Regent & Duke
Taking on Another Job
you could have told me all of this sooner,”
Stephen McGregor said as he paced back and forth in front of Kelson’s
“I am sorry about that, Sire,” Kelson said as he calmly sat petting a very contented Ming, “Nigel had just asked me about the time of the incident with the boat and my uncle being killed. I hadn’t even considered taking him up on his offer but certain circumstances,” he paused, “have caused me to rethink that.”
“And those circumstances would be?” The King of Howicce and Llannedd asked, looking first at Kelson for an answer, and then to his daughter, Michaela, who was sitting across from Kelson.
“I can’t really tell what they are at this point, Sire,” Kelson said as he absently petted the cat, “truth be told, I don’t really know myself. Right now I just have my suspicions.”
“And you don’t want to tell me about them?” the King asked, folding arms.
“Not without further proof, Sire,” Kelson said, looking up at him.
Letting out a sigh of exasperation, the King then put forth another question, “Well at the least you and Nigel have decided on a date when you will assume control of the Duchy of Carthmoor from him?”
“We have, Sire,” Kelson replied, patting a recently opened letter on his desk.
“And?” the King asked irritably.
“Nigel has suggested All Hallows Eve as a date for the official ceremony.”
“That’s just over a month away,” the King commented, “Isn’t that a little soon?”
“Sire, if I may?” a recently returned Jackson Morgan inquired.
“By all means, Jackson,” the King said.
“My father has suggested, Sire,” Jackson paused. “That His Grace,” Jackson indicating Kelson, “would be best served if he was installed sooner rather than later to get a handle on running things.”
“It could backfire, you know,” Stephen said after being silent for several seconds.
“I know,” Kelson said before adding, “but I will be going there the day after tomorrow. Outwardly, I will be going to see how the joint oil leasing deal would …”
“But really to check out the opposition,” stated the King, finishing Kelson’s sentence.
Kelson smiled and nodded in agreement.
The King was silent for several minutes as he digested the information, “Are you planning on taking Alexandra with you? What about the regency? Are you planning on stepping down?”
“For now, Sire,” Kelson said turning to glance at his daughter who was playing with Linda by the balcony doors, “she will be staying here, until I am certain about security there. Eventually, I do plan on bringing her over. She is, after all, my heir as well as yours. I assure you, Sire, I will have something figured out by the time I am installed as the Duke of Carthmoor. If you have no further questions, Sire,” Kelson said standing up and placing Ming on his chair, “I really need to talk to Linda, in private, concerning Alexandra.”
Once they were alone on the balcony overlooking the castle gardens, Kelson turned to Linda and said, “I need you to do me favor, Linda.”
“Please contact the council, inform them that I will be visiting Carthmoor in a couple days, and I would like to have my uncle to be made aware of everything?”
“Everything?” she asked.
“I take it that you want someone from the council to tell him?”
“Yes again,” he said “and only what they feel is necessary in not comprising themselves. I may not get the chance to tell him myself.”
“Anything else he needs to be told?”
“Only that,” he replied, “that I will need him for my eventual investiture as Duke of Carthmoor and…”
“And?” she asked probingly.
“To bail my ass out when this all blows up in my face.”
Having been established in the year 1829 the Yard at Nyford has long been the home of the Criminal Investigation Department of all Gwynedd. The first headquarters for the Yard, being an old palace. With the growing need for criminal investigators and the improving techniques, new buildings were built along the Lendour River in 1890. At this time the Yard changed its name to the New Yard at Nyford. In 1967 the present headquarters, a modern 20-story building, was built on the old site.
As The Yard, as it often referred to, is continuously consulted by investigators from the Eleven Kingdoms and around the world, the headquarters currently houses, a criminal records office, forensic laboratories, a detective-training school, a criminal intelligence department, an anti-terrorist unit, and fraud and drug squads.
“Okay, Chris,” Carolyn asked as she moved next to him in the big bay window overlooking the Yard’s training area, “What is so important that you had to see me?”
“Two things,” he said pointedly, holding up two fingers.
“They are?” she asked curiously.
“One, Matt’s training is going quicker than I thought,” he said glancing at her, “I may send him undercover with Bart sooner than I thought. I want you to watch him for a minute. I didn’t know he was so adept at martial arts.”
