Ch 1 When JJ Met Sally

Douglas Family Home
Mesa, Arizona
United States of America, Earth
Tuesday, May 4, 2004
 
“Mr. and Mrs. Douglas, thank you for letting us stay with you.”  John Jess Lawrence IV shook Rich Douglas’s hand but returned the embrace Mel Douglas gave him.

“JJ, the house feels empty with Steve the last of our children still at home.  Having you and Jevron spend the night with us helped the house to feel less empty.”  Mel turned to Jevron and mind spoke with him.  Anytime that you want to stay with us you are welcome.

Thank you for your hospitality.  I may take you up on it.  The packs have moved away from the Boeing manufacturing facility on Friendship.  The herds do better away from all the activity.  It is more convenient to stay with you and cross over from the Mesa facility to the Friendship facilities.  I enjoyed communicating with your family last night.  Jevron was one of a growing number of older Kin that found Human style houses better than sleeping out under the stars, especially in desert areas.

“I wish Patty and David would leave David Jesse with us.”  Mel though she visited her daughter and family at least once a month on the planet Mossly, wished she got to see her grandson more.

“DJ loved the visit a month ago when Patty and David attended the Team Council Meeting.  David was impressed by our nursery.  They are setting up one for their Teams on Mossly.”  JJ enjoyed the time he spent working with the kids in the nursery.  It was not something you would expect of a young teenager who looked forward to pitting himself in mental combat against Qoof masters.

“Well we need to get you to Falcon Field.  I still can’t believe they will not allow you to fly a shuttle.”  Rich knew JJ had won the preteen shuttle flying competition last year.

“I am only thirteen.  They require two adult pilots when flying long distances on Earth.”

“You could have gotten permission.”  Rich knew JJ was capable of convincing any non-Team member of anything he wanted.

“If we started using our abilities to take advantage over others, we would lose the trust they have in us.  Besides, we will be taking a flight path along the Grand Canyon.  Mom really enjoyed seeing it when she was a girl.  I wish we could get permission to fly down in the canyon.”

“After the accident last year where the couple flew into the side of the canyon wall, I am surprised they let flyers near it.”  Mel was even more surprised Professor Marie Maclaren Lawrence, the foremost expert on the Adjacent World Theory had spoken of a childhood visit in such terms as to have JJ wanting to visit the canyon.  He had been on so many worlds you would think Earth would not hold such charm.

“Well, I did arrange the test flight for the new flyer based terrain 3D camera system Boeing installed in the flyers.”  JJ smiled as he remembered how he had made the arrangements without once having to make use of his mental abilities to influence people.

“You set things up to test a multi-million dollar camera system, so you can get a flight across the canyon.”  Mel was impressed JJ had done this without using his abilities.

“No it will be along it.  From Page to the Hoover Dam.  We just have to stay above the canyon rim.”

Mel started laughing.

“How did you get that concession?”  Rich was curious.

“Jevron is the top Kin flyer pilot.  This is a training flight where he will be instructing me of the finer points of piloting a flyer.  I will be old enough to compete in the flyer competitions this summer.  I intend to win in my class and possibly place in a higher class.”

Rich and Mel could sense the amusement Jevron had at the idea of this being a training flight.  I will learn as much from JJ as he will from me.  He contributed a lot during the design review and checkout of the revised flyers and shuttles for the Kin.  Marvin took JJ to see some of the other projects they were working on.  He wanted JJ’s thoughts and opinions on the projects.

Marvin Shelly was the Vice President and Plant Manager for Boeing Small Spacecraft.  The helicopter facility in Mesa, Arizona had grown with the Teams needs for shuttle craft to include a much larger facility co-located on the Kin home world Friendship.  There they had a much larger manufacturing plant as well as a large unpopulated area and nearby space, which were both used for testing.  Flyers and other small craft were now also manufactured there.  With the two facilities being accessible to each other by the numerous windows connecting the planets Earth and Friendship, they were essentially one.

Marvin wanted JJ’s opinion on other projects!  Marvin had been Rich and Mel’s boss’s boss before they had quit so they could spend full time leading the growing number of Arizona Teams.  Rich’s thought was only for his wife.
 
He is Marie’s son.  She is always being sought out for her opinion on anything to do with mathematics or astrophysics.
 
