Chapter 269


Our hope is that every homosexual youth in this country can find a home and someone to love them as they are.
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Traveler Chapter 269
    I knew that I was in trouble when three pregnant women began to dote on me with sweet treats, sweet words, and a cup of coffee. Adsila stood by watching as she learned the tricks and wiles that a woman uses to get a man to do what she wants him to do. Adsila needed school clothes, but the clothes that she needed couldn't be found in just any old mall in town, they were set on going to the source. Four old married men loaded up our families and took off for a shopping trip to Milano, Italia. They wanted Gucci, Pradda, Versace, Armani, and it had to come directly from the center of fashion with no middle men getting their hands all over the merchandise.

    I had learned why Roddy and Adsila had argued the day before, Ugitsiha had confirmation to the story. I have heard it said since I was a small boy, 'if you want it known, telegraph, telephone, or tell a woman.' My wife is a woman, bless her heart. I never wanted a dickless one in my life, but I am glad that I found Ugitsiha. She had been on the telephone with her relatives in Oklahoma and had learned something that concerned my family, especially our son, Roddy. Adsila's mother had been crushing the pill and mixing it into the child's oatmeal and orange juice each morning for several weeks before the wedding. She had told her daughter that she needed the juice so that she would be strong and well for her honeymoon. With Adsila out of her control she was worried that the small girl would get pregnant and would be unable to carry a baby to full term.
    That had been a concern of ours and we had discussed it with Roddy. He did not think that he was ready to be a father, he felt that he wanted to wait for at least four years. Adsila is a spoiled little brat that has to have her way or no way. She saw Sagi with Steven Allen and she was living with a very pregnant Quemela, she wanted a baby of her own. Roddy tried to reason with her, but that only led to him spending the night away from her. I looked at him and then at the girls as they batted their eyes at me, I made the decision to go shopping, in Italy.

    The boys were leaving throughout the week to return to their schools around Europe. I was mixed about sending the boys back to BAE, Greece is in a turmoil and civil unrest abounds as the have nots seek what the haves have. I festered on that situation for the entire time that the boys had been with us at Camp Christopher. I finally made a decision, I sent those students to BAF. That school has plenty of room for the Greeks and their staff. The climate is similar and they are in close proximity to their home school when the situation changes back to normal.

    The students at BAW weren't ready to end their summer of fun so I listened to them tell me what they wanted to do for the remaining two weeks before they needed to settle in for school to start again. Coy had been bragging about his replica of Germany's famous Nürburgring, complete with the seventeen and a half mile long Gesamtstrecke. He got the older boys excited when he described his one and a half mile long autocross track area. He told them that he had six Mini Coopers that they were welcome to use as they try to beat his record of 40.3 seconds at 70MPH on the autocross course. That did it, fifty boys boarded a plane for Houston, TX on Wednesday morning.

    Two hundred boys that had recently joined our numbers really taxed our staff and resources when they asked to spend two weeks at the beach in California. I turned to Darryl Landers and Cameron Langley and asked them if they wanted to babysit two hundred horndogs at Cliff House for two weeks. Mitch Evans and Carrol Templeton came to me and told me that they were planning on a trip home before their junior year at college resumed. They said that they would help with the boys and that they could take small groups up to the lake for water skiing. I secured cooks, drivers for the buses, and security for the boys to leave on Tuesday evening so that they would arrive at Cliff House before noon the next day.

    The remaining boys wanted to ride horses, I was glad to send them to Camp Christopher for that. I made it clear that the Arabian horses that Raven had given Roddy as a wedding gift were not to be ridden unless Roddy was there with them. They agreed, but only if they could brush the animals down and help feed them. That was fine with my little married brave, he also agreed to letting them lead the animals along on rides as long as Nolan or Tristan was along with them.

    Bryan is a quiet person that keeps to himself and holds everything in. I was happy to learn that he had made himself a friend while we were at the camp. I had wanted Pete and his crew to take a vacation and let another pilot take my family to Italy. That would never do, for any of them. I made them a deal, they could fly us over if… Pete usually holds his emotions in, but when I told him that he had to take Eddy with us he broke down in real tears. Isi and "Tav"-Octavius Thorne from the castle in Slovenija, joined us for an Italian excursion.

