From what I read...it seems that your hard drive is attached as a slave, rather than a master.
I don't think that applies, since you have a laptop, with (likely) one hard drive, not two or more
To be honest, I have no clue, based on what I have read for your particular error.
What I would do:
a. Run chkdsk /r or the equivalent on the C: partition. It's easier to follow the directions for running the Graphical Version via My Computer, XP Chkdsk, Using the Graphical Version (My Computer) - http://www.updatexp.com/windows-xp-chkdsk.html
. You want to put check marks in both options (scan, recover).
b. Run a long test diagnostic from the hard drive manufacturer, after the chkdsk completes. It doesn't hurt to be more sure that there isn't a hard drive problem.