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Torchwood: Touch (Fanfiction)


Word Count: ~1.000
Summary: A year in chains, tortured and killed repeatedly – what would you miss the most?
Characters: Jack Harkness, Ianto Jones, the Doctor (Ten)
Pairing: Jack/Ianto
Rating: PG-13
Spoiler: End Of Days, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
after series one / series two
Crossover: Doctor Who
after The Sound Of Drums / after The Last Of The Time Lords
Crossover-Spoilers: The Sound Of Drums, The Last Of The Time Lords
mention of torture
Author's Note: Written for the jack_ianto_las challenge “I didn't see that one coming …“. I fixed some grammar mistakes my nice reviewers on jack_ianto_las pointed out for me. So this is a slightly altered version.
Disclaimer: I’m not making money with this fanfic. The tv-show Torchwood and the characters appearing within it belong to their producers and creators. Any similarities to living or dead persons are purely coincidental and not intended.


The lights in the room are glaringly bright, hurting Jack's tired eyes and making him wish for just a minute of darkness. His body aches from being held in one position for too long. The skin of his wrists is raw from all the times he strained against the bonds. But the guards can't know that he's in pain or their taunting will become worse than it already is, so he alternates between keeping quiet when they hurt him and flirting with them when they don't, and sometimes he just closes his eyes and escapes into his memories of his team: Tosh's shy smile, Owen's acid wit, Gwen's open warmth and Ianto's loyal presence. He remembers the taste of Earth's rain, the wind whipping into his face when he's standing on some roof and the comforting noises of the Hub. He clings to those memories when the Master kills him in the most inventive ways just to watch Jack's body knit back together.

A long time ago, he was able to travel anywhere he wanted just by pushing a few buttons on his wrist strap. Even when his boundaries were limited to Earth and a straight timeline, he'd never felt this trapped. This is his life now – this room, these chains and the smell of blood and pain.

Over a year goes by, 372 days, and Martha Jones helps the Doctor save Earth and Jack is free. It isn't until the Doctor approaches him in the TARDIS just before dropping him off in Cardiff that Jack realizes what kind of scar the Master really inflicted on him, and all it takes to break it open is one touch to his shoulder by a kind hand.

Nothing – not the torture, not the taunting, not the many deaths – had prepared Jack for what that touch would do to him.

Before he knows it, he cries into the Doctor's coat and Martha's jacket, feeling so lost and small and raw. ”I'm sorry,” he whispers brokenly, embarrassed about his outbreak. ”I didn't see that one coming.”

The Doctor hushes him and Jack sees his own pain reflected in these old, old eyes and he knows that he's not the only one feeling this way – he isn't the only one who's feeling like he can't breathe.

”I did,” the Doctor says softly. ”One thing every sentient being needs on a regular basis to be happy – a kind touch.” He sighs sadly. ”We both went a year without. It hurts to get used to it again.” His lips thin and he nods slowly, a faraway look settling on his face. “But we crave it nevertheless.”


Here, the lights are soft and inviting, intimate and warm. Jack wants them to stay that way forever, but these are stolen moments of peace and instead of thinking too hard about how he could arrange for the world to stay that way, he just enjoys himself. His body is heavy from the good meal and the bottle of red wine they shared. The skin of his wrists brushes against the rough cloth of Ianto's jeans, tingling from the friction. His hands hold on to Ianto's thighs, stopping him from getting up, even though Ianto utters worries about being too heavy to straddle Jack's lap. He doesn't try to move away though, not really, instead moving forwards until his knees are on either side of Jack's hips and his groin is touching Jack's belly. They're not really aroused, though, not yet, just drifting together.

Jack's right hand moves up Ianto's thigh, under his hoodie, to caress smooth skin and he hears Ianto's breath hitch, sees his eyes close and feels him press closer. Ianto's arms slide around Jack's neck and they kiss slowly. Jack thinks that he and Ianto may have never been more intimate than right now in this moment.

His hand shifts around to the small of Ianto's back and pulls him closer, relishing the warm skin under his palm. ”Tell me,” he whispers, picking up a half-finished conversation they had over dinner.

Ianto licks his lips and looks into Jack's eyes. ”There's been no one for me,” he says softly. ”I didn't sleep with anyone while you were gone.”

Jack sees his own question reflected in Ianto's eyes and answers, ”Me neither.” He wraps both arms around Ianto and presses his face to Ianto's shoulder. Then he raises his head again and adds, ”I didn't even touch anyone.”

