Jack rolled over, flinging his arm across the taut stomach beside him as an arm came around his shoulders. He shifted his head on the pillow to face the person beside him, pressing a kiss to his bedmate's lips. He pulled the other person on top of him, deepening the kiss, but they broke away. "Now, now, Jack, if we go any further we'll never get to sleep, and Gwen would kill us if we overslept on her wedding day," Ianto's teasing voice said, and Jack pouted.
"Not even a quick one?" he asked hopefully, but Ianto shook his head, rolling off Jack so he had his head on the older man's chest, listening to the steady rhythm of his heart. Jack sighed. "How much you wanna bet something goes horribly wrong?" he asked with a smile, looking down at Ianto. Ianto stared back curiously.
"What makes you think something will go wrong?" he asked.
"I've been with Torchwood for around 150 years. In those 150 years, I've been to nineteen Torchwood weddings. Only one of them went off without a hitch first time round. Twelve had some kind of alien turning up at the venue, three didn't go ahead because either the bride or groom was injured or taken hostage. And two of them were postponed because the world was ending and the spouse had to go and save it," he listed, remembering each one with a fond smile.
"That's only eighteen, Jack, what happened to the other one?" Ianto queried, having done the maths in his head.
"That one never happened because the night before the wedding, the bride found the groom in bed with the best man, who happened to be her brother," he said with a grin. Ianto winced in sympathy.
"Well I suppose you have a point there. I just hope for the sake of my hearing that everything goes okay tomorrow, because if Torchwood ruins Gwen's wedding, she'll yell us all deaf," he remarked, making Jack laugh.
"Very true. Now, how about we get that sleep you were talking about? If we have to save the day tomorrow, we'll both need it," he said softly, kissing Ianto's forehead. Ianto kissed Jack's chest softly, and pulled the duvet up to cover them both as he felt Jack's arm come tighter around him, their legs intertwining. They closed their eyes, and it didn't take long before both were fast asleep.
The next morning, the couple were awoken by Jack's phone going off. "Answer it," Ianto groaned sleepily, and Jack reached over to pick it up, checking the caller ID. Gwen.
"Hello?" he answered through a yawn, watching as Ianto got up, going through the door to Jack's little bathroom.
"Jack? I'm sorry if I woke you, but I really need you to come over. And bring Owen," she said, her voice panicked. This immediately woke Jack up, the sound of the shower turning on in the background.
"Gwen, are you okay?" he asked concernedly.
"Yes. No. Kind of. Not really. Just get over here, now," she said urgently. Jack untangled himself from the duvet and stood up.
"Let me get showered and dressed, I'll be right there. I'll call Owen. See you in a minute," he said, ending the call. He pressed speed dial two for Owen, and waited for him to pick up.
"What's happened now, Jack?" Owen asked on the other end. Owen, blunt and to the point, Jack couldn't fault him for that.
"Something's wrong with Gwen, she didn't tell me what it was, she just said to get over there and bring you. Can you go over? I'll meet you there as soon as I can," he relayed, knowing Owen was closer to Gwen's flat than he was.
"Sure. I'll bring my kit just in case," he said, and Jack could hear scrabbling that sounded like someone grabbing car keys. "Bye," Owen said shortly, and the line went. Jack threw his phone onto the bed and went through to the bathroom, stripping off his boxers and getting into the shower with Ianto.
"What did Gwen want?" his lover asked as Jack rapidly lathered shampoo through his hair.
"Something's up, she didn't say what. Only to get over there and bring Owen," Jack replied. Ianto frowned; when someone asked for Owen it was usually for something medical, rather than just a chat. If she had just asked for Jack, Ianto would have thought it was the usual pre-wedding jitters, but to call the medic could mean something serious.
"I'll be waiting back here with my Comm on if you need me, and you know Tosh will be in soon," he said quietly, moving over so Jack could get fully under the spray and wash the soap out of his hair and off his body. He knew that Gwen must have sounded scared, because Jack was naked in the shower with him and hadn't made one innuendo, or attempted to grope him. That just wasn't like him. When they were done, they dried themselves off and dressed quickly, putting their Comms in and Jack strapping on his gun, just in case. He gave Ianto a quick kiss and slipped his phone into his pocket.
"I'll keep my Comm on in case you want to know what's happening," he assured him, starting up the ladder.
"I know. Now go, see what's wrong with her. And please, try not to ruin her wedding." He added. Jack put on a hurt look, though his eyes were glinting in amusement.
"I'll have you know none of those Torchwood wedding disasters were ever my fault," he said indignantly, before disappearing up to his office.
He arrived at Gwen's flat and saw Owen's car parked across the street as he got out, finding the key to Gwen's flat on his keyring. He had a key to all his team's flats in case of emergencies, though Ianto had given him permission to use his whenever he wanted. Almost like asking me to move in with him, Jack mused. He ran up the stairs and opened the door, coming through to stand in the bedroom doorway. Gwen was sat on the edge of the bed in her pyjamas, while Owen knelt in front of her, an alien sort of stethoscope on her stomach. Her very pregnant-looking stomach. Oh, shit. "How you doing, Gwen?" he asked, a little breathless, flicking his still-damp fringe from his eyes.
"Owen says I'm pregnant," she replied worriedly. Jack looked at her with raised eyebrows.
"You think?" he said sarcastically, earning a glare from Gwen.
"Jesus Christ, what with?" she asked, slightly hysterically.
"Exo-biological insemination," Owen supplied.
"That alien last night," Jack said, running through his head all the shape-shifting species that used biological insemination through a bite. There were plenty. Owen prodded Gwen's stomach and she shoved him away, standing up.
"Get off. It bit me, Jack, that's all," she insisted, pushing past him and storming into the kitchen. Jack sighed and went after her, followed by Owen. He found her pouring water into a glass.
"It passes the eggs on through the bite, some species do that. A kind of sneaky way of keeping the bloodline going. Boy, would Darwin have a field day if he'd made it to space," he remarked. Gwen nodded mock-seriously.
"Hmm, yeah, great," she said sarcastically.
"Listen, Gwen, you are going to be fine, okay. If there was any biological incompatibility, you would be dead. Now, according to this scan you are carrying a non-sentient blastopheric mass," Owen said in his professional voice.
"A what?" Gwen asked, now opening a jar of pickles. Oh, God, Jack thought; cravings, hormones and mood swings all in the space of ten minutes. Fantastic.
"It's a kind of alien egg. But don't worry, we'll look after you, I promise. We've got procedures in place for this situation," Owen continued.
"You mean this has happened before?" Gwen asked incredulously, a pickle in her mouth. Jack remembered the last time it had happened; a man called William had been inseminated when an alien had bitten his leg. That had called for an emergency C-section, and poor Will was never quite the same again.
"You've heard of immaculate conception, haven't you? Well..." Gwen looked at him as if he was insane, and Owen thought now was the best time to interrupt.
