Warnings: Implications of sexual activity
Summary: Children of Earth wasn't the first time Rhiannon had found out about her brother's relationship with his boss. It was just the first time she'd challenged him on it, the first time she'd broken their agreements of half-truths and lies.
AN: This was written for the first challenge of the first round of the jack_ianto_las. This was for the prompt "The Right Time To Lie".
Lies and Half-Truths
"Hello?" Rhiannon Davies pressed the mobile to her ear, while she rooted through her handbag for tissues. "Micah, put that down!"
Her daughter gave her a sullen look but dropped the packet of biscuits.
"Rhiannon, it's just me, Ianto."
Looking back, she couldn't work out exactly what it was in his voice that made her stop. She hadn't heard much from her brother since he'd moved back to Wales, but every time she had, there'd been a desperation in his voice, and then that last time it was like he was … empty, or something. And the things he'd said, it was like he was saying goodbye. She'd never really stopped worrying about him since he'd tripped and skinned his knees at five, but the last few weeks, there'd been a part if her honestly expecting to hear something horrible had happened to him.
But this time, it wasn't like that at all. It wasn't happiness, exactly, but it was like he was overflowing with emotion, different kinds just streaming out of him.
"Ianto, what is it love?" She dropped into a kitchen chair.
"Nothing, I just… something happened yesterday and I can't talk about it with anyone, and I thought…" He trailed off.
"Right, sweetheart, I'm coming over." She was already back in her purse, pulling everything out in search of the car keys.
She ignored his assurances that it 'wasn't necessary' and 'really wasn't that important' (lie number 1), called up to Johnny that she was going out and he needed to keep an eye on the kids and was on her way.
She'd been to Ianto's flat before, but she was still shocked by the sheer 'flashness' of the block. He buzzed her in quickly, and then it was just a matter of navigating the staircase (surely flats this fancy could put in a lift).
When he opened the door, she enveloped him in a hug. He blushed and made the usual noises about him not being a little boy anymore (lie number 2), but she could see that he was slightly chuffed. "Alright, I'll put the kettle on and you can tell me all about it."
"It really isn't that big of a deal-"
Rhiannon quickly interrupted. "Look, it got you to call me. We both know that's gotta be pretty important. And don't give me that look," she added when his expression flooded with guilt. "We both know it takes wild horses to get you to the kid's birthday parties, let alone calling me up out of the blue. Spill."
"Alright," he said, sinking into a kitchen chair and staring at his hands while she bustled around the cupboards, grabbing the tea (she didn't care how much coffee he'd brewed in London, what he needed when he was stressed was a nice steaming mug of tea). "I think I did something stupid."
"You'll need to be more specific, love," Rhiannon replied, placing their drinks on the table.
"I slept with someone I probably … I shouldn't have slept with."
There was a brief pause and then: "Was she not hot then?"
"Rhiannon!" Ianto's cheeks flushed exactly the same colour as they had when he was younger. "As it happens, the person I slept with was very attractive. And no, they're … she's not horrible or married or anything like that."
"So what's the problem?"
"The problem is that I should hate … her. She did something terrible, something I should never be able to forgive, except now I can kind of understand it and-" He trailed off and then looked at her expectantly, as though she was supposed to answer all his problems from that vague babble.
"You like her, right?" she asked. At Ianto's shamefaced nod, she continued. "You think she's gorgeous – don't try and fool me Ianto Jones, I know you – and she's available. I think you should give it a go."
Ianto smiled at her, the way he used to when he was still young enough that he thought his big sister could chase away the monsters under the bed.
"You deserve to be happy, especially after everything-" She trailed off. They didn't talk it but she knew that something traumatic had been bound up in his move home.
The landline buzzed through the silence. Ianto jumped up to grab it, then, seeing the number, ran into the living room to pick it up. Unable to resist the temptation, Rhiannon picked up the phone in the kitchen. She was highly surprised to hear the voice of an American man on the other end, one who sounded nervous, but like he was trying not to.
"So, Ianto, about last night-"
"It's fine, Sir," Ianto interrupted. "I shouldn't have left so early, but you had given us the day off and I wanted to see my sister."
"Ahh." Confidence had returned to the mystery voice. "So, would I be right in thinking you needed time to think it through?"
Ianto's silence was taken as affirmation.
"You propositioned me, Ianto, but I was hardly going to turn down a good-looking bloke like you."
"I should think not, Sir." There was a teasing quality to her brother's voice that she hadn't heard in too long. "I was thinking of coming back to the hub this evening. You still not looking to turn down a good-looking bloke like me?"
At the sound of the rich, joyful laughter from the other end of the line, Rhiannon hung up. So, it appeared last night's dalliance was male (lie number three). Well, she hadn't seen that coming. Then again, it probably wasn't time to talk about it. And she could wait (the lying had always worked both ways). But if he took too long, she was going to get it out of him. No way was her baby brother lying to her about something that big. Not while she had something to say about it.