Waking to Live - Chapter 1
A/N: Here we are, finally, at the beginning of Waking to Live, the sequel to 'Ianto Wakes', 'Jack Wakes', and 'Lisa Wakes', where we find out what happens between our heroes. Ianto and Jack have both woken up from retcon, and are dealing with the consequences. Remember, Ianto is in London with no memory of a month-long affair with Jack. Jack is at Torchwood, with a dead Cyberman in the autopsy bay, and two agents who appear to have betrayed him, though he suspects that Suzie has been blackmailing Owen. What does she have on him? Read further to find out!
Warmings: Discussions of non-con.
As always, reviews and follows/favorites are wonderful tokens of appreciation for my story that I love to get.
Owen slunk back into the Hub, his shoulders slumped and a scowl on his face. He looked around, not seeing Suzie or Jack. His anxiety skyrocketed. He walked over to the autopsy bay and fell to his knees. It was a bloodbath. Lisa's body lay on the table, blood was everywhere, and he vaguely recognized Jack's bootprints leaving the area, and Suzie's shoeprints.
"Shit," he gasped. "What happened?"
"Suzie happened," Jack said, coming up behind Owen. Owen jumped to his feet, startled. He swallowed thickly and faced Jack. It took him a full minute to look up enough to see Jack's stormy eyes. Sadness, disappointment and anger warred for control of Jack's features.
"Jack," Owen whispered, his voice cracking.
"My office. Now."
Jack turned and Owen reluctantly followed him. Tosh already sat in the visitor's chair. Jack took his chair and motioned for Owen to remain standing. Tosh activated a small video camera.
"What does she have on you and how long has this been going on?" Jack demanded, every shred of emotion gone from his voice.
"Two years," Owen answered, avoiding the first question. Jack simply nodded, waiting. "I didn't — I didn't mean for any of this to happen," he said suddenly. "You have to believe me, Jack!"
"What does she have on you?" Jack repeated.
"Katie," Owen said haltingly. "Her family. There are bombs in their homes, at their offices, in their cars, at the kids' schools." He started sobbing. Tosh rose from her seat, but a gesture from Jack had her back in it immediately.
"They're all I have left of her!" Owen shouted. "That blast in London two years ago that took out an entire apartment complex? That was her showing me she meant it. Katie's brother was in that building." Tosh gasped and covered her mouth. "Her sister-in-law wasn't home, but she was pregnant, and now she's a single mother. Suzie has spies in London watching them."
Jack sighed, rubbed a hand over his face. "What else?" he asked wearily, his anger dissipating at hearing Owen's story.
"She put this ring on me —" He broke off, glanced at Tosh, who was both pale and furious, and decided he had to continue. He had betrayed both of them, so they both deserved to know why. "It's like a cock ring, only —"
"If she activates it, it'll cut it off," Jack supplied. "Minxili sex toy. I knew we'd found one of those a few years ago. Thought it was lost in the Archives."
Owen closed his eyes and took a deep breath, trying to calm himself. "She — " He opened his eyes, looked directly at Jack. "She forced me to have sex with her."
Jack reared back in his chair, fury boiling behind his eyes again. Owen had saved this for last, knowing Jack's aversion to forced sex of any kind. The man might be a flirt and charmer, but he always sought consent. And Owen had seen him interrogating a rapist once. The memory was scored into his mind as Jack at his cruelest. It didn't matter that it was a human raping an alien. It was rape, and they'd been sore-pressed to keep the man alive after Jack had his go at him.
"She raped me, Jack," Owen said, not breaking eye contact. "She beat me and cut me and I'm going to have scars for the rest of my life, but, hey, I'm still alive, right? She's made me do more things that make my stomach turn than I can count, and I did all of it, hating myself, but knowing that I'd do it, because it's better to be a bastard and alive than a good man who's dead. That's what my parents taught me, anyway.
"And, yeah, if I hadn't been so broken by Katie's death, maybe I'd have been able to come to you, or resist her, or give up my life, but I'm a coward, Jack. I'm a fucking coward, and this is what I've become, so you can just shove it all, because I did what I had to do to live!"
He drew a deep breath before he continued. "And I'm sorry about Ianto. I really am, but at least he's alive, too, even if he can't remember shit. I'll have these memories for the rest of my life. I have to live with myself, knowing what I've done."
