Word Count: 1229
Characters: Ianto, Jack, Rhiannon, Mica, David.
Written For: Week One prompts Surprises, Christmas Tree, and Ribbons, at torchwood_fest 2018.
Summary: When Ianto invites Jack to spend Christmas with him, he doesn’t expect his sister to drop by without warning.
Beta: My lovely friend milady_dragon. Thanks so much!
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters. They belong to the BBC.
It was Christmas morning and Ianto had woken to a cold and empty space beside him in the bed. He had a pretty fair idea of where to find his other half though, especially since he could hear furtive scrabbling noises coming from the next room. Pulling on his robe he went to investigate, and sure enough there was Jack, bare arse sticking up in the air as he rummaged about underneath the Christmas tree. Leaning against the doorjamb and folding his arms over his chest, Ianto took in the enticing view for several moments. There were far worse sights to wake up to than a naked Jack.
If he was truly honest he often found the sight of his lover’s arse quite appealing. It was an excellent specimen; Jack had won an award for it after all. When he’d looked his fill, he finally spoke. “Jack, what exactly do you think you’re doing?” He’d long since given up being embarrassed by his lover’s exhibitionistic nature; these days he found Jack’s casual nudity more amusing than anything else, just one of his other half’s many eccentricities.
The scrabbling ceased, and Jack hurriedly emerged, a stray strand of tinsel caught in his hair. “Ianto, you’re awake! It’s about time; I thought you were never going to get up. I’ve been up for ages, half the day’s already gone!”
“It’s eight in the morning on Christmas Day, Jack. I’d been hoping to get a decent lie in, but I suppose I should have known better.” Ianto was starting to think that maybe inviting his lover to spend Christmas with him at his flat might not have been the best idea he’d ever had. Still, Jack was here so it was too late to change his mind now. “You didn’t answer my question. What are you doing?”
“Oh, I just wanted to see what Santa had brought us.” Despite being naked, Jack somehow contrived to look completely innocent of any wrongdoing; it was an impressive talent. “Why do you ask?”
Where to start… “First off, you do know Santa Claus isn’t real, right?” With Jack it was always wise to ask such questions, just in case.
“Of course I do, I’m just entering into the spirit of the season!” Jack flashed a grin. “Besides, with everything we’ve seen, can you be one hundred percent positive he doesn’t exist? What if there really is a Santa Claus? He could be an alien, or a being from another dimension!”
Ianto decided to let that slide for now. “Okay, never mind that… Secondly, what did I tell you last night about waiting until we were both up before you started opening presents?”
“But I haven’t opened anything, honest! I was just sorting them into two piles, yours and mine.” Jack hesitated a moment, then added, “I did unwrap one of the chocolates off the tree and eat it though. I was getting hungry.”
That mouthful wouldn’t have done anything to take the edge of Jack’s prodigious appetite, but again Ianto let it slide. He wasn’t about to let Jack distract him from his current line of questioning; he could be very distracting even when he wasn’t trying to be. “If you haven’t unwrapped anything, where did that ribbon come from?” He indicated the length of red and gold satin dangling from Jack’s hand, still tied in a neat bow.
“This?” Jack held it up.
Ianto nodded. “Yes, that.”
“It fell off one of the presents while I was sorting them. I was trying to put it back on when you came in.”
“A likely story. So, let me get this straight; you woke up, and you were in such a hurry to see what presents there were that you couldn’t spare the time to put so much as a robe on first?”
Jack pouted. “I don’t have a robe, and I didn’t want to take yours in case you needed it, which you obviously did.” He gestured to the robe Ianto was wearing. “I was getting chilly though so I turned the heating up a bit.”
Now Jack mentioned it, the living room was quite nice and toasty, especially compared to the driving rain Ianto could see through the open curtains. A white Christmas this most definitely was not. The sky was all leaden clouds; according to the previous night’s forecast it was going to stay wet and miserable for the next couple of days. Still, let it rain if it must, Ianto didn’t care; the lights and the Christmas decorations gave the flat a cheery and appropriately festive air.
With that in mind Ianto figured he might as well go along with the situation. He shrugged. “Fine. I’ll make coffee, shall I? And I’ll shove some Welshcakes into the oven to warm for breakfast. No opening of presents until I get back.” He started towards the kitchen then turned back. “Just out of curiosity, whose gift is that ribbon off? I don’t recognise it.”
“One of yours from me,” Jack replied.
Ianto studied it, draped around Jack’s arm, a label dangling off it, and smirked. “How appropriate.”
“What?” Jack raised his arm to look at the label: ‘To Ianto, Happy Christmas, love from Jack. XXX’. He grinned. “Maybe I should’ve wrapped myself and crawled under the tree with the other presents.”
“I thought you had.” With a wink, Ianto departed to make the promised coffee. Jack dithered for a moment then followed, drawn by the irresistible dual temptations of coffee and food.
Ten o’clock found the two of them sitting around on the living room floor, drinking coffee, eating the last of the hot Welshcakes, and opening presents. If Jack had got his way, they would’ve been doing all that sooner but Ianto had insisted on getting the turkey into the oven first; it was a fair-sized bird and would require several hours of cooking, so it had to take priority if they were going to have any chance of dinner being ready at a decent time.
Jack being Jack, he’d agreed to help by preparing the vegetables while Ianto stuffed the turkey, but had refused to get dressed first, saying he was perfectly comfortable as he was. Starting to feel a bit overdressed, not to mention warm thanks to the extra heat from the oven, Ianto had shed his robe, leaving himself in pyjama trousers and slippers, and pulled an old t-shirt on in lieu of an apron. What did it matter since it was just the two of them? It wasn’t as if they’d be getting visitors; nobody ever came over on Christmas Day.
As the presents were opened, Jack had festooned himself with more and more coloured ribbons, claiming they made him feel pretty, like the Christmas tree. Ianto had simply rolled his eyes; Jack was just a big kid at heart, but if adorning himself with ribbons made him happy why should Ianto complain?
The TV was on, with the end of the Carol service from King’s College blaring out; watching that had been one of his mam’s Christmas traditions, and it wouldn’t have felt like Christmas to Ianto without some carols. Because the sound was turned up and both he and Jack were singing along with the familiar old songs, neither of them was aware of anything amiss, until a voice announced loudly, “Surprise! Happy Christma… Oh my God!”
TBC in Part 2