Mr. Ken called Sheriff's Deputy Jerry Arnold, the officer he called the first time they visited the twins' house, before they left BAMC. He wanted to let him know he and the lads planned to stop by the Parchsons house, one more time, to see if the lads wanted anything else from the home. The owner of The Cove told the Sheriff's Deputy he was just giving him a 'heads' up' in case someone called them about a stranger at the house.
Since it was a Saturday, and not a Holiday weekend, traffic was a bit more congested, so it took the Covers a bit longer to arrive at the Parchsons home than the first time. When they did arrive at the house, the Sheriff's Deputy was nowhere in sight, but Mr. Ken wasn't concerned. He'd met the neighbors that the first time and hoped they'd remember him this time around. The Deputy showed up just as the Covers opened the front door.
Mr. Ken told the lads to go inside and check around the house for anything they wanted to take back with them, while he talked to the Sheriff's Deputy.
"Thank you for stopping by, Jerry," offered Ken Thomas, as the two men shook hands. "I hope this visit will go a bit faster and a bit quieter."
The two men laughed at what Mr. Ken just said. Jerry then told him that he wanted to stop by anyway to tell him his detectives hadn't really found anything too out of the ordinary. Jerry Arnold did add that since some things were a bit suspicious and they couldn't account for where they got all their money they would continue to investigate, as time permitted.
None of the neighbors came out of their homes that afternoon to check up on what people were doing at the Parchsons' house. They'd seen that truck and Sheriff's Deputy before, so they decided not to get involved this time around.
Mr. Ken thanked Jerry again for coming and then told him he needed to get inside to make sure they don't burn the house down. When Mr. Ken walked into the house, he called out to the boys to learn where they were. He told them he needed to check something out for their dad and could be found in either the room that worked as an office or the master bedroom.
Up in their shared bedroom, Kevin and Kyle looked through their games to see if they wanted to take any of them this time around. As they looked through the games, they realized that most of them had missing pieces and others weren't fun anymore at their age. But the twins continued to search through the house.
Ken Thomas went looking for the Parchsons' computer. When he found it, he turned it on hoping that he didn't need a password. He found he did. Using his learned computer skills, he attempted to bypass it but he found he couldn't. The man looked through the desk hoping to find a piece of paper, or something with the password written down on it. He failed at that task, too.
Mr. Ken then went up to the master bedroom to see if he could find a strong box of some sort. He hoped the Parchsons kept their sensitive material in it, such as bank passbooks and the password for the computer for him to look in it. The owner of The Cove did find a firebox with the key in the lock mechanism. He took the box over to the dresser and placed it on top and turned the key to open it.
Mr. Ken didn't find the computer password, but what he did find was, he thought, extraordinary. Inside the firebox was some Money Market instruments that showed Mr. and Mrs. Parchsons had quite a bundle of money stashed away. There also was their banking information. Mr. Ken copied down the information, so Dan would have something to search through to try to find their source of income.
Mr. Ken went back to the office room to do one last search for the password. It was then that Kevin and Kyle walked in looking for him.
"Are you looking for dad's password?" asked Kevin.
"Yes, I am. I guess I didn't remember it right when your dad told me," said Mr. Ken as he lied to the twins.
"Well, he doesn't keep it in the desk, or the house, even. It is on his cell phone. I know. I've seen him take the phone out and look at something on it when he wants to get on the computer," explained Kevin.
"Oh, OK ... did you boys find anything you want to take back with us?' asked "Dad Ken'.
"Not really," said Kyle. "We did look at everything, but the clothes are worse than the ones we took back the last time and the games we looked at … well, they are either missing parts or pieces, or we don't like playing them anymore."
"OK … let's check the refrigerator to make sure there isn't anything in there that is spoiled or will spoil. Since we won't be coming back and your parents won't be here until May or June we need to get rid of anything that will spoil and make a mess or stink when it goes bad," explained Mr. Ken.
"Ah, 'Dad Ken'," started Kevin.
"Yes, Kevin," replied 'Dad Ken'.
