Sarah had never been so grateful to be home.
She got out of the cab, looking around the neighborhood while the driver pulled her bags from the boot and she paid him. Not much had changed, despite her being gone so many months. Her car was in the drive, and the circulars had been gathered off the porch. Looked like Josh had tidied up after he brought K9 home for her when she left Cardiff. The house across the street was for sale again, she noticed without interest. No one seemed to stay in the place long, so it really was no surprise. She just hoped the next owners were less high strung than the last.
She made her way into the house, leaving her bags in the front hall. It was good to be home again, with her own bed and her own kettle, her knickknacks and her memories gathered into one place after a lifetime of travel. She envied the Doctor, who took his home with him when he traveled. It took so much of the stress out of it.
“K9, I’m home!” She picked up the mail and sorted through it absently.
The hum of his treads presaged K9’s arrival in the hall. “Greetings, mistress. Your return is welcome.”
She smiled as his little wire tail wagged happily. “Thank you, K9, it’s good to be back. Anything interesting happen while I was gone?”
“Negative, mistress. All has been quiet since I returned from my assignment in Wales.”
“Yes, same here.” She stepped over him to head back to the kitchen, eager for a cuppa before she settled back in.
“Was your trip to Scotland satisfactory?” He trundled along after her.
Sarah filled the kettle and plugged it in before answering. “I think I got my intentions across. Between the breadcrumbs I left for the eccentric Mr. Clive and the implication that the information I have is safely archived for immediate global release should they ever interfere with the Doctor again, I think we’ve heard the last of Torchwood.” The sudden pang that last thought created startled her. To cover, she turned to take down some of Lavinia’s china for her tea. “Of course, I doubt they’d have expected me to hide it on their own computers.”
“Well done, Mistress. Now that you have returned, you have twenty-seven emails and five phone messages waiting for you.”
Back to work. “Thanks, K9. I’ll get them when I’m done here.”
“Affirmative.” And he wheeled off about his business.
Alone again, she could think about that vague sense of loss. She had probably stayed in Cardiff too long. She couldn’t help but miss that crazy lot. And it had felt good to be a part of something again. Something bigger than what she and Josh and Nat were about. But she was needed elsewhere, and they had their own business to attend to. It was time to move on.
Taking her tea, she wandered into her study to check her messages. The first three were from Josh and Nat, the fourth from an acquaintance at the EU Council asking her to call back on a matter of some urgency.
The last one made her smile.
“Now that you’re home,” Jack’s voice began without preamble, the timbre such that even through the phone line and the tinny recording, she could tell he was smiling, “I thought it would be a good idea for us to stay in touch. So I’ll be by on Friday night. You still haven’t told me the whole story about the Book of Tomorrows, and there are some things I haven’t told you about death and resurrection. And if that gets boring, well, I’m sure we can think of some other ways to stay in touch that don’t involve a lot of talking.” The raw innuendo made her grin even as her body responded to the memory of his touch. “Don’t bother to call back, I’m not going to let you say no, Sarah. I’ll see you Friday.”
Shaking her head, she switched off the machine. He must have been watching his damned CCTV monitors for her. That boy. But she couldn’t deny the flush in her cheeks and the way her heart raced and her stomach knotted like a teenager waiting for her first date.
Friday couldn’t come soon enough.