The Dream Curse
By Jo Rita Raymer
Another rainy day in
, by the look of the darken sky it
wasn’t about to let up anytime soon. The atmosphere was heavy, unstable and the
temperature had dropped quickly. Something had made the birds silent. But that
didn’t silence the humans who were doing the daily routines, clueless to the
oncoming storm. Cardiff
The Torchwood team had stopped in a local tavern to have a few drinks after a long night of hunting. The creatures called Weevils were coming out of the sewers more frequently now and were killing innocent people. Last night was just one night of many that the team had captured these creatures so the world might be a safer place.
The waitress placed their drinks down on the table and told them to have a great day. As she walked away Owen smiled and considered asking her out on a date.
Jack was gulping down his glass of water as Owen spoke up sarcastically.
“Well bloody hell, that hunt went down badly. Ianto what were you trying to do sedate me or the weevil?”
“I was merely trying to help you Owen. My aim was just a little off.” Ianto tilted his head a bit and gave a smile.
Owen glowered and replied “Next time do me a favor and don’t help okay!”
Toshiko and Gwen looked at each other and started to laugh at Ianto and Owen. Jack just waited till the laughter had quit before he spoke.
“Well the main concern was to capture it before any harm was done. Now Janet has someone to communicate with, if by any means that is what these creatures do to talk to one another.”
Gwen finally spoke up. “We don’t know a lot about these creatures except they are linked together in some way to each other. Sort of like an empathy. Too bad we can’t just send them back through the rift to where they came from.”
Owen looked at Gwen and exclaimed “Speaking of the rift, don’t you think it’s been quiet for the past few days?”
Jack glanced over at Toshiko as she pulled out her hand held device and looked at her results with a puzzled look on her face.
“Just a small blimp but nothing to be alarmed about, it disappeared as fast it showed up on the device. I don’t think anything came through.” She replied.
Jack raised his eyebrow slightly and looked at Toshiko.
“Are you sure about that Tosh? We need to stay on top of this just incase.”
“I am sure Jack. But when we return back to the hub I can recalibrate and do another scan.” She replied as she put the device back into her canvas shoulder bag. But she hadn’t been wrong before. With these weather conditions anything could have slipped through. Could something be coming? She pushed the thoughts from her mind for now and worry about it later.
As the Torchwood team returned to the hub Jack asked Toshiko if there was any residual energy left from what she had encountered earlier. She reported back that there was no activity at all;
was safe for
another day. Cardiff
Jack was alone in the hub when he heard Toshiko’s computer sounding out, rushing over to look at the screen he saw there was rift activity. Immediately he texted the team to get back to the hub fast something or someone had gotten through.
The residual energy was two miles outside of Cardiff so that is where the team went. As they made their way to the isolated location it had started to rain heavily. Toshiko got out of the SUV and scanned the area and there was no activity at all. She thought maybe there was something wrong with her device in some way. Owen stepped in to give her a hand with the analysis and he got the same results. Nothing!
“What in the hell is going on here?” Owen exclaimed.
“I don’t know but I know what I saw on Tosh’s computer. Something was definitely here.” Jack said as he took a heavy breath.
But at the same time Jack was feeling disgusted that there was nothing more they could do. He felt as though something was not right. When he looked to his right he saw a wooden box which looked very old sticking out of the mud. Jack bent down to retrieve it.
“This wasn’t here a moment ago.” He replied.
As he looked at it closely he found it had strange markings on it, hieroglyphic symbols.
“What did you find sir?” Asked Ianto as he approached Jack. He placed the box inside his grey coat and turned to walk toward the others.
“It’s a magical box Ianto.” He chuckled. “I need a better look at it when we get back. Let’s go, there’s nothing more we can do here.” Jack replied.
Ianto knocked on Jack’s office door. There was no answer. He grabbed the door knob while trying to manage a tray of coffee and a Danish. The room was semi-darken; the only light pooling was a desk lamp. Jack’s head was bent down and his chin was resting on his chest, sitting slumped in his desk chair asleep. He was awoken by the smell of coffee.
“Perfect timing Ianto.” He said.
Ianto placed the tray down on his desk and handed him a cup of coffee and the Danish. A few moments later after enjoying the warmth of his coffee and his nourishment he replied. “Has everyone else gone home Ianto?”
