Our Little Secret Ch. 10bydeltablonde©
Chapter 10 -- The Hunting Party
Jen decided to rent her house furnished, so a great deal of its contents could stay, but all her personal belongings had to either be packed for moving, put into storage, or be discarded. April whipped the house into shape much more quickly than Jen imagined was possible. She cleaned everything, and packed up everything that Jen was not going to leave behind for rent. April washed every stitch of clothing Jen owned, or sent it to the drycleaners, leaving Jen with a fresh wardrobe. Her judgment seemed closely aligned with Jen's preferences, letting Jen focus on things like finances, utilities, moving companies, rental agencies, and other logistics while April did the hands-on chores.
Joel effectively moved in to Jen's house, not so much out of romantic aspirations, but to be as helpful as he could in preparation to their departure for the west coast. His apartment was temporary anyway, and it would take very little effort to pack it up -- more like packing a hotel room. Not to mention, Joel would need a place to stay during his return trips to Boston. He would eventually let go of his existing apartment -- it was too expensive to use as an occasional crash pad -- but he decided to keep it until he found something more suitable.
April worked tirelessly during the week -- easily ten hours every day. When she offered to work Saturday, Jen said it was too much -- April had done enough. But when April said she really needed the money, and Jen would be doing her a favor by letting her work, so Jen agreed, but insisted April take Sunday off.
April said Monday would be her last day. She was living with roommates, and their lease was expiring at the end of the month, which was Monday. They were losing the apartment. April needed to find a new place to live, which explained the need for extra cash.
"Live here with us until ..." Jen offered, and then stopped to think. "April, would you like to move in here, and look after this place until it's rented out? It won't be perfect, there will be painters and tradesmen fixing things up, but it is a place to stay, and I would feel so much better having someone I trust living in it." Jen figured It would take a month or two of fixing up before she would be ready to rent it.
"When would I move in?" April asked.
"Now!" Jen smiled. "Whenever you want. It gives you time to look for another place."
"I'm sorry, Jen, but I couldn't afford to live here."
"No, April, I won't charge you rent. Your job will be look after the place, and for that you stay here for free."
"Until you rent it out?"
"Right," Jen nodded. "Say in two or three months."
"I promise I'll look after it really good," April solemnly declared.
"I know you will," Jen smiled. "I wouldn't ask anyone to do this." And so the deal was sealed. April would move in right away.
Then April offered to drive Jen's car and corgis out to California. She knew Jen was already nervous about flying the dogs on the airplane. Jen agreed it made good sense, as long as April understood there was no rush for her to get there, and she could take her time and not feel pressured.
September First fell on a Tuesday, and Jen was scheduled to begin work one week later, the Tuesday day after Labor Day. She and Joel decided to fly to San Francisco on Friday, and take the long weekend to settle into their new, temporary home in San Jose. April would start her transcontinental drive with the Corgis on the same day.
Don McLean's assistant, Kristen Jergens, sent an email to Jen on Tuesday saying they had located a furnished home that met her requirements. It was a small bungalow with a fenced in back yard with two bedrooms, and a furnished basement that could be used as an office. She included several pictures. She invited Jen to fly out to see it, but warned time was getting tight. Jen and Joel looked at the pictures, and Jen sent a reply email saying it would be fine.
Wednesday was Jen's last day at Quinton, two weeks and a day after she put in her notice. She had let it slip she was taking a job at Google on the west coast with a big bump in pay. Her co-workers' reactions ranged from unguarded jealousy to heartfelt congratulations. Amazingly, Jen was busy all day with final touches on policies Quinton was working on.
By the time she came home from Quinton for the last time, April had pretty much packed everything up. The dining room was chocked full of packed moving boxes that would be shipped out when Jen and Joel found a more permanent home in California. Four massive suitcases were ready to fly to San Francisco. Google would pay the extra baggage fee. Jen was left to pack her own carry-on suitcase.
Thursday ended up being a relaxing day of tying up loose ends instead of the mayhem last minute frenzy Jen was expecting. April was busy getting the dogs ready to travel, and she had just picked up Jen's car from the mechanic for a once over before the long trip. Joel was back at his apartment, packing up.
