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A Single Soul (A Torchwood Fic)

Title: A Single Soul
Pairing: none
Rating/Warning/Spoilers: Gen/Set during series one with no true spoilers. Ties in a bit with the end of DW-S3
Summary: While trying to track down an assassin, something comes through the rift with a connection to Jack's past.
Author's Notes: This is my first Torchwood fic. In it I use an original time traveling character who will eventually meet every incarnation of the Doctor. Doctor Who/TOC Files I've already had him meet Nine, Rose and Jack in Biting Time
Disclaimer: Torchwood and the gang belong to Russell T and the BBC
Thank you: To eleanorb for Owen's choice of beer and the comment! To meilin_miranda who was a very fair beta with wonderful constructive criticism. Oh and I kinda built Ianto's background based on jadesfire's The Waiting Years and The Wandering Years



A Single Soul
"What is a friend? A single soul dwelling in two bodies."
Aristotle



Alan Kelly chased after the bastard that had shot at him. He kept his prey in sight, barely registering when they moved into the older section of the city, the houses closer together. Alan knew that he had to get the man soon before the sun went down or he'd lose him completely.
He knew there were people who held grudges against him or just plain hated the Alliance. Somehow he had become its unofficial poster boy and it was akin to becoming a target. Hence the assassin.

Suddenly he sensed a literal change in the air. It seemed as if it was becoming solid, Jell-O starting to set. He felt if he stopped he'd be caught in it permanently. Breathing slowly, he forced himself forward and broke out the other side.

Disoriented, he looked around and immediately noticed four things:

1. It was now daylight when it had been near sunset.
2. The area was an open plaza when he had been running through narrow streets of row houses.
3. He could smell the sea and hear gulls when he had been in a land-locked city.
4. He had lost his quarry.

Aware he was garnering odd looks, Alan stepped into the mouth of a close and looked at the machine on his wrist. It was blank. "C'mon, damn it!" he hissed as he slapped it. Still nothing. It always let him know what time he was in down to the second. With the machine acting up, there was no way he'd be returning home soon.

**************************************************

"Jack, I'm picking up another energy signature like the one a few months ago!" Toshiko Sato called from her station.

Jack Harkness sighed as he reached for his greatcoat. Something new had fallen through the rift and they still hadn't caught the last one. "Where's it now?"

She pointed upwards to the plass.

"OK. We'll need to cover the exits and surround it." He strode through the Hub towards the lift at the base of the water tower. "Owen, you take the area around the Centre, Gwen, the National Assembly, Tosh, the Quay, and Ianto, Pierhead. When you get a fix, notify the rest of us. This might be a killer like the last one."

"Jack, there's no proof that there's a connection to the murders," said Gwen Cooper as she headed for the main lift.

"There's no weapon on Earth today that can cause such damage." He stepped onto the lift. "Just be careful!" he called after them as it started to rise.

His own position was right in front of the water tower where he could watch unobserved thanks to a perception filter. He scanned the plass, taking in tourists with their cameras and the locals going about their business. Nothing seemed out of place. His wrist computer beeped, alerting him to an anachronism. There was material out there from the 23rd century. He then pinpointed its location.

"Owen, it's heading in your direction."

"What is? I need to know what I'm looking for."

Typical Owen. "Human male."

"Oh, that really narrows it down."

"He should be passing you...now," came Tosh's voice.

"Right. Got him."

"Remember, Owen. Just follow. Don't engage."

"'E won't know I'm there."

Jack knew Owen Harper could be too cocky and hoped that this time it wouldn't jeopardize the mission. He looked down at his computer and saw the dot that was the target pick up speed and head into the alley alongside the Millennium Centre. Owen might need help.

"Everyone, the alley to the east of the Centre!" Jack yelled as he raced across the plass, dodging pedestrians as he did so. Gwen reached the entrance to the alley at the same time and he motioned her through. Guns drawn, they crept forward and soon saw Owen on the ground rubbing his jaw and another man standing, his back to them.

"Arms on your head!" Gwen ordered. "Face the wall!"

The man did as instructed without a fuss.

