Hello all! I'm back now with a nice little one shot to keep you lot happy Until I can get my new story up off the ground. I've been doing a little thinking about my characters and have realised that my timeline needs some thinking. I've edited Light at the End and Friends till the end to suit this (not big changes but a few little ones to the boys ages). For any information on the timeline check out my profile as I've put the individual stories on there in the order they happen as well as the boys exact ages in each one.
For your information though:
Scott – 19 years and 7 months old
John – 18 years and 1 month old
Virgil – 15 years and 3 months old
Gordon – 12 years and 9 months old
Alan – 7 years and 8 months old
I know it's a bit strange to have exact ages like this but I'm paranoid about my timeline of events. Anyhow…I've gotten a bit off track. On with the one shot!
Summary: Poor Alan's on the receiving end of a flu induced rant from Gordon. Unfortunately Gordon's words have some disastrous consequences for little Alan.
Disclaimer: I've begged and begged but still no luck on ownership, but do not fear I shall never give up!
Ill Spoken Words:
I hate being sick! Gordon thought to himself as he rolled over onto his stomach.
Lying in bed feeling like crap with nothing to do but stare at the freaking walls, so much fun! Anybody spot the sarcasm?
He'd been sick with this stupid flu for three days now with no signs of it letting up its tight hold anytime soon. Virgil had picked up the bug in school a few weeks ago and naturally gotten sick as a dog. He'd managed to pass it round the family starting with Jeff, then reaching Alan before settling on poor Gordon.
Why did I have to get sick?
With Scott away at university he'd managed to miss the flu going round by the time he came home for Christmas the epidemic would be over.
Why did John have to go on that stupid trip? If he hadn't then he'd be here and I wouldn't be stuck with Doctor Virgil.
It was true that out of his three older brothers Scott was easily the most over protective out of them. The paranoid restrictions his oldest brother had placed on him, well all of them, over the years were slowly going out the window now that he was away from home. Gordon and Alan had made a point of breaking several of their oldest brother's rules already. Virgil, despite being younger than John, was next in the pecking order for the title of most over protective brother. His fascination for medicine and taking care of people made him in some ways worse than Scott. John was different. John wasn't as over protective, well he was but he had way of being over protective without being completely excessive about the whole thing.
But stupid John was far too intelligent and managed to get himself invited on some stupid trip to the world space centre. He wanted to be an astronaut like their dad and, despite having already visited the place numerous times over the years, he just needed to go again.
A familiar nauseous feeling rolling round his stomach interrupted his thoughts and had him dashing for the bathroom. Several minutes later, after having brought up everything he'd eaten ever, Gordon stood on shaky legs. The walk back to his bedroom seemed to get longer every time he threw up.
I hate being sick.
Claws reached out to the shaking child curled up in the corner of the room.
Teeth snapped as the monster pushed it way into the room, making everything tremble as it did.
The poor child was exhausted.
He'd spent hours running around the house away from the monster but it'd finally caught up with him. His mind told him to run but his body was too tired.
The monster loomed over the child as its hands closed around his tiny body…
Waking up with a start Alan barely managed to stop himself from screaming. Clutching Freddie close to his chest he willed his racing heart to slow down and his body to stop shaking so violently. Fearful eyes darted round the room before settling on the ever growing shadow in the corner. Remembering back to his nightmare the young boy shuddered before making a quick decision. There was no way he could sleep in here tonight. Ordinarily common sense would have told him that he was being silly, Scott and daddy had told him time and time again that monsters weren't real, but right now he was too scared. He was frightened and that shadow sure looked like it was moving.
He was out of bed and through the door before the shadow could grab him. Sighing in relief Alan closed the door and clutched Freddie a little tighter. Now the monster was shut in his bedroom he didn't have to worry about it so much, everyone knew that monsters were too stupid to open doors. Johnny said so.
Looking round the dark hallway Alan moved toward the only door he could. Daddy had to get up real early to talk to his friends, Virgil was having a sleepover at his friend's house so wasn't in his room that only left Gordon. He was still shaking violently as the memories from his nightmare floated around his brain. Shuffling quietly up the hallway the frightened young child was relieved to find Gordon's light was still on.
