Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Chapter Twenty-Eight - Beneficiaries

The interrogation room was cold, and empty. The lone man sitting in the room looked to his left at the mirror that was hiding presumably a few police officers and SWAT teams if need be. He didn't care. He realized his time was ending on this world. Suddenly the door opened to the cold room, and the man didn't show any emotion on his face when a woman walked in, putting a file on the desk in front of him before sitting down herself.

"Kelly has connections with the police department.  You remember Kelly, right? She remembers you. After you kidnapped me she said she would love to get her hands around your throat.  Quite frankly I don't blame her.", Annabelle said. "They let me come in and interrogate you myself. So I'll be good cop, bad cop, or painful cop. And the Starlight Shores Finest will look the other way if I have to resort to the third option, not just on my behalf, but everyone you've hurt in the past. You've made a lot of enemies, Jack, including me."

Jack looked at Annabelle, but didn't say a word. He just looked at her, right into her amethyst eyes, recognizing the anger she had retained over the years.

"Who is the new Benefactor?" Annabelle asked, angrily.


5 Hours Earlier

Tom woke up in Annabelle's bed, nearly freezing from his lack of clothing. As he stood up to get dressed, Tom looked around for his overshirt but couldn't see it, and decided to put on the rest of his clothes before walking downstairs. Keera, who saw him leave Annabelle's room, decided to have a bit of fun knowing full well of what was going on.

"I take you and Annabelle are on good terms again?" Keera said, smirking. Tom, who didn't want to talk about the night before out of partial embarrassment, especially to Annabelle's own daughter, kept standing there with his mouth shut.

"So it took you all night to apologize to her?! Wow you must have talked ssllloooowwwwlllyyy. Though I suppose since it had been over a month since you guys split you needed to get a few things off your chest, like shirts maybe."

Tom was a bit agitated and said "Aren't you a bit young to be talking about all this? Besides, what happened is none of your business, Keera."

"Yeah I suppose." Keera smirked, then changed the conversation. "By the way, I figured out what is in the tomb of Richard Alan Ladeen. A genie lamp! Though the answer was staring me right in the face, 'Al Ladeen, Aladdin. Genie lamp.' I hate puns that I don't get."

"A genie lamp?!" Tom said. "That is certainly something to look for! If someone evil got a hold of a genie lamp, the consequences-"

"Would be dire. I know." Keera said. "They could alter reality! They could bring unimaginable evil to the world. They could change the past!" With no more words Keera suddenly went off walking, making Tom wonder what she was thinking of at the moment.

Keera walked into the bathroom and looked at herself in the mirror. She looked at eye damaged eye, the eye patch that covered it, and the scar that spread across her face like the fire that caused the whole thing. "...could change the past."

Keera always wondered about what would happen if she somehow went back in time and subtly told herself to go with Scarlett when she left for her purse. Then she wouldn't have been injured, she wouldn't have the scar or the eye patch. Everything would be perfect, just absolutely perfect.

In her mind, however, nothing would be. Everything good and bad that had happened to her family in the month since the accident would be erased. For one, Scarlett would be just as constantly angry as before, as the accident wouldn't have altered her outlook on life. Another thing was that the scar made her a stronger person as a whole, it was a reminder to her that anything can happen at any time. She remained where she was for a few moments, then left the bathroom, still struggling over what she would do if she had the chance to change her life.


Tom made his way to the kitchen where he saw Annabelle, wearing his missing over-shirt, albeit inside-out, and using a laptop. "Nice clothes. Brown looks good on you." He said, "Makes you look a bit like a tre-"

"If you finish that sentence I'll shove your face down the garbage disposal. I'll do it too. And yes, your shirt does look good on me, thanks."

Tom walked over to her and sat down on the stool beside her. "So now you're telling everyone what happened last night? That we... what about France?"

Annabelle's face developed a more somber look. "When I told you to keep what happened in France a secret, that backfired four years later and ended up nearly destroying our friendship. I don't want that to happen again. I don't ever want to be in a situation like that with you again."

"I'm worried what happened last night was a mistake." Tom replied. "I'm worried that it will eventually cause a second rift. What if that happens?"

Annabelle thought back to a month before, when she used the teleporter. She remembered traveling to what she still believed to the future, and seeing Tom on the phone sounding desperate as he said "Come on, you have to remember, I told you what happened in Starlight Shores was a mistake... Please... listen!"

Annabelle then turned to him. "We'll have to cross that river when we come to it, won't we?"

Tom nodded, and they sat there alone, in silence for a short time.


An hour later Kelly, Keera, Tom, and Annabelle met in the living room and sat at a table, ready to discuss what Tom had heard the night before.

"So I'm not gonna sugar coat this... there's another Benefactor, and the man who caused the destruction of Sunset Valley is still alive. AND they're working together to obtain what we believe is a Genie Lamp from a not-so-ancient tomb. But they can only do it when there's a total eclipse of the sun, which is two weeks from now."

"5:54 PM." Keera said. "And it will last for eight minutes. So someone has to be at that tomb at 5:54 PM, on September 20th, to stop them from getting their grubby little hands on the lamp."

