Now that Torchwood was no longer hiding in the shadows, and the existence of aliens was a matter of public knowledge, there was no reason to keep Nosy cooped up in the Hub or at the flat all the time. Video of the Fluff had been broadcast worldwide over the two months since the child-stealing 456 had been defeated. Pictures had been printed in every newspaper, and fanmail had been coming in by the sack load. Nosy was an international celebrity thanks to the part it had played during the crisis. Why shouldn’t it get to meet its adoring public?
Besides, Nosy deserved a reward, beyond the medal it had received from the Queen. A shopping spree at the St. David’s Centre seemed ideal. Nosy could choose some new toys or other things for itself and perhaps even have lunch out. Surely the cafés and restaurants wouldn’t deny it service.
The weather wasn’t bad, overcast, but dry and not too cold. Jack and Ianto took Nosy in Ianto’s own car, so the Fluff could look out the windows and be seen by passers-by. Ianto’s only concern was that the sight of the furry head peering out and goggling at everything might cause an accident, so he gave the police fair warning and didn’t set out until the morning rush was over.
Heads turned as Jack and Ianto, with Nosy between them, exited the lift that had brought them up from the underground car park. Some people drew back a bit nervously, others stepped aside to make way for the Fluff and its friends, and almost everyone came to a halt. There was no doubt that Nosy was the centre of attention, not that Jack and Ianto were surprised.
A small child broke away from her parents and ran to Nosy, throwing her arms around it in an awkward hug, and sneezing when the long green fur went up her nose. She laughed, and Nosy hummed, and then more people were approaching, bending down to stroke Nosy, thanking it for stopping the 456 and saving their children.
Nosy basked in all the attention, humming politely to its fans. Once in a while, Jack or Ianto would find themselves shaking hands with grateful people, but they were an afterthought; Nosy was the main attraction.
Progress through the shopping centre was understandably slow, it seemed as if every person there was determined to get their thirty seconds with Cardiff’s most famous alien, and more people were arriving all the time, having been texted by friends and family. Everywhere phones were capturing snapshots and video footage. It was a good thing Tosh wouldn’t have to search out and delete all the social media posts because there were going to be thousands.
“So much for shopping and lunch,” Ianto said. “I should’ve foreseen this.”
“Everyone wants to show their gratitude, and why shouldn’t they? Without Nosy’s assistance, we might not have been able to defeat one of the worst alien threats the world’s ever faced.”