"Ahh, when I was talking with my dad, he told me … he told me that the doctors told him they might be out by the first of April. He also told me that if their skin grafts heal as fast as the ones they've already done then, well, they might be out by the middle of March to the beginning of April," was how Kevin described what his dad told him.
Kyle, upon hearing his dad told Kevin about the possibility of them being released earlier, put his hands on his hips and yelled at Kevin, "So, dad told you they might get out of the hospital sooner than they thought. You know what … he never did tell me that! He never tells me anything! That even proves he likes you more than he does me!" Kyle then ran out of the room with tears running down his cheeks. Charles ran after the younger twin.
"Kevin … your dad never told me that either. … Do you know why he may have told you that and not your brother, or even me?" asked 'Dad Ken'.
"No, sir, I don't. I guess since he and I talked a lot together he just, well, told me. I don't know why he didn't tell Kyle, or you even. Maybe … maybe he figured you'd talk to the doctors and they'd tell you," replied Kevin.
Mr. Ken walked over the older twin and hugged the lad. Kevin looked up at the man and smiled and leaned into the hug. Just then Kyle and Charles came back into the room.
"I'm sorry … I'm sorry I yelled at you, Kev," started Kyle. "I'm just mad … dad shares so much more with you than he ever does with me. I just … I just wish he would include me in more things."
Kevin walked over to his brother and the two hugged.
'Dad Ken' let the twins hug one another for a few moments before asking them if they were all ready to go back home. The twins looked at one another and smiled at the word 'home'. They then turned to 'Dad Ken' and told him they were. Charles then spoke up and said he was getting hungry. They all had a good laugh over that.
Mr. Ken said goodbye to Deputy Arnold and wished him man a safe night. The lads also wished the man a good night and before long the house was locked up and the Covers were on their way 'home'.
They stopped for a quick bite to eat on their way back to The Cove, and then Mr. Ken and the boys stopped by Ms. Judy's house to pick up Robert. The twins talked to Robert and Eric about their visit with their parents, while Ms. Judy and Mr. Ken listened in. Before long, Mr. Ken asked Ms. Judy and Eric to accompany them to Four Corners for something to eat and maybe a round of Miniature Golf. Ms. Judy said she'd go to dinner, but she didn't want to play miniature golf.
They ate on the Diner side that evening. The twins continued to tell the group about their talks to their parents and it was Kevin who told Ms. Judy, Robert and Eric that his dad told him they could be out of the hospital by the 1st of April. Ms. Judy immediately looked to Mr. Ken who just raised his eyebrows back at her meaning he'd talk to her about that later.
"Come on 'dad', play with us," called out Charles to Mr. Ken. The man just told the boys he wanted to talk to Ms. Judy while they played.
The Miniature Golf course manager said it was early enough that she could allow 5 people to play at the same time. She either said that because it was true, or because she knew the owner of the Miniature Golf course was right outside watching. Whichever the reason, Robert, Eric, Charles, Kevin and Kyle all got putters and a colored golf ball, then walked out to the first green. As the lads began playing their game, Mr. Ken and Ms. Judy talked
"Judy, when I talked to Parker … he said absolutely nothing to me about the possibility that he and his wife could potentially be finished with their treatments come next April. Kevin told us that after we were at their house for one last look around. Kyle was pissed that his dad didn't say anything to him and he yelled at Kevin. Judy … there has been an on-again and off-again riff between the twins ever since the Labor Day Picnic.
"Kyle … well, he's told me that Kevin and his dad would often go off most Sunday's to places unknown. They never take Kyle and he was mad that his dad has told Kevin not to tell him. Judy … Kyle has told me … that he wishes he had a dad who would pay attention to him and talk to him like they used to do. Kyle has even become clingy … to Dan.
"The thing with Kevin is … he is very moody and the more Kyle says anything bad or mean about Parker, Kevin will defend his dad. That's what usually causes them to have words," explained Ken.
"Does Kevin ever hit Kyle? Have you ever seen that?" Ms. Judy wanted to know.
"No, nothing that I've observed … and Kyle … he hasn't shown any bruises or marks. They were swimming all weekend, with their friends, and I would have noticed if there were," replied Mr. Ken.
