Andrew was in his full body suit handling one of their most dangerous virus strains. This was one of the rare ones that could literally infect anybody. It didn’t matter if you were a demon, wolf, vampire, fairy, unicorn or anything of the sort, nobody was safe from it once released. This one, like most of the few that were that dangerous was sadly created on purpose by a truly psychotic group of people. It was released about five years ago and it took them two to get it under control. In two years it had taken countless lives and caused so many pain. Now that it was under control his whole team was assigned to rigorously study it, to find better antidotes for it that work faster and make medicines if possible to help deal with the side effects.
His heart beat as fearfully as it always did as he carefully got it ready to view again. He was just about to open then vile and pour a small amount into a petri dish when the labs alarm went off. He quickly started walking it back so he could help whomever or get out if he had to. He had just got his sample back in when the computerized female voice sounded over the speakers. It announced the doors out were locked down and that everyone not wearing a body suit was to quickly get one on. He still didn’t know what happened but now he was terrified someone had broke open a sample and might have put them all in danger.
He went over the the intercom on the wall and held down one of the buttons. It was to the room one of his friends worked in. “Anybody there?” He released the button.
“Andrew? Where are you?”
“Lab C, second floor. What’s going on?”
“Some maniacs sneaked his way in to the building. They tried stealing one of the viruses, but accidentally broke some of the vials.”
“Do you know which ones yet?”
“No, but we radioed downstairs and they said he locked the elevators so no one can get to where he was. The CDC is coming, they said to just hang in there.”
“I can get to where he was.”
“It’ll be easy for me, just tell me which floor.”
There was silence for a moment. “Third floor.”
“Alright, you guys just stay put, don’t leave the room your in.”
“Be careful Andrew. If something happens to you your wife Fleur and your father James would come kick all our asses and I don’t know who is more frightening when they are pissed” Andrew might have chuckled under normal conditions but this was serious. They dealt with horrible things that had no business back out in the public. Some colossal moron wasn’t only putting the people inside the lab in danger but everyone surrounding them, including his family. Andrew hurried out, his mind racing. He knew he shouldn’t fill his head with worse case scenarios but he couldn’t help it. He had too many people he loved immensely.
The doors had all been locked by their automatic system but Andrew was a wolf and had incredibly strength because of it. He broke the doors and made his way to the elevator. He easily removed those doors aswell and pushed for the elevator to come. Lock down never locked up the elevators since the people shouldn’t be able to leave wherever they were in the event of something happening so it functioned and brought him up to where the man who had caused this was.
Fleur stood outside the barricade that had been erected around the building, James and Ashton with her. They watched as police officers, homeland security, and the CDC kept people back. Men and women pulled on hazmat suits and checked radios, some of them had guns. “Do you think Andrew’s okay?” Fleur asked, her voice shaking.
“He’ll be alright.” Ashton tried.
“You know how he is, he’ll want to do the right thing.” James said, barely keeping himself from jumping the barricade and running inside.
Fleur felt tears burn her eyes and she turned into Ashton who hugged her tightly. They had raised Andrew to be strong and independent and he had grown into a man unafraid to step up and do what had to be done. James had even made sure he knew how to defend himself outside of being a werewolf. They knew he wouldn’t just sit there, it wasn’t in his nature.
Andrew very much wanted to remove the suit to better use his senses, but he had no idea what type of chemical had been released when that moron had decided to mishandle the vials. He moved slow, peeking around corners so he wouldn’t be surprised. He stopped when he heard footsteps and looked around the corner, spotting not one, but two men. One of them had a metal case in his hand. Their backs were too him and he slid around the corner, moving as silently as he could. One of them froze and turned and raised a gun, firing off a few rounds. Andrew took one to the shoulder as he rushed them, growling as he hit the one with the gun. The other took off, case in hand and Andrew cursed as he wrestled with the first guy. He was strong and obviously not human. He also had blood coming out of his ears which meant he was infected.
Seeing this Andrew was relieved that with the monsters being out in the open these suits, after years of scientists working were made out of stronger material, material that was hard for even supernatural beings to rip because this asshole sure was trying. Andrew knew he was still in danger though. While they were harder to rip it wasn’t indestructible. It wasn’t even so much him getting sick, it was the pain his family and wife would go through if he caught something. This would be the first time it had come down to it but he saw it as his only option. He snapped the mans neck before he had the chance to rip his suit and infect him.
