Pairing: everyone/everyone (nearly) [Jack/Gwen, Jack/Tosh, Jack/Ianto, Jack/Owen, Owen/Ianto, Gwen/Tosh, Gwen/Rhys, hints of Gwen/Owen]
Written For: widowedanthem, otherwise known (to me anyway) as Mei Mei, who lets me copy her French homework and tells me Torchwood spoilers on Mondays. She wanted Christmasness with mistletoe.
Rating: NC-17 just to be sure, but nothing too graphic.
Summary: “Mistletoe grown on the rift- in other words, the world’s most powerful aphrodisiac- and you’re telling me that Jack has got his hands on some?”
Author’s Notes: This is madness in writing. I’m pretty certain it could happen in canon, which somehow makes it worse, but I mean- Jesus. Anyway. Enjoy.
Friday morning, and Ianto comes in slightly late with a bag containing everyone’s bagel preferences. He is about to hit the button to open the door into the Hub, when he hears a small noise from under the reception desk. He turns, hand quickly going to the gun he’s taken to wearing under his jacket ever since he was captured by cannibals, before he sees that it’s Tosh.
“What-” he begins, before she puts a finger to her lips, and drags him down beside her.
“Shhh!” she hisses. Ianto curls himself up under the desk beside her, carefully putting the bagels to the side to prevent them getting squashed.
“What’s going on?” he whispers, concerned by her nervous face.
“It’s Jack,” Tosh replies, glancing anxiously around as though he can hear them. “We have a problem.”
Ianto closes his eyes.
“Tell me the worst,” he says, steeling himself. And Tosh says the five words he was hoping that she’d never say.
“He’s got hold of mistletoe.”
“How?” Ianto asks desperately. “I thought that we’d-”
“Wait, I haven’t told you the worst!” Tosh hisses. “It’s more than just that plastic stuff Suzie brought in as a joke last year. This stuff is grown locally.”
Ianto swears in Welsh, and then takes a deep breath, because he has to clarify the situation before panicking.
“Mistletoe grown on the Rift- in other words, the world’s most powerful aphrodisiac- and you’re telling me that Jack has got his hands on some?”
Biting her lower lip, Tosh nods.
“But how?” he asks, trying to scrunch himself further under the desk. “We took precautions! Lots of precautions!”
“Gwen,” Tosh whispers. “She didn’t know- I suppose we hadn’t got around to warning her. She thought that it would be ‘festive’.”
Ianto puts his head in his hands.
“Where is Gwen now?” he enquires, although he doesn’t want to know the answer.
“Downstairs,” Tosh replies. “Jack pounced, and I ran for it.”
“And where’s Owen?” he asks tentatively. Tosh looks guilty.
“He fell behind,” she admits. “I couldn’t wait for him. I mean- Jack has mistletoe.”
It’s an understandable situation. Ianto tries to think.
“We’ve got to lock down the base,” he says quietly. “Contain this, before Jack goes on another rampage through the streets of Cardiff.”
He watches Tosh’s terror turn to resolve.
“Ok,” she says. “We need to get downstairs, lock down the base and- and hide somewhere. I’ll go for the switch, you go see if you can find and rescue Owen.”
“What about Gwen?” Ianto asks.
“We can’t help her now,” Tosh tells him. “And try to avoid any contact with the mistletoe. You know what that stuff does.”
Ianto nods, grits his teeth, and carefully unfolds himself. Tosh gets up too, a grim expression on her face.
“Oh,” she adds, “And don’t forget the bagels.”
Tosh runs for the lockdown switch and Ianto creeps his way, bent double and silent as only the best butlers can be, through the Hub. He catches a brief glimpse of Jack and Gwen- well, going for it is the only phrase he can think of- on her workstation, paper and coffee cups all over his nice clean floor, and tries to think of where he would hide, if he were Owen. He heads for Owen’s autopsy lab. Jack is too busy to hear him as Ianto makes his way down the stairs and crouches down, looking around. His gaze falls on the autopsy drawers, just as he hears footsteps behind him. He turns, panicked, to see Tosh kneeling down beside him.
