On dark desert highway cool wind in my hair
The Eagles sang when Headmistress Brown walked into my dorm room.
"Mr. St. John can I speak with you in private?"
"What about Mrs. Brown?"
"Mr. St. john, Cameron I am afraid I have bad news, your Uncle Joe was in an accident driving from Los Alamos this morning. His car was hit by a semi on one of the northern passes and his vehicle was knocked off the road way and fell to the canyon floor below."
"WHAT" was all I could say? I was in denial from the shock. No way, not, not Uncle Joe, couldn't be uncle Joe, no there has to be some mistake. But in the back of my mind I already knew there wasn't. Mrs. Brown wouldn't tell me something like this unless it was true. Being a man I hate to admit the tears fell from my eyes like bullets. In the span of 15 seconds I had gone from exuberant about seeing Uncle Joe and blowing out of St. Eligius academy for the summer to devastated at the lost of another family member, my last one in the world. Those 15 seconds started a whole new life that I could never had imagined.
It took me a long time to figure out who I am. I am Cameron St. john, 15 years old, and a complete orphan now that I am standing at the funeral of my uncle. When I was just over a year old my parents were killed in a car accident, it seems to be that my family has a bad history with motor vehicles. Out of the blur and confusion of the flames my hero was a strong fireman who struggled to pull me out of the back seat unscathed and alive while my parents were both dead. This tragedy marked the first stage in my life. My life with Uncle Joe.
Uncle Joe was my mother's brother. Apparently grandma and grandpa had disowned mom for marring dad because he was a rancher unlike her father and brother who remained engineers and lawyers. Uncle Joe stepped up and took me in, it was hard seeing that he was a single man who worked all over the world. 35 years old and no real roots, but now a nephew to care for. He did his best in the first couple years, he taught at numerous colleges, got a nanny, and did his best to help me develop not just mentally but also physically. He taught me how to throw, and the proper way to swim. He taught me how to wrestle, how to surf but also to reason, think and read. He had a twisted sense of humor. Once he called on his four-year-old nephew in a class full of college students to help them see plain truth versus over thinking. He asked them to get a pen cap out of an empty bottle with out touching the bottle and I was the only one who succeeded. After 3 hours of his students trying and failing, my uncle stands up and calls to me,
"Cameron how do you get the pen cap out of the bottle?"
I got up and looked at the bottle and the pen cap. I walked out of the room, went to the faculty lounge and got a pitcher. I filled it with water and went back and poured the water into the bottle. Joe laughed as I was spilling water but the pen cap popped out the top.
"Cameron gets an A, and the rest of you get to clean up."
He picked me up and carried me out of class laughing the whole way.
From kindergarten all the way to the 5th grade we traveled every summer and moved from college to college working on research projects or teaching classes. I went to school to learn things in the labs and grew up. I mastered the arts of little league, basketball and martial arts. I learned to shoot weapons, use a knife, and how to fence. Uncle Joe gave me a little of every thing, except love; he always had love and time for me.
Being the attractive man that he was he did date often. I would spend time with Carr or Debra, who were never far away from Uncle Joe. I think Uncle Joe used me early and often to catch the eye of the more discerning females, as a single man with a kid. I guess I was like catnip. I know we had a lot of dinners brought by or invited over for a reason. I got pinched and hugged, smooched and kissed along with stuffed with cookies cakes and sweets. Lord, I think Uncle Joe kept me physical so I wouldn't gain a thousand pounds.
When I was eleven I was enrolled in St. Eligius academy for the gifted: a boarding school. Uncle Joe said I needed to educate myself and learn how to socialize. He had a lot of projects that need him and he didn't want me to suffer because of them. My schedule changed to school years in Colorado and summers around the world scuba diving on wrecks and digging for artifacts in South America. Also touring castles and cathedrals in Europe while spending time in monasteries in India, Tibet and the Far East. I was learning to ride, fight, meditate, and gain knowledge while dispersing it to others. This summer we were supposed to go to Baja to help with a shark survey and do some diving in the gulf. Instead I spend the first day of my summer vacation at a funeral and a wake.