"Ah, Judy … has Dan talked to you about the twins, or their dad, even?" asked Ken Thomas, out of the blue.
"No, he hasn't. Should he have?" replied a curious Judy Turner.
"Judy … I'm going to tell you something … that is in complete confidence. You have to … I want you to promise me … that you will let Dan do his job … before you go off half-cocked. OK?" said Ken, as he looked around to see who, if anyone, was nearby.
"Ken … you are sounding very mysterious. I'm not too sure I want to know what it is you want to tell me. … Does it have to do with your new foster lads?" finished Judy.
Ken looked around one more time before answering Judy. "Judy … do you promise NOT to go overboard until Dan can do some more investigating? I need to know that you will keep this close to your vest until Dan … that until Dan can either prove or disprove what he is looking into."
"Dang, Ken, you sure are making this sound like … like there is someone out to steal away someone. The twins maybe. This is so mysterious. I … you know if what you are wanting to tell me is going to be disruptive to the boys …I'll have to step in and take some sort of action," reasoned Judy Turner.
"Yes, yes I know you have to protect the twins, but … well, maybe your action could be to take … maybe … no action," teased Ken Thomas. "But, I'm not going to tell you what's going on, in the background, until you promise me you'll give Dan some time to research some things he is checking out."
Judy thought, for a few moments, about what Ken just told her. She knew she had an obligation to protect the kids, but she needed to also find out what might cause some disruption to the kids' lives and she knew they didn't need any more obstacles in their young lives. She also knew that if there were going to be disruptions with Ken they could also be with whomever she placed the twins with. She figured it would be better to protect the twins where she had a much better rapport than potentially with other foster parents.
Judy looked at Mr. Ken and said, "OK, Ken, you got me. They say 'Curiosity killed the cat' so … I guess I'll see if my curiosity will kill me," now laughed Judy. "OK, what is it you want to tell me?"
Ken looked around to make sure there still wasn't anyone in earshot. Then, Ken looked straight into Judy's eyes and proceeded to tell her what Robert told him about Parker Parchsons. The woman was shocked to hear that Robert may have found another of his abusers. Ken then told Judy what he felt was coming from Kevin and the nightmare dream he had. He then recounted what Kyle told him about his dad and some of the off comments the boys had made over the past two weeks.
Ken then told the Director of CPS what Dan was trying to do and the help he was getting from the department. Ken also disclosed to her what he found at the Parchsons that afternoon and what Deputy Arnold told him outside the house. Ken thanked the woman for believing in him and letting Dan continue to investigate Parker's background. Ken told Judy he hoped Dan could find some association with Robert's dad and possibly Parker Parchsons. Mr. Ken that said he hoped Dan could also possibly find there is also some association between Parker and Judge Terryman.
Ken then hit Judy with one more thing. He told her how Robert feels Kevin was being used like he was. Ken told her of the similarities between what his parents did with the money he earned for them and the nice things the twin's parents have versus the little the parents spent on their twins. Judy was speechless after hearing what Ken just told her. Tears came to her eyes as she thought about what the twins might have gone through.
The owner of The Cove and the Director of Children's Protective Services talked more about the twins and what they may or may not have gone through. Ken reminded Judy the twins were already seeing Doctor Doug and had another session scheduled for Tuesday night. The man told Judy that Doug Jennings hadn't told him anything the boys told him, but reminded Judy the doctor wouldn't say anything unless it had to do with them wanting to hurt themselves or others.
Judy told Ken she would keep her mouth shut, but she also told him he had to keep her in the loop and let her know what he found out immediately after he was told. Ken agreed to those terms and told the Director that he hoped Dan would find out something soon.
As the adults talked, the five boys out on the miniature golf course played for keeps. Well, Robert, Eric and Charles were the main contenders as they'd played the course more than the twins had. The twins were happy to be out there just having fun. Their mom and dad rarely took them places, like that, so this was a big treat for them. Whereas, the older lads had played often enough to know the intricacies of the course.
The twins would laugh at the older Cover lads as they yelled because they either missed a shot or made a particularly difficult one. Robert was in the lead during the first nine holes with his Best Friend, Eric, only one stroke behind. Charles was three strokes behind but he'd made more of the more difficult shots than his older 'brothers' and wasn't giving up. The twins were well behind them all and they stopped counting their strokes after the sixth hole because they saw the way the older boys were playing against one another.
