(Copyright 2006 - 2007 by the Author)
Editors: Radio Rancher & Str8mayb
The following is a complete work of
fiction. Any resemblance to
characters and real life persons is completely coincidental.
The following story contains
violence and erotic homosexual situations
and content. If it is illegal for you to read this, please leave now. Please do
not copy or distribute this story without the author's permission.
Author reserves all rights to this story.
"Well, good morning. How are you doing?" Cecelia stopped
laying bacon in the frying pan, spying the unusual smile stretched across Sean's
"I'm feeling good. There's nothing like a good nights sleep to recharge the batteries. You were right. Those boys'll run me into the ground. Right now, I need some caffeine. Care to join me?" Sean grabbed the handle of the coffee pot, and filled his cup. He took a quick sip then set it safely beside him on the counter, making sure his morning fix was within reach. He pulled a cup from the cupboard and poured it for Cecelia. Sean stretched out his arm, and offered the coffee. He peered into her brown eyes through the rising steam from the hot java, and sensed too many unanswered questions.
"Thanks hun, I think I got a minute before I burn the bacon." Cecelia grabbed the offered cup, and leaned against the counter. Taking a sip, her eyes had questions, but she held her words.
"The answer to your first question is yes." Sean sipped from his cup, and watched her eyes, for understanding. Seeing no reaction, he went to the pot and topped off his cup.
"If the answer is yes, what was the question?" Cecelia took a final sip of coffee and set her cup on the counter. She shook her head in disbelief as the realization finally dawned upon her. She felt uneasy as Sean had read her thoughts like an open book.
"You were going to ask, at some point, if Brandon was really going to stay. The answer is yes. You were also going to ask about more room for the boys, and I think I have the solution to that too, so again, the answer is yes." Sean turned to the family room, and walked to the back door. He walked onto the back porch he sat down in his usual spot, and placed his coffee cup on the table beside him. The sunrise painted the sky in brilliant reds and golds as it rose over the mountains in the distance.
Cecelia steadied herself as she leaned against the counter, fighting the sudden weakness in her knees. In stunned silence, she stared as Sean walked to the back door. She didn't give any indications that she wanted to ask any questions, but he had hit them right on the head. Those thoughts did cross her mind, after she saw him come into the kitchen. `how did he know?'. Not finding an answer, she went back to the stove to finish preparing breakfast. There was yet another mouth in the family, and with three boys, she was going to be at her limits for cooking. On the menu this morning, was sausage links, bacon, sliced ham, and pancakes. Scrambled eggs would be on the side, for whoever wanted them. She was in the middle of cooking the sausage before something else dawned on her. The boys were going to be calling her grandma now.
Her eyes misted over as she was reminded of her past. She would never have kids of her own. As a result, she would share all the love in her heart with other families.
"Morning granma." Justin walked into the kitchen trying to pat his hair down.
"Well...Good morning little one. How are you this morning?" She smiled, as she watched him get into the fridge to get some juice out. She was remembering all the mornings that he wasn't there, and all the emptiness in the house.
"We all slept great. Jared and Brandon will be coming soon; Jared is helping Brandon in the bathroom. Next time is my turn." Justin had a little frown on his face, as he thought about the bathroom thing. He was sure it was no big deal. But it was being in the bathroom with someone else, while they let nature do its thing that made him queasy.
"That is so nice of you two, to help him like that. I am sure, if things were switched, he would do the same for you." Cecelia had a warm smile on her face, as she looked at Justin and his crimson face.
"Thanks. Hey, where is Dad? Is he out on the back porch again? I don't know what it is with that, but its kinda weird. He always wants to go and sit outside." Justin finished his glass of juice, and knowing what the answer was already, he walked to the back door.
"Hi granma." Brandon squealed with delight, as Jared was pushing him around the corner leading into the kitchen.
"And how are you, littlest one? Do you have a big hug for your grandma?" Cecelia stopped making pancakes, turning to face the little guy, with her arms open. Her warm smile was inviting, and Brandon wheeled himself to her, giving her a big hug.
"May I have some juice please?" Jared patiently stood by, as he watched the two in the loving embrace.
"Yes you may. And in the future, you don't need to ask. This is your house as well Jared. But thank you for asking." Cecelia was a little shocked, that someone that young had such good manners. Then it dawned on her, as to why.
"Thanks grandma. Where is Dad and Justin?" Jared drank his juice in two big gulps, and wiped his mouth on the sleeve on his sweatshirt.
"I think they may still be out back, watching the sunrise. Could you go and tell them breakfast is almost ready? And Jared, there are napkins for that, you know." She smiled while she answered, so Jared wouldn't get too upset over her catching him.
"Okay, thanks again granma." Jared blushed, for he knew better. It's an automatic reaction with children. There is no better place, than the arm, to wipe your face on.
Jared left and retrieved Sean and Justin. The twins went upstairs to wash, while Sean helped Brandon downstairs. In a matter of moments, they were all sitting around the dining room table, staring with anticipation at the food in front of them. The breakfast nook off of the family room was no longer spacious enough, so they had to eat at the dining table. There was enough room for twelve to be seated comfortably around the massive table. This worked for everyone, especially Cecelia. It was closer to the kitchen, and easier to clean, without the corners of the breakfast nook.
All of the boys dug in, and were soon eating like they hadn't eaten in days. This was just a remarkable thing to watch, for even little Brandon kept pace with the older boys. Sean ate one plate, and then watched the three boys put away enough food for about eight or nine adults. As with dinner, there were no leftovers, but lots of dirty dishes.
