Castle Roland

Three Finger Cove - Robert
Book II

by Chowhound


Chapter 52

Published: 28 Apr 16

Three Finger Cove – Robert

Copyright © 2012 - 2015
by Chowhound
All rights reserved

It must have been about thirty minutes, after the boys began to swim, when Mr. Ken decided to go check on them. He hadn't yet installed the Bell device he told Miss Mary he would, but he decided, they were all guys, and, if they were skinny-dipping, he wasn't going to say anything.

Mr. Ken stepped out onto the pool deck and began to watch the boys frolic to and fro, jumping in and out, and having a great deal of fun. Catching some movement out of the corner of his eye, he saw one boy, sitting on the bench, on the side, of the pool. He wondered what that was all about so he walked over to the boy, and saw it was Terran. The man decided sit down and talk to the boy.

"Terran, why is it that you're not swimming?" asked Mr. Ken.

With tears still streaming down his face, Terran looked up to Mr. Ken and said, "They said that I couldn't swim. They said I needed to do some stupid swim test before I can go into the pool. I told him that Trevor could tell them how good a swimmer I am, and that's all they should need to know."

Mr. Ken smiled inwardly knowing that Robert did what he asked him to do when any new friend wanted to swim, in the pool. He was glad that Robert stuck to his guns and made the boy sit out and not swim because he wouldn't do the swim test.

"Terran, didn't Robert explained to you the reason for the swim test? Did he NOT tell you that I require any new person, who wants to swim in my pool, that they have to swim from one side to the other so we can make sure that they are a safe swimmer?" directly asked Mr. Ken.

Terran sat there a moment, thinking, and then replied to Mr. Ken, "Well … he may have said something like that, but still, I can swim really good and I should be able to swim with the rest of the boys," angrily replied Terran.

Mr. Ken was taken aback by the boys attitude, and then realized why Trevor felt the way he did about his younger brother. The man knew he needed to do something, to allow the boy to swim, but he could not go against his principles, and his rule, that every new person, must, take the swim test.

"So, Terran, tell me, if I ask you to get into the pool, right here, and swim across to the other side, can you do that for me?" offered Mr. Ken.

Terran looked up to Mr. Ken and said, "Sure, I can do that for you."

"Okay, Terran, let me take you up on that. I want you to get in the pool, right here, on this side, and I want you to swim all the way across, to the other side. You ready to do that for me?" challenged Mr. Ken.

Terran smiled, at the man, and quickly went to the side of pool, and jumped in. Then, looking up to the man he said, "Watch this!" Terran was able to swim across to the other side of the pool, without much difficulty. Mr. Ken saw he wasn't the strongest swimmer, he had ever seen, of an almost 11-year-old, but he saw the boy could hold his own as he swam across the 25 meter wide pool.

By that time, the rest of the boys had stopped, what they were doing, and watched Mr. Ken sitting and talking with Terran. They all wondered what was being said, but when they saw Terran get up and jump in the water, they figured Mr. Ken was getting him to take the swim test.

When Terran finished swimming, across the pool, he got out and ran back to Mr. Ken and asked him how he did. Mr. Ken applauded him for how well he swam, but then he decided to teach the boy a lesson.

"Terran, I want you to hear what I have to say … and I want you to listen and listen real good. Robert did exactly what I told him to do. I told him that any new person, are you listening, that any new person who has not swam in my pool needed to take my swim test. When you refused to take my swim test, Robert did the right thing, and made you sit on the side of the pool.

"Terran … what you did … was wrong! You cannot question authority no matter who it is and how old they may be. A person in authority is just that! Terran, you need to learn that you cannot have things your way … all the time.

"So, young man, I believe you do owe Robert an apology for questioning his authority and balking at his attempt to enforce my pool rules and my requirement of a swim test for every new swimmer. So, what would you like to do now, young man?" asked Mr. Ken.

Terran just stood there, with new tears streaking down his eyes. He knew from the way Mr. Ken just talked to him, that he was wrong. He knew that he wasn't fighting his older brother, just then, but was actually going against the person who invited him to spend time, there, at the Cove.

"Mr. Ken … I'm very sorry. I know what I did was wrong. And yes, I agree, I do owe Robert an apology, for the way I acted. I hope you will forgive me, for the way I acted today, and I promise to never act this way again. And, I hope that I will be invited back to swim again," a somber Terran replied, to Mr. Ken.