JJ is only thirteen and he has trained the past five years for mental combat with the Qoof.
 
And where has he been able to find any Qoof Masters to combat.  We have been keeping low the past five years since the invasion of the Kartan system by the Qoof.  The Qoof and the Nartak have stepped up their fighting and they have not had time to check out what happened to small fleets led by a Sub-Sector Master.
 
I wonder how much JJ and the others had to do with the Qoof and the Nartak ignoring us.
 
“Mel, I think Steve and I will go and see the Team competitions this year.  He has been trying to talk me into going for the past six months.  Do you want to go?”

“Yes, it sounds like we should go.  David and Patty will be competing in the Team Leader contests.”

First Squadron of Warships Complete Maneuvers – Sidney Goldman, Wall Street Journal

May 4, 2004 – Earth’s first squadron of warships have finished maneuvers which put on display their capabilities for allied observers.  O-bat, the leader of the Glazen observers stated he had seen the starships perform beyond the expectation which had existed when the ships had been started.  He was especially pleased with the way the mixed Human and Kin crews were working together.  The ships crews include the first Kin graduates from the Luna Space Academy.  With the recent completion of the second Mars shipyard and the first Friendship shipyard, there are seven shipyards producing starships for the Human and Kin home systems.
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Boeing also announced yesterday the acceptance of the new TFF F-11 flyer.  Senior Kin Representative Jevron oversaw the performance acceptance test at the Boeing .  The F-11s first deliveries will be to the Friendship ground forces and the Australian teams.

Our special edition on May 17th, the fifth anniversary of Alice and Jess Maclaren opening the first window to another world, will be a comprehensive report of the changes since the first window was opened.  The edition will include sections not only on the five species of the Hand but on the Mossen and Ridanna also.

Grand Canyon, Arizona
United States of America, Earth
Tuesday, May 4, 2004
 
“This is flight AU-T2-S2-H3-K3.  We are turning West-South West per our flight plan to follow the Grand Canyon to Hover Dam.  Increasing speed to 1100 kilometers per hour.  We are monitoring all air traffic within two hundred miles.  We note five tourist air buses over flying the canyon.  Also, one  preparing to take off from the airfield on the south rim and two tourist air buses heading to the canyon from Las Vegas.  This is the only air traffic that we have identified as having low altitude flight paths near the canyon.  Please advice us of other air traffic that is within the canyon area or that will enter there within the next half hour.”  JJ reported their change in course to the regional air traffic controller.

“Flight AU-T2-S2-H3-K3, I confirm the in air flights.  The other three have not been handed over to our control.  We will let you know their flight plans when they are.  Excuse me, to whom am I speaking.  You sound young for flying this flight plan.  Is your other pilot older?”  The air controller was worried about having another accident like last year’s.

“This is JJ Lawrence.  Jevron is older.  He is my Kin bond mate.  He is a grandfather.  We are members of Team AU-2.  Our flight is testing flyers with new camera equipment that we just received from Boeing in Mesa.”

“I knew you should be OK after the information that you gave me on the other flights, but we had a terrible accident in the canyon last year and they want us to verbally confirm all flights and you do sound young.”

“I am only thirteen but I have been flying the flyers for almost five years.  The first Glazen flyers were crude but we are both flying TFF F-11s.”

“F-11s are still prototypes.”

“No, we started taking delivery of our first production ones last Thursday.  I was the test pilot for the prototypes since Alyca is pregnant.”

It dawned on the air controller to who he was talking.  “Sorry JJ.  I just realized who you were.  I am Emma Sandino.  I deal mostly with commercial flights and had not expected to find you up here.”

“With everyone busy with the wedding, we took the opportunity to come up here and get away.”

“We are having a party late Friday night to watch the ceremony.  Would you give the three of them best wishing from my husband and me.”

“Emma, I will let them know.”  JJ had just received a mental cry for help.  What surprised him was it was directed to him but the sender did not know him.  Jevron, I just received this.  He passed the message to him.

Go, I will contact Patty.  Jevron had also recognized that it was JJ’s Life-Mate that had contacted him.  He remembered when Nancy had told JJ that he would meet his Life-Mate when he went to her rescue.

“Emma, I just received an emergency message.  Flight AU-T2-S2-H3-K3 leaving flight plan.  Message originated near Colorado City.  Flyers will be on independent courses.  Making best speed.”  JJ had broken formation and was accelerating even as he was reporting to the air traffic controller.

