Life had settled into a
routine for the family and friends of Station 51s A-shift. On the days
Johnny worked, Nicole would stay at the DeSotos. The doctors had wanted
to make sure someone was with her all the time since she had miscarried
once, been shot in the chest and had smoke inhalation from the fire.
Plus with the expectation of twins, she was on complete bed rest. So
every night Roy and Johnny would call the DeSoto home and talk to their
The day was quiet. For once there were no calls. All the men had the
chance to get their chores done and they got through lunch. Then the
call came for an MVA on the freeway. They knew that when four squads
and engines were called out that it was a bad one.
Johnny and Roy shook their heads when they arrived at the scene. There
were about 20 cars involved. Johnny sent up a silent prayer of thanks
that most of the injuries were minor ones. From the looks of it, the
injuries could have been a lot worse. The most severe injuries were
in the four front cars. Seeing that three squads were already at work,
Johnny and Roy took the fourth car. Inside were two women.
Johnny smiled to himself as he worked. Up until two years ago, he
would have wanted the phone numbers of both these women. Now he thought
of them as pretty, but he wasn’t interested. He thought quickly
about Nicole and then shoved all thoughts except of his job out of
It took them 20 minutes to get the two women out of the car. Both
men were a little concerned that neither woman had regained consciousness
during that time. It was just as they were getting ready to transfer
them to the ambulance stretches that both women started to come around.
Callie and Mandy both woke up to see two handsome men bending over
them. Callie’s heart raced as she felt the dark haired man holding
her hand. She didn’t want to consider that he was just trying
to get her pulse. He must really care for her—he was here beside
her when she was injured and he was holding her hand.
Mandy was having similar thoughts about the sandy haired guy. He had
his hand on her forehead checking her skin. But she believed he was
comforting her. Neither woman acknowledged that these two men were
paramedics just doing their job.
Roy and Johnny both rode in with the ambulance. It made it crowded
with the ambulance attendant, two patients and two paramedics, but
Rampart wanted IVs, vitals, and conditions on both patients throughout
the ride and it would take both paramedics.
Callie looked over at Mandy and smiled. These men cared about them.
They were so concerned they were even going with them to the hospital.
Both women knew that they would be marrying these men—at least
in their minds they would be.
During a break in starting IVs and checking vitals, Roy and Johnny
made small talk. “Hey, Johnny, are you planning anything special
for your anniversary?”
“Yeah, we can’t do too much with Nicole being so close
to her due date, but we will have a nice quiet dinner and evening.
Have you and Joanne decided where to take the kids on vacation this
year?” Johnny wanted his first anniversary with Nicole to be
“Not yet. We’ve narrowed it down to three choices, but
we are still debating.”
“Hey Johnny, I heard that Nicole’s going to have twins.
Is that true? And if so, are you ready for two at once?” The
ambulance attendant wanted to see if the rumors that were going around
Rampart were true.
“Yep, I have the privilege of getting two at once. And we are
ready and can’t wait until they are here.” Johnny was filled
Callie and Mandy were watching the paramedics as they talked. Then
Roy and Johnny started to take their vitals again as requested by Rampart.
Johnny turned to Callie. “How do you feel?” He smiled
Callie’s heart melted. He really cared about her. “My
shoulder and leg really hurt.”
“Well, you have a dislocated shoulder and a broken leg. I relocated
your shoulder, but it will be sore for quite a while. I’m sorry
I can’t give you something for the pain. Dr. Brackett wants to
see if you have a head injury. You were out for some time and have
a nice sized lump on the back of your head.”
Callie loved the crooked smile Johnny gave her as he patted her arm.
Roy was busy with Mandy. “Does your head hurt?”
Mandy smiled at the kind face that was watching her. “Yes, and
so does my arm.”
“Well, we will be at Rampart shortly and they will be able to
give you something for the pain after the doctor checks on any possible
head injury you may have. I can tell you that your arm is broken in
Mandy’s heart was doing flip-flops at the smile Roy was giving
her. Mandy looked at Callie and both women shared a knowing smile.
Being twins they had the uncanny ability of knowing what the other
was feeling and thinking without any verbal communication. Mandy knew
that Callie had the same idea she did.
