Thunderbirds: Snot of Doom! – A Gerry Anderson A21 News Story

It was another peaceful day on the paradise-on-Earth that was Tracy Island.

In the lounge. Jeff was studying a complex chart with Brains. Virgil busied himself with his latest canvas masterpiece, while Scott lay on the couch reading a book. Nearby, Alan and Gordon were engrossed in an exhausting game of checkers.

Jeff nodded with satisfaction, “Well, Brains, this new fuel you’ve developed should help us reach danger zones anywhere in the world up to 30% faster.”

Scott coughed once and then continued reading.

“Thirty-Four a-and one-half percent, to be precise, M-Mr Tracy,” Brains responded with pride.

Scott coughed again, resumed reading, then had a violent burst of coughing once more.

Jeff’s brow creased with concern, “Gee, that sounds like a bad cold coming on Scott, I’ll tell Tin-Tin to prepare the sick room, you need some rest.”

Scott shrugged as he replied, “But I feel fine, father.” He coughed uncontrollably once again.

“No buts, Scott – Thunderbird 1 needs a pilot in case of emergency and you need to be fit for duty. That’s an order, son,” Jeff said firmly.

“Yes sir,” Scott replied drowsily, standing up and heading for the sick room.

Jeff flicked a switch on his desk and spoke into the intercom unit, “Mother, Scott’s coming down with a cold, could you take some medicine to him in the sick room?”

“Oh dear, yes Jeff, I’ll do that right away.”

In the kitchen, Grandma unlocked the medicine cupboard. The interior was completely empty.

“Oh my, we haven’t got any medicine!” she exclaimed with abject horror.

Back in the lounge, Alan and Gordon had abandoned their game and were standing in front of Jeff’s desk, concern etching their good-looking features.

“Will Scott be okay, father?”

“He’ll be fine, Alan. Grandma is taking him some medicine now, he’ll be fit for duty again in no time.”

Suddenly, Grandma burst into the lounge. Jeff looked up in surprise, “Why mother, what’s wrong? You look like you’ve swallowed a soup ladle.”

“I don’t know how this could have happened, but we’ve run out of medicine!”

“What??” Jeff said, his jaw tightening at the frankly disastrous revelation.

“There isn’t a single bottle left in the house,” Grandma said in near hysterics.

Jeff assumed his most commanding tone, “This is serious. We’re all in such close quarters here that any one of us could be infected already. We need more medicine fast. There’s no time to lose. Virgil, launch Thunderbird 2. Get out to the mainland and get us those medical supplies.”

“Yes sir, I’m on my way!” Virgil replied, hurrying to the launch chute.

“Gordon, Alan, you boys go with him, he’s going to need a hand carrying those drugs. We’ve got very little time on this one,” Jeff added.

“Okay, father,” Alan said, his voice sounding strangely deeper than usual for a moment.

“Oh, and if you get a chance, can you pick up a carton of cigarettes?” Jeff asked, indicating an empty cigarette case on his desk.

Gordon grinned, “Ah relax dad, we know the drill.”

“That’s my boys. Thunderbirds are go!”

In moments the three International Rescue men were zipping along hidden chutes to Thunderbird 2’s hangar. Once on board, Virgil rolled the giant machine out of its concealed pen and over to the launch ramp where it was raised into position. Then, with a huge rumbling from its twin rocket motors, the green leviathan hurtled skyward.

In the sick room, Tin-Tin was dabbing Scott’s forehead with a damp cloth. Jeff entered and moved to the side of the bed.

“How is he, Tin-Tin?”

“He’s getting worse, Mr Tracy. He’s stopped coughing, but he’s got a high fever, his nose is all runny and it’s getting worse all the time.”

Jeff sighed and quietly whispered to himself, “Come on boys, Scott’s counting on you.”

Thunderbird 2 continued on its mission of mercy, racing across the afternoon sky.

“We’ll be touching down at the local pharmacy in 1 minute,” Virgil advised.

“Gee, that was fast!” Alan remarked.

“We’re using Brains’ new fuel.”

Gordon snapped his fingers as a thought suddenly struck him, “Ah, so that was setting up a plot point!”

“What?” Alan asked in a puzzled tone.


“I’m setting her down!” Virgil declared, firing the landing jets and bringing Thunderbird 2 smoothly to the ground.

Moments later, the three brothers reached the door of the pharmacy. Gordon tried the handle.

“Don’t just stand there, Gordon – open the door!” Alan whined impatiently.

“You fellas are never gonna believe this…”

“What is it, Gordon?” Virgil asked, unsettled by the distressed look on his brother’s face.

“The pharmacy’s closed!”

“Closed!?” Alan blurted out, “At this time of day? Why?”