"Right, we'll take you back to The Hub, you lie back, I'll run you through a Bio-Xenic Microtron, couple of days off your feet, you'll be fine."
"Whoa, in a couple of days? In five hours, I am walking down the aisle, Owen!" Gwen interrupted. Jack steeled himself for what he was about to do. Why did Torchwood never get good weddings?
"No you're not," he said calmly, and Gwen turned.
"I hate to say this, but you're going to have to postpone the wedding," Owen finished, and Gwen spun to face him.
"No! Have you any idea how much a wedding costs?" she cried angrily.
"Listen, Gwen, you are not carrying the baby Jesus in there," Jack said, trying not to snicker. All they needed was a donkey, a stable, and a really bright star, and they could have a good show going here. But now wasn't the time, he thought as Gwen rounded on him.
"I don't care, alright? I'm not gonna put Rhys through this, he'd had to put up with enough as it is," she stressed, crunching on the pickle. "I'm not postponing the wedding."
"You are not thinking straight!" Jack said over her, and she glared.
"Do not bring my bloody hormones into this, Mr Jack Harkness!" she yelled furiously.
"Okay, calm down," Jack said quietly, attempting to ignore Owen's amused smirk in the corner.
"Owen has said, if this wasn't safe I would know about it by now, right?" she asked, looking to Owen.
"As far as I know, yeah," Owen agreed.
"Okay, so I'm good until after the wedding, yeah? Then, I'll do whatever I have to do," she reasoned. "Once I am Mrs Williams, not before," she warned. Jack nodded slowly.
"Fine, call Rhys and tell him to get over here," he said, leaning against the wall. This did not bode well for a good wedding. He watched as Gwen talked to Rhys on the phone, then ended the call and looked at him.
"He'll be here as fast as he can," she said. Jack nodded and looked to Owen, who shrugged, sighing.
"We'll go back to The Hub, get things ready for after the wedding, and figure out how we're going to do this. You explain it to Rhys. Okay?" he asked. Gwen nodded, and Owen grabbed his bag.
"Right then, Owen, let's go," he said decisively, turning and going out the door.
They came into The Hub, alarms blaring, to find Tosh sat at her computer. "How is she?" she asked, having been briefed while Owen and Jack drove back to The Hub.
"She's going ahead with the wedding," Owen replied.
"Which is fine, as long as she doesn't go into labour at the altar. Rhys might forgive her for going down the aisle pregnant, but not giving birth to a razor-toothed monster that eats half his family," Jack added.
"Could that happen?" Ianto asked from behind him.
"Well, look, the pregnancy's advanced and we're not familiar with the species," Owen said clinically.
"Which is why you, Owen, need to open up the guy with the teeth, make sure there's no surprises," Jack told him, and Owen nodded, going to the Autopsy bay.
"I'm on it," he said distractedly, and Jack looked to Tosh.
"Tosh, you've got an early pass to the wedding. Keep an eye on Gwen," he ordered. Tosh smiled, and Jack nodded to her, turning to face Ianto.
"Ianto," he started.
"Jack," Ianto replied, perfectly straight faced.
"Gwen's gonna need a new wedding dress. Bigger," he said, and Ianto nodded curtly, walking off. Jack knew Ianto was the best person for things like that; he had an eye for good clothing. Just look at the suits he wore. Jack watched as Tosh went to get changed, and Owen got ready for the autopsy. He sighed and retreated back to his office, sinking into his chair and running a hand through his hair tiredly. This was not a good morning. First, his morning time with Ianto was cut short, then Gwen turns out to be pregnant with an alien baby, and now she's still going to get married while pregnant with said baby. Oh, this was such a mess. How were they going to explain it to her friends and family? You don't just turn up fully pregnant out of the blue. And then there was figuring out what alien it was, and what to do with it. All the while keeping the wedding going until the end, and stopping the guests from getting suspicious. Well, it couldn't be any harder than the time his medic Francesca was getting married and a pair of blowfish decided to take the groom hostage, saying they'd release him if they got ten thousand pounds worth of cocaine. That was an interesting day.
He rubbed his temples and let out a long breath. Right, first things first, figure out what alien Gwen was carrying, and how they gave birth. Owen was on that. Next, keep Gwen from harm, just in case the alien was dangerous. Tosh was there. Then, find a cover story for the pregnancy, and hope to God that no one asked too many questions. Finally, go to the wedding, get Gwen back to The Hub afterwards, then remove the alien and send her and Rhys on their honeymoon. Job done. He looked at his phone, and figured he'd call Gwen. Pressing speed dial 4, he waited for her to pick up. "Hey, Jack," she said.
"Hey, how are you doing?" he asked, smiling. He could never say his life was boring.
"Oh, you know. So far so good," Gwen replied with a sigh. Jack felt sorry for the poor girl, she'd been waiting for this wedding for months, and then this comes up.
"Look, I just wanted to let you know Tosh will be with you anytime," he said calmly.
"I don't need a babysitter," Gwen insisted, and Jack heard Rhys say something in the background, and the phone being handed over.
"We don't need you at all, Jack. You've already done plenty to mess up today. Do us both a favour and keep well out of it, yeah?" Rhys said warningly.
"Yeah I hear you, Rhys. Look, still, congratulations-" But the phone cut off. Rhys had hung up on him. He stared at the phone silently. How was this his fault? He hadn't been the one to impregnate Gwen. The thought itself made him a little more than disturbed. Not that Gwen wasn't a nice girl, but she just wasn't for him. He had Ianto. And he hadn't forced her to go out after that alien. He'd offered to do it, told her to go enjoy her hen night, but she'd insisted on taking it. Jack closed the phone and slipped it back in his pocket, rubbing at his temples. He knew Rhys still didn't trust him, he thought he was going to steal Gwen from him or something. Jack had almost laughed when Rhys had asked if he was gay, back with the whole thing with the alien meat. If only he knew. He looked up as his door opened, and smiled when he saw Ianto, a large box in his arms.
"I got the dress," he said, holding up the box. Jack grinned.
"Excellent. I assume you've picked a gorgeous one, so let's send it out with Tosh. You okay?" he asked. Ianto nodded.
"Yeah, just now realising what you meant about Torchwood weddings," he said, perching himself on the edge of Jack's desk. "Still, at least this will probably be the only one." Jack looked at him questioningly.
"Why do you say that?" He asked.
"Well, neither of us are likely to be getting married anytime soon, I'm quite happy where I am, thanks. Owen, well, he's technically dead, I think the wedding vows might have to be altered a little. As for Tosh, the only man she'd ever marry is Owen, and I've already covered that one. Nope, I don't think any more weddings will come after this one," he reasoned. Jack couldn't help but grin when Ianto said he was happy where he was. It had taken them a lot of rough patches and hard work to get to this point in their relationship, but it was definitely worth it.
