Collin arrived at the Wilkinson Estate and greeted his grandmother warmly. She was taken aback to the warmth of the greeting from her grandson and thought that she had ‘won’.
Collin continued to treat her with respect and often sought out her experience on things of importance. The two of them carried on as they once did, when Collin was younger.
During the first week of school, Collin, and his new ‘old’ friends, stopped by a couple of used car lots to check out vehicles that the guys might like to buy. Remembering what Mr. Ken had told him about what the type and age of a car would tell people, if he ever was in an accident, Collin looked at ‘older’ cars, instead of newer, fancier vehicles. Collin sat down with his grandmother, after dinner, to talk to her about purchasing one and wanted her opinion.
Grammy listened to Colley and heard his reasons for wanting one particular vehicle and his explanation as to why, but, in the end, Grammy was steadfast in her refusal to allow him buy it. With the words, “I will not allow you to buy that car, or any other car, for that matter, do YOU hear me? I am your guardian, and what I say goes!” That edict was the end of the ‘lets’ play nice’ truce that had lightly existed ever since Collin arrived back at the Wilkinson Estate.
The next day, Collin went to the car dealership and talked about what he needed to do to buy the car. Then, that weekend, he bought it, using funds from his checking account held at the bank his mom & dad had always used.
When Grammy refused to allow him to park it on the Wilkinson grounds Collin reminded her ‘it was HIS home, not hers’ and parked his car there anyway.
It took a few weeks for things to settle down, after Collin’s car purchase, but by then, the Board meetings, that his parents were on and that he was now taking their place, began up in earnest.
One afternoon, before the Fall Board Meetings took place, a group of important contacts were going to stop by the Wilkinson estate. Grammy Wilkinson told Collin “Tonight, beginning at 6:30, there will be several, how should I put this, several well placed individuals will be stopping by. They worked with your mother and father on several fund raisers and on a few other organizations. They all want to welcome you back and of course … offer their condolences for your loss. These were all important contacts for your father, in his business operations, and it might be good for you to begin to get to know them, when in time you take over Wilkinson Enterprises,” explained Grammy Frankenberg.
Collin, again, remembering what his Big Bro, Mr. Ken, had told him, dressed appropriately and met with the people who stopped by. Afterwards, he began attending some of the Board meetings and got to know many of the other Board members. The thing was, he found that going to so many meetings was taking up too much of his high school study time, and he respectively told them so, and stopped going.
Grammy was furious when she heard he wasn’t attending those meetings and told Collin so.
All Collin did was remind her of what he said in court, and left it at that.
Collin also began having some of his ‘new’ friends stop by to study and swim and do whatever high school kids do. Grammy didn’t like all the noise, and the ‘strangers’ as she called them and had ordered some to ‘never come there, again.’ When Collin heard what she did, he invited the entire football team and cheerleader squad over one Saturday for a BBQ.
Grammy Frankenberg didn’t want all ‘those people’ on ‘her’ property and she called the police. She complained to them about all the noise and food being taken and wanted them all arrested for trespassing. Not to be out done, Collin brought out the Deed and showed it to the policemen that it had his name on it, not hers. The police left and told Grammy not to bother them again, since it wasn’t her ‘property’.
Collin and Grammy Frankenberg continued to go round and round on many things. Collin was living and doing the things he had done at the Cove and Grammy was constantly saying he couldn’t. Eventually, V. Susan Frankenberg took Collin back to court to get them to make him do what she wanted.
A different judge, this time, upon hearing that she was there to have the court ‘make her grandson do what she wanted’, threw out her request. The judge then told her that ‘…she had gone to court and fought to be his guardian and NOW it was up to her to figure out how to ‘raise’ the teenager.’
Back at Three Finger Cove, Uncle Andy had been keeping Mr. Ken abreast of what was happening between Collin and his grandmother. Mr. Ken laughed at what the judge told Grammy, and remarked that ‘she asked for it.’ Mr. Ken continued to work as the CEO of Wilkinson Enterprises, and continued to work on changing the name to C.W.E. Inc. He also bought two small amusement parks to add to his ever expanding empire. And taking to heart what Grammy said about his not having any ‘experience’ in dealing with kids, he went back to school and took college courses dedicated to him getting a second degree in ‘child rearing and development.’
During all this time, Ryan’s suit against the police department and the school board never went to trial because both the police and the school board agreed to settlements. The police department demoted the two police detectives back to patrol officers, and paid Ryan $75,000.00 for the way he was handled and made to wear handcuffs when he wasn’t under arrest and for being placed with common criminals.
