Gentle Rain (Part Fourteen)

Title: Gentle
Rain

Warm Rain Series

Part One | Part Two | Part Three | Part Four | Part Five | Part Six | Part Seven | Part Eight | Part Nine | Part Ten | Part Eleven | Part Twelve | Part Thirteen | Part Fourteen

Author: Gumnut

13 – 19 Feb 2019

Fandom:
Thunderbirds Are Go 2015/ Thunderbirds TOS

Rating: Teen

Summary:
Sometimes it is so gentle, you don’t realise it is happening.

Word count: 2574

Spoilers &
warnings: Virgil/Kayo, Scott/OC, Gordon/Penelope, spoilers for Warm Rain up to
this point in the timeline.

Timeline: Six
months after ‘The Proposal’, almost a sequel.

Author’s note: For @scribbles97
::runs around in circles screaming madly:: My characters have it in for me.
::wails:: Hurts!

Disclaimer: Mine?
You’ve got to be kidding. Money? Don’t have any, don’t bother.

-o-o-o-

The moment Scott left, Kay’s glare returned
to Virgil.

He held up his hands in exasperation. “What
the hell was I supposed to do? If Brains dies, International Rescue dies with
him!”

Kayo straightened in her chair. “And what
do you think would happen to International Rescue without you?”

“I-“

“Virgil, you can’t keep doing this.”

“Doing what? You think I did this on
purpose?” He shifted against his pillows. He was so goddamned tired, but Kay
had been simmering all day and he had had it.

“Of course, you did it on purpose!” And
there were tears in her eyes.

“Kay!”

“You ignored your health for the sake of
others.”

“It was for Brains!”

“This time. But what about last time, or
the time before that, or before that?”

“I’m a rescue operative. It’s what I do.”

“You died!”

“I didn’t know there was anything wrong
with me.”

“What the pain wasn’t enough for you? Do
you need to be visibly bleeding to warrant time off?”

“What do you expect me to do? You know what
we do. You do what we do. We’ve been doing it for years!”

“I expect you to respect yourself as much
as you respect me.”

He opened his mouth, but nothing came out.

“I love you, Virgil. I do.” She closed her
eyes. “Ever so much. I want to share your life, but I can’t share it, if you
give it all to International Rescue. You can’t keep doing that.” She blinked
and a tear rolled down her cheek.

Virgil’s heart stuttered and it had nothing
to do with his injury. He reached out to touch her but she slipped from the
chair and stepped away. That hurt even more. “Kay?”

“No, Virgil, you have to understand this.
You can’t keep pushing the limits. It is going to kill you. Without you, there
is no International Rescue. There is no us. There is nothing.”  

He reached for her again, desperate to
touch her. “Kay!” She took another step back. Her head was shaking ‘no’,
another tear making its way across her beautiful skin. “Kay, no, don’t, please
don’t!”

“It has to change. Things have to change. I
can’t…I can’t…” Her breath hitched and she turned away. “I can’t.” She
shoved the door open, startling the security officer on the other side, and, as
cat-like as ever, she fled the room.

“Kay, no!” The machinery monitoring him
screamed as he tried to get out of bed. Several nurses came running and he was
buried under a sea of medical white.

“Mr Tracy, calm down!”

“Kay!” His face was wet. He struggled
against hands. “Kay!”

“Mr Tracy!”

“Kay, please!” But his heart was hammering
in his chest and he was gasping for breath. Spots danced in his vision. He
couldn’t.

Please, Kay, I’ll do anything…anything…

“Mr Tracy, if you don’t calm down, I will
be forced to sedate you.”

He stared at the blonde-haired nurse so
opposite from his Kay.

He let all his muscles go, falling slack
back against the bed. A sound far too much like a whimper passed his lips.

Kay?

God.

Anything for Kay.

-o-o-o-

“Scott?”

She stared at him as he slid from the
shadows, an expression of horror on his face. “You lost your family in the
tsunami of 2060? The tsunami caused by artificial seaquakes triggered by the
Hood. In his attempt to get his hands on our technology.”

Her throat grew tight, but she nodded once.

“And the accident that led to your
paralysis. That was five years ago.” Those gorgeous blue eyes were boring into
hers. “The same incident?”

She closed her eyes and nodded once more.

“My god, Em.” His voice was hoarse. “How
can you even bear to look at us.”

Her eyes shot open. “It wasn’t your fault.
None of it was your fault!” She would not have him or any of his brothers
feeling guilty for this. “It’s happened. It’s in the past. It is not your fault
and honestly, I really don’t want to talk about it.”

That shut him up.

Gordon was doing an impression of a tennis
spectator. Scott spared a moment to glare at his brother and the younger one
obviously got the message. “Okay, that is my cue to exit stage left. Thank you,
Em, for the lovely hot chocolate and the extra marshmallows were particularly
delicious. Don’t worry, I won’t tell John you found his stash.” Gordon grinned
as she blinked. He waved a hand at his brother. “Scott, m’boy, this one is a
keeper. Highly recommended. Don’t break her.” And before his brother could
reply, the aquanaut loped up the steps to the door across the room and made a
run for it.

