Characters: Ianto, Jack, Team.
Summary: Everything is quiet at Torchwood, Ianto has nothing to do, and he’s seriously bored.
Word Count: 595
Written For: paceisthetrick’s prompt ‘any, any, “ticking away the moments that make up the dull day”,’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters. They belong to the BBC.
The stopwatch sits beside the coffee machine, ticking away the moments that make up one of the dullest days Ianto’s ever experienced. Picking it up, he notes it’s been less than five minutes since he last checked it so he sets it back down and continues making coffee. It’s the most exciting thing that’s happened so far today, with the possible exception of Jack actually getting on with his paperwork without being either nagged or threatened. Just goes to show he’s not the only one bored out of his skull. You know it’s a dull day when Jack can’t find anything better to do than his hated paperwork. At least it passes the time.
The clicking of computer keyboards provides a counterpoint to the quiet tick tick tick of the stopwatch; apart from Tosh, who finished hers hours ago and is now working on something else, everyone is dealing with their paperwork backlog. Ianto almost wishes he had some to do as well, but he’s not going to help Jack with his; it’s a matter of principle, he does way to much of it as it is, and offering to help would only distract Jack and lead to no work getting done by either of them. Not that Ianto has anything to do right now.
He used to long for days like this, with nothing happening. They gave him the perfect opportunity to get on with other tasks that piled up when he was being run off his feet helping to save Cardiff, or the world. He stares longingly towards the stairs down to the archives; he still has a ton of sorting and cataloguing and filing to do down there, but the archives are off limits due to a contaminant being accidentally released. It’s nothing seriously harmful, but if inhaled it causes disorientation and, for some reason, an intense craving for onions, so no one is allowed down there, even wearing a breathing unit, until the air scrubbers have done their job and eliminated the fumes. It’s infuriating and frustrating and downright inconvenient, but there’s not a thing Ianto can do about it. The protocols regarding contaminants exist for a reason.
So here Ianto is, making coffee. The inhabitants of the cells have already been fed and mucked out, the Tourist Office has been completely reorganised, everything that needed cleaning has been cleaned, and it’s not even lunchtime. On top of that, the Rift is in one of its dormant phases, the Weevils are keeping to the sewers because of the chilly weather, and there’s not so much as an alien invasion attempt to break up the monotony. Honestly, everything is so utterly normal you’d never know that Cardiff sits on a Rift through space and time.
Coffee made, Ianto distributes it to his colleagues, along with snacks. Jack in particular always works better when he’s got something to nibble on. A few smears of chocolate on reports is a small price to pay for the work getting done. Perhaps when refreshments have been handed out he’ll go and pick up something for lunch instead of ordering in. It’s still a bit early, but there’s nothing else to do and it beats sitting around playing solitaire on his laptop. Maybe he’ll walk to the deli and time how long it takes.
Returning his empty tray to the kitchen, Ianto picks up the stopwatch, noting five more minutes have passed. Fetching his coat, he leaves behind the Hub and the sound of fingers tapping on keyboards, and heads outside in search of relief from boredom.