He left the man laying on the floor and took off after the one that got away. Andrew ran as fast as he could though his shoulder ached. It was now hitting Andrew like a brick wall that his suit was indeed open to the air around him. They had shot him and it had torn through the suit somehow. Obviously some bigger moron was now making bullets strong enough to rip material supernatural beings had trouble ripping. Stress was overcoming him now. If it was something that could make him sick he was up shit creek.
Andrew took the gun and went to one of the maintenance rooms. He stashed it, knowing he wouldn’t need it and quickly found some duct tape. He knew he might already be infected, but he figured he could at least minimize exposure if he patched the hole. He wrapped tape around his shoulder as tightly as he could without sacrificing mobility then left the maintenance room. The other guy was still around here, but either didn’t have a weapon or had not wanted to use it. Either way, the guy was probably also infected and Andrew couldn’t risk letting him escape. He made his way to one of the labs and used the intercom to radio his friend. “Listen, I don’t have much time to talk, I’m hunting. Call downstairs and tell them there were two, one is dead and the other is on the loose with a metal case. Both have been exposed, one was infected for sure and I have also possibly been exposed. They’ll need to have a spot to quarantine and scrub me.”
“Are you nuts?”
“Just do it and let me worry about finding this guy.”
“Seriously, be careful.”
“You guys just keep the door locked, I don’t know if the other guy is armed.”
Fleur and James were pestering the officials so much for information it wasn’t long after the call downstairs that an officer approached Fleur and filled her in on what they knew ‘He might be sick?” tears streamed down her face. She knew the kinds of things her husband worked with well. It had fascinated her up to this point but now his job wasn’t quite so amazing to her. Fleur couldn’t think about loseing Andrew, especially not today. She had been up late the previous night so she didn’t have breakfast with him this morning. She just had to keep telling herself that wouldn’t be the last chance for her to have breakfast with her husband.
“How bad is his injury?” James asked.
“We don’t know, he didn’t tell his friend if he was bleeding, just that his suit had a hole in it and how many guys are in there. I want to say he should have stayed put, but if these assholes broke in it means they had a way out. As long as your son keeps the last guy on the run, we’ll have time to get in there and secure the building.”
“He could die.” Fleur wailed. “You don’t even know what he’s infected with.”
“Possibly infected. No one knows what he’s been exposed to.” The officer replied. “I know this is hard, it’s terrifying, but we’re going to get in there and get him out as quickly as possible. Precautions have to be taken for the people out here or whatever it is could spread. Please be patient.”
“Do you have kids?” James asked.
“I have a daughter and I would move heaven and earth to make sure she came out of there alive.”
“I expect you to do the same for Andrew.”
“I will, we all will.”
The officer walked away and Ashton, along with James held Fleur. She obviously needed it and they needed the comfort aswell. “He’s coming back to you Fleur” she was crying too hard to say anything in return and was glad they kept holding her. She didn’t know if she could stand right now without their support. Andrew was the sweetest man she had ever known, that hadn’t changed in the slightest over the years. Imagining life without him was soul crushing and no matter how hard she tried to fight away her thoughts of the worst she couldn’t help but think them.
When she calmed again Ashton said “I should go fill in Capricia and check on the kids. James and I dropped them off at her house in such a hurry I know they were upset. Why don’t you come with me, get some air? Standing right here doesn’t help our son and I know James will call if Andrew comes out” James guessed his husband was trying to pull her away so she wouldn’t work herself up so much or maybe to spare her seeing Andrew if when he came out, he was incredibly bad off. “I can’t leave, I have to be here for him. He might need me”
They tried to talk her into taking a second but she wasn’t budging so eventually Ashton left by himself, leaving James there for her sake and to make sure he was called when Andrew was safe. He knew Fleur was too upset and would be too wrapped up in her husband to be calling anybody. Ashton drove straight to his sister and brother in laws house and walked right in the door. It was hardly ever locked so he knew chances were good he could just come in. HIs children ran up and hugged him “is Andrew okay?” Elva asked. Little Elva was their nine year old, the one with James eyes since she was a blessing from a surrogate willing to carry a child for him and his husband with James DNA. They had hoped he would produce twins since James and Capricia were twins but just having Elva was a miracle they would be forever grateful for. “Yeah, what’s going on?” the six year old boy in his arms asked.