Johnny went into treatment room 3 with Callie and Roy went into treatment
room 4 with Mandy. When they had given the doctors the information
on their patients, they met at the nurses’ desk to wait for whoever
would be bringing in the squad to pick them up. They would check later
on the extent of the women’s injuries just like they did with
every patient they brought in.
“Hey Dixie, how’s your day going?” Johnny was the
first one out.
“Today has been quiet. I just hope it stays that way. How’s
Nicole doing? Are you ready for your twins?”
“Nicole’s doing great. She is so beautiful, but if you
asked her she would tell you she feels and looks like a beached whale.
I keep telling her that she is beautiful.”
“Who’s beautiful? Are you two-timing your wife, Junior?” Roy
knew that Johnny loved Nicole and wouldn’t do anything to hurt
her. He just liked to tease his partner.
“Nicole’s beautiful and she is the only woman in the world
for me.” Johnny knew that Roy was teasing. “How’s
“Well, it looks like she has a concussion and her arm is broken
in two places. She’ll be here for a few days. How’s Callie?”
“She has a concussion, too, and her leg was broken. It was a
clean break, but she has won a few days’ stay here at hotel Rampart,
Before Dixie could say anything the tones sounded and Johnny and Roy
were on their way to another call.
The guys were tired. They were just getting back from a huge fire
in the warehouse district that had taken about nine hours to put out
and another three to clean up. All they wanted to do was to get back
to the station, take their showers, eat supper and relax. They were
all praying that they didn’t get toned out again. They were just
Johnny, Roy, Mike and Marco headed for the day room as Cap headed
towards his office and Chet headed for the shower. Mike was the first
one to see the dinner set out on the table and the presents in the
“Who do we have to thank for this? Do you suppose Nicole and
Joanne did all this?” Mike walked over to the table and picked
up the card that was on top of the presents. “They’re for
Roy and Johnny.”
Roy walked over, took the card from Mike, opened it and read it. “This
is to say thank you for all you do. Please take care of yourselves.
We don’t want anything to happen to the loves of our lives.” Roy
looked at Johnny. They both knew that the handwriting didn’t
belong to either Joanne or Nicole. “It’s signed with all
our love, your special girls.”
“What’s in the presents?” Marco wondered what was
Johnny picked one up and opened it. Inside was a very expensive watch.
There was a note that read, “To my one true love, your secret
Roy opened his and an identical watch and note in his.
Johnny set the watch down and went to the phone. He quickly called
the DeSoto home. “Hi, Joanne, can I talk with Nicole.—Hi,
sweetheart, how are you feeling today? What did you, Joanne and the
kids do today?—Nicole, I love you so much. Goodnight sweetheart.—Yeah,
Roy would like to talk with Joanne.” Johnny handed the phone
to Roy and went to sit down at the table. Roy finished talking with
Joanne and came to sit with Johnny.
“Nicole hasn’t been out of bed all day. Roy, the girls
did not bring this stuff nor did they send someone to do it for them.” Johnny
wondered who would have done this and how they could have gotten into
“I know, Johnny. Joanne and Nicole would let us know if they
had done this. Besides we both know they wouldn’t just go out
and buy these watches without checking with us first. I don’t
like this at all.” Roy had a very strange feeling about this.
“Don’t like what?” Captain Stanley and Chet walked
in just in time to hear Roy’s last statement.
“Hey—dinner. Did Nicole and Joanne bring it?” Chet
didn’t notice that no one else was eating. He just sat down and
started to dig in. He had his plate full and was just getting ready
to take his first bite when he noticed no one else was even trying
to eat. “What’s going on?”
“No, Nicole and Joanne didn’t bring it. We don’t
know who brought it.” Johnny didn’t like the idea of someone
bringing them gifts and leaving that kind of notes.
“To answer your question, Cap, I don’t like any of this.
We walked in and found dinner ready, watches for Johnny and me and
love notes. The notes tell us to take care ourselves, that we are the
loves of their lives and are signed our secret admirers.” Roy
was really upset.
“And you’re sure Nicole and Joanne didn’t do it?” Chet
put down his fork.
“Yeah, we’re sure. We called and talked to them. They
didn’t have anything to do with it. I’m going to go take
my shower.” Johnny was unusually quiet as he walked out of the
“Yeah, and I think I’ll go get ready so I can take mine
when he’s done.” Roy followed Johnny to the locker room.
Marco, Chet, Mike and Captain Stanley just stood and looked at each
Mike reached over and picked up the notes. “Maybe this is a
one time deal and nothing will happen again.”
