Title: Captain, My Captain
Author: Jessie Blackwood
Pairing: Jack Hackness/John
Fandoms: Torchwood/Sherlock
Rating: NC-17
Disclaimer: Characters owned by Davies, Moffat, Gatiss and the BBC. I don't own any of it, except maybe the idea for the story, etc. etc. etc., no infringement of copyright intended, no money being made, etc, etc. Any resemblance to any persons living or dead is purely coincidental.
Note: An little angsty AU ficlet with a twist. Post CoE, Pre TW:MD, Post Reichenbach, AU
Note 2: The poem “A Rose By Any Other Name” is by Tanith Lee and appears in her book, Silver Metal Lover. Always been a favourite of mine and one I highly recommend. The "live his life for him" quote is a take on the same book. If you read it, you'll see what I mean.
Summary: Two captains, in a gay bar, trying to forget.


John had no idea why he’d gone out into the city. Perhaps he was sick of sitting in 221b thinking. Perhaps he figured he’d test out a theory. He wasn’t sure. He sat in the anonymous bar, downing a whisky and soda, concentrating on being inconspicuous. He wasn’t looking at the other patrons, he wasn’t glancing left and right and round him. He was ignoring the eighties ballads playing over the speakers, the wrought iron chandeliers and the eclectic tiled floor beneath the cast metal legs of the stool he was perched on. He was staring into the glass, waiting for the insensibility to start.

Jack walked into the bar with the express intent of forgetting; forgetting his pain, forgetting his loss, forgetting everything. His intent was to find someone, anyone, and get fucked senseless. It was the only thing that got him even half-way toward escape, seeing as how alcohol didn’t cut it anymore. He made his way through the crowds, shouldering a weaving trail through to the solid curve of dark mahogany and brass, catching the eye of the man on the other side, the one with his hand gripping the tap handle as though it was somebody’s dick. Or was that simply Jack’s filthy mind working overtime? The man eyed him curiously and smiled, openly flirting, his hand sliding deliberately slowly down the bulbous upper half of the handle, before releasing it and handing the pint over to the man further down the bar who was impatiently waiting for it. The barman grinned and poured Jack the neat shot of single malt he asked for and slid the glass over.  “Not seen you in here before,” he murmured quietly.
That was original, Jack thought. “Nope,” he said unhelpfully. And you won’t see me again, either, his tone suggested. He chose a stool and perched, registering but not seeing the people to either side of him. You want more information, ask an open question, he thought morosely. He wasn’t in the mood for empty flirting. He wanted action.
“You too, huh?” The man beside Jack had spoken, his voice a fraction slurred but not significantly impaired.
“Excuse me?”  Jack’s eyes flicked to the man’s drink. Whisky and soda. Probably only on his third or maybe fourth, depending how he handled his drink.
“You look like you’re tryin’ to forget...” The man tipped back his drink and downed it, allowing it to burn a trail to his stomach. It registered on his face as a slight grimace. “Like me.”
“Yeah, well, we all have regrets.” Jack eyed the man. Cute, in his own way. This one was blond, stocky, not conventionally beautiful, but those eyes. Hazel? Grey? They were changeable in the low light. Sufficiently unlike to allow him the luxury of losing himself in another man’s arms. Significantly shorter than Jack, he figured this one might do, as long as Jack wasn’t going to get punched for suggesting a liaison with a straight guy. Although, they were in a known gay bar. That was part of the reason why he had headed there.
“So, what do you do? Who may I have the... pleasure of talking to?” the blond man asked.
“Captain Jack Harkness, and you are...?”
“Captain John Watson, ex-RAMC.” They shook hands.
“Well now, what could be the matter, Captain John—” How ironic was that? “— that you have come here tonight, all on your lonesome?”
“I lost someone.” The statement was bald and to the point. “My best friend. He lied to me, you know that? Then he... he died...” Jack winced. This guy’s pain was raw. Like his own, but fresher, more recent maybe.
“Then we might both be looking for the same thing.” He laid a gentle hand on the back of the other’s where it lay on the bar. Their eyes met.
“What the fuck?” John froze.
Jack sighed and withdrew his hand. “You’re straight? Just my luck, eh? I come to a gay bar and pick the only straight guy in the room...”
“What do you mean, gay bar ?” The man’s reaction would have been comical under any other circumstances.
“This bar is gay-friendly, mate. Did you not know?”
“Just saw the lights. Wasn’t particularly looking. Oh, fuck, why me? I’m not gay, I keep telling people and nobody bloody listens. When he was alive I told people, now he’s dead I tell people, and it doesn’t bloody matter. Nobody ever fucking well listens...” Jack smiled at the slightly drunken tirade.
“Yet whoever he was, you loved him. Otherwise, you wouldn’t have been so affected by his death. Besides, there are degrees of love, and gender often has nothing to do with it.” He downed his drink. “That’s why I hate labels. They’re far too limiting.”
“That’s what he used to say.”
“John, you should do what you feel is right, follow your heart.” Jack punctuated the words by tapping his finger softly against John’s sternum. The two men locked eyes and Jack smiled. “Well, it’s plain you’re not interested, because you’re not gay—although you might be bi but you’re not sure so I’ll see you ‘round.”
“You’re leaving? But—”
“Look, I came here for one thing,” Jack’s voice took on a slightly harder edge. “I came with the express intent of picking up some random person, taking them home and hopefully getting fucked senseless which will allow me to forget for a little while. That’s all. End of story. Sorry I don’t want to stick around and chat,” Jack said and rose to his feet. “but that wasn’t what I came for.”
“I’m a... random person ...am I not?”
“Yeah, sure you are, but you’re a random virgin as far as sex with a guy is concerned, so no thanks.”
“Do I look like him?” He aimed the words at Jack’s back because the man had turned away to make his exit.
“No, you don’t,” Jack admitted, turning back. “You’re blond, he was dark. You’re shorter than he was, you’re older too...”
“Then I don’t remind you of him?”
“No, you don’t.”
“You don’t remind me of him either. You’re too... big, there’s too much of you. ” Their gazes met again, and Jack sighed.
“You really up for this? You’re not going to go all regretful on me half way through and spoil it? Because I really will be pissed if that’s what happens...” John’s head shake was firm and his hand, when he put it in Jack’s, was dry and warm and steady. A good strong grip, no shake, not tentative. “Oh, what the hell. How far are we from your place?”