"Boys, if you are done, could you clean the table now please. I have something to show Cecelia for a couple of minutes." Sean looked at them, with a big smile of pride on his face. They were adapting well, and the idea of chores for them, would take some of the burden off of Cecelia. Now with another child in the house, it was apparent that there was never going to have a shortage of chores.
"Sure Dad." The twins answered, and went to start cleaning the table. Brandon just looked glum, for he wanted to help out too. If it wasn't for his casts, he would gladly help.
Sean led Cecelia to the family room. It had a very high ceiling, all the way to the roof. While Sean looked up, staring at the empty space, he motioned for her to come stand next to him.
"Well, what do you think?" Sean was still looking up to the ceiling, and kept smiling.
"What on earth are you talking about? What are you looking at?" Cecelia was looking form the ceiling, to Sean, and back again. Her face relayed the evident confusion racing in her mind.
"New construction. We need more space, and all this air up there, is going to waste. What do you think? Do you think we could manage without the extra head room in here, or should we just add on to the house?" Sean never looked away from the ceiling, transfixed on thinking, as he waited for an answer.
"I don't know. But it sounds like a good idea. But how long are we talking about? This is where you guys like to watch TV, so you need to think about that too." Cecelia had stopped staring at the ceiling, to stare at Sean. It appeared he hadn't even blinked, from where he was looking.
"Well, I don't know how long it would take. As far as it being intrusive, we have the living room as well. And then, there is the kids' game room upstairs too. We'll have enough to keep us entertained, so don't worry about that. Do you think it's a good idea though?" Sean finally stopped looking up, and looked her in the eye.
"If it can be done, I am sure you will find a way. I know that much. Yes, it sounds good. When are you planning to look into this?" Cecelia pondered the strange request before she answered. If there was a way, Sean would find it. He was working miracles already, so why not?
"Well, it depends on how busy the day gets today. We're expecting Dale and Marty this morning. We have some things to take care of, and then who knows. But I'll get on this right away, for Brandon won't be in casts forever. Speaking of which, we should be getting ready now. Is there anything else the boys could help you with this morning? Once we take off, I am not sure what time we will be back, it might be awhile. If we're going to miss lunch, I'll be sure to call." Sean was all business this morning, and wasn't wasting any time on the house plans. He knew there would be a shortage of sleeping areas, and already made one goof. He didn't plan on there being a second oversight on his part.
The boys knew of the visitors, so the twins went upstairs to get ready. They had showers to get out of the way, and clean clothes to get on. Sean almost forgot about Brandon, but Marty being the reliable person he is, already sent some clothes to the house. They were, of course, in Sean's closet. This was unusual, for it was never mentioned where Brandon would be sleeping.
Sean took his shower, and dressed, then went and got Brandon to help him get dressed. There was the normal itchiness with the casts, and Brandon was very well behaved for having to endure this. He was a real trooper, and didn't complain, well at least too much. It was a real treat to watch Brandon in sweats that were to big on him. They had to be, to leave enough room for the casts.
It wasn't long after Sean wheeled Brandon out to the family room that the boys came down stairs. They were being very well behaved this morning, and Sean hoped that this wasn't a one time deal. But with Marty and Dale on their way, this would be an unusual meeting. Then the mysterious package in the mail, made no sense. Sean couldn't guess, about what the contents were. This caused him concern, and his mood went on the defensive
As everyone sat down, and tried to relax on the overstuffed sofa in the family room, the doorbell rang. The man who used to own this house using the doorbell, was one more thing for everyone to grow accustomed to. Sure enough it was Dale with Marty in tow. Cecelia let them in, and was getting coffee for everyone while they went in and sat down.
"Gentlemen, how are you today?" Sean stood up to greet his company. The anticipation of this meeting weighed heavily on his shoulders. After the usual handshakes, they all sat down, with the adults on one side of the coffee table facing the children on the other.
"I am doing well, and just like that weird dream last night, I woke to find this in the mail slot." Dale produced a manila envelope that was addressed to him. He was amazed that it even fit into the little mail slot at his apartment, where he had been staying since Sean and Justin were released from the hospital.
"I am good. But I think this is going to be another day to remember. But I am almost getting used to them by now." Marty answered, as he looked at Dale, then Sean. This would be another one of those days, he could just tell. His former employer, and new employer were together on this one. He started to regret coming here. He knew that the envelope was going to lead into more legal garbage than he wanted to deal with, but he couldn't resist. He was as curious as Dale and Sean were; at least the looks on their faces indicated it. He gave Dale a look of approval, as he prompted him to stop the suspense and open the envelope. He was rewarded, as Dale set the envelope down, and slowly opened it, as if he expected a snake or something to jump out.
"Are you ready, we have no idea of what really is in there?" Sean was trying to get eye contact with Dale, looking at his face. Dale looked down at the envelope, and without saying a word, he nodded his head as his fingers fumbled to open it.
As Dale finished opening the envelope, the silence in the room was deafening. The kids were sitting on one side of the table, the adults the other. The boys were quiet, not saying a word, for fear of distracting the adults' attention to what they were doing. They watched as Dale pulled out a stack of papers, dragging out a few discs with them. It was as if the oxygen in the room had suddenly been replaced, for everyone was breathing again.
"Dad? What is in there?" Justin, forgetting that his biological dad and Sean were both sitting there, blushed at his question. Dale sensed his confusion, and instead of answering, looked at Sean to reply. Sean's eyes just opened further, for he was unsure of how to act, or answer the question.
"Well, I am not sure. Dale, what do you think those are?" Sean looked at Dale trying to read the papers that seemed to be of some legal sort or another. Flipping through them, his eyes gave his emotions away. The wide open position they were in, told everyone that it was not good news.
