Title: Love or Pride
Genre: AU/ Romance
Pairings: Jack /Ianto
Summary: Ianto Jones in an aristocrat who’s betrayed by his fiancée, Lisa. There enters industrialist Jack Harkness. Is what he asks something the young lord can give? Or isn’t?
Torchwood- Copyright BBC. Vaguely based on the book Le Maître de forges by Georges Ohmet
Un-betaed so all mistakes are mine!
Chapter 4 at: anastasisrick.livejournal.com/2549.html
Ianto’s hair had gone loose after his long run with his horse. He loved being free and he always wanted to be alone those precious minutes filled with the fresh air and the smells of the woods. Not even Lisa had managed to change that in all the years she knew him. He jumped from his horse and led him to the stable where a servant found him.
‘Master Ianto. You have visitors…’ Ianto had done his best to forget about today’s visitors.
‘What? Did the blacksmith saw us in his dreams?’ He asked while looking for his pocket watch. It was still too early for visits.
‘What?’ The servant asked wondering what was his master talking about.
‘Mr Harkness. Is he here?’
‘Ah no sir! Mr and Mrs Harper are here.’
‘Owen and Toshiko?’ Ianto asked happily already pushing the reins to a stable boy and turning to the servant who nodded.
‘Master Ianto? Captain Harkness is not a blacksmith.’ He said wanting to give to the younger man the right information.
‘I know, George. But he’s…’ he didn’t know how to describe the changes Jack brought to the village in general and Warf on particularly. Ianto Jones just didn’t like changes; and he didn’t like the brash American. ‘Captain, you said?’ He asked in an effort to change the subject while he sped his step.
The older man tried to catch up with the younger but in the end he knew it was a lost cause. Despite of that he did talk about Jack’s adventures in America and everything he had heard about his from the servants and people working in Torchwood. Besides the Aristocracy, common people liked and applauded Jack’s attempt to give them jobs and thus regular paying.
Nesta welcomed Own and Toshiko as she sent George and Corin to find Ianto and Arwen. Owen was her husband’s sister’s son and had just finished his studies. His family had gone against his idea of becoming a doctor –they would have preferred him to supervise their estate in Essex- but Owen loved London and life in the city too much. London was where he had met his wife, Toshiko.
‘Own how nice to have you here with us!’ The problem with the young doctor was that he was acerbically honest.
‘Have you heard about Lisa?’ Ianto’s Mother paled.
‘So it is true. I didn’t want to believe it.’
‘If you mean if Lisa’s getting married to a man who’s not Ianto then, yes, it is true.’
‘John told me yesterday, but…’
‘It was hard to believe. How did Ianto take it?’ Owen asked and as he noticed her guilty expression. ‘You haven’t told him yet?’ He said exasperated. ‘He is going to find one way or another and… it will be better to hear it from you, than some stranger.’
‘Owen, I’m sure Lady Nesta only thinks for Ianto.’ Tosh said wrapping her arm around her husband’s trim waist.
‘I wanted to think it was a huge misunderstanding…’ Nesta said and sat on her armchair with a deep sigh.
‘Well, it isn’t. And Ianto doesn’t particularly like Hart.’ That was new for Ianto’s mother but she didn’t have the time to comment as footsteps were heard and Ianto came in. With a quick nod Owen agreed not to say anything to his younger cousin.
Lisa looked out of the coach’s window the beautiful view. Ianto loved his place more than anything else; except maybe Lisa herself. She turned around to stare at her fiancé’s face. John was not ugly, on the contrary. He was a handsome man but there was something about him that made her long for Ianto.
‘Can you tell me again why we are coming here?’ She asked worrying about their visit to the Warf. She hadn’t wanted to come but her fiancé and mother kept pushing her until she could do nothing else but agree.
‘To visit your relatives of course my dear.’ John was many things, rich being the most important of those, but honesty was not his stronger attribute.