Owen stood just as Tosh and Ianto Jones arrived a little out of breath. "Is everyone all right?" she asked.

"Everything is under control," Jack answered as Gwen cuffed the man's hands behind his back. "Owen just needs more practice following people."

"You told me to follow. I did."

"I also said not to engage."

"Jack?" The voice was questioning, unsure of itself. It was also a voice Jack hadn't heard for years. Not since before his first trip to Cardiff. Before the Game Station.

Jack turned as Gwen pulled the man away from the wall and nearly fell back in shock. "Alan?"

***********************************************************

Gwen looked over at Jack's office for the twentieth time in the last ten minutes. They had brought the man-Alan-back to the Hub without even trying to hide its location. Jack then had Gwen remove the cuffs and asked Ianto to make coffee. Then he and Alan entered his office and shut the door.

"How do they know each other?" she asked.

"Dunno," said Owen removing the ice pack from his jaw. "We still don't know a thing about him."

Tosh was clicking away at her keyboard. "He is definitely what came through the rift."

"From?" Owen prompted.

"According to what we found on him, I'd have to say the future." She looked up at them. "Maybe 200 years."

"But Jack knows him." Gwen could not believe the thoughts going around in her head. "Does that mean Jack's from the future as well?"

"It would explain his wealth of alien knowledge," said Ianto as he joined them carrying the coffee tray bound for the office. "Perhaps he came through the rift himself and was recruited by Torchwood once they felt he wasn't a threat?"

His delivery of this theory made Gwen wonder if Ianto really knew the truth about Jack. Then again, it could be a simple logical hypothesis based on the--or lack of--evidence at hand.

Gwen looked to the office yet again. "I just wish I knew what was going on."

*****************************************************

Alan sat across the cluttered desk from Jack. It was the last place he pictured Jack-a desk jockey, especially at Torchwood. Yeah, he had caught that logo everywhere, and, if he had missed those, there was no missing the large sign on the wall. He was bursting with questions but waited as the man in the crisp suit and tie came in with a tray bearing two coffee mugs, sugar and cream.

"Will there by anything else, sir?" he asked with a soft Welsh accent.

"We're set, Ianto. Thanks."

Ianto gave Alan a questioning look as he walked past on his way out.

Once the door had closed, Alan looked at Jack. "It's good to see you, but what are you doing here? Last time I saw you with the Doctor and Rose, you were a team."

Jack cradled his mug in both hands. "We were. We'd do anything for each other. Then came the Daleks. You know them?"

Alan merely nodded, not wanting to interrupt.

"The Doctor had a plan to stop them but he needed time. I organized some defence so the Doctor could finish. I was cornered and out of ammo when they shot me."

"How the hell did you survive?"

"I didn't. I died up there, Alan. Thing is, I came to surrounded by piles of dust. I ran back to the control room where they Doctor had been only to see the TARDIS dematerialise."

"There is no way he would have left had he known, Jack. That isn't his style." He took a sip of coffee. "I take it you haven't seen him since."

"Not that he'd recognize me. I don't know what I'd do anyway."

"Punch him or kiss him?"

"Exactly," he agreed with a crooked grin. He leaned back in his chair. "So what were you doing when you got caught in the rift?"

"Now the interrogation begins."

"Think of it more as catching up with an old friend."

"Do you like what you do, Jack?"

No answer.

"If I remember my history correctly, this place thinks of the Doctor as an enemy. Do they know you travelled with him?"

Still nothing.

"I will get it out of you, you know. Get you talking so much you won't even know what you're saying."

Jack sat up straight. "You gonna tell me what you were doing?"

***************************************************************

Ianto made his way to the Tourist Information Centre that doubled as Reception and stepped into the back office. He slipped off his jacket and placed it on a hanger before switching on his computer monitor.

The man they had brought back was familiar to him-both name and face. He sat down and opened the Torchwood Archives, somehow knowing that was where he had spotted the name while working at Canary Wharf.

Being a third generation employee of Torchwood made him familiar with some of the stories. He couldn't help but smile when references to Jack came up. One thing about having the name Jones: it was so common, no one connected him to Torchwood 3 or Jack, and he liked it that way.