By the time the boys got to the twelfth hole, Ms. Judy and Mr. Ken were on the side rails looking in and watching the boys play the remaining holes. The competition got so bad between the older lads that the twins began to play ahead of them and then would look back to watch what they did.
Going into the seventeenth hole, Eric was in the lead by one stroke while Robert and Charles were tied right behind him. The lads knew that this and the last hole could mean the difference between winning and losing. Charles had to go first on the Par 3 17th hole. He knew how to play the hole. He just had to make sure he didn't over or under play his stroke.
The pre-teen lined up his shot and putted the ball. The ball bounced off a rock first, then it hit a side railing and finally bounced back into the playing area. He was happy with his shot. The ball was close enough to the cup that he had the chance for a score of 2, as long as Robert or Eric didn't hit his ball.
Robert went next and he overplayed his shot. His ball bounced off a side rail before careening off the rock and rebounding back towards the tee. His ball was right in the middle of the playing surface blocking any chance by Eric to putt in that direction. Eric went next.
Eric looked over the hole to see how he should play it. He saw Robert's ball directly in his way so that meant he needed to use one of the side tees if he wanted to bypass it and get close to the cup. He also knew Charles' ball could be in the way depending on how he hit his golf ball. The teen knew if he hit Charles' ball he could bounce off it and have a bad lie. He also knew that if he hit Charles' ball wrong he could place his opponent's ball closer to the cup and thus give him an easier 2 for that hole.
Eric placed his ball on the right tee and stood over it to address the ball. He lightly struck his golf ball and it missed Robert's easily. He then watched as the ball struck a side rail, about two-thirds the way to the cup, and slowed down. Eric knew if the ball hadn't stuck the side railing, where it did, it probably would have gotten much closer to the cup than Charles' was. Sadly, Eric's ball came off the rail and went directly towards his opponent's golf ball and hit it.
Charles stood back and watched Eric putt his ball and how it hit the side rail. He was super surprised when the ball went off at a weird angle right towards his own ball. Then when Eric's ball struck his golf ball the pre-teen was amazed how his ball began moving in the direction of the cup. Charles couldn't contain his wishful thinking as he screamed for the ball to go in. Then it did. You would have thought the lad had won the Texas Open Golf Tournament he yelled so much and jumped around.
Robert three putted and was now totally out of contention. Eric made the cup on his second shot putting him and Charles tied. Judy and Ken yelled their encouragement, from the sidelines, to their respective boy. They then told the twins to hurry up and putt out so the 18th Hole would be wide open for Eric and Charles.
Robert joined the twins to putt out the 18th hole. Kyle got his ball in the Hole-In-One slot and won a free game. Robert and Kevin both got 3s. They all laughed and congratulated Kyle on his Free Game. Now all three lads watched as Charles and Eric argued who would go first.
Eric argued since Charles went first on the 17th he should go first now. Charles told Eric he got a one on the 17th and he reminded Eric he'd gotten a two so he had to go first. Robert put an end to the argument by siding with Charles.
Eric had to putt first, so he got his ball lined up and shot for the Hole-In-One slot. He missed and got a 2. Charles then placed his ball on the center tee and lined his ball up to win the free game and the match.
Charles knew he had to hit the ball with the right amount of force but not too much or else he would miss the chance at the win and possibly the match if he got a three. The pre-teen stroked the ball with what he thought was the right amount of oomph. The ball rose up the incline and it began to curve and away from the Hole-In-One target. Now the lad had to hope that when the ball fell to the bottom it would rest in the slot with a "1" in it.
Everyone watched what the ball was doing. Judy held her breath while Ken had a big smile on his face. The twins were opened mouth as they watched Charles' ball begin to roll back down the ramp. Eric kept yelling, "Go into the "3" slot, into the "3" slot!"
The ball, as it came down, actually bounced off the thin separator between the number "3" slot and the number "1" slot. As the ball bounced it was obvious the ball was going in either one of those slots. Which one, nobody knew. Then the ball fell back down and hit the separator again but this time it caromed off towards the '1' side and fell into the slot. Charles had won the game.
