Jeff was tapping a pen against the orange hardwood of his desk, staring at an invitation about a charity function from Lady Penelope. He usually attended them and also donated large sums in the name of his construction company however this little memo had been addressed to him - not as the CEO of his company - but as famous luna astronaut who had ties to International Rescue.
In this case he was stumped. Last time he did something charitable in the name of International Rescue, it was a special gift for a sick child to spend Christmas with them, however this time that wasn't going to be an option. He had to come up with another idea that wouldn't put his secret organisation at risk.
“Everything alright, Mr. Tracy?”
Jeff looked up as Tintin put down his coffee. “Not really no. This blasted charity thing for Penny has me in a twist. How can we contribute a donation in our name when we can't do a proper public appearance?”
Tintin sat down in one of the chairs facing the desk and thought for a few minutes. “Maybe you don't have to Mr. Tracy. It's possible to make other people do the donation.”
Jeff leaned forward with his head resting on his hands. “Oh? Pray tell me how I do that, Tintin?”
“Well, you could donate something to be auctioned off, like maybe a old uniform or something?” Tintin suggested.
“Hmm.. Possibly. Though there's a risk if we do that of having imposters running around or our technology falling into the wrong hands.”
Tintin shrugged. “How about photos of the boys? Everyone knows their visual identities now anyway however have yet to make the connection they're your sons. You could give them all fake names, donate the photos and get people to bid on them with all the money from the auction going to charity.”
Jeff sat back in his chair and played with his fingers a few minutes with a thoughtful look on his face. “You've got me interested, love. However there's one detail missing.”
“Oh? What would that be sir?”
“The context of the photos. We can't have too much in them that would give information to our enemies.”
“They could always be like those firefighter calendars, the ones where they're either topless or nude.”
Jeff almost fell off his chair. “Tintin! How could you suggest something like that!”
“They're not little kids anymore sir.” Tintin pointed out. “Scott's now thirty and you do regularly complain that none of them are getting out there and meeting any ladies. Maybe this will bring the ladies to them instead?” she tried to look on the bright side.
Jeff frowned and eventually caved. Tintin did have a point about him complaining his boys were still single. He did want to be a grandfather at some stage in his life.
“Alright, Tintin. Do you have anyone in mind we can trust to do it tastefully and without putting our organisation at risk?”
Tintin smiled. “Oh I have JUST the right person for the job! You will not be disappointed Mr.Tracy!”
The next day phone calls were made and flights organised and by late afternoon that Friday, the famous fashion designer and photographer Francois Lemaire touched down on the runway of Tracy Island via a private helicopter with all his photography gear.
Tintin was the first to greet him, and lead him to the house where Jeff and four of his sons were sitting in the living room.
“Mr. Lemaire, meet Jeff Tracy and the boys from International Rescue.” Tintin introduced them, smiling politely.
“It is a pleasure to meet you all!” Lemaire smiled brightly, shaking Jeff’s hand. When he shook Scott’s his eyes opened wide. “Are you the fine young gentleman who saved my unique fashions from being stolen when our plane was hijacked?”
“Uh that would be me.” Virgil said shaking his hand next, his big brawny hands almost crushing Lemaire's delicate ones.
“Yeah, thank your lucky stars, that Virgil is good at flying.” Gordon joked. He wasn’t going to tell the man that it was him who was talking to the pilot and telling the man what to say to the hijackers.
Alan just waved and stuck his head back in his magazine, causing Tintin to scowl. Admittedly Alan didn’t like photographers much, his time as a race car driver made sure he hated the press a great deal - the lies and the rumours he had to fend off from them was not something he was looking to repeat anytime soon.
“Ah don’t worry about him Tintin.” Gordon said, brushing Alan’s bad attitude off like water on a duck’s back. “When he see’s how much better I look he’ll want to try and out do me.” he teased.
“Heh, in your dreams Gordon.” Alan pouted.
“Oh hey dad, isn’t John supposed to have his photo done too?” Gordon changed the subject to his other younger brother who was currently absent. This however made Alan’s ears pick up. He was also curious as to how they were planning on getting John involved in this.
“Indeed and we've already discussed it, though I don't have any clue what that brother of yours is up to, but as long as it's not going to cause trouble I'm going to leave him to his own creativity.”Jeff replied gruffly.
“Hang on, so we get a bit of creative freedom in this?” Virgil’s face lit up.
Jeff nodded. “Indeed, as long as it's not lewd or compromising.”
All four boys nodded. The only reason they agreed to this was because it was Tintin’s idea and even though the three elder ones knew Alan was head over heals for her, they all knew she'd be supervising the shoot so they all wanted to tease Alan by trying to see how far they could go. Afterall, it was rare for any of them to walk around the house like real bachelors anymore though in the case of John alone in space you could be left to draw your own conclusions.
“So.” Gordon rubbed his hands joyfully. “Who's first?”
“Me.” Scott said flatly. “I want to be able to watch you all humiliate yourselves afterwards.”
“Given the effort to get Lemaire to John he’ll be last right?” Virgil added.
“Right so that means myself, Virgil and Alan get to fight over who’s next?” Gordon grinned. “Ohh this is going to be interesting….” he laughed as both his other siblings gave him evil glares. He shrugged. “Hey, having Scott go first means we get time to PLAN ours.”
Alan and Virgil looked at each other before moving like whirlwinds to find something they could be photographed with that would outshine their eldest brother and each other.
Scott patted Gordon on the shoulder. “How about you? Going to go the distance?”
Gordon laughed. “I don’t need to Scott. We’ve all seen me in photographs before without a shirt. Olympic athlete remember?”
Scott poked him in the ribs. “Oh I remember. I also recall an accident that left you pretty scarred under that flamboyant shirt of yours.”
“What’s wrong with my flamingo pink shirt? It’s all the rage Scotty. You should try and keep up with the fashion trends sometime.” smirking he then added, “At least covered in scars it looks like I’m a real hero brother dear.”
Scott’s expression soured. “You’ll keep Gordo. I promise you.”
As he turned to get ready, Gordon decided to add salt onto the wound. “It’s not me you need to be afraid of being shown up by of those two bozos!” He trilled joyfully, rocking back and forth on his heels. “It’s the quiet ones who have more brains than brawn who you have to watch out for!”