"Well, I think." Dale started to speak, but got choked up over what he was reading. His eyes started to tear, and his breathing became erratic as the newfound knowledge opened old wounds.
"Let me see those please." Marty reached over, covering for his long time friend and colleague. He took his time picking up the papers, as Dale looked on the verge of tears at any moment. Sure enough, Dale stood up and walked out of the room, as Marty finally picked up the papers.
Justin watched as Dale left, and looked at Sean who shrugged his shoulders. Jared was confused, as was everyone else. He looked at Justin, who studied all the faces in front of him. Brandon got scared and confused, for the emotions in the room ran rampant. With all the commotion going on, it was not a good room to be in, if you could read minds. Sean could tell something needed to be done, and soon. He stood up and went to kneel beside Brandon, putting a comforting arm around him.
"Hey champ. It's going to be alright. I promise. Things are kinda scary now, and I understand if you don't want to be in here right now. In fact, it might be better if you aren't." Sean gave him a firm one armed hug, and kissed the top of Brandon's head. This helped, and the tension in his little body loosened its grip slightly.
"But Dad, you know what happened in the dream, we are all supposed to be here." Jared stated the obvious, as he looked at Sean with concern in his eyes.
"Yes, but..." Sean was trying to protect his children from harm, and ignore what he was told. He didn't get enough time to voice his objections, for Justin was backing up his brother.
"Dad, you know as well as the rest of us. We know who gave those directions. And we don't want to disobey them. Brandon is a tough little guy, all he needs is a good hug. Don't you bro?" Justin got up, and walked over to Brandon, and gave him a brief hug, to relieve Sean. Sean looked at his oldest, and nodded his agreement. He hung his head down a bit as he went and sat back with Marty as he flipped through the papers Dale had left.
"I think for everyone's sake, we can wait until Dale comes back. This way, we only have to go through this once." Marty was firm, but understanding of everyone present, children included. He was unsettled, as his look gave him away. The questioning look in his eyes, and the bead of sweat on his brow, indicated that this was no easy task. He was nervous as well, being in the presence of Sean and his children. He knew that there was no way of `sugar coating' anything he discussed.
"Go ahead Marty. I think this is for everyone's benefit, and it really needs to be out in the open." Dale stood in the doorway, his eyes gave evidence of recent emotional turmoil. As he tried to keep his distance from the boys, he stood there head down, and shoulders slumped in a sign of resignation. He didn't want the boys to read his thoughts right now.
"Well, from what I read quickly, this is why your mother was the way she was." Marty tried to let this soak in, while the boys were looking at each other. He noticed the looks of understanding from his attentive audience, he continued.
"Dale, I know this is hard for you. But once they got Mary hooked on drugs, they basically helped her destroy her own life. And the blackmail that they had on her wasn't much. She didn't know that." Marty finished as he looked around. He hoped that they understood.
"What are you talking about? Who is they?" Sean spoke with venom in his voice, now he was getting riled. This involved all three of his boys, and he wasn't happy.
"Whoa there Sean, calm down. Let me explain." Marty braced himself for an attack, of any form. The sweat was running down his face, for he felt as if he was a goner if the boys and Sean wanted it so. Marty came to terms with what the boys and Sean were capable of, but was still scared.
"They, are the ones that died in the car wreck. He was, my cousin. He borrowed money a few years back, to start up a family portrait studio." Dale walked further into the room, and stood at the end of the couch with torment written all over his face.
"Huh? I don't get it." Sean was flustered, his face turned blood red, and his breathing increased. The veins across his temples, started to pulse.
The boys, all three of them, made their way to be closer to Sean. The twins simply walked around the coffee table, and Brandon had to wheel himself over. He wedged his way between the twins, running over their toes. They sensed the disruption inside of Sean, and wanted to comfort him. Marty knew it was only a matter of time, got up and sought safety next to Dale. He did not want to be in the direct vicinity of those four while they were emotional. Dale looked at what was unfolding in front of him, and was amazed at the strong bond his sons had taken with Sean. It surprised him that no words had taken place, they just knew.
"Thanks guys. I know I shouldn't be upset, but damn it." Sean spit out, his emotions still in control of him. His eyes slowly gave up their glossiness, as the boys had surrounded him.
"That's what we are here for, Dad." Was his answer from the three boys.
"Okay, let me get this straight, Dale. You are related to the person responsible for mistreating Brandon. And not only that, you are related by blood to Brandon as well? Now that, is something that is unforgivable. What do you have to say for yourself?" Sean tried to remain calm, but his temper started to flare. The boys were all trying to keep him calm. They did not know why, but they knew how. Each one, had at least one hand touching Sean somewhere. Brandon was able to get his good arm over the back of the couch. He kept the contact as strong as he could, not wanting to see the results if he failed.
"You have to understand something Sean, please before you convict me here. I run a very large business, well, not any more. You do. But at the time, I was investing in things for capital growth. If the business plan would make a good return, I invested. As a family member, I was pressured to invest, but he did have a sound business plan. As far as knowing who Brandon was, I didn't. If I did, I would have put a shoe right where it would do the most good." Dale was going to swear, but changed his mind at the last moment, when all the boys stared at him. He felt a chill run up his spine, and that prompted the vocabulary change.
"Dad, I believe him. He isn't lying. He may not be the best person for a father figure, but he is telling the truth now." Justin walked around the couch, and looked into Dale's eyes. Justin saw the pain and hurt deep down in Dale's soul. Justin turned around to face the rest of the gang, and nodded his head in approval.
