Ianto and Gwen had gone out to go and pick up lunch when the unmistakeable sound of the Tardis filtered though the Hub. Mickey groaned but he couldn’t quite get the smile off his face. Jack turned to Martha and glared.
“I asked you not to call him,” he said with false calm.
Martha stood her ground. “And I told you this is way over my head. I’m worried about you Jack. You and the baby. Let us help.”
Jack frowned. “I don’t want him here,” he said in a small voice.
“He can help,” replied Martha kindly but firmly.
“What if he doesn’t want to?” asked Jack.
Martha opened her mouth to answer but Mickey interrupted. “erm Boss..? Ianto and Gwen are back and the Doctor’s talking to them…”
“Oh god,” said Jack rolling his eyes and running to the lift.
“Oh hello! Gwyneth isn’t it?” said the Doctor bouncing over to them.
“Er… it’s Gwen actually,” replied Gwen flashing a worried look at Ianto who had gone very, very still and quiet.
“That’s right!” replied the Doctor brightly. “Gwen Cooper, from an oooold Cardiff family. And another Jones! Ianto, right?”
“That would be correct, Sir,” said Ianto hands clasped behind his back. If the Doctor had been paying attention he would have noticed that Gwen was subtly trying to stay between them. But he flung his arm around Ianto’s shoulders and either missed or ignored Ianto’s slight grimace.
“Is Martha about? I got a very strange voicemail message. I was away from the phone at the time. The Grand House of Greego is not as hospitable as I had been lead to believe…”
“Why?” drifted another voice from the direction of the invisible lift. “What did you do?”
“Jack!” responded the Doctor removing his arm from Ianto and giving the immortal a hug. “I did absolutely nothing. I have no idea what they got upset about. I fixed it, and it’s hardly like I broke it on purpose! And Mickey! Mickity-mick Mickey, how are you? Just need Martha and the gang’s all here.”
“Present and correct,” said Martha coming up from the Tourist Office across the plass.
“Don’t you dare salute,” grinned the Doctor pulling her into a hug as well.
Martha beamed. “Oh it is good to see you!”
“I’ll go and put the coffee on then,” said Ianto quietly. Taking the bag from Gwen and extracting himself from the group, slipping away the way Martha had arrived.
Ianto put the bag of sandwiches on the counter and took a deep breath. He heard the bell as the door opened and turned to see a contrite looking Jack.
“I didn’t know she’d called him,” he said slowly.
“I know that,” replied Ianto slowly.
“I… I wish I could tell him to go…” said Jack staring into space.
Ianto felt a lump in his throat. He hated seeing that defeated look on Jack’s face. It was so wrong and out of place. Jack was supposed to be the one who could cope with anything.
“I wouldn’t ask you to do that,” replied Ianto.
Jack blinked. “I know you wouldn’t… I promise Ianto I’m not going anywhere. I’m staying here.”
“I didn’t ask you to promise that,” said Ianto.
Jack moved across the space in two strides. “I’m staying because I want too.”
Ianto hugged Jack back. He let himself hold Jack just slightly too hard for slightly too long.
The moment was broken by the sound of Jack’s stomach rumbling. Ianto chuckled.
“Hey,” argued Jack. “Eating for two here!”
They both went completely still in each others arms and looked at each other.
“It’s still too early for that isn’t it?” said Jack with a grimace.
Ianto just nodded, eyes wide.
Martha hustled Jack and Ianto down to the autopsy bay where the Doctor was poking at one of the medical devices.
“You know,” he said as they walked in. “This really isn’t what you think it is…”
Martha coughed in a pointed way. The Doctor beamed at them.
“Martha explained. Really Jack, you do get yourself into some states.” The Doctor grinned and Jack’s shoulders sagged. Ianto had to fight the urge to punch the Doctor, he squeezed Jack’s hand instead.
“Lets get this over with then,” said Jack looking anywhere but the Doctor. He squeezed Ianto’s hand back and jumped up on the examination table.
“Well,” asked the Doctor waving his sonic screwdriver over Jack’s belly. “Who ’s the erm… father?”
