Title: Anything Can Happen

Author: tarotgal

Fandom: Torchwood

Rating: PG-13

Pairing: Jack/Ianto

Summary: An early morning alert forces Jack and Ianto into a bad situation

Bunnies: 87 & 90

Notes: I wanted to write *something* for round 2 and this slipped out in a few hours. It's rough but fun & light.



                The alarm had gone off at precisely 05:28 hours. As Jack and Ianto were the only two in the hub at that time of morning, they were the two to respond as dawn broke over Cardiff. They drove at top speeds to an abandoned, marshy area on the outskirts. When a rift in space and time ran through a town, anything could happen.


                That morning, anything took the form of a large plant. The shiny, green leaves were the size of car tires. The stalk was as thick as a human arm. And bright yellow stamens protruded from the dark red petals, almost as big and tall as a man. As Jack and Ianto approached it, the flowering plant slowly turned towards them. That alone made the men stop short. Perhaps the plant could feel the vibrations their footsteps made on the ground. Or perhaps it was drawn to their body heat. Whatever the reason, it was terribly unsettling.


                But when the plant began to tremble, the men knew they were in trouble. As an ultra-fine mist of dust was released into the air, Jack's eyes widened in recognition. “Run!” he shouted, turning, rushing, shoving Ianto, almost tripping over Ianto in his haste. “Back to the SUV!”


                The two men ran through the marsh as fast as it was possible to run, not sure it would be fast enough. The vegetation around them was dense and the ground was dangerously soft. The car was only twenty meters away. Then fifteen. Twelve. Ten. Still so far away.


                With only seven meters to go, one of Ianto's fine, black, patent leather shoes sunk into the cushy, swampy ground and stuck there. He lurched forward, unable to take the step as planned. But Jack had a tight hold on Ianto's arm and pulled him forward. Ianto shuddered as his foot came free and his sock touched the muddy ground instead, but he was ultimately glad to keep going.


                They reached the SUV and dived inside, slamming the doors closed after them. Jack locked the doors, as if that would help. His breath was racing and there was a slight stitch in his side. He turned to Ianto, whose breath was ragged and whose cheeks were bright red. “Do you think we made it in time?” Jack asked. He coughed and unconsciously rubbed his nose.


                Ianto shook his head as his eyes closed. His nose twitched and a split second later, a heavy sneeze tossed him forward as his nose tried to expel particulates. “HIHTChooo!


                “Oh, Ianto. Bless you.” Jack rubbed his own nose again, then dug Ianto's handkerchief from the man's breast pocket. The bright blue pocket square was supposed to be only for show, but Jack knew Ianto wouldn't mind in the end. He cupped it to Ianto's countenance quickly.


                Ianto sniffed and took another deep breath. “Sniff! Hehh… hehh'kshooo!


                “Bless you. This is bad.” Jack wiped Ianto's nose, unfolded the hanky and folded it the other way before holding it in front of his own face. He bounced once in his seat as the sneezes took hold of him, dropping his mouth open and forcing a deep, involuntary breath. “ihhhhhhhh-YIHShhh! Ihshhh-uhh!


                Sniffling more, Ianto cracked a smile. “Bless you, Sir.” He reached over and stroked the back of Jack's hand. “I guess those flowers are definitely in their pollin… pol… poll-heh-hehh-Shooo! Sniff! Pollination stage, wouldn't you say?”


                Jack nodded in agreement. “I don't want anyone else to breathe that stuff in. It's bad enough you and I… ihh-IHHShuhh!” He rubbed his nose into the hanky. “Ugh. I can't think when I'm sneezing like this. We should get out of here.”


                “We should,” Ianto said. “But I don't… I… hehShoo! Sniffle, I don't think we should drive in this condition.”


                Jack seemed to carefully consider this. He put his foot on the brake and stuck the keys in the ignition. But as he tried to turn the keys to start the car, he sneezed freely towards the dashboard. “ihhhh-HihShhhhh!” He tried to catch his breath, but failed. “ihh-Chishhh! hehShehhh! Ihhhh-hihh-ihhhShhhhhh!” The short, forceful, urgent sneezes were impossible to fight.


                “You can't drive anywhere,” Ianto stated the obvious. “Besides, we can't leave the scene. What if someone stumbles upon this place by chance?”


                “Then he's in for… for a… a sur…” Jack's eyes were wet, his nostrils flaring, his jaw dropping. “I-ahhh… I c-can't… I think I have t-to…”


                Taking the initiative, Ianto leaned over and kissed Jack. Their equally ticklish noses bumped and they held their breaths. The urge to sneeze died down for the moment, and Jack instinctively cupped Ianto's face to keep him there longer. When they broke away, Jack looked disappointed but not quite as sneezey.


                With a smile, Ianto took off his shoe, stripped off both socks, and loosened his tie. He grabbed Jack's arm and pulled the man into the back of the SUV. “As long as we're trapped here… sniff! Sniff! We might as well make the most of it.” Ianto lay back across the row of seats and loosened his tie. “As long as you don't mind if I sneeze.”


                Once Jack had settled in place, straddling Ianto's legs, he sniffled and grinned. “As long as you don't mind that I really don't mind…” Jack's breath caught as he leaned forward, his crotch rubbing against Ianto's. This time, he didn't need to sneeze, though he held the handkerchief out still.


                Ianto's eyes fluttered shut and he blindly reached up, taking Jack's hand and guiding it to his nose and mouth. “ay-ihhhh… hehhh… Hehshoo! Kehchoo! Kitchoo!


                Jack started to bless him, but felt a sneeze coming on far too quickly. His head snapped down, and he used the opposite side of the handkerchief. “IIIh-Chuhh!


                Their noses nuzzled through the handkerchief. And through their pants, Ianto's hardness strained happily against Jack's. In a town where anything could happen—and usually did—being assaulted by an alien plant and trapped in their own SUV suddenly didn't seem like such a bad thing.