He keyed in the name and the search engine showed him as a "Person of Interest" with four definitive sightings. The first entry chronologically was Christmas 1888 which he spent with the family of a well-to-do Harley Street physician. The second was from 1900 after the relief of Mafeking. The third entry was composed mainly of army records dated 1917 and told the story of a pilot named Alan Kelly who was shot down behind enemy lines and made it back to base unharmed a few days later. The last was the most unbelievable and proved he didn't know Torchwood was watching him. There were a number of photos with this entry spanning most of the 1960s and showed Alan Kelly as a member of a band called The Competition.

Going by the evidence the only conclusion he could draw was the man was a time traveller from the future. One of the early directors commented in the file that Kelly might be connected to the Doctor. Ianto printed the file to show the others downstairs. Hopefully this information would keep them from questioning Jack's background.

*****************************************************

Jack preceded Alan out of the office and heard the creak of three chairs as his team tried to pretend they hadn't been watching. He also wondered how much they suspected. A man from the future fell through the rift and claimed to know him. And I didn't even try to think of a plausible cover story. I must be losing my touch. I guess I'll be making a few retcon cocktails when this is over, he thought.

He looked over at Alan who merely shrugged. He had said that he would follow Jack's lead. Jack just had to figure out what that was. The truth might be nice for a change. The all-out truth, holding nothing back. Those cocktails would probably need to be doubles.

He cleared his throat and three faces turned to him. He heard the lift door from reception open and Ianto walked out to join them. Must've been monitoring from upstairs waiting for us to be done.

Jack made quick introductions, just using Alan's rank. "OK, we're all here so I have some information for you. The man who came through the rift months ago is from the future. Alan was chasing him when he fell through as well." He wouldn't give more information than he had to.

"Why such a gap between arrivals?" asked Gwen.

"The rift is always in flux," answered Tosh. "The difference is due to the distance between them during the chase."

"So why should we believe him?" asked Owen. "He could be in it with this guy."

Jack heard a snort of poorly disguised laughter and knew Alan was enjoying this. Too bad I can't tell them that they're in the presence of Earth's most decorated hero. "Because I know him."

Owen latched onto that like Jack knew he would. "How do you know him? He's from the bloody future."

"He is named in the Archives as a Person of Interest," supplied Ianto. "There are at least four mentions of you throughout history since 1879," he said to Alan as he handed the file to Gwen.

Jack wondered why he hadn't caught that. Must've just been looking for the Doctor.

"A Person of Interest, eh? In good company, am I?"

"There's only one other," said Jack, knowing Alan would catch on.

"So these are all you?" Gwen asked going through the file. "1888, 1900, 1917 and 1965?"

"Guilty. It's my job, observing the past and trying to keep a low profile."

"You were in a band in the 60s and you were friends with the Beatles," commented Tosh. "That's not exactly 'low profile'."

"I didn't always succeed."

"So you met Jack on one of your missions?" questioned Gwen.

"I was in the States a few years ago and Jack saved my life."

"As I recall, you returned the favour."

Alan pulled up one of the wheeled chairs and sat down. "So, what did I do to become a Person of Interest for Torchwood? I didn't blow up anything or cause a major incident."

"It was believed at first that you were someone else," Ianto answered. "Then it was thought you might lead them to him."

"You've read his file so you know he's not a psycho," said Jack. "Do you want to hear his story now?"

Alan looked at them all. "Short version. The man I was chasing and the man you have here is Korwyn, a well-known assassin who has never missed a contract."

"That's just friggin' wonderful," commented Owen. "We've got out own Terminator."

"Oh, he's human, just well-trained."

"Do you have anything we can use to track him?" asked Tosh. "Our sensors can't pick up a thing."

"You found me pretty quickly."

"When someone comes through the rift they give off energy. The longer they stay, the more it dissipates."

"So he's been here quite a while then." Alan looked at Gwen. "How long?"

"About three months. Since you have no way to help us track him, I guess we should get back to going through his victims."

Jack knew that going through the minutiæ of files was one of Gwen's strengths as a result of her police background. She always came at things from the side of the victims while the rest of them approached via the perp-alien or human.

