A Timeless Place Ch. 20

Ocak 30, 2022 0 Yazar: admin

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Six months later, Jonathan sat at his Uncle’s desk with Tony seated right beside him who was showing him the various files contained on the hard drive of the computer. He was instructed, step by step, how to navigate each one and continue the orders and pay outs that would keep the business running.

It didn’t go unnoticed that many of the files had been removed, leaving only half of what had been there the last time Jonathan had tried to decipher the codes. But, he didn’t ask many questions knowing Tony would tell him if it were that important. And with the strange happenings that had been going on in the mansion since they had been there, he really didn’t need to ask. He assumed that Mr. Bowman must have made a special appearance of some kind to Tony and told him what to do and where to look.

For that matter, Jonathan had seen the particular disc that Tony had slipped into the drive prior to their session, but had thought it only contained a program for the computer. It made since though that if Mr. Bowman wanted to hide the code translations that he would do such a thing as write ‘word processor’ on the disc. So, he didn’t let it bother him at all that he had been fooled into thinking that, being it was what was supposed to be thought in the first place.

In the last six months, he had been undergoing rigorous therapy to regain the use of some of his other faculties. Walking was one of those that had plagued him to utter determination. He once confided to Tony that he would die first before he would be bound to a wheelchair – and so far, he had made good on that promise. The finite usage of his hands and fingers were being addressed as well. Just sitting at the computer operating the mouse had once been a frustrating task for the kid. But his resolution to be a whole man once again would not allow that to stop him at all.

Short-term memory problems had surfaced, causing the family to be even more patient with him. He would often forget things as soon as they were told to him, but had come to a mildly humorous solution by hanging a small notepad around his neck, with pen attached that he would scribble in when given important information. But then, if he could just remember to look at it once in a while, everything would be perfect.

All in all, it was getting better though. He was recalling more short-term information than he had been. Although, many days he just couldn’t remember anything at all. Most of the time, it just depended upon what mood he was in or how he felt that day.

Greg was away that morning, having gone to the hospital to check on an existing position he might be able to fill. Everyone had agreed that it would be good for the doctor to go back to work, utilizing his skills and at the same time, keeping him sane. At least the rest of them wouldn’t be blaming him for it being he was just practically bored slap out of his mind. So, driving the rest of them crazy seemed to be the most obvious thing for the doctor to do.

Tony had had his hands full with running the new club. It was almost obvious to them all that he might had found his new niche in the family and was enjoying it but seemed to miss using his other skills as a nursing bodyguard, and so forth. They all supported his tremendous efforts in getting the club up and back to running again.

The new club had all the amenities as the old one, minus the drugs and prostitution that was once in the background of running the place. It was also practically running itself. The profits each night were outstanding, given the new additions that Tony had basically thought up and implemented. It also added to the excitement of the place drawing in a larger crowd than what had been there before. It was beginning to be believed that a new building was in order. A multi-story building in that each floor would house a different genre of music thereby satisfying a greater number of patrons.

Peter had come to Tony about opening a P.I. service that would also help with some income to the family. Both of them were registered firearms experts as well as highly trained in detective work and other areas of investigation. It would give them a chance to utilize what skills they had accrued and also enjoyed.

It was discussed with the family during the dinner meal the night before to gain the feedback of the rest of the crew. Bruce suggested they should hire Jonathan to help with answering the phones and doing the office work at which the kid became a little nervous though excited to help whenever he could. Of course, Tony and Greg suggested that Bruce could also help by filling in as a secondary office person or even some legwork once in a while. It soon grew to include Greg as a fill in for medical situations. In the end, they all agreed it was a superb idea.

Someone knocked on the door as Tony was helping Jonathan with the business files. Jonathan, who was so enwrapped in his work, never heard the knock at the door. But, Tony called to whomever it was, bidding them aksaray escort to enter.

A tall man with short black hair and a dark tan entered the room dressed in a three-piece business suit. His gait was full and determined, though gracefully poised as if he had been reared from a very distinguished background. Long limbs added to the handsome man’s features that made Tony take notice of him right away. He rose slowly from where he had been sitting, as the man seemed resolute in coming into full view of Jonathan, if no one else.

