Pairing: Tosh/Ianto, mystery addition at the end
Summary: Fooling around on the firing range
Author's Notes: Set just after 2.01. Many, many thanks to my betas karaokegal, diachrony, and awesome Brit-picker crwban. You guys rock.
Disclaimer: Torchwood and the characters appearing in this fic are property of the BBC. No copyright infringement is intended.
Previous fics in the same 'verse:
Urban Retreat #1
Brownian Motion #2
Clouds in the Evening Sky More Darkly Gather #3
Ianto's aim was good, Tosh decided later. It was his timing that needed work.
That morning, he'd stopped by her desk, diffidently asking for her help with something after hours. Pen between teeth and eyes on her monitor, Tosh had mumbled agreement without bothering to ask what she was getting into. Once the alchemical symbols of integral and differential had cleared from her mind later, she worried at the unasked question all day.
Ianto was turning out to be a fount of useful information; she was honestly surprised at how the team had wasted him in a mere servant's role for so long, and how he'd tolerated that. A man who could rig the Cardiff fountain tower into a mobile phone antenna was unlikely to need her to fix something for him. Anything work related could be dealt with during the work day -
Add into the equation that Jack wasn't giving her the kind of verbal byplay she'd expect if they wanted something more carnal. Unless Ianto was interested in her alone tonight.
She pushed that thought aside as highly unlikely. After Jack had returned, the force of his personality was angled in two directions: Ianto and Gwen. It made sense, as Jack had never been able to resist his people when they began to slip from his grasp. It was an ache in her chest to know she wasn't interesting anymore, but hardly unanticipated.
What then, did Ianto want from her?
He appeared at her elbow right on time, a decorous few feet away. "Ready when you are, Tosh," he murmured, "and take your laptop, we might need it."
She gave him a suspicious look, but undocked the computer without a word. "Lead on, Macduff."
He smiled at her lopsidedly. Crooking one finger at her to follow, he led her toward the other side of the Hub. "You're more Horatio than Macbeth, Tosh."
The comment stung, even though she knew he didn't mean it to. An intellectual, inactive side character, never the main - that really was her role these days. Buttoning up her disquiet, she trailed in his wake, then stopped when she realised he was heading toward the firing range.
"Ianto," she called, "what are we doing? I'm not the weapons expert." She wrapped her arms about her laptop, hoping Jack wasn't waiting inside. She'd sworn off the office flings for good and didn't want to be drawn back in - she was just beginning to relate to both Jack and Ianto without flinching.
He glanced back at her, straightening his spine. As if each word were prickly, he said, "Jack says I need some practice on the range, if I'm to be out in the field with you lot. The thing is - his brand of help isn't exactly - helpful." He grimaced. "And I'm not asking Owen."
She couldn't keep back a smile at the thought of that scene. He smiled with her, expression softening.
"Why me, then?" she pressed. "Why not Gwen?" She wasn't sure why she was arguing, but her fingers were tightening on the case of her laptop.
He passed a hand over his brow, then fixed his gaze on hers. "Because she and Jack teach the same way. With them, it's all about feeling the weapon, aiming with your whole body, locking on the target - I don't learn that way." He took a step closer, touched her hand. "You and I think more alike."
She held his eyes for a moment, nodded warily. It felt as if Ianto had been studying the Jack Harkness guide to personnel manipulation.
"Besides," he said ruefully, with a glance at Jack's empty desk, "Gwen is - occupied, tonight."
Maybe he meant to elicit camaraderie with that, but Tosh felt a stab of biting satisfaction, quickly suppressed. Not the new shiny thing anymore, Ianto? She looked down to hide her expression, guilt at the cruel thought now flushing her cheeks.
When she didn't respond, Ianto let his hand drop. "Do you still want to help me?" he asked in neutral tones. She looked up to see his tightened jawline, decided he might not be as manipulative as she'd thought.
Relenting, she cocked her head toward the range. "Let's go, then."
A smile flickered across his face, relief evident in his eyes.
Two hours and three boxes of ammunition later, the room smelling of smoke and gun oil, Tosh pointed to the graphs she'd pulled together while Ianto field stripped the AK he'd been using, his handgun already dismantled and gleaming beside it.
"Your reaction time is good," she said briskly. "Your stance and aiming technique are textbook. The problem isn't in your skills - it's your decision-making." Bringing the relevant window to full-screen, she circled it with her stylus. "When the situation isn't clear - a hostage, a runner in a crowd, more than one attacker - you consistently take too long to act." Looking back at Ianto to emphasize the point, she stopped herself at his thin-lipped scowl. She put down the stylus and leaned toward him, annoyed.
