LL - All done!Now that were are back online! Ning was trippin!....
By midnight, Jack was almost at his wits end. He’d tried the twin’s cellphones endlessly and every possible contact number that he had for Almira and all to no avail. He wasn’t one to lose his cool over much, but when it came to his kids, all bets were off. Kay watched as he paced up and down his living room frantically calling whomever he though could have an inkling of where Horace, Jacob and Almira were.
I’ll kill that woman when I see her again, Jack raged internally. If you see her again, said a more morbid side of his brain. Much as he tried not to think about it, the thought that his sons and ex-wife could be injured or worse in a car accident kept on racing through his mind.
Kay herself was brainstorming and trying to figure out what she could do to help; she’d already left a message with Troy, who had promised to get to Jack’s place as soon as he could manage it. Kay then got on the phone to her personal assistant when Troy finally buzzed the intercom.
“Hello, Melanie? I’m so, so, sorry to bother you on the weekend, but this is an emergency. I really need your help on this,” Kay asked desperately.
“No Kay, go ahead. It must be that bad for you to call me.” Melanie replied while pushing away her husband in their bed, who had just begun to kiss the side of her thigh when the phone rang. She pulled the sheets over her breasts as if Kay was actually there in the room to see her and gestured to her now sulky other half to be quiet.
“Well, it’s my partner’s teenage twin boys,” Kay began. Jack beamed a little in spite of the circumstances when he over-heard her refer to him as such.
“Yeah Melanie. They were supposed to be dropped at their grandparent’s house for dinner with us at 7 this evening, but they never showed up. Their mom was bringing them. Jack’s been calling them for hours, but the phones are switched off. Now before we go nuts and call the police to report them missing, I need you to check the airport and see if anyone with these names flew out of Chicago tonight.”
Kay gave Melanie the names and then appealed to her conscience before ending the call. “Please Mel, I’m counting on you. Do the best you can with your phone and your computer and let me know as soon as you get any news. Just let me know if there is anything at all please.”
“You got it Kay – I’ll do my best.”
When the call was over, Kay did her best to explain the situation to Troy before Jack got off the phone to his own various sources.
“So the last time you saw the boys, did the say anything about possibly running away,” Kay asked Troy. “Anything at all. Please Troy, Jack is going crazy with worry and I hate to see him like this. He’s already spoken to Gracie in Saudi and she has no idea where they could be either.”
“Mom, you think if I knew anything I wouldn’t have told you immediately? Come on, mama, you know me better than that!” Troy protested.
“I know baby. I’m sorry, but I’m just clutching at straws here.” Kay confessed. She then immediately turned to Jack once he was off the phone at last.
“So? Anything…and did you manage to reach Ishmael too?”
“Yeah Ishmael called me back, but he knows as much as we do. He hasn’t seen Almira since they signed the divorce papers a week ago…but get this Kay, he said that his housekeeper confessed that she spoke to Almira and told her about his engagement to Farrah. The woman only opened her mouth to tell him when she saw him rushing around, trying to get some of Almira’s family on the phone to ask them if the boys were there. Ishmael was almost crying when the old woman ‘fessed up. The lady was scared for her job and figured that Almira must have gone crazy when she found out that he was re-marrying.” Jack recounted.
“Well I guess the snitch has a heart.” Kay reasoned. “Did he sack her?”
“Of course he did. But now he’s on his way with Farrah to see if they can help at all; Ishmael thinks it’s better if we all pool together in one place.”
“Good idea.” Troy affirmed.
“Oh, and I called my assistant too.” Jack said. “Genny Templeton is going to check if there have been any accidents on the highways on the outskirts of town – just in case,” he concluded with his voice wavering a little at the thought.
“My God Jack, Lord knows what’s happened to them.” Kay said. “How long till we can report them missing?”
“24 hours. But my gut tells me that we should not wait that long.” Jack replied. “I do have an old connect in the District Attorney’s office; if I can get him on board, he can get the police dept to track the boys GPS signals on their cell phones.”
“But the phones are switched off.” Kay remarked.
“The beauty of technology is that the satellite can pick up exactly where they are even if the phone is off. The signal can still transmit.” Jack confirmed.
“So what the hell are we waiting for then?” Troy said.
Jack picked up his phone again without another word.
“Mom…what’s wrong with you.” Horace asked. “Why have you driven us to this place in the middle of nowhere and taken our phones? Dad is gonna be worried mom come on!”
“Shut up you – forget about your dad for a minute.” Almira spat. “I brought you both here to talk without any interruptions. Thanks to a good friend there is enough food here for a few days.”
“A few days!” Jacob protested. “You know is this country, this is abduction.”
“I’M YOUR MOTHER!”
“How can we ever forget,” Horace mumbled. “So what do you wanna talk about that is gonna take a few days and deprive me of my Playstation.”
“Why you boys hate me….” she said in a voice that was uncharacteristically pitiful. “Why does everybody hate me. I mean, Ishmael has already found a new wife and Jack….that idiot of a father of yours told me he’s going to marry that witch! What’s wrong with both of those men!”