Standing in the cemetery in upstate New York in a summer rain surrounded by people I had know all my life and a smattering of those I didn't. Surrounding me were the people I've known most of my life: Mrs. Brown my head mistress, Carr and Debra, Dr. Goniga, Dean of one of the colleges we were at, Miss Tawilliger, Uncle Joe's assistant, and Keller, the guy that taught me how to shoot rifles and to hunt. Along with various women and men who had the look of academics or field scientist including one with a hula girl tie, Uncle Joe would have loved it. Standing along with the guys in the dark glasses and dark suit, along with their bosses in their power suits and power ties, looking appropriately somber and with a bit of a guilty look. The priests' words filled the silence; it seemed weird because it was just like any other sermon. He had done this a hundred times; it was his job to preach about the dead. Standing there listening to a man preach about a man he never knew was eerie to me as a I was seeing the flag draped coffin the Calvary honor guard and the 21-gun salute. I looked about and thought to myself, "I guess I don't know as much as I thought about Uncle Joe."
Later at the wake I stood in the receiving line. I was amazed at the number of initials, acronyms and business cards I had received. All from directors and CEO's to agents and designers engineers and professors. Then there were the women: married, single, married, young, old, apparently uncle had been very busy while I was in school and growing up and before. I even met his first wife now married to a senator from California. I didn't remember Auntie Fran but she remembered me and invited me to come out to visit her and her husband in LA. The director of the defense development agency made sure to shake my hand and offer his condolences and thanks for my help over the years??? For what I don't rightly know but he said it. Through out the evening either Carr or Debra were close at hand and always there to help me find my way.
Around 10, I couldn't handle any more pointed stares and sober consolation. I walked over to the bar and pour a double of Glen Fidich reserve, turned and said, "I toast the man I know as uncle father and friend Joseph Carlucci may he rest in peace or take over hell." And promptly slammed the scotch and fell on my ass. I don't remember much after that except the feeling of being held and my hair being stroked.
I woke up the next morning with a splitting headache and a warm body cuddling me. I could never miss the intoxicating smell of channel perfume and I knew that it was Debra. It just happens to be one of my favorite smells. I turned and saw Debra; she kissed me softly and held me whispering,
"Carr thought you could use the company between the events and the alcohol I hope you don't mind."
Looking at her I replied, "Debra if I was 3 days dead I wouldn't ever mind a beautiful lady like you holding me in my bed."
Debra smiled and laughed, "At least you got Joe's tongue and his alcohol tolerance, and you didn't puke. How bad is the headache?"
"It 's fairly bad but not too horrendous."
Carr came in carrying a tray with a glass full of some red concoction, three coffee cups, and a carafe of coffee. He handed me the glass first.
"This is a prairie eye opener, it's made up of V-8, Tabasco, tequila and some Worcestershire along with an egg. Drink it down my boy, its Joe's cure for what ails you."
It was nasty and burned going down but it did clear my head quickly. The mixture was followed by a cup of coffee with sweetened condensed milk, something I had grown fond of when Uncle Joe and I dove near the Bosporus straits in Turkey.
Carr sipped his coffee before mumbling
"Well the plan is: we fly down to DC for the reading of the will, while there use Joe's condo in Alexandria. So get to packing, wheels up at 11".
Now Carr is what every boy wants in an "uncle" though he never let me call him that. He's brave, handsome, a ladies man, with the heart of a kid. He would give you the shirt off his back but woe to those who would hurt an innocent child. As a mechanical engineer Carr has widgets and whatchamacallits all over the place. He could probably build a star ship out what's lying around his house. When I was 10 he helped me build an electric go-cart in Casablanca. I was zipping around the city driving both Uncle Joe and the ships captain nuts while Carr he just stood there stoically remarking, "But captain, you wanted him to be able to run errands."
Carr bought me my first car, a 1948 Mercury coupe rusted and DOA for the last 3 years. We have been slowly rebuilding it from the frame to the engine to the interior. This summer we were going to install the engine, so when I got my drivers license it would be ready, probably another thing that will have to wait.
