The FifthChapter




If you are dumb enough to believe this story is true, please stop, shut off your computer and then go to the nearest mirror to repeatedly slap yourself back into reality. You'll thank yourself afterward, I assure you.

IF you are below the age of 18, please don't read the stories on here. Your presence jeopardizes those of us who do so legally.

Personal Disclaimer:

Many of you wrote to tell me how much you enjoyed the stories beginning. I appreciate those emails.

In my reply, I told you I'd received word from an attorney forbidding my continuing with the story. I'm sorry, but after a nice enjoyable vacation, I've come to the conclusion legal censorship of what I “might” write really pisses me off. So, with that said, I'm writing what I please and if it's not to their liking...fukem.


Chapter Five:

When we were finished eating, Evan and I went back to the bungalow. He'd never been to the hotel, so he was rather impressed hearing the list who'd stayed at ours.

Do you think someone famous is staying here in another one?”

Probably, or maybe it's someone who might be famous one day.”

That'd be neat.” he said.

We went in and he took a look around. “Would you like to sit in the jacuzzi?”

I don't have any trunks.”

I don't either. I'm not asking to make love, I'm asking if you'd like to sit and relax.”

He looked surprised and said, “Ok, I'm sorry. My first thought was being afraid you'd see me naked, but then I realized we'd see each other naked a lot.”

You don't have to if you don't want.”

No, I want to. It's just I wasn't expecting to be surprised.”

Ok, let's go in here and sit on the sofa.”

Den, let's get in the hot tub.”

He went over and had his shirt off before I could say anything further.

I stood there and he turned. “What's wrong?”

Ev, come here.”

What did I do?”

This isn't the locker room, this is the beginning of our relationship. I'm not one of the fellas, but your lover. I undress you and you undress me. It's more romantic that way.”

Oh man, I'm messing it all up.”

Shh” I said putting my finger over his lips. I kissed him and said, “Now, am I complaining?”


Good, now, I'm going to undo your pants and then, I'll take your shoes off. Stand there and I'll be back up.”

He smiled and his cute dimples showed.

I kissed his neck and then nibbled my way down across his chest and abdomen.

I thought we weren't making love?”

We're not.”

Then you better stop because I'm already hard.”


I kissed my way across his chest and then tongued my way across his stomach. I undid his pants and then unzipped his zipper.

My mouth reached his belly button and I kissed it lightly. I trailed my tongue on down to his waistband and then pulled is pants and briefs down in on fluid motion.

I kissed my way over to his hip and then down his leg. As I did so, I untied his shoes and kissed his left thigh as I lifted his right leg.

I'm going to fall.”

I've got you.”

I took his shoe off and then his sock. I kissed my way up and kissed my way up and across his abdomen When I reached the middle, I had to move his shaft out of the way. My touching him, caused him to take a sudden intake of breath.

I kissed my way down his right hip and as I kissed down his thigh, I lifted his left leg.

He had better balance and I got his shoe and sock off rather easy.

As I kissed my way up, I moved toward the middle of his parted thighs and when I got to his sack, I licked up and then on up his shaft.

I stood up and then kissed him deeply.

Oh man, that's awesome.”

Yeah, I've always fantasized about doing that with someone. I'm glad it was you.”

You've never done that before!”

Nope. You're the first.”

Well, you did it gooood.”


Den, I'm nervous.”

I know”

I don't know what to do.”

Follow my lead and just do what comes naturally.”

I didn't have my shirt on.”

Good thing I stopped you, otherwise I wouldn't have gotten to take anything off.”

His hands went up my sides and got to the button at my collar.

Undo my tie first.”

I'm afraid of choking you.”

Ok, here, I'll show you how to do it.”

I undid my tie tack. Then, I pulled the back out of my shirt and showed him how to pull it loose.

If you undo it that way, it will always come undone without a lot of wrinkles.”


I undid the collar buttons and slipped my tie over my head. I threw it over to the side chair and then undid my top button.

Ok, all it is now is undoing buttons.”

He stared intently at my buttons and the second one down, I lifted his chin with my finger and kissed him.

Ev, don't be afraid. You're beautiful.”

You sure we're not going to make love?”

I'm sure. I want us to get used to each other first.”

Ok, I guess I am just so afraid.”

Don't be.”

He leaned forward and kissed me gently. As he did so, his hands unfastened my buttons. My hands caressed his sides as he did so. His kiss became more passionate.

When my shirt was undone, I broke the kiss and said, “Ok, here's how you do cuff links. A lot of shirts don't have them, but when I was young, my grandpa told me a nice shirt had them. Since then, I have always insisted on my shirts to have them.

Back here is the clasp. All you do is turn this and it pulls through.”


He looked at the link and said, “Are those real diamonds?”



“Take a look at the back. They came from Van Cleif. One way to tell if they're real diamonds is to look at the jeweler who make it.”

They had to cost a fortune!”

I'll let you in on a secret. The cheapest way in the world to buy diamonds is men's cuff links on eBay. These puppies are half carat stones and five per link. How much do you think they cost?”

Five thousand?”

You got the five right, but the thousand was way off. Two hundred and twenty five dollars.”


Yeah, ten half carat stones and gold settings for that. Who would've thought it?”


I'll get you some. You'll look like you dress like a million dollars and don't cost all that much.”

Did your tie tack come off ebay?”

No, it came from grandpa. My dad got his cuff links before my grandma could get them for me.”

He took them?”

Off his corpse. Yeah. My grandma wanted him to look nice in the casket, but then she wanted me to have everything. The tie bar I wear sometimes up here and my nape came from him. The tie tack, this ring here, and the chain over there on my vest.”

You took your vest and jacket off!”

Yeah, it was too hot looking at you.”

He smiled and said, “You really think I'm good looking?”

My God, you have to ask? I think your eyes are gorgeous. Your nose I love. Your lips...oh man, they're so kissable. Your chin. I'm not sure because it's allowing me to kiss you right over to your ear.......”

My dad said it came from his daddy.”

Well, I think it's amazing. Your skin is so soft and I don't feel stubble at all.”

I don't shave that often.”

Lucky you.”

I came out of my shirt and then undid my belt.

You're getting undressed!”

You're going to help. I'm just speeding things along because if I don't get to hold you soon, I'm going to explode.”

He giggled. “You really think I'm worth it?”

“Ev, you're way more than worth it. It's I who feels inadequate next to you.”

Oh bull!”

Really! Look at you. Look at me. I see perfection wherever I look on you and when I look in the mirror, I see the broken nose my dad gave me when I was fourteen. The scar above my eye when I was six. The big ears and the lopsided grin and this eyelid which just droops.”

I think you're hot.”

I was today. It must have been a thousand degrees in this suit.”

Shh”, he said kissing me. He lifted my muscle shirt up and over my head.”

Man! You're muscles.”

I work out when I'm in places like this.”

I can tell.”

We'll probably work out together when we're in hotels.”

Mom said she was going to put you a room together at the house.”

Yeah, I've got to get that equipment It looks like we'll be buying new.”


If I can't get it out of the house, then I'll have to buy some.”

Ok, we'll go together. You want to work out with me?”

Sure babe. It's not real hard.”

Good, because I've never done it.”

Why not?”

I kept looking at guys and would get hard. So, I left the room real fast.”

Ok, well it's ok if you get hard when we work out.”

I'm hard now!”

I know and so am I.”

Oh, I'm sorry, let me get those pants off you.”

Hang on. Let me get them off and we'll get into the hot tub.”

Nope! You took mine off, I take yours off.”


He hugged me close and then began kissing me again. As he did, his hands roamed all over my sides and back. Mine caressed him and then he kissed over to my ear. He licked, nibbled, and sucked and grazed his way on down my neck.

When he reached my collar bone, he kissed it and began licking. He went down my chest until he reached my nip. He took it in his mouth and sucked gently.

Oh man.”

You like?”

Oh yeah. It was like lightening bolts went off. I had no idea they were so sensitive.”



He kissed his way across my chest to the other one and then did the same thing. The sensations were so extreme, my legs nearly buckled.




I'm glad to know that. From now on, I know what turns you on.”

I'll be sure to let you know. That was surprising.”

His hands caressed my side and he began licking his way across my stomach. When he got to my belly button, he tongued his way around it and inside. The sensation seemed ten times as powerful as my nips.



Man, that was like ten times as powerful as my nips.”


Yeah, it was incredible. Who would have thought it?”

He kissed on down my lower abs and then took my boxers down.

You're wet!”

I imagine. I leak when I'm turned on. With what you're doing, it's probably like a faucet.”

I've never seen that before”

He didn't waste any time. He kissed the tip and licked it.

Babe, sheesh!”

He didn't stop. He took the tip on in and my knees went weak.


He looked up and said, “It's big.”

You're not supposed to be doing that!”

Shh. I'm doing it the way I want.”


He took it on in his mouth and I immediately saw stars. The sensation was incredible.



The vibrations he sent through me was just driving me insane. The sensation of the suction. The warmth, the feelings I felt for him. His hands pulling me to him and caressing my ass. Were all just way into overload. Nothing I had felt with my own hand felt anything like this.”

He came back up and said, “I need to get you into that hot tub. If I don't, we're going to make love.”

You telling me!”

He laughed and said, “Was it good?”

Good! I've never felt anything like it. My word!”

He stood up and said, “I'm sorry about not getting your pants and shoes off.”

No problem. I'm going to be naked in a second.”

I began taking clothes off at a frantic pace. The shoes which had cost so much were thought as a detriment to my being nude.

As soon as I was naked, I turned around and he was stepping into the hot tub.

Hang on a second and I'll turn it on.”

You've already gotten me turned on.” he said with a smile.

You've got me turned on too.”

I flipped the switch and the water began swirling. He said, “Ahh, this is nice.”

I told ya. It's interesting how a hot day can be quenched with hot swirling water.”

And a good man.”

I laughed and said, “That too. I'm glad I got one. You'll have to find your own.”

He laughed and said, “I got him.”

He reached out under the water and grasped my manhood. “Whoa! I created a monster!”

He laughed and started doing the Jaws theme. He came over and crawled between my legs and began kissing me.

My hands began caressing his silk smooth skin. As my hands went down his back, our tongues twirled until my hands cupped his cheeks under the water.

His hardness rubbed up against mine. We closed in closer together and that's when I felt his hand slide down around my hardness and slowly began jacking me.

We continued to kiss and franticly explore each other's tongues. His jacking me was beginning to give me warning signs I needed to tell him to back off or we'd be sorry.

I broke the kiss and said, “Ev, please, I'm about to cum.”

Oh!” He giggled and said, “I was so into it, I didn't know.”

I know. We'd been gooey.”

He said, “Sorry.”

Don't be. I'm glad you're so into it. Can I do something?”



I went down and began sucking upon the tip of his penis.

Oh man!'

I licked around and as I did, he began moaning louder.

My hand reached down and caressed his sack. “Oh!”

Somehow, I'm not sure how, I'd gotten his entire length in my mouth. He moaned as I came back off. I began swallowing it down again when he said, “Den!”

I came up and he said, “Whew! All of a sudden, I just felt like I was going to cum real fast.”

Oh, that's cool.”

You don't mind?”

Hon, it's further than I wanted to take it, but I would have been fine with it.”

He smiled and said, “Ok, this is just so intense.”

I know. It's nice isn't it.”

Yeah, I'm feeling so many things for you right now it's incredible.”

Me too.”

We continued to kiss, but eventually, he said, “How long have we been here?”

I don't know.”

I need us to get home so we can talk with my parents before they go up for the night.”

It can wait.”

No, I've got to...”

Wait hon.”


I'm afraid of upsetting them. I wonder how their night has gone.”

I don't know. I hope well.”

I wanted us to go out to eat because I wanted this to be Sam's night with them.”

Ok, I wondered.”

She's going to be really good.”

Yeah, I'm excited for her.”

She's growing up. I just hope things can be slowed down for her so they don't take her last bits of childhood from her.”

She's a teen.”

I know, but...”

She'll be good. She's a lot more headstrong than you know.”

I hope. I just want to get to know her more.”

You will.”

I've never had a sister before.”

From what I heard, you have one.”

Yeah, I wonder what she's like?”

If she's like you, she'll be awesome.”

She has to be a lot older then me if she was conceived back then. I wonder what it'd be like to have an older sister.”

She'd be what?”

At least fifty.”

Man, your dad's that old?”

No, he's like almost seventy.”

He was that old when he had you?”

Yeah, my mom was young.”

How young?”

She'd have been like nineteen when she had me.”

You're twenty seven?”


So, she'd only be like forty seven if she was alive now?”


She died young.”


Let's go so we can get home.”

Ok, let me dry you off.”

He laughed as I dried him off and then dried me as I'd done him. We continued to kiss more and then, he broke the kiss and reached over for his clothes.

Get dressed”


I went into the other room and gathered clothes. I put on a pair of Dockers and a polo shirt. I got my shoes and socks from earlier and put them on.

Ev came in and said, “I'm sorry to be in such a hurry, but I'm going to talk with mom and dad.”

Ok, while you do that, I'll catch up with Sam.”

We went out and walked to the car park. It didn't take us long to get to their house and as we popped in through the gate, Ev said, “Hon, tomorrow night, I'm staying at the bungalow with you. I hate this.”

Ok, I'd like that.”

We pulled up in front of the house as I saw Ran's car still parked out in front of the garage. We went in and Sam came running. “I got a manager!”

Did your mom and dad get everything put down they wanted?”

Yeah, she's been great. We're only going to work when I don't have school.”

Good. I was worried about that.”

She's wanting to speak with us about thoughts for songs.”

Did you tell her what you wanted?”

Yeah, but she wants ballads too.”

Ummm, Sam, do you want ballads?”

I don't care as long as I get to sing.” she said smiling with enthusiasm.

Well, I need to speak with your mom and dad because if she's going to push things at you which you don't want, then I'll step in and find you someone else.”


No! I don't like this. Today, it's ballads. What is it tomorrow? Drugs?”


Then we stop the crap now. We had a talk about what you needed, don't you remember?”


Then follow the plan. People aren't going to dance on a dance floor to a ballad. If she wanted fucking Mariah Carey, she should have gotten her. You need records sold God Dammit.”

She looked at me and said, “Is that's what it's about?”

People dance on the weekend and the song sticks in their head. By Tuesday or Wednesday, they want to buy. If they don't hear it, then they're not going to buy it.”

Oh. Well, I want people dancing to it and having fun.”

Where are you going to have fun listening to a girl sing about a breakup?”

Is that what a ballad is?”



Hon, now you see why I'm having a stroke!”

D came in and said, “What's going on?”

Mom, I don't want to sing ballads!”

She smiled and said, “Is that why Den is having a fit?”

D, honestly, when did you sell the most records?”

The late seventies.”

What were they?”


Sam wants to sing songs which people dance to. She had no idea what a ballad was until I explained it to her.”

Oh Lord.”

Mom, I hate those type of songs!”

Ok, we'll tell her.”

D, I'm pissed. If she'll fall off the plan and try getting her to sing ballads now, what's she going to try to get her to do tomorrow?”

I think she's going to communicate with us.” she said putting her hand on my arm.

Well, I'm not going to think it, I'm going to know it because I'm about to step off in her ass.”

D smiled and said, “Den, settle down. We'll talk with her. Nothing's etched in stone and we don't even have a contract yet.”

Good, because she needs to know I'll find someone else if that's the sort of person she's going to be.”

Den, please.”

Do you want her to be a 'has been' before she starts?”


Then get her name out there. You sold records because people heard them on a dance floor. You don't hear ballads on a dance floor.”

Ok, she's wanting to talk with us about what songs to get her.”

Good, but she's probably just wanting to find her songs. I'll call her and tell her ballads are off so she doesn't bring a bunch of them here. I promise I'll stay sane.”

Ok” she said smiling. “I'm glad you're so protective over her.”

She's my little sister.”

D laughed and said, “Ok, the reason I'm in here is Bran told me to come and get you.”


She laughed and said, “Hon, it's ok.”

No, it's not. I don't feel right.”

Sam asked “What's going on?”

D said, “We've not been treating Den right and Ev just told us where we went wrong. Now we need to apologize to him.”

She linked her arm in mine and said, “Come on. Bran's upset.”


At himself. He says he should have seen it your way.”

I take it Ev explained it the way I told him.”

Yeah, he said you talked about M&M's and got him confused.”

Let me tell you Ev probably only really pays attention to green ones.”

She laughed and said, “Is that why you have on different clothes?”

Sam started laughing and I turned around. She was right behind us. “Ma, she's laughing at us.”

Sam, be nice.” she said chuckling.

Sam laughed harder and said, “Den and Ev sitting in a tree....”

Sam, grow up.” I said with a smile to my voice.


D said, “Sam, grow up.” D said laughing as we went into the living room.

