Billy scrambled up the tree with single-minded intensity. Ahead of him, he heard muffled grunts, curses, and occasional whimpers as the Kirbys struggled up the tree. Bitterly, he wondered if this was enough to satisfy their parental urge to locate their son- three people dead, one missing- he's not dead, Alan's not dead -and no hope of getting off this godforsaken island anytime in the forseeable future.

"Billy? Have you seen Dr. Grant?"

Temper, patience, and self-restraint snapped, all in the same instant. "No," he snarled. Kirby blinked and backed away, a bit further out on the branch he and Amanda had chosen. "No, I haven't seen Alan. And you know what? I hold you responsible. You, and your wife that isn't your wife, and your lousy check that isn't worth the price of the paper it was printed on." He advanced towards Kirby, climbing effortlessly up to the branch the man shared with Amanda. Both Kirbys clung together and edged away, eyes wide. "If it hadn't been for you, Alan would never have come to this island. He would be safe, at the dig, looking at goddamn stars and discussing goddamn theories. He wouldn't be out here in this dinosaur infested hellhole with killer raptors stalking him. Now you just shut up about Alan, and leave me alone."

Billy had them backed out onto the farthest part of the limb that would support their weight, now, and was almost mad enough to push them a bit farther and watch them fall. Some of that must have communicated itself to Paul Kirby, who extended a hand, with a panicked look.

"Whoa, now, Billy- take it easy!" Behind him, Amanda clung to his arm with wide eyes. "We just wanted-"

"Yeah, yeah, spare me the details. You just wanted to find your son. Now leave me the fuck alone."

Billy turned abruptly, sure-footed as a cat in the tree, and made his way up several more branches. His conscience wouldn't allow him to get too far away- after all, assholes or not, the Kirbys were fellow humans- but he really didn't want to be near them at the moment. He found a spot and settled down with his back against the tree trunk, ready for a long and sleepless night.

Alan was alive. Alan had to be alive. He refused to admit that there was any other possibility. Part of him acknowledged that this belief was nearly as irrational as Amanda's belief that her son had survived, alone and unaided in this tropical hell. But the rest of him clung to the fact that Alan had faced these beasts before and survived.

He's alive, whispered his mind. And he has the eggs.

Guilt gnawed at him. He'd seen Alan stop and grab that damn pack- not so lucky anymore, nosiree. And he was mortally certain the raptors had enough intelligence to catch the transfer of the pack from one human to the other. So Alan was out there, alone, and he had the eggs. With the pack of raptors on his trail...

Knock it off, kid, he thought, ignoring the twinge he felt. Kid had always been Alan's nickname for him. He's also got enough sense to climb a tree, just like you did. And raptors aren't built for tree climbing.

But that was cold comfort, when he was confronted with the knowledge that Alan had gotten separated from the group while trying to save something he saw as important to Billy.

He could hear the Kirbys below, talking quietly. Idly, he wondered what they were talking about- probably Eric. Talk about obsessive. Sure, they had reason, but-

Memory grabbed him by the throat and shook him.


Firelight flickered in the blackness. The smoke tickled at the back of his nose, a familiar scent. The cold burrowed down into his bones, but it was welcome... oh, so welcome. Because it was providing Alan with enough incentive to hold him close, to snuggle under the blanket and talk like he never had before...
"I get a little... overprotective, I guess you could say. Obsessive."
He wondered what was wrong with that. Huh. Dr. Sattler sure must be a weird person, if she couldn't handle having all of Alan's attention focused on her, on keeping her safe and there with him...

Billy bit back, hard, on a moan. Alan was alive, dammit! Alan was alive, and he was just fucking fine. And he would show up in the morning, smiling and cheerful and ready to get the hell to the coast. Because Alan Grant wasn't the type of man to let some damn dinosaurs take him down.

Billy stood up, moved a bit farther away from the Kirbys. Even though he could forgive them their obsessive worry for their son, he was still mad at them. He peered through the gathering dusk, straining for any sight of his lover.

"Alan," he called, knowing it was futile. "Alan!"

But there was no answer.


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