Rating: T - Suitable for teens, 13 years and older, with some violence, minor coarse language, and minor suggestive adult themes.  I'm switching over to these Fiction Ratings.  Fiction Ratings.

Warning: Bad language

AU: LB/ATF 

Disclaimer: The Magnificent Seven is owned by Trilogy, Mirish and MGM. No money is being made. This fanfic is purely for entertainment purposes.

Author's notes: Thanks to Phyllis for the great beta. This is the sequel to Mr. Mason... or at least the next in what's going to have to be a series. A scene in this was definitely inspired by the movie Pet Sematary. LOL

Feedback is loved.

 

Trees

Sequel to Mr. Mason LB/ATF

By: Ruby

"Buck?" Vin stood beside the bed, his hand on Buck's shoulder, shaking the man awake.

"Wha-?" Buck started, staring up at Vin, his hand clenched in a fist. "Good God, boy. Don't do that to a man." His heart was pounding in his chest. He glanced at the clock. It was five o'clock, Saturday morning.

"Sorry," Vin ducked his head. "But JD's not feeling good."

"What?" Buck sat up, throwing the sheet off. He only wore lounge pants so he grabbed a T-shirt off the floor and pulled it on. "What's wrong?" he asked as he followed Vin out of the door.

Shrugging, Vin shook his head. "Don't know. He's real hot and talking in his sleep. He had the sheets all twisted up around him. I got him loose and asked him if he wanted to sleep with me... but he didn't hear me." He frowned, staring up at Buck fearfully. "He's real sick."

"Okay," Buck told him. "Go and get Chris."

"'K." Vin ran off to do as he was bid.

As soon as Buck entered the room, a cold streak almost knocked him off his feet. He saw his boy and was to him in a couple steps. JD's face was pale and shiny with sweat, his black hair plastered to his skin.

"Shit, son," Buck knelt down next to the bed. He put his hand on JD's forehead, but pulled it back when the heat seared him. "Oh, Jesus," he hissed. JD writhed on the bed, mumbling and twisting in his sheets.

"What's going on, Buck?" Chris asked worriedly as he came into the room.

"Damn, Chris," Buck's voice shook. "JD's real sick. 

Chris came over and leaned over Buck's shoulder. Out of habit, he placed the back of his hand on JD's forehead. He gasped. "Fuck."

Buck gulped, glancing up at him, his face white. "Yeah." 

"I'll get the thermometer." Chris told Buck and then turned to Vin, who was hovering on the other side of the room, his face pale with worry as he stared at JD. "Vin, run and get us the phone so we can call Nathan."

"Yes, sir." Vin ran from the room.

"JD," Buck picked the child up, sitting down on the side of the bed and holding JD in his arms. "JD, son, can you hear me?" 

The boy's eyes fluttered but didn't open. He whispered something that sounded like "Trees."

Buck's breath caught in his throat. 

Chris walked back into the room, shaking the thermometer. "I can't find that ear one we have. But here's this one." He handed the glass tube to Buck.

Wilmington pulled JD's mouth open and gently placed the thermometer under the little boy's tongue. The two men stared at each other while they waited for the results.

Chris picked the wadded up Scooby Doo blanket off the bed and shook it out, covering the boy with it. 

Buck stared at the blanket and then up at Chris. "Not this one," he said as he pulled the blanket off and tossed it to the floor as far away as he could. "Get one out of the closet."

Chris stared at him. Walking over to the closet, he grabbed another blanket and laid it over JD. 

Pulling the thermometer out, Buck looked at it. His brow furrowed. He swallowed, glanced up at Chris and then back at the glass tube. "Read this for me," he told Chris.

Chris came over. He too stared down at the thermometer, a perplexed look on his face. "It's normal." He shook his head. "Ninety eight."

"He's burning up, Chris."

Glancing up at Buck, Chris shook the thermometer out again. "Do it over and I'll go find the ear one." 

Vin came running in with the phone. "I'm sorry. It wasn't in the charger. I had to page it."

Chris ruffled his hair as he took the phone from him. "That's okay, kiddo." He hit speed dial for Nathan's number as he walked into the bathroom.

Vin came over and sat next to Buck, staring down at JD. "Is he gonna be okay?" He gazed worriedly up at Buck.

Buck took the thermometer out, shaking his head at it again. Normal. "How can that be?" he breathed out. 

"Buck," Chris yelled out from the other room. "What was the reading this time?"

"Normal!" Buck called out to him, hearing Chris on the phone with Nathan.

Latching onto the thermometer and pulling it down, Vin gazed at it. "What are you looking at, Mr. Buck?"

Buck swallowed hard as he gave Vin a halfhearted smile. "See that little line right there? It tells us how hot JD's body is. It says he's normal."

"But he looks awful hot, Buck." Vin reached a tentative hand out, petting JD's arm. "He feels hot too."

