Part 7

Usual disclaimers apply.  The following contains male-to-male sex.
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They immediately went to the sheriff’s office and explained the situation. The sheriff was in his late fifties, he’d held the position for over thirty years and knew almost everyone in town, so he was reluctant to believe a stranger, but Martin got him to call his dad and after that he agreed to get everyone involved together. When he realized this would include more then one or two people he took them to the motel next doors and borrowed the conference room.

Martin’s father, William, had been the first one to arrive. He shook Desmond’s hand and thanked him for looking after his son. A doctor arrived not long after him, carrying a bunch of files and started talking directly with Sheriff Miller. Martin talked with his father, catching up on what had happened in the last few months. Jason never left his side.

The atmosphere was somewhat relaxed until the last man arrived. He was in his early forties, light brown hair, clean shaven. The business suit he was wearing covered up the few extra pounds he had.

“Damn it Miller, this better be important,” the man said as he stormed in, “I was in the middle of a teleconference meeting with Japanese businesses.” He noticed the other people in the room at that point and looked them over, his gaze stopping on Desmond for a moment and then he saw Jason. “Jason, where the fuck have you been,” he said in an angry tone.

The sheriff blocked his path, “calm down Adam.”

“Don’t tell me to fucking calm down George! He disappears without an explanation and you don’t do squat. Now he’s back and you’re blocking my way.” Adam glared at the sheriff, “are you aiming for an early retirement George?”

“Accusations have been made against you,” George said, not paying any attention to the veiled threat.

“And you’re believing that no good kid of mine?”

Jason cowered behind Desmond, shaking at the sound of his father’s voice. Desmond had a difficult time not walking across the room and wringing the man’s neck.

“Sit down Adam!” the sheriff ordered with enough authority in his voice to make the business man take a step back, and then sit next to William.

“You here to finally take control of that brat of yours, Trenton?” Adam asked William with scorn in his voice.

William just rolled his eyes, having had to deal with Adam’s attitude often enough to barely pay attention to it anymore.

The doctor, William and Adam were seated in the three seats on one side of the table. The sheriff took the one at the head while Desmond, Martin and Jason remained standing, facing the three men.

“Jason,” the sheriff said, “why don’t you tell all of us what you told me.”

Jason clung to Desmond’s arm, unable to move. Desmond placed his free had on his shoulder and smiled at him. That seemed to calm him enough to step in front of him. Desmond didn’t show it, but he took dirty pleasure at the rage that was smoldering in Adam’s eyes.

“My father, Adam Whitteker, is an abusive man. He hit my mother when she was still alive and me after she died.”

“Come on!” Adam exclaimed slamming his hand on the table, “He’s obviously been coached into saying that, probably by that guy, who ever he is. Who the hell is he anyway?”

“My name’s Desmond,” he replied, “I’ve been looking after Martin and Jason for the last two months.”

Adam started at him for a moment and then bolted up. “George, I want you to arrest that man for kidnapping.”

“Sit down Adam,” the sheriff said in a calm voice.

Adam turned to the old man, “you listen to me you old relic, you’re going to do what I tell you or I’m going to make sure you don’t even get a pension when I rip that badge off your chest.”

“You’re not going to do that Adam,” the doctor said.

“Oh?” Adam’s sounded amused as he faced the man, “and tell me Henry, why is that?”

“Because someone in this town has finally grown the balls to stand up to you; I think it’s appropriate that it be the one person you thought you never had anything to fear from.” He slid a folder across the table to the man. “In there are absolutely every injury reports I filled out when you wife had to come to the hospital. I knew what you were doing to her, but I knew I’d be wasting my time trying to bring charges down on you. Even if a judge had been willing to take you to court, Theresa would never have said anything against you. That poor woman loved you so much it killed her.” He slid another folder, “this one covers Jason’s injuries for the last two years. The second time he showed up at the hospital with a broken arm I tried to convince him to speak up, but he was so terrified of you he kept saying he’d slipped in the bathroom. Now that he’s coming forward and is willing to testify I can lay down charges of parental abuse if I want to.”

Adam had an evil smile, “Try it, and see what happens. You’ll never get anyone to convict me. Even if this pussy tells them everything I’ve done,” he pointed to Jason, “no one’s going to dare lay a finger on me. I’m the only reason this town’s still around.”

“That’s why, *if* we decide to bring this to court,” William said in an even tone, “it won’t be here.” Adam looked at him as if he’d suddenly turned green. “You’re right, you pretty much own all of us in one way or another. So we’re going to take this to another county, hell, we’re going to take this to San Francisco, lets see how you handle the big time lawyers, those who don’t owe you any favors.”