Sam followed us and said, “Ev doesn't have different clothes on.”

Ev didn't take any with him. He had to wear the same ones home.”


Sam!” D said louder.

Mom! Isn't that gross?”

D laughed and said, “Sam, can we have a moment alone with them?”

Sure, but I still think it's gross.”

She left and Bran started laughing. He said to D. “Hon, it's you who get to talk with her.”

Ev said, “I'll talk with her. I'll give her a bottle of aspirin and a bottle of Geritol.”

D laughed and said, “No you won't! I want grand kids.”

Mom, from her?” Ev said in a mocking tone at Sam.

D laughed and said, “I'm not sure right now if I'll want them coming from you two.”


Bran started laughing and said, “Hon, it doesn't work that way.”

D started laughing and said, “Sorry.”

Bran said, “Den, we owe you an apology. Ev explained it and you're entirely right. I understand why you think the way you do and you're entirely right.”

D said, “Can you explain it to me?”

I said, “Bran, let me.”

Ok, I'm waiting because if you have a way, I'm sure it's good.”

I sat in front of her and said, “Ma, upstairs in your closet is a bunch of clothes. You've got name brands, costumes, and all sorts of outfits. Now, let me ask you how much you could get for them all right now?”

Mmmmm, probably around a hundred thousand dollars.”

Nope. Think again.”

I know I spent more.”

So look at it this way. The way you guys were looking at my net worth is what the list price is on everything. You take a look at it and see something just like it at Neiman Marcus, so you think because I have it, I can get rid of it for that price. Well, I'll tell you I can't.”

She looked at me and said, “Why not?”

Because I'm not Neiman Marcus. I'll have to get rid of it for yard sale prices and that's the only way I could get someone to buy it immediately.”

Then wait.” she said seeming sure of herself.

Yeah, I could wait, but what I'm looking at is a net worth of what I have now...right now... and if I could get rid of it now. Not by waiting.”


Yeah, so all those properties and that stock and all I have has Forbes saying I'm worth x amount when I'll tell you there's no friggin' way. To me, it's worth x amount if I had to sell it right now....not when I wait.”

Oh, so we've been thinking you're a lot richer than we thought.”

Yeah, and you've been joking I don't know what I mean when I tell you they're wrong.”

And we've been wrong too.” she said looking like a rug had been taken from beneath her.


She turned to Bran and said, “Hon, we've messed up.”

Yeah dear, we have. And the whole time, we've been laughing at him because we thought he was wrong. Now he's proved to us we're wrong. It doesn't feel good, but that's how we've been making him feel.”

She turned around and said, “Den, I'm sorry.”

No problem. I'm just sorry I had to show you guys, but if I didn't, it'd be living a lie and I can't do that.”

Then how rich are you?”

I'm rich, but not as rich as they make me out being.”

Ev interrupted. “Dad, he would like for me to go with Trent and he to Italy the week after next. Can I clear my schedule and go?”

Sure, I don't see why not.”

I said, “Bran, we're going over so I can get Olive trees. We're also going to tour the place and go to London for a little bit and then to New York. We'll leave Ev in New York while Trent and I go to South Carolina to get my dogs. While there, Trent can look over my dad's digs and set up surveillance so we're safe.”

Bran nodded and said, “Why's Ev staying in New York?”

Because I promised I'd not take him to South Carolina.”

Oh, well, that's understandable. He staying at your place in New York?”

Yeah, but we won't be gone that long.”

Ok, I'm fine with it.”

Ev asked, “Has Trent called you?”

No, why?”

Ev looked at me and I said, “Bran, he's going to talk with you because he wants you guys to pay for our modifications gratis. He says once you find out what you gave us there, you're going to die.”

What'd we give you?” He asked looking perplexed.

Have you been down in the back yard?”

No, I've not been there that often.”

I said, “D, have you seen the tennis court?”

Yeah, it's awful.”

Bran's eyes started getting an excited look to them. “Don't tell me!”

Yeah, he said if you farmed it, you could make a fortune. It's the real stuff.”

D looked at us and said, “What?”

Bran said, “Oh my God!”. He suddenly sat up on the edge of the sofa looking excited.

Yeah, that's why he's saying that, but I told him I'd give it to you guys to farm as long as I got it back where I needed it.”

D asked again, “Guys, what are you talking about?”

Bran said, “Grass.”

Someone's growing grass down there?”

He laughed and said, “Babe, the best.”

Oh Lord!”

He laughed and I said, “Bran, you're terrible.”

She looked at me and said, “He's joking with me?”

No, but it's not the kind you're thinking.”

I didn't think so, it looks awful down there.”

Bran said, “Hon, let me fill you in and you'll be amazed. There are some types of grass which are very rare and valuable. When they come up for auction, they sell by the square foot and they're worth a lot.”


It's not normal grass hon. It's grass which is for tennis courts and it's not the light green kind they have now, but a better older strain they used to have all over the place. What people didn't know was as they tore out the grass tennis courts, they were getting rid of it because the company which was the only place in the world who had it lost all theirs because of a flash flood.”

So the grass I saw was worth a lot?”


Ev said, “Thankfully, Den saw it and knew what he was seeing. He showed Trent and Trent was just amazed. He told Den he'd get you to do the whole job for the grass there, but Den told him you could have it as long as he got it where he wanted around the house.”

Where do you want it?” Bran said serious.

Ok, I know the stuff wears forever. I also know the height it's at now is it at full height, so I want to put it along the edge of the driveway, sidewalk, and in between the flagstones. Other than that, I want it down there on the tennis court.”

That's all?”

Yeah, but you can take it up and farm it and you can make a fortune off it.”

You damned right we can!” he said laughing.

Personally, it's not worth more to me than where I want to use it, so if it helps you, then it's great.'

Bran said, “The whole tennis court is the stuff?”

The tennis court, the sides and the backs. It's probably a good eighty by a hundred square feet of the stuff.”

And it's in good shape?”

The grass is, but the tennis court is junk. They planted poplars around it some time ago and those trees roots have made their way up into the clay and it's a mess. The trees need cut and the clay needs taken out and relaid and then it's got to be repacked. That can't happen with the grass on it.”

Ok, we'll do that”

I refuse to let you guys pay for our security and landscaping though. It's going to cost a fortune, but it'll be the way I want it.”

Bran said, “He suggested everything?”

Yeah, but I made modifications which are going to keep the house and the grounds the same except for a low stone wall down front and wrought iron on top of it. It'll be nice and look like the way it would if it were done when the house was built.”

Where are you getting the stones?”

The garage is stone. There's enough there we can use it if we only put that stone across the front. The walls down the sides and across the back are going to be a lot taller and can be tinted concrete put in forms to look close. And the stone from the garage won't be needed because we'll have to have a larger garage.”


Ev's going to have two cars and I'll have the one plus the limo. Speaking of which, I'd like to do something if you don't mind.”

What's that?”

Ev's hand clasped tighter on mine.

If you'll agree, I'd like to trade D cars.”


Because I just want to.”

Bran looked at me strangely and said, “What'd you do?”

I held out the keys to the Rolls to D and said, “IF you'll let me have your Jag, I'll give you this.”

She got up and came over. She took the keys and said, “Oh my God.”

She turned to Bran and said, “Hon, he's bought us a Rolls.”

Bran smiled and said, “That one you guys drove up in?”


He jumped up and took off towards the door. Ev and I followed and by the time we got to the door, he was down by the driver's side jumping up and down. D was standing on the steps laughing and clapping.

I went over and said, “Someplace through the years, I remember you getting out of one and it's stuck with me because I thought you had one. Now I know you do.”

Is that why you did it?”

You two are great parents. You've given me your son's love, so what can I do to show you I'm falling in love with him and you guys too?”

She turned around and hugged me.

I said, “Don't hug me. He's the one that picked it out for you guys.”

She hugged him and said, “You picked it out!”

Yeah. It was the prettiest one they had.”

It's beautiful!

Bran got in and said, “Babe, it's better than mine. It's the one I told you which was top of the line.”

She turned and asked, “How much did this cost?”

Not as much as I think you guys deserve.”

Can we go for a ride?” she asked rather excitedly.


Bran started it and they took off down the drive.

Thanks.” Ev said rather quietly.

No problem. I told you it'd work.”

You're slicker than a car salesman.”

Yeah, but we got your mom's Jag to trade in for your Ferrari now.”

Do you really love me?” he asked.

Yeah, but it's not as much as it will be tomorrow and that's not as much as it will be the day after. Let's keep it getting better and better and it'll be as good as theirs some day.”

You were mad a minute ago. Do you realize you were yelling?”

Was I?”


Well, I was pissed. Thank God your mom hadn't signed a contract.”

What happened?”

Remember how I talked with you guys and laid out that plan about selling dance music?”


Where in it did I say a thing about ballads?”

You didn't, except to say that's where people made their mistakes.”

Guess what she's wanting your sister to sing?”


Now you know why I exploded.”

Sam went along with it?”

She didn't realize what a ballad was until I explained them to her and then she was upset.”

Maybe I'm wrong, but isn't a ballad where it's a break up song?”


Oh man.”

Nowhere in the plan did we discuss her singing ballads. So I exploded.”

Dad will be pissed. Does he know?”

We're going to get it taken care of. Let me call her now while I'm thinking of it.”

I pulled out my cell and called. “Hello?”

This is Den, we have a problem.”

What's going on?”

Ev and I got home and I spoke with Sam. Sam said you mentioned ballads.”

Yeah, she said she wanted to sing them.”

Are you aware she had no clue what a ballad was?”


Yeah, I explained what they were and she hates them. I'll tell you I just plain exploded when I heard, but I'm assured we're going to talk about what music we think is best for her.”

Yeah, we didn't get into it too much. D and Bran thought it would be great to have the whole family together to discuss it so we discussed priorities and what they want and don't want.”

Ok, They say they're happy about that, so I'm thinking they got what they wanted there. All Sam told me was she's not going to be performing while she's in school.”


Good. Now, do you want a heads up on what I think?”

It'd help.”

Dance music. Get her fast tempo so it's heard on dance floors around the world.”

Just that?”

Stick to it and she'll be happy.”


Take a look at Cher's numbers and then tell me what you saw in regards to each song.”

The Believe Album did really excellent.”

And what about singles from it?”

Ok, I'm getting you now.”

IF they hear it on a dance floor, it will stick in their head. They'll buy it if they do that. That's what sold Cher's music and the upbeat tempo is what drew people to her on the radio. It made it special because it appealed to everyone.”

Ok, but not everyone's career is the same.”

Music is...Take a look at the top women performers for the past thirty years. What do you see?”

A lot of powerful women.”

I see a career like this. Whitney...oh my God!...then it went to ho hum...it's another Whitney pissing and moaning song until she woke up and gave us some more Oh My God's.

Do you want to dare hear what I think of Mariah's career? I would have slit my wrists too if I had to sing the shit she was.

Now, Madonna. It's upbeat Madonna. It's sweet, kinky, and it's fresh nice and it's getting me onto the dance floor. Take a look at Holiday and see if it still fills dance floors and everyone knows the words. But ask them to sing you Isla Bonita and they'll turn to you and say “What the fuck was she thinking?” Well, she got through a ton of those years until she decided to give us this Hung Up album and we're back in it. It's because we can identify and dance to it.

In short, dance music makes a career until they decide they have to be serious and screw it up. Sam wants those because it makes people happy and I'll tell you I want them because it sells and it gets her name into people's houses and on their all time favorite lists.”

What about the power ballad singers?”

Ok, Cher falls there yeah. I'll give you Cher because I think Cher has the personality to screw up and smile and sell trillions because she'll tell you she screwed up. Yeah there's even some damned good songs out there she did which were Ballads, but how many ballads have Pet Shop Boys cranked out?”


Yeah, put her in a league there and she'll sell for the next twenty years until she wants to be a monk.”

She laughed and said, “You're cynical, but funny as hell.”

I love you because you're great. Ran loves you therefore I love you. Did you know that?”


“Yeah, I think the man would have your baby, but don't let him know that.”

She laughed and said, “He's a neat guy.”

Yeah, he's my best friend.”

He's told me a lot about you too.”

We kid each other hard, so don't think I was trying to cut him down today.”

I was a bit alarmed, but then on the way out there, he told me you have a way of giving him compliments where everyone else thinks you're being mean to him.”

Yeah, but when it counts I'll be there for him as he has been for me.”

He'll tell you what he did wasn't so special.”

I'll tell you different. He saved my life that night because my dad was sober during that one. After the beating, he went out to get drunk so he could come home to beat me some more.”

That's terrible!”

Yeah, but the only reason I'll tell you he's not dead yet is because hell hasn't gotten hot enough for his sorry ass. When it is, he'll croak and the world will smile.”

Do you realize most people don't talk that way about their parents?”

Thankfully, the world didn't have my dad because he's the stuff wars are made of...pure hate rolled up in a good piss off.”

Aren't you worried about what he'll do when he finds out about you and Evan?”

Yeah, but as we speak, I'm working on it. He's getting surveillance put on him and we'll know when he decides to slither out from under that rock. When he does, I'll be forewarned and he'll think he's coming to strike only to find out I've moved and he'll have to chase me some more. The advantage is I'll keep ducking and dodging and I'll wear out that Social Security check.

When he's broke, he'll either have to suck up some juice in a bar away from home and sleep in the back of the truck or go back to the rock and slither under.”

You don't give him any money?”

I'd give him some if he'd go get some cyanide and make Kool Aid. Hell, for that, I'd put on a party hat and make sure he doesn't spill a drop!”

She laughed and said, “That's terrible.”

Hon, between you and I...and Ran doesn't even know this.

The last time I went home, he caught me at my grannies house. He drove up and took the steps off the front porch with his truck Then, he went around back to come in and started taking shots at me with that pistol until I crowned his ass with a skillet from behind a door.

I finished packing to get away, and as I was getting in my car with a broken rib, he drove his truck into my car. He pulled forward to ram me again broadside when I floored it to get out of his way. Then, I decided to take out his truck to be sure he didn't follow me and I could get out of town.”

He shot at you!”

I changed my voice to imitate my dad's. “Yeah, because how dare I show up at my house and try to sleep one night in his fucking town? He'll not have a faggot in his town by God!”

He said that!”

A lot of other mean shit like my mama was a slut and the only good pussy was the night he popped her cherry. Try to figure out how a slut has a cherry and I'll give you the 'Father of the Year Award' he never got.”

Where's your mama?”

In a grave. She died of cancer when I was little. And for your information, she worshiped the ground he walked on and made sure she cooked his breakfast the morning she died .because he'd had a hard night the night before.'


He's an alcoholic. All the 'night befores' were and are hard for him. Were you aware of what we found in the archives about him?”


Back in the sixties, D's tour drove through town. He pulled them over and gave them a lot of tickets.

In order to pay up and leave town, they had to gather fourteen hundred dollars. So, the manager went to the promoter to get the money.

While he was gone, my daddy raped one of the girls. She got pregnant and low and behold, she gave birth. The baby got adopted out and the singer lost her job. She later died of heroine.”

How'd she keep her job or not have to abort?”

My question exactly. Apparently, the manager thought it was his, so he got permission for it to happen. I guess shit hit the fan when the baby came out interracial.”

Oh man.”

Yeah, I finally find someone who will have me and I get a dear old call from the past in those archives. Thank God D doesn't hold daddy's sins against me.”

Do you think the girl was the only one he raped?”

I would say he probably did more. I can't say for sure, but all I know was he's mean enough to do it and it's all about the control and power with him.”

Why doesn't someone do something?”

It's easy. He's the law there. He was the law there, but once he got caught trying to steal my money, he got thrown out and now the town Marshall and the Sheriff are both his puppets.”

And the county lets it go on?”

Everyone lets it go on because it's easier not to say anything and get harassed. Has Randy told you what happens when he goes home?”


The police drive by Randy's parent's house every stinking day.

The moment they see he's in town, he can't drive without getting pulled over. He can't ride in a car without the driver getting pulled over.

And when they go to the store, the law frisks him...to be sure he's not shoplifting”


Because Randy carried me out of the house that night. Since then, it's been nothing but harassment to keep him gone because he knows the truth about what happened and can talk bad about him.”

Oh man!”

Yeah, earlier, I had a security man tell me because I've got a billion dollars I shouldn't have to be afraid of anyone. Well, that man doesn't know my daddy and he sure doesn't know what all he's capable of.

All I can say is I've offered to take the man to the town to show him and I hope I can live through it to be sure to get security.”

What's going to happen?”

I don't know. He said he's going to call some people. All I know is not enough people can be called because once the good old boy network gets called out, the road out of town is too long and I can't drive fast enough.”

You need armed security and some state patrol guys.”

Do you think they'd help? I mean the county cops are all working for a man who's under my dad.”