"Yeah," Buck agreed. "He does." 

Chris came back in. "Damn it, I can't find the fu-" he looked at Vin, cleared his throat. "The ear thermometer. Nathan's on his way over. I told him that his temperature is reading normal."

Buck nodded. Pulling the shivering boy to his chest, he shuddered. "Chris, now he's cold."

"What?"

"Feel him. He's ice cold." Buck rubbed JD's chilled hands.

"What in the hell is going on here, Buck?"

Shrugging, Buck snorted out an exasperated breath. "I don't know. But I don't want to wait for Nathan. Let's take him to the hospital now."

Chris nodded. "Yeah."

"Buck...?" JD's eyes fluttered open and he stared up at his foster father. "What are you doing?" He struggled to sit up in Buck's lap.

"JD?" Buck stared at him in wonder, feeling his forehead and his hands. He looked up at Chris. "He's fine." He shook his head. "He feels fine now."

JD was looking around. "I had a dream." He gazed out the window. 

Buck gulped down the lump in his throat. "You feeling okay, kiddo?" His voice trembled. 

Bobbing his head, JD answered, "Yep. How come? What's going on?"

Chris came over and squatted down in front of JD. Reaching out, he patted Vin on the knee while he asked JD, "Are you sure you're feeling better? You were pretty sick a few minutes ago. Real hot. And then real cold."

JD puckered his lips up in a pout. "I don't remember nothin' like that. Just my dream and then waking up in Buck's lap." He looked around. "Hey, where's my Scooby Doo blanket?" He glanced disgustedly down at the blanket covering him. "I don't like Bob the Builder anymore. He's for *little* boys."

Buck chuckled, a relieved sound. "Sorry, kiddo, We switched it out. It was the first one Chris grabbed."

"Humph," JD narrowed his eyes at the velour blanket. 

Glancing up at Chris, Buck shook his head. "Should we call Nathan off?"

Chris sighed. "He's already on his way." He gazed appraisingly down at the little boy. "Besides, I really want him to take a look at JD."

"But I feel fine, Mr. Chris." JD smiled, scooting off Buck's lap to sit between him and Vin. "Is Mr. Nathan coming?"

Buck ruffled his hair. "Yeah, he's coming, kiddo. Just to make sure you're not sick."

JD shrugged, glancing down at his lap. Picking up a corner of the Bob the Builder blanket, he rubbed it between his finger and thumb. "I'm not sick." He looked up at Buck and then back down. "I just went out in the trees to talk to Mr. Mason."

Buck gasped in a breath. "What?" He ignored Chris' disgusted snort. 

JD looked up at them. "Mr. Mason came again after we went to bed. He said that he needed me. So I went out to the trees with him. We was talking."

"JD," Chris squatted down in front of him. "It was just a dream. You didn't go anywhere. Vin would have seen you leave," he glanced at his son, who shook his head at him, "and he didn't see you go anywhere."

Sticking his lip out, JD shook his head. "It wasn't a dream. I..." he looked around at the others, searching Vin's eyes out to get his opinion.

Vin shrugged. "JD you was here the whole time."

Wilting, JD ducked his head. "Oh. I dream-ed it." He puckered his lips up in consternation. "But I remember what Mr. Mason told me an' everything."

Chris was careful not to let JD see him roll his eyes as he stood and walked over to the corner of the room to stand, arms across his chest.

"Mr. Mason told me that Mr. Buck did something bad." He shook his head furiously. "But I told him there was no way. That Mr. Buck never does nothin' bad."

Buck smiled sadly. 

JD shrugged. "But Mr. Mason said that Buck has to 'pay'." He glanced up at the others. "What's that mean?" He looked over at Buck. "Do you owes Mr. Mason some money?"

Buck's face had blanched white. He swallowed hard, glanced at Chris and then back at JD. His heart thudded in his chest. He shook his head, blinked his eyes and then let out a long, sharp breath. "JD... like I said last night, Mr. Mason isn't real. You can't be talking to him because he's not alive."

"He's a ghost!" JD whispered loudly, nodding his head wisely.

"No, JD," Chris told him, walking across the room to him. "There's no such thing as ghosts."

JD sighed, a sad, bewildered sound. "But I talked to him, Mr. Chris. We went out in the trees and he told me that Mr. Buck has to pay him something." He huffed out a breath, tucking his arms across his chest, petulantly. "It wasn't a dream." He'd have stomped his foot if he could. He glanced down at his tiny toes. Picking a leg up and lifting it as close to Buck's face as he could, he said, "See!"

Buck gasped. 

Chris came over to see what Buck was looking at.

The bottom of JD's foot was covered with mud.

 

May 2006

 

Feedback is loved. Thanks. Ruby ;)

[email protected]yahoo.com

Back to Ruby's Magnificent Seven Page