Castle Roland

Somerset Farm

by Jamie Haze

In Progress

Chapter 39

Posted: 16 Mar 15


Jamie Haze

The big Trenton helicopter hovered three hundred feet above and to the side of an enormous building on the Trenton estate, a building that didn't exist two weeks earlier when they left for the cruise. Buck and Doug touched cheeks to look out one window. Bill Henderson, Doug's father looked over their shoulders proudly. He snapped his cellphone closed with a grin. "Watch the roof," he told everyone sitting on that side of the cabin. They could see through the clear greenhouse-like roof to water sparkling in the pools below it. A crack widened at the peak and in just over a minute the two halves traveled back down their opposite slopes and the two pools, one, square for diving, and the other, fifty meters long and eight lanes wide, were fully exposed to the sun. The halves continued on tracks completely off the gable ends until they almost touched the ground on either side and the complete and completed interior was exposed to the afternoon sun.

The budding architect and engineer in Doug asked his father, "How'd you manage that clear span? Why don't they sag?"

"I called in lots of favors. A mechanical buddy suggested that we stress the beams with cables underneath so they actually bow up slightly just like a really long concrete pre-stressed I-beam, but without the concrete hiding anything. What looks like glass is a light weight polycarbonate material so they aren't as heavy as they look and ultraviolet penetrates as ordered," Bill cast a rueful glance at Bucky sitting with his wife Becky in seats behind the boys. "So you two goof balls can keep your tans going all winter."

Bucky giggled, "Don't look at me, it's what they wanted." He leaned forward to poke his son over the seat back, "What do you think of your dive tank junior?"

The dive platforms protruded from a tall column, but only the highest was over the square of water, Buck frowned when he noted that even the springboards terminated over the tiled deck. "Great Dad, one dive and I'm dead. Great engineering Bill, didn't anyone notice that they aren't out over the water?"

"DUH!" Doug giggled, "They swing somehow fool." He cocked an eye at his father, "They do don't they?"

"At the touch of a button by the deck elevator door, or if you forget, at any level you choose." Bill grinned at Bucky, "When I told my engineering friends that this project was a super rush no budget job, they really got creative. You may regret turning me loose on this. Plus, in truth, one already had this designed for a new university complex. The components were finished and waiting to be installed," he smiled angelically like Doug did when caught doing something naughty. "WE borrowed their aluminum roof frame too and added the stress or it still wouldn't be finished. Unfortunately they're way behind schedule so they won't need this tower or a roof for another six months. Airfreight is certainly convenient when you're in a hurry." Bucky agreed with a gravelly giggle and slammed him in the arm with his fist just like the boys were fond of doing to each other.

Bucky laughed as Evan, who had been pacing the aisle since they lifted off from the Trenton hanger at Newark International Airport, tapped him on the shoulder, "Excuse me Bucky, but could we land? I have to take a leak so bad."

"Did I not suggest this before leaving airplane?" Anton asked with amusement. "You hurry here and there all the time, but not ever stop to pee until need is most urgent," he scolded with a grin and offered Evan a bottle of water.

"Yeah," Buck agreed, "let's land this puppy we want to get wet."

Doug looked at his watch and frowned, "It's too bad we flew east, we lost three hours of practice already. Did you see Paul start running to the field house as soon as we dropped them off?" He giggled, "He was in such a hurry, he left Marc to lug all his junk himself. No one but Marc would think about taking pictures at a funeral."

The chopper turned and moved to settle on its pad. Becky Trenton stretched her neck for a final glimpse of the pool. "Darling? What's the big building on the end going to be used for?" She asked her husband.

Bucky giggled, "I thought no one was going to ask. My dear I think I have a decorating job for you and Martha," he hesitated and attempted a straight face. "That's the residential wing." He saw Buck and Doug looking at him over their seat backs. "We've got the most modern aquatic center in the country at the moment anyway, built to the latest Olympic standards and I thought it would be nice to offer its use to other Olympic hopefuls, so you're looking at a small hotel really, with fifty rooms and apartments for those boys and girls to live while they train. By doing that I've been able to lure a diving coach out of the seclusion of retirement for Buck primarily, but he may take on some others attracted by his name and his gold medals. Of course anyone may bring their own coaches, we'll see."

"Who Dad?" Buck asked with renewed enthusiasm. It had been weeks since his father said he would find a diving coach, Buck thought that none were available, so he'd become resigned to happily swimming with Doug until school started when he could join the school team and swim competitively on the preppy circuit.

"Eric McBride."

The surprised silence in the cabin was broken by the thunks of the hatch being opened, the steps lowered and by Becky's impromptu planning session with Doug's mother, Martha Henderson, sitting across the aisle. Neither woman seemed to recognize the name. The boys did. "He's got AIDS doesn't he? Isn't that why he dropped at of sight?" Buck asked in a low voice.

Bucky frowned, "Yes, so? He's coming here to coach you and specifically NOT to allow you to lure him to, ah, do anything else. He's bringing a friend, an assistant who I understand has the same affliction. Both I'm told appear quite healthy. Both of you have expanded your circle of friends to such an extent that frankly I'm continually surprised that any of you can make it to breakfast on any given morning. Enough should be enough" He held his frown while he talked. His voice bordered on ominous it dropped to just above a rock crushing whisper. "I've made it very clear to Eric that if he or his friend so much as touch you or anyone else in a manner that is anything less than professional, coach to student, he and his friend will not die of that disease." He smiled slightly and the icy chill in the cabin diminished. "I planned to make that speech in privacy at some point soon, but not here and now. I'm pleased that you both understand what I've said."

"Damn Dad, you didn't need to cop an attitude over one little question." Buck complained meekly.

Evan started to rush the hatch. He paused by Bucky, bent almost double with his need to relieve himself. "Man Bucky, you're as bad as Grandfather. He scares the piss out of me too when he gets bent out of shape. Where's the bathroom?"

"There's one just inside the hanger because I sometimes forget too," Bucky laughed and pointed.

