Danger Runs In Our Family

Chapter Eight

We returned to Aspen Lodge about five thirty and we sent the boys to wash up before we went to the mess hall to eat, at about 6. The security detail took turns using the half bath and did the same. I went with the boys and watched as they washed up and I noticed that Luke seemed in charge here, making sure his younger brothers had washed up good and that no mess was left behind when they finished. Once Tom was all cleaned up he ran over to me and asked if we were going to eat with all the soldiers again. I told him we were and he said that was "way cool" the other two thought it was neat so when we were all done we went to Wayne's bathroom to see if he was ready yet, but he said he needed a few more minutes so I sent the boys to get Bill and Kevin as I returned to the living room and the security detail. One of the agents took me aside and told me that Jim and Jake had arrived and I should know that they had eloped right after our reception was over and they were playing down their own wedding, so as to not take anything away from our honeymoon or from the boys first trip to the retreat.

At dinner, the boys split up and each of the younger three sat with a different table and were treated like little brothers to all the adults at their table. That gave me a chance to tell the older boys and Beth and Wayne what I had learned about Jim and Jake and Beth told me to leave it in her hands and she'd put together something nice for them before the week was over, with the help of Scott and the mess hall captain.

After dinner, we all watched a movie with some of the staff and before the end, the three lads were nodding off and Wayne and I, along with our security detail, got them to bed and all tucked in.

The following day, after their swimming lesson, the boys wanted to go for another pony ride so we hiked to the barn, and dawdled quite a bit, the boys being very curious about the woods and that some places had paths and some you could walk between the trees and find all sorts of good stuff, like funny shaped flowers like the protected lady slippers we had to warn the boys not to pick, and the mountain laurel which was so prevalent in the area. They liked turning over fallen logs to see the different bugs and worms under them and it was a bonus to find a toad or lizard under one. We had fun watching them again get a riding lesson and we told them that in a day or so we would ride horses with them and take them out on a trail ride. Our two secret service agents were constantly with us, and as annoying as that was it was totally necessary, we knew, but it was our honeymoon after all and while the boys rode around in the coral with the servicemen teaching them the finer points of guiding the ponies to go where they wanted them to go, Wayne and I found five minutes alone in an empty stall to do a bit of serious snogging. After brushing ourselves off we returned for the end of their lessons and then we five headed back to Aspen Lodge with our two minders, who had the obligatory rifles along with their sidearms. The rifles were necessary out in the woods as occasionally bear had been sighted here.

About halfway to the Lodge, the boys spotted a big outcropping of rock that was too interesting to pass so we all hiked out to it to have a closer look. The three lads had just scooted under a low overhang of rock to see if there was a cave or something even more interesting hiding under there, when in quick succession there came rapid automatic rifle fire and both agents were down and so was Wayne! One of the agents had fallen near me and I reached over and removed his rifle and sidearm. All three were alive and moaning and I distinctly heard the rustling of leaves from above as someone was making their way down the hill above to the rock the boys and I were huddled under. The boys were clearly frightened and I shushed them and asked them to get as far under the overhang as possible. Gary whispered to me there was a big metal box under there and there wasn't much room, but they'd scrunch up as much as they could. I thanked him and asked the boys for their shirts as I might need them. They pulled off their new Ts and I cautiously lay in front of the boys once they were tucked in under the overhanging rock. From the noises coming down the hill toward us the shooter was coming down right in front of us and as a pair of grubby sneakers and ratty jeans appeared in front of me I rapidly fired the automatic pistol from the low position I was lying prone in and shot at just above both ankles and as the male form fell in front of me I shot him again in his right shoulder which caused him to drop his rifle in agony. I quickly got out from under the rock and pressed the panic button on the first agent's jacket lapel and stuffed his wound with one of the tee shirts and then went to Wayne. It just about killed me to see him in such pain, but he was regaining consciousness and he told me to do what I had to do so I stuffed his shoulder wound with another of the Ts and then went to the second agent who was out cold, his head having hit a rock as he fell and used the third T to stuff his gut wound. I couldn't keep pressure on all three wounds so I went back to Wayne and applied pressure to his shoulder wound and by now the boys were scrambling out from under the overhang and Luke and Gary went to the two agents and I asked them to press on the wadded up Ts to try to stem the flow of blood, just as I was doing for Wayne.

