Castle Roland

The Wizard

by DJ Thomas

In Progress

Chapter 24

Posted: 9 May 16

The Wizard Heart

Dj Thomas

From Chapter 23

"Eli, I am not sure that I am the right person for the job you want me to do. I know what Uncle Max said, but I am scared that I will let you down. I don't even know what you want me to do in this position?"

"Aunt Kelly, the fact that you are scared of letting me down lets me know that you are the perfect person for the position of Khiclock. I need someone who worries, not only about themselves, but about others as well. I have seen how you watch your kids, as well as the rest of us. That shows me that you are a caring, giving, and honest person. That is what I need." Eli was trying to explain to her, with a little help from Magnus. Eli did not know that David was outside his bedroom in the hallway listening. "See, I haven't known about Wizards all that long, but in that short time I have seen several cases of young Wizards being hurt by the people who are suppose to be protecting them. Cody was traded to pay a gambling debt, as well as having his own father beat him. Sasha was sold from an orphanage to be a slave, and Toby was whipped and beaten so he would make more money so his own father wouldn't have to work. These are the type of cases that I want you on. We need to protect our kind, young and old. You will meet Ms. Dawn, she is going to be the Porkha, she will deal with the elderly and you will deal with the young, together it is my wish that we can protect all Wizards so no one will have to be abused or bullied ever again!"

"Wow Eli! I didn't know about those cases, but I agree something needs to be done. But, what about my Class? I mean I have always been put down because I wasn't a higher Class or as strong as the rest of my family."

"The strength of your Gifts is not what I need. What I need, what the Wizarding World needs is the strength of your heart!"

David could not believe how well Eli handled his Aunts insecurities. He walked into Eli's bedroom and saw that Kelly and Eli were just finishing a hug. David had never felt the huge amount of pride as he did right then for his soon to be son.

"Son, you need to get in the shower. We have a busy day tomorrow." David told his son.

"Okay Dad. Aunt Kelly, if you have any other questions feel free to ask them. If I can't answer them Grandpa Max can or I can ask the past Kings for the answer. Don't be afraid!" Eli said before he rushed off to the shower.

"Sis, I know you are worried, but we aren't. You are the only one who can do this job; otherwise, The Wizard Heart would have told Eli you weren't the right one. He is not doing this on his own. We are all there to support him, and that includes you! Please think about that, but do it later! I don't need that boy stressed this weekend. Dealing with the stress of Sherry is more than I can handle." David said as they walked down the hallway. His last comment made his sister almost fall down from laughing.

"Little Brother, you better not let Sherry hear you say that! You don't want to be in the dog house before your honeymoon!"

"Yeah, don't I know it, but there isn't going to be a honeymoon just yet. With everything going on with the Council, we don't want to take a chance that someone will take another shot at Eli. Sherry and I agreed that we would wait until things settled down a bit, and then we would take a week to ourselves." David told his sister. She did not look happy with this information.

"Don't worry Sis! We will take time out for ourselves, just not where we are far away from Eli, he is more important to us than a little privacy!" David told her trying to lighten the mood.

"Okay David, I just wanted to make sure that you and Sherry were making time to become a couple! It is not as easy as you might think. Once the 'I do's' have been said, things change. Whether or not you want them to, they will, because you will be married."

"I hear you, and we have talked about that as well. We know things are going to be different, and we will have some trouble I am sure, but as long as we keep talking we should be alright."

"Well, I just had to do my duty as Big Sister to make sure you weren't rushing into things too fast! And, for the record, you couldn't have found a better bride than Sherry. I am very happy for you that you have found someone to share your life with. You know, I really have missed you!" She told her younger brother before giving him a hug.

"I have missed you, too Big Sister! Why the hell don't you and Eric move up here! I heard that his parents moved back to Arizona because of his Mom's health. You have nothing holding you in Florida, so come home Sis!"

"We have been talking about it, but I am not sure now is a good time."

"You are wrong there, Kelly! This would be the perfect time; you are starting a new adventure as Khiclock to the most powerful Wizard King our kind has ever seen. What better time to start a new life?"

David and Kelly joined the other adults downstairs. When they walked into the room Sherry and Eric both noticed the siblings had their arms around each other and that Kelly looked like she had been crying. Eric got up and hugged his wife, he wanted to make sure she was alright. David smiled at Sherry as he walked over to where she was sitting and kissed her.