"I trust your judgment Justin. But screw up in front of me Dale, and I swear to all that is Holy, you better find someplace I cannot find you." Sean let out a big breath he didn't realize he was holding. His emotions were unbalanced, and now he threatened the twin's natural father. He needed to get a grip, so he stood up and headed toward the kitchen. This left everyone stunned, his behavior, and his sudden departure were unusual.
Marty looked at Dale to figure out what was going on. He didn't want to be the one to go after Sean. Not with the outburst, and now a threat. Marty didn't think Sean was a dangerous person, when they first met. But now he wasn't sure, he knew he didn't want to find out. The horrified look in his eyes, enhanced by the sweat running down his face, he looked at Dale and surrendered.
"Okay, okay. I screwed up. I know that now. Let me go talk with him, and see what I can do." Dale hung his head down, as he marched toward the kitchen, leaving a very relieved Marty, and three very curious boys.
"Well, boys, I think I need a drink. Is there someplace else I can go and get some water, besides the kitchen?" Marty's voice raspy with nervousness, let the boys know that he needed to get away. He noticed the head tilt of Justin and went to the guest bathroom. Once inside, he ran the cold water, and splashed it on his face. He was really scared, but why? Sean had never threatened him, but what about next time. He was also concerned for Sean's health, for the doctors already told him, to watch his blood pressure. With the water dripping down his face, he looked into the mirror while he considered what just happened. Could he continue this meeting, without losing his self control?
"What is up with Dad?" Jared looked at his brothers, his voice full of concern. He knew what they just found out, would upset anyone, but Sean? This was going to be a very interesting day.
"I don't know. I hope he and father can patch things up though. If I know Sean, he is in there ripping him up one side and down the other." Justin tried to eavesdrop, tilting his head toward the kitchen.
"I'm getting scared." Brandon started to whine from his spot behind the couch. In all the excitement, he was almost left out, but followed his brothers lead. But now, he was on one side of the furniture, while they were on the other.
Jared jumped over the couch to comfort Brandon. Justin was a second behind, walking around the couch to get there. Justin knew that if Cecelia had seen shoes on her couch, there would be no dessert. With one twin on each side, Brandon calmed down, almost instantly. The emotions were running rampant this morning, and it was affecting everyone.
"Sean? I am sorry. But in wanting to build a vast empire, I made choices. The wrong ones, I know. But I need to know if you can ever forgive me. I made mistakes, I am only human. But you need to get yourself together for your children. I think you have everyone scared right now, me included." Dale talked to Sean's back. He didn't want to get too close, for he didn't know what Sean was capable of. He knew he would react the same, if the shoe was on the other foot. Or would he?
"Dale, just give a minute. Right now, I just need some space." Sean had an empty coffee cup in his hand, and went over to refill it. While mixing it, the tension seemed to be lifted, and it was a sudden relief for him. The anger that had built up, dissipated, and his calm demeanor was coming back. Setting the spoon back down, he turned to face Dale.
"Sean, if I had known anything, trust me when I say he wouldn't have had any time to do what he did. He ruined my life too. That bastard. It's a good thing he is already dead, or I would race you to him. Winner gets first blood." Dale walked a little closer to Sean, but kept an arms length away. If Sean wanted to swing at him, he would at least have time to dodge.
"Dale, I know. Trust me, I know. I am sorry if I scared you, but what I said stands. I find out about anything bad in your empire, there will be hell to pay. Got it?" Sean had a fake smile spread across his face, but meant every word. He had no idea if he could carry the threats out, but it worked to keep Dale on edge.
"I understand. Now, can we go back to your kids? We left them sitting there, scared and confused." Dale held his hand out, offering a handshake of peace. The grip that Sean had, squeezing his sweaty hand, made Dale wince in pain.
"That is another thing I'm glad you brought up. Dale, I am only a substitute for you. Let them know you care about them. They need a friend, if nothing else. I know why you are letting me raise Justin, and now Jared. But Brandon needs his family too. You are it. If you cannot accept this, let me know. We can move on, without you. But if you would like to participate in the boys lives, now is the time. Each one, has his own reasons for being unhappy, and I am going to change that. I hope we can count on you, the boys need you as much as they need me. Be their friend, send a card, something. But don't walk out on them again." Sean squeezed Dale's hand even more, without realizing it. Dale's fingers went numb as the blood flow was cut off.
"Uh, sure. Can I have my hand back now, before you break it?" Dale was hurting; his hand felt like it was getting crushed. After he asked, Sean let go, but still had an almost evil smile on his face. Dale rubbed his hand as he tried to ease the pain, and check to see if anything was broken.
"I guess I can say sorry. I don't know what came over me. I never act like this. I am going to get some fresh air for a moment. Go back in by the boys, I'll be there shortly." Sean set his cup down on the counter, and went to the back door. This left a very stunned Dale, who wasn't going against his wishes. Dale turned around to go back to the boys.
Marty was sitting down, opposite the boys when Dale entered the room. This was a little odd, it was just the opposite of the seating earlier. They had switched sides. Marty had more color in his face, and no longer wore the deathly pale pallor of earlier. Dale stood and watched his boys interact, and could see why Sean loved them so much. His heart melted as he stood and watched the boys comfort Brandon. Once he was noticed, there was the usual barrage of questions regarding Sean's whereabouts.
"He needed to get some fresh air." Dale managed to get out, before the three boys started giggling. Noticing the facial expression on Dale, the boys had to take time to explain it.
"Dad likes to go and sit," Justin grinned.
"In the morning," Brandon glanced over to Justin.
"While he drinks his coffee." Jared giggled, finally finishing the thought.
