Categories > TV > Thunderbirds > Enhanced0 Reviews
After participating in a rescue at a US research base John begins experiencing strange and amazing side effects.
Chapter Six: Sudden Illness
Twelve Minutes Later
Scott Tracy quietly opened the door to John's bedroom and cautiously looked into the room. He had arrived back on the island a few minutes ago - the little diversion to play his little trick on the US military had cost him some additional flight time. Shortly after getting to the surface dad had told him that John was suffering from a migraine and had gone to bed.
Normally Scott would have accepted his fathers assessment and left it at that. But something was telling him that there was something more wrong with John than a simple migraine.
Scott has always had a strange sixth sense where his brothers were concerned. He didn't understand it but he always just knew when something was wrong with one of them. And right now that strange sense was screaming at him that something was very wrong with John.
Not wanting to unnecessarily worry his father and two other earth side brothers he hadn't told them about his feeling. Instead he'd come up here to investigate the feeling on his own.
Moving quietly so as not to disturb his sleeping brother Scott and approached the bed. With each step he became more and more convinced that something was very wrong with John.
Reaching the side of the bed Scott gazed down on John's sleeping face knew that his feeling had been right. John's face was unnaturally pale; virtually the only colour being from the tan that John was just starting to regain. His skin was caked in sweat as though he'd been exercising really, really hard. And John was huddled up as if trying to keep warm he was also shivering.
This isn't a migraine, Scott thought mental alarm bells ringing at full volume. Gently he reached out and put his hand on his brother's forehead and immediately felt the unhealthy amount of heat John's body was generating.
Scott stared at John for a few moments in alarm and concern. Where had this sudden fever come from? John had been perfectly fine this morning and out on the rescue. Had anything been wrong with him out on the rescue Scott knew he would have been immediately informed. He couldn't help but wonder if John had inadvertently picked something up out on the rescue, could he have picked up a cold from one of the researchers. Or god forbid could he have been exposed to something on that base. Something very nasty like a biological weapon.
Scott shuddered at the mere thought of it. Research into biological weapons had been illegal for a very long time - since the mid 20th century in point of fact - but didn't stop some people and governments from doing research in that field.
"Get a grip Scott," he said softly to himself. Take a few deep breaths Scott brought himself under control, then removing his hand from John's forehead he turned and left the room. He had to alert dad to what was happening with John.
Jeff Tracy looked up from the magazine he was reading when he heard Scott come into the living room. One look at Scott's face was enough to set mental alarm bells ringing in Jeff's head.
"Scott what is it?" Jeff asked. "What's wrong?"
"It's John," Scott answered. "I just checked in on him. Dad he hasn't got a migraine."
"What do you mean Scott," Jeff asked just as Virgil look up from the chess game he was playing with Tin-Tin to stare at Scott.
"He's running a really high fever dad," Scott answered. "His temperature is way higher than it should be, he's pale as a ghost, while simultaneously sweating and shivering."
As Scott spoke looks of concern appeared on the face's of everyone who was listening. The symptoms Scott was describing definitely did not fit with the migraine, which was what John had seemingly been suffering from when Jeff ordered him to bed. After a moment of concerned silence Jeff snapped into action.
"Tin-Tin," Jeff said.
"Yes Mr Tracy," Tin-Tin replied.
"Go and prepare the sickroom."
"Yes Mr Tracy," Tin-Tin answered standing up and leaving the room.
"Virgil go and find Gordon then bring a stretcher were going to have to move John to the sickroom."
"Yes father," Virgil answered also getting up and silently berating himself for not realising earlier that something more was wrong with John than a sudden viscous headache. He should have insisted that John go straight to the sick room and lie on the diagnostic bed so they could have determined what was actually wrong. Without saying anything he left the room in search of Gordon.
"Scott can you go and get Brains and meet us in the sickroom."
"Sure thing father," Scott answered then he also left the room for Brains lab. Since the lab was usually where the scientific genius could be found he would check their first.
Jeff for his part sighed and also stood up heading for John's room with a worried frown on his face.
As soon as he entered John's bedroom Jeff knew that Scott was right and that something was seriously wrong with John. John had twirled around so much in the bed in his feverish sleep that the blankets had sort of wrapped around him forming a cocoon with only John's blond hair visible. Jeff rolled his eyes even as his concern grew. John had only ever done that when he was ill, it had used to drive both him and Lucille crazy.
Jeff moved up the side of the bed and carefully peeled back the layers of bedclothes to reveal his son's face. John's face was really, really pale and completely caked in sweat just as Scott had said. Before Jeff's eyes John tossed in his sleep again and made a sound that sounded like a soft whimper. The sound set off even more mental alarm bells in Jeff's head. Not only was John extremely feverish all of a sudden but he seemed to be in some pain as well.
"John," Jeff whispered softly in a deeply worried tone. Seeing his son like this upset him to no end. Jeff worried and got upset whenever his sons were ill just like any parent would but he especially worried about John when he was ill. Of all his sons John was the one who resembled his late beloved wife the most. So it always seemed to hurt more when John was ill or got hurt on a mission.
Jeff felt his son's forehead and the back of his neck and recoiled when he felt the huge amount of heat his son's body was generating. John's fever was dangerously high. They had to get him to the sickroom now so they could try and diagnose what was causing it and start trying to bring it down. Jeff also decided that he would place a call to the mainland and get a doctor out here. Australia was closest he would call and get a doctor out here ASAP.
Gently he unwrapped the cocoon of blankets that John had woven around himself so his son's body was completely clear of the blankets. John wasn't wearing anything save for a dark blue pair of boxer shorts. He really does look ill, Jeff thought worriedly. Looking at John so pale and shivering obviously suffering badly with his sudden fever Jeff couldn't help but feel helpless.