“Ah.”  Emma was speechless as she watched one of the flyers visibly accelerated.  She had never seen that before on long-range radar.  She stared at the display that showed JJ had reached a speed of Mach 3.6 before he started to decelerate as fast as he had accelerated.  That was not the flyer about which she had read.  The Australian Teams really did have the custom flyers that had been rumored.

*******

“Emma, this is Western North America Teams Leader Patty Douglas-Meir.  I am scrambling shuttles out of San Jose, Las Vegas, and San Diego in support of Flight AU-T2-S2-H3-K3.  I am taking off from San Jose as we speak.  The other flights will be air born in three and seven minutes.  We are contacting NORAD and Near Space Defense to inform them.  This is a rescue of an individual and is not a planetary defense issue.  Each shuttle will inform you of its individual flight plan.  We will be fully operational so we will not need traffic control.  Inform all flights in the area of our activity.  Duration of high-speed flights should be under seventeen minutes.  Do you copy?”

“Emma Sandino, West Pac ATC acknowledges.  Will you be in time to protect JJ?”

Patty laughed.  “We are hurrying to make sure that JJ doesn’t have to handle this all by himself.  He just found his Life-Mate when she called out to him for help.  We want to make sure he doesn’t have to do anything to protect her that he might regret later.”

“How did she know to call out to him if they had never met?”

“That is a very good question.  I need to go now.  I don’t need a lot of paper work making me late for the wedding.”

Jevron call to Patty had contacted her just as they were loading the shuttle.  She handed DJ to Liz Berger and hurried to the controls.  The others had time to do no more than sit down before she took off at high speed under fully suppression of acceleration and gravity.  DJ had been startled when he started to float but a quick thought from Patty told him everything was fine.  He started laughing when Dray, Liz’s husband and Life-Mate, took the hat he had been wearing and let it float in front of the toddler.  That kept him amused as his mother jumped the shuttle out of the atmosphere, across to the Arizona-Utah border and down to the small town of Colorado City.

As they approached, the ground, the scene below them caused the four adults to start laughing.  JJ sat on his flyer staring down seven scared men.  All seven of them showed cuts and bruises on their face and hands.  Nothing major, just what they might have gotten if they had been hit by a small stone or stick.  Next to the flyer stood a girl of about JJ age in a simple white wedding gown.  The look on her face was angry but tear tracks streaked her face.

“I told the other shuttles to take their time.”  David Meir said as his wife landed the shuttle on the street to the side of the men who seemed not to notice it.  All their attention was on JJ.

“They are not armed but I don’t see any reason to take off our side arms.”  Dray Berger and his wife Liz were Patty and David’s seconds in command for the Western North American Teams.  “What is JJ doing to them?  He does not appear to be doing anything.”

“He is just letting them feel how he feels about them.”  Patty was amazed at JJ’s control.  “It’s a combination of anger and exasperation.  Sort of like if the dog peed on the rug and you are trying to decide what to do about him.”

They got out of the shuttle and walked over to JJ.  Patty was carrying DJ.  “We will take over.  You have more important things to do.”

“Thanks Patty.”  JJ shook his head and got off of the flyer.  He walked over to the girl and didn’t even look at the seven men.

Patty handed DJ to David and then walked over and stood in front of the men.  She could tell that none of them had accepted the training five years ago when almost every human had learned mental communication and other mental abilities.  “Which of you is the girl’s father?”

None of them said anything but six of them looked at the man in front with a switch in his hand.  Patty pointed down the street and they turned and scurried away like dogs with their tails between their legs.

“She is too young to get married.”

“She is fourteen.  The same age as her mother was.  Take her.  She is a witch just like the rest of you.”  He turned and walked off.

“What is going on?”  David walked over and stood besides his wife.

“Polygamists bastards.  They were probably going to force her to marry one of her uncles.”

David had never seen Patty so upset.

They walked over to where JJ held the crying girl.  He looked up as they approached.  “Her name is Sally.  She was supposed to marry her Uncle Harry.  She ran.  When they caught up to her, she pelted them with sticks and stones.  She can move things with her mind.”