Dale's jaw dropped. The three boys spoke, one at a time, but it was strange. One finished what the other was saying. All he could do, was smile as he regained his composure.
Marty glanced over at Dale and chuckled. He had witnessed this earlier, and knew it was only a matter of time before Brandon was included. He looked at the astonished expression on Dale's face and was instantly embarrassed as Dale glared back. `This might be a good time to shut up', he thought.
"Did I miss anything?" Sean strolled back in as though nothing had happened. The sculpted lines of earlier stress had disappeared, and his temples felt as if they were no longer going to explode.
"No you didn't, Sean. We were just wondering where you went, and the boys explained that you like to go out and sit on the back porch. That is a nice place, I remember..." Dale diverted his eyes as he seemed to stare at some far away object. He stood, lost in thought as he remembered his joys of his married life. They sensed his painful emotions, and decided to change the subject.
"Dale, even being the bearer of bad news so to speak, it was nice that you came over here today. Now, where were we? We should get this taken care of, and the day started, before it gets any later." Sean directed his stare to Dale. He wanted to know what else was in the envelope.
"Ahem, yes. If I can have your attention again, I'll try to make this as speedy as possible." Marty was nervous because he didn't want to upset Sean any further. The rest of the morning was stranger than usual.
The twins took this as their cue, and went to stand by Sean just in case. Brandon was wheeling himself over too, but it was harder for him to get close, because of the furniture. Once everyone was comfortably seated, and Sean was again guarded by the boys, Marty continued.
"From what I have read, these documents only indicate how bad a person Mary was. I find it hard to believe. These things are what we already knew about her, after your divorce from her, Dale. I can't imagine why you would get these things now, it's rather puzzling. For all that I have read, the evidence points to Mary. Now why would..." Marty tried to piece the evidence together, but failed to see the big picture. `Why now?' The thoughts raced across his mind as Sean stood up.
"Marty, do you have that box of papers from the bank? I think I know what's going on now. I need to see those again." Sean wiggled his way around the boy's legs, trying not to trip.
"Yeah, it should be around here. Ask Cecelia, I'm sure she put it somewhere safe." Marty's brow furrowed as he tried to understand Sean's attempt.
Sean walked out of the room to find Cecelia. He asked the whereabouts of the box as he approached her. "Cecelia, there should've been a box delivered here from the bank. Do you know where it is?"
"A box? Hmm...oh yes, I put it in the back of your closet." Cecelia tilted her head in thought, as she remembered where she put it.
After walking through the dining area to get to his bedroom, Sean searched his closet to find it. It was safe in there, no one had even noticed the nondescript box. The bank seal was still intact, meaning no one had opened it. Picking up the box, he almost ran back to the room, to unravel this mystery. At least he hoped it would be solved. He set it down on the coffee table with force, and slid his way back into the center of the boys. All eyes were upon him as he tore at the tape.
"I think I have the answer, if I can just find it now." Sean dug through the papers again, like there was a prize at the bottom. "I think I found it."
"What is it? Why did you get that box, and who's stuff is in there?" Dale was on the edge of his seat, as he peered over the contents, not wanting to touch them.
"Oh, excuse me, Dale. This is the last contents of Mary's safety deposit box. We found Brandon's birth certificate in here, and I didn't think to go through it yet to see what else was in here." Sean beamed with pride that he had figured all this out.
"Mary still had her safe box? I gave that to her when we first started to date." Dale's eyes gave his state of mind away, as the tears of past love, trickled down his face, as he remembered back to happier times.
"Are you going to be alright? Should we do this later?" Sean's voice was full of concern. He put the papers down, and looked Dale in the eye.
"Yeah, I'm fine. Let's get it done and over with, while we are all here." Dale tried to maintain his emotions, as he put a brave face on.
As he looked at Marty, Sean held his hand out for the other papers. Once gathered, Sean glanced over them, and kept nodding his head. "Just as I suspected."
"Dad, stop playing Kojak and tell us what happened, now." Justin was anxious to get this done and move on, he was still upset over what his mother did to him and his brothers.
"Well,I'm sorry guys, I was just trying to put it all together; from what I can see, they were trying to blackmail each other. Your cousin, Dale, was a good for nothing piece of shit. He was using Mary to get back at you, and held this over her head, so she did the things she did." Sean waved the papers so everyone could see.
"Now, for the rest of this stuff. Mary knew she wasn't going to be forgiven by you guys, so she was trying to make sure at least after her death, her name would be cleared." Sean looked at the boys, to make sure they were listening closely.
"All the blackmail stuff your cousin had on her, was from when he drugged her. Everything from the first set of pictures, when you were out of town, to her being used in the films. He had sex with her as well, and that is why Brandon so closely resembles the twins. They are actually related. See here, she kept notes of everything she could prove, which was a good move on her part. After she was discovered snooping around his office, her career went down the tubes, so to speak, but her drug use increased. She didn't like who she was, and was forced to sign her rights over to your dear cousin. But she was still a determined person, and tried for the last few years to expose him for what he is. Now, it is just too late." Sean got quiet, and his face fell.
"What do you mean? She was trying to prove her innocence all these years?" Dale stood and began to pace, his voice full of anger.
"Not only was she tricked the first time, when you were out of town, but she had to be kept drugged in order for her to, um, perform." Sean was uncomfortable with talking about this in front of the boys. His face blushed as he looked at them. Noticing that they weren't upset, he started to continue but Dale interrupted.
"You mean after all these years, that our friendship was a joke? He destroyed my marriage, and tore apart my family? It's a damn good thing he's already dead, cause I would kill him now." Dale spat the words through clenched teeth.
