Characters: Ianto, Jack.
Summary: No matter how many times it happens, Ianto will never get used to seeing his lover dead.
Word Count: 500
Written For: Prompt #419 - Loss, at slashthedrabble.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters. They belong to the BBC.
The alien is definitely hostile, and armed with some kind of futuristic laser pistol. It fires at Jack just seconds before Ianto’s bullet stops it in its tracks, and Ianto curses himself for not being fast enough. He knows even before he turns towards his lover that the alien’s aim was as lethally accurate as his own, knows because if Jack were alright he wouldn’t be surrounded by this hollow, echoing silence.
He turns slowly, both needing to see for himself and not wanting to look. Jack is sprawled unmoving on the warehouse floor, a neat hole in his forehead, and the back of his head gone. His eyes are wide open, but they see nothing; there’s no doubt he’s dead. Again.
The sense of loss hits Ianto like a physical blow and he staggers, almost falling to the ground where he stands. In that instant, it doesn’t matter that he knows Jack will revive, because right now the man he loves is dead, and grief threatens to overwhelm him. Temporary death is still death, after all. This is something he’s sure he’ll never get used to, no matter how many times he’s witness to it. He’ll never be able to simply shrug off Jack’s deaths as unimportant, not when every time a little piece of his heart dies too. Jack means too much to him for Ianto to be unaffected.
There are things that have to be done though, and with an effort, Ianto pulls himself together, checks that the alien is dead and not just injured, and takes its weapons. Alien biology can make it hard to be completely certain, so it’s always best to err on the side of caution. With that in mind, he cuffs its wrists together behind its back. If it turns out to be less dead than it appears, at least that should slow it down a bit.
Tapping his bluetooth headset, Ianto lets the rest of the team know what’s happened, warning them to watch their backs. They don’t know for sure yet if this alien was alone; there could be others out there. That done, he goes to Jack, carefully dragging him away from the worst of the blood and gore. Coming back from death is never a pleasant experience for the immortal, but having to wake up in a pool of his own blood is bound to make it worse.
Sinking to the cold, hard concrete, Ianto gathers his lover into his arms, holding him close so that when Jack wakes up he’ll immediately know he’s not alone, that someone is there to comfort and protect him. It’s the least he can do, and besides, it keeps Jack from hurting himself by accident. His revivals can be quite violent.
All Ianto can do now is wait for Jack to come back to him, praying this won’t be the time his ability to beat death fails. Losing Jack temporarily is bad enough; Ianto doubts he could survive losing him for good.