“Sally, you are coming with us.  We are going to a wedding, but they waited until they were ready and no one is forcing them to marry.”  Patty hugs the two of them.  “JJ, let us take Sally inside.  Dray will load yours and Jevron’s flyers.  We just need to stop in San Jose and pick up the rest of our bags.”

“No, we aren’t done.  We must see to Sally’s family and the others around here.”  The look on JJ’s face showed he wasn’t looking forward to what must be done.

“He will beat mother.  He blames her when we do something that displeases him.”  Sally looked frightened.

Patty sees that there was much that they needed to do.  Mom, we need DPS here as soon as possible.  Can you contact them?  Patty had been in mental contact with her parents since Jevron had contacted her.  Mel and Rich Douglas were the senior Team leaders for Arizona.
 
I will contact them as well as the AZ Attorney General’s office.  They have been looking into things up there.  A young teenage boy and girl ran away a couple of months ago.  The girl was to be married to a man three times her age.  Calling in the state police is a good call, but we want to keep Child Protection Services out of this if we can.  They do more harm than good.
 
We will go to Sally’s home but won’t do anything but observe and talk until they get here.
 
I will offer to shuttle them there.  I think the offer of a shuttle trip into space will make them move a little faster.
 
“Sally, we are going to go to your house and make sure that your mother is all right.”  Patty’s words didn’t reassure the girl.  Sally looks even more frightened.
 
“Uncle Harry is the police chief.  He isn’t going to be happy that I ran.”
 
“I have asked my mother to request the state police for help.”  Patty had known there were problems with the local police.  She was glad that she had asked for help from DPS.  “Is there anyone else that might need protection?”
 
“Momma Ruth, but not Momma Jane, she did not take to the witch powers.  Most of us kids have them but we manage not to let the others know.  I had to keep them from taking me back.”

“Sally, they aren’t witch powers.  We have been given them to help others.”  JJ doesn’t go into a long explanation.

“What JJ says is true.  You have very strong abilities.  You working with JJ will be a big help in what we have to do.  You and your brothers and sisters.  I would not be surprised if your mother and Momma Ruth also had strong abilities.”  Patty pointed to her shuttle.  “Is there room for the shuttle to land or should we walk?”

“We should walk.  It is only a little way.  I could not out run them for long.”

Jevron, would you take the shuttle and keep guard above us.  I don’t think that we will need you for more than to make them wary.  Patty organized things and they soon were walking towards Sally’s home.

*******

Patty was testing the bottle that she was going to feed DJ with when her mother reported back to her.  The AG’s office was upset when I told them about Sally.  Their informant had told them that the wedding was tomorrow.  They were planning to break it up and arrest her father and uncle.  They and DPS are on the way to Sky Harbor where we will pick them up in a few minutes.  They requested that you do nothing until we get there.
 
Let them know that we will make sure that no one is hurt.  Sally is worried that her father will beat her mother.  We are walking over to talk to them.
 
Try to keep it peaceful.  Mel notices DJ with his Patty.  You don’t expect any trouble.
 
We are just backup and a decoy.  Patty smiled.  JJ can handle them especially with is Life-Mate here and involved.
 
He is that powerful.
 
He is but it is something that we have kept secret.  Patty had been including everyone with her and the three shuttles overhead in her discussion with her mother.
 
“Why is what you can do a secret?”  Sally asks JJ, who was walking beside her holding hands.

“I can tell when people are telling the truth.”  He hesitates for a second but Sally was his Life-Mate.  She was the last person from who he should hold anything back.  “I can talk people into doing things.  I would just need to talk with your dad and he wouldn’t hurt anyone, but I won’t do that unless there is no other way.  I could also put him and others asleep if it were necessary.”

“That isn’t what you did when you confronted them back there.”

“No, I just let them mentally know how I felt about them.  I think that they were shocked by that and the fact that they could read my thoughts.”

“They rejected the witch powers.”

“No, the Group Mind didn’t let the abilities develop for them and others who wouldn’t accept the abilities.  They can receive my thoughts if I want them to.”

“Like what I was receiving earlier.”

“No, that was something more.  We are Life-Mates.  Just as Patty and David or Liz and Dray.  I heard your call for help even though you didn’t know me.  Between us we can share thoughts whenever we want.”  Try and send me a thought.
 
You are so tall and handsome.  When I look at you, I feel so happy.  Sally thoughts were what she had wanted to say to him since they met.

