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Torchwood: Galaxy Quest (7)

Galaxy Quest (7)

Word Count: ~37.000
Summary: Eight years ago, the actors of the popular sci-fi show Galaxy Quest were heroes – these days, they can't escape the shadow of the roles they played, even though the show has been cancelled. When an alien race mistakes them for real heroes fighting evil and seeks their help, they quickly find themselves in a fight that goes way over their heads. To survive, they have to overcome their differences and conflicts of the past, but pride is something that's very hard to swallow ...
Characters: Jack Harkness, Ianto Jones, John Hart, Gwen Cooper, Owen Harper, Toshiko Sato, Mathasar, Sarris, Laliari, Teb, Eugene Jones, Carys, Annie, Lahnk, OCs
Pairing: Ianto/John Hart, Jack/Ianto, Tosh/Owen, Gwen/Rhys
Rating: PG-13
Warnings: Torture, mention of partner betrayal, language
Beta: danian and czarinakitty, who did a great job under time pressure. Thank you both!
Disclaimer: I’m not making money with this fanfic. The tv show Torchwood as well as the movie Galaxy Quest 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.
This is a work of fiction. No similarities to the private or public lives of the Torchwood actors are intended, even though there are references to the fictional characters they played in other productions.

Complete Fanfiction Masterlist
Galaxy Quest Masterlist
Chapter Six



***
***


7.



In the aftermath, Jack, Gwen and Owen gathered in the room they'd had dinner in, sitting grimly around the table and staring at the schematics of the ship displayed on the flat screen. Jack glowered at all the red blinking areas of the ship, wondering how they could get out of the mess they'd landed in. He knew that he'd probably approached the whole situation a bit too much as if it was a game, but with Ianto resting in his quarters from the hit on the head he'd received and Tosh being led away to the engine room by worried-looking Thermians, it was hard to ignore that this situation was serious.

Deadly even.

Gwen and Owen's expression showed him that they had the same thoughts running through their heads while the computer updated them on the situation in its female, droning voice. ”Forward thruster shaft: 87% damage. AFT vector guards: 96% damage. Level 5 structural breaches in quadrants 32, 34, 40, 43, 58-”

”What about the engines?” Jack interrupted.

The computer paused a moment, then it repeated, ”Forward thruster shaft: 87% damage.”

Jack rolled his eyes.

Gwen asked gave him a nod and said, ”Computer, what about the engines? Why don't we have power?”

”The Beryllium sphere has fractured under stress.”

Gwen looked at Jack. ”The Berryllium sphere is fractured.”

”Can it be repaired?” Jack asked.

Gwen looked at the screen. ”Computer, can it be repaired?”

Owen muttered something and brushed a hand through his hair in annoyance.

”Negative,” the computer answered. ”Damage to Beryllium sphere irreparable. New source of Beryllium must be secured.”

Gwen sighed. ”We need a new Beryllium sphere.”

Owen pointed an accusatory finger at Jack, his dark eyes flashing angrily. ”You broke the ship! You broke the bloody ship!”

Jack ignored him. ”Computer, is there a replacement Beryllium sphere on board?”

Gwen echoed, ”Computer, is there a replacement Beryllium sphere on board?”

”Negative, no reserve Beryllium sphere exists on board.”

Gwen shook her head. ”No. We have no extra Beryllium sphere on board.”

Owen slapped his palm on the table, causing Gwen to startle. ”You know, that is really getting annoying!”

Gwen's green eyes narrowed and she glared at him. ”Look, I have one job on this lousy ship. One job! It's stupid, but I'm going to do it. Okay!?”

Jack tried to suppress a smirk when Owen shrank away from her uncharacteristic display of anger. Quietly, he muttered, ”Sure, no problem. Don't get your knickers in a twist.”

The door opened and Mathasar and Teb entered, both looking serious. Mathasar lowered his head and proclaimed in a shaky voice, ”A thousand apologies.”

