sam_storyteller: (Default)
sam_storyteller ([personal profile] sam_storyteller) wrote2005-07-18 10:35 am
Entry tags:

Lambert & Butler; Torchwood, PG.

Title: Lambert & Butler
Rating: PG
Summary: Well, when coffee, alcohol, and sex fail us...
Pairing: Strictly speaking, gen Owen and Ianto; Jack/Ianto implied.
Notes: Spoilers for everything up through 2.08, A Day In The Death. This was in my head, but probably would never have been written down if not for this macro popping up in [ profile] ihazastopwatch today. I mean, come on. That's some kind of sign.
Warnings: None.

Originally Posted 2.29.08

Also available at AO3.


After Owen spent three days sulking about being dead -- which was comfortably mythic for a good Anglican choirboy from Wales -- Ianto decided that this was simply not on anymore.

For one, he was not entirely alongside usurping Owen's position on the team. For another, Owen was likely to take out his frustrations on his erstwhile replacement. Rubbing Owen's nose in his past abuses was all well and good, but Jack took it too far when he made Owen make the coffee. It punished everyone, after all. Someone had to have some mercy on him, and since kindness hadn't worked, he might as well try being unorthodox.

So, monitoring Owen on the CCTV feed that went to his Information Centre computer, he took action.

Ianto: Owen.
Owen: What
Ianto: May I speak with you?
Owen: No
Ianto: Alone?
Owen: No
Ianto: I need to speak with you.
Owen: NO. 

Owen stepped back from the computer and wandered across the medical bay, but this was expected.

Ianto: I have something to show you.

He took out the stopwatch -- ever at the ready -- and clicked the button. It took Owen six forty-two by the watch to come back to the computer. If there was one thing you could depend on, it was Owen to be an arsehole but succumb to curiousity in the end.

Owen: Is this going to be kinky? Because it's going to be very disappointing for you if it was.
Ianto: No! What is wrong with you?
Owen: Just asking.

Ianto took a deep breath. He would not bring up the Tintin Incident.

Ianto: Come up. Take the scenic route. It won't take long. Ten minutes, tops.
Owen: You and tops. 
Owen: Why should I?
Ianto: Because if you don't, you'll always wonder.
Owen: Bullshit
Ianto: Don't come up, then. 

He reset the stopwatch and started it again. This time Owen didn't bother responding, but it only took him three minutes five seconds to make up his mind. When Ianto saw him step onto the stone in the centre of the Hub, he hung the closed sign on the outside door of the Information Centre and walked across the Plass, waiting hands-in-pockets for the faint scrape of pavement which was all that made it through the perception filter. Owen stepped into existence, expectant, annoyed.

"Funny thing," Ianto said casually. "If a person were to, say, kick that CCTV pole gently, the camera might swing slightly. Hardly noticeable. Just enough to create a blind space around the perception filter."

Owen looked almost...nervous now. Ianto smiled his best disarming smile and took a small box out of his pocket, tossing it the five or six feet between them. Owen caught it automatically, studying it, perplexed.

"Lambert and Butler brand," Ianto said. "Seemed appropriate."

"What the hell am I supposed to do with these?" Owen asked.

"Well, when coffee, alcohol, and sex fails us..." Ianto said, seating himself on the stone and taking out a small silver lighter. It was quite plain; Lisa had always meant to get it monogrammed for him.

"I can't breathe, you great prick," Owen said, dropping the cigarettes in his lap. Ianto tore the cellophane off the top and popped it open, removing the foil and taking one out. He tapped it on the pack, almost thoughtfully, and far more expertly than Owen probably expected. Owen, shaking his head, sat down next to him.

"Do you need a doctor to tell you that's going to kill you?" he asked.

"Not this individual cigarette," he said, putting it between his lips. He took out a second, tapped it, and added it next to the first. "You might not be breathing, but you can talk, which suggests you can at least move the air around."

"I'm going inside -- "

"Door's locked, and I'm sitting on your other entry. Besides, either you take it," he said, lighting both and suppressing the cough that followed, "or I sit here and smoke them." He took one out of his mouth and smiled, offering it filter-first to Owen. "Twice as bad for me; not like it's going to kill you."

