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Love of and on the Canal

Part 16

The next day Terry's mum came and picked them up, she even offered to let us stay at her house but we said that we were happy on Zachire and we were. By Friday we sorted a lot of things out, insurance, builders and the such. I had phoned Jim to update him but his phone had been on answer phone for the past few days. I e-mailed him but still had not heard back. Well with time on our hands, about 2 months untill the house was re-built, I had even asked for some alterations to be made. We decided to head up to see Tom and see how out boat and butty was coming along and then to do some exploring of other canals. I still had not heard from Jim so assumed it would be all right if we taught Carl. We were going to leave Saturday morning.


I work at 6.30 to find two teas on the cupboard opposite our bed. Carl had got in the habit of making J and myself tea before he went out with the dogs. He loved to be up and about early and he often went into town and bought a paper. I woke J and we spent some time in the shower together and as usual we were both as horny as hell.

By the time Carl got back I had breakfast on the go and he had his shower. He came out just in his boxers and I was glad to see all the bruising had now gone and he even appeared to be putting on some weight, not much but a little. He was far to energetic to put on much weight even though he eat everything that we put in front of him. It did not matter what the weather was like he loved to be outside exploring and the dogs loved it, loved him, they were never far from his side. Over the past week we had been giving him lessons on various subjects, Terrys mum had got the syllabus for his age range from their school so we had something to work on. His writing was not very good but he had picked up computing and he loved to draw and sketch and he was a natural, his picture were fantastic. We got him to read the papers out loud to us in the mornings. he had also started to read books in his spare time rather that watch the telly.

I think we were all eager to get on the move. We were at Marsworth by lunch time and I was driving, J had gone below to warm up. Carl had been off working the locks with him. I was leaning up against the rail on the back with the tiller in my hand and he came up and turned his back to me and leaned on me, he looked up and smiled. He had done well and had quickly understood the water flows in and out of the locks. I put my arm round him and hugged him a little. Right at that moment it started to rain and with the wind blowing from the front in seconds we were soaked. I steered Zachire into the bank and a few minutes later we had moored up and got below. We had been dressed against the cold not the wet and we were both soaked, J laughed as we came through the door. Carl gave a little grin then ran towards him, jumping and cuddling him getting him slightly wet. We all ended up laughing.

I stripped off and jumped into the shower and was soon joined by Carl, I washed quickly, all I really wanted was to warm up a bit. I could see Carl looking at my cock and balls and he got embarrassed when he sprouted a woody. I got out first and dried off and by the time I had finished I was erect as well and Carl was staring even more. I put on some boxers then helped him to dry off. We dressed in dry clothes and went out to find J had prepared a lunch of warm bread rolls and soup.

That night we moored up in the middle of no where by Horton lock.

After supper Carl updated his journal while J updated our blog and web site and I set out some school work for Carl to do tomorrow. We all then had half an hour or so on the lap top checking and answering e-mails and then we went onto our chat group and chatted with who ever was their. Quite a few wanted to know if we would be mooring in there towns and could they visit. Zachire was now nice and warm, I left J and Carl on the chat group and went and put a DVD on but I was soon asleep and when J woke me with a hot chocolate I found Carl curled up next to me and it was just after 10.


It was dry but very very cold, Carl had not gone far with the dogs and when he found we were still in bed when he got back he jumped on us. He was soon tiggling J who was squirming under his expert fingers. I slid out and headed into the kitchen and started breakfast, when I went back Carl had crawled under the duvet and was cuddled up to J who smiled when I came in. Carl was still very quite round strangers but around us he loved to cuddle up, he loved to be made a fuss of.

I let Carl check over the engine before starting it up and as the first lock was in front of us I got off with a windlass, untied Zachire and pushed the front out. Carl looked at me in horror, J was all ready off and operating the lock. This was his first time alone, well nearly alone, Zac was sat by him. I just headed off to the lock. He did very well, J had only opened one gate and he got Zachire set up right and brought him in, he held it on the engine as we closed the gates and then opened the paddles the other end to fill the lock. Once full and the gates had been opened he eased out and then waited for us to close the gates and board.

