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Home Is Where The Heart Is

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“That’s the last one.” Jeff said as he put down the final box, wiping his brow as he straightened. He spun to his five sons, who had already started digging around the boxes for their possessions. “We’re officially moved in boys!”

A chorus of loud cheers spread across the assembled group as the announcement carried across the room that would become the lounge, and when International Rescue started for real, the main hub of communication between it’s members. The patriarch grinned at his pride and joys. “If I may say something else…” They listened with rapt attention. “I can never thank you boys enough for agreeing to follow your old man on this mission to make a true difference in the world, and help save as many lives as we can. I know you’ve all given up promising futures in your own fields for something that might not even work, and I am sorry for that, but…”

“C’mon, Dad. You gotta stop apologising for that.” Alan huffed, leaning against the closest box to him. “Didn’t you say when you first talked to us about International Rescue that the choice was ours?”

Scott nodded in agreement. “If any of us didn’t want to do this, we wouldn’t be here.”

“I… suppose you’re right.” Jeff looked between his youngest and eldest, and swept his gaze around once more to see his other three sons nodding behind them. He inwardly shook himself, addressing the room at large again. “That’s what makes us a family, I guess.” He frowned. “But if any of you want to leave, if this place doesn’t feel like home, the choice to return to your own lives is yours.”

“Sure, it’ll take some getting used to,” Gordon smirked at his brothers, and they could already tell he was planning something, “but as long as we’re together, we can make a home anywhere.”

As predicted, the so-called Terrible Two had started their infamous pranks almost immediately, with the future Thunderbird 2 pilot being their first target. Virgil had just stepped out of his nice, warm shower, happily whistling to whatever song he could overhear on the radio, when he suddenly was coated from head-to-toe in water that was a lot cooler than the last batch he’d been doused in.

“GORDON! ALAN!” The second eldest’s thundering voice echoed down the corridor, managing to catch Scott and John’s ears. The pair shared a look as Virgil stormed out of his room with only his towel around his waist, soaking wet. Upon noticing they were there, the medic fixed them with a stare that made even the battle-strengthened Scott wince. “Where. Are. They?”

John pointed in the general direction he knew the two youngest brothers were. “Poolside.”

“Thanks.” Virgil grinned evilly, his goal clear.

As he strode off, purpose in his every step, Scott sighed. “I had been hoping they’d wait at least a day or too before going ham…”

A moment of silence passed between them before John grinned at his brother. “Wanna go watch?”

Scott matched John’s smile in a second. “Oh, absolutely.”

Jeff’s attention was dragged away from his already huge stack of paperwork that Kyrano had been helping with when he heard it. The pure sounds of chaos. Sighing, he got up and walked out onto the balcony that overlooked the pool, aiming to tell the boys to knock it off. He stopped when he saw how happy they were. How comfortable and at peace they were as they splashed each other with small waves of water.

Kyrano walked forward to stand next to the patriarch, smirking knowingly as he put a gentle hand on his shoulder. “I told you, Mr Tracy. That they’d be okay…”

Jeff smiled gratefully at his manservant and best friend, before looking back out at his sons. “Welcome home, boys…”