The first time Ianto stays over, he realises too late what’s happened. His 6am alarm sounds and he shifts away from Jack, placing a hand on the older man’s chest to lift himself across the bed and grab his phone. Jack stirs and wraps an arm around Ianto’s back.
“What’s that?” He asks sleepily.
Ianto hesitates for a moment. For some reason biting his tongue. He shakes his head and sets his phone down.
“Just an alarm. I should get up.”
He is off the bed before Jack has the time to argue. Jack turns over in protest, facing the wall. Ianto checks he isn’t looking before picking his jacket up off the floor and rifling through the pockets. He doesn’t know why he’s even bothering to look, he knows they aren’t there. In his mind’s eye, he can see them on his bedside table, next to the light and the book and the pair of glasses he doesn’t tell anyone about. Jack rolls over.
“Come back to bed. We have some time.”
Ianto huffs and grabs a few of his clothes.
“I need to shower, I’ll see you up there.”
He’s up and out of the bunker in a matter of seconds. Jack sighs and leans back on the pillows. He tries to be annoyed for a few moments before the memory of last night forces itself into his brain and a decidedly smug smile breaks out onto his face.
Post shower Ianto rifles through his locker, lifting up the spare shirts and underwear. Nothing. He remembers yesterday evening, and throwing the empty packet in the bin. He sighs, trying to decide what to do next. A part of him knows he should talk to Owen when he gets in, but an even bigger part knows that’ll be an awkward encounter and wants to avoid it at all costs.
He gets dressed quickly and looks placidly at himself in the mirror. The old clock on the wall tells him its been over an hour. He takes a deep, calming breath and heads out of the door and towards the main hub.
At 10am he’s starting to feel a little on edge. He tells himself it’s all in his head, which, Ianto thinks with a wry smile, it actually is. He delivers the mid-morning coffee as quickly as he can without being too obvious and heads down to the archives until lunch, ignoring the concerned look Jack gives him as he walks away.
The archives prove a good distraction for a while, even if it is a little too close to Lisa’s old room for him to be totally on board with. He sits at his small desk and catalogues, files and writes for well over 2 hours until his comm beeps in his ear.
Ianto taps it.
“You’ve got 4 hungry Torchwood agents here, any plans for lunch?”
Ianto sighs and realises the time.
“Be there now.”
He calls the pizza place on his way up, knowing that by the time he gets to the tourist office the pizza will have probably arrived. The journey from deep in the bowels of the hub is a long one, but he’s used to it now. He’s even managed to stop thinking of Lisa every time he crosses the threshold. Today however, those thoughts seem to be pushed to the front of his mind, what it was like, running this journey away from the woman he loved as she tried to kill him. He shakes his head and pushes the door leading to the main hub. Jack smiles at him, that gentle smile that warms his heart and makes other parts of him start to pay attention. He smiles back, but can feel how forced it probably looks. God, he feels awful.
He doesn’t eat at lunch, begging off to go to the tourist office for a ‘delivery’. He sits in the back room for a bit, enjoying the peace and quiet, and lack of panic attack inducing memories. Jack texts him, a simple ‘Plans tonight? J’ but it’s enough to make his stomach flip. And he knows he needs to talk to Owen, because on the off chance he isn’t going home tonight, he needs another course. There’s no way he can manage it without.
“Owen…” He says quietly, approaching him at his desk. “Can I have a word?”
Owen sighs and doesn’t look up from his desk.
“What is it Teaboy? Can’t you see I’m working?”
He spins his chair to look up at Ianto and his harsh exterior immediately goes. Ianto is pale, paler than usual, and looks bone tired from what has been a relatively quiet day.
“Fine. Get down to the med bay.”
Its awkward, more awkward than that first time. Ianto barely remembers it anyway. Owen showed up at his flat, stony faced, but surprisingly kind. He offered, Ianto accepted. And since then every month or so a parcel appears on Ianto’s desk, discreet, efficient and up until Ianto started things up with Jack, very effective. Ianto had a routine to his life, which worked well for him, but Jack shook that routine up and gave him something unexpected to look forward to everyday. Which in some ways was amazing, and in others was a nightmare. Ianto knew he wanted it both ways, so he gritted his teeth and sat down on the autopsy table.
“What’s going on then?”
Owen was in ‘Doctor mode’, which Ianto appreciated. It was easier talking to Owen when he wasn’t trying to take the piss constantly.