JJ blushed.  Sally, when I saw you, I realized what I had been missing.  I have known Life-Mates for years.  When my sister Karen met Mike, I saw how much it changed her.  She was so much more than she had been.  Until I met you, I didn’t realize how little I understood Life-Mates.  I still don’t know as much as I thought I did, but I look forward to learning with you what Life-Mates can be.  I love you.

I have known you for only minutes but I find that I love you also.  How can that be?
 
Somehow, we were selected for each other and we are each that which completes the other.
 
“We turn here.”  Sally finds that with JJ at her side that she does not fear going home.

“Sally, I forgot to ask.  What is your father’s name?”

“Jeremiah Green.”

As they approach the house, a young girl who had been sweeping the walkway saw them and ran into the house.

As Sally’s father came out the door, he turns to stop the woman who was following him.  “I will see my daughter.”  She tells him.  He started to object but then motions her on ahead of him.

Sally and JJ speed up and meet her at the gate.  The woman hesitates until JJ opens the gate for her.  She comes out and embraces Sally.  When they break apart, Sally reaches for JJ’s hand.  He steps beside her.

“Momma, this is JJ.”

“I am glad to meet you Mrs. Green.”

“JJ, call me Bethany.”

“Yes, ma’am.”  JJ sees Mr. Green standing at the fence.  The confused look on his face, tells JJ that Sally’s marriage may not have been something that he really wanted.  “Mr. Green, Sally loves you.  She shouldn’t be forced to marry.  You are a lucky man.  Though your marriages were arranged, your wives have grown to love you.  I think you knew, that isn’t what would have happened if Sally had been married today.”  JJ had learned much more about Sally’s home life than she realized when she spoke about her mother, father, and his other wives.

Sally had been surprised at what JJ had learned but knew it was true what he said.  She realized that she had also learned as much from him.  The thoughts they shared had other thoughts tied to them and she could access any of them when she tried.

Jeremiah Green is unable to look JJ in the eye.

Bethany reaches across the gate and takes her husband’s hand.  She draws him forward towards their daughter.  His gaze is still at his feet.

Sally steps forward and hugs her father.  Father, I love you.  Nothing can stop me from loving you.
 
Jeremiah is startled to sense his daughter’s thoughts.

“Mr. Green, the ability to share thoughts with someone is not a witch power.  It is an ability that has been given to most of us so that we can be closer together.”  JJ paused and reached out mentally to his cousin Robert.  He had sensed that Robert and his Life-Mates were awake and following what was happening.  I need to communicate with the Group Mind.
 
We see that you and Sally together can communicate with the Group Mind without our help.  Introduce us, then we will join with you to address the Group Mind.  Sally also received the thoughts of the joined Three-Fold Life-Mates.
 
Sally, this is my cousin, Robert Maclaren and his life mates Claire Clarke and Nancy Tohe.
 
Your cousin!  Sally knew of the three of them.  JJ had a much lower profile especially in a community that thought of the Teams as witches.

Yes, JJ is my cousin.  He has been a member of the second Australian Team, but you and he have another path to follow now.  We will talk of this later. The Group Mind wants to talk to you.
 
As with JJ, Sally could sense more thoughts tied to those she had just received.
 
Greeting Sally.  The Group Mind addresses Sally but include JJ and the Three-Fold Life-Mates.  You and JJ will work with your family to form a new Team.  As JJ has seen, it is time for them to understand and accept what they have called the “witch powers”.
 
Who are you?
 
What am I is the better question.  Just as you are made of the individual cells in your body and that which makes you also independent of them, I am made of the individuals of the five species of the Hand.  All Humans, Kin, Glazen, Swizz, and Clar are a part of me.  This even includes your father and others that did not accept me before when I sought to help them learn the abilities.  With yours and JJ’s help, they will learn to accept their place with the others.  The Three-Fold Life-Mates are correct.  You two are able to contact me on your own.  You and others will be leading Teams that will need to be able to contact me.
 
JJ answered many questions from Sally and her parents after the Group Mind broke contact.

*******

Mel and Rich Douglas had arrived with the people from the Arizona Attorney General’s office and DPS officers while they were talking with Sally’s parents.  Dave had met his in-laws and the official when they touched down in a nearby field..