By that time, all seven boys had come over to where Mr. Ken and Terran were talking. So, when Terran decided to apologize to Robert all he had to do was turn and the preteen would be right there. Terran understood he had acted up, in front of all of them, and that he should apologize in front of all of them.

Terran, gathered his thoughts, then said to Robert, "Robert, I am very sorry for the way I acted, earlier. I am sorry I questioned your authority and I apologize for not taking the swim test. I was wrong. I hope you will forgive me for my actions and that I will be allowed to come back to swim again."

The boys remained quiet while waiting to hear what Robert had to say. But one boy, Trevor, couldn't believe what he just heard his younger brother, Terran, say. That was the first time, he could ever remember, Terran did not fight, tooth and nail, about something, or anything, he was being called on for.

Robert knew he needed to reply to Terran's apology, so he gathered his thoughts and said, "Terran, we will always have someone bigger, older, or in authority over us, and we all need to do whatever is necessary to ensure that we don't upset the applecart. I accept your apology and I hope that, in the future, you will think about what someone is trying to do before you begin to argue, with them. Come on …we're all wasting valuable swim time."

As seven lads all dove or jumped into the pool, Robert hung back to talk with Mr. Ken. The lad thanked his dad for handling the situation and getting Terran to take the swim test. Mr. Ken, on the other hand, applauded his son for sticking to his guns and not letting the boy swim without taking the required swim test. The two quickly shared a hug and then Robert dove into the water to join his friends.

Seven o'clock AM comes awfully early to a kid who knows it is a Saturday, and he can ‘sleep in', but is awakened out of his slumber and told to "Wake Up!" Especially, when he forgets he volunteered to do something ‘special' that day. That's the way all eight lads felt when Mr. Ken came barging into the Theater to get the lads, moving.

Robert told the guys to not worry about their sleeping bags, for now, but to grab their gear and follow him to the bathroom. As the older guys began to get up, their morning ‘glories' were very evident. A few of them forgot that Terran and Sam were there and they straightened out their ‘boy toys' before putting their pants on.

Over in the corner, Terran and Sam got an eye full of the older boys' boners, as those two youngsters called them. The two rascals smiled, at what they saw, and unconsciously straightened out their own flag poles.

A few of the older lads stopped at the half-bath, just off the Theater, to drain their lizard, and let their morning wood go down, but the majority went to the boys' bathroom on the second floor. Terran and Sam had never seen a urinal in a bathroom, before, and when the older boys stripped to their underwear and began to use the device they stood there open mouthed.

There were four sinks and four shower heads for eight lads, so Brad, Trevor, Chuck and Gordon all choose to get their showers first and then brush their teeth, later. Robert, Brad, Terran and Sam went to the sinks and began to brush their teeth and would switch places when the time was right.

The two younger lads were still not sure if they had made the right decision to spend the night. They talked during the night, about their experience in the dressing room, but weren't sure they could get naked and take a shower with the older guys. They kept looking at one another for the other one to make a move.

Robert, but especially Eric, knew what the two younger boys were thinking. "Do I get naked around the older guys and show my weiner, or do I run away?" That was why they decided to hold back and take their showers with them. They figured that way their older brothers couldn't razz them too much.

When it came time for the lads to switch places, the older lads readily came out naked while drying themselves off. Terran and Sam got another eye full of preteen hanging bits, and this time their own brothers, but were still uncertain if they would get naked, themselves. But, before the younger boys knew what was happening, Eric told them to get their clothes off and get into the showers.

As the two young lads began to undress, Sam looked at Terran who looked back, but neither one wanted to be the ‘chicken' and run away, because everyone would see their ‘boy parts'. It didn't matter, to them, that they had already seen their older brothers ‘junk' a few times because, for right now, they didn't want the older boys, their brothers included, to see how small theirs kid toys were in comparison to the older boy toys.

Their thoughts were interrupted by Eric and Robert directing them into the shower. It was then they realized they had undressed and were now naked. They both immediately placed their hands in front of their ‘equipment' and didn't know what to do next.

Eric broke the ice by saying to the boys, "Look … Terran and Sam, we're all guys here, okay. We each have the same things, a penis and testicles. Sure, we all call them dicks, or peckers or balls or baby makers or a number of other things but, in the end, we all are alike. Go ahead, look at Robert and me … come on, you can look.

