Chapter 011

Together Chapter 011

Copyright 2014 - 2015 Banzai Ben and Amazing Anastasia

 

Present – Liz – after the wedding

 

Bernie and I were headed for a tent to experience a little post wedding afternoon delight when my phone rings. Even though I don't recognize the number, I see that it is a Colorado area code so I answer and hear, "Is this Elizabeth Morgan?"

 

I hesitate for a moment to confirm my identity but he does sound official so I answer, "Yes this is Liz Morgan, with whom am I speaking."

 

He replies, "This is Jim Freeman the Sheriff of Lake County, we saw the wedding on television and figured we'd better call you and not Ben or Jennifer Blaine."

 

I'm concerned when I answer, "Exactly why is that?"

 

Jim replies, "I know they are on their honeymoon so I didn't want to disturb them. I hate to tell you this, but it looks like the cabin burnt up again - it's totally destroyed."

 

I stumble for a moment from the shock (and champagne), Bernie thoughtfully catches me and I much too loudly answer, "What in the hell happened?"

 

Jim says, "We're in the process of getting an arson investigator up from Denver, but from what I've seen, it looks like arson because the sprinkler system was turned off."

 

I pause for a moment, think and hope for a negative answer, "Tell me, was this covered by any television news?"

 

He replies, "Oh yeah, it is big news up here. Almost everyone was, and still is, here except for the Truth Network."

 

I can only hope that Ben and Jens will be too busy on their honeymoon for the next two weeks to turn on the TV. I continue, "Jim thanks for the information, do you have any idea when we might start on rebuilding the cabin again?"

 

Jim, who has been a fountain of information answers, "Sorry Ms. Morgan, we have no idea. If this is indeed arson then it could take months and of course insurance might not cover it."

 

I think for a moment and reply, "Thank you so much Jim, especially for not calling Ben and Jens. I am sending Samantha to the cabin immediately to cover the situation. Please call me if there are any further developments and please do not bother Ben and Jens"

 

Jims laughs and says, "Yeah, if any two people ever deserved an uninterrupted honeymoon it's those two. By the way, Samantha did a great job on the coverage of the wedding. We were all shocked at the Mossad team and laughed like crazy when the wolves and bears marched them out of the forest. Sorry to bother you Ms. Morgan."

 

Jim hangs up the phone, I look at Bernie and he asks, "Don't tell me the cabin burned up again?"

 

I am more than dumbstruck, I am awestruck, so I nod my head and answer, "That's right, it was Sheriff Jim Freeman. He thinks it is arson and the cabin is a total loss."

 

I slump to the ground and begin to cry. Bernie comes over, sits beside me and asks, "Liz, what's wrong?"

 

I'm embarrassed because I don't want to tell Bernie I'm upset because my wedding dress was destroyed with the cabin so I concoct a plausible lie, "I just can't believe someone was so callus as to do this on their wedding day." I wipe my eyes and continue, "Shit I thought I was busy getting ready for the wedding, this is going to be even worse. Please find Gretchen and ask her to come here while I find Samantha and get her headed toward the cabin. I want to find the fucker that did this and burn them at the stake, just like they burned up the cabin…"

 

Present – Zarika and Yasmeen – running away

 

Firstly, we cannot believe that Ben married Jennifer, but it was even worse that we were not invited to the wedding. Yasmeen and I sit on the rug in the main room crying. Why oh why did our Ben marry her and why did he forget us like so much trash?

 

Yasmeen pulls away from me, gives me an evil look and says, "I know a perfect way to get back at Ben and the fat Jennifer bitch for this."

 

I blink my eyes to see through the tears and ask, "Yasmeen, what are you thinking?"

 

She smiles evilly and says, "We are going to run away from home and burn down the cabin."

 

She shocks me so I question, "But isn't that against the law?"

 

Yasmeen justifies her actions, "It is no more against the law than Ben marrying Jennifer. You are the first wife and I am the second wife so he should have married us and made the bitch Jennifer his concubine."

 

I think for a moment and answer, "Yes, you are correct! Ben and the fat Jennifer bitch broke the law first so we are justified in using any retaliation. So please, explain your plan…"

 

I am so upset that Ben married that bitch Jennifer that I will make both of them pay by destroying this cabin which should rightfully belong to Zarika and me. If we can't live in it with Ben as our husband, then no one will live in it.