“We’re locked in,” she whispers in his ear. “It’s contained. For the moment. What the hell are we going to do, Ianto?”
Ianto wonders faintly why exactly it is that Tosh expects him to know.
“Look on the bright side,” he whispers back. “At least we won’t be eaten this time.”
Tosh blanches and Ianto grimaces. They’re silent for a moment, listening to Gwen moan and giggle and Jack make unsettling slurping noises before they both decide at the same time that they need to hide.
“Don’t the effects wear off?” Tosh whispers hopefully, “And the mistletoe becomes useless again.”
“At the end of epiphany,” Ianto whispers back, then clarifies it: “The sixth of January.”
Tosh’s face falls.
“And the date now is…”
“The twenty-second of December.”
“Oh.” Tosh sighs. “Well, it was a long shot.”
Then they realise that Gwen’s moans have become a high keening of sorts and that Jack will be coming to look for them at any minute, and run for the drawers. Tosh crawls into one and shuts the door quickly behind her, but the one Ianto opens has a panicked looking Owen lying inside. There’s a moment of indecision, then Ianto definitely hears Jack’s footsteps on the move, and so he pushes himself inside on top of Owen, and they pull the door shut behind them.
“Bloody woman,” Owen mumbles into Ianto’s shoulder. “Why didn’t you warn her?”
“I didn’t know that this was going to happen!” Ianto protests through gritted teeth. “I thought it was self-evident that you shouldn’t give Jack mistletoe of any kind, Rift-affected or not.”
“If I get caught, I’m holding you responsible,” Owen mutters, apparently trying to find somewhere to put his hands. Ianto jumps and knocks his head on the top of the drawer as one of Owen’s hands creeps unsettlingly close to his arse.
“What the hell are you doing?” he snarls.
“Have you got a mobile?” Owen asks. “’Cause when Gwen and I were hiding out in here from your Cyberbitch of a girlfriend-”
“-Whatever, her phone went off and almost got us killed.”
“My phone is on silent,” Ianto hisses back. “Keep your fucking hands to yourself!”
They can both hear Jack approaching, so say nothing, pressed together way too tight and breathing in tandem. They hear a drawer being opened next to them. Ianto grits his teeth and hides his face in Owen’s shoulder and they hear Jack asking, sounding completely normal and sane:
“Tosh? What are you doing in there?”
“I was- I mean- I was-” Tosh sounds confused and Ianto feels Owen’s fingers bite into his arms in an attempt to make absolutely no sound.
“Come on, we should get you out of there,” Jack says, concern in his voice now.
“Jack, you’re not in your right mind at this moment,” Tosh stammers. “It’s the mistletoe, it’s-”
She’s cut off a second later, and Ianto can tell that the mistletoe has kicked in, and there’s nothing that they can do. Tosh is completely and utterly seduced. He listens as best he can, as Tosh moans into Jack’s mouth, and then there’s a soft whooomph of a sound, before their footsteps walk away. Ianto finally dares to breathe again, at least until he realises what the sound was. The sound of something falling. And he realises what it is, as the smell seeps in through the tiny crack in the door of the drawer.
The smell of Rift Mistletoe is a smell you don’t forget. Ever. Faint, but vivid, like chocolate and oranges and the best sex you ever had in your life, all whirled up with freshly mown grass and burnt sugar. Jack dropped the mistletoe. About three inches from us. He starts to think shit, we need to get out of here, when Owen grabs his face and kisses him, the mistletoe effect kicking swiftly in, and Ianto does honestly want to stop him, but a moment later the plant gets into his head too, and instead he kisses back.
Gwen doesn’t know how the hell this happened. One minute she was saying that she felt the place needed some sprucing up for Christmas, and she was going to show everyone what she’d brought in, the next second Owen and Tosh were screaming and running, and about five minutes after that she was sprawled on her workstation underneath Jack’s incredibly firm body with his mouth glued to hers. It’s not as though it was a particularly horrible position to be in or anything; after all, it’s all Gwen has ever really thought about since meeting Jack. Judging from certain glances and facial expressions, it’s all anyone thinks about when meeting Jack.