Gordon’s absence left a silence.

Scott stood on one side, Em on the other.
His blue eyes were staring at her as if he could draw something from her.
Perhaps it was forgiveness that he was seeking.

God forbid if it was redemption.

“I didn’t want you to know for this exact
reason.”

“What reason?” His voice was quiet.

“Because International Rescue was as much a
victim of the Hood as anyone else.” She swallowed. “I know you suspect him for
the disappearance of your father.’

‘How do you know that?”

She straightened. “I had a lot of time on
my hands after the accident. I needed distraction. I also needed to know my
family hadn’t died in vain.” That last came out as a whisper despite her
determination not to become emotional.

Scott’s lips thinned as he edged his
hoverchair in her direction. “You did some research.”

“I had to.” She didn’t move as he drew
near. “You did your best.”

“It wasn’t enough.”

“It will never be enough.”

He stopped and his expression froze.

She pushed on. “You can’t save everyone,
Scott.”

“I know that.”

“Do you really?”

“Of course. But we can try.”

“And die trying?”

He blinked. “What?”

“Virgil nearly died because he kept
trying.”

“Virgil made a mistake.”

“No, we all made a mistake. The signs were
there, but we acted on none. He died, Scott. If he had been alone, we would
have lost him. Pure chance saved him.”

That impacted on those eyes. It hurt to see
the sudden terror flare up. She didn’t want to hurt him. It was the last thing
she wanted to do. “Scott…”

“What are you trying to say?” It wasn’t
cold, but it wasn’t kind either. More desperate than anything else.

She straightened. “Sooner or later you or
one of your brothers is not going to be as lucky.”

“We’re aware of the possibility. It comes
with the territory.”

It sounded like something said many times
before. Like rote or a reassurance.

“Scott, it is not a possibility. It is a
certainty.”

He frowned. “How do you know that? How can
you say that?”

“Have you seen Virgil’s medical records?”

“Seen? I was there for every damn
incident!”

“Then why can’t you see?! How many times
does your brother have to take a hit for it to sink home that this can only end
in tears?”

“We save lives!”

“By giving your own?!”

“Our lives are ours to give if necessary.”

“What about your brothers’ lives, Scott?
Are they yours to give? They will follow you to the ends of the Earth. On your
say, they will risk everything. Are you prepared to sacrifice your brothers?”

“They know what they are doing.”

“No, not them. You. You run International
Rescue. It is your decision. Are you willing to send them to their deaths?”

Those eyes were on fire and they tore at
her heart. His tone froze the air in the room. “I am aware of my
responsibilities.”

She let her shoulders droop just a little.
“Then find another way. Please before the inevitable happens. Please Scott.”

His expression hurt as he pinned her with
his eyes. “How can you possibly judge us? You don’t even know us.”

“Because I don’t have to. It is that damn
obvious.” She turned away. “I’m sorry. I-“ She looked down at her hands again,
curled in her lap. “It just hurts.”

-o-o-o-

He was a fool. A fool to think anyone could
see their vision like he and his brothers did. Deep inside a part of him curled
up and died. This beautiful woman…no, he was a fool. She was just like all
the others.

“You don’t have to watch if you don’t want
to. You are able to leave at any time.”

The immediate hurt that flickered across
her face cut into him, but her expression resolved itself, a professional calm
slipping into place. “I’ll keep that in mind.”

He pressed his lips together as his temper
flared. “Please excuse me.” Spinning the hoverchair in place he left the room,
escaping into the corridors of the house.

“What the hell, Scott?”

He startled. “Gordon? Were you eavesdropping?!”

The aquanaut straightened, a hand going to
the back of his neck. “No…yes…kinda…whatever. What do you think you are
doing?! Get your ass back in there!”

“What? She clearly doesn’t understand what
we do here.”

“Oh, god, you are a moron.”

“And you are an ass. Get the hell out of my
way.”

“No way, bro. That woman cares about you
and all you can see is ‘The Mission’.”

“Gordon-“

“She’s worried about you! Can’t you see
that?”

“She thinks I’m going to order you all to
your deaths!”

“Sure, that’s a possibility, but look
beyond that Scott. Em cares!”

“Cut the jokes. This is not the time.”

“And this is not a joke. Christ, Scott! She
was being damn honest with you and all you did was take offence.” His brother’s
eyes flickered red in the light as if he was possessed. “Honestly, have you
seen Virgil’s medical records lately? It is quite a picture.”

Scott stared at his brother, betrayal
slicing through his heart.

A door slammed, followed by a muttered
curse. Both of them looked up to see Kayo tear into the hallway, her expression
broken.

Oh god, his sister was crying.

Scott couldn’t help but stare for a frozen
moment. “Kayo?”

Her eyes widened, obviously not expecting
to find two of her brothers outside her rooms. Her face shone wetly in the hall
light.

