him. “It’s alright. I’ve got you, it’s okay.” He rubs Ianto’s back and holds him until he stops struggling and he can untie his hands.
Jack fumbles over the knotted cord that is looped about Ianto’s wrists, his fingers are cold and numb, the fact that they are both shivering with the cold doesn’t help.
As soon as Ianto’s hands are free he wraps his arms around Jack and clings to him. “Thank you. I thought…The knife...” He makes a choked noise and holds Jack tighter. “Thank you.”
“Come on, let’s get in out of the rain, you must be freezing.” Jack helps Ianto to his feet before turning back to Jubel.
He’s not sure what he going to do or what would be for the best. He knows that it would surprise his team if they ever knew, they seem to think that he should have the answers to everything, to know everything and be able solve all their problems. Some days it feels like the loyalty that he has from them, as scant as it sometimes is, would disappear completely should he ever admit that quite frequently he has no idea what is going on or what the best course of action might be. Right now though there is one thing he is sure of, and that is that he’s definitely not sorting anything out standing out here in the rain.
“Up.” Jack waves his gun at Jubel, angry and frustrated that he can see no solution to the current situation that doesn’t include Jubel’s death. “Get inside.”
“Are you going to kill me?” Jubel says flatly, as he stands, unable to meet Jack's furious stare.
“Don’t.” Ianto is still pale and shivering as he places his hand over Jack’s and slowly makes him lower the gun.
“He tried to take you away,” Jack says softly, but does as Ianto asks and places the gun back in his pocket.
“Please. He was desperate, he just wants his daughter back.” Ianto steps in closer, still a little unsteady on his feet, he puts an arm about Jack's waist, effectively placing himself between Jack and Jubel. “He’s only doing this out of love. I can’t condemn him for that." His voice drops to a whisper. "Not after what I did.”
“It’s okay.” Jack wishes he could hold him like in better circumstances. He knows needs to talk to Ianto about this, about Lisa, talk to him properly with no interruptions, demands for coffee or alien invasions, to tell him that he understands and that he’s forgiven him.
Still holding Ianto close, Jack turns to Jubel. “Is that true?”
Jubel nods miserably as they walk inside, “The Devor have got her, my little girl. She’s all I’ve got, Jack. She all I’ve got left of Sidony.”
“The Devor?” Now that was a surprise, the Devor were many things, mercenary, prone to tribal infighting, vicious if you crossed them and utterly ruthless in how they dealt with their enemies. What they generally weren’t though were people, well aliens, who took children hostage.
“I owe them money. A lot of money.” Jubel slumps down into one of the flight chairs, a hand still held tight to his arm. “Sidony was sick and I spent everything I had getting her the treatment she needed. I would have done anything for her. I was stupid, I went to the Devor and I borrowed more than I pay back.” He looks at Jack with eyes red and full of tears. “It didn’t make any difference, she still died. I loved her and she’s gone.”
“I’m sorry.” Jack remembers Sidony from the few of the cons they’d pulled together. She’d been tall, gorgeous and blue. And so fiercely independent that even suggesting she might need help with something usually earned that person a smack round the head. She had been one of the few people that the Jack Harkness charm offensive hadn’t worked on.
“They took Sibel as guarantee, so that I wouldn’t run out on the debt.” He rubs a hand across his eyes, “I’ve got two more days to come up with the money then Grell will put out a bounty on me. I don’t know what he’ll do with her.” Jubel takes a shaky breath and shakes his head. “If it was just me I wouldn’t tried to get the money, it wouldn’t have mattered what they did to me.”
Devor Grell, well now there’s another unwelcome blast from the past, Jack thinks grimly, remembering a city and a war that he had been in so long ago, back just after he’d quit the Time Agency. It’s not a pleasant memory, but it does open up a possible solution to the current situation. "Contact him."
"What good would that do?" Jubel says miserably. "It's not like you can flirt with him into writing off the debt."
"Just contact him. I'll take care of the rest." Jack sits down gratefully in front of the screen, trying not to let either Jubel or Ianto see quite how rough he’s still feeling. He doesn’t want to give Jubel an opening if this goes wrong and he doesn’t want to worry Ianto.
"He's not going to talk to you."
"He will. We go way back, Grell and me." Jack gives Jubel a grim smile. "He'll listen, trust me. Just tell him it's Jack and he wants to speak to him about Telamer."
Jubel still looks unconvinced but starts pushing buttons on the comm unit anyway.
Jack waits and hopes that Grell accepts his offer or he’s all out of ideas.