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 Category:  Mystery and Crime Fiction
  Posted: May 8, 2014      Views: 536
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Chapter 24 of the book The Bard of Bel Air
Plans are discussed while reunions take place.
"The Gang's All Here" by michaelcahill

Winston is the focus as the rogue war hero turned traitor. What role does a mentally ill homeless man assume. He seems to have more on the ball than most imagine.

Previously, tension at the mansion as words are exchanged between Diamond and Junior. Junior finally decides to call the cops forcing Lucy's hand. Lucy scoops the girls up and leaves. Lucy and the two Dancer girls are on thier way to meet Harpster and discuss the next steps along with Q and the Bard. We continue now as people reunite prior to urgent discussions getting under way.

Diamond gazed at Harpster and managed an almost pleasant smile. Harpster's heart sang an incredible melody. Everyone in the room could hear every single beautiful note.

Diamond did not turn a deaf ear either. Her eyes grew with surprise and her head tilted to the right. Her heart prepared itself suddenly for the unexpected. Her soul flew free unencumbered by silly human shufflings. Souls do not shuffle; they only know how to dance.
With her right arm, Ruby Dancer moved her mother slightly to the side and stepped forward. With a voice that betrayed her confident smile she hoarsely said, "Hello, Father."
Q following his instinct grabbed Harpster's arm to support him. Harpster took in the sight of his daughter as time and all other physical laws ceased to exist. She had eyes that saw inside of him through any weak barrier he attempted to construct. The scrutiny weakened his knees even as the lack of judgment strengthened his hope. Her beauty astonished all that beheld it for it only began on the outside. It could be followed inside easily and once enclosed, there was no end to find.
Harpster could not stop a single tear. He could not even lift his free arm to shield his face. It hung by his side unmoving. His silent plea for her to come forward to him crossed easily across the room and she approached. She moved as though the earth and she were of the same material. They embraced, father and daughter for the very first time.
Most men with children when asked for the happiest moment in their life will say, "the moment I saw my child for the very first time". Johnathon Blackwell Senior, "Harpster", to most that knew him, would tell you that very same thing.
The Bard strolled up to a teary-eyed Diamond Dancer. "They call me, the Bard. I live in a fabulous world of my own making".
"Diamond". She smiled a genuine soft smile. "Don't we all; don't we all."
The Bard waved his arm in a flourish and bowed deeply to father and daughter. He recited a poem:

"to seek the meaning
                                cease the seeking
                                                the endless speaking
                                                                pontificating self-revealing
                                                in depth feeling
                                send the world reeling
my old face is pealing
                                now you see
                this skull has many caves with exits
                                                                I can easily flee
                                at my whim
the inside must meet you outside
                soul's naked swim"

