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"...Choose only entertainment and media that uplift you. Good entertainment will help you to have good thoughts and make righteous choices...Do not participate in entertainment that in any way presents immorality or violent behavior as acceptable."
For The Strength of Youth

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Submitted by Steven ODell on 6 July 2007 - 12:27am.

Chapter 16

The question of contacting the proper authorities had now come up officially. Rudy quickly provided an answer.

"What you need to worry about is getting an investigative agency that won't have a bias and suppress any details of the evidence. The local police are not what you want, obviously. I think you should go to the phone booth a few blocks from here and make a call untraceable to any of you. You can contact the state police for a start and bring in the F.B.I. later, if you like. Attempted murder, kidnapping—maybe even some real murders could be uncovered quite easily by getting the right people involved."

Mose agreed readily. "Good idea. Just what I would do. Thanks for your help in this, Rudy. You really came through in a pinch. You can be in my foxhole any day."

Javits extended his hand to Mose, hesitating a moment in his grip and said sincerely, "Thanks for asking me along...a real pleasure to serve with you men. Most excitement I’ve had in years."

Jonathan chuckled. "Yeah, even his mistakes are good."

Rudy laughed out loud. "I only did what any man would have done—just a bit more clumsily, that's all." Now everyone was laughing.

Denise could see that another friendship of respect had been formed this night. It mattered not what their backgrounds were; whether military, police or civilian, they had all actively participated in the night's proceedings and had all contributed heavily to the success of their mission. All had put something on the line and performed admirably.

"I want you all to know I'm proud of every one of you and doubly proud to call you my friends," Denise announced.

Tom now spoke up to the group as a whole for the first time, deep emotion apparent in his voice and tears welling in his eyes. "And I want you all to know how grateful I am for your efforts in my behalf. You all put your lives on the line for me and most of you don't even know me."

Tom hung his head for a moment in contemplation, then looked briefly at Jenna and continued. "My full name is Thomas Baird Gilvaine. My father is Edward Gilvaine of Boston." He waited for a reaction and was instead informed that they already knew. Even Jenna said it was his own business as to why he went only by a portion of his name. All she cared about was that he was safe again.

"No, I want you to know, Jenna. I went by that name for two reasons. I wanted to prove I could survive for a reasonable amount of time on my own merits and secondly, I knew...well, I hoped...that one day I would meet the woman in my dreams and I wanted her to love me for who I am and not for my family's resources. I'm sorry, Jenna."

"I told you, it doesn't matter. Rudy already told us all of that. He's an investigator and a darned good one."

Javits nodded a humble thanks to her and remained quiet.

Mose offered to go make the call to the authorities and hinted that he was now getting tired and wanted to get some rest when he got back.

Denise noted, "You've all been through a lot tonight. I know it was very stressful for you. I've made beds in every way possible and if Ron doesn't mind for the evening, Jenna can share a room with me. That will make it easier." She looked to her husband for his response, already knowing what it would be.

"No problem, babe. So, what did you do here all alone, while we were out fighting dragons?" He smiled at her as if it were an inside joke only they knew.

Denise returned the smile and squeezed his hand. "I did what any good damsel would do. I prayed that the rival would be swiftly vanquished." She winked at him and Ron pulled her to his side and buried his face in her hair, closing his eyes, inhaling deeply and thanking providence for such a woman as this.

Tom, too, was grateful. In the morning he would ask the woman of his dreams to marry him and he would promise to be her ‘knight in shining armor’ forever.

The End

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