"Oh, I don't know, there's always civil union," he said suggestively. Ianto looked at him, eyebrow raised.
"Is that a proposition, Jack?" he asked, trying to keep his slightly teasing tone. Jack looked at him seriously.
"Not yet, but maybe one day. You never know," he replied honestly. The thought had never occurred to him before, but now, he could see it. He could see them. Ianto smiled thoughtfully, nodding slowly.
"I suppose. So where's Tosh?" he questioned.
"Right here. Everything sorted?" she asked, coming up to Jack's door. She was dressed in a very nice low-cut, dark blueish-purple dress, a necklace hanging to accentuate her bustline. Jack let out a low whistle.
"Very nice, Toshiko. Stunning. You'll have all the guys eating out of your hands," he said appreciatively, making Tosh blush. Ianto handed her the dress box.
"There's Gwen's new dress. Other than that, I think that's everything. And I agree with Jack, you look beautiful," he told her.
"Thank you. Both of you. Will I see you two at the wedding?" she asked, and Jack grinned.
"Couldn't keep me away. You know me, I don't miss a party," he said with a roguish wink. Tosh laughed.
"Try and keep him under control, Ianto. Wouldn't want him traumatising some poor wedding guest," she joked.
"I can't promise anything, Tosh," Ianto replied wryly as she left the office, box in arms. Ianto turned to see Jack, a sultry smirk on his face.
"I promise I'll be good by not flirting with the other guests, but I don't think I'll be able to keep my hands off you, you know. We may both be the ones traumatising them," he drawled.
"No sex in public, Jack, I've told you before," Ianto said sternly, though he was grinning. Jack pouted.
"Aww, come on. Not even for Gwen's wedding?" he pleaded.
"No. I'm not letting you get naked in a place where everyone can stare at your body. It's mine to look at, and mine only," Ianto replied possessively. Jack leant over and kissed him.
"Yours, am I? You'll have to show me exactly how I'm yours tonight, then," he said huskily.
"That can be arranged. For now, I'll show you Gwen's dress," Ianto replied, flourishing a catalogue and coming round the desk to lean over Jack's shoulder. He let Jack flick through, and pointed out the one he'd picked. Jack looked through the others, then went back to the one Ianto had chosen.
"Nope, I like that one. Good choice," he said, nodding.
"I estimated Gwen's size from The Hub security laser scanner. As you know, my dad was a master tailor. He could size a man's inside leg measurement by his stride across the shop threshold," Ianto said with a small grin.
"Ahh, family eye. Remind me to test it sometime," Jack said flirtatiously.
"Well, if, ah, later on-"
"Jack!" Owen interrupted, barging in. The two sprang apart, and Ianto looked down at the catalogue.
"Yeah, brilliant, like that one," he said quickly, as if he and Jack had been talking about the dresses this whole time. Jack realised that Owen probably saw through it, but they'd rather not chance it, as they'd end up with comments about how they should be working, not flirting.
"We've got a problem," Owen said bluntly. Jack and Ianto stood up and wordlessly followed the medic to the autopsy bay, where he held up a purplish, strangely shaped organ on a tray. "Look what our friend was hiding," he said, holding it up as it dripped film-like goo. Ianto wrinkled his nose.
"And that is..." He trailed off expectantly.
"A proteus gland. The shape-shifting organ of a Nostrovite," Owen supplied.
"And what is that exactly?" Ianto asked seriously.
"Trouble," Jack said as Owen put the gooey organ back on the tray with a grimace. "Big trouble," he started rolling his sleeves down, and waited for Owen to put the tray back before walking towards the autopsy room door. "A Nostrovite is a shape-shifting carnivore with a taste for human flesh. It's intelligent, and sneaky, and damn it, I should have seen this before," he said, shaking his head. If Gwen was pregnant with a Nostrovite baby, they were in deep trouble.
"That's the problem with shape-shifters, you never know what you're looking at," Owen said.
"What's the big deal, it's dead," Ianto said, glancing back at the Autopsy room.
"Yeah, this one is," Owen retorted.
"Does there have to be more?" Ianto muttered exasperatedly, grabbing Jack's coat from the railing and holding it out for him.
"Nostrovite mate for life, you know, like swans and penguins," Owen continued.
"Yeah, except you don't find Nostrovites on greetings cards," Jack interrupted as he shrugged his coat on.
"Right, and then the male Nostrovite carries the fertilised egg in a sack in his mouth and passes it onto the host with a bite," Owen carried on as if Jack hadn't said anything.
"Gwen," Jack filled in.
"And where does the mother come in?" Ianto asked, following Jack as he lead the way to the door.
"Well, when she tracks down the host, and rips it open," Owen answered bluntly.
"That's Nostrovite childbirth, and mamma's out there right now, looking for Gwen. Come on," Jack said, putting his gun in his holster and slipping effortlessly into the role of Captain Jack Harkness, fearless leader of Torchwood Three. Ianto followed him, and they hastily went up the lift, out of the Tourist office and Ianto went to go get the SUV. Jack stood, waiting, and attempted to call Tosh on his Comm as Owen rushed up, his bag in his hands, and Ianto drove the SUV towards them, stopping in front of Jack. "Tosh isn't responding," Jack said worriedly.
"Then let's get going," Owen finished for him, opening the back passenger door, while Jack opened the front one.
"Sure you're ready for this, Owen? You know what a Nostrovite can do. You think you got it covered a hundred feet away and it's already chewing on your liver," Jack warned, concern in his eyes. He didn't want Owen going and getting half ripped apart, because they had no way of putting him back together again.
"I don't need my liver. You need me, Jack," Owen argued, filling a syringe. He opened his bag, and Jack caught a glimpse of something.
"Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. The singularity scalpel, where you going with that?" he asked sternly as Owen zipped it into his bag.
"Okay, we need to get to Gwen before the Nostrovite does, we might not get a chance to get her back to The Hub and the Microtron weighs about two tons," Owen said frankly.
"Err, that thing kills people," Ianto reminded him from the driver's seat.
"I saved Martha with it," Owen retorted.
"Lucky shot," Jack said.
"Listen, you'd better start trusting me, okay, I've been working on it and I think I've got it sussed. Besides with that Nostrovite around we really don't have too many options," Owen told him, not leaving any room for argument.
"He's got a point," Ianto pointed out, and Jack looked at him.
"What is it with you? Ever since Owen died all you ever do is agree with him," he accused. Ianto rolled his eyes at him as he got in the car.
"My mother told me never to speak ill of the dead, even if they still do most of the talking for themselves," Ianto said dryly with a look towards Owen.