“Yes they have sir. They said they would be back tonight.” He said with a grin.
“Why didn’t you leave too Ianto, we’ve had a busy night and I am sure that you are tired like the rest of us?”
“Well sir I thought you might need something.”
“I am in need of a hot shower. And there is plenty of room for the both of us if you are interested.” Jack said raising one eyebrow and smiled with his boyish grin.
“Yes I am interested Jack.”
As they stepped into the shower letting the hotness of the water saturate all over their bodies. Jack placed his hands on Ianto’s face pulling him close to taste his lips, while moving his hands down to caress all over his body. Ianto moaned with pleasure and excitement with each touch from Jack. As the climax came to an end, it left the both of them not wanting the moment of their love-making to end.
“Ianto.” He heard Jack saying bringing him back to reality.
“What did you say Jack?”
“I said is that a new shirt? You are looking very good this morning. Are you okay?”
“I am fine and yes it’s a new shirt. Thanks for noticing it. I better go and make more coffee and get those files back into the archives. Is there anything else you need me to do this afternoon sir?”
“No Ianto. Could you please drop the sir? I think I will look and see if I can read those hieroglyphics on that wooden box that I found earlier. It could be alien origin.”
“Okay I will see you back upstairs sir.” He said with a smile on his face.
Jack chuckled as he watched Ianto leave the room. His love for this man grew more intense than he thought possible. He had many lovers in the past; male and females and some more than others he cared to just forget about. But Ianto was special. He cared for him deeply. Thinking of him now it made him smile. He really didn’t like to think about his past and he tried not to do so; but sometimes he would see someone who reminded him of her. A smile, or the way they walked or even when someone tossed their hair over their shoulders.
He needed to get back upstairs and get to work on that wooden box; memories would have to wait another day.
Jack was sitting at his desk studying the strange markings on the wooden box, slowly turning it from side to side. He thought to himself this can’t be right. He had seen the symbols before. The meaning read DREAM OF A LOST LOVE. He took the box and tried to pry it open with a letter opener. As it opened he heard a swoosh sound. A gray mist floated up into Jack’s face. He reached inside and took a piece of parchment paper out and placed it in his hand. He slowly stood up to call for Ianto for help but he collapsed near his desk. Jack fell into a deep sleep.
Ianto was at the computer when he heard a hard thump that hit the floor. He thought maybe Jack had dropped a book or something from his desk. When he went to investigate the noise, he saw Jack lying on the floor possibly dead. Ianto bent down to check him out and Jack appeared to be unconscious but still breathing. He immediately dialed Owen’s mobile number. It took several rings before he heard his voice.
“This better be an emergency to interrupt me.”
“Owen, there’s something wrong with Jack. He collapsed and is lying on the floor.” Ianto said nervously into the phone.
“Just give him a few minutes and I am sure he will come back to life. Jack always comes back.” He said.
“He’s not dead Owen! He seems to be unconscious.”
“Yeah, he is lying near his desk and beside him is that strange looking box he found this morning. And it’s opened.” Ianto said in a worried tone.
“Shit. I’m on my way. Give Gwen and Tosh a call and tell them to get back to the hub okay.”
There was silence on the phone for a few seconds. Owen thought Ianto had hung up the phone.
“Ianto are you there?” He said with a worried tone.
“Yes…. yes, I will do it now.” He replied as he put down the phone.
It seemed that it took a long time before the rest of the team arrived back at the hub. As they walked into Jack’s office they found Ianto sitting by his side holding his hand while tears were streaming down his face. Owen rushed over and placed his hand on Jack’s chest feeling a strong heartbeat. Gwen and Tosh stood by Ianto’s side while Owen examined Jack to try to determine what could be wrong with him.
“Ianto, we need to get him off the floor and on an examining table. Come on you lot he’s going to be fine. You know Jack he always comes back.”
“What’s wrong with him Owen? I want to know.” Gwen replied.
“As far as I can tell he’s in a very deep sleep. His vitals are normal and there’s no trauma to his head at all.” Owen said as he took Gwen’s hand.
“So what do we do in the meantime till he wakes up?” Toshiko asked.
“Well as Jack would say we keep doing what we do. Come on guys we will figure this out.” Owen said trying to convince the others not to worry.