'Tea' I asked as I got on an he smiled at me, as I went down the steps I turned 'well done, very well done' His smile widened.

We did some food shopping in Leighton Buzzard and then stopped at bridge 111 and the Globe Inn, it had got bitterly cold and a wind had got up, it was a short day but we were in no hurry. We had lunch in the pub sat next to a roaring log fire. We were the only customers and the Landlord came and sat with us, a little later a kid put his head round the kitchen door and when he saw us sitting there he came across. His name was Peter and he was the landlords son. He invited Carl up to his room to play on his games consul. J, myself and the Landlord, Jack, had a pleasant afternoon chatting about everything and nothing. J and myself went back to Zachire, I felt quite tipsy and went and laid on the bed J joined me. We were woke at 7 in the evening by Carl coming in. He had had a good time but was wondering about dinner as he had not heard from us. I asked him if he wanted to invite Peter which he did, I took a quick shower and then J and myself did Pizza and chips for dinner. Peter was very polite but quite boisterous and he and Carl ended up talking the dogs out for a quick walk. Carl actually stayed the night with Peter in the pub.


Once more it was cold, the canal had actually frozen over but it was not that thick. As I went out to walk the dogs Carl came out the pub door. He dumped the clothes he had taken with him and put on his coat and joined me. The dogs loved theses fresh mornings and ran for miles while we walked along the tow path.

We were just entering the second lock of the flight of 3 out side the 3 locks pub when I heard my mobile, I dashed inside and picked it up looking at my caller display, it was Jim.

'Hi and how are you' I asked as I answered it.
'Not bad, sorry about the house'
'Thanks .... are you all right we have not heard from you'
'Well I am all right but' he paused 'look we need to meet urgently and someone else need your help'
'Well we are near the Three Locks pub out side Leighton Buzzard' I heard him talking to some one.
'OK look moor up or what ever it is you do and wait ..... it real important and don't panic'
'Panic' I asked a little panicky and concerned.
'Look we will be there as soon as we can but ..... well a local policeman may be with you first'
'You tell me not to panic then you say that' I almost shouted at him.
'It OK look .... just beleave me it OK .... please just wait' and before I could answer he hung up.

What could I do, once out of the last lock I told J and Carl about the call as we moored up.

'There not taking me away are they' Carl asked in a timid voice. I shook my head.
'No definitely not' I replied hoping I was right.

We sat waiting and after about 10 minutes I saw a police officer walk past and the I felt the boat rock. I went to the back and opened the door.

'Hello you must be Chas or James he asked
'Chas' I said holding out my hand, he shook it. Next he used his radio, I did not catch what he said.
'You want to come in and tell me whats going on' I asked he came down, J was sat at the table Carl was next to him huddled in real close.
'Look I am sorry I don't know much' he said and then went on 'all I know is that some top brass are on there way and all I am meant to do is check the location and then wait for them' he shrugged apologetically.

It was about half an hour later when he got a call on his radio and he told us our visitors had arrived and he thanked us for the tea and left. I went to the door and watched him approach a black Range Rover and after a few words to the driver Jim got out followed by another policeman, this one was obviously the top guy judging from they way he was dressed.

Once they were inside Jim introduced us all to him, he was Hertfordshire Chief Constable, if my memory served me correct he was as high as you could get. Well between them the explained ..... It seems that last week there had been a number of police raids in Hemel on known drug dealers, one had gone wrong. Instead of being a simple raid it turned out that the house was heavily secured and some of the occupants had been armed and one of the police officers had been shot and injured. There had then been a stand off, eventually the people had given them selves up after two days.

The police searched the house and had found in a locked upstairs room a boy of about 11 or 12.

