Title: Rude Awakening
Characters: Ianto, Jack.
Spoilers: Nothing for the series, but references to my fic ‘Sock Horror!’
Summary: All Ianto wants is to sleep, but someone’s at the door…
Word Count: 1202
Written For: Challenge 2: Loud at beattheblackdog.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters.
There was a loud banging coming from somewhere. Ianto groaned and rolled over, wanting to bury his head under the pillow and leave the world to sort itself out for once. He was tired. No, make that exhausted. He’d crawled into bed sometime after five in the morning, having spent most of the night battling aliens intent on enslaving the good, and not so good, citizens of Cardiff. So much for getting an early night. What he wouldn’t give for one night of uninterrupted sleep; it felt like he’d only just dozed off when the godawful racket started. Briefly cracking his eyes open, he checked his wristwatch, which he’d forgotten to take off earlier; it was just before eight. He shut his eyes again against the dull morning light, whimpering. This was so unfair! He’d been asleep for less than three hours, and that was nowhere near long enough.
“Jack? Go see who’s at the door,” he mumbled into his pillow. There was no reply. Groaning again, Ianto rolled back onto his other side and without opening his eyes, groped across the bed beside him. It was empty and cold, Jack must have left without him noticing, not surprising since he’d been asleep. Maybe there’d been a Rift alert.
Still the annoyingly loud banging continued. If anything, it was getting louder. “Why does the universe hate me?” Ianto sighed as he fumbled around on the floor by the bed for something to put on, coming up with one of Jack’s socks, his own tie and a pair of boxer shorts that could belong to either of them, it was impossible to tell whose they were with his eyes closed since they both liked the same brand. Dropping the tie and sock back on the floor he pulled the shorts on, found they were back to front and had to take them off and try again.
Eyes barely open, he shuffled his way over to the bedroom door, where his bathrobe was hanging, kicking discarded clothes aside when his feet got tangled in them, and muttering curses under his breath. Ianto was normally a very tidy person, but there were times when sleep was far more important than hanging clothes up or putting them in the laundry basket. It wasn’t as is they were going to wander off during the night. Well, probably not anyway, though he still had some doubts with regard to socks. He’d learned you could never really be sure about them.
Pulling on his bathrobe, he tugged the bedroom door open, stubbing his toes on it in the process, his muttered curses rising in volume as he hobbled barefoot across the landing to the stairs. Whoever was banging on the door, it better be something important, dragging him out of his warm, comfy bed on such a bitterly cold day. Especially after Jack had specifically said as they fell into the aforementioned bed that he could take the rest of the day off.
Ianto’s feet were frozen long before he made it down the stairs to the front door. He wished he’d stopped to put socks on before leaving his bedroom, but they would’ve taken too long to find. Elusive things, socks, it was a miracle he’d captured one by accident. ‘Should’ve held onto it instead of letting it go. No telling where it is now. Bad idea to leave them roaming around loose.’
When he finally reached the bottom of the stairs the banging still hadn’t stopped, and there was something frantic about it.
“All right, I’m coming!” Ianto shouted loudly, hoping to be heard over the noise. He twisted the latch and flung the door open, expecting to find the postman or the meter reader standing there. What he wasn’t expecting was Jack. Naked. He stood hunched and shivering on the doorstep, looking wet and a little blue.
“Jack? What are you doing out there with no clothes on? I mean, I know you like being naked, but this is hardly the weather for it. Did you know it’s snowing?”
It was; fat, lazy flakes were drifting slowly down from a cloudy sky to cloak the frosty ground.
“This wasn’t intentional!” Jack’s teeth were chattering so much he could barely get the words out.
Ianto just sighed, grabbed him by the arm and dragged him inside. “Get in here before the neighbours see you and phone the police. It’s draughty with the door open.”
Jack stumbled into the hallway and stood there shivering as Ianto shut and locked the door. “I’m so cold!”
“Well you would be, wouldn’t you? It’s January, last night’s forecast said the temperature wouldn’t rise above freezing today. I know you can be a bit… eccentric at times, but why the sudden urge to streak in the middle of winter? Sometimes I just don’t understand you.” Ianto started back up the stairs with Jack following. His shivering was practically audible.
“I wasn’t! I woke up and I couldn’t remember if I’d locked the SUV, so I decided I’d better nip outside and check.”
“Naked? In this weather?”
“I thought it would only take a minute and then I’d be back in bed, there didn’t seem any point in getting dressed only to get undressed again a few minutes later, but the door must’ve blown shut and my keys are on the nightstand.”
Ianto rolled his eyes. “You’re an idiot. Why do I put up with you? Don’t answer that. Just, go take a hot shower before you freeze to death, then you can come back to bed.” Ianto stalked off towards his bedroom as Jack slunk into the bathroom, doing as he was told for once.
Back in his bedroom, Ianto surveyed the clothes strewn across the floor and wearily started to gather them up. He’d never get back to sleep knowing there were four socks lurking somewhere; he’d been a bit paranoid about them since the incident with the evil sock creatures. Not to the point where he couldn’t wear them, but he definitely preferred all socks to be safely shut away when he slept. He felt safer that way. Jack would no doubt laugh if he knew.
Not that Jack could talk after his latest escapade.
Laying flat on the floor, Ianto extracted the fourth and final sock from under the bed. It must’ve crawled there under its own steam, he couldn’t think of any other way it could’ve got that far. He shoved it in the hamper with the other three and gratefully climbed back into bed, pulling the covers over his head to drown out Jack’s singing drifting from the bathroom. Jack had a wonderful voice, but Ianto was fed up with loud noises disturbing his rest, he just wanted to get warm again and go back to sleep.
By the time Jack, now looking pink from the hot water instead of blue with cold, slid into bed beside him, Ianto was already fast asleep. Jack snuggled into the warmth and smiled. There was nothing like nearly freezing to death to make you appreciate a cosy bed and a warm Ianto to cuddle up to. For the rest of the day, he intended to make the most of it.