Ianto gaped at the crowded room; it was practically standing room only. “When we advertised vacancies I had no idea we’d get this kind of response,” he admitted, sounding a little shell-shocked.
Torchwood had become public knowledge since the whole 456 fiasco six months earlier; at least it would have been a fiasco if it hadn’t been for the valiant efforts of the Torchwood Three team, hidden away beneath the Roald Dahl Plas in Cardiff. The British government had been perfectly willing to hand over ten percent of the country’s children, and had been encouraging the leaders of other nations to do the same before Torchwood had made the sacrifice completely unnecessary.
The footage of the fireball that had been the 456 ship exploding out in space had been broadcast around the world. There had no longer been any point in denying the existence of aliens, and after praising the team for doing an excellent job of eliminating the threat, Her Majesty had granted permission for the true facts of the incident to be released to the press.
Not only that, she’d also authorised sufficient funds to more than quadruple the size of the team, so that there could be roving field units ready and able to assist the world’s governments with anything to do with alien affairs, from tackling invasion attempts to setting up trade deals with other races.
This expansion would only be the first step, training the people who would hopefully, in a few years’ time, be helping to set up Torchwood bases around the globe. The nations of the world were gradually beginning to set aside their differences in the light of possible dangers from other planets.
Advertising for new employees had been restricted to Britain and Ireland for now; the other countries would get their chance once there were personnel to spare, but nobody had expected this level of interest.
“There must be hundreds! How on earth are we supposed to whittle them down to a manageable number of potentially suitable candidates?”
Jack smiled at his lover. “I have an idea about that; let’s see how they handle meeting an alien. Why don’t you start taking names and contact details? I’ll be right back.”
Ten minutes later, Ianto had everyone filling in forms with their details and the reason they were applying to work for Torchwood.
Fifteen minutes later, a significant number of people were abandoning their forms and making a hasty exit, having abruptly changed their minds.
“Excellent idea, Jack!” Ianto smiled as Torchwood’s resident alien wended its way among the candidates, goggling curiously at each person in turn. Some fled, putting themselves out of the running. Others drew back uncertainly but more or less held their ground; they could go either way. The rest stared curiously back at Nosy, some even approaching the Fluff, exclaiming in delight, seeing not a fearsome alien but something wonderful. It occurred to Ianto that Nosy’s empathic sense could prove invaluable for selecting candidates. An excellent idea indeed!