They answer to the Governor.”

I'll have to check to see who the Governor is. Hopefully, the guy is a Democrat because my dad pulls hard for the Republicans. I might have a chance then.”

It's that crooked there?”

It's so crooked they've not heard of straight.”

So that's why Randy says it's difficult for him to go home?”

Yeah, and I'm to blame.”

No, your dad is. Randy did the right thing and all you did was try to do the right thing and be yourself.”

I'd like to think that, but it's just hard to not think if I'd been different, he'd have liked me.”

No, the only way I see would have had you be just like him and then he'd take you as a threat and you would have killed him. Then, as he was laying on the floor, he'd tell you “That's my boy.”


She paused and then said, “Den, I'm wondering...Did you ever belong to a band or choir? You're awfully good with the direction of music.”

You want the truth? Or, would you like a short answer. If so, I'll tell you yes, and leave it at that.”

The truth.” she said sounding rather disappointed in me.”

The truth is I belonged to the band. I played alto saxophone. I found one up in the attic which someone said it belonged to my mama. I practiced the thing while daddy wasn't home, and got to be quite good at it.

What's bad was three fold. I got to high school and tried out to be a drum major which leads them in parades and stuff. Well, the band teacher, a Mr. Boone only wanted rich kids.

I hardly qualified there, so he never attempted to do a thing with me to teach me any of it. I ask, and one thing I'll tell you was I wanted that spot more than anything, but they had try outs and I went up first and it was a wreck. Everyone was doing their own thing and I had no clue what I was doing.

The second thing happened that very afternoon. I was practicing at home and my dad came in. He wanted quiet and he threw the thing across the room. It got a huge dent in it and that was all she wrote for it.

The next thing which happened was he then beat me up and I got a broken jaw. No jaw, no playing the sax. I went to school and pompous ass Mr Boone saw I wasn't capable of playing, so he put me in the drum line.

Well, I've played the sax, the clarinet, and a lot of other saxs, but had never been so much as near the drums in that five years of playing. Having a fresh broken jaw and wires, trying to carry a big assed drum strapped to me wasn't so hot. I was seeing stars and stuff, so finally, I just decided to hell with it and walked off the field. That afternoon, I went to the guidance office and dropped band altogether.”

Oh man. That's terrible. You're so good! You should have stayed in band.”

“I'd like to think so, but one thing I'll probably do is I'll probably have D send a cd to Mr Boone along with a letter saying, “The kid you wouldn't give the time of day led the collaboration of this music and did good. You should have given him a chance.”

Is he still there?”

No, it seemed he got his kids through school and decided to retire. At least that's the reason I'm hoping he retired. It'd be awful if he saw he couldn't possibly dash someone else's hopes and quit due to lack of ability.”

She chuckled and said, “Do you think if you'd had a lesson on drum majoring you could have done it?”

Here's what I'll tell you and then you'll see.

Randy knows the whole story. He went to the drum major and photocopied all the sheets the guy had. Then, he brought them to me and I studied the things until I knew them all. I think it was Randy's hope if I learned it, I could fill in when that guy wasn't able to do it.

What I will tell you is Randy was like the school's unofficial mascot when it came to filming anything. After that, the one part of the school which he didn't ever film after I quit was the band. That's the sort of friend he is.”

She smiled and said, “He and you are close, aren't you?”

If Randy was gay, there'd not be a hope of anyone for me but him. He knows parts of me that no one else does and he knows how to reach those spots. We joke with each other bad, but there's a kinship which is amazing.'

I'm glad you have him for a friend.”

I'm glad my cousin had him for a friend. Without that friendship, I'd never gotten to know him.”

How did that work?”

My cousin was who got Randy involved in the music side of things instead of video, or taking pictures.

One night, they were all recording this guy who had some real talent. I mean the guy was good, but he was only good if you kept him out of a bottle. IF he got to drinking, he was done for the night.”

So that's how you met him?”

No, he was there and I just happened to be there bringing my aunt and her family a bunch of leftovers from gramma's. My aunt told me to go out to the studio to take a look, so I went.

While there, I listened to the song they'd recorded and what I'll tell you was this guy's album had some really really good stuff on it. At least three of the songs were what I call “pull over” songs.”

What's that?”

Ok, what they are to me is a song you listen to while driving and you'll end up bawling so hard you have to pull over.”


Yeah, but one of them was just all wrong. The guy played acoustic guitar on it and it was mediocre as it was, but it was a song to his little girl and telling her he was sorry for being gone so much out on the road. To me, it just sucked because it was like...boom, take that, daddy feels bad, so he'll rub the shit in and sing to you while you feel bad. It was just wrong.

Instead, I casually mentioned it was wrong and they all got offended. It was so bad, you'd thought I was going to get lynched. I mentioned my opinion and the feelings about it and Randy picked up on it. Then, I told them I thought it'd be better if instead of acoustic, they had a music box so it sounded like he was singing to her using the box as his music instead of rubbing in on a sore point.”

What happened?”

Well, nothing that night. Everyone was pissed at me, so I hauled out of there. But, Randy asked to see the music and then went and got a Casio keyboard. He did the backgrounds with a music box playing the guitar tracks and put it in front of the guy. That's when they laid his voice track over it. What happened, I guess, was the guy was like way blown away.”

So it sold?”

Not really, but it was good stuff. The reason it didn't sell wasn't because the guy wasn't talented, but because the record people all saw a drunk and a liability. They sure didn't want him to blow any tours.”

Do you remember the guy's name? Maybe you could get some of that music for Sam.”

I would, but once again, it's ballads. Instead of being a lover spurned, it's a kid spurned. It'd give Sam a bad way to go from the start. It's have everyone thinking she was singing about her mom.”

Would D do good with it?”

Oh man, I bet if she sung them she'd have number ones like bam, bam, bam. Then the guy could get credit for something in his life and she could do some good with them.”

She said, “Let's try to get those songs.”

I said,”Let me talk to Ran, I bet he's got them tucked away somewhere.”

Ok, he's still there going through the archives. That place is amazing.”

I sure understand. I thought maybe a few boxes, myself. I sure didn't think it was as big as it was. Can you imagine what he thought when he found out she took everything?”

Yeah, but she sure deserved it all.”

Yeah, but she sure could help a lot of people with it.”

Let me do some checking on the music for Sam. There are a lot of good writers out there who I see a lot of submissions from. I'll listen to the demo tapes and bring what I think would be good. From what I hear from Ran, you have a way of listening to songs and putting in things which make them great. From what I've heard, he's right.”

I do it, but anyone can do it. It's easy if you've heard enough music.”

She laughed. “If we all could do it, there'd be nothing but good music out there!”

Well, I'll get off here and go see Ran.”

Ok, you'll be around tomorrow?”

Tomorrow's a good day. I've got nothing on the plan except phone calls again. I really need to look at my schedule and see what I can do because I've really got to make some more money.”

She laughed and said, “I wish we all had your problem.”

Nah, it's not that way. I got told I don't have enough to do what I want in Africa, so I've got to make more.”

What do you want to do?”

Buy some land and make an animal park which is protected enough the animals which can't live there can live there without any threats.”

Oh, that's a tall undertaking.”

Yeah, but someone once asked me why I don't buy land here in Texas or someplace else and release them there, but to me that's the same as a zoo. If they were where they belong, then it's not that but a protected sanctuary.”

I understand, is it ok if I introduce you to some people who might be able to help?”

Sure. It's not an ego thing. If other people all want to go into it, that's be great. That way, my money could go into building a fence around the place and theirs could go into buying land.”

You're wanting to fence it?”

Yeah, with a fence the poachers aren't going to be able to cut through easily and get their trucks through. It'd take a lot, but I've got an idea of what's needed.”

Ok, well, I'll make calls for you too.”

That'd be great. If need be, we'll have a fund raiser and get other people to sign on. I'd not thought of that before.”

She laughed and said, “What you need to do is have a fund raising dinner. It doesn't have to be much, but what the point is is to get people together, get their money, and to get them interested in donating more time or money. With a lot of people getting behind it, the magazines are full of the idea and other notables can sign on.”

Cool. What I think would be neat is a bunch of ads with a dotted line out there on the land saying this is where a rhino used to be and this is where want to put it again.”

Will they let you?”

I'm not sure. I don't even know how to go about it. It's just something I feel compelled to do.”

I understand. It sounds noble. I'll call around.”

Ok, thanks. I'll sign off and we'll talk tomorrow.”

By the way, I want to have you meet someone.”

Ok, tomorrow. I need to go speak with Ran.”

Bye now.”

I rang off and Ev said, “She handle it well?”

Yeah, I think it's good. It sounds like a lack of communication.”

Ok, you're going out to speak with Ran?”

Yeah, you want to go?”

Nah, I'll go up and tell Sam. She's probably worried.”

Oh...well, I should have thought of it.”

No, you're taking care of her. Don't worry about thinking you weren't.” he said smiling.

I know it's just not the same as having a sister around all the time. I've got to get used to it.”

He laughed and said, “With her around, it'd be a pain.”

Nope. She's good as gold. You'll realize it.”

She is, but don't tell her I said it.”

I know, you guys are a lot like Ran and I.”

He laughed and said, “I'll see you in a moment.”

I went out to the archive and entered. It was quiet. “Ran?”

Yeah bud.”

Gotta few moments?”

Sure. This place is great. I'll probably be spending every waking moment in here for a while. Right now, my head's just swimming reading all this.”

Good stuff?”

Gossip, tidbits, things they used in the recording. There's a lot of stuff here which is adding up to a lot of things I can put into the DVD.” he said smiling.

Ok, I spoke with Georganne. We had a slight miscommunication, but it's better now.”

What happened?”

She asked Sam if she wanted to sing ballads. In Sam's enthusiasm, Sam said yes. Nevermind the fact she had no clue what a ballad was and hates them.”

Oh man, she didn't know?”

No, to her music is music.”

I understand. It wasn't until I got into it I found out there were words for what I wanted and if I used them people would understand better.”

Probably, but remember when you're speaking to someone who has no training they probably don't know what words mean.”

True. So what's up?”

You remember that night you and I met?”


Who was the guy?”

Damn, let me think.....his first name was Ivan. I can't remember the last.”

You remember the music he did?”

Vaguely. I remember that one song.”

Do you have it?”

I doubt it.”

Do you think we could get it?”

I thought you didn't want ballads.”

Not for Sam, but for D.”

Oh! Man, that'd be awesome but she might not like the content in the song.”

Maybe, but I'd like to throw three of those songs from that album at her to see if she'd do them.”

Ok, let me see. Gar would probably have the guy's name or maybe even the masters tucked away someplace.”

He probably does.”

Let me call. Let's see, it'd be about ten am there. He should be up.”

If he's not in the studio.”

Better yet. If he's there, he can call on break and it won't cost him anything for the length of time we talk.”

It costs you guys?”

I Skype the calls. I know he did, but then that was before he became a big shot. He might have all his calls on their dime now.” he said smiling.

I need to talk with him some time.”


He has keys to my cars there. I'm thinking about selling that apartment and shipping my cars over.”


Well, most of my business there can be done over the phone, so I'll do it that way. What business I can't, I'll meet them in hotels. It's not like I've not done it that way before.”

You're pulling in your bases?”

The ones I can. The more days I can be in off the road, the better.”

He smiled. “You're really coming in to roost.”

Yeah, it's exciting, but I really want to.”

I can tell. Your eyes are telling me a lot. I like it.

You do know Gar will insist upon meeting him.”

Probably. A lot of people are going to want to meet him, but maybe when this is all done with the security thing, I can be more open about things.”

If your dad would die, it'd be a lot better.”

Yeah, but one thing I'll have to do is get a better car for out there until then.”


Let's just say mine is near totaled now.”


I didn't tell you, but the last time I was there he and I had problems.”

Problems...as in your car got totaled!”

That and then some. I'll not go into it, but it was the worst scene yet.”

Worse than that night!”

Yeah, I had three broken ribs this time, but he shot at me.”

“Son of a bitch! You got to start packing some heat and take that fucker out!”

What I'm going to do is start going there with body guards who are armed. That way, if he wants to shoot, then they can take him. It'll be a mess, but maybe that's why I've got that guy now...for the security.”

Bud, you've got to go in and get a restraining order upon him.”

I have to stay alive to go to court to do that. You know as well as I, it's going to be a mess. Georganne said I might be able to go to the highway patrol.”

Let me get you someone to go to the Governor. If we start doing it so they know you're threatened, they'll have you some protection. Even if they can't provide it, they'll know the situation and you're feeling threatened enough you have to hire security.”

Who would we call?”

Let me talk with a few people. I think if they provide it for other people, they should you.”

Tell them they can have x rays and use the car to get paint from so they know things have occurred.”

Ok, but they might be told something different by him if he says different.”

Then tell them I'll open the house and they can pull the bullets from the walls.”

HE shot at you!”

Yeah, and then chased me around inside the house. I finally crowned his ass with a skillet and got some time to pack some things.”


It's been the most I've been scared since that night. This time, the only reason I didn't die was because he apparently can't shoot straight at a moving target.”

Oh man! We've got to do something about him.”

What I want to do is just get the house back into order and then close it up. I'll leave it as it is until he's dead.”

I understand, but you shouldn't have to leave because of him.”

You shouldn't either, but that's what he's gotten done.”

Ok, let's start fighting this. If he realizes we're going to start pulling things out and going above everyone's head, we'll be better set.”

I'm afraid he'll have them start pulling charges out of their ass or something.”

No, if there's not been any charges filed yet, then they're not going to have any grounds to do so. Any they pull up, we'll have them fought and prove the whole bunch are crooked.”

Ok, how do you think I should handle it?”

My advice would be to speak with the Governor personally man to man. He'll have things at his disposal which can get you protected.”

Ok, I'll do that tomorrow.”

I'm about to close up shop here.”

Ok, but please start parking in the garage. The way you're parked now is blocking most of the bays.”

I never thought about it.”

They didn't complain.”


We got up and walked out. I shut off the lights and said, “Did she have it locked?”

Not when I got here, but they were already down here I guess as the lights were on.”

Ok, I didn't know. I'll tell her it's unlocked and will ask for a key if she'll let us use it.”

Do you think she will?”

Yeah, they're great people.”

I sure hear that. You got lucky with his family.”

Yeah, it's great the way it is.”

What's your day like tomorrow?”

Calls and business. I've got to order up some stuff for the house and then get it ready so we can start staying there.”

It going well?”

Oh yeah, I'm losing my heart to him.”

Good. He feel the same?”

Yeah, it's a bit awkward because we're so inexperienced, but we're making it.”

He laughed and said, “I laugh, but I'm happy for you. At least you know someone waited like you did.”

Yeah, can you believe he has hang ups about his body?”


I don't know. It's that way.”

Well, you guys can work through it.”

What are you going to do?”

Go home, listen to the answering machine. Make a lot of calls and then work.”

You need to get a staff.”

Yeah, but then it's their work and not mine.”

Find people who will do the work like you want it done.”

Can't. It's not that easy. If I had robots maybe, but when you put someone into it, it's always going to be their work and their editing”

Ok, well, I'd help but you'd have a real problem then.”

He laughed and said, “Yeah, your plate is about as full as mine.”

I'm not complaining. I have a plan to get it so I can enjoy it more at least.”

He smiled and said, “Ok, I'll think about hiring someone.”

What I'd do is see what equipment there is out there. Maybe you've not got something which would make it quicker.”

No, I keep the latest equipment. It's all time consuming. They film the stuff and it's up to me to make it a good edit.”

What do they do?”

Nothing. They pay me to make the edit.”

The one who films it doesn't come in?”

Believe me, you don't want those guys in there. It's an easy enough principle the way it goes. They get the talent in costume and then film the whole shot all the way through. Then, they go do the same for all the costumes throughout the whole thing and then, it's up to me to come in and save their bacon by making cuts and splices.”

So it's really wasteful, huh?”

Yeah, I'm not going to bitch. Sometimes it helps because some of their shots are just terrible. The talent's lip sinking is way off or they'll turn wrong, or something and they'll say that's a complete shot without having another take.”

Oh. You should get in and start filming the stuff.”

Not on your life. My days are full enough as it is.”


This way, they do the hard part and I do the easy. I can edit one and get it done in a day while it takes them a week or more to film it. I can seem like Superman and get a lot done for a lot of people this way.”

It works?”

It works, but for me, having a backlog of two weeks is getting to be an average thing.”


Fortunately, I've always sought contracts which have me with plenty of edit time so I've got a lot of weeks to get it done and back out the door. I'm not anywhere near where I would be if it was real bad.”

Ok, it's just you don't have a life except for this.”

I get days like today, but it sets me back some.”

Ok, maybe I can get over and help. If I can get you a day or so less on your headache scale, it'd be good.”