They stumbled through the door, up the seventeen steps to the flat and up the next flight into John’s bedroom. Jack crowded him, pressing him up against the wall, fastening his mouth on John’s neck, sucking and biting none-too gently. John was overwhelmed by a strong, spicy and very attractive scent and the feel of hard muscle under his hands. When they kissed it was suddenly all hands and lips and teeth and tongues and hot, so very damned hot. Jack was a gorgeous man to look at, all chiseled jawline and dark hair, blue-grey eyes and a wide, white-toothed grin; very easy on the eye. He was strong too, tall—John was cricking his neck looking up at him—and solid, big in every respect; every respect. So unlike Sherlock— don’t think about him— Jack was broad through the chest and shoulders, with big hands. Those hands were surprisingly gentle and deft, undoing shirt buttons and John’s belt buckle with speed and delicacy.

Jack sensed no hesitancy on John’s part. He was enthusiastic and, while inexperienced, he was eager, curious, adventurous, and willing to learn. Nice cock too, Jack could not help but notice. Thick and long and perfectly suited to him, dark blond curls nested at the base, jutting proudly away from his body like it was standing to attention. Considering he was ex-military—he even walked like he was still on a parade ground—that wasn’t a surprise. Jack palmed John’s erection, wrapping long fingers around and stroking upward, then down, adding a twist on the down-stroke that had John writhing under him. Jack smeared his thumb across the glans that drew a gasping groan from John’s lips.  
“Oh, God, that’s...amazing.”
“Good, eh?”
“Oh, yes. Yes, very damn good.”
“So... John,” Jack paused. “Medical Corps, hm?”
“Yup...” He was lying on his back, panting, arching into Jack’s touch.
“You’re a doctor?”
“Yes, I am... Ah, yes, like that...” John sat up a little, watching as Jack stroked his hand up and down idly. “Why? Do you need a doctor?”
“Yeah but not in the way you mean...” Jack frowned, a small smile quirking one corner of his mouth upward.
“So why did you ask?”
“You’re going to be alright, John. I promise you.” Jack bent and kissed him, tongue swiping around his mouth. John groaned into it.
“How do you know...?” he asked when they broke contact. “I might... might still decide to top myself. I admit to having thought about it...” Why was he admitting this to a total stranger? He had no clue why but it felt good to talk, to confess.
“Had you figured for a bottom, rather than a top...” The man grinned, disarmingly. It took a moment to see the joke and then John laughed. “Sorry,” the man added, ruefully. “That was tasteless of me...”
“Maybe black humour is all I’m capable of appreciating right now,” John admitted.
“Yeah, well, it has its place, I guess. Look, John, it would be a shame if you tried to kill yourself, but I don’t think you will, not now. You’re a doctor, you have access to drugs, you’re not stupid. I’m thinkin’, though, that you’d have done it already if you’d been going to.”
“You think?”
“Yeah... look, John,” Jack leaned in close and murmured in his ear. “Live for him, okay? Promise me that? Just... live his life for him, see things, do things, things he now can’t. Live life on his behalf, and on behalf of them all...”  Tears forced their way from Jack’s eyes. “For Ianto...” The name seemed to cause Jack physical pain. “For Owen, for Tosh, for...for all of them.... See old age through to its bitter end, for me?” Jack leaned in close, voice tense with his emotion, and pressed trembling lips to John’s. “Because you CAN!”
John blinked away his own tears, seeing the vehemence in Jack’s eyes. He frowned, then he nodded, once, promising to a stranger that which he hadn’t dared promise to himself. “Alright,” he husked. “Okay... If I can, I will. You’ve lost a few, then, not just—”
“I’ve lost a lot . I’ve lost so many, but I endure, I carry on, I can’t just die, no matter how much I want to. Look, I’ve got to go—”
“What, now?” John was indignant and Jack laughed.