It had taken a few months longer for Ashton to pick a surrogate and a few more tries to get her pregnant than with James but it wasn’t a bad age difference. Misael took much more from Ashton than Elva had taken from James. It was almost as if they had chosen cloning over a surrogate because their little boy was almost identical to him in looks and behavior. “we don’t know much now. I just wanted to check on you” he wasn’t going to tell them about their brother being shot just yet, not until they knew if he was okay or if he’d have to have a darker conversation with them. In either case he felt James should really be there too for something like that.
When the kids were willing to play Ashton hugged Capricia “thank you for just taking them like that”
“of course” her voice became a whisper “do you really not know anything yet” Ashton motioned for her to follow him out of the room. They turned a few things on and he whispered “he was shot. They don’t know how bad it is but he’s alive and he’s already subdued one of the people who broke in”
“so it was a break in?”
“yeah, where is Kellen?”
“since we weren’t expecting the kids theres really nothing here for them. He’s out getting juice and things like that. We’ll keep them, you two just worry about Andrew. How’s Fleur?”
“She’s breaking down. I tried to get her to come with me to breath but she wouldn’t”
“If Kellen were in that situation I wouldn’t leave either and I’m sure you wouldn’t be leaving James”
“yeah, I get it”
“need something to eat?”
“I don’t think my stomach could take it, just a soda if you have some” they turned everything off they had turned on so the kids couldn’t ease drop and she handed him a drink “Seriously, I have my niece and nephew. I’ll even take them to school tomorrow if I need to. Just worry about my other nephew”
:If the kids want us don’t hesitate to call.”
“well, hopefully this over soon”
Andrew moved slowly down the hallway, sweat beading on his forehead. It was starting to get hot since the air had been turned off. It was either that or he was sick and he hoped it wasn’t. He didn’t even know what the two thieves had spilled. He followed the scent of the other man, wandering what he was doing. The guys movements were erratic, his turns seemingly random as he tried to lose Andrew. The first man had been some sort of feline shifter, but this guy wasn’t putting off any scent but human. He wondered what had possessed them to break into this place, if maybe they were a part of a cell or if they were hoping to make a quick buck.
He thought it was incredibly dumb in any case they’d break in while everyone was there though he did realize that might have been the only way they could figure out how to get in. This place was incredibly well protected when nobody was working and once this place was locked down it was like a vault. It had to be for the safety of everyone from these horrible diseases. When this was over they’d have to get better and more security during the day. He just hoped it wasn’t too late.
When Andrew finally sniffed out the second thief, the man was standing on a counter frantically trying to pry a vent grate off the wall. Andrew could tell the man was panicking, he could smell it. “You’re not going to be able to get out that way.” His voice startled the thief who quickly jumped down and face the door.
“Just le…leave me alone.”
Andrew peeked around the door frame. “You’re trapped, just give up.”
“I…I can’t, they’ll kill her.”
“I used to do this kind of work, but just planning, on banks and stuff, I…I’ve never gone inside, but they said if I didn’t…they took my daughter.”
“What’s in the case?”
“The Pr…Proto Grey Virus.”
“That’s a world killer. It would take centuries to decontaminate.”
“I know, but…I had no choice. Please, they’ll kill her if I don’t deliver.”
Andrew sighed, this man wasn’t lieing. “and let me guess, they’ll kill her if they find out you told anybody or got the police involved?”
“yes and it’s not a bluff. They have nothing to lose because they are wanted by the police anyway. They can’t possibly get in any more trouble than they already are in. I can’t lose her.”
“we can figure this out without handing over something this dangerous. Let me help you. I’m a Epidemiologist here. I can put something together that looks and will give off the same smell as that to trick him”
“My daughter, I can’t afford to play games”
“I’m not letting you leave here with that so let me help you. I’m sorry but this isn’t a choice. I can do this, I have years of experience.”
“How can I trust you?”
“You don’t have a choice” Andrew said seriously. Someone might have this mans daughter but far more than just his daughter would die if he let that leave this lab.