"Thanks!" Evan called. He looked back at Doug and Buck climbing down the steps as he ran for the big doors, "I'll be right back guys, wait for me, I want to go swimming too!" He veered to the side to avoid a rumbling caution sign yellow Hummer as it emerged from the hanger.

Everyone but Bucky gawked at the blocky truck, he just laughed and glanced at his smiling son, "Someone suggested they needed something to drive around the place and visit the Wilcott's by a land route, and now the aquatic center is a half mile from here, but I imagine most times you'll be required to run back and forth," Bucky winked at Bill, who would continue coaching Doug, "but occasionally it will be nice to drive." The pool complex was planned with its own gated entrance and would be fenced to separate it from the rest of still growing estate as Bucky continued to acquire surrounding properties in his quest for increased security.

"Yup like now," Bill agreed and smiled at his son standing, supported by crutches, "but as soon as you get rid of those damn crutches, the only time I want to see you in that monster is when you go visiting the Wilcott's. So who wants to go for a test drive to the pool?"

Anton shook his head, "Tomorrow perhaps. I would rest now." The silent Dobermans fell in step beside him. He glanced at Gregor and Meesha, "Go if you wish, sleeping requires no assistance, have fun. This home is secure if any is in this country.

Joe and Will went to the house along with the women and Anton, servants and guards carried the luggage. Noah, David, Meesha and Gregor gathered around Buck and Doug while they talked about who should be first to drive their new toy, the Hummer. It was almost the first time that they were alone together with the exception of Evan.

They'd dropped Peter off with his parents on the top of the office tower in New York City. The Anderson's still suffered from bouts of open-mouthed culture shock. The latest was to be invited aboard Anton's new jet for the flight east from California. As antique enthusiasts, they found it difficult to believe that anyone would use museum quality pieces and bolt them to the deck to furnish the plane's interior. Then during the flight, Anton spent time minutely inspecting the beautiful paneling and moldings in the main lounge criticizing hairline cracks he found in the joinery work to a nervous young man who took notes and who was part of the permanent staff that actually lived full-time somewhere in the 747.

Dylan had Trenton Hall to himself while they were away since he had to work on his film and couldn't even get away for the fast trip to California. He happily commuted back and forth to the city in his leased helicopter, much to the disgust of his legions of fans who waited for hours anywhere they thought he might appear and were even excited about getting a glimpse of his chopper when it landed and departed the rooftop helipad while they stood in the street looking up at the mirrored glass office tower.

Morgan opted to join Paul in the gym for a few days, content to be with him to spot for him and generally be his gofer, replacing the less than dependable Marc who planned to split his time between the two estates and sports complexes. He and Paul had become best friends as well as lovers, though never exclusively, there was always Marc and any of the others who were eager and more than willing.

Billie had become impossibly impatient to return to Dagger Key. Anton granted him permission to build an appropriate manor house on the island, which befitted a new multimillionaire, plus he had a wedding to plan, his and Dieter's as well as a son to love as soon as Tommy could be adopted by any means and at any cost required. These assorted plans left Doug, Buck and Evan at Trenton Hall for the foreseeable future.

Bucky and Bill stood back listening to the conversation about who should be first to drive, Bucky grinned, "Within thirty seconds they're going to start arguing, not about who should be first, but about who shouldn't be first."

"Goddamnit, you drive the fucking thing, you know how to drive, I don't and there's too many of us already. I'd be nervous with these assholes looking over my shoulder laughing at every little mistake." Doug declared.

"No way! I bought the goddamn thing for us the drive. I mean I paid for it, Dad bought it, and US is you first, it was your idea to buy it." Buck countered.

"My idea? All I did was admire Don Thomas' out loud. Are you going to buy everything I like? I won't be able to open my mouth around you."

Buck grinned, "I sure don't want that to happen, you have such a beautiful mouth."

Evan pushed between them and kept on going to climb into the driver's door and settle his little butt behind the wheel. "Fuck you both, I'll drive as soon as I find the right button to raise the fucking seat and if anyone laughs I'll just sic the Doberman boys on them. Why do they always build things for you fucking monsters?" He asked rhetorically. When the seat was high enough, he moved it forward until he could comfortably press the accelerator. The idling diesel roared. "Okay, let's go, all you old assholes get in the back. He saw Bucky and Bill standing in the back, both wore frowns. "OOPS! Excuse me SIRS, I meant these assholes, not," he rolled his eyes and giggled, "Somehow that didn't come out right. You know what I mean."

Everyone was laughing at Evan by the time the pool building came into view. Evan maintained a red-faced determined grin as he drove. Buck, sitting next to him in the front seats with Doug elbowed him, "Man, Mom's going to kill you when she sees those bushes," he warned between giggles.

"They'll grow back won't they?" Evan squeaked, "Or I could replace them before she sees them. I still have the checkbook Grandfather gave me to buy us a house. I tried to give it back since he's here, but he told me its my job to buy it, its one of my chores, like taking out the trash or washing dishes at home, way back when I had a home," he added softly thinking of his mother.

Bill directed Evan to park on the side of the pool opposite the residential wing as Bucky referred to the dormitory. This was the actual public entrance to the pool area and the lobby was the beginning of a mezzanine that ran around the big room, one and a half stories above it. The dive tank was at the other end of the pool closest to the dormitory. Some of the building's windows even looked into the pool area when the roof was closed. There was a wall of floor to ceiling glass at the balcony level and even the open railing was replaced with glass. They could tell that the dorm wasn't even close to being finished from the incessant power machine noises that echoed around the walls and empty rectangles waiting for windows.

Doug looked back to find Bucky to thank him for paying for the beautiful facility, and his father for building it so quickly by stripping crews from other jobs and moving them to Trenton Hall and then work three shifts so construction was nonstop. Bucky and his father weren't with them.

When Bucky jumped down from the Hummer, his eyes lighted on the biggest Caterpillar front-end loader he'd ever seen close up. Bill walked with him until the hulking machine dwarfed them. "You know Bill if I had to really work at a job doing physical labor, I think I'd love to operate one of these big babies. I get off on construction machines." He grinned at Bill, "When I got stuck in traffic on the interstate that you caused by the way, I could have gotten a lot of work done, you know paper work and the phone, but I was always distracted by these damn machines. Just watching them is a trip. Is this the biggest they make?" He asked wistfully.