I was just about to press the second agent's panic button when a whole squad of Marines and 10 Secret Service agents descended on us and it was then I started to lose it and I hugged and Kissed Wayne as gently as I could as a medic tried to get to him and then I grabbed each of the boys up and did the same to them. In all my years of being the cool calm and collected one out on a mission, I had never been so scared in my whole life as I had been when I saw Wayne get shot and the panicked looks on the boys' faces. We four were swaddled in blankets to help stave off the shock our bodies had been put through and I was able to tell one of the senior officers about the metal box under the rock that I guessed the shooter was either trying to protect or coming to get when he had spotted our group exploring the rock formation where the box was hidden. I told the officer I didn't think the man even knew who we were. He had not said anything before or after getting shot so I guessed that when he saw the armed agents he must have thought they were after him or the box, or both.

I grabbed up the boys again as they prepared to carry Wayne down to the path and a large golf cart someone had driven here in, was there and they laid him gently on the back seat and the boys and I in the front passenger seat, all huddled together so an agent could drive us up to the lodge where a helicopter was waiting to fly him to Bethesda. He was groaning now but someone had redressed his wound and given him something for the pain so I turned a bit so we could communicate and he told me not to leave the wounded agents waiting, to have them flown out with him. I relayed that to our driver and he radioed to his team and told them to hurry along with the two secret service agents as the President wasn't moving without his agents. Soon it was two more large carts moving rapidly toward the helipad and there were several trained medical personnel waiting for us when all three carts arrived. Beth and Kevin and Bill were all there along with Jim and Jake. Kevin immediately broke from their group and rushed to his dad's side. I had the boys down on the ground and Bill and Beth were checking them all over to make sure they were alright and Bill grabbed me tight and told me he was so worried for all of us when the retreat went into lockdown when the panic signal had been received.

They loaded the injured into the helicopter and one of the team came and grabbed my arm and dragged me into the helicopter, to ride with Wayne to the hospital. Since none of the wounds appeared to be life-threatening, and everyone was stable at that time, I was able to speak with Wayne and he held my hand as we flew to the hospital. I told him how much I loved him, how much I admired him and that he better pull through this alright or I'd never forgive him. He, in turn, told me how much he loved me and our boys, all of them, and he wanted me to know he'd never willingly leave me or the boys. I kissed Wayne on his lips when the medic told us we were about to land. I quickly checked on the agents and they were in pain still, but seemed much more alert now.

The waiting was the worst and even though the hospital had a special area for the president I could still see the media gathering down on the ground level as I paced and waited alone, with the exception of the young agent assigned to me while we were in the hospital. Very soon a very compassionate nurse brought me the news that Wayne was doing just fine and the bullet had been stopped by part of the shoulder blade so that was why there was no exit wound. Nothing major had been damaged and muscles and tendons had only been superficially disturbed so he had had a very lucky break and was currently in the recovery room and would be up to his suite in about an hour. I asked about the agents and was told that both should recover very well and that the worst was the one shot in the shoulder as the ball joint of the shoulder had been hit and shattered so they had fitted him with a replacement shoulder joint and his recovery would take some time, but he would be as good as new after some physical therapy.

Wayne was a bit groggy when he was wheeled into the suite but when the orderlies had left he gave me one of the worst tasting kisses ever. I teased him about his anesthesia flavored breath and we finally had our chuckle together as I got him some ice chips to moisten his mouth and throat. He asked about the wounded agents and I told him what the friendly nurse had told me and then I told him that our family was coming on the next copter to see him. I told him that Beth had wanted the little ones to get cleaned real good and into fresh clothes before they flew down. She and Jim and Jake would accompany all five boys. Wayne then asked if his vice president had stopped by and I told him no, he was being kept busy at the White House, but his wife had sat with me for about 20 minutes before her agents suggested she return to the White House as they still hadn't learned anything about the shooter himself as yet. They had determined the metal box hidden under the rock's overhang had about 200 thousand dollars and massive amounts of meth in it, but as yet they didn't know if he was a hired assassin or if what was in the box was his own stash.

We had a great reunion with all the boys and their chaperones when they all arrived just after Wayne got off the phone with the vice president, assuring him he would be fine by the time our planned honeymoon was over. Probably a bit sore still and a bit more healing to be done, but nothing that would interfere with him returning to work.  

We avoided the press when we left the hospital later that night and we all felt bad having to leave Wayne there for at least the night. He would return to the retreat the next afternoon and I wanted to stay with him, but he made sense in telling me one of us should be there with the boys as they were still a bit shook up about the whole incident and seeing their protectors shot didn't help either. I had achieved hero status in their eyes and he told me it was a good chance for me to bond with them, he'd have his chance when he returned to us tomorrow. At least we were all able to have dinner together, although poor Wayne had a mild diet so soon after coming out of the anesthesia.