"The only thing different about the two of us and the two of you is that ours are a bit bigger and we both have a few pubic hairs over them. That's all. Come on now … drop those hands and show us that you're growing up and can deal with being nude around other males."

When neither Sam nor Terran made any attempt to drop their hands away from their pride and joys, Eric knew he had to say something else to convince the boys they would not be ridiculed or laughed at.

"Guys, we're wasting a lot of time here," began Eric, "and soon Mr. Ken will be up here wanting to know why we are not downstairs eating breakfast. Now … turn around towards the wall, and drop those hands, and begin washing yourself. Right now you're probably so scared that there is no way you're gonna get a boner."

The two younger lads began giggling at Eric's ‘boner' line and they dropped their hands and turned to the wall, at the same time. They both set the water temperature and began washing. Robert had already finished and was glad Eric took the lead with Trevor's and Chuck's brothers.

As the younger boys showered, Sam wanted to know when Eric ever had to get naked in front of a bunch of older boys. It was then Eric told them about the Holiday Swim Party and how the older boys turned around for the younger lads to let them see what older teens looked like naked. Eric then added his infamous ‘same equipment' gaffe and explained how the adults reacted to that.

By the time the two younger lads finished their shower, they both were laughing with Eric and freely showed their ‘equipment'. They didn't even care their older brothers saw them naked since they had seen their older brothers, a few times already, and it was only fair they showed them theirs. Just then Mr. Ken came in to the bathroom and asked what was taking them all so long. He got an unintended eye full of very young boy parts.

The Texas Boater Safety Education, offered by the U.S Coast Guard Auxiliary, was an all-day Course. Mr. Ken knew he could have the boys take the Course on-line but he felt being in a classroom setting was better for a youngster to learn, plus they had a person they could immediately ask questions of.

The course began at 9 AM and didn't end until almost 6 PM. That made for a long day for kids who had already spent five days in a classroom environment that week. The boys learned about Boating Laws; Boat Safety Equipment; Safe Boating; Navigation; Boating problems; Trailering, Storing and Protecting Your Boat; and, Hunting and Fishing, Water-skiing and River Boating.

The two areas the boys did pay special attention to were: Required Safety Equipment for Personal Watercraft (PWC) and Operation of Your Personal Watercraft. Eric had told his friends that The Cove had three wave runners: Mr. Ken's 3-passenger Jet Ski, and both Collin's and Ryan's Yamaha WaveRunner's.

Eric told them how much fun he had on them, the past two summers and, when he turned thirteen that June, he would be able to drive one, without a person eighteen, or older, on the back. That information didn't go unnoticed by the other soon-to-be thirteen years olds, in the group. They all secretly hoped they would get the chance to ‘drive' one of the machines, themselves, that summer.

At school on Monday, all the guys could talk about was the Boating Safety Course they'd taken and passed, that Saturday, and the fun they had swimming again, at The Cove. They told their other friends, since they passed the course, that when they turned thirteen they could legally operate a Personal Water Craft (PWC). Then, Eric told those gathered how many PCW's Mr. Ken had at The Cove.

Unbeknownst to them, Terran and Sam became instant celebrities because they had not only swam in Mr. Ken's indoor swimming pool but they also got to spend the night. Many of their friends were jealous but were also happy for their friends' ‘special treatment'. The girls couldn't hear enough about what the lads did and hungrily listened to anything else they could hear about that ‘special' house on the lake.

When Terran and Sam were able to be alone, with their male friends, they told the guys about their changing in the Men's Dressing Room, before their swim. Then, Sam told their buds about their Saturday morning showers. Many of their same aged friends couldn't believe the two, Terran and Sam, actually got naked and took showers with guys who had ‘hair' about their dicks.

All Terran and Sam did then was smile at the experience and told their buds that it wasn't as bad as it sounded, but they did have a few moments of being ‘scared'. All the young lads knew what it was like to have to show your ‘boy parts', to anyone, and couldn't imagine doing that in front of the bigger boys, and, especially, their brothers. Then, Sam told them what Eric said about ‘boners'. They all had a good laugh about that.

The 7th grade girls ‘clique' kept to themselves, more and more, ever since Joanna's last suspension. They knew if the girl got suspended, one more time, she could be expelled. But that didn't mean they weren't talking about how they could get back at Logan, for one, and maybe Eric and Brad for the way they too treated them.

