Home > Kathy P. > Fever Dream
Summary: Jim suffers an unusual reaction to Blair's herbal remedies.
Disclaimer: Petfly and others own them. I don't. Such is life.
Thanks to Tae, a wonderful beta reader. Any mistakes left are mine..all mine! Bawahahaha.
"Ah, Ah, Ah Choo!"
Jim reached over and grabbed a kleenex from the box sitting on the end table. Pulling the blanket around him tighter, he huddled into the corner of the couch, convinced he was about to die.
Wiping his raw, leaking nose with the tissue, he focused his hearing to see if Blair had returned from his run to the store yet.
Earlier, the Sentinel had developed the sniffles, which he had ignored, much to his Guide's disgust.
The younger man had advised him to take some vitamin C and echinacea to nip the cold in the bud. Jim had dismissed the suggestion with a wave of his hand.
Now, here he sat on the couch, pathetically waiting for Blair to bring him home some ginger-ale and cold medicine.
Tilting his head, he heard the distinctive sound of the Volvo making its way down the street. The Sentinel listened as his partner parked the car and made his way up to the loft.
Hearing the keys in the door, he sat up a little more in his corner of the couch.
Blair smiled at the sick man as he entered the loft, kicking the door closed behind him. Tossing his keys into the basket, he put down the bag he was carrying and hung his coat up on its peg.
Grunting, Jim blew his nose and watched as Blair moved into the kitchen.
Pulling the bottle of ginger-ale out of the bag, Blair grabbed a glass from the cupboard and filled it up. Reaching into the bag again he grabbed a bottle of pills and moved over to where Jim was languishing.
Placing the glass of ginger-ale within easy reach of Jim, Blair shook a pill out of the bottle and handed it to the older man.
Jim eyed the small brown pill with suspicion. "What's this, Sandburg?"
"Take it, Jim. It'll help."
Holding the pill up to his nose he tired to sniff it but his nose was too congested to pick up any scent. "I'm not taking anything I don't recognize."
"You're such a baby. It's a herbal remedy that I use all the time."
"Yeah? What's in it?"
"Yarrow, boneset, mulberry leaf and catnip."
"I don't know, Sandburg," he said eyeing the little pill warily. "What if I have a reaction to it?"
"You won't have a reaction Jim. These are made with all natural products. Do I have to remind you about the cold medicine incident?"
Grabbing his glass of ginger ale, Jim swallowed the pill. Trust Sandburg to bring that up. Just because he fell off a train. Jeez.
"Good boy," the younger man said.
"Shut up, Sandburg."
Laughing, Blair put the bottle of pills on the coffee table and sat down in the chair beside the couch. "You're such a grouch when you're sick, man."
"Sorry, Chief. I just really hate being sick," Jim said as the fell into another coughing fit. "What are those herbs good for anyway?"
"Well, yarrow is good for upper respiratory problems," Blair said as he ticked the items off on his fingers. "The boneset is an expectorant. Mulberry leaf is usually used for sore throats and the catnip is for your fever."
"You're sure this will work?"
"Trust me, Jim," Blair said as he stood up. "Why don't you try to get some rest? I'm going to go work on my paper that's due next week. Call me if you need me, ok?"
Blair rolled his eyes at the Sentinel. "Hey, man. Whenever I'm sick, you go into Blessed Protector overdrive. Let me return the favour, big guy."
"Sorry, Chief. I just really hate being sick."
"So you've said before. I'll come and check on you in an hour." Moving over to Jim, he lifted the blanket off of the ailing Sentinel. "Do you want to go upstairs, or do you want to stay on the couch?"
"The couch," Jim said as he stretched out to his full length.
"Ok, man, "Blair said as he spread the blanket over his partner. "You take a siesta while I do my school work."
Jim grunted his agreement. Closing his eyes, he listened as the younger man went into his room. The sound of books being opened and pen scribbling on paper lulled him into a light sleep.
What seemed like just a few moments later he woke up. Extending his hearing, he tried to find what had awakened him from his sleep. The only noises he heard were the quiet sounds of Blair working in his room. Nothing loud enough to of awakened him up.
A glimpse of black out of the corner of his eyes grabbed his attention. Turning to look, Jim frowned when he saw nothing there.
Another blur of black was seen in the far reaches of his peripheral vision. Quickly turning his head again, he started to get annoyed when again he saw nothing there.
The feeling of being watched made the Sentinel turn to look at the stairs leading up to his bedroom. His eyes widened when he saw what was up there. Laying at the top of the stairs, looking at him with half-closed eyes was his spirit animal, a large black jaguar.
Jim closed his eyes and shook his head, convinced that when he opened them again the animal would be gone.