“I will stay with Jack awhile and monitor him for any changes.” Gwen exclaimed.
She took Jack’s hand to place it in hers but his hand was tightly closed. As she pried it open a piece of paper fell to the floor. Gwen quickly picked it up and called out to the others.
“Hey guys come here quickly. This fell out of Jack’s hand. It says DREAM OF A LOST LOVE. What in the hell does that mean?”
“He was looking at that strange box he found earlier and it must have been inside it.” Replied Ianto hastily.
“Where is the box Ianto? It might tell us something. It’s better than standing here and wait to see if Jack comes to.” Owen commented.
Ianto hurried into the office to retrieve the box that was still lying on the floor but now it was closed shut. As he picked it up he could feel Jack’s presence but somewhere far away. And it frightened him that Jack may never wake up. But he couldn’t think of such things. He would wake up and things would go back to normal and they would laugh about what had happened to him. Perhaps they would go out to dinner and a movie and have some fun after that. He entered the autopsy room and handed the box to Owen. He studied the symbols on all sides of the box and handed it to Toshiko.
“Can you encrypt this and get the meaning of the symbols?” He asked.
“Sure Owen, but it will take time. I will get right on it.” Toshiko replied as she went straight to her computer station.
Owen walked over to where Jack was lying and there was no change at all. If Toshiko couldn’t get the meaning from the symbols and give them a clue to what happened to Jack could he wake up on his own? Owen went back to his terminal to see if maybe if there were some rift activity about the time that Jack collapsed. He had to do something he was a doctor and he could figure this out.
Gwen and Ianto were sitting with Jack when Owen and Toshiko walked in. The expression on their faces told the whole story and it wasn’t one that they wanted to hear. They didn’t have any answers at all. It was up to Jack now.
Jack remembered that he opened the wooden box and then feeling very dizzy as if he was going to black out. And then he got up to call out to Ianto and he woke up here. He looked around the room. But where was here? Jack slowly got to his feet and looked again even though his mind was still addled. He thought the place looked familiar to him. The room was small and the light was dim and glowing. The bed was medium size with a dresser beside it. Hanging over the middle of the room was a light fixture that reminded him of a disco ball. Boy did that take him back a few years he smiled as he thought to himself. He walked over to the door to see if he could open it, turning the door knob and giving it a jerk to his amazement it opened. Lurking around the door’s edge to see if anyone was around saw there was no one. Who had brought him here and why? And furthermore what time period was it he wondered. Many thoughts were rushing through his mind; but he had to assert the situation and get himself back to his team. As he walked into the living room he realized that he indeed had been there many times. In fact, it had been like a home to him. Realizing this he knew that he had gone back in time. A period in his life he didn’t want to reveal to anyone not even himself. He had to get out of here and fast. Jack started for the front door when it opened up and he was confronted by a woman from his past.
Miranda Peacock stood in front of Jack with her hands on her wide hips. Her oval face and her big brown eyes looked the same as it did many years ago. She always had an expression on her face no matter what was going on in her life. Even when her kids were driving her crazy or her husband had a new ideal about a new job adventure he wanted to try out. Miranda never gave up on her family.
“Jack Harkness, did you wipe your feet when you came in? Do you know how many times you have brought red mud into this house? I have lost count. Well don’t just stand there come and give me a hug.” She exclaimed with joy.
He smiled with his boyish grin and proceeded to give her a hug. It felt as though he had never left. But this can’t be real. It had to be a mere shadow of a memory that was from his past and he was living it all over again.
“Miranda, it’s been a while hasn’t it? You look beautiful as always.”
“Jack if you call a few weeks a while ago well then it has been. You do look a little pale dear, are you ill? Raven wondered where you had gotten to. She thought maybe you found another girl.” Miranda was rattling on.
“Raven’s alive…. She’s not dead?” Jack paused.
“Of course she’s alive. Why would you say something so nonsense as that Jack? Are you seeing someone else? Please don’t break my little girl’s heart.” She said as her voice was almost choking up.
“No, I’ve just been busy that’s all. Where is she at by the way?” Jack asked.
“She’s out shopping for a few things for dinner tonight. Sit down and I’ll get you a cup of tea and biscuits. I am sure you are starving by now.”
“Can I ask you a strange question Miranda?”
