“How am I supposed to make coffee or do my other work like this? I can’t pick things up, or type, or anything! I don’t even like bananas!” Ianto complained. “Neither does Tosh; she’s allergic to them.”
“Only if she eats them,” Jack pointed out. “Somehow I can’t see her deciding to nibble on you. Wouldn’t be a good idea anyway.” He looked dubiously at the two large yellow bunches of bananas poking out of the ends of Ianto’s jacket sleeves. “There’s no knowing if they’d grow back; you might find yourself missing a few fingers.”
“Well that’s a cheering thought.” Ianto glared at his lover.
“At least it’s just your hands; the rest of you is fine…”
“So far,” Ianto broke in.
“…and we’ll fix you as soon as we can. Don’t we always? Tosh is already working on the problem, so chin up, keep smiling. It’ll be fine.”
“You always say that when stuff like this happens.”
“And I’m always right, aren’t I?”
Ianto gave a half shrug. “I suppose. So far, anyway, but that doesn’t mean you will be this time.”
“Don’t be such a pessimist.”
“I have bunches of bananas instead of hands, Jack! Excuse me for not feeling particularly chipper right now.”
“I told you we’ll fix you and we will. You just need to have a bit of patience.”
“And what if I need to use the bathroom? Because that could prove a bit tricky.” Ianto waved his banana hands at Jack; they looked lovely, bright yellow and not quite ripe.
“Thankfully no, not at present, but it’s only a matter of time. Have you even thought what might happen to my hands if it takes a few days to fix me? Will they get overripe and start to rot? I could be left without hands. Not to mention bananas are a lot more delicate than fingers. They could get squashed when I’m asleep. I can’t even take my jacket off because my bananas are more than twice the size of my hands.”
All of those things were true and Jack’s optimism started to flag. It was one thing getting turned into a ferret, or a cat, or some other creature, but a different matter entirely when only part of the body was transformed. Still, he made an effort to look on the bright side. “On the other hand, at least you didn’t get turned into a single giant banana.” That sounded lame even to him.
“I might almost have preferred that,” Ianto said gloomily. He shambled over to the sofa beneath the Torchwood sign and dropped bonelessly onto it, resting his banana hands carefully in his lap, knowing he was in for a very boring time until Tosh and Jack found a way to fix him. All he could do was sit there and worry about whether or not his banana affliction might be spreading up his arms, hidden beneath his sleeves. It was entirely possible that the banana hands were only the beginning.
Three hours later, Ianto was dozing where he sat when he was awoken by a weird crawling sensation in his… bananas. Opening his eyes, he looked down at his lap and cried out in horror. “Oh no!” His banana fingers were turning brown and shrivelling before his eyes. “Jack! Help me! I’m rotting!”
Jack hurried over and stared in shock.
“Do something!” Ianto wailed.
“I don’t know!” Ianto was on his feet now, holding his rotting banana hands out in front of him so they wouldn’t drip on his suit. It was a nice one and he didn’t want rotten fruit soaking into it. “Anything! I don’t want my hands to fall off!”
Tosh hurried over, looking worried, and gasped at the sight that met her eyes. Torchwood saw a lot of disgusting things, and rotting fruit was mild in comparison to most, but the fact that the fruit in question was Ianto’s hands made it so much worse. She dashed back to her workstation and grabbed her scanner, returning just in time to see one of Ianto’s banana fingers fall to the floor, where is shrivelled away to nothing. Another followed, this time from his other hand, then a third, fourth, fifth, alternating hands each time.
Ianto was speechless, clearly in shock. When his final banana thumb dropped off, he collapsed onto the sofa as his legs gave way. “My hands!” he whimpered.
Jack sat beside him and wrapped his arms around his distraught, trembling lover. “It’ll be okay; we’ll fix this, I promise.”
“I don’t have any hands,” Ianto mumbled against Jack’s neck. “How can anyone fix that?”
“There’s no blood at least,” Owen said, peering inside one of Ianto’s cuffs. “Just nice, clean, smooth skin, no sign of rot.” It was probably meant to be encouraging, but it really didn’t help.
“What am I going to do without hands? I need my hands, I’m useless without them.”
“Not to me. Try not to worry; we’ll figure it out,” Jack assured him. “Won’t we, guys?”
Nobody knew what to do though; they just stood around the sofa, sunk in their own thoughts, until half an hour later, Ianto’s wrists started to tingle. He sat up, pulling away from Jack, and told Owen, who sat on the edge of the coffee table and peered up Ianto’s sleeve.
“Is my arm rotting now?” Ianto asked dully.
“I don’t think so, it looks more like… You know when you turn a rubber glove inside out then blow into the wrist to turn the fingers?”
Ianto’s eyebrows went up as something bulged out of the ends of his sleeve. “Am I growing more bananas?”
“Those look pink, not yellow,” Tosh said.
Sure enough, the pink lumps slowly expanded into familiar looking hands, fingers gradually unfurling. When they stopped growing, Ianto held them up, turning them this way and that. Never in his life had he been so happy to see his hands; he could hardly take his eyes off them. Owen scanned them.
“They’re your hands alright, every bone, every tendon and muscle, every scar, and right down to your fingerprints.”
“Told you we’d fix it,” Jack said, breathing a sigh of relief and ignoring the fact that none of them had actually done anything towards restoring Ianto’s hands. It was the end result that mattered right now, not how it had been achieved.
Ianto chose not to point that out either; his hands were back and appeared none the worse for their bizarre ordeal. He still didn’t know how or why they’d turned into bananas in the first place; perhaps it had simply been a minor glitch in the fabric of reality that had corrected itself. One thing he was sure of was that he was never going to take his hands for granted again.