We did make it back to the Aspen Lodge in time for the late news and the first item covered, of course, was the shooting of the President and two secret service agents, and how the "first husband" had protected the children and shot the attacker. Blurbs like "Don't Mess With the First Husband" were shown at the bottoms of the ads until the broadcast finally started. For all the hoopla they gave a concise account as to what had happened when we stumbled upon a drug dealers hoard (it was now established he was a drug dealer). They described how I had protected the boys and from my hidden position I had shot the attacker and administered first aid, while teaching the two oldest boys how to assist. Pictures of us boarding Marine 1 at the White House at the beginning of our honeymoon were flashed on the screen and the boys whooped when they recognized themselves on the screen.

When it was over Beth announced it was time for bed and I scooted them off my lap and escorted them down the hall to their bedroom and bath and watched as they washed up and brushed their teeth. While they used the toilet I turned down their beds, getting them ready for their boys as they each came out of the bathroom. I had just tucked each one in and had kissed each one goodnight and was about to turn off the room light, leaving the night light on in the bathroom, when Tom asked from his bed, "You really saved us today didn't you?" and Gary asked "You were putting yourself in front of us weren't you?" and as if they had rehearsed it Luke said "This all means you love us doesn't it, just like a real dad does?" I was a bit choked up but I told them the best I could that when I saw we were being attacked I thought of protecting them as best I could, even as worried about Wayne as I was, and I wasn't going to let that man hurt any one of us more than what he already had, including the agents. They thanked me and each asked for another hug and when they did each whispered in my ear, "Goodnight Dad, I love you." I told them all to sleep well and that Wayne and I loved them too. Bill and Kevin had waited in the living room for me and they told me they too were going to hit the hay, but they wanted a good night hug from their hero and so I got them from them both and sent them to their room.

At breakfast the next morning we were greeted at the mess hall by a standing ovation as we entered and the boys all stayed by me as we ate. Many of the staff came up to me and gave me praise for protecting my family and for quickly administering first aid, I told them all it was the result of my training, which most of them would get, or had gone through already. Everyone wanted to know how Wayne and the secret service agents were doing and I was pleased to tell them that Wayne might be released later in the day, and that the agents appeared to be doing very well.

Jim called me a short time later and told me that the doctors were willing to release Wayne after noontime and that they, Jim and Jake, would be accompanying him here to the retreat. He told me that there was to be a press briefing at the hospital and Wayne wanted me there with him for that, but it wasn't necessary for all the boys to come for Wayne thought that might be too much exposure for them to handle all at once. He said that Marine 1 would fly me to Bethesda and would stay to fly us all back to the retreat.

While the younger boys were having their swimming lesson with Scott, supervised by Beth, of course, I showered again and dressed in a nice suit to go pick up Wayne. I had already packed a bag for Wayne with a good suit and all the accessories and I was ready to travel to go get my man. All five boys and Beth and Scott saw me off and in a short time I was in Wayne's suite at the hospital and we were in each other's arms, swapping spit, which I told him would help him heal faster. I helped him dress and then we waited for the doctor to finish with the reporters and then one of Wayne's aides from the White House came and got us for our portion of the press briefing. Except for the immobilizer sling, he had to wear Wayne looked the studly President I had fallen in love with and had married just a few days ago, and I felt very proud to be at his side. We held hands as we entered the conference room to a blaze of light from the TV cameras and applause from the reporters.

They had not expected to see us there, we had not put out there that Wayne was up and about but they had been told just as the surgeon had finished his last question so we were somewhat of a surprise to them. They asked how he was feeling and he told them that he was feeling very grateful that the man standing with him, his spouse, was with him the other day when he was shot, because I had handled the situation just as I had been trained to do, and had prevented a number of deaths because as Wayne saw the shooter come close to where he had lain wounded he saw the rifle being aimed again at him just as I shot the man. He asked the crowd if they thought he had picked a good man to love and the room again erupted in cheers, whistling, and applause. I was totally embarrassed but the next question was for me so I answered the question: "What was going through my mind during the confrontation?" My response was that protection of the ones I loved and those others who were wounded were my priority and that my training kicked in and I was just glad that everything had turned out so well. We had been told that the shooter would heal, in a prison hospital, and the injuries to his legs would not prevent him from being able to walk again at some point. I told the reporters that both Wayne and I were thankful that his injuries were not more severe, but my training had saved his life, because I wouldn't have hesitated to shoot him dead if I had been able to see him aiming again at Wayne.

