Several hours later Daphne was sitting at Velma's bedside in the Intensive Care Unit gently holding one of her hands. Velma had been placed in a chemically induced coma to shut-down her brain and cold water was being piped around her head, both in an effort to halt the swelling and stop her brain from destroying itself. The rise and fall of her chest was dictated by the ventilator breathing for her, all sorts of tubes and wires covered Velma, doing for her the things she could no longer do for herself. With the help of one of the nurses Daphne had adjusted the pillows and sheets to how Velma liked them and then tried to convince herself that Velma now looked more peaceful and comfortable than before. Daphne attempted to assemble her thoughts; she was supposed to brief her father on Velma's condition soon. Her only thought was this was so unfair; Velma had only been with them for a few days after being away for a while. Daphne smiled slightly as she thought back to two days earlier and how they had given Velma such a surprise at the airport…
Velma put down her bags and looked up into the light, she started as a multi-headed and armed shadow moved towards her faster than she could react. It loomed over her, grabbed her and began to squeeze her tightly. Velma was slowly being crushed
"OK, OK, I'm glad to see you all as well, but please, can I breathe?" she croaked.
"Sorry Velma, it seems like you've been gone for ages." replied Shaggy "How did you do?" Velma had just returned from England where she had been on a month long course in field forensics and evidence collection. "Passed with flying colours" beamed Velma "They have offered me a place on the lab based course later this year." The gang headed out of the airport to the Mystery Machine "I had a great time but it's good to be back with you all" she said as they settled down for the journey home.
They finally arrived home, Fred took Velma's things inside whilst Shaggy and Daphne spent the next 10 minutes tying to wake her up. Once awake she went to her room, unpacked her things then went downstairs
"Present time everyone" she said and handed out various gifts she had brought for her friends.
"Freddie, go get our present" whispered Daphne to Fred, "OK" he replied and off he went. Velma went into the kitchen and began to spread something on some bread.
"One more thing, I came across this breakfast spread called Marmite which they have over there I thought you'd like to try"
"New food, come on Scoob" "Roo Rood! Ro roy!" chorused Shaggy and Scooby.
"It smells a bit strange Velma, have you tried it?" Daphne asked suspiciously
"A couple of times," replied Velma "but I preferred the home-made marmalade they had on campus. Freddie can try this when he comes down. All try it together on 3..."
Fred was upstairs digging out Velma's welcome home present; he had just located it when the strangest set of noises began to come from downstairs. He quickly went down to see a bug-eyed Shaggy and Scooby fighting each other over the water tap, Daphne, now a grey-green colour, was desperately trying to paw something off of her tongue and Velma, well she was doubled up in laughter on the floor. Fred became distracted by an unusual smell and felt hungry, he walked towards a plate on which lay a piece of bread covered with some kind of spread.
"Velma!" yelled Daphne leaping onto her and used her scarf to quickly tie Velma's hands together; she then began to tickle her. Velma was still helpless with laughter to put up any resistance "Velma you asked for this" Daphne began to laugh as well.
"Shaggy hold her hands out of the way" Shaggy held her hands above her head as Daphne proceeded with the tickling. Velma began to regain some composure
"Sorry, sorry, I just couldn't resist it, No stop it stop it, stop it" she cried out and tried to twist away as the tickling began in earnest.
Daphne saw Fred about to eat from the bread "Fred, don't do it! Velma's trying to poison us!" It was too late.
Everybody stopped and stared at Fred as he took a bite from the bread, then another then another. "Not bad, when did we get this in Daph?"
"You like it?" Daphne cried in horror, "Velma you monster, you've poisoned my Freddie" she laughed and she resumed tickling Velma.
"Velma, what is that stuff?" asked Daphne "Not even Shaggy and Scooby can eat it"
"Ro Ray" confirmed Scooby.
"Stop tickling me" Velma shrieked in laughter "I'll talk, I'll talk." Daphne eventually stopped and finally Velma was able to reply "As I said, it's a breakfast spread, for what it's worth I can't stand the stuff either. My class mates played the same trick on me". Daphne climbed off Velma and untied her hands, "There is a theory that you will either love or hate the stuff, nothing in between. Looks like we proved that theory today" she laughed.
Over the evening meal Velma described here time in England and found out all that had gone on whilst she was away, towards the end the phone rang it was answered by Daphne and was evidently from her parents. After the call she sat down at the table
"We have a job to do, and this one comes from my father. It seems that there are some counterfeit versions of his products being produced. He thinks they are being made near here and would like us to have a look, but we don't have to set off immediately, he knows you have just flown back today Velma"
"Well I don't get jet-lag when flying back" replied Velma, Shaggy and Daphne exchanged knowing glances "But I'll get an early night in any case. But why pick us Daph? Doesn't your father had his own investigation team?"
"Yes" replied Daphne "But one of the products has only just been released so he is concerned that someone on the inside is involved, he would like us to take an independent look into it."