Teb ducked his head as well and added, ”We have failed you.”

Jack raised his eyebrows. ”How have you failed us?”

Mathasar shook his head sadly. ”We have seen you victorious in much more desperate situations. The fault must lie with us, with the ship.”

Gwen shot Jack a glare that screamed at him to explain the truth. He felt uncomfortable about the Thermians placing the blame on themselves, too, but he didn't see how telling them would help. ”No, Mathasar. It's not your fault and it’s not the ship’s fault. It’s … it’s my fault. We … we screwed-”

”We're not the people you think we are,” Gwen interrupted his stuttering.

Mathasar frowned. ”I don't understand.”

Owen got up and approached the Thermians, burying his hands in the pockets of his lab coat. ”Don’t you make any telly shows on your planet? Any theatre, films?”

Mathasar shrugged. ”The historical documents of your culture ... yes, in fact we have begun to document our own history, learning from your example.”

Gwen shook her head. ”No, not historical documents. They're not all historical documents. I mean ... surely you don't think Game of Thrones is a ...”

The way Mathasar and Teb scrunched up their faces and shook their heads made her pause. Mathasar took a deep breath and with a mournful expression said, ”That poor family.”

Owen rolled his eyes. ”Oh, dear!” He turned to look at Jack. ”We're screwed.”

Gwen cleared her throat and leaned forward. ”Mathasar, is there no one on your planet who behaves in a way that is contrary to reality?”

Mathasar's eyes widened slightly. ”Ah! You speak of ...” He turned to Teb and they muttered softly to each other, before Mathasar continued, ”Deception? Lies?”

Gwen gave a nod.

”We have only recently become aware of these concepts. In our dealings with Sarris. Often, Sarris will say one thing and do another. Promise us mercy but deliver destruction. It is a concept we are beginning to learn at some great cost.” He paused for a moment and then smiled bravely. ”But if you are saying that any of you could have traits in common with Sarris ...” He started to laugh awkwardly, as did Teb.

Owen glared at Jack. ”Screwed!” he repeated.

In that moment, the screen at the front of the room switched from the ship's schematics to the engine room and Tosh was smiling at them. ”Hey, Captain. Listen, we found some Beryllium on a nearby planet. We might be able to get there if we ...” She took a steadying breath. ”... if we re-configure the solar matrix in … parallel for …endothermic propulsion. What do you think?”

Jack had no idea what she was talking about but everything was better than being sitting ducks. ”We’ll do that!”

Tosh turned to the other technicians looming behind her. ”That was correct. Amazing job, guys! Let's clap each other on the shoulders.”

***

“Do you think it's possible that this is just a big nightmare?” John asked.

Ianto opened his eyes and glanced around his private quarters – a moderately-sized, cosy yet modern furnished room with an adjoining bathroom – and blinked at John in confusion. ”Do you think that's possible? That one of us is just making this up in their head?”

John gave a wry smile, leaning back in the chair he'd dragged over to sit next to the bed. ”I'm hopeful.”

Ianto chuckled, but he didn't say anything. No good answer came to mind, especially not with the killer headache he was experiencing. Whatever medicine the Thermians were practising, though, was starting to show effect. The pain was receding ever so slowly and he started to feel better.

”Are you all right?” John asked, worry in his blue eyes.

”I'm fine. Just a headache.”

John swallowed visibly and the crow's feet around his eyes deepened when his face pulled into a pained expression. ”I was scared.”

Ianto nodded. ”Me, too.”

John stared at him. ”Don't you think … we could manage and maybe try again? We don't have to get married or adopt kids or anything like that.”

Ianto pulled a face. ”You want kids.”

”I thought you wanted that, too.”

Ianto bit his lip.

”Not with me, though,” John continued with a sad smile, seemingly reading his mind.