You come over and I'll put you to work full time. You're getting talented at all this to the point I look good.”

I laughed. “Yeah, fill someone else full of it.”

No, really. Do you realize that last one you helped with was given a VMA?”

What's that?”

It's an award for videos.”

Ok, but I had no clue.”

You deciding to put those out the way we did was what got it. They can say it was a great song all they want, but I'll tell you it wasn't shit. You saw the way to do it and we got those computer generated graphics on it and it worked awesomely.”

I don't think so. It probably cost them a ton extra.”

Not really. When it comes out the song sells an extra million of the albums, then they're money ahead.”

Did it do that?”

Who can say? All I can say was it was one of the major hits of the album after people started seeing the video.”

I'll help, but I still think you're filling me full of shit.”

He laughed and said, “Ok, but don't be surprised if I beg you to come into a partnership.”

We need to get you laid bud.”

He laughed and said, “Not likely to happen. With my size, all these little blondes out here can see is a whale.”

Leave that alone.”

Den, give me enough time I can go in under the knife and I'll be happy.”

What are you going to do?”

They've got a procedure which puts a ring around your stomach. It makes you lose weight.”

Is that safe?”

Yeah, tons of people have had them.”

I want to speak to the doctor you go to. If he's not safe, I'll get you someone who will be.”

He smiled and said, “I've already been to appointments.”

So what's the hold up?”

First of all, he told me I wasn't heavy enough to have it done. I had to have more weight on. Then, he told me how long it would take to recuperate and I saw there wouldn't be enough time in my schedule. So now, my fat ass is trapped.”

Don't say that. We'll get you ahead and then you can get it done but I want to be there.”

You remember Carnie Wilson?”

I've heard of her.”

It's the same thing she did basicly.”

She's gotten skinny?”

Bud, you don't pay attention to much, do you?”

No, not down here. I've got other places I've had to be.”

Let me call her. I'll have her come over and speak with you about it if you're so unsure. She had it done so the whole thing was on video.”


No, it's helped a lot of people.”

Dude, I saw a sex change operation on the internet. I don't want to see anything else like that. You'd find me passed out on the floor.”


There's a reason they knock you out when you have surgery and that's so you don't pass out.”

You're squeamish of that?”

Yeah, how those people work in there is beyond me. I hear of these surgeries where the person stays awake and I just think it'd be one of those things I'd ask to be knocked out just the same.”

How many surgeries have you had?”

None and the less the better.”

You've have bones broke and seen lots of blood, so I know that doesn't bug you.”

It'd bug the hell out of me. It wasn't by choice!”

Hey, let's switch subjects. I can see you're about to have a panic attack on me.”

Dude, I don't think I could watch that.”

“Let it go. We'll not have you watch the tape.”

You watched it!”

Hell yeah. I've seen it enough I could probably do one.”

Oh man”

Let me call her and have you speak with her. That way you're going to be sure I'm safe.”

Hey, you're like my closest friend. I'd like to keep you around for a while and it doesn't matter what size you are.”

I'd like to be smaller and that way I can get someone.”

Ok, but can't we just have you diet and us work out?”

Name the diet and I've been on it. I'm tired of dieting and not getting results.”

What happens after you have the surgery? You'll have to work out or it'll all just hang.”

I'll work out. IF it hangs, then I'll have another surgery to get it all back up.”

You'd do that!”

Man, you're sure not from here. They have all sorts of operations they do all the time.”

I realize that, but it happens to other people and some of them die.”

Hey, look at it positively. Inside, I'm dying right now. I see what you've got and I want it so bad...”

His voice cracked. I stopped walking and turned to him. I hugged him and said, “Ran, man. I never knew.”

He composed himself real quick and said, “I want it man.”

Ok, we'll get it for you. I never knew. To me, you're great the way you are because I know what's in your heart.”

You big old fairy. You were just horny.”

Nah, it's because of what we are together.”

Well, I'm not gay, and your dick's too big. Believe me, you want to see me get skinny, you come at me with that dick and I'll run my fat ass off!”

If I'd known, you'd been skinny a long time ago, but it didn't matter to me.”

He hugged me and said, “Just support me on this and I'll appreciate it.”

Ok, but I want to make sure you're safe. How much does it cost?”

I've got enough.”

I didn't ask that. Do you have enough for all those other surgeries if you need them?”

Yeah, I'm not broke. I do a damned good job on anything I take on.”

Ok, just don't die on me man.”

Just say it, you love me and I love you too.”

I do.”

Good, now let's go in and get you your guy because I'm getting scared you're hot for all this bod.”

I laughed and said, “Ran, shut the fuck up.”

He laughed and said, “You realize I feel closer to you than ever?”


Because I just do. Now shut the fuck back.”

We went into the house and saw no one was there.

Where's everyone at?”

I gave D and Bran the Rolls, so they went out on a drive in it and Ev's upstairs talking with Sam.”

You gave them the Rolls?”

Yeah, Ev got it because he thought it was what I wanted him to have. He wants a Ferrari like mine, but in red. So, we gave it to them.”

What are you going to do with the other cars you're bringing in?”

Who knows? What I do know is I won't need them parked over there, so I'll bring them in over here.”

Take the Rolls out home. I'll use it there.” he said.

Ok, it'd help because your people wouldn't get pulled over. I should have done that for you a lot sooner. I never thought.” I said with my voice going down.

Hey, my family look at it as them and not you. They know what happened and they'd have done it too.”

It's not fair they get harassed over me.”

My mom says the police driving by are protecting the neighborhood. She doesn't see it as anything but... When we drive, yeah, it's a hassle, but I'm not in that often, so it's not an undue hardship on them.”

Ran, one time is more than it should have been.”

Look at it as I do. Let's say some kid was driving down the street and he was talking on his cell phone. Let's say I hadn't been pulled over and there wasn't a cop there, so he'd have plowed into someone instead. This way, he saw me getting harassed, so he drove better.”

Well, let's make it so that stuff stops.”

I'm not sure it will. I just want it to quit for you.”

Come on up to the apartment.”

Let me get a drink. What do they have here?”

I don't know. Let's raid the icebox and see.”

He laughed and said, “Man, you feel at home, don't you!”

Yeah, they're not worried about us.”

No, I mean it'd be funny if a cop walked up to the door. We'd be the one seen as robbers!”

You stall them and I'll run.” I said laughing.

I'd serve to be a good anchor. I'll just share the donuts.” He said laughing.

We looked into the fridge and I got out the tea. I poured us a glass of tea and then put it back.

Mmmm, but not as good as your grannies.”

No one's is. I could make it the same, but you could too.”

What'd she do?”

Ok, but as soon as I tell you, you're going to try it and then realize it's a big hassle.

What you do is you go down to the farmer's market and you get fresh spearmint. When you get it, you come home and you put on a gallon of water to boil. When it's boiling good, you'll have all those leaves pulled off the stems. Put those into your gallon jug and then, you pour the water over them and let them sit a spell.

When it's cooled, you put the water into the ice box and each time you want tea, you pour out a Pyrex cup of the stuff and you put it into a pot to boil your bags.

Then, when you get your bags boiled, you take them out and you add in two cups of sugar. You'll have grannies' sweet tea.”

That's it?”

Yeah, it's the spearmint which made it so good.”

Two cups of sugar! Jeesh!”

You liked it, you know.”

Yeah, but...”

Either way, you now know what she did to make it so good. One thing I do is add in an extra bag of green tea to the mix so it doesn't go bad so fast.”

Does that work?”

It lasts me a few extra days in the ice box. I can't drink the stuff that much. If I did, I'd be up and down during those long assed flights so much it'd be pitiful.”

How do you do it flying that much?”

You get your laptop and you play a game. While doing that, you listen to the ipod and soon enough, you're there. If you don't, you'll go stir crazy.”

The hours you've been in the air are what makes me wonder whether your job is worth it.”

Let me tell you something, the longest assed flight I've ever been on was to Dubai. You fly from here and it's like you're flying into forever because it takes that long. BUT, once you're there, that frigging palace is worth it.”

I've seen pictures of the place.”

The man is sweet. If you met him, you'd think to yourself he was a class act, but you have no idea how he lives until you get there. Let me just say perfection is that place.”

He showed you around the place?”

The man turned me onto Rolls Royces. His are one of a kind, but they're awesome.”

What does he do with the things when he gets new?”

I don't know, but let's just say he has to have some lucky relatives because I think he replaces the things each year.”


We got up to the apartment and went in. “This is his?”

Yeah, it's like a two bedroom apartment.”


I've not been in theirs, but Sam's is like his.”

If he dare ever says he had a hard upbringing, I'll sit on him.”

I laughed and said, “He doesn't say anything about it. I don't think they have any ill will over it.”

Good, at least you're getting someone normal.”

It makes me appreciate him more. Just think what it'd be like if I was raised normal.”

I was, but even I think this is way over the top. This is like bigger than my mom and dad's whole house!”

Mine too.”

Well, I won't go there about your place.”

I know, so close you can't sneeze without wiping everyone off.”

Not his house, but your grannies. Fuck, I'd never consider that place you lived in with him a house much less anything other than a dog house. I think he lived in what he saw his heart could support.

Small heart, small house. Your grannies' house wasn't large, but it was filled with love...which makes me wonder how he ever came from her.”

She didn't cause that. She knew how to put him into line.”

Well, she should have done it more.”

You know the South. Mama's raise them and then, they're released to raise hell. He raised it, tamed it, and then called all of it his.”

I sure hear that.”

Where's Ev?”

Over at Sam's. Let me go get him and tell him where we are.”

Ok, I'll be here checking out his tunes.”

Ok, there's the stereo unit over there. Feel free, he told me I could.”


I went over the catwalk to Sam's apartment and knocked on the door. Sam came to the door and answered it. “Ev here?”

Yeah, come on in.”

No, I didn't mean to pry. I just wanted him to know Ran and I were over in his apartment. You two go ahead and have your talk, Ran's looking through his music and playing some.”

Ok, you know you're welcome to come up anytime.”

Thanks hon.”

She smiled and said, “I feel like I've not only gained you as a brother, but him too.”


She whispered. “No, Ev. For so long, we've been at each other's throats.”

Oh. Ok, well I'm glad it's happened this way.”

I went back over to Ev's suite and went in. Ran was going through some of Ev's tunes.

You know, he doesn't have a one of his mom's here.”

Why have it here when he can go to the studio and hear the masters?”

Oh, man that had to be nice.”

He probably doesn't see it that way.”

It's strange isn't it. You see the life he's led and he's got her for a mom. You're like her biggest fan and you two end up together.”

Yeah, and I didn't even intend on it. Hell, I never even knew her husband ran any sort of company I could've ever done any business with.”

It's nice for you though, you get love and know the music.”


He's got a nice selection of tunes. The kid spent some money on CD's.”

Yeah, but you've got a nice selection too and you never paid anything for yours.”

I'll have to let him come over some time and browse.”

We'll be over, you know that.”

I'm thinking about moving, so you can come help me move.”

Where you wanting to move?”

I've seen a place which totally rocks mine to hell. It's a lot, but I can afford it.”


It's up in the hills. It's one of those glass houses.”

Ooh, people in glass houses...”

He smiled and said, “Shouldn't throw Rock and Roll? The Rolling Stones?”

I chuckled and said, “It'd be cool.”

Den, I'm going to be changing a lot about myself. With the weight loss, I'll be coming out of my shell more.”

Let's make a deal. You pick 'em and I'll tell you if they're worth having. Don't get one of those fake people who are all plastic. You'll end up having nothing but an alimony payment.”

That's why I'm getting everything before I get the dame. I figure with a pre-nupt, I'll be safe.”

Live with her for a while and then get a pre-living contract. If she's living with you with one of those, she'll sign the pre-nupt.”

You going to get one?” He said with an arched eyebrow.

Nah, what's the use? I'm living in the house his mom give us and he's driving my car. If worse comes to worse, he can get his car back and I'll be looking for another place. I don't think we'll need to do that, so it'll be great.”

What about all your other digs?”

Face it, California law frowns on gays, so I don't even think palimony is going to cover it. Besides, if I go into it thinking negative, I'll get negative. I'll go in positive and keep that.”

He smiled and said, “I gave the advice, that's all I'm going to say.”

Ok, now when is your doctor's appointment?”

I'll call and get one. It'll probably be in a few weeks.”

Ok, let me know so I can get that on my schedule.”

We sat and listened to one of the cd's. I heard a car door out front and said, “D and Bran are back.”

Ok, you need to speak with them?”

Yeah, I'll need to go down and speak with them.”


I went down and the door bell sounded. I thought it strange, but thought maybe they'd left their keys. I answered it and there stood a police officer.

Hello, are Evan or Samantha home?”

One moment, come on in.”

You the butler?”

I smiled and said, “No, I'm the boyfriend. There trouble?”

We're here to tell them there's been an accident.”

An accident?”

Yes, it's bad.”

Involving who? The estate or the wall down there?”

No, the Gordons.”

Oh God, please don't tell me they're hurt!”

It's worse.”

Oh fuck. Let me go get them.”

I went up and ran into Ev's apartment. “Ran! Come on!”

What's up?”

It's the police, they've had an accident and I think they're dead.”


Yeah, come on!”

I went over to Sam's apartment and went on in. Sam and Ev were sitting in a pit group. “Guys, come on.”

What's going on?” Sam asked.

The police are here, you're parents have been in an accident.”

Oh no!” Sam said shocked.

Ev looked at me and said, “Are they?”

I don't know, they never said much. I told them I'd come and get you.”

Oh man.”

He walked with me and Sam was already down the stairs.

We got there and Sam leaned up against Ran.

Ev said, “Don't tell me they're...”

I'm sorry. They went out on I-5 and the car they were in was struck by someone asleep in a semi. They never had a chance.”

Ev looked at me and asked the police, “How'd you know to come here? They just were given the car.”

Your father's driver's license gave the address. Did your mother have her purse with her? If so, we never found it at the scene.”

“No, they were just given the car. We just got it for them. We hadn't even finished the paperwork with the dealership.”

The police officer said, “Don't worry about that. They weren't in the wrong. The driver of the truck either fell asleep or something because the truck was over on their side. It looked as if they tried to get over, but ran out of road because there was a canyon wall.”

I said, “Sir, where have they taken the bodies?”

They're with the medical examiner's office right now. They'll probably be able to be released tomorrow.”

I looked at Ev and said, “Hon, I'll have to step up here. Ok?”

He nodded numbly and I said, “We need to get out a press release. It has to be handled right.”

And your name sir?”

Dennis Johns.”

And your business sir?”

I run my own company, DJI.”

The one police officer said, “Dan, he's on the Fortune 500. He's like the biggest export importer in the world.”

I smiled and said, “Not quite. There are bigger.”

He nodded and said, “Not in the United States. They said you're the biggest.”

Don't always believe them. They got my net worth wrong too.”

You're not a billionaire?”

Yeah, but not that many...just the same, how do I do this with the press?”

The police officer said, “I don't know. My advice is to call her publicist.”

Sam said, “She didn't have one. She retired.”

I said, “Sir, I'll take care of it. Thank you guys for coming. Could I get you guys' names?”

Sure, I'm Dan Ramey and he's Jeff Shields.”

Ok, I've got that down.”

“I'm sorry sir.”

No, you guys are doing your jobs. I'm sorry too.”

Ev was holding onto me and I walked with him to the door to let them leave.”

Guys, how did you get in the gate?”

We notified whomever answered the box and they let us in.”

From behind me, I heard, “It was me Mr Den.”

Ok, thanks for letting them in Sarah.” I looked at the police and said, “Guys, don't worry, I was worried for a moment.”

Jeff nodded and said, “Mr Johns, that car...if you need anything from it, please let us know. The impound yard will be holding pretty tight rein on it to keep the sightseers at bay.”

Ok, please put my name on the ownership of it. That should keep people from being so nosey.”

It might not since you're a celebrity too.”


Ev said, “You're on that list. It makes everyone think you're famous.”

I nodded and said, “Guys, I'm an average person.”

He nodded and got into the car.

Ev said, “What do we do?”

I've got to call and get Georganne, she'll know how to handle this.”

We went inside and sat down in the living room. Sam asked, “What's going to happen?”

Ev looked up at me and I said, “Hon, what we need to do is get a call made to Georganne first. She'll field the press. Otherwise, we'll have a whole lot of them camping out down at the gate.” I paused and said, “Ev, I need to ask some questions. Do you know if your parents had a funeral home or pre-need plan?”

I don't know. I'll call Marty and see. He's dad's lawyer at work.”

Ok, we'll need him too.”

Can you call him?”

Sure, I'll need his number.”


He held out his cell phone and already had it dialed. I took it and heard it ring.



Yes, who is this?”

Dennis Johns, I'm with Evan and Sam, Bran and D were just killed in a car accident.”