“Alright, but if she dies…”
“She won’t, I know these compounds better than anyone, you need to come with me back to my lab where we can quarantine ourselves, we’ve both been exposed and I’ve been shot.”
“I didn’t know he had a gun until we started leaving, I’m sorry.”
“I need to check on what you guys broke, it’ll make it easier if the CDC knows what they’re cleaning up.”
“Okay, is…is that leopard with me…”
“Dead? Yes, I had no choice. He was also infected. Since you’re not showing any symptoms, it must not be human related. Come on.”
The man followed Andrew back to the room they had stolen the virus from and waited in the hall while Andrew took note of each broken vial. It looked like they had fallen out when the leopard had pried the door to the freezer open. The thief jumped when Andrew came back out, but didn’t say anything else has they headed for Andrew’s lab. He closed and locked the door then called his friend over the intercom to let him know what was happening he told him to tell the cops and CDC to play it off so the real bad guys wouldn’t be tipped off.
“Is this going to take awhile?”
“It will take longer if you keep talking to me. Let me think” Andrew understood this man hadn’t made his day hell because he wanted to but all the stress he was under right now made it hard for Andrew to not to snap at the man. His wife and his entire family were probably all terrified, he had had to take a life today and the mess they had caused wouldn’t be taken care of in one day. It would probably be a week before everything was back to normal here. He also had another life in his hands and he didn’t want to be responsible for two deaths in one day. He had to do this right and save this mans daughter.
The officers outside wanted to let Andrews family know what was really going on but the more people that knew the truth the bigger risk of it getting out to the people who had the theifs daughter. They gave Andrews family an update so that they could know he was okay but they didn’t tell them what was really going on. “what sort of bullet was it?”
“we still don’t know but it can’t be too bad of an injury. His only concern seemed to be getting infected”
“He didn’t say if he was bleeding or…or anything?” Fleur asked.
“No ma’am, only that he had been shot while neutralizing one of the suspects. We will get him out of there as soon as we can, but right now we have to be patient. The CDC has to take every precaution during a chemical spill, especially when that chemical is a possibly deadly virus.”
“Does he know what they spilled?”
“I’m sure he does, as far as I can tell he’s pretty on top of things. He sounds like a smart kid, just keep faith in him.”
“I…I understand.” James hugged her, doing his best to calm her. “I just want him back. I want him home.”
“He’s coming out, just give everyone time.” Ashton said as he rubbed her back.
“I’m so scared.”
“We know, we’re scared too.”
“Would you stop pacing.” Andrew said as he mixed chemicals, slowly adding each one so as not to blow him and his new acquaintance, George, up.
“I can’t help it, what if they find out?”
“Either stop pacing or I make you stop pacing. My dad was a cage fighter, he taught me all the best ways to choke a man out.”
“Your mom must have her hands full.”
“Don’t have a mom, two dads. He works in an antique store in case you were curious. They’re the most amazing parents any kid could ask for and I’m sure they’re outside right now with my wife trying to keep themselves and her from running in here. So stop pacing, it’s distracting and some of these chemicals are volatile if I mix to much in.”
“Why are you still using dangerous stuff?”
“Because he has to think he’s getting what he wants and nothing safer than what I’m using will work. I want to be nice to you, I really do but you are going to have to stop talking to me and sit down.” The man finally sat down and remained quiet. The pacing had been helping him deal with the stress of the situation but he knew he was putting this man and his family through a lot. When Andrew finished George asked “what am I supposed to do now?”
“do you know where you’re supposed to hand this off?”
“How much more time do you have?”
“I was supposed to text him before we met since none of us knew how long it would take to get in here and get out.”
“what’s the number so I can give it to the officers outside?”
“but” Andrew cut him off angrily “don’;t but me, the officers around here are very competent. They can look into a number without alerting the douche they know anything is wrong”
George rattled off the number, his voice shaking as he did so. Andrew could see the conflict in his eyes, but this was important. He went over to the intercom and gave his friend the number to relay to the officers. “Got it, just be careful with that stuff, Andrew.”
“Don’t worry, you know me.” He then turned back to George. “So, as soon the CDC get here and clear us, I’m sure the officers are going to get you hooked up with a wire and vest then let you “escape”.”
“How do you know that?”
“Just a hunch.”