    Bureaucrats around the world are a bunch of money hungry beggars. Worse than a bureaucrat is a wannabe clawing his way upward, often running over those in his way to the top. We ran into such a person as we passed through customs in Milan. Geographically Milano, Italia sits far to the north in the country, about center from east to west. The majestic Alps can be seen to the north of the large city that is the center of fashion to the world. London, New York, and Tokyo have nothing to compare to the shops of Milano. Everything that the rest of the fashion world has is probably bought in Italy and shipped to their stores. My girls wanted to shop at the source so there we were.
    Everyone was excited until Roddy and Adsila were passed through to the customs officer to get their passport stamped for entry into the country. The stuffy matron that served them refused to grant them an entry visa because they were listed as man and wife on a single passport. No amount of arguing by the women of our party could sway the public servant's mind. I had to throw my weight around.
    I am a citizen of the world and not required to pass through customs of any country that I visit, I only do so out of respect for the sovereignty of that nation. I had been treated as my station in life begat as I talked with the head of the customs office. He had been alerted of my visit and had tried to make sure that he had a good staff ready to pass us through the formalities as quickly as possible. I felt Ugitsiha's frustration before I caught on to Roddy's anger. I spun about and looked over to them to see what was going on. I listened in to the discussion that was going on before I moved over and laid my hand on my son's shoulder. "Is there a problem with my son's passport?" I asked the woman.
    "You need to move on and let me do my job here. This child is trying to smuggle an underage girl into this country for who knows what sort of vile purpose." Her supervisor rushed up to her and told her to shut up, in Italian of course, so that the tourists wouldn't understand them. I don't need to speak languages any longer, I can see the thoughts behind the words, eat your heart out Cullen.
    The head man that I had been talking to stepped up and stamped Roddy's passport and apologized profusely to us. We were finished with our duty and moved on to a row of FI SUVs waiting inside the building for us. Each of my sons, and his family, had their own vehicle as well as one for each couple of my flight crew; I wanted those young men to have everything that was available in the way of luxury and royal treatment.
    The Polizia di Stato had the gathered crowd held behind barricades to give us clear passage. Two armed Polizia saluted me as I entered my vehicle then they mounted their motorcycles and waited for us to get settled in. My vehicle was a stretch Bentley SUV with two large seats for my family. Mounted on the floor in front of the first rear seat were two rear facing carrier seats for my babies. I helped Daylight strap the little ones into their seats as Yuri looked over the large backseat that he would have all to himself. He wanted nothing to do with that, he wanted to ride next to his daddy.
    I am in a quandary. I love Yuri very much, but&… No, it is not like that. Roddy has won my heart since the day that he first ran into his Elisi's house and saw me sitting there. I have learned so much from the little Indian brave as we have bonded through the years. I don't want to let him go, not yet, he is still a boy with a lot of growing up to do.
    Yuri is a boy as well. He is developing into a young man whom any father would be proud of. Parents say that they don't have favorites, but I wonder. I try to treat both boys equally. My major fear is the feelings that Ugitsiha gives off from time to time. She is proud of her progeny, and rightly so. Yuri is not her child, he is a street urchin that I dragged home one day. Yuri is quickly developing the Holy Spirit's gifts that Kuckunniwi has awakened in him, I am afraid that he may feel Ugitsiha's true feelings for him and be hurt. I will protect him, even from my wife if I have to, he is worth the effort.