They had checked with neighbours and none of them had ever seen a kid, some had lived there for just over 4 years. None of those arrested would say anything and as yet the kid had not said a word, Carl nudged me and when I turned to him he mouthed 'Ghosty'

'Excuse me sir' he said and both Jim and the Chief looked at him. 'Where was the house' he asked. When they told him he just uttered that one word but this time out loud 'Ghosty' Now it was his turn to tell them his story, it was not the full version but as he explained he had lived in one of the house that backed onto the one that was raided.

They showed him a photo and he nodded, it was his ghosty.

'Well this may help' the chief said and then went on 'Jim has tried to get the kid to talk with out success, Doctors have examined him and apart form malnutrition he seems ok but they can't explain why he cant talk' he stooped taking a sip of his tea that I had made while listing earlier. 'We need to hide or a better way of putting it is keep the kid out of sight for a while' he stooped and looked at Jim then went on all most apoligetcly 'thats where you come in ... if you agree' he finished.

We chatted some more, it seems that did not want to keep him locked up but didn't think it was a good idea to put him in a hostel or foster home, then Jim had come up with us. The Chief thought it was a good idea and he liked it even more now that Carl had actually meet the kid. We worked out the details, Ghosty was going to stay with us for .... well for a few weeks, the Chief gave us various phone numbers and we were to report our over night stop every night. If he did talk and had anything important to say we were to make contact immediately. I agreed but also said that we needed our privacy and Ghosty probably need some time to adjust, he agreed that we would be left alone but he also made us promise to report anything suspicious. One thing he wanted us to be on the look out for was news paper reporters just in case they got hold of something.

I looked at J and Carl and the nodded, I reached across and shook the Chiefs hand and then Jim's, it was agreed. The Chief stood just as the boat rocked and a police officer came in.

'He's escaped' the police man shouted and the Chief looked alarmed just as a kid ran past.
'Ghostly' was all Carl said as he pushed passed me grabbed his mobile and with the dogs close on his heals he ran out the door. I looked and saw a police woman run passed.
'Call her back, he's ours now .... Jim I'll call you soon' The Chief looked at me then Jim then nodded to the officer at the door who got on his radio.
'Give us an hour, if we haven't got him by then well call' I said. J had got my coat and a couple of spares as well as his own, I picked up my mobile. We locked Zachire up and headed off after Carl.

We did not have to go far, just round the corner we found the WPC helping Carl out of the canal. I ran up and helped her, J got on his knees and reached out to Ghosty who reluctantly took the offered hand. Once I had Carl on the bank and wrapped in one of the extra coats I went and helped J. We lifted Ghosty out, he had lost both of his shoes and was covered in mud. Some of the canal network had not been dredged in years and near the banks it is only a couple of feet deep and very muddy. Both boys were very cold and I could hear teeth chattering. J had wrapped Ghosty in the other coat and was holding him tight, Ghosty still looked very scared and was watching all of us, his eyes flickering from one to the other.

'Look after him, he deserves some good times' the WPC said and walked off talking into her radio. I went to her and gave her my card.
'E-mail us, well keep you up to date' I said and shook her hand, she smiled and headed off.

Carl had come up and wrapped his arms round me, I picked him up. I looked at J and Ghosty who was looking at Carl. Carl gave him a thumbs up sign and he seemed to relax a little. J then scooped him up and we started to jog back to the boat. Carl wrapped his arms round my neck, he was shivering. I glanced back, Ghosty looked scared.


I bent and picked him up he look so scared and I was surprised at how light he was. I could feel him shivering and his teeth chattering. Carl was looking over Chas's shoulder and gave Ghosty a thumbs up sigh before he buried his head into Chases shoulder and tightened his grip round his neck. I looked down at Ghosty and was surprised to see he was looking up at me out eyes meet for the briefest of moments. As I was jogging I had to keep my eyes on the tow path but after minute or two I felt his arms come up round my neck. We were nearly at Zachire when I felt him begin to struggle and I was worried that he might be trying to get away, he struggled so much that I had to stop and he got loose but instead of running away he bent over and was sick. I put my hand on his back hoping that it might reassure him as he was sick again. I saw Chas turn and start back but I waved him on, Carl needed to get out of those wet clothes.