Oh Lord.”

Yeah, the police just left. We need you guy.”

I'll be right there.”


I hung up and said, “He's on his way.”

Ran said, “Guys, I'm going to take you upstairs.”

Ev said, “I want to be with Den.”

Sam said, “I want to be here. Don't leave me.”

I'm not guys. I'll be here.”

I held out my phone and called Georganne. “Hello?”

Hi, Den here. We need your help.”

What's going on?”

D and Bran were just killed in a car wreck. I have no clue how to get a statement out to the press.”

Hang on a second. They what?!!!”

You heard correct hon. The police just left.”

Ok, here's what I'll do. I'll be right over.”


I hung up and said, “She's on her way. Other than those calls, I'm not making any.”

Ev said, “What happens?”

Right now, we've got to sit down and we've got to get a list of your employees at the office. They've got to be called and it's got to be decided if you want them to work tomorrow, or give them the day off.”

Give it to them off.”

Ok, so do you have an emergency notification list?”

It's at the office.”

Oh man. Ok, I'll have Marty get it. The second thing I need to do is ask you to go get your mom's purse.”


Credit card companies. We've got to call them and get those shut off. You have no idea how many people will suddenly try to get things with those numbers.”

He looked at me and said, “You're serious!”

Yeah, I'll tell you an incident of someone I knew who ran a huge hotel chain. She died and her lawyer got statements from all over the world stating she'd purchased things with her credit card the day she died.”

That's terrible.” Sam said.

Yeah, and rather than do that to you guys, they're one of the first places which needs called. You might have Marty notify the bank too, but anything which was your mom's probably won't be handled by him.”

Why not?”

He's an employee of your dad's company. It's a thing if your mom's not on the company, then he won't represent her interests.”

Ev said, “She's on the board.'

Good. I'm flying blind here. Don't think I know everything.”

I know.”

Sam said, “Den, we trust you.”

I appreciate that. I'll tell you now I've never dealt with anything like this.”

Ev said, “People are really going to be camped out down there?”

Hon, you'll see fans who have listened to your mom's music all their lives coming out here to feel close to her.”

Do you think we'll be safe here?”

You'll be safe, it'll be a problem getting in and out, but you'll be safe.”

I pulled out my phone and dialed. “Yeah, this is Den. I need you to bring out the limo. Drive through if you have to, but we need it here soon.”

Where are you at?”

Beverly Hills.”

Ok, I'll get in now. It's going to take me two days.”

Damn. Ok, drive and don't stop until you get here. Well, forget it. The news will be out in the morning and we'll need the car by tomorrow afternoon.”

Do you want me to fly out?”

IF you can catch a flight, I'd appreciate it. Use the card and I'll have a limo bought by the time you get here.”

I could get the one from San Francisco and be there by morning.”

Ok, do that. It makes more sense.”

Where in Beverly Hills?”

Ev, what's this address?”

Ev looked at me and the look he gave me wasn't registering anything. Sarah gave me the address from behind. I passed it along and said, “Get here. When you get to the gate, ring up and you'll be let in.”

I'll be there.”

I rung off and said, “Ev, we've got to get you sat down. You're checking out on me bud.”

Sam said, “Evie, come on. Come in here with me and we'll sit together.”

She came over and hugged him. Together, they walked into the living room.

I turned to Sarah and said, “Marty, their lawyer is coming and Georganne is coming to serve as the publicist.”

May I make a suggestion?”


Call Capitol Records. They'll get the word out as they were her last company.”

Ok, any clue the number to call?”

One moment. I had a number I was to call in an emergency with the children.”

Ok, I appreciate this.”

No problem there, I've been with them for years.”

Sarah, please don't worry about employment. I'll retain you here or at my place if need be and you'll be given all you have in seniority from them.”

She smiled and said, “I appreciate that, but I'm taken care of.”

Just the same, let's make sure of that. Do you know how to notify everyone else at the other companies?”

I'll make calls.”


Their pre-need plan is with Shelton's.”

Ok, thanks. I'll call them.”

She handed me a telephone book and I dialed the number I found.

Shelton's Funeral Chapel.”

Hi, this is Dennis Johns. I'm calling to notify you of a couple of deaths.”

Ok, one moment.....ok, I've got a pad and pen.”

D and Brandon Gordon. They're at the medical examiner's.”

D, the singer?”

Yes, I was told they had a pre-need plan through your home.”

Yes, I'm so sorry.”

Be prepared for the mob. When would you like us down there to do things and what do you need from us?”

How about if I come tomorrow and we make the plan there?”

It's not made?”

They picked plans and caskets, but the other necessities weren't decided.”

Do you have internment anywhere?”

One moment, I'm looking in the files right now.”

I'm glad you have that, it helps here because I didn't know anything.”

Right here, one moment, I'm reading the file.”

Ok, it's completely top of the line. Internment is at Forest Lawn. They have a crypt purchased which is already on site.”

Man, I'm glad of that.”

We'll pick up the bodies and be out there to this address at one pm. Is the address still...”

Yes, that's correct.”

Ok, we also have a complete obituary here they were kind enough to provide.”

Ok, could you go ahead and release that? It'd help on our end.”

It says here for me to contact Capitol Records and Motown Records. It also states all matters will be dealt with by Richard Martinez, their attorney.”

He's on his way here. He's been notified.”

Could I get their cause of death? It helps me to know how to deal with the ME down there.”

Car accident. They were hit head on.”

Ok, it'll probably be tomorrow evening before I'm released their remains.”

That's fine, when do you think we should plan on a funeral?”

Let's see, three days from tomorrow will be....Sunday. Do you want it on Saturday or Monday?”

They're having a viewing?”

Yes, it's ordered.”

Ok, let's do it on Saturday.”

I'll plan on then. You do realize this viewing is going to be large.”

I imagine. Whatever you do, don't make it a spectacle.”

I won't allow it. I appreciate your forthrightness.”

I'm winging it. I have no idea what to ask or what to do here.”

You're doing fine. I'll be there at one tomorrow afternoon.”

I hung up and heard a buzzer. Sarah said, “Den, here's the entry gate for the kitchen. There's one in their suite and one in mine. The other is out there in the garage.”

Ok, how do I work it?”

The video screen is here. You flip this and then, to speak, you press this button and they hear what you're saying. You can hear them all the time.”

Ok, what happens about when people are camped down there?”

I'll notify the police. They shouldn't allow it.”


I looked at the monitor and saw a man. “Hello?”

Richard Martinez, their attorney.”

Ok, come on up.” I looked and Sarah said, “That button opens the gate.”

Ok, what happens if someone runs in when the gates open?”

You throw that switch over there. The doors of the house all lock automatically and the police are called. If any windows are open, it'll tell you which ones.”

Ok, they don't lock?”

No, I'll go around and get those shut and locked.”


She smiled and walked off.

I went to the back door and saw Marty just exiting his vehicle. I went out and shook his hand.

I'm glad you're here.”

How's the kids doing?”

Sam's strong. Ev's in a bit of shock.”

I imagine. This is going to rough on him.”

I'll be here with him.”

You're Den?”


Bran had me called today and I'd just gotten paperwork signed for something in regards to you.”

I looked at him, “What?”

He's putting half the company into your name and Ev's in his.”

Damn, is that legal still?”

I think it could be if Ev knew about it.”

We were told, but I didn't really want Bran to do that.”

“The problem with being given something as a bequeath is it's not possible to refuse it. The person giving it can refuse to give it, but the person receiving can't refuse.”

Can I sign it over to Evan?”

Yes, but Bran had specific reasons he wanted you to have it. He wanted you to have it as he knew you'd help Evan in ways no one else could.”

Ok, I'll try, but I don't know. Let's switch subjects, do they have Wills with you?”

That was their Will. Everything else is taken care of.”

Do you have specific directions of what to do?”

It's all in this file. Let's go in and I'll show you.”

We went in and Sarah came over to hug Marty. “Hi Sarah, you knew I'd be here.”

Yes, it's shocking, isn't it?”

Yes, who knew?”

We sat down and he pulled his chair over beside mine. I moved a little and we took the long side of the table. He opened the file folder and said, “Hold on a moment and I'll lay everything out.”

He lay the folder flat and began laying out sheets. The way he did it, each sheet had a color coordinating color with matched a color on the folder.

Bran liked things laid out like this. When it's done, it looks like a huge collage. He could see everything at a glance.”

It's interesting. It makes things a lot easier to understand.”

He smiled.

Over here, is the list of people who must be called immediately.”

I nodded and took the sheet. “Ok, I just got off the phone with the funeral home. The man said he had in his file you were handling things. I didn't mean to cross you out there.”

No, it's fine. It just means one less thing to be handled.”

I looked at the list and said, “You've got their account numbers here and which banks. That's excellent. I'd spoken to Evan about getting her purse, but you've got the information needed.”

Yes, it needs to be done.”

I'm aware of the reason. I was one of the few who were on good terms with Mrs. Helmsley. What happened there wasn't right.”

I've heard a lot of instances like that. Over here is my permission forms to go after those people and those who publish any stories inflammatory to their memories.”

Good, you're prepared.”

I took a lesson from Elvis. It seemed anyone with an axe to grind came out and either told their story or wrote a book. I spoke with her at the time and we made this form to go after anyone who attempted to do likewise to her. All the proceeds from the lawsuits will go to the estate for the kids.”

Good. Don't be afraid to go after them and don't be afraid to expend any amount monetarily. I'll step in with my funds if needed.”

He looked at me and said, “Let's hope there aren't that many.”

I'm not, it just means I don't want you to burden the company with legal fees and am letting you know if you need to hire other attorneys due to the amount of suits, you've got the means.”

He smiled and said, “Bran said you were that way.”

Evan has all rights to what is mine. I'm not going to step back now.”

Ok, now, here's what else we need to do? Have you contacted Capitol?”

The funeral home is doing that.”

Ok, they've got a death notice on file she's approved.”

What about Bran?”

He wanted things to be left extremely quiet about him. He knew her career overshadowed him and wanted it kept that way.”

Ok, now what's next?”

Did you call the AP?”

What's that?”

Associated Press.”


They've got a death notice on file also.”

Damn, I don't have anything planned. They have it all thought out.”

Your attorney should be getting you on that. It's like walking a tightrope without a net.”

Can you do it?”

Yes, but I'll be busy here.'

No, I didn't mean.”

He smiled, “Den, is it ok if I call you that?”


Bran called you that, so I wanted permission.”

If you're on good terms, you get that. If not, I'll let you know not.”

He smiled.

I'll plan yours. We'll get it completed.”

Good, now what's next?”

We need to work on calling these networks.”

Man, that's a list!”

Yes, but my opinion would be to contact Jet Magazine first.”

Ok, let's get to dialing.”

Tell them you've got my backing and if they insist, I'll speak with them.”

Ok, you dialing too?”


I dialed. “Jet Magazine.”

This is Dennis Johns, I need to notify you D Gordon passed away this evening.”

D Gordon?”

Yes, it was her married name. You knew her as D Rost of the Olympians.”

Oh no!”

Yeah, do you have a death notice on file?”

I'll check.”

My list here says you were sent one back in 1984. You might need to brush it up, but it'll work.”

How'd she die?”

Car accident. Her husband was taken too.”

Oh Lord.”

Yeah, I need to get off here.”

Your name please?”

Dennis Johns. Don't keep this cell number as it's my work line.”

Ok, your affiliation with them?”

Family associate.”

Ok, we appreciate the call.”

I'd like to say all the names of all the networks and magazines we notified, but the list was almost five pages single spaced typewritten. When Georganne came, we got her to calling too and about ten pm, the calls were completed.

Georganne asked, “Where are Ev and Sam?”

Ran had them in the living room. I hope they went upstairs.”

You're not with him?”

Hon, this needed done. They put it into my hands.”

She nodded and said, “Any idea what this does to us?”

He's their attorney. His clue would be better than mine.”

Marty heard and held up a finger. We talked amongst ourselves quietly and when he got off the phone he said, “Here's what I was told about the contract you discussed. D said it was completely within her approval boundaries and she was fine with all releases she retained.

I understand you were working with her on a project and my advice is to now get Evan to sign what he wants to release. He's now Samantha's guardian until she reaches maturity and financial guardian until she reaches twenty five.”

I asked, “They put him over her financially until twenty five when he's not that old yet?”

They didn't plan on dying soon, but Bran's comments to me today stated you would be there with him when decisions were made.”

Oh man, this is complicated.”

He smiled and said, “Just know he had complete faith in you.”

I'm glad because I sure feel inadequate now.”

He nodded and asked, “Are we ever ready?”


You're right. It's happened sooner than I had ever imagined, but I'm glad Bran and I had our talk today.”

I've got to think about the business though. It puts me in a conflict of interest with my business and if I do it, I'll have to shut mine.”

He nodded and said, “Those decisions don't need to be made right now.”

You say that, but the government would state otherwise.”

What you decide, let me know and I'll handle everything for you.”

What size is your legal department?”

We've got eight people on staff.”

That's a lot of lawyers, isn't it?”

Two attorneys. I'm senior counsel and there's a minor. We've got two secretaries and four paralegal.”

Ok, I'm learning some things.”

He paused and said, “Den, I can't help but ask. When I drove up, I saw both their vehicles in the garage. What were they driving?”

Ev and I bought them a car. We were going to give them it and take D's Jag on trade. The papers hadn't been signed yet, but I'll discuss that with the dealer.”

Oh man.”

It's a mess. I'm sorry. I never intended it to be their death car.”

He reached out with his hand and laid it upon mine. “Don't think that. It causes undo blaming of your self and it does no good. You had no intention of it as you only thought it something good. I can tell by your reaction it's painful.”

Georganne added, “He told me about giving them the car. They'd just drove away in it. When I spoke with him earlier.”

He nodded and said, “I'll call the dealer if you need. It was purchased in your name?”

In my name, and it was going to be titled to me personally.”

Ok, what I'll tell you is the press is going to really get into your business. I imagine the National Enquirer will put all sorts of slants to the gift. If you'd like me to represent you on it, I will.”

Can we get a statement out to the press by myself?”

Sure, is that what you want?”

I'll have to ask Ev because it's going to probably lead to more questions about he and I and I don't want to infringe upon him in any way.”

Ok, don't for now and let's sleep on it.”

I nodded and asked, “Do you have a contact list in regards to the office?”

It's at the office. Normally, it's here but Bran and I had just discussed putting more names on the list and updating it. In fact, when I spoke with him this evening, he joked about your name being added to the list.”

Tears stung my eyes and I said, “He was a damned nice man. Well, she was an awesome woman too, but I feel I didn't get enough time with them.”

Marty nodded and said, “I worked for him for almost thirty four years and considered his friendship a prize each day. With D, I felt like her times we got to speak were so refreshing it was like a warm rain on my field of flowers in April each time.”

Oh man, you're quite right there.”

He stood up and said, “I need to go speak with the kids a moment. They need to be told a couple of things.”

Ok, don't pressure too much. Ev's not doing so well.”


We went into the living room and when Ev saw us he stood. He held out his hand and said, “Marty.”

Evan, it's damned sad I know, but your dad and I talked earlier and I need to ask you a few questions.”


Bran discussed giving a portion of the company to Den. Did he discuss it with you?”

Yes, he said he was going to. He said they were wanting to retire.”

Ok, is that something you want to pursue?”

Ev looked at me and said, “Do you want it?”

I need to check to see where I am legally. I'd love it, but not if I have to shut the doors on my business.”

Marty said, “Part of what I need to discuss with you, Den, is I can place it into trust for you which should pass the legal hurdles with the government. I think if it works for the President, it should work for you.”

Ok, check things out and let me know.”

He then looked back at Ev and said, 'I'm not pressing on anything with the business. You know what your dad left you and I do too. I'll be here acting in your interest, but I need to tell you you're now responsible for Sam's welfare in guardianship.”

Can Den help me with that?”

I'll get the paperwork filed so he's part of that too.”

Sam nodded and said, “Good, Den and I were discussing things earlier and I'm satisfied with it being that way.”

Ev nodded and said, “Den, be there for us.”

I will babe.”

He came over and hugged me. I said, “Marty, I realize my business isn't a part of your watch, but I need it to be for he and I financially. I want him on my bank accounts and all I possess. It's quite a bit, so I need to let you know that now.”

Marty nodded and said, “I'll get something drawn up to cover him legally if that's what you want.”

What I want is us to be protected legally as if we were married. I realize we can't file joint tax returns on personal income, but in corporate, we can do the closest thing to it. Any pay coming to me from the company, place in my account which he has access to and I'll do likewise for him.”

Marty asked, “Bran and D gave you the house?”

Yes, together, but I have properties all over the world.”