Gordon sighed as he rolled over onto his back. He was exhausted, his stomach was aching, his head hurt and everything inside him was trying to crawl outside of his body. Tears came to the teenagers eyes before he furiously wiped them away. Crying wasn't going to solve anything. No matter how terrible he felt crying wouldn't help anyway.
"Gordo?" A small voice came from the edge of the room.
"What?" The teenager ground out, sickness and tiredness making him more irritable than usual.
"I had a bad dream." Shaking his head Gordon rolled his eyes.
"So? What am I supposed to do about it?" Ordinarily Gordon would be full of sympathy for his only younger brother, he knew just how vivid Alan's bad dreams could get, but right now he was tired, he felt sick and he hurt all over. His sympathy for his youngest brother went right out the window when his head pounded again.
"Well I-" His response was cut off when an irritated Gordon sat up and glared at him.
"Just go back to bed and stop being such a baby." The seven year old bristled at the word baby. If there was one thing he hated it was being called a baby. He was most definitely not a baby.
"I'm not a baby." Scoffing Gordon turned to face his younger brother.
"Well you're sure acting like one." Rubbing a hand over his eyes the teenager missed the way his younger brother's eyes filled up. It wasn't his fault that the monster decided to come out tonight. "Just go back to bed, stop being such a baby and grow up. We can't hold your hands for the rest of your life you know!"
He turned over and deliberately faced away from his frightened youngest brother. He just wanted to sleep was that too much to ask?
"Sorry Gordo." The second the door closed with a tiny click guilt poured into his mind. It's not Alan's fault he was sick and it's definitely not his fault he had a nightmare. Wincing Gordon closed his eyes, as much as felt guilty he felt too sick to really care about it right now.
He'd apologise in the morning.
Sighing heavily Scott stepped out of the car and stretched. The drive hadn't taken as long as he'd thought it would but sitting down for that long was not something the 19 year old enjoyed. He couldn't help but smile as he walked towards the house. He'd been gone only a few months but it felt like a lifetime. Scott hated being away from his family but he was enjoying not being the responsible one for once. Since John had been born at two years old he'd been the big brother, the one supposed to set an example and he loved it. Caring for his brothers was something he'd always enjoyed but being able to do whatever he wanted without having to worry about baby sitters or other stuff that really shouldn't have been his responsibility. After losing his mother he'd felt like he had to step in and take care of them, it was his duty.
"Scott. I wasn't expecting you so soon, I didn't think you'd be here until later on tonight." Shrugging his shoulders Scott embraced his father. It's good to be home.
"My lectures today were cancelled so I thought I'd hit the road early." Okay so maybe that's not entirely true but really the lectures today weren't important (his lecturer had told them last week that there was nothing new) and he really wanted to get home. Judging from the sceptical look on his father's face the man wasn't buying it one bit.
"Right of course. So how's school been?" As Scott rattled of his exploits since heading out on his own both men felt some of their tension ease, the same thought running through both of their heads.
It feels good to have you back.
Virgil sighed as he stepped out of the car. Watching Alan trudge into the house the strong feeling that something was wrong came back into his mind. For the past few weeks his youngest brother had been acting increasingly strange and now he was worried. He shared his thoughts with John who'd echoed his sentiments. It wasn't like the kid was unhappy but…there was something not right. There were times when he clearly wanted to ask something or say something but then all of a sudden he'd stop himself, it's like someone was pressing a button or something to prevent him from talking.
"He's still acting weird. I tried talking to him last night and I know he wanted to tell me but he just won't." John said as he wandered round the car towards his younger brother. There was something not right about the whole thing but the kid wasn't going to talk to them.
"Hey isn't that Scott's car?" John's thoughts were interrupted as Virgil spoke. Shaking his concerns loose he followed his brother into the house, eyes lighting up as he spotted his only older brother standing in the kitchen. He couldn't help but sigh in relief as Scott lifted Alan into his arms.
Maybe now we'll figure out what's going on.
"Hey I thought you weren't coming home for a few more hours yet." He smiled as he embraced his brother, mindful of the 7 year old in his arms.
"Figured I'd surprise you early. How's school going?" John's response was cut off as Virgil groaned theatrically.
"1 more week and then no more school until the new year." Both boys laughed at their brothers words, it was no secret that Virgil didn't like 'wasting' time in a classroom. He was much better off hands deep in paint or clay or something like that. Being stuck in a classroom looking at a bunch of math problems was not his idea of enjoyment.
