mtxref_fic: (Torchwood)
[personal profile] mtxref_fic
Author's Note: Written for [community profile] fic_promptly's Author's choice, author's choice, meet the folks Featuring Jack Harkness, Ianto Jones and Jack's family of origin. Related to "Never Doing That Again".


"Are you sure this is a bright idea?" Ianto said, as Jack stood in their living room, Verrity strapped to his back as he keyed his time vortex manipulator.

"As long as you don't make any references to Torchwood or the Time Agency, we should be good," Jack said. "These folk were born before the Time Agency got started.

"And contaminating them with certain ideas might cause a paradox," Ianto said, putting a hand on Jack's arm. "I guess I can't mention Verrity's ...related to them, either."

"You're a quicker learn than some of the people I trained with when I first joined the Agency," Jack said, grinning at him, then pressing the last button. Everything went bright before it all lurched sideways.

When the world cleared around them, the three of them stood on a dune overlooking a beach, people clad in tan garments sitting on colorful blankets under shelters covered in sheaves of grass. In the distance loomed up a blocky futuristic-looking building, though it dawned on Ianto that one person's futuristic look was another person's contemporary look.

Verrity whimpered in her carrier, but Jack reached back to adjust her and rub her hands gently. "It's all right, fussy, that's what happens when you travel in time," he soothed. "Come on, let's take your other dad to meet your grandfather."

They set off down the slope, approaching the crowd gathered on the shore. "So what is this?" Ianto asked.

"Water harvest: second greatest date on the Boeshane Calender, next to First Snows Day," Jack explained, as they passed through the crowd, past several booths with food and drink, slipping past some young folk dancing barefoot on the sand to the strange skirling of some very high-pitched flutes.

"Water harvest?" Ianto asked, raising an eyebrow.

"It's a dry planet with two supercontinents: water's as precious to the economy as silicon or grain," Jack replied.

"Mmm?" Verrity asked.

"Oh yes, helping man the water harvesters and fishing, that's what I had to do when I was a little Jack," he said, replied to her burble.

"Sounds like a busy life," Ianto said.

As they wove through the crowd, a few of the locals eyed them curiously, some spoke among themselves in a liquid language that sounded almost like Welsh, only a bit slurred and the grammatics seemed fumbled. Some giggled and a few of the children pointed at the newcomers, to have their hands whapped by elders chiding them.

"Is that Welsh they're speaking?" Ianto whispered to Jack.

"It's similar, but not quite the same," Jack replied, leading Ianto into the thick of the festivities, among the low tables laden with plates of food and arrangements of greenery and grasses, past the knots of family groups and people cooking over small campfires and peculiar looking cook stoves. One tall, sandy-haired man accompanied by a blonde woman caught Jack's eye, smiling and speaking a greeting, which Jack returned.

"Your dad?" Ianto asked Jack, noting their eye color and jaw lines. Then he noticed the bundle strapped to the sandy-haired man's back, blue eyes peering over his shoulder.

Verrity emitted a gurgle. "Yes indeed, and take a look at those baby blues on the little guy," Jack said.

Ianto looked back and forth between the infant and the father of his own infant. "Is that...?"

"We'll talk about this later, say any more and folk will get suspicious," Jack warned.

"I've got a feeling I'm the alien here," Ianto said, dryly.

Jack acted as interpreter, keeping the line of communication open, answering Ianto's indirect questions. Though Ianto got the gist of the conversation through gestures and body language; thirty thousand more years of history and evolution, and in some ways, humans had remained the same: they had families, albeit in a different configuration, they bickered and teased and joked among each other.

And they had hospitality: the sandy-haired man approached Ianto with a smile and held a dish of food to him, what looked like stew made with vegetables and shellfish.

"Thank you," Ianto said, realizing he'd just spoken in English.

"You well come," the sandy-haired man said.

Jack watched this exchange and said something to the sandy-haired man, who replied, happy tears in his blue eyes.

"Something I said?" Ianto said.

"My dad just said he's blessing the relationship," Jack said. "That and the food, it's a local custom: he's accepting your request to marry me."

"Guess I'll have to learn the local language," Ianto said. "And we won't have to worry about in-law problems."
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