Title: Flawed Makes Us
Pairing/Characters: Jack/Ianto, Tosh, Owen and Gwen
Summary: Not all scars are visible some are deep wounds on the soul and they are the ones that take the longest to heal.
Disclaimer: I do not own Torchwood
Author Notes: Written for the h_c bingo prompt: scars and this is the sequel to Broken Glass. Unbeta’d so please forgive any mistakes.
Tension filled Gwen as she slowly entered the Hub, the laughter from her teammates echoing down to her from the conference room. ‘You can do this Gwen, all you have to do is tell them you’re sorry and everything will go back to normal.’ Gwen told herself as she forced her legs to move and walk up the stairs and confront the people she accidentally hurt yesterday.
‘I don’t even understand why Jack is making me do this? They know I didn’t mean it like that. Honestly they’re making a big deal out of nothing.’ Gwen huffed silently to herself; she had more important things to do then pamper her colleges hurt feelings. ‘They just can’t understand what it’s like to have someone on the outside and the fear that you might not becoming home to them.’ Taking a deep breath Gwen steadied herself and with her head held high walked into the conference room.
All conversation stopped and tension filled the once joyful room as hurt and fury radiated off of Owen and Tosh in waves. Jack squeezed Ianto’s hand tighter, the hand he hadn’t let go of the entire time he was explain why he reacted the way he did at Gwen’s demanded. Owen and Tosh had understood and after some cursing from Owen and reassuring a worried Tosh that he was okay Jack knew they had forgive him for letting Gwen get something none of them got someone on the outside knowing the truth about their jobs.
All four gazes slowly turned to land on Gwen and Jack knew the moment he saw the steeled look in Gwen’s eyes she still had no clue how deeply she hurt her teammates with her unfeeling words yesterday. She didn’t see the scars that lingered on all their souls; all four of them have lost those who meant the world to them all thanks to Torchwood, something Gwen hasn’t suffered through yet and therefore couldn’t understand the true depth of their losses.
“Gwen, I think you have something to say?” Gwen flinched at the coldness in Jack’s voice or the ice in his normally warm blue eyes.
‘You can do this Gwen, all you have to do is say you’re sorry and that will be that.’ Gwen was confident that once she said she was sorry this would all be forgotten. “I’m sorry for what I said yesterday. I let my emotions rule me and I said some things that I didn’t mean. I hope we can all get past this.” She flashed them her sweetest smile and her most soulful eyes.
“You except us to buy that bullshit?!” Owen demanded as he shot to his feet pushing his chair away with some much force that Ianto fear it would leave a dent in the wall.
Gwen openly gaped at Owen the pure venom in his eyes striking deep into her soul. She tried to get her mouth to work but nothing wanted to come out.
Owen stalked closer to Gwen fury pouring off of him. “You, don’t get to speak you said your piece yesterday, now it’s our turn. We are not cold and lonely as you so kindly put it. You rub your so-called perfect and happily relationship in our faces every chance you can. Yet you found your way into my bed more then once and lust after Jack like a cat in heat daily. What you have with Rhys is not love. I know what love is Gwen, I know it’s not cold and lonely out there. I loved and still love Katie with all that I am and the loss of her will always leave a scar on my heart along with the what-could have been. You don’t know what it’s like to have your whole world ripped out from under you.” By the end of his rant Owen’s voice became choked and filled with heartbreak as he thought of Katie.
“But I do not what that feels like! I lost Rhys do to Bilis!” Gwen remembered full well the terror that griped her when she lost Rhys.
“Yeah, but you go him back!” Owen spat back at her. “I always wondered why you opened the Rift to bring him back when you then went on to spend the next week at Jack’s side completely ignoring Rhys. You had no business playing the grieving widow when your lover was alive. It was Ianto who should have stayed by Jack’s side and not you. You’re selfish ways robbed Ianto of that right.”
Jack felt Ianto tense at Owen’s reminder of his week long death, not caring that Ianto didn’t like to flaunt their relationship in the front of others Jack wrapped his arm around Ianto’s shoulder and pressed a tender kiss against Ianto’s temple.
The tender gesture did not escape Gwen’s notice and she felt something stab deep within her heart, it hurt to see Jack and Ianto sharing something so tender and precious.
“Owen’s right.” Tosh’s soft voice spoke up and all eyes turned to her. Not all the comfortable with being the center of attention Tosh tried not to fidget under all their gazes but it was the kind look in Ianto’s eyes and Jack’s reassuring nod that had Tosh taking a deep breath and turning to meet Gwen’s gaze head on.
“You act like you’re better then the rest of us all because you claim to have more humanity then us and because you have a relationship and life outside of Torchwood. But you’re not Gwen. You have no right in treating us like heartless monsters. We’ve seen things you’ve never experienced before. You can’t even begin to understand the personal losses we have gone through. We’re flawed and we’re not perfect and we may act like we’re cold but that’s only because we fight so no one, you included never has to go through what we’ve gone through!” To Tosh’s own horror tears began filling up in her eyes and began running down her checks.
“The reason I wear these suits are not just because I like the feel of a well-cut suit against my body and not even for the reaction I get from Jack. No, the reason I wear them because it helped to hide what was beneath. The scars he cared from Canary Wharf, from the Cannibals, one too many close calls with a Weevil and all other dangers Torchwood brought into my life. We all have those kinds of scars because that is the dangers Torchwood brings.” Ianto spoke up softly and all eyes flew to the Welshman.
Ianto’s blue eyes bored into Gwen’s as he drove his final point home. “Gwen, you must remember not all scars are visible; the deepest ones are the ones you can’t see. I hope you remember the scars that you’re teammates carry.”
Jack was proud of his team for speaking up and letting Gwen know how they saw her treatment of them. “Gwen, they’re not trying to be mean, they are just trying to let you know how your treatment of them and callus and hurtful words make us feel. Yesterday you we’re way out of line, in your comments to me and the others and your actions. We are a team and no one can think they are more important then anyone else.”
Jack was happy to see true remorse shining in Gwen’s teary-eyes. “We’ll give you a few minutes alone to compose yourself.” Jack pushed back his chair and pulled Ianto up with him and was pleased to see Owen wrap a comforting arm around Tosh’s shoulders, he wasn’t sure if this could be the start of something between them given Owen’s admittance that he still loves Katie, but he could only hope that they found some type of happiness, like the kind he found with Ianto, with each others or others.
Left alone Gwen couldn’t help but think maybe just maybe she wasn’t the heart of Torchwood like she believed.