"Oh my God!" Jen heard April from the living room late in the morning. Jen walked in to see what was happening. April was watching television, but by the time Jen entered the room, whatever April was watching had been replaced by an advertisement. "They're showing an interview of the Albuquerque orgy guy tonight," April said. "They say one man forced all those women to have sex." Jen had heard of the Albuquerque orgy -- everyone did. It seemed too fantastical for one man to make all those women do that against their will.
Later, just after two o'clock, Jen was in the living room with April when another plug for that evening's Insight show came on again.
It is a shocking true story that even we didn't believe until we saw it for ourselves. Join Sally Jamison at nine o'clock tonight when she interviews the one man who forced twelve unsuspecting women into performing unspeakable acts of sex and debauchery in Albuquerque. Viewers, and especially parents are strongly advised tonight's episode of Insight is not appropriate for all viewers. Jen liked Sally Jamison. She was levelheaded, hard hitting, but compassionate. Jen normally didn't follow this kind of hyped up story, but it was Sally Jamison. She didn't do sensationalist or fluff pieces. If they were building up something like this for Sally Jamison, it really was big.
Jen texted Joel.
How bout you me & April go out to dinner tonight at 7 -- near my place -- nothing fancy? Jen figured that gave them enough time to get home to watch Insight at nine. Joel replied:
Sounds perfect. I'm at the office now -- all done at home. Will be your place by 6. Jen had lists of to-do list. She spent most of Thursday afternoon going through all her lists, verifying she had checked everything off. By five o'clock on Thursday, she and April had nothing to do. Jen opened a couple of beers and sat down with April and celebrated.
Joel spent the afternoon working with Barry, and the last hour with Sylvie. She said an office manager with her responsibilities makes on average $60,000 a year. Joel sent an email to Autumn to increase Sylvie's salary appropriately.
Sylvie thought it was better to leave the office in Boston. Joel said he would try that for now, and see how it goes. She was welcome to fly out to the West coast to meet with him from time to time if she wanted the change of pace.
Joel shook hands with Barrie and Sylvie. He thanked them both for the wonderful job they were doing. Joel arrived at Jen's at five thirty. They all agreed on a local Boston Pizza, and arrived there by six thirty. That's when the Insight episode came up in conversation over dinner.
"I want you to know something, Jen," Joel said. She looked at him strangely, mostly because he was acting strangely. "I love you and I would never do anything to hurt you."
"Uh, okay?" she answered cautiously. "That's good to know, and I love you too." She paused. "Joel, what's going on? You're kind of freaking me out."
"I don't mean to freak you out," Joel said. "Just remember I love you, and I would never hurt you."
- - -
Jen, Joel, and April watched Sally Jamison introduce the show after the viewer discretion warning.
This is a story that seems impossible to believe, and I would not have believed it myself if I had not seen the evidence with my own eyes. In the interviews that follow, I will speak with a man who openly admits he was the mastermind behind the Albuquerque orgy. For legal and security reasons, we cannot disclose his identity. We have altered his appearance and voice, but the words you will hear are his own. For purposes of this interview, we call him Jim -- that is not his real name. You will hear Jim's full story over the next three episodes of Insight, but before Jim tells you his side of the events, we need to explain how Jim did what he did. How did he control twelve ordinary, beautiful women to participate in an orgy they would normally never have heard of, let alone attend? To answer this, we have to walk you through a story that frankly, I did not believe at first. I will take you through the same steps we went through, and when we are done, you will understand why Jim in Albuquerque is the least of our problems. We first have to tell you, this did not start out as our story. Trish Marples, a freelance journalist, brought this story to Insight, and we will introduce you to Trish later in this show. To research Trish's story, we spoke with others, like Jim, who not only corroborated what Jim is telling us, but demonstrated how Jim controlled those unsuspecting women. We will show you one of those demonstrations. We have also spoken with senior ranking officers in the United States Air Force who are investigating this situation, and we will play you an interview we recorded earlier with Colonel Brian Greene of the Air Force. Colonel Greene heads a task force related to this investigation, and that task force reports to the highest levels within the American government. But before we do that, we have to go back to where it all began. It started on an ordinary Tuesday afternoon, on June Ninth, in 2015, when a routine flight from Atlanta to Boston declared an emergency and diverted to Richmond, Virginia after a ball of light hit it and rendered all the female passengers unconscious. Jen snapped her head to Joel, who was watching with Jen and April. "Joel, what is this?"