"All military and government types, right?"

"The most recent was a couple of days ago," Jack replied. "She was an opponent of the current Minister of Defence."

"Could it have been contracted from there?"

"You wouldn't think it to look at him. He says he's acting for Earth's benefit but I don't know. There's something not quite right about him." Even looking at photos made Jack's skin crawl. He just couldn't place the feeling. Just when he thought he had a finger on it, it slipped away. They had never met and no one Jack knew through his contacts had this same feeling. He gave himself a mental shake to get back to the conversation.

"Are there any known opponents in the area or heading this way?" Alan was asking.

"Plan to head him off?" Owen asked snidely.

"Owen," Jack warned.

"I thought stopping another senseless death the right thing to do. 'I will maintain the utmost respect for human life.' Isn't that what the Declaration of Geneva says?"

Owen didn't have a comeback. Nice one, Alan!

Ianto looked up from Gwen's computer. "No one will be in Wales until next week."

"At least it'll give us more time to catch 'im," declared Owen. "We'll need it."

"But how can we find him now?" asked Tosh. "We still have no way to track him."

"There is a way to bring him to us," said Alan slowly. "Assassins have large egos. Reputation is what gives them work and a missed target is a blemish on his record. That's why they keep trying until they succeed."

Jack knew what he had in mind. "No way."

"He hasn't had any misses," said Gwen. "There's been nothing but deaths."

Jack did not like Alan setting himself up as bait. He had to make sure that everyone was involved and that meant everyone needed to know the truth. "There is one who got away," he said with a pointed look at Alan.

****************************************************************

Owen polished off another pint of Brain's Dark. "Well, it's not proper beer. But it's the best you sheep-shaggers can do," he remembered commenting at Ianto's raised eyebrow. Who would've thought that all those pub-crawls he had done back in med school would come in handy now? He looked across at Jack and Kelly who were throwing back whisky like there was no tomorrow, which was unusual. He had never seen Jack drink before. Ianto sat there sipping wine; the only sign he was not at work being his missing tie.

The two friends got more vocal, boisterously swapping stories. Some of the people Kelly had met sounded like a Who's Who of history.

Owen cast his eyes about the pub and noticed that almost every woman was looking their way. 'Course, it's those two, he thought. I'd never get any action if I hung around with them every night.

He went to take another drink of beer then remembered it was gone. "Same all around, then?"

Jack looked at him and Owen could tell he was totally sober. "Thanks, Owen."

He gathered up the empties and walked back to the bar. He placed the orders then turned around to scan the room. He saw Tosh and Gwen in a small nook talking away like they were having a relaxing girls' night out.

"Excuse me?"

He turned to see a gorgeous redhead who was practically falling out of her low-cut little black dress. He gave her a winning smile. "Yeah, luv?"

"I was wondering...I was watching your table and..." She took a deep breath. "Your friend in the suit, is he attached?"

Owen's confidence crumbled. Shoulda known if a bird approached me it would be for someone else. But Ianto? His cruel streak surfaced. "Sorry, luv. The sandy-haired bloke is off for London in the morning and the other two, they're a couple."

He paid for the drinks and head back to the table, scowling.

"Strike out again?" asked Jack.

"You severely cramp my style," he said as he set the drinks on the table before sitting down. "How much longer anyway?"

"Most criminals like being around 'real' people and feeling superior because no one knows their secret," spouted Ianto,

"He's here," Kelly said in a near whisper. "Laugh like I'm telling you a dirty joke. I need to get a better idea of where he is."

They laughed as requested and Owen wondered what they hell he was doing. How could he tell where the man was without looking around?

*******************************************************

Alan knew this would be an ideal time to use his "special" ability. He learned by chance that he could literally put himself in someone's position. He could see through their eyes and witness all they did. In rare cases he could delve into memories and emotions. Thankfully, that wasn't needed in this instance. He did not even want to contemplate the inner workings of an assassin's mind. While still carrying on his side of the conversation, Alan used his ability to slip into the head of the assassin. Looking through the man's eyes he could see Jack and Ianto's faces and Owen's profile which meant he was behind them.