Still, she has Rhys, and after the whole thing with Owen she’s beginning to think that perhaps she should give fidelity a try again, so slipping up and shagging Jack wasn’t part of the game plan. And the worst part is that Gwen is still not entirely sure why she did it. Owen at least attempted to seduce her (well, you know, he promised sheet-ripping orgasms and so on, and who was going to turn those down?), but all Jack did was move two feet and kiss her, and she let him. She let him do a lot else besides, and a flush swiftly paints her cheeks, guilt and horror and some small amount of girlish glee swirling around inside her.
A soft moaning sound to her left makes her quickly duck under her workstation, digging her fingernails into her knees in an attempt to stay silent and not be seen. But she needn’t worry, because when she peers tentatively out, she can see Jack and Tosh, kissing at the top of the stairs down into Owen’s lab. Gwen shakes her head to clear it out of all the possible emotions she could be feeling right now, and instead tries confusion. Jack, sex fiend or not (“I’ve seen him in action- he’ll shag anything if it’s gorgeous enough”), wouldn’t suddenly decide to jump on them all without good reason. So something must have happened. But-
A bunch of green and white on the floor suddenly reminds her of something. She brought in mistletoe today- the woman selling it off a stall at the roadside informed her that it had been grown locally. Gwen smacks her hand against her forehead, realising what must have happened. A Rift in space and time, and some mistletoe. Shit. That’s probably not a good combination. She wonders how she could possibly have been so stupid, and stays absolutely still, biting her mouth shut to maintain silence as Jack and Tosh, giggling and kissing, stumble past her, clearly heading for Jack’s office. Gwen waits until they’re gone before quietly making her way down into Owen’s lab. She needs to find Owen and Ianto and get someone to help her, before Jack goes crazy (or worse; comes back for more).
There really isn’t room in this morgue drawer, Ianto reflects, biting Owen’s lower lip and grinding his hips downwards, feeling, rather than hearing, Owen’s answering groan. The smell of burnt sugar and cut grass is still unbelievably strong around them and the tiny little part of Ianto not currently being taken over with desperate lust is screaming that he has to escape and get that mistletoe contained before it’s too late, but he can’t override the impulse to simply stay here with Owen and fuck him into nothingness.
A buzzing feeling somewhere in the region of his arse makes him momentarily incapable of thinking, before he realises that his phone is going off. He pulls back, whacking his head on the roof of the drawer, and quickly moves his left hand over Owen’s mouth. Owen licks at his palm but Ianto tries not to think about that as he instead worms his free hand down to pull his mobile out of his trousers.
“What?” he asks hoarsely, as Owen begins to suck Ianto’s fingers into his mouth.
“Ianto?” It’s Gwen, and she sounds scared. “Ianto, where are you?”
“Um…” Ianto is beginning to regain his ability to think and pulls his hand away from Owen’s eager mouth. “I’m in one of Owen’s drawers. The dead body ones.”
“Oh.” Gwen sounds puzzled. “Why? What are you doing?”
You really don’t want to know, Ianto thinks, swallowing hard as Owen pushes a knee between his thighs.
“Help,” he says weakly.
Gwen begins to open the drawers in the autopsy room, trying not to think about her experience with Owen while trapped in one of these. She finds Ianto and Owen pretty quickly, entangled. Their mouths are bruised and Ianto’s neck looks like it’s been attacked by a wild animal, raw red lovebites blossoming over and around his collar.
“What-” she begins, shock rushing through her at the sight of the two of them, apparently barely aware of her presence.
“Please,” Ianto says, sounding as though he’s having difficulty getting the words out, bending his head to kiss Owen again, “Get that fucking stuff contained.”