Wrong. The cat was still there, and it was closer. Sitting on a step halfway down the stairs, the large feline's tail was whipping back and forth as he stared at the sick man.
"This can't be happening," Jim moaned to himself as he watched the cat stand up and move down the stairs toward him.
Slipping past the Sentinel, the large cat headed toward one of the huge potted plants that Blair had insisted on putting in the loft. With wide eyes, Jim watched as the cat sniffed at the plant, then reached out to nibble on one of the leaves.
"Hey, stop that," Jim said as the animal started to eat the leaves off the plant.
The spirit animal turned to look at him, gave a soft growl, then turned back to his snack.
"All right, that's it. No cat is going to give me attitude in my home," Jim muttered as he pushed himself off of the couch. Standing on shaky legs, he made his way over to where the jaguar was making a meal out of Blair's plant.
Reaching out he grabbed the cat by the scruff of the neck. "That's enough for you, mister," he said as he tugged the animal away from the plant.
With a discontented snort the jaguar broke free of Jim's grasp. The cat seemed to stare at Jim with mild disappointment over his interrupted snack. Then it gave what Jim assumed was the equivalent of a feline shrug.
Jim watched with a growing sense of dismay as the cat crouched down. The large animal's haunches were in the air and the tail was whipping back and forth again. Shoving off with powerful legs, knocking over the plant in the process, the jaguar launched himself at his next target.
The hallway rug.
Jim watched in amazement as the large cat curled itself around the rug. Grabbing it in his powerful jaws, the cat started to worry at the fabric as his back legs came up to claw at it.
"Stop that," Jim said to the spirit animal. "Hey! I said stop that!"
The big cat totally ignored the irate Sentinel. Pushing the rug into a ball, he curled even further around it, kneading the fabric with his sharp claws.
Standing over the spirit animal, shouting at him, the older man didn't notice his Guide come up to stand beside him.
"Jim, are you all right? What's wrong?" Blair said with concern.
"What do you mean what's wrong? Can't you see what he's doing? He's trying to eat my rug!"
Blair looked down at the crumpled rug, then look back up at his angry Sentinel. "Ok, Jim," he said mollifyingly. "I think you need to get some more sleep. Come on. Lets get you back on the couch."
Putting an arm around the older man, Blair gently turned him around and steered the bigger man back to the living room.
Looking over his shoulder, Jim watched as the black cat got up to follow him. He kept in eye contact with the animal while Blair pushed him down on the couch.
The big cat jumped up into the chair by the couch. Kneading the chair's cushion for a second, the cat settled down into a big black ball of fur. His eyes were closed to slits as the animal watched the Guide take care of the Sentinel.
Blair fussed over Jim for a moment, placing a hand on his forehead to judge his fever and tucking the blanket tightly around him. "Well, your fever has gone down a lot, Jim. Just try to get some more sleep and I'm sure you'll feel better when you get up. I guess those pills really worked."
Jim broke eye contact with his drowsing spirit guide and look up at Blair, comprehension shining in his eyes. "It must be those pills, Chief. You said there was catnip in them right?"
Looking puzzled, Blair replied, "Yeah, there's catnip in them. So?"
"So, that must be the reason he's acting like that."
Jim sighed at the look of confusion on Blair's face. "My spirit animal," he explained. "He's been acting strange."
"Your spirit animal?"
"Yeah, Chief. You know, the big black cat sleeping on the chair over there," Jim said with exasperation as he pointed to the chair across from them.
Blair looked over at the empty chair, "Umm, I don't see anything Jim."
"He's right there. Hey, stop kneading that cushion! You're going to put holes in it."
"Ok, Jim, calm down. I'm sure he won't hurt the chair," the younger man said, trying to placate the sick man.
"He better not," Jim muttered as his eyes started to drift shut. He opened them again to look at his smiling Guide. "I'm not taking any more of those pills, Sandburg. God knows what he'll get into next."
"Let me get this straight. You think that catnip in the pills is causing your spirit animal to wonk out on you?" the younger man said as a smile played around his lips.
"Well, isn't it obvious, Darwin? What else could it be?"
"Man, I'm sure I can get another chapter for my dissertation out of this," Blair chuckled to himself.
"Ha Ha, Sandburg. Just keep those pills away from me."
"Whatever you say, man. Just try to get some rest, ok?"
"Ok. Just as long as we're clear on those pills," he murmured as sleep started to claim him.
He heard his Guide laugh some more as he headed back to his room. The younger man's gasp of shock brought him back from the brink of sleep.
"Jim, what the hell did you do to my plant!"
Pulling the blanket over his head with a groan, Jim turned down the dial to his hearing, blocking out his roommate's grumbling and the loud, rumbling purr coming the large cat on the chair nearby.
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