Eli, Cody, and Donnie were all in Eli's bedroom talking. They all knew they should be sleeping, but they were too excited. All for different reasons.

Eli was excited to go see the motocross races the next day. He had thought that maybe he could start riding, until he watched a practice. NOPE, he decided he would remain a spectator and stay with fish for a hobby.

Donnie was so excited he thought he might burst. He overheard his parents talking earlier about moving close to Uncle David. Donnie didn't really feel he fit in with the kids in his school and he didn't know any other kids his age who were Wizards. But, here he really felt welcomed and a part of the group. That is what he had always wished for.

Cody was excited, but nervous at the same time. He knew that Eli had forgiven him for being a bully all those years, but he still had not forgiven himself. Now here he was sharing a bedroom with him, and he knew that Eli was 1000% stronger than he was. Cody was excited to be a part of Eli's High Court, but at the same time, He was nervous about being part of Eli's High Court!

David sent Eli several messages about going to sleep. He was getting a bit frustrated with all the boys.

'Eli, if you and your cousin don't shut up and go to sleep I am going to come up there and use Compulsion on you three to go to sleep. Now, for the last time, GO TO SLEEP!'

Sherry noticed that David had blanked out, she knew this happened when he was talking to Eli telepathically.

"Let me guess, the boys are still up talking?" Sherry asked with a giggle.

"Yes, how did you know?" David asked.

"You get this blanked out look when you are talking with Eli like that. Do you need me to go get them to sleep?" Sherry asked.

"No, I think I got my message across. But, if they don't go to sleep soon, be my guest! I had no clue that they would still have enough energy to stay up talking this late!"

"Davie, you really need to pay closer attention when you have three boys that close in age together, plus three who are all Wizards. Sherry, how many gallons of apple juice have we gone through today?" Karen laughed.

"Well, total I think we went through about six gallons, the kids I think drank at least four gallons."

"They went through that much!" David exclaimed. "There is no way those boys are going to sleep tonight! That much apple juice would wire them for a week." David was really starting to worry.

"Sweetie, do not worry. Uncle Max warned me about it, so all the juice the boys were drinking was watered down. In reality between the six kids they really only drank a little over two gallons. However, what you and your brothers have been drinking is the real thing, so you might want to slow down!" Sherry said trying to calm David down and at the same time poke fun at him for having a glass of apple juice in his hand while complaining how much apple juice the kids drank.

"Yeah little brother, that is like the pot calling the kettle black, isn't it?" Kelly said making all the women laugh. The guys didn't really find it all that funny!

"And on that note, I am going to bed!" Eric said getting up to take his glass through to the kitchen.

"Breakfast will be around 7:30 a.m., coffee will be ready by 6:30 a.m. for anyone who wants it." Sherry said as the group started to break up for the night.

After making sure the house was secured, David headed up to his bedroom. Sherry had offered to allow him to move into her room, but David wanted to keep to tradition and not sleep together until after they were married. As David explained it to Sherry, it was a Hunt family thing. In reality, David was scared of disappointing her before they were married.

Sherry couldn't believe that her own wedding was just two days away. Ever since Eli came into her life she knew she would be alone, never to marry. Meeting David was more than a dream come true for her. David was the man of her dreams. He was everything she had ever thought the perfect man would be. He had none of the bad habits her father had warned her about, and he had the money to support her. The one short term boyfriend she did have was unemployed and wanted her to support him. With Eli bringing the two of them together, she knew it was fate.

When morning came, there were quite a few people dragging their feet. Eli looked over at his Dad and Uncle Stephen and started laughing. They looked like they had been out drinking all night.

"Dad? Did you and Uncle Stephen go out drinking last night? You look like people in the movies do when they are hung-over." Eli kind of chuckled.

"No we didn't, but we are a bit hung-over. Drinking too much apple juice is the same as drinking too much beer. Take this as a lesson, boys, a little is good, a lot is painful!" David told his son.

"Damn painful!" Uncle Eric said as he walked into the room. "Please tell me the coffee is laced with painkillers?" He said as he stumbled over to get to the coffee pot.

"You know, you older boys are going to have a great day if you don't deal with this, those bikes are going to sound like hundreds of guns going off with a bunch of chainsaws thrown in for good measure." Sherry told the guys.

