AN: If there's anyone around who reads both Alex Rider and Thunderbirds fic like me, the other two in AR are happening and I'm sorry for not posting but I've had some emotional trauma going on. I will be starting to though. Promise!

Disclaimer: Yes, I own the Thunderbirds. They're currently catering to my every whim.

The sun was shining, the birds were singing and it was a perfect day on Tracy Island.


"Alan, how could you? You know better than to try doing something so foolish! You know, I actually started to think that maybe you were getting more responsible. I was even thinking about talking to Dad to see whether we should start your Thunderbird training. I can see now that I was wrong. You're still far too immature to be on the team."

Scott Tracy firstborn to Lucille and Jeff Tracy and the field commander of the Thunderbirds was usually cool-headed and could be counted on to think before he talked. Unfortunately, 'usually' was not a word usually used to describe events when the youngest Tracy son was around.

"I made a mistake Scott! You're acting like I did it on purpose when it was just a stupid mistake! And, I'm too immature to be on the team? What happened to trusting me? What happened to you guys finally realizing that I'm not a kid any more? Or was that just another bunch of platitudes to make sure that I act like a good little boy and don't throw my toys out of the cot? You know, I actually thought that you meant it. I actually believed that you guys had started to trust me. I guess I was wrong again, huh?"

Alan turned and started to make his way towards the door.

"Where are you going?"

"I'm going for a run. I can't stand being in the same house as you right now." Alan replied, already half out the door.

Scott pulled in a deep breath.

What is wrong with me? Why was I so awful to him? It was just a mistake and I know he didn't mean it. Damn it, we were finally getting him back to happy after how he left. I guess I'll just have to make it up to him later.


Running always helped. Whether it was to help him think or to block out a particularly bad experience, running had always been his safety. His entire family was like that. All of them had a certain thing they did to help them cope, to help them think or, even just for fun. For Gordon, it was swimming and coming up with increasingly elaborate pranks. For John, it was concentrating on whichever book he was writing at the moment or anything to do with space. For Virgil, his music and art were outlets and for Scott-

No, don't think about Scott.

Don't think about how much it had hurt to have his older brother say those things. A part of him knew that Scott was just tired; a forty-six hour rescue and then having to come and pick up Alan had had running on close to empty. He hadn't been able to take a break, though, because there had been a problem on Thunderbird 1 and Jeff had wanted it fixed ASAP because there was a chance that they'd need her soon; there were a couple of natural disasters looming in the distance. Scott could have just left it to one of the others but he'd been insistent that 1 was his 'bird and he'd be the one to fix her, thank you very much. All of that had just made his brother irritable and he'd taken it out on Alan.

But what if it wasn't that? What if he does actually believe that? After all, Dad has no problem with believing that I'm not ready – he's said to my face that he's not considering training until I'm seventeen because I need to grow up first.

Alan's thoughts drifted in a different direction, towards what had happened when his Spring Break had ended. Jeff had insisted that he go back to Wharton and graduate there instead of being home-schooled and trained as he'd wanted. That conversation had not gone well. Some of the things his Dad had said still stung and it had been months ago. It had started fairly innocently…


"Alan, could you come in here for a minute?" Jeff's voice came from the study, easily reaching the living room where Alan and Tin-Tin were lounging on the sofas, talking about nothing in particular. Everything was fairly relaxed, with the teenagers savoring the last few days of Spring Break.

"Sure, Dad, I'll be there in a sec." Alan called back lazily.

"Now, Alan. It's important."

"'Kay, I'm coming."

Alan walked into his father's study, ignoring the little voice that said something was about to go wrong. After all, he was a real part of the family now, wasn't he? A part of the team.

"Alan, do you want one of your brothers to take you back to school? I'd prefer to take up Lady Penelope's offer but since it seems to be a calm week, one of your brothers can take you back, if that's what you want."

Jeff looked up when Alan didn't reply.


Alan stared at him.

"What are you talking about, Dad? I thought I was gonna be using a correspondence program."

"What? Alan, I've told you a million times, no shortcuts! What would make you think that I'd changed my mind?"

"I just thought that-" Alan faltered at the look on his Dad's face.

"You thought what? That you were special? Better than your brothers? You thought that because I gave you the badge, you could do what you liked and I'd let you?" Jeff's temper was about to snap.

Unfortunately, that thing came in the form of Fermat. He'd been worried that Alan had forgotten about the essay their math teacher had assigned him and, thinking that Alan was still in the living room, had gone there and asked Tin-Tin where he was. Jeff had just fallen silent and was waiting for Alan to answer him and Fermat's voice came through loud and clear.

"Ms. Garrett g-gave him an e-essay on the l-last day and I kn-kn-know that he still hasn't a-asked his d-dad for a note to ex-explain why he didn't do it. I just wanted to make sure he didn't forget."

"Alan? Did you have an essay to do?" The Tracy patriarch's voice was soft and calm, completely different to what it had been only a few minutes earlier.

"Dad, I was going to tell you but-"

Alan faltered again.


Alan wrenched himself back to the present. The ensuing scene had been a lot like most of the others between him and his father, but with one difference- this time, Jeff had lost control and started screaming and Alan had just taken it. The fact was that he'd had no idea what to say to his father. Usually, he had no problem with telling people exactly what he thought of them, with more than a few obscenities thrown in but that time had been different. He'd finally decided to trust his dad not to hurt him and had let his guard down. As such, he'd gotten badly hurt when Jeff had voiced the doubt he'd felt at making Alan a part of the team.

Stop thinking about it! There's no reason to dwell on things that are over and done with! Suck it up and get over it Tracy!

Alan took a deep breath. It was time to go back inside and apologize to Scott. He was not looking forward to it.

AN: Hope you liked it!