Ianto took John's hand, squeezing gently. ”I would love to have kids with you,” he said earnestly. ”But it's not fair to you that I …”

”You're in love with him.” John sighed. ”For what it's worth, I think he's still in love with you.”

”He's in love with himself. Mainly.”

”Mainly”, John replied with a short nod. He cleared his throat and shook his head, pulling his hand out of Ianto's grasp. ”You should rest for a bit.”

Ianto nodded reluctantly. He didn't feel like resting, not really. He felt like doing something, even though he had no idea what it was. ”Fine.”

***

When Jack approached Ianto's door, John was just leaving. As soon as he saw Jack, he paused and took a deep breath before he said, ”Hey!”

It sounded casual but Jack knew better. It was anything but.

”Hey!” he answered nonetheless. ”Is he all right?”

John nodded quickly. ”He's fine.”

”Good, I need him.”

When Jack tried to walk past John, he felt his arm being grabbed tightly. ”What for?” John asked. ”He needs rest.”

Jack glowered at John's hand until he removed it, then he looked into his eyes determinedly. ”We're going down to the planet to get a Beryllium sphere.”

John raised an eyebrow. ”And he's needed?”

”Yes.” He jutted his chin out challengingly. ”What's your problem?”

”My problem is that you're a selfish dick!”

Jack gaped at John, taken aback for a moment. ”Now wait a minute. All of us are doing this for the Thermians.”

”We're all only here because you lied to them, Jack!”

”I didn't force anyone to come!”

”But you made it sound like child's play and now we're stuck here.”

”We're looking for a way out.”

”This is not Galaxy Quest, Jack!” John exploded, taking a threatening step towards him. Jack found himself backing off one step and steeled himself from withdrawing any further. ”This is real life where real people make real decisions and where real villains kill the good guys! Even you!”

Jack stared at him. ”Don't you think I know that? I'm aware of the situation.”

”And yet, Ianto was almost killed!”

”So, that's what this is about? It's about Ianto?”

”It's about all of us!”

”If you want to be angry at someone that he broke up with you, then you should be angry with him! It's not my fault!”

John scoffed. ”Of course it is, because he still loves you!”

Jack froze.

John ducked his head and his shoulders slumped. ”He's still in love with you, even after everything you did to him.”

Jack swallowed and hoarsely replied, ”I didn't screw our relationship up.”

”You didn't?”

”He did that himself! I didn't ask for much, but it was too much for him. Nobody seems to understand that he started it all because he didn't trust me.”

John stared at him, then he laughed incredulously. ”So instead of making a clean cut like an adult and breaking up with him, you proved to him that he really can't trust you.”

Jack didn't answer. No answer would have been good enough. He knew, because he'd run through all of them in his own head and he hated himself for each and every single one.

”You know,” John said, ”shagging Gwen is one thing, because you were already on your way to splitting up. Manipulating his career on the show is quite another thing – and don't pretend you didn't give the producers the idea of sacrificing Laredo for the greater good. It didn't matter in the end, though, because the show was cancelled anyway.” John stepped closer again, lowering his voice. ”What you don't seem to get is that he needed time and you weren't willing to give it to him. You humiliated him, Jack. Not everyone's like you. We can't all be like you.”

Jack narrowed his eyes. ”It was well-intentioned.”

”You outed him at a press conference, Jack! How was that even remotely well-intentioned?”

Jack swallowed. ”I don't have to explain to you of all people why I did it.”

”No, you don't, because I know why you did it. I'm your best friend, I know you better than you know yourself. Ianto, though … he would deserve an explanation.”

With that, John turned away and left.

Jack stared after him until he was out of sight and only then did he release the breath he'd been holding for quite some time. Shaking his head, he steeled himself. It didn't help to cry over spilled milk and they had a job to do. With that firmly in the forefront of his mind, Jack entered Ianto's quarters after knocking. ”Hey!” he said. Ianto turned his head, looking up at him from his position on the bed. Jack gave a smile. ”Do you think you could come with us down to the planet?”