Eli walked up to his dad and hugged him. You could see the relief in David almost immediately. He then went to his Uncle Eric and did the same thing followed by Uncle Stephen. Sherry was amazed at seeing the change in the men.

"Thank you Eli, I feel so much better, but what Gift did you use?" Stephen asked.

"I didn't use a Gift, just gave you a hug." He said with a straight face before heading out the back door.

"Aw, the power of a child's hug!" Sherry said while laughing.

Cody went behind Eli and hugged each of the men as well, but everyone was watching Eli, and didn't notice him. Once outside, Eli absorbed all the hangover pain from Cody.

"I can't believe no one saw you! How did you do that?" Donnie wanted to know.

"It wasn't me. You had everyone watching you to see what you would do. No one was paying attention to what I was doing, so they think you somehow took their pain. We make a good team!" Cody laughed.

"Well, you are partially right." The boys heard behind them. "I was watching and paying attention to both of you. I saw the team work you used and if I am not mistaken, Eli you used the Gift of Enthrallment to get everyone watching you and not Cody, am I correct?" Aunt Karen said as she came out onto the back porch.

"Yeah, but how did you know?" Eli asked.

"Because, I am one of the very few Wizards whom Enthrallment does not work on. Now, how did you two work out what needed to be done?"

"When I saw Uncle Eric looking so miserable, I told Cody what I wanted to do. Grandpa Max told Cody not to use his Gift until he had more training on it, but the pain doesn't affect me because of The Wizard Heart. But I didn't want either of us to get into trouble."

"Mom, please don't get mad at Eli, I should have said no, at least until Grandpa Max got here." Cody begged his Mom.

"Sweetie, I am not mad at anyone. Well, okay, maybe a little. You should have let them suffer a bit longer!" She laughed as she gave her son a hug followed by her nephews.

Eli, Cody, and Donnie headed out to the fish building to do the morning feedings. The boys were all excited about going to the races. With the three of them working together they finished the morning duties faster than normal. They locked up the building and rushed back up to the house, still laughing and having a good time.

"Stephen, I think you and I need to spoil Eli a bit today. Being around this many preteen boys, all of whom are excited, could be very painful if it wasn't for him." Eric told his brother-in-law.

"I think all three of you men need to spoil all the boys today. What you aren't aware of is the team work shown this morning by all three of them." Karen told the men.

"Honey, what are you talking about?" Stephen asked his wife.

"Well, Eli didn't like seeing you all hurting, so he worked up a plan. However, his plan might get someone in trouble so he figured a way to do it so you three and the rest of us in the kitchen wouldn't catch on. I only know because of the Gift he did use doesn't work on me. He used the Gift of Enthrallment. He told Cody and Donnie what to do, and as he walked around giving everyone hugs, Cody was using his Gift of Pain Amalgamation followed by another hug from Donnie. None of you noticed what Cody and Donnie were doing because you were enthralled by what Eli was doing. Eli was worried that Cody would get in trouble because of what Uncle Max had said about him needing more training before using this Gift, but he took steps to immediately take all that pain away as soon as they stepped out back. Sherry, you should be very proud of the boy you have raised. He is a very smart and very caring boy who is going to make a wonderful King!" Karen explained to everyone before getting another cup of coffee.

"Why those clever little turds!" Kelly said while starting to laugh. "I agree with Karen, you Boys had better take extra special care of those three little Men today!"

The three men knew they were put into their place and all answered Kelly with their heads down. One yes dear, and two yes Sis's were heard by the others, who couldn't help but laugh.

"Well, seeing you are all laughing at us, we are going to go pack the truck and wait outside!" David said just as Eli came rushing in saying that Uncle Nevin was there.

David had already decided to load the cooler into the back of Nevin's truck to give them more room in the explorer. He was very surprised to see a small travel trailer behind the patrol truck when he got outside. David sent all three of the boys inside to get their backpacks, extra clothes that might be needed, and to say goodbye to the ladies.

"Hey Nevin," David called out as he walked towards the truck, "what is up with the travel trailer?"

"Ron and I thought it might come in handy today. If the boys do good it might be a very long day, so having someplace to relax will be nice. Plus, it's got AC!" Nevin laughed.

"I think that as this team grows, I am going to need to look into something for Ron to use. Maybe one of them custom trailers like you see at the pro races." David said out loud but more to himself.