By this point, Tosh was openly sobbing along with Owen, her face buried in her hands. Jack stood abruptly, rounded his desk and drew Owen into a fierce hug. Owen clung to him, tears rolling down his cheeks, his breathing loud and wet.
"I'm sorry!" Owen repeated, over and over into Jack's chest. "I'm sorry! I'm sorry!"
Jack held him tighter, pulled him closer. "I forgive you," he whispered in Owen's ear. "I forgive you. We'll figure it out."
They stood like that until Owen had cried himself out. When he stiffened in Jack's arms, Jack let him go.
"What happens now?" Owen asked, his voice rough.
Jack went to his liquor cabinet and pulled out his good scotch, poured three large glasses, handed them out. He sipped his, staring into space for a moment. "How was Ianto, when you left him?" he asked, not looking at Owen.
"Sleeping. Physically fine. I left out a few things that could be triggers. A newspaper with an article about Canary Wharf, a bottle of your favorite scotch. I'd have done more, except — "
Jack raised a hand to cut him off. "It's OK, Owen. You did what you could. You didn't know I'd wake up in time to catch her." He drained his glass. "Suzie's still out cold from the stun gun I hit her with, so I haven't had a chance to interrogate her, but I'm leaning to more, extreme, shall we say, methods."
"Send her to UNIT," Tosh declared to gasps of surprise from both men. "It's what she deserves."
Jack looked from one to the other of them. "Listen, both of you. We're down two agents, and Suzie is a big risk. It's going to be difficult for a while. Can I count on you to be behind me? No matter what happens?"
"Yes!" Tosh said immediately.
"Yes," Owen declared. "Whatever you want, Jack. Whatever you need."
Jack smiled grimly. "Good. You're good people, and I know what it's like to be coerced into doing things you regret, so, Owen, I'm giving you another chance. Don't fuck it up."
"I won't, Jack. You'll see."
Jack nodded. "OK, here's the order of the day: Owen, clean up the autopsy bay and get Lisa's body as ready for burial as possible. Remove all the tech and incinerate it. I have to go to London to see the Queen on Monday, so I'll take it with me and make sure it gets to her funeral, if there hasn't been one, yet. If there has, I'll make sure it's buried at her marker. Tosh, keep working on those things I told you to do earlier. And find me Lisa's parents' number. I want to contact them personally to give my condolences."
Tosh stood to go, pausing to give Owen's arm a small squeeze.
"Owen, stay another minute," Jack said. Once Tosh was gone and the door closed, Jack motioned Owen to sit. "I've reviewed the CCTV from the last twelve hours," he told him. "And it triggered my memories. I appreciate that you stood up to her down in Lisa's room about Tanizaki."
"It's been driving me mad for years," Owen admitted. "But she's been losing it more and more lately. It's like somethings come unhinged. At first it was just sex and stealing retcon, but now it's — this."
"Speaking of retcon," Jack started.
"I'll get to work on an antidote for Ianto," Owen finished.
"Thank you." Jack paused for a moment. "I know talking or letting people in isn't your strong suit, but I'd like you to see a psychologist."
"I'd rather talk to you," Owen muttered under his breath. "And you know how I feel about you."
"You blame me for Katie's death," Jack stated.
"I'll listen, if that's what you really want. It'll be difficult."
"I owe it to you, Jack. You need to know everything."
Jack sighed. "I'm not a psychologist, I won't be able to do more than listen."
"Good. All that 'it'll get better' nonsense is bullshit," Owen declared.
"Once you've finished in the autopsy bay and with Lisa, I'll work on getting that ring off you. I have an idea of a few things that might work, but I have to search the Archives."
"She controls it from her PDA."
"I'll start there. For now, go."
Jack watched Owen leave, feeling suddenly old, tired and sad. I let Owen down, he thought. I should've noticed what Suzie was doing. I should've been able to stop it. Shit. And now I'm having him clean the autopsy bay, kind of like assigning him penance for his crimes.
Oh, Ianto, I wish you were here. I wish we could have each other throughout this crisis. I promise, you, I will do everything I can for you. I will come for you once all this with Suzie is sorted. I will come for you.