Title: "Come Fly With Me"
Rating: Adult concepts- but not explicit this chapter.
Spoilers/Disclaimers : Torchwood, belongs to the BBC and RTD, I’m just borrowing the characters.
Summary: Torchwood characters in a story set in the glamorous world of international travel!
A/N: Sorry, yet again for the delay- I hate work! Here we go… Confession time.
Chapter List: http://wanda1969.dreamwidth.org/1863.
Only three days earlier, Ianto had seen the same view from the aeroplane window, but then he’d been looking at their approach to Îles des Pins, rather than flying away from the island characterised by the distinctive Pacific Pines liberally dotted around the landscape. He wished that they’d had three weeks there instead of the three nights that they’d been able to escape there. But he and Jack had made the most of it; there had been little to do but relax and enjoy the luxurious hotel, but they’d managed to see quite a bit of the island the day before they left, visiting other small, deserted beaches, the famed Picine Naturelle and the tiny main village of Vao and its brightly painted pseudo French Mission Church.
He ruminated on whether the others had noticed his and Jack’s absence from the hotel in Nouméa. He came to the conclusion that now was as good a time as any to just stop pretending – the last few days had convinced him of that. The way that Jack had been so at ease was so contagious that it had removed all of his worries and filled him with a new need for less subterfuge when it came to his relationship with his sometime boss. If the rest of the crew had noticed, he wasn’t sure that he would be able to deny anything if the two of them could have such weekends away without any kind secret planning or deception.
It was late in the afternoon when the two men walked through the lobby of the Torchwood staff’s hotel. Ianto had thought there was a possibility that they would see their colleagues, but it was either time for a siesta or their co-workers were presumably still sightseeing or sunbathing.
In the dim light of the candles flickering on the tables of the family-run restaurant, Jack thought Ianto had never looked lovelier- even if he was sure that the other man would have baulked, as usual, at being described in terms such as ‘lovely’. Ianto’s customary pale skin was now lightly tanned, sunkissed from some very uncustomary sunbathing at the Baie D’Oro, the pair usually spending their time away from the UK exploring the towns and cities that they visited. But the clear, cooling waters, white sandy beach and thoroughly calming ambience of the Le Meridien hotel had shown Jack yet another side to him- carefree and relaxed- and as much as he adored his usually pale Welshman, this new tanned Ianto was fast turning into an equal favourite.
Ianto pushed the empty plate away as he finished eating- they’d both had the House Special of Spaghetti au Pistou.
After the last three nights away, it was tempting to try to persuade Ianto to go back to his room (or Ianto’s) when they got back to the hotel, but it would add more fuel to the fire if any suspicions had developed in the two men’s absence. Jack finished his own pasta and sighed, regretting that their time as a normal couple was over for now.
Ianto twitched the corners of his mouth into a small smile, knowing exactly what was on his boyfriend’s mind. “I don’t mind, you know.”
“Mind us telling the rest of them- if they ask where we’ve been, that is…”
Jack’s eyes glittered. “I get the feeling that it’s pretty much a given that they will have noticed we haven’t been around for a few days, they’re such a bunch of gossips.”
“Gwen will, you mean. Tosh’s already said she’s been asking after you,” Ianto snorted.
“In that case, telling them’s a necessity if it will get Gwen off our backs.”
“Your back, you mean. She’s not interested in me!”
Jack laughed. “More fool her, then, if she’s not aware she’s in the presence of a Coffee and Sex God extraordinaire.”
He shook his head genially. “Any more talk like that and I might change my mind…”
It was still early when they returned to their hotel, and a nightcap seemed in order. It was no surprise to find the majority of the crew already in the bar, with the exception of Beth, who rarely joined in their drinking sessions. Giving Jack’s room number, they ordered their drinks as they entered the bar and turned to seek out a couple of seats with their teammates. They were stopped by Suzie on her way back from the toilets.
“What the heck have you two been up to? I’ve not seen either of you for days!”
“Just having a trip out to the islands.” Jack glanced over to Ianto who nodded firmly, the wary look in his eyes belying his determination. “Look, Suzie… I know this is a bit out of the blue, but me and Ianto… we’ve been seeing each other.”
