After-effects

Chapter 10

Gordon tapped gently on Scott's door before pushing it open and stepping inside. Scott, who was a notoriously light sleeper, stirred almost immediately and was sitting on the edge of his bed by the time Gordon reached him.

"John," Gordon murmured as he held his phone out towards Scott. "He…he needs to speak to you."

Scott picked his watch up off the bedside table and shook it. "Are we having problems?"

Gordon pushed his phone towards his brother again. "Not technical problems, no. The watches are fine, John just phoned my cell 'cos he could see me moving whereas everyone…mostly…else was asleep."

Scott frowned at Gordon's hesitancy and held his hand out for the phone. He patted the bed beside him in an invite to Gordon to sit down and then put the phone to his ear. "I'm getting bad vibes, Johnny. This call is not going to be good, I can tell."

"And hello to you too, Scott," John chuckled. "…and you're not wrong. You're not going to like the call."

John briefly told Scott that after hearing nothing from the island all day, he had been woken from his sleep by Thunderbird 5 announcing the fact Thunderbird 3 had been launched and was on its way towards him. John went on to explain that he had been unable to make contact with Alan aboard Thunderbird 3 but that he assumed it was Alan himself who was being uncommunicative rather than Three or Five because, as far as he could tell, all the systems were fully functional. He touched on the fact that Thunderbird 3 appeared to have been launched without any sort of clearance but omitted to tell Scott about Gordon's near-miss.

Scott stood up and began pacing slowly back and forth while John was talking. This left the bed free for Gordon who flopped down comfortably on top of sheets while he waited for his older brothers to discuss what, if anything, they were going to do for the rest of the night.

~#~

By the time John and Scott had finished talking, Gordon was fast asleep. Scott disconnected the call to John, turned back towards his bed and smiled. "You've had a long day, Little Fish," he murmured. "…and it looks like you're down for the night so I guess I'll be taking your room for now. I'll come and see you in the morning. Sleep well."

Scott unlaced Gordon's shoes and carefully pulled them off without disturbing the sleeping aquanaut. He got a light blanket out of his closet, spread it gently over Gordon and then quietly left the room.

~#~

John contacted Scott early the next morning to tell him that Alan had docked safely during the night but that the youngest Tracy hadn't told him anything useful due to the state that he had been in when he had arrived. Alan had been in floods of tears, had babbled a lot and had made little or no sense before he had finally shut himself in his bedroom, covered himself entirely in bedcovers and hadn't been seen since.

Scott shook his head at this. "So we're still none the wiser as to what's caused all this but it's safe to say that it's something big. And by big, I mean, really, really…Thunderbird 2-type big."

"I'll try to get some sense out of him when he gets up," John promised. "It's not like he's going to be able to avoid me for long and I've kind of trapped him up here for the…er…time being. I've locked him out of Three, in case you were wondering 'cos much as I might like it up here, I'm not willing to stay up here indefinitely and that's exactly what'll happen if he takes Three and decides to go…well, anywhere other than back down there."

Scott nodded. "Makes sense as I can't see him wanting to come anywhere near here when Father finds out what he's done. Three's neither inconspicuous nor easy to park anywhere other than the island though so it's not like he could go many other places with her." Scott shrugged. "Keep him locked out, Johnny, just in case. Oh, and John…" He paused for a moment and peered at his watch. "…keep in touch."

~#~

Scott wandered through the house, into the kitchen and flicked on the coffee machine. Virgil, still half asleep, wandered into the room and pushed a mug towards him and the two brothers spent a quiet few minutes with their drinks until Virgil's watch made its presence known.

"Virg?" Gordon's voice floated quietly out of the watch. "Are you awake? I can't get up. If you can hear me could you please come and give me a hand?"

"I hear you, Gordy," Virgil replied softly as he stood up. "…and I'm on my way. Just hold on, I'll be there in just a moment."

Scott stood up and followed Virgil from the kitchen. "You need to head to my room," he murmured. "Gordon fell asleep in there when he got back last night and I didn't have the heart to move him."

Virgil nodded. "Fair enough. I can't say I'm surprised he's struggling to get up if he's in your room though. Dad really didn't think things through well when he equivalently stuck Gordy in a seat for the greatest part of yesterday. He'll be stiff and uncomfortable and…"

"…Stuck in a bed with no grab rails." Scott finished Virgil's sentence just as they stepped into the corridor leading to the bedrooms. "Damn, I would never have left him if I'd thought about that."

Scott pushed his door open and hurried over to Gordon. "I…"

Gordon shook his head. "Don't say it, Scott. It's my fault I'm stuck here, not yours. You only suggested that I sat down, not that I should take over the entire bed and then fall asleep. Thanks for the blanket, by the way…at least I assume that was you?"

Scott nodded. "You were well away so I covered you over and crashed in your room for a few hours. I wouldn't have left if I'd thought you'd have trouble getting up again."

"S'okay, Scotty," Gordon let out a sigh. "I kind of guessed that I'd struggle this morning. It was a long and very strange day yesterday and one that I'd rather not repeat any time soon if I can otherwise avoid it. Virg, once you've got me moving could you please take a look at T2. I sort of promised her that you'd sort her out once you'd…um…once you'd sorted me out and I'd rather Dad didn't see her with her wheels in the sand."

"I can do that," Virgil agreed, frowning slightly and looking down at Scott who just shrugged. "Let's see about getting you moving first…and then we'll sort out Tracy 2."

~#~

Scott and Virgil got Gordon up off the bed and deposited him in Scott's bathroom so he could freshen up and relieve himself. The pair then escorted him to the kitchen where Virgil propped him up against the worktop in front of the window and Scott made him a cup of weak, milky coffee.

"I take it they were yours?" Gordon asked as he waved his cup at the part-drunk mugs of cold coffee on the table. "I'm sorry if I disturbed you but thanks for coming to my aid 'cos I think I'd've been stuck there for hours on my own."

Scott leaned over and ruffled Gordon's hair. "Any time, Little Fish. Any time." He chuckled as Gordon hurried to flatten his hair back into some sort of order. "Do you want to try again with the drinks, Virg, or are we just going to see about putting Dad's plane to bed?"

Virgil looked disdainfully at the cups on the table. "Let's get the plane shifted first. We can start again with the coffee when we do breakfast."

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