"I think you should talk to Ron about it. I know he has been looking into a few since Toby came to live with him. I also know he is a little worried about the amount of money you are spending on the boys. He was talking about trying to get a corporate sponsor for the team. I think he is worried that you will stop supporting them once you figure out that there isn't any reward in it for you." David was about to respond and Nevin could tell what he had said hadn't made David happy. "Hey, don't shoot the messenger, and also don't take my word completely, I told you what I thought Ron was thinking, not what he told me he was thinking." Nevin said while holding up his hands to ward off any attack.

"You're right, but damn it, all I want out of this is to see the boys doing what they love. I don't care how much money it takes, after all it hasn't been doing me much good sitting in the banks. I will talk to Ron, and see what he would like to do." David said. "Thanks Nevin for letting me know what you think is going on."

Once everything and everyone was loaded into the trucks, they pulled out. Nevin was leading with David following in his Explorer. This event was only about 30 miles from the farm. One of the other nice things about this event was that it was in Johnson County, so Nevin and David could get their vehicles in without any hassles because they were both official vehicles.

When they arrived they parked near Ron's van and the 'Team Trailer'. Mikael Welsh was there helping Ron wrangle the bikes out of the trailer. Eli offered to help, but Ron told him they had it.

Toby, Ryan, and Sasha all came running up to the group. They informed everyone what the schedule was for the day. When the practice times were, when the qualifying heats were, and finally when the first heats were. Needless to say all the boys were wired tight. Once the team started getting ready for their practice slot, the other boys decided to go walk around.

Mitch went with the group, as kind of a chaperone. Not that it was needed, but he always felt it was his job to look after his little brother.

Eli spotted a bathroom, and told the others that he needed to use it. They all told him they would wait for him to come back. On his way out of the bathroom he heard someone crying. It sounded like a kid. He looked around the corner of the bathroom building to see a younger kid sitting in the dirt by an older motorcycle.

"Hey, what's wrong?" Eli asked the boy, who looked to be a couple years younger than him.

"Oh, hi! Sorry, I shouldn't be crying, I know I look like a baby, but I don't care. My chain broke, and I won't be able to race today. I spent all my money just to get it here and to pay the entry fee, and now I get nothing!"

"Hey, don't worry about crying, we all do it when we get upset. I bet my friends could help you fix your bike so you could still race."

"Thanks, but that is against the rules. One team cannot help another. I think they think it will lead to cheating."

"Well, that is just stupid! So, who is to say you can't join my friends' team? Come on, let's go ask them! By the way, I am Eli." He said holding out his hand.

"I am Kyle, Kyle Poliski. Thanks, do you think they would let me join their team, even if it was just for today?" Kyle asked.

"I know they will. Come on." Eli said before getting yelled at by a very scared Mitch.

"WHERE THE HELL HAVE YOU BEEN? I have been looking all over the place for you!" Mitch yelled as he saw Eli.

The other boys were trying not to laugh, except for Kyle, he looked scared to death.

"Mitch, I am sorry that I scared you, but I was just around the corner talking to my friend Kyle here. So you need to chill!" Eli told Mitch very calmly.

"Sorry, it is just the first time that I am kind of looking out for you and I thought I had lost you. I knew I should have never let you go to the bathroom alone."

"Mitch, I am fine, please relax!" Eli told his older friend. "Now, come on, we don't have much time." Eli started running back over to where the Martin's had their trailer. It didn't take long for the whole group to reach the adults sitting there.

"Dr. Martin, this is Kyle. He has a problem and I think we can help him. See he spent all his money on getting ready for today's race, and the entry fee, but his chain on his bike broke. So now he can't even race. I was wondering if you would let him join the Martin Brother's Racing team, even if it is just for this event, so that we could help him fix his broken chain?" Eli said looking Ron right in the eyes.

"Well Eli, it is not really up to me. First, the Martin Brother's Racing is run by the Martin brothers. They make the decisions on who races and who doesn't. Then it is up to the Sponsors to determine if the team can support another rider."

"I will speak for the Sponsors, Yes!" David simply said.

"Hey Kyle, what are you doing here?" Sasha asked as he came out of the travel trailer.

"Hi Sasha, I didn't know you rode? Wow, cool gear!"

"Yeah, my friends got me to join their team." He poked his head back into the travel trailer and yelled, "YO, Bosses, come meet a friend of mine!"