The school board, even with the newly elected members recusing themselves, voted unanimously to censure Principal Mark Stanley, and placed him on probation. The School Board then wrote a specific set of instructions for situations like what happened to Ryan that required all school administrators to call a parent or guardian for them to be present when a student is questioned by the police, or even the District Attorney. The ‘new’ School Board also introduced every recommendation Mr. Ken and Collin fought so hard for, the previous school year.
Mary Taylor’s interior decorating business took off and she had to hire two assistants to help with all the work she received after people were referred to her when they found out it was she who completely outfitted Three Finger Cove.
Chief, well, she remained Chief. After Collin’s departure, Chief continued to sleep in the teen’s bedroom in the hopes he would soon be back. But, after a couple of weeks, she knew Collin wasn’t ever coming back, so she again began sleeping in Mr. Ken’s master bedroom. Ken then bought Chief her own special bed so she would have a softer place to rest.
Over at the Wilkinson Estate, Grammy continued to berate Collin over anything he did and she even tried to force him to send money to the many organizations she had an interest in, while making it seem as it was what his parent’s would do.
Grammy continued to make life a ‘living hell’ for Collin even though he wasn’t doing anything other than going to school and hanging out with his friends. He even began dating some, which Grammy had a difficult time trying to ‘put an end to’.
Then one day, in late September, when Collin came home from school, he found an ambulance, with its lights flashing, pulled up to the front door of the estate. Running in, he found his Uncle Andy, who told him that Grammy had had a medical episode, but they weren’t sure what it was and so they were taking her to the hospital. Later the next day, Collin and Uncle Andy found out that Grammy had had a slight stroke, and would need to be in a nursing home, for a few months, until she recovered.
On October 4th, at one o’clock in the morning, the doorbell at Three Finger Cove began to ring in earnest. Chief got to the door first and was beside herself because of who was outside that door. As Mr. Ken opened the front door, he found a smiling Collin Wilkinson who immediately jumped into his arms and hugged him hard.
“I thought I’d make it rain and show up without my clothes but … well that was a bit much. But I knew ... I just knew I had to be here … at this time … as it was one year ago today that Chief found me outside and you brought me inside and saved my life! I hope you don’t mind that I did this without telling you?” said Collin, a little sheepishly.
“Mind?” responded Ken Thomas. “I think it’s awesome that you remembered. And, it is so good to see you. Come inside and let’s talk.”
That visit was the first of many that Collin made to Three Finger Cove. He only stayed until late that first night after getting to see his ‘mom’ and other ‘brothers’. They talked about how his grandmother was doing and his school and the other things he’d told them in his emails, as such.
Collin hosted Thanksgiving at his home that fall, which was attended by Mr. Ken, ‘mom’ Taylor, Ryan, Eric and his mom Judy and a slew of others he met and admired from his time at the Cove. Collin did decide that Three Finger Cove was the place to be for the Christmas and New Year’s Eve, so he traveled there as soon as school ended for the Holidays.
Eventually, Grammy realized that the world HAD moved on while she remained in the yesteryear. She began to take more interest in what Colley was doing and in his friends. She even invited Mr. Ken and Collin’s ‘brothers’ and their moms to spend some time at Wilkinson. Grammy worked hard to ensure Collin had a good home and a ‘new’ life full of joy and happiness.
Collin really began to enjoy his ‘new’ life, after his grandmother’s change of attitude that he felt was because of her stroke. Knowing he only had a little more than a year before he turned eighteen; Collin decided not to file his Emancipation request.
Collin’s suit that he had brought against Brittany and Hannah finally went to trail and he won. The girls were made to pay him $25,000.00 each, much to the chagrin of their parents.
Rodney Costa did start college that fall. His body was still healing from the beating he took from Bill and Raleigh. He elected to attend the local community college, in order to get some of the required course out of the way and stay by his mom. He and his mother both sued William Shappell and Raleigh Mitchell and their parents. Rodney sued for the injuries he suffered and his mom sued for the anguish and heartache she had to endure. They both won and their verdicts were in the millions of dollars. The suits are now working their way through the appeals courts.
Shelley continued to stay in touch with Collin, but she knew, deep down in her heart, that he was never coming back, and that she had to move on. She and Collin talked about their relationship and they both agreed that they both needed to date other people.
Meagan and Ryan continued to date, but it was more difficult not having a limo readily available as when Collin lived at the Cove. Ryan did get his driver’s license about the time Collin was made to move back to the Wilkinson Estate.
Jerry and Colt continued to stay in touch with Collin while their parents stayed in touch with Mr. Ken. They all hope they can happen upon another ‘wild’ Disney Cruise together again.
Damon and Ellen continued to date and everyone said they made a very ‘cute’ couple.
As for Chief, well, she continues to miss her ‘Collin’ and truly enjoys it when he stops by for a visit. She does continue to hope, though, that one day another lad will eventually find his way to live at Three Finger Cove.