Ok, I'll need a list of them. The reason I'm asking about the house is because it might be best if you all stay over there since this house will be the focal point of the fans. They wouldn't think to look over there.”

Ev said, “It was in mom's name. Is that going to matter?”

Not really. Her residence is listed here in many ways. She filmed the interview with Barbara Walters here, so people will recognize this place. I'd stay there until after the funeral at least.”

Ev asked, “Any idea when it will be?”

I answered, “Saturday. Visitation will be on Friday.”


Sam nodded and said, “What do we need to do?”

I said, “Tomorrow, at one, the funeral director will be here. He'll need us to decide some things and that's when I imagine they'll want what you guys decide they should be buried in.”

Mom told me she wanted her purple dress. It's been told to me all my life, so I know what she wants. Daddy never said.”

Ev said, “I'll get him his best suit and his white shirt. He only had one piece of jewelry and that was their wedding ring.”

Mama had a lot of jewelry.” Sam said.

Ev said, “I'll help you decide.”

He turned to me and asked, “What about the car?”

Don't worry about it. If they still want me to pay, I'll pay and insurance will cover it. It should cover them for any accidental death too.”

I wasn't meaning that. It was still yours.”

Hon, I gave it to them. Well, we did, so in my mind it was theirs. We didn't get to do the paperwork, but we'll handled it as it comes. I'll call the dealer in the morning.”

That man gave you his card. Do you think you should go ahead and call him?”

Ok, it would probably be a shock to him to hear it on the news. He did recognize your dad.”

Marty said, “Den, I'll stand here if you need me.”

I pulled out my billfold and got the card out. I saw my hand shaking. Ran took the card and said, “Here, I'll dial for you.”

He dialed and I listened. “Hello?”

Hi, this is Dennis Johns, I bought a car there earlier from you.”


I need to speak with you because there's been an accident.”

Oh no!”

Yes, nothing in fault of the car, but the couple whom I gave it to as a gift were killed in it. A truck hit them head on.”

Oh man.”

Yeah, now what I need to know is if you want me to go ahead and purchase and then collect from your insurance or if you need me not to, or.....”

Dennis, here's what we'll do. Consider the car paid for. I'll contact our insurance company and we'll get that lined out with their deaths. Consider that funeral paid for as well.”

It's already done.”

Ok, well, I want you to know it's unfortunate, but I'll do all I can to help.”

Ok, now what I need to do is to go ahead and tell you I need a red one like my yellow with a white top and an automatic in it.”

The Ferrari?”

Yes, let me know when you have it available and I'll get it from you. Add it and take it out of my account as a personal vehicle.”

Ok, now what I need to know is this. We've got a limo which meets your standards available. It's up at our dealer in San Francisco, but I can get it here.”

Let me think for a moment. My chauffeur is flying in up there as we were going to bring mine from up there down here. Could you deliver that one to my place up there?”

Sure, give me the address tomorrow and I'll have that done.”

I spoke for a moment and said, “I'm sorry about the hassle. It wasn't my intention on anything like this happening.”

I understand. I know it wasn't anything under your power. It's unfortunate, but you'll see we have things like this planned for.”

Ok, I'm sorry once again.”

You'll be home tomorrow?”

No, here's the address which I'll be. You can come here. I've got the papers here from the car you left.”

Ok, do you want a replacement for the Rolls?”

Not yet, the couple we were giving it to perished in the accident, so there's no need.”

Oh, I'm sorry, it wasn't the fella who was with you, was it?”

No, it was his father and mother.”

Oh dear.”

Yes, bad.”

He's ok, isn't he?”

No, they died.”

No, him. He seemed a lovely sort of fellow.”

He's fine. He's with me now. I need to close this off.'

Ok, what time tomorrow?”

Make it two and we'll be here.”


I hung up and said, “I'm sorry guys, he's very thorough.”

Marty smiled and said, “The Rolls guy?”


He is that.”

Ev asked, “What about the car?”

They're paying for it. Your car will be delivered when it's available.”

I don't feel like it now.”

I understand. I'm not saying you need to drive it right away. In fact, I've got my limo coming down from San Francisco tonight. It'll be here in the morning.”

Ev nodded and said, “I didn't want any problems with the dealer.”

Don't worry about that. He was completely great to me.”

Ev said, “It's uncomfortable to you, isn't it.”

Yes dear, it is. I never thought giving it to them was going to lead to this.”

If I hadn't picked it out.”

I hugged him and said, “Honey, don't think that. You picked it out and we decided to give it to them.”

If I'd just kept it for myself, this wouldn't have happened.”

Marty gave me a look and I said, “Here's the deal on the car.

Ev and I went to the dealer. He picked the car out because he thought I wanted him to have a Rolls. It didn't matter one bit to me what he picked, but he thought I wanted him to have it, so he picked it.

Later, we discovered the lack of communication and decided to give it to D and trade her cars so Ev could trade in her Jag on him a Ferrari and she'd have the Rolls. That's the story on the car.”

Do they still want mom's car?” he asked.

I don't know and I didn't discuss him about it. To me, it's not something I wanted to bring up.”

Sam said, “I'll take it.”

Ev turned and smiled. “Sam, you've got a car coming already.”

He turned to me and asked, “We can give her the other one right?”

Sure, that's no problem.”

She said, “What is it?”

It's an Aston Martin convertible.”

She nodded and I said, “I'm sorry it's at a time like now.”

Ev turned to her and said, “Mom and Dad would love for you to have it. Mom would probably be laughing and jumping up and down like she did with the Rolls. Dad would want to take it out for a spin like he did the Rolls.”

She nodded and said, “They were happy about that car. Mom hadn't acted like that in a long time.”

She came over and hugged me and said, “Thanks Den.”

Hon, don't think anything of it. We're a family still and they'll be with us in spirit.”

Marty came over and said, “Den, I'm glad you're with us. It's nice to see your interactions and I like it.”

Ev looked at him and said, “He's great.”

Your dad said he was, but you know how I am. I'm suspicious until I see everything for myself.”

Georganne said, “Den's in there fighting for them as much as a member of the family. Don't worry about him at all.”

Marty looked over at Ran and asked, “What's your name?”

Randy, I'm.....”

Sam interrupted and said, “He's my boyfriend. He's Den's best friend and Ev approves of him highly.”

Randy looked surprised. He gave me a look like, “What the hell!” and I shrugged a bit.

Ev smiled and said, “Earlier tonight, when we were up in Sam's apartment, she and I were discussing how she was going to get Ran to go out with her. I guess that cat jumped clear out of the bag.”

I laughed and Marty looked shocked. Ran's face was one which was priceless. “You mean you like me, you really like me!”

I said, “Ran, you're not Sally Field and you're not getting handed an Oscar. Buck up and deal. She likes you and you can either say you're happy about it, or you can shut up and sit down and I'll answer for you in affirmative, but you two are going to go out.”

Ran smiled and said, “But I'm fat!”

She said, “Ran, you're over weight yes, but you're a nice guy and you really care a lot about people. I could go out with someone and find him all wrong because he'd be fake, or I could find you and know everyone likes you and I think you're great.”

Marty asked, “What's your line of work Randy?”

I have my own company. It's Video Generations International.”

Marty looked like he thought for a moment and asked, “What sort of work does your company do? I've heard of it, but I don't know where.”

I do a lot of editing on music videos. If a company needs computer graphic effects added to some film, I can do it. I film commercials and do a wide variety of other things like mixing audio.”

Did you do a commercial for us once?”

What's the company?”

Dollar Stores.”

Oh man, yeah, I did a whole Summer's worth of commercials three years ago. The guy shot the footage and then sent it to me. I added the prices on and a lot of other graphics.”

Marty nodded and said, “Ok, I'm remembering now. It was good work.”

I said, “Marty, here's a clue to what he really does. If you turn on MTV, MusicBox, VH1, BET, and any video network, it's probably a commercial for his business as he's done a whole lot of them.”

Marty looked impressed. “How much sales?”

Ran's chest puffed out a little. “Annually last year, I did almost seventy million. My net side of the business was over forty eight.”

I looked surprised. “Damn, you said you could afford things bud, but I didn't know you were doing that good!”

He smiled and said, “Four videos a week, a quarter of a million each and that's just the videos. All the other work is where I vary in the numbers.”

Ev said, “Cool.”

Ev turned to Marty and said, “Marty, I need to ask you a question about something? Mom and dad worked on a song with us last night. Mom was going to release it on an album, but now that probably won't happen. Where are we legally if we would like to still release it?”

As executor of their estate, it's within your rights.”

I asked, “What about allowing the song to be placed on a new star's album?”

Ev looked at me perplexed and I finished, “Sam's wanting a career in music and we could release it on hers.”

Marty said, “It's completed?”

Ev nodded and said, “Come in here and we'll let you hear it. I'd not be excited, but you're going to hear dad sing and wonder why he ever opened a store.”

They walked to the studio and Ran and Sam stayed. Georganne said, “Den, I'll go home. It looks like the night is winding down. What's on for tomorrow?”

One, we have the funeral director here. Two, the car dealer. Other than that, I think it'll be crowd control later in the afternoon when the word gets out. Come on over when you can.”

She nodded and said, “What's needed over at your house?”

Beds, furniture, a lot of things. I like the suggestion, but for now, it's needing a lot of work.”

Sam asked, “Who's going to complete the works now that mom and dad are gone?”

Hon, I'm not worried about that. It's something I've not even thought about.”

I could help. I know how to do it.”

Ok, maybe, but not right now.”

She said, “Den, you need to know something. The way I'm looking at it is mom's out on another tour and Dad went with her. To me, that's the easiest way for me to think about it right now.”

Ok hon, but let's not worry about the other house. If we need to leave here because of crowds, I'll get us into Ran's place or somewhere else.”

Ran looked shocked and said, “My place if filthy. Don't do that to me!”

Ran, you need to get the place policed. Your girl here is going to think you're that big of a slob all the time. Either tell her Pizza Hut decorated the place or part with your collection of boxes which lay around it and smile at the memories of them.”

Sam laughed and Ran said, “Bud, you're cruising for that bruising.”

Hugs don't bruise idiot! I keep telling you I'm not your type!”

Sam said, “Ran, just tell him you love him and he'll let me come over. I'll help you clean the place.”

He said, “No, I'll call in the Wonder Women and have them go through it.”

He smiled and asked, “Den, could you come outside for a moment?”

Sure, let's not go outside, we can take it to the kitchen.”

I went over to Sam and said, “We'll be back kiddo.”

Ok” she said hugging me.

We went into the kitchen and Ran said, “Den, what am I going to do?”

Say yes, you dumb ass!”

She's fifteen for chrissake!”

And? I'm not telling you to fuck her. I'm telling you to go out with her. You don't like her?”

She's a fucking ten and I'm like a negative nine.”


Georganne came in. “Guys, you're hardly whispering!”


She smiled and said, “Ran, you're ship has come in and you're bitching because you were expecting a row boat. Face the fact she's taking you on board and get in there.”

I smiled and said, “Sis, that was hardly whispering.”

He seems to react to me when I'm screaming at him.” she said with a huge smile.

Ran said, “Ok, but I feel uncomfortable. If I wind up in prison Den, I'm going to get out and you'll be my bitch.”

In your deepest darkest fantasies darling. You might find you like handcuffs and men in uniforms. I've got your number.”

He smiled and said, “It sounds like you'd like it too much.”

I went over to him and said, “Ran, listen up. If it were she who were above age and Ev was telling me he wanted me, what would you advise?”

I'd say, go with your heart and.... damn.”

Yeah, now go with your heart and love her back.”

Don't you think this is a fucked up time?”

Not really, they were discussing things about you earlier, so the difference is Bran and D aren't here. If they were, I bet you D would tell you to be good to her baby and Bran would be in having a talk with you about how he trusts you and you should really be careful of your nuts because if you think they're fragile, so is his daughter's heart. You break, he'd break and one will hurt just as bad as the other. Since Bran's no here, I'll step up and say the same.”

Georganne laughed and said, “Ran, you have him from the front and I've got you from behind because what he doesn't do, I'll be doing to your ass. I'll step a foot off in it and chew on it until my legs kicking you in your brain for that move.”

He said seriously, “So you think?”

Ran, listen, I'd say she's the sort of girl she knows what she likes. She's got someone who is good for her and has a solid base like her daddy. He too had a wife who went out on the road while he stayed at home being her rock. I think she chose wisely.”

Ev came in and said, “Guys, I can't help but hear what you're discussing.

Here's what we talked about upstairs. She is attracted to you Ran. She knows you're fragile somewhat, but when it counts, you've been there for Den. She admires that because she knows you'd be there for her.

Tonight, where were you? You were there for her and it's not anything other than your ability to be a friend and show you're capable of more. Be her friend and if it works so it's something more, then run with it.”

You approve of her age and mine?”

Ran, you're ten years older. Look at my dad and mom's age. My dad was nine years older than mom. They had us when they were older, but you know what? They had a lot of good years together.

I can only hope Den and I get so many, but if you ask me, I'll tell you I also hope we go together because I know my dad would've been lost without mom and mom would've been likewise over losing dad. To me, they got lucky. They're in heaven together and both are smiling to see they got to meet you and know I have mine.”

Ran nodded and said, “Ok, but what I'm going to do is ask you to take her out and let me talk with her. Do you mind?”

Sure.” Ev said.

I said, “Ran, take her over and get her one of those Baskin Robbins things you like. The one that's in the cone.”

Ok” he smiled.

Marty came into the kitchen and said, “Ran, what I'll do is I'll write a release from liability if you want. If you're worried, that will protect you.”

Ran nodded and went into the living room. Marty looked at Ev and I saying, “Guys, I don't know the guy, but if Bran and D approved of him, I'll stand behind their judgments.”

Ev said, “Marty, he's one which as soon as he got here, mom let him go all the way through the archive. She even thought enough of him to let him stay there and do what he wanted while she came into the house.”

Marty nodded and said, “That spoke loudly. She never trusted anyone out there.”

Ev nodded and said, “Marty, I'm going to give him complete permission to go ahead and make a DVD of all the things mom has. We were planning on having mom interviewed, but now we'll have it so other stars are giving the presentation.”

Marty nodded and said, “She spoke with me about it and said she was more excited about that than she'd been in years. I think it'll be something everyone's going to like. I know I want to be one of the first to see it.”

Mentally, I got a good idea of the way Marty perceived himself in the relationship he had with Bran and D. He viewed himself as their guardian and protector legally. I imagine he'd seen both of them get hurt or attempts made to hurt them and he viewed Ran and I as threats too. Time would show him and nothing else was liable to change his suspicions.

Marty, I need to ask some questions of you in regards to legalities.”

Ok, now?”

Yeah, one of them should be discussed with Evan present.”


That archive out there. She had a blanket statement allowing her to get those records, but could they come back and try to get them?”

Not while I'm alive they can't. I drew up that statement. Yes, it's a blanket statement, but that's what protected her all these years. He signed it and allowed her to go in and whether she took one file or all of them, he allowed it.”

Ok, I was worried. I'm not so up on legal stuff, so on things like that, I'll need your input.”

That will be fine as long as there isn't a conflict of interest.”

There won't be, just realize he and I are together from here on out. You tie us and bind us and we'll be fine. I'm not worried about us exploding, but everyone else. I'm sure you were in situations where you had to step in and protect them, so feel free to maintain the same action.”

He looked perturbed and said, “Den, it's nothing you've done, but I can't do that. My position will be to protect their interests completely.”

Ok” I looked at Ev and said, “Sell me the company. If he sees he's now working for me that way, he'll also see all the money from the sale go into my account as ours. You'll have complete access to the funds and you'll still sit where you are now. The only thing which will change is he'll feel like he's now working for me.”

Marty said, “No, you're misunderstanding me.”

No, I'm not. You're saying Bran giving me half isn't as good as Evan's half and yet, is Ev giving me half of seven hundred million in a bank? Is he given me seven and a half percent of an insurance company? Is he giving me another two billion in real estate at least? No, so he's getting more than me from what I give him and I'm getting half of what he has.

You're looking down and saying the half I got is somehow less than fifty percent because of loyalties. I'll tell you he got the better end of the deal but I'm not upset.

Tie us and bind us because he got the better end of the deal. Fuck me on legalities and I'll use what I have left to bury your ass in a court room.”

Ev said, “Marty, you need to lighten up. Dad trusted him because he saw Den as being completely upfront. Mom trusted him with a lot and you saw him protect her interests. My interests have been completely covered here.”

Marty looked at Ev and then at me. “I'm sorry you feel like I'm not behind you.”

I don't know what it is. I get an impression you're standing there in judgment and it pisses me off. If you can't see I'm legit, then discover it damned fast and change it. That attitude is yours, not mine.”

Are you legit?”