"Almost, you'll find the biggest in quarries where they stay permanently because they're too big." Bill grinned, "Want to drive it?"

Bucky looked around to see if anyone was watching them, the boys had gone inside. "You mean it? Could I? I mean I don't want you to get into trouble with the union." He told Bill with little boy hope and his hands already on the ladder up to the operator's cabin. It was clear that very much coaxing wasn't required.

Bill giggled. "Its my damn machine. I'm with you. I admit I love to play with these things too, but don't much because the regular operators are usually watching and frowning. Each is afraid I'll damage HIS machine. I encourage people to take ownership of the equipment they operate, so I mostly back off. Go ahead, climb up there, I'm right behind you," he looked around, "I guess the regular guy works another shift."

Buck held Evan and the others back; he wanted to give Doug the honor of being the first into the pool. They were close enough for him to hand over his crutches and lean on to pry off his gym shoes. He shorts dropped where he stood when he unbuttoned them and his shirt joined them on the tile deck. There were no furnishings as yet. He didn't even try to mount a starting block. Coils of floating lane markers lay off to the side. He barely managed four baby steps to the edge before he was gone with a soft watery bloop followed by growing rings of ripples. He broke the surface and the pattern of rings thirty feet out. He faced them wearing an open eye radiant smile. "Today we swim, just swim. No fucking around, just swim," he repeated before he sank. They could see his shape imitate a dolphin. His arms and hands became diving planes until he whipped them in an arc and they became auxiliary power. He moved forward by flexing his incredibly supple body with his legs together, working in concert with his torso and legs. His course was perfectly straight, centered between two bottom lane markers. He appeared to be moving slowly but he reached the other end of the pool with ease and speed, which belied the strength required to make the movements look easy.

"Goddamn," David muttered, "if he swims like that very often he'll give washboard abs a whole new meaning." Noah and Buck agreed.

"Not to mention lats." Buck added holding imaginary love handles and thrusting his hips suggestively.

Evan's head appeared above a stairwell in the corner, "Hey guys, down here," he called, "there's a damn window in the wall! You've just got to see this."

When Doug touched and turned, then surfaced he was going to invite the others to join him, warm water wasn't placed on earth to be watched, it demanded to be loved and used, but they were gone. He shrugged mentally and assumed that they were exploring. He decided to explore his new home as well. There were black bands that ran along both long walls and smaller rectangles centered on each of the eight lanes in the end walls. A faint tapping intruded in the soothing bubbly silence. He broached, inhaled and dove, heading for the sound emanating from the wall. The black panel was glass. He swam along it until he found his friends' faces in the darkness grinning back at him.

"Hey!" Buck said clearly, "Your father thought of everything," Doug saw Buck talking to him in a microphone, he grinned and nodded. Buck pointed along the window's sill. "There's a track and a little flat car, it's a camera mount! Unreal! Marc will blow his mind when he sees this setup!" If Buck could be impressed, Doug certainly was, but he wasn't swimming. He motioned for them to join him before he returned to a lane to begin doing laps.

Doug heard splashes then arms, legs and bodies appeared surrounded by bubbles. He pointed right and left indicating that they should get out of his lane, he wanted space. The six paced him for a while. The always-inquisitive Evan was the first to climb out at the dive pool end to stand and study the tower with its boards and platforms. His eyes rose to the top platform, the ten-meter level, almost thirty-three feet above the water. He looked back with a grin before he ran to the base of the tower. The guys swimming in the pool didn't know he was looking down on them until he shouted and waved.

Gregor was horrified to see him with his toes curled over the edge of the platform. He had time to shout, "Evan! NO!" Before he lapsed into unintelligible Russian. The small body jumped up and out, then folded into a tuck position, and straightened to perfectly horizontal before it entered the water cleanly. Evan surfaced with a delighted smile to delayed cheering. Everyone but Doug had pulled himself from the pool wherever they were closest to a wall and started running. Doug was standing on his hands, still in the water from the waist down so he could see over the ten feet of intervening deck space into the dive tank, ready to worm his way across if Evan failed to reverse his course into the depths and surface promptly.

Someone was cheering from the balcony. Everyone looked up. They recognized Eric McBride grinning down on them. His face and body were as recognized as Dylan's. After sweeping the diving events in the last Olympics he'd gone on to pick and choose endorsements. He was an aquatic Michael Jordan. A movie centered on diving was written for him hurriedly, but the shitty script combined with his lack of acting talent conspired to end that career at one film. The movie did showcase his body and his ability to make any male clothing look good, good meaning salable, so his career as a premier male model blossomed and the endorsements grew. One day he collapsed during a photo shoot and was rushed to a hospital.

The cause was glossed over successfully as overwork and the flu, until at the end of the interview, Eric's doctor was overheard by a reporter complaining to a publicist, about the difficulty of keeping the real problem confidential for any great length of time. The doctor didn't name the disease, but the damage was done. Eric's past and very secret lifestyle was exposed to public scrutiny. He abruptly retired futilely railing against God, luck and the doctor's big mouth to divide his time between his ranch in Arizona and his family's oceanfront home in the Hampton's on Long Island, where Bucky found him and his friend living for the summer.

Eric applauded Evan as the cheering diminished to tentative smiles from the guys looking up at him. "I'd give that a nine point seven-five any day," he called to Evan before he disappeared into the dorm to reemerge on the deck level. Evan had climbed from the water and was standing near where Doug sat like an Indian idly scratching the healed scars on the soles of his feet. Eric was wearing a tee shirt, shorts, battered tennis shoes and a hardhat. He offered his hand to Evan and continued his sentence, "actually that dive was a nine point nine-five. You lost half a point because your legs pitched forward a tad when you went in. I subtracted the rest just because you're an unknown right now, but you won't stay that way as soon as we get you into some meets. You must be Buck," Eric's green eyes twinkled down on Evan, "I'm glad to see you're already talented, that will make my job easier. Your father didn't tell me."