“We can hope, but looking at these notes, I don’t really
think so.” Captain Stanley wondered how far this was going to
“Roy, I wish we could return the watches. I wonder who sent
them.” Johnny had a very bad feeling that this was not going
to end with just the dinner and watches. He was wracking his brain
while he dressed trying to think of who had written the notes and sent
“Yeah, Junior, I agree. I’m not going to wear mine. Maybe
we can talk to Vince and see if he can find out from the store on the
boxes who bought them and we can send them back.”
“That’s a great idea, Roy. Let’s talk to him as
soon as we get off our shift tomorrow.”
“Why don’t you and Nicole stay with us? Joanne and I talked
about it and we feel that it might be better for Nicole if she didn’t
have to travel back and forth in the car so often. We’d really
like to have you guys stay with us.”
“We would love to. We had been talking about it, too. I didn’t
like having to take her back and forth so much. Thanks, Roy. We’ll
really appreciate it.”
After they had all had their showers, they ate the dinner deciding
they didn’t want to waste it just because they didn’t know
who brought it. But dinner was quiet, both because they were so tired
and because they were lost in thought. Luckily the tones didn’t
sound. They actually got through dinner.
The six men worked together to clean the kitchen and do the dishes.
Just as they finished the phone rang. Captain Stanley was the closest
so he answered it. “Hello, Station 51, Captain Stanley speaking—Sure—just
a minute.” He turned to look the five men standing by the sink. “Johnny,
it’s for you.” As he gave the phone to Gage, Hank whispered—“it’s
a woman, but not Joanne or Nicole.”
“Hello, this is Johnny—Yes, we got them, but we really
want to return them.—Because we can’t accept them and really
don’t want them.—Will you please tell me your name and
let me know where to send them?—Hello, hello.” He turned
and looked at the puzzled looks on the faces of the others. “She
asked me if we got the dinner and presents. Then she asked if we liked
them. When I asked for her name and address so we could return them,
she just said that the presents were to show they loved us and hung
up. I still don’t know who it was.”
“Did you recognize the voice at all, Johnny?” Roy was
hoping Johnny would recognize the voice.
“It sounded familiar. I know I’ve heard it before, but
I don’t know where and it was only once.” Johnny was defeated. “I’m
tired, I think I’ll turn in.” Johnny walked out of the
“I think I’ll turn in, too.” Roy was right behind
him and the others soon followed suit. Roy and Johnny were actually
thankful when the station got toned out about an hour after they turned
in. Neither man had been able to get to sleep, and both were thankful
to be able to concentrate on something other than their mysterious “admirers.”
On the way home after their shift Johnny and Roy talked about the
gifts and phone call. They both decided that they would tell Joanne
and Nicole what had happened. Neither man had ever thought of keeping
something from their wives and they weren’t about to start now.
Roy and Johnny had quickly eaten the breakfast Joanne had prepared
for them. When they were through they told Joanne they needed to talk
to her and Nicole so they headed for the guest room where Nicole was
lying in bed. Then they told them about the events of the evening before.
“Maybe they got the hint from your conversation on the phone
last night.” Nicole knew that this was bothering her husband
and his best friend.
“I hope so, but we asked Vince to stop by here this afternoon.
We are going to give him the watches and see if he can track down who
bought them so we can send them back.” Johnny just wanted to
lie down next to his wife and hold her for the rest of the day.
“Well, until he gets here, it looks like you both need to get
some rest. And since we are staying here now, why don’t you come
to bed now?” Nicole slid to one side and turned down the covers
inviting Johnny to do just what he wanted to do.
“And why don’t you come with me and we can get some rest,
too.” Joanne led her husband from the Gages’ room.
Roy and Johnny both slept for the better part of the day because they
were holding their wives and had only pleasant dreams.
Vince stopped by the DeSoto home at 2:30 that afternoon. Johnny and
Roy gave him the watches and asked him to check with the store to see
who had purchased them so they could return them. Vince took the watches
and said he would see what he could find out.
The last two shifts had been plagued with phone calls, but nothing
else from Johnny and Roy’s “secret admirers.” They
enjoyed the breaks between shifts because they were and uneventful
for the DeSotos and Gages. Roy and Johnny both hoped that their secret
admirers would soon tire and give up.