We both assured the press that the young boys were not hurt during the incident and they were missing their other dad last night. We thanked them for coming out today and we left to be flown back to the retreat and the rest of our honeymoon.

By the time we landed at the helipad at Camp David a "Welcome Home" sign had been created and strung above the pool terrace. We were swarmed by all the boys when we stepped out of the helicopter and again we were greeted by applause as we made our way to the terrace. The same thing happened when we all appeared at the mess hall to eat with the staff, but the party this night was for Jake and Jim. Beth had coordinated a surprise reception for them with the crew from the mess hall and the contingent of Secret Service agents at the retreat, and boy were they surprised. As much as we wanted to be able to party all night with them, by the time the younger boys started to show signs they were getting too tired to stay any longer I had convinced Wayne to come with me up to Aspen Lodge and get some more rest.

We left the party and we took the three boys with us up to our lodge to get ready for bed. We left Beth dancing with Scott and Bill and Kevin told us they'd be up in a while, they were talking with a group of service people who they were friendly with. There were now four secret service agents assigned to us and they went through the lodge before we entered and when given the all clear we were allowed inside. The boys wanted Wayne to supervise their bathroom duties tonight, with Tom telling him how much he missed him last night as they walked arm in arm to the bathroom. While they did that I turned down each of their beds, getting them ready for the three sleepy heads. Wayne came out to give the three, some privacy as they all used the toilet and we then tucked them in together and gave out our goodnight kisses. Luke told us that this was the best time of the day for him, as he really liked when we took the time to tuck them in and gave them kisses for a good nights sleep. They all said "Good night Dads" as we left the room and Wayne was as moved as I had been last night. I steered Wayne to our room and helped him get undressed, giving his cock a generous amount of cleaning as I sucked him off and I was going to tuck him in too when he flipped the covers back and urged me to join him in bed, which I did, being very careful of his right shoulder as I gently and slowly made love to his eager hole, after he had lubed me up and told me he needed an injection of sperm to help him sleep.

When we returned from the pool the next afternoon Luke asked if they were going to get to go to school when we returned to the White House. I was stuck for a second, as I hadn't thought about that, other than when we had interviewed Beth for the governess job and we told her she would have to make sure they were up and ready for school each morning. Beth piped up and said she had it all in hand and they would have two mornings of testing after we returned to DC and then the next Monday they would start regular school at the private elementary school affiliated with the high school Bill and Kevin attended. I looked at her with a raised eyebrow and she snickered at me! She said it was all part of her job and everything was set up already. She then coyly asked if we were going to hire Scott to come to the White House pool to continue to teach the boys to swim as she'd have to add that to the schedule she was still making up for the boys. She told us Scott would be fully retired at the end of February and he was willing to continue to teach the boys for as long as we wanted, he'd just be a private citizen earning a little to augment his retirement. Wayne nudged me with a malicious little gleam in his eyes, but I couldn't tease her, not now anyway, so I told her that was a good idea, as long as he was willing, and to please add swimming lessons to the boys' schedule. She said she'd do that right away and left us to do so. Wayne grinned that grin at me and I told him that I thought there was something brewing there between Beth and Scott, he in turn laughed and said a blind person could tell there was.

The rest of our stay at the retreat was much calmer, with the exception of a Marine physical therapist working with Wayne every day to help him strengthen his arm and shoulder and the day before we left we took all the boys down to Bethesda to see the wounded agents before they were released. The boys were all very interested in their healing progress, as were Wayne and I, and we assured them their positions at the agency were still theirs as soon as they had both had a chance to heal. We arrived back at the White House on a Sunday afternoon and by then I had received reports from the security company I had hired to watch over the house Bill and I had inherited from his folks and although there was nothing alarming in the reports some of the enclosed photos showed the landscaping was not being tended to as I had asked the maintenance crew to do. I decided that I'd go and look over the situation myself and when I told Wayne about my concerns he insisted on going with me, in fact, all 5 boys wanted to go so we used a van from the White House motor pool and with six agents we all went to the house in Alexandria. Bill went ahead as we walked up the drive and opened the front door and turned off the alarm. We walked through the house and seeing everything inside was alright we then trooped outside and walked around the house and the pool area.

