Characters: Ianto, Jack, Tosh, OMC.
Word Count: 1722
Summary: When something of Ianto’s goes missing, he immediately has his suspicions, but will he get a confession?
Written For: Challenge #169 - Confession at fan_flashworks.
Disclaimer: Sadly, I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters. Think of the fun I could have with them…
“Confession is good for the soul,” Ianto murmured as he and Jack sprawled across the new bed in Jack’s quarters, basking in the afterglow.
“So I’ve heard. Why mention it now though? D’you have something to confess?” Jack raised himself up off the pillows slightly to leer down at the top of Ianto’s head. The effort was wasted since Ianto’s eyes were closed, and anyway, even if they’d been open the only thing in his eye line would’ve been Jack’s armpit.
“Nope, not me, I just thought you might have something you want to get off your chest.”
“The only thing on my chest right now is your head.” Jack flopped back against the pillows, content to let Ianto’s head stay where it was.
“So you’re not going to admit to eating the sausage rolls I put in the fridge for tea?”
“I would if I had, but I didn’t, so I won’t.” Pushing himself right up on his elbows, so Ianto slid off him onto the mattress with a surprised huff of breath, Jack frowned at his lover. “Seriously, it wasn’t me! I never even saw any sausage rolls. How come I always get the blame when something edible disappears?”
Ianto shifted into a more comfortable position and stared up at Jack. “Because you’re a bottomless pit of hunger, devouring anything you can get your hands on.”
“Hey!” Jack scowled indignantly. “That’s only post-revival! Coming back from death takes a lot of energy and I need to refuel quickly to keep my strength up. And I do too have a bottom! It’s an excellent specimen, though I say so myself; won me Rear of the Year on more than one occasion!”
That drew an eye-roll and a snort from Ianto. “Which just confirms my suspicion that you’re a shameless arse.”
Jack rolled over, grabbing Ianto and tickling him. “There are worse things to be, Mister Perfectionist. Now apologise for your unfair accusations!”
Struggling and laughing, trying to fend Jack off, Ianto finally gasped out, “Alright, you win, I’m sorry for calling you bottomless!”
Pausing to consider the apology, Jack nodded. “Good enough. Now where were we?”
The mystery of the missing sausage rolls was pushed to the back of Ianto’s mind as round two got underway.
Going to the fridge the following morning to get the butter for their breakfast toast, Ianto once again noticed the empty space where his sausage rolls should have been. They couldn’t just have vanished by themselves; that would be a bit too weird even for Torchwood, but if Jack hadn’t taken them, who had?
There was no CCTV in the kitchen itself, an oversight he should probably correct, except for the fact that he and Jack often made use of the blind spot for a quickie when the rest of the team were out. It saved them having to remember to erase the footage. However, the approach to the kitchen area was in line of sight of no less than three cameras; surely one of them must have caught something. He pulled up the CCTV from the day before on his monitor in the kitchen and started a search.
“Whatchya doing?” Jack asked, leaning over his shoulder.
“Investigating yesterday’s disappearance. Unless those sausage rolls grew legs and walked off under their own steam, which I’ll admit is not beyond the realm of possibility around here, one of the team must have taken them and I intend to find out who,” Ianto explained. “They were in the fridge before I went out to collect the Thalaxian laser pistol handed in to the police during their last weapons amnesty, but gone when I got back.” The rest of the team, aside from Jack, had also gone home by then. “So,” he continued, “I have a timeframe to work with, shouldn’t be too hard to figure out the guilty party…”
It wasn’t. Only one person approached the kitchen during that time period, and it was the last person Ianto would have suspected. “Tosh?” He and Jack watched their friend scurry past the camera, coat on, bag over her shoulder, and the paper bag containing the sausage rolls clutched in one hand. They tracked her from camera to camera through the Hub as she called out a goodnight to Jack, then left through the cog door. “Sorry for accusing you last night,” Ianto apologised.
“Doesn’t matter, I might have eaten them if I’d known they were there. Why would Tosh take your sausage rolls though?”
“No idea.” Ianto was interrupted as the cog door alarms started to blare, almost drowning out his voice. He glanced at Jack. “Looks like we’re about to get an opportunity to ask.”
To their surprise, Tosh trotted straight into the kitchen, head down, pulling a familiar paper bag from the bag slung over her shoulder.
“Morning Tosh,” Jack said cheerily. “Interesting bag you’ve got there; wouldn’t happen to contain two sausage rolls by any chance, would it?”
