Three Finger Cove – Robert
Copyright © 2012 - 2015
All rights reserved
All rights reserved
Tuesday night came and Robert was ready with his questions. The first two were doozies. He asked his dad, "Why didn't he tell him any of those 'secret' things before?" And then, "Why did he have to wait so long to find out about the 'secrets' of the house?"
Robert sat there fuming. He felt he wasn't trusted and Trust was one of the things he and Mr. Ken talked about a few weeks back. He wanted to know why he had been treated that way and why was Ryan the one to show him and not his dad! He continued to sit steadfast and with a hurt face as he looked to his 'dad' for the answers.
"Okay, I call this Tuesday night meeting of us to order!" repeated Mr. Ken from what he usually said for the Tuesday night meeting. But this time, Robert just sat there with a scowl on his face.
"Hey, buddy, what's that face all about?" asked 'dad' Ken.
"You know what it is all about!" replied the boy.
"Well, I've been gone a week and I'm not sure what it could be. Did I miss your Birthday? Did I forget to bring you back something, although I think you're a bit old for that? I'm not sure what this is all about Robert but … well, maybe you can fill me in. Okay?" the now confused man asked.
"We talked about Trust a few weeks ago and I find out you don't really trust me!" the lad practically yelled.
"Whoa, there partner! I have NO idea from where that is coming from. You got to give me a few more details than sit there and yell at me when I have no idea of what I did or said. And by the way that is no way to speak to me or any adult!" Mr. Ken regretted saying that last sentence, but he was getting a little hot under the collar.
"You went away and left Ryan to show me the 'secrets' of the house. You didn't trust me enough for you to do that yourself! Why don't you trust me? Why did I have to hear it all from a stranger!" cried the lad, now with tears streaking down his face.
Now, Mr. Ken had the reason for his 'son's' demeanor. He had to get the boys attention and explain why he did it that way so the boy would understand and get that chip off his shoulder. Sure the lad had been through two hells but he wasn't to blame and he wasn't going to allow the boy to treat him, or any other adult, that way.
Mr. Ken just had to figure out how to deal with both problems. He also needed to let the boy know how much he meant to him but also the boy shouldn't blame him for his past problems and that seemed exactly what the boy was doing. Using his anger from his past to help boil over his present anger and take it out on the unsuspecting 'dad'.
"Okay, Robert, now I got some idea of the Why, but I do not like what else I am getting from you right now! I hear a lot of anger in that voice and I do not believe that I am the one who should be on the receiving end of all that. Yes, I did not tell you the 'secrets' of Three Finger Cove and for good reason!
"There was no way I knew how long you were going to remain here with me. We still have your mother and father's trial to get through and up to my going away I didn't know what would happen to us.
"I figured if I told you all the 'secrets' of Three Finger Cove and you were either taken away from me by the courts, like what happened to Collin, or a long lost relative showed up, then where would I be? I'd have a twelve year old out there somewhere knowing the most valuable secrets of my home, and someone who could and possibly would be telling all his friends what he knew. And before long way too many people would know as well. I had to wait!
"You mentioned Trust! I do trust you and that is why I did give you some of the 'secrets'!" When Mr. Ken said that last part he got a definite sour facial response and knew the word "some" was the culprit.
"Yes, some! Ryan doesn't know ALL the 'secrets' either. I bet he showed you the secret computer folder. That isn't the only secret Folder on the servers. There are things like my investments and the codes to access the cameras all over the estate that no one, but I and my lawyer, have the passwords to them. One day you too may get to know some of those codes, but that will be a while yet. At least NOT until you become my REAL SON!"
That last statement took Robert completely by surprise. His head shot up and his eyes looked directly into 'dad' Ken's eyes and when he saw the smile he realized that Mr. Ken did indeed truly 'Love' him. The lad jumped into his 'dad's' lap and began to cry, hard! The two sat there for almost five minutes before Robert's crying subsided enough for 'dad' Ken to make out what his 'son' was trying to say.
"'Dad', (hic), I am so sorry for saying (hic) that. I should have known (hic, hic) that you had a good reason (hic) and I thought you didn't (hic) love me and didn't want me (hic, hic) to know anything about you or (hic) the house," finished the lad and put his crying head down onto his dad's shoulder crying hard again.