"Okay Owen, but you'd better be sure you know what you're doing," Jack warned. 'Gwen's life is at stake', were the words left unsaid, but Owen got the message. Ianto pressed the accelerator, and Jack put his hand on the other man's knee as they drove off. Ianto looked at him, then his hand, then to Owen, who was looking out of the window. Jack shrugged, but didn't move his hand, and Ianto gave up, rolling his eyes and letting Jack squeeze his thigh. Ianto glanced down at the Sat Nav screen, following the directions to the place where Gwen was having her wedding. It was near the countryside, which always made him a little uneasy since the cannibal incident. Jack picked up on his nervousness, and began tracing comforting circles on his knee through the fabric of his trousers. Jack still wasn't too fond of the country either, none of them were. But Ianto was the worst, Jack close behind. The Welshman had been held captive, nearly killed and bled, and watched as Jack had broken in with a tractor and a shotgun and shot all his captors. He'd had nightmares for weeks after that, and Jack had been the one comforting him when he'd woken up from most of them. Jack glanced at his watch, hoping desperately they weren't too late, and looking at the screen to see how far away they were.
"How much further?" Owen asked as they rushed past other cars, swerving in and out.
"Few minutes," Ianto replied, keeping his eyes locked on the road.
"What I don't understand is if people are gonna make such a big deal about getting married, why come out into the middle of nowhere, where no one can find you to do it! That to me suggests inner conflict," Jack complained.
"It's because the happy couple want everything to be perfect," Ianto said, with a pointed look at Jack. Well, Gwen should have gone and had the wedding in another country, far away from Torchwood, if she'd wanted a perfect wedding, Jack thought.
"An alien egg in your belly, and its mother coming to rip you open. Yeah, perfect," Owen said sarcastically. Ianto took a turning, and they pulled up to a fancy-looking hotel and a large stone building with elegant gardens. Ianto parked, and the three got out.
"Ianto, Owen, you find Tosh. I'll stop the wedding," Jack said as they ran towards the buildings.
"They're going to think you're the father of the baby or something, if you just rush in there and tell them to stop, Jack," Ianto pointed out, a small hint of jealousy in his voice. Jack looked him in the eye.
"If they do, I'll set them straight. Now go, and keep your Comms on," he ordered, splitting away towards the building where the wedding was taking place. He heard the minister's echoing voice, and realised he'd gotten perfect timing. Typical. He burst through the doors, and everyone's heads turned to him. Rhys glaring, and Gwen looking like if she wished hard enough, he would just disappear. "Stop! Stop it! Stop the wedding!" he called, running down the aisle to gasps. "Hold on," he said, holding his hands up as people stood.
"Jack," Gwen breathed, shaking her head slightly.
"Gwen. Believe me, I am sorry," Jack said, coming to a halt in front of the happy couple and sending apologetic looks at them both. "But this has to stop now." He heard Rhys' mother stand up, and her whisper to her husband.
"I just knew that baby wasn't Rhys'." Jack turned on his heel to look at her.
"I'm sorry, m'am, but I'd appreciate it if you didn't accuse me of sleeping with Gwen. I have a boyfriend, and I would never cheat on him," he told her icily, loud enough for the whole room to hear. There were more gasps and whispers at that, and Rhys' mother spluttered, going red with anger at being talked to that way. Jack ignored her and turned back to Gwen and Rhys.
"What the hell are you doing here?" Rhys whispered to him.
"Jack, I told you, I am marrying Rhys," Gwen said firmly.
"Not now, you can't," Jack replied softly, regret in his eyes. He had just wanted this wedding to go smoothly, but no, it just wasn't to be.
"Hang up, Jack. You've screwed things up enough between me and Gwen, you are not going to ruin our wedding," Rhys whispered furiously, clasping Gwen's hand tightly in his own.
"Listen, I am trying to save Gwen's life. Yours too," Jack whispered back urgently. The Nostrovite would probably know they were onto her by now. Gwen eyed him suspiciously.
"What's going on, Jack?" she asked. Jack looked around, the guests were all looking at them. Well, him. But he couldn't blame them, a stranger had just run in and told them to stop the wedding, and stood up to the groom's mother.
"Not here. In the room," he told them, before turning to the guests. "If you'll excuse us for a few minutes, we need to discuss something. I promise the wedding will happen as soon as it can. Go outside for a bit, have a walk around the gardens," he assured them, leading Gwen and Rhys back down the aisle and out of the doors before anyone could protest. Once they were out of earshot, Gwen rounded on him.
"Right, now you tell me what is going on, Jack Harkness. You told me I could go through with the wedding," she said angrily.
"We found out exactly which alien inseminated you," Jack informed her as they went up the stairs of the hotel. "The mother wants her baby back," Gwen opened the door to her and Rhys' hotel room and walked in, followed by the two men.
"There are two of them," she clarified.
"Ma and Pa Nostrovite. They hunt in pairs, but Childbirth is more of a three way," he said, trying to find the right words that wouldn't set off either of the two. "He finds and impregnates a host. She then comes in like the midwife from hell. Hanging around, watching, waiting. Until the time is right. Then it gets messy," Rhys shut the door, then faced Jack.
"So you think it's near?" he asked.
"She's a shape-shifter, Rhys. She could be out there making small talk with your mom and dad," Jack said, impressing upon them the seriousness of the situation. Rhys and Gwen shared uneasy looks, and Jack just kept his expression stony-faced. Gwen let out a shaky breath and Rhys helped her sit down on the end of the bed.
"We are not stopping the wedding," she told Jack.
"Gwen, there isn't a choice here," Jack cut in.
"Ever since I've met you, Jack, all Rhys has had to put up with is, is crap. The lies, the danger, the complications. But he's stood by me," She stood up, "Who else would do that? Who else, would marry me, knowing I'm carrying some kind of monster inside of me?" she asked, taking a step closer to Jack. "I love him, and I'm going to marry him. Today." He tried not to back away, though every instinct was telling him to. He knew Gwen's game. She'd tried it a thousand times. Try and get him interested, or jealous. Jack wasn't buying. Gwen knew damn well he was happy with Ianto, even without the words he'd spoken to Rhys' mother. Jack honestly didn't know why she stayed with Rhys yet kept flirting with him. Rhys stepped up beside Gwen and put a hand on her shoulder.
"Thanks, but it is my wedding too. Don't I get a say?" he said, looking up at Jack. His gaze was less hostile than before, now he knew that Jack was doing this because Gwen was in danger, not because he wanted to steal her from him. Jack opened his mouth to speak, when a female scream rang through the building. He turned and darted out of the room, racing up the corridor towards the source of the noise. He saw an open door, and one of the bridesmaids run out, screaming. He sprinted in the room and saw Ianto, Owen and Tosh, and a dead body on the floor, half eaten.
"Ianto, after the girl, I need this contained," he ordered, and Ianto nodded, rushing out after her.
"Jack!" Owen called, knelt beside the corpse. Rhys and Gwen came running into the room, and halted when they saw the scene.
"Oh God. I want Gwen out of here now, Jack!" he yelled.
