Title: Adaptation, a Torchwood/NCIS Crossover (19/20)
Characters: Jack Harkness, Ianto Jones, Tim McGee, LJ Gibbs, Ducky Mallard, others
Rating: Starts PG, but hey, it’s got Jack and Ianto in it (not to mention Tim & Jethro!)
Disclaimer: Oh, please. If I owned them, would I let some of those idiots write the scripts? And if I were making any money off them, would I be where they could find me?
Summary: Tim McGee’s worlds collide as Torchwood is drawn into an NCIS case
Part One is here; Part Two is here; Part Three is here; Part Four is here; Part Five is here; Part Six is here; Part Seven is here; Interlude is here; Part Eight is here; Part Nine is here; Part Ten is here; Part Eleven is here; Part Twelve is here; Part Thirteen is here; Part Fourteen is here; Part Fifteen is here; Part Sixteen is here; Part Seventeen is here; Part Eighteen is here
Ianto's voice carried not only the authority of a man used to command, but the full power of the Winter King. It stopped us all in our tracks.
“Captain O'Shea, take your men and clear out this level. Bring everyone you find here. Roberta, assign one of your people to each fire team. Block any attempt to insert illusions into the marine's minds. Captain, I know it's against your training, but you must stay here and stand guard.”
O'Shea looked like he had been asked to bite the heads off live chickens, but he nodded and barked out directions. The marines and their Silurian companions fanned out while Jethro, O'shea, and I stood watch over the Winter King and his Consort.
Ianto knelt and pulled Jack's body across his lap. “You know, cariad,” he whispered in Jack's ear, “we're going to have a long conversation about this habit of yours of jumping into the line of fire every time someone is in danger. One of these days you're going to run out of lives...”
The monologue continued, too low for Jethro and O'Shea to hear. They both looked at Ianto in horror and a great deal of pity. I held my tongue; I had heard things about Jack, things so wild and hard to believe that I couldn't bring myself to speak them out loud. All I could do was wait and see.
A few minutes passed, and the whispered monologue continued. Finally Jethro couldn't stand it any longer. He reached for Ianto... just in time to see Jack take a deep, gasping breath and open his eyes. He jumped back like a scalded cat, looking at me with wild eyes.
“What the hell?”
“Holy... it's true, then.” I waved my hand in Jack's approximate direction. “We had heard rumors... But I didn't believe them, not really.”
O'Shea was staring at Jack. His hands gripped his rifle so hard his knuckles were turning white. “Sir?”
Ianto helped Jack to his feet. The Torchwood director was pale but there were no signs of damage. He smiled at us, a pale version of his usually cheeky smile.
“Sorry,” he said to the room in general.
“I saw you hit by something that looked like a laser beam. You had a hole in your chest. I thought you were dead. The Consort of the Winter King dead on our watch!” Jethro's voice was steady but I could hear the anger rising underneath. “I don't think sorry covers it.”
“I had this accident a few years ago, and it left me unable to stay dead.” Jack shrugged. “Captain O'Shea, we have put you and your men hip deep in it, haven't we?”
O'Shea gave something resembling both a bow and a salute, but his eyes were fixed on Ianto. “The Winter King?”
Jack laughed. “And that impresses you more than my immortality. You Celts are all alike.” He stepped away from Ianto and walked towards the center of the room, where the shooter was being held by three Marines and one of the human-Silurians. “Let him go, please.”
The Silurian stood calmly, observing Jack with as much curiosity as Jack was observing him. Nearly seven feet tall, he towered over Jack, but to my Senses he seemed fragile. His skin was worn smooth in some places, and its grayish tone implied ill health rather than protective coloration. The ear plates were dull white, and its eye slits were nearly shut. He smelled of death.
“I'm Captain Jack Harkness. We need to talk.”
“There is nothing to say,” At any other time the high-pitched voice that emerged from the round mouth would have been amusing. “We have lost. You will kill us all, as you have done before.”