Evan shook Eric's hand enthusiastically and of course giggled while he shook his head. "Gee thanks for the score, but I'm not Buck," he tossed his thumb, "He's Buck, I'm Evan, Evan Falconburg." The guys grinned as he puffed out his chest each time he got the opportunity to tell someone his new name. He swung on them with a frown, "Laugh mother fuckers all you want, autographs are free today only, starting tomorrow they'll be ten bucks each and you supply the paper and pen."

That declaration caused open laughter, even from Gregor and Meesha, and they had little clue what he said. Gregor knelt in front of Evan and attempted to frown while he babbled in a mixture of Russian and sorry English trying to convey what would most certainly happen to him if Evan were injured while in his care. He managed 'Anton', and 'grandfather' clearly, then pantomimed having his throat cut and made realistic gargling sounds as if air was escaping from a lowered and widened mouth. Evan paled with understanding at last, he, Gregor and Meesha knew that sound and would never forget it. Gregor continued by making graphic chopping motions with the side of his hand, up his other arm, across his kneecaps and after pulling his cock and balls out, chopping at them before sawing at his neck.

"Okay! Okay! I get the message, enough already I understand," Evan announced while he grabbed Gregor's arm to make him stop dissecting his body. When Gregor nodded in satisfaction and stood up again, Evan grinned at him, "However now that we know that I can dive off the high platform, there's no reason to stop me from doing it is there?" He took off running for the tower with a giggle, "Come on Buck, man this is so cool, high diving is a rush like a wet dream without getting hard!" Buck ran to catch him. "Would you mind if Eric coached me too?" He asked as they boarded the tiny elevator.

Gregor looked confused until he saw Evan run and Buck followed him into the elevator after they hurriedly shook hands with Eric. He ran around the pool to his shorts and cell phone. The others watched him speed dial then pace in circles while the call was routed via satellite to satellite to an exchange in Germany, then back up and back across the Atlantic to the new jets' communications center, before it was forwarded to Anton's cell phone a half mile away from where Gregor marched impatiently and impotently. Meanwhile he watched Buck dive; spectators and a new coach watching betrayed him. He was nervous and scissored his legs all the way down, but did enter the pool with his arms, head and torso in the proper order. Evan followed Buck, the second time less successfully because he got cute and attempted to twist his body to see what would happen. He barely had time to stretch out his arms to absorb the brunt of the impact with the water. He surfaced unhurt, just winded and with a new respect for the ten meter platform.

Eric didn't offer either boy a score on those dives and forbade either of them to use the ten meter platform again if he wasn't up there with them, unless they wanted to jump off feet first for fun, but even then if they did they should practice keeping their bodies straight, legs together and toes pointed at the water. He complimented them both for having the balls to attempt a dive from the equivalent of over three stories up as rookies and started to leave them.

Buck frowned at Eric's back, "Not so fast coach, Evan got two dives, I want two dives. Come on, show me." David and Noah agreed by just moving to block the narrow deck between the pools.

With his retreat cut off, Eric turned back to Buck, "You don't understand, I'm not a coach, I've never coached anyone before. I just dive, all I know how to do is compete, I don't know if I can teach you or not, I've never tried. I guess I'm as nervous as you were up there a minute ago."

Doug still sat on the deck. He had one foot held up to his face studying the sole minutely six inches from his eyes. "So start competing, that's what I do, we race, I've been winning so far, but I know I've been raced. Then I show them how they can swim faster. I challenge Buck and the others to beat me," he said quietly with a smile at his foot.

Eric shrugged, took off his hardhat, his shirt, kicked off his thongs and dropped his shorts. "Okay, that might work. We need a judge." He put two fingers in his mouth and whistled. "Trevor, my buddy is in there somewhere, he gets off on construction. We learned to swim together, we started diving together, and we've always done everything together our whole lives."

"WHAT?" Trevor shouted from a doorway in the dorm building at deck level and followed his question with echoing laughter.

"Not everything, not always, not if you're both sick." Evan innocently observed with a raised questioning eyebrow. He echoed the other's thoughts out loud.

Trevor walked in with a slight limp. His left thigh was badly scared into the leg hem of his shorts. He was smiling until he saw Eric naked, surrounded by naked strangers and no one was smiling. "What's going on?" He asked with a hand on Eric's shoulder.

Eric introduced Trevor before he looked at Evan, "No, not always, there was one time, just one, me, I did it," he said cryptically before he turned to look at Trevor with pain in his eyes. "They want to know how we got it, how I caught it and gave it to you." Eric started talking in a soft voice with his eyes on the deck.

"I can't drink, not more than one glass of wine with dinner. I get nasty, really nasty. A few years ago when we were still unknowns, we went into a national meet. Trevor came out as the top dog; he was always better than me. He could fucking fall off a board and still get a solid nine. I did okay. That night after dinner we celebrated. We were in our hotel room for the night, and we figured no harm, I could get shit faced and Trevor would put me to bed, only it didn't go down that way. I wanted to go out to a gay bar and party some more. Shit we'd never been in one before. He said no, and tried to get me to bed. I said no and I hit him, not hard, but hard enough to piss him off. He opened the door and let me go. I went, but by the time I got to the lobby I started to feel morose, fucking guilty if you want to know the truth. I wanted to go back up to the room and apologize, but I needed some courage first, so I went into the lounge. I started talking to a guy in there, and we connected. I invited him up for a threesome; we'd never tried that before, just talked about it. The guy would be like a peace offering. When we got to the room it was empty Trevor was gone. That pissed me off all over again and I took it out on this dude, a total stranger. He had a fucking pocket full of condoms but we, Trevor and me, we never used them, we didn't need them. I wouldn't put one on and wouldn't let the dude put one on him or me either.

"Our coach woke me up at six o'clock in the morning, the dude I fucked with was gone. Trevor was in the hospital with a crushed pelvis and an unbelievable compound fracture of his left thighbone. He thought I went to the bar in a cab and took our rental car to find me. He was pretty fucked up too, and ran a light. We made up in his hospital room, I confessed to fucking around with another guy. Trevor, big softhearted dope that he is forgave me for that, it was just sex, it didn't mean anything. He forgave me even though I destroyed his career, he knew that, but I didn't, not then. I thought everything would heal and he'd get back to beating the shit out of me as usual in the next meet. The coach laid the bad news on me that same night."

