Title: The Show Must Go On – Sequel to ‘The Play’s The Thing’
Characters: Jack, Ianto, assorted OCs
Word Count: 1323
Summary: Jack and Ianto are coming to the end of their two-year college drama course.
Warnings: Completely AU, set in a universe where Torchwood doesn’t exist.
Written For: My cottoncandy_bingo square Victory/Success.
Beta: Flying solo on this one because it’s kind on the pay-off of the last four parts and I didn’t want to give it away. If I’ve screwed anything up, please tell me and I’ll fix it.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood or any of the characters. Which is sad.
A/N: This is the fifth in a series of AU stories for different prompts on my bingo card, following Jack and Ianto through their school years and beyond. There are seven in total, of wildly varying lengths.
College, Jack and Ianto decided, beat secondary school hands down. There were still classes, and the ubiquitous homework, but they were finally where they wanted to be, taking a course in the dramatic arts.
They had other classes too, having opted to continue studying English Language and Literature, as well as History, but the drama classes were their main focus and they were loving every minute. The first year was over almost before they knew it and after a busy summer, they were back for their final year.
One of the best things about the course they were taking was that the students themselves were in charge of the play they would be performing at the end of the two-year course. It was entirely their responsibility; they would do everything from choosing the play and casting the roles, to building sets and making costumes. The teachers were mostly just there to offer advice and guidance if it was needed.
After a lot of discussion, the whole class had agreed on performing the musical ‘Grease’. They were all familiar with the film version, and already knew most of the songs by heart, which gave them a head start. Working alongside a group of people their age who shared their passion for theatre was the biggest buzz the two teens had ever experienced.
“This must be how it feels to be part of a real theatre company,” Jack commented to Ianto one day, as the class sat around hashing out set designs and costume ideas.
“I can’t imagine ever wanting any other career.”
Because of Ianto’s perfect recall, he was elected head producer and no one was the least bit surprised when he chose Jack as his deputy. They went everywhere together anyway and constantly finished each other’s sentences. When their classmates joked that the must be telepathically linked, Ianto rolled his eyes and Jack grinned.
“I wish! If we were, I could make use of Ianto’s memory. Among other things.”
Ianto blushed furiously at that and slapped Jack with the notebook he was holding.
“Behave, or I’ll put you on decaf!”
The look of horror on Jack’s face at that threat had the whole class in stitches. They were well aware of Jack’s caffeine addiction.
It was no secret to their classmates that the two boys were a couple, though they still hadn’t got around to telling their parents. There didn’t seem to be any rush and anyway, they had other things to occupy their minds.
It was Jack’s idea that the cast members should all be responsible for getting their own costumes. With ‘Grease’ being set in the Fifties, the characters’ costumes didn’t need to be made from scratch so it was decided that once all the roles had been cast, they’d spend a day in town, rummaging through charity shops for suitable outfits.
Ianto decided that to be fair, everyone who wanted to perform in the play should make a list of the roles they’d like to play, in order of preference, and audition in front of the whole class. Then everyone would vote for who got which role.
Jack put ‘Sandy’ at the top of his list, but because he was considered the class clown, everyone thought he was joking although they gave him a standing ovation for his audition.
During a break in the auditions, Ianto went over to Jack, hugging his boyfriend.
“I’m sorry, Cariad. I know how much you wanted the chance to show what you could do in the role.”
“It’s okay,” Jack sighed. “I’m used to the disappointment by now.”
“It’ll happen one day. Maybe when we’re famous and can produce our own plays. Or we could write one of our own, with you as the female lead.”
“Why not? We just have to get famous first,” Ianto teased with a grin.
“Oh, that’s easy. We could just streak through Cardiff, then everyone would know us!”
“I said ‘famous’, Jack, not ‘notorious’,” Ianto chuckled. “Getting arrested for public nudity wouldn’t improve our chances of becoming respected actors.”
“Darn, you’re right, as usual,” Jack grinned. “Guess I’ll have to think of another way for us to find fame.”
“You do that. Meanwhile, we have a production to organise. We should get on with the auditions.”
Everyone involved kept their own notes during the auditions then filled in the voting slips Ianto had given them. No one was allowed to vote for themselves and in the interests of fairness the votes were tallied by their supervising teacher, Mr Reed. The next morning, he posted the results on the class notice board for everyone to read.
Ianto, much to his surprise, had been the most popular choice to play Danny, getting 21 votes. Jack was to play Kenickie, having received 17 votes. One person had voted for him to play Sandy; he was pretty sure he knew who that was.
“I’m just sorry it wasn’t enough. You can be my Sandy any day,” Ianto told him.
Jack felt blessed to have such a supportive partner.
With all the roles cast, the real work began.
The students on the production design side of the course got to work on detailed plans and started building the sets as soon as their designs were approved. Ianto and Jack almost wished they’d signed up for that class too; the designs looked so professional, the sets were sure to be amazing.
Meanwhile, the cast began learning their lines and rehearsals got underway.
The first Saturday after the cast list was put up, all the performers went on their planned costume-shopping trip, separating into small groups depending on their roles. Ianto and Jack soon drifted away from their group to shop on their own, as usual preferring each other’s company to anyone else’s.
After shopping, they all met up again at McDonalds for a burger and to show off what they’d bought. It was a successful day, but a tiring one and eventually everyone said their goodbyes, wearily heading home.
Back at Ianto’s house, he and Jack shut themselves in his room and sorted through their purchases. There were a few things among them that Jack hadn’t showed to their friends, but he put them on now for Ianto to see.
“You look beautiful. You really would have been great as Sandy.”
Jack grinned as he twirled, making the full skirt float around him.
“I don’t know why so many girls choose to wear trousers these days. Skirts are so comfortable. On hot days, I sometimes wish I could go out in one without people giving me funny looks.”
“Maybe you could get yourself a kilt,” Ianto suggested. “You might still get some odd looks, but not as many.”
“Hmm, that’s an idea. Of course, you know it’s traditional not to wear anything under a kilt,” he added with a wicked grin.
Ianto immediately blushed, which just made Jack grin even more.
“Umm, yeah, I knew that. I bet you’d do it too.”
“Of course I would! Can’t argue with tradition!”
“And yet, you argue with tradition in everything else.”
“Well yeah, some traditions are dumb!”
“Like the one about only girls playing the female roles?”
“That one especially! Practically the only time guys get to play women in plays is for things like the Ugly Sisters in ‘Cinderella’. How is that fair? Girls can play male roles. I mean it’s not like I want to be a girl, not permanently, but I could play some of those female roles as well as any girl could and no one will give me the chance to prove it. Isn’t that what acting is all about? Being someone you’re not and making people believe? I’m not a pirate or a king, but I’ve played both on stage. Why shouldn’t I be able to play a woman?”
“I don’t know,” Ianto sighed. “I guess some people just have no imagination.”
Continued In Pt. 2