"Is this supposed to prove something?" Owen asked, propping the cigarette between his lips.

"Not precisely." Ianto inhaled, exhaled, tapped the filter and watched a fleck of ash go flying. "I quit two months before Canary Wharf."

"You're smoking. You haven't quit."

"I'm doing a friend a favour."

"Oh, spare me."

Ianto shrugged. "Pay a little attention. Use some of that focus. Inhale."

Owen cautiously tensed the muscles in his throat. The tip of the cigarette flared. He looked at Ianto and there was a bare moment of panic in his eyes. Ianto put his hand out and tapped Owen's ribcage firmly. The smoke came out in a huff, and he barely saved the cigarette from falling.

"It's not going to hurt your lungs, because they're not absorbing anything," Ianto continued. "And if you can control your autonomic responses, eventually you might be able to digest things. And even if you can't -- at least it's five minutes spent away from the Hub. Something to do with your hands."

"Someone ought to tell you," Owen said, grinning. "Smoking Kills."

Ianto snorted. "We ought to get a motto like that. Torchwood Kills. But you might have fun anyway."

He was gratified when Owen laughed. The other man rested his forehead against the heel of his hand, elbow propped on his knees, cigarette dangling.

"It's so completely unfair," he said, after a while.

"What's that?" Ianto asked, feeling the head-swimming sensation that the first cigarette of the day used to give him.

"I'm dead. And the only pleasure I have left is a smoke." Owen tapped the filter with his finger. "The one sin I never indulged in...before."

Ianto nodded contemplatively. "Irony gets us all in the end."

"If I catch you smoking again, mind, I'll do their job for them."

"No fear. Pack's yours," Ianto said, tipping it into Owen's lap. He held out the lighter.

"That's not cheap," Owen said, looking at him.

"No. It's not. But I haven't much use for it anymore."

Owen lifted it out of his fingers cautiously. "Cheers, Ianto."

"Mmh." Ianto took one last brilliant drag and regretfully stubbed it out on the pavement, carefully tossing it into the trash bin nearby. "Make sure you air out a bit before you go back down to the Hub. God knows what Jack would say."

Owen put his cigarette out and stood up, tucking the pack into a back pocket. Ianto looked pointedly at the butt lying on the pavement.

Owen rolled his eyes, picked it up, and tossed it in the bin. Ianto nodded approvingly and walked back towards the narrow stairs leading down to the Information Centre's door, leaving Owen standing on the Plass, looking contemplatively at the lighter in his hand.

Jack: What are you and Owen doing up there? I couldn't find either of you on the CCTV.
Ianto: I think it's been misaligned, sir. I'll call the city about fixing it. 
Jack: Then it'll never get fixed.
Ianto: I'm sure they'll get round to it sooner or later.
Jack: Is Owen up there with you?
Ianto: He's having a bit of a meditation outside.
Jack: And what is he meditating on?
Ianto: Jealous, sir?
Jack: Ianto.

[Ianto is typing]

Jack: Ianto!
Ianto: The mystic secrets of tea-boys are not for the eyes of outsiders, Captain. I'd leave him be if I were you.
Jack: These mystic secrets. Do they involve tongues or inappropriate hands?
Ianto: Perish the thought. Let him alone, Jack.

[Jack is typing]

[Ianto has left the conversation.]

Jack: Mystic secrets of tea-boys, my sculpted ass.


[identity profile] 2008-03-01 03:42 am (UTC)(link)
The mystic secrets of tea-boys are not for the eyes of outsiders, Captain. That needs to be on an icon.

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 04:40 am (UTC)(link)
LOL. I almost titled it "The Mystic Secrets of Tea Boys" but it sounds so dirty, somehow...

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 05:25 am (UTC)(link)
indeed it does *puts it on one*
...Captain wouldn't fit
Edited 2008-03-01 05:26 (UTC)

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 07:33 am (UTC)(link)
That's awesome-- is it gankable?

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 07:35 am (UTC)(link)
It is supremely gankable

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 02:16 pm (UTC)(link)
Brilliant! :D I love it.

Could I request this same icon without the bottom text, so that it's just "The mystic secrets of teaboys"? I don't have a "Torchwood" icon for the fic journal and that would make a really nice one.