“I need some more.”
That threw Owen off.
“What? How can you need more? It’s the 16th. What did you do?”
Owen was clearly jumping to conclusions.
“Nothing like that…”
“So what? You want me to up the dosage? In our last meeting you said you were happy with what we were on.”
“I just need another course Owen, it’s nothing sinister.”
Owen stood up and went to one of the many medicine cabinets in the room. He rifled around a little bit then pulled out a small box. He set it on the side.
“Those were for next month. So, I’ll do an extra order to set you up for then.”
Ianto pocketed the box and smiled grimly at Owen.
He went to jump off the table but Owen lifted a hand to stop him.
“Ianto. If something has happened, you need to tell me. You can’t double up to try and deal with whatever it is by yourself. I can tell you’re a bit off?”
Owen was quiet, asking these questions with a soft hesitancy he rarely showed.
“Its not that. I… I’ve missed today. I forgot as I left home this morning and I ran out of the ones in my locker. I realised its probably silly of me to not keep a few more spares at the hub. I’m walking round with a head full of cotton wool right now.”
Owen sighed and nodded.
“Right, that’s probably a good shout. You could have just said, save me giving you the third degree. Or did you just not want to admit that Mr ‘I know everything’ forgot to take his pills this morning.”
Ianto’s eyes widened and he turned back towards the main hub to see if anyone was listening, they weren’t.
“Shush alright. It’s awkward enough us having to have these little conversations every month, let alone so close to everyone else. Don’t go shouting it around.”
He hopped off the table with a glare.
“Fine I’m sorry, but you shouldn’t be embarrassed about this, Ianto. It’s perfectly normal.”
Ianto scoffed and walked up the stairs.
“like you know…”
The first time Jack came to the flat, Ianto darted ahead of him to bedroom. He shuffled the caddy into his bedside drawer and the empty packet he had forget to throw away that morning. Jack had come in a few moments later, wearing only his boxers.
“I got tired of waiting…”
And Ianto immediately forgot about his secret, about what was in drawer, and he lived in that moment.
A few weeks later they’re back at Ianto’s flat and It’s 6am.
The alarm goes off. This time Jack rolls over, Ianto is awake and tries to get there before him but apparently he’s slow in the morning. Jack picks up his phone with a huff to turn the alarm off.
“You know, this alarm is really starting to-”
he stops mid-sentence as he reads the text on the small screen. Ianto reaches over and snatches the phone out of Jack’s hand. He silences the alarm.
Jack looks at him slowly, mouth half open. Ianto is pointedly not looking at him as he gets out of bed, pulls on some underwear and walks to the bathroom.
“Ianto, I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to-”
“Its fine. Doesn’t matter.” He walks out of the bathroom with his toothbrush in his mouth and a foamy frown on his face. “It’s nothing.”
Jack sits back on his haunches and clasps his hands in front of him.
Ianto is quiet, he goes back to the bathroom and spits out the toothpaste, he comes back holding a small glass of water.
“Since my suspension. Owen… he… well… thought it was a good idea.”
“And was it?”
Ianto nods and sits down on the edge of the bed.
“Why didn’t you tell me?”
Jack reaches for Ianto’s hand and clasps it tight.
“It’s a bit awkward. And I…” He takes a deep breath. “I was embarrassed.”
Jack chuckles warmly at him and pulls him in for a hug.
“You really think I would judge you for something like this?”
Shrugging, Ianto said nothing.
“Well I wouldn’t. This shows me that you’re taking care of yourself, this shows me you want to look after yourself. And there’s nothing sexier than that.”
Jack leans in and kisses Ianto softly. It doesn’t take long before its gaining heat. After a few enjoyable minutes, Ianto pulls back.
“Sorry to break up the party, but I actually do need to take these now…”
He laughs, so does Jack. It feels good to Ianto, to be able to be honest about this with Jack. He stands, opens the drawer and pulls out the 7 day box. Jack admires it.
“You know me…”
He takes the tablet quickly with a drink of water, then smiles down at Jack.
“What now?” Jack asks, smiling slightly.
“Now, we shower, then breakfast, then work….”
“I think I’ll leave that to your imagination… Sir.”
Jack growls as Ianto saunters into the bathroom. That man would be the death of him, and he’s enjoy every second.