A Good Man – Chapter 3

Ianto straightened his tie one last time as he prepared to enter the Torchwood building. It was his first day as the Director of Torchwood Cardiff and he was determined to make a good impression on the rest of the team. Keeping up with the Torchwood One dress code, he was immaculately dressed in his favourite suit; black with narrow grey pin stripes and a light pink shirt with a striped silk tie. He knew that the staff of Three didn’t bother with suits, but wearing suits felt more comfortable to him than going casual. Taking a deep breath he pushed open the door to the Tourist Office and as expected, Jack was standing there waiting for him.

“Welcome to Torchwood Cardiff Jones, Ianto Jones,” he said politely with just the hint of a grin.

“Captain,” he replied. Ianto looked at Jack, who was looking him up and down, before turning around and taking note of the general shabbiness of the office, noting the various out-dated leaflets and trinkets that were lying around.

“Who works in here?” he asked.

Jack shook his head. “No one, we don’t really want to encourage too many people to come snooping around here. Besides, after Canar… well, after what happened, everyone knows about Torchwood now. Probably don’t even need to keep the office here any more really.”

Jack showed Ianto where the button for the hidden door was and turned away to lead Ianto down the corridor leading into the main Hub. Ianto followed, watching Jack’s coat tails swishing about his legs as he walked. Ianto rolled his eyes at himself – he had no idea what sparked his previous comments about liking Jack’s coat. It wasn’t like him to say something like that; especially to someone he had just met, and more importantly one of his employees. What had he been thinking?

As they left the corridor and stepped through the big cogwheel door Ianto looked around at the enormous cavern that was the Hub. He had seen blueprints of the Hub but they hadn’t prepared him for the sheer size of the place. Once the cogwheel door had rolled back into place and the alarms had stopped blaring Jack started pointing out the main areas, including Ianto’s office. Finally he took Ianto up to the Board Room where the rest of the team were waiting.

The others were sitting around the long rectangular Board Room table in their customary places, all except Suzie who had changed places to allow Ianto to take his place at the head of the table. Jack showed Ianto to his seat, and then took his own seat around the corner to the left of Ianto.

Jack pointed to the people sitting around the table and started the introductions. “Owen Harper, Gwen Cooper…”

Doctor Owen Harper, thank you!” Owen interrupted.

Ignoring him, Jack continued, his face softening with an affectionate smile as he introduced the next person. “Toshiko Sato, computer genius, and Suzie Costello, she’s your second-in-command. Everyone this is Ianto Jones, Ianto is our new boss.”

Ianto smiled and nodded at each person as they were introduced.

“And he looks good in a suit,” Jack finished off.

“Careful, that’s harassment, Jack.” Ianto and Jack looked at each other and after a moment both of their faces broke into playful, if reluctant, grins. The hostilities of yesterday’s encounter seemed to have been pushed aside, for the moment at least.

Ianto looked around at the faces of the people seated around the table and using his photographic memory, recalled the information in their files.

At the opposite end of the table to him was Doctor Owen Harper, formerly from London; he had been recruited from a major hospital in Cardiff. He had been hired by Torchwood after his fiancée had died under mysterious circumstances and he managed to attract Torchwood’s attention with his subsequent persistence in trying to find out exactly what had happened. Ianto wondered if this loss would give them any common ground: he had heard that Doctor Harper could be somewhat snarky and difficult to get along with ordinarily.

To Owen’s right, and to the left of Jack, was Toshiko Sato. She had been released into Torchwood custody from a UNIT prison facility after being found committing treason. Ianto had read the details of her alleged act of treason and whilst he couldn’t deny it was treason, given the circumstances surrounding it he was glad that someone – Jack – had seen fit to get her out. He was impressed by the achievements recorded in her files, and was glad she hadn’t been left to rot in prison.

Opposite Toshiko was Gwen Cooper, a relatively new recruit to Torchwood. Her role was basically to liaise with the police on matters that could potentially affect the public. Torchwood may no longer have been a secret organisation, but there was still a distinct lack of trust between themselves and the police. Gwen’s role was aimed at bringing the two organisations closer together. Her former beat partner, Andy Davidson, was also sometimes brought in to assist and had proven invaluable to Torchwood by alerting Gwen whenever something suspicious happened. Gwen also performed a lot of the admin work for the branch.

And finally, sitting to the right of Ianto and next to Gwen, was Suzie Costello. She was the only team member, apart from Jack, that Ianto thought he might have problems with. Suzie had been brought to Torchwood Cardiff shortly after Alex Hopkins’ suicide, as a temporary measure until a permanent leader was found by Torchwood London. That search had been neglected somewhat as London had been side tracked by other bigger issues. It was only now, with the fall of Torchwood One, that a new director for Cardiff had been appointed and Suzie would have to give up her position of power. It remained to be seen whether Suzie would stay on at Torchwood now that Ianto had arrived.

Despite being the highest ranked survivor of London, Ianto had never held a position anywhere near the rank of Director. He had only ever been a department head and Ianto was a bit unsure how the team, especially Suzie – who he was effectively ousting from her position – would perceive this lack of experience of life at the top.

When it had been announced Ianto would be taking over at Cardiff, he knew that she had protested quite vehemently about how she was the better choice, but she was overridden by a committee who wanted desperately to get Ianto Jones off their hands. After the bad press Torchwood had received over Canary Wharf, Ianto was to be touted as an example of how they looked after the survivors, as well as supporting their recoveries and careers.

Ianto looked over at Suzie as she pushed a cup of takeaway coffee his way.

