The story below is fiction. It is also may contain erotic or sexually explicit behavior between males. If you find this offensive or you are too young to read it, please leave.

The author reserves all copyright privileges. This may not be reproduced, except for personal use without permission.

Dedication: To Ry and Don. Also I’d like to thanks the many authors and readers who have been so supportive of this story.

Thanks always to Bill H. my editor and friend.

If you would like to comment or say ‘Hi,’ I’m at  John Tucker


Chapter Forty

It had been a quiet morning as Ron lay reading the latest Clive Cussler adventure novel that Matt had chosen. He had woken early and after a light breakfast had gotten out of bed with the help of Tyler, his security guard/ brother, and walked around his room, finally sitting in the only armchair available. Tyler had brought the book, then left for the cafeteria for some breakfast and coffee. After Ron had read only a few pages the phone rang.

“Ron Turner,” he spoke into the receiver.

“Ron, this is Frank Stone.”

“Morning, Sheriff. What can I do for you?”

“I’ve got some good news for you. Charles Mattson, or Fat Charlie, was found stabbed to death this morning in a room at the Mirage.”

“Wow, that’s astounding!  Do you know who did it?”

“Yes, we have a suspect and we’re pretty sure he did it. He’s only a kid though. I sure hated to arrest him since he did the public a service in getting rid of that slime ball.”

“A kid?  You’re sure?  Did he shoot him? “

“No, he was killed with a knife. The kid’s not that big either, maybe 130 pounds.”

“I don’t understand how that’s possible. Charlie must have weighed 300 pounds.”

“The kid got cut up pretty bad. Looks like he was raped too. We took him to the emergency room at the Summerlin Hospital. We found him pulled off the road on the Summerlin Parkway in Charlie’s black Cadillac. Very strange!  We found a piece of paper on the front seat with your name and address on it, along with a map. Looks like he was trying to find you”

“As you know Sheriff, Summerlin’s where I am. I’m being discharged in a while. Can I see this kid?”

“Normally I’d say hell no, but since you were Charlie’s intended victim, and since it might help unravel what happened, I’ll approve the visit. You’ll need a detective with you though. Would one o’clock be ok?  I’ll have Detective Phillips meet you at the nurse’s station on the 5th floor where we’re holding him. He should be recovered by then. He lost a lot of blood.”

“That would be great Sheriff. I do appreciate all the help you’ve been.”

“My pleasure, Ron.  Oh, and by the way, we’ve pulled the security from the hospital. I don’t think you’ll have any more problems.  We’re glad that everything worked out. Goodbye.”

“Goodbye Sheriff.”

            *        *        *

The corporate jet with RET on its tail was high over the Gulf of Mexico. The plane was loaded to capacity with passengers from the PT-II on a heading for Las Vegas. They would make landfall shortly just south of Houston, Texas. An added passenger was Hans, the son of the captain of the yacht. He was sitting as close as he could to Tim while they held hands and watched a movie on the screen overhead.

Matt was sitting next to Robert in a pair of leather-covered seats near the front of the cabin. They were talking as the plane cruised at 35,000 feet of altitude, speeding toward their destination. Matt was speaking to his young friend.

“I’m so pleased that you and Jeffery found each other on this trip, Robert,” Matt commented.

“Thanks Matt. He’s so great. I never met anyone that affected me so much,” Robert said. “I’m already lonely. I just don’t know what I’m going to do. Can I tell you a secret?”

“Of course,” Matt answered. “I won’t tell a soul.”

“Well, you could tell Ron what I’m about to tell you but please, no one else.”

“Sure, you can count on it.”

“Well, last night Jeffery told me he loved me!”

Matt smiled. “That’s wonderful Robert! What did you tell him in reply?”

“I told him that I loved him too! … I guess I should tell you the rest.”

“You don’t have to if you don’t want to,” Matt responded.

“I just have to tell somebody, Matt. Well Tim spent the night with Hans and Jeffery spent the night with me. It was so great!  I just want to cry because we’re apart just when we found each other.”

