Characters: Ianto, Jack
Summary: Jack is intent on celebrating St. Patrick’s Day like any good Irishman…
Word Count: 715
Written For: Prompt 480: Shamrock, at slashthedrabble.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters. They belong to the BBC.
A/N: This is the longer version of the ficlet posted to the community.
Entering Jack’s office with morning coffee for two, Ianto was stopped in his tracks by the sight that met his eyes. “Jack, what have you done to your hair?”
Jack beamed happily back at him. “You noticed!”
Advancing towards Jack’s desk, not taking his eyes off Jack’s hair, Ianto admitted, “It would be difficult not to.”
“Do you like it?”
“It’s green. Emerald green, to be exact.”
“For St. Patrick’s Day, of course.”
“In case you haven’t noticed, you’re not Irish.”
Jack frowned. “What does that have to do with anything?”
“St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland,” Ianto explained patiently. “Just like St David is the patron saint of Wales.”
“I know that, I’m not stupid.”
“You are, however, living in Wales, not Ireland, and weren’t you the one insisting not long ago that you’ve been here long enough to consider yourself a Welsh citizen?”
“Well I have!”
“But now you’re celebrating an Irish national holiday?”
Jack pouted. “I like St Patrick’s Day! There’s green beer, and everyone wears something green, only you threw my green shirt out so I had to come up with another way of joining in the festivities.”
“Your green shirt got ripped half to shreds.” Ianto chose not to mention that he’d been relieved when he’d had to consign it to the furnace. He’d never liked that one on Jack. “You couldn’t have just pinned a shamrock to your lapel?”
“Oh, I’ve got one of those as well.”
“Of course you have.”
“I got one for you too, so we could match!”
“Jack, I’m Welsh!”
“Don’t you want to show support for your neighbours across the sea?”
Unlike Jack, Ianto knew when to give in gracefully. “Fine, just don’t expect me to dye my hair to match yours.”
“I didn’t think you’d go for that so I got you this instead.” Jack slid a slim box across the desk towards Ianto, the kind of box a tie would come in, and Ianto almost groaned with despair. If Jack had got him some gaudy, tasteless tie covered in leprechauns and shamrocks… “Aren’t you going to open it?” Jack was obviously disappointed with his lack of enthusiasm.
“Got my hands full, haven’t I?” Ianto indicated the tray he was holding. “Why don’t you open it for me?”
“I can do that!” Jack picked the box up, whipped the lid off, folded back the tissue paper, and lifted out the tie.
Ianto felt all the tension drain out of him. “It’s lovely, Jack. Thank you.” The tie was slate grey with narrow diagonal stripes in several pleasing shades of mossy green.
“I was going to get you one with shamrocks on it, but I thought you’d probably find some excuse not to wear it. Besides, this one can be worn all year round, not just one day a year. Much more practical.”
“You really thought this through, didn’t you?”
“I’m not just a pretty face.” Jack winked cheekily. “So, will you wear it? That shirt you’ve got on should set it off nicely.”
Ianto looked down at the deep plum coloured shirt he’d picked out that morning, and the black and grey tie he was wearing with it. “I do believe you’re right. Clear some room on your desk so I can put this down.” He held up the tray. “Coffee’s getting cold.”
“Can’t have that.” Jack moved a stack of files so Ianto could slide the tray onto the edge of his desk, then snagged his mug as soon as it was within reach, draining half of its contents in a couple of big gulps.
Ianto picked up his own mug for a couple of sips before slipping his tie off and folding it neatly. Taking the new tie Jack handed to him, he settled it around his neck and tied it with the ease of long practice. “How do I look?”
“Good enough to eat, not to mention appropriately festive. Just one thing missing.” Jack held out one hand, palm up.
Sighing, Ianto accepted the shamrock and pinned it to his lapel. “I just hope you won’t expect me to celebrate St George’s Day with you.”
Jack looked horrified at the very idea. “Perish the thought; that’s so boring not even the English bother to celebrate it.”