Tony knew he had seen this man before, but couldn’t recall when or where. And it concerned him that the man had yet to speak a word to either him, or Jonathan, as he stepped further into the center of the room.

“May I help you?” Tony finally asked, drawing Jonathan’s attention from what he was doing.

“No, but I’ve come to see the boy,” the man stated with some finality.

The sound of his familiar voice rippled through Jonathan causing him to shudder. He looked up from the computer screen to see the man standing before him. At first he didn’t believe his eyes, having not seen the man since the first day they had returned to the mansion.

“I’ve received a very –” the man stopped abruptly for a moment looking away from Jonathan’s stare as if he didn’t even deserve to be seen by the kid. “…Strange visit from a mutual acquaintance,” he barely looked back at Jonathan to say. “It’s time we had a little discussion about your parents, Jonathan.”

“Don’t you think this is a little sudden?” Tony asked with deep concern.

Jonathan felt himself begin to tremble from the inside out. A line of perspiration formed over his upper lip, as he was suddenly flooded with overwhelming warmth that was almost nauseating to him. He placed his hand on the arms of the chair and attempted to stand – only to plop back down in the chair, as if his legs had no strength at all.

“Stay, Jonathan.” The man held up a hand to him and it was obvious this was most uncomfortable for the man. “Just sit still and try to relax. Do you need a drink, son?” the obvious concern in the man’s expression and in his voice caused Tony to suddenly look up at him not having expected it.

“I think I do,” Jonathan looked up at Tony who stood over him.

“Okay, baby,” the man leaned down planting his lips to Jon’s lovingly before he stood again and went to the bar.

“Mr. Preston,” Jonathan almost muttered inaudibly. “Who visited you?”

Joshua shifted from one foot to the other nervously it seemed. And it appeared he was trying to decide how to answer that question.

“Won’t you have a seat?” Jonathan then motioned to one of the two chairs that were facing the desk where Jonathan watched the man find the one closest to him to park in.

“I’m sorry this is such short notice, Jonathan. But the – ” Mr. Preston cleared his throat before continuing. “…The mutual acquaintance was quite adamant that I do this today.”

“I’ve never seen you like this before, Joshua. Did Jim scare you?” Jonathan looked up while he spoke, as Tony handed him the drink he had asked for.

“You could say that, yes,” Mr. Preston returned with a brief nod.

“So, you saw him, too?” Jonathan leaned on his arms on the desk still not having taken the first sip of his drink. His expression exuded a need for confirmation of what he had also seen on several occasions.

“Yes, Jonathan.” The man looked down as if he wanted to burst into tears. “I saw him, I felt him, I heard every word he spoke to me.”

“What did he do to you, Joshua?” Jonathan wanted desperately to come up out of the chair he sat in feeling a deep need to console the man across from him. He tried as hard as he could to stand up, yet his legs still wouldn’t cooperate with him. Finally, he looked up at Tony for assistance.

“Jonathan, just please,” Mr. Preston held up a hand. “Stay where you are. You’re fine right there,” he added.

“I need to stretch my legs, Joshua.” Jonathan was determined not to let the man placate him in any way. If he wanted to get up and walk around, he would – by God.

Tony helped Jonathan to his feet, then let the young man hold onto him while he slowly stepped from behind the desk to the chair beside Joshua. It was then that Mr. Preston noticed the boy’s new hair growth and that it had grown to shoulder length so quickly.

“You’re looking good, Jonathan. You’ve come a long way since your surgery,” Mr. Preston commented to the kid with a tender smile.

Tony listened as he went back to the desk to retrieve the drink he had made for Jonathan. He ambled back to where the boy was sitting and handed it to him. Then he stepped over to the far side of the office, near the balcony doors, picked up a chair that he carried back setting it down right beside Jonathan. Once he was seated, he leaned forward propping his forearms on his thighs to listen to the conversation.

“Thank you, Mr. Preston, aksaray escort bayan ” Jonathan had smiled sheepishly while Tony was getting the chair. He looked down at his glass, which he realized he still hadn’t drunk from yet. Lifting it to his lips he took a couple swallows feeling the relaxing warmth of the alcohol almost right away.

