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Fic: Asking

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Apr. 20th, 2011 | 04:51 pm
mood: anxiousanxious
music: everything but the girl - missing
posted by: theorclair in deadweird

Title: Asking

Author: theorclair

Author’s Notes: This was originally written for comment_fic: prompt samueljames, Torchwood, Tosh/Owen, finally getting together (pre-Reset please). It was the first thing I've written that's long enough to be a full story instead of a drabble, and figured it couldn't hurt to post it here.

Pairing: Tosh/Owen

Warnings/Spoilers: None.

Rating: PG

Word count: 933

It was those damn flowers that did it.

Owen Harper had decided, shortly after he begun to work at Torchwood, that he no longer did romance. He wasn't sure he'd ever done it in the first place - every time he tried to do some foolish romantic thing under the delusion it would charm Katie, he'd wound up making a bloody mess of things. She never seemed to mind that, true, since she always just laughed and kissed him, saying it was the thought that counted. But to put up with him for any prolonged period of time she had to be tolerant. He'd certainly gotten into his fair share of shouting matches with Jack and Gwen, and he and Ianto seemingly couldn't get through a day without snapping at each other.

Not that he had totally sworn off intimacy, of course. He was perfectly fine with casual shags, and plenty of women were willing to go along with this. Of course there had been the whole Gwen fiasco, but he tried not to think about that much. They both knew it had been a mistake.

Despite what his co-workers seemed to think, he was not entirely clueless. He knew Tosh fancied him for some reason. He wasn't sure why this was the case. She was good-looking, sweet, and intelligent, and all that meant she could probably date anyone she wanted to. She'd already had Tommy and Mary, and while Tommy had to go back to his own time and Mary turned out to be a psychopathic alien, the potential was there.

But it was the flowers, of all things. He had responded with snark because he couldn’t remember doing it. (He even briefly considered the reason they had all lost two days was because she had rejected him in front of the others and he had retconned everyone as a result, but finally decided even he wasn’t idiotic enough to try something like that.) Even with that, it took him most of a sleepless night where he rejected getting drunk in favor of pacing back and forth in his flat like a maniac to realize if he had any chance at all, it would be now. Tosh was both beautiful and smart, and there would be plenty of others vying for her affection in the future. And if it failed he could always retcon himself. Or just get really pissed.

He wasn't sleeping anyway, and figured the fewer people that witnessed his rejection the better, so he arrived at the hub at about five in the morning. The only person likely to be there was Jack, and even he wasn't mad enough to be conscious at this early hour. At least he thought. Unfortunately as soon as the lift dropped him off he realized that the lights were on and Ianto was fiddling with the coffee maker doing whatever he did to it to get it to make better coffee than anyone else did.

"What are you doing here at this hour?" he asked, although he had a sneaking suspicion of the answer.

"I never left," Ianto replied without turning around.

Owen groaned. "I do not need that mental image. At least you're fully dressed."

"Well, yes, but I can change that in a few seconds if you want me to," was his deadpan reply. "Oh, and Tosh is getting in early today. Gwen rang us a few minutes ago and said she had a dreadful condition that could only be cured by spending twenty-four hours with her fiance, so we're short her."

After he heard that he was about ready to give up. He wasn't planning on saying anything to Tosh if Teaboy was hanging around, and if Ianto was already up at this hour he certainly wouldn't conviniently vanish if he wanted to have a word with Tosh. And he would have headed to the autopsy bay and found a way to keep himself out of sight for the whole day if he hadn't notice a unopened package of post-it notes sitting on a desk. Ianto was still facing the coffee maker and didn't notice when she shoved the whole thing in his coat pocket.

Half an hour later his desk was covered with the remains of several crumpled post-its and the dredges of one mug of coffee. There was a certain type of person that wrote love notes, and he was not that person. "I give up," he said to himself.

"Do you need help with something?" said a voice from behind him.


Damn it.

"Nothing," he forced himself to say in a level tone. "Oh, and Gwen's not coming in."

"Thank you, but Ianto told me that already."

He was going to respond with some neutral remark, but what came out was "Do you want to go out to lunch with me?"

Damn it again. He made himself not turn around so he couldn't see what had to be either disdain or amusement on Tosh's face.

When she said "Today?" of all things, her tone sounded like neither of those things, and he forced himself to turn around. She didn't look disdainful or amused. Surprised, maybe. Flattered, definitely.

Unable to speak, he only nodded.

She smiled so wide that her face seemed split in two. And her surprise was evident in the quaver in her tone, even as she said "I thought you'd never ask." So she has been convinced of rejection too, he thought as the slight shaking in his hands showed the nervousness he was still coming down from.

What bloody fools they both were.

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