The Choice Ch. 32byangelface195©
A dream, A fantasy or maybe somewhere A reality.
2013©angelface195 -- all rights reserved
Dunge, Randolph and Andrew hightail it back to the house before the NYPD get into the house. The police break down the front door and find a barely conscious Jacqueline near the stairs and a dead Phillip lying on the ground.
As they search the house, they find the playroom. "What the hell was going on in here?" asks one police detective scratching his head. An ambulance arrives, but Jacqueline dies on her way to the hospital.
The next day the Daily News Headline reads:
Massacre at House of Pain and Bondage
Dunge does not tell me any of what has gone on. He, Randolph and Andrew manage to go back into the garden and pick up any evidence that links them to the shooting.
Randolph is very upset about Phillip's murder and vows to kill Marcus himself. He and Andrew are also upset that Minerva has gotten away. They now have to figure out where she is.
I call home the morning we are at sea after reading in the New York Times what happened on the ship's computer. I can barely hear him, but I get the gist of it. I send him an email that says, "If anyone knows where Minerva might be, it is Denise. I will call you tomorrow when we are back at the hotel."
I don't share what has gone on at home with Brian and Anna because I don't want them worried. I join them for our last night aboard ship. We spend the day together participating in ship activities and at night dancing. However, my mind is on Daniel and what torments he is now suffering.
I don't sleep, but spend the night sitting outside staring out into the ocean and praying. Brian awakens about four and comes and sits with me. He doesn't say anything and we sit holding hands and watching the sun come up.
As soon as we dock, we are whisked away in the limousine I have rented back to magical Disney World and the Animal Kingdom Lodge Royal Asante Presidential Suite.
I am anxious. Until they catch Minerva, my loved ones are still in danger and until they find Daniel, I feel very guilty. Perhaps even after they find him, I will feel as if somehow I could have prevented this.
At the hotel, Anna takes over and makes sure we have everything we need for our extended stay. She goes shopping dragging Brian with her because she knows I need space. I am very grateful.
I call home and speak to Dunge, Randolph and Andrew who tell me everything that has occurred. After speaking with them, I make a phone call to Michael Worthington, the President's chief-of-staff. Michael makes a phone call to the FBI and they with his instruction take over the investigation. Dunge, Randolph and Andrew are in the clear as the FBI takes all of the evidence with them.
Dunge has phoned Denise who has some ideas where Minerva might have taken Daniel. My three are leaving in a few hours to go to two of the three places Denise has mentioned. They want to find Daniel before the FBI does and Randolph wants to kill Minerva.
Brian, Anna and I spend the day at Disney World -- the happiest place on earth and I am not happy. I want to be home where the action is. I want to be a part of all this, but I know it is best for me to stay away. So I go on rides and try to have fun.
Daniel awakens in a room that looks like a jail cell with concrete walls. The door has a slot to send food through and a square metal plate to see inside. A small window allows some light. In the room are a table and chair, a bed, a sink and a toilet. He goes to the door it is locked. He is wearing white pants and a white tee shirt. He has been cleaned up, but there are still small cuts over his body from where Jacqueline cut him.
A few moments after he awakens, he hears a key in the door. A man he has never seen before followed by Marcus enter his cell bringing with them food. The man does not look at Daniel but sets the tray on the table.
"Eat and then the Mistress will come down and see you." Marcus says briskly.
"I want to go home." Daniel says firmly.
Marcus laughs, "You're never going home." He turns; Daniel stops him by saying, "Why is she doing this to me? Why are you helping her?"
Marcus whose shoulder has been bandaged turns around, "She loathes your former partner. You will be her revenge. Stephanie Stone will suffer because of your death. I am helping her because she is my Mistress and I love her."
He and the other man walk out the door, locking it behind them. Daniel looks stunned. They are going to kill him for revenge. He thinks he is going to cry, but he does not. A quiet strength comes over him. As he sits and eats his breakfast, Daniel knows that I am looking for him and that gives him hope.
I am meeting Mickey and Minnie Mouse and feeling very foolish. I want to go home. I want to find Daniel. I call Andrew's cell phone. They have gone to the first place and found someone living there, they are now headed for Pennsylvania and a farmhouse that Denise owns and that Minerva knows well.
As they get up to the house, they see two cars parked out front. Randolph calls Denise and asks her if anyone is living at the house. Denise says that only one person should be there the caretaker. Dunge and Andrew get the equipment they need. They will wait until dark.