“Jonathan, this isn’t going to be easy for you to hear –”

“You still haven’t answered my question, Joshua,” Jonathan cut him off deliberately wanting to know the entire truth from start to finish. “What did Jim do to you?”

“Now, Jonathan,” Mr. Preston half laughed, giving the young man a quirky little grin. It was one of those that Jonathan knew was a disapproving smile a parent would give. “Son, you know better than to interrupt someone when they’re talking.”

Tony chuckled, “he’s forgotten a few of his manners since he’s been out of the hospital.”

“No, I haven’t forgotten. I’ve just realized a few things is all.”

“Like what, Jonathan?” Mr. Preston’s professional attributes kicked in suddenly.

“Like how people take each other for granted, and that we don’t ask enough questions from our friends, who need us to ask every now and then, even if it does seem like prying. And that everything we do has a consequence, no matter if we realize, or believe that or not. And we all take life for granted, many think it useless and mundane, where others hate the lives they live and never work through what makes them feel that way. We’re all headed somewhere, whether we believe it or not. And from what I’ve seen, I want no part of that at all. None of us are perfect. We all make mistakes, some more than others do. But, it’s not our place to judge them for those mistakes.”

“Give him an hour and he’ll be finished, Joshua,” Tony jested.

The man laughed lightly, “I take it you’ve already heard all of this before.”

“More than once,” Tony laughed sitting back against the chair then propped an ankle on his thigh.

“Well, it does appear to have made a change or two in his thinking. And whatever it was, I’m sure served its purpose,” the man suggested seriously.

“Oh, it has, believe me,” Tony stated then. “He’s a changed man, now. Why, we don’t even have to fuss at him about eating anymore, except to just remind him once in a great while. But, that’s only because he’s gotten so busy doing something that he’s forgotten.”

“I heard you had a terrifying dream, Jonathan. And if it helped you, then I’m glad it happened, for your sake,” Joshua studied the young man thoroughly noticing he felt a bit uncomfortable being discussed so openly. “Jim came to see me last night. He was a little upset that I hadn’t told you about your parents the last time I was here,” he began to volunteer, veering them away from the prior subject.

“What happened?” Jonathan leaned forward a little; his expression was one of great interest.

“Oh, he did the old ghost, ball and chain, act to start with. I honestly think he was just having a little fun with me. And when I finally called his bluff, he politely picked me up and flung me across the room like the rag doll I was. Then he in no other terms informed me that I would tell you what he had done to your parents, or I would feel worse than that when he was finished with me.”

“What HE did to my parents?” Jonathan repeated a little surprised to hear it.

“Yes, what he did to your parents,” Joshua hung his head wishing it didn’t have to be told to the little man after all he had already been through.

“What did he do, Joshua?” the tone was one that suggested it wasn’t a request to know either.

“Jonathan, when you were five, he made an offer to your mother that she didn’t appreciate very much at all –”

“What offer, Joshua?” There was that tone again.

“Son, I will tell you what is pertinent for you to know. Other than that, forget it,” the man answered firmly.

Jonathan’s eyes cut to the man for a second, but seemed to cool almost instantly from the heated glance.

“Your mother and Jim once used to get along quite well when he would go to visit. And he did so often, bringing you little toys and her something special. He seemed to care a lot about her. I believe that he did. He just didn’t know how to control his temper, or his passions. He was never one to keep his thoughts or much else to himself.

“Of course, hubby found out about Jim’s proposition, becoming quite furious with the whole situation. He began to believe that there was more going on between Christy and her brother than there truly was. This became a problem when your father began to make accusations to Christy about Jim’s many visits.

“Jim being the honorable brother he was, came to her defense, facing your father about his accusations. Tensions were high and a lot of angry words were traded, when your father took a swing at Jim. Of course, Jim defended himself, but he had always been a little escort aksaray high strung. And I believe he never meant to actually kill your father at all.

“Christy became hysterical, threatening to call the police. Jim knew he would be hung from the highest tree if they ever caught him. He tried to plead with her to just give him a chance to get out of the country, but she was adamant that Jim had murdered your father in cold blood. In her upset, she found her a butcher knife that she came at Jim with, only she didn’t make it to him before she tripped over you landing on the knife.”

