Title: Adaptation, a Torchwood/NCIS Crossover (Epilogue)
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
Author's Note: A llaeswisg is a long robe caught at the shoulders, a lot like a Roman toga. Carn Llechart is one of the oldest and largest ring circles in Wales.
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; Part Nineteen is here; Part Twenty is here
I stared at myself in the mirror and Drustan ap Madog stared back at me. I wore my Clan's colors, brown tunic and pants with silver piping, with the ermine's head embroidered on the collar. The Heir's circlet that I had accidentally-on-purpose forgotten to bring had been delivered by morning by a Small One named Pansy, with a pointed note from the King regarding my duties and responsibilities. Jethro had been immensely amused until another Small One showed up, carrying a complete outfit and another circlet for him. The note accompanying it was from Jack: you took him on, you took everything that came with him. Deal with it.
I studied the circlet. It was made of three flat pieces of silver shaped like waning moons, held together with three large dark red garnets. It had been placed on my cradle three days after my birth, and family legend had it that I had grasped it and wouldn't let it go until one of my aunts had exchanged it for a silver rattle. Now it sat right on my brow, the garnets disappearing into my hair so all that showed were the three silver crescents. Seeing myself like this made me realize Jack had been right. This was who and what I was, and the idea, even the suggestion, that Jethro wouldn’t be able to deal with it suddenly terrified me.
A soft knock on the door pulled me back into the here and now. Jethro would deal just fine; if there was one thing I had learned over the years it was that once he committed to something he stuck to it no matter what.
“Enter,” I said, using the familiar yidh y Tylwyth construction. After all, I was home.
Ducky walked in, resplendent in a bespoke tuxedo. After our encounter with the Silurians, while Jethro, Abby, and I were arguing about where to live, Ducky had gone into a huddle with Jack and Ianto and then presented us with a fait accompli. The beautiful house in the Alexandria suburbs was signed over to us, furnished, and Ducky had packed his bags and moved into Carn Llechart. To hear Lady Achren’s good-natured grumble, Grandpa Ducky had taken over the joint.
“How are you holding up, Timothy?”
“Fine, I guess.” I saw Ducky’s amused smile, and groaned. “Who am I kidding? I’m a nervous wreck. How’s Abby? Where’s Jethro?”
Ducky valiantly managed to subdue himself. “Abby is in Lady Achren’s apartments, together with as many ladies as could be crammed inside. I’m told it’s beginning to resemble what the fashionable Regency folk called a crush. It’s female time over there, and God protect the hapless male who blunders in.”
“And Jethro? Who’s keeping him company?”
Ducky gave me a look of pure deviltry. “Jack.”
“Holy Mother, Ducky!” I yelped. “We’re getting married in two hours. I want Jethro in one piece!”
“Stop worrying, Timothy. Jack will behave. He knows how much Ianto wants this marriage to happen.” He kept a straight face for a few seconds, then patted me on the shoulder, smirking just a little. “Tony and Mr. Palmer are there also, as well as Rhys and Andrew.”
“Thank goodness.” I poured myself a splash of wine. “And they sent you to keep me company?”
“Exactly. Ianto has been delayed, but he'll be here soon.”
“Who's minding the store?”
“John and Ieuan are on Hub duty. O'Shea called Jethro earlier. Everything is fine in Washington, too. Stop jumping about, Timothy. And don't sit down!” He reproved. “Let's keep you pressed and neat until after the ceremony, shall we?”
A soft displacement in the air announced the arrival of the Winter King. Within Carn Llechart, only three people had the authority to use the Paths: the King, his Consort, and the Keeper of the Wards. If it had been anyone but them, the ermine heads on the collars of the Keeper's knights would start to yip softly and the whole place would have shut down tighter than the Tower of London after closing time.
“Sorry I'm late,” Ianto said. “How's our groom, Ducky?”
“Only about as bad as you were.”
“That bad? Shall we send for something strong to settle his nerves?”
“I'm afraid that will not be possible,” Ducky was looking at his watch. “Time to go get you married, Timothy.”
We headed downstairs to meet my parents and our immediate family. By tradition the groom's retinue left from the King's Tower and the bride's from the Consort's Tower, but in our case, Jethro had been accommodated in the Consort's Tower and Abby in the Holly Court. Everything else was absolutely by the book, by Lady Achren's – not to mention my mothers' – insistence. The three processions would meet in the central courtyard of the upper ward and then pass through the Holly Gate on the way to the Winter Hall in the Lower Ward, where the ceremony would take place.
The courtyard outside the towers was filled with relatives and friends. Everyone carried small bouquets of yellow and orange Welsh poppies and Queen Anne's lace. As I stepped out, they cheered and applauded. I tried to stay with the crowd, but Ianto planted his hand in the middle of my back and shoved me forward.
I led the way down towards the fountain at the center of the courtyard. As the crowd parted, I saw Jethro coming down the path on the opposite side. He was wearing an outfit similar to mine, but his collar was embroidered with the Torchwood logo. I had to fight down a giggle as I saw he was wearing his circlet. Tony, Jimmy Palmer, Jack, Rhys, and the Summer King and his Consort walked behind him, together with Rhy's wife, Martha, a stunning woman who seemed to have her own escort of Small Ones, and Martha's sister Tish and her husband. A bevy of kids brought up the rear. Somehow I wasn't surprised to see that Jack had given Jethro a proper retinue.
We met in front of the fountain. Jethro was solemn as he reached out to take my hand. Our fingers intertwined as we turned to face the massive gates of the Holly Court, the oldest building in Carn Llechart.
A flourish of pipes sounded and voices rose in the traditional wedding hymn as the gates swung open. Jack and Ianto's two oldest daughters stepped out, wearing silver-embroidered green llaeswisgs, unbelted, as befitted unmarried girls. They carried garlands of wildflowers and wore crowns to match. Behind them, Ziva led a small army of ladies dressed to the nines. Finally, the Lady Achren came to stand on the doorway, holding Abby's hand lightly as she presented the bride to the assembled crowd.
I nearly swallowed my tongue. Abby was stunning. A plain white llaeswisg was belted right under her breasts, flaunting her swollen belly. The belt was made of dozens of gold and silver strands braided with multicolored stones. A matching rope had been woven through her elaborate hairdo. She wore high-heeled silver sandals and her toenails had been painted a different color each. The butterflies at the pit of my stomach evaporated. I felt Jethro squeeze my fingers and I tightened mine around his, knowing everything was going to be just fine.
As she reached us, we reached out with our free hands to take hers.
“Are they all right?” Jethro whispered.
Abby patted her belly. “Summersaults until about fifteen minutes ago, then they settled down.” She grinned at us. “Let's get this show on the road before they wake up again.”
Jethro and I let go of each other's hands and moved to stand on either side of her, offering her our arms. She tucked hers through and rested her hands on our forearms. We turned to face the crowd's applause. Then, smiling, we headed for the Holly Gate and our future.