"Behind us to the left there should be a man about 30 with blond hair, maybe 5'10", 180 pounds, watching us."

Jack looked while tossing back his drink. "Got him. Not bad," he said with a crooked smile.

"Down, boy. Assassin, remember?" He sipped his whisky. "Time to let Tosh and Gwen know."

Owen stood. "Why is it always me who plays the cad?"

"Because you're a natural," Jack answered.

Owen glared but didn't say anything as he sauntered over to Gwen and Tosh and pretended to chat them up. Acting insulted, Tosh slapped him-unfortunately on the same side where Alan had already punched him. He refused to take the hint and would have been beaten to a pulp by the two rugby players who came to the women's aid if Ianto hadn't quickly pulled him away and out of the pub.

"Step One is complete."

"Yeah, but was it successful?"

"We'll know in a bit."

Continuing their act, Alan and Jack stumbled out the door and into the quiet street. Ianto and Owen were out of sight, waiting in a designated spot. Alan knew Korwyn couldn't resist the bait being offered and, as far as he knew, Alan wasn't aware of his presence. Jack said they'd keep him locked up in the Torchwood cells until his machine started working again.

"You know, we won't be considered well and truly drunk until we sing loud and off-key."

Alan looked at Jack and knew he was right. He sang the first song that popped into his head. "I've been a moonshiner for many a year.."

"And I spent all my money on whisky and beer," Jack joined in enthusiastically.

When the hell is he gonna make his move? We're running out of verses. Maybe he needs another sign. He tripped over his own feet and fell to the ground nearly taking Jack with him. They laughed drunkenly as Jack helped him stand after a few tries.

"What the hell are you doing?" Jack hissed.

"Giving our friend a bit more time." He let Jack hold him up a bit as he checked on Korwyn. "OK, he can see us. Let's go."

They turned the corner into an alley that was wide enough for manoeuvrability yet narrow enough to contain. Somewhere ahead Owen and Ianto were waiting.

Korwyn followed them and Alan watched through the other man's eyes as he brought up his hand to shoot. Timing it as he pulled the trigger, Alan staggered into Jack, pushing them both out of the way. The energy bolt shattered a hole in a wall spraying bits of brick and dust everywhere.

Jack stood there holding him, acting both drunk and stunned. "What the hell was that?"

"Even when you're pissed you're a hard target!" Korwyn strode forward, weapon aimed at Alan's head. "Why couldn't you have left me alone? How the hell did you find me anyway?"

Alan pretended to overcome the alcohol. "You-you were the assassin who tried to kill me. It's your bloody fault I'm here." He straightened and looked Korwyn in the face. "Hear you've landed on your feet, got yourself a good job. What's your title, Consultant to the MOD?"

"Something like that. You, however, are a bonus. Unfinished business I get to resolve."

"Won't this bring extra attention to you, your paymaster?" asked Jack.

Korwyn looked at Jack, his gun still on Alan. "Don't think I wouldn't enjoy killing you, Captain, but it would just be a waste of time." He gave them a crooked smile. "Oh, yeah, I know all about you and your team. My employer thought it best that I know who might try to stop me. So the rest of you can just come out and join your leader here!" he called out.

Ianto and Owen walked up behind them while Gwen and Tosh joined them from the mouth of the alley. Korwyn motioned for them to join the men. "Place your weapons on the ground and kick them towards me." Six different guns clattered across the road. He kicked them further behind him.

This was not how Alan had planned it to go down. He hadn't counted on Korwyn knowing about Torchwood. Whoever his boss was also knew Jack couldn't die and that's what worried Jack most. How long before this mystery man exploited that for his own purposes?

"Saxon must be paying well," said Jack conversationally. When Korwyn didn't respond, Jack kept going. "C'mon, it's easy. You're bumping off his opposition one by one and he's probably the only one out there to accept and use a man of your 'talents'."

Saxon. Saxon. Why do I know that name? Minister of Defence...the Valiant...Christ! He becomes the Prime Minister and kills the President of the United States! He looked at Korwyn "What did he promise you when he becomes PM?"