Robert now realized he made a mistake and his chat with Miss Mary the other night came flooding into this mind about perceptions and responsibilities and trust and expectations. He was ashamed of himself right now and he needed his 'new' 'dad' to know how much he screwed up.
"'Dad', I am so sorry! I … I was blaming you for lots of things (hic) and I wasn't thinking! Miss Mary talked to me the other night about things and I just figured out what it meant. I really screwed up 'dad' and I am (hic) really, really sorry!"
"That's alright 'son'. We are still learning about each other and we are still going to make mistakes. I had thought of telling you there were 'secrets' but then you'd only be wondering what and where. There are lots and lots of things I'd want you to know but what if you did have to be moved away from me? What if we didn't hit it off as with your last foster parents? Would it be fair to either of us?
"So, I decided to try to make your life here The Best I could until a time came that, well, things could slowly be revealed to you. I have come to really "Love" you Robert! I was miserable while I was away. I figured you might be, too, so I had Ryan begin to show you some stuff. I knew you looked up to him as a Big Brother type and I also knew he'd enjoy showing you that stuff. I bet he even made a game of it whereas I'd only show you and leave it at that," fully explained 'dad' Ken.
"Thanks 'dad', for explaining things some more to me. Yea, Ryan did make it a game of showing me the stuff. When I bugged him about telling me the password or something he told me he'd have to 'kill' me and then he tickled me and tickled me. Even Chief got into the act and so did Miss Mary. But, I really did have a great time. We climbed the ladder and Ry showed me how to exit the garage without setting off the alarm.
"Ryan even told me all about the Easter Egg Roll and he and his friends let me and my friends help do the inventory and put the coins into many of the plastic eggs on Friday night and Saturday morning. That was a lot of fun and now I know what you mean about how much work is involved and we haven't even set the eggs out and everything. I think I'll wait until it is my turn to participate," explained Robert.
"Well, 'son' … I am sure glad you got to see what's involved and to help with the Easter Egg Roll set-up. Yes, there is a lot more work to be done before this Saturday's Big Event. Ryan and his friends will be back early Saturday morning and we'll be out there helping too. Remember … you are NOW a member of Three Finger Cove and you have to be not only a part of it but you need to be there and be a 'host'," explained 'dad' Ken.
"But I won't know what to do or even how to be a 'ghost'," complained Robert.
"It's, be a HOST, not a 'Ghost'," laughed Mr. Ken. "And, what you'll mainly do is talk to the participants and maybe their parents. But first, you'll help with setting out the eggs and in the end passing out the prizes. I know it will be all new for you but each and every time you attend one of these events you will learn more and be better prepared. Just go with the flow and if something goes bump in the night, learn from the mistake."
"OK 'dad' … I think I understand. I'll just 'go with the flow'," teased 'son' Robert. The two had a good laugh over that.
"Ah 'dad' … I hope you won't get too disappointed in me," began Robert, trying to stay in that jovial mood. "I didn't know how rich you really are and I … well, I kinda wanted to know. So … so, I asked Ryan and he said he didn't know. All he said was that you told him it would take a thousand lifetimes to spend all your money.
"So … I Googled some census information about the average yearly income and figured out that at that time you built The Cove you ah... must have had ah … please don't get mad at me … you must have had about two billion dollars. 'Dad', maybe this is one of the things I'm not supposed to know, but …" tailed off Robert.
"Well, 'son', you did good to figure that out. I got to give you high marks for going through all that trouble to find out how much money I may have had. Did you take into account the cost of this house and how much it takes to run it? And, what about what I've spent since I told Ryan that? A lot of Dairy Queens have been bought since then," 'dad' Ken said to the boy and then tussled his hair.
"Da aad!" squealed the pre-teen.
"Okay, I'm going to level with you about how much money I have. I may or may not had that much at one time and only my banker and I know for sure! I was a very fortuitous person but I have no idea how and why. One day back when I was, like, 18 and just beginning college, I woke to find I had come into all that money. It was just there. I had always dreamed of being rich and then there it was.
"When I went to the bank, one day, the manager came out to greet me and took me to his office and talked to me about investments. He thanked me for using his bank and told me he'd do whatever he could to make me a satisfied customer. I had no clue to what he was referring but that maybe I'd been the millionth person to walk through the front door or something" laughed both 'dad' and 'son'.
