Disclaimers: I do not own Torchwood or any of its characters.  I am making no money from this.  It is purely for entertainment
purposes only.

Warnings:  MPREG!!  If you've been reading for this long, I'm sure you've already noticed.

Notes: Please remember that I am just another stupid American.  Please forgive any spelling or grammatical errors as I must
rely solely on my own knowledge and my irritating spell-checker.

More Notes:  This should be the last part of Ianto's little Christmas vacation.  Next up, a short interlude and then on to Combat!


Part Forty-Three

Ianto was in a state of turmoil.  He'd awoken surrounded by warmth, feeling safe and contented.  He didn't even have to open
his eyes to know that he was in his favorite place - Jack's arms.  Instead, he snuggled in closer, wanting to savor this blissful
moment while it lasted.  All too soon the real world would intrude upon them again, taking Jack away.

The thought reminded him of last night, of all that Jack had told him.  He felt overwhelmed by it all.  Even with everything he
had learned, he was certain that he'd only been gifted with a fraction of Jack's history.  The man was over a hundred years old.  
Surely, it would take longer than one night to tell his entire history unless he had lived a particularly dreary life or had no sense of
how to tell a story.  Jack certainly was an exciting man and was definitely able to captivate with his tales, sordid as they most
often were.  It didn't really matter to Ianto though.  He treasured each scrap of information.  But he couldn't help but wonder
why Jack was trusting him at all.  Ianto got the sense that Jack didn't trust easily.  No surprise there, not with their line of
work.  But Jack was also immortal.  It must be second nature for him to keep secrets, if only to protect himself from those
would who use or hurt him.

Immortal.  Jack was immortal.  He was over a hundred years old.  He'd loved, been married, had families.  And then watched
them grow old and die or leave him unless he left them first.  He'd traveled in the stars, through time.  What could he possibly
see in Ianto?  There was nothing special about him.  He was an ordinary Welshman.

Ianto pressed a hand to his distended stomach, wincing.  His pregnancy was the only thing that made him remarkable.  Was that
the reason Jack was with him?  Was he just a shallow reminder of a time and place Jack would rather be in, where men in
Ianto's condition weren't such an oddity?

"You're thinking too much," Jack grumbled sleepily, a lazy hand moving down along Ianto's spine.

Ianto shifted a fraction closer to Jack, sliding the hand he had been pressing against his own stomach over the other man's
body.  "Sorry," he murmured, then settled in, laying his head on Jack's chest and listening to the strong, steady thrum of his
heart.  Who knew how many other opportunities he would have to enjoy it.  Jack was going to leave him.  There was no
question about that.  When the Doctor came, Jack would leave.  Ianto didn't want him to.  He selfishly wanted to keep Jack all
to himself.  He was happy when Jack was around.  He didn't want to lose that, to lose Jack.

Annoyingly, he felt his eyes betraying him and his throat began to ache and close.  He held his breath, forcing back the urge to
cry, but despite his efforts a couple of tears managed to sneak through.  He felt stupid for crying.  He was a grown man for
heaven's sake.  He should have better control over himself than this.

Jack's arm came around him, his other hand moving to his head, fingers combing through his hair.  Ianto felt and heard Jack
sigh.  In response, Ianto apologized again, feeling it was somehow his fault.  It was his fault.  If he weren't so pathetic, Jack
would have been able to sleep longer.  He wouldn't have to placate Ianto, or feel obliged to make him feel better.

Jack shifted on the bed, moving Ianto right along with him, until they were sitting more or less upright.  Ianto felt his cheeks
heat when Jack caught his chin between his fingers and tipped his face up.  Nervously, he cast his eyes aside to avoid Jack's
searching gaze, his breath catching in his throat as another errant tear dripped along his cheek.

There were no questions, no words at all.  There was only Jack's thumb as it swiped the tear away.  And then there were lips
pressing against his own, talented lips that chased away the ache in his chest.  The tip of a tongue grazed his teeth and Ianto
pulled back, breaking the kiss.  He didn't like being kissed first thing in the morning.  Well, that was only partially true.  Lips
were one thing, he could abide that, but tongues were another matter altogether, and just a touch too much for him so early in
the day.

If Jack was offended, he didn't let it show.  Instead, he moved his lips to the corner of Ianto's mouth.  Another kiss landed on
his cheek, then another and another, following the line of his jaw until Jack's mouth was a breath away from his ear.  "You
okay?" he asked breathlessly.

The words, so soft, made Ianto's breath catch in his throat again.  He thought about lying, about claiming that everything was
fine.  But Jack had seen him crying.  He wouldn't believe that nonsense.

Ianto sniffed, then shook his head.  He kept his eyes down, staring at the folds of blanket that covered their laps.  Not knowing
what to do with his hands, he clenched one in the bedding beside himself and settled his other over the roundness of his
stomach.  "W-Why?" he croaked out eventually.  He looked up briefly, catching sight of confusion on the Captain's face before
he darted his eyes back down to the bed.  He breathed a shaky breath and tried again.  "Why me?  Why are you here, with me?  
I'm not ... I'm nothing special."  He bit his lip and moved his other hand up to his stomach, cupping his palms around the large
dome.  "Is it because of-"

Jack's fingers stilled his lips.  "Don't you dare finish that sentence, Ianto Jones," he said gruffly.  He moved his fingers to Ianto's
chin, tapping at the underside gently.  "Eyes up here."