Ev said, “Damn it Marty! You saw dad's report on him! He's legit. I saw the man go through a credit report today and if a car dealer will trust him enough to let that much money roll out the door with him, then I know he's legit.”

I said, “Ev, it's not you, but I've got to get out of here. That question has me really irked.”

Ev turned to Marty and said, “Here's the deal. Go and look at that report. Read it and decide if you still find doubt. If you do, then turn the file there over to Robert and consider yourself fired. Dad trusted him and that was after he got the report.”

Marty said, “Guys, I'm sorry. I don't know what it is, but I just don't know how to back off from protecting everyone in this family.”

I said, “I understand. What you're failing to realize is this family was going to grow. The kids were going to find significant others and you were going to have to accept them too.

In a legal sense, you represent him, but Bran attempted to make the playing field level. Apparently, you still don't trust it. I'm saying to try.”

Marty asked, “Guys, give me a month. If at the end of a month I'm not better, then fire me. I imagine it's just too many changes happening at once.”

I held out my hand and said, “Marty, look into my background. I'll tell you now you're going to see a fucked up background. My dad's an alcoholic and an abusive asshole. I've not hidden a thing about that and if I could, I'd personally see to it that wasn't so. I can't without getting myself into a world of trouble. He knows that and I know it, so I wish him dead and he thwarts me daily.

You see this nose. It was broken by him. You see this jaw. Broken by him. Ribs? I've had more broken than I can even imagine. The scar above my eye. The scar on my leg. The scar on my back. And the scar on my soul all inflicted by him.

Tell me legally how I can get the man gone and I'll be forever in your debt, but what I demand of you is to protect us because once the funeral pictures go out, you're going to see a great big target painted on our backs and that man smelling a dollar bill will come to try to claim it.

That's why I want Evan protected...because I know the man now thinks if I die, he'll gain all I own, possess, and have. I want Evan protected so if he does take me out, I'll die laughing at how I beat the fucker.”

Ran came in and said, “Marty, you don't know me, but everything he's said is true. He could tell you stories all night long, but in the end, it's up to you to trust.” He turned to Ev and I and said, “I'm not sure how long we'll be, but I'll have her home.”

Ev turned to Sam and said, “I've got to call the school tomorrow to excuse you out, but don't think it's not a priority.”

She smiled and said, “I know.”

Ok, work with me and I'll work with you.”

She laughed and said, “I love you Ev.”

I love you too. Now scoot!”

They left and Marty said, “Where is your dad?”

Beaufort, South Carolina. He was a town Marshall, but lost his position due to attempting to drain my bank account after 9/11.”

Marty's eyebrow raised. I continued. “I was supposed to be on one of the flights. I never made the flight and in his zeal to be wealthy, he forgot to check his sources I was actually dead. The banker gave him the money and I showed up and sued the hell out of the bank. That's all provable.

Since he lost the money and his job, he's appointed his best friend town Marshall and is life long friends with the Sheriff. Together, they've got a corner on justice in that county. That's all provable.”

Marty asked, “You won the suit?”

Yeah, I got back my funds because the banker had not one shred of paper to document his release of my money...all three hundred million of it.”

Marty asked, “You said you wanted Ev to sign signature cards, where's that account?”

Kearney, Nebraska. It's there because once again, my dad's an alcoholic and I figure even if he made phone calls, by the time he got to that state, he'd be drunk. I know he'd sure not make it that far driving.”

Your dad's abused you?”

Yeah, check the family service out there. Ran saved my life and I got moved out of there and in with my granny. I lived there until she died and I inherited her house. Since then, I go back to the town and face my dad in order to see the house. Each time, I either get harassed or abused by him. Ran gets the same treatment.”

He's beaten Ran?”

No, harassment. Ran gets pulled over. His family gets pulled over if he's in the car. When he goes shopping, the police pull him and publicly frisk him for possibly shoplifting.”

Ran think about suing?”

Who? The law? You can't sue the law.”

No, your dad.”

My dad doesn't do anything to him...it's all hush hush and wink wink.”

Have you thought about doing anything legal to your dad?”

Dude, nothing gets done when anyone's around except his jaw flopping. He says disrespectful shit about my mom and because she's dead, no one can prove anything. In turn, I say shit about him trying to provoke him for that public outburst of abuse. It doesn't happen.”

The only recourse you have is private security protecting you.”

Yes, and I'm following up on that. Until my dad dies, I promised Bran I would never take Ev to that town.”

Marty nodded and said, “That's good. It might be bad because Evan can't go there, but it's for the best interest of his security.”

Ev smiled and said, “Guys, you're not thinking the way I'm thinking.”

Marty and I both stopped and looked at him.

Ev said, “Marty, as a lawyer for our company, can you sue someone who speaks inflammatory against a member of our board?”

Yes, if it can be proved.”

Ok, so here's what I see. A store costs us about three hundred thousand in inventory. If we have to build, it's a little over a million depending upon the parking. So what we do is we go there and we put in a store if there's not one already.

If it needs a Grand Opening, then we publicize it high and low and we have both he and I there. People will come and him not knowing he's an owner, he'll come in and make a fool of himself in the store. That's when we sue him and make that public.”

Marty nodded and said, “Ok, that would work.”

I said, “No, it would work for the altercation, but the moment we file suit, he or his buddies would have that store torched.”

Ev nodded and said, “We go with a roll down shutter to protect the glass....since it's hurricane country. We do the same over the dock and rear entrance. We make everything fireproof as much as we can and we place video all over the place.”

Marty said, “Let me check to see if we have a store there.”

I said, “Guys, you're talking about wasting a million to try trapping him up in something he might not do.”

Ev said, “I'll roll the dice. You now know it takes three hundred thousand for inventory, but what you don't know is we'll make that return the first two weeks we're open.”

Marty pulled out his cell phone and called someone. He asked, “Is there a store in Beaufort, South Carolina?”

He listened and said, “Nine forty three. Where's it located there?” He listened some more and said, “Thanks.”

He snapped his cell shut and said, “Nine forty three is there. It's located in a shopping plaza.” He smiled and said, “Ok, now, what I'll do is beef up the security there, the video and get that shutter installed. We'll have sound on the video and place a placard on the front which announces everyone video surveillance is inside.”

Ev said, “Have them repaint the store in the scheme we were discussing as for our new colors. Put new plastic in the marquee and go to that new layout. We'll reopen it and advertise it as such.”

I said, “Ok, I'll go along with it, but what happens if he comes in with his pistol shooting like he did the last time I was there.”

Marty asked, “Is it a conceal and carry state?”

I have no idea. What does it change?”

You're telling me your dad is a former law enforcement officer. If he comes into a store with a loaded weapon, it's a misdemeanor, however if he uses it, it becomes a felony because my people will throw the money at him and make whatever he does an armed robbery. The second he does, my guard there will blow a cap in his ass and he'll be dead.”

I said, “Guys, I was for it up until that. It might be legal, but this conversation just took us over to premeditated murder.”

Marty said, “Den, we'll stop. It's that we want to help you. I'm sorry.”

No problem. I ride that fence all the time.”

Ev nodded and said, “I'm sorry.”

I realize that Ev. It's something I deal with all the time. I probably could've hired a mercenary a long time ago to do some real agonizing things to him, but instead, I've had to go the route of not going home as often.”

Marty asked, “Den, what if we can get him locked up for a long time? Would that be an option?”

I'd like to think it would help. What I think is he'd be able to concentrate upon his efforts from there and I'd be no better off.”

I beg to differ. Inside a jail cell, he'd have monitored calls and with urging by myself, he wouldn't be allowed to be housed in that county.”

I smiled and said, “Guys, it's been so simple all along it's scary to think it just hit me!” I smiled upwards and said, “Thanks Bran.”

I looked at Marty and asked, “Would you call who you just called and see what stores there are in the Savannah area?”

Marty nodded and called. When he got off the phone, he said, “Six in the area. What's on your mind?”

Savannah is right down the road. It's in an entirely different state. Anything he did there would be out of the county, and under a different set of laws. He'd make that move because he could go do what he wanted and come back home to be on his bar stool at the same time.”

Marty smiled and said, “He'd be away from the other guys and not able to control them as easily.”

Ev nodded and said, “Do you want to do that?”

Without killing him, I'll set myself up to be a decoy. I do think he'll come if he thinks it can publicly embarrass me. How long does it take to get a store redecorated?”

Ev said, “Two weeks.”

Ok, do all of them in the Savannah area and get those safety precautions set up. On the one we're going to use, put in a roll shutter door which has a fast acting roll down on it. It can lock us in the store in less than ten seconds and protect anyone who is outside from entering while he's being held.”

Ev nodded and said, “Let me make a call.”

He pulled out his cell and spoke. “Get all the equipment ready for a remodel we spoke about. You should know I'll be installing a lot of security features so you'll need to work around those guys.”

He spoke with whomever he was speaking a while longer as Marty and I spoke.

Marty said, “Den, it sounds like you've been through hell with this man.”

Yes, but he's my dad and I keep hoping one day he'd get better. If it hasn't happened in twenty years, I doubt if it will.”

That's how long your mom has been dead?”


Marty asked, “When did you go live with your grandma?”

I was fifteen. It didn't stop, but it sure slowed down.”

No one looked at him with disdain for losing his son?”

No, anything with juveniles are bound to secrecy from the papers. He kept it quiet and so did granny.”

Marty nodded and I said, “We need to have the Beaufort area and all the areas around there canvassed with flyers. One thing I want on them is to advertise Evan and I being co-owners and partners. I'll slip a press release into the paper there advertising the 'local boy does good' angle and have in it Ev and I's relationship.”

Ok, that would prod him.”

Yeah, everyone down there at the VFW would goad him for having Ev as a son in law. Two days before the Grand Opening, I'll call him and tell him I expect him not to be there and threaten him if he ever tried to touch a hair on Ev's head, he'll have me to deal with.”

You really know how to push his buttons!”

For a long time, I lived trying not to push them so I didn't get beat. Now it feels good to push them to get him to mess up.”

Marty smiled and said, “I had a friend once who went through much the same. It was terrible. I wonder what happened to him?”

I said, “On that flyer, I want it to state we'll be at the store doing the Grand Opening between five and seven at night. It being open all that day and the week prior so people can see it will give him the opportunity to go scout it. If he does, we'll know because I'll have someone keeping an eye on him.”

Ev got off the phone and I said, “Ev, you might want to call Trent and tell him we'll be needing video and that door on the one building.”

He nodded and said, “I'll get sound there also. We'll have it wired with both bubble cams and corner cams.”

I said, “You might want to tell him I'll be manning the cash register so none of the workers are hurt. If my dad sees me in that capacity, he'll be more likely to draw his weapon and if it's aimed at me, it'll definitely be viewed by a jury as an armed robbery.”

Marty said, “That's smart in a way. What's he going to say? No, I wasn't trying to rob the place, I was only trying to kill him! That'd get him more time.”

I said, “Yeah, but if he pulls the trigger, I'm done. I can't outrun him there.”

Ev began speaking into his phone.

Marty said, “Let's work on something which will protect you from any gunshots which are fired.”

Body armor only does so good. If he does a head shot, I'll be dead.”

Marty shook his head and said, “I really wish you'd let us have someone who would shoot back.”

I said, “Marty, the only way I'll do it is if it's a police officer from that town who can testify along side the video.”

Do you think his death will stop the harassment in your town?”

It's not the harassment which bothers me. It's the physical abuse and the dodging flying bullets. I know my mom wasn't a slut and I know she was a good wife to a fault. He can't say anything which matters to me anymore than he has. The way I dealt with it was by substituting mentally every slur on her as him talking about himself.”

It was a cruel game.”

Kids live it all the time in this world. We're not likely to stop it because it's hidden so well. For every one who gets saved, there are thousands more who are tortured. Until we have video in each home, it's not likely to end.”

Marty nodded and said, “Have you thought about suing him on the abuse?”

No, is that possible?”

It's possible. Do you want me to get the suit filed so he's got that to face publicly before the Grand Opening?”

Do it. It'll stir the pot more and really have him ducking his head publicly.”

Marty smiled and said, “The good thing there is once he's taken in, the suit can still inflict damage and make everyone aware of how it was for you in that town. I'm thinking it'll back the police off if we use the press to tell both you and Randy are harassed each time you go there by them.”

Good thinking. They'll really be stirred up worse than a hornets nest, but what I think is I'll have Randy's parents go on a cruise for two weeks so they're not arrested falsely.”

Ev got off the phone and said, “Trent's coming over tomorrow with the blueprints and layouts. He doesn't think you should be working in the store.”

That's my conditional offer. I'll not have anyone else jeopardized for me.”

Ev nodded and said, “I'd probably not either and Trent said as much.”

Marty said, “Guys, I'm going to go. If you need me, call me anytime and I'll come running.”

Ev said, “Let me put you in a code for the gate so you can get in and out without having to buzz up.”

I asked, “When you do that, can I get a code too?”

Sure, here's the way Dad set it up. Dad's was Dad1 on the touch pad down there. Mom's was Mom1. Mine is Evan and Sam's is SamG. Yours can be Den1 and Marty's can be Mart. It's easy to remember and it gives us all different ones.”

I asked, “Does that register when someone enters or leaves?”

Yes. It's quite complex. I could show you the main computer which operates it and you'd be amazed at all it does. It even registers the weather and records the video around the estate.”

I asked Marty, “Before you leave, could I speak with you alone out back?”


I hugged Ev and said, “I'll be right back.”

Marty and I went out and he asked, “What's on your mind?”

Marty, what does their Will state about this house and the servants?”

This house goes to the kids jointly and nothing is said about the help...except for Sarah.”

Good about Sarah.”

Why'd you ask?”

It's going to be hard. Ev and I were given the house over in Bel Aire and I'm personally wanting Sam to have this place. I'm not bringing it up to them, but the way they had the help around here, it's going to cost us an arm and a leg to keep them going.”

They did have a lot of servants.”

You telling me! It bugs me to fritters how thick they are. I'm sure that's how they wanted to live to be reminded they'd made it, but I imagine it's somewhere close to half a million a year just to keep them on!”

Marty nodded and said, “An estate this size is a huge responsibility.”

I'm not complaining about the money. I want you to know that, but one thing you'll learn about me is my friends know me, but outside of those select few, I don't want people to know squat about me. Having servants means I have a bunch of people who are apt to walk in when he and I are making out and so on and so forth. That thought bugs me and is one thing I put my foot down about for the house over there.”

You wanting to get rid of them?”

No, well, if Sam wants them, I'm fine with them being here, but I imagine she'll be living with us. I don't know. This sucks.”

Marty put his hand on my arm and said, “It's something they didn't count on. I'll tell you they'd be proud of you for stepping up. I can see your love for them and can see you're fighting with your own morals and theirs.'

True. One thing you'll learn about me is I've got all that money and don't want to be treated like I've got it. To me, I like the cars and the nicer style of living, but an estate like this just isn't in me. All my places I've got, nowhere do you see someone who is just there to wait on me. Yeah, I've got a chauffeur, but that's because it'd look really cheap of me to drive it and do business up front instead of the back.”

He smiled.

Other than that, I eat out and I cook my own when in. I clean up after myself and use temporary cleaning services instead of live in. I do that for everything I can.”

Marty nodded and said, “That's a good way to do things, but they wanted people to be there at a moments notice.”

I guess that's good if you want it, but it's a waste of money.”

He smiled and said, “It didn't matter to them.”

That's where I have the problem. A penny saved is a penny earned and waste not want not...you know how it is.”

He nodded and said, “I see where you're coming from. It'll be an adjustment, but you also need to realize those kids just inherited a lot of money. They'll probably be afraid to change things since they grew up this way.”

I know Evan is prepared for the changes I want. It was a part of what we'd discussed. I don't know about Sam, but the only person I've promised to keep on is Sarah. I want you to know that before hand so if we shut the estate until Sam grows of age for it to be hers, there's not going to be a lot of people kept on.”

The grounds will be kept.”

They've got a company they own for that. The same for security.”

Sarah will need to be spoken with if you're planning on moving her to the other house. Here, she has her own apartment and there, I don't know. One thing I do know is she was bequeathed a half a million.”

Nice. I'm glad, she's a nice lady.”

She is like a member of their family.”

I treat her as such. Now, another thing I'm going to ask is this. What do we do with their things when it comes time?”

Marty blanched and said, “I can't tell you there. I know no matter when you go into that apartment it's going to be sad. It'd seem heartless to do it when they're not ready, but it'll be wasteful to not do it and let things deteriorate up there.”

I'll speak with Ev and Sam about donating some items to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and some other museums. That would be a good way to honor D's memory and keep her in the hearts and minds of her fans.”

He nodded and said, “It's going to be rough. I'll tell you now D didn't have only adoring fans. There were some real crack pots out there.”

I imagine. Do you think any of them will come after the kids?”