Everyone congratulated the pre-teen on his win and to celebrate Mr. Ken took them all over to Dairy Queen for banana splits. When the seven people had their concoctions they all sat at adjoining tables. It was then Charles had to tell everyone what his strategy was going into the game, so he would have a chance to beat his two older 'brothers'.
The twins thoroughly enjoyed their special treats. They each must have thanked Mr. Ken a half-dozen times for taking them to DQ and letting them have such a big treat. Ms. Judy listened as the twins told how their parents rarely took them out for any ice cream, let alone a banana split.
When the group finished eating, they cleaned their tables and then all the lads visited the Men's restroom. Robert was the first one out and went directly to his dad and asked if Eric could spend the night. Ms. Judy was there and said she didn't mind. 'Dad' Ken thought about it for a few moments and they decided that Eric would be there tomorrow anyway, so he agreed.
Judy followed Ken back to The Cove so they could talk some more. When they all got back to The Cove the boys wanted 'dad' Ken to watch a movie with them, but he declined telling the boys he and Ms. Judy needed to talk some more since they both just had a busy week. The lads headed down to the Theater while Ken and Judy headed for the Study.
Judy wanted to hear more information about the twins' actions and how they were integrating themselves into The Cove. Ken told the woman the twins took to the house and their new 'brothers' quickly. The owner of The Cove told Judy how the boys enjoyed the amenities and that they could bring their friends over. Ken told the woman about their shopping experiences and how the twins talked about not having as good a clothes as their parents had, but they still loved their mom and dad.
Judy wanted to know more about the changes that Ken had observed in Kevin. All Ken could do was tell her how he watched as the lad would go through a Jekyll and Hyde like change. Ken also speculated the lad might be going through some withdrawal issues because he is away from his parents, or he is apprehensive from being out of his comfort zone of his old house.
The owner of The Cove then told her how Kyle would inadvertently push Kevin's buttons and Kevin would get on his twin. Ken went on to explain how the twins agreed on calling him 'Dad Ken' but occasionally Kyle would revert to just 'Dad' and Kevin would get mad.
The two adults continued to talk more about Robert's feeling that he knew Parker Parchsons from before. They also covered the parallels between Robert being made to go with those men at age 10 ½ and Kevin and his dad's heading off together when Kevin was about the same age.
The two adults also discussed the extra money the Parchsons now have and where they might have gotten it and how it is similar to Robert's parents having loads of extra money available to them. Ken further complicated things when he told Judy that Dan could find no discernable income stream for the Parchsons other than Parker's poor showing as a salesman.
When the movie was over, the lads came up to the Study to ask Mr. Ken to help them find a snack they could eat before going swimming. Ms. Judy took that opportunity to hug Eric and tell him to have a good night and then she went home. 'Dad' Ken went with the five lads to the Kitchen Nook and suggested they have some cold milk and Momma Maria's sweet cakes. But the boys asked if they could have ice cream… Mr. Ken nixed that idea telling them they already had a banana split. The boys moaned some but they did have some sweet cakes and cold milk.
"'Dad Ken', come swim with us," asked Kyle, as he stopped by Mr. Ken's Study before heading down to the indoor pool to change.
"OK, I'll come down to swim, Kyle. But you tell Robert I'll swim only by MY RULES," advised 'dad Ken'.
When Kyle got down to the indoor pool, he went over to Robert and told him 'Dad Ken' was going to swim with them, but only by his rules. Kyle asked him what Mr. Ken meant by that and all Robert did was laugh. Robert then went to Eric and Charles and told them that their 'dad' was going to swim and they had to keep their swimsuits on.
Kevin and Kyle heard what Robert said and of course, they asked him what he meant. After all five lads had changed into their swimsuits, Robert sat the twins down and explained. The teenager told the twins that their 'dad' won't ever swim with them if he knows or even suspects they will take their suits off when they swim. Charles added that their 'dad' doesn't mind them and their friends' skinny dipping, but he forbids anyone to be forced to do so or even teased or shamed into swimming without their suits.
