It was dark and it was cold, there was a metallic tang in the air as he woke up. He wished that he wouldn't as his body woke up, then his mind began to register the blistering pangs of red hot pain that seared throughout his entire body.
He tried his best to push it away to try and hear his surroundings that continued to being a mystery to him, the only time he could escape was in his dreams or the blackness caused by whatever drugs they were trying out and experimenting on him.
"Ah awake I see! Well no matter, you will soon return to wherever it is you go... let's start the next test and this time it better work!" The man said in a soft and teasing voice, which quickly changed into harsh and snappy.
He could barely hear this man talk and before he attempted to fight back against the people that were holding him here, he was back under a new drug's influence.
He wanted nothing more in wanting to escape, heal and cause hell for these men and their company before being reunited with his family.
And reunited with them will happen soon, he promised himself.
It was just so hot, the air conditioning helped a little and the cold showers were great but he knew he couldn't stay in there because of several reasons which he couldn't quite remember at that present time.
So it was the air conditioning on at full in his room, and when daring to leave, it was with a sleeveless t-shirt on ignoring the looks from his family as he helped himself to Onaha's fresh lemonade.
Now John was led out on the sun deck staring up at the stars letting his mind wander, just trying to figure out why his body was acting like this with his temperature so high.
Maybe it's the humidity... He thought to himself and scratched at an itch across a small scar on the back of his hand.
Listening carefully John could hear the sounds of the jungle night life while inside Onaha was working hard on making something for his family on their return from a rescue.
It had been a month since Thunderbird Two was repaired and cleared for flight, it went through a few minor system updates and the hull's intensity was increased to allow the transport ship to receive more damage when out on daring rescues carried out by the organisation International Rescue.
He wasn't fit for any rescue missions after his temperature started spiking like it had for the last few days, Brains suggested about testing his blood but John refused with none of the concerned scientist or his father's questions answered.
Sighing deeply, John closed his eyes from the diamond filled sky before stretching with a groan getting comfortable on the lounger.
Asides from just being too hot and the occasional headache he was fine, he was drinking and eating fine. Well OK maybe he was staying away from some of the more spicy meals that were made, and was having more ice in his drinks than normal but that was about it.
Sighing again, he reopened his eyes and dismissed his thoughts about the humidity before getting up from the lounger wondering what to do, feeling that a walk somewhere would do him some good.
It was adjusting and that was what it was developed to do, it was in its own genetic make-up. It was designed to adapt to any and all environments, once its feeders found a food source then it would grow and learn about its new growing environment.
This process had taken weeks because of the constant change of food and atmosphere, but now it grew along all these manmade tunnels to grow and flourish. It loved the total ease that these opening allowed and sent out its vines to let the fruit come to crop.
To unleash its hidden talents and release chaos upon its environment like its generations before it.
The roar of the turboscram engines echoed a little as it flew closer to the mainland, inside four members of International Rescue were flying back from a mudslide in North Korea. All they wanted was a shower, and the promise of a filling meal.
"What do you think is causing John's temperature to spike like that?" Virgil asked after getting off the radio to Brains on the island.
"Not sure to be honest Virgil, he refuse to let Brains to examine him" Jeff replied watching the instrumentation on the panels in front of him as his son piloted the large transport vehicle.
Virgil sighed and brought up the landing procedures as the island's silhouette appeared ahead of them, "I know Dad, I have tried to talk to him myself" He replied.
"I have too but he just shuts us out" Gordon replied from behind them.
Alan remaining quiet at his side, thinking over how much their brother had changed. "It'll be fine once we find Scott" He muttered softly, barely audible over the noise of the engines.
The craft fell silent asides the hum of the engines that changed pitch as the pilot focused on moving onto the landing procedure lines set up by the computer.
"We will find Scott, one day soon..." Virgil replied with a soft sigh, his heart heavy in his chest as he said those words. He had repeated them often in the last few months, and each time those few words were repeated they sounded emptier and emptier to his ears.
A loud hiss filled the air and made the two young men dive for cover under a loose piece of metal, that had been pushed out by the attacking vine. The metal above them buckled dangerously as the acid continued to drip down out of the cuts and bullet holes in the thick green and purple vine.
"Reminds you of anything" One of the young men asked as he tucked back under, as much as he could without crushing his companion.
