Summer Vacation Ch. 32byD.C. Roi©
The next week passed quickly. Tommy was very busy at the dojo, and the inn seemed to get busier every night. He left work and, exhausted, dragged himself home every night.
Greg was back and he picked Tina up after work every night, so Tommy didn't get to talk with her as much as he would have liked. She did tell him it would be OK if he took Bobby four-wheeling that Sunday, though. She also told him Greg was going to take her to dinner and a movie in another town. She said Greg looked relieved when he heard that Tommy was going to take Bobby off their hands for the day.
Tommy's birthday arrived and his aunt had a small celebration at home. He got a letter from his parents. They expressed their amazement at the bequest from Master Kwan and said they had total faith that he'd handle his inheritance wisely. They also wished him a happy birthday and sent along a ton of pictures they'd taken of what they were doing.
It was obvious from the tone of the letter and the pictures that Tommy's father was having the best time of his life and, since his mother wrote the letters, she was too. She wrote that both she and her husband had come to love Alaska and were thinking about moving there permanently.
"You know," Tommy told his aunt after he finished reading the letter. "I could probably fund a grant for Dad so he can continue his studies up there, seeing as how they like it so much."
Karen smiled at him. "What if they want you to come up and join them?" she asked.
"I might go," he said, "but just for a visit. No way am I going to live in Alaska."
His aunt laughed. "I didn't think you would," she said. "I understand from Kim that you've been seeing quite a bit of her friend, Donna. What's going to happen when she goes back to college?"
The young man shrugged. "I don't know," he said. "I mean, it isn't like we're going steady or anything."
"That's probably just as well," his aunt said. "You shouldn't be settling down with one person at your age. With the dojo and school, you already have too much to do."
"Yeah, I suppose so," Tommy agreed, although he knew that if Tina would have him, he'd settle down with her in a minute.
Also on his birthday, he stopped at the lawyer's office and signed all the papers that would officially transfer Kwan's estate to him.
"So far, everything you've done leads me to believe you are a sensible young man," Attorney Brothers told him, "so I doubt I need to tell you this, but I would be very careful if I were you. You have a lot of money, but you'll find it can disappear quickly if you aren't careful."
"I'm aware of that, sir," Tommy said. "And believe me, I do plan to be careful." He smiled at the lawyer, who he'd come to like. "And I'm sure that if I'm not careful, my attorney will remind me about it, won't he?"
Brothers laughed and said, "He certainly will."
"What about the trusts I asked you to set up?" Tommy asked.
"They are all done. Now that you've become an adult and have accepted the estate, they will be activated. Documents notifying the recipients will be mailed to the beneficiaries of the trusts immediately," the lawyer said. "And I had the bank transfer sufficient funds to cover the outstanding portion of your aunt's mortgage. She'll need to sign some papers, but for all intents and purposes, her home is free and clear."
"Good," Tommy said. He stood up and so did the lawyer. They shook hands. "Thanks, Mr. Brothers, I'm lucky to have an attorney like you."
"You take care, young man," the lawyer said.
Tommy's last night of working at the Four Corners Inn finally arrived. As usual, they were terribly busy, but he did manage to find a few minutes to talk with Tina between customers.
"I'm really going to miss you," she said. "That new boy Mr. Dreisbach hired isn't nearly the worker you are."
"He'll learn," Tommy said. "You just have to give him time."
Tina nodded. "Yeah, but I can't talk to him like I can you," she said. "And we won't be able to talk on the way home, either."
"I've got a phone," Tommy told her. "And I plan to keep in touch, anyhow. Bobby would never forgive me if I didn't."
He hoped Greg wouldn't show up to pick her up that night but, unfortunately, he did, and Tina left with him.
"Thomas," Mr. Dreisbach said, "it has been a pleasure having you work for me. I wish you well. Don't be a stranger, now."
"Yes," his wife added, "after all, no one makes the fuss over my cooking you do."
"I'll stop by from time to time," Tommy told them. "I mean, where else can I get food this good? There isn't a better place in town to get good food."
Mrs. Dreisbach blushed furiously. "Go on," she sputtered, "you flatterer!"
Tommy left the restaurant and headed for his aunt's house. When he got there, Bud's car was parked out front, but the house was dark. He had a feeling it wouldn't be long before Karen and Bud announced that the big cop was moving in. As far as Tommy knew, the policeman hadn't been to his apartment in days.
He went in the house and started down the hall hoping Kim wouldn't slip into his room tonight. She hadn't done that for some time and the young man found he really didn't mind. Maybe he'd finally be able to get his sex life straightened out. It would be nice if he could settle down with just one or two women for a change. He just reached his bedroom when the phone rang.
"Who the hell is calling at this hour?" he thought as he walked out to the living room to grab the phone. "Hello?" he said.
"I wanna talk to Tommy Jackson, that you?" a rough voice said.
"Yes, that's me," the young man replied. "Who's this?"
"None of your fuckin' business," the caller snapped in reply. "Look, kid, I got a message for you, and you fuckin' well better pay real good attention. You got that?"
Tommy was shaken. He had no idea who this was, but he was paying attention. "I'm listening," he said.
"OK. Here's the deal," the unknown man said. "Your girlfriend, Tina's in a lot of trouble. You don't do exactly like I say, she could wind up hurt real bad. That fuckin' rug rat of hers, too. You got that?"
A cold chill gripped Tommy. "What's wrong with Tina?" he exclaimed. "You bastard! If you've hurt her..."
"Hey, kid, lissen up!" the man said, "You ain't in no position to be yellin' at me. You just fuckin' shut up and lissen!"
"OK," Tommy replied. He forced himself to be calmer. "What do you want?"
"You get your ass down to the park. Right now!" the man said. "The back part, behind the tennis courts. You know where I mean?"
"Yeah, I know where that is," Tommy said. It was near the spot, in fact, where he and Donna made love not that long ago.
"You damn well better come alone, too, you got that?" the caller told him. "No cops. We see any sign of cops, the slut's gonna be fucked up good."
"I'll come alone," Tommy said. He was shaking with both fear and anger. Tina's ex-husband had to be behind this. It came to him. The car lights he'd seen! Ron must have been following him for weeks! "I'll be there in fifteen minutes."
"You damn well better move your ass," the man said. "We ain't gonna wait all night. Fuckin' chick's hot-lookin' you know, maybe me and the boys'll find out how hot, we got to wait too long."
"I'm leaving right now," Tommy said. "Don't hurt her." The phone went dead.
"What's up?" Bud asked.
Hearing his friend's voice startled Tommy and he spun around to find the big cop standing in the living room with him. "Ah..." he stammered.
Bud had awakened when the phone rang. He heard Tommy talking, got up, and had been standing in the hallway, listening while the young man carried on his conversation. "Look, I heard your side of that call and it didn't sound right," he said. "Maybe I've been a cop too long, but I can tell when things aren't right."
"Get some clothes on," Tommy said, "I'll explain what's going on on the way." He didn't want to waste time and even though the caller told him not to bring the cops, he thought having Bud along would be wise.
"Where are we going?" Bud asked as they went down the hallway toward the bedrooms.
"For a walk in the park," Tommy said.