Trevor wrapped a muscular arm around Eric's neck and hugged him hard, "And you've been punishing yourself with this fucking guilt trip ever since. We both fucked up, ourselves and each other equally." He grinned looking into Eric's eyes, "Now what did I tell you I was going to do to you if I heard you tell that fucking story ever again?" He asked too sweetly and didn't wait for an answer. Eric grinned and began to twist away from his lover's arm. Trevor tightened his grip and pulled them both off balance until they fell into the dive tank, "Drown you RIGHT?" He screamed as they sank and began to wrestle. After a couple of minutes they pulled themselves out to sit on the edge. "Now why did you call me? I was busy learning how to cut molding in our apartment."

Erick explained their need to first teach diving before they had anyone to coach and how he wanted to try to do it by demonstration and competition as Doug suggested. He pointed to Doug, but he was gone. Evan was talking to Anton using Dieter's phone, and used it to point out a sleek dark form swimming underwater away from them. "Damn, he swims like a fish." Trevor observed as Doug broached the surface to breathe then bent his body to disappear again, slapping the surface with his feet before they too were gone with a splash.

"Nope," Buck corrected, "a dolphin. Rocket taught him that."

"Who the hell is Rocket? Is he here?" Eric asked looking from face to face.

Evan disconnected and returned Gregor's phone, "Of course not, he lives in the Bahamas, he's the boss dolphin of our pod," he explained, and dismissed the subject from his mind. He punched Gregor in his thigh and pointed at the four corners of the roofless structure with a sweeping circle of his arm. Two video cameras already looked down on them and the second pair moved to them as they watched. He waved by turning himself in a circle, "Grandfather said I can so dive if I want to, as long as I do the best I can, to be the best I can, just the way he does things." Gregor gave up, shrugged and saluted a camera.

Anton dropped his phone in his pocket and resumed watching the plasma screen in Trenton Hall's control room. He was calming his racing heart with deep breathing. "Saying no to such diving from so high would cause sneaking and sabotage of expensive cameras. The first dive was quite good, was it not?"

Will was sitting at the desk, he was in the process of arranging for Anton to visit the children's home and sent a preliminary good faith payment in the amount of ten thousand dollars for any inconvenience his tour might cause when he inspected the boys available to accompany him on his yacht for a cruise. The owner himself, Evan's stepfather acknowledged receipt of the credit card draft and invited Anton to visit at his convenience. A chime sounded to indicate that there was new mail. He blanked the divided screen and Gregor's salute from four different views disappeared. "Here we go."

An e-mail dialog, almost a chat commenced. The boy's home proprietor naturally wished to keep his location confidential and suggested that Anton arrive by train. He would be met at a designated station and transported wearing a blindfold. He explained that the visit was unique among his clients, no one had ever asked to visit before and while he wished to be accommodating, he did have the security of the boys to think of and couldn't think of an alternative.

"The fool!" Anton roared with laughter, "Who would place his life in the hands of scum with blindfold?" He asked Will rhetorically. Will agreed and waited to type a response. Anton snapped his fingers. "Send snoopy photo of compound. Place red X in some open area inside fence. Say perhaps my helicopter will land there. Demand the place cleared for safety. Say I do not travel by rail. Say also if I wished to do his business harm, it would be done and we would not be having tiresome conversation. My entourage will include armed bodyguards, assistants and," he giggled, "pets."

"Pets?" Will asked with a raised eyebrow.

"Pets. I will bring Meesha and perhaps your capable, handsome and dangerous boy-like Noah. They would be dressed alike in tailored suits and be very subservient. I will say both are too old and I wish to replace them, perhaps with younger boys not yet with scratching beards. I will plan to leave them behind, a gift perhaps? Perhaps they could still be of use before the bloom of youth departs them? They will be a small advance payment if they can be replaced with something younger."

"You mean as trade ins?" Will asked with a giggle of amazement.

Anton nodded, "Yes, that is good!" He clapped his hands in delight, "They will be left inside the compound. After this cretin and his stable of boys leave, they will gather all the staff members involved and follow on another aircraft and join us on Sea Song before we depart Ft. Lauderdale. There can be no witnesses." He rocked in his chair, looked back to Hans and Herman and relayed the plan in German. "We will have a busy night of sport fishing my friends," he concluded.

Will winced visibly when Anton repeated the last comment in English for him. "What do you want done with the client list?" He asked to change the subject. "There are some of considerable wealth, but all have left themselves vulnerable because whatever happens to them they cannot go to the authorities."

Anton shrugged then smiled, "It is time that all involved should be rewarded with wealth of their own." He looked back at Hans and Herman, "You and Billie should bring these men down. Divide fifty percent among you evenly and the balance should go to the boys also evenly. Open accounts for them, secret accounts until they become eighteen, of course after expenses." Anton shifted gears, "What of my grandson's mother? Is she involved?"

Will shook his head, "No I'm happy to say, she isn't, she still has her job as a nurse on the three to eleven shift, and spends her free time traveling around the area putting up fliers with Evan's picture and description. After all this time, she still maintains hope of his safe return, but she still lives with our friend since the beating Evan gave him is or was being investigated as a home invasion and kidnapping."

Anton's frown changed to a huge smile, "Good news then. Could you personally go to her, take many photos of her son to prove he is alive and happy? Bring her directly to Dagger Cay so they may be reunited when Sea Song arrives to deliver boys. Perhaps she would accept a token position as the nurse at new school, or as Evan wishes for her. That will be their decision."

Tommy, as he asked to be called, Mark and Charlie watched the dive boat depart for the reef while they waited impatiently from the Doog still tied to the dock. "If they get to the dolphin first, won't them fish just forget about us?" Mark asked Dieter. Charlie and Tommy agreed with concerned nods as they coated each other with sunscreen.