 

I explain my plan to Zarika, "Firstly we need to pack our best clothes because after we do this, we cannot come back. Then we turn off the fire sprinkler system since I know where the valve thing is in the basement. Then we go into the kitchen, turn on all the gas in the stove and oven. Next we will put a magazine in the toast making machine, press down on the lever and leave."

 

Zarika grins at me and questions, "Yasmeen, how did you come up with this idea because it's evilly genius?"

 

I answer, "I saw it on a movie; when the spy did it the whole house exploded."

 

We run to our rooms and pack our clothes…

 

Present – Samantha – taking care of Stacy

 

I'm busy taking care of a very drunk and sick Stacy. I get her back to the campsite area, then look over and see that Wojtek might be in even worse shape than Stacy. I maneuver her over to a table, make her sit and leave to get us a couple cups of strong black coffee.

 

I come back over and see Stacy is slumped over the table, fast asleep in a pool of her own puke – my heavens what BFFs do for each other! I grab a bunch of napkins off the table, pick up Stacy's head, wipe her face clean - it wakes her slightly and she cries, "Whyyyyyy Bennnnnn!"

 

Because she is somewhat awake, I hold a cup of coffee to her lips and demand, "Stacy drink this."

 

She takes a sip, spits it out and complains, "This isn't champagne. I want more champagne! And where's my good drinking buddy Woho… Womo… not that's not right, let me try again W… W…  Wojtek, we were getting drunk together."

 

Even though she is my BFF, I am getting pissed and order, "Stacy, Wojtek and you are already drunk! Now it's time to have some coffee and sober up so we can clean up your dress."

 

I should have known better than to mention the dress again because Stacy wails, "Yes my wedding dress for Ben, whyyyyyyyy Bennnnnnn!"

 

I watch Liz approaching and can tell that something is wrong. She walks up, looks at Stacy and says, "It looks like you have your hands full."

 

I know Liz doesn't care for my relationship with Stacy, but it's no different than the relationship between her and Jennifer - she just doesn't see that yet. I answer, "Yeah, I guess Stacy is upset about the wedding and decided to get drunk."

 

Liz says, "Sam, I hate to pull you away from Stacy, but you need to get back to the cabin ASAP because someone torched it…"

 

Present – Stacy – drunk

 

I might be drunk, but I am certainly not incapacitated. I hear Liz tell my BFF Sam that the cabin is burned up, so I sit up and say, "Gee gah goo gorp?"

 

Liz and Sam give me strange looks. Then I realize that what came out of my mouth, wasn't even close to what I wanted to say. I see the cup of coffee sitting on the table, chug it down as fast as I can, wipe my mouth on the sleeve of my ruined wedding dress… I start to cry a little… OH HELL NO, I'm not going there again about my dress so look at the two of them and repeat very slowly and this time correctly, "What the hell are you talking about? The cabin is destroyed?"

 

Liz looks at Sam, then at me and answers, "That's right, Sheriff Jim Freeman called me, told me it looks like arson and that the cabin is totally destroyed."

 

I swear, "What sort of lowlife would do that on someone's wedding day!"

 

Liz smiles and answers, "Well, I'm glad to see your reaction because that removes you as one of the prime suspects."

 

I glare at Liz and spit, "Liz, I might not be happy about Ben marring Jennifer, but I would never stoop so low as to destroy the cabin which I helped to have rebuilt."

 

Samantha makes me feel better when she reinforces my innocence, "Yeah that's right Liz, I know Stacy and she would never do such a dirty and underhanded thing."

 

Liz then orders, "Sam you and the cameramen need to haul ass to Leadville to cover this story."

 

I interrupt, "I'm going too, in fact I'm going to call my people and have them start looking for the fuckers that did this evil thing."

 

Sam reminds me, "What about the horses and the very drunk Wojtek." Then she points.

 

I follow her finger and see Wojtek curled up in a ball and snoring like crazy.

 

I think for a moment and answer, "I will get Bill to bring the horses and Wojtek, but first I need to get out of this fucking dress and back into my camos.

 

As I get back into my camos I wonder if this has anything to do with the two bodies, one which was on fire, that I saw earlier. I will ask Sam about this on the way to the cabin…

 

Present – Jack – taking care of business

 

Masha is waiting at the campsite as I arrive to pick up the body bags. I can tell from the look on her face she's very nervous and realize I need to take care of this. I walk over to my family, look at Ivan and ask, "Ivan, Mama and I need to talk in private. Can you sit here quietly for a few minutes?"

