There’s seaweed everywhere; it clings, wet and stringy to the rocks, making them treacherous underfoot. The tide is just going out, which is lucky; if it had been coming in they might have had a serious problem. As it is, they’ll have plenty of time to find whatever the Rift dumped on them this time, although why it couldn’t have chosen a more accessible spot is beyond Ianto.
Sometimes he thinks the Rift just likes messing with them; he finds it hard to believe that there isn’t at least some degree of sentience involved, along with a warped sense of humour. If there isn’t, then why did they get thirty-three bags of peanuts and a garden hose last week?
The sea is rough today, churned up by an offshore wind, and as he scrambles and slips, trying to find a secure foothold in order to get over the big rock in front of him, salt spray moistens his face and leaves droplets in his hair. He grabs a handful of weed, tugging it loose and tossing it aside, the scent of it sharp in his nose. The rock beneath it is wet, but at least without the seaweed he can get a grip on it, hauling himself up and over, feet scrabbling for purchase. He practically slides down the other side on his arse, thankful he changed into jeans for this jaunt. The best drycleaner in the world would probably have their work cut out for them getting seaweed stains out of a wool and silk blend.
“What kept you?” Jack asks cheerfully.
“My trainers don’t grip as well as your boots do. I could’ve used a hand back there. Find what we’re looking for yet?”
“I think I might have. See over there?”
Ianto follows Jack’s pointing finger and almost groans. “Is that what I think it is?”
“Depends. What do you think it is?”
“Looks a lot like a jellyfish to me.”
“Close enough; it’s a Kloosh.”
“An alien jellyfish. Hails from the Aldebaran system.”
“Wonderful. Exactly how do you plan on carrying a two-foot wide alien jellyfish back across a quarter of a mile of slippery, seaweed covered rocks?”
“Um, very carefully?”
Ianto sighs in resignation. This has disaster written all over it; he hopes the Kloosh doesn’t sting.