Change of Plans
"I thought you enjoyed running the tourist office?" Jack dropped the form onto his desk and frowned up at Ianto. It wasn't even eight in the morning and things were changing again. Sometimes he hated that about Torchwood. Well, that and the paperwork.
"It's a pleasant diversion - guiding confused humans rather than bloodthirsty aliens, but you have to admit that it's not a very convincing cover."
"What's not convincing? We have plenty of brochures don't we?"
"That we do, sir. We've even got keychains and overpriced postcards - found cases of them leftover from the sixties. But we don't keep regular hours and..."
"Is the Cardiff Board of Tourism bothering you again? I thought I had that all straightened out."
"If by straightened out you mean that you've flirted and charmed all the secretaries there, then yes. But..."
"You're not still on about that award are you? That was two years ago."
"And last year as well, sir. We have the distinction of winning 'Worst Tourist Office' so often that they presented us with a trophy. Janet uses it for a supper dish."
"What about this year?"
"We did win a special recognition award. Came in a nice frame."
"It was from London, sir. Every time Owen works the Tourist Office he sends all our visitors to London. Tourism there is up three percent thanks to our office."
"Just proves how useful we are. If they're that easily misdirected we probably don't want them wandering around Cardiff anyway."
"Possibly, sir. Although I am getting threatening letters from local merchants."
"And that's different from usual?"
"Actually, no. There are still regular complaints about your driving, sir."
"See, nothing different at all."
"True, but there is the other matter."
"And that is?"
"The size of the building, sir."
"What about it?"
"Five people regularly go in and out of the Tourist Office sir, but inside it's barely large enough for myself and three visitors. My office is the size of a closet."
"It's not at all suspicious then? Having the five of us wandering in and out of that building every day."
"What do you suggest?" Jack replied, not exactly conceding the point.
"You're sure about this?" Jack asked again, surveying the newly-renovated former Tourist Office. It was more open now and Ianto had a proper desk with better light. Best of all, his old office had been redone as a kitchenette and there was even a small bathroom with shower. The sofa in the reception area converted into a very comfortable bed.
"It does have its advantages," Ianto pointed out with a glance at the sofa.
"But the name..." Jack broke off as the phone rang. Ianto answered it briskly.
"Harwood's Haulage, how may I help you?"
Jack shook his head and walked away, the memory of Rhys' laughter still ringing in his ears.
Feedback for Astra Plain
or email to email@example.com
Return to April Challenge