Title: Part 4 - I Fall to Pieces (stand-alone)
Author: daedreams (aka: daedream_fanbot)
Characters: Ianto, Jack/Ianto
Setting/Spoilers: Set around the beginning of 1.05, Small Worlds
Rating: all ages
Word Count: 283
Disclaimer: Not mine; no major harm intended; will return when finished, only slightly scathed.
Summary: Ianto gets dressed and tries to keep it together.
I Fall to Pieces
I haven't always been this together. There was a time, during my adolescence, when the thought of wearing a tailored pressed suit, like my father had done every day of his life, would have been beyond ludicrous.
But now, just after getting up in the morning, I carefully lay out my trousers, shirt, jacket, and tie. And as I slip on the layers, one by one, I feel far less naked, far less exposed, and far less like I'm about to fall to pieces.
It's just my third day back after my suspension, and I'm still wondering why I'm making the effort. Wasn't it all a ruse? Just a means to an end. The grunt work, the happy facade, the putting up with Owen, the flirting. All for Lisa. But no more Lisa, yet I still cover myself in heavy fabrics and guilt.
I'm not fooling anyone any more. Except myself. But perhaps, just maybe, if the tie stays tight around my neck and the cuff links stay closed around my wrists, then I can keep myself together. Not let out the rats that are gnawing at my stomach. If I can just get on for one more day, then maybe tomorrow I'll be able to continue keeping it together.
Or maybe I'll just fall apart. Piece by piece.
Then he puts his hand on my shoulder. I almost jump at the snap that I feel, thinking that it's over now, I've shattered. But then I breathe and I'm still here and it's back to work.
Work is what keeps me solid. It's work, isn't it? Couldn't possibly be hope. Hope that he'll place a hand on me again. And keep me whole.