Monday morning brought good news for Mr. Ken. He received final approval for the Zoning variance, he requested, on that overlook lake property he acquired and now could submit his final plans for the office building and hotel he wanted to build on that property.

On Tuesday, Mr. Ken heard from his construction foreman. The man let him know all the required material's to build the skateboard ramps, the boys wanted, were now on order and should be delivered this Friday. The man reminded Mr. Ken that the men were all looking forward to helping build the ramps, along with the boys and their dads.

The foreman said all the men want to do something, other than the day-to-day grind, and doing the ramps will greatly help all of them to use some of their skills they feel are becoming ‘rusty'. The construction manager then told Mr. Ken that this would be ‘OFF the clock', and not to worry. Mr. Ken then made a note for Momma Maria that she was needed the day the ramps were being built to feed as many as 20 -25 men and boys. He added drinks to the list to include a few cases of beer.

After school, Mr. Ken asked Robert to step into his Study when the lad was finished with his after school snack. Fifteen minutes later Robert came smiling into the Study.

"You wanted to talk with me ‘dad'?" smiled Robert, as he asked the question.

"Yes, ‘son', I want you to talk to your friends and tell them the materials for the ramps will be delivered this Friday. What I need to know, from them, is how many of their dads can help with the construction. I know this may be considered ‘short notice' but I know how much you boys want those ramps. If we can't get a good number this weekend we can reschedule it to next weekend, if need be. You have any questions for me?" finished up ‘dad' Ken.

"No … I think I know what you are asking. I'll call the guys right now and that will give them time before dinner to talk to their dads. Anything else?" a still smiling Robert asked.

At dinner that night, as Mr. Ken and Robert ate their evening meal, Robert told his dad that all the dads have agreed to show up. He told his ‘dad' that some dads were ready to work and some were ready to help. Then, Robert asked his ‘dad' which group he wanted to be placed in. That comment got Robert a head ruffle and a rib-poke while the man smiled at his joke. He then told his ‘son' he had a surprise for him come construction day.

Robert knew NOT to ask his ‘dad' about any surprises, as he knew, the man wouldn't tell him no matter what. The lad learned, over time, that when ‘dad' said he had something he wanted to surprise him with he would never relent, and tell him early. The boy would just have to wait and see, like everyone else, come Saturday.

School seemed to drag on for Robert and his friends. They could ‘smell' spring's fast approach and they couldn't wait until they could be out on the lake having fun with the WaveRunner's. They sometimes got caught daydreaming in class and when they were, they apologized and asked the question be repeated. They usually knew the answer so their teacher would overlook their inattentiveness.

Friday came, and when the tractor-trailer delivering the ramp materials blew its horn, Mr. Ken was surprised at the amount of material sitting on the flat-bed trailer. Going outside, he greeted the driver who asked him where he wanted the materials. Lucky for Mr. Ken the man had a forklift hanging off the back of the trailer and he easily offloaded the materials and placed them in the garage parking corral. While the driver did that, Mr. Ken called his foreman to let him know the materials were there and tomorrow, Saturday, the ramp build was ON.

Robert couldn't believe the quantity of materials that sat in the parking corral that were destined for the ramp build. He looked all around the pallets and saw lots and lots of pressure treated plywood, boxes of screws, steel pipes, pressure treated 2x4s, 4x4s, 4x8s, 2x6s, angle iron and Masonite sheets. He knew his ‘dad' sure ordered enough materials. Now, he had to wait for his surprise.

The boys, and their dad's, along with Terran and Sam, showed up around 8 AM. Mr. Ken, well actually Momma Maria had a large pot of coffee, ready, two big jugs of OJ, along with a slew of breakfast burritos, just waiting to be eaten. As the men and lads enjoyed their breakfast, they talked about how they would proceed.

The boys pulled out the drawings and blueprints, they downloaded off the internet, for the ramps they hoped to have built. It was then their dads saw the complexity of the ‘build'... Then they got out Mr. Ken's tape rule and began to measure out where the ramps would be located. It was then the dads knew they were in for a very long day.

As the dads began to open up the pallets, and sort out the materials, three constructions trucks came barreling into The Cove and screeched to a halt. Mr. Ken's construction foreman jumped out of the lead truck and went directly to his boss and asked the man, "Okay, where do we start?"