Ryan and Toby came out of the travel trailer together. Ryan had on a new team jersey and Toby was in his full gear, matching to what Sasha had on.

"Kyle, I would like for you to meet the Owners of Martin Brother's Racing, Ryan and Toby Martin." Sasha said with a wave at each of the brothers.

"Hey Kyle, I have seen you race before, you race in the under 100 cc bracket, right?" Toby asked.

"Yeah, normally I do."

"Ryan, Toby listen, Kyle here broke his chain on his bike, and can't get it fixed. With the way the stupid rules are, he can't get help from anyone because that would be cheating, but he could if he was part of a team. I was hoping you guys would make him a part of your team so that he can ride today?" Eli said.

"Well, I don't know about Ryan, but I have seen Kyle ride. We could use someone of his skill in the under 100cc group. What do you say Ryan?"

"Well, if our sponsor thinks it is a good idea, than I am all for it."

"The sponsors already said yes!" Eli shouted.

"Then all we need to do is get the paperwork done, and you are a part of Martin Brother's Racing! Welcome aboard my friend!" Toby said.

"Kyle, we will need your parents to sign for you so do you think you could ask one of them to come over?"

"My Mom was on her way to work, but she is coming back to get me when I called about the chain. She should be here soon." Kyle told the adults. All of whom were not really happy that she had left this 10 year old boy here alone.

"Boys, why don't you go help Kyle get his bike and stuff together and bring it over here. That way as soon as his mom arrives, Ryan can get started." Ron told the boys.

Noah, Eli, Mitch, Donnie, Cody, Jeremy, Evan, and Kyle all ran back over towards the bathroom building to get what very little Kyle had. The adults laughed thinking that two would have gotten the job done instead of eight.

As the boys approached Kyle's bike there was a man standing nearby. He looked rough to all the boys except for Kyle. Kyle just sighed really loudly.

"Where have you been Boy? I told you to stay right here!" The man said while grabbing Kyle by the back of the neck.

"Let go of me!" Kyle yelled in pain.

"Will you never learn to do what I tell you?" The man yelled.

Mitch and Eli had seen enough, Mitch didn't want Eli to use any of his Gifts, so he yelled at the man to get his attention away from Kyle.

"Hey Jerk! Yeah, you! You best let go of Kyle right now if you know what is good for you!" Mitch yelled at the man. It did work because he dropped Kyle to the ground. More quietly he told Eli to get his dad.

'Dad, we need you and Uncle Nevin by the bathrooms, NOW' Eli sent to David.

"Who the hell do you think you are, Punk? How dare you yell at me and interfere with a family issue? You need to get your ass out of here now!"

"I don't think so, see I was raised to do the right thing. If I see someone being bullied, it is up to me to stop it. If I see someone being abused, then it is up to me to stop it. Right now I am seeing both, so I am going to do whatever it takes to stop it from happening!" Mitch told the older man.

"Oh that is rich! You are going to stop me? You and what army? What this bunch of little kids?" The man laughed.

"No, I think that we will help him!" Nevin said as he stepped around the corner with David right behind him followed by Steven and Eric. The man turned pale and mumbled something that no one understood.

"Now, my name is Sheriff Nevin Mills, what might your name be?"

"I am Ivan Poliski, and this is none of your business Sheriff." Ivan said.

"Well, I am making it my business, because I heard my son say he saw you bullying and abusing Kyle here. Now that is something that I cannot have."

"Look Sheriff, Kyle's Mom left him here for me to watch out for. I am the track manager, I left him here with his gear, and when I got back he was gone. All I did was demand to know where he had gone off to. So, like I said, this has nothing to do with you."

"Alright, fine, Kyle, do you agree with what this man said?" Nevin asked the scared boy.

"I guess…" Kyle started.

"NO! Sheriff, if you would look at the back of Kyle's neck you will see the hand print of where this man grabbed him. Also, he could have explained himself to us when Mitch yelled at him to let go of Kyle, instead he asked us if we wanted to fight him. Kyle also told him to let go of him, which he didn't until Mitch yelled at him." Eli was going to go on, but about that time an older pickup truck pulled up and a young lady stepped down from it.

"Kyle, what is going on here?" She asked.

"MOM!" Kyle cried and ran to his mom. As he was hugging her he told her that his uncle had hurt him again. She pulled him away and looked at the back of his neck, she got as red as the mark on Kyle's neck.