Blinking, Ianto raised his gaze.  He bit his lip, confused and conflicted.  And none of it felt any better now that he was looking
Jack in the eye.  "But why?  All that you told me.  Just being with me.  Why me?"

Jack raked a hand through his disheveled hair.  "It was too much, wasn't it?  I got caught up in the stories and I didn't think.  I
should have spaced it out more."

"No!" Ianto said, perhaps a bit too quickly.  He'd loved every glittering detail Jack had given him and he wouldn't trade it for the
world.  "I loved hearing it all.  I just ... I'm not sure why you told me.  Am I convenient?  Why not Gwen or Owen or Tosh?  Or
do they already know?"

"They don't know," Jack replied.  "Well, Gwen knows about the immortality.  But I didn't tell her, she just happened to see me
die once."

The way he said it was casual, as if she'd caught him sneaking an extra biscuit out of the tin.  It made Ianto flinch.  "Then am I
just a novelty?  Or a pale shadow of the time you came from?"  He hated the way it made him sound, so whiny and insecure, but
he supposed that was exactly what he was at the moment.  He felt so unsure of his place.  Jack's tales, while wonderful, had left
Ianto feeling so small and insignificant.  What was he other than just a blip in time for the immortal man, just another pebble cast
to the bottom of a vast lake lined with near-identical stones?  Like all the others, he'd make a brief ripple in Jack's life, then sink
to the bottom of his memories, eventually forgotten.

"You think I want you because you're pregnant?" Jack asked.  He didn't give Ianto a chance to reply.  He shook his head.  
"Believe me, if Owen were pregnant I wouldn't be here with him like this."

Ianto couldn't help but snicker at the mental image.  Honestly, Owen?  Pregnant?  "He'd probably rip your balls off."

Jack chuckled.  "Yeah, well, lucky thing you aren't him."  He eased his hands down, sliding them gently along Ianto's body until
he was caressing his belly.  "I want you, because you are Ianto Jones.  Amazingly brilliant, a wicked sense of humor, and
devastatingly handsome.  What's not to appreciate?  You put up with me, even when I make mistakes.  You're strong and brave.  
Not many men could do what you do and still keep it together, and that's not even considering your pregnancy.  You've been put
through the wringer, mentally and physically because of Torchwood One's experiment.  Yet, you still carry on and do what you
need to do.  You take care of me, of all of us.  I trust you."

Ianto wanted to throw his arms around Jack and snog him senseless.  He wanted to declare his love.  He did none of this
though.  He couldn't risk exposing his heart like that, couldn't risk having his feelings trampled on.  Jack hadn't admitted to
loving him, just to wanting him.  Those were two vastly different things.  This infatuation Jack had could wear off at any time,
so why quicken the coming of the heartbreak.

Still, he felt a need to do something.  He put his arms around Jack, but not so dramatically as his earlier inclination wanted him to
do.  Jack's arms went around him in response.  Ianto hummed, pleased, lapping up every shred of affection he could get from
this man.  He leaned in close, pressing as much of himself against Jack as he could, which wasn't quite as easy as it sounded
with a stomach the size of his.  He gave up after a moment of discomfort, in which he heard Jack chuckling softly in
amusement, and turned himself sideways so they could touch more.  "Ha, bloody, ha," he muttered, nuzzling his nose into Jack's

"You're just adorable."

Ianto snorted.  "I'm a whale."

Jack licked his earlobe, then nibbled at it delicately.  "I think you're beautiful," he commented, trailing his hands down, lovingly
caressing Ianto's stretched belly.

"I don't know if I should trust your judgment.  You thought that alien we encountered last month - well you and the team
encountered - was beautiful.  The ones with the broken down ship you lot helped repair.  What did you call them?  Devraxi?"

He could feel Jack smiling against his skin.  "Oh, yeah."

"They had fluorescent yellow skin!"

"Yeah, but they also had two tongues and the most amazing trio of incandescent green eyes."

Ianto pushed him away good-naturedly.  "You're incorrigible."

Jack was laughing as he slid out of bed and picked up Ianto's ring from the bedside table.  He held his hand out to Ianto.  "Come
on, brush your teeth.  I want a proper kiss."

Ianto rolled his eyes.  "Incorrigible," he grumbled, but took Jack's hand and let him help him up, slipping the ring onto his finger
in the same moment.  The tingling sensation of his stomach being hidden away by the ring's filtering effects made him sway
unsteadily until Jack settled his hands at his hips.  He hummed appreciatively and leaned in toward Jack, enjoying the closeness.  
Licking his lips, Ianto let a little smile curl his mouth and nudged his forehead against Jack's.  "I was thinking of coming back to

Jack smiled in return.  "Oh?  When?"