“Yeah, I can believe that. I saw your goodbyes when we left the ship, so what you’re telling me is no surprise. I could see the love in your eyes when you parted and now every time you say his name.”

Tears began to flow down Robert’s cheeks.

“It was so wonderful! Now what am I going to do? He’s there and I’m gonna be in Las Vegas.”

“How ‘bout if you let Ron and me worry about that. I know that Ron really loves ya, bud. I do too. Maybe we can work something out.”

“Oh Matt, Ron has been so great to me already. I don’t know how I could let him do more.”

“Just don’t worry about it now. Things might not be perfect nor happen fast but if it’s real, love will find a way.”

“I hope you’re right, Matt. And thanks.”

“Not a problem Robert.”

A chime sounded from the phone at Matt’s chair. Matt reached for it bringing the receiver to his ear.

“Hello, this is Matt.”

“Matt, my sweetest man, this is Ron.”

“Ron, I’m so glad you called.”

“Why? Are there problems?”

“No, everything is great! I’ll be go glad to see you though. We have so much to discuss. How are you? Have they captured Fat Charlie yet?”

“I’m great too. I’ll be checking out of here at 2 o’clock. I should be home by the time you arrive. As to the other thing, Fat Charlie is dead!”

“What! What happened?”

“They found him stabbed to death this morning at the Mirage. They’ve captured the suspect. He’s just a kid and he’s here at this hospital.”

“Wow! I shouldn’t say this but I’m so glad that Charlie’s gone. I never would have rested peacefully while he was alive. What’s gonna happen to the kid?”

“I’m not sure, Matt. The Sheriff has given me permission to see him at one o’clock before I leave. I hope to find out more then. I’ll fill you in when you get home.”

“Home! Oh Ron, that sounds so good. I can’t wait!”

“I can’t either my love, every minute I’m away from you is like torture.”

“Aw, you’re just saying that ’cause it’s true,” Matt said laughing.

“Yeah, it is,” Ron said agreeably. “Hey, I’d better go now. Would you hook me back up to the captain? I’d like to have him pipe me over the P.A. system so I can say ‘Hi’ to our friends.”

“Sure Ron, I’d be glad to. You must have a joke!”

“How did ya know that?” Ron asked laughing.

“Oh, I just know you. And I love you too … in spite of it.”

“Ha, ha! I love you Matt. I love you just the way you are, babe.”

“That’s what I was tryin’ to say Ron just in a different way. I love you.  Bye.”

“Bye, babe.”

Matt pushed the button to transfer the call to the captain, and replaced the receiver back in its cradle. Moments later the music and sound from the movie stopped and Ron’s voice could be heard over the cabin speakers. Everyone stopped speaking and listened.

“Hi everyone, this is Ron.  Hope you had a nice time on the yacht. I should be home by the time you get to Las Vegas. They’re letting me out of this place after while. Boy! Do they check you over for everything!  Why, they even sent in a proctologist!  While he was back there, I told him ‘Man! Now I know how a Muppet feels.”

The cabin broke up and Ron continued.

“The captain of the plane told me that two vultures tried to get onto the plane in Miami, each carrying two dead raccoons! He said that the cabin attendant stopped them at the door and said to them. ‘Sorry folks, only one carrion per passenger.’”

Everyone but Tim and Hans roared.

Jack saw the puzzled looks on their faces and laughingly said to them, “I’ll explain it later guys.”

Ron’s voice came back, overpowering the laugher. “Matt told me that you wanted to go to church tomorrow before ya go back to New York.”

Everyone looked surprised; no one more than Matt.

“So to get you in the spirit, I got one more for ya:  Seems like the new pastor was visiting the homes of his parishioners. At one house it seemed obvious that someone was home, but no answer came to his repeated knocks at the door. He took out a card, wrote ‘Revelation 3:20’ on the back and stuck it in the door.”