"Okay." Annabelle said, "We'll contact the police, the FBI, Interpol, about fifteen militia groups, and tell them... that a villain who's suppose to be dead and another villain supporting him are planning to take over the world with a magical genie lamp. That will go smoothly."

"Yeah. In this case we're on our own." Kelly said, "Unless, maybe I can get my friend Davis to send some units from Sunset Valley PD here. He trusts me enough to listen to whatever oddball things I have to say, considering I was the one who led him to Vu in the first place nine years ago."

"Okay, get him on the phone." Tom replied, "At least that will give us some kind of help. I don't want to do this alone, because these are international criminals we are talking about, who knows what kind of weapons they have!"

"We could always LET them get the tomb open, then somehow steal the lamp for ourselves." Keera said. "Get it out of their hands before it's even in there."

"That sounds way too dangerous, for everyone involved." Annabelle replied. "And maybe that kind of power could corrupt US into using it for dark and malicious deeds. We can't take that chance. Besides, we have two weeks to figure out what the hell we're going to do, and until then we need to figure out what we're up against. Kelly, you and Keera should use the computer to find any information regarding the tomb of R.A. Ladeen."

"Sounds good, Annie." Kelly said. Annabelle then turned to the other one sitting at the table.

"Tom, since you're the adventurer, how about you go to the museum and find what you can about the legend there? I know they recently opened an Egyptian exhibit, and since this lamp supposedly came from Egypt there could be some kind of connection between them."

"What about you?" Tom replied with a worried tone in his voice. "What are you going to do?"

Annabelle turned back to Kelly. "Before you start research, can I ask you to call the police station? I need to talk to someone who is currently in prison outside of town, and I won't talk to him unless I know absolutely sure that I can, and he's secure in the station."

"Who?" Tom asked.

"Jack Toomes. He could give us information on the new benefactor, whoever the hell it is."

"Annie I-" Tom was about to object before Annabelle lifted her hand up.

"And before you say anything." she said, "I will be guarded by the police officers, I will be safe and sound. Please let me do this alone. After the way he tricked me in Bridgeport four years ago, I need this. Please?"

"Okay, but I'll be nearby at the museum. If I hear anything, I'll be there. Understand?" After what happened up to the night before, Tom was not about to talk back to anything Annabelle said.

Annabelle nodded and they all four stood up to go do what they were asked to. Annabelle smiled at Tom as he walked away, still slightly feeling the way she was the night before when he came into her room and apologized to her. After all, Annabelle loved doing things spontaneously, and there was nothing as spontaneous as that. Suddenly her strange sense of humor got to her, and she wondered if Tom would be sick with the flu the next day, like in France.


 Tom made his way back to the museum like Annabelle asked him to, and hoped to not see that strange man who somehow knew his name like last time. Unfortunately, things didn't go so well for him at this point because the man was standing in the exhibit as he walked in.

"Mr. Jameson." Jacob said, "Glad to see you came back! Couldn't escape the allure of this tomb I see?"

"No, I need to find something about it, Mr. Thompson. And how did you know my name last time we met?" Tom walked up to him and looked him in the eyes, sensing something familiar about them. "Have we met before or something?"

"No. When you moved into town you registered your name at City Hall for voting purposes. I was there at the same time for the same reason. My rather exceptional hearing led me to discover your name. And I don't think you saw me in the crowd."

"That makes sense I guess." Tom withdrew himself from whatever confrontation he was ready to start and walked over to the Sarcophagus which adorned the center of the exhibit. "I'm actually here to ask someone about... genies. Do you know anything about them?"

"Genies? Jinn? I know a bit about them. They are supposedly creatures from a dimension parallel to our own, and have phenomenal cosmic powers but have a habit of becoming trapped in the itty bitty living spaces within golden oil lamps. Why do you ask?"

Tom, not wanting to let this man know what he was looking for, quickly came up with something off the top of his head. "Just curious. I like the idea of creatures that grant wishes, gives me something to strive for in these cold Starlight Shores days. I don't what I would wish for if I had lamp like that. Maybe for a better world!"

Jacob smiled in a way that almost disturbed Tom, and said "Well I would wish for control... of things, you know. Minor little things that most people wouldn't even care to lose, and that other people would kill to obtain. Then again I'm just one person, but they do say 'the greatest things can start with the most miniscule people'."

Tom, listening to this man, decided to walk away in a very fast manner, forgetting everything that he was told to do by Annabelle.

"What's the matter Tom? Can't you stay and chat? Or do you have to run home?" Tom ignored the man's words, and  after a few moments of walking he didn't hear them anymore.

He turned back around and saw that Jacob Thompson was gone from the exhibit, even though Tom himself walked out of the only exit. This creeped him out even more as he continued on.


Kelly and Keera were in Keera's room, looking up information for Annabelle regarding the Genie Lamp. Well, Kelly was. Keera at the moment was still reading in that book discussing legends, having searched it for anything else regarding wishes. After a few minutes of reading in silence Keera closed the book and looked over to Kelly. "Hey, you know the supposed Genie Lamp in Ladeen's tomb is currently the only known artifact in the world capable of granting the user's wishes? There was one in Lucky Palms, but it was destroyed.