If Carr was a boy's best "uncle" then his girls were a boy's best "auntie". Debra is Carr's current girl, but no matter who the girl was she was beautiful, talented, caring, organized, and did I mention beautiful, thought so. Beautiful is an understatement, they are drop dead gorgeous or at least I always thought so and so did Carr. Debra for example was 5'6" around a 140 lbs, long wavy burgundy auburn hair, emerald green eyes, not huge breasts but well proportioned to fit the rest of her down to a trim waist, flaring hips, to toned athletic thighs and shapely calves, all together well put together woman. Carr's girls acted as his secretary, assistant, cook, maid, and lover. During our trips they would share a room and the girls would be his only companions. I would guess Carr is monogamous to the girl of the moment he won't ditch her or collect another while he had one and I rarely saw him with out one the entire time I have know him.
Now Uncle Joe's assistants 's were always the shy graduate student types: quiet, efficient, knowledgeable but had to be drawn out. They were gorgeous creatures also you just couldn't always tell, like Miss Janice Tawilliger. To look at her you would say librarian 5'4" 120 lbs, creamy skin and sandy blonde hair generally up in a bun, hard tell about her body in all he tweed and wool she wraps herself in. I only know she fits the type because last summer she amazed me with a stunning body in a string bikini while we were on the beaches of the south of France. She is petite but better than well-formed body almost dainty but perfectly formed from a her fine bone structure and seemingly long neck to a nice slightly larger than a handful breasts, trim and tight six pack abs to a rounded bottom and dancer legs, even her feet were beautiful (ok I might have a bit of a thing for Miss Tawilliger) but the blush that filled her skin starting on her checks and creeping down to the top of her breast made all the more sexy to me. But Uncle Joe never as far as I know dated or had other than a professional relationship with any of his assistants. Miss Tawilliger always struck you as the shy librarian bursting to share what she knows, organized like a field marshal at a landing and precise as an atomic clock. All wrapped up in tweed and a bun.
Debra hopped out of bed showing she had on just one of Carr's t-shirts muttering, "Damn it Mike I still have to get us packed."
I looked around and found my "bag". My bag was a gift from Uncle Joe it was damn near the size of an old fashion steamer trunk made of double layers of Cordoba rip stop nylon with like a billion pockets and compartments, on a set of 8 roller blade wheels. It had separate sections for my shower kit, shoes, hanging and folded clothes, electronics along with a money box and attachments for extra cases on the sides for when we traveled, right beside it was Carr's contribution the emergency case, a Halliburton style aluminum case/ back pack. With a second shower kit a couple changes of street clothes extra credit card and money along with my passport and a spare cell phone along with room for my laptop when we had to fly commercial.
When Carr walked out of the room with his mischievous grin, I got up dug out my pair of the knights shorts (St. Eligius mascot), funny, I remember last night I was wearing my black suit, hmmm, went sat the trunk on its right end un zipped the front panel, pulled my shower kit, a pair of jeans, socks, boxer briefs and an Old Navy t- shirt. I went ahead and took care of my morning ablutions and cleanings along with waving my electric razor over my face. Once done, I checked the closet and found my suit hung with out a wrinkle (curiouser and curiouser). I Went through the pockets collecting my watch, wallet, sunglasses, the stack of business cards, and then careful pulled my garment case out of the trunk and re-stowed my suit and dress shoes. Put the cards in my moneybox pulled my belt along with my Leatherman and Gator lock blade running thru my jeans belt loops. Pulling on a pair of Nike air cross trainers I zipped up the trunk checked the case and pulled them out to the living room of Carr and Debra's condo.
Apparently Debra had banned Carr from packing (typically because he packed as many mechanical do dads as clothes) so he was putting on the table his typical breakfast: hash browns, eggs scrambled, biscuits, country sausage, and bacon, all smothered in sausage pepper gravy with coffee and juice.
"Come on cam take a seat and dig in, after the flight we are suppose to go directly to the lawyers office. Then god knows when well get good food again. Debra might drag us to one of those hoity toity novae Peruvian Cajon joints where they give you a shrimp in a slice of tortilla for dinner with three black beans and a kennel of corn."