Johnny was whistling as he and Roy entered the locker room. They had
enjoyed their days off and Johnny was in a good mood. But he stopped
dead in his tracks when he opened his locker.
Roy noticed the look on Johnny’s face. “What is it, Johnny?” He
quickly looked in Johnny’s locker and saw the package. With a
feeling of dread, he opened his locker and found he had one, too.
Just then Captain Stanley walked into the locker room and found the
two paramedics staring into their lockers. He walked up behind them
and saw the packages. “Where did they come from?”
Both men jumped since they had not heard their Captain walk in. Johnny
was the first to recover. “We don’t know, Cap. They were
there when we opened our lockers.”
“Well, take them out and open them. Then we will deal with how
they got in there and who they are from.” Captain Stanley had
the same feeling the two men had—that these were more gifts from
their “secret admirers.”
Carefully, as if they were handling bombs, both men took out the presents
and opened them. Inside were two very expensive sweaters. And two cards
that read, “For my sweetheart to keep you warm until you are
in my arms. Your secret love.”
“I don’t like this one bit.” Johnny was getting
a very strange feeling about the whole situation.
“I don’t either, Junior.” Roy was getting the same
feeling. “How did whoever did it get into the station to put
these in our lockers? And how did they know which was our lockers?”
“Let’s go ask C-shift if they know anything.” Captain
Stanley wasn’t happy that someone might have gotten access to
the station when no one else was around. He didn’t like it one
The uneasy feelings grew and spread as no one had seen anyone. There
had been no visitors to the station and no one asked to leave anything
in anyone’s locker. Now C-shift’s Captain was beginning
to worry, too.
Roy and Johnny quietly went back to the locker room and quietly changed
into their uniforms. They were both glad that they were done and on
the way back to the kitchen before any of the other guys arrived. Both
men were wracking their brains for a way to dissuade their “secret
admirers” once and for all.
Hank, Roy and Johnny were sitting at the kitchen table staring at
their coffee cups lost in thought as Mike, Marco and Chet entered the
room. It was Chet that finally broke the spell. “Hey, you guys
zoning out on us? We expect it of Johnny and once in a while Roy, but
you, too, Cap?”
Hank looked at Chet. He didn’t have to say a word. The worried
look on his face put all three of the other men on alert.
“Cap, what happened?” Mike was the one who asked the question.
“Guys, grab a cup of coffee and sit down. We’re going
to skip roll call today. We have to talk.” Captain Stanley was
not only worried about the fact that someone had gotten into the station;
he was worried about his paramedics.
Chet knew that it was something serious for Cap to cancel roll call.
He followed Mike and Marco as they got their coffee and headed back
to the table.
“Guys, someone got into the station and left something in Roy
and Johnny’s lockers without anyone knowing about it. Captain
McGregor is pretty sure that it happened when they were out on a run,
but they aren’t ruling out that it may have happened during the
night.” Captain Stanley looked at the faces of his crew.
“But they are very light sleepers. Surely they would have heard
something if it happened in the middle of the night.” Chet didn’t
like what he was hearing. It was an invasion of privacy.
“Well, they were on that big warehouse fire yesterday, so headquarters
took them out of service around midnight. They had just returned to
the station after a 16-hour battle. Each one of them had a glass of
milk and went to bed and fell asleep almost immediately. However, when
the wake-up tones went off, they could hardly wake up. They all felt
like they had a hangover. Captain McGregor found some pills on the
floor by the refrigerator. Jim and Dan looked at them and figured out
they were sleeping pills. Captain McGregor didn’t think anything
about it until I told them about the presents in Roy and Johnny’s
lockers. He is in the office calling headquarters and the police right
now. So whatever you do, don’t drink the milk.” Hank was
once again staring at his coffee cup.
Roy and Johnny both turned white when they heard about the sleeping
pills. They knew paramedics on C-shift and believe they knew what the
pills were. Captain Stanley had not told them that part. They were
beginning to fear for their shift mates and other firefighters who
worked out of station 51.
Looking at Johnny, Roy knew they were thinking the same thing. “Cap,
maybe Johnny and I should take some time off until we get this thing
straightened out. We don’t want to put anyone’s life in
“Roy, I don’t think that’s—“ Hank never
had a chance to finish his statement.
“What happened this morning?” Vince had just walked in
the room and overheard Roy’s statement.