No, but don't think that just because I said so. I can't tell you what some of them think.”

Ok, good looking out and I'll let you know if anything looks strange.”

Call Trent first and me second. If it looks strange, it's probably an immediate threat.”

What I'm doing first is getting my limo down here. Second, I'm going to ask for some body guards from Trent for the next few weeks. I know the crowds will be thick anywhere we go and cameras will be shoved in their faces.”

Be aware they'll be shoved in your face too. You and he being together are going to really have people wanting a photo.”

I imagine. I think it's stupid, but I know how they were for some others.”

He nodded and said, “Well, I'll be going. Give me a call if you need me.”


I went back inside and Ev came over to hug me. “What's going on?”

Ev, I had some questions I wanted to ask to get some advice...not legally, but how he thought things should be handled here.”

Like what?”

About this house, about your parents things, about a lot of things which I think if I put my opinion in it'll seem pushy.”

What did he say?”

He said Sarah was provided for in their Will. All the other servants weren't. In regards to your parent's things, it's rather touchy. It'd seem heartless to say anything, but it's wasteful if we don't handle them.”

I know. I just have no idea. There are so many things we'll have to do I just don't know what to do.”

Let's not worry about it tonight. What do you think about Sam and Ran?”

Sam's more set on him than you think. She said he caught her eye the moment she saw him.”

Ok, but let me tell you this so if you and she speak, she can be told.”


Ran's got an appointment to have some surgery done to have him lose weight. She might like him as he is, but he doesn't.”


Other than that, Ran was wanting to move up into one of those glass houses on the hill instead of his place he has now.”

Do you think he'd want to live here?”

Probably, it'd be good for his business and hers.”

I know. Another thing I'm thinking about is mom's archive. They could care for it better than me. I don't know much about it and don't really want it.”

I hugged him and said, “Ev, I'm so sorry about how tonight has went.”

Hon, look at it this way. Sam told us how she's handling it and I think it's smart. As soon as I heard it put that way, I started thinking like that and it's helping a whole lot.”

It will, but it can't become a delusion in which you think they'll come home.”

I know.”

We hugged a moment and then he asked, “I want some ice cream.”

Ok, we can go out and get some.”

No, there's some in the freezer. It's my favorite.”

What kind?”

Apple pie a la mode.'

Sounds good.”

It has apples and cinnamon swirled through vanilla. It's good.”

We got out a couple of bowls and he made us some real high stacked mounds. I said, “I'm putting mine in the microwave, do you want yours done too?”

What does that do?”

It knocks the edge off so it doesn't freeze your teeth.”


I put it in and when it was zapped, I handed him his and we went to the bar to sit.

He said, “Hon, please don't think Marty is normally like that. Tonight is the first time I ever saw him be that way.”

I understand. I'll tell you how I see him and you'll laugh.”


Imagine a guard dog. He's loyal to his master and his master's family, but anyone else gets a growl. I'm here and he growled. What he doesn't know is I'm going to be here and your dad had his reasons to sign things into my name.”

Your tone of voice says you disapprove of that.”

I do. I think it should go to Sam.”

Sam got all of mom's money, the rights and royalties, and all of the things which could ever go to mom from her career. I got all of dad's. If there had been another boy, I'd have to share, but that's the way they had things.”

Ok, that's sexist, but I understand.”

He smiled and said, “Sam's going to be fiercely protective of it.”

I know, but what I do think is we should donate some of the costumes to some museums.”

Mom said not to do it. She said she thought a museum to the group would be better.”


Because if we charged a small fee for the tour, it could help support the other group members.”

Ok, do you want some advice?”


Put the museum out here instead of anywhere else. Let me make some calls tomorrow and see what's available. I have a few ideas of what can be done and it'd be nice.”

What's your ideas?”

This DVD we're about to make is what I'm thinking. If we got an old movie theater, we could show it and have the museum in the expanded lobby area”

Ok, but you don't realize there's a lot of costumes.”

Ok, let's forget the buying an old movie theater and build a building. I'm thinking of the costumes, but I'm also thinking about wax figurines of her in pose in the costume.”


She is out there at the Hollywood Wax museum. I'm sure they will let us have her measurements for the figures and maybe would make them if we allow them to rotate out the costumes with the one they have.”

Ok, I'm getting the picture.”

Good, now think of the way I see it. For a lot of her songs, she had a dance she did. For “Halt”, they had a dance. We could use that costume she wore for it. Then, there's the concert she did in the park which was world famous. We could have another of the background and clips of the footage on monitors next to the scene.”

This is sounding cool.”

It costs money, but I think if it were done right, it'd be wonderful. What we need to do is have the place ooze class and do it up so she would be totally in love with it.”

This is going to sound bad, but I want it to be an entrance fee which gets people to not think twice about paying it to get in.”

Ok, how about three fifty flat per person. A family of four is fourteen and that's a good price.”

He smiled and said, “One thing I'll request is all the scenes be behind glass. Another thing, is absolutely no chewing gum. She hated the stuff and wouldn't let us kids have any.”


It gets in the carpets, our hair, and people put it under the seats in the stadiums when they had concerts. You don't know it, but the promoters charged them a lot for removal of the stuff. She said with what she paid to remove it, she could've bought a gum company.”

Man! I never knew.”

Yeah, so absolutely no gum.” He smiled and said, “Now, do you want to be in for a surprise?”


Come here.”

He took me into the studio. He punched some buttons and suddenly, I saw the digital replay of the night we recorded there.

He turned to me and said, “It's our security system for the house. Little would we think we can use it for the video to the songs.”

Oh man” I said “Chills are going up and down my spine.”

He nodded and said, “Den, don't think the whole house is like this. She had it in the studio because there was a time when they were recording something at Motown when someone did something and an unusual sound was made. As much as they tried to recreate it, they couldn't until one night in a concert she heard it and stopped the concert to get the guy to do what he just did again. When they built the studio, they put in video for it so it'd never happen again.”

Man, this is awesome. I hate seeing me there, but seeing your mom and dad perform the song is so nice.”

I like it because it will show everyone in one long take how it was done in one take. It's like that song needed to be recorded as a lasting tribute.”

He hugged me and said, “There are so many firsts with that song. She allowed you to mess with her music, Sam sang, Dad sang, and I sang on it.” He paused and said, “And you sang.”

I think it's going to be cool. Let's show Randy this....no, let's surprise him and send it in an email so he gets it and goes insane by himself over there later.”

He laughed and said, “You're terrible!”

Yeah, isn't it great!” I said laughing.

Ok, here, I cut it from the video and am now zipping it. When we send it, let's send it to ourselves too so we know it's able to be opened.”


I said, “Ev, once we send it, I'm going to do something I think is going to be the video for it.”


Hang on because it's going to be blowing you away.”

We packaged the zip file and then sent it. Once we were done, I said, “Ok, stand back here where I'm standing.”


Now, let me do it so you can see.”

I dimmed the lights in the recording booth so only the lights from the engineers booth reflected into it. Then, I started the seventies track it's based upon.

Imagine a camera shot from where you're standing with the lead in music playing. In there, we'll have a dimmed view of dance lights strobing and going all over the place. Fog mists and then, we're led into the booth with her recording the voice track over it.”

Oh man.”

Yeah, it's like she's singing, but it's coming from the memory of a dance club that will never be. What I'm going to do is at the end, I want to lead it on into the Billy Squire song.”


It would have never been released. We know that. With it on the back end of the video, it's a two for one and the fans get to see her having fun and being as she never would've let them see.”

He leaned into me and my arms went around him. “I'll do it. Do it this way exactly and we'll get it out there so they'll play it.”

We'll have to do it as a special single extended play to sell it.”

Do it that way and then, we'll put it on Sam's cd when she does hers.”

Ok, we'll have to wait on this until tomorrow because I want Randy to be totally blown away when he opens that email.”

My cell phone rang. “Yeah”

It was Ran. “Den, go to a television set. The news it breaking about the wreck.”

Ok, why are you so panicked?”

They're showing the fucking news shots of the wreck!”

Oh God Damn.”

Yeah, tell them to pull that shit. Sam's curled into a little ball here and is in hysterics.”

Son of a bitch! I'll call you back.”

I got off the phone and franticly looked for my number for Capitol.

Capitol Record, how may I direct your call.”

Emergency Crisis please.”

One moment sir.”

Yeah, Crisis unit.”

Dennis Johns here, call the networks and tell them to pull that footage off the stations.”

I'm sorry, but even if we told them, they probably wouldn't do it.”

Ok, call them and tell them in fifteen minutes, I'm going channel surfing and any station I see playing that footage will be sued by me on behalf of the family for a billion each. I'm calling my lawyers now.”

I hung up and called Marty. “Yeah Den.”

Marty, start channel surfing and recording which ones are playing the footage of that wreck. Then, prepare suits on behalf of me for a billion in damages for each station which is showing it in fifteen minutes.”

They're what!!!”

You heard me, Randy just called me and said Sam's seen it. She's in hysterics over it and he's trying to calm her. This isn't the way we want her to be remembered.”

I looked over at Ev and he was shaking his head. Tears were streaming and I said, “Marty, call me back. I need off here now.”

I hung up and Ev said, “They're vultures.”

I'm doing damage control hon. I'm trying to get it stopped.”

Den, it's probably going to do more bad than good.”

Hon, I've got to try.”

I called the Rolls dealer man, “Hello”

Den John here.”

Hi Den, there's footage on all the channels.”

That temporary plate comes back to you guys. Can you call from your end and try to get them to stop it?”

Oh man. Yeah, I'll do all I can.”

I'm filing suits for a billion each to each one playing it in fifteen minutes. Please record the ones you see playing it and let me know. Also, do your best not to let the records out.”


I think you'll be having fans beg, steal, or borrow permanently the sales slip. It's got my personal home number and bank account number on it. What I've been told to do is give you my black card to use and then all those transactions are kept confidential.”

Ok, that's a thought, I'll do it that way.”

I appreciate this. You've been way above and beyond the call.”

No problem.”

I hung up and said, “Ev, that man should be offered a curator's job with the museum. He's really great about all he's done.”

Ev nodded and said, “Den, what do we do now?!”

We've done what we could. Now we need to find Sam and get her back into our embraces.”

I called Randy “Yeah”

Where are you now?”

On the way back to the house.”

Ok, she better?”

She's better, but I'll tell you now she's pissed.”

Ok, we'll get her mind totally off it when you get here.”

I appreciate it.”

I said, “Ev, we're doing a plan switch on this video. We've got to get Sam's mind off what she saw. You up for it?”

Yeah, how is she?”

Randy says she's pissed.”

That's Sam. She'll probably come in exploding, so be careful.”

Hon, it's going to be sad, but diversion is the best way to do it.”

Ok, I'm fine with it.”

Be there for her when she breaks down.”

I will.”

We went into the kitchen and had just gotten a glass of Sunny D when they arrived.

The door slammed and Sam was stalking around the car. Randy ran to open the door for her and she came in. Her eyes were blazing and I held out my arms.

Den! They're terrible!”

I know hon. I'm doing all I can. I'm sorry you saw it.

Now, let's go in here because I've got a surprise for you.”

I'm not in the mood for surprises.”

Not even from your mama?”

She looked at me and I said, “Yeah, it's good.”


The studio.”

She looked at me and then at Ev and said, “What is it.”

Come on.” I said soothingly.

We went into the studio and I said, “Sit here. Ev, you come over and stand behind her.”

I reached around her and pressed F1 on the keyboard. The video began to play on the monitor.


Yeah, just watch”

I stepped back next to Ran and said, “Bud, come here and let them be alone.”

I want that video dude.”

Done been sent to you in an email. Now, come here.”


We stepped back into the hallway and I shut the door. “What's up?”

Ev will only release the video if we do it the way I explained it to him so listen up.”


We get a shot from inside the engineer booth with the recording booth being dark, then mist fog and have dance lights lighting up the booth with the sounds of the lead track playing. Then fade in to her singing in there.”

Oh man, you're hitting for spine chills.”

You got it, now what we're going to do is we're going for total domination of the airwaves. At the end of the video, you put that video of her singing “Everybody Wants You” on the back end of it to show her fans she was at home and having fun when she recorded. It'll show them the side of her to let them know she went out happy.”

You're trying to get all the awards, aren't you!”

Hon, you're going to be in there with us when we go up on stage, so be ready to work your ass off to get this on the air fast.”

It'll take a special release extended play mix album to get it done.”

I don't give a shit what you do to get it, but I want it to be on the air next week.”


You can do it. It's not much. All it takes is your equipment in here and some fog and crazy balls and a laser machine. Give the effect of a dance floor and you'll get it. All the rest is editing in the video you've been sent and you'll get us a million seller.”

Ok, when they go to bed, I'll come in and get that filmed. The sound can come from editing it in, so I'm fine with that. All I need is the one shot and that video.”

It's sent. It's on a zip file in an email I sent to you.”

You know you're nuts, don't you?”

Yeah, certifiable.”

Ok, now I've told Ev, so let's fill Sam in and we'll get you free to do your stuff.”

Why'd you show it to her now?”

Hon, she's pissed. Diversion is the best tactic you can use to refocus her.”

Ok, I wouldn't have thought of it.”

My dad taught me how to handle people out of it.”

At least something good came from it.”

We stepped into the studio again and Ev was holding Sam. She was crying and I went up and put my arms around them. She turned and put her head on my shoulder.

Den, do it.”

Ran's going home to get equipment and get the shot we want him to get and then, he'll edit. It'll be on the air early next week.”

She looked at me and said, “How!”

Ran's good. It's a simple shot because we're leaving it raw so her fans will know she was at home having fun and recording.”

I turned to Ev and said, “Did you tell her how we're doing it?”


I said, “Sam, stand over here.”


I stood behind her and said, “Now, take a look in the recording booth. You see the lights from in here reflecting in there, but nothing else, now, imagine fog misting up and then that back beat of the song coming in.

You begin seeing dance lights and in the middle of the mist, you see her coming through on the mist recording it in there. The mist fades and then you see her image coming through clearer. Then, at the end, you see her stop at the end and then, one two three four, you hear the strains of the Billy Squire song come through and she's suddenly dancing, doing the air guitar, and having a great time in there.”

“Oh man, that's good.”

Yeah, she finishes, and suddenly, lights are off and camera turns to leave the booth. Your private performance is finished.”

She turned and started crying again. “Oh man, chills went through me. She loves it.”

We all got them babe....we all got them.”

I said, “Ran, go get the equipment, you know how we want it.”

I'll get right on it. It's going to be an all nighter for me.”

Ok, I'll respect your need to work.”

He came over and hugged Sam. Her arms snaked up around his neck and said, “Can I go with you?”

Sure, come on. You can help.”

She smiled and said, “I'm going. Thanks.”

They left the studio and Ev came over. “Do you know you just taught me worlds about her?”

Hon, there's always a time in us when we're feeling little and vulnerable. When you have someone to reach out to, it recharges us and makes us better. After those times, we leave a bit of our hearts with that person so we can come back to retrieve it when we need it again.”



Notes From Retta:

Hi folks, you don't realize what a refreshing feeling it is to sit at a keyboard and have the words roll from your fingertips as fast as these are coming. In my other books, it takes a week anymore to write a chapter. This one, it's taking a day to write it.

As I write this, I am inspired from a number of performers careers. It's interesting how it's came about. When I think of the car wreck scene, I think of the footage of the Jane Mansfield car accident. No, it wasn't on the highway in question, but Montgomery Cliff nearly died in the area where I'm thinking. Both very good looking people cut down by car accidents.

For those of you who don't remember what Monty looked like, go onto any search engine and take a look. His looks are still captivating enough to garner him star billing some fifty years later.

In the next chapter, I'm going into some of the things people do which aren't so nice. Yes, there will still be a lot of love flowing, but I want to give an accurate depiction of what happens all the way around.

From My Keyboard To Your Heart”



Copyright Notice – Copyright 2008 by RettaMichaels

The Author, RettaMichaels copyrights this story and retains all rights. This work may not be edited, changed, or duplicated in any form, media [known or unknown], without the author's expressed permission. All applicable copyright laws apply.

Retta Michaels does NOT give editorial consent in order for this story to be published. If it is deemed unpublishable, in it's context, permission must be granted before publication or changed occur.

Trademark Notice – Trademarked 2008

From My Keyboard To Your Heart”, “ 'Retta”, “RettaMichaels”, “Retta”, “Rhett”, “Rhette”, “Vonn Michaels”, “VonnMichaels”, and “Vonn Michael's Stud Service Night Club” are all trademarks of the RettaVonnMichaels L.L.C.. None of these trademarks may be used, or authorized without consent.

Disclaimer: All individuals depicted in this story are fictional. Any resemblance to real persons, characters, locations, or incidents is purely coincidental.