“I hope you’re right. I’m sorry about all of this, sorry about causing you trouble, for scaring all those people, sorry you got shot.”
“What kind of bullets are those anyway?”
“I don’t know. The men who took my daughter would though.”
“I see.” He leaned against the counter. “Listen, just stay calm, your daughter needs you to keep your head.”
“I know, I’m trying.”
“I really am sorry I can’t be more patient with you. It’s just not like we’re dealing with diamonds or money or some ancient artifact we’re messing with diseases that could wipe out our worlds population”
“I don’t think I have any right to demand you be nicer to me. It’s alright”
“This will fool him so all we have to worry about is you staying calm and acting as if you’re doing what he wants. Nobody is going to get sick and your daughter is going to come out of this alive. Repeat that in your head as much as you need to” George nodded. They were checked and cleared before the police did what Andrew expected and set him up with a wire and let him escape. This was now out of Andrews hands but he was still tense. He deeply hoped this would end with nobody else getting hurt.
The moment Fleur saw him exit the building she was over the barrier and running to him. None of the officers had the heart to stop her and she nearly knocked him down when she hugged him. His arms wrapped tightly around her, his nose pressing into her hair to breathe her in. “You jerk.” She said through her tears. “I was so scared.”
“I know baby, me too.”
“You two should head back over the barrier. The CDC wants to retrieve the body of that other guy then start decontaminating.” One of the officers said.
“Thank you for everything you did to help me in there.” Andrew said as he shook the officer’s hand then lifted Fleur.
“Andrew, your wound.” Fleur said as she wiped the tears from her face.
“Just let me carry you, I’ve had a hell of a day.”
Andrew was happy to see his fathers there and he had no choice but to lower Fleur when they both went to hug him. Ashton fussed over him, looking him over and expressing how worried he was before both he and James told him how proud they were of him for doing the right thing. “How’s your shoulder?” James asked as they started toward the car.
“Feels bruised, but I think the wound closed up. I’ve never been so thankful to be a werewolf.” He sighed. “I had to kill someone, I didn’t want to, but…”
“If you apologize for doing what you had to do to survive, I’ll put you in an arm bar right here in front of all of these nice people.” James replied. “I know it wasn’t easy and it wasn’t what you wanted, but you and thousands of others would be dead if you hadn’t.”
“I know and that’s why I don’t regret doing it, I just wish I hadn’t had to.”
“You’re a good man, Andrew, that’s why you feel that way.” Fleur said, doing her best not to start crying again. Losing him would have killed her.
They took Andrew and Fleur home “We’ll call in the morning to see if you feel up to us bringing the kids over. They were worried about their brother” Ashton said and Andrew replied “you don’t have to call. I’d love to see them.”
“Good, we’ll go get your car if we can too”
“we love you two. We’re ordering delivery for you two aswell. That isn’t a question. You need to eat and neither of you probably want to cook something” Andrew smiled, feeling blessed to have been adopted by these amazing men. They pulled away as soon as Andrew and Fleur entered their home. “I hate you had to go through that today Fleur”
“are you kidding? You’re the one who was stuck in there with crazy people and diseases. I never worried about your job before but now…all I could think about was that I didn’t have breakfast with you this morning” He kissed her head “Fleur, I love you. You were up late and really needed rest”
“But that could have been my last chance to be with you”
“it wasn’t though. You’re stuck with me for many years to come beautiful and you’ll have every opportunity to have breakfast with me in the mornings. I imagine I’ll be home awhile. I doubt the lab is going to be reopen anytime soon.”
“I hope not, I need a little time before my nerves can handle you going back there” He pulled her into his lap on the couch. “well regardless of what they want I’ll take some vacation if I need to for you to feel better”
“I just love you so much Andrew”
“I love you too” He held her close to him until the food arrived. Andrew asked how much and wasn’t surprised his dads had already paid for it aswell. Andrew handed the man a tip then sat down to eat with his wife. The next morning they had company fairly early but Andrew knew his siblings had probably been anxious to come weather they knew or not what actually happened. They spent a lot of time together as a family in the following days and up until he went back to work. Fleur still didn’t feel ready but she knew she never would. She’d just have to let Andrew go and keep herself busy with her own work as an Esthetician.
~ The End