“Patty is putting DJ to bed.”  Dave told Mel who was looking for them.

“We are here to arrest those that were forcing Sally Green to marry.  Marriage at fourteen is illegal even with parental consent.”  Maria Sanchez, head of the Attorney General task force, interrupted the family discussion.

“She saw to it that she didn’t get married.  Then when JJ arrived after she called for help, there’s no way that anyone will force Sally to do anything she doesn’t want to do.  You won’t have to worry about child brides being forced to marry here any longer.  JJ and Sally won’t allow that to happen.”

After introductions, Dave led them to Sally’s home.

When they arrived, Maria Sanchez walked up to Sally’s father.  “Jeremiah Green, I am here to have you arrested for trying to force you under age daughter, Sally into marriage with your half-brother Harry Green.”

Jeremiah had suspected this when he saw the approaching officers.  He was surprised when Sally moved beside him and put her arm around him.

“Ms. Sanchez, I believe that you would have a hard time convicting Mr. Green of that in court.  Sally and he have reconciled.  I believe that her testimony would prevent any conviction with which she didn’t agree.”  JJ’s confident but matter of fact tone startled the prosecutor.

Before she could react, David stepped in.  Marie Sanchez, I would like to introduce you to John Jess Maclaren Lawrence the fourth.  He and Sally are Life-Mates.  JJ this is Assistant Attorney General Marie Sanchez.  She had been investigating problems with forced underage marriages in the community.  They had heard that Sally was going to be forced to marry tomorrow and had been prepared to act to prevent the marriage.

David’s long introduction had allowed Maria the time to understand how well connected to the Team senior hierarchy JJ was.  David, who with his Life-Mate were the leaders of the Western North America Teams, treatment of him as an equal said that he was much more than the son or grandson of important people.  When JJ stepped forward and offered his hand, she accepted it.  She was curious to where this would lead.

“I assume that you are more interested in prevention than in prosecution, so that changes here that would result in the end of forced marriages would be welcome.  I know that the changes have started and will continue.  This is especially true if we can eliminate the cause of much of the problems.”

“Yes, the forced marriages here have been an embarrassment to Arizona for years.  When I recently had reason to look into the problem, I found that it was only a part of a wider range of crimes.”

JJ could tell that Jeremiah Green was initially surprised but then he had realized that that explained some things that he had recently heard about.

“If we can borrow the audio recorder that you are using, I think that we can provide you with some useful evidence.  The arrest and prosecution resulting from that evidence would be welcome by the local community.  It would require you and everyone except the Greens and myself to return to the shuttles for no more than an hour.”

Marie Sanchez was surprised at how well this young boy’s arguments went with her own beliefs and feelings.  She agreed and they returned to the shuttles.

Jeremiah and Bethany were amazed at how JJ had taken command of the situation.  Maybe with his help they would find a way for them to get out of the situation that they found themselves in.

JJ had been teaching Sally how to mentally sense both people and things.  They had discovered that the Sheriff had been watching them from the yard of a nearby house.

“Mr. Green, the Sheriff will be here in a few minutes.  Your brother is very upset that his marriage to Sally is being delayed.  He doesn’t know that he will never marry her.  When he does, he will become furious and say things that he wouldn’t if he thought about it before saying them, but he has had his own way here too long.  Just let him talk.  He can do nothing to harm you or yours.”  JJ had had a very serious look on his face but then he smiled.  “While we are waiting, I would like to meet the rest of your family.

Jeremiah turned and called to his other two wives who had been watching from the doorway.  Soon they and a dozen children younger than Sally were being introduced to JJ.

*******

Sheriff Harry Green arrived while the introductions were still going on.  When he was ignored until the introductions were finished, his anger grew.

When the last introduction was done, Jeremiah turned to face his half-brother.

Jerry, I am glad you got your daughter under control.  The wedding will have to wait until things settle down.”  He glanced at Sally and saw her holding hands with JJ.  “Who is that boy?  Send him away.”

“Harry, Sally will not be marrying you.  I believe she will be marrying JJ but not until she is ready.  Bethany and I weren’t for her marrying you.  She would never have been happy as your wife and her happiness is very important to us.”

“She will marry me or I will foreclose on your mortgage.  I told you that when you originally objected to the marriage.  You and yours will be homeless and no one will dare take you in.  You will have to leave.”

