PROMPT- At first Martin thinks it's just a cold, and no wonder he got one in his perpetually damp and cold attic. But the symptoms don't go away, they become worse and worse. He coughs like mad, there's prickling pain in his chest, he feels weakness and dizzyness. Medicine is super-expensive as he finds out when he finally dares to go to a chemist's, so he ends up buying some tissues, the cheapest thing on display, and that's it.

Everyone at MJN thinks it's a cold too. They have no idea how hard it is for Martin just to stay upright; Douglas makes jokes and Arthur makes Martin hot tea, that sort of thing.

It goes on for a couple of weeks until one day they fly somewhere freezing, and Martin is cold like he never thought he could be, and by morning his acute bronchitis develops into full-on pheumonia. His fever is through the roof, he can hardly breathe with his sinuses totally clogged and his cough coming in fits every time he inhales. Basically, he's a living illustration to a description of a pilot unfit to fly.

How do they cope with it, stranded in a non-English-speaking country with severely ill Martin who has a good chance of dying after he has neglected his health for so long, a contract they have to cancel, with little money and little knowing of what it is that they can do?

I don't want just a usual h/c fic with friendly fussing over someone ill, I'd really like something serious and angst-y. Gen or D/M pre-slash/slash, I'm fine either way.


Martin didn't just have bad luck, he didn't have luck period. Bad luck meant that someone would have good luck eventually. A yin and a yang.

But Martin? No luck whatsoever.

Anyone who looked at his life could have figured that out, whether it was the failed CPL exams or the pilot job that didn't pay him, but Martin mostly focused on two of the ways. His attic apartment and always losing to Douglas during any of their games. Those were the ones that really mattered. They were the ones he had to face every day, over and over, always staring him in the face. And Douglas was a sore winner. (Of course, he was an even worse loser, but that was something Martin never had to worry about.)

But basically, Martin was the one who got the short straw, the rotten deal, and basically was the bad luck magnet for all of MJN air. Nothing really bad happened to anyone else when he was around. Just him.

Martin had resigned himself to a life of always being called the co-pilot, always being the one to lose games, always being the one to get the hotel room with the bed that broke as soon as he sat on it, and always the one to get hurt, like when he broke his leg tripping over flat ground, even as Arthur fell off of Gerti's wing at the same time, coming away without a scratch.

Essentially, Martin was used to his life sucking.

He wasn't sure why he kept trying to tell himself any different.

It started off as a cold.

The common cold. Nothing that Douglas Richardson would concern himself with, of course. The common cold couldn't touch a man like him, but he was irritated with Martin's sniffling.

(To be fair, it was an eight hour flight, and Martin was getting annoyed with himself by the end.)

So he went to the chemist, but after seeing the price of the cough syrups, decided he would be better off eating, and just bought some tissues instead. They were much cheaper.

But then came the coughing.

After one particularly brutal fit (on a flight to Florida), which left Martin exhausted and slouched in his chair, Douglas spoke up.

"Martin, are you alright?"

"Of course I am Douglas. Just a cold."

Martin could feel Douglas' eyes examining him and made a point to ignore him.

"Colds generally don't involve coughs like that."

Martin rolled his eyes. "I'm fine and I am not giving you control."

Douglas tutted. "Really Martin? Is that all you think of me? I can't genuinely be concerned about you?"

Martin snuck a glance at him. "Are you?"

"Of course. You could crash us into a mountain during a coughing fit and I wouldn't even get a chance to use my five steps."

Martin rolled his eyes. "Yes, well, thank you for your concern."

Douglas only hummed in response.

"Oh and Douglas?"

"Yes, Sir?"

"We're flying over an ocean. I hardly think we're going to crash into a mountain."

"Notoriously sudden, those mountains are."

Martin snorted.

"New word game," Douglas declared.

"What is it now?"

"Double bill question and answer movie titles."

Martin groaned. "Oh, not again. I'm awful at this. And you just save them all up to use."

Douglas ignored him.

"Casual Sex? Never Say Never."

"Oh, fine. Umm... how about..."

"What Women Want. Chocolat."

Martin perked up. "Oh, oh! I've got one. Where's Jack? Parade's End."

Douglas sighed. "Martin. That is a television show, not a movie."

"Oh. Right."

"Guess Who's Coming to Dinner. Mulan."

Martin sighed and wracked his brain.

The warm humid air in Florida seemed to do Martin some good, and he felt like he was well on his way to getting better.

Not so.