The bedroom door opened and Virgil came through followed by Gordon who was manoeuvring an antigrav stretcher and looking understandably worried. John's sudden illness had them all concerned. Except for Alan who still did not know. Inwardly Jeff sighed. Before he called the doctor he would have to call Thunderbird Five and fill Alan in on what was happening with John. He wasn't looking forward to telling Alan, as he knew how his youngest son would react. He'd been shocked, worried and feel utterly helpless and unable to help stuck as he was aboard the space station.
"He doesn't look good dad," Gordon said looking worriedly at John.
"No he doesn't," Jeff agreed. "Let's get him to the sickroom."
It was surprisingly easy to get John to the sickroom. Worryingly John did not show any sign of waking up when they moved him from his bed to the stretcher or from the stretcher to the sickroom's diagnostic bed. He was deeply unconscious. A fact that had Jeff very, very worried.
Brains arrived at the sickroom a few minutes after them.
"S...s...sorry Mr Tracy," Brains said apologetically even as he looked instantly deeply concerned at John. "I h...h...had to l...l...lock down an e...experiment."
"It's okay Brains," Jeff answered. "You know what to do?" he nodded to John.
"Y...y...yes Mr Tracy," Brains answered as he moved over to the controls of the diagnostic bed and operating them with practised ease.
The bed beneath John's body lit up, as did a small unit on the ceiling above the bed. A fan of light similar in appearance to the laser fans popular in nightclubs and discos projected from the ceiling and began to slowly sweep along the length of John's body from the top of his head down. Additional sensors built into the diagnostic bed scanned John from below. Assisted by Tin-Tin Brains read the bio readings on John as they came in.
"John's b...b...body temperature is reading out at 106 degree's," Brains read off.
"White blood cell count has shot up," Tin-Tin reported worriedly knowing that it was not a good sign at all. "There is intense stress on every single system in John's body."
"C...c...curious," Brains abruptly said.
"What is Brains? What's happening?" Jeff demanded. Though his voice and face were calm the worry he felt was plain to see in his eyes.
"W...were n...not picking up any s...s...sign of bacterial or viral infection. J...John should not be ill like this."
"Brains look at this," Tin-Tin said pointing out a reading. "The sensors are picking up an unusual compound in John's bloodstream."
"What kind of compound Tin-Tin," Scott asked.
"I don't know Scott," Tin-Tin admitted.
"It a...appears to b...be a b...biopolymer residue of somekind," Brains stammered a thoughtful frown on his face. "I...I'll need a blood sample for analysis."
Tin-Tin moved over to a drawer and took a hypospray out of its sealed clean environment. Inserting a sample tube she moved to John's side and took a small sample of his blood. As the hypospray disengaged it left behind an organic sealant to seal the tiny puncture wound where it had taken the sample.
Tin-Tin withdrew the sample tube and made sure it had sealed properly as it was supposed to before handing it to brains.
"There you go Brains," she said.
"Thanks Tin-Tin," Brains replied just as the diagnostic console gave a series of bleeps. "W...what the?" Brains exclaimed turning his attention back to the console.
"What is it Brains," Jeff asked.
"Johns fever is dropping off," Brains replied. "B...body t...temperature returning to normal. White b...blood cell count a...also dropping returning to normal level."
Everyone turned there attention to John and watched as as if by magic John's skin returned to a normal healthy pallor and he stopped sweating and shivering though he remained asleep.
Brains re-ran the scan of John's body. And then not believing the result he ran the scan again to the same result.
"John's bio-readings are all back in the green," Tin-Tin said shocked. "Body temperature, white blood cell count, everything is back to normal. John is just asleep."
Everyone exchanged shocked and disbelieving glances. But on the scanner readouts was indisputable proof that John was suddenly back to normal and showed no sign at all of having been a mere minute earlier dangerously ill.
"What just happened," Scott wondered aloud.
"I don't Scott," Brains answered in a quiet awed tone of voice. "I just don't know."
Two Hours Later
John Tracy awoke feeling perfectly fine, as he sat up he was startled to realise that he was not in his bedroom. He was instead lying on one of the beds in the sickroom. John frowned. How had he gotten here? The last thing he remembered was going to bed with a full force migraine raging inside his skull. Now he felt fine. Better than fine actually. Truth be told he felt better now than he'd ever felt in his life.
The door to the sickroom opened and his father came in.
"Hello son how are you feeling?" Jeff asked.
"I'm fine dad," John answered. "What am I doing in the sickroom? Last thing I remember is going to bed with a pounding headache?"
"Don't you remember being feverish," Jeff asked.
"No," John answered frowning at his dad. "What happened to me dad?"
Jeff sat on the edge of the opposite bed and explained what had happened. How when Scott had come home he'd gone to check on him and found him with a dangerously high fever, how they'd moved him to the sickroom and what had happened with the diagnostic scans.
"I was that sick just two hours ago," John asked frowning in disbelief yet somehow knowing his father was speaking the truth.
"You were you gave us quite a scare," Jeff admitted.
"I feel fine now," John replied. "What happened to me dad?"
"We don't John," Jeff answered. "We honestly don't know. Brains is analysing the biopolymer residue we found in your blood maybe that will provide some answers."
"I hope so," John admitted. "Can I get up please?" Jeff looked closely at his second born son.
"Alright," he said at last. "I'll go and get you some clothes. But I want you to take things easy for the rest of the day. Clear."
"Yes father," John answered smiling. Jeff smiled back and left the room to go and get some clean clothes for John.
John for his part leaned back on the bed and tried to make sense of what his father had said. But found he couldn't make any sense of it. After a moment he sighed and waited for his father to return with some clean clothes. All the while he couldn't help but wonder.
What had happened to him?