"I then went out and did some business with the teller and when she gave me my ending bank balance I saw this huge number. I asked her about it and she called the manager and he just smiled at me, like I was joking about all that money. Yes, it was a huge amount of money and it could have been two billion dollars, but it also could not have been.
"I couldn't believe it, so I just went away and figured they'd find the error one day and it would all be straightened out. I want you to know 'son' … that I used that 'one thousand lifetimes' spiel to get Ryan to stop asking, back then, how much money I had," then laughed Mr. Ken.
"Continuing … I was attending college so I didn't go to the bank all that often. A few days later, the college financial manager called me into his office. I figured I was over due on some money I owed but that wasn't due until after I graduated or stopped attending. He thanked me for my full four year college payment and told me he had investment experience and if I need a financial advisor to give him a call.
"'Son', I was stunned. Here, within a few weeks of one another two people told me I was rich. Rich beyond my comprehension. I went back to the bank and withdrew like a thousand dollars. I figured they made the mistake and as soon as I took money out instead of putting it in they'd find out and then everything would be good. Again, my balance was astronomical! It took me almost six months to get the bank manager to confirm, in writing, that the money in my account was indeed mine. Then, with that letter, I began to search for just the right property and then planned the building of this wonderful house. I haven't looked back since."
"'Dad', that is so awesome. Are you still mad at me for the way I behaved? I'm really sorry I acted that way!" and saying that he gave his dad another hug.
"'Son', stop saying that. What we need to do is to use this time on Tuesday to get to know one another better and do what we said we'd do … which was talk over the last week. In this case, it is two weeks but it seems that Mary's talk with you made an impression. But still, we need to talk about stuff and especially what is on your List. How does that sound to you?" counseled Mr. Ken.
"Yes, I agree. And we do need to talk about my dad and me. I guess we should start there tonight. I know you heard much of it as we've talked before. Do I have to tell you about all that again?" the young boy asked with fear in his face.
"No, 'son' you don't, but I don't want you to feel guilty about anything you did. You didn't have a choice in the matter and you were forced to do all that … whether you enjoyed some of it or not is immaterial. It wasn't right for your dad to 'sell' you to those men. And, since your mom agreed to use the money, she was just as guilty as he, even though she didn't do anything directly to you.
"What your mother did do was she allowed you to be abused, to no end, and then enjoyed all the money you made for them and didn't give a shit about you! I have directed my lawyers to sue your parents for the remaining monies to be placed in a Trust Fund for you for when you go off to college. Now, what can you tell me that I don't already know?" smiled 'dad' Ken.
For the next two hours they talked about how it all began and how it ended. Most of the 'what' was discussed by the lad knowing it all would be at the trial, whenever that happened. What Mr. Ken didn't know was how everything had been found out. Robert told him a video was found in one of the men's homes by his cleaning lady.
The man had forgotten to take it out of the player and when she dusted the controls it came to life on the TV screen. She called the police and the rest was history. When he was taken in by Miss Phillips, the CPS worker, he had to go to the hospital where they found he had tears inside of him that needed to be surgically repaired and of course he had to see the shrink.
The lad told him more about the three different homes he was sent to live in and how he was treated in all three. In the first, he told how he was sexually abused by the man there. How the man came to his room late at night and make him do some stuff but he never fucked him. Robert said he would cry every time Miss Phillips came to visit. Then finally, she figured he was just not happy there and to make the kid happy she moved him to this old couples place.
At the second home, he retold how the religious couple abused him with religion. He revealed he had to read the Bible when he wasn't doing homework and was made to go to church three times a week. Robert said he had no friends and he couldn't even watch TV unless it was some religious program or something. He told his 'dad' he complained to his new CPS worker, Miss Canfield, and was moved again.
In the third, and last, house, Robert told how the older teens found out about him somehow and forced him to do sexual favors for them. Robert went into more detail about what the older teenagers made him do. The lad then revealed that they made the other younger boy do the same stuff.
The pre-teen told how the man found out and he had to satisfy him as well. He hadn't been there too long before he complained to Miss Canfield, who didn't believe him. But the more he told of the abuse he received there was when Miss Canfield got Ms. Judy involved.
When Robert and Ms. Judy finally met, the boy told her how the older boys would beat him up and make him do sexual acts with them. Then, he explained that the man found out and he had to do the same things with him. Then Robert revealed he never had any clean clothes and they would not feed him very much.