“I’m not going to get into ancient history with you. It’s your current crimes I’m concerned about. You participated in a smuggling operation. You kidnapped two federal agents. You murdered...”
“No!” The Silurian reared back to full height. “We did not murder anyone. All we wanted is the technology to do what the other clan has done. We offered them artifacts in exchange for transportation here and help in setting up this place.”
The roar made us turn. Three Silurians were being marched into the room. One of them was struggling with his guards. It was he who had shouted. He seemed older than the others. The skin was gray and smooth throughout, and the ear plates were worn and nicked around the edges. I could feel the waves of energy coming off his third eye, but they bounced off harmlessly from the shield the Roberta's people had set up around him.
The Silurian Jack had been talking to turned on him. “Why? Do you have yet another master plan? Considering how well all your other plans have worked, perhaps throwing ourselves on this man's mercy would be our best step.”
“Mercy? From humans?”
“These are not humans!” The very human snort that accompanied the retort would have been funny in other circumstances. “That one over there,” he pointed at me, “is as nonhuman as it is possible. His mind is like ours, yet not, and like a human’s, yet not. This one here,” he pointed at Ianto, “has a human mind, yet it holds so much power he could destroy us all. And this one,” he pointed at Jack, “seems human but his mind is powered by an energy so vast it makes the sun look like a child’s light-stick!”
“It does not matter! We are the First Ones and this world is ours by right. Negotiating with…. food animals is demeaning!”
“And using your own people as experimental subjects is better?” Roberta pointed at the capsules. “You could just have asked for our help!”
“I don't think he believes you would listen,” Jack said. “Not after you found out who they were.”
“No! Please!” The Silurian who had shot Jack pleaded with him. “Don't!”
Roberta frowned. “Why wouldn't we listen?”
“A friend of mine was traveling with Charles Darwin and the crew of the Beagle when they encountered a Silurian group hiding in the Galapagos Islands. The leader of the group had experimented with his food animals and in the process accidentally developed certain functions that would ultimately lead to intelligence. The leader knew if his clan folk found out he would be executed, so he sabotaged their stasis chambers and fled with his followers. The leader died in the Galapagos, but some of his followers escaped.” Jack pushed a few buttons on his wrist strap. “Darwin did some drawings of them.”
The image that floated above his wrist may have been quarter-sized, but the details were a clear match to the Silurians in front of us. Roberta studied it for a moment and then turned to the Silurian who had shot Jack.
“What is your name?”
“I am Siarkhak. I am a geneticist.”
“Are you? Do you think these,” she pointed to the capsules, “are proper science?”
“It's the best I can do,” he said, half-way between defiance and shame. “We are dying! There's only twenty six of us left. My own mate has lost all our eggs. We need to do something!”
“And we will.” Roberta touched his arm. “We wouldn’t hold your ancestors’ actions against you. But we need something in exchange.”
“Siarkhak, be quiet!”
“Or what, Asykh? We're done, old man. Our time is over. All we can do is hope to survive.” He turned to Roberta. “What do you want?”
“One of the humans says that the when the body meant to resemble the woman you captured was left for NCIS to find, he saw a map. What was it?”
“The smugglers wanted to know where to find more treasure. Asykh gave them access for some of our sites, but I do not know which ones.”
Roberta turned to the old Silurian. “Asykh?”
“I have nothing to say to you.”
“Yes, you do, old man.” The coldness in her voice made me wince. “I have the survival of your clan in the palm of my very human hand. Your pride or your brood, Asykh. Choose.”
He held her eyes for a few minutes, then sagged in defeat. “I gave him a list of our weapons stores. I have been studying human history. If one human clan had Silurian weapons the other clans would want them too. They would attack each other until only a few were left.”
“You wanted to set off World War III,” Jethro said harshly.
“What does it matter now? You’ve won. You’ve stopped us.” His hands opened and closed as if trying for something beyond his reach. “We’re all dead.”
“Not quite, Asykh,” Roberta said. “I can see your great age on you, old man. You will die. But your children will live. Maybe they will not rule the world, but they will live.”