Not to say Carr is uncultured, he really is, he likes opera and plays and reads anything not nailed down, but he believes food should be filling and taste good; not be a show piece of artistry at 300 dollars a plate. Of course being a teen boy I heartily agree. Debra walked out of the bed room looking for all the world a professional assistant in a black skirt suit set nylons and 3 inch heels, with her make-up and hair flawless. Debra snorted, "You can't even make him a healthy breakfasts."
Carr smiled and said "but Debra, a boy cant live on rabbit food and nuts all his life. " Carr got up went in to the kitchen and returned with a plate of sliced fruit, yogurt with homemade granola, and a glass of orange juice, "and I made the diet plate for you." Carr barley dodged the napkin Debra threw at him as she laughed.
Once we finished breakfast Carr and I played pack mule and carried the bags out to his SUV. Once the bags were packed, we mounted up and headed to the airport.
"Well my boy I hope last night wasn't a prelude to your current plans" Carr started. "It would break Joe's heart if you went self destructive because of his death."
Debra chimed in, "I doubt it, yesterday was stressful on Cameron," Debra turning in her seat looking on me," he better remember that Joe loved him and wants him to succeed."
I just nodded my head then turned looking out at the farm fields and houses. I was somewhat ashamed of how I acted last night. Uncle Joe, Carr and Debra had always treated me like adult, or at least with respect. It was never 'go do this' or 'I am busy, can it wait?' They talked to me and listened, then explained. If I had a question they would answer it so I could understand it.
About an hour later we pulled up to a small county airport and drove up to a rather worn looking hanger at one end of the field.
"Carr, what are we going in? A sopwith—camel?" I quipped.
"No, we are taking a Citation that Joe and I kept here."
He got out of the truck and walked over to the small door on the side of the hanger then started back. As he was walking back, the hanger doors opened revealing a deep blue Citation S. On the side of the plane was stenciled C & C engineering. C and C was Carmichael and Carlucci engineering, a company owned by Uncle Joe and Carr, though I didn't know it had done so well to have a private plane. Most of the time when we traveled it was in charters or commercially.
A little gob smacked, I looked at Carr and said, "How long have we had this?" as technically I was one of the owners.
Back before I was born, my uncle and Carr had won a bid for a new combat vehicle for the military. Close to the delivery date they needed money to complete the prototype. Grandpa Carlucci wouldn't loan Joe any more money and Carr couldn't get another loan in time. They were trying hard to make due when my mom called. During the call mom asked her brother Joe what was the matter. Joe explained he was stressed about the delivery contract, and how if this project didn't get finished that was it. He and Carr would be broke and problem never get work in the field again.
What does mom say? "How much?" Within 24 hours Joe and Carr had the money and corporation papers. Dad may have been a rancher, but mom was a sharp cookie. Mom and dad mortgaged the family ranch and gave the money to the boys as stockholders. When my parents were killed those stock shares came to me, well technically they were in a trust for me, along with the insurance and settlement money.
Carr looked at me smiled and said "Well this would be one of the C & C fleet, this one we got about two years ago."
"Fleet? What fleet? You mean I have been shelping around commercial airports for two years and I could have flown on our planes?"
"Well yes and no, it's more like ten years, and there wasn't always a plane available. Joes last assistant was afraid of little planes, so she always booked you into a big safe plane rather than trust Joe, Debra or I to fly you to or from school or where ever."
"Silly I know, but them's the breaks, besides closest airport to the school was Colorado Springs and easier to fly commercial rather than fight thru the military," Carr explained.
With that Carr pulled into the hanger along side the cargo door of the plane.
"Debra why don't you go and start the warm up and me an muscles boy here will load all you luggage." Carr smiling as he said it.
"Well you know how you boys are, these planes are to technical for you," was Debra's reply.
After we cross-loaded the luggage, Carr pulled the SUV to a back corner of the hanger and we got on board the jet. Carr went up to the cockpit,
While Debra commented over her shoulder, "We'll be out of here in a minute hun, just sit down, buckle up, and hang on. After we get in the air you can come on up and I'll show you a bit of flying."