“Jeremiah, how much is your mortgage?”  JJ asked.

Jeremiah was surprise as he answered JJ’s question.  “Two hundred and thirty seven thousand.”

JJ automatically made the currency conversion but knew that is was much less than the savings from his salary as a member of the AU-2 Team for the last five years.  “I will loan you the money to pay off the mortgage or I will see that you have housing elsewhere.  I would prefer the second option.  That would give you better medical and education for your children and leave the Sheriff stuck with your house.”

The casual way that JJ offered this surprised everyone.

“Why do you think that your daddy would give Jeremiah that much money?”  Sheriff Green shouted.

“It isn’t my parents’ money, though they would gladly offer it to have Jeremiah free of your control.  It’s money that I have earned but have had no reason to spend.  This would be a very good use for it.”

Harry turned to his brother.  “I want you and your family out of my house by the end of the day or I will throw you out.  You send Sally home with me and I may reconsider.”

“You will never touch Sally.”  Jeremiah yelled.

“We will see about that.”  Harry started towards Sally.

You can bring them back now.  JJ mentally told David and Patty.  He stepped in front of Sally.

Harry was totally enraged and pulled back his hand to slap JJ out of the way.

JJ allowed the slap only enough to leave a mark on his face as he fell to the side and turned the motion into a cartwheel.  The physical activity didn’t deter or hinder his mental action.  He caused Harry’s anger to go away.  Harry immediately realized the trouble his anger had put him in and reached for his gun.

“Keep your hand away from your gun.  There are too many children here.  I cannot let you start firing.”

JJ’s voice was very cold and commanding but it is only his voice and not his mental powers that he was using as he pointed his Team handgun at the Sheriff.

“Boy, put your gun away.  I am the Sheriff and you are under arrest for resisting arrest and pulling a gun on a law enforcement officer.”

“No, I am authorized as a Team member to protect myself and those under my protection by any means.  Sally as my Life-Mate and her family are under my protection.”

Harry looked at the boy.  What he saw wasn’t a boy holding a gun that he didn’t know how to use, but someone that wouldn’t hesitate to shoot him and that wouldn’t miss.  “Well you are still under arrest.  You don’t come into my town and point a gun at me.”

“And you don’t strike children.”  Maria Sanchez had walked up behind Harry.  She was flanked by two officers who grabbed Harry’s arms and handcuffed him.  She and the others had moved closer when Harry’s argument with his brother had taken all of Harry’s attention.  They had seen Harry slap JJ.  When the boy had quickly turned the table on the Sheriff, they had been surprised but that had done nothing to lessen the offense of him striking JJ.

The shocked Harry was read his rights and led away.  Maria took pictures of JJ’s face and the Green family standing there to document the situation of the offenses.  Bethany handed Maria the recorder, which she turned off.

Maria turned back to JJ.  “You could have controlled this at anytime.”

“Yes.  I thought it best to let the Sheriff show himself as he is.  I did cancel his anger to let him know how much trouble he had gotten himself into.  Other than that, anyone could have done the same.”

“Anyone else would have been unconscious from the slap that he aimed at you, but you moved with it allowing only enough so that we had evidence.”

“Any of my Team could have done the same.”

“Maybe the move but not the calmness that you showed.”  David was impressed.  He didn’t think that anyone from their Teams could have done as well.

“That is something my sisters, cousins, and my friends have been developing.  We do not allow our  emotions to rule us when we face the Qof or Nartek.  We will be demonstrating our practice routines at the Team Competitions.  Everyone will need to learn to work beyond their emotions.”

“I have so much to learn.”  Sally was bewildered at what she had in front of her.

“I will be learning a lot of things over.  Meeting you has changed much that we knew.  You are the first person of any of the five species that has had any telekinesis ability.”

“I thought that it looked like a lot of cuts and scrapes on those men.”  Patty contemplated what it would mean to their plans, but there were too many unknowns.  She turned her mind to surveying the Green family.  What she found was impressive.  They had not found such a large group with Team level abilities in years.  Even then two adults, Jeremiah and his wife June, who had been denying their abilities had strong Team level abilities.  “I guess that all of Jeremiah’s family will be going with you.”