Lucy was next through the door and she went straight to the Bard. "I'd appreciate it if you'd take better care of my friend. He's a poet you know. Yep. I hear he can fly helicopters too, but I think that's just a legend." She gave him a big bear hug.
The Bard actually turned red. "Yeah. The whole helicopter thing. Poof. I flew out with Harpster, here, on my back. Well, Krypton is just a memory. I just want your word that you can handle Lois. Well, maybe Clark can make a move there. Wait, no… too bi-polar… hold on now… the phone booth, Tonto, no doors… I'll be mobbed… "
Lucy smile and shook her head. "Well, we honestly don't have much time for reunions as lovely as they are. We have to make a plan and we have to do it quick. No offence, Harpster, but you've got some rotten kids and at least one of them is a psychotic killer."
Harpster clearly had interest in only one of his kids at the moment, but he realized the urgency of the situation. Ruby, though she didn't know the details, also had a sense of the urgency permeating the atmosphere in Tenaya's now small feeling apartment. Harpster spoke, "Well, this is our team. What's our plan? When it comes to resources, we have them. I have connections and funds even Q doesn't know about. I know people. It comes from being obscenely rich."
Tenaya stood up. "Here's the situation as I see it. We have Winston Blackwell, a trained weapon of destruction who's gone rogue. He seemingly has no conscience and is motivated strictly by money. He has funds, Brewster's, and he has manpower and equipment. We don't know the extent of it at this point. We know that they are missing one helicopter. He has military secrets that have enough value to make Brewster's estate seem insignificant to him. We don't know what the secrets are. The money involved has to be billions for this to make any sense."
Lucy stood up and took over. "He's a loose cannon. He has killed one person that we know of and he appears more than ready to add to that total. Remember, as far as Winston knows, he blew his own father up. I could see in his eyes that he would have been delighted to kill Lincoln and I don't know that by now he hasn't. I think he wants to recruit me. He likes that I appear to be a psycho gun-toting bitch that wouldn't mind using his eyeballs as something to decorate my martini. Of course, we know that I don't just appear to be that."
Everyone laughed at that including Q who had just met her. She continued, "We need to know everything about what Winston has got going on. I don't see where I have any choice but to go under cover if I get the chance. Yes, it's dangerous. Anyone have a better idea?"
Diamond stepped forward. "I'm not really a part of the family or involved at all, I guess. My daughter is though. I'm here to protect here whether she thinks she needs it or not. I want to know why the hell we are sitting in this room whispering about these crazy schemes. Why don't we call the L.A. whatever newspaper you have here, and the T.V. stations and blow the whistle on this situation. Hells bells people, we can prove that Harpster ain't dead. For Christ's sake, he's sittin' right there! Well, I did promise Ruby"
Q spoke to that. "I like that phrase, blow the whistle. Keep that image in mind. Think… start of a race. Whistle blows… race begins. Winston jumps in his tank and starts blowing things up. Maybe he drops anthrax out of a helicopter. Maybe he nukes LAX. Hell, who knows. And, that's the point. We don't know. We call a press conference… Tap, tap, tap… is this on? Yeah, okay. Winston Blackwell is a murderer and a traitor. Oh no! Winston is in a world of hurt now. His world just went down the toilet. Maybe he will come waltzing in and say, "Hey, sorry boys, looks like ya got me. By the way, which way to my execution?" Or, just maybe he uses the millions of dollars he has and leaves to hide out with one of his buddies in China or Pakistan. Or, maybe he's just pissed and wants payback. While we're patting ourselves on the back, he's putting bullets in anything that moves."
The Bard hopped up. Then he hopped around a little. "I'd make an excellent Bugs Bunny. What seems to be ascending, Physician? Is that too formal? By the time Geraldo finds the empty vault the Winston Tire man has burned rubber all over the state. We need to know the enemies strength and more importantly, what his plans are. Who are his contacts and what is he offering them. It's going to be a damn shame if his clients lose confidence. Holy backing out of the deal, Batman. Yes, Robin the Chinese can't trust the forked tongue anymore. When he runs it's too late, surrounded. Lookin for love on a two way street. Too dangerous for I Love Lucy. Ricky Ricardo at your service. This is right up my alley. Not under cover, under sheet, like Caspar…a ghost… now you don't see him… now you don't."
"I'm safe, Bard. I've been doing undercover professionally for years. How the hell are you supposed to eat and communicate running around the forest or wherever they are?" Lucy didn't want to come right out and say the Bard might be too nuts to trust on his own. That did run through her mind though.
"Lucy, I understand you concerns. But, there is no one better for the job. You slip up, you're dead. There is no grey area. He's my son. I can't see you taking that risk." Harpster seemed ashamed and responsible for Winston.
Ruby hadn't said a great deal. She never did. She listened. When she spoke it came with a lot of thought behind it. "Winston is an opportunist. We need a scenario that creates an opportunity for him. Junior is alive because of his control of and knowledge of Dad's money, right?"
Harpster loved hearing her call him "Dad". "Yes, that is true. He kept me and the Bard here alive, because of what he thought we might know. We can all see that the second anyone's usefulness is gone, so are they. What's your point?"
"My point is that any of us could join forces with Winston if the scenario suited him. He liked Lucy and the way she stood up to him, I could see that. She could easily come up with some secrets about Dad's money that she found out that even Junior doesn't know about that he'd be more than interested in. Why? Cause she's sick of working for assholes like Junior. She wants some real money. See? Scenarios. He'd be tripping over his own greed to have her on board. Not that dangerous. She's a pro. I could go with her as a translator. Fluent in Mandarin. Scenarios."
The discussion continued well into the night.
At the Blackwell mansion, most of the people had retired for the evening. Winston bid his brother goodbye and exited through the front door. A couple minutes later, Lincoln left as well and headed towards his car. Winston had other plans for him.

The book continues with Lincoln Surprises & Plans Are Made. We will provide a link to it when you review this below.

Author Notes
Would you like more information on the reunions? I'm trying to concentrate on the action. There has to be some background as to the planning and the whys and wherefores and that takes some time. So too would more details about the various reltionships between Harpster and Diamond, Harpster and his daughter Ruby, and even Lucy and the Bard which seems to have a few sparks developing. I plan to sprinkle more about relationships as the story moves along. I'm just not sure how much of that to include.


Johnathon Blackwell Senior-Harpster, presumed deceased former owner of a music conglomerate.

Johnathon Blackwell Junior- Senior's son and heir apparent to the family fortune.

Lilith Blackwell- Widow of Blackwell Senior and claimant to the estate.

The Bard-Stewart Slater, homeless, writer, musician, mentally ill. witness to the death of Harpster amongst other things.

Detective Tenaya Adrian- lead is there is a murder to investigate.

Detective Lucy Smaldino, Tenaya's partner

Lincoln- The Blackwell family butler.

Ruby Dancer- singer and Daughter of Harpster though she doesn't know anything about it.

Diamond Dancer- mother of Ruby and former mistress of Harpster. Refuses to tell Ruby anything about her father.

Dr. Khin- The Blackwell personal family physcian

"Q & A"-- Q Aubrey Langstan--"Q" The Blackwell family attorney.

Daniel- Blackwell Senior's Deaf brother.

Esmeralda "Emma" Blackwell- Blackwell Seniors Mother

Winston- Blackwell Senior's son. War hero turned mercenary. Kidnapped father and the Bard.

Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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