"Calm down ..." Marty's words were interrupted as Dale's fist smashed into his jaw. He fell to the floor unconscious only a few feet away..
The boys sat wide eyed as Sean shook his head in disbelief. Checking to make sure the boys were alright, Sean stood to confront Dale.
"Dale, how dare you do that in front of the boys. You have two choices here. Make the smart one, and do it fast." The icy tone of Sean's voice made Dale's blood run cold. The twins sat in silence upon hearing the violent edge in Sean's voice.
Dale cowered away from the inhuman voice. The coldness in Dale's eyes, disappeared, as he looked at his now bleeding hand. Seeing Marty laying on the floor, he realized what he had done. Dale slowly backed up from Sean, to walk over to the still unconscious Marty. Slapping his face a little, Dale was able to revive Marty, and helped him up. He was afraid of what he had done, he had never hit anyone in his life. Making sure his old friend was okay, he started to walk out of the room.
"Dale, don't go. Please?" Marty was rubbing his chin where the punch landed.
"I am so sorry Marty. I didn't know what came over me, and I need to leave." Dale's voice filled with regret.
"Dale, stop now. We need to finish this here and now." Sean wasn't in the mood to discuss this later, for once, he was getting the upper hand. Dale stopped, and turned to face him.
"Why? I don't even know what came over me. And you want me around the boys? I don't know if I can trust myself." Dale's voice started to break up, and his shoulders drooped.
"Yes you can. I trust you." Sean walked over and held him in a comforting hug. Dale was not in any better shape, but having Sean hold him, was welcomed.
The twins watched the scene in front of them unfold. Brandon glanced over at his brothers, and smiled.
"Thanks Sean. I don't know what happened, or why, but thanks." Dale wormed his way out of the strong arms that were holding him.
"Marty, are you okay? Do you need something, ice pack maybe?" The grin on Sean's face was priceless. He had thought about doing just that, since day one. Now he didn't need to worry about it again.
"I'm good, thanks for asking." Sarcasm was thick in Marty's reply.
Sean went and sat on the couch, and was again surrounded by the boys. After sitting more upright he continued the tale of the downfall of Mary. First, there were the pictures that were taken of her and another man, while Dale was out of town. This was the first step in breaking up Dale's marriage. Then, there were the parties that only she was invited to. They were conveniently scheduled while Dale was either too busy, or out of town on business. This is when the drugs were introduced to her, and they slowly got her addicted. All this while, Dale had no clue as to why his wife was withdrawn, and sex between the two, had ceased. After the marriage was on the rocks, the filming started, and then the real blackmail had begun. Dale's cousin had it out for him, and wanted to make him suffer. And suffer he did. The movies, the drugs, and of course the split, were almost enough to make Dale lose his mind. But Dale was proven to be the winner after all. He was alive, and the perpetrators were dead.
Trying to keep her own sanity, Mary had started to gather evidence about the abuse she went through. This included copies of Dale's schedules. There were also many references of notes in regards to where, when and how many drugs were used to force her into submission. The porn movie industry is a bad place, and she almost survived it. But then, with her getting pregnant, with Dale's cousin's baby, that was the last straw. She tried to stay off the drugs, long enough to have a healthy baby. But afterwards, she lost it. She had become a slave to the power of drugs. Her so called career was gone, for she no longer had the right stuff, meaning her body was too far gone for films. But she did keep trying to get evidence on her captor. She was able to find the different connections used, for different tastes of movies. And some very interesting off shore bank account numbers. Marty was all over that, once they figured out what they were. All of her notes, were unconventional to say the least, written on what ever was handy at the time. With the accounts, contacts, and the bribery, the sleaze bag wouldn't have stood a chance at survival, if he had actually been tried by the courts. But it looked as if, he did get what he deserved. Even the bastard's wife, played her role in it as well. She was used as back up, in the movies, and a false mother to Brandon. For her part in the dastardly plot to ruin Dale, she also got her just desserts. The interesting part of her notes, were the names and numbers of children's pictures. Sean's mood had turned sour again, after mentioning it. He stopped talking, and held his face in his hands while he cried. The boys surrounded him and tried to comfort him the best they could.
"At least that damn bastard got what he deserved." Dale felt safer as he kept his hands in his pockets.
"And to think, he got off easy. The car wreck was just convenient. But it worked." Marty was done rubbing his sore jaw, and was not going anywhere near either of the men. He had learned his lesson.
"While we are on this subject, look what else is in here." Sean reached into the envelope and pulled out another birth certificate, with Dale's cousin listed as the father. This would make the adoption process so much easier, for both parents were now dead. He handed the paper over to Marty, who flinched as Sean got closer.
"Oh, uh, thanks. This will help tremendously." Marty was now really embarrassed, for his sudden reaction to Sean's proximity. He didn't know what to expect from Sean, and if this morning was any indication, he would have to stay on guard, forever.
"Chill out Marty. You only have to be like that if you are hiding anything. Or ever cross me." Sean smiled wickedly, and it worked. Marty lost all the color in his face, as it sunk in. There's no way of finding out the potential of Sean's power, and this helped Sean in knowing. He was feared, and it made him feel better.
"Yeah, okay. I just need to absorb all this. These are some interesting papers we found, and your attitude is, uh, something else today." Marty tried covering the nervousness with his shaking voice.
"I think you are overreacting just a tad, Marty. Sean is a very nice guy. Just don't piss him off." Dale chuckled, watching one of the toughest lawyers in the city on the hot seat.
