General Fiction posted February 18, 2012 Chapters:  ...52 53 -54- 55... 


Exceptional
This work has reached the exceptional level
A big favor is asked of Alex

A chapter in the book Twist of Fate: A New Generation

Agenda

by Connie P


David Posner went over every detail of his plan one last time. Certain a press release was not only the best way to protect Blake, but a perfectly timed opportunity to knock a few holes in some constitutional erosions drafted into law in the name of Homeland Security. Now all he had to do was sell it to Blake, a plan he wanted Alex to back up.



After Alex’s mother served cold cuts for lunch, his father captured the children’s attention with preparations for his homemade ice cream. Michael had never heard of homemade ice cream. Fascinated by the process and the actual possibility of making your own ice cream, he stuck, unwavering, to the man he nervously called Grandpa Hennessey for the first time.

Alex and Emmie sat in lounge chairs out of the sun, and when Alex heard Michael call his father Grandpa, he turned his face away from Emmie. When he turned back, his eyes were red-rimmed from fighting back tears.

Emmie whispered, “What is it?”

“You heard that, didn’t you?”

She nodded and smiled. “I’m really glad your dad decided to make ice cream. Michael has so much--simple things sometimes let him just be a regular kid.” She snickered and added, “When’s it going to be ready, anyway?”

“Well, the towel’s on the bucket, so I’d say about twenty minutes. He’s the only person I know that still uses a hand-crank. He says the electric freezers don’t get it hard enough.”

He called out, “Hey, Dad, how much longer? I think Emmie’s craving ice cream.” Before his father could answer, Alex’s cell phone rang. He shook his head in near disgust.

As he headed for the table where he’d left his phone and keys, he said, “If this is business, remind me to get a separate phone.” When Alex answered to David Posner, he asked him to hold and walked back to Emmie. “I need to take this inside. I shouldn’t be long.”

Once Alex gave him the go ahead, David said, “Well, what do you think?”

“About what?”

“I assumed you’d heard. Walker Rush is dead.”

“The CIA director, what the hell?”

“Not sure, but he’s dead and I have some decisions to make concerning Blake. D.C. is on fire with speculation, but it’s somehow connected to Dickson’s death and ultimately to Blake. I’m surprised you haven’t heard.”

Alex sat in disbelief, but explained, “I’m off this week. I’m getting married Thursday.”

“Well, congratulations, but I need you in the loop. We’re going to hit the country with another bombshell later and I haven’t told Blake yet. It would help tremendously if you’d back me up.”

“What are you planning?”

“A press release. We need to get Blake into the public eye. It’s the best way I know to keep him safe. Once the atrocity of his imprisonment is made known, only a fool would touch him. Do you agree?”

“I’m not sure. First of all, how is this going to affect Mr. Connor?”

“As long as we keep Blake away from the press and do his talking for him, it won’t. I don’t think he’d breach the agreement, but you know how tricky reporters can be.”

“I guess, but I don’t want to make a commitment until I’ve talked to Brian. When are you planning to break the story?”

“We thought the six o’clock news would eat it up, so we’ve got a few hours. But look, Alex, I need to know who’s guarding him since Dickson’s death. We won’t be able to move him without their cooperation. It’s my understanding they’re doing their jobs very well.”

Alex fell silent. Brian had just told him to step back and his adamancy proved to be effective. After a few moments, he said, “Tell me why you need my involvement—he’s your client.”

David chuckled. “You may not realize it, but I think you have a new puppy. Blake thinks you’re his BFF. He’ll listen to you.”

Finding David’s comment anything but amusing, Alex shot back. “Puppy? That’s a hell of a way to put it. The guy’s been locked up in a hole with nothing but hopelessness and hostility and God only knows what else. Don’t dehumanize him—he’s not going to be a poster boy for the ACLU’s agenda.”

David countered, “Don’t lose your objectivity, counselor. Agendas, in a case like this, are a means to an end. When we expose Blake’s treatment, it will pave the way to exposing a long list of human rights violations going on under your corporately trained nose.”

“When do you need my decision?”

“We’re ready to go. I just need you to have a convincing conversation with Blake and see if you can find out whose ass needs kissing to move him. And while I’ve got you fired up, we need a place to move him. I can stick him anywhere … literally, but …” Posner hesitated. “… we could move him to Atlanta and he’d have a minor support system. He’s taken on his family and I’m not sure he can function on that level without some help.”

Alex mumbled, “Christ.” He stood and started to pace before he finally said, “Give me a couple of hours, I’ll call you back.” He tossed his phone onto his mother’s sofa. Brian’s not going to like this. He then groused, “Puppy, my ass,” to thin air.

Emmie was standing on line with her bowl in hand when Alex opened the door. “Em, I’ve got something that can’t wait. Why don’t you get us both some ice cream and come in out of the heat for awhile?”

After getting their bowls filled, Emmie started inside. Her soon to be mother-in-law said, “I’ll walk you in. We’ve got another batch ready for the freezer.”

When Emmie joined Alex on the sofa, she handed him his bowl, but he set it aside and laid his head against the back of the couch. When he blew out a puff of air, she said, “What’s going on?”

“It’s the guy in D. C.--I’ve been asked to get involved again, so I need to talk to Palmer first and then Brian.” She reached for the television remote, but Alex put his hand over hers. “Baby, there’s some more negativity going on. Try to find a movie—stay away from the news right now.”

“I can handle it.”

“I know you can, but you don’t need to.” He looked toward the kitchen before he went on. “Now, the C.I.A. director is dead. Let’s don’t feed the baby on too much murder and mayhem.”

“He was murdered?”

“Who knows, but I’m sure it’s not pretty.”

Olivia, who’d followed her grandmother inside, ran to the back door with a plastic tub of strawberries. When the door closed behind her, Alex’s mother came into the room and sat across from Emmie and Alex. “Is there something you two would like to tell me?”

Alex said, “What do you mean, Mother?”

Iris Hennessey raised a brow and leaned forward, her eyes bored into Alex and after a few minutes of pinning him to the sofa with her intense stare, she softened her countenance and looked at Emmie. “Craving ice cream?” Then back to Alex. “Get out of the heat for awhile? Alexander, I may not be as young as I once was, but I’m neither deaf nor am I dumb. Now, is there something you’d like to tell me?”

Alex cut his eyes toward Emmie. “I think we’re busted.”

Emmie turned a shade of red that made Alex’s hair look pale. He blushed too and gave Emmie a pleading look. To the surprise of both he and his mother, tears rolled down Emmie’s cheeks.

By the time Iris made it across the room, Emmie was in full-blown sobs and Alex looked as if he might not be far behind. She eased down beside Emmie. “I’m sorry, sweetheart. Maybe I should have addressed this with my son. Please don’t cry.”

Emmie sniffled out, “We were going to tell you at the party. I don’t want … you to … think … I’m that way. Alex is the only man I’ve been with since Michael’s father died, the only other man ever.”

“So you are going to have a baby?”

Emmie nodded.

She snuggled Emmie, but continued to give Alex a look. With a fixed smile, she said, “You know, Alexander, there are ways to prevent these things.”

“We didn’t want to prevent it, Mother. We want a baby right away. No one else knows about this, so don’t be hurt. The children certainly can’t know yet, but yes, we’re going to have a planned addition to our family and there will probably be more to come.” He took Emmie from his mother’s embrace. “Emmie’s very sensitive about how this might be perceived and I can assure you, what we did, we did out of love and for each other.”














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