“When the offering was processed the following Sunday, he found that his card had been returned. Added to it was this cryptic message, ‘Genesis 3:10’. Reaching for his bible to check out the passage, he broke up in gales of laughter. Revelations 3:20 begins, ‘Behold, I stand at the door and knock.’ Genesis 3:10 reads, ‘I heard your voice in the garden and I was afraid for I was naked.’”

“See ya in church. Bye.”

Sounds of the music and movie returned but were drowned out by the laugher and giggles coming from all over the plane.

The aircraft crossed over the coast of Texas as the passengers resumed their preoccupations.

            *        *        *

Tyler came into the room carrying two cups of coffee.

“Hey, what gives? The security cop is gone!” he said excitedly as he handed Ron one of the cups and scanned the room.

Ron quickly filled him in on the call from the Sheriff about the fortunate demise of Fat Charlie. He also filled him in on the happenings with Tony, the prime suspect in the murder.

“I guess I’d better call the office and wrap up your Aztec security detail too.” Tyler said.

“Yeah, I agree. I’d like you personally to stay for a few more days, though. We have some things to discuss and you have some people to meet.”

“Sure Ron, you’re paying the bill. I’m sure that the office won’t mind. Although I can’t imagine what I can do for you now that Fat Charlie is dead.”

“You’d be surprised brother, you’d be surprised.  Go ahead and make your call. Then we need to talk.”

Tyler reached for the phone and punched in the phone number of the main office in Los Angeles.  Relaying the latest happenings to the scheduling supervisor and Ron’s request for his continued temporary presence, he received instructions for the rest of the detail, and approval for his remaining in Las Vegas. He then said goodbye and hung up the receiver.

“Everything’s been approved,” he told Ron. “I have to give instructions to the rest of the guys, then we can talk.”

Ron nodded in understanding as Tyler picked up his two-way radio and ordered the two security men in the parking lots to meet him in the waiting room on the first floor.

“I’ll be back in a few minutes, “ he said to Ron. “I need to give those guys their instructions on checking out of the hotel and returning to California. I’ll just have them keep the room for me, and I’ll check out later.”

“No need for that,” Ron commented. “I’d like you to move to my house for the rest of your stay. It would be a lot more convenient to find some time to talk more.
I have other guests arriving too, from Florida, but I have plenty of room for everybody.
I’d like you to meet them all, and to meet the love of my life, Matt.”

“That would be great, Ron. I’ll have the guys check out and bring my gear back here.”

“Sounds like a plan,” Ron said smiling.

“I’ll go meet the guys now. I’ll return soon.”

“Fine Tyler. See ya in a few”

Tyler stood, turned and walked out of the room.

        *        *        *

20 minutes later the door opened and Tyler again entered the room. Ron looked up from his reading and smiled as Tyler took a seat at his bedside.

“Tyler this might be premature, but things are going to get hectic soon, so we’d better talk now while things are quiet.”

“Sure Ron, whatever you want.”

“I know that this brother thing has probably been a shock to you,” Ron began.

“That’s not the half of it,” Tyler said. “I’ve tried not to think of it, or even its implications. I just want you to know that I’m not looking for anything from you.”

“Thanks but it’s not quite as simple as that. First of all, I’d like to say that I truly believe that you are my brother, which should be proven by Monday.  Second, I’m more than just a little pleased. In the last day or so I’ve come to know you a little and I’m proud to say that you’re a fine man, and a credit to our father. It’s his loss that he never got to know you, or love you. He was a hard man in many ways but not a bad man. He and I were close when I was younger, but drew apart when he discovered I was gay.
I’ll tell you more about that period in the future. Just know that I want to make up for his neglect. I want you in my family as my brother. I’ve even talked to Matt about it. He agrees that it’s the proper thing to do.”

“Wow! Ron, I’m astounded! I thought that you’d want me gone and out of your life. I never thought that anything so great could possibly come out of the discovery of our kinship.”

“You certainly have nothing for which you should be ashamed. Regardless of how our father treated your mother or you, I’m telling you that I want you as my brother. There is much I see in you for which we both can be proud. I thought about this all through the night. I’d even be proud to have you take our family name. That’s your choice, of course.”