Minerva goes down to the cell. She enters alone. Daniel is lying on the bed and sits up when she appears. "Is that how you greet your Mistress?" She smiles a snaky smile.
"You are not my Mistress anymore. You abused your power." He said with a strength he hasn't felt for some time.
Minerva goes up to him and slaps his face. "You think you're smart. You are mine. I will tell you now you will never leave here. Tonight will be your last night and tonight you will pleasure me. Your friend." She spat the word friend out, "Will not be in time to save you. Maybe if you eat my pussy, then I'll let you live a day longer."
Daniel doesn't even touch his face where she has slapped him. He glares at her, "I'll never touch your disgusting sex again. Stephanie is more a Mistress than you will ever be."
Minerva holds her temper. "Marcus will be here to whip you until you agree to pleasure me. As for your dear Stephanie, where is she? She's on her honeymoon with her little pets. She did not want you. I am the only one who wanted you and this is how you betray me? You are nothing. To think you thought of yourself as a master." She laughs cruelly. "You are not even good enough to lick my shoe or keep as a doggie pet. You are nothing."
Daniel stands, "No Minerva, I am a man and I've been a very bad friend. You can whip me, you can kill me, but my loyalty is to Stephanie. So do your worse, I can only die once."
"Ugh," Minerva growls. "I can't wait to get rid of your sorry ass."
The door opens and Marcus comes in with the whip. Minerva leaves and Daniel's torment begins anew.
Andrew can hear the screams. They cannot wait any longer. Dusk has just approached and they get ready. Dunge calls the FBI and then he, Andrew and Randolph get ready to get Daniel.
The caretaker sees them, but does not shout the alarm. He hates Minerva. He nods and lets them in the house. They follow the screams, which lead them downstairs. The door is open and Randolph points his semi-automatic gun at Marcus who turns. "Give me a reason not to cut you in half." Randolph says and Marcus flicks his wrist, the whip catches Randolph's hand and he shoots killing Marcus. His face is grim as he says. "That's for Philip."
Minerva hearing the gunfire runs outside with Andrew chasing behind her. Bloodied and in pain Daniel is on the floor and Dunge goes to him. Minerva turns and shoots. Andrew ducks behind a bale of hay and fires back, but she makes it to her car. She starts the car and drives as Andrew shoots and misses. He is angry.
Randolph is calling him and he shakes his head as he walks back to the house. The FBI arrives before the local police and they take charge as an ambulance arrives and takes Daniel to the hospital. Andrew rides with him while Dunge and Randolph survey the grounds and they find the hole dug for him as well as a DVD message for me from Minerva which tells his location and that he only has three hours of air left. They know I cannot possibly get there in time.
Randolph phones me, "Daniel is safe and on his way to the hospital... "
I wait, but he doesn't say anything so I ask, "And Minerva."
"I'm sorry Mrs. S. she got away, but we will find her." He says apologetically.
"Don't bother. She will get hers. We have to take care of Daniel now. I'm coming home in the morning." I say.
Dunge gets on the phone, "She had a pit dug for him and a message for you saying she was only giving him three hours of air. What a foul bitch!" He spits out.
"I'll be home in the morning. Thank you so much. I'll see you soon." I am starting to get upset.
Dunge continues, "You never have to thank me darlin' you know I would do anything to protect you. I do have something to tell you and I'm ashamed I didn't before, but I didn't have enough proof."
"Proof about what?" I say my voice cracking because somehow I know this news is something that will send me over the edge. I manage to say, "Dunge, you're scaring me. What are you talking about?"I say.
"I believe that Minerva was responsible for Sir's plane crash." He says softly and gently, but it cuts through me like a knife. My stomach churns and I feel nauseous. I hadn't expected this at all.
"What?" I say as if I didn't hear him. Andrew gives him a dirty look and whispers, "You should have waited to tell her this." Dunge shrugs and whispers to him, "What difference would it have made. I know her; she doesn't like to be kept in the dark." Dunge repeats the words slowly. I feel as if a knife has been thrust into my heart. "I'll explain everything tomorrow. Please, I'm sorry." Dunge says sincerely.