    With sirens blazing we moved out of the large terminal building and through the streets of Milan at a breakneck speed. I have learned that European motorists drive much to fast; I was like Yuri, I wanted to slow down so that we could see where we were. We pulled to a stop on Via Manzoni. I looked out of the window and saw that we had already made our way to the Grand Hotel et de Milan where we would be sleeping during our stay in town.
    The hotel was built in the mid-nineteenth century and maintains its old world charm and eloquence. I signed the register for my party. I needed seven suites plus a room at the end of each hallway for the security that I found myself surrounded by. I was able to get the entire second floor for everyone to stay close together. Each of us had a suite that had been dedicated to a celebrity that had once stayed at the hotel. I was given the royal suite that has been dedicated to Giuseppe Verdi who stayed at the hotel in 1872. Everyone moved to their rooms to refresh themselves before we sat down together in a private dinning room to eat and lay out our itinerary for the following day.
    Pete moved next to me, he had been browsing the hotel's selection of brochures and he had a couple to show me. He loves the Tapestry of my life that hangs in the foyer of the classroom building at Camp Christopher, he had found a museum near the hotel that had a selection of ancient tapestries, paintings, sculptures, weaponry and decorative arts. He wanted to visit there. I am not one to stand and stare at paintings on a wall. I like the photographs that my boys have posted on our walls at home, but that is about it. However, I thought that a little culture couldn't hurt my sons, Cory and RD included. We planed on a visit to Museo Poldi Pezzoli while the women in our party shopped.
    I called the concierge and asked about strollers for the babies, he would have two double strollers ready for us the following morning, I love efficiency. The following morning I placed my two little guys into a stroller and kissed my wife, and a credit card, goodbye. Cory has a lot of trouble with little Chrisy, the boy was just to big to ride in a baby carriage and he would walk like a big boy. The strollers provided were only doubles so Awinita and Steven Allen would ride while Chrisy walked. Of course if Chrisy was going to walk then Cory Stevens was too. I was ready to find a day care center. Of course the hotel could provide a sitter for us, but I was in a foreign country and I am a target of every mad money seeker in the world, I would keep my children in my company. Cory agreed.

    The women climbed into the stretch Bentley SUV for their trip to Via Sant'Andrea where they planned to shop at Chanel, Armani and Hermes, just to name a few. They planned to spend the afternoon in the stores and workshops of such renowned designers as Gucci, Versace, Luis Vuitton as they visited Via Montenapoleone. I made a bet with RD and Cory that they would not make it to all of the shops on the first street before they headed back to the hotel. I had no takers, they both agreed with me.

    When we stepped out to the street in front of the hotel we found that the Polizia had barricades set up to keep the public away from us. We planned to walk like regular tourists and I did not like the distinction that I was receiving. My security force and the Polizia did not like that. I threatened to close the local FI office and fire everybody then hire people from the streets to answer my phones. I told the captain of the local police force that I would be safer walking than riding the short distance to the museum. Of course no one outside of my family knew that all of us were dressed in Mithril, even the five babies. Steven Allen's booties were made of the super strong fiber.
    When the barricades were moved back to allows us to move on I heard shouting. I don't speak the language, but I tuned into the minds of the mindless couple to learn that I had talked to them about their son that had been found in the castle at Slovenija. They were shouting that I was the queer that stole their son from them and used him as a sex slave. I looked at them and sent them a mind message that stopped them cold. I showed them images of our meeting and their own words when I told them that their son was found safe and well. They wanted no part of him. They wanted him dead and out of their lives forever. Acting through the international courts to gain full custody of their boy, and the others, I took the boy out of their lives and gave him a home in Tucson, where he is doing quite well thank you.
    I showed the couple images of their son at school and at play. I showed him singing in our show the previous week. I touched their hearts and made them regret their words. I offered to let them visit with their son at their home or in America, they did not want anyone to see him and a trip was out of the question for them. I walked on toward the museum.
    No one knew of our conversation that only lasted for a split second, the speed of thought. All anyone saw was that the boisterous couple grew quiet and stared at me for a second or two. My family knew what had happened, in fact Roddy and Yuri had been in my mind listening, so had Awinita. I am going to have to learn to guard myself from that girl, she is more powerful than all of the rest of us combined.