Gwen looks around her and sees the sprig of mistletoe lying, forgotten, beside her shoe. She glances at Ianto for confirmation that she’s been right in her suspicions, but he seems to be rather busy trying to eat Owen alive, so she uses her initiative and looks around for a jar or something. Her head is buzzing and she can feel herself getting aroused, just from the presence of that plant. Before she can try and squeeze herself into that drawer along with the two men, she picks up the mistletoe, shoves it into a specimen jar, and screws the lid on as tight as she can. Immediately, the feeling of light-headedness goes away, and she turns around.
“Fucking hell!” Gwen can hear Owen trying to swear quietly behind her, and turns around. He and Ianto are attempting to disentangle themselves and crawl out of the drawer without touching each other, which is proving to be difficult, and they wind up panting on the floor.
“I will never forgive you for this, Cooper,” Owen snarls.
“For God’s sake be quiet,” Ianto whispers, barely moving his lips. “Do you want to bring Jack down here?”
Owen makes a soft groaning sound and puts his head in his hands. Ianto moves to crouch beside Gwen, clearly ready to move at a moment’s notice.
“What’s going on?” Gwen asks. “What’s wrong with the mistletoe?”
Ianto explains to her that the Rift makes mistletoe somewhat dangerous, and then proceeds to tell her that it makes Jack completely insane. They’re not sure why it affects Jack even more than the rest of them, but it does, and they’ve locked the Hub down to make sure that Jack can’t escape around Cardiff with the mistletoe.
“Is that a viable option?” Gwen asks in a panic, but before Ianto can reply they all hear a final-sounding shriek of delight from Tosh and a guttural groan from Jack, and that heralds the fact he will be coming to look for them.
“Quick, before he leaves his office!” Owen mutters, scrambling to his feet and heading for the stairs.
“Where are we going?” Gwen asks. Owen turns back.
“We are going nowhere,” he tells her. “You’re on your own, folks.”
And then he’s running for it. Ianto and Gwen look at each other and then at the mistletoe in its containment jar.
“We need to get all the mistletoe into isolation,” Ianto explains quickly. “It’s the only way.”
Gwen looks around and finds some more jars, which she stuffs into her pockets. But they can hear Jack’s footsteps coming across the Hub, and there isn’t time to escape.
“Quick,” Ianto says, pushing Gwen in the direction of one of the drawers. “Hide.”
“Yes, because that worked so well for you and Owen,” she mutters, but obeys. “What about you?”
Ianto has a determined sort of look on his face.
“Just get out and get rid of that mistletoe,” he says, getting to his feet. It occurs to Gwen what he’s going to do just as he kicks the drawer shut on her. She grimaces in the dark, and tries her best not to make a sound.
“What are you all doing around here today?” Jack asks, looking puzzled. Ianto notices, feeling faintly depressed, that a new sprig of mistletoe is tucked into Jack’s sonic wristband thing. “Are you having a party? Am I not invited? Where’s Owen?”
“I have no idea,” Ianto replies honestly, and then adds, “And we’d never have a party without you, sir. You’re the life and soul.”
“Flattery will get you nowhere, Ianto,” Jack says, walking a step closer. The scent of the mistletoe in his wristband begins to drift towards him, citrusy and sugary, and he feels his thought processes fill up with pink mush. Oh dear. He backs up quickly, closer to the wall away from the drawers where Gwen is hiding, determined to be levelheaded for as long as he can be before he gives in. His mouth still stings from Owen’s kisses, and he can’t help thinking that whatever Jack has in mind will leave him aching all over.
“Can I get you a coffee, sir?” he enquires, trying his best to melt into the brickwork, edging closer to the stairs. “I could add extra espresso, and see if we have any of the biscotti you like left.”
He knows that getting into the main Hub is akin to sexual suicide. The large bag of mistletoe Gwen brought in is on the floor by her workstation and the scent and effects of it will have filled the room by now, but if he can distract Jack, then maybe Gwen will have a chance to escape and bag it all up.
“Are you avoiding me?” Jack asks, sounding hurt. “At least tell me what I’m supposed to have done…”
Ianto’s heel hits the bottom step and he quickly moves up the first stair.