"I doubt it, Tommy's the only one who can talk to them or that they'll talk to. They're going out to the reef and we're staying in the lagoon so the dolphin, not fish, won't disturb us. They're mammals Mark, for the tenth time, aquatic mammals, highly intelligent and maybe in their own way smarter than you. After you get comfortable with diving off the Doog while we're submerged, then we'll go out to the reef to a spot where the other guys met them. Your buddies on the dive boat are going to be on the other side of Black's Cay so we won't run into each other."

Curt submerged the Doog near the big mooring buoy, the deepest part of the lagoon. The boys and Dieter drew straws to decide who would use the sub's two hoses and regulators and which standard scuba gear. Mark and Dieter drew the scuba tanks and while Curt and his crewmen helped them put the gear on, Dieter explained its proper and safe use. Tommy suddenly got a far away look in his eyes. He wrote something on his pad and showed it to Dieter while his lips formed the words. "WE WON"T NEED THIS STUFF -ROCKET AND COMET SHOWED ME."

"Showed you? When was that?" Charlie asked since he seemed to be better at reading lips than Mark and he asked before Dieter, Mark or Curt.

"JUST NOW." Tommy looked up at the conning tower and grinned. He wrote, "THEY'RE CLOSE." He had time to hold the pad up to Dieter before everyone heard muted thumps.

They all went down to the observation deck. Rocket and Comet took turns thumping one window while the other two young males made spirals around the sub's hull. Tommy waved eagerly. Dieter waved but felt foolish until Rocket's eye fixed on him and the whole sleek body seemed to nod and beckon him to enter the dolphin environment.

The two unnamed dolphin halted their excited pace in front of the bulbous window where Charlie and Mark were standing. Mark grinned, "Yeah! That one wants me! Look Charlie the little guy picked you! Man, this is gonna be way cool! Let's get out there and let them teach us!" The two boys raced each other for the tight spiral steps to the conning tower.

"You HALT right there sailors!" Curt barked. "We really should surface before we open the hatch shouldn't we?" He asked sarcastically. The two boys got out of his way by pasting their backs to the airlock hatch on the mid-level deck. The crewmen followed their captain.

All three sported erections that bounced as they climbed, Mark reached out a hand to the last while holding his own up suggestively. He was rewarded with a grinning nod as the crewman caught his wrist and held his hand tighter to his body momentarily while he climbed. "Damn, I wonder why we never got studs like these as customers? All we ever got was them old fuck faces who can't get their jollies without hurtin'."

Charlie agreed, "Yeah but young guys couldn't afford us. If they weren't sellin' themselves they were getting freebies on the street from each other, so why save up to pay for an hour?"

The four human virgin participants in the watery orgy to be were greeted by a display of dolphin agility and strength as they piled out on the deck. The four dolphin tail walked, leaped straight up to dive straight down, did splashing belly flops and chattered loudly whenever their heads were above water, all in tight formation and all as close to the Doog's side as they could get.

Tommy used his hands to turn Charlie's head and eyes to his lips. "I'll go first, you guys watch me." He had a thought, "Ask if we have swim goggles."

"Fuck swim goggles, what are we going to breathe?" Charlie answered as Curt appeared with the needed goggles.

Dieter explained breathing; "They need air too and they know we need to breathe more often than they do, your partner will take care of you. Just hold on tight and when your head hits air, suck in a lungful. Doug thinks they time it by our exhales. After you get in the water and they get done playing with you, maybe that's foreplay to them, just relax and float on your back. They'll do the rest, except they need help in mounting."

While Dieter lectured, Tommy dropped the chain that joined the fixed railings where the boarding ramp was attached when the Doog was docked and took a giant step out into the crystal clear lagoon. Comet glided up from below and offered his dorsal fin as a handhold. Tommy was overjoyed at the first contact and boldly hugged the slick cool dolphin body. Comet shivered in delight and sent a picture of Tommy with his arm over his back and his dorsal snuggled tight in Tommy's armpit. Tommy nodded, held out his arm and as soon as he felt Comet's dorsal touch him, Comet flipped his tail flukes and they were gone. Comet skimmed the bottom before he headed up again at speed with Tommy's body and his erection pressed against his side and his legs trailing back. When they broached, Tommy was screaming for joy mentally. Comet sent him a mental giggle and seemed to say, "Little swimmer, you ain't seen nothing yet!" The boy and dolphin idled in a tight circle waiting impatiently while Dieter and the boys jumped in and joined with their chosen finny friend.

When Dieter tried to imitate Tommy's hold on Comet, Rocket shook him off. Then, he attempted to simply use Rocket's dorsal like Charlie and Mark were doing, Rocket sank under his hand leaving Dieter to tread water and turn his body to follow Rocket's progress as he circled four or five feet below the surface. It suddenly dawned on Dieter that Rocket was trying to get behind him and maybe get him in the same position he used to propel Doug through the water. Rocket was sending images of exactly that. Tommy received them, but Dieter didn't yet realize he was too. He stopped turning and waited with his legs spread slightly. He discovered he was right when Rocket goosed him with his nose and he felt the smooth head snuggle his crotch. His hard cock and flattened nut sack became a miniature rider with saddlebags on the harder dolphin saddle-like nose. Dieter's heels locked under Rocket's pectorals as the leader of the dolphin pod started forward slowly at first while Dieter experimented with the position of his arms and hands. He finally allowed them to glide in the current at his sides. Rocket, true to his name, broke the circle and headed for the pinchers.

Rocket gradually increased his speed as he felt his human riders' confidence rise and Dieter began using his body to compliment Rocket's fluid movements. Each time they broached, Rocket took them higher or they were airborne longer. Dieter shouted and laughed whenever his head was above water long enough. His body throbbed with pleasure; the current created as they surged through the water constantly massaged his cock.