“I am,” said Ianto hovering nervously just out of arms reach.
“It’s easily checkable anyway…” continued the Doctor airily.
“Doctor,” replied Jack in a cold tone. “The baby is Ianto’s.”
“Yes, yes of course,” said the Doctor distractedly. “Oh, what? What? Oh dear…”
“Doc…”said Jack though clenched teeth
“You might want to sit down,”
“I am sitting down,” hissed Jack though gritted teeth.
“Well, congratulations. It’s twins!”
“Twins?” repeated Ianto hoping he didn’t look as shocked as he felt.
“Of course they are,” sighed Jack. He looked at the Doctor nervously. “Are they going to be… you know… are they okay?”
The Doctor looked up at Jack and beamed. “Fighting fit and ready to cause as much trouble as you.”
A strange expression flashed across Jack’s face. Ianto took a step forward and put his hand on Jack’s shoulder. The Doctor didn’t seem to notice.
“I’ll stick around for a bit. Wouldn’t want Martha to worry, but I think it should be fairly straight forward. About five months or so to go. Then a caesarean obviously… Do you know that was named after Julius Caesar, who was the first person to be born like that...?”
Martha giggled. “Nope it wasn’t. It was on QI.”
The Doctor looked offended. “Oh sure believe Stephen Fry over me…”
“Er… Doc?” asked Jack. “We done? I’ve got things to do.”
“Yes, yes,” said the Doctor airily turning back to his conversation with Martha. Jack stood up and almost snuck out of the room. Not looking back at the Doctor but clearly wanting too.
“I’ll go with Jack then, shall I?” asked Ianto, unable to believe that neither the Doctor nor Martha had noticed Jack’s mood.
“Oh yes,” said Martha brightly. “See if you can get him to have some rest. The babies are going to put a lot of pressure on his system. It’s tough work being pregnant, even for our Jack.”
“Jack’ll be fine,” added the Doctor, grinning wide enough to crack his face. “He always is.”
Ianto followed Jack up to the office. Gwen tried to stop him but he just shook his head and told her to ask Martha. When he caught up with Jack the other man had settled into his desk chair and was holding a pen over the pile of paperwork.
Ianto hovered by the doorway. A little unsure of what to say. It was clear that Jack was upset about something but Ianto couldn’t quite work out what it was. He was uncomfortable with the Doctor being here. But that was daft, Jack loved the Doctor.
“Jack?” asked Ianto softly.
“I thought I’d get these UNIT reports done. Stop you nagging at me,” Jack grinned but his heart wasn’t in it.
Ianto walked across the office and stopped in front of the desk. “Jack, could I have a look at that pen please?”
Jack wordless handed the pen over and Ianto threw it over his shoulder. “Screw UNIT, they can wait,” he said with a small smile.
“Can I have that in writing?” asked Jack.
Ianto chuckled. “Jack I’m Torchwood One trained. As far as I’m concerned UNIT is an overly militarised, useless, committee lead organisation, who couldn’t find their collective arses with both hands and a map. Whose only halfway decent decision – ever – was to hire Martha. And that was before I found out what they did to Tosh. What’s wrong?”
Jack chuckled at Ianto’s description of UNIT. “Who says anything’s wrong?”
Ianto frowned. “You’re usually pleased to see the Doctor. But you’ve been moping around twitching at everything he says.”
Jack sighed. “Can I plead hormones?” he asked.
“Yes you can, but I know it’s more than that,” replied Ianto.
“Come here,” said Jack. Ianto walked round the desk and Jack pulled him into his lap. Ianto wiggled round. “Ianto,” said Jack impatiently. “You’re not going to squash the babies. Just give me a hug.”
“How do you know?” huffed Ianto but he settled down.
“Hell,” said Jack burying his face into Ianto’s neck. “Twins.”
“I know,” said Ianto. They sat for a few minutes. Ianto concentrating in the feel of Jack breathing on his neck. “Jack, talk to me please?” said Jack finally.