“More presents from our ‘secret admirers.’” Johnny
looked at Vince with pain in his eyes.
“And we think they may have put sleeping pills in the milk that
C-shift drank last night.” Roy went on to explain the situation
“Do you have the gifts and the notes? Maybe they left fingerprints
and we can track them that way? And I’ll take the milk and sleeping
pills with me to have them checked out.” Vince didn’t like
the way this case was headed.
“I’ll get the gifts and notes.” Johnny needed to
get away from the looks of his friends.
Roy followed his friend out of the room. He knew that Johnny needed
to talk to him alone and they needed to decide what to do next.
“I have the sleeping pills.” Captain McGregor was just
getting ready to leave.
“Hank, I think we need to talk. I have put the station out of
service for the time being.” Chief McConikee had broken several
speed limit laws to get to Station 51. “Where are Johnny and
“They are in the locker room. Vince wanted the presents and
notes they received this morning.” Hank Stanley wondered what
the chief wanted.
“What presents?” The Chief realized there was more to
this than just the sleeping pills.
Hank explained to him what they had found in the paramedics’ lockers
when they arrived that morning.
Vince looked at the chief and then Captain Stanley. “I think
the five of us had better talk in your office, Hank”
Johnny and Roy had walked back in with the presents and notes for
Vince. “Here, I hope you can find some fingerprints. We put everything
in plastic bags for you.”
Just then the phone rang. Macro answered it. “Station 51.—No,
they are not available right now.—No, I’m not sure if they
received them or not.—Can I tell them that you call?—I
need to know your names so I can tell them that you called.-------------Yes,
I’ll give them that message, but who do I tell them called?” Macro
turned as he hung up the phone. “That was one of your secret
admirers. She was mad when I said you were unavailable. She said that
they knew you were here and that you’d better not be trying to
avoid them. Then when I said I didn’t know if you had received
their presents, she got even madder and said that you had better not
give them to the police like you did the watches. She said they knew
you were talking to the police and you had better stop if you didn’t
want something terrible to happen. When I asked her name, she started
yelling and said to tell you that you would know who they are if you
thought long enough and that you had better stop playing these games
with them or you would be sorry and then she hung up.”
Johnny’s legs were unstable and he sank into the closest chair
he could find. Who were these women and what did they want?
“Well, I came to tell you that I didn’t have any luck
with the watches. They were paid for with cash even though they cost
$2,500 a piece. Since it was a cash transaction, the store didn’t
have any records of the name of the purchaser. But we did find some
fingerprints and hopefully can match them to any we get off these presents.” Vince
did not like the turn of events. “I’ll take these out in
a box. I don’t know how they found out about the watches, but
if we can make it look like I am taking out something else, I can take
these out in the bottom of the box.”
As they collected newspapers, etc., to make it look like he was taking
them somewhere, Vince placed the gifts, notes, sleeping pills and milk
in the bottom of the box. Then the papers were put on top and Vince
turned to carry it out to the car. “I will let you know as soon
as I find anything. We will be sending an unmarked police car to every
run this station is sent on until we find out who these women are.”
Nicole was lying on the couch in the living room while Joanne sat
in the chair. They were enjoying a late breakfast together. Just as
Joanne was collecting their dishes to take them back to the kitchen,
the phone rang. “Hello, DeSoto residence.—Would you please
repeat that?—I’m sorry you must have the wrong number.—That
is where you are wrong. We both know that our husbands love us very
much and that you are harassing them.—No, they do not love you.
They don’t even know who you are. They have told us all about
your presents and your calls and the fact is they don’t want
them.—No you cannot speak to Mrs. Gage. She is resting right
now and cannot be disturbed.----Who are you?” Joanne sank into
the chair as she hung up.
Nicole didn’t like the ashen look of her face. “Joanne,
I know that was our husbands’ ‘secret admirers,’ but
what did the caller say?”
“She said that Johnny and Roy really didn’t love us. She
said that soon they would leave us for those women and they would take
our children with them. They are just waiting for you to have your
babies so they would all be together as a family. She said that Johnny
and Roy didn’t want to leave their children in the care of women
they hated. Then they said that we should be careful as something terrible
will happen if we stand in the way of Johnny and Roy leaving us to
be with them.”