Flying in a private jet is different, not like an airliner, it felt kind of like a roller coaster taking off lot faster and steeper than the big jets. Once we were up in the air Carr returned, dropped into another seat, and voiced the orders. "Up front Debra is going to teach you the basics of flying a jet."
Sitting down in the co-pilots seat Debra explained about the instruments and controls including the upgraded EVS system and GPS navigation. She let me fly it for about ten minutes before saying that we were going to start landing shortly. Trading places with Carr I sat down and belted up again. Funny, where big jets are softer on taking off than the little ones the landing was like a feather. I didn't know we were on the ground till the engines went into reverse thrust. None of that big thumps and shimmies in comparison to the airliners.
One we got to the hanger Carr and Debra shut down the plane. Once the plane was shut down the cab door opened and Debra called back, "Go ahead Cam, stretch your legs, we will be another 10 minutes or so in here and another 10 doing post flights."
I unbelted and walked towards the door, only to see the bright sunshine, I pulled on my sunglasses and walked down the stairs. There I saw what seemed like an anthill in motion. Two guys were unloading the cargo door into a suburban while a couple more were doing tie downs and chocks. When I turned to walk around the plane and see the field I almost ran in to Keller.
Now Keller isn't hard to miss in the civilized world he's 6'3" 250lbs with a close cropped graying high and tight haircut and piercing green eyes. Keller was a friend of uncle Joe's from the military. If I understand, the situation Keller taught Joe how to be an officer, Joe returned the favor by hauling Keller back to safety after an accident. Keller had taught me how to hunt and survive in the wilderness. I spent a week living off the land in Alaska, between Christmas and new years this past winter, in one of those' killer survival excursion vacations'. Funny thing is I was there with a bunch of business types and such, I think Keller had me go on it just to keep them alive. Keller was like a drill sergeant with out the reservation that you be alive after training. I felt sorry for those poor guys being shown up by a 15 year old but thems the breaks.
"How you doing Mr. St. john?"
"Doing well Keller, your not here to shanghai me off somewhere to baby-sit another batch of wannabe titans of industry."
"No Cameron, I am here as the company security chief, I brought the trucks and will be your guild in the wilds of DC," Keller grinned.
I never liked Keller's grins; they always meant something bad was going to happen. You know like: ok lets take a little hike —grin-, marching 50 kliks. That's the grins Keller has.
"Keller why do I have the feeling I should have packed my glocks and body armor before coming here."
"Never you mind pup, Keller and crew are here to make sure nothing happens," touted Keller.
That's when I looked around again; I saw 6 or 7 of the guys that worked for Keller on those tours, either as drivers or the guys unlading the plane. A little spooked I just about jumped out of my skin when a hand touched my shoulder.
Keller admonished," you should have expected that, getting sloppy Cameron," he said with a wink.
"Mr. St john, sir," came out of this mousy looking woman.
She couldn't be more than 5'2" and 100lbs soaking wet, dressed in what can only be termed legal associate attire, right down to the dame scarf tied into a bow around her neck and prim glasses.
I looked at her and said," I am Cameron, Mr. St. John lives in Chicago."
She looked at me quizzically and then started again," Cameron St. john I am Ms. Jocelyn Phelps, I'm here representing you late fathers firm, if you need anything just say the word and I'll take care of it while your in Washington."
"I'm sorry ms. Phelps but my fathers been dead for nearly 14 years and he never had a firm."
"I'm sorry sir I was told you were Joseph Carlucci son?"
"No need to apologize he didn't know Joe had adopted him legally," came Debra to my rescue" but she is right Joe, Sam, Carr, and Jackie all used the same law firm to represent them selves and the company."
"Oh how are you Ms Shaw," Ms. Phelps said thru almost airtight lips with a glare in her eyes.
Carr saved the day again by stepping in, "oh Jocelyn looking wonderful as ever, still toiling for Jeffries I see, that man should never have gotten a partnership."
Ms Phelps blushed," Carr you are a rascal! Since his daddy is a partner it was inevitable. It would have been nice if he hadn't switch that paper work, but then, maybe I'm just not cut throat enough for the firm," said a visible more certain Ms. Phelps.