"Listen," she said, "it's not a terrible thing, and one you can train yourself out of if you have to. I have the same problem: I think too much." Pushing out an uncomfortable laugh, she shrugged. "It's why I'm never in the vanguard with Jack. I don't belong there."
Abruptly, Ianto turned and threw the cleaning kit at the wall, the plastic case shattering with a loud crack. Tosh cringed backward, eyes widening as her heart leaped into her throat. It was so easy to forget the blackness she'd glimpsed inside Ianto, that flash of pain and self-loathing she'd stolen while wearing the pendant. He kept it hidden under a perfectly quiet visage, had even started cracking jokes in a deadpan fashion. It was as though the whole scene with Lisa had never happened - but apparently he was still close to his breaking point.
"Dammit!" he yelled, starting to pace from table to wall and back, hands clenched stiffly at his sides. "This place asks more and more of me, makes me change who and what I am -"
This place equaling Jack, she thought, stunned.
He stormed back to her, slapping his hands on the table, face twisted, eyes glazed. "I push down everything for him, everything, and it's never good enough." As abruptly as the rage had begun, it subsided, Ianto dropping his face into the cup of his hands, obviously fighting to bring himself under control.
Tentatively, she reached out to touch him lightly on the shoulder. "How can anything be enough for a man that's outlived everything?"
Lunging quick as a viper, Ianto snatched her wrist and pulled her tight against him. His entire body was vibrating like a taut bowstring. His face only inches from hers, he snarled, "That is not an excuse." She could feel his breath hot on her lips.
Without thinking, she wrapped her free arm about his neck and closed the distance between them, pure animal instinct knotting her fingers in his short hair. He surged against her, lifted her onto the table, metal and wood gun parts clattering to the floor.
He thrust her legs apart, brought her captive hand to his belt. Breath shuddering against his neck, she undid the buckle, the zip of his trousers, pushed the whole mess down to slide her hands across soft bare skin.
Groaning, Ianto sank his teeth into the flesh over her collarbone, drawing blood. She pulled him closer, nails digging into his thighs. He shivered, knees buckling, then kissed her again. His lips tasted of iron.
Rough and wordless, he peeled off Tosh's trousers and underwear. In a rush, he moved back into position and thrust into her. She sucked a breath in her suddenly constricted chest at the pain and pleasure and heedless freedom of it. Folding legs around his waist, she pulled him closer.
What was she doing? This was hardly safe sex - Maybe I don't want it safe.
One hand was cupped at the small of her back, pressing against her with every thrust. Tosh reached down between them to touch her clit, bringing herself off with a surging, blissful moan seconds before Ianto arched his back and came with an angry snarl.
The entire fuck had lasted less than a minute. Tosh felt aftershocks of her orgasm shudder through her, bringing with them a touch of amazement. The more I try to analyze this, the more wrong I am.
Ianto, his face against her bitten shoulder, drew back suddenly. "Oh god, Tosh, I'm so sorry, you're bleeding -"
"I can take care of that."
Tosh whipped her head around to see Owen leaning against the door frame, hands in his pockets. Ianto's hands tightened on her possessively.
"How long have you been there?" he accused, some of that angry intensity back in his voice.
Owen leered back. "Long enough." Pushing off the wall, he sauntered over and clinically pulled Tosh's shirt further off her shoulder to expose more of the wound. "I came running when I heard the crash. Stayed for the show." His hands against her skin were moist and warm.
Tosh winced, looking up into Owen's flushed cheeks. He was looking at Ianto with a sort of wary admiration.
"Do you have any idea how much force is required to break skin with human teeth?" he asked, looking back to the bite mark. "There's more to you than I would have thought."
Ianto cleared his throat, an echo of more usual persona.
What was Owen thinking? Nerves twanging in alarm, Tosh dipped her head a little, trying to force him to look at her. He wouldn't meet her eyes at first, then glanced up quickly. He licked his lips.
That wasn't anger, or even amusement. He was turned on.
All of a sudden, she started laughing, feeling insanely giddy. She snaked one arm about Owen's waist and pulled him into the hot sweaty circle of space she and Ianto made. Owen gasped when she pressed him close. She could feel his cock hard and warm even through his trousers.
Ianto stared hard at her, then turned back to Owen with a speculative look in his eyes. He reached out and grabbed a handful of Owen's collar.
"Next time," he hissed, "don't just stand there. Make yourself useful."
As always, comments and concrit are extremely welcome!