"I've seen the shape-shifter; it's a woman, she's in black," Tosh said. Jack fought back a snort at the clichéd-ness of 'The Woman in Black', and surveyed his options carefully.
"Jack, I'm afraid the situation is uncontained," Ianto's voice came from his Comm. Jack internally swore.
"Okay, Ianto, get to the SUV, jam the phone lines. The last thing we need is for someone to call the police," he ordered through the earpiece. "Tosh, you're with me, we'll find that woman in black. Gwen, Owen needs to op right now," he said.
"I want Gwen safe, Jack. Now," Rhys said, panicked.
"I want her safe too, Rhys, so we do what I say!" Jack shouted back at him. He was tired of things going wrong for him, and just wished people would follow his orders for once. Gwen turned to Rhys and took his hand.
"Rhys, Jack knows what he's doing, darling, okay?" she said gently.
"Look, if we run, the Nostrovite will be waiting for us. And we're running out of time!" Jack pressed urgently.
"What's the plan, Jack?" Gwen asked, slipping into professional mode. Owen held up his bag.
"I've got an idea," he said quietly.
"Then I'm staying here, okay," Rhys piped up.
"Fine. Tosh, with me," Jack said, running out of the room with Tosh on his heels. They ran back out of the hotel, towards the stone building where the wedding was being held, and threw the doors open. "Move!" he yelled, making his way through the crowd. "Everyone just stay calm and do exactly as I tell you."
"Who the hell are you?" Rhys' dad asked snidely.
"Torchwood," Jack replied shortly, and Gwen's dad looked at him.
"Gwen's Torchwood? You mean you're real?" Jack realised he'd have to have a word with Gwen about telling people, but Tosh called to him.
"Jack! There she is!" she cried, gesturing to a blonde woman in a black dress.
"Everybody down!" he exclaimed as the woman turned, growing razor teeth and claws and snarling viciously. Jack raised his gun and shot, hearing Tosh do the same, as the alien ran, jumping out the window. He and Tosh followed, and he caught sight of her running across the path. He chased in that direction, until they came to an open space. She was nowhere in sight. "Damn, that thing's fast," he said, panting slightly.
"She won't have gone far," Tosh said, stopping behind him.
"Come on," Jack beckoned, turning back the way they came. It was no use looking for her there, especially when Gwen and the baby were inside.
"Jack, everything okay?" Owen asked through the Com.
"It got away, Owen. How's the patient?" Jack asked.
"Rhys' mum is with her," he replied.
"Jack. That's Rhys' mother there!" Tosh called, looking over to where Rhys' mum was talking with Gwen's mum in the courtyard.
"Come on," Jack said, as they ran again. This time, back up to the hotel room. They met Owen outside the door, and he silently counted to three. On three, Jack kicked open the door, gun raised in front of him. "Get back, you ugly bitch!" he roared, keeping his gun trained on the stout woman.
"What the hell do you think you're doing, that's my mother!" Rhys yelled, face going red in anger.
"No. It's the alien," Jack told him.
"I'm not an alien!" The woman cried, and Jack raised his eyebrows. If he believed everyone who said that, he'd have been out of the job years ago.
"Oh, you're good, I'll give you that," he said, noticing Ianto enter with his gun raised from the corner of his eye.
"But I'm not!" she protested.
"Yeah, and the Lone Ranger didn't have a thing with Tonto," he retorted, managing to keep a straight face as he said it.
"Jack, does the shape-shifter copy smells, too?" Gwen asked.
"No, just physical," Owen answered.
"Right, well I'd recognise that bloody awful perfume anywhere, it's Brenda, Jack, it's Brenda," she assured him. Before he knew it, a fist came at him, hitting him in the jaw and sending him back into Owen.
"That's for calling my mother an ugly bitch!" Rhys snarled. Jack bared his teeth and glared at him, breathing heavily.
"But if that's Rhys' mum, then who's that outside?" Tosh asked slowly. Jack, Owen and Ianto looked at each other, before all sprinting out the door at lightning speed, ushering Gwen, Rhys and Brenda with them. They came out to the courtyard and Jack dodged around guests at full speed, until they saw the alien.
"Move!" he yelled, aiming his gun.
"There she is!" Owen shouted. The alien saw them and let its teeth and claws go, grabbing Gwen's mother by the throat.
"Move! Halt!" Jack yelled out to the scared onlookers, getting them all away from the alien.
"It's my mum, Jack. It's my mum," Gwen said, stopping in front of them.
"The bond between mother and child is a wonderful thing," the alien said, grinning maliciously.
"Let her go, okay?" Gwen pleaded.
"You'll deliver my child," the alien hissed back.
"No deal," Jack said.
"You don't have a say," the alien sneered, shooting him a dirty look.
"Just do it, Gwen," Gwen's mum said desperately.
"It's okay mum, I'll make sure you're safe. You're okay, you're okay," Gwen replied calmly.
"You can't do this," Rhys whispered.
"My mum, Rhys," Gwen repeated
"Yeah, I know, I can't let you," He argued.
"Jack," Gwen called quietly. Jack looked from Gwen, to Rhys, to the alien. Gwen usually had a plan, he hoped she did this time.
"Rhys," He snapped, and the man backed off. Gwen's mother whimpered, as Gwen walked slowly towards them, holding her bouquet.
"It's okay, mum," she said softly.
"Gwen," her mum breathed.
"You're gonna be okay. It's okay," Gwen said, like a mantra. Jack steadied his gun, seeing Tosh, Ianto and Owen do the same. "Stay calm." Gwen carried her walk, and the alien eyed he swollen belly.
"Come to mamma!" she growled, pushing Gwen's mum away and baking a dive for Gwen. Shots rang off, coming from under the bouquet and lodging bullets into the alien's chest. Jack chased after it as it ran away, screeching, but he lost it, and Owen came up beside him.
"That's the kind of daughter every mother must dream of; cool as ice, and packing an automatic." He said jokingly. Jack turned back to Gwen, who was with her parents, and her father turned to him.
"Gwen told me about you, but I didn't believe her," he said, eyes wide. Jack smiled slightly.
"It'll be back. Owen, get Gwen ready. I want that thing dealt with now," he ordered. Owen nodded and went to Gwen, putting his arm around her waist to help her to the room, Rhys in tow. Jack watched them walk away, and felt a hand on his shoulder. It was Ianto.
"This day isn't turning out how I'd hoped," Jack cracked weakly. Ianto gave him a slight chuckle.
"It never does, Jack," he replied.
"What do we do now?" Tosh asked, walking up to them.
"We get everyone safely inside. Then we make sure the egg is gone. After that, we find the mother, and we kill her before she kills us," he said, taking a deep breath. Tosh nodded.
"Right then. Let's get started," she said. Jack and Ianto nodded, and Ianto's hand came off Jack's shoulder, only to be snatched by Jack's hand as Tosh went off to herd the guests inside.
