Who He Wants To Be

by Gracefultree

In honor of Ianto's birthday, I present the first chapter of a new story.


What if Jack and Ianto met in May of 2005, before Ianto joined Torchwood, when the then 21 year-old Ianto indulged his curiosity about being with a man when out drinking? What if Jack was so impressed with the young Welshman that he wanted more than a quick tumble in the sheets, and decided that with Ianto he could be the man he wanted to be if Torchwood hadn't gotten in the way? What if he said his name was James?


Be prepared for a long story with lots of twists and turns. It started out as a single scene for a different story and morphed into its own epic drama. I just can't write short stories very often, it seems, if my others are any judge. I've written 3/4 of this one already, so there's little worry that I'll stop in the middle. I'm also crazy in love with it... I know, a little self-centered of me to love my own story, but I'm confident in my plot, characterizations, and writing, so, there you go. I'm thinking of a weekly update starting in September, though I could be persuaded to update more frequently with the proper motivation.

Rated M: Many chapters have warnings for sex, though not all. There's angst, as happens with our boys. Be prepared.





Ianto Jones woke with a pounding headache. He groaned, rolling over, waving a hand at the blinds and wishing he could close them without having to get out of bed. He glanced at the bedside clock. Instead of the time, he saw a folded piece of paper propped up, blocking his view of the numbers. He frowned. Sitting up, he groaned again as his body protested with a series of aches and pains he couldn't explain. He picked up the note.

"Yanto, I had a great time last night. You're an amazing man, and I want to get to know you better. I'm sorry I couldn't stay, and please believe me when I say that this isn't a line, but I had to leave early for work. I'd be making you pancakes right now, otherwise. Here's my mobile. Call me sometime, and I'll take you on a real date. — James"

Ianto's frown deepened. Who was James? Why would he —?

Memories filtered into Ianto's sleep and hungover-addled brain. He'd been out drinking with one of his roommates, Steve, at a gay bar, because Steve had just come out and wanted Ianto to come with him, despite Ianto's protests that he was straight. Their other roommate, Gary, also straight, hadn't been around to join them, though he might have done it just to support Steve if he had been.

A few hours into the night, Steve put the moves on, kissing Ianto and groping his crotch with less skill than Ianto's first girlfriend who'd never touched a cock before. Ianto hadn't minded, though. He was single, and pleasantly buzzed, and he hadn't met or seen a girl to spark his interest in weeks, and if he couldn't have a quick drunken fumble with a friend now and again, what was the point?

But, really, Steve, you've got a dick of your own. You should be better at this, he remembered thinking at the time.

Then he'd seen James across the room. Tall, with carefully styled brown hair and a huge smile, he'd caught Ianto's eye immediately. So much so that Ianto had roughly pushed Steve away and walked over to him. And when he got closer, he was drawn in by the sparkle of life in James's blue eyes and his carefree laugh. They exchanged names, chatted for a little bit, then James bought him a drink.

He remembered the first frenzied kiss outside the gents, the smell of James's aftershave, the feel of James's large hands as they cupped his arse through his jeans. He remembered the cab ride home, awkward because Steve had insisted on coming along, even though Ianto couldn't keep his hands off James any more than James could keep his hands (or lips) off Ianto. He remembered a hurried conversation about safety, about who would fuck who, that it was Ianto's first time with a man, and then he lost the thread of everything but the exquisite pleasure of being with James.

He sat up, looking around the room. His clothes from the night before were strewn about. Some books had fallen off his bookcase, from when he'd shoved James against it in a desperate bid to get the man to hold still long enough to get his jeans open while keeping up with the kisses that were beyond heated. James hadn't protested at all once he understood Ianto's intention. There were two used condoms in the rubbish bin, and he had the sudden embarrassing memory of demanding that James fuck him again once they'd both recovered because it felt so damned good to have the man's cock up his arse the first time around, even with the pain of being breached like that. James had encouraged him through it to find the pleasure, and, oh, was it pleasurable!

He wasn't quite as enthusiastic about it now, feeling the ache in his backside.

Groaning yet again, he pulled on his jeans and boxers from last night, shoving the note from James in his pocket with his mobile. He wondered if he'd call him. He wondered if James was for real and did have work. He found himself hoping it was true, that maybe James would take him on a date, take him dancing, take him home to his bed next time. James was a bit older, and probably had a flat to himself, Ianto reasoned.

In the kitchen, he put on a pot of coffee, his usual morning ritual, needing the caffeine. That he'd been up until God knows when having sex with James didn't help his energy levels, even though it was almost ten, an hour later than Ianto ever got up on the weekends. At least he didn't have work today. Steve stepped hesitantly into the room. To Ianto it seemed like he'd been waiting for Ianto to start the coffee to come see him.

"Um, Ianto —" he started. "Um, about last night — I didn't mean —"

Ianto walked over and gave him an awkward one-armed hug made more awkward because neither of them were wearing shirts. Not that they'd ever been embarrassed about that sort of thing before, but... "Don't worry about it," he reassured him. "We're good." He paused. "And I don't think I'd have minded a quick fumble if that's all it was, but, man, just ask. I'd prefer that to being drunk and in public."

Steve nodded, relaxing some tension from his back, though his face was pinched with regret. "I'm really sorry! I didn't plan it, or anything… I —"

"Steve —"

"Someone got laid last night!" Gary exclaimed, stomping into the kitchen and giving Ianto a hearty slap on the back. "Your room reeks. Didn't she want to stay —" he broke off, seeing the strained look between Ianto and Steve. "Oh, no, you didn't —"

"No!" Steve blurted. "No, it wasn't me!"