“Not right now, no,” he chuckled. “I am going to finish what I started, don’t worry. But I am leaving, though, tomorrow night. Nothing can stop me now. You know, fresh start, somewhere new, find a new horizon. I’ve hitched a ride on a transport out of here. I have to be in Cardiff by tomorrow night.”
“I won’t ever see you again, will I?” John knew in his heart that this man, this stranger, was more in touch with him than anyone had ever been. He understood John on a fundamental level; understood grief, understood that John wasn’t gay, despite the situation he now found himself in, understood loneliness. Jack understood that John was so much more than a simple label. He was a human being in all its complexity and simplicity. A thing of infinite potential, as long as he didn’t try to pigeon-hole and label and categorize himself. So be it. John’s hips lifted. “I’m holding you to that, Captain. Finish what you started.”
Jack smiled. “Okay. You asked for it, Captain.”
“Yes, I did, didn’t I?” There was the beginning of a  sparkle in John’s eyes, something waking up, coming alive again. Somehow it gave Jack a little hope too.  

Hips thrusting and eyes heavy-lidded with lust, sweat beading his tawny skin and hair, John was intoxicated by the man moving above him. He would never have admitted, a scant few hours before, that he could possibly find sex with a man as fulfilling and satisfying as sex with a woman. And this was simply no-strings mind-blowing sex. Jack had guided him, taught him, shown him what to do. Jack was thrusting hard, and deeply, and John was arching into every thrust, meeting each one with his own, driving Jack closer to the edge. With a groan and a shudder, Jack thrust one last time and tumbled over the edge of his own personal precipice, to be caught and held by surprisingly strong arms. John looked down and groaned as he saw his own erection.
“My turn,” he growled softly, like a mountain lion ready to strike, Jack thought.
Not only was John Watson a willing pupil, he was also an adept one too, at least if the fingers moving inside Jack’s body were anything to go by. He did have an advantage though.
“Doctor, remember?” John had grinned when Jack had squirmed and asked him if he could locate his prostate. Jack had laughed and admitted defeat. Oh, hell yes, he knew where it was alright.

“Promise me something in return, Jack.” They were lying entwined in each other’s embrace, drifting on the post-coital cloud of their endorphin high, lazily stroking and caressing. John had to accept that his first encounter with a man had been exceptionally satisfying, even if—and here he had to force himself to admit the bald truth—even if it hadn’t been with Sherlock.
“What?” Jack glanced at him with lazy eyes, relaxed and sated.
“Don’t forget them all, Jack. Never, ever forget them and remember the good they did, remember them with pride.”
Jack laughed harshly. “They were stupid to love me.”
“Were they stupid people, Jack?” John asked pointedly. There was a pause.
“No, they were very clever people, all of them.” He sighed. “They should have known better. Where is this going exactly?”
“They loved you for a reason, Jack. They loved you because they saw something worth loving. They can’t all have been wrong. Remember that, that’s all. Just... try to believe it. That’s all I ask...”
Angelo, Estelle, Greg, Lucia,... Ianto.... Jack recalled all their faces, every voice, every moment. He would, he thought, even remember John Watson. He nodded and sighed into John’s embrace. They lay together for a moment, both with their thoughts, quiescent, strangely tranquil. Then John rolled to face him and his hand strayed. Jack gasped as the knowledgeable fingers began to explore. The man might be a virgin with regard to sex with another guy but he was a doctor and his knowledge of anatomy made up for the lack. Soon they were teasing feelings out of each other that left them both breathless. If this was their one night, John was going to make it a memorable one, for both of them.