“Nothing, sir. But I thought you might be thirsty.”
“You’re looking at me like I’m the Big Bad Wolf or something,” Jack says, pouting painfully adorably. Ianto makes it up another step. Not so far to go now. He can do it.
“What very big eyes you have, sir,” he says, barely thinking, taking another step. Jack has begun walking up the stairs too, a smile spreading across his face, unsettlingly predatory in nature.
“All the better to see you with, Ianto,” Jack tells him, and he’s close enough for Ianto to see just how dilated his pupils are. It’s a wonder how he can see anything at all.
“What big-” he begins, stumbling on the top step and falling painfully hard onto the concrete, breath knocked out of him. He shouldn’t be panicking quite this much. But Jack has always had the ability to reduce him to a nervous wreck with just a smile. Jack is on his knees over him in a second, and before they can get to the line all the better to eat you with, my dear, their mouths crush together. Ianto, with the last shreds of common sense he has, manages to reach down and dislodge the mistletoe from Jack’s wristband, sending the plant bouncing off down into Owen’s lab. He reflects that the floor in front of the autopsy room is perhaps not the best place to be doing this, and then he thinks of nothing at all but the feel of Jack pressed against him.
Tosh reflects miserably that the only word that can describe her appearance right now is debauched. And that’s more than a little depressing. Her hair is rumpled and mussed up, her shirt is actually torn, and her bra strap has slid down her shoulder. She can’t even be bothered to slide it back up again, but as the mushy lust subsides she can only feel faintly ashamed. Sighing, she pulls her clothes back together as best she can, and sits up from her sprawl on Jack’s office floor. Half the papers and random artefacts from his desk are on the floor around her, but she knows that she has to get the mistletoe contained before something worse happens. So she gets to her feet and carefully tries to make her way to where the plastic bag full of the plant is.
Gwen risks a peep out from the drawer to find the lab reassuringly empty, although the smell of burnt sugar is still filling her nose. She discovers why a few seconds later, seeing a sprig of mistletoe lying on the floor. Commando style, she crawls on her stomach across to it, and shuts it in a jar. The scent vanishes immediately, and she can think clearly. This is getting easier. She just needs to get the rest of it sealed away, and she’ll be fine. Really. So she gets to her feet and tentatively picks her way over to the stairs, and hurries up them.
Ianto and Jack are on the floor fiddling with the buttons on each other’s waistcoats in a frankly quite adorable fashion. The smell of mistletoe hits Gwen the moment she steps over them into the Hub, and she fights every urge in her body to beg to join in. Instead, walking slowly as though she’s wading through treacle, she makes her way to her workstation. Got to get this done.
Tosh can see Ianto and Jack undressing each other on the floor in a far more affectionate fashion than she’s seen Jack treat anyone else with today, and so quietly takes advantage of their distraction to get to the mistletoe. If she can get it out of the Hub, or into a decontamination unit or something, all will be fine. She just has to get to it, before it’s too late.
She crawls across the floor, heading hopefully for the stupid plant, and gets to her feet to grab a discarded Tupperware box from Gwen’s workstation (she’s started bringing lunch from home into work, cooked by her boyfriend, and it always smells gorgeous). And then, just as the scent of mistletoe gets so strong that it burns the inside of her nostrils, she sees Gwen crossing the Hub.
“No,” she tries to say, because Gwen has got to stay away, stay far away, but it’s too late. Gwen looks momentarily horrified for a moment, and then the plastic box is falling from her fingers and instead she finds herself entwined with Gwen, fingers tangling in that soft, dark hair.
Owen is downstairs in the cells, considering locking himself in one of them to prevent anyone else from getting to him, but instead he just sits on the floor, panting. He’ll be fine. Everyone else will be far too tied up to come and bother with him. But, five minutes later, he realises he’s forgotten how potent Rift mistletoe is, and the smell of orange peel and candyfloss starts to drift down. And there’s a Weevil down here, hissing softly. Owen shuts his eyes. He can already feel the hormones in his body going into desperate overdrive, and now he’s got a choice. He can stay down here and face the distinct possibility that he’s going to open that cell door and attempt to have sex with a Weevil (and probably wind up getting gored into the process), or he can go back upstairs and face the possibility of having sex with Jack. And Ianto. And Tosh. And Gwen (again).