"Yeah, Dad is a nice guy." The twins and Brandon spoke up. The mixture of their voices sounded like music.
"I think, with all this behind us now, there is one more thing we should discuss." Dale's face fell, humor replaced by sadness.
"I think you should discuss this alone with the boys Dale. I am going for another cup of coffee. Anyone else need anything?" Sean stood, and watched the faces of everyone, then turned and left. There was no reason for him to be included in this conversation, and he didn't want to intervene either. This was their decision, as being the last living relatives of the deceased. He felt the urge to sit outside once more, and grabbed a cup of juice as he passed through the kitchen. He had enough coffee for the moment, but was thirsty.
"Well boys, we need to discuss what to do with your mother's remains. I know this isn't something that's normally discussed, but we need to." Dale had tears running down his face, for this would be the last time he wanted to discuss her. His love for her remained strong, even with everything that happened. Old wounds were torn open again. Now was the time to decide what to do with her remains, and he wanted his children's opinions.
"I think we should have her ashes spread across that field. You know, the one you used to go have picnics in? I think that'd make her happy." Justin looked at his brothers, and their confused faces.
"That's a good idea. Jared? Brandon? What do you think?" Dale tried to stop the tears, but gave up. The boys knew this was a tough time for him, so he let them flow freely.
"I think that's what she wanted, when we saw her there last night in the dream." Jared's face had a look of understanding and care. He was no longer mad at his mother, she was already dead.
The twins and Dale looked at Brandon, for his opinion. He just shrugged his shoulders, for he never knew her. The only time he had seen her, was in the dream the previous night.
"Well, it looks like the field is it then. Should we schedule it now, or are we going to do it on the spur of the moment?" Dale's eyes were red and puffy, but no longer watering as he looked at the boys.
"I think that we can do it anytime. So let's not schedule it. We never know what's going to happen around here, or when. You call us when you're ready." Justin looked into Dale's eyes, letting him know he did care.
"Yeah, what he said." Jared elbowed his brother in the side, trying to lighten the somber mood that had fallen in the room. Brandon giggled, and the sound of his laughter brought smiles to everyone including Marty.
"Now that it's settled, I have court papers to file. So if you guys will excuse me, I really do need to run." Marty stood, and acknowledged everyone, before heading for the front door.
"Hang on a sec. I think I will go with you. I have things to do too." Dale rose, as he tried to catch Marty before he got to the door.
"What's the big hurry? What did I miss? Did you guys decide on what to do with her ashes?" Sean walked back into the room, almost bumping into Marty on the way out. This made Marty's eyes go wide, he didn't want to upset Sean now.
"Yes, we decided on spreading her ashes out in the field, where we were last night. But how did...?" Dale did a double take on Sean, before turning back to try to catch Marty. With all the excitement this morning, he could only guess how Sean's brain worked. If you had any secrets to hide, stay away. He was going to make sure that Sean and the boys, had a clean company, with no bad dealings of any kind. Sean's threat stayed in the back of his mind. And that voice, that unearthly voice. It sent shivers down his spine, as he raced to catch up to Marty.
"Hmm, I wonder what his problem is. He wasn't thinking very clearly, as he left was he?" Sean silently laughed to himself, watching the direction Dale left in.
"I can only guess." Jared slapped his knee, before he busted up laughing.
"Yeah Dad. I thought he was going to piss himself there." Justin imitated his twin, adding a full belly laugh.
"Guys. What about me?" Brandon wheeled himself around the couch, to get more attention from his brothers and Sean.
"Yes, you two, watch your language now. There are children present in the house." Sean smiled as he watched Brandon become the center of attention. The twins became glued to each side of him.
"Sorry Dad. I didn't mean it to say it like that." Justin blushed, as he looked at his little brothers.
"I know you are, but in the future, please remember who is around. Okay?" Sean had a hard time not laughing as he tried to look serious. This little charade didn't fool the boys, and soon they were all laughing.
"Hehe, he did look like he was going to wet himself though. Haha." Brandon courageously put his opinion in, with everyone laughing more. They laughed for a few minutes more, until Justin pulled away from the group, and stared at Sean.
"Um, Dad, what was with that voice thingie you did? That was like scary. I've never heard that voice before." Justin stared into Sean's eyes, and tried to get a hint of emotions.
"Let's not go there now, or anytime in the future." Sean stood up and backed away from his boys. The look on his face was very serious, as he turned pale. The temperature in the room dropped a few degrees as his knees failed.
"Dad? Are you feeling okay?" Justin ran to Sean's side, stopping Sean from falling.
"DAD!" The high squeal from Brandon was deafening, as Sean slumped to the floor. Jared hurried to help his brother get Sean to the couch. Sean's eyes rolled into the back of his head, as his breathing became shallow.
"Brandon, go get Ceclia. NOW!" Justin tried staying calm, as his emotions ran rampant. His new dad wasn't in good health, or something else was wrong. `This shouldn't be happening, today of all days', he thought to himself.
"What's going on? Oh my God! What's wrong with him?" Cecelia ran into the room, after hearing the commotion caused by the boys, almost tripping over Brandon's wheelchair.
"He, he just started to..." Jared cried out, not being able to speak, as his arms were in a tight grip around his new dad.
"He just got up, and said something, then collapsed." Justin's eyes started to water too, for he felt responsible for asking the question before this happened. He held onto Sean from the other side, not allowing Cecelia to get a closer look at him. Brandon not wanting to be be left out, wheeled himself over to the three, and put his hand on Sean's leg.
"DAD!? Are you okay?" The tears came freely from Brandon's eyes. The electricity in the room was audible. You could feel the room being charged, and get a little warmer.