Looking down onto the
training yard Carolyn picked Matt out in the crowd of recruits he was
training with. It was fairly easy to see even from here that the class
was mostly beginners with a few that stood out as having some form of
martial training before. She was surprised to see that Matt, standing in
the middle of the group, was mimicking the movements of the instructor
exactly, while the other's seems to be having problems putting together
the moves, holding their balance, and listening to the instructor at the
same time. A faint, "Do you understand" could be heard
issuing from the mouth of the instructor as he completed a combination
of kicks and punches that looked a little more difficult than those
prior. A strong "YES SIR" came from the
Carolyn was surprised to
see how light he was on his feet, and judging by the expression on the
instructor, she was not the only one surprised. He gestured for the
other students to stop while assistant instructors went around talking
to the students, correcting a stance of a posture here and there. Waving
Matt out of the group and gesturing for another instructor to take over,
he walked with Matt from the center of the yard to an enclosed area just
below the balcony where Carolyn and Chris stood. They could hear the
conversation passing between the gray-haired old master and the young
“Where are they going?” Carolyn asked turning to Chris.
“They’re going to get Matt started on his undercover identity,” Chris answered stone faced, ”why don’t we go have a seat?”
As they each took a seat in a nice sized couch a short distance from the big bay window, Carolyn asked, ”I take it this isn’t the only thing you wanted to tell me about?”
Chris stared at her for several seconds, and then he finally asked, ”What would you say if I told you that at one point a member of the Haldane Royal Family may have known who Jack the Ripper was?”
“Excuse me?” she asked surprised by the question, ”where the hell did that come from?”
“Would you believe, right here, at the Yard.”
Carolyn stared at him dumbfounded as he continued, ”a couple of months ago my wife Donna , who has been helping me update all the Old Yard Nyford files, came across a journal in the Jack the Ripper file, written by one Michael Conley.”
“Who was he?” she dared asked.
“He was an inspector and an ‘Alienist ‘on the case,” he said.
Carolyn nodded recalling that ‘alienists’ were the 19th century equivalent of modern day criminal profilers.
“In journal it mentions a visit to the castle at Rhemuth, on the premise on briefing the Crown Prince. Michael Conley didn’t go into much detail about was said, but got the impression that he left the meeting very scared. “
“What was he scared of?” she asked.
“I don’t know,” he said, adding, ”unfortunately the very last page, where he may have mentioned who Jack really was is missing.”
“I have a bad feeling,” she said, ”that isn’t the worst of it.”
“Your right,” he said, ”beside the fact that if this journal where to go public we don’t know how it will affect our present Haldane’s reputation.”
Carolyn stared at him blankly for several seconds, and then said, ”The journal is missing isn’t it?”
“Yep,” Chris replied bluntly
“I’m coming!” Mary MacEwan screamed as juggling papers in a desperate attempt to get open her office door in time to reach her ringing phone. Finally getting the door open she vaulted towards the phone flinging the papers across the desk in the process. “Hello?” she answered out of breath.
“Mary?” a familiar voice said from the end of the phone.
“Mikos?” she asked, ”what are doing calling me? I thought we agreed that you weren’t to call here?”
“I wouldn’t be calling if it weren’t important,” he replied, ”how soon can you come to Carthmoor?”
“I don’t know, maybe tomorrow. Why?”
“Well I’ve got a hold of something that you just may want to see.”
“What is it?” she asked.
“I can’t tell you over the phone,” he said, ”all I will say what have something that may have led to the destruction of the Haldane’s before, and may do so again?”
“Where do you want me to meet you?” she asked.
“Meet me at my restaurant, Phourstanos,” he said.
“I can be there tomorrow,” she replied, ”I have to finish up helping out my niece, Alison, with the Claibourne family accounts; they are mess since my sister-in-law died.”
“Okay,” he said, ”see you tomorrow then.”
** I am glad no-one heard that** she thought to herself.
In another part of Claibourne’s vast castle, Alison MacEwan sat at her own desk staring at the phone, the phone that just happened to be the same line as her aunt and was connected to an answering machine. ** What are you up to, Aunt Mary** she thought. Ejecting the tape from the machine she whispered to her self, ”well I suppose I am going to have to go to Carthmoor to find out.”