“Sure Jack you can ask me anything. You are like family to us. If you are in trouble or need help I will do what I can. So go ahead and ask your question.”
“What day and year is it?”
“Jack have you been drinking? You know good and well it’s
13th 1970. Why do you have a bewildered look on your
“There’s nothing wrong honest. I wish I could….”
About that moment the kitchen door flew open with a loud crash as the door hit the wall. Raven stood there with her hands full of shopping bags of groceries. She placed them on the table and turned around to see Jack standing there with her mother. She rushed over and slapped him across the face. Then she pulled him close to her kissing him passionately on the lips.
“Where in the hell have you been Jack Harkness?” Raven snapped at him.
“Saving the world again.” He said with a grin on his face.
“From aliens again I suppose. Jack you need to stop saying those kinds of things. You got Matt into believing that stuff. And you know how my little brother is hanging on every word you say.” Raven replied.
“Well you two can go sit down in the living room and work things out amongst yourselves while I get dinner started. Arthur will be here shortly and he will want his dinner on time. And it’s not prepared he will have my head.” Miranda told them.
Raven took Jack by the hand and took him into the living room and they sat down on the sofa.
“Jack, where have you been for the last few weeks? I’ve been worried out of my mind. I thought you had forgotten about
” She said softly. me.
Jack placed his hand on her arm and tenderly started caressing it. He looked into the reflection of her eyes and only saw her beauty. He stroked her hair feeling the softness with his hand between his fingers. Memories of what he had came flooding back to his mind. He had shared happiness with her and her family. But again he remembered pain as well. Why was he brought back to this place and time? Then he remembered DREAM OF A LOST LOVE.
“Jack, didn’t you hear mom? She asked you if you were staying for dinner.”
“Sure I will stay. Looks like I will be here for a while, until I figure this out or…..” He paused.
“Jack you are not making a lot of sense at the moment. Are you sure that you are alright?” Raven asked in a concerned tone.
“Hey with these good looks what could be wrong? You are important to
” He said. me.
“I know that Jack. I am planning on spending the rest of my life with you. I will always love you. But you never talk about yourself or the work that you do. All you ever say it’s important. Just tell me who the real Jack Harkness is. What is this secret you don’t want me to know?” she said as she was tearing up.
Jack pulled her close to him and tenderly kissed her. He gently wiped away the tears from her rosy cheeks.
Jack had fallen in love with her the first day he saw her. She was walking across the street in
with her mother and her little brother Matt.
He was there on Torchwood business and was on his way back to Cardiff.
But his plans had changed now he had to meet this girl. And that’s what Jack
did. As he saw his opportunity to accidentally come upon her as they were
walking out a local store. Of course he used his charm and that boyish grin to
win her over. Bristol
They were very happy, laughing all the time making future plans that he knew might never happen. It wasn’t the fact that he would never get any older, but one day she would get old and die. He even thought about telling her everything about himself. But that never happened. Their plans were tattered by her death. Jack was crushed because of what happened to her. It was his fault and he never forgave himself. She was killed because of him. Could he change her future and save her? Was this real or is it indeed a dream? If only the team was here to help him sort this out. He would just have to play it out on his own. His thoughts were interrupted my Miranda saying that dinner was on the table.
Arthur came in the back door grumbling about the events that had transpired that afternoon at his job. He was working with machinery all day and could be stressful at times. But it was a living and it kept a roof over their heads and food on the table. That’s all he could ask for. But he wished that Jack would marry his daughter and give Miranda and him some grandchildren so they can spoil them. He wasn’t getting any younger.
“Dad, what are you concentrating so hard about?” Raven enquired.
“Nothing in particular Raven. Let’s sit down to eat. I am starving.”
Owen told everyone that nothing else could be done until Jack woke up. It could be days or weeks or longer. No one really knew. Ianto took a deep breath and let it out slowly. He was so disappointed how they could stand by and do nothing. Look how many times Jack came through for them. When they thought there were no answers he always had a solution to the problem. Why in the hell could they not figure this thing out?
“Tosh, could you decrypt the symbols that were on the wooden box?” asked Ianto.
“It has several meanings. But it refers to a dream curse. And then Gwen found that note that says DREAM OF A LOST LOVE. So it does make sense why Jack is asleep.” Toshiko said.
“Gwen was there anything else written on that piece of paper?”