“Oh bloody hell,” he mutters, watching the Weevil get to its feet to bang itself against the glass of its cell. “Bloody fucking shitting hell. I am never, never forgiving Gwen for this.”
And he turns to run back upstairs again. To something resembling chaos. Ianto and Jack are- are- well, they’re- on the floor, anyway. And Tosh and Gwen are leaning against Gwen’s workstation, their hands under each other’s shirts, and in another circumstance he’d be jumping about with delight, but right now there are more pressing things on his mind. Like getting rid of that plant thing before-
Oh help. Gwen hears him and turns around, pupils so dilated her eyes are actually black and she looks halfway demonic.
“Gwen,” he says carefully, “No. Bad Gwen. We both know this can’t happen. At least, not here.”
Tosh looks at him too, and her tongue darts out to brush over her lips.
“Bad Tosh,” he adds, aware he’s starting to drawl and that any second now, he’s going to-
Quickly, with the last desperate shreds of common sense he has, he grabs Tosh’s wrist and drags her after him into one of the endless corridors Torchwood has, and doesn’t stop running until the air starts to get that stale archive-y smell. Tosh is panting and pulls her wrist away.
“Thanks,” she gasps, sinking down to sit on the floor. “It’s useless. There’s nothing we can do. We’re going to have to stay down here and…” She trails off.
“… And fuck till January,” Owen finishes for her. He sits down too, resting his head on his knees. “I hate mistletoe. I really do.”
Tosh is looking at him with an almost wistful look on her face, which wipes off the second he gives her a quizzical glance. They both know that they should go back, but right now they just can’t bring themselves to.
Left alone, Gwen pants and does the buttons on her shirt back up again, and then looks at the mistletoe on the floor and then at the Tupperware box near her right foot. Torchwood has an incinerator somewhere, she knows, and maybe if she burns the mistletoe then its effects will stop. Something must get rid of it, but although Ianto, Tosh and Owen have all been adamant that it must go away, no one has actually told her how to destroy it. Still, the incinerator seems to be the best source of destruction they have around here, so she stoops to pick up the plant. And her mobile starts ringing.
“Hello?” she asks, picking it up. It’s Owen.
“Look, are you trying to get rid of that stuff?” he demands.
“Yes,” she replies. “I thought I might try the incinerator.”
She can hear Ianto making soft little moaning sounds and decides that she’d better move quickly before Jack comes to find her again.
“Don’t,” Owen says. “Just get it down into the lab and put it into one of the big containment boxes I’ve got. Ok?”
“But Jack and Ianto are in front of the only entrance to the lab,” she says pathetically, slumping to the floor next to the bloody stuff. “I’ll never be able to make it past them.”
She can hear Owen relaying the problem to Tosh, and wonders why they couldn’t drag her to safety with them. She supposes that it’s because it was her fault.
“We’re coming, Gwen,” Owen says in a fatalistic tone. She hears Tosh say something indistinctly. “Only not literally.”
Ianto carefully rebuttons his waistcoat and picks lint off his trousers and all sorts of things before remembering that someone really ought to knock Jack out for his own good before this gets out of hand. Then he notices that he’s lying on the floor with his spine feeling like it’s been bent out of shape, and wonders exactly when he’ll decide that this has all got out of hand.
Jack is prowling across the room towards Gwen, who is standing as though transfixed by the bag of mistletoe, and Owen and Tosh are nowhere to be seen. None of this bodes well. Ianto gets to his feet.
“Jack,” he calls. Jack turns back to look at him.
“Do you want a coffee now?” he asks. “Blue Mountain. You know that you like that one.”
Jack looks torn for a moment and it’s then that Owen and Tosh run in.