    I had a chance to get off with Tav to talk to him for a moment. He only knew Tony Beaton because of his brother, Gaius. Guy and Tony had been suck buddies through junior high school, Tav got caught up with the wrong people when he took Tony to a party with two older frat brothers. The two boys were paid off by father Jake who was looking for children for his sex farms. Tav never saw Tony again until I returned with him to Tucson in May. Tav sat down with Tony and his boyfriend, Franz. Tav was surprised to learn that Franz was the son of the bastard that ran the operation at the castle in Slovenija. He apologized to Franz for hating the man, Horse told him that he hated him as well. Tav had to know why Tony was called Horse, he was shown. "No wonder my little brother loved you," he quipped.
    I asked about his relationship with Bryan. He looked at me and almost whispered, "That guy is so in love with you that he hurts inside. He would rather sit in your lap and have you hold him than eat or breathe. He is loving, and he is a lovely person. I have never met anyone like him and I will do whatever it takes to hold onto him forever." That pleased me, I have a very warm spot in my heart for the boy that I found in chains in the streets of St. Tropez, Fran#231;#231;ais. At that moment Bryan stepped out of the restroom at the museum, that brought our conversation to a close as Tav rose to meet his boyfriend and give him a hearty kiss, which was returned in kind.

    We were through with our tour by noon. Little Chrisy had not made it the first block before he wanted to ride. Roddy placed Cory Stevens on his shoulders, little Cory fell to sleep with his face in Roddy's hair, and drooled. Cory set Chrisy into the stroller in front of Cullen James, who was sound asleep. When I led my boys into our suite we found Ugitsiha sitting on the couch with her feet up. She was quietly singing to our latest #249;dyi wahya. She looked her most beautiful self as she sat there rubbing her hand over her belly that was growing larger each day. I could truly see the inner glow that a pregnant woman has.

    I drove the Polizia crazy when I informed my security detail that all of us would be going out for dinner. We wanted to get a first hand taste of real Italian food from a real Milan restaurant. We all love what Edmund prepares for us, but when in Rome??? or at least Italy.
    Il Ristorante Milano Savini had come highly recommended. The well established restaurant is considered to be the city's finest. Its stylish d#233;cor and period furnishings create sophisticated surroundings that, combined with impeccable service, made for a perfect dining experience for all of us. Most of my family is not used to the service that was coordinated by our Ma#238;tre Sommelier, wine steward. The table service was discreetly handled by a very attentive and capable staff who served some to the finest food that many of the kids had ever tasted. Actually I suppose that I am the only one that is used to the service that we received. Cory has traveled with me, but we seldom ever dine in the opulence that surrounded my family that second evening in Milan.

    Because of the lateness of the hour, and distance involved over darkened streets, we had used a motorcade to take all of us to dinner. When we left the restaurant to return to our hotel I felt something that made the hair on the back of my neck stand up. When we stepped into our elevator at the hotel Awinita spoke to me, "He's a bad man, dad. Remember his thoughts and how he felt in your mind and you will be safe." I looked at the small girl, she smiled at me. Both of us knew what was about to happen to us and I had to work harder to protect my loved ones from that event.
    Once in our suite the boys wanted me to play with them for awhile. They didn't want to play as much as they wanted to talk to me. Roddy led the way; he did something that I had never known him to do before, he and Kuckunniwi began to turn in each direction as they stood back to back. I had to know what they were up to as I delved deep into their minds, I found Yuri there looking around as well.
    Kuckunniwi embraced me, "We are putting up a wall so that no one can listen to us, especially mom and Awinita, daddy." I had no idea what was on his mind so I lay down on Yuri's bed and let the boys climb all over me. Cory Stevens went to his bed and went to sleep, I looked at Kuckunniwi, he smiled at me.
    No words were spoken between us as we talked together in each other's minds. "Yuri, what did you hear?" Roddy asked his brother.
    "I heard that man say that he was going to kill us. He was Russian you know, he is a very bad man that I have felt before when we went to see my grandmother awhile ago. He is мафия man there." I got tickled at his description, I have no doubts at all of my son's meaning, it was just the innocent way that he expressed what he had felt.
    Roddy looked at Yuri and the two of them began to play that trip over in their minds, they focused on the chase through the streets of Moscow and I remembered hearing that man's thoughts as well. I was a bit preoccupied at the time and did not pay attention to his thoughts, but both boys had heard and remembered everything that he thought about us as he talked to someone else… on a phone… on a radio? I can't tell you which. I really don't feel that the man is Russian Mafia, he is just a cheap hood following the orders of the hook.
    "Now that we know who he is and that he is here let us set up a way of being able to stop him from hurting our daddy," Kuckunniwi said. He turned and looked at me when I reacted to his thoughts, "Daddy, I may only be two years old, but my wisdom and knowledge is ageless, trust in me and let our Lord guide us through." I had been told and I was humbled by my youngest son.