“I didn’t notice. I was too busy helping you guys put Jack into the autopsy room. I placed it on the work station over there. Tosh saw me do it.” Gwen replied as she went to retrieve the piece of paper.
Gwen gave the piece of paper to Owen as he intensely studied the words more closely.
“Guys since the box had hieroglyphics on it wouldn’t this piece of paper have it as well? This note is in English.” Owen asked.
“YES!” They all replied at the same time. They were all too busy worrying about Jack than to look what was right in front of them.
“SHIT!” Exclaimed Owen as he turned the piece of paper over.
As he turned the piece of paper over he saw a small signature that read Captain John Hart. The others saw the disturbed look on his face. But they were in this situation as a team and hopefully together they could figure this thing out. How much time did they have as well as Jack till John Hart will make havoc for them?
“I thought that he was out of our lives for good and now this shit. Bollocks! It’s signed Captain John Hart.” Owen said.
Ianto grabbed the paper from Owen’s hand and looked at it. Something he always feared that he would come back and take Jack away or try to anyway. His mind was racing very fast trying to take it all in.
“John Hart. I think Jack could be in trouble if that bastard had anything to do with what has happened to him.” Ianto replied.
“Well mate, there isn’t a lot we can do is there?” Owen exclaimed harshly.
“Can’t we revive him with the EKG machine? Wouldn’t that shock him out of his sleep state that he is in?” Gwen asked.
“No. His heart is beating normal. He’s still alive just in a deep sleep. So that wouldn’t work at all. So we…” Owen was saying.
“We wait till he wakes up then. No way! We need to wake me up now Owen. You don’t know what that bastard is up to.” Ianto screamed.
“Look Ianto, Jack is in no danger as far as I can tell. John Hart can’t hurt him. We aren’t going to leave his side for a moment.” Owen said trying to console him.
“Owen is right.” Toshiko replied back heading back to her work station. She wanted to study the hieroglyphics more in detail.
“No, I am going in there and wake Jack up now!” He said.
“Ianto, Jack will be just fine. He has been through worse things than this. Trust Owen okay.” replied Gwen.
“I can’t wait Gwen. I am sorry.”
“Wait, Ianto. Are you afraid of what’s happening to him in his dreams? And you can’t handle that. You’re jealous that maybe just maybe Jack is having the time of his life having sex and John is playing the good wife again.” Owen shouted back at him.
Ianto’s face got very red with anger and he rushed to Owen’s side and punched him in the nose. Blood poured down from his nose running onto his white doctor’s coat. Gwen rushed over and got between them pulling them apart.
“Oi! This is not going to solve anything you lot beating each other up. I want you both to stop this nonsense now. Do you hear me?”
Ianto made his way back to the autopsy room where Jack was. He leaned over and kissed him on the forehead while gently touching his hair. He whispered into Jack’s ear so the others couldn’t hear him if they were watching through the monitors.
“I love you Jack. Please come back to me.”
Jack was listening to Miranda and Arthur discussing their vacation plans visiting Washington DC to see the White House next year. But Jack knew that it would not happen at all. Soon their world will be crashing down all around them. In less than six months they would be making preparations for Raven’s final resting place. He wondered if he could stop the events that were going to take place in the months ahead. All of a sudden he heard a voice calling to him. “I love you Jack. Please come back to me.”
Jack looked up as if was coming from above him.
“Ianto where are you?”
“Jack who are you talking to? Who is Ianto?” asked Raven.
“Ianto he works for me. I thought I heard his voice speaking to me. I guess I’ve been working too hard these past few weeks. My mind is just playing tricks on me. I am the one that needs a vacation.” He said with a chuckle.
“I know what you need. Let’s go for a walk. Hey, I will even buy you a drink. What do you say?” She said struggling to get him from the sofa.
It was only a short distance from Raven’s house to the local tavern. The sky had gotten dark but there was a beautiful full moon out and the stars were so bright. There was stillness in the air tonight as if danger was lurking around the corner.
As they entered the tavern it was very loud and smelt of tobacco and beer. Each table was medium size draped with a checkered table cloth and a bowl of peanuts. They sat down at the far end of the room and ordered two beers. Jack took Raven by the hand and brought it to his lips and kissed it. He thought this was so surreal, spending his life with her and running Torchwood as if was meant to be.