Ianto loosely draped his arms around Jack, trying to appear casual.  Inside, he was nervous, hoping that Jack wouldn't see
through him and know that Ianto hoped that by being in the Hub he'd get to spend more time with him on a daily basis.  If Jack
was going to leave in some indeterminate amount of time, he wanted to spend as much of that time with Jack as he could.  "Hm,

"Did you tell Rhiannon?"

The idea of going back to work honestly hadn't been on his mind for more than a few minutes, so Ianto answered negatively.  
"No, not yet."

Jack hummed thoughtfully.  "Well, why don't you give it one more day?  Let your family get used to the idea of you leaving
instead of springing it on them?"

Of course he was right.  Ianto felt a little ashamed of himself for being selfish.  David, Mica and Rhiannon - and yes, perhaps
even Johnny - deserved more respect than that.  "Oh, yes, right, of course.  I wasn't thinking."  He leaned back away from Jack
a bit and ducked his head, biting lightly at his lip.

Jack lifted a hand and ran his fingers across Ianto's scalp.  "I think you've been thinking a little too much, actually."  That hand
slid down the back of his head, then settled to cradle the nape of his neck.  "I'm not going anywhere."

Ianto swallowed around the lump in his throat.  He shook his head, embarrassed about being seen through so easily.  He shifted
closer, leaning in and resting his head against Jack's shoulder.  "Yes, you are," he murmured, failing to stop a shiver from
wracking his frame.

Strong hands held him against the solid body of his lover, fingers pressing and sliding up and down along his spine in a gentle
touch meant to soothe.  Ianto soaked it in, cataloging every caress, every sound, the smell of him, the feel of him, locking
everything away in his mind for when Jack was gone, for when he would be alone one more time.  He should have known better
than to get attached.  He always ended up alone in the end.

When Jack let out a lengthy sigh, Ianto realized what a fool he was being.  He was behaving selfishly again, thinking only of
himself.  He would push Jack away all the sooner if he kept this up.

He pulled himself away from Jack, struggling to smile.  It was difficult, painful even, but he thought he managed it well enough.  
"I'm sorry," he croaked and wiped a hand over his eyes, dismayed to find them wet again.  "You're here now, that's what
matters.  We can worry about tomorrow later."

Jack didn't look convinced.  He raised a hand and cupped Ianto's cheek, smoothing his thumb through the dampness on his
skin.  "I need answers only the Doctor can give me.  When I have those answers, I'll come back.  I have every reason to, now
that I have something worth coming back for."

The implication was enough to make Ianto's breath stutter to a halt.  He still didn't think he was worthy of the dashing Captain's
attention and here Jack was telling Ianto just that, that he was good enough, that he was special enough to Jack for the man to
give up the chance to gallivant across time and space just to come back to Cardiff for him.  For him.  Ianto desperately wanted
to believe it was out of love, but he couldn't let himself.  The pain of finding out it wasn't true would crush him and he simply
couldn't risk it.  But he could at least believe that it was out of some sort of affection that Jack had for him.  Love would be
wondrous, but it was dangerous to hope for.  He could survive on affection alone.

Jack drew away from him to pull on his trousers and undershirt.  Ianto raised an eyebrow.  "No underwear, Captain?" Ianto
intoned dryly.

A dashing grin was his reply as Jack grabbed his dressing gown and helped Ianto into it.  "Well, I won't lie and say I wasn't
hoping for something a little more substantial than a kiss."

While the other man was busy tying the sash, Ianto tucked his fingers into Jack's belt loops and tugged him forward, bringing
their bodies flush together again.  He shivered at the delightful feel of Jack's burgeoning arousal against his hip, his own pressing
into the firm line of Jack's thigh.  He rocked forward a little, just enough to send a frisson of electricity up his spine, his ardor
further inflamed by the blatant moan that dripped like honey from Jack's full lips.  It was almost enough to make Ianto want to
hump him right there.  Almost.  Not quite.  He wasn't so far gone that he forgot this was his sister's house; his sister's
bedroom.  But that didn't mean he couldn't play a little.

Giving into indulgence, Ianto moved in closer still.  Bypassing the man's lips, he gave a nipping bite to Jack's chin, following it
with a soothing lick.  He trailed similar bites and tender kisses up along his strong jaw until he found an irresistible earlobe to toy
with.  Then, grinning, he paused to whisper, "Last one to the bathroom gets down on his knees first."  With that, he nudged past
Jack and went to the door.

He was halfway out of the bedroom when a hand slapped against his rump.  He swallowed back a yelp and smiled, moving at a
pace that wasn't quite as fast as he could actually manage.  Winning wasn't everything.  Jack was chuckling behind him,
behaving himself for the most part in case young eyes were wandering the halls at this early hour.  But his hands did wander,
stroking fire along Ianto's thighs and hips, nudging him forward with bumps of his pelvis against Ianto's backside.  Teasing
caresses and torturous promises whispered against his ear.  Oh yes, Jack's affectionate scraps were a veritable feast to Ianto.  If
that was all he could get, it would have to be enough.

To Be Continued ...