Nicole had been able to tell that the voice on the other end of the
line had risen in volume, but she hadn’t been able to make out
the words. When Joanne told her what was said, her already highly emotional
state took her over the edge and she started crying so hard her body
Joanne knew that it wasn’t good for Nicole to be crying so hard.
She tried to calm her down, but was having no success. Then the contractions
started. Knowing that multiple births usually meant a premature delivery,
Joanne prayed that this wasn’t too soon. She picked up the phone
again and dialed Station 51.
Vince had just reached the squad in the bay on his way to the car
when the phone rang again. He turned and headed back to the day room
to see if it was anything important.
Mike answered the phone. “Station 51.—Oh, hi, Joanne.—Yeah,
he’s standing right here, just a second.” Mike turned to
see seven sets of eyes on him. “Roy, it’s Joanne and she’s
Roy reached for the phone and Johnny moved closer to him. “Hi,
honey, what’s wrong?—What exactly did she say?----------Ok,
we’ll be there as soon as possible. Why don’t you put Nicole
on the phone and I’ll let Johnny talk to her. Maybe that will
calm her down.” He handed the phone to Johnny. “I’ll
tell you everything later, but Nicole is really upset and has gone
into premature labor because of it. See if you can calm her down and
we’ll call in a still alarm and then head over there.”
Johnny took the phone and began to quietly talk to his wife as Roy
turned to the others and told them about the phone conversation that
had upset Nicole so much. Captain Stanley ran to the mike and called
in the alarm stating that the whole station would be responding and
an ambulance needed to be dispatched. Chief McConikee got on the mike
and told headquarters that Station 51 was still out of service until
further notice. This one run was a family emergency. By that time Johnny,
Roy and everyone else was in their designated places and Vince had
radioed for an unmarked car to meet them at the DeSoto home. Captain
Stanley ran to his seat and the two vehicles were on their way with
the Chief following behind. No one noticed the car that followed the
caravan down the road.
Joanne was glad that Johnny had been able to calm Nicole down somewhat.
Now she was just dealing with the pains the contractions were giving
her. Joanne wasn’t too worried when Nicole’s water broke,
but the sight of some blood did worry her. She was at the door the
second the men from station 51 arrived on the scene.
Johnny was the first one in the door and crossed the room in record
time. Roy was close behind and had the equipment set up before the
others could even get into the house. Roy had told Johnny about Joanne’s
phone conversation on the way to the house, so he could better deal
with his wife. Johnny held Nicole in his arms for a few seconds and
then turned on his paramedic mode. Nicole was bleeding and neither
man liked it. Neither did Rampart. Nicole and Roy were on their way
to the hospital in less than three minutes. Captain Stanley had Chet
drive Johnny in the squad since he wasn’t sure Johnny could handle
it. Chief McConikee drove Joanne to the hospital stating that he would
drive her home when it was all over. So the caravan headed to Rampart.
Again, no one noticed the car following behind.
Five hours later Johnny was sitting next to Nicole’s bed watching
her sleep. He had been released from duty. The ordeal in the emergency
room had worn Nicole out. Johnny was sure that she didn’t remember
the birth and that both babies were healthy and weighed at least six
pounds each or the surgery afterwards. They were all going to make
it—including Nicole. Johnny prayed a silent prayer of thanks
that Nicole’s bleeding had only been from one of the kids pushing
a little too hard to get out and causing a slight tear that was repairable.
Nicole stirred and saw her husband deep in thought. “Hey, daddy,
how are you doing?”
Johnny’s face lit up. “I’m doing great. I like the
sound of the word daddy. How are you doing mommy?”
“I’m sore but I couldn’t be happier. When do I get
to see our precious angels?”
“They will be here soon. You were pretty tired by the time the
second one came, but you did great. Then you fell asleep. You and our
children are fine. We have two beautiful daughters.”
As if that was their cue, Joanne, and Roy entered the room each pushing
a hospital baby crib. Hank, Chet, Marco, Mike and Chief McConikee followed.
Chris and Jenny brought up the rear.
“Hi, everyone.” Nicole smiled as Joanne and Roy placed
the babies they were pushing into her arms.
“What are you going to name these two?” Chet was almost
as proud as Johnny.
“Yeah, what are you going to name them? I need to get their
birth certificates under way.” Dixie had joined the group.
“Well,” Nicole looked at the girl asleep in her right
arm. “This is Melinda Rachel. And this is Melanie Renee.”