“Gwen went out earlier to grab some breakfast for us all.” She pointed at the pastries and other beverages on the table. “We weren’t sure how you take your coffee, so I hope this is OK.”

Gwen smiled. “We do have a coffee machine, but none of us can get it to work very well.”

Ianto smiled, maybe there was something he could do to break the ice with the team then. “Do you want me to take a look at it? I can be quite handy with a coffee machine.”

“Be my guest,” she replied.

“I suspect it contains alien technology,” Jack laughed.

The team then took turns to give a brief description of what they mostly did, and what their current projects were. Ianto advised them he would meet with them all separately over the next few days to discuss their current projects in more detail. After that the impromptu meeting was over and the team filed out, leaving Suzie behind with Ianto to go through the details of the handover of both Torchwood and the official “custody” of Jack.

Ianto spent the rest of the morning either being shown around by Jack or going through paperwork and other various issues with Suzie. Tosh gave him a basic run down of the technologies they were using and Owen showed him around the Cold Storage room, or as it was more commonly known, the Autopsy Room.

When lunchtime came around Ianto left the team to have their lunch while he went out – there was something he wanted to buy. He got back to the Hub just in time to find the team leaving in response to a rift alert. Saying hello and goodbye to them he wandered into the kitchen area to take a look at the coffee machine. He had bought a packet of his favourite brand of gourmet coffee and fully intended to have the machine running smoothly by the time everyone returned.

Ianto shook his head in disgust when he saw how clogged up the filter was and he spent a good hour cleaning out every removable part of the machine he could get to. He grimaced as he caught a whiff of the coffee grounds as he threw them out. He shuddered to think when the machine had last been cleaned. Finally the machine was clean enough to meet Ianto’s high standards – even the outside of the machine had been cleaned and polished to perfection. Putting in a new filter, Ianto started grinding some coffee beans just as Jack called in via the comms to say they were on their way back. The timing was excellent and Ianto had six cups of coffee ready just as they walked in the door.

Suzie, Gwen and Tosh groaned in delight when they tasted their drinks. Ianto had somehow managed to make their coffees exactly the way they liked. Jack smiled knowingly, he had already been treated to Ianto’s coffee and he knew exactly how they felt. Owen looked at them and shook his head.

“Looks like we’ve got a new tea boy, not a new director!”

“Owen!” Tosh looked surprised, and a bit embarrassed by Owen’s lack of respect to their new boss.

“What?” Owen threw back at her. “If the cap fits…” and with that Owen grabbed his own coffee and took a sip. The entire team laughed as they saw the look that appeared on Owen’s face – it pretty well matched the looks on the girls’ faces when they tasted their coffees. He scowled at them all and walked down to the Autopsy Room without another word.

Ianto smiled to himself and grabbing his own coffee he headed up to his office with Suzie to hear her report on what happened with the rift alert.

Later in the afternoon Ianto finished reviewing the staff reports he had been looking at and left his office. He stood on the balcony outside his office and quietly observed the team below him as they worked. Tosh was working at her desk, looking at her screen intently whilst rapidly typing away. Gwen was on the phone following up some suspicious activities that had been reported to the police, trying to see if any of them needed Torchwood’s involvement. Jack was nowhere to be seen, he had planned to do some work in the archives so Ianto assumed that’s where he was. Suzie was at a desk piled high with alien artefacts that she was trying to identify and Owen was still in the Autopsy Room.

Deciding it was time for another coffee Ianto went down to the Autopsy Room to see whether Owen wanted a refill.

Owen looked up cautiously as Ianto entered the room. He wasn’t sure if he had overstepped the line earlier by calling Ianto ‘tea boy’ and had stayed in Autopsy all afternoon to avoid him.

“Need a refill?” Ianto asked, holding up his own cup.

“Sure,” Owen said, relaxing a little. “Err, boss… About earlier…”

“It’s fine,” Ianto interrupted. “Just don’t go making a habit out of it though. I’m not anyone’s tea boy.”

Owen nodded. Ianto looked at him briefly then winked at him before turning around to go and make the coffees.

After handing Owen and the girls their coffees Ianto decided he would take Jack’s to him. He hoped he wouldn’t get lost in the lower levels. Jack had shown him through some of the rooms, but the lower levels seemed to go on forever. As he was walking down random hallways looking for Jack the lights flickered on and off occasionally. He wondered if there was something wrong with the electrical wiring.

Luckily he found Jack relatively soon – he was coming out of one of the rooms just as Ianto came around the corner. Jack looked up at Ianto in surprise.

Ianto held up Jack’s cup. “Coffee time,” he said.

Jack gave a half glance at the door he had just exited and began herding Ianto back up to the main level.

“What were you doing in there?” Ianto asked.

Jack shook his head dismissively. “Nothing much, just putting stuff away. Our archives are a bit of a mess at the moment.” He looked back to the room again but said nothing more.

Ianto looked at Jack closely. The way Jack was moving them away from the room struck him as a bit strange but he decided not to push it any further. He decided to change the subject. “Jack, while I was looking for you the lights were flickering a bit. Is there a problem with the wiring?”

“It’s an old building, that’s all. It’s nothing major,” Jack replied.

They were now back on the main level and Jack immediately left Ianto and went over and sat by Tosh’s desk, effectively ending any further conversation with Ianto. He started discussing a problem she was having with the programme she was working on. It was not an area Ianto was able to assist with so he left them to it.

Ianto decided he should spend some more time with Suzie, and get to know more about the project she was currently working on. He walked over to her desk.

“So Suzie, tell me about this glove…”

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