"Where's dad?" John chuckled as his younger brother marked yet another day off on the calendar.
"He left some papers at work that he needs to look over so he went to pick them up. What about you sprout? How're you doing?" Alan had been the one that struggled to adjust to Scott being away from home the most. The oldest and youngest siblings had a stronger bond than most did, sometimes the two were more like parent and child than brothers.
"Don't call me sprout." All three smiled at the age old response to the nickname. "I'm okay."
Scott frowned at the distinct lack of words from his baby. He'd been expecting Alan to talk his ear off about anything and everything. It was no secret that the child had missed his oldest brother something fierce.
"You sure?" The child bit his bottom lip as if afraid that the words would escape without his permission. Knowing his words would betray him if he let them loose he settled for nodding his head. Deep down he wanted to tell Scott that he missed him and how happy he was to have him home but the same words that had blighted the poor child's mind for the last few weeks came back to him.
Stop being such a baby.
Gordon was always right, well most of the time, and if he thought that Alan was being a baby then it had to be true. If there was one thing that the child hated it was being called a baby. It was almost like a trigger. Being called a baby would instantly set off every defence the kid had.
"Can you put me down? I have to go to the bathroom." Frowning even further Scott settled his younger brother on the ground and watched him head upstairs.
"Okay what's going on with him? I don't mean to sound big headed or anything but I was expecting a little more than that when I got home." Shaking his head Virgil hopped up onto the counter ignoring John's glare at his actions.
"No idea. He's been acting weird for a few weeks now. Refusing to hang out, not letting us help him with things, trying to do everything on his own…it's not right." Virgil shook his head as he spoke.
"We've both tried talking to him but…" John trailed off. His brother had only just gotten home and here they were worrying him already. Scott nudged the blonde almost as if he was aware of what was going on in his head. "He just, he just stops himself from saying what he wants to. I can tell he wants to tell me what's going on but he just keeps stopping himself. He wants to tell us but there's something stopping him."
"You don't think he's having trouble at school do you?" Although it'd been Virgil who said the words all three were thinking the same thing.
Alan sighed in relief as he reached his bedroom. He was happy to have his big brother home, really happy. When Scott had gone away to school he'd hated it. Scott was his big brother, not having him home made Alan's heart hurt. He should be happy to have him back home, he'd missed him a lot. Having his brother hold him and pick him up made his heart hurt less. Walking away from him hadn't been easy but…
Stop being such a baby
Gordon's words ran around his brain once more and he shook his head. He wasn't a baby so he didn't need to be held by Scott like he did before. He was older now. He wasn't a baby anymore.
The problem was he didn't want to be older like his brothers yet. Being looked after by his brothers felt nice and he missed having them watch over him. He'd missed Scott like crazy, he missed John helping him with his reading and he missed Virgil playing the piano to him when he was sad. He didn't miss Gordon at all. Okay…so that wasn't true. He missed spending time with Gordon but his brother thought he was a baby. When he proved he wasn't a baby then everything would be better.
Shaking his head he pushed the thoughts out of his mind and focused on something else. Thankfully he had just the topic to get his mind off of the mean thoughts in his head.
Show and tell.
His teacher had told them all to bring in something that was special to them that they could talk about. The seven year olds eyes drifted over to where Freddie was sat on the bed. The teddy bear had once been John's but had now been passed down to Alan. He could bring Freddie into school but…only babies needed teddy bears. Looking round his room his eyes fell upon the book Virgil had made him for his birthday.
The red book was filled with pictures of his mother. He liked looking at the book, he didn't remember his mother because he was too young. Not knowing his mother upset him a lot so Virgil had made him the book so that he'd be able to see his mother every day. It was perfect for show and tell.
Gazing at the book shelf the child knew that he had a problem. There was no way he'd be able to reach the book without asking one of his brothers for help. But…big boys didn't need to ask for help and he was a big boy. If he was a baby then he'd need to ask for help but he wasn't a baby so he didn't need help. It was simple really if you thought about it.