"Harold Saxon, Prime Minister? You've got to be joking," Owen muttered.

"Sorry, not joking." Alan never took his eyes off Korwyn.

"Simple. I advance with him. Enough of this."

As he changed his aim, Jack and Owen rushed him, throwing him off-balance. Alan felt the concussion of the blast as it threw him to the ground and that was it.

***********************************************************

Tosh watched the monitors with Gwen and Ianto as their prisoner ranted and roared against his captivity. Korwyn had been quickly tackled and restrained so they could transport him back to the Hub.

This event had brought two items into her sphere that she wanted to study. Unfortunately Jack locked up the assassin's weapon stating it wasn't alien and therefore not something that fell into their purview. Besides, it would be returning with Alan once his machine was working properly.

Her eyes strayed to the medical lab where Owen was examining him. Oh, how her hands itched to study a true time machine. What tech geek or physicist wouldn't? Again, she would probably be forbidden, as it would corrupt the time lines or some such.

"I can't believe we're going to let him go," said Gwen. "He's a murderer."

"We have no proof," reminded Ianto. "Just his word, which he can easily deny later."

"From what he said, Harold Saxon ordered these deaths and becomes Prime Minister? We can't let that happen."

"As I understand it, if we prevent this, Time will find another way for it to happen," said Tosh. They both stared at her. "That's how it happens in books," she defended.

At that moment, they heard a whistle and a few choice words carry from Owen in the lab. They rushed over to see what could draw such amazement from the normally dour Londoner.

Tosh arrived to see Alan sitting on the examining table while Owen peered at his left hand like it was something he had never seen before. Wait. That was the hand that took some of the blast. It should be a mangled stump. How is it still whole?

"Tosh, you should take a look at this," Owen called.

She made her way past Ianto and Gwen, down the steps where she stopped by Jack who was watching the whole thing with a knowing look on his face.

He grinned when he saw her hesitate. "Go ahead."

She smiled in thanks before joining Owen.

Alan looked at her. "Knock yourself out but remember, no dissection and you can't keep it."

A flap of skin on the wrist was open revealing intricate circuitry. His hand was artificial! That could explain why the assassin's weapon didn't destroy it. "The work here is amazing," she said. "How long ago did it happen?"

"Five years ago. It was a rescue mission and my hand was sliced off."

"Does it retain feeling?" asked Gwen. "A sense of touch?"

"It does, but I can turn it off when the need arises."

"Like landing a ship when the controls are on fire," put in Jack.

"For example, yes."

Tosh heard a soft beeping. "What's that noise?"

Owen looked at her questioningly. "What noise? I don't hear anything."

"Sshh, there it is again." She realized it was the machine on his other wrist. "It's this," she pointed.

The smile that spread across Alan's face was so...endearing in its childlike quality. I guess when you feel you're never going to go home again and then the chance arises that you can, that would be the look.

Owen closed up the skin before going to a cabinet and dug out a sling for Alan's now useless hand. "Guess you're on your way home, eh?"

"I'll be out of your hair in a little bit." Alan got down from the table.

Tosh looked at Jack and for a moment she thought she saw hurt and even longing in his eyes. She remembered how he was in the pub, laughing and joking with an old friend, true joy in his eyes. She didn't think she had ever seen him that way before. Would he take the opportunity to go with this man or would he stay with them?

************************************************************

Jack walked back to his office and switched on the radio that was always set to Big Band classics. He grabbed the whisky bottle and glass before sitting at his desk. He poured a large one, this time wanting to well adn truly feel its effects. He stared at the glass. Someone else was going to go off and leave him stuck in this one place and time when he had been used to travelling anywhere and anywhen.

There was a knock on his door and he looked up to see Alan standing in the doorway. Jack waved him in. "You wanna glass?"

"No, thanks. Don't think I could handle any more right now. I just wanted to know if you'd care to join me. The others would love to see you. Or maybe we could meet up with the Doctor and Rose somehow."

The strains of Moonlight Serenade came from the radio and Jack thought back to dancing with Rose on an invisible spaceship in the middle of an air raid. "She was so worth fighting for."

