Characters: Ianto, Jack, Owen, OCs.
Word Count: 1567
Summary: With Jack expecting twins, Ianto decides they’d better start making preparations for the new additions to their family.
Written For: Challenge 269: Yarn at fan_flashworks.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters.
‘Twins!’ Ianto thought, still elated and awed at Jack’s news. ‘Two babies! They’re going to be double the trouble, but double the fun as well.’ It was an exciting thought, but still a lot for him to get his head around; for a start he’d have to get used to caring for a baby all over again, only this time there’d be two tiny people demanding to be fed and changed and cuddled. It wasn’t going to be easy splitting their time between caring for the babies, running Torchwood, and giving their daughter the attention she deserved.
With all the time in the universe before them, he and Jack had been in no rush to add to their family, wanting to fully immerse themselves in the experience of raising their firstborn. They hadn’t even been considering trying to get pregnant again yet. Although Meriel was an only child she was far from lonely; she made friends easily, and had Nosy for company at home when her parents were busy, so there’d seemed no pressing need to provide her with siblings.
Even so, despite all their precautions, and with Meriel only just turned seven, Jack was pregnant again, and Owen had confirmed only a few short hours ago what Jack had already found out for himself, that they were to be blessed with twins. Jack was approximately ten weeks along, and according to Doctor Owen Harper, earth’s foremost expert on male pregnancy, everything looked fine.
Twins though… two babies, and not much more than six months for himself, Jack, and Meriel to get everything ready for the new arrivals… What if the babies came early? Obviously there was no point in messing about; they needed to start making preparations right away.
This evening, once Meriel was in bed, Ianto decided he’d sit down with Jack and they’d make a list of everything they’d need to buy: a double buggy, two cots, two changing tables, or maybe three… There was already one in the nursery at the Hub but if they were having two at home there’d better be a second at work as well so that both babies could be changed at the same time if necessary. For the first few months they’d need to take the babies to the Hub with them, since one person could scarcely be expected to care for both babies all day while their other parent was at work. Then there were bottles, bottle warmers, clothes, nappies, toys, high chairs, and so many other things Ianto barely knew where to start. If only he and Jack hadn’t given all their baby things away to Tosh and Owen when they were expecting Lily. Shaking his head, Ianto pushed those thoughts aside, filing them for later; now wasn’t the time or place.
Instead, he loaded an assortment of sponge cakes into his shopping trolley; little individual ones, big Victoria sponges and chocolate cakes, round sponge cakes, loaf shaped ones, lemon slices, a couple of Swiss rolls… plenty of variety to feed Jack’s cravings. He was on his way to the freezer section to stock up on his husband’s other necessity, ice cream, when something caught his eye.
It was a display of knitting yarn, bright colours, pastels, and multicoloured wools packed tightly together on the shelves like a soft, squashy rainbow.
‘Two babies,’ Ianto reminded himself, thinking back to all the knitting Jack had done when he’d been pregnant with Meriel. Two babies would mean twice as much knitting, so why not start on that right away too? Jack still had the patterns he’d used back then.
Owen hadn’t asked them if they wanted to know whether they were having, boys, girls, or both, although it didn’t matter since neither Jack nor Ianto adhered to the idea of pink for a girl and blue for a boy. Meriel had worn everything, and still did; although she liked what Gwen termed girly colours she still wore a lot of blue because it suited her so well and brought out the colour of her eyes.
Ianto picked out pastels for the new babies however, both plain yarn and multicoloured, 4-ply and double knit. If Jack wanted 3-ply for anything they’d have to go to a knitting shop; the supermarket didn’t seem to stock it, but the wool here would do to start with. Loading enough for several outfits into his trolley, he continued on down the shop to get Jack’s ice cream, six large tubs, and if the people in the checkout queue gave him funny looks as he piled his purchases on the conveyor belt, he barely noticed.
“Twins!” he told the checkout girl, unable to keep the wonderful news to himself. “We’re having twins!” He couldn’t stop smiling now that it had properly sunk in; he felt like his feet were barely touching the ground.
“Congratulations!” the girl told him. “Looks like your wife will be doing a lot of knitting.”
Ianto didn’t bother trying to correct her, just shrugged and said, “Oh, we both knit; it’s very relaxing, not just a hobby for you ladies. Good thing too, with two babies to knit for.”
“Good for you, dear,” said the elderly lady behind him in the queue. “My late husband used to knit; he learned as a lad during the war. He’s the one taught me. I’ve often thought more men should try it.”
Several other people in the queue offered their congratulations and Ianto thanked them as he loaded ice cream, cake, and wool back into his trolley and paid the cashier. Making his way out to his car, where he hurriedly piled his shopping bags into the boot, he headed for home, wanting to get the ice cream stowed away in the freezer before it could melt.
With the food stashed, Ianto went up to his and Jack’s room to find his husband’s knitting bag, patterns, and needles before going back to the Hub. Jack was in his office, relaxing music playing on the mini hi-fi system that had taken the place of his old gramophone, which was now at their flat along with his record collection. He looked up from the paperwork he’d been trying, and largely failing, to do, too distracted by the new lives growing inside him to concentrate on anything so mundane. In a few days, once the first rush of excitement had subsided, he’d be better able to focus on work, but at present there was so much to think about that his mind was in a giddy whirl.
“Bought you something,” Ianto said, leaning over to kiss his husband, one hand straying to smooth over the small bulge in Jack’s abdomen.
“A present?” Jack asked eagerly.
“Not exactly…” Ianto picked up the carrier bag he’d brought in with him, upending it, and tipping its contents onto Jack’s desk, several of the balls of yarn tumbling into Jack’s lap.
Jack’s eyes went wide. “Oooh!” He snatched up several balls, looking at them, squeezing them, and exclaiming over the pretty colours: Mint green, lemon yellow, peach, white, lilac, and pale turquoise.
Ianto laughed. “I figured you wouldn’t be able to concentrate on work today so I got your knitting bag and patterns from home. Maybe we could pop out to the knitting shop at lunchtime if it stays quiet here and choose a few new patterns. I have a feeling we’re both going to be doing a lot of knitting this time around.” He’d only learned to knit since Meriel was born.
“Great idea!” Jack beamed at his husband, pulling him down for another kiss. “And thank you for this, I can’t wait to get started!”
“You’re welcome. Just saw the wool in the supermarket and couldn’t resist. It’s all supposed to be machine washable.”
“I have the best husband in the whole world!” Jack sighed happily. “You really do think of everything.”
“I do my best. Now, why don’t you settle yourself on the sofa and start knitting while I see what I can do about this paperwork?” There were a few things Jack would have to sign off on, but it would only be a matter of a few months before Ianto would have to take over the reins of Torchwood again while Jack was on maternity leave. It wouldn’t hurt him to start getting back into the swing of things now; it would feel less like jumping in at the deep end when the time came for Jack to stop working. The two of them were more or less joint leaders these days anyway, what with both of them being immortal.
Jack didn’t need telling twice; he willingly vacated his seat, scooping up as many balls of yarn as he could and heading for the sofa in the corner of his office.
Ianto gathered the rest of the wool, cramming it back into the carrier bag and taking that and the knitting bag over to his husband before settling himself into the desk chair. He’d fix coffee for everyone, and tea for Jack, in a little while, once he’d dealt with the most urgent paperwork, then maybe he could leave the rest until after their lunchtime shopping trip.
Reluctantly tearing his thoughts away from Jack and their growing family, he sorted the files into order of priority and got down to business; as much as he might wish it would, the paperwork wouldn’t do itself.