“I don’t know what to say, Ron. This is beyond my wildest dreams. To have found who my father was, and even better a brother who accepts me. I’m in a daze.”  

Moisture was clouding Tyler’s vision as he wiped the corners of his eyes and Ron continued speaking.

“I’d like to tell you what I’m thinking. As you know we’re not absolutely certain of our familial relationship yet, but the first thing I’d like to say has nothing to do with the results of the DNA testing. I’d like you to consider taking over the top management of Aztec Security. I spoke to Will, my right-hand, business manager, vice president who you met yesterday. We talked briefly when you left the room for a few minutes. He was impressed by his first discussions with you when we all talked about the Aztec purchase. He’s not as anxious to move on this as I am, but he agrees with me and has a lot of faith in my judgments.”

“That’s incredible Ron. I’m not sure that I’m ready though, I have to admit.”

“That doesn’t worry me. Whatever you lack in experience yourself, or expertise that is not available within Aztec to help you, we will furnish. Our managers act independently, but not alone. We are there for support and guidance. We trust our managers to operate in the best interest of the company and to lead and guide their own people as good examples. I think you fit the bill. I hope you’ll accept.”

Tyler paused a moment and Ron could imagine the turmoil that was caused in his brother’s mind by the offer.

“Of course I’ll say yes, Ron. I don’t know all the details you have in mind, but somehow I trust you to do right, both for Aztec and for me.”

“You can be sure of that Tyler. I’m certain that you will find the compensation equitable and the working conditions to your liking. One thing I’d like you to consider though. My thought is that we might move the company headquarters to Las Vegas. We would, of course, keep the L.A. office open, since it’s the center of west coast operations. I want to consider opening a New York office too. There is a lot to do there. I have some big plans for Aztec in that City.”

“This is mind boggling, Ron.” Tyler said in astonishment. “I don’t know what to say.”

“You should know Tyler, that the decisions are yours to make. I mandate very little to my top people. I offer these things as just a couple of many suggestions I hope we will share in the future. You will not offend me if you choose not to follow my recommendations. Nor will acceptance of my suggestions be considered as an excuse for lack of success. I expect you to tell me when I’m wrong if you feel that I am. I want you to feel that you can bounce your ideas off me too. I will say though, that I will tell you if I want something done without debate. I will take full responsibility for the consequences in those very rare instances.”

“I understand that Ron. I have no problem with taking orders when they’re given. I’m sure that we can work together well.”

“I’m confident of it too,” Ron responded. “Now I’d like to talk to you about the brother thing.”

“Ron, I’m already on overload. Don’t you want to wait ‘til we’re sure?”

“No. I don’t think that’s necessary. When I tell you that I am sure that we are brothers, you can bet on it.  I also have confidence that should it not be the case, your honesty and integrity would not allow you to take advantage of the situation. I’m the one who’s willing to gamble on that!”

“I can only hint in generalities about what I’m about to tell you. We’ll have the bean counters figure out the exact figures when our relationship is confirmed. I hope that this will not come as a shock to you, but should the results be positive you will be rather wealthy. Here’s basically how I see the situation but I’m willing to discuss it if you think my plans are flawed or inequitable.”

“Ron, let me interrupt,” Tyler said quickly. “I meant it when I said that I want nothing from you. What you have already offered me is my dreams come true.  Even if we are brothers, I ask for nothing.”

“Tyler, I’ll tell you this. I didn’t earn what our father left to me. It was an accident of birth. We share that accident, even if it was with different mothers. I have taken that modest wealth and turned it into a vast fortune. What I’m suggesting is that I give you the same opportunity. I’m offering half of what was left to me several years ago plus some growth of that money like 8% compounded, as if it had been invested in good but non-spectacular investments. I’m the one who’s making out like a bandit. I took all of the money and risked it all for some spectacular growth. I gambled and won. Therefore, I’m keeping the bulk of the rewards for that effort.”