“I wonder…” Jacob said sarcastically.
“Shut up and answer me!” Almira screamed. “No one is leaving here until I get some answers! I wanna know why!”
“Mom, come on.” Horace began.
“You think I’m playing?” Almira began.
The boys shrank back in horror in their seats when their mother took a 12 inch chef knife out of her Hermes Birkin and put it in her lap.
“So tell me boys…why do you hate me so much? Am I not your mother? Did I not carry you both for nine months?! But no, you run away to live with your wretched father once I go through a bad time! If my sons don’t love me, then who will!”
Jacob and Horace looked at each other perplexed; how the hell were they going to get out of this one?
“Okay Mr Ames, I can only say that you’re a very fortunate man. The DA’s office called me out of a poker game for this. You must be able to pull one hell of a string.” said Detective Phillips. “Anyway, the satellite tracker has one of the phones located in Edwards County, Illinois. So the good news is that they might still be in the state. We can only hope that the phone wasn’t thrown in the bushes somewhere; Edwards County has a lot of woodland and hunting lodges, so you can imagine.”
“Thank you so much Detective.” Jack replied. “Any idea how far it is from here?”
Kay looked at the clock while he was talking; it was 3am, but it didn’t look like anyone was getting any sleep soon. Both Melanie and Genny had confirmed that there were no flights out of Chicago with the twins on them, neither had they been reported in any accidents. That was a bit of a relief to all concerned, but it still did not answer the $64 million dollar question of where the hell they were.
“About five hours driving easy,” replied the detective. “I’ve already asked someone in the precinct to call the Sheriff’s dept in the county and given them the co-ordinates from the satellite reading. I guess you wanna make your way out there huh?”
“What would you do if they were your kids?” Jack dead-panned.
“Point taken, here is the estimated location – just put it into your GPS in the car and start driving.”
Troy had already put his boots on before Jack ended the call. Everyone in the room had been listening since the phone was put on speaker so that they could all hear any good or bad news. Jack, Kay, Troy, Ishmael, Farrah and Shaleef had all been waiting in the living room with bated breath when the detective had called. The men made all got ready to go, but Kay pulled Jack to the side before he left.
“Baby, do you need me to be with you?” she asked tenderly. “I was gonna call on an old acquaintance to help me get the boys faces on the news for Sunday morning, just so that people are aware that they’re missing….”
“Cool sweetie. You do that and stay here with Farrah – its best you don’t come and you can call me to update me in case Genny calls when she can’t get me on my cell phone. That girl is fantastic, she almost lost her father last night; he had a heart attack, but she still insisted on helping me find the boys. She’s just got her laptop, her cell and a cup of coffee to keep her company in her car. Genny is in the hospital’s café because she can’t use her cell in the intensive care ward.”
“But what about Jim?” Kay asked with genuine concern for her old betrayer.
“The docs said that he’ll pull through. He’s already talking apparently – but they found high levels of cocaine in his blood. Once a junkie….”
“I know. Let’s just leave it at that. The boys are more important now….go on and call me once you guys hear anything from the detective.
“I will.” He promised and kissed her deeply before making a swift exit, bound for the open road.
“That woman’s gone crazy I tell ya! Jim…you sure you wanna let her stay at your place?”
“Who is this?” Genny asked. “I’m Jim’s daughter and I have no idea what you’re talking about.”
“Umm…oh Genny?! This is Mr Grayson you know, Paul from the hunting lodge upstate. I own the one next door to your daddy’s cabin. Can I speak to ya daddy please?”
“I’m sorry Mr Grayson, he had a massive heart attack last night. He can talk, but just barely. I’m just picking up his calls in case something important comes up.”
“Good God. I’m glad that the old fella is alive. Tough as anything old Jim is. He could always drink me under the table.”
“I think that’s part of the problem. But anyway, can I help at all?”
“Well he called me last night about seven thirty and said that one of his lady friends will be coming over to stay at the lodge for a few days and to give her the key. Well I just walked by and heard the woman shouting at the two kids that she came with….”
Genny’s heart almost sank to the bottom of her stomach at the revelation. Only one thing that she had to ask Paul Grayson would confirm her suspicions.
“Mr Grayson, what did the lady look like?”
“Oh, she’s one of them A-rab womens and the kids she came with look African American. So do ya want me to tell her to keep the noise down, or just to drive right back from where the hell she came from?”
“No Paul, I wouldn’t do that. I think that woman might be dangerous – just call the Sheriff’s department. I don’t think my daddy knew what she wanted to use the lodge for. The father of those boys has been going crazy looking for them all night; he’s my boss and that lady’s ex-husband.”
“Exactly. Mr Grayson, I’m going to let the authorities on this end know the exact address to the lodge and when the Sherriff arrives, I hope we can count on your help.”
“Sure thing Genny, sure thing.”
As soon as she was off the phone with Paul Grayson, Genny called Jack, who by now was half-way to Edwards County been driven in Troy’s SUV.
“Jack – you will never believe this. I know where the boys are.”