Alan smiled as an idea popped into his head. If he could find a chair then he'd be able to reach the book without his brother's help. Looking round the room he frowned as he realised that there was no chair in his room, John had one in his room but it was too big for him to move. Another moment passed as the child tried to figure out how to get to the bookcase without having to move the heavy chairs. As another idea popped into his head he smiled again. Maybe he didn't need to ask his brothers for help after all.
Stepping into his dad's office he spied just the chair he was after. Although the chair was bigger than the one in John's room this one had wheels on it, he could move it easily to reach his book. Taking hold of the chair the seven year old was careful to move it down the hallway without bumping into anything.
Moving the chair into position Alan scrambled to stand on it not realising the chair had moved backwards a few feet in his efforts. Finally standing tall on the chair he leant over to reach the book frowning when he realised that he couldn't reach. He was tall enough now but he was too far away. Apply his logic he stepped forward on the chair he reached over again to grab the book. Unfortunately for the child he stepped a little too far forward and as he leant over again.
All of a sudden the chair slid backwards sending poor Alan crashing to the ground with a painful thump. Tears sprung to the child's eyes as he clutched his throbbing wrist close to his chest. Pain radiated up his arm as he cried and his head pounded horribly.
"Alan?" Someone's strong arms wrapped around him causing the child to cry out in pain as the arms brushed against his wrist. Pulling away from the pain, and with it the arms trying to comfort him, Alan wasn't surprised to see three of his brothers standing before him.
"Scott move." Virgil ordered as he took his brothers place. Kneeling down in front of Alan the young medic scanned his eyes over the youngster. "What happened?"
Taking a deep breath Alan managed to still his cries long enough to whisper out the word 'fell' before another wave of tears crashed over him. Placing a hand on his brothers shoulder Virgil managed to ease the injured appendage out of his grasp. Judging from the fact that his wrist was already starting to swell up there was a distinct possibility that there was something broken. Taking a deep breath Virgil set about doing what he always did, taking care of his family.
"Scott go get me an ice pack I need to put it on his wrist. John call dad and tell him we're taking Alan to the hospital." Both brothers snapped into action quickly Virgil's voice gave them little room for arguing. "Sprout look at me."
His heart broke when two wet blue eyes met his own but he swallowed the pain in his heart and took a deep breath.
"Listen to me I'm going to make it all better okay. I promise I will. Now what I'm going to do might hurt a little bit but I promise it's going to be okay." Alan gave a tentative nod, crying slightly harder when the action made his head throb more. Pulling the belt from the dressing gown hanging on the door Virgil managed to move fast enough to fashion a make shift sling, continuing despite the crying from his younger brother as he did so.
Once the sling was in place Virgil wiped the tears from his brothers eyes and gave him what he hoped was a reassuring smile.
"We're going to take you to the hospital and they'll take good care of you." Placing a kiss to his brother's forehead Virgil helped him to his feet, careful not to jostle the boys wrist.
"Here. Ice pack." Thankfully his brother had enough sense left to wrap it in a towel.
"I can't get hold of dad." John called as he came through the door, phone still attached to his left ear. "It's just ringing."
"He's probably driving." Scott cursed loudly, ignoring the look of disapproval coming from both his brothers. "Alright lets just get him to the hospital and we'll worry about dad later."
Trying carefully not to jostle the injured arm Scott gently lifted his brother into his arms.
"You guys go to the hospital I'll pick Gordon up from swim practice and keep trying dad. Call me when you know more." It wasn't a question but an order.
"Alright sprout. We'll just let dad fill out these forms and then we can go home." Unfortunately the wrist was indeed broken but thankfully it was a simple fracture. The red cast the boy now donned on his wrist would have to stay there for at least three weeks.
"Why didn't you just ask one of us to get the book for you? It would have been a lot simpler and lot less painful." Alan's eyes filled up with tears at Virgil's words and for the first time in weeks he didn't stop himself. Alan was tired of being a big boy. He wanted his brothers to take care of him and make everything better, he didn't care anymore if that made him a baby.
"I didn't want to be a baby." He whispered, finally voicing the thoughts that had been racing around his head for weeks now. Both brothers shared a confused look over the top of Alan's head.
"What are you talking about?" And so Alan finally told his brothers exactly what had happened a few weeks ago with Gordon. By the time Alan had finished there was tears in his eyes that had nothing to do with his broken wrist.