    I had read the unseen man's thoughts as he watched me move from the Savini Restaurant to the awaiting SUV. He was concentrating on me and didn't seem to pay attention to my family, for that I was grateful. I saw in his mind bombs, rockets, RPGs, big guns, and torture. I have no doubt in my mind that the man wants to hold me captive and torture me for a long time, but I felt that he was under orders to kill me as quickly as possible, by any means possible. What I knew my sons also knew, that scared me more than that man did.

    Early the next morning the girls were off to continue their search for just the right item of clothing on Via Montenapoleone. The guys set about touring Via Sant'Andrea and the Museo di Milano, a museum that documents the history of the city, while I sat in a secure radio room at FIS headquarters with Head of Station, Italy. I had asked the head man in the country to meet with me and his local people as I told them of a plot that had been uncovered to end my life. I did not tell them how, or by whom, it was uncovered and they knew that if they wanted to keep their jobs they shouldn't question me. I have built a strong reputation in FIS as being the man in the know and what I know is always right on. There was no need for any questions.
    I told the security officers that I expected an attack on my person on my way to my plane or on the plane itself. A plane is at its most vulnerable point during take off and landing, I wanted exrtra security on the ground at the airport and two gun ships in the air above the airport until we were airborne and out of the area. I was told that all would be secure, I missed the garbled thoughts of a renegade agent in that meeting.

    A day long automobile trip through the Fondotoce Nature Reserve at Lake Maggiore was the climax of my family's vacation to Italy. My security was apprehensive, but not as much as I was for the safety of my loved ones. I had to place my faith in my Lord, the Gifts that He had granted me, and the people that surrounded us to keep us safe and allow us a pleasurable outing. It was the first time that my entire family had been with me away from a school or Villa St. Tropez and I wanted it to be remembered for a long, long time. It was a very special time for me because it was the first time that I had my boys all together for a trip to anywhere except Oklahoma. My babies are growing up very quickly and I want them to enjoy family trips the way that I did when I was a boy with my parents.
    To lessen the logistics of travel we loaded into three vehicles, with two chase vehicles of course. I had borrowed King Cullen's specially equipped limousine just for that day and had it flown to Milan aboard an FI freight transport. By the time my family arrived at our plane a few hours later everybody was happy for my choice.
    We really made a few security men nervous when I sent them off to the perimeter of a serene area and told them not to spy on us or to return to our location until they were summoned. Let me lay this out for you. Because of my money I am a target for hundreds, if not thousands of people that want what I have, by any means, hook or crook. Second, because of the threat that I pose to those that would prey on others, especially children, I am wanted dead, not alive. Third, and to the men that were there to protect me, we were in a wildlife refuge with wild lions, tigers, and bears, and they were all hungry. They did not like being told to get lost. I gained some help from an outside source, Sagi and Ugitsiha told them to get lost, in a very sweet, feminine way. Hey, if it works#8230;
    The girls worked with Awinita and Kuckunniwi to erect an impregnable mind barrier a quarter of a mile in every direction around us. Even were someone to look directly at us they would not be able to see us through that wall of thought. Next we reached out to a pride of lions that were watching us and relaxed their minds. The lioness is known to be the more aggressive of the breed, especially if she has kits. The females in that pride were docile and wanted to get to know this new pride of animals that was in their territory. The older matriarch? was the first to approach the new boss of the walk.
    Ugitsiha assumed the form of a she-lion, but she stood on her hind feet, a feat never seen by the members of the wild pride. Slowly each of the females of the pride gathered next to Ugitsiha and lay down with their cubs next to them. The young males were cautious, but they overcame their fears and joined the circle around my wife. The old male lion was the last of the pride to come to the circle, he had to protect his family after all. All of my family had assumed the shape of lions and we gathered amongst the wild pride and began to learn whatever we could about their life in the wilds of an outdoor zoo in Italy. They were fed well, but the older ones enjoyed the times when they were allowed to kill their own game. That didn't occur often and it had not occurred in over a year, the old male wanted his cubs to kill to prove themselves. I planted the thought in his mind that it might be better the way their life was. I showed him that he had no enemies to fear and that all of his pride would grow to be very old together. I wondered how true that really was.
    We moved apart and ate our lunch. We were amongst wild animals, and with our children, we had to be careful. Anything can happen when around wild beasts and it can happen so quickly that no one can react in time to protect themselves or others. We made a wide space between us. The lions were curious about the creatures that seemed to look like them then they looked like the creatures that were in those funny things that spewed foul smelling smoke as they moved in a line on the black ribbon that runs through their territory. We laughed at their description of people and vehicles on the road through the park.
    One or two of the braver lionesses walked over and sniffed at our vegetables and wondered about them. Roddy told them that we did not kill for our food the way that they do. He showed them that we eat plants, I hoped that they couldn't see that only four weeks earlier he had enjoyed a rare steak at the dinning room of our hotel on the island nation of the Republic of Trinidad. I didn't want the lions to think that we were lying to them, I wanted to gain their trust.

