Tosh had never tried ice-skating before. Technically, she still wasn’t; she was frozen to the spot, clinging to Owen like a fuzzy limpet in her fluffy coat.
“Tosh, sweetheart, you need to relax. I won’t let you fall.”
“I promise. Don’t you trust me?”
“I don’t know.”
“Wonderful, I’m marrying a woman who doesn’t know if she trusts me!”
She glared at him.
“I don’t like ice, it’s slippery!”
“Yeah, well, that’s kind of the point! Come on, I’ve got you; slide your foot forward.”
Reluctantly doing as he asked, she wondered how Owen talked her into these things.
Skating past, hand in hand with Rhys, Gwen smiled at Tosh’s tentative first attempts at skating.
“Remember the first time you took me skating,” she asked, hugging his arm.
“Oh aye, I remember! Had bruises all up my arms for weeks from where your fingers dug in,” he chuckled.
“I was terrible, wasn’t I, even worse than Tosh,” Gwen giggled, remembering. “Fell over so many times, my arse was black and blue!”
“But you always got up and tried again. Had to drag you off the ice in the end, wouldn’t quit until you’d got it. You made me proud.”
Out in the middle of the ice, Jack and Ianto were chasing each other, laughing and showing off with small jumps and spins. Ianto hadn’t skated since he was in his mid teens, but it was apparently one of those things that once learned, you never forgot. He was a bit rusty, but being on the ice again made him feel as carefree as it used to ten years before.
Jack couldn’t stop smiling; it was good to see Ianto having so much fun. Sometimes even Ianto seemed forget how young he was, weighed down by the pressures of work.
Ianto skidded to a halt in front of Jack.
“You look happy!” he commented.
“I was just thinking the same about you. You should smile like that more often.”
“It feels good to be doing something just for fun. I’d almost forgotten what that felt like. This was a good idea, Jack. I think the others are enjoying it too.”
“We’ve all been working too hard lately, we need to make time to enjoy life.”
“You won’t get any argument from me. Come on, race you round the rink, loser buys the drinks!” Laughing, Ianto raced off, Jack right behind.
Andy and Mickey looked at each other and shook their heads.
“Work with a right bunch of nutters, don’t we,” said Andy.
“Makes life interesting though, don’t it,” Mickey replied.
“True enough. You ever skate before?”
Mickey shook his head.
“Nah. But if Captain Cheesecake can do it, how hard can it be?”
Stepping onto the ice, Mickey’s feet shot off in different directions and with a yelp he collapsed in a heap.
Smothering a laugh, Andy offered him a hand up.
“Okay, maybe not as easy at it looks.”
“Guess I finally get to teach you something,” Andy smirked.