Categories > TV > Thunderbirds > Enhanced0 Reviews
After participating in a rescue at a US research base John begins to experience strange and amazing side effects.
Chapter Thirty One: Breakthrough
Tracy Island, One Week Later
Brains jumped, startled out of the schematics he was reviewing, as his main lab computer abruptly admitted a series of bleeps. Now what, he thought with a frown, as he got up from the electronic drawing board he was working at, and went over to the computer. He vaguely remembered instructing the computer to run some tests and simulations but what on, he couldn't remember. He had gotten to into designing some modifications to Thunderbird One.
The flagship aircraft of International Rescue was still down for repairs after that close encounter with a pyroclastic flow at Mount Baker. Brains, with help from Tin-Tin and Scott, had repaired as many of the damaged systems as they could, but they were now stuck until some replacement parts arrived. Parts that were not due to arrive for another two days. In a way, Brains believed that the damage to Thunderbird One was a bit of a blessing in disguise - not that he was about to tell Scott that - as it was allowing him to give her a very thorough, long overdue overhaul. He already had some modifications to make to improve the way ship functioned.
Brains put the thoughts about Thunderbird One out of his mind for now, and gave the computer his full attention. After a second of looking at the screens blankly, he remembered what he had asked it to run its tests on. The tests and simulations were on the nanites, and Brains' continuing quest to find a way of getting them out of John, without killing him in the process. He quickly scanned the test results, and behind his glasses, his eyes widened. The test and simulation indicated away of doing just that. Intrigued and excited now, Brains read more in depth. This is it, he thought, this is how I can get those things out of John without hurting him. I must tell Mr Tracy immediately.
With a few quick commands, Brains transferred the information to one of the empty electronic pads beside the computer. Then he picked up the pad and left the room, hurrying towards Jeff Tracy's office to give him the good news.
That Same Time
Alan Tracy frowned as he studied the information displayed on one of the control rooms many computer screens. The sensors were tracking a tropical storm in the South Pacific. That was nothing unusual, there was always a few at this time of year. Tropical storms and typhoons were common at the moment. It was where this one was going that had him concerned. The storm was heading right for Tracy Island. According to the storm plot it would hit the island in just over two hours
"Going to get a bit wild down there," he said to himself, remembering from past experience that when tropical storms hit the island, they brought with them high winds, lightning and rain - a lot of it. "It's approaching from a weird angle though, Dad might not know its coming."
The winds in a tropical storm were very powerful and could do a lot of damage. While all the buildings on the island were designed to withstand much more than a tropical storm, it would still cause havoc if it caught them unawares. Can't take a chance that they don't know its coming, Alan thought before flicking a control on the console sending a hailing signal to Tracy Island.
Pulling idly at the collar of his t-shirt, Gordon entered the villa from the patio and looked over at where his father was sitting at his desk, going through some paperwork. Gordon had been going down to the dock to get out two jet skies. He and Virgil had been going to have a race around the island when he had noticed that it was extremely humid outside. There was an eerie calm in the air as well, and when he'd seen how rough the ocean was today he'd known something was up. Something was coming, yet as far he knew they hadn't received any storm warnings.
"Dad, have we received any weather reports today?" he asked.
Jeff looked up at the sound of his voice and frowned. "Not that I'm aware of, Gordon," Jeff replied, before looking over at where John was sitting nearby reading an astrophysics magazine. "Have you heard anything, John?"
"No I haven't, Dad," John answered, looking up. "I would have told you if there was a storm coming. The weather forecast this morning said nothing. Though there are some tropical storms wandering around but none are near here as far as I know."
"Well, something's coming," Gordon said frowning. "The ocean is really choppy this morning."
"That's odd," Jeff answered, still frowning a moment before a familiar beeping sound filled the air. The sound immediately drew everyone's attention to the portraits, where Alan's eyes were flashing. Jeff pressed a control on his desk to answer the hail, and the portrait changed to a live feed from the space station. "Go ahead, Alan."
"I've spotted something, Dad," Alan replied. "Sensors have detected a tropical storm approaching the island from a very odd direction."
"That's strange, we've not had any storm warnings," John said, looking at the screen, while noticing Brains coming into the room out of the corner of his eyes. Alan shrugged.
"It's there, John take a look," he answered and his image disappeared to be replaced by a feed from Thunderbird Five's sensors. The screens showed a mass of angry storm clouds heading right for Tracy Island. "The computer estimates the storm will hit the island in two hours," Alan's voice said over the image.
"That's a very odd angle for a storm," Gordon mused.
"Indeed it is, Gordon," Alan replied as his image reappeared. "That's why I checked the scanners the moment I saw it, just to be sure it wasn't a malfunction. The angle does explain though why the weather service didn't spot it; it was only luck that I saw it myself."
"Odd angle or not it's coming," Jeff said. "So we better prepare for it. Thanks for letting us know Alan."
"No problem, Dad," Alan replied. "Good luck."
"Thanks, Alan," Jeff replied. Alan smiled and broke the connection from his end. Jeff sighed and looked at John and Gordon. "John, will you go and get Scott and Virgil. We're going to need their help to secure this place for the storm."
"Okay, Dad," John replied, getting up and leaving the room.
"I'll get started on clearing the stuff off the sundeck," Gordon said, before leaving the room as well.
Jeff looked over at Brains, like John he had noticed Brains come into the room. "Yes, Brains?" Jeff asked.
"Mr Tracy, I b...b...believe I have m...m...made a breakthrough about the n...n...nanites in John," Brains replied.
"I believe that I n...n...now have a means of r...r...removing the nanites from John's b...b...body without killing him in the p...p...process."