    RD and Cory each know a little about the financial end of my life; they each had a few zillion questions that had been plaguing them. "Dad, I spotted that one bank that you introduced me to the owner of when we were in St. Tropez one time. Do you still do business with him and that bank?" Cory asked.
    "I do have a few million dollars in that bank, but with the world financial position now days I watch every penny very closely," I answered glibly and with a smirk in my voice.
    "What is going on in Greece, why did you send those boys to live at BAF?" RD had the question that I had wanted to answer for several days.
    "Do you two boys remember that night that we all sat around in a group and talked about how that banker in France had stolen more than seven billion dollars? He was tried and sentenced to five years in prison and ordered to pay more than five billion euros in restitution. His actions brought to light a dangerous trend in the world banking community that affects the money of each and every boy that has passed through my schools, both of you included."
    There is a bank named Barclays headquartered in London, United Kingdom. The British multinational banking and financial services company has operations in over 50 countries and territories across Africa, Asia, Europe, North America and South America and around 48 million customers. It has total assets of two point thirty three trillion dollars. Just a little more than twice what my investments with the money from you boys is worth." All of the family giggled, but the they wiggled about in their seats. The girls looked the most confused, I generally don't discuss finances with them or around them. "I can see smoke signals from that banking group that I feel should be watched very closely."
    Just this week there was a run on the banks as the crisis in Greece seems to be getting worse. I can not put boys that I have assumed responsibility for into harms way."
    I have told all of you in the past that I believe that the finances of the world will collapse and that money will be worthless. I can see trends that support me in my thinking and I want to be sure that all of you are safe and secure. I also will provide for the students in each of my schools and as far as I can, I will provide for the boys that have passed through the schools. Each boy that has graduated from any Bradford Academy has taken with him a large fortune to get his life started on the right foot. Still I will help those boys if they need it."
    All of you boys, except for Yuri, were present in the old rec room one night when I showed you my collection."
    "Yeah, I asked if I had any gold coins. I was a little kid then and didn't know no better, sorry daddy."
    I grabbed Roddy to me and gave him a tight hug. "You never have to apologize to me for asking a question. Asking is the fastest way to learn whatever you do not know. Yes that was the night. I also showed you guys a picture of a room located deep underground at Base C. Do you remember that?"
    "Heck yeah, I'll never forget what thirteen billion dollars in cash looks like. I would like to see that for real sometime though," RD stated. I will have to think of a way to take the boys into the mountain to see the wealth that I have placed there for them. I wondered if I should take my wife and daughters-in-law down there as well. Would they get greedy and try to take that money for themselves? I better just take the boys, the wives can see what we see through their mind's eye.
    "Dad, you could bail all of these banks out and still have money left over couldn't you?" I was not prepared to hear that from Adsila.
    "I could, and with impunity from loss. But if the Bible is correct, and I am sure that it is, then there is going to come a time, and very soon, when there will be no money to buy food. I know that the Lord will provide for those of us that obey Him. I believe that the money that He has allowed me to gather is just for such a day as that to come."
    "You said 'those that obey Him,' I thought that we didn't have to live like that."
    "Honey, I would like for you to join our Friday night Bible study and you are welcome to sit with any of us at anytime to study, ask questions, and learn the Logos–written Word–of God. No, I am not talking about minding rules. The only thing that we as SITs have to do is to believe with all our hearts that Jesus is Lord and that He died and rose again for our sins and salvation. If you believe that and are Baptized by immersion under water in His name, you are saved and we will be together forever in His Kingdom to come." I wondered how much of that would get through to a fourteen year old spoiled child. It is not my place to worry about that, my job is only to sow the Seed and let the Holy Spirit help It to grow. I know that with Roddy at her side the devil doesn't have a chance with her.
    I watched her face, she had another question, "What's a SIT, dad?". I smiled as I told her that it is my word for Saints In Training.

