Tales from TEKville by TheEvilKaren

Photo stories featuring 1:6 scale dolls

Part 7 - the Immediate Aftermath

 

At Ranger Construction's office . . . .

Harmony bursts into the office, startling Keeli.

"Where is Rob?  I really need to talk to him."

Keeli is curious, but too polite to ask questions.

"He's in there, with Ranger," she says, angling her head toward Ranger's office door.  "Do you want to wait?"

Harmony taps her foot.  "Not particularly, no."  She glances at the clock.  "How long has he been in there?"

"About a half hour.  He should be emerging soon."  She smiles at Harmony.  "They're deep in discussion about the bar renovation project.  I'm sure he's told you that it's going really well.  I'm so excited!  I love Shepherds Pie, but it's so hard to find a table when they're playing.  I can't wait to check out the new space Darius is adding!"

Just then Rob emerges from Ranger's office.  "Harmony!  What are you doing here?  Is everything OK?"

"Not exactly, no.  I . . ." she glances at Keeli.  "I need to talk to you about something.  Can you take a break?"

Keeli senses that whatever is on Harmony's mind is not something she wants to discuss in front of her.  "That's OK, Harmony.  I need to run these quotes to the post office and pick up some things for Ranger.  You guys can have the office to yourselves."

As Keeli grabs her purse and slips out the door, Harmony grabs Rob's arm.

"Oh, Rob!  It's so awful!  Fath . . . I mean, Grandfather had an affair with his housekeeper before he married Moth . . . I mean, Grandmother!  And he left everything to those upstarts!"

"Whoa, slow down!  Maybe you'd better start at the beginning, babe.  Here, sit down.  I'll get you some water."

Harmony collapses into Keeli's chair while Rob grabs her a bottle of water and pulls up a chair next to her.  "OK now . . . . what's this all about?"

"I just got back from that meeting at that new lawyer's office -- you know, the one who prosecuted Jes in her murder trial?  The meeting was called to read a surprise will that was written by the man I always thought was my father before I found out that Camille was my mother and that the woman I'd always called 'Mother' is actualloy my grandmother."

Rob is familiar with Harmony's childhood and the deception that wrought total havoc in her life, but even he has trouble following her.  "Hold on, OK?  Let me make sure I've got it straight so far.  I know that you are actually Camille's illegitimate child and that your grandmother raised you as her own daughter.  What's all this about your grandfather?"

Harmony sighs impatiently.  "He died intestate -- or so we all thought -- so of course Mothy . . . Grandmother inherited everything.  But apparently there was some sort of a will hidden in the wall of the bar, which is the building where my grandfather lived before he married.  So . . . "

"Wait.  This will . . . . was there some sort of a book with it?"

Harmony looks sharply at Rob.  "Yes!  How did . . . .?"

"Connor found it when he broke open the wall between the existing bar and the new space we're adding at the NY.  We gave it to Ranger.  He was going to give it to Darius, but it disappeared.  How on earth . . ."

Harmony shakes her head impatiently.  "It doesn't matter how it got into the hands of these money-grabbing strangers.  The point is that Randolph St. Clair left everything to the housekeeper!"

Rob controls his own frustration at Harmony's inability to tell a story coherently.  "Wait . . . what's this about 'money-grabbing strangers'?"

"Don't you get it?  The housekeeper is dead, but she had an illegitimate daughter.  Grandfather's daughter.  She is apparently also dead, but she had two children, and they were there in Koslowski's office today, practically frothing at the mouth to get their hands on my inheritance!"

"Your inheritance, Harmony?  Aren't there like a couple dozen St. Clairs just here in TEKville who are descended from old Randolph?"

"Oh, that's just a technicality!  I was raised as my moth . . . grandmother's youngest child, the baby of the family.  Who better to benefit from the St. Clair fortune?"

Rob resists the impulse to roll his eyes.  "Babe, if this is true, don't you think you should be thinking about your grandmother and not yourself?  Charley Ball pays you well enough that you don't really need the St. Clair money."

"But it's the principle, Rob!  I just don't want those upstarts to get their hands on anything that's rightfully ours."

Rob knows better than to try to reason with Harmony when she's in one of her "moods", so he takes this opportunity to change the subject.  Glancing at the clock, he asks, "Aren't you working today?"

Harmony's mouth opens to form a protest, but she lets out the intake of breath in a sigh instead.  "Yes, I suppose I should get back.  Charley can't even find his posterior without my help."

"Why don't I pick you up later and we'll go out for a nice meal?  Maybe that will take your mind off this whole will thing.  Date?"

"Sure.  Whatever.  I have to run.  See you later!"

Rob stands shaking his head for a moment after Harmony dashes out the door, then grabs his keys and heads back to the NY.

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At Colette and Diego's condo . . . .

" . . . and the final blow was when the lawyer said that all of the money goes to these children of my grandfather's illegitimate daughter!"

"Mi Corazon, we do not need thee money.  You know that I weel take care of you and thee cheeldren!"

"Oh, I know, Diego, but what about Grandmother?  This must be  so awful for her!  And I'm so afraid that . . . Camille . . . will start badgering me again to go back to New York and resume my modeling career in order to support her.  As if I could, after bearing two children!"

"Mi esposa, you are as beauteeful as thee first time I saw you.  No one would ever suspect that you have geeven birth!"

"Oh, Diego!  Thank you for that!  But there is no way I would ever leave you and the girls to go back to New York.  She just doesn't understand that I have no desire to return to that life.  I am happy for the first time!"

"She has no hold over you, Colette.  She ees your madre in name only."

Colette sighs.  "I know.  But I'm still worried about Grandmother.   Knowing that Grandfather, whom she brought us all up to idolize, had an affair -- with his housekeeper, no less! -- must be a terrible blow to her, even without what this will mean to her monetarily."

Diego pulls Colette onto his lap to offer comfort.  He kisses her neck and rubs her back. 

Soon he is kissing and rubbing other parts of her anatomy, and her immediate response wipes all thought of her grandmother's plight from her mind.

Oops, looks like it's time for us to leave!

To be continued . . .