Chapter Seven: Final Arrangement
Back at the Hub, after all the carnage, Owen offered to take Gwen home. Tosh felt good enough to drive, and after a not-so-subtle look between Jack and Ianto, followed the others to the garage, Jack's order to take the next two days off ringing in all their ears.
"Two days off?" Ianto asked, wincing as he shifted positions on the couch to make room for Jack, who, predictably, threw himself into his seat without regard for either its structural integrity or the comfort of his companion and his bruised and broken ribs.
"We all need a break after that," Jack replied with a tired sigh. "Now, you have a choice, Mr Jones," he declared with renewed energy.
"Do any of the options involve us having sex?" Ianto asked hopefully. "Because broken ribs or no, I could use it." Jack moved closer and leaned in deliberately for a kiss. Ianto returned it with only the smallest hesitation. He remembered the kisses that had been interrupted the day before. "Mmm, I could get used to this," he admitted when they drew apart.
"Good," Jack breathed. "You have a choice of where we're sleeping. My bunker's not on the list because it's too small, and I don't want to exacerbate your injuries getting both of us to try to fit there."
"So, what are the options?"
"Either we go back to your flat or we find a hotel."
"You think I'm letting you go home alone after today?"
"Well, we don't - I mean, usually -"
"We're going to have to do things differently, Ianto. This arrangement we have isn't working. I want to kiss you. I want to make love to you instead of just have sex with you. I want to sleep next to you."
"Actually sleep together? Make love? Really? You're not the type," Ianto muttered.
"How do you know?"
"All these months…"
"Remember, I let you lead. It's my turn to set the pace for a while. Your flat or a hotel?"
Ianto leaned his head back against the sofa, considering his options. "Hotel," he finally said. "My flat would just be awkward. Your ego wouldn't fit in the door, let alone the rest of you."
"Are you making fun of me?" Jack asked, a twinkle in his eyes. "Owen must have given you the good stuff."
"I have more for later. It'll help when you're pounding into me." Ianto paused. "Making love, huh?"
"You think you're up to it?"
"Won't know unless I try, will I?" Ianto mused, shifting over initiate the next set of kisses.
After two days of gentle, sensual lovemaking and the occasional passionate tryst, Jack and Ianto developed a new understanding of their arrangement. No longer were they simply fuck-buddies, or office-shags. Now they were lovers in truth. To Ianto's surprise, Jack was not just about the quick fuck, and could, in fact, hold off his own release for hours when giving Ianto more attention and consideration and pleasure than anyone else who had ever shared his bed.
To Jack's delight, Ianto was hooked immediately.
They took the opportunity to re-learn how to be with each other, once Ianto was better. They spent hours kissing on the Hub sofa most nights before moving on to other things. Once in Jack's bunker, they undressed each other slowly, kissing and licking and touching every part of the other man as they went. It became less about frenzied release and more about quality of touch, of sounds and sights and smells and tastes. They had those wild moments that categorized their first weeks together quite often, especially when the others were in the Hub, but when alone with time and privacy ahead of them, they focused each other.
It hardly seemed possible, but their desire for each other only doubled with this new intimacy.
By the time three Rift refugees arrived in their small airplane from 1953, Ianto had given up the flat he never saw and secretly moved into the Hub with Jack. The bigger bed Jack acquired hadn't hurt his decision in the slightest, nor their developing ability to talk to each other. None of the others noticed the change in accommodations, though Tosh would sometimes tease Ianto about having to erase CCTV footage he and Jack forgot to take care of. Neither of them commented that the scenes she deleted were a combination of wild abandon and sweet and loving, and Tosh silently gave them her support through little gestures and the occasional chocolate muffin or coffee she brought Ianto.
When Jack died, then died again and stayed down, Ianto expressed his grief through his silence, disappearing into the shadows of the Hub, only coming out when someone needed him, and only then because Tosh coaxed him to it. He couldn't bear to sit with Jack, ceding his place to Gwen, who didn't deserve it, despite his heartache and jealousy. Seeing Jack alive again lifted his spirits in a way he never expected, and kissing him in public like they did made everything worth it. All the pain, grief, and heartbreak dissipated into the atmosphere at the feeling of Jack's lips on his again.
"I love you," he whispered to Jack after their kiss.
"I know. I love you, too," Jack answered, giving him another lingering kiss.