"What was that?"

"The last words I spoke to her. The last words I'll ever speak to her." Jack looked up at Alan's puzzled face. "She died in the Battle of Canary Wharf."

"Christ!" Alan exclaimed. "How did you find out?"

"She was listed among the dead along with her mother and boyfriend."

"Did you ever think that because the Doctor was involved that she might not be dead?"

Jack had once held on to that hope but knew from personal experience that death was inevitable when the Doctor was around-except for that one time when everybody lived. "Everyone at that Game Station died. Even me. Canary Wharf was practically the same thing."

"You survived that by unexplained means. What's not to say that Rose may have survived some way as well?"

"I hope she had an easier time of it if that's the case." He took a deep breath. "After I saw the TARDIS leave, I checked for other survivors. 501 levels and I was alone. Not wanting to hang around and answer the questions once the Earth got around to sending someone, I decided to use my vortex manipulator. I thought the 21st century would be the best place to find the Doctor but I kinda overshot and ended up in 1869. The manipulator burned out making it completely useless. I had to live through the entire 20th century waiting for the right Doctor."

And in that living, how much dying was there?"

"Starting at Ellis Island in 1892 when I was shot through the heart, at least eight times before I gave up counting."

"Jack, I'm sorry."

Jack knew he meant it but he didn't want to go that way right now. "I set myself up here knowing he'd come to Cardiff again at some point."

"But Torchwood?"

"I decided to make myself useful while I was here. After the fall of Torchwood One, I restructured it, keeping it defensive yet not as weapon-dependant, if that makes sense."

"It does." Alan looked at the glass of whisky. "You told me more than I thought I'd get and you weren't even drunk."

Jack chuckled. "Don't think I need it now."

"Good." Alan picked it up and downed it in one gulp, smacking his lips when he was done.

"Hey, I thought you said you couldn't handle any more?"

"I lied." He set the glass back on the desk. "So, I take it you're gonna hang around a bit longer?"

"Yeah. I kinda feel like I'm here for a reason-besides waiting for the Doctor."

"Saving-the-World kinda thing?"

"Who knows with this place? More likely to keep them from killing each other." Jack stood. "Doesn't mean you can't drop by every now and then."

Alan rose, facing him. "Now that I know where to find you, of course I will."

Jack embraced his friend and childhood hero. Alan returned it and Jack took comfort in that moment. "Give my regards to the others," he said upon breaking the hug.

"Sure. I guess I should get Korwyn from your cells and be on my way."

"Here. You'll want this." Jack walked to his safe and removed the weapon. "I think it'd be better off with you."

Alan took it and placed it in the waistband at the small of his back. "It's dangerous enough in the 23rd century. I don't want to think about widespread use now."

Jack took him by the arm. "C'mon, let's get you down to the cells. I don't trust myself with you right now."

"Why, Jack Harkness. I'll have you know I'm not that easy," he teased.

"You and the Doctor," he joked back.

The rest of the team followed them down to the cells. Owen aimed his weapon at Korwyn as the door opened to make sure he didn't try anything while Alan put the bindings on his wrists.

"Thank you all for your help. I'll try to stop by for another visit." He programmed his machine. "You take care of each other. Your lives depend on one another now." With his dead hand resting on Korwyn's arm, he activated his machine, disappearing in the blink of an eye.

Jack couldn't help but smile at the looks on their faces. He was tempted to physically close their mouths

"Bloody hell!" declared Owen.

"Is that how he...travels?" asked Gwen.

"It must take an awful amount of energy," said Tosh.

Ianto merely looked at him, knowing what he had passed on.

"OK, back to work. Ianto, Tosh, make up a story and some evidence regarding the unfortunate demise of our killer. Owen, you'll need to create an autopsy report. Gwen, you can liase with the police and tell them we've caught the killer and that they will get all the pertinent paperwork."

They all walked ahead of him along the corridor while he paused a moment to look at the empty cell. He felt better about his situation than he had in a long time. Maybe Rose was still out there and maybe the Doctor would be able to explain what happened to him. Until that time came, he had a job to do.

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