[fandom] Torchwood; after episode thirteen. All characters, gen.
Jack pinned Ianto against the wall with his broad too-bright smile. There was light and laughter and happiness in his eyes, and he had just waltzed right in through the front door. Behind the desk, Ianto pressed the emergency call button, staring straight ahead as his heart did its best impression of a renegade drumline. Owen was first up the stairs, and as soon as he saw Jack he wore a matching grin, relief smoothing the hitch in his now-normally taut shoulders. Gwen gave a soft cry and laughed, her cheeks tinting apple-pink. Tosh breathed a heavy sigh - relieved - and the three of them took steps closer to Jack, all of them silent for the shock and the fear he might leave again.
Ianto had not stepped forward. He had been confused with the team, when Jack disappeared. He'd been frightened with them when he didn't return. He'd mourned with them when the realization that Jack was gone for good (or so they thought) sank in.
But he would not rejoice this return with them.
Ianto's voice rang out strong and loud and laced with pain. "You left us," he blurted out, accusation in his words and on his face and even in the way he stood there stupidly with his shoulders against the brochure wall and clenched his hands into useless fists.
Jack's smile faltered. "I'm back."
"You LEFT us," Ianto said again, "without a word or a thought or a backwards glance, running off to bigger better things. You left us, and now you're back like nothing happened and look --"
He waved a delicate hand at the rest of them, "We'll all still follow you anywhere."
Ianto shook his head, tears stinging his eyes though he told himself sternly that he would not cry. They'd seen him cry too often. "Do you have any idea what that feels like?!"
Tosh looked at the ground. Gwen gazed at Jack. Owen shot Ianto the glare of his life.
And Jack understood, which Ianto saw and hated.
He turned on his heels, and muttered under his breath by way of explanation, "I'll fetch the coffee."
crossposted to comixologist and torchwoodcoffee. comments & criticism are always appreciated.