Characters: Owen, Ianto, Jack, Tosh, Gwen.
Summary: On a Rift retrieval out in the countryside, the Torchwood Team witness a strange and beautiful phenomenon.
Word Count: 516
Written For: My own prompt ‘Any, any, Standing on a mountain top looking down at the clouds,’ at fic_promptly.
Disclaimer: I don’t own Torchwood, or the characters. They belong to the BBC.
A/N: Beware, shaky meteorology ahead!
It was surreal. Here they stood, on top of the ridge they’d been following for the past half hour, looking down at billowing waves of whiteness. It was as if the valley below them had been filled with whipped cream, or shaving foam, or the froth from a zillion pints of really good beer.
“What is it?” Owen asked, awed in spite of himself. He hadn’t wanted to come out into the country, yet again, not that Jack ever gave him a choice, but this was a sight worth seeing, even if he’d never admit that to anyone else. “Is it alien? Something to do with whatever the Rift dumped way out here?”
“It’s clouds.” A delighted smile spread across Ianto’s face, making him look like a kid at Christmas. “I haven’t seen anything like this since I was about ten!”
“Clouds?” Owen couldn’t believe what he was hearing. “What’re clouds doing down there?”
Ianto laughed. “We’re a lot higher up than you might think. Sometimes if the weather conditions are just perfect, a low band of cloud will settle in a valley while the upper slopes get left in sunshine. Beautiful, isn’t it?”
“Weird, that’s what it is,” Owen said, but he couldn’t stop staring at the softly billowing surface lapping against the hillside below him.
“Please tell me we don’t have to go down into that,” Gwen begged. “It would be like walking through thick fog, all dampness and poor visibility’; we’d have no chance of finding what we’re looking for.”
“It’s fine,” Tosh assured her. “The coordinates of the Rift spike are on the other side of the ridge, about twenty metres down. Shouldn’t take more than ten minutes to collect whatever it is. My readings indicate it’s inorganic and completely inert.”
“Great!” Jack grinned his megawatt grin. “In that case, there’s no rush to find it.” He gestured towards the cloud-filled valley. “That’s not something you see every day, so we might as well enjoy it while we can. Kick back, relax for a bit and take in the view. Whaddaya say?”
“Sounds good to me,” Ianto agreed, shrugging out of his backpack and sitting down with his back against a sun-warmed rock.
“Me too,” Tosh agreed, picking out a flat rock and sitting down.
Jack pulled his boots and socks off and started down the slope.
“What’re you doing?” Ianto asked, amused.
“Thought I’d go for a paddle!” Jack wandered down until his feet were in the clouds.
“Nutter!” Ianto laughed. “What does it feel like?”
“Wet, a bit chilly, but not bad. You should try it!”
“Why not? I’ve never paddled in a cloud before.” Pulling off his boots, Ianto joined Jack, soon followed by Gwen and Tosh.
“Come on Owen,” Tosh shouted up the slope. “It’s fun!”
“Ah, what the hell,” Owen muttered. “If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.” Tugging off sneakers and socks, he padded down the grassy slope. “You do realise you’re all certifiable, don’t you?” he asked.
“Yep!” Jack winked. “But we know how to make our own fun!”
Even Owen couldn’t argue with that.