The border landscaping looked pretty haggard, while the planting beds around the rest of the yard looked just fine. Bill told me he thought maybe the water line to the planting beds around the house's foundation had either gotten cut or blocked, as the other planting beds were OK. So we tested the sprinklers and found that indeed the sprinkler heads at the foundation beds were not working and I called the maintenance company and told them about the problem and told them to have the sprinkler system fixed and the now dead plantings replaced. I thought about making a big deal about them not taking care of this before, but I didn't feel like stirring up things, at least not yet. On the ride back to the White House Wayne asked what we were going to do about the house, were we going to sell it? I asked why he asked and he told me he had liked the place since the first time he and Kevin had stayed over with Bill and I and he always thought of it when he thought of his days after he left office, of all of us living together in a nice home somewhere. He said we had just under three years to think about it, and to keep an eye out for a nice ranch style house to put in the back, beyond the pool, for the secret service agents we'd have with us for the rest of our lives.

When we got back to the White House Bill and Kevin were both handed several envelopes as we entered the family quarters and Beth said we needed to talk, before Wayne went down to the Oval Office for the rest of the afternoon. Beth told us the boys' placement tests would begin at 9 in the morning until noon and the same the next day. She thought we were going to be surprised by the results but she wouldn't say anything for fear of jinxing them. The three youngest came running up to say bye to their daddy and then they whined to me that Bill and Kevin had locked their room, so I explained the privacy rules to them and then took them to the gym in the lower level and we all had some fun "working out" with a game of basketball and then in the games room we played ping pong for about another hour. We went back to the gym when Wayne had his physical therapy and the boys got to see what he had to go through to get back in shape, and I got to perv on the President as he lifted weights and did his stretching routines.

During our dinner that night Bill and Kevin showed us the acceptance letters they had gotten from various colleges and universities they had applied to and then they showed us the ones from Georgetown University,  in the Georgetown neighborhood. They had applied together for that one and because of its high standards they weren't counting on getting in, it being a much smaller university than any of the others they had applied to, but there they were, two acceptance letters for the fall semester. They explained they could live at home and commute and they had accepted them both as incoming sophomores, with just one class each to do on campus during the summer. We were so proud of both of them and very pleased they wanted to live "at home". There couldn't be anyplace safer to live than the White House. They would each have a secret service agent or two assigned to them, Kevin of course, as the President's son and Bill as my ward and me being the spouse of the President.

The next morning Beth got the three musketeers up and showered and dressed before we all had breakfast and then she took them to a quiet room where she had three educators from the private school set up to begin their placement tests. Wayne and I went downstairs to the staff meeting and we listened as they proposed different projects I could get involved with, as other first spouses had. I listened for about a half hour before I asked everyone for their attention." I know the previous administration is gone, I know now that the attack on Wayne and myself was drug-related, but if I do have a voice I want it to be for the good of all people, not just the LGBT community, but the fact that Jeff Sessions was against the Matthew Shepard and James Byrd Jr Act still rankles me. James Byrd Jr was not, as far as I know, gay, but he was the black man who was dragged to death behind a vehicle. In light of the former president's support from white supremacists groups and the KKK, I want to be a voice for tolerance and understanding. I'm not afraid to ruffle a few feathers, but after the last administration, I feel these hate groups need a bit of their own medicine. "I sat down and Wayne patted my thigh under the table.

One staffer was asking how one gets involved in something like that and Wayne squeezed my thigh really hard for a second, letting me know that now was not the time nor the place to bring up that subject. Instead that night, for dinner, we had guests. Wayne had invited the director of Special Ops and the director for the FBI to dinner and we had a great time entertaining the boys, all five of them during our meal. The younger boys kept asking us questions and when we answered them they would say something like, "I thought so" or "I hope I spelt that right". We explained to our guests that the lads were being given placement tests today and tomorrow, and I guess they understood as the director for Special Ops said," Better them than me!"

After we had finished our meal Beth took the munchkins off to the game room and Bill and Kevin went along with them for a while. We four men went into Wayne's private home office and Wayne explained why he had extended the dinner invitation. "Since the debacle of the incident in Virginia, only one person is in custody. I want to know what is being done to stop these hate groups, and specifically the men that pounded that hate shit into that young man. I'm not pointing the finger at either of you, but I want some answers before I unleash my secret weapon.

The director of the FBI was very forthcoming about his plans to get new agents infiltrated into these hate groups, but he said this always took time and the safety of his team was taking precedence over speed.  The director of the special ops troops said the exact same thing, infuriating and frustrating both Wayne and me. After the two visitors had left, Wayne and I sat and I said that in this day and age of computers it was amazing to me that more about these groups wasn't known. All that was known was what they wanted the public and their followers to know through their websites. I felt that if they had websites they must be doing more on computers than they wanted anyone to know about.

Comments appreciated at Art West