I picked him back up after a couple of minutes and he put his arm straight round my neck, I looked down and him and smiled and I got a brief smile back. I let him down as we got on the steps and he looked at me and I nodded, slowly he went down. I noticed a naked Carl run into the showers.

'Come on get your wet clothes off' I said, he looked at me then at Chas who was heading to the kitchen. 'Come on you need to get warm and dry' I tugged at his pullover and he let me pull it off. He was shivering but was soon naked and I was quite shocked. Carl had looked skinny but Ghosty was even worse but on the upside he did not have the bruises or scars that Carl had.
'Carl can you give Ghosty a hand, show him how it all works' all I got in reply was a hand came out of the shower and pulled Ghosty in.

Chas handed me a cup of tea and he had made to hot chocolates.

'We need to move' he said, 'the Chief said about people being nosey, what with the police and two wet boys, I think we need to move on' He was right, he all ways said I was the brains of the outfit but he was the thinker, the one who looked at all the angles. I lent in a nd kissed him. He got his coat and went out the front and I soon felt the boat move, I new what he was doing, we had done it many times before. He had untied the front and pushed it away from the bank, he would not walk to the back, untie us and jump on, next he would start up the engine and we would be on our way.

My stomach rumbled, lunch, I got down a couple of cans of soup and emptied them into a sauce pan, next I got 4 large potatoes out and put them in the micro.

'Come on were moving' I head Carl shout as he came passed me and into the lounge with Ghosty in tow, the were both wrapped in large bath towels. He started to dry.
'Can you sort out some clothes for Ghosty' I asked him, I knew he wanted to get out and help Chas. I looked at Ghosty who was still wrapped hugging the towel. I went across and started to rub his back, he looked scared. Carl was soon dressed and out side. I helped Ghosty and when he was dressed he came and sat at the table. I took soup and jacket potatoes out to Chas and Carl who were sat at the back cuddled up. I went back down and put soup and a potato in front of Ghosty and sat opposite him, he watched my every move.
'So you feel better now' I asked and he nodded and I noticed as I spoke he formed the words with his mouth as I spoke them. 'Have you a proper name or shall I just call you ghosty' He looked at me thinking then he mouthed something. I watched but could not make it out, he looked frustrated and tried again. I tried to think and tried to make the same shape with my mouth. He mouthed it again and I got it 'David' and as I said it he jumped up and came and sat next to me and hugged me.

Once we had finished eating I sorted him out a pair of Carl's trainers and a coat and lead him out the front. He stood next to me looking round then stood up on the seat that ran round the front and looked back. I saw Carl wave and he waved back. We were just approaching a lock so I grabbed two wind lasses and as Carl nosed the boat in I jumped off and he followed me. Scruffy and Zac ran up to us and he knelt and made a fuss of both of them as I walked up to the lock. He caught me up and watched what I was doing and then looked across at the other gate. I pointed at the other windlass and he picked it up, my paddle was now open so I walked across with David on my heels. I showed him the spigot and he fitted the handle on and tried to wind the handle, I had to help him in the end. We got the gates open and Carl brought Zachire in.

'So you OK Ghosty' Carl shouted, David looked at me. 'David, his names David' I shouted back to Carl and Chas, David smiled and gave everyone a thumbs up. Carl jumped off and gave him a big hug.

That night we moored at Groeway Bridge near Milton Keynes.


Well what a day and now we had another kid and he had taken to J straight off. To my surprise once we had settled down in the lounge, David had seen Carl pick up a book and then gone to the shelves and looked at our collection. He had the picked up The Goblet of Fire and settled down next to Carl and started to read. J was on the lap top and I nudged him and pointed, he smiled.

'You like Harry Potter' he asked and David gave him a thumbs up sign and I saw his mouth the words 'yes'.

Top Brass means Bosses of a company or in this case Top Police Officers.

I started a mailing list of people that were interested in my story but Yahoo seem to have wiped my address book. If you want me to send you and e-mail when the next chapter come out please let em have your e-mail address or keep an eye on my blog.