The ramblings of a Nut who should be doing something else – Adelaide, South Australia

For @i-am-chidorixblossom ::biggest hugs:: Sorry I haven’t finished it yet, will do asap…I have kinda worked out where it is going, vaguely. My muse is weird. ::falls over and snores on the keyboard::

Virgil stared at the piano.

The ivory stared back.

Reaching a gloved hand he touched the familiar keys, but as
if echo of reality, his glove prevented him from feeling their silky touch.

“Virgil, you coming?”

He looked up as Scott tore into the room still in his uniform,
as Virgil was, no time between rescues.

No time for anything.

“Yeah, give me a second.”

He rolled his shoulders, willing the ache to just go away.

It didn’t.

“You okay?”

Virgil blinked. “Fine.”

“Great. Launch in five.” And he spun into his chute. Idly,
Virgil wondered if his brother had remembered to disengage the uniform spinner.

With a sigh he followed suit, throwing the broken piece of Thunderbird
Two on the floor beside the desk, and heading to his chute.

Another day, another rescue.

It would have been nice to have had the night in between.

-o-o-o-

Thunderbird Two landed hard and Virgil swore. There went the
damn landing gear alignment. Another afternoon of repairs lined up and he hadn’t
even gone through post flight checks yet.

The hangar loomed and
he cut speed, the mountain’s shadow passing over him as it swallowed him whole.
The turntable caught his ‘bird and spun her ready again for the next rescue.

Which by all accounts would be, five, four, three, two…”Virgil,
we have a situation.”

Goddamnit!

-o-o-o-

He stunk.

There was no other way to describe it.

Virgil walked up the module and lay his head against the
cold cahelium. God, that felt good.

But he stunk.

Five rescues in a row. All undeniably urgent. Three
involving children. Two with fatalities. And that was only today.

He didn’t want to think about yesterday.

He wanted to stay right where he was, no going back out into
that damn desert sun.

“Sir, are you with International Rescue?”

No, I’m with the circus, we just arrived in town. He swallowed
a sigh, lifted his head and turned around. “Yes, ma’am. Can I help you?”

She wrinkled her nose at him, obviously having gotten a
whiff.

“Do you think you could move your equipment? We can’t get
the tour bus out of the carpark.”

He stared at her.

The remains of a second tour bus were still hanging off the
cliff fifty metres away. Two people had fallen to their deaths despite all his
efforts.

Total blank.

“Sure.” Just let me wash this blood off my hands first.

She smiled at him. “Thanks.”

He resisted the urge to connect his head with the cahelium
with an audible thunk.

-o-o-o-

He staggered into the comms room, there was no other word
for it.

His head was pounding, his shoulders aching and there was a
stone in his right boot.

“Woah, eau de hard work just walked into the room.”

“Shut up, Gordon.”

“I’m sorry, my mistake, eau de bear.”

He ignored him. Sometimes that was all you could do.

“Virg, how did it go?”

He stared up at his big brother for a moment, briefly
wondering what the hell he was talking about. “Oh, the climbers. Caught both of
them. One was okay, the other was a whining cow.”

The room fell silent and Virgil looked up from where he had
been attempting to pull a piece of grass out of where it had managed to get
stuck in his harness. “What?”

Scott was frowning at him. “Are you okay?”

He flicked the piece of grass onto the floor. “Oh, I’m dandy.
Haven’t slept for a while. Three people died in my arms today. I ate food
earlier, but it tasted like cardboard. Must have had something to do with all
the blood on my hands. How are you?”

And there was more grass! How the hell did the damn stuff
get through the neoprene and his undershirt to scratch his skin? The material
was space-rated, for crying out loud. He picked at it.

A shadow passed over him and he looked up to find a pair of
worried blue eyes blocking out the setting sun.

“Virg?”

“What?!”

Okay, so he yelled a little. Didn’t realise he could make
his brother flinch quite that way.

He scratched his head and something fell out of his hair and
on to the floor. Whatever it was, it scuttled away behind one of the lounges.

Gordon yelped and backed away.

Virgil really didn’t have the energy to do anything much at
all. “Sorry about that.”

“I think you should sit down.” And his brother was trying to
usher him in the direction of the lounge without actually touching him.

“Why?”

There were calculations going on behind those blue eyes, he
could tell. “Are you tired?”

“What do you think? There have been countdowns and fall
downs and let downs, so why shouldn’t there be sit downs as well.” He took a
step towards the lounge, but apparently the day hadn’t finished with its fall
downs yet, because the floor suddenly flew at his face.

“Woah!” And there were hands on him, grabbing at his uniform,
and then he truly was sitting down.

On the floor.

“I stink.”

An arm wrapped around his shoulder, and there were words
that didn’t really make sense. Then there were more people than before.

Grandma was there.

“Hey, Grandma.”

“Hello, Virgil.” She reached out and touched his face. He
edged back a little and she dropped her hand. “How are you feeling?”

“Like shit.”

She blinked at him. “Are you hurting anywhere?”

“Everywhere.” And the world started to tip sideways.

There were hands again. Something soft. And he was finally
resting. The floor was hard, but it was cool and there was no energy required. “Oh,
god, that is good.”

There were voices, lots of them, but he understood none of
them, and quite frankly, he didn’t care.

He drifted.

-o-o-o-

Next bit

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