Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Butterfly Dreams (38)

(A sequel to The Strange Story of Mr. Black and Ms Gray.)

They had died when helping thwart a plan to undermine the government of the United States. Now Ben and Susan have returned from the dead and they must bring that government down. Standing in their way are Michael Black and Michelle Gray, the bodies of whom they now occupy.
-(The Story begins HERE)-
Family Secrets

The drab-gray plane we boarded was essentially a Boeing 707 modified for military use. There was some resemblance to the exterior of a commercial airliner, but the likeness ended the moment I passed through the door.

I was inside of what must have been a small control room. Every inch of the interior seemed to be lined with sophisticated electronic equipment. Flashing lights, digital displays, crackling static and intermittent beeps left little doubt that the plane's systems were up and running. Several airmen wearing headphones were stationed at the various pieces of equipment.

We passed through a door into a larger cabin. It was smaller than that of a passenger liner having only seats for about a dozen people. Brock and Baxter helped Susan into the front row of seats. After securing her seat belt Brock took a seat next to her and fastened his own belt.

Baxter gave me gentle nudge toward the back of the cabin and pointed to another door. "We'll be riding in the next cabin, Michael."

Although I was curious as to why we were being separated I said nothing but strode ahead. Motioning for me to follow Baxter opened the door and stepped inside. I turned to look back to the front of the cabin. As I expected, Wingate and Professor Jordan were close behind us.

Once Jordan passed through the door Wingate snapped, "Corporal Baxter, I don't know what connections you have, but they must be pretty high. You've got until we land to find out what you can. If you fail, I can assure you that my methods will be fruitful."

"Captain Wingate, I'm surprised at you. Don't you remember that water boarding has been outlawed?" Baxter countered.

The man sneered and walked away. Baxter chuckled and closed the door. He glanced at me and said, "Don't worry, he won't get his clutches on you or your wife."

I grinned and said, "I'm kind of curious about those connections too. How is it that a corporal has Colonels and Captains hopping?"

"Let's just say that I answer directly and only to a higher authority."

I let out a low whistle and stepped aside as the professor took the window seat in the cabin's front row. "Very well, Jeremy, I won't question your rank or loyalties anymore."

I sat down next to Jordan and glanced at each of them in turn. I cleared my throat and said, "I take that the seating arrangements mean that we'll be having an informative, albeit it private, discussion."

It was Professor Jordan's turn to clear his throat. Seeing that he had my attention he uttered, "Yes. It is time for both of you to learn the truth, the family secrets if you will."

Baxter nodded and said to me, "As educated as you think I might be in this matter, there is much I don't know."

There was a sudden rumbling outside followed by the whine of the plane's engines. I glanced past Jordan at the window and leaned forward for a closer look at the five individuals approaching the plane. Though I should have been beyond surprises, I gasped nonetheless.

Colonel Allison, the airbase commander, was directing four more passengers to the plane. Following him were the two FBI agents, Landers and Ferrara who were herding my missing employee David and a woman aboard. Stunned I turned to Baxter and cried, "Faye? What in the hell is she doing here?"

Baxter sat down and fastened his seat belt even as the plane started to move away from the hangar. He motioned for us to do the same and replied, "Later. Let us just say that we're going to have one interesting reunion out in the desert."

The craft taxied and turned onto a long stretch of tarmac. Two minutes later the thrust of the engines had us moving along the runway. Gravity momentarily grabbed at my stomach and then the massive jet was airborne.

His chin resting on his fist Baxter said, "Your computer tech, David has been kept out of sight and under the protection of the FBI. They were following him when he was run off the road by an unmarked sedan. When the men in the sedan saw the two FBI agents bearing down on them, they sped away, obviously not wanting a confrontation. David was uninjured by the way."

"That's comforting," I snorted. "We weren't notified of his welfare or his whereabouts because ...?"

"Quite frankly, Michael," he scowled, "we did not fully brief the FBI. We didn't know whether or not the FBI had been compromised. As you are well aware, there is a premium on those who can be trusted."

I made a circular motion with an extended finger and said, "...And the three of us can trust each other, right?"

Jordan, who'd been silent for some time interjected, "If a father cannot trust his sons, who can he trust?" He eyed both of us and queried, "You trust your father, don't you?"

The blood rushed from my head and I whimpered, "No! It's not possible!"

Jordan's smile was brief as he nodded, "Well, it is true in a sense, but not in the conventional manner. I cannot honestly claim to be your biological father. As to the paternal seed, I'm afraid there is no way for that to be determined."

I slammed my fist on the armrest and growled, "Damn it! If you're trying to tell me who I am, you're failing miserably. If you're trying to further confuse me, you have more than succeeded."

"Michael," Baxter uttered, "it's a long flight. I had made arrangements for some food and beverages to be loaded into a refrigerator in the cabin behind us. I suggest we have a bite to eat before the Professor elaborates any further."

Jordan concurred with a jerk of his head. "Then I will start at the beginning."

I fell back into my seat and stared at the ceiling. "Why do I get the feeling that Ralph Edwards is going to walk through that door carrying a book and proclaiming, 'Michael Black, this is your life?'"

To be continued ...

Michael Black, This Is Your Life



Jack K. said...

"Because, it is."

Considering all of the things that were happening when the original Michael and Michelle were working on, it will be interesting to learn the "truth".

Still a great story. A bit long, but fascinating.

Thanks for sharing.

Sandee said...

I too am ready for some truth.

This is the best story you've had yet. Just saying.

Have a terrific day. :)

Hale McKay said...


...And a lot of the truth is going to revealed soon.

Hale McKay said...


Jack Nicholson would wonder if Michael can handle the truth.