Title: Just because it is doesn't mean it should be
Warning! - Major character death
Spoilers: Pretty big spoilers for Day 4 of Children of Earth
Notes: Day 4, I'm not going to lie, made me cry like a baby... I've read fics before that have made Jack out to sound like a bit of a bastard and scene re-writes where Jack actually says 'I love you' out loud, I don't like that. Here's my take on what was going on in Jack's head.
"I love you"
Don't leave me, don't go, don't give up, don't speak, save your breath, please, please don't leave me. I want to tell you. I want to tell you how much you mean to me, how much I need you but I can't. I can't tell you how much I want you, how much I've always wanted you, since the day you barged into my life.
You can't go, you can't. What will I do if you're not there? Not there to make my coffee, to bring my coat, to watch sleep.
You're so warm in the mornings, waking up with my arms wrapped around you, you're so perfect, so peaceful. In those moments you're mine, just mine. And now I can't bear loosing you, your warmth.
I want to tell you, I want you to know that you're everything.
But I don't want to tell you like this. I want to tell you in your flat, in your bed, under the covers, just us, wrapped in the duvet protected from the world.
I want to tell you that I love your coffee, I love your suits, I love your smile, I love the mischief in your eyes, I love your determination, I love your passion, I love your accent, I love...
I love you Ianto Jones.
I love you.
But I can't tell you. I won't tell you. Not like this. Not now, because I can't give up on you. I can't let go. I won't. Because you're always there when I wake from death, holding me. You give me something to come back for.
Please, give me something to come back for, so I can tell you, please.
"Don't forget me"
I open the front door and the rooms are silent, no lights are on but the morning sunlight is creeping through the gaps in the curtains. I remember to take my boots off at the door, no matter how cute he is when he's angry I really don't want a boot thrown in my face again.
I stalk through the living room, peer into the kitchen, I have a pretty good idea where he is and I can't smell coffee so he hasn't gotten up yet.
I throw open the bedroom door, there's a Ianto shaped lump under the thick white duvet and I can't help myself.
"Ianto!" I call in my loudest, most authoritative voice, he barely even flinches though. He rolls over, head just poking out over the covers and suddenly he looks very small and vulnerable.
"Sir" he says, muffled by the surrounding material "I'm sorry but I'm not getting up"
Suddenly I feel a pang of worry, what if he's ill?
I perch on the side of the bed and brush the hair from his eyes "Ianto, are you alright?"
He mumbles something incoherent but I make out the word 'comfy' before he rolls over with his back to me again.
Ianto seems pretty set on not moving so I work on removing my clothes before sliding into the bed next to him. I feel the muscles in his back shudder involuntarily as I mould myself to his form. I wrap one arm around him, holding him close, sharing his warmth.
For a while we lay together, I rest my head on his shoulder, placing butterfly kisses wherever I feel the need to.
Eventually he turns to face me, our noses just touch. He smiles, that's when I know, I know I have to tell him.
"Ianto" He nuzzles his face into my neck breathing out a relaxed 'mmhmm' which makes me shiver. "I love you"
It's almost unintelligible, so quiet I struggle to hear myself say it. He tenses in my arms and for a split second I regret those words.
"I love you too"
My sigh is shaky with relief.
His hand is on my chest, over my heart, he pushes back and looks into my eyes and I know. I know this is exactly where I want to be.
"I love your coffee, I love your suits, I love your smile, I love the mischief in your eyes, I love your determination, I love your passion, I love your accent..." I punctuate each statement with a kiss to whatever skin I come into contact with.
"I love your flaws, I love the way you call me 'Sir', I love your wit, I love that damned stopwatch" He laughs, nipping at my chin. I kiss him, it's chaste and perfect.
"I love your laugh"
He rolls us so his head rest squarely on my chest, he looks up at me and I can think of a million other things I love about the man.
"I love you, Jones, Ianto Jones"
He grabs the edge of the duvet and drags it over both our heads; we're cocooned in a soft warm heaven, just us, protected from the world.
"Don't forget me" he says quietly, almost to himself. I squeeze him tighter to my chest with one arm and card my fingers though his hair with the other.
"In a thousand years time, you won't remember me" He sighs, he sounds defeated, it breaks my heart to hear.
"Yes I will. I promise. I will"
I kiss the top of his head, knowing he doesn't believe me. But I will, in a thousand years, ten thousand, a million; I will never forget my Ianto. Never.
It's raining and cold but he doesn't care. Nothing matters, not without him. He shouldn't have gone with him to Thames House, he couldn't save him. He died with the man he loved only to wake up again, empty.
"I love you" Ianto had said but Jack couldn't, saying it back would mean giving up; he wasn't ready to give the Welshman up.
The moment replayed in his head, killing him a little more each time he remembered. Tears followed the tracks of the previous tears down his cheeks, mixing with the rain.
He knelt by the grave 'Ianto Jones 19th August 1983 – 9th July 2009'
He trailed a hand down the stone, traced the letters of his name.
"I love you too"