Virgil suddenly thought of something, “Oh no… I’ve just realised it’s National Store Closure Day…”

“What the gee-whiz is that, Virgil?”

Virgil wagged an admonishing finger at Alan’s total ignorance, “It’s a completely unsubtle plot device used to add an extra hurdle to our mission is what it is.”

“Huh? What is this plot you two keep referring to?” Alan asked as his boyish face creased with incomprehension.

“Aww relax will ya? We’ve got the Mole on board Thunderbird 2 – we can tunnel our way in,” Gordon suggested helpfully.

“It might just work!” Virgil replied, “Fire up the Mole, Alan.”

“Gee whizz, this is going to be fun!” Alan declared gleefully.

Back at Tracy Island, Jeff, Brains, Kyrano, Grandma, Commander Norman and a repurposed Steve Zodiac puppet with ginger hair and a moustache were gathered around Scott’s bed.

“How long do you think he has, Brains?”

Brains considered for a moment, “Given his r-rather violent bout of flatulence a few moments ago, I would e-estimate he has two hours at the most.”

Grandma shook her head, “I just don’t see how his cold could have suddenly become a life-threatening illness for no reason.”

Kyrano placed a caring hand on her shoulder, “It advances the plot, Mrs Tracy, and gives the audience a reason to invest emotional concern in the character.”

Grandma nodded slowly, “Oh… I see.”

Jeff placed a hand on Grandma’s other shoulder, so that she sagged at the knees a fraction, “All we can do now is wait and hope.”

The ground shook as The Mole rolled out of Thunderbird Two’s Pod.

On the street nearby, Virgil spoke into his portable radio, “Proceed to drilling position.”

“FAB!” came Alan’s reply.

The Mole stopped in front of the pharmacy. It tilted up, locked into position and began to drill into the ground. Dust and debris flew everywhere, shattering the windows of many nearby businesses.

Moments later, the Mole broke through the floor and stopped inside the pharmacy.

Gordon unstrapped himself from the rear cabin position and advised Virgil via radio, “We’re inside.”

“Good work, Gordon. Now get those supplies and make it fast.”

The pair hurriedly began loading the medical supplies into the Mole when Alan spied a brightly-coloured notice on a nearby display stand.

“Hmm, three for two on all vitamin supplements… Is that a good deal?”

Gordon sighed, “Forget it Alan, we have to hurry!”

“Look, if you lend me a few bucks, I’ll pay you back when we get home. Please?”

Gordon rolled his eyes, “Fine, just hurry up already!”

“Great!” Alan replied, beaming.

While Alan had loaded up his additional supplies, Gordon carefully left the correct change on the counter and the two boys boarded the Mole. The machine reversed back into its entry tunnel, spraying the interior of the store with at least fifteen kinds of incredibly hazardous debris.

The Mole emerged and reversed into Thunderbird 2’s Pod. Virgil lowered the rest of the air-frame into position and clamped the Pod in place.

“Right, let’s get back to base – we’re running out of time!” Virgil advised.

The mighty machine lifted off, setting fire to the roof of the empty pharmacy, which promptly collapsed.

The large crowd around Scott’s bed had grown to include Lady Penelope, Parker, The Hood, Race, Goddard, Captain Hansen, Lambert, Stephens, Sproggle, Light Fingered Fred, Troy Tempest and Noel Edmonds.

Brains tapped Jeff on the shoulder, “He only has a few minutes, M-Mr Tracy.”

Jeff stared sadly down at Scott, “Then I guess the boys didn’t make it.”

Tin-Tin strained her ears, “Wait, what’s that?”

There was the faint sound of an aircraft approaching the island.

Jeff slapped Brains on the back, nearly knocking the little scientist off his feet, “Is them! Brains, initiate reception procedure!”

“Right away, sir!” Brains said, rubbing his spine as he hobbled out of the room.

The rock face started to retract and the palm trees lowered to the ground.

“Hold on, I’m taking her in.” Virgil said.

Gordon was fidgeting in his chair, “Come on baby, faster! Faster!”

“Oh shut up!” Alan replied sourly.

A few minutes later, the trio rushed into the sick room carrying the medicine. Grandma opened one of the packets, took out a single pill and gave it to Scott.

He sat bolt upright in bed, “Wow, I suddenly feel completely better!”

Virgil grinned, “Looks like we got here just in time!”

Jeff beamed proudly, “You boys have done a great job today. Now, where are my cigarettes?”

Alan’s face fell, “Gee whizz, we forgot all about them!”

Jeff shook his fist in mock rage, “Alaaaaan!”

They all laughed and laughed until no one could quite remember why they were laughing anymore.


Written by
Andrew Clements

A writer, film maker and self confessed Gerry Anderson fanatic. Free to good home.

Leave a comment

Prepare for life on Moonbase Alpha

UFO: The Complete Comic Collection