As Genny explained the situation to Jack, her eyes widened at the Sunday morning local breaking news bulletin that had just flashed across the Hospital café TV screen. Horace and Jacob had officially been reported missing – and Almira was the prime suspect. Now all that everyone could pray for was that she not put on the TV inside the cabin before the Sheriff got to her.
The boys were still sat in the same chairs that they had been in for the past 12 hours; they had listened to the their mother rant, cried in fear from the chef knife been thrusted in their faces, peed their pants because she would not allow them to get up and both come to the conclusion that she had finally gone crazy. Only someone with a mental disorder would behave in such a way and keep talking as if what she was doing was normal.
Horace and Jacob prayed that their father would find them before she could injure them or worse, but they were running out of hope. Nobody knew that they were in the middle of nowhere in a hunting lodge surrounded by dense woodland.
After talking for hours on end until her throat was dry, Almira had begun to make tiny cuts on her fingers with the sharp blade. She knew that she had f***** up big time – but there was no turning back now. If she was going to go out, she figured that she may as well do it with a bang.
“You boys will turn out just like your father won’t you? You’ll just forget about me like he did! Well I’m not going to let you FORGET!” she said with a conclusive scream and lunged at the boys with the knife. The everything went black.
“She took them where!” Kay exclaimed. “So you know where they are…Jim Templeton’s lodge? I didn’t even know that he liked to hunt. Do they even know each other?”
“Apparently so.” Jack confirmed. “Genny told me that she walked in on Almira giving him a blow-job in the office one time. Apparently Almira scared her even then…..”
“Shit. So how far are you then? And what about the Sheriff over there…you know that the boys are all over the state news channels…I spoke to a guy who knew a guy and needed to call in a favour.” Kay explained, while thinking of Randy Wade – owner of all the major broadcasting for Illinois – who just so happened to be one of her ex-submissives in her Mistress Klymaxx days.
“Thanks baby – Genny told me that too. But the good news is that the Sheriff just called me and the man that lives next door had the spare key to the lodge and let them in. They got there just in the nick of time; Almira had a knife and they managed to knock her out could before she could do anything stupid with it. Also the boys are fine. I’ll get there in about 20 minutes and once everything has calmed down, I will give you a call.”
Almira woke up feeling fuzzy and wondered where she was for a moment; when her eyes finally came into focus, she could feel her arms had been cuffed behind her back. Jack, Shaleef, Ishmael, two Police officers and another young black guy in plain clothes were all looking at her. She looked over to where Horace and Jacob had sat all night, but their seats were empty.
“She’s coming to….” Said the Sheriff.
Jack walked over to Almira with his hand in a fist; Troy saw this and immediately jumped next to him to hold Jack back in case he did the unthinkable.
“Why Almira?” Jack asked in a pained voice. “Why put my boys thru this? They haven’t hurt anybody…why did you have to hurt and humiliate them? For what Almira?” he concluded with his voice wavering.
“Because of you Jack! Because you left me and I still love you, you bastard!” she screamed. “I never loved him,” she said pointing to Ishmael. “Can’t you see that Jack? If I couldn’t have you, then I wanted you to feel the pain like I’m feeling in my heart. Do you know how it feels Jack? To find out that you lost the only person that you truly loved to another? I know that I did you wrong Jack, but didn’t we have the good times?” she ranted.
“That what all this is about?” Jack blasted. “Because you can’t move on? You put my sons thru this s***, had me thinking y’all were dead and got almost my entire family praying that the twins are okay, because you want me to feel pain? Well congratulations Almira, I feel pain alright. Pain that my boys will probably never want to see their birth mother ever again. You know Almira, of all the things you’ve done to me – even the physical violence, the yelling at me, the ganging up on me with your father, this is the only thing that would ever make me turn my back on you for good.” He confessed. “You know Almira, I feel sorry for you…by the time that you realise that the world does not revolve around you, it will probably be too late, everyone would have left you. I’m done Almira. I’m done. Don’t ever try to speak to me ever again.”
With that, Jack turned tail and walked out of the lodge eagerly followed by the rest of the men.
“Jack! Please, don’t leave me!!!” Almira screamed. The silence in the room told her that he was never coming back.
“So Mr Benjamin-Ames, would you like to press charges?” asked the Sheriff.
“She is the mother of my kids – I can’t. Her brother has been informed of this situation and is on their way to get her. I promise you that she will not cause anymore trouble. I’d just like to get my boys home if that’s okay and it’s a long drive back to Chicago.”
“Your call sir.”
“Thanks Sheriff, thanks for everything,” Jack concluded and shook the man’s hand.
It was over.
Kay jumped out of her seat as soon as she heard Jack’s key open the door; upon seeing Horace and Jacob, she raced over to hug the them. Being overwhelmed by the entire ordeal, both boys began to sob in her arms. Kay could smell the feint aroma of urine on their clothes and shuddered to think about what Almira had put them through.
“You’re gonna be okay guys…you’re with your father now and you’ve always got me too.”
Jack hugged his sons again for the umpteenth time and then broke down himself at that moment. Almira would never be welcome in his life ever again. He only hoped that the boys would forgive her someday.
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