Jeff looked at Brains in surprise. Brains had been working on that problem intermittently since the nanites had first gotten into John nearly a month ago. Real life nanotechnology was something that was so new to all of them, that Jeff hadn't really thought Brains would ever succeed in his goal. Consequently, he had been watching with growing pride as John adapted to all the changes the nanites had been making in his body, from the earlier changes, to the most recent dramatic change in John's physique. In conquering the changes he had observed John's self confidence grow stronger, it was nice to see his normally quiet son more confident in himself.
"Take a seat, Brains, and tell me everything," Jeff said.
Brains nodded and sat down opposite Jeff and began to explain exactly what he had discovered.
A Few Minutes Later
John returned to the living room, with Scott and Virgil walking a few paces behind him. Immediately from the way his father and Brains were talking, John knew that they had found something out. What that was, he didn't know, and he didn't want to boost his hearing to make out what they were saying.
Noticing that John had returned with his brothers, Jeff broke off his conversation with Brains, and looked over at them.
"Ah boys, good," he said. "Has John told you what's happening?"
"Yes, Father," Scott replied. "Thunderbird Five's sensors have detected a tropical storm coming our way from a very odd angle, a storm that will reach us in two hours."
"That's it exactly, Scott," Jeff answered. "So we have a lot of things to secure or put away before the storm arrives and not a lot of time to do it in. Scott, I want you to go down to the dock and start putting the stuff there away. Make sure you lock down the building. Virgil, I want you to go to the round house and make sure everything is battened down before closing the storm shutters."
"F-A-B, Father," Scott and Virgil said in unison, before leaving the room again to carry out their assigned tasks.
"What can I do, Dad," John asked, curious as to why Jeff had not assigned him to do anything. When there was a lot of work to do to get the villa complex ready.
"You can go and help Scott in a couple of minutes, John," Jeff replied. "But first, myself and Brains want a word with you. Please take a seat."
"Sure, Dad. What do you want to talk to me about?" John asked
"It's about the nanites, John. Brains believes that he has found away to safely remove them from your body."
"I see," John replied, with a sudden empty feeling in his stomach. He had been starting to really get comfortable with the idea that the nanites were going to be inside him for the rest of his life. To be suddenly told that Brains might have away to take them out, made him uncomfortable. He had gotten so used to them he didn't know if he really wanted to be normal again.
"Tell me everything Brains," John said after a moment's silence.
Brains nodded and once again began to explain his latest test and simulation results on the nanites. The simulation had revealed that a complex serum made of a variety of different and complex chemical compounds, could be administered to John's body in three treatments spaced over several days. Once present, the serums active components would begin slowly returning John's body to normal. By safely dissolving the nanites, while simultaneously using a complex controlled process to return John's cells to normal human operation. There were risks however Brains explained. The risk being that the serum might either not work at all or have other unforeseen effects that could potentially be fatal.
"The c...c...choice would be y...y...yours, John," Brains said. "I can make the s...s...serum in question, it's difficult to s...s...synthesise but w...w...within a w...w...week I would h...h...have enough ready to m...m...make the attempt."
"I see, Brains," John said. "I will have to think about it. I should go and help Scott now."
"Okay, John," Jeff replied. "Take as much time as you want to make your decision. We'll all stand by you and respect your choice, no matter what it is."
"Thanks, Dad," John answered, smiling as he stood up, then he turned and left the room.
Jeff watched the older of his two blond haired sons leave the room. He had seen the look in John's expressive blue eyes as Brains had outlined his discovery. He suspected that John wasn't certain that he wanted the nanites out of his body. Jeff could understand how John felt that way, John had become used to them being a part of him. Jeff wouldn't be at all surprised if John decided to keep the nanites. As he had said to him Jeff would support whatever decision he made. And Jeff knew that everyone of John's brothers would be the same.
"Mr Tracy, w...w...what do y...y...you want me to do now?" Brains asked, wondering if Jeff wanted him to return to his lab, or if he wanted him to assist the boys with securing the villa complex for the approaching storm.
"Please go and help Gordon out on the sundeck, Brains," Jeff replied.
"Yes, Mr Tracy," Brains answered, standing up before following John's path out of the main living room.
A Short Time Later
Scott grunted as he manhandled one of the jet skies into the boathouse and locked it in place. This would go a lot easier if I had some help, Scott thought.
The sound of footsteps approaching made him look up. Glancing outside he smiled when he saw that help was coming in the form of John. Yet, as John approached Scott knew that there was something on his mind, he could tell by the look on John's face and his whole demeanour. Dad must have said something to him, Scott thought, has to be something serious to have John looking the way that he is.
John came into the boat shed at that moment, and Scott smiled warmly at him but John did not show any sign of having noticed. Scott knew that his brother had gotten so lost in thought, that he was basically moving about on automatic pilot.
"John," he called out to get his brothers attention.
John jumped. "Scott I didn't see you there," he said. "You gave me a bit of a fright there."
"Sorry. You seemed preoccupied. Is anything wrong?" Scott asked, shifting into concerned big brother mode without even realising that he was doing it.
"No, nothing's wrong Scott. I just have a lot on my mind," John replied reassuringly.
"Want to talk about it?"
John considered for a moment, it would be nice to talk it over with someone. And Scott had always made it clear that his door was always open to his siblings if they wanted to talk about something. The problem was though, John wasn't sure what to say, and they didn't really have time to have a proper brother to brother chat at the moment.
"Yes," he answered at last. "But not right now. We have too much to do to get this place ready for the coming storm. We can talk about it later. Let's just do what we have to do."
"Are you sure John?"
"Yeah, Scott I'm sure."
"Alright, help me get the Lucille into the boathouse. Then we can start locking everything down."