Suzie looked taken aback as her eyes darted between them.
“I know we should have told you…” Jack paused, seeing brief confusion quickly replaced as understanding dawned. “But it’s serious- we’re getting a house together…”
She shook herself out of her thoughts, and smiled. “Congratulations… How long…?”
“About nine months- give or take,” Ianto chipped in.
The Cabin Service Director actually chuckled as she shook her head. “And I didn’t even notice?”
“That was kind of the idea, Suzie.” Ianto said with an undeniable hint of friendly sarcasm.
“Well- you bloody well succeeded. I had no idea…”
“Ianto, it looks like the plan worked!” the pilot cocked his head at her with a cheeky grin. “Seriously, though- nothing’s gonna change at work, and I think we’d both be grateful for the opportunity to tell the rest of the crew ourselves.”
Suzie understood Jack immediately. “No problem. I won’t say anything unless you want me to.”
The waiter settled the two men’s beers on the bar.
“Thanks, Suzie.” Relieved to have his drink, Ianto made a grab for his beer, with a quick thanks to the barman.
“Suzie- thanks,” Jack agreed. “Now, come on you two- I think we’ve been spotted. We’d best grab a seat. ”
The trio walked over to the table and Jack and Ianto were lucky in finding spaces next to each other- and, thankfully, Jack found Owen separating him from Gwen, who looked up only briefly from her conversation with Emma and Martha as they sat down.
“So, a good trip, eh?” Owen asked Jack quietly.
“Just great, Owen. If this isn’t a one-off, I think you really ought to take a few days out there next time. It’s beautiful.”
“Fingers crossed we get this route, then!”
“I’m with you. What’ve you been up to while we’ve been away?”
“Actually did a bit of sightseeing- Mont Humbolt and that Blue River park thing. A couple of days of sunbathing and me and Tosh were bored as hell. Amy came along the second day – turns out she hates sunbathing as much as Tosh. It’s that Celtic skin,” Owen silently laughed, and eyed the ‘new’ tanned Ianto.
As Owen detailed the trips out, Jack made mental notes, knowing that Ianto had had his sights on both of those sites, before he’d whisked him away to Île des Pins. It also turned out that Owen had been out and about in Nouméa that very day and gave him a few tips on places that he and Ianto had missed out on before their trip away.
“Right, then, I need to go for a piss,” Owen said unceremoniously and stood after finishing describing his last few days and his beer.
Gwen wasted no time in hurriedly halting her conversation with the two other women, and slid into the vacated seat next to the pilot.
“So… Jack. I’ve not seen you for a few days- it sounds like you’ve been away.”
“Yeah. Seemed a pity not to make the most of a stop-over out here.”
Ianto glanced up momentarily from his conversation with Tosh and Amy, unsurprised that Gwen had completely failed to notice his own absence for the last three days.
“I hope we get this route again. We could all go, then you wouldn’t have to go travelling on your own…”
With one ear fixed on their exchange, Ianto quickly disentangled himself from the discussion with Tosh and Amy, and turned to Jack and Gwen.
“He didn’t go on his own- I went with him.” Ianto surprised himself with the certainty with which he joined the conversation.
“Oh- well, perhaps we could all head out there, then?”
“No, Gwen. I…” Jack started, just as Owen returned and squeezed back onto the end of the sofa in between them.
There was an unexpected and opportune lull in the conversations around the table. Jack took his cue from his partner, and he was convinced that now was the time to finally get all of this secrecy out of the way.
“Guys…” Some of the crew looked towards him and he suddenly wondered what he was going to say. For his own part Ianto wished that he could be the one to take over Jack’s burden of confession, but he’d never been the loudest or more confident of the pair, and he knew that the pilot usually managed to charm himself out of any situation anyway.
“Hey, guys…” Jack raised his voice a few decibels, suddenly gaining everyone’s full attention. “Look I know my private life isn’t anyone’s business, but- well- I think I need to speak to you all…”
All eyes were now on him as he persisted. “Perhaps I- we… were wrong in not saying anything before now. But I hope you’ll all understand... Ianto and me have been seeing each other and, well… well, we moved in together a while back.” Jack looked around at their colleagues who were trying to digest his words with wide eyes and slackened mouths. With the exceptions of Owen, Tosh and Suzie (all three were grinning wildly), the rest of the crew seemed nothing less than ‘gobsmacked’. To say that their jaws hit the table wasn’t far off the mark.