 

He jumps immediately to stand at attention, salutes me and says, "Yes Sir! Captain Sir!" Then he sits back at the table.

 

I swear, someday and someway I am going to figure out a way to get even with Banzai for this nasty-assed trick. Too bad he can't have children, otherwise I would teach them every swear word I knew and even create a few new ones.

 

Masha says, "Ivan, we are going over here. Please stay at the table."

 

He surprises me when he jumps up again, stands at attention, salutes her and answers, "Yes Sir! General Sir!"

 

I chuckle and ask Masha, "Did Banzai teach him that? And why the hell are you a General and I am only a Captain."

 

Masha gives me a sly grin and answers, "No, Ben did not teach that to Ivan, I taught him to do it. And the relative ranks simply make sense to me."

 

There is no way I am walking into this minefield - not today and not with the mess that I need to help take care of. We move a short distance away and I whisper to Masha, "I hate to tell you this, but Megan and Evelyn were going to attack the wedding but the wolves stopped them and they killed one of the wolves. The wolves retaliated and killed both of them. Thom, Glen, Hammer and I are taking care of the mess."

 

Masha gasps, puts her hand over her mouth and whispers, "Jack that's terrible news. How did Jennifer take it?"

 

I answer, "She doesn't know yet, we're going to tell her after the honeymoon. So make sure you don't tell anyone. I'm just here to get a couple body bags to pack up the remains."

 

Masha sensibly suggests, "Perhaps you should change out of your Dress Blues first."

 

I answer, "Thanks, that's a great idea." Then I see someone walking toward us and swear, "Shit, it's Liz!"

 

Present – Liz – informing the team

 

With Sam and Stacy on the way to the cabin, I need to inform the rest of the team of the disaster. I see Jack talking to Masha and figure I can kill two birds with one stone. As I approach them I can tell neither of them are happy about seeing me so I assume they already heard the bad news.

 

I walk up to them and comment, "From the looks on your faces, I guess you two have already heard the bad news?"

 

Masha says, "Jack just told me! What a terrible thing to have happen on their wedding day!"

 

Jack adds, "Yeah I was just coming back to get some body bags to take care of the remains."

 

Jack's answer startles me and it takes all my reporter instincts to hide my emotions. I realize I had the luck to stumble onto something else which is going on. I ask, "What are the plans for the remains?"

 

Jack answers, "Thom knows a medical examiner who will examine the bodies and provide for death certificates. The only problem is Hammer was so angry about what happened to Evelyn, he poured damn near a whole bottle of Scotch on Megan and set her on fire."

 

What the fuck! Megan and Evelyn are dead! Damn, when it rains it pours! Unfortunately Gretchen chooses this time to run up and announce, "Liz, sorry it took so long to get here. Are you sure about the cabin being destroyed?"

 

Jack looks at me and asks…

 

Present – Jack and Masha – taking care of business

 

What the hell, the cabin is destroyed? I thought Liz was talking about Megan and Evelyn getting killed. I glare at Liz and demand, "Liz, what the hell is Gretchen talking about."

 

Liz laughs and answers, "Obviously not what we were talking about earlier. Some arsonist set the cabin on fire and it's totally destroyed."

 

Jack continues, "Liz, what we were talking about before Gretchen came up needs to remain a secret. So help me if you…"

 

Gretchen interrupts, "What's the big secret you two were talking about when I came up?"

 

Liz interrupts, "Gretchen, not now! Jack, don't worry about it. What we need to worry about right now is Jennifer and Ben finding out about either problem."

 

I figure since the cat is out of the bag I might as well let Liz know, "Liz, Banzai already knows about what we were talking about earlier. We decided to wait and tell Jennifer after the honeymoon."

 

Gretchen again annoyingly interrupts, "What are you going to tell Jennifer after the honeymoon?"

 

Liz glares at Gretchen and answers, "Gretchen, not right now."

 

Masha asks, "So everything in the cabin is gone?"

 

Liz answers, "Okay, here's the whole story. Sheriff Jim called and said the cabin was totally destroyed by a fire which was probably set by an arsonist."