"Alan, sweet heart wanting someone to help you with something doesn't make you a baby. It makes you smart. Asking for help when you need it is something you should always do. And as for what Gordon said, well I'm sure he didn't mean it. You know how much of a grouch he is when he's sick." Scott's words got a smile out of him at last.
"Yeah. He was probably just upset and sometimes when people are upset they take it out on people who don't deserve it." Alan gave a nod but judging from the sizeable yawn he was struggling to hide the pain killers he'd been given, not to mention the fact that they'd been at the hospital for hours now, were kicking in. He snuggled into his oldest brother's side, sighing happily when the nineteen year old picked him up. He wasn't a baby but that didn't mean he couldn't be comforted by his older brothers. It didn't take long for him to fall asleep in Scott's arms.
As Alan drifted off Virgil and Scott shared another look, this one promising hell for a certain red head.
Gordon could practically feel the anger radiating off of his brothers as they sat in front of him. His eyes darted towards the door, wondering whether or not he'd be able to make a quick exit. Probably not judging by the murderous look in his oldest brother's eyes.
"How could you say that to Alan!?" He finally exploded after too many minutes of silence. "You know how he feels about being called a baby. What were you trying to do?"
"I wasn't-" Gordon tried to explain but Scott's anger took over the older male for a few minutes. Standing up he leant over the table and forced his younger brother to look him directly in the eye.
"Do you know how much worse this could have been? What if it hadn't just been a broken wrist? What if he'd hit his head on the bookcase when he fell? Anything could have happened Gordon!" In his anger he didn't notice the slightly fearful look that had entered those green eyes. "I am so disappointed in you. You are supposed to be his big brother but you made him feel like he couldn't come to us for help and he ended up breaking his wrist!"
"Scott!" It was John's panicked voice that finally brought him out of his rage. "Back off."
Wincing as he looked into the fearful green eyes staring back at him Scott's rage disappeared in an instant. He was mad yes but that didn't give him the right to terrify his little brother. Giving him a disappointed glare John took a seat next to Gordon.
"Look at me Gordo." When his brother made no move John tried again. "Look at me!"
The sharp words finally got through and green eyes met blue.
"You know how Alan feels when it comes to his nightmares. They're vivid, viscious and all round pretty terrifying. The fact that he came to you for comfort should have told you have afraid he was. He was scared out of his mind and then you go and say that stuff to him." When Gordon made to speak Scott interrupted.
"We get it. We know how you are when you're sick alright. We're not stupid fish. You've always been the same but that doesn't make this okay. Being upset and ticked off doesn't make what you did okay." Knowing his brother was right Gordon nodded his head.
"I'm sorry. I didn't mean it and I tried to apologise the next day but he said it was okay and I figured it was." Sighing Scott shook his head. Gordon shouldn't have said those things but he at least tried to make it right.
"We know and it's not your fault that Alan inherited the stubborn gene." Truth was all of the Tracy boys had inherited the stubborn gene from their father…and maybe from their mother too. "But it's not us you need to apologise to."
Following his brothers 'advice' Gordon waited until the morning to apologise to his little brother.
"Alan, can I talk to you?" He was met with a stony glare that reminded him a lot of John but the kid nodded his head all the same. "How's your wrist?"
The youngest blonde shrugged his shoulders and still refused to speak to his brother.
"Alright you don't want to talk to me. I can deal with that, just let me do the talking." Taking a seat next to his brother on the bed Gordon was glad when the blonde didn't take off. "I'm sorry about what I said. You're not a baby and the fact that you came to me when you had a nightmare doesn't make you a baby. I was feeling sick and upset…I was frustrated cause I was stuck in my room and felt terrible but I shouldn't have taken it out on you. When you came to me I shouldn't have yelled at you. I'm sorry squid."
When his brother didn't make a sound the red head stood up and made his way to the door. It was only when his hand touched the door knob that he heard it.
"Gordo?" Smiling the teen turned to face his youngest brother. "Can you help me tie my shoes? My fingers don't work so good with my cast on."
Smiling at his brother Gordon knelt down before him. Sure they would argue and fight over the years but they'd always be brothers.
I felt like being cheesy at the end but hey! I'm aloud. I hope you enjoyed this, feel free to let me know what you think. Constructive criticism is always welcome.
Hopefully I'll be back soon with another story until then bye bye x