Rocket turned them sharply just before they reached the pinchers cut to the reef outside and headed back to the sub. Dieter wasn't surprised to find the other three couples had been following when he and Rocket passed them still charging the pinchers, or that Tommy looked to be completely at ease as he too rode Comet's nose and even had time to wave and grin at the apex of a leap. Dieter felt his body tense as they neared the Doog. His whole being was centered on the extraordinary sensations emanating from his cock. He tightened his leg muscles communicating unconsciously with his ride. Rocket suddenly started moving straight forward just under the surface so Dieter could hold his head above water. They moved fast enough to create a wake as they approached the Doog. Suddenly Dieter was exploding, ejaculating as he rarely did so hard and fast. Rocket rolled unexpectedly and twisted free. He returned just as quickly, gliding back to between Dieter's legs, but facing him, to place his snout on Dieter's cock and chatter excitedly. Dieter rubbed Rocket's head and nose while he watched the cum leave his body as if they were tendrils of smoke to be dissipated in the liquid atmosphere.

Rocket pushed Dieter under with slow forward movement. His hands traveled over the big dolphin until he embraced the hard slick body. He raised his legs and locked his ankles to gain leverage in arching his body. The time had come; it was Rocket's turn. The image of Doug clinging to Rocket as he was doing entered his mind. Doug reached between them, aiding, using one hand to help. Dieter helped, then used his legs to impale himself. Doug faded to be replaced with his own taller heavier dusky body. "SWIMMER BREED!" Rocket shouted in his mind while they began slow tail jerky circles. Dieter was as enthralled with interspecies copulation, willing and enthusiastic by both parties, he amended, as he was to discover that they were empathetic, at least while in harmonious close contact. The water around them seemed to hum with sex. Dieter knew when the three boys were similarly mated to their dolphin partners as first Tommy's and then images of the other two couples entered his mind.

Dieter lost track of how many times he felt Rocket shiver. The intervals between orgasms lengthened. Gradually, the images Rocket sent changed. He saw Doug once again with Buck, Evan and Billie. There was a tangle of arms and legs. Curt was involved too along with his handsome crew. They were all on a bed, no a bunk in the sub. Dieter's view was from outside the sub looking in. Suddenly he felt sand on his back and much of Rocket's weight pressed his body. His head and shoulders and half of the big dolphin's body were out of the water. He looked around to discover Tommy and Comet on one side and Mark on the other with Charlie and their dolphin lovers, all similarly beached in a tiny cove beyond sight of the cottages. The dolphin backed away into deeper water with chatters of delight, pleasure or perhaps thanks.

Dieter was the first to get to his feet. He helped Tommy stand first then Charlie and Mark. They looked out to the water; the four dolphins were fifty feet out, swimming aimlessly and eyeing them whenever they broached to breathe or holding themselves above the surface so their blowholes were exposed. Dieter giggled and massaged his butt, "I don't know about you guys, but I know I've been had. I think they brought us here so we could make it with each other on the beach."

Tommy looked at Charlie, his lips moved rapidly, Charlie giggled and answered, "Tommy says they want to orgy. We do our thing while they watch. They don't like watching from outside the big fish, I guess they mean the sub huh? We can join them anytime by just wading out. WOW what a trip!"

Dieter looked down, he and the boys were hard again, or still, his had reached the point of pain in his need of relief. He pulled Tommy down into the area where the water lapped the sand and covered him with his body. They kissed with mutual urgent passion and weren't distracted when Mark actually tackled Charlie then dragged him to near them close enough to touch. Both smaller boys heads lay on wet sand. Mark lifted Charlie's legs and knelt between them. His voice was hoarse, "Little Charlie boy, I'm goin' to suck you off first, then I'm goin' to eat you out, every fuckin' drop of fish cum is mine just like I promised. Then I'm goin' to fuck you like you ain't been fucked ever. How's that sound?"

Charlie pulled Mark's head down roughly, "I'll let you know when I'm satisfied, and then I'm working you over the same. Only then I'm going to drag your sorry ass out there for a refill," he pointed vaguely out to where the dolphin males idled, "then start all over again."

Dieter lifted his head enough to whisper, "Sounds like a plan to me." Tommy nodded and pushed him back and down his small body by pressing Dieter's shoulders.

Mark and Dieter had reached the point in the plan when they were both mounted. Dieter tried to be careful and go slow conscious of not hurting Tommy at first, until Tommy began pounding his back using his fists and heels while he frowned. Tommy touched Charlie and said something. Charlie croaked out Tommy's words. "Really fuck me, I won't break." Tommy nodded up at Dieter. Dieter grinned and redoubled his thrusts in speed and depth.

Their heads went into shadow suddenly, everyone looked up. Curt and his crew grinned down on them, three erections bobbed in greeting. "Can we join you? I'll have a mutiny on my hands if you say no." When he was ignored, he grinned and nodded. All three started wading out to the waiting dolphin. "We're going to see if they'll accept us. We're really tired of watching. Later!" He added over his shoulder.

The marathon ended in mid-afternoon when the four dolphins tail walked out to deeper water before they headed toward the pinchers. The guys were satiated as well and were stretched out on the sand shaded by palm trees. Tommy rubbed his stomach to explain. Curt nodded and went into a dramatic pantomime at his crew. "Food?" One asked. Both took off running, "We get from sub, no worry!" He added over his shoulder.

Curt frowned at their retreating backs, "I keep forgetting how fast they're learning English, particularly anything to do with food or fucking," he giggled. "Is that where our friends went?" He asked Tommy.

Tommy and Dieter both nodded, Dieter answered, "Yup, the rest of the pod are harassing a school of fish just outside and they asked for help. Food and fucking are two of their priorities too."

Curt blinked in surprise, "Can you talk to them now?"

Dieter nodded, "I get images, pictures. I saw them surrounding a huge school of bait fish, bunching them up tighter together before they start feeding but the fish keep leaking away because there aren't enough dolphin to keep them corralled." Tommy nodded his agreement, patted his cock and yawned. Dieter grinned, "Yeah, that too, they were simply fucked out for the day and I might add so am I," he sighed in pleasure.

Their laughter was interrupted by the sound of a helicopter coming in fast over the pinchers. Everyone ran into the shallows to watch it. Dieter told the others that it was a charter and no one was expected. He started to turn back to the beach when the chopper changed course, lost altitude and headed straight for them. It stopped to hover fifty feet out over the water. A side window opened and Billie's head and one arm waving frantically filled it. He used a microphone and his voice boomed over the helicopter sounds. "HONEY, I'M HOME! STAY THERE! I'M ON MY WAY! THAT"S THE PERFECT PLACE! THAT'S WHERE WE'LL BUILD IT!" Billie's feminine giggle was muted by distance when the chopper headed for the landing pad.