"Well since every thing is transferred, the planes paperwork is done and we are ready," stated Carr
"Please mount up and we will head to the firm first," said Keller.
Keller broke us up, put Debra and Ms Phelps in one suburban and me and Carr in the other.
When we got in Keller said," I hope Debra doesn't kill this one."
Car replied," She wont it's a misunderstanding and Debra will straiten her out."
"By the way wasn't Jeffries Jr. supposed to meet us not Jocelyn?"
"Well between you and me Jeff Jr. is a class one idiot. I hope he has a good excuse or he will be up the creek with his father. He apparently already screwed up something to due with Cameron's trust from what I was told at the club" said Keller.
"Oh now that ought to be interesting," smirked Carr.
In the little SUV caravan we drove inside the belt way to K street and drove into an under ground parking garage. Keller got out first and walked around to the back. Something was up, Keller looked nervous and Carr noticed it too. I looked to the driver, he had the console open and had his hand on the grip of an MP-5K-PDW and he hadn't shut off the suburban. I thought, "Shit, what is going on."
looking at Carr he looked like he was ready to jump for cover. Keller knocked on the fender of the suburban and the driver turned off the engine and hooked the MP-5 to a sling under his jacket. Keller opened the door and pointed toward an elevator car. Debra, Ms. Phelps, and I walk over to it. Followed by Keller, his partner and the two drivers. I finally recognized his partner, Natasha.
Natasha was not her name but that's what every one called her. Kind of like the old Rocky and Bullwinkle villain made modern, long midnight black hair almost paper white skin. Her history was a mystery to me, along with how she and Keller met. Natasha was I guess you'd say Goth or maybe matrix-like is a better description. She had multiple rings in her ears a nose piercing with a small onyx stud, black lip stick and eye makeup, if you saw her nails they were usably done in black. She was wearing her common uniform, black leather duster with a white frilly fronted shirt and low cut hip hugger skirt fishnets and calf length lace up Docs. As she walked I could see both her Skorpian MP and the three throwing knives on her rig.
Natasha smiled when she saw me and greeted me," hello darrrling so good to see you, my condolences." She gave me a hug as we walked in to the elevator.
Inside the elevator Natasha and Keller stood in the front corners while the drivers stood in the door path. I was guided into Natasha's corner while Debra subtly guided Ms. Phelps behind Keller so Carr and Debra were behind the drivers. I don't think she even noticed she was being handled. I didn't know what was up, but I knew something, because Keller was saddling me with a body guard specifically Natasha, not that I minded. Keller hit the button for the 23rd floor then inserted a key and we went straight up from there.
When the elevator doors open the drivers exited and moved to their side of the elevator. Debra and Carr exited, followed Ms. Phelps and myself, and last but not least were Keller and Natasha. The six of us walked up to the receptionist.
She looked up and broke out with a professional yet sincere smile," Mr. Carmichael, Ms. Shaw, Mr. St. John, Mr. Keller, Ms. Drovoski; Mr. Jeffries sr. is waiting for you in the main conference room."
"Ms. Phelps, Junior is looking for you. "The receptionist mentioned conspiratorially
Ms Phelps' face took on a bit of pallor when she heard that.
I took her arm and said," well I guess junior will have to come find us because my lawyer is going into the conference with me."
I led Ms Phelps towards, what I hoped was, the conference room. I looked over my shoulder and saw Carr chuckling and Debra shaking her head. Keller doing a fine impression of a statue as Natasha tried to hide a full body laughs and the receptionist looking like some one had told her that shit was ambrosia. I looked at Ms. Phelps and she had a look of astonished terror on her face, I soon found out why.
Coming across the office almost screeching was an idiot on fire, Jefferson Jeffries junior esquire.
"Miss Phelps where are you going?"
Then turning towards me," Who are you, her boy friend?"
Turning back to Ms. Phelps," Miss Phelps you are late, where have you been? Did your little tryst keep you up all night and you just couldn't make it in on time?
Well Miss Phelps," said the increasingly agitated and irritating little man.
