captgreatcoat: (Absolution)
[personal profile] captgreatcoat
It's been a strange couple of days.

Not in the usual way he winds up thinking that about Torchwood. In a very different way. His team are all on edge. Owen screwed up a crime scene, Tosh has been slacking off on an urgent report for UNIT, Gwen is being just about insufferable, and on top of all that, he's had to call the Prime Minister to tell her off.


But when members of his staff are acting like superheroes then trying to read his mind, that's beyond strange. That's a cause for genuine concern, and he's been waiting for the clues to figure out just what the hell is going on.

They came sooner than he expected in the form of a vicious, bloodthirsty Arcateenian who'd committed dozens of murders over her time in Cardiff. And seduced Tosh to worm her way into their base. Tosh. So vulnerable to that sort of attack.

And now, heartbroken, but damn, she should have known better.

It wasn't like he had an option. He had to kill 'Mary'. There was no way she was going to go back to her planet, not after she'd been exiled, killed her guard, escaped, and seen what was out there in the universe beyond her own planet.

And he wasn't going to let her kill anyone else.

If that means Tosh hates him ... he didn't set out to be loved. You can't do his job and be loved. Sometimes, his staff hates him. And sometimes, he deserves it.

But she doesn't hate him. She comes to find him in her misery, and maybe he can offer her something of comfort in a few soft words that are as close to right as any words can be and the delegation of the decision with what to do about the pendant that made her telepathic.

For what it's worth, he thinks she was right to smash it. She doesn't need that power. None of them do.

"Why couldn't I read your mind?" Tosh asks, after they've been sitting together for a few moments, listening to the constant trickling fall of water from the tower.

"I dunno," he says, shaking his head, and it's ... as close to true as it usually gets with him. He doesn't know.

He has a couple of ideas, though. Whatever has made him this undying whatever he is must be to blame. But Toshiko doesn't know about that.

"Though I could feel you scrabbling around in there," he adds, leaning over to her and giving her one of his best grins in a pretty good attempt at covering the disquiet her question's caused.

"I got nothing," she says, her voice almost breaking with the emotion of the day. He's turned away again; he doesn't want to meet her eyes. Especially when she continues. "It was like you were, I don't know, dead."

That makes the grin fade. (She could be right.) He lets out a heavy breath and looks back up at her.

"I want that list for UNIT on my desk. Tomorrow." Tosh straightens, her face still lined, but she nods. "Or I'll ..." He turns his head. "What do bosses do in situations like these? You know. Regular bosses. Do I get to beat people?"

"We've got rules for that." Tosh laughs.

He lets out an exaggerated grunt of frustration, an almost manic grin on his face as he slaps a fist into his palm. "Red tape!"

"Jack." He'd been smiling, laughing, trying to boost her, but he turns serious now, because he knows how these conversations go. It's usually only right at the end, when she's put at her ease, that she'll say what's really on her mind.

Toshiko was having a crisis of her own humanity, caused by the whispers of others' minds she'd heard. They weren't meant for her. Not for a good, sensitive soul so uneasy in the world but with so much to give. She's crying as she asks how to live with the new world she's seen.

"There are some things we're not supposed to know," he says, placing one hand over her knee. She's so petite his hand looks oversized against her leg, but the contact is the important thing. Touch, reassurance. "You got a snapshot, nothing more."

"I don't mean about Gwen and Ianto and Owen. I mean ... the whole world." She shakes her head. "It doesn't matter."

His smile is grim as he stands and reaches down to smooth her hair and wipe away her tear. It's still all right. There's good to be found in humanity if only you look close enough. Of all people, Jack knows that. And Tosh will learn it, too.
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captgreatcoat: (Default)
Captain Jack Harkness

July 2014


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