It was then Robert knew what his surprise was and he was glad he waited to find it out. Even the dads and their boys felt relieved when they saw eight men get out of the trucks wearing their tool belts. The men then shouted for the group to help with off-loading the tools and before long the table saws, saw horses, pipe benders and much, much more were setup and ready.

Knowing they were going to be building four ramps, the foreman broke the large group into four teams. Each team had at least two veteran carpenters. The remaining dads and lads were spread out according to the difficulty of the build. No one was given a pass, including Mr. Ken.

The foreman had two teams begin work on the half-pipe since it was the largest build. The other two teams began work on the 4 foot launch ramp and the 4 foot quarter pipe. They left the grind box for last, as it was just an elongated box, wrapped with the steel pipe, placed along the edges.

By twelve noon, Mr. Ken called for a break and he and Maria brought out soup and sandwiches, for everyone. He also provided cool soft drinks for the boys and coffee for the men. He also showed the guys where he placed a couple of cases of cold beer, and offered it to the men.

The foreman nixed the beer, for now, saying it would not only dehydrate them but it would tend to slow them down. He said the very cold beer wasn't going anywhere, and that it will taste great when they finish up, early that afternoon.

During their lunch break, the carpenters talked openly with the lads. They wanted to gauge how well the boys understood the safety the men had stressed, all morning, plus how they liked doing that sort of work. The boys thanked the men for allowing them to help and not only to hammer nails and set screws but also allowing them to use the table saw and power drills, with their supervision. They told the carpenters, what they really appreciated the most, was that they actually felt they were a part of the ‘build' they were all now calling it.

The dads listened to their son's discussion, with the seasoned carpenters, and they began to appreciate what the men were trying to help their lads with. Silently, they all thanked their lucky stars these men appeared, when they did. They knew there was no way they could have gotten all four ramps built that day.

With lunch over, the teams headed back to work. The two teams building the half-pipe ramp were already on the mid-section that joined the two ramp ends. The other two teams were almost finished, themselves, and only had to finish bending the plywood and then attach the Masonite.

Since, there were too many people to safely work on the launch ramp and quarter pipe a few of the men, and boys, started the ‘build' of the grinder box. That project went fast since it was only a rectangle box with the steel pipe embedded on the facing edges. The men allowed the boys to do much of that work.

At three o'clock that afternoon, the foreman went and inspected all the work. He found a few nails or screws that needed to be further coaxed into the wood but overall he was very pleased with all the hard work his men, and the dads and their sons, had performed that day.

It was then that Mr. Ken called for the beer to be broken out. But, the foreman, again, put a nix on that idea. He told the man to look around. He pointed out all the spare unused plywood and stringers and Masonite and suggested they had enough to build at least another ramp. The lads smiled with glee at that thought.

The dads were very tired, from all the manual labor they had done, so far. But, they could see in their boy's smiles and the hope on their faces, for another ramp, so, the dads quickly joined in the discussion on which ramp would be built.

The fun box was chosen for the last ‘build'. It wasn't complicated but it did tend to take up a bit more space, since it was long. They got out the tape measure and located a spot where it could fit, without interference to any of the vehicles now parked in the garage.

This time, instead of all four teams jumping into the ‘build', the carpenters said they ‘had this one'. The lads still wanted to help so they were given the task of handing the needed materials to the men so they could work their magic. It didn't take the carpenters more than an hour before the ramp was complete. It was then the foreman said it was time for a beer.

The lads got out their skateboards and began testing the ramps. They couldn't believe they now had not four but five awesome venues with which to practice their stunts and hone their skills. There were enough items for the lads to use that all eight lads were able to stay out of each other's way.

After some initial testing, Robert realized he had to thank all those men, somehow. He then went up to each of the carpenters, first, thanked them, and then gave them all a big hug. Then, he repeated the same thing with all the dads. The other boys, seeing what Robert was doing, followed his example and did the same for all the men, there.

Mr. Ken then made an announcement. He told the work crew that he would host all the ‘builders' with a catered BBQ, on that Saturday of the Memorial Day Weekend, there at The Cove. He told everyone to bring their swimsuits. He also said the men could bring their significant other and the boys could bring a friend, or a date, if they wished. Everyone had a good laugh at the ‘date' comment.

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