“She tripped over me?” Jonathan’s voice quivered with the pain he felt from hearing all of this news.

“Yes, it seems you were playing on the floor and why she didn’t notice you there when she came out of the kitchen, I don’t know. I’ve never understood that part of this story.”

“Jim told you this story?” Jon asked glancing askance over at Mr. Preston.

“Yes, he did,” the man nodded in confirmation while he replied.

“And you believed him?”

“I believe the first part, Jonathan. Your father called me that afternoon in a rage wanting to know if I had seen Jim at all and that he wanted a piece of him – ‘if he could find the snake’. And those were his words.

“As far as your mother, I’m not really sure I do believe it. I have my suspicions that something else occurred between your mother and her brother that caused Jim to have to defend himself again, or he lost his cool and killed her.” Mr. Preston sighed heavily. “It wasn’t until after it all happened that he began to change drastically. The man I used to know as Mr. James Bowman was never the same man again. Jonathan, your Uncle once loved people the way that I’ve seen in you. He was a gentle sort, but he didn’t take anything off of anyone, especially where his sister was concerned.”

“Joshua, where are my parents?” Jonathan asked with a deadly low tone that used to frighten Mr. Preston about Jim.

“Your Uncle is the only man that knows where their bodies were placed. You see, without a body of evidence, your parents were only listed as missing, but presumed dead – after a several weeks searching for them that came up empty.”

Jonathan grasped the arms of the chair, lifting himself up onto wobbling legs. Mr. Preston and Tony stood right away to assist the young man who drew back from Tony in obvious emotional duress. But, the man persisted, grasping Jonathan’s arm firmly, but not overly so, as the youth began to teeter backwards.

“Leave me alone, Tony,” he grumbled wanting desperately to be alone for a while. He needed to think through all of this and make up his mind what he would and wouldn’t believe for himself.

“Jonathan, you know the answer to that. Not on your life, especially when you’re upset,” Tony returned sternly.

The words were on his lips and tongue when Jonathan groaned long, fighting them back before he said something he truly didn’t mean. He pressed his hands into Tony’s chest giving the man a shove that didn’t amount to much at all. The man remained firmly placed where he stood, but grabbed Jonathan when he began to fall.

“Damn it, Jonathan. Don’t make me have to call Bruce and Peter in here! We’ll tan your hide, boy!” Tony reached down lifting the young man that had sat down on the carpeted floor. He pulled Jonathan to him holding him firmly to his body.

“Perhaps, you should, Tony,” Mr. Preston suggest then.

Tony nodded to the man as his lips drifted deep into the young man’s ear, “Jonathan, you know I love you and would never let anything happen to you. But, I’m also not going to be treated like this,” he whispered adamantly.

Jonathan then broke into sobs. He suddenly felt safe in Tony’s arms realizing he needed them, and to be near him. His body trembled as he embraced the man and buried his face in the Tony’s neck and shoulder. Holding on strongly, he knew it wouldn’t be long before the man would be forced to put him back in his chair, for his legs were most uncooperative – having no strength in them whatsoever.

Mr. Preston migrated to the door, leaving for a short time. When he returned, Bruce and Peter were right behind him. They entered the room silently, surrounding Tony and Jonathan in the event they might be needed for assistance. They all watched as Tony had sucked in his lower lip, biting down on it while he rubbed the young man’s back up and down. His arms strongly holding Jonathan to him and his head leaning against the youth’s.

In all of the riveting emotions that exuded from Jonathan at that moment, none of them ever noticed the presence that silently had entered the room with them. He stood in the darkest corner, an expression of tremendous pain written on his face. His eyes glistened in the low lighting of that corner of the room while he watched his nephew mourn as it should have been long ago.

How he wanted to hold Jonathan and help the young man through all of this, but he knew in the back of his mind that could never be. Jonathan would hate him the remainder of his days. The relationship they once had was finished, as was the new one that had been formed only recently. Their bond was broke by Jim’s treachery and lies. He would forever be bound where he was due to Jonathan’s unforgiving.

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