"I am glad that you are here Sheriff! I want this man arrested for child abuse. This is the last time you will ever lay a hand on my son, Ivan! I told you last time that I would have you arrested if you ever laid your hands on him again!" She was yelling at everyone while hugging Kyle. Eli thought this was kind of funny and was having a hard time not laughing.

Nevin placed Uncle Ivan under arrest and called for someone to come transport him to the jail. He also took pictures of Kyle's neck for the report and took statements from everyone that saw what happened. All this time, the kids were helping Ryan get Kyle's bike ready to qualify.

Kyle's mom, Natalie, signed the needed paperwork to allow Kyle to officially join Martin Brother's Racing. David told her that Kyle wouldn't have to worry about his bike any longer, because he would be getting a new team bike and all the needed gear to go with it thanks to the team sponsor. He did not tell her that he was the sponsor.

The three riders went off to do their practice rides, and the other boys went to the stands to watch. The adults sat around talking about different subjects. One of them was a new team trailer.

"Ron, Nevin told me you have been looking into some kind of team trailer?"

"Well, yes I was, but they are so expensive. I really like having a place for the boys to get in out of the sun and cool down on the really hot days, and having a place for them to change is also great. The trailer that we have now works, but as you can see, it is nowhere near big enough."

"I agree, I can't believe you were able to do two bikes out of that thing, now with 3 on board, it isn't going to work. Tell me about what you would like, as if money was no issue at all."

"Well, one of those toy haulers would be great, but then I would have to look into getting a truck to pull it as well. I have thought though, that a motor coach or a motor garage as they are called would work better. But they are in the hundreds of thousand dollar range."

"Why don't we do this, do some research on both types. Don't worry about the cost of the units, we want top quality for our boys. We can then sit down and talk the pro and cons of each type and decide what we want. I am also thinking that I want to add the Sherriff's logo to our team uniform, as a charity sponsor, what do you think Nevin?"

"Wow, that would be cool. I know we sponsor a few youth teams, softball, baseball and soccer, but this would be a totally different type of team. I really like the idea!" Nevin told the guys.

"Alright, now Mikael, do you have any problems being the second adult for this team now? I mean, there are 4 boys now and only one adult, he is way out numbered." David laughed.

"Yeah, we figured that. I look forward to helping with the team as one of the 'Adults'. Cindy and I have already talked about this and have decided that Sasha needs this more than anything. He has had such a sad life up till now that we will do anything to keep that smile on his face." Mikael told the others.

"I totally agree with what you just said, and I want to make sure that he has everything he needs. I also think that we as a group need to look into Kyle and his mom's situation as well."

"I agree with you David, that name struck a bell with me. Kyle's Dad was killed a few years ago in a bank robbery gone bad. Unfortunately, his dad was one of the robbers so there was no insurance payout. We have felt that Ivan was involved in the bank robberies as well, but could never prove it." Nevin told them. "There was a total of 4 banks that got robbed, the robberies all stopped when Viktor Poliski was killed. The case has never been solved."

"You should see if Eli can help you solve it." Ron said not thinking about Mikael being present until he saw David's face.

"I agree, if there was anyone, Wizard or Non who could solve that case it would be our Dexas, that kid is amazing." Mikael said with a laugh.

"Wait a minute, how do you know that Eli is the Dexas?" David asked.

"Well, it really wasn't hard to put it together, after all why else would a Monco, a Sheriff, and the LCT listen to an 11 year old and make me the new LCT and get the Council to agree with it?" Mikael said with a smirk.

"Who else knows? Have you told anyone about this?" David asked kind of panicked.

"I know that Sasha knows, but other than that I know of no one that does. Cindy and I do not really talk much about the whole Wizard thing, she leaves that up to me. I have not said anything to anyone, not even Uncle Max, but I am pretty sure that he knows I suspect Eli is not who everyone thinks he is."

"I for one want to thank you for your discretion. We do not want it out until he is ready to take on the whole Council, and he is ready. The plan was to let them know as soon as our wedding is over. I expect there will be lots of fireworks when he is announced." David explained to Mikael.

The adults talked more about the approaching showdown with the Council while the boys were practicing for their qualifying heats. It wasn't long before all the boys were back complaining they were thirsty and started attacking the coolers.

