“How’re you feeling?” Jack asked, hovering beside the bed, worry and sympathy warring for supremacy on his face.
“Awful,” Ianto admitted, lying limply against the pillows, a woebegone expression on his face. “I should’ve paid attention to the warning signs this morning and just stayed home.”
“What warning signs?” Jack had been there when Ianto had got up that morning having spent the night, and he hadn’t noticed anything ominous that could have been taken as a warning sign. Besides, what sort of sign could possibly warn about something like this?
“The milk in the fridge had gone lumpy even though the date wasn’t up, so I had to tip it away.”
“Ah, that’s why there wasn’t any. I thought we’d just run out.”
“Then the toast burned and I spilled the coffee, and if that wasn’t bad enough, one of my shoelaces snapped. I should’ve realised right then I was doomed.”
“That’s it? Ianto, those sorts of things happen to people all the time.”
“Not to me they don’t. Any day that begins with that many bad omens can only get worse, and it did. When I went to pick up the dry cleaning a black cat ran across the road in front of me.”
“Ianto, having a black cat cross your path is not a bad omen; that’s just a silly superstition.”
“That’s what you think! I had to swerve to avoid it and I caught the passenger side wing mirror on a road sign. Knocked it clean off.”
“The wing mirror or the road sign?”
“The mirror of course, twpsyn! The road sign’s still there, but it might be a bit bent.”
“Mirrors can be replaced. I still don’t see why you think it was a bad omen. I mean, I know you’ve had a bit of bad luck today, but still…”
“A bit?” Ianto started to sit up, winced, and slumped back on the pillows again. “You call this a bit of bad luck? I’m in hospital, Jack! I should’ve heeded the warning signs and been more careful, and I shouldn’t under any circumstances have been so stupid as to walk under that ladder. That was just inviting disaster!”
Ianto didn’t consider himself superstitious, but after the awful morning he’d had, it would have been common sense to avoid taking unnecessary risks. If he had, he wouldn’t be here now, suffering from concussion, three broken ribs, a dislocated shoulder, and a fractured wrist. It was a miracle he hadn’t broken his neck into the bargain.
“Accidents happen; there’s no way you could’ve known that guy would fall off his ladder, and look on the bright side; you saved his life.”
“Yes, because it’s so comforting to know a six foot six, three-hundred pound builder can fall off a thirty foot ladder, land on me, and walk away without a scratch while I wind up in hospital. Excuse me for not seeing any bright side.”
“I see your point. But you got lucky; it could’ve been worse.”