"A little of the vines we saw at Newbay but these are wrong... they were green, just pure green" The other replied and itched the back of his neck absently as he thought. "But they should still be weak against fire... only if I didn't drop those fire rounds"
"Yeah, butterfingers Johnny strikes again" The first replied and frowned when his companion didn't stop scratching his neck. "Did it?"
"Get me? No... phantom pains, not a good time to get them" John replied with a shrug and focused on trying to see if he could rescue his grenade launcher and flame rounds from the giant Ivy, taking a glance at his brother, Scott.
"Yeah well it's got us pinned and I'm not sure how to... wait, do you smell that?" Scott asked, sniffing the air and winced. "Well we're sat in a giant... we can use this"
John's eyes went wide, "You're nuts! We'll get roasted alive" He replied, smelling the flammable solvents in the air.
"Well we'll just have to run for it, somewhere out of this giant fireball's path once I light it up" Scott replied, taking a look at his brother and shook his head.
"OK, the door to the right leads to a empty corridor... we've got five lefts and two rights before we reach the main laboratories" John replied as he reloaded his trusted Colt.
"On three..." Scott said with a grin, getting one of the many lighters out of one of his many pockets.
John jumped awake, feeling a leaf on his bare arm. He quickly shook it off and looked around, curling up tightly as he swore he felt something familiar close by. His hand went to the waistband of his trousers and cursed when he realised he was unarmed.
Night life croaked into existence to his ears as he continued to wake up and slowly relax, as he realised that he fell asleep on one of the many beaches of Tracy Island. He slowly stood up and ignored the tingle sensation running up and down his arms, feeling the slight night chills of the tropical paradise.
Focusing a little more, he heard the familiar sounds of his family in the complex close by talking about various things including the rescue that they had just returned from. They must have left him to sleep, as after a few days of surviving on only a few hours sleep then his exhaustion had gotten the best of him.
He groaned as he sat up, resting his head in his hands as he woke up. 'Why that one dream? Why now... is it because of the jungle' He thought to himself and looked at where the lone leaf had fallen onto the wood, lit by the lights coming from the main complex.
"John, are you coming in for something to eat?"
Lifting his head up from his hands, he came face to face with a concerned Virgil. "Hey Virg, I'll be in a minute" John replied with a tired smile.
"How are you feeling now?" Virgil asked, sitting down on the end of the sun lounger.
"Still pretty hot, but other than that... fine, no headaches, limb stiffness... nothing" John replied with a sigh, saying normal symptoms that appeared with a low level infection of the bio hazard weapon that was now in his veins but at a dangerously high level.
Virgil sighed, "Well come inside for something to eat, you may not feel the cold at the moment but the rest of us do" He said resting a hand on John's shoulder but soon removed it, feeling that his brother was hot to the touch.
"Burning up really sucks Virg, so I suggest you don't do that again for a while" John muttered before getting up, stretching and hearing his legs, spine and shoulders crack with a tired sigh.
"Have you been that hot all the time?" Virgil asked his brother, watching as he stretched with a few soft groans pass his lips.
"No... I've cooled down now thankfully, we thought that running warm was normal for us but this hot..." John stopped and sighed, scratching his neck before shaking his head. "Come on, I could do with a drink... I want to hear how the rescue went" He added with a smile.
Virgil grinned and got up onto his feet, talking to his eldest blonde brother about the rescue they had returned from.
The residue in the pipes was so rich, thick with new and different foods for the white roots followed closely by the green stems of the heavy mutated plant.
It was spreading through the pipework, seeking food but lived off all artificial lighting that peeked through the grating above.
The plant froze whenever it felt vibrations or flames touching its roots, slowing it down only a little. It wondered what the strange vibrations and flames were as they rarely happened over the weeks that it took for it to establish itself in this strange, new, enriching environment.
Something was calling it, telling it to grow and follow its biological programming. To grow and to let its pods grow, to unleash the hidden bio-weapon designed into its very existence.
Papers were pinned up on the walls, littered the desk with maps lain out on another wall with notes and strings all pinned up. This was once the most tidiest room on the island but now it was looking like some sort of old fashioned detective's office, working on a complicated case.
To the young man, this case was very personal to him. He was working on any and all clues coming from across the planet to try and find his lost brother, but he knew he wasn't lost. Not really.