“Welcome Melinda and Melanie.” Jenny had pushed her way
through the grownups to stand next to her Uncle Johnny. “Welcome
to the family.”
Everyone laughed and echoed, “Welcome to the family.”
No one knew of the two ladies standing outside the door listening
to the group within. ~Soon you will be ours. Now we will have our family.
Now that the babies are here, we will become the family we should be.~
Johnny was whistling as he entered the locker room. He had taken his
family home the day before. He hadn’t gotten much sleep with
two new babies in the house, but he couldn’t be happier. Roy
grinned at his partner as he followed him into the locker room. It
had been a sight to see Johnny as he brought Nicole and the babies
over to the DeSoto home to spend the day. He was happy for his best
The morning started out fairly quiet and for once the men were glad.
Then the phone rang. Marco answered it as he was cleaning the day room.
No one thought anything about the call until Marco walked into the
bay. He was glad to see Captain Stanley standing with the paramedics. “Johnny,
Roy, that was your ‘secret admirers’ again.”
Johnny turned white and looked at Roy, then his Captain and then at
Marco. “What did they say this time?” By this time Mike
and Chet had joined the group.
“That now the babies are here it is time for all of you to become
a family. They said they know you talked with the police and they will
teach you a lesson. They said that soon you would be with the women
you love instead of the women you hate. Every move you make is being
watched carefully according to the caller and it won’t be long
now.” Marco wondered who these women were.
Johnny walked out of the day room and into the locker room. That’s
where Roy found him a few minutes later. “Johnny, are you alright?”
“Well, I guess not. Cap is calling Vince right now. Maybe we
should take our families and go somewhere for a few days.”
“They are watching our every move, Roy. How are we going to
go somewhere without them finding us?”
“You’re right. We are just going to have to watch our
backs until Vince can find out who these women are.” Roy was
just as frustrated as Johnny.
Joanne smiled at the sight before her. Nicole had fallen asleep on
the couch with one hand in each bassinet holding her daughters. It
was the first chance Nicole had gotten to rest all morning. Joanne
prayed that she would get at least an hour’s rest.
Just then someone knocked on the front door and Joanne hurried to
answer it before anyone could bother the two sleeping babies and Nicole. “Hello.” Joanne
had no idea who the two women standing in front of her were.
“Hello, may we come in?” The woman standing there was
surprised to see that Joanne was really actually quite pretty.
“Um, no, now is not a good time.” Joanne had a bad feeling
about this situation.
“Oh, but why not?
“Because I don’t know who you are or what you want. And
there are some children and my friend sleeping in the living room and
I really don’t want them disturbed.” Joanne tried to close
the door on these two intruders.
The woman standing on the first step down looked at Joanne. “I
think you’d better let us in.” She pulled Jennifer out
in front of her and pointed a gun at her head. Jennifer was terrified.
Joanne didn’t say anything but moved to one side to let the
women in. The first woman closed and locked the door. Taking out a
gun she motioned for Joanne to go into the living room and Joanne did
as she was told.
Nicole looked up as the group entered the living room. She had woken
up at the knock. Looking at Joanne and then Jennifer, Nicole knew right
away who the two women were—the secret admirers. When Callie
let go of Jennifer, Nicole pulled the little girl into her arms. Mandy
watched as Joanne went to set on the couch beside her “sister” and
Nicole had calmed Jennifer. “Who are you and what do you want?”
“I am Callie and this is Mandy Wandell. We are your husband’s
lovers and are here to get the children. Johnny and Roy asked us to
pick up the kids and meet them. We are leaving town tonight. We are
going to our mountain cabin. You know how much Johnny loves the mountains.
The sunrises and sunsets are beautiful in the San Andres this time
of year. Oh, I probably shouldn’t have said that. Oh, well, it
“Johnny and Roy are on duty. They would not leave town tonight.” Nicole
was hoping to call Callie’s bluff.
“Yes they would and they are going to. Joanne, call Chris down
here now.” Mandy’s tone left no room for argument.
“Chris, come down here now.” Joanne watched every move
either one of the women made. She didn’t want them to do anything
rash to any of the kids. Both Joanne and Nicole said a silent prayer
that the babies were asleep.
Chris came down the stairs mumbling the whole way. He stopped at the
bottom when he saw the two women he didn’t know and the guns
they were holding.