"Just watch," he said quietly.
"You were on that flight, Joel. What the fuck is this?" Jen never used the word fuck as a swear word.
"SHHHH!" April called out. "Let's watch."
At the time, experts believed the only aftereffect of that flight was all females were temporarily rendered unconscious, and had no other ill effects. We now know, and the US Air Force knows, there were much more serious aftereffects -- powers we call them. Jim was on that flight on June ninth, and he used those powers in Albuquerque to force those innocent women to participate in the orgy against their will on August fourteenth, where one of those women died. Jen wasn't watching the television any more. She was staring at Joel.
We do not know if it affected all men, but at least some men on that catnap flight, as it is commonly called, have the power to make women do whatever they want, and the women do not even suspect they have been manipulated into doing anything against their will. From the woman's perspective, when a man like Jim makes her do something, she believes it was her idea in the first place. Regardless of how ridiculous or dangerous her forced actions may actually be, the woman believes it made sense for to her to take those actions at the time they occurred. "Oh my God!" Jenny put her hand to her mouth, and she stood up and bolted toward the bathroom. Joel and April looked at each other when they heard Jen vomit into the toilet.
Joel went to the bathroom to check on Jen. "Get the fuck out!" Jen warned while her head still hovered over the toilet bowl.
"Jen, I can ..."
"GET THE FUCK OUT!" Jen shrieked as she stood up. Her face was beet red and her eyes bulging with rage. "GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY HOUSE. GET THE FUCK OUT OF MY LIFE!" she screeched, and she ran forward and slammed her open palms into Joel's shoulders so hard he toppled backward and landed hard on his ass. She stepped forward and kicked him in the side of his leg many times. "GET THE FUCK OUT AND NEVER, EVER FUCKING COME BACK!" She stepped around Joel and ran upstairs. The corgis chased her, but were too late, because she slammed the bedroom door, leaving them to roam upstairs in confusion.
"DO NOT FOLLOW ME TO CALIFORNIA TOMORROW," Joel heard Jen yell from upstairs. "YOU STAY THE FUCK AWAY FROM ME FOREVER!" and the door slammed shut again, this time with the corgis inside the bedroom.
Joel stood up from the floor and walked to the living room. April was stricken by the commotion she witnessed. "Take care of Jenny," Joel said without commanding her, left the house, climbed in his car, and drove away.
- - -
Joel slept poorly. He knew Colonel Greene promised the impossible, but only a fool would believe such a promise. Not that Joel was angry at Colonel Greene -- this was Joel's own undoing. He hated people that blamed everyone but themselves for their own problems, and Joel was not about to become one of those.
Joel must have finally slept, because his phone woke him at seven thirty on Friday morning. It was Sam Barrington calling. Joel was trying to remember where he heard that name before. Sam said they had spoken after he claimed to have been fired from Quinton. Now Joel remembered. After the press conference in Richmond, Sam Barrington of the Boston Times called Joel because Quinton was denying firing Joel.
Sam Barrington had a different question this time. Wasn't Joel on the catnap flight, and if so, did he have the same kind of powers described on the Insight documentary aired the night before? Joel declined to comment, and hung up. Within the hour, Joel received four more phone calls from reporters.
Joel turned his phone off and retrieved one of his prepaid phones. At nine o'clock Joel phoned Sylvie at work. She said there were nine messages waiting when she arrived asking about Joel's connection to the catnap flight and two more calls since she arrived. She has declined to comment.
Joel was way out of his depth. He needed help. He looked up the number for Terrance Strong, and called on his prepaid phone. Terrance's assistant answered. Joel introduced himself, and said he needed to speak with Terrance urgently. Terrance came on the line, and Joel explained his situation. Joel explained he didn't think it was a legal matter, but certainly a public relations one, and asked Terrance to connect him with the same PR firm that handled the three girls' case. Terrance said if it was not a legal issue yet, it could soon become one, and Joel should come in right away.
