Making the perfect cup of coffee was a painstaking process, but one Ianto never failed to enjoy, from carefully grinding the beans, to adding water at the perfect temperature and letting it brew for exactly the right amount of time, right down to steaming the milk to perfection for those who wanted it. Most people didn’t have the patience required to produce a truly superb cup of coffee, but Ianto did. It was well worth taking time over; you couldn’t expect to get perfect results every time if you rushed.
The tantalising coffee aroma teased his nose; he could almost taste it, rich and slightly bitter on his tongue, and he breathed it in as if it were the finest fragrance ever created. As far as he was concerned, it was. Nothing smelled better than high-quality coffee, perfectly brewed. He’d received plenty of compliments regarding his coffee, but never any complaints.
So why was Jack insisting he teach Owen to use the Hub’s coffee machine? It was ludicrous! Quite apart from the fact that Owen was ham-fisted at best in his handling of it, the man was dead; he had no sense of smell. No matter how hard he tried, he’d never be able to make even a passable brew if he couldn’t smell it.
Not only that, but Owen had always enjoyed his coffee, and in Ianto’s opinion, forcing him to make something for the rest of them that he himself could no longer drink was cruel. It was cruel to the rest of the team too, condemning them to drinking something substandard after they’d grown used to regular infusions of Ianto’s best. Torchwood’s leader was soon going to have a very cranky team on his hands.
Jack probably didn’t mean to be cruel, he no doubt believed he was doing the right thing, giving Owen jobs that would help him feel useful now that he was dead and too fragile for fieldwork. He really hadn’t thought this one through though, and hadn’t been inclined to discuss it when he’d given the order. Perhaps this evening, after the others had left, he might be more willing to listen to reason.
Ianto knew Jack blamed himself for Owen’s unfortunate condition, and he probably was to blame, but at the same time, Ianto was sure Jack hadn’t meant to bring the medic back to a living death. If he’d known that would happen, would he still have done it? There was no way of knowing, it was doubtful even Jack could say for sure. He’d wanted to give them all the chance to say goodbye; that had been part of it, Jack hadn’t merely been motivated by his need to get the code for the alien morgue. Perhaps he’d hoped saying goodbye would make the grieving process easier for the team.
It didn’t matter. Trying to turn Owen into Torchwood’s coffee boy was a waste of Owen’s talents and an insult to Ianto. He and Jack were going to have words.