"What are you guys doing?" Sean opened his eyes as the boys surrounded him. He tried to sit up, but was being held down under the crushing weight of the twins.
"What do you mean? We are trying to figure out what is wrong with you! You just fainted, don't you remember?" Justin whimpered into Sean's shoulder.
"Wrong? I feel fine. Can you let me up now?" Sean struggled to sit up now. The redness in his cheeks proof that he didn't know what was going on.
"Don't do that to us again! I was so scared. I thought that, that..." Jared cried heavily into Sean's shoulder, his body shook from crying.
"Dad, are you sure? You didn't look that good, and your voice was even different." Brandon pulled his hand back, as he looked away from Sean's face. The feeling he got after touching Sean was different. It was cold. Like death. Brandon held his arms close to him, and started to curl up into a ball as best as he could.
Sean looked at the reaction that Brandon had. His face fell, as a tear rolled down his face. He looked over at Justin, who was showing the same concern. Jared was still hiding in the nook of his neck, still sobbing. Sean slowly closed his eyes, and fell limp into the couch. The twins relaxed their grip on him, not knowing what happened. As they sat up and stared at each other, the twins looked at Sean. His cold body still had signs of life.
"DAD! NOOOO!" The screech of Brandon made everyone jump. Cecelia nearly had a heart attack, grabbing her chest like her chest was going to explode. Brandon looked at the twins sitting by Sean, with tears streaming down his face.
"It's okay little one. I am still here, see?" Sean sat up, which made the twins almost fall off the couch. The look of total surprise on their faces showed they didn't know what was happening.
"Wha...?" Jared looked into Sean's eyes, then over to Brandon's.
Justin had an angry look on his face. He didn't understand what was going on, but the energy in the room had taken on a different feel. His breathing was a sign, not everything was alright.
"I'm sorry boys. I had to do something. You wouldn't let me go comfort Brandon. The only way was to, um..." Sean tried to explain what he'd done, but didn't know how. He stared at his lap, as the boys surrounded him.
"Dad, how did you...?" Justin wrapped his arm around Sean's shoulders, letting him know he wasn't mad, but still upset over this little charade.
"I, I , um, don't really know. I just had to get to Brandon, and thought I got off the couch to do it. Apparently, I didn't do that. But I still got to him." Sean looked into Brandon's face for forgiveness, not wanting to scar him for life.
"That, that, that was, your spirit I felt?" Brandon barely got out above a whisper, as he slowly rolled the chair to get closer.
"Yeah, it kinda was. That's how I was able to find him, in the first place." Justin overcame his anger, hugging Sean tighter.
"Is that what it was?" Sean looked into Justin's eyes, and saw love and compassion within.
"I guess so. But how did you?" Justin looked at Sean as he tried to think. Justin couldn't remember how, it was a matter of life versus death for him.
"I don't know what just happened, but Sean you need to go see a doctor. And that is not a request." Cecelia had regained her senses. She had no idea as to what was happening; only that things were not right. She exerted her authority, or at least what she thought she had.
"I am fine. Don't worry about it. Watch." Sean tried again to stand, but didn't have the strength. The twins were not to blame this time, he just didn't have the muscle coordination or power to get up from the couch.
Cecelia gently moved Brandon out of the way, working to get closer to Sean. She grabbed his wrist, and to check his pulse. Her look of concern growing, she reached up to check his forehead. Shaking her head, she headed into the kitchen.
"What was that all about?" Jared looked into Sean's eyes, trying to figure out if something was really wrong. Relaxing his grip on Sean, he reached for the wrist closest to him, and tried to take the pulse himself. What he found, made his eyes widen. Justin caught on, and grabbed the other wrist, and his face turned sour as well.
"What's wrong?" Brandon squeaked out watching his brothers faces change. The tears in his eyes still fresh, were joined by others. Brandon tried to get closer, but Cecelia stopped him, as she walked back into the room. She had her coat on, and keys in hand.
"Alright, I called the hospital, and we're expected. Justin, Jared, get your coats, then come back here and help Sean. And don't forget to grab a coat for Brandon. Sean, you're in no shape to drive. And being that Marty is busy now, I'm taking you to the hospital. And no talking back, understand?" With a determined look on her face, she waited as the boys started to move.
"I told you I was fine. What's the big fuss about?" Sean tried to stand again, but fell back into the couch. His energy was gone. With his chin about on his chest, he nodded to the boys to get busy. He couldn't even think of why he felt like this. He sat there, and waited with all the eyes on him. Still feeling light headed, he slumped into the couch, as he tried to catch his breath.
"You're not fine. You have a fever, and your pulse is racing. You're going to go see a doctor, and now." Cecelia was determined to make this happen, if she had to tie him up. There was something wrong, but she wasn't a doctor. She was first aid certified, and had stayed current since she became a nanny. She had no clue as to what was happening or why.
The twins came running back downstairs, forgetting the rules about running in the house. With a simple glance from Cecelia, they knew they were forgiven this once. Jared helped with Brandon's coat, while Justin wrestled with Sean. The look on Sean's face was of disbelief, that he'd lost his motor skills to the point he couldn't sit upright. As Cecelia pushed Brandon, the twins struggled with Sean; they managed to get into her car.
To be continued...
Thank you to my editors for their help in making this story into what it is today. Comments and criticisms are always welcome. Please forward them to firstname.lastname@example.org For those of you wishing to read ahead in the story, you can find additional chapters at http://www.tickiestories.us or http://www.myspace.com/stories_by_hal or http://crackerwriter.us/Main_Site.htm Thank you all and hope to hear from you soon!