Entirely at your discretion, of course :)

[identity profile] 2008-03-02 05:58 pm (UTC)(link)
Bless! I'm off to upload this and then post two new fics :D Thank you!

[identity profile] 2008-03-03 11:28 pm (UTC)(link)
I just had to swipe that! will credit. Is there a sculpted ass one too? ;))

[identity profile] 2008-03-12 08:37 pm (UTC)(link)
I snitched it too, will credit of course. :)

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 03:52 am (UTC)(link)
Love the Ianto and Owen bonding~ Jack at the end was perfect too!

Great fic, really nicely done!

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 04:01 am (UTC)(link)
Oh I like :)
Especially the mystic secrets of teaboys.

I maintain that Owen MUST be able to breathe, or he wouldn't be able to talk. And he does plenty of that.

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 04:39 am (UTC)(link)
There's been some discussion of it...*rummages*


Interesting stuff...

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 06:17 am (UTC)(link)
I'm really not sure at this point how I wound up here - I'm desperately trying to avoid all the work I have to do this weekend, so my online peregrinations have become rather more erratic. And I don't generally read fanfiction, so I'm not sure what prompted me to do so this time. I am very glad that I _did_ wind up here and that I _did_ bother to read the fic, though, as it was quite thoughtful and entertaining.

Thanks for the lovely story and the distraction ^_^

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 02:09 pm (UTC)(link)
LOL! I don't read fanfic much either, so I definitely take your compliment in the spirit it was given :) Hope your work isn't too hard -- breaks are good!

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 06:22 am (UTC)(link)
Aww, how sweet of Ianto, still taking care of his teammate. I'm really glad you got into the fandom, you've got a great voice for it.

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 02:08 pm (UTC)(link)
Thanks! It's a fun fandom, and while I know a lot of it is simply me self-identifying again (Mulder when I was a Misunderstood Adolescent, Lupin when I was a teacher, Ianto now that I'm an assistant) it's still a kick to explore the characters.

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 07:15 am (UTC)(link)
Ianto's logic is so spot on, and it's lovely that he's looking out for the other members of the team (and making Jack jealous while doing it is always a bonus).

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 02:07 pm (UTC)(link)
Ianto is definitely getting possessive sex after that day. (But only after he showers and brushes his teeth :D)

Fic: Lambert & Butler

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 12:10 pm (UTC)(link)
Owen and Ianto's relationship is (or can be) really interesting and it certainly is here. What they have in common and don't have in common. I really liked that Ianto could get Owen to laugh.

[identity profile] 2008-03-01 04:23 pm (UTC)(link)
"Sculpted ass" is SO Jack. It really is.

[identity profile] 2008-03-03 06:26 pm (UTC)(link)
Not to put too fine a point on it. *ducks*
snakeling: Statue of the Minoan Snake Goddess (Default)

[personal profile] snakeling 2008-03-02 10:41 pm (UTC)(link)
Ooh, I liked the glimpse into a friendship between those two. Especially how well Ianto knows and plays Owen :D

[identity profile] 2008-03-06 05:11 pm (UTC)(link)
I dislike smoking intensely, so I'm slightly worried by the fact that Ianto smoking is oddly appealing. Maybe it's just that it's a relief to see that he does have bad habits (other than Jack).

[identity profile] 2008-03-07 12:35 pm (UTC)(link)
Well, and it's just the one. Good Ianto for quitting *pats him* :D

Your sentiment was echoed by nearly everyone who saw this macro, which was part of the inspiration to put this story on paper.

[identity profile] 2008-03-07 12:45 pm (UTC)(link)
Yeah, I saw the macro.

Silly boy for smoking.

[identity profile] 2008-06-25 11:48 pm (UTC)(link)
Apparently Gareth David Lloyd is the utter opposite of Ianto...

I read in an interview with him that people almost shoo him outside of the hotels, because he's a scruff bucket...

[identity profile] 2008-06-26 08:33 am (UTC)(link)
He tends to look a little scruffy in his civvies when interviewed for Declassified.