Tears spring into my eyes as I hang up the phone. Brian and Anna are out. I am glad because I take this opportunity to wail, really wail from the depths of my soul. I want to tear the room apart, I want to tear my chest from my heart, I want to rip Minerva from top to bottom with my bare hands. I want to scream, I want to fight someone, anyone, and all I can do is knock a chair over as I fall to my knees and weep.
Security knocks on the door. I manage to compose myself to open it. "Mrs. Stone?" The young man in uniform with a badge that says security asks, "Are you all right? We heard there was a disturbance."
I apologize, "I just got some really bad news. I'm sorry I made so much noise." He looks at me with sadness and understanding, "Is there anything we can do?"
"No." I say softly and close the door. By the time, Anna and Brian return I am in the shower. I come out clean and temporarily sane, but Anna sees my red-rimmed eyes and knows I have been crying.
"Mistress?" She asks and the tears start again. I cry and I can't stop. Brian comes in and lifts me in his arms and I cry my arms around his neck. I cry for hours and they both hold me as I try to explain, but the words come out choked.
Anna takes my phone and calls Dunge. He tells her everything and she gets angry. "You should have waited until she got home to tell her this. We will be there tomorrow. See you then." She snaps at him and hangs up.
Anna brings a wet cloth. I am put into bed, covered with a sheet and Anna cleans my face. She orders some chamomile tea and cakes. Brian calls Andrew and learns that Daniel is at the hospital under guard. He has cuts all over his body and whip marks. He also has a broken arm and a damaged spleen, which has to be removed.
"It could have been worse," Andrew says to Brian. "Minerva had intended to kill him. She had the hole dug. She is truly evil. I'm just sorry I let her get away." He says wearily.
"Please tell Mrs. S that I will be staying with Daniel. Dr. Heart is on his way here. It will be a few days. I've called Daisy to let her know you will be home in the morning. She says everything is ready for your arrival."
Brian thanks Andrew and returns to me. I am finally asleep. He takes Anna into the other bedroom. "We need to take care of her. She is stressed out. I want to kill that bitch Minerva. We need to find out where she is."
Anna agrees, "I have an idea and a plan." When she tells Brian what she has in mind, he smiles. "Not a word to her." They agree. "It is our turn to take care of our wife." Brian says and Anna nods.
Michael Worthington receives a telephone call from Anna. He already knows what has occurred at the farmhouse. She tells him her plan and Michael agrees with her. "I'll take care of it. It will be my wedding gift to you."
It takes five months, but the CIA finds Minerva hiding in Namibia. The team sent to her compound kills her guards and take her to an undisclosed location where she is raped by guards, beaten and tortured; they pull out her nails one by one and her teeth. They cut off each of her fingers and toes. Before she is to be buried alive, a DVD is played for her. Anna appears, along with Brian, Denise and a very alive Daniel, "You will now pay for all your crimes and for all the pain you've caused. This is for Sir and Rachel." Brian says and then Minerva is taken away to her death.
I did not find out about this for a year after it has happened. When we return home, Daisy has everything under control. Skip, Rachel, Dominic, Marlene, greet us and to my surprise Rebecca who has vacation for a week.
I am told about all the police action across the street. Dunge and Randolph arrive later in the day looking exhausted. They have given their statements to the FBI. Daniel is undergoing surgery, but the prognosis is good. He will live. I call the hospital and spoken with Dr. Heart. As soon as he can travel, I want him here where I can keep an eye on him. I need to take care of him.
Dominic informs me that we have a movie to finish and we start shooting on a sound stage in Brooklyn in a week. The movie is nearly done, and then the editing begins. I have a week to get my head back in the game. I really need to calm down or my work is going to suffer.
Skip tells me that anything I need he will do. Marlene who is six months' pregnant and glowing offers her help. Rebecca also volunteers. Rachel however says nothing.
Later in the day she pulls me aside, "This is my fault." She says and I stare at her, "Why do you say that?"
"If I had not chosen Skip over him, he might not have gone off the deep end." She says looking down at her hands. I lift her face up, "This is not your fault, it is mine."
Brian comes into the room, "It's not either of your faults -- It's that crazy bitch Minerva. She is out for revenge for crimes, which do not exist. It is her own guilt. Stop it both of you." He comes to Rachel and hugs her, "Be happy with Skip. You both love each other. Daniel's problems are his. He needs to work this out. It had nothing to do with you."
