Ianto had long been aware that it was impossible to please everyone at Torchwood Three all the time, and quite frankly it wasn’t worth the effort to even try. Nevertheless, there were days when he thought his teammates were just determined to be as contrary as humanly possible. This seemed to be turning into one of those days.
“Right, bearing in mind that I’m not trekking all over Cardiff just to pick up a different lunch for each of you, what do we all want today?” he asked when everyone was conveniently in one place having just returned from a bracing Weevil chase.
“Ooh, how about fish and chips?” Jack suggested. “We haven’t had that for a while.”
“Jack!” Gwen complained. “The last thing I need is something loaded with grease! I don’t want to wake up on my wedding day too fat to fit into my dress! Besides, we should eat more healthily. How about salads?”
“After runnin’ around Cardiff for the last two hours? I need sustenance, not rabbit food!” Owen folded his arms over his chest. “I vote for Indian? I could go for a curry.”
Jack shook his head. “Ianto and I are going over to his sister’s for dinner tonight, remember? I’ve been reliably informed that Thursday night is curry night at the Davies household, so we don’t want curry twice in one day.”
Ianto nodded. “Sorry, Owen.”
“What about sushi?” Tosh suggested. “Healthy but satisfying.”
Jack and Ianto looked at each other and nodded, but Gwen pulled a face. “I don’t know how you lot can eat raw fish!” She shuddered dramatically. “Just the thought is disgusting!”
“I can’t believe I’m sayin’ this, but I agree with Gwen. If I ‘ave to eat fish, it should be cooked in batter.”
“So we’re back to fish and chips?” Jack looked hopeful, but Gwen remained adamant and Tosh apologetically admitted she didn’t really fancy anything with chips.
“Chinese?” Ianto suggested.
“We had that twice this week already,” Jack reminded him.
“How about Greek?” Gwen said.
“The Greek place was closed last week by the environment of health and safety,” Ianto told her. “Seems their standards of hygiene were somewhat below par.”
“We could get sandwiches from the deli,” said Tosh.
“They’re closed Thursdays,” Gwen told her.
“I wanted somethin’ hot anyway.” Owen looked around at his colleagues. “Thai?”
“Again with the spicy!” Jack glowered across at Torchwood’s medic. “Seriously, would you eat both Thai and curry in the same day?”
“Only if I was really drunk,” Owen admitted. “Point taken.”
“We could go round and round like this for the rest of the day and not get anywhere,” Ianto sighed. “We’re going to have to find some sort of workable compromise or it’s going to be dinner time before we’ve decided what to have for lunch.”
“I’ll eat anything that’s not loaded with spices,” Jack replied.
Ianto nodded. “Same here. Much as I love spicy foods, twice in one day is not on. I don’t want to have indigestion all night.”
“I’ll go along with what everyone else decides,” Tosh added with a smile for her friend.
“Looks like it’s up to you two then.” Ianto looked from Owen to Gwen and back again.
The two exchanged a look.
“Hell, why don’t we just be done with it and order pizza?”
Gwen opened her mouth to protest, then deflated. “Fine, I’ll just bring a salad with me tomorrow.”
“Everyone’s agreed on pizza?” Ianto asked, receiving nods from the rest of the team.
“Now we just have to come to an agreement on toppings,” Jack said with a grin.
Ianto gritted his teeth, praying for patience. “You know what? Don’t even bother starting that argument. You’ll eat whatever I order, are we clear?” he snapped.
There followed a moment of complete, stunned silence, broken by a meek, “Yes, Ianto,” from the rest of the team.
Compromise was all very well as far as it went, Ianto decided, but with this lot sometimes it was necessary to make up their minds for them. There were fewer arguments that way.