The first of the boys to race in a qualifying heat was Kyle. With the whole group cheering him on; he ran very well. He came in second place in his heat, but with a very fast time. Toby said that it would be very hard to beat it and he was a shoe in for the first heat.

Next up was Sasha. He looked fearless on his bike, riding it like he was born on it. Needless to say he not only won his heat, but set a track record for his class in qualifying. All the boys and adults were cheering him on all the way back to the trailer. Mikael was very happy with his boy's performance and it showed with the way he congratulated his son.

The last of the Martin Brother's racing team to qualify was Toby. He had to wait the longest before his heat. Several riders almost crashed coming off the starting line causing Toby to have to fall back. He had to play catch up the whole run, but did a great job of coming back from behind. He ended up taking third place in his heat, but did qualify for the next race.

As the day went on, the boys all cheered for the team. Kyle did very well, he placed second in his next heat and then first in the last one putting him in the finals. Sasha won both of his next two heats, putting him in the top spot for the final.

Toby had a rough day. He won his first race heat, but he got hit by another rider in the second one, and had to fight to get back to the front of the pack and ended up in second. He was not happy about getting hit and let the judges know. This was the second time this same kid had caused an accident.

Ryan through it all was very busy. Not only was he on the sidelines for each of the races running the stop watch for lap times, but he was in the trailer between the races making sure that the bikes were all in top shape or repairing any damage that might have been caused. Only Toby's bike had any real damage done to it, but Ryan was able to take care of it.

All the boys visiting the races for the first time were very impressed with the way the team worked together.

The finals were held that evening with the stadium style lights turned on. Kyle's mom had made it back in time to see his last heat race, which made him very happy.

David could tell that she was not happy about something, so he pulled her off to the side.

"I am David Hunt," David started and could see the recognition in her eyes. "Yes, I am the former LCT, but now I am just a school teacher and part-time volunteer medic for the county. I can tell you are upset by something, and I do not want anything to spoil the boys' day, so would you mind telling me what is wrong?"

"First off, Mr. Hunt,"

"David, please."

"Fine, David, my name is Natalie. I am upset, and am trying very hard to keep it together right now. My boss informed me after my shift that I was fired for being late again. I was late because of coming back to help Kyle. This is the only thing my son asks for, to be able to race. Now I don't know what I am going to do." She said as she started to cry.

"Well, for one, you will stop that!" Nevin said as he walked up. "Sorry, but I couldn't help but overhear what you guys were talking about, and that might be because I was trying very hard to hear what you were talking about." He laughed. "Now, Natalie, I know your family has no loveloss for my department after what happened with your husband, but I have always felt bad about the way things were handled back then. Of course I couldn't do anything because I wasn't the Sheriff, but I am now. So, what do you say to a full time position as an administration assistant to the Sheriff of Johnson County? Mrs. Quinn is retiring at the end of the month and I have yet to find someone I think will do the job, that is until now."

"You are offering me this even knowing who my husband was?"

"Yes, because you are not your late husband, and I also know that it was proven beyond a doubt that you were in no way involved with his activities. You are the right person for the job, and I would really like to have you on board. What do you say?"

"I say I would be stupid to say no, so YES!" Natalie told Nevin.

"Great, now you will have to interview for the position, I will call and set it up for Monday morning. I believe my wife is off that day." Nevin said the last part more to himself than to the others as he walked away.

"What did he mean by that?" Natalie asked David watching Nevin walk away with his phone to his ear.

"Well, if I know him, and I do, he is talking to the only person on the planet that even remotely scares him, his Wife. He is asking her permission to hire you."

"But, she doesn't work for the county, does she?"

"Nope, but he isn't about to hire a lady without her permission!" David laughed as he walked them both over to where Ron was laughing his butt off at his best friend.

"Yes, I know honey that is why I want you to meet with her. I know I should have checked with you first, but you have to understand she was upset and I knew she was the right person for the job. Yes, Eli and Noah like her, they both talked to her between races. Great, I will ask if she would mind stopping by the farm on the way to town. I love you, and thank you for understanding." Nevin hung up the phone and then flipped off his best friend.

"I cannot believe how scared you are of one little woman!" Ron teased.

"Watch it buster, or I will tell her what you just said!" Ron stopped laughing in an instant, which caused the rest of the group to burst out laughing at both of them.

Drop me a line. I'm interested to hear what you think.

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