Ianto's fingers comb through Jack's hair and he looks at him knowingly. ”How long has it been for you?”

Jack might just fall in love with Ianto for picking up on hints no one else seems to get.

He kisses Ianto's neck. ”Over a year. In chains.”

Ianto nods, grief in his eyes.

Jack hates that he caused him more pain, but he also knows that Ianto wouldn't want him to hold back, because Ianto's not a child or someone who needs protection – however much Jack loves to provide it. Ianto's strong and independent and he's fiercely protective himself ... and maybe, Jack thinks, he needs just a bit of protection right now.

He smiles. ”They say that every sentient being needs a kind touch on a regular basis to be happy.”

A crooked, boyish smile blossoms on Ianto's face, hiding the grief. ”You're not in chains anymore.”

”No,” Jack says, but he still feels damaged and it takes everything he has not to clutch Ianto to him in a needy frenzy, to feel his warmth and smell his scent. He wants to feel human again, not like a freak and the Master's pet project.

Ianto kisses his cheek and whispers, ”Then touch me.”

And finally, Jack feels like he can breathe again.


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( 27 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 17th, 2011 11:50 am (UTC)
Beautiful story. Thank you for sharing.
Jul. 17th, 2011 11:59 am (UTC)
Thank you for commenting. :)
Jul. 17th, 2011 01:42 pm (UTC)
Just gorgeous and so very bittersweet. Ah! And you know I never cease to marvel how you do this in two languages!
Jul. 18th, 2011 10:25 am (UTC)
Thank you. :)
(Deleted comment)
Jul. 18th, 2011 10:26 am (UTC)
Thank you. :)
Jul. 17th, 2011 02:09 pm (UTC)
Science knows that babies need more than food to thrive. They need music and touch. Or they end up brain damaged.
Jul. 18th, 2011 10:26 am (UTC)
I heard about that. I think that it's the same for adults, just that they don't end up brain damaged.
Jul. 17th, 2011 02:25 pm (UTC)
Why you hurt me so good that I can only flail? :D

I like the quiet intensity of this piece and feel the pain shared between Jack and the Doctor. Ianto's shrewdness for detail always makes my heart pitter-pat. :)

Love this!
Jul. 18th, 2011 10:28 am (UTC)
Thank you. :)
Jul. 17th, 2011 05:09 pm (UTC)
Aaw what a lovely story, very quiet and sweet.
Jul. 17th, 2011 11:12 pm (UTC)
Yeah, this. Perfect. Thank you.
Jul. 18th, 2011 10:28 am (UTC)
Thank you.
Jul. 18th, 2011 10:28 am (UTC)
Thanks. :)
Jul. 18th, 2011 08:05 am (UTC)
Oh, this was just lovely. You really did a terrific job of teasing out the theme of the calming and reassuring nature of touch. I loved how Jack got some immediate comfort from the Doctor (even if it threw him into shock at first) and then ultimate comfort from Ianto.

Very emotional little piece, but done so in such a quiet way. It made it more impacting, that's for sure.

Terrific job!
Jul. 18th, 2011 10:29 am (UTC)
Thank you. :)
Jul. 18th, 2011 10:56 am (UTC)
Beautiful!! <3
Jul. 18th, 2011 11:09 am (UTC)
Thanks. :)
Jul. 18th, 2011 12:03 pm (UTC)
I love that Ianto understands Jack so well and sees what the others don't. He'll take care of Jack, make him feel safe and protected as well as loved.
Jul. 19th, 2011 12:44 pm (UTC)
I think that's something he really does. :) And Jack needs that.
Jul. 18th, 2011 01:30 pm (UTC)
beautiful and those two last lines just killed me!

thanks for sharing it!
Jul. 19th, 2011 12:44 pm (UTC)
Thanks for commenting. :)
Jul. 19th, 2011 01:08 am (UTC)
Jul. 19th, 2011 12:45 pm (UTC)
Thanks. :)
Jul. 31st, 2011 01:02 pm (UTC)
I love this. Very raw and real.
Aug. 1st, 2011 03:45 pm (UTC)
Thank you. :)
Aug. 17th, 2011 08:24 am (UTC)
Beauitiful, thanks for sharing!
Aug. 17th, 2011 09:59 am (UTC)
Thanks for reading. :)
( 27 comments — Leave a comment )