"Be careful," Jack murmured.
"Always am, Jack," Ianto replied, squeezing the other man's hand. They let go, and split ways, Jack going to a group that included the bride and groom's parents, the best man and the bridesmaids.
"I need you all to go inside, quickly. If everyone's together, it's safer," he told them. The bridesmaids looked him up and down and giggled, blushing slightly.
"Alright then, handsome," the blonde one said flirtatiously, giggling, and Jack rolled his eyes.
"I'll repeat what I said, I have a boyfriend. Now come on," he said. The two bridesmaids huffed and went off, whispering to one another, while the parents and best man followed. Once they'd gotten everyone inside, Jack met up with Tosh and Ianto. "Right then, let's check on Gwen," he decided. They nodded, and together the three of them went back up to the hotel. Jack, Tosh and Ianto went up to the Room, where they saw the door wide open. Jack went in first, and saw Owen reloading his gun. He aimed it at Jack, who held his hands up. "Whoa," he said, showing he meant no harm, but Owen still didn't lover the gun. "What happened?" he asked, eyeing the smashed chair and black blood spatters. "Put it down, Owen," Jack said, motioning to the gun. Owen didn't do anything.
"It thought I'd gone off," he said, and that was all Jack needed to know. Sometimes, it was a really good thing that Owen was dead.
"Where's Gwen and Rhys?" Tosh asked.
"Done a runner. Listen, I emptied a clip into that thing, as did Gwen. Some mother instinct or something is making that cow unstoppable. Our guns don't work," Owen said, holding his up uselessly as if to demonstrate his point. Jack smirked at him.
"Then I guess we're gonna need a bigger gun," he said simply, leaving the room. The others followed, looking slightly perplexed, as Jack led them back outside. Ianto gained a look of understanding, and the two of them went to the SUV, opening the boot and getting two silver cases, opening them. They put the pieces inside together, until they were a large, dangerous-looking gun. "Tosh, Owen, Ianto. Go inside, make sure all the guests are there, and tell them to get ready to have a wedding. Ianto, save me a seat," he said with a wink. The three nodded, and Ianto kissed him on the cheek.
"Have fun with the big guns," he whispered mischievously, before turning to follow the other two. Jack stood there, stunned, for a moment, before chuckling and hoisting the gun onto his shoulder, setting off after a trail of black blood.
The trail led to a barn, and though the doors were shut, he heard the unmistakeable sound of a chainsaw. Wondering who it was that had the saw, he opened the doors and saw the alien had her back to him, too busy watching a now flat-stomached Gwen and a chainsaw-wielding Rhys. Jack almost grinned at the sight, and raised his gun. Rhys spotted him and stopped the saw, staring at the metal monstrosity on his shoulder. "Fuck," he said simply, and Gwen stared at Jack too. The alien curled a finger, and leered at Rhys.
"Rhys... you're a bad boy. And you know what bad boys get?" she went to lash out at him, but Jack fired too quickly, and she exploded in a mess of black goo.
"How's that for a shape-shift?" Jack said with a satisfied smirk, unable to resist getting a line in as Gwen and Rhys gaped at him.
"Jack," Gwen breathed, and he walked over to them, pausing to eye Rhys, who was covered in guts.
"That whole evil, dead thing looks pretty good on you," he noted, as Rhys let out a weak laugh. He walked over to Gwen and picked her up, looking at her with a grin. "You okay?" he asked, as she put her forehead against his own, smiling. She laughed, and he pat her on the side, moving to put her down next to Rhys. "And," he grabbed one of Rhys' hands, and one of Gwen's, and put them together, feeling as their fingers laced. "The hero always gets the girl," he declared, patting their clasped hands. Rhys grinned.
"I don't know, you were pretty heroic with your giant gun. Where's your girl?" he asked, putting his arm around Gwen. Jack winked.
"My girl is inside, saving me a seat for the wedding that you two are supposed to be the main part of, come on," he said, walking out of the barn. Gwen and Rhys jogged slightly to catch up, and Gwen smiled at him.
"I don't think Ianto would like being called a girl," she told him, and Jack shrugged.
"Fine then. My guy is inside. Happy now?" he asked teasingly. Gwen looked at Rhys, then back to Jack.
"Yep. I'd just be happier if I hadn't ruined this beautiful dress," she said, looking down at the black-stained dress. Jack pat her shoulder.
"Don't worry, after the wedding is all over, just give it to Ianto. He knows an excellent dry-cleaner's, they do my coat. I'm sure they can get most of it out," he said, gesturing at a splatter on her side. Gwen giggled, and Jack looked at her curiously.
"What's so funny?" he asked.
"Nothing, I'd just always wondered how no matter what, that coat is always pristine by the time I come into work every morning. Now I know why," she told him, bursting into giggles again. Jack shared a look with Rhys over her head. Women.
They reached the doors, and stopped. "We'll go inside and get your dad to come out, Gwen," Jack said. She nodded, beaming, and Jack kissed her on the forehead.
"Good luck," he whispered, before he and Rhys slipped into the hall. All eyes were on them, and there were sighs of relief when everyone saw they were unharmed.
"Gwen is waiting outside the doors; she won't walk down the aisle without her father on her arm, and we can't have a wedding without the bride," Jack said with a grin as Rhys took his place at the altar. People cheered as Gwen's dad nodded and left the hall, and Jack slipped into a seat near the front, next to Ianto. "The alien's dead. Just a pile of black goo in the barn," He whispered into his lover's ear. Ianto smiled and nodded.
"Good. Now we can enjoy the wedding," he said back softly, taking Jack's hand in his own and resting them on Jack's thigh. The music started, and the door opened. Gwen and her father stepped in, and though Gwen was sweaty, and her hair was falling out a bit, and her dress was covered in black stains, she still looked every part the beautiful bride. Jack smiled at her as she stood next to Rhys, sticking his tongue out playfully. She rolled her eyes at him, and faced the minister, who had started to speak.
"I never get why non-religious people still have Christian vows at a wedding," Jack murmured softly to Ianto.
"It's tradition, now be quiet and watch," Ianto scolded lightly. Jack sat through the prayers, and the long and confusing speech the minister made, until it finally got to the vows.
"I, Gwen Elizabeth," she looked at Jack as if daring him to say something but he just sat there, grinning amusedly, "Cooper."
"Do take thee, Rhys Alin Williams, to be my lawful wedded husband," the minister said.
"Do take thee, Rhys Alin Williams," Gwen repeated steadily, though giggling slightly, "To be my lawful wedded husband. Come here, you," she whispered, pulling Rhys into a kiss. Jack and Ianto clapped with the rest of them as the newly married couple had their first kiss as husband and wife. When they broke apart, Gwen's eyes scanned the room, and eventually landed on Jack and Ianto, who gave her thumbs up. She smiled, and curtseyed, Rhys' hand in her own.
