BoI stopped in Housekeeping and Steve and Juan were still there, looking at something. I heard Steve say, "Juan, this looks like a great idea. Let's tweak it in the morning when we're both fresh."
They hadn't realized I was there, "That sounds like a good idea. I trust you had a good day. Why are you still here"
Steve turned to me, "We had a good day. We're still here, because Juan is waiting to take you home, and I'm waiting for Greg and Grant to come get their things."
I was confused, "Juan, why are you taking me home? You don't work for the Transportation Department anymore."
"I volunteered to take you home because my home is near where I picked you up this morning. I figure it would be a waste of gasoline to have the limo take you home and then have to come the whole back here."
I looked at Steve, "Where are Greg and Grant anyway?"
Steve grinned, "The last I saw them, they were trying to arrange the furniture in your new office. A lady was there, helping the three guys. She said she was going to be your receptionist."
Steve continued, "Ed, I took the liberty of hiring some temporary help to at least empty the trash and clean the public areas tonight. I had a number of questions about what was going to happen. As I'm sure you have found out by now, the restrooms in this building are absolutely unsanitary."
"Yes, and even President Odom is aware of that problem. The kitchen in the cafeteria was even worse and the cafeteria has been closed. Steve, I would like all of the locks to the cafeteria entrances to be changed as soon as possible. I'm sorry to be so unorganized, but President Odom and I have fired a number of employees today, and more may be leaving tomorrow. Just so you know, the Transportation and Security Departments are now under my jurisdiction, as well as the cafeteria."
The two guys were laughing. Steve looked at me, "Boss, Juan and I can change the locks on the two main cafeteria doors while you go chase Greg and Grant out of your penthouse suite."
As I was passing the security desk on the way to elevators, Ms. Miller and Oz were talking about something. Oz looked up at me, "Boss, when you leave tonight, we think that you should leave by the side door. There seems to be an inordinate amount of vehicle traffic passing by the building. One of the young guards is sure that at least two of the vehicles have passed by, a number of times."
When I got to my new office, it was comical. Joe, Greg, Grant and Tammy were looking around, Tammy was saying, "Guys, this office has no character. There is nothing that would make it seem like a special office."
I looked at the assembled people, "People, it's time to go home. Greg and Grant, Steve and Juan are waiting for you to pick up your things. They want to go home. Tammy, why are you here anyway?"
"I got bored in the legal department. No one stopped in after you and President Odom departed, and there were no phone calls."
"So you're saying that if you get bored, you'll just take off and leave the office unmanned if none of the others of us are here?"
Tammy glared at me, "Look, I'll probably be so busy that I won't have time to go to the bathroom. That's probably good, because the bathroom facilities in this building are deplorable."
"Tammy, we'll take care of that problem tomorrow. Now lock them down and let's move out of here. It's already 5:30. I, for one, am exhausted."
The five of us went to the elevator, and when we got off on the ground level, Tammy departed. The other four of us went to the Housekeeping Office so Greg and Grant could shed their coveralls and collect their belongings, since they would not be returning to the office to work anymore."
Juan went to get his car and pull it around to the side of the building, Oz had unlocked the door and waited with me until Juan showed up.
I was to find out later that Greg and Grant didn't fare so well when they departed the building.
When Juan and I pulled up at the Daniels/our house, Allie was playing soccer with Jim, John and a young man I hadn't seen previously. Juan asked, "Why is Emmanuel here? He was supposed to mow the lawn tonight."
Allie and the young man came running, and Allie announced, "Dad, dinner will be ready to eat in twenty minutes. This is one of the neat people in my class, Manny Gomez. Manny, this is my Dad, Ed Waller."
I shook hands with the young man, "It's a pleasure to meet you, Mr. Gomez."
Juan looked at Manny, "I thought you were going to mow the lawn after school?"
"Dad, we did mow it. Allie, Jim and John helped, and then we mowed the Daniels' and the Thomas' lawns. Mother said you wouldn't be home until almost seven thirty. She has dinner in the crock-pot.
Juan grinned, "Let's go home and eat. Mr. Waller, I'll pick you up at seven in the morning. I don't want to be late for my new job."
Manny yelled, "I'll race you home, Dad." He took off running toward the path that lead to the school.
I looked at Allie, "Where is everyone else?"
Allie nodded, "Mr. and Mrs. Daniels had a dinner meeting that had something to do with the opera. They said they probably wouldn't be home until after nine. Bra is reading some book about the American Constitution. He has hardly talked since he got home. It's boring around here when there aren't any people around."
"Allie, what are you saying? Jim and John and Manny were here when we arrived."
Allie didn't back down, "Dad, Jim and John had just gotten home from soccer practice. They haven't had dinner yet. Didn't you hear Aunt Nancy calling them. Come on, let's go fix dinner. I'm hungry. Manny helped me fix some enchiladas and other Mex-Tex foods as he called them."
As he was fixing dinner, Allie started to complain, "Dad, I'm really going to be bored in school. I already know almost everything the teachers are teaching us."
I smiled, "I'm pleased that school is so easy for you. Maybe you can help the boys and girls who aren't so fortunate."
"Dad, I tried to help some of them, today. There was this one boy who told me he didn't want my help when I tried to help him with his math. He told me that he wasn't going to let any foreigner tell him what to do. He got a zero on his paper and I got a hundred per cent. He told me on the playground that his Granddad got fired by someone at your company, yesterday."
After the three of us had eaten the great meal and taken care of the cleanup, we went to sit on the front porch so Brahim could tell us about his day. We were sitting on the step when a man and woman and young boy came strolling down the street.