A spike of fear shot through him. “Virgil?”

And her stance changed, fury rising over
and above whatever was causing the tears. “Is an idiot.” She shoved past the
both of them, flung open her door and, walking through, slammed it behind her.

Scott and Gordon stared at each other.

Shit.

-o-o-o-

Virgil stared at the ceiling tiles. Sixteen
holes by sixteen holes. Ten across the room. Fifteen down the length.
Chequerboard if he squinted. Smiley face if he connected each square in its own
piece of pixel art. Interrupted by the smoke detector and a fire sprinkler,
destroying the neat pattern.

Whoever had installed the light in the room
was an idiot. It was not in the centre and that bugged him the most.

He closed his eyes.

He had been on this path so long, it was
hard to imagine any other. In truth, there were many. He had skill, talent and
money. There literally was nothing tying him to International Rescue except the
love of his family and the challenge of the job.

A deep breath and there was pain.

Tears in Kay’s eyes.

He couldn’t.

Things have to change.

It broke his heart, but he knew that if
push came to shove, what his choice had to be.

But god it hurt.

His comms going off scared him silly. What
the hell? He was supposed to be asleep, for goodness sake. “What?!”

“Virgil? You okay?” Scott.

“As okay as I can be. What’s wrong?”

“Kayo just got home.”

“And?”

“Are you okay?”

“I’ve already answered that question.”

Silence fell at the other end of the line.

“Is there anything else I can do for you?”

“Virgil-“

“What?!”

“What’s wrong?”

Everything. “I’m fine.”

“Don’t give me bullshit.”

“You’re the one who contacted me.”

“Because I’m worried.”

“You’re always worried.”

“With good cause.”

“Well, I’m sorry to tax your brain cells.”

“For Christ sake, Virg-“

“You know what, I don’t care.”

“What?!”

“Now is a good a time as any. Scott, I
quit.”

The sudden silence from his comms ate the
room.

“What?” Scott’s voice was deadly quiet.

“I quit International Rescue. I’m sorry. I
don’t have a choice. I can’t do it anymore.”

“What?” Disbelief.

“I’m sorry, Scott. Talk to you tomorrow. I
just…no, I’m sorry, I can’t.” He hit his comms and wiped his face, his
fingers tangling in his oxygen cannula.

God.

Shit.

Oh, hell.

It hurt.

-o-o-o-

Scott sat frozen.

But then Gordon seemed to be suffering from
the same affliction, the aquanaut staring at him completely stunned.

A moment and his heart started beating.
“Did Virgil say what I think he just said?” Please tell me no.

Gordon opened his mouth. “I…it has to be
the medication. We will let him sleep and talk to him about it tomorrow.”

“Uh.” It was like the whole world had up
and bit him. “Kayo-“

Gordon held up his hands. “Hey, no, man.
You are not going in there. Let it all rest and we can discuss it calmly
tomorrow.”

He blinked. “Em.” And suddenly it all just
hurt.

“That, you need to fix.”

“How?”

“Go back in there. C’mon, Scott, admit it,
you like her.”

“I-“

“Screw the mission, bro. Take a damn minute
for yourself! You don’t owe the world everything.” To emphasise his point,
Gordon grabbed the hoverchair and gave it a shove in the direction of the doors
to the lounge. “C’mon, Scott, you both deserve it.”

He stared at the doors.

What if-?

“Scott, you only have so many chances.”

A glance in his brother’s direction and he
caught something passionate shining in Gordon’s eyes. What?

Oh, for the love of-

He shoved the controls forward and
barrelled the doors open with his foot.

Okay, that might not have been the best
idea. Ow.

Screw it.

Em wasn’t in the room.

Huh?

Pushing the chair across the room, he
pushed his way through another set of doors and into the corridor that led to
the guest quarters and Em’s rooms.

He didn’t let himself think, just kept
going until he was confronted by her door.

No thought, just a knock.

No answer.

Another knock. “Em?”

The door was flung open by Doctor Harris.
Fully dressed, pale Doctor Harris, with a suitcase open on the bed behind her.
“Yes?”

“Virgil quit.”

She blinked, something pain-filled
flickering across her face, before her professionalism returned. “Good for
him.”

“Did he say anything to you?”

“No. And no, I didn’t say anything to him.
Not my prerogative. I thought speaking to his commander would be more
appropriate.”

Scott looked down to where her feet should
have been. “Perhaps.”

Silence fell.

“Look if you don’t mind, I have a plane to
catch.”

Despite his determination, despite his
defences, the declaration hurt. “Don’t go.”

Ice blue eyes stared down at him. “Why
not?”

“Because I don’t want you to.”

“Do you always get what you want?”

“No.” He looked down. “No, I don’t.”

He must have said something right because a
soft touch landed on his cheek. “No, no, you don’t.”

He looked up and was caught by her gaze.

“Please, Em, don’t go.”

-o-o-o-

End Part Fourteen

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