He was trapped, being held by the pharmaceutical company BioTech. He still remembered the misty dream he had months ago of seeing his brother, before all this had happened to them. Before the nightmare that was Newbay, before it was infected with the virus turning its people into the living dead, a biological nightmare that cost thousands of lives, not just in Newbay but small villages and towns across the world.
The infection, once thought to be contained was spreading in different communities. Each time a town was destroyed, a cover up story was created. BioTech had a good public face that was believed by the public because of all the good charity work that the company did, creating communities for families with factories for workers but underneath it all they were in the business of biological warfare.
With help from International Rescue, his own son's accounts of what they had witnessed in Newbay. Jeff Tracy, owner of Tracy Industries was using all the knowledge to fight against BioTech. He wanted to bring them down in what he originally thought was in memory of his two eldest sons but now he had promised himself and the public that he would reveal the truth of the pharmaceutical company in honour of all the families lost in the tragedies across the world.
But while that fight continued, a search took place. A search and rescue of one Scott Tracy, some had given up hope while others fought every tiny step of the way. Especially one John Tracy, after being declared missing or presumed dead, he was given a free reign in being allowed to organise a search of all known BioTech laboratories and warehouses.
It was with this freedom that his father tried to help him but had trapped his son on the island, to keep a better eye out on him and to surround him by his family. Normally back before all this begun, John felt that love but now he could feel that love mixed up with fear and anguish for how much their astronaut brother had changed.
A pattern fell into their lives, one that they set into a regular pattern for them to cope the way things changed in their lives as they did their best to try and live a life on their tropical island. That same tropical island that housed the rescue crafts better known as the Thunderbirds, hidden deep within the island. Some of the residents felt that the pattern was introduced to try and bring stability into their lives but others just shrugged and fell into it, hoping for something to help them continue with their daily lives.
Meal times were always a trying time, having to remind one of their family members to come and join them or at least eat sometime during the day if not to keep himself healthy but to please them. Each time they would look amongst themselves before deciding silently who would fetch him.
Today was Alan's turn, and he could feel the cold sweat appear on his forehead trailing down his cheeks and neck as he left the dining room and headed off to the bedrooms. He had heard Virgil and their father talk quietly about John but he had dismissed it as worry and concern for their missing eldest brother, Scott.
The youngest member of the Tracy clan was so caught up in his thoughts that he didn't see that he was at John's closed door and sighed softly, he could feel the hairs rising up on the back of his neck as he rose a fist up to knock on the door for admittance.
John sighed as he leaned out on the balcony, he stared out at the distant ocean but he was not seeing that once calming scene. He was in thought over the emails that he had spent the good part of last night and this morning filtering through, he had wanted to find some clue that would help him in his search for at least one of the bigger laboratories.
All the emails had pointed out to smaller laboratories, half he knew were destroyed a long time ago, 'Something Scott and myself ensured that they were... oh Scott, where are you!' He thought to himself and felt his phone vibrate at his side.
He retrieved it and looked at the number with a tired smile, "Hey, got something for me?"
The door slid open allowing the young Tracy in, he was surprised in how much the room had changed since he last been in only a week ago. 'Guess this is what he does with those nights he can't sleep' He thought to himself taking in how the furniture had mostly been moved around.
The desk had been moved away from the wall and pushed around so it was more close to the en-suite bathroom leaving that wall space blank, well would have been blank if it wasn't filled by a large map with hundreds of bits of string or post-it notes tagged all over it.
The computer was on, with a screen saver of different star constellations. Alan had to smile at this, nothing had changed there but then stars brought him comfort too. Always had.
He looked around for the missing occupant, he found the bathroom empty with the door wide open and the bed looked undisturbed but a small warm gust of air flew past him along with a familiar voice of the room's owner.
"That's great Joe, I think we checked that one already but if you think you can find something out then please, let me know as soon as you can" John's voice spoke from the balcony as Alan stepped closer to the doors.
"Yeah, that's right... I'll be out there on the hunt soon, just hope we can find something soon! Just feel that we are all running out of time" He continued softly, leaning against the rail of the balcony lost in his phone call.
The younger blonde Tracy sibling slowly walked up, but couldn't help but stop and stare at the maps and notes on the wall. Some had disturbing images with notes attached, and strings from those images to show their appearances in different parts of the world.
Frowning, he stepped closer to look at one of the smaller pictures and gave a involuntary shiver in recognizing the drawings. When he saw this creature himself, it was dark but it was never something you forget and that it haunts the dreams of everyone for a very long time.