“They have strong family ties and would want to be together.”  JJ turned and addressed Jeremiah.  “Father Jeremiah, your whole family, even you and Mother June, have strong abilities that will help the Teams defend the Federation of the Hand from the Nartak and Qoof.  I ask that you consider joining us.  You can take your time to decide but I ask that Sally and Mother Bethany accompany us to my cousin’s wedding.  They would like to meet Sally before they go on their honeymoon.”

“Your cousin?”  Jeremiah had not figured out JJ’s family connections.

“My cousin, Robert Maclaren and his Life-Mates Claire Clarke and Nancy Tohe will wed this Saturday on Friendship.  Sally and Mother Bethany would accompany me to the wedding.”

“I have nothing to wear.”  Bethany was also frightened of not fitting in.

“JJ’s sisters have asked me for your sizes, color preferences, and ideas about what type of style you might prefer.  I don’t know how they found out, but their mission is to see that you have everything that you need.  It is their way of welcoming you to the family.  Dray and I are also glad to have you in the family.”  Liz stepped forward and hugged Bethany and Sally.

JJ realized that he had introductions to make.  “Liz and Dray Berger.  Liz’s brother Mike is my sister Karen’s Life-Mate.  They are the assistant Team Leaders for Western North America and the planet Mossly.  He then introduced Patty, David, and all the rest with Mel Douglas supplying the information on the Arizona officials that she had brought with her.

During the introductions, Patty had been mental explaining about Life-Mates to Sally.  She described how one checked people you met to determine if they were Life-Mates for anyone you knew.  That is how we could tell that you and JJ were Life-Mates.  It is very important to check people you meet against those that you know to determine if they are Life-Mates.

Yes, I want everyone to find the happiness and completeness that I have found with JJ.

Then could you ask that boy watching us from the corner of the house to come join us.  He needs to come with us.

Sally looked over to where Patty indicated and saw her cousin Morris.  She waved and called him over.  She was surprised at the happiness that JJ felt when he saw Morris.

Sally, please introduce me.  JJ had taken her hand and they walked towards Morris as he cautiously came forward.

“JJ this is my cousin Morris.  Mor this is my Life-Mate John.”  Sally was surprised that JJ was having a hard time not breaking into laughter at the second part of the introduction.

JJ offered his hand and the two boys shook.  “My sister Leslie will be very excited when she meets you, her Life-Mate.  Even if you are Mor and she is Less.”  JJ couldn’t hold in his laughter.  For a second the cousins were confused but then they joined in the laughter.

Morris was introduced to the other Team members who were also amused with the names.

“Jeremiah, we need to talk to Morris’s parents about him coming with us to meet Less.”  David enquires.  “Where can we find them?”

“Harry is his father, but he threw Morris out after my sister Ellen died.  Morris blamed his father for her death, but there was no one but Harry to investigate her death.  Ellen was the third of Harry’s wives to die without an investigation.”  Bethany was angry but had tears in her eyes.

Maria Sanchez had heard what was said.  “That is something I can take care of.”  She looked at Morris.  “You believe your father was responsible for your mother’s death.  Would you be willing to testify to that in court?”

Morris was cautious.  He looked to Sally.  “Mor, this is Maria Sanchez.  She came here because your dad was trying to force me to marry him.  She is an Assistant Attorney General.  I trust her.”

“Yes, ma’am.  Dad and mom had had a fight.  He had hit her.  She died two days later.  He wouldn’t take her to the hospital.  I will do what has to be done.”

“Morris testifying against your father will be hard but it is the right thing to do.”

Morris looked away.  Bethany went and but an arm around him to comfort him.

“Bethany, would you look after your nephew and see that he is back in Arizona next week.  I will start an investigation into the deaths of Harry Green’s wives.  I will also want to talk to you and other members of your family about what you know.”  Maria put her hand on Morris shoulder.  “Son, I think the best thing for you is to go and meet your Life-Mate.”

Colorado City Sheriff arrested – Janet Pierce, AZ Republic

May 5, 2004 – Colorado City Sheriff Harry Green was arrested for the death of his wife Ellen in March.  Investigators are also looking into the deaths of his other wives, Mary in 2003 and Sandra in 2001.  The Attorney General’s office was investigating a report that Sheriff Green was trying to force his niece to marry him when they received information about Sheriff Green’s involvement in the death of wife Ellen.

Book 3  Chapter 2

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