Gwen’s own eyes were like saucers as they darted between Jack and Ianto.
“Oh, my God!” Emma couldn’t help herself saying out loud, accompanied by quieter mumblings from some of the others.
Jack raised his eyebrows and went on, chancing a quick look towards Ianto, whose now tanned skin was ably hiding the faint blush which the pilot knew would now be affecting the Welshman.
“We shoulda said something sooner, but I’m not sure there’s ever a right time to come out with something like this,” Jack winced at his inadvertent use of the phrase ‘come out’; he hadn’t meant to imply that either of them were actually gay- not that that would be a problem to him if it were true- and he was sure that Ianto wouldn’t thank him for insinuating that they’d been hiding in the proverbial closet. He quickly spoke again and hoped that the white lies wouldn’t be too noticeable. “But when we got here, a bit of sightseeing was kind of irresistible, and we decided that it was time to tell you all- stop sneaking around,” he paused and tried to gauge the reactions around the table, which could only be described as stunned silence. “So… well… here we are…” He raised his hands before dropping them back down and reaching for his drink and grinned a toothy, but uncertain, grin. “I think I really need this!”
The lull in the storm was short-lived, as a few moments later the questions for both of them started: “How long have you been seeing each other?”, “So you’re gay?”, “When did you move in together?”, “But weren’t you seeing Lisa Hallett?”, “Are you going to get married? You know, one of those Civil Partnerships?”…
This year, this kind of confession had become pretty much par for the course for both of them, even if Jack knew Ianto well enough to see that he was internally squirming at both the interrogation and the attention to his private life. He was doing pretty well though, no doubt due to the grounding presence of a nearby Toshiko, Jack judged.
Mercifully, Gwen Cooper appeared to be so completely shocked by the news that she was just joining in with the general hubbub around the table rather than actively taking a part in what was quickly turning into a question and answer session. Still, Ianto was acquitting himself well.
Discussions drifted towards whether anyone else at Torchwood knew about their ‘liaison’, as Emma so precisely put it.
“We’ve officially changed our addresses at HR, but as for the rest of the Torchwood, no. Apart from you guys, no one else knows… And, if you’re all OK with that, we’d like to keep it that way for the moment. We’d just like to have the opportunity to tell people ourselves over the next few weeks,” Jack said firmly.
In the main, their colleagues nodded their assent, but both men knew that they weren’t going to be able to stop this getting out. For a start, Beth was one of Lisa’s old friends, although they hadn’t seen much of each other in recent years, and, secondly, neither of them was sure that certain members of the crew would be able to keep such a juicy piece of news to themselves for too long…
For the first time in what seemed like hours, Jack and he actually had the chance to exchange a few words, as a couple of the ‘girls’ (including Toshiko and a rather confused and disgruntled Gwen) declared that they were going back to their rooms. Owen and the rest had eventually moved onto other gossip-worthy titbits.
“So,” Jack whispered. “Whaddaya say we leave now?”
“Jack, they’ll know we’re leaving together…”
Jack put his head to one side. “Ianto, do you truly think they think we’re going to spend the night apart now? It doesn’t matter when we leave- they’re just going to assume we’re going to get together anyway.”
Ianto weighed up his comments, knowing he was right- he’d do just the same in their place. Whatever they did, tomorrow morning, at breakfast, there would always be the assumption that they had spent the night in the same room. “I suppose so…”
“C’mon then, I’d say it’s time we made our excuses, and left.”
Ianto was easily swayed by him, and steeled himself for the announcement of their departure from the bar.
“Yeah, yeah- you’re right. But if you think I’m up to anything after all of this tonight, I think you’re going to be sadly disappointed, Harkness.”
He laughed, something which Ianto was always amazed that Jack could do under every circumstance. “Tell me about it! But that’s not the point- I just think we both need to wind down. And have a chat.”
To be continued…