"Build what I wonder?" Dieter asked himself out loud before he grinned at Tommy, picked him up and hugged him. "Whatever. Get ready to meet your new mommy and/or your other father!" He laughed while Tommy attempted to kiss him like few sons kiss their fathers.

Bucky's cell phone chimed, he took one hand from the bucket control to fish it from his pocket. He grinned without taking his eyes from the grade stake he was guiding the giant loader by so closely it disappeared from view. "Hold on to this after you tell her that we know its dinner time, but we're in conference here doing important work," he mumbled to Bill who had his butt balanced on one of the operator's arm rests. "For the third time. When Becky gets a bug up her butt she's impossible." He added with an absent-minded grumble.

Bill giggled, "She heard that," he told Bucky without covering the phone, then laughed harder. "OOPS! No nooky for you tonight pal unless the door hits OUR asses inside of ten minutes."

Bucky laughed and shouted, "YOU'RE A TOUGH NEGOIATOR DARLING! OKAY! WE'RE ON OUR WAY!" He lowered his voice, "Am I pussy whipped or what?"

Bill disconnected and studied Bucky's little phone. "Wow, sensitive instrument, she heard that too, she agrees and loves you anyway."

"Can we maybe continue this tomorrow?" Bucky asked looking up at Bill again little boy hopeful.

Bill was looking out the front window. His expression changed, "STOP!" He shouted. Bucky stomped the brake before he looked forward and down. A black man stood in front of the bucket so closely all they could see were his head and shoulders. He was grinning up at them. Bucky shut the machine down with a nervous hand. The man scooted to the boarding ladder and climbed as Bill opened the door.

"Now Boss, what hell you doin' with my machine? You scared me almos' white when I found it missin'. I was ready to call the law befo' I heard it workin' on dis roadway. What yo doin' trainin' dis little white man all dressed up fit to kill an' bury wid out changin' clothes?" The man was smiling to negate his sarcastic scolding.

Bill chuckled sheepishly, "Hi Alvin! Alvin this is Bucky. We were just playing around, Bucky always wanted to operate one of these and you forgot to hide it, so,"

"So you jus' up an took it?" Alvin finished Bill's sentence. He giggled, "I would'a hid it better, but you ain't been around." He scanned the cabin interior then looked back and forward at what Bucky and Bill had accomplished on the new driveway to the pool. "No harm done," he grinned at Bucky, "exceptin' you doin' too gooda job an' way too fas'. You goin' to up an' spoil de workin' conditions fo' all us po' operators sho enough yo are!"

Bucky giggled at the left-handed compliments about his speed and workmanship. He started to stand up. "We're done, we have to get to dinner or suffer consequences." He offered his hand to Alvin, "Thanks. Do you really think what I did is all right?"

Alvin pushed Bucky back in the seat, "Yup it sure is fine, but you be all dirt if yo walks from here. Drive us back to de poo, den I takes over. I jus' hold on right here." When Bucky drove them into the soon to be complex parking lot, they found the Hummer and the boys gone.

Bill frowned, "They left us. Call them anything but late for dinner." Bucky agreed.

"Dat be all right Bucky, yo jus' drive to wherever yo car be parked." Bill and Bucky grinned at each other when they realized that Alvin was clueless about who Bucky was.

"Well okay," Bucky shrugged, "I guess I get to drive another half mile then."

Alvin looked askance at Bucky, "Yo' ain't tellin' me yo parked up to de big house? Them folks be upset an' kick yo little white ass fo' yo' if they fin' out. Yo some lucky they ain't home."

Bucky grinned, "Yeah, I'll drive down here tomorrow." He again looked hopefully at Bill.

"Do you mind if Alvin comes in to continue the training? He's the expert and I've got a world of things to do tomorrow. It is his machine after all."

"Sho, I train yo, dat grade be so fine when we finish, da boss here give you a machine for your own self," Alvin volunteered. "Plus I gets a double sift an' all dat nice overtime." While he was talking he started to notice where Bucky was driving them. First back along the yet to be graded crude track between the pool and the closest paved estate road, then along that road to the front of the house and straight to the roofed portico and the front door, almost. Alvin ducked when the tractor cabin roof collided with the portico's lower roofline. Falling brick, concrete and roof slate rained on the front of the big machine.

Bucky winced, shut the machine down, and hunched his shoulders, "OOPS! I guess we're close enough to walk from here."

The whole house evacuated through the front doors. Buck and Evan were the first. Buck took one look and fell to his knees laughing and pointing at his father's diminutive form sitting behind the wheel attempting to look puzzled and innocent at the same time before he started laughing with Buck, then Bill. Alvin's eyes were like saucers. He first looked to make sure Bucky and Bill weren't injured before he dropped to the driveway to inspect the cabin roof and the front of the machine for damage, until he saw a dozen young men quickly putting their weapons out of sight. One, the man working in the second floor control room hid a machine pistol behind his back. The newest bodyguards hid their smiles with their hands; the others with family and friends didn't try.

Bucky climbed down after Bill, straightened his tie, frowned at Buck and scooted to Becky to kiss her cheek, "What's for dinner darling? Sorry we're late." He tossed a thumb over his shoulder at the hulking silent machine, "I think I just bought you a present, but since its late, you'll just have to wait until tomorrow to drive it. He motioned to Alvin to join them, introduced him to Becky, then to Buck after hauling him to his feet using the back of his shirt. "As you can see Alvin, the family is home. Say since you're here, how about joining us for dinner?" Alvin started to shake his head and back away until Bucky caught him by the shoulders and steered him toward the door. "What time do we start tomorrow?"

Becky shook her finger at Bill after Buck and Alvin disappeared inside. "You created a monster you know," she laughed. "I guess you should just add THAT to the bill for the pool, or better yet perhaps get it fixed and bring him a new one tomorrow. Do they come in any colors other than that horrid yellow?"

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