“Chris, you and I are going into the kitchen and make chocolate
milk for all of you and formula for the babies. They are supposed to
eat soon.” Callie pushed Chris ahead of her into the kitchen.
As they prepared the milk and the bottles, Callie mixed in some kind
of powder. Chris didn’t like what was happening, but he did as
he was told. He led the way back into the living room carrying a tray
with the glasses of milk. Callie followed carrying the bottles.
“Ok Joanne and Nicole let’s feed the babies. Chris, you
come over here and sit with me. Jennifer, you sit with Mandy.” Callie
handed a bottle and baby to Nicole and one to Joanne. She took the
tray of milk from Chris and motioned him to sit on the floor next to
his father’s easy chair. Callie sat in Roy’s chair and
Mandy sat in the other stuffed chair motioning for Jennifer to sit
on the floor next to her. It was quiet as the babies were fed. Both
Joanne and Nicole had a bad feeling, but didn’t know what to
do to get out of the situation.
Nicole watched as Melanie and Melinda happily ate and then fell asleep.
There was a feeling of dread in the pit of her stomach. Sure the babies
usually fell asleep shortly after they ate, but she knew that they
were awake enough when they started eating that they should have stayed
awake long enough to play for at least a few minutes. One look at her
face and Nicole knew that Joanne felt the same way. As it was, the
babies almost didn’t finish eating before they were asleep.
Mandy and Callie put the babies back into their bassinets. Callie
handed Jennifer and Chris a glass of milk and told them to drink it.
Jennifer loved chocolate milk so she drank hers fast. Chris was still
wondering what Callie had put into the milk and didn’t want to
drink it. One look at the guns and he decided he better do it anyway.
So he followed his sister’s example.
Callie turned to Nicole and Joanne. “Now it’s your turn.”
Joanne and Nicole both drank the glasses of milk they were handed
and watched as Chris and Jennifer both drifted to sleep. Both women
were trying to think of some way not to drink the milk, but knew there
was nothing they could do.
“Ok, now, let’s go upstairs.” Callie made both women
go in front of her upstairs to the DeSotos bedroom. There she told
the women to lie down as both of them realized they had been drugged. “Good
night ladies. The children are ours now, so don’t worry. We’ll
take good care of them.” Both Nicole and Joanne lost the fight
to stay awake.
Callie laughed as she went back downstairs and helped Mandy load the
twins, Chris and Jennifer into the Gage’s van. Then they pulled
the van around the corner and while Callie stayed with the kids, Mandy
went back to the DeSoto home and started the living room furniture
and drapes on fire. She quickly left as the blaze took hold.
Johnny and Roy were working together on the dorm when both of them
felt a chill run down their spine. Exchanging glances both knew the
other felt it.
“Roy, something is wrong. We need to call your house.” Johnny’s
chill was a strong sense of dread.
“You’re right. Let’s go.” Roy led the way
into the day room. Johnny paced beside him as Roy picked up the phone
and dialed his home. Roy knew that Nicole was spending the day at their
house and Joanne was going to let her rest. When the phone rang for
the 20th time and was not answered, Roy’s feeling grew stronger.
“Johnny, there’s no answer.”
Johnny’s reply was cut off by the tones. As the men headed towards
their vehicles, both Johnny and Roy stopped dead in their tracks when
the address given was the DeSoto home. Quickly exchanging looks, they
were in the squad and out the door before Hank Stanley could give them
the run slip. He would give it to them later, knowing who’s address
Roy drove faster than he had ever driven before and it was only three
minutes before he pulled up in front of his house. Johnny was out of
the squad and halfway across the yard before Roy could put the squad
in park. Both men ran into the house and called for their wives. Seeing
the blaze and not getting an answer, they ran upstairs to check it
first. Roy opened the door to their bedroom and found both women on
the bed. Yelling at Johnny, he grabbed Joanne. Johnny raced into the
room and grabbed Nicole. Both men ran down the stairs. The engine crew
was there by the time Johnny and Roy got back outside. The unmarked
police car had gotten hit by another car so never made it to Roy’s
Seeing Roy and Johnny had the women, Captain Stanley sent Marco and
Chet into the house to look for the kids. He figured Roy and Johnny
would take care of their wives, so he walked over to Mike to get the
hose and start fighting the fire.
Continued in Unwanted Attention