"We will now all go to the hotel dining room for the reception," the minister announced, and Jack stood, pulling Ianto up with him. Tosh and Owen followed, and the four of them went up to Gwen and Rhys.
"Congratulations, Mr and Mrs Williams!" Jack said, hugging them both.
"Thanks Jack. Now, you all ready to go have food, champagne and dancing?" Gwen asked, eyes lit up excitedly. They all nodded, and Jack slid his arm around Ianto's waist, pulling him to his side as the six of them walked up to the hotel together. The sun was setting, now, and Jack looked over at the horizon.
"It's beautiful," he murmured, gazing at the golden sunset. Ianto hummed against his shoulder in agreement.
"Come on, I'm hungry," Jack said after a few moments, pulling Ianto to catch up with the others, who hadn't realised they'd stopped. They entered the dining room to find it all decorated perfectly, and the finger buffet in the corner. Jack's face lit up. "Food!" he cried, making Ianto and the others laugh.
"I'm going to take Jack to get food before he makes even more of an idiot of himself. Save us seats at the table, will you?" Ianto asked. They nodded, and split ways. Jack grabbed a plate and started piling his favourites on it quickly, while Ianto went at a slower pace, putting less food on. "Jack, have you actually eaten anything at all today?" Ianto asked, watching Jack squeeze some mini sausages onto the edge of his full plate.
"Nope. I'm starved," he said. Ianto frowned.
"I hate it when you forget to eat," He murmured. Jack turned to look at him.
"I know, and I'm sorry, but to be fair, I haven't really had the time," he apologized as they walked back to the table.
"Bloody hell, Jack, how many people are you planning on feeding with that?" Owen said as Jack put his plate down.
"Just me. I'm hungry," he said, taking a large bite out of a small chicken sandwich. Ianto rolled his eyes fondly at Jack as music started playing. Some cheesy pop song from the eighties that had all the thirty to forty year-olds up on the dance floor, remembering the good old days.
"Oh, God, this song is awful. There is no way I'm having my first married dance to that," Gwen said sticking her tongue out in disgust.
"Do you want me to go man the music station? I had a friend who was a DJ in uni, I know roughly what I'm doing," Ianto offered, and Gwen smiled at him.
"Oh, that would be lovely, sweetheart. Thank you," she said, taking Rhys' hand and standing up as Ianto did the same.
"Don't leave me!" Jack whined, looking up at Ianto with puppy-eyes that made him want to melt. He chuckled, leaning down to kiss pouting lips.
"I'll be back in a bit, when I've played some good songs before it goes back to rubbish. I'll have plenty of time to dance with you," he promised, leaving to go to the sound system. He faded out the old song, and started up a new one. This one was slower, better. Gwen gave him thumbs up and pulled Rhys out onto the dance floor. Jack watched Ianto for a while, eating his food, before Tosh tapped him on the shoulder.
"I'm going to get a drink. You want anything?" she asked.
"Oh, just water, thanks," he said. Tosh nodded and left, so it was just him and Owen left at the table.
"You're going to have to Retcon everyone, you know," Owen spoke up.
"I know. It's a shame, after the whole thing with the alien, this has actually been a pretty good wedding," he mused.
"Yeah, but oh well. We'll let them enjoy it a little longer." Out of the corner of his eye, Jack noticed the two giggling bridesmaids eyeing him, and gulped.
"Oh, shit," he muttered as they started to cross the room.
"What?" Owen asked. Luckily, Tosh came back with the drinks, and Jack stood up.
"Toshiko, come dance with me?" he asked, eyes pleading to say yes. Tosh cocked her head curiously, but nodded, letting Jack lead her onto the dance floor. Jack watched as the two girls said something to Owen, then walked off again. "Thank you. The bridesmaids are after me," he confessed to Tosh, by way of explanation. Her eyes widened, then she giggled.
"Never thought I'd see you running from two pretty girls who want to dance with you," she remarked.
"Yeah, but they scare me. And they don't just want to dance. They want to dance," he said, stressing the last word. Tosh nodded understandingly, patting his head patronisingly.
"Why don't you go ask Ianto if he'll dance with you? I think Owen needs rescuing," she said, looking over to where somebody's grandmother had sat next to Owen, and seemed to be flirting with him. Jack laughed.
"Go on, go save him. I'll be fine hiding from the evil girls," he said, wiggling his fingers teasingly. Tosh laughed and went off to retrieve Owen, while Jack sidled up to Ianto at the music station.
"Would you care to dance?" he asked formally, holding his hand out with a grin. Ianto looked at him thoughtfully.
"Hmm, I suppose I can," he said, faking reluctance, taking Jack's hand and letting himself be led onto the dance floor. Jack saw over Ianto's shoulder that Gwen was now making dance rounds through all the male guests, and felt sorry for her. He'd been married once, and the worst part about it was having to dance with all the grandmothers, mothers, female cousins and friends. Jack rested his head against Ianto's, his lips tickling the other man's ear. "Jack, earlier, when you said that maybe you'd ask me to have a civil union with you. Were you serious?" Ianto asked softly. Jack thought about it for a moment. Was he serious? He could see himself with Ianto in ten, twenty, fifty years. If Ianto lived that long, of course. He wanted to be able to grow old with him, but knew it wasn't possible. With his wife before, Sarah, she'd died before they'd really had a chance to be married. Jack had proposed as a spur of the moment thing, they'd only been dating five months. But it was wartime, and lots of young soldiers were marrying their sweethearts, knowing they might not come home. Jack knew he'd come home, though, but he still married her. It seemed like the thing to do at the time. Then she'd died two months later; she'd been killed by soldiers of the opposition. Then there had been Estelle. Jack had loved her, but he'd been prepared to leave her when she aged and he didn't, coming back years later as her lover's son. With Ianto, well, Ianto knew Jack couldn't die anyway. And if Ianto did live past the average Torchwood personnel life expectancy, Jack wanted to live with him, until the day he died. He loved him.
"Yes. I was serious. Someday, Jones, Ianto Jones, I will propose to you. I don't know when or where, but I will," he vowed as they revolved on the spot, oblivious to everyone around them. Ianto froze, and Jack thought for a moment he was about to leave, before he felt a kiss on his jaw.
"And when and where you do propose, Captain Jack Harkness, I'll say yes," Ianto promised in reply. Jack beamed into Ianto's hair. Ianto wanted to marry him. "And you want to know why I'll say yes?" Ianto asked. Jack wordlessly nodded his head, and felt Ianto's lips on his ear. "Because I love you, Jack," Ianto whispered. Jack moved his head to look Ianto in the eyes, and kissed him tenderly.
"I love you too, Ianto. So much," he replied. Ianto smiled.
"That's good," he said offhandedly, leaning his head in the crook of Jack's neck with a sigh.
