I asked as Lee and I walked toward the waiting Seaview, Lee’s duffle hoisted
over his shoulder.
I know you mean well, but,” he paused, then smirked, “I’d really rather you
paint Seaview red than change the name of the institute.”
a minor change,” I pouted. “And you know that there’s no way in hell that I’ll
allow Seaview to become a scarlet lady.”
know,” he said with a grin, “do what you want, Harry, but you
know, the Nelson-'Crane' Institute of Marine Research just might inflate my ego.
Big enough as it is, don’t you think?”
both laughed as Kowalski gave us each a snappy salute and took Lee’s duffle
a good cruise,” I said, embracing Lee in farewell, protocol be damned.
this time, we won’t be chasing Moby Dick.”
can still be unpredictable….”
Harry, I know. We’ll keep a safe distance.”
better,” I laughed and slapped him on the shoulder.
to come aboard?” he called up to
the officer of the deck, who happened to be Sparks this morning.
care, Harry,” Lee said, then climbed up the gangplank, saluted the colors and
turned to give me one last wave before going below.
would have liked to go along on this
cruise. But frankly needed a
rest after having
been on the nerve wracking sideline during Lee’s recent vacation. I still had
the unenviable task of soothing all the ruffled feathers of NIMR (oops, NCIMR) clients
whose projects had been delayed. It was time to get the business side of things
watched as the boat slipped her moorings and headed out to the channel, Lee and
Chip in the conning tower, waving to me before they ducked below and dove the boat.
Onward to a new and probably boring adventure.
sort of, maybe. You never knew, down deep below.
hard not to be a little uneasy, and not about the mission. Lee was still
gaunt, though most of his bruises had faded. His hair had finally grown back
and the patchwork of shaved skin and stitches on his scalp was only a memory. Still, those recent events were hard to shake
even though Lee was looking almost normal
what Lee’s friend Joe had said after all of the accolades of Lee’s recent
heroism, no one had forgotten Lee’s exploits, and he was almost regarded
as if he could walk on water. (Okay, so
I’m exaggerating, but we were still getting a lot of requests for TV shows,
magazine, and newspaper interviews.) So much so, that Lee had opted to bunk
with me until his apartment complex was no longer a hang-out for the interested
press and public.
my small apartment above my office was just fine, he’d told me, (my larger
bungalow was being repaired for a burst water line).We’d spent some
companionable time together but he also spent some nights aboard Seaview, just
soaking up the feel of her at rest, alone, and undisturbed.
Angie interrupted my musings as I entered my outer office, “there’s something
you need to see. Right away,” she said as turned on CNN.
only right,” a young man was saying to reporters in front of a well- known lawyer’s
office, “that the world knows that Harriman Nelson is not the pillar of morality
that everyone thinks he is.”
you have proof of your accusation that
the admiral is your father, Mr. Hawthorne?” one of the reporters asked.
pharmacy’s paternity DNA kits confirmed it against the Boston Historical
Society’s DNA pool that included the admiral and his sister. If he can claim that pond scum Lee Crane as his son, he
sure as hell can claim me. My mother finally admitted to me that Nelson knocked
her up, and I had the DNA test done. Damn it, I want justice for my mother and
she knew you were his son all this time, why wait until now to tell you? Why
not seek him out when she knew she was pregnant?”
had her reasons, I guess. I’m the true Nelson! Crane doesn’t have a drop of Nelson
blood. He’s not even Irish, and his DNA has some anomalies that indicate he
could very well be the product of incest! Would you really want a man like that,
a paper Nelson, to co-own the institute now, looking forward to when all of it is
bequeathed to him? I’m Nelson’s true son. I’m entitled to a share of the assets
at least, if not an equal share or more than that mongrel Crane.”
Ronald,” a woman neared to stand beside him, “I only agreed to let the world
know that you’re Harry’s son for truth’s sake. Let’s not belittle Captain
Nelson-Crane. He’s an international hero, after all. And the admiral can ‘adopt’
anyone he likes. Though it is a bit unusual at their ages.”
with that they got into the waiting taxi and drove off.
it off,” I said. “I think we can expect some phone calls…no comment for now.”
I swear I don’t recognize that woman. Still…do a background check on the both
think it could be a scam?”
not sure,” I sighed. “I did sow a few wild oats in my day. I regret that it's feasible."
now, I’m waiting for my call to Seaview to go through. I’m just not sure how to
tell Lee he might have a brother. A very jealous brother.
phones are ringing off the hook. At least Angie can put the main phone lines on
voice mail. But I do have to take the call from Jiggs.