    The devil tried to get to all of us on our way back to Milan at the end of our outing. After lunch we napped and took in the fresh sounds and smells of the European mountain air before we had to call it a day. The boys started a game of seeing what shapes they could see in the clouds, before long the women joined in the fun with us. I noticed that the clouds were getting lower, which threatened rain. I loaded all of my family into the stretch limo that I had borrowed from King Cullen. My flight crew climbed into the rear SUV with their close friends, and I rode alone in the lead stretch SUV so that I could work in private on a few matters that had occurred to me when we discussed the banking situation in Europe. What I didn't know is that we had been watched and followed when we left the hotel that morning.
    Yuri screamed into my mind from the family limo to listen to Kuckunniwi. I sat upright as the sound of my youngest rang through my head, we were under attack from the front. I looked up in time to see a missile flying toward my family's vehicle. I grabbed the steering wheel from the driver's hand and put us directly into the path of the incoming death machine. As I knew it would, the missile impacted harmlessly on the Mithril body of my armored ride and darts bounced from the windshield. A few of the tiny metal slivers were embedded in the surface of the bulletproof glass which caused my driver to panic and oversteer.
    I was in contact with all of my family, they were safe. I told them to go to the plane as fast as they could push their ride. I told Mike to get his crew to the plane at once. He told me that Pete was on the radio with the ground crew and that the plane would be waiting at the end of the taxi way for all us to arrive. I transformed into a mouse and scampered across the lap of my driver then returned to my natural shape on the other side of him. I pushed him over to the other seat and settled into the driver's seat before I spun the steering wheel so that my vehicle did a full one hundred and eighty degree spin and I was in hot pursuit of my assailants.
    I listened to all of the babies ooh and ahh as they watched me pass them going the other direction. The driver of the limo knew his defensive driving and he had my family out of the area very quickly. I found the button to fire the onboard rockets from my SUV as I passed the SUV with my flight crew onboard. I felt the minds of all of them, but it was Isi that gave me my first encouragement, "Great driving, dad. You are as good as Roddy said you were in Moscow." At that moment a loud explosion took his mind off what he was saying and I had to spin around again to avoid the shattering van that I had just reduced to scrap iron.
    I scanned the area with my mind and touched on a helicopter leaving the area. I searched the wreckage of the van with my mind and found one man dying, he was happy to tell me that hook would see me dead before I ever saw him coming, then he went silent. At least I had the confirmation that I needed about who was behind the attack. With his last breath I saw a fuzzy image of a face cross his mind. I wasn't sure, but I thought that I knew that face. I had to get my family safely out of the country.
    I am not afraid of driving fast. I had no idea where the road I was on led, but I put the accelerator through the radiator and took off after my family's limo. My driver was in the midst of a complete breakdown and he was curled in a fetal position on the seat next to me, he was to be no help. I found the mind of the limo driver and learned where the airport was and the most direct route to get there without getting on roads with heavy traffic. I relayed that information onto Mike and Isi to give to their driver as we flew past fast moving Europeans like they were standing still. I felt the mind of one man as I flew low on his right side, he was traveling at one hundred and eighty KPH, about one hundred and eight miles per hour. As I disappeared in front of him he couldn't believe that someone had passed him going so fast.
    I caught up with the limo, it couldn't maintain the speed that I had over the local roads. I checked my mirrors for my crew, they were nowhere in sight. I asked Mike where they were and he told me that I had caused several traffic problems as I flew past them and they had to maneuver around the stalled vehicles. My bad, I had to apologize to him and all onboard with him. He told me that my family was my responsibility and that they would catch up, eventually.
    The plane was waiting and by the time that all of us were onboard and our babies strapped into their carrier seats by the time that Pete and his crew arrived. They went directly to the cockpit as Tav, Isi, and Eddy took their seats in the middle of the plane. The large seat that fold down into beds and the ones with tables were kept empty for anyone to use as the need arose.
    The ground crew had done their job well, the planes engines were warmed up and the check list had been performed. All Pete had to do was to shove the throttle controls forward and pull back on the yoke. We shot almost straight up like a rocket. At about six hundred feet we were hit by another missile. The plane was still climbing and Pete said that he was in control. I gave the word to go. Pete leveled off at twenty five thousand feet and took a long breath. I stepped into the cockpit after hearing an alarm sounding. "Looks like they got the landing gear on the right hand side, dad." I looked at his panel and saw that the hydraulic pressure was gone on one gauge. Mike touched my mind and told me that he was going out to check on it.
    I forbade him to do that. He was needed to crew the plane, and I am more used to working at high altitudes than he is. I locked the cockpit door and changed into a Bumblebee. The flight defying insect has flown successfully in a flight chamber which recreated the thin air of twenty nine thousand feet. I knew that I would be able to crawl around the landing wheel housing without any risk at all. That is unless you tell my wife, she will kill me if I get killed out there. I found my way through the pressurized bulkhead and into the wheel well. The damage was severe, we had no right hand landing gear. The body of the plane was intact, but the missile had impacted on the gear itself and blown it to smithereens, the dual wheels were gone. Pete would earn his pay with our next landing. I just didn't know where we could land safely.
    As I made my report to the crew Mike handed me the radio's headphones. I heard a voice that I had not heard in sometime. I was grateful for Peter Caulfield's message and told him that we would be glad to land at Heathrow airport in London. He had arranged for our safety as soon as he had heard that we were hit by a missile on takeoff. He wanted to know how we survived. He had watched a demonstration of a helicopter clad in the old polymer reinforced Kevlar, now he wanted to know about the new fiber that FI had invented.