“What are you thinking about? You looked like you were a million miles away from here.”
“I am sorry Raven. It’s just….”
“You can tell me Jack. What’s troubling you?”
She gently touched his stubble on his face and felt the warmth of his skin. She remembered there were times she could not get enough of him. But now it was different something had changed and she was going to find out what it was.
“I have seen so much Raven that you would not believe. It would take me several life times to describe my adventures…. I can’t….” he stopped suddenly.
“Jack you are like a box of secrets every time you open one up and there’s another box with yet another secret. It’s a cycle of never ending secrets. When will you ever let me in Jack?”
Jack saw the sadness in Raven’s face. It was about time that he told her about Torchwood and the work that he did. He was about to say something when he saw a familiar face walk into the tavern. Things were about to get much worse than he realized. He rose from the table and was heading for the bar to confront his unwanted visitor.
“Did you miss me Jack?” replied John Hart.
“Are you real? What are you doing here?” Jack snapped.
“Yes I am real. It’s the only way that I could get to spend more time with you. By the way it’s called dream leaping. I am here to alter your dreams lover boy. It took a lot of doing but hey I am here now. You are going to wish you had treated me better Jack.” John replied with a smirk.
“These people haven’t done any harm to you. Just show me how to wake up and I will spend time with you once I get back. Is that a deal? Just leave her out of this.”
“Well let me see… No! I want time now Jack Harkness. I want Miss Hottie over there to feel my pain. Shall we go sit down and have a few drinks and discuss our relationship to her? What do you say Jack?”
“I said to leave her alone. I mean it!”
“Oh you mean it! Well mean this Jack!”
John took Jack by the nape of his neck and pulled him close kissing him firmly on the lips. Jack quickly pulled free from John’s grip and wiped his lips with the back of his hand. He glanced around the room as it fell silent to what had transpired. Raven had a bewildered look on her face. She rose from her chair and started to rush out of the crowded room crying uncontrollably. Jack could not stop her before she had gotten outside.
The streets were dimly lit as Raven started to across it not noticing the oncoming car that was approaching her. Jack heard the squealing of the car tires and the impact. Raven was lying in the middle of the street with blooding oozing from her ears and mouth. Jack rushed over and sat down beside her cradling her in his arms.
“Why did you rush outside like that? It’s not what you think.”
“Jack… I love you.” She replied as she coughed up more blood.
“Don’t say anything. Save your strength? Help is on the way.”
“No Jack there is no time, for my days on this earth will be a mere shadow now. You are not a blameless man Jack. How many more skeletons do you have in your cupboard?” she said as she took her final breath.
“NO! NO! NO!” Jack screamed out.
Jack leaned over and kissed her on the lips as tears rolled down his face. He slowly looked up and saw John Hart standing there with a smile on his face.
“I will see you real soon Jack even if it’s only in your dreams.” He replied and then disappeared right before Jack’s eyes.
Jack slowly closed his eyes shut for a few seconds, as he opened them again he realized that he was lying on a metal table at Torchwood. Ianto had his head resting on Jack’s stomach and he had fallen asleep.
“Ianto, is that you?” Jack asked.
“Yes Jack, it’s me. Are you okay? Everyone come quick Jack’s awake.” He called rubbing his eyes.
The team came rushing in to see that their leader was indeed awake and talking. But he seemed a little lost and troubled about something. After he had gotten up and got himself dressed and of course had some of Ianto’s famous coffee blend. He told them about Raven and how John Hart had caused the trouble that lead to the events of her death. Still overwhelmed with sadness Jack wept as the others looked on at a man who had dreamed of a lost love.
But it was a dream. The events that Jack observed did not happened at all. Raven was shot and killed when she walked into a bullet saving Jack’s life.
Jack made sure that the wooden box was put away in the archives for safe keeping. He did not want anyone going through that pain as he did ever again.
After a few days had passed and things were slowly getting back to normal, well if you call hunting weevils or tracking down alien tech normal then it was.
Jack ran up the steps to the main hub area his eyes sweeping over the gantries and walkways, the work stations and their glowing computer screens and of course the clutter as always. And the metal tower with the constant flow of water.
Jack Harkness was finally home.
Every night in my dreams
I see you
I feel you
From across the distance
And the spaces in between us