So I wrote a short story, a ficlet if you will, something that'd be rattling about in my brain for a few days...
Warnings: All series of Torchwood
Characters: Jack and Gwen, mentions of a lot of people
Summary: It’s a tribute to those they lost
Author’s Note: No beta, so it’s probably FULL of errors, lots and lots of errors, yup, sorry about that, but when the urge to write takes hold, look out!
Word Count: 501
Disclaimer: Nothing, I own nothing, there’s not even a penny in my bank account so please don’t sue!
“The cherry blossoms?” asks Jack.
“Those are for Tosh,” answers Gwen as she hooks her arm through his.
“Ah,” says Jack. “Perfect. They’re beautiful. So was she.”
“What else do you see?” she queries.
Jack looks closer at the tribute that Gwen and Rhys set up. “Is that the singularity scalpel?”
Gwen laughs and nods, “Yes it is. I couldn’t help it, that thing holds such a special place in my memories. I thought it was the perfect thing to add as a way to remember Owen.”
Jack smiles and says, “It was one of his favorite toys.” He leans down again to search out another tribute and notices a faint scent in the air. “I smell coffee,” he mumbles quietly.
“That’s for Ianto, we figured out a way to make the water smell like his special blend.”
“It fits,” Jack replies. “He’d appreciate the subtlety.”
“Do you see anything else?” asks Gwen.
“What is the picture of the two little boys?”
“That’s for you and your brother. You lost him, and your childhood that day,” she says softly.
Jack straightens up and envelopes Gwen in a tight hug. “Thank you,” he whispers.
She pats his back and pulls away slowly, “Keep looking.”
For the first time he sees the small picture, tucked into the corner of the memorial. “That’s Steven,” he says hoarsely.
“Because Jack, you lost him, and I wanted to…” her voice trails off at the anguish on Jack’s face.
“I didn’t lose him, I killed him,” he states flatly.
“Jack, you were pushed so far beyond what anyone is capable of withstanding that it’s a wonder you didn’t break sooner. You are allowed to grieve as his grandfather,” says Gwen, punctuating her words by grabbing Jack and pulling him back into a tight embrace. “It’s okay.”
He pulls away and looks down at Gwen, “It hurt. It still hurts.”
“But that’s okay Jack. The hurt is part of the grieving process.” She pats his arm and puts a smile on her face, “Come on. Let’s go and get a coffee, and talk.”
Jack closes his eyes and sighs, “Talk about what?”
“Well, tell me about him,” replies Gwen. “Tell me about Steven, and Alice, all the good things. Let’s just talk. We can talk about Tosh, Owen, Ianto, relive the times we were happy.”
“Okay,” he says. “Okay.”
Gwen takes his arm again, and guides him down the Plass towards a coffee shop. “What was he like?”
As they walk away, the sun sets over the small fountain placed at the site of the invisible lift. The light reflects off of the burnished bronze basin, and catches the lines of each engraved picture. The coffee scented water bubbles quietly, slowly filling the fountain. Not many people understand the pictures etched in the monument, but the words on the back of the memorial ring true to anyone who happens to walk by.
For those we have loved, lost, and will see on the other side.