Ianto runs across the Hub at a speed that’s a more than a little unsettling to Owen, heading right for the mistletoe. He pushes Jack in the back as he passes, sending him directly into Owen’s path. Tosh dives out of the way, and before he knows what’s happening, Jack is kissing him hungrily, and Owen, after a split second of wanting to kill Ianto for making him be the distraction, wants nothing more than to kiss him back.
“Gwen,” Ianto orders, backing up against the wall, “Get the mistletoe. Take it into the autopsy lab, find something to contain it in, and lock the lid. Ok?”
Gwen nods, bending down to scoop up the mistletoe. She can see both Ianto and Tosh fighting not to run at her so she heads as quickly as she can for the lab. She dumps the plant on the table and looks around for a container, finding one in a cupboard. She can hear four sets of footsteps coming towards her, and quickly crams the plant any old how into the isolation unit, slamming the lid down and hearing it shut with a faintly pneumatic hiss. Gotta love alien technology.
The smell of burnt sugar and the hungry rush of lust inside her fades instantly. Jack staggers and nearly falls, and Owen and Ianto quickly catch him as he faints. Tosh gives her a relieved smile and steps around the men to run down the stairs. She stacks the isolation boxes of mistletoe up neatly and smiles.
“Please,” she says, “Don’t ever bring anything into the Hub that you think might be festive, ever, ever again.”
Jack is out cold on the sofa, and the rest of the team sit around and eat pizza.
“Why is it,” Owen begins, breaking the silence, “That despite the fact that we’ve got actual laws put out that says you can’t grow mistletoe anywhere near the area where the Rift is, and we do constant sweeps, around this time of year some bugger always grows some and it always winds up here?”
“You mean this isn’t the first time this has happened?” Gwen asks, sounding somewhat worried.
“It’s an annual event by now,” Owen yawns. “Hey, remember the year that it took three days before Suzie finally managed to shove the stuff into the incinerator? And then the plant got released into the atmosphere around here in the smoke and absolutely everyone was-”
He trails off. Tosh and Ianto are glaring at him and Gwen looks absolutely horrified.
“We were going to build up to breaking it to her,” Ianto explains carefully. “Because it is rather a shock to tell someone that every Christmas they are going to wind up attempting to sleep with most of your co-workers against your will.”
“Sounds like every other office Christmas party I’ve ever been to,” Gwen says vaguely, tucking her hair behind her ears. “But seriously. This happens on a regular basis?”
Ianto and Tosh look sheepish, and Owen can feel the same look gracing his own face.
“Pretty much,” Tosh says, eating the last slice of pizza and casting a look at the unconscious Jack.
Ianto waits until Tosh, Gwen and Owen have gone home before slapping Jack until he regains consciousness.
“Ow! What happened?” Jack asks, looking confused.
“You managed to get Rift Mistletoe in here again,” Ianto replies, doing ‘stern’ as best he can. “You have got to stop this. I mean it.”
“I don’t-” Jack begins. And then smirks. “It’s just harmless fun.”
“No, it isn’t,” Ianto sighs. “How did you get someone to grow it this time? It’s very, very illegal by now.”
“Can’t tell you,” Jack yawns. “Otherwise you’ll stop me next year.”
Ianto takes a deep breath in through his nose and lets it out before speaking.
“Jack, if the archives are correct, then you have been doing this almost every year for the last five decades.”
Jack twists his mouth in thought.
“That sounds about right.”
“I suppose this wouldn’t be the point to beg you to stop.”
Jack smirks slightly.
“You could give it a go anyway. Appeal to my better nature. See what happens.”
Ianto almost gives in.
“Sir,” he sighs, “You have no better nature.”
“Oh.” Jack looks momentarily disappointed. “Do you want to just shag on the couch then?”
Ianto just about manages a smile.
“Good evening, sir,” he says, and walks away.
“You’re home early,” Rhys says, turning as Gwen lets herself in. “Did something happen?”
Gwen hopes she isn’t blushing.
“No,” she tells him. “Pretty boring day, actually.”