‘Is it true or you just want to show Ianto you…’ John’s hand was around her neck in a fraction of the second and his clear eyes were so intense they could cut. Lisa shivered. It was a reaction John always managed to pull out of her body.
‘Want to show Mr Jones what, love?’ His American accent was also so very different than Ianto’s dulcet one. She cursed money and fortunes for the hundredth time. It hadn’t been her fault her aunt her lost the family’s fortune. She had to look out for her own future.
John Hart looked at his future wife and couldn’t really believe he was going to marry her. When he had first seen her he had thought nothing of her other that to spend a couple of passionate nights with her. But she was a member of the aristocracy and that was unacceptable out of the holy bonds of wedding. He made the decision to marry her only when he met the elusive Ianto Jones.
He caressed Lisa’s face with the back of his hand while his thought was on the blue eyed man who had insulted him for not giving him the attention he was seeking. No man should ever do that to him. Ianto Jones was no exception. The only thing he wanted now was to see the devastation in those icy blue eyes –so much lovelier that Lisa’s brown ones.
He would prefer to have the young Lord as his bed mate than the exotic looking woman currently sitting by his side but after the way Ianto Jones had treated him with he had to settle with revenge. John just wanted to see that pride shattered in the expressive blue eyes.
And he had found just the perfect way.
Jack and Grey were riding fast. Grey was staring at the intent look in his brother’s eyes.
‘Why are you taking me with you?’
‘What? You don’t want to meet our neighbours?’
‘It’s me you’re talking to, Jack. What’s your hidden agenda here?’ He asked wiggling his eyebrows. ‘Does this have anything to do with the youngest master?’
‘Have you met him?’
‘A couple of times. He’s not living here…. So it is about him. You like him don’t you?’
Jack remained silent.
‘You should know that his pride is just as evident as his…’ He stopped looking for the right word.
‘…attractiveness?’ Jack asked.
‘If you say so! He’s engaged though, isn’t he?’
‘Not for long.’
‘What do you mean?’
‘You will soon know.’
‘Jack what are you going to do? Ask him to marry you?’
He wasn’t certain if he wanted to go that far, not yet at least, but he wanted Ianto Jones and he’d do and use everything he could to have him. Jack was not a man used to go unnoticed. This was one of the few times he was happy for it!
‘It won’t take you long to make him see you, Jack! No one can resist you for long…’
Ianto was talking to Owen in the far end of the terrace and Nesta was deep in conversation when Rachel announced Jack’s and Grey’s names. Ianto sighed deeply.
‘What is it?’
‘This man irritates me!’ Ianto said truthfully. ‘He thinks he owns the world.’
‘Cousin, some may say the same for you too!’
‘No I’m not like that!’ Owen raised his eyebrow and got a gentle punch. ‘I am not!’
‘Whatever. What’s with this Harkness?’ Ianto blushed and looked down. ‘Oh don’t tell me! Another male admirer?’ Owen instantly bit his lip.
‘Another?’ Ianto asked, blue eyes narrowing suspiciously. ‘Owen never speak to me about that man again. The audacity of his… I don’t understand how Lisa would like that man’s company.’ Ianto shuddered at Hart’s memory.
Jack walked purposely, his long coat accenting his tall and lean frame, instantly seeing Ianto. Grey was right next to him and behind them was Arwen who had just returned from a hunting trip.
An hour later Arwen was monopolising Grey, and Jack had captured everyone’s attention with his stories except for the one’s he really wanted to. Lady Joes was subtly looking at her tall guest and the glances he gave her youngest son. Maybe Ianto wouldn’t feel Lisa’s betrayal very hard if he had his mind elsewhere. As her gaze turned to the man in question she saw her son looking at her suspiciously. She just smiled and looked at Jack.
Owen liked Jack. He was different than the people Ianto got along with but he could see the interest in Jack’s every move and silently hoped that the younger man would give the industrialist the attention he deserved, if only to spite Lisa.
For that to happen, Ianto had to learn the truth!
Chapter 6, part A at: anastasisrick.livejournal.com/3486.html