“The first time I travelled with the Doctor,” said Jack into Ianto’s neck. “I sort of got accidentally immortal.”
“Accidentally?” asked Ianto. It was weird to think that Jack had been mortal once. That he could have died and then Ianto would have never even known him
“Yeah,” said Jack. “Then he left me behind. I figured he thought I was dead. But he didn’t. I was ‘wrong’”
“What?” asked Ianto. Not quite understanding, Jack made it sound like the Doctor had left him on purpose.
“He’s a time lord,” explained Jack. “And I’m a fixed point. I feel wrong to him. He can’t help that.”
“So he left you? Just like that!”
“We’ve talked about it. He got over it I think. He said I could stay with him after the whole year that wasn’t anyway.” Jack sounded to Ianto like he was making excuses for the Doctor.
“Big of him,” mumbled Ianto unhappily.
“I… I guess I just. I don’t want him to say something like that about this.” Ianto felt Jack’s face move against his neck and could imagine the crooked smile. “That’s kind of stupid isn’t it? He wouldn’t ever say something like that about a child.”
Ianto wondered why on earth Jack kept going back to this guy.
Eventually Ianto convinced Jack to get some sleep. He’d been a lot more tired since getting pregnant. He went down to the main Hub. Gwen was talking to Martha and Mickey was showing the Doctor something on the computer.
Ianto stalked straight past the Doctor and gave his gun to Gwen.
“What’s this for?” asked Gwen.
“Your job,” said Ianto calmly. “Is to hold the gun and not under any circumstances to give it me back.” He took a deep breath and straightened his jacket. He turned to face the Doctor.
He didn’t raise his voice, he didn’t shout, he just calmly stated. “You are without a doubt the most inconsiderate, selfish… being I have ever met.”
“Hang on,” said the Doctor indignantly. “What!”
“You told him he was wrong,” snarled Ianto. “You left him behind…”
“That was ages ago,” interrupted the Doctor.
Ianto just looked at him as if he couldn’t believe anybody had said something that stupid. “Oh well then, that makes it okay then. You practically called him a slut!”
“What? I did not!” exclaimed the Doctor.
“You didn’t believe him when he told you who the father was! What did you think that said? All Jack ever wanted was your approval, and all you ever do is knock him down!”
“Look,” said the Doctor reasonably. “You can’t extrapolate Jack’s feelings based on your own. He’s from a completely different time…”
“Gwen?” asked Ianto calmly holding out his hand.
“No,” said Gwen stonily. “You told me not to give you the gun. But if he carries on being this condescending I might shoot him myself.”
Ianto turned back to the Doctor. “Don’t tell me I don’t know Jack,” said Ianto quietly but with real menace. “And don’t tell me you do, because if I thought you were doing this to him on purpose I’d have even less respect for you than I do now.”
Ianto stalked away towards the tourist office. The Doctor looked confused for a second then huffed and walked off in the opposite direction.
Mickey just looked awed. “Did he just tell off the oncoming storm?”
Gwen just shrugged. “Storms are mostly just rain. We’re Welsh. We’re used to rain.”
Gwen found Ianto in the small cubby behind the beaded curtain in the tourist office. He was sat on the floor hugging his knees. He looked up at her.
“Its twins,” he said flatly
Gwen sighed. “Yes sweetheart. “ She sat next to him on the floor.
“That’s two babies…”
Gwen fought the urge to laugh. “That’s usually what people mean by twins, yes.”
“How are we supposed to cope with twins,” said Ianto staring at his left kneecap.
“The same as you cope with one baby I suppose, just, you know double.”
Ianto gave her a withering look. She chuckled.
“Ianto you are going to be a great Dad. Don’t worry.” She patted his shoulder consolingly.
“Oh god,” said Ianto. Panic welling up in him again. “I’m going to be someone’s Dad!”
“Only just figured that bit out, huh?” Gwen was now really struggling to contain her laughter.
Ianto narrowed his eyes and glared at her. “One day Cooper you’re going to knock Rhys up and I’m going to laugh at your freak out.”
Gwen chuckled and stuck her tongue out.