 

Masha inquires, "But didn't Jennifer have a fire suppression system installed?"

 

Liz answers, "Yes, but according to Sheriff Jim someone purposefully turned it off."

 

Gretchen complains, "I knew I should have brought one of the tablets hooked up to the network. It would have informed me immediately of the fire. But we should be able to see videos of whoever turned off the sprinkler system and depending on where they did it, whoever set the fire. That is if the tunnels survived."

 

Masha suddenly gets a shocked look on her face and frantically yells, "Ivan! Where is Ivan?"

 

We turn around but my boy isn't at the table anymore…

 

Present – Alexi, Mira, Ira and Safia – heading to the cabin

 

We are extremely lucky to find a TSIFFTS flight headed back to the Leadville Airport. Safia is sick the whole time on the flight, while my sister Mira appears to be unperturbed.

 

I comment, "Mira, why is it that you feel no sickness on this flight while Safia is extremely ill?"

 

Mira smiles at me and explains, "Alexi, that should be obvious even to you. My fetus is superior, to Safia's because it was created from my Ben's male procreation component and thus causes my corporeal self no discomfort."

 

Safia glares at me for asking the question then turns toward Mira and states, "Mira that assumption is idiotic. Our babies both contain the same amount of your family's DNA."

 

Mira grins and counters, "I was not referring to my family's DNA I was referring to the inferior DNA from your family."

 

Safia expectorates yet one more time and then sasses, "Miranda, do not try to feed me that bullshit and then call it chocolate because that's not what you said. You said, 'My fetus is superior to Safia's because it was created from my Ben's male procreation component'. Alexi's sperm impregnated me so half of my baby contains your genetic code…"

 

Mira interrupts, "Yes, and the remainder is from your DNA which we deduce from you and your sister's previous issues is of questionable quality."

 

Safia eyes flash anger as she demands, "Mira, you take that back. Or else!"

 

Mira unwisely taunts, "I cannot and will not retract the obvious truth. If you cannot handle the truth remove yourself from the gridiron. And furthermore, 'or else' yourself."

 

Safia unfastens her seatbelt in preparation to fighting Mira but my sister Irina wisely intervenes, "Both of you are exhibiting an extreme measure of instability precipitated by the hormonal imbalance caused by your dreaded fetal conditions. Remain seated with your restraints fastened and cease your inane whining."

 

Mira mimics Ira, "Cease your inane whining." Ira's face fills with rage while Mira grins and taunts, "You are just jealous that you are not carrying Todd's fetus."

 

Ira shocks us all when she pats her stomach and announces, "Are you so confident that I am not?"

 

Mira and Safia begin questioning Ira like crazy, I lean back in my seat and the pilot announces, "Ladies and gentlemen, please make sure your seatbelts are securely fastened. We will be landing at the Leadville Airport."

 

I know that Ira is lying to Mira and Safia to compensate for the fact they feel superior to Ira. I query for what length of time she will keep them in suspense.

 

I make sure my seat belt is fastened and I remind Safia, "Please fasten your seat belt." She complies and we make a very soft landing.

 

Mira and Safia continue the questions until finally Ira explodes, "I am not carrying Todd's fetus, I just wanted to silence the two of you magpies!"

 

They then begin to berate Ira for the 'terrible joke'. I just can't wait to arrive back at the cabin, put on my headphones and play Grand Theft Auto.

 

The C-130 rolls to a stop, the doors open and our ears pop from the pressure differential. We acquire our Bentley (remember we liberated it from a doctor) drive toward the cabin and Safia questions, "What the hell is going on? Why are there all these vehicles here?"

 

Mira further states, "Look, there are many trucks of fire."

 

Ira yells, "Where there are trucks of fire there are fires!"

 

We move past them and see that the wonderful cabin has been decimated.

 

Ira cries slightly and utters, "Our accoutrements." Mira echoes, "Yes, our accoutrements have been vaporized."

 

I complain, "My computers!"

 

Safia further whines, "All the baby items I had already purchased."

 

Ira announces, "I will pursue the person who perpetrated this heinous act to perditions gate!"

 

Mira adds, "I will pursue them even further."

 

Safia declares, "I will burn their ass like they burnt the cabin."

 

I smile and declare all those thoughts are too benign for these villains. I rub my hands together and announce, "I'm going to torture them worse than I tortured Chow Mein…"

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