[identity profile] 2008-10-15 03:58 am (UTC)(link)
mmm... a sexy scruff bucket with a fantastic accent and sings in a band *melts* :D

[identity profile] 2008-10-15 10:53 pm (UTC)(link)
oooh most definately :)
ext_3467: a path from the forground to the background, through a yellow and green field (Default)

[identity profile] 2008-03-08 05:55 am (UTC)(link)
I really liked this.

[identity profile] 2008-03-08 01:16 pm (UTC)(link)
*giggle* I love this. Never commented on your lolcat fic, which is very bad of me, but I have to plead illness and delirious amusement as the reason.

Also, a mutual friend in the form of [ profile] essayel gets all gleeful when I mention I've read your fics. ;)

[identity profile] 2008-03-08 01:19 pm (UTC)(link)
*laughs* I'm glad you enjoyed it! [ profile] essayel is indeed a good mutual friend. :)

[identity profile] 2008-03-09 04:17 pm (UTC)(link)
Oh, lovely!

Even though I haven't watched the bloody ep yet, stupid BBCA getting three weeks behind!

[identity profile] 2008-03-09 08:11 pm (UTC)(link)
'Sculpted ass' LMAO
ext_17079: ([ianto] first thing comes into your head)

[identity profile] 2008-03-11 01:18 am (UTC)(link)
I can't help but grin at this.

[identity profile] 2008-03-17 02:52 pm (UTC)(link)
This is just so terribly Ianto, it makes me laugh. Of course Ianto would be the one to realize that there's something hinky about an Owen who can talk but can't give CPR. ;)

Nicely done, and the exchange with Jack at the end is spot-on.

[identity profile] 2008-03-21 07:53 pm (UTC)(link)
LOL. I almost titled it "The Mystic Secrets of Tea Boys" but it sounds so dirty, somehow... LOLOLOL! That sentence, is absolute genius. XD Hell, YOU'RE an absolute genius.XD

[identity profile] 2008-04-14 04:05 pm (UTC)(link)
Oh this was funny. Made me laugh!

[identity profile] (from 2008-05-17 04:24 am (UTC)(link)
I enjoyed reading this.

[identity profile] 2008-08-05 01:10 am (UTC)(link)
I really liked this, especially your Owen :)

(got here via [ profile] torchwood_house and am now wandering around in awe of the fic)

[identity profile] 2008-08-05 12:50 pm (UTC)(link)
Thanks! Glad you liked it, I hope you enjoy the rest :)

[identity profile] 2008-08-06 09:56 pm (UTC)(link)
How did I miss this? I thought I'd read everything!

This: "Ianto took one last brilliant drag and regretfully stubbed it out on the pavement..." makes me miss smoking. Man.

Nice work as ever.

[identity profile] 2008-08-06 10:06 pm (UTC)(link)
Mystic secrets of tea-boys, my sculpted ass.


I really loved this!

[identity profile] 2008-08-06 11:52 pm (UTC)(link)
This is such beautiful Ianto and Owen interaction. and Jack's bit at the end is perfect. It's going right into my memories 'cause it makes me happy. :-)


[identity profile] 2008-11-16 08:29 am (UTC)(link)
How did I miss this one?? I thought I have read all your fics... Although I am certainly not complaining :-)

I really like this one, it is a good pick-me-up :-)

Heehee. sorry I am doing a girlie moment at 'my sculpted ass'

[identity profile] 2008-12-07 10:04 pm (UTC)(link)
Other than The mystic secrets of tea-boys which is, like others have said, made of win, I heart this line:

Ianto snorted. "We ought to get a motto like that. Torchwood Kills. But you might have fun anyway."

You must get sick of people praising your characterisation, but I can't help mentioning how vividly I could picture the scene and the hear the voices of these two men. You are especially good at writing Ianto because you are able to balance his apparent self-confidence and his underlying vulnerability.

Now I really want a cigarette!

[identity profile] 2008-12-07 10:11 pm (UTC)(link)
*grins* glad you liked it.

Wanted to check -- are you aware you're posting each comment two or three times?

[identity profile] 2008-12-08 04:30 am (UTC)(link)
Oops, sorry, the computer I'm using tonight is rubbish. It doesn't always acknowledge that I've posted a comment so I have to do it again, and again...