Releasing her, he takes me in his arms. I feel his strong embrace and lean my head into his chest, "And you my wife, this is not your fault either. Minerva is crazy and Daniel is messed up." He kisses my hair and lifts up my face so I am staring into his eyes, "I took the liberty of calling Sir Richard. Daniel should return to California. He needs serious help and therapy. Sir Richard has arranged for it. I don't think he should return here, too many memories.
Every day he would see the house of horror across the street, every day he would feel even guiltier seeing you and Rachel. He should return to Sir Richard's to get the help he needs. He can go to a facility. Please Mistress, call Dr. Heart and tell him to take Daniel to California."
I know he is right, but I want to see him. As if he read my mind Brian says, "Mistress, Anna and I want to go to Pennsylvania with you to see him."
I nod, "you are right. I'll make the arrangements with Dr. Heart and we'll go in a day or so." Smiling I say, "So when did you get so smart my love."
He kisses me, "I've grown up. I'm also a husband and the man of this house, so I have to be a man."
Anna comes in and Brian tells her that we are going to go visit Daniel before he leaves for California. Anna agrees with all of it.
I make a phone call that evening to Mistress Diana and Sir Richard. I thank them both for doing this. Diana says to me, "We will take good care of Daniel and please come visit anytime."
Sir Richard is very serious, "I never should have let him go. What she asked for was ridiculous. I should have stopped him."
"He is a grown man, how the hell could you have stopped him. It was his decision. By the way, what was the one condition he would not meet?"
Sir Richard cleared his throat, "She asked him never to see you again. So she amended it to not speaking to you."
"Oh" is all I say and the tears fall. Sir Richard and I are quiet for a moment and then I tell him what Dunge told me about the plane crash.
Dunge had in his possession a photo of a man who had arrived in Canada and was spotted near the plane that was to bring Sir home. Dunge had a photo of a group of friends of Minerva's that was taken a long time ago at a party. Taking into account age and changes, he thought the photo was of one of Minerva's friends. When he saw Marcus, he knew that it was he.
Dunge didn't want to tell me this until he was sure. He hired an investigator and put the pieces together. Marcus is now dead so that part of over, but Minerva has disappeared.
Sir Richard offers to make some inquiries, but I tell him to let it go. Daniel will be out of her reach in California and she isn't stupid enough to return to New York.
A few days later Dunge informs me that Minerva was spotted in Paris. I breathed a sigh of relief. At least she was out of the country.
Anna, Brian, Dunge, Randolph and I take the plane to Pennsylvania. We are going to visit Daniel and bring Andrew home. I go in first. Daniel is lying in a hospital bed with machines going on. He looks so tiny in the bed and I bet he's lost at least twenty pounds. He opens his eyes as I enter and manages a weak smile.
"Hey, this is one way to get my attention." I say with a lame joke. He starts to laugh, but feels pain, "please don't make me laugh."
I sit in the chair by his bed, tears spring into my eyes. "I'm so sorry."
He grimaces, "For what? You didn't do anything. All the stupid decisions I've made are my stupid decisions. You have done nothing but try to warn me, to protect me or just plain knock some sense into my thick skull. I am the one who couldn't see past my own fuckupedness. I'm the one who thought I knew what was best."
"Has Andrew told you that we want you to return to Sir Richard? How do you feel about that?" I ask cautiously.
He nods slowly, "I thought about that before when I was in the cell. I need to go back. I need help and now, I am willing to listen. I'll call Sir Richard."
I squeeze his hand, "It's already arranged. As soon as you're ready to go, Dr. Heart, Dunge and Randolph will take you back."
He nods, "Please thank all of them. Also tell Anna and Brian I'm sorry I intruded on your honeymoon."
"Don't be silly. You are never an intrusion." I stand and kiss his cheek. He manages a weak smile, "I'm tired. I'll see you when I return from California."
Daniel is dismissing me. "If you need anything, please let Andrew know." I turn to leave.
Daniel calls my name, "Stephanie."
I turn, and he again smiles, "I love you. I will always love you and I want nothing but happiness for you. I think you've found that after Sir died with Anna and Brian. I look forward to seeing your new film. "
I smile back ruefully, "You're job is waiting for you when you want it."
He shakes his head, "I think I just need to take my time. I want to do something different. Let Skip be your new partner."
I have no response to this, turn, and leave. When I am outside, I say to Andrew. "Put ten million dollars into Daniel's account,tell Sir Richard to do whatever is necessary for him and if he needs anything to call you."