Ianto looked at him quizzically. ”Why?”

”We need a new Beryllium sphere,” Jack answered. ”To get the ship working again.”

Ianto sighed deeply and sat up carefully. ”Yes, I guess ...” He grimaced and pressed a hand against his forehead. ”I guess I can do that.”

Jack smiled. ”Good. Thanks, Ianto.”

***

“What's this?” Owen asked when Tosh handed him a device. It was rectangular and as big as a small book, fitting comfortably into his hand. A screen was embedded into the top half and it had several round dials and switches on the bottom half.

”You should know it,” Tosh answered.

Owen looked down at the device quizzically.

Tosh sighed but gave him an indulgent smile. ”It's a surface mapper, you idiot. I have programmed it to the coordinates of a Beryllium sphere of sufficient density.”

Owen stared at her in amazement. ”You sound like you've done this billions of times already.”

She shrugged. ”Well, I kind of did.”

Owen smirked.

Tosh caught his hand, squeezing briefly before letting go again. ”Be careful.”

Owen looked at her earnestly. ”'Course.”

He turned to enter the shuttle the team was going to use to get down to the planet. Owen wasn't too fond of the idea of taking the small ship. The thought of entering the atmosphere in something the size of a minivan scared him. He walked up the ramp and towards the front of the ship, where the complicated navigation system was. At least the seats looked comfortable.

”Owen!” Tosh called. He turned around, saw her smiling teasingly. ”You may be dead but you will avenge us!”

”Shut up, Tosh,” he replied and took a seat behind the pilot's chair, buckling himself in.

John was already there, sitting behind the co-pilot's seat, staring out the window into the busy hangar where Thermians were checking on the other shuttles. He looked pale and tired.

”All right, mate?” Owen asked. ”You sure you want to come with us?”

John startled out of his thoughts and cleared his throat, turning to look at him with one eyebrow raised. ”Are you saying I can't?”

”I'm just saying … you didn't seem overly happy about all of this from the start.”

John just glared at him. ”Of course, compared to you being so ecstatic.”

Owen had to give him that and grimaced.

John sighed and turned back to the window. ”Somebody has to keep a clear head with all of you running about like crazy people.”

Owen had the feeling that John wanting to accompany them had more to do with Ianto than with the rest of them, but he didn't comment on it. Some things were just too obvious to point out.

Ianto chose that moment to quietly sidle up to them anyway. ”John, do you have a minute?”

John looked up at him quizzically, but nodded quickly and unbuckled his seatbelt. ”Sure.” He got up and followed Ianto to the front of the ship.

Owen could barely hear the muffled conversation while Gwen dropped into the seat behind him. ”You're coming with us?”

”If I'm gonna die, I'll do it properly,” Owen replied distractedly, his eyes fixed on the way Ianto stepped closer to John and took his hand.

”Are they making up?” Gwen asked curiously.

”If you'd shut up for a minute, I could hear.”

She gave his arm a playful slap but kept quiet, leaning forward so that her chin was almost resting on his shoulder.

John shook his head. ”I'm just trying to-”

”I know what you're trying to do,” Ianto interrupted him. ”I appreciate it. Just ...” He leaned closer and Owen couldn't hear what he said next, but John wrapped his arms around Ianto's waist and pulled him close.

Owen whispered, ”I think they're breaking up for real.”

Before Gwen could answer, Mathasar's voice behind them interrupted with Jack's catchphrase from the show, ”Never give up, never surrender.”

Then Jack walked past them towards the front of the ship. He paused when he saw Ianto and John break apart slowly. Owen expected him to interrupt them with a lewd comment or a bad joke but instead, Jack remained standing and waited until John had cupped Ianto's cheek for a moment before moving away.

”So,” he said then, clearing his throat. ”Can we go?”



Chapter Eight
Galaxy Quest Masterlist
Complete Fanfiction Masterlist


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