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Chapter 6

Jack and Ianto’s conversation about Adam Michaels, Duncan MacLeod, and Jack’s time away didn’t happen as planned. Before they could even get their takeaway back to Ianto’s flat, a Weevil alert had them rushing back to Bute Park. Several hours and two other alerts later, they had collapsed into Ianto’s bed, too tired to think or move let alone talk.

The following day had been a difficult one – from reviving Tommy to Ianto’s conversation with Gwen about past Torchwood teams. Ianto told himself he wasn’t bothered that Gwen clearly had drawn conclusions about his relationship with Jack. They were involved; there was no point in hiding it. He just wished that they were allowed to maintain something separate from Torchwood the way Gwen had, but apparently, that wasn’t to be the case.

Ianto had sighed as he made his way up to Jack’s office. He knew dealing with Tommy unnerved the Captain. People out of time always did something to Jack – as if he saw himself in them. Ianto hadn’t really understood why until Jack came back and started sharing more with him.

He had known he could ask Jack for more information about their mysterious stalker and he would provide it. He really was trying to be more open with them – all of them – but especially Ianto. However, seeing the tension in Jack’s shoulders had made him decide on another approach.

“This time tomorrow, he’ll be back in 1918,” he had begun gently, hoping to let his Captain know he understood that this case was difficult for him. He had succeeded beyond his wildest fantasies, and he couldn’t have been happier.

When they had ended the kiss in Jack’s office and Ianto had tried to lead Jack into the older man’s quarters beneath the Hub, the Captain had stopped him.

“Not here. Not like this. Not this time,” he had insisted, an almost vulnerable expression on his face.

Ianto had taken Jack to his flat. They hadn’t spoken on the way there. Instead, Jack kept one hand on Ianto’s thigh as the other man drove, almost as if he was afraid the younger man would vanish. Oddly, he hadn’t moved his hand higher or made any suggestive comments or gestures, which he would have done before he left with the Doctor. It was just another way that Jack had changed.

Ianto had been impressed with Jack’s restraint, which lasted just long enough for them to make their way into the flat and close the front door behind them. The minute the lock had clicked, Jack had pulled Ianto to him and kissed him with all the hunger and need in him.

Ianto had broken the kiss and taken one of Jack’s hands in his. “Bed, now,” he had ordered, loving the way the Captain’s eyes had dilated with arousal.

They had spent the next several hours re-learning each other’s bodies. As had often been the case in their physical relationship, Jack had let Ianto take control. Ianto suspected it was because Jack had to be the Captain everywhere else. In Ianto’s bed, he was just Jack.

Afterwards, the men lay curled together – relaxed and sated – in Ianto’s bed. Ianto lay resting against the headboard with Jack’s head pillowed on his chest. The older man was gently running a hand up and down his lover’s torso. “Thank you,” he whispered against the Welshman’s skin, his hot breath caressing the flesh tenderly.

Before Ianto could reply, his PDA chirped at him. “Damn thing,” he muttered, trying to reach for it without dislodging Jack from his chest and barely succeeding. He frowned at the display. “That’s not good,” he muttered, cursing that they could not even have a few hours to themselves.

Raising himself up on his arms, Jack looked at the other man. “Trouble?” he asked, sounding like he already knew the answer.

“There’s been more activity in the Torchwood and UNIT databases. It’s our Dr. Michaels again,” Ianto reported, frowning. “Tosh has a trace set up to monitor this guy and has been shutting him out at every turn, but he gets around her firewalls eventually. It’s certainly not neat, though. It’s like he doesn’t care if he gets caught.”

“Oh, he doesn’t,” Jack admitted with a shake of his head. “He’s not afraid of much,” he added, making himself comfortable again next to Ianto. “What do you want to know?”

“Can you start with who he is?” Ianto asked, setting his PDA aside and eyeing the Captain. “I’m guessing his academic credentials are only part of the story.”

“You could say that,” Jack replied cryptically, then winced. “I promised myself I wouldn’t do the answers that are not answers with you anymore. If you ask, and I can answer without risking timelines, then I will. In this case, well, I need to know where to start.” He paused. “What do you know about Immortals?”

“I’m assuming you don’t mean the one currently drooling on my chest?” Ianto asked, eyebrows raised to his hairline. When Jack laughed and shook his head, the younger man continued. “I know as much as any other Torchwood operative who was trained at One. Immortals are not human, but they are not alien. Torchwood avoids their Game and their Watchers, but we demand the same.”

Jack nodded, not really expecting any less. He knew Torchwood One’s information on Immortals and Watchers pre-dated Yvonne Hartman. “Okay, so you have the official line down, but what else do you know?”

Ianto didn’t bother to deny anything. Jack was well aware that One kept information on everything, and that Ianto’s curiosity was one of several insatiable appetites that he had. “I’ve seen the Watcher database,” he admitted, shrugging his shoulders slightly, and then his eyes widened. “That’s where I’ve heard the name Duncan MacLeod before. They call him the Highlander. He’s a favourite to win the Game.”

“I don’t know much about him,” Jack revealed, shaking his head. “All I know is what I’ve read. Adam on the other hand – him I’ve known a long time.”

“How long?” Ianto wondered, knowing that for Jack time really was relative.

Jack frowned, looking a bit perplexed. “Depends on how you calculate it I suppose. For Adam, we first met in the mid-1870s. He was going by the name Dr. Benjamin Adams then. I ... recognised him.”

Ianto’s narrowed his eyes, and then gasped when he put the pieces together. “You met him in his future, didn’t you?” he asked, trying to keep the timeline clear in his brain.

“While I was with the Time Agency,” Jack confessed, wondering how much he should say. He decided Ianto needed to know who Adam was. The ancient could be enthralling, and he wanted Ianto prepared for that. “In the Fifty-First Century,” he added, watching for the other man’s reaction.

“But ... if you knew him in the 1800’s and again in the Fifty-First Century, that makes him well over three thousand when you meet him,” Ianto gasped, shaking his head. “That’s ... I can’t even comprehend that.”

“Oh, three thousand would be selling him short,” the Captain retorted. “He won’t thank you for it at all. No, by the time he meets me, he’s well over eight thousand – and happy to let you know it.” He thought about how important Methos and other Immortals would be in what was coming, but he wasn’t sure how to share that with Ianto without endangering the timeline. If they were lucky and Ianto stayed relatively safe, everything would change in his lifetime. The Old Man and his Highlander would be in the middle of it.

Ianto was still trying to process what Jack had told him. “But that would make him ...” his voice trailed off as he ran the numbers in his head again and then his eyes grew impossibly large. “He’s Methos,” he stammered, remembering the name from the Watcher database. “But, the Watchers said he was a myth ... that he doesn’t really exist.”

“People have said that about me, too,” Jack replied, looking a bit smug at being able to surprise his lover. It happened so rarely. “He’s Methos, and he’s a sly bastard. The question is, what the hell does he want with me and Torchwood this time?”

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