Adam snorted, “if you really could do that, we wouldn’t be sitting here.”

“I asked them not to do it,” Desmond said.

Adam looked at him, his eyes narrowing in anger, “and why’s that?”

“Because no matter how much pain you put Jason through, how much you worked at humiliating him and destroying what ever self confidence he might have had. He still loves you and I’m not going to force him to watch his father being dragged through the mud.”

“You really think you can scare me?”

Desmond walked to the table grabbing the edge looking like he was using it to support his weight. What he was doing was making sure he wouldn’t give into the temptation to reach across the table and grab that man by the neck. “I don’t care if I scare you or not, because I read enough news papers to know what they do in prison to man who abuse kids.” He felt the table crack under his fingers as he tightened his fist in anger.

“Alright, this is enough,” the sheriff said, “we won’t be able to resolve anything with our tempers this high strung. William, why don’t you take Martin and Jason to Angie’s for a burger? Adam, you’re going to find yourself a quiet corner and calm down. Desmond, I’d suggest you do the same before you break the table.”

Desmond nodded and released it. He rested his hand on the table as everyone left, taking deep breaths. He’d been noting the flare ups in his temper recently. When ever he felt someone was threatening something that was his, anger would increase. Unlike Adam it wasn’t a blind anger. He didn’t feel like he was ‘flying off the handle’ but he did have this need to hurt what ever caused the threat.

And his strength had been increasing. Much faster than it should with the time he’d spent at the gym over the last month and a half. He’d been lucky to bench press a hundred pound before, now he could do four without raising a sweat. He’d gained one hell of a defined body as he lost most of the fat on it.

He didn’t have to look to know who it was that entered the room when the door opened. He straightened up and turned, keeping his arms against his sides and fist clenched as he watched the business man walk within two feet of him.

“Lets get something straight,” Adam said, “I don’t know what your game is, and I don’t care. When you leave this town, Jason’s staying here.”

Desmond fought to keep his arms against his body as all he wanted to do was turn this man into a blabbering idiot. It would be easy to do, grab the man by the neck and make him forget everything. He could see himself doing it too. He knew that no matter how this ended here today he would be a thorn in the side of his family again. Destroying him right now would be so easy, but Jason would hate him for it, and he didn’t want that.

He crossed his arms over his chest and stared down the man, knowing that his own anger was as visible in his eyes as it was in Adam’s. “Jason’s leaving with me,” Desmond said flatly, “you can’t intimidate me, or buy me. The only reason I’m not destroying you right now is because Jason would hate me for it. I didn’t take him from you; he left of his own free will. I’m only thankful that Martin stuck by him. I’d hate to see what would have happened to him left all alone. He would have probably ended up with someone like you, ready and willing to abuse him at every opportunity.”

“You son of a bitch!” Adam yelled as he took a swing at him.

Desmond didn’t think. He caught the fist in a hand and squeezed it until Adam’s face registered pain, and then, as much as he’d promised himself he wouldn’t do anything like that he poured his hate and anger into the man, he showed him what he could do to him if he really set his mind to.

When he released his fist Adam scrambled back until he hit the wall, his face ashen with fear.

Desmond’s gaze followed him, his eyes burning with cold calculating anger. “Do you understand me now Adam?” The man nodded rapidly. “Good. You’re going to release Jason. You’re going to agree to making me his legal guardian. You’re never going to initiate contact with him. And if you ever talk about what happened here, I’m going to show you what Hell is really about. Is that understood?”

Adam nodded vigorously just as the sheriff walked in. “What’s going on here?” the old man said, “Adam I told you to go cool off somewhere.”

“It’s alright sheriff,” Desmond said, “we were just talking, I think we were able to come to an understanding, isn’t that right Adam.” He looked at the business man as he tried to regain his composure.

“Yes, that’s right,” the man replied, not looking at Desmond.

The rest of the meeting went quickly. Everyone was surprised at Adam’s change of attitude, but no one questioned it. Desmond supposed that they were rejoicing in the powerful man’s subdued behavior.

Before long the paperwork to make Desmond Jason’s legal guardian was filled. Adam never looked at him or Jason during the process and left as soon as he was no longer needed. Martin hugged his dad and made him promise to give his love to his mom. And Martin promised to email them both as soon as he arrived.

Feeling much better they headed for the car.

“Ready to go home you two?” Desmond asked.

“Yeah,” Jason replied.

“Can we stop at a rest area on the way?” Martin asked innocently.

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