"What do you mean 'destroyed'?" Kelly asked, standing away from the computer.

"Well, according to this book, there was a Wishing Well located in Lucky Palms, Nevada. The legend was that there was a rich married couple who had everything in the world except a child. They tried adoption agencies but to no avail. Eventually they wished upon the well for a child of their own, to raise. They got their wish, but it backfired immensely."

"The child was pure, uncontrolled, evil. When his geography teacher failed him for getting a wrong answer on a pop quiz, the child stalked the teacher until he mentally broke down, then smashed a ceramic globe over his head. Eventually the parents abandoned the child in their home town of Bridgeport, leaving him all their fortune as they left the grid and vanished, but not before having the wishing well destroyed."

"What does this have to do with anything?" Kelly asked, with a scared tone in her voice. Keera showed her a picture of the child from the story, and she recognized him instantly. "This picture was taken in the 1980's?!"

Keera shuddered. "Yes. It has to do with what we're looking for because my mother is going to talk to that child right now."

Annabelle walked into the interrogation room with a glare on her face. She never wanted to see Jack Toomes again after what he put her through in Bridgeport, yet here she was, walking into the same room as him. Only this time it was him who was in a precarious situation, as even though he was not restrained, it was  behind the one-way mirror that three SWAT team members were prepped with assault rifles, just waiting for him to make the wrong move.

Annabelle walked over to Jack and placed a file on the table in front of him. On the file was a picture of Jack back when he was first arrested in 1997 for illegal possession of a firearm. Annabelle was inwardly brimming with confidence as she had the upper hand on him. "Kelly has connections with the police department. You remember Kelly, right? She remembers you. After you kidnapped me she said she would love to get her hands around your throat.  Quite frankly I don't blame her."

Jack didn't make a sound, and Annabelle just looked at him. "They let me come in and interrogate you myself. So I'll be good cop, bad cop, or painful cop. And the Starlight Shores Finest will look the other way if I have to resort to the third option, not just on my behalf, but everyone you've hurt in the past. You've made a lot of enemies, Jack, including me."

Annabelle looked at Jack, trying to get into his mind. Finally she went straight to the point. "Who is the new Benefactor?" she asked, angrily. "What do you know about him?" Jack didn't make a noise, he just looked at her. Annabelle slammed her hands down on the steel table, nearly making a dent in it. "Who is he?!"

"What about 'Hello Jack, long time no see'?" Jack finally said, looking at her. "It's very rude to your elders to not say hello first, Annie-Bell. I deserve it at least, since it's been so long since we last saw each other."

"You don't deserve anything less than painful torture." Annabelle said through gritted teeth. "You don't even deserve three meals a day and a cozy little cot to sleep in. If I had my way you'd be taken out to the back of a barn and shot."

"Ah, nice new dark attitude you've developed." Jack said, smiling. "Must have been the years of pain you've endured since Bridgeport. Tell me... about two months ago when I was watching some errant television while laying on my 'cozy little cot', I saw on the news about someone named Keera Ketrhin, is she related?"

"Who is the new benefactor?" Annabelle sternly said while standing up, not giving Jack a chance to get to her. "What's his name?"

"His name is Carl Peter Jones Richardson Thomas Jingleheimer the Third. You know, he's the cousin of John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt, twice removed of course. Lovely family there, they send me cookies every Christmas, with this beautiful card that smells like candy canes. I have them hidden under my, heheheh, 'cozy little cot'."

Annabelle realized coming to the police station was pointless, and turned around to leave. Without looking at him, she said "Goodbye, Toomes. Have a nice day and please go to Hell."

Annabelle slammed the door shut and started to leave the police station, with no more clues than when she entered the building in the first place.

Meanwhile, back at the interrogation room, Jack looked around. He was told that some paperwork had to be done before he would be transferred out of the station back to prison. So while he waited, he looked at the file on the desk. Then he heard a faint sound, yet familiar. He looked up and saw Jacob Thompson standing out of the point of view of the interrogation room's camera, near a back wall.

"It's time, isn't it?" Jack said. Jacob nodded, then Jack stood up, ready to leave the police station. "Well what are we waiting for?"


After filling out some paperwork, Annabelle left the police station, and turned to see Jack being led into a black car for transport back to the prison. She smiled, realizing that he would never harm anyone ever again. Suddenly, a distinct, and familiar, whirring sound permeated throughout the air, and Annabelle turned around just seconds before a massive explosion overtook the car, destroying it completely and killing the man inside.

Annabelle, who was near the police station, was hit by the shock wave from the explosion and was knocked hard to the ground. Sirens from nearby fire trucks filled the air as the car continued to burn within the small crater that formed around it, while Annabelle passed out from the impact.


  1. Normally I love your writing, but I noticed a lot of errors in this chapter. No need to rush!

  2. love it!i cant wait for the next chapter(:

  3. Really great chapter!! I love your work, can't wait for the next chapter! And that ending, O_O