Its claws, the razor sharp tongue on the picture was nearly wrapped completely around its head, skin pink in some places and a dark blood red in others including the top of its head that revealed its brains. To Alan, the whole body screamed that it was inside out with the hands and feet turned into lethal weapons.
"Looking for something squirt?" John's voice muttered from behind him making him jump and spin around to face his second oldest brother, his shirt bunched up along the arms and neck to try and cover the scars on his pale body.
"John, sorry to bother you but I couldn't help..." Alan started to say and stopped, glancing back at the board.
"Curiosity, it's OK... we all get like that, though sometimes we need a sharp reminder to that it needs to be curbed" John replied, slipping his phone into the pocket of his jeans. "I guess that Onaha has been ringing the triangle" He added with a tired smile rolling down his sleeves to hide his arms from sight.
Alan looked at his brother, seeing how much older he truly looked. He knew that he was the youngest but for some reason he had noticed that his eldest brothers had aged greatly from their experiences, or at least he noticed from watching John.
"I'm guessing you've been sent up to make sure I'll eat" John's voice snapped Alan out of his thoughts, he saw his brother frown and sigh. He dug out his phone and looked at the caller id, "Ah, can you go down? I need to take this"
Alan slowly nodded, "I'll ask Onaha to set a plate aside for you" He replied and quickly left the room, closing the door and sighing deeply.
He listened to John's voice speaking a language very rapidly and sounding energetic.
Jeff looked up from some paperwork he had brought from the office, hearing footsteps approaching the quiet table.
"No luck Al?" Gordon asked, looking up from his doodling on a scrap of paper amongst the file he had spread out near him while Virgil copied him on the other side of the table. They were both helping their father deal with the heavy backlog of files that were regularly flowing from the different departments of Tracy Industries.
"None, I tried my best but guess that there's something going on out there that needs his attention" Alan sighed and pulled his own pile of papers towards him, this was the amount of homework that he foolishly let build up.
"We'll get through to him eventually son, it may just take a little more time... we are all still suffering shock and the absence of Scott" Jeff spoke softly and slowly, glancing at the empty chair of the table. He felt his sons look between him and the chair before sighing and settling down to work.
"Can't believe how much mail we're getting daily, and this is just a small portion of it... the rest are being delivered to the headquarters in New York from the email I got this morning" Virgil replied, rubbing the back of his neck. "But I guess because of the amount of work we're putting into getting BioTech shut down, then we are should expect to get a lot of this"
Onaha came into the room, "Why don't you boys move all that work away if you want something to eat" She broke up the conversation, a tray containing a mixture of drinks balanced on her arm with Tin-Tin following behind carrying a large jug of homemade lemonade.
"Looks like your room Alan, with all that school work in there... why can't you accept our help with dealing it?" She asked, clearing a space to set the jug down.
"Because Tin-Tin, I can deal with this... I normally can, it's not like Fermat's... he's taken over most of their chalet with his work but then it is hard to tell the difference between his school work and Brain's inventions" Alan replied, moving his papers away from the middle of the table to allow Onaha and Kyrano to start bringing out the food.
"Think the messiest room at the moment is mine" A voice spoke up and sat down at the table with a tired sigh, glasses perched on his nose.
The family looked up, surprised by this latest addition. John had come down from his room.
"What? I know that got this and that inside of me, but I do occasionally still need these when working on the computer or this PDA... oh, you're probably wondering about the mess" John continued as he waved the small electronic gadget in his hand, not revealing the screen but noticed his family's shock of him joining them for a meal.
Jeff shook his head, "It's your room John, we're just happy that you've decided to join us" He replied with a smile and they settled down to eat as the food was put out.
For a while it felt like it was a normal meal, except one person was still missing and that shadow was not going to disappear soon.
A long white corridor.
Glowing red beams, dodged around with grace.
Another long white corridor.
Alarms sounded, the white paint turned red by the flashing lights.
The sense of almost escaping, just another corner to go.
A slicing sound, followed shortly by a thud.
Failed, blood pooled out from under the prone body.
Faded into darkness.
The figure gasped as he woke up, his body burning with shock and pain. He tried to figure out what had happened, he felt that he almost escaped but as his senses returned, so did the scientists talking in hushed words. He glared tiredly at them, as one added something to the drip attached to his arm then soon he knew no more, just the darkness as before.