When John woke, Jack was gone. He briefly remembered a sleepy parting kiss and the brush of fingers across his hair. An envelope lay beneath a piece of paper  on the bedside table. John leaned over, switched on the light and picked up the paper, peering at the neat script.

A rose by any other name
Would get the blame

For being what it is--

The colour of a kiss,

The shadow of a flame.

A rose may earn another name,

So call it love;

So call it love I will,

And love is like the sea,

Which changes constantly,

And yet is still

The same.*

Dear John, I once knew a girl called Rose Tyler and she shone like a beacon in the darkness. She was brave and lovely and proud and clever. You remind me of her, in many ways. You’d make my doctor a wonderful companion, you know that? I know you’ll never know what I’m talking about but trust me, it’s a compliment. You’re a great guy, you deserve to live and love and do all those things you always wanted to do.

I’ll be gone by tonight and you probably won’t ever see me again, but you already know that. Where I’m going I don’t need the contents of this envelope, so please use it. Take it and go places, buy a car, buy travel tickets, something, anything you want. Just do it in his name and Ianto’s and Estelle’s and Angelo’s and all those people I knew who I can’t do anything for anymore. And before you get the wrong idea, I’m not paying you for services rendered, I could never think of you like that. You’ve helped me so much tonight. And I’m not leaving you my money because I’m going to kill myself. I can promise you that. Cross my heart and all that crap. I really AM going away and I’m going to find myself again. This is my gift to you for a memorable night and comforting words and your thoughtful compassion. You’re a fantastic doctor.  Try your best to be happy. You deserve to be.


PS, you really are great in bed. Do it with guys more often, they’ll love you. I know I do.


The envelope was stuffed full with several thousand pounds worth of notes. John’s eyes bugged. No need to bother Mycroft for the rent then, he smiled. He might contact Greg Lestrade and ask him to make sure the money was legit before banking it though. God knew where it had come from. Why would Jack give him this much? He sighed and shook his head. There was no way of giving it back, that was certain. Okay then, providing the money was legit, he would do as he’d been asked. He might travel a little, see Greece and Egypt and all those places he had thought of going to but never managed. He would buy a good camera and take lots of photos, update his blog with them all. Who knew, if by some miracle Sherlock was alive, he would see them on the blog... Who was he kidding? John smiled and sighed and shook himself. Hope was a funny thing. Always there, in the background, waiting either to be encouraged or dashed, but without it, he couldn’t face each day. Oddly, Jack had given him hope that things might be okay.

Jack stood on the hilltop, his last glimpse of Earth being a green Welsh hillside with a tearful, heavily-pregnant Gwen and a worried-looking Rhys standing watching his departure. His thoughts were of that other Captain John, and hoped he was on the road to getting past his grief . And that, he thought, as his atoms scattered into the transmat, is one darn good reason why I might one day return. He thought of blue eyes and great coffee and sarcastic wit. He thought of chocolate-addicted Pteranodons, Offices and archives, chinese and pizza and stolen moments in the greenhouse, of a childlike glee in looking cool while piloting the Sea Queen or driving the SUV, of frightening secrecy and coolly calculated shooting. He thought of love and heroism, sacrifice and saving the world. His world. And Jack found it within himself to remember and to feel proud of the man he had loved.

John watched the dawn rise, sitting in 221B in the full knowledge that he could now afford to stay. Surrounded by evidence of his best friend’s life, he thought of dark floppy curls and bright pale-green eyes, a long dark coat and running, of boredom and smiley faces and bullets in walls—the wall had it coming—he thought of manic chases and leaping across the rooftops like a bloody gazelle, of mad cabbies and shots in the dark, bombs and swimming pools, strange experiments and violin playing and tea.  He smiled, exasperated and fond. And John found it within himself to remember and to feel proud of the man he had loved.