Allie recognized the young boy and yelled, "Hey, Curtis. Are you still going to beat me up?"
The young guy bounded toward Allie and shouted, "How can you afford to live in this house? You just got here; you're a foreigner."
I was appalled at the comment as was the man, who was walking with the young man, "Curtis, shut your mouth. This is my boss Mr. Waller, and I assume that the young man you have been so rude to is his son. Sit down and don't say anything."
I was surprised, "Greg, do you live around here?"
He nodded yes, "We live in the next block over. We were just out for a walk. Is this where you're going to be living?
"Yes, we're going to buy the house from the Daniels. Did you know that Juan lives nearby?"
"No, we only moved here two months ago. I never had an occasion to meet Juan until today. Am I going to be making enough money for us to continue living here?"
I started to laugh, "Greg, I'm sure that you will be able to afford to live here, since the Security and Transportation divisions are going to be your responsibility, starting tomorrow. I need to clear the salary with the appropriate people, tomorrow. I was a little busy today. By the way, this my partner, Brahim Safi, and the young man who is visiting with your son is his brother, Allie."
Greg was surprised, "I know nothing about the Security and Transportation Departments. Why am I going to be in charge of them. By the way, this is my wife, Kim."
Mrs. Gump took exception, "So, now I'm a by the way."
I looked out on the lawn and Allie was sitting on top of Curtis with his hand cocked as if he was going smack the other the young man. I yelled, "Allie, that's not how we settle disputes, here."
Allie looked at me, "Dad, I wouldn't really hit Curtis. He has all of these bad words coming from his mouth. He says that his Grandfather hates you, and that's why he tried to shoot you."
Greg grabbed Curtis, "Greg, what are you talking about?"
Curtis looked up at his Dad, "Dad, when you and Mother went shopping last night, Granddad called and yelled, 'Tell your Dad that we fixed that queer bastard. The company will be begging for us to come back.'"
Kim admonished, "Curt, we don't talk like that."
Curtis looked at his Mother, "Mom, I'm only telling you what Granddad said when he called."
Greg looked embarrassed, "Ed, I had no idea that my Father was actually involved in the shooting. Did you know? I didn't know about the shooting until we were watching the late news last night and they didn't identify who had been arrested. Curtis, why didn't you tell us last night that your Grandfather called."
"Dad, you and Uncle Grant were talking about whether you should go to work today or not, and you sent me to get ready for bed. I didn't know about the shooting until school today when I heard Jim, John and Allie talking about it. How was I to know that Granddad had tried to kill someone?"
Greg sighed, "That explains why Grant and I were approached by two of our cousins who didn't report to work today. They threatened us and called us traitors. Mr. Waller, why didn't you tell us that you had been shot, today?
"Greg, I was a little too busy today to worry about who had tried to shoot me. I guess I'll have to wear a disguise to work from now on."
Allie started to laugh, "Dad, I'll make sure you have your makeup and lipstick on just right. I got it; you can go to work dressed as clown."
I frowned, "You're asking for it, Son."
Greg was laughing, "Ed, I'll see you in the morning. We need to get home and check on our other son."
Curtis looked, "We already know what Connor is doing. He's doing what he does every night; he's talking to his girlfriend and playing with his you know what."
Allie giggled, "What's a you know what? I don't think I've ever seen one of those things."
Everyone laughed. I looked at Greg, "Why don't we work out a car pool arrangement with Juan. We can save money on gasoline. He's picking me up in the morning at seven, so why don't you meet us here?"
Kim grinned, "Greg, that would be perfect, since my car is scheduled to have some work done tomorrow. I can use your car to deliver Connor and his friends to school."
After the Gumps had departed, I suddenly realized I was exhausted and my leg was beginning to throb. "Guys, I need to get some rest. My leg is beginning to hurt. I probably shouldn't have been moving around on it as much as I did today."
When I was ready for bed, Brahim and Allie came into the bedroom and Allie asked, "Dad, what kind of clothes should we take to your parents' house tomorrow. I need to know so I can pack for everyone when I get home from school tomorrow."
"Allie, just pack some old clothes for us. I'm glad that you thought about needing to pack things. I totally spaced it off. My parents wear jeans most of the time. Pack us each one casual outfit in case we go to church or out to eat. I'm sure that my parents will have you shopping before we leave this weekend."
After Allie had gone to his room and Brahim was in bed, I had my arm around him, playing with one of my favorite parts of his body. "Bra, how was your day?"
He turned so he could kiss me, "Ed, you aren't going to believe this, but I was propositioned four times today: twice by young women, and twice by members of the male sex. In fact one of the males was downright aggressive and followed me into the men's room. He was practically drooling when he saw my penis."
Brahim chuckled, "He was following me, and I turned to him and told him that I hadn't been practicing safe sex and that I was allergic to latex. That caused him to back off rather quickly."
"Ed, going to college here in the states is very different from Algeria. Everything is so laid back here. I'm really going to need to apply myself to the history courses. The rest of the courses seem as if they will be easy enough."
I hugged Brahim, "Bra, let's get to sleep. It's going to be time to get up before we know it. Maybe we will be able to find time to play, this weekend, while we're visiting my parents."
Author's Note: As our three guys head off to the Land of Snores, the story is ending, since what's happening currently has nothing to do with the title of the story. It will resume in a sequel entitled, 'Taking Texas By Storm.'
I, for one, enjoyed this story very much, and of course I will be right here with the new story. As soon as I get my hands on it, I will bring it to you.
I can hardly wait to see what will happen in the next story.