“That sounds more than fair to me,” Tyler said. “I don’t know much about investments, though. It seems that what you are offering is what I probably would have done with the money anyway if I were left to my own devices.”

“I’m not suggesting that you do that in the future. Later, when we have more time and all this nonsense is confirmed and calculated, we can talk about investment strategies for the future. I feel sure that we can tailor them to fit your needs.”

“I’m open to all suggestions, Ron. I’m a total novice at all of this, so I’m glad you’re willing to help me. Do you mind me asking how much money we’re speaking of?”

“No, of course not, Tyler. If my memory and calculations are correct. I would estimate your personal wealth at around $40 million.”

Tyler opened his mouth in shock!

“Ron, I’ve never even thought of that much money! I can’t take that much from you. I’d just have to give it away to keep my sanity.”

“Don’t do that,” Ron laughed. “It will drive Mr. Peterson over the edge. Besides I have another thought for the use of some of it.”

“Who’s Mr. Peterson?” Tyler asked.

“He’s the man who manages the Charitable Trust.” Ron said in response. “I haven’t told you about that yet!”

“There’s more?” Tyler asked as he shook his head.

“Yeah. It’s the best part. Our father put a sizeable sum into a Charitable Trust. Mr. Peterson and I have turned it into a substantial charitable organization with a fortune in assets and large earnings, which we are using to help people.  I have lots of plans for the use of that money. Of course, part of it is yours too, about $30 million or so. I would expect you to sit on the Board of Trustees and influence its proper use.”

“I hope you don’t have any more surprises for me. I’m not sure that my heart can stand it.”

“Just one more for you to think about. It’s about what I think you should do with part of your personal money.”

“What’s that?” Tyler asked. “You know that I’m open to any suggestions.”

“Well, we’re purchasing Aztec for around $20 million. I’m offering you the opportunity to buy 40% of it which is $8 million dollars. It would be your first investment and one whose return would be under your control.”

“Wow, that would be great! I’d like that a lot!”

Ron smiled. “I was hoping you would. It gives you a special reason to make Aztec into a company that will be a great asset to us both. Now one last thing before they bring in lunch and the doctor and nurses descend upon us to throw me out of this place.”

“Sure, Ron. I hope that it’s not another surprise.”

“Well, it is in a way, although you must have heard me speaking of it on the phone and with Will and Jan. I guess I should tell you a little about how I came to be in this hospital bed and the events that transpired before it. The reason I need to tell you these things is that we’re expecting company this afternoon, and they already know about them.”

Ron began to tell Tyler of his friend Bryan and how they met. He told of Alan and his meeting with Matt, his true love. As lunch was brought to Ron, Tyler slipped out and brought back a sandwich from the cafeteria. He sat spellbound, completely forgetting his sparse meal as Ron relayed the story of the many friends on the aircraft speeding to Las Vegas. Ron spoke too of Will, Jan and Margaret from the office and Dorothy, who was also being released from the hospital at 2 o’clock.

As Ron’s story arrived at the present, the doctor walked in, greeting Ron and Tyler with a smile.

“I’m sure you’ll be pleased, Mr. Turner,” he said. “I just signed the forms approving your release from our facility.”

“It’s not that I don’t appreciate your hospitality and care, Doctor, but I truly am pleased. I hope I don’t have to see the inside of a hospital for a long time to come.”

“I see no reason that you should,” enjoined the smiling doctor. “If you just take it a bit easy for a couple more weeks, your life can return to normal.”

Ron laughed. He wondered if the doctor had any idea of how ‘normal’ his life was not?

“Well, you can get dressed now,” the doctor continued. I’ll send an orderly in with a wheelchair in about 10 minutes. Has your transportation arrived yet?”

“No, not yet,” Ron replied, “but send the orderly in anyway. I have a couple more stops to make before I get out of here.”

“Oh?” asked the physician.

“Yes,” Ron said. “I need to go see if my friend Dorothy who is also a patient here, will be ready to leave too, then my brother Tyler,” he said nodding to his young companion, “ and I need to go visit a young man accused of murder.”

        *    *    *    *    *