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Ghost of My Past

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Letting out a long breath Jack Harkness overlooked the bay. It was hard to believe that it had been nine years - in this timeline – that he had last step foot on Earth soil. He had vowed never to return since lost Tosh, Owen...Stephen...Alice...Ianto.

Ianto that one hurt the most, a part of him ached that he had never let the Welshman know how much he truly loved him. How much he held his heart and soul. He had been a fool, he had been afraid to let Ianto into his heart; he had kept Ianto at a distance while he used Gwen and her feelings for him and his lust for her as a way to keep a barrier between him and Ianto.

He had regretted it since the moment Ianto laid dying in his arms, telling him that he loved him and Jack hated himself that he couldn’t return those words, he carried them still within him and he regretted not saying them out loud.

“Ianto Jones, I love you. I just wish I had the courage to say it to you when you were still here.” Jack whispered. “When it mattered that you needed to hear them.”

“As do I.”

Jack found himself whipping around with his heart in his throat as he came face-to-face with the last person he thought he would ever see again. “Ianto?”

For a moment Jack wondered if he had a fever. ‘I have to be seeing things,’ was the one thought running throw his head, after all, there was no way that he could be seeing Ianto Jones alive and standing before him. Anger and rage took over him as his face twisted into a snarl and he reached for his trusted Webley. “I don’t know who you are but you messed with the wrong man by using that face.” Jack snarled.

Ianto – or what was ever posing as Ianto – let out a soft sigh, one that tugged at Jack’s heart. “Jack, I understand and if I was in your place I would be reacting the same way as you are. But my allies who were sent to watch over me will use it as an excuse to shoot you and haul your body away. So please for now put that gun away.” Ianto pleaded softly with Jack.

Ianto was not surprised when Jack’s grip tightened on his Webley. When he had been informed that Jack was back he had been torn he wanted to be the one to seek Jack out but then again he hadn’t. It had been ten years since he last laid eyes on Jack and it still haunted and hurt him to know that Jack hadn’t returned his feelings.

‘No I’ve moved on. This is important.’ Ianto would not let his feelings for Jack drag him back. “Jack, please as an Agent of SHIELD, I need you to stand down. There is much we need to talk about.” Ianto raised his hands as he tried to reason with Jack.

“I don’t know who you are but my Ianto is dead and you have no right using his face to try and trick me.” Jack grip tightened on his Webley but he couldn’t bring himself to fire it, not when he was looking and sounding so much like his Ianto that he wanted nothing more than to pull him into his arms and never let him go.

“You will put down the gun or you will be put down.” A voice hissed in Jack’s ear.

Jack felt his hair standing on the back of his neck, he hadn’t even heard the new arrival arriving and that was the first clue that he was dealing with someone deadly. The second was the gun pointed at the side of his head.

“Natasha.” Ianto sighed out this is what he had feared as he had accepted the mission to seek out the slowly rebuilding Torchwood and his new as well as old family had been less than pleased when had been giving this assignment.

Natasha Romanoff snarled under her breath as she moved the gun away from his head. She didn’t like Jack Harkness, she knew all about how he had used Ianto and let him die without hearing the words of love declared back to him. “You are lucky that it is only me and not Phil or James, he would have been dead before he knew what was happening.” Natasha pointed out as she came to stand next to Ianto.

Jack knew who he was dealing with this was Natasha Romanoff, the Black Widow one of the deadliest souls living.

Natasha was unimpressed with the man before her, she knew what he had done to her Ianto and she didn’t like him for it. Ianto was special and Harkness was lucky that he had Ianto’s love.

Ianto knew what was coming and let out a sigh as her lips curled up into a smile that chilled Jack to his immortal soul and she purred out, “He’s just lucky that Clint and Steve could keep them away and even they were tempted to say screw it and let them come. I was surprised when Toshiko didn’t talk me out of this.” Natasha’s eyes softened as she thought about her wife.

Jack blanched completely at the name. “Tosh? What about Owen and Stephen?” Jack found himself almost afraid to ask.

Ianto’s blue eyes softened as he looked at his ex. “All alive, my father decided to bring them back when he did me. He knew how much Tosh and Owen meant to me and his heart broke for Alice.” Ianto could see the confusion, disbelief, and hope in Jack’s eyes and there would be time to explain everything later, right now he had a mission to complete. “A lot has changed Jack in the years that you have been gone. I know that now you and Gwen are trying to rebuild Torchwood and that is why I am here. Since everything has happened since the Avengers arrived SHIELD has taken over as the one to deal with all kinds of threats and that includes aliens. If you would like to rebuild Torchwood you will need to agree to work with SHIELD, even UNIT is doing so since the world learned that they would give the children over to the 456.”

Jack could only stare at Ianto in disbelief. He had known that Gwen had been itching and hinting at wanting to rebuild Torchwood. Jack had seen the love and lust in her eyes when she looked at him. He had never forgotten how she bragged about how special and important she was because she had survived when the others hadn’t and it had finally made him see how he had held her above the rest, including Ianto. “Who is your father?”

That had both Ianto and Natasha blinking. “Of everything I said that is all you want to know?” Ianto had been sure that Jack might get mad at him for not bringing Gwen into SHIELD; it wasn’t easy to miss how important she was to him. ‘Just wait that might come when he demands for her to be brought in.’ the little voice in the back of Ianto’s head hissed at him.

“I need to thank them.” Jack could see the shock and disbelief in Ianto’s eyes and it was as he had feared Ianto had doubted his love for him.

“My tad is Merlin.” Ianto smiled as he thought of his father with a fond and loving smile. His dad Arthur hadn’t been too happy when he learned that Ianto was meeting up with Jack again.

“His Aunt Morgana also helped out a little,” Natasha spoke up; it was interesting to see who disliked Jack more Arthur, Morgana, Phil or James for how he left Ianto broken hearted.

Jack could only stare at Ianto, he knew all about the tale of Arthur, his soulmate Merlin and Lady Morgana. “I thought Morgana was enemies with Arthur and Merlin?” Jack found himself asking.

Ianto shook his head. “A lot has changed Jack and a lot was lost in the time of history. My father's and my aunt have made peace with one another. My tad and my aunt laid waste to the 456 when they tried to come back for revenge on the ship they lost. No one dared to mess with them. Will you agree to meet with Nick Fury?” Ianto asked he didn’t add that his cousin, Morgana’s son Phil would be there and his lover Clint only kept him away from killing Jack was because he had an arrow with Jack’s name carved into its tip waiting for him.

Jack studied Ianto and he longed to do nothing more than to pull Ianto into his arms and never let him go. “I will as long as one thing.”

‘Here it is.’ Ianto braced himself for the demand that Gwen be included to come.

Jack looked nervous as he licked his lips and stared at Ianto and finally blurted out, “If you will have dinner with me.”

Ianto could only blink at Jack; there was still so much to work through between them. “I’d like that Jack. But just as friends Jack, it’s been years since we last saw each other and much has happened in my life. You still own a piece of my heart but we have much to work through.”

Jack could hear the pleading in Ianto’s tone and he knew that he had hurt the Welshman deeply. ‘I will do everything in my power to win your heart back Ianto Jones.’ Jack vowed to himself as he smiled at Ianto. “Friends it is.” ‘For now.’

Natasha could see the cunning in Jack's eyes and she knew that he would be set on winning back Ianto. ‘I wonder what James is going to think about that?’ There was a battle for Ianto’s heart coming and Natasha would do whatever it took to keep Ianto’s heart safe.