"Where'd you two go anyway?" Gary asked. "I thought you were going out for Steve. Change your minds?"

"His name is James," Ianto said.

"James?" Gary asked. "A bloke?"

"Yeah," Ianto answered, pouring coffee for them all to avoid having to look at them. Especially Steve. He had a feeling it might be awkward between them for a little while.

"Huh. Well, whatever. Was it good?"

"Yeah," Ianto said again, a small smile on his face, his cheeks turning pink as he blushed. He thought of James's voice murmuring little endearments and encouragements in his ear as he got closer to his release. He felt the heaviness of his muscles, well-used and sated. When had he felt so good after a night with a girl?

"You should have seen them going at it in the cab," Steve put in, feeling a bit more comfortable now that Gary was there to run interference. "They were groping and snogging like teens."

"Didn't think you were into guys," Gary commented to Ianto, pulling milk from the fridge and sniffing it to make sure it was still good before pouring some into his mug. Steve grabbed it from him.

"Didn't think I was, either," Ianto said, plopping into a seat, ignoring the milk as he always did. He winced as his arse complained. "Shit, I'm sore."

"Wait, you let him fuck you?" Steve demanded. "You're not even gay and you've had more action than me?"

"You've only been out for a few weeks," Ianto pointed out.

"Yeah, but you're not out at all!"

Ianto shrugged, sipping his coffee. He closed his eyes, suddenly seeing James's naked, tanned chest in his mind's eye. His bare, hairless chest, with those perfect nipples... outlined by the moonlight streaming in through the blinds he hadn't closed. He remembered the feeling of James's cock in his hands, hard and smooth and so much different than touching himself.

"I had sex with a man," he gasped.

"Um, yeah, that's what we've been talking about for the last five minutes," Gary muttered, pouring more coffee into each of their mugs.

"I had sex with a man," Ianto repeated. "Twice."

"Twice?" Steve barked, spitting out his mouthful of coffee.

"You must have really liked it," Gary said. "That or been completely shitfaced."

"No, I, I, um, I — shit. I really did it!"

"Now don't start freaking out," Gary said, putting a hand on Ianto's shoulder when Ianto buried his head in his arms. "It's not a big deal. I mean, it doesn't have to be. You were safe, right? That's the only important thing, really."

"Yeah, we're not going to judge you," Steve quickly added. "Come on! This is us, here."

"I know. I know, but it's just so surreal," Ianto said. "It's like — it's like it was the most natural thing in the world to be with him." He glanced at Steve quickly before looking away, the implication clear between the two that it hadn't felt natural making out with Steve.

"Wow," Steve said, pushing on despite his discomfort. "What was it like? Did you suck his cock? What did it taste like? Was he cut? Was he big?"

Ianto's head shot up to stare at his friend in shock. "None of your business!" he shouted.

"I do not need those kinds of details!" Gary exclaimed at the same time, holding up his hands and backing a few feet away. He moved to toss some bread in the toaster. "Seriously, though, did you get his number?"

"Uh, yeah," Ianto answered.

"Where is he?" Steve asked. "I don't hear the shower, or anything."

Ianto offered Steve the note. "He said he had work."

"You think it's a line?" Steve asked after reading the note aloud for Gary's benefit.

"If his number's real, it might not be," Ianto mused.

"Yeah, but leaving for work is like, the oldest one in the book!" Gary said. He put a pile of toast on the table. "Are you going to call him?" he asked around a large bite.

"I think so," Ianto answered. He nibbled at his own toast. "How long do I wait to call? Is it different than with a girl? 'Cause I know I can't call one of them until at least tonight, let alone tomorrow, without coming off badly." He looked expectantly at Steve.

"Don't ask me! I have no idea!"

"I don't want to seem too eager, but I don't want him to think I'm rude," Ianto said with a frown.

"Well, you've already had sex, so you don't have to worry about seeming like that's all you're looking for," Gary mused. "And the kind of guy who goes out and pulls a stranger might not care about that, anyway. So, you don't want to make him wait, but you've gotta figure out what you want. If you just want to try on the sex for size, that's one thing, but if you actually want to date him..." He trailed off.

"He knows I've never been with a guy," Ianto said. "I made sure to tell him that." He paused. "And he does say in the note that he wants to take me on a date."

"But do you want that?" Steve asked.

"I don't know. Maybe."

"Well, first thing to do is figure out if he's for real. Then, I guess you just be honest with him."

"Easier said than done when I have no idea, myself," Ianto muttered. He took back the note and re-read it, thinking of James's hands on his skin, of his tongue in his mouth, of his mouth on his cock. Would he return the gesture next time and blow James? He forced down the erection that threatened. From his reaction to just thinking about it, yes, he'd try blowing James. He picked at toast crumbs on the tabletop. "Is it wrong to want to call him?" He looked up, the real question of 'is it wrong to want to sleep with him again?' behind his eyes.

"Of course not!" Gary answered.

"Why would it be?" Steve asked.

"I just met him. I don't know anything about him."

"So you've got to ask," Gary said. "That's how it goes with anyone new, girl or guy. Look, none of us will look down on you for calling him. None of us will think less of you if you're gay."

"I'm not gay!" Ianto exclaimed, slightly horrified at the thought.

"Nothing wrong with being gay," Steve muttered under his breath.

"Of course not," Ianto agreed quickly. "I like girls. I know that. I guess, I guess I like him, too. I think," he added hastily, not as sure as his body was about his attraction to the man.

"Then that's the answer," Gary declared. "Have a shower and call him. You'll feel better once you know if he's for real."