Tosh gave a started squeak and stopped dead, eyes wide and a guilty expression on her face as she realised the kitchen was occupied.
“Jack! Ianto! Hi! Um…”
Ianto raised an eyebrow. “Is there perhaps something you’d like to tell us? Something along the lines of a confession, maybe?”
A blush stained Tosh’s cheeks and she ducked her head. “I’m really not cut out for a life of crime,” she sighed. “I always get caught. Yes, I took your sausage rolls last night, Ianto, and I’m really sorry, but I’ve bought replacements.” She offered Ianto the bag, which he accepted. “I’d hoped I might be able to put them in the fridge before you noticed the others were gone. Silly of me to think I could get anything past you when you notice everything.”
“I’d have given them to you if you’d asked,” Ianto chided gently.
“I know you would have, otherwise I wouldn’t have dared to take them, and I’d have asked if you’d been here, but you weren’t, and he was so cold and hungry I had to do something.”
“Who was cold and hungry?” Jack asked, puzzled.
“You remember the old man who plays the accordion up on the Plas?”
Jack nodded. “The one with the little dog.”
“That’s right. Well, a couple of days ago he collapsed and was taken away in an ambulance, I saw it on CCTV. I think he had a heart attack. Anyway, his dog was left behind, all alone. I thought someone from social services would come along to take him to the animal shelter, but nobody has, and he won’t leave the spot where his master always sits, he just huddles under the bench, almost out of sight. I think he’s waiting for his master to come back for him. I’ve been keeping an eye on him, but yesterday the weather was so awful, and I knew he must be hungry, so…”
“So you took him my sausage rolls.”
“Yes,” Tosh said in a small voice.
Ianto wrapped his arms around her and kissed the top of her head. “You are an amazing person. Have you fed the dog this morning?”
“Yes, I got some proper dog food and some bowls, so he’s got food and water.” Tosh’s voice was muffled against Ianto’s chest, so he let her go. “But I’m worried about him, Ianto. With the weather getting colder, what’s going to happen to him?”
“Well for a start we’d better get him a warm, waterproof coat for daytime,” Ianto decided. “The busker never stayed after dark, so maybe the dog would be willing to leave his spot then and come into the tourist office overnight. We can put a bed in there for him and let him out again every morning. I’ll talk to D.I. Swanson, let her know we’re taking care of the dog for the time being. Maybe you could see what you can find out about his owner from the hospital.”
“I’ve tried, but I don’t know his name so finding him in the hospital records is proving impossible, and when I tried phoning they wouldn’t tell me anything because I’m not family.”
“Maybe the police would have better luck. I’ll ask Kathy if she can send an officer to the hospital to find out what they can about him.”
Three hours later, they’d learned the busker’s name was Evan Morgan, he was sixty-seven, and had indeed suffered a heart attack but was recovering well enough to receive visitors. As he had no family or close friends, no one had been to see him; needless to say, he was fretting about his dog. Andy Davidson picked Tosh up to take her to the hospital, so she could reassure him. She took with her a photograph of the dog, Buster, sitting beside Evan’s usual bench, now dressed in a smart red coat Ianto had bought for him.
“Don’t worry about Buster,” she told him. “He’ll be well looked after while you’re in hospital.”
Evan squeezed Tosh’s hand as he thanked her for looking after his little friend. “Sayin’ thank you doesn’t seem near enough. I bin so worried ‘bout him, but nobody could tell me a thing. It’s so good of yer to be carin’ for him, miss.”
“Call me Tosh, and it’s not just me, it’s my friends too. Buster is such a sweet dog and we all adore him.”
“He’s a good ‘un right enough. Kept me company must be seven years now.”
“I’m sure you’ll have many more years together as long as you take good care of yourself.”
“I’ll do the best I can. Now I know Buster’s in good hands I can stop worryin’ ‘bout him and concentrate on meself.”
Tosh smiled. “You do that. I’ll visit you again tomorrow, maybe you can tell me some stories about Buster.”
“Oh, I can do that alright,” Evan agreed, nodding. “He’s a character.”
Impulsively, Tosh leaned over and kissed the old man’s cheek. “Behave yourself, and no chasing the nurses.”
“Wouldn’t know what to do with one if I caught ‘er,” Evan laughed. “Reckon I’m past all that.”
He was still chuckling to himself as Tosh left, a lightness to her step that hadn’t been there when she’d arrived. Buster might be quite a character but Evan was too; she had a feeling she’d made a very special new friend.