Poor Jocelyn she was shaking, mortified and near tears. I turned saw Debra about to strike so I beat her to it.
"Junior, I presume," I started out.
"Allow me to settle a few things here for you. First of all this is 'Miz 'Phelps not miss and I believe it is actually Ms. Jocelyn Phelps esquire, an associate of this firm not a secretary."
"Second if I was her boy friend and we had enjoyed ourselves last night that would be none of your damn business. Third as to why she was late, she was not, she was at the airport receiving my party and I, to cover your lazy ass," I stated.
"Allow me to introduce my self and my companions, my name is Cameron St. John these are my associates and your firms clients: Michael Carmichael, Debra Shaw, along with Natasha Drovoski and Keller."
"Now I believe I will expect an apology to Ms Phelps from your self and discuss your action as a partner with your father who is awaiting us in the conference room," I snarled trying to sound like Keller.
To say he look like a fish out of water doesn't do it he looked like one of those goggle eyed gold fish being dipped in red ink. I turned and almost ran into a tall older gentle man in an impeccable Armani suit with graying temples to his well-groomed black hair.
I said, " Excuse me sir, my apologies."
He said in a deep powerful voice," No Cameron, it is I who should apologize for my son."
"My name is Jefferson Jeffries Sr.," he offered his hand and we shook as equals.
"Please come this way Cameron, Jocelyn."
"Junior I will see you in my office after I'm have taken care of Mr. St. Johns business, do try to be there," in a loveless tone that proved I was glad I wasn't in Juniors shoes.
The senior Jeffries showed us into a well-appointed conference room, he offered refreshments I took coffee, enduring Debra's glare.
"Well Cameron, I believe this is a grand unveiling of what your uncle and parents built," Started Jeffries sr.
"First of all, they were all three good friend as well as partners."
"If it weren't for those three, I would probably be a sleazy divorced attorney or working at another firm."
"Those three help my brother and I build this firm into what it is today".
"Now to business, Joe was very specific about this. His shares in the company, the firm, and his finical instruments; along with most of his real property he wanted it to go to you Cameron," said Jeffries sr.
"There are a few items which are specifically gifted to: Mr. Carmichael, Ms Shaw, and a few charitable intuitions and collections."
"Outside of those items and donations, we have transferred the rest of the estate to your trust from your parents passing."
"Well what does that mean Mr. Jeffries?" I asked.
"Well at fifteen you are worth about 70 million dollars total I believe."
"70 million as in 70 followed by 6 zeros! As in a shit load of money! Where did this come from? What? How? Where? When?" was running thru my mind. Jefferies said "I'm sorry, no I misread, that's what your Trust was at, it's roughly 440 million with your uncles estate."
I think that's when I fainted dead away.
Now true I new uncle Joe and Carr were well off, but I figured a lot of it was just company money or expense accounts. Hell I thought I went to St. Eligius on a scholarship. That's how the rich kids treated me. I mean yea, I got stuff that I wanted, usually after uncle Joe was sure I wanted it and it wasn't a fad. I mean uncle Joe taught collage, did research work, and took summer jobs so he could take me around the world. I never knew he was rich.
I woke up to a blurry vision and soft fuzzy lines whispering" Mr. St john, Cameron, Cameron"
In a not so quite voice," Jocelyn why don't you kiss him you know like a princess," coming from Carr.
Astonishingly from Natasha," well I can think of a few ways to wake him up."
My eyes slammed open at even a hint of what Natasha could think of-buuuuurrrrrr-.
Ms Phelps and Carr helped me to my feet.
"Well my boy I guess the secret is out now," said Carr.
I just looked at him scowled. I turned to Debra who has a look of being caught telling a lie to a teacher on her face.
"So when was I going to be told that I didn't need to worry about how I was going to go to collage or that I could have donated more than what I did to charity."
"Joe thought it best if you didn't know. Then you wouldn't turn into someone like Junior or those punks at your school," admitted Debra. I sat down in the chair and just stared at my shoes.
I could only croak out thru the tears," can I give it all back, all I want is uncle Joe."