    The airstrip was foamed from one end to the other as Pete brought us in for another of his perfect landings. We were down and almost at a fast walking speed before the plane tilted over onto its right side and spun around in a full circle. The family had been well versed and knew how to get off of the plane in an instant. Each of the men onboard took a baby in his hand and jumped down the inflatable slide and ran away from the plane. I had Cory Stevens in my arms and I handed him over to his mother then kissed her and welcomed her to England before I headed for the big mucky mucks that had gathered to see me go up in flames.
    Paul Walker, England's head of station, London greeted me with a warm handshake. I patted Paul on the back and told him that I was glad to be walking around his country. Peter came running over to me with Berg hot on his tail, they both wanted to shake my hand. I led all of them over to Pete and told them that he was the man responsible. Everyone from Generals to ground crew privates congratulated my pilot for his skillful landing. I walked around the plane to inspect the damage and see if I needed a new plane to be delivered to me. The wing tip was scuffed, but a little rubbing compound would take that right out. I could see no damage to the plane at all. I left it to Peter's men to check it out then they could turn it over to an FI crew.
    A limo came barreling onto the field with the flags of Philby fluttering in the breeze. The limo stopped in front of me and El stepped out to grab me and give me a big hug. She told us that we were all to be her guests for as long as we wanted to stay. I helped my wife and babies into her car as an armored FI limo pulled up for the others to ride in. Yuri grabbed my hand and looked up at me with tear streaks on his tiny face. The boy had been so scared that he had peed himself and I had not paid any attention to him. I took him to a nearby restroom as Roddy ran onto FI-2 for a clean pair of jeans for his brother. I love the way that my sons love each other and look out for one another.

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