Ken had to console the boy during most of the revelation. The boy was reliving all of his pain and abuse for the past ten to twelve months before he was brought to Three Finger Cove. 'Dad' Ken suggested to Robert that his 'son' continue to see Doctor Jennings.
Mr. Ken explained to Robert that the lad needed to deal with those issues so he could free himself from all his past tormentors and begin living in his new 'life' and look forward to a bright future there with his 'new' 'dad'.
The two hugged some and just sat there feeling the closeness and 'love' between them. The night was finished off, as was their tradition, with a visit for ice cream Sundae's at the close by Dairy Queen.
First thing the next day, Ken called Judy and told her about the additional abuse Robert received at the last house as well as the first. She made another note for her files and said they would begin the follow up now that she had two such complaints from Robert.
The two talked about how close their boys were becoming and Ken had to reassure Judy that they were going to get into that stage where their friends were going to be more important to them than either of them. He mentioned they would have to find things to do with the boys that would also involve a friend or two in order to keep peace during the outing.
Ken Thomas then asked Judy about the possibility of adopting Robert. Ms. Judy had to remind him that until both parents are convicted and sent off to prison there could be no decision on that. Mrs. Turner told him that she would first have to do a search for aunts or uncles or other family members and ask them if they were willing to raise Robert. She explained that CPS, by charter, wanted to keep the families together and those family members on either side had to relinquish their rights for the boy before she could declare him a ward of the state and thus eligible for adoption.
Judy Turner sympathized with Mr. Ken and agreed Robert would be better served staying with him, especially after seeing how well the boy adapted to his new environment and school and friends. She told him as long as they aren't told to go look for relatives it was best not to upset the apple cart, just yet. She promised him she would keep him informed and will let him know whatever whenever but, as for now, she reassured him that Robert wasn't going anywhere.
As soon as Mr. Ken got off the phone, he immediately called his attorney and told him to get the investigators out and about looking for any of Robert's relatives and to find what they could about any and all of them. He explained to Mr. Jackson his desire to adopt the boy and wanted all the dirty details, if any, so he could have the best chance of keeping Robert as his 'son'.
They then talked about the interesting turn of events concerning Mrs. Johnston and her possible theft of monies from the household accounts. Mr. Ken encouraged Bill to find a reliable certified public accountant to do an examination of those household accounts and to see if he could find any illegal transfers of cash for services not performed. He also asked the man to check the woman's financial assets and incomes and also her dealings with the cleaning supervisors
Mr. Ken then told Bill of his employing Jules Diamond to begin searching Mildred's friends and previous employers and for the children she was responsible for. Lastly, Ken asked Bill's opinion of Judge Adam Richards and what he thought about him taking the Judge out for dinner and talking small talk about Robert.
Mr. Jackson explained he was not one to try to use friends like that but Mr. Ken asked 'what good it was to have all that money and not be able to use it to influence someone with it'. Bill relented and said Mr. Ken should just do what he felt was appropriate but not for rulings or favors but just for ideas and possible scenarios.
It wasn't long after he got off the phone that Maria came to his Study and told him he had a visitor in the Foyer. Thanking momma, he went out there where he was asked to identify himself and then the man gave him a summons for court as he was being sued by none other than one Mrs. Mildred Johnston.
The lawsuit was seeking damages for illegal termination, for unlawful age discrimination for her termination, and for false and damaging statements that she abused the boy in her care. The total amount asked for by the plaintiff was one million dollars for illegal termination, three million dollars for age discrimination, and five million dollars for the slander. A total of nine million dollars was being sought by the fired housekeeper.
Mr. Thomas had to again call his lawyer to fill him in on what just transpired and the two discussed their next move. They decided to wait for the preliminary hearing, but they also knew that Mildred Johnston's attorney would try to avoid that and will ask for a settlement first.
Bill Jackson figured they would initially ask to settle for close to $6.5M and they could probably get them to settle for $3.75M to $4.25M if they were so inclined. Mr. Ken agreed to play along in order to delay the trial date so they could get as much damning evidence on Milly for when they counter sued.
Mr. Ken 's plan was to be as vindictive as possible and wanted to search for all of Milly's hidden nooks and crannies to ultimately support more charges pressed against the old 'bitch' that would send her to jail for a very long time.