Eric then told the twins that they are not allowed to skinny dip with adults at any time. The teen then told Kevin and Kyle how when Ryan went swimming with them after he graduated high school Mr. Ken would not let him skinny dip with the boys anymore since he was now an adult. Robert told the twins how they all cried 'happy tears' and then had a good time swimming.
Just as the older boys finished telling the twins about Mr. Ken's Rules, they heard the man calling out, "Where is everyone?"
The six Covers had a good time swimming that night. The twins, in particular, had the best time as their dad had never swum with them like 'Dad Ken' did that night. Mr. Ken threw the lads out of the water and they laughed hard as they landed back in the water. Mr. Ken let them jump off the large rock that jutted out over the water. Something their parents would have had a difficult time allowing them to do as they both were afraid of heights. It was while they all swam that Mr. Ken remembered he told the younger lads he'd find some things for the boys to dive for.
It was almost twelve midnight when the boys went up to bed. They all stopped at the bathroom and drained their dragons, then they split up and went to their respective rooms. Of course, Eric went to Robert's room, the twins went to their shared bedroom, along with Chief. Charles, well, he had to sleep by himself. But Charles thought to himself, before going to sleep, that he was going to ask his 'dad' in the morning if he could have at least one friend spend the night next weekend.
The Cove was as quiet as a mouse that night as everyone slept soundly. That is until around 3 AM when Kevin had a nightmare. Kevin had thought long and hard about what his dad told him about Julian going to take of him and his twin before dad Parker and mom Vivian got out of the hospital. Kevin knew he didn't give enough effort to try to convince his dad to find someone different to take care of them. But, Kevin knew when his dad made up his mind even his mom couldn't change it. The older twin was still thinking about what his dad told him before succumbing to sleep.
Kevin's mind kept mulling his thoughts around inside of it while Kevin slept. It was those last thoughts about Julian that made up the scenario for Kevin's nightmare. In the beginning of his dream, Kevin saw how Julian took them to his home and initially got him and Kyle comfortable and made them feel like it was their home, too. It was as the twins got comfortable living with Julian that the man began to stop by their room when they changed. Or, he'd come into the bathroom when they were taking a shower.
Kevin's dream slowly turned into his nightmare as the dream took a dark line. In the dream, Julian began coming into the twins' room and waking Kevin to go with him to his bedroom where they could have some 'fun'. At first, Kevin went along with the man, but when Julian started to try to get Kyle to take showers with him and then had the younger twin sit on his lap, Kevin became afraid for Kyle.
Then one day, in Kevin's dream, the older twin came home only to find Kyle was nowhere to be seen. Kevin immediately checked everywhere in the house he could think of. He even checked the attic but only found it hot and full of old things and cobwebs. The older teen ran out to the garage to see if they could be out there.
Kevin got extremely scared for Kyle. He hoped Julian hadn't taken his twin with him to where he and his dad would meet the other men and their boys. Suddenly, he saw his brother pedaling his bike down the street. It was then Kevin saw a familiar car stop and a man that Kevin knew called out to Kyle to come over to him. Kyle went over to the man, who began to open the car door, and invite the younger twin inside.
It was then that Kevin screamed in his dream, "Kyle … DON'T GO WITH HIM! DON'T GO With Him!"
It was as Kevin's mind yelled that Kevin suddenly sat up in his bed and opened his eyes. The twin quickly looked around the room to see if he had yelled out loud and, if he had, did it wake his brother. Kevin was relieved Kyle remained asleep. Chief did wake up to Kevin's sudden movement to sit up in his bed. She stared at the lad as if she was waiting for something bad to happen.
The thing Kevin did notice was that he was sweating profusely and he felt cold sitting there in his bed. Kevin got out of bed and went to the bathroom to pee. Chief watched the older twin leave the bedroom and still didn't do anything but watch.
When the older twin came back, he changed his underwear and crawled back into his bed and found a section that was not damp from his sweat. He went right back to sleep and didn't have another bad dream the rest of the night. Chief watched for a few minutes more and when she noticed Kevin had settled down and was now asleep, she went back to sleep herself.
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