Joel made an appointment for eleven. It was just Joel, Terrance, and Julie Harmon, Vice President of Devros and Taylor, the PR firm that handled the Mojo girls' case. They spent the first half hour going over the documentary from the night before, and Joel said in his own experience, the documentary accurately depicted his own abilities. They asked Joel if he was aware of other incidents similar to the Albuquerque situation, and Joel declined to answer.
"Joel," Terrance explained, "Julie is a lawyer, and she's hired through me. Client-attorney privilege is in force in this meeting."
"That's not the problem," Joel explained. "I cannot answer your question due to national security reasons."
They looked at Joel for a long time. "Joel, are you cooperating with any federal law enforcement agencies or other branches of the US government?" Terrance asked.
"If I answered that, I would be violating the law," Joel answered carefully.
"Hypothetically," Terrance chose his words carefully, "if we were to take on this case, I don't know how we can help you. Without full disclosure of what you are involved in, we could unwittingly betray federal secrets. Hypothetically," Terrance said again.
"Hypothetically," Joel offered, "what would you need in order to engage such a client?"
"Hypothetically," Terrance continued, "we would need to speak with the federal agency in question."
"Hypothetically, I am going to go now, and see what I can figure out," Joel smirked and stood up.
"Good luck, Joel," Terrance offered his hand. Joel shook both their hands and left.
Joel went home. Bored and unsure what to do, he turned on the television. They were re-running the previous night's show of Insight, so Joel decided to watch. This was the first of three installments, and in this installment, they spent most of their time explaining how the 'charm' worked -- that's what they called his power. They even had demonstrations, very similar to the one Joel performed on Detective Halton in Albuquerque.
In this case, they invited three women, who consented to come on the show, and then Bill made women take their clothes off while they blurred out the naughty bits to satisfy the censors. Once the women realized what they had done, they were horrified and embarrassed, but they still allowed Insight to use the footage. They later interviewed the women, who claimed to have no recollection of being told to undress; only that they chose to do it, and it made sense to them at the time. The show ended at two o'clock.
For all his time he spent with Colonel Greene, Joel realized he had no way of reaching him. As if by magic, his chime sounded from the apartment building front door. He answered the hail, and it was a Lieutenant someone, Joel didn't catch his name, of the Air Force, and could he come up? Joel buzzed him in, and waited at his apartment door.
An Air Force lieutenant in service dress with the name tag HUTCHINS approached from the stairs -- he didn't bother with the elevator. He was in his late twenties with dark hair wearing glasses. He did not have a sidearm. "Mr. Winkman, may I come in, please."
Inside, Lieutenant Hutchins explained Colonel Greene has been trying to reach Joel all day. Joel explained he turned his cell phone off -- there were too many reporters calling. Lieutenant Hutchins pulled out a cell phone from his pocket, pressed a speed dial button, and announced, "Sir, Lieutenant Hutchins. I have Winkman in Boston." He waited while taking orders, and then said "Yes Sir," and Hutchins passed the phone to Joel.
"Colonel," Joel said into the phone.
"Winkman, I need you in Quantico now."
"I can probably make it for tomorrow."
"No, Winkman, you go with Lieutenant Hutchins. He'll take you to Hanscom, and we'll put you on a military flight."
"As in that kind of now," Joel nodded. "I assume I have my usual choices," Joel offered grumpily.
"I can have US Marshals there in ten minutes if you like," Colonel Greene offered without joking.
"I'll pack a bag," Joel sulked. "We'll be on the move in fifteen minutes." The line went dead, so Joel handed the phone to Lieutenant Hutchins.
As it turns out, packing a bag wasn't much of a problem, because Joel had already completely packed, expecting to fly out with Jenny today. He opened a large suitcase, and pulled several things out to pack a smaller bag. "I forgot to ask Colonel Greene how long I'd be there," Joel said to Lieutenant Hutchins
"No idea, Sir," Hutchins replied.
"Help yourself to some water or Coke in the fridge, if you want," Joel pointed.
"No thank you, Sir."
"A lieutenant is a bit of a high pay grade to send to collect someone, isn't it?" Joel asked as he transferred clothing from the large suitcase to the smaller one.
"Not in this line of work, no Sir," he answered without seeming to take offense.