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ArWen the Eternally Surprised
Author: Ria Time: 2007/11/22
Arwen encounters a strange monk and gains a little extra time.
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The Clash of Worlds: The Fellowship of Necessity
Submitter: Date: 2011/10/30 Views: 542
Chapter 1

It was dark again sixty five years later, although much longer for him, when he stood under the arch of the Welsh National War Memorial in Cathays Park. A cool breeze drifted through his hair again, but although it was colder than that one had been, his heavy coat kept him from feeling it this time. He wasn't alone, either, although his companion hadn't said anything since his discrete arrival through the dusk, just waited in silence until he was needed. It was one of the things that Jack l...

"I was in the Black Forest when peace was declared," he announced to cover his thoughts, voice ringing around the memorial. "I'd been there just over a month, sheltering in the Wutach Gorge."

Ianto saw it for the invitation it was and came to stand beside him, head tilted back to look at the stars, haloed by the plinth above them. "Was there much fighting there?" he asked softly, the back of his hand brushing against the cuff of Jack's sleeve in an offer of comfort.

He brushed his fingers against Ianto's and shook his head. "None. The mountains kept everyone out. Sometimes, a lot of the time really, it was easy to forget that there was a war being fought at all. It was so serene."

"Why were you there?"

A shrug somehow laced his fingers into Ianto's. "Because they sent me there. I was to scout out the land, find the best route through into the heart of Germany. I kinda feel like they forgot about me."

Ianto chuckled and tightened his grip on Jack's fingers. "What was it like there, were you alone?"

"Yeah," he turned and tugged Ianto with him and they walked down the avenue towards the grass. He sat down and pulled Ianto down with him and they lay side by side on the grass, their fingers laced together and anchoring him. Trees above them and stars beyond. "It was like heaven," he sighed to the sky. "I went through hell to get there and found heaven. Oh I wish I could show you," he chuckled. "It was spring, and the river was icy cold with snow melt from the mountains, and the flowers were coming into bloom. I slept in the shelter of a huge willow tree, so big that it kept me dry when it rained. I'd not see another soul for weeks, but I saw wild deer and caught fish from the river. If heaven is a place on Earth, it's there. The most exciting thing to happen was this box... I haven't thought about it in years, it fell the first night I was there." He frowned and searched through his memory. "It was so long ago... I never found out what it was, but I brought it back with me and it was stored in the archives. I think it was in London..."

Ianto propped himself up on one elbow and supported himself with his other hand on Jack's chest. "We could have a look," he suggested. "See if it survived, and if they ever found out what it was."

"Yeah, I probably should," he agreed with a sigh. "Come back down here and stop thinking about work."

Ianto smiled as he obeyed and rested his head on Jack's chest.

Ianto dried his hands off and emerged from the kitchen, nearly bumping into Jack in the hall. "Jack, have you..." a familiar grinding noise filled the flat and his hands clenched in the towel. "Oh shit."

"It might not be that bad..." he suggested, shifting Ianto aside so that he could get into the living room to see the TARDIS materialise. "Maybe he's just come to say 'hello' and offer us a cup of tea."

Ianto leaned into him and his sigh made his back shudder against Jack's chest. "Don't be gone too long," he told him, forcing cheer into his voice. "And don't... mmph."

He curled one hand around the back of Jack's neck and sighed against his lips, sagging into Jack's arms. Jack's arms were tight around him and didn't loosen as the doors opened and they gained an audience, even as their lips parted and Jack turned to look at him and Ianto's forehead pressed against his shoulder. "Doctor."

The visitor sat down on the sofa and leaned forwards to look at them, standing in the doorway. "Jack, Ianto."

"Do you need me?" Jack asked softly, loosening his grip on Ianto. He hated himself for it, but if the Doctor needed him it would be because it was a situation where only a fixed point could survive, and he just couldn't take Ianto into that.

The Doctor sniffed and tilted his head to look at them, but, of course, didn't answer the question. "Sixty five years ago, Jack."

"Not for me," he pointed out.

"War is coming, Jack. War is coming because sixty five years ago, they lost something they need to conquer this planet and this galaxy. You know what I'm talking about, don't you Jack?"

"The box..." he straightened up and slipped his arm lower around Ianto's waist. "It was lost, it was in the archives at Canary Wharf."

"No it wasn't, Jack. It's under your nose in Cardiff."

Jack swallowed and looked at Ianto. "What do we do?"

"Don't tell anyone it's here," he instructed, jumping to his feet. "Keep it secret, and keep it safe. Find it, though. And wait for my call. I'm going back to UNIT."

"Wait," Ianto called. "Shouldn't we destroy it?"

"No, not yet. It's the only thing that can destroy them, as well as the only thing that can destroy you," he called over his shoulder. "Just keep it safe."

"Was that enigmatic, or just annoying?" Ianto asked with a sigh. "I have a really bad feeling about this."

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