By the time the night was coming to a close, Jack felt like he'd danced with every woman in the building. It seemed everyone wanted to talk to the mysterious American who saved the day. No matter how many times he'd told that that he had a boyfriend, or kissed Ianto right in front of them, they kept on flirting with him. Ianto seemed to find this incredibly amusing. At least, he did until the two bridesmaids came up to him and asked him how Jack was in bed. Now Jack was sat with Owen and Tosh, while Gwen danced with Rhys and Ianto worked the music. His coat and waistcoat had long since come off, now hanging on the back of his chair. His sleeves were rolled up to his elbows, and his braces were undone at the front, dangling over his chest. Owen stood up and held out a hand to Tosh. "Ready to see that dead man dance, Tosh?" he asked. Tosh smiled and took his hand, letting him take her out to the dance floor. Jack smiled softly, it was nice that Tosh was finally getting Owen to see her. Even if he was dead, technically. Nobody was perfect. He stood up abruptly, and walked out onto the dance floor. Seeing Ianto was busy, he went over and tapped Rhys on the shoulder.
"Mind if I cut in?" he asked, grinning.
"Ahh, why not. I'm danced off my feet. Think I'll have a beer," Rhys replied, clapping Jack on the shoulder and going off to the bar. Jack took Gwen's hand and put his other arm around her waist.
"So, not bad for a Torchwood wedding, huh?" he joked.
"I suppose it could have been worse. Though I am looking forward to the honeymoon," she said.
"Yeah, that'll be fun. Enjoy it," he said seriously.
"I will. What will you do while I'm gone?" she asked. Jack smiled.
"Oh, the usual. Pizza, Ianto," Gwen giggled as Jack winked, "save the world a few times," he said casually.
"Will you miss me?" she asked.
"Of course. Who else will yell at me like you do?" he said innocently. Gwen laughed and slapped him on the shoulder playfully.
"Watch it, you. I can now sic my husband on you," she threatened jokingly. Jack pretended to shiver.
"Ooh, scary. Really," he deadpanned. Just then, a throat was cleared behind him, and he turned to see a smiling Ianto.
"May I..." he trailed off, and Gwen and Jack broke apart. Gwen held up her arms slightly to Ianto, but he moved to face Jack, so she covered it by clapping her hands together and walking off.
"So, you've finally decided to come off your platform for the night and dance with little old me, have you?" Jack ribbed into Ianto's ear. Ianto chuckled, the vibrations in his chest sending shocks of pleasure down Jack's spine. "How do you do it?" he thought aloud.
"Do what?" Ianto asked curiously.
"Make me feel like a teenager again. The butterflies in my stomach, the tingles on my skin, the lightheaded feeling I get when you're around. I haven't felt like this since I was eighteen," he said softly. Ianto seemed surprised, but stayed calm.
"I guess I'm just special," he replied in a whisper.
"Yeah, you are," Jack told him, holding him as close as he could, feeling the hand at his back, and the breath on his neck. They danced until the song ended, and a faster once came on. Then, they went back to their table, where the other four were sitting down. All the guests seemed to be getting drowsy, falling asleep against each other. Jack sat down, pulling Ianto's chair right next to his. Gwen looked around at her sleeping guests, then back to Jack.
"What have you done to them?" she asked suspiciously.
"That's the funny thing when you mix level six Retcon with champagne. Really makes the party go with a 'shwing', then you fall asleep. I figured it was best if they didn't remember what happened," he explained. Gwen frowned, but nodded, and Jack slid two full champagne glasses across the table.
"Maybe the happy couple should forget, too," he suggested, but Gwen shook her head.
"I want to be able to remember my wedding. Even the part with the alien baby," she said with a smile, Rhys nodding next to her.
"Time for bed, I think," Owen announced.
"We'll see you after the honeymoon," Rhys agreed, standing up. "Stay out of trouble," He said, as if scolding children. Gwen laughed and held her train so she could stand up, and the others followed suit. Gwen went round the table, hugging and kissing everyone on the cheek.
"Thank you for the dress, it was beautiful," she said to Ianto, hugging him.
"My pleasure. Enjoy the honeymoon," he replied. She grinned at him amusedly.
"Oh, I will. Enjoy your free time with Jack," she sent back at him, though he was sure he detected a hint of jealousy. To his credit, he managed not to blush, just smirking at her.
"Oh, I definitely will. See you soon, Gwen," he said, letting her go on to hug Tosh. She then got to Jack, and hugged him tightly.
"Thank you. For managing to stop this wedding being a complete disaster," she said gratefully. Jack smiled.
"It was the least I could do. You kids have fun now, don't do anything I wouldn't do," he joked.
"Is there anything you wouldn't do?" Gwen asked. Jack pretended to think about it for a moment.
"No, not really. As I said, have fun," he said with a lecherous wink, shaking hands with Rhys.
"We'll take care of all this," he assured him, gesturing to the room full of sleeping people.
"Thanks, mate," Rhys replied. The Torchwood team minus Gwen waved goodbye as the newlyweds left, and Tosh sighed.
"Something tells me our bed time is a long way off," she guessed.
"That's right guys. It's been a busy day but we are not finished yet. We've got a lot to do, we've got a major mop up operation, and I want your best work. Remember, it's Gwen's wedding," Jack said quietly as they all started to get to work.
"That's what I love about Torchwood," Ianto mused as he and Jack started to clear tables. "By day, chasing the scum of the universe. Come midnight, you're the wedding fairy."
Jack snorted, and the four spent the next few hours cleaning up and getting everyone home, making sure all records of the Cooper-Williams wedding were erased, except for the paperwork. Wouldn't want to accidentally un-officiate the wedding, now, would he?
When everything was finally cleaned up, and they had dropped Tosh and Owen back to their flats, Jack turned to Ianto, who looked tired.
"Now we go home, I think," he said, holding out a hand. Ianto took it, and they walked hand in hand back to the SUV. The sun was coming up now, and the roads were pretty much empty, so it didn't take them long to get back to The Hub. Jack waited for Ianto to lock up the tourist office, then they took the lift down below. As they stepped over the threshold, Jack held out an arm to stop Ianto, putting his other hand in his pocket.
"Jack, what?" Ianto asked, as Jack pulled a handful of confetti from his coat pocket. He held it up with a grin, then opened his hand and blew, sending the confetti fluttering to the ground. Ianto looked at him strangely, but he just smiled and tugged on the Welshman's hand.
"Come on, there's a bed waiting with our names on it," he said, leading him to his office, and bedroom.
"Not bad for a day's hard work," Jack said contentedly as they lay in bed together. Ianto rolled over and looped an arm across Jack's stomach, pulling him closer.
"Jus' go to sleep," he mumbled sleepily. Jack chuckled and kissed Ianto's hair, breathing in his scent as he closed his eyes.
"Night," he said softly.
"Night, Jack," Ianto replied, already half asleep, a peaceful smile on his face.