Status: Finished

Genre: Literary Fiction



Status: Finished

Genre: Literary Fiction



The Harry Hope Fertility Clinic appears to be ground zero for a worldwide black market in superior sperm.
Interim Director of the Clinic, Doctor Michael Barnes, along with his wife Fiona, Bill Richardson, a Private Eye, and a good Hells Angel, Tom Bubb, get caught up in the machinery of a deadly organization intent on killing anyone who threatens their multi-billion dollar enterprise.
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The Harry Hope Fertility Clinic appears to be ground zero for a worldwide black market in superior sperm.
Interim Director of the Clinic, Doctor Michael Barnes, along with his wife Fiona, Bill Richardson, a Private Eye, and a good Hells Angel, Tom Bubb, get caught up in the machinery of a deadly organization intent on killing anyone who threatens their multi-billion dollar enterprise.

Chapter40 (v.1) - PROFITS AND PROMISES

Author Chapter Note

Profits for the organization continue to climb, along with the nervous tension of its members.
A witness changes his mind out of fear while Tom Bubb fears rejection from his true love, Electra Wales.

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: February 01, 2017

Reads: 67

A A A | A A A

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: February 01, 2017




A Serial

Nicholas Cochran

Chapter Forty


“Well, Senator, this makes all of us extremely happy,” murmured Maxwell Wales,“this is why we do it. Your—you and your wife’s—approval is all that matters to us.”

“Max, thanks again. I apologize to you about my previous concerns. Let me congratulate you and your staff—and particularly your donor—for granting us such an incredible child. Which brings me to the next topic. I’d like another vial, please.”

“Coming right up, Senator. We’ll have one to you before sundown tomorrow—Washington time.”

“Oh, Max; I just remembered. I think I have at least a dozen more customers for you,” laughing, "do I get a finder’s discount?” He covered Max’s first words with a sound Senatorial snort.

What Max said to the request was simply that the Senator would get a ten percent discount for every successful referral. While he was telling the Senator this, Max’s brain doubled over with inner laughter at the thought of him running a Seminal Ponzi Scheme.

“Well, I’m off to nail down those referrals,” chuckled the Senator, “only ten and I’ll have a freebie, right?”

“Yes, that’s right, Senator.” Max was becoming very tired of this old windbag who was trying to sound powerful and was, instead, coming across as an elementary school boy with his mind in the gutter.

“Then, away I go, Max,” resuming his Hill demeanor, “I’ll be looking for your rep; just have him call ahead. Thanks again, Max.”

“Our pleasure, Senator, “best to your wife—and your new standout son.”

The Senator waited before hanging up. “You know, Max; I’ve been trying to think of anything illegal about what we’re doing. I mean, we have secure lines, clandestine meetings, ‘safe’ doctors to do the implant;  I mean: so what? All we’re doing is taking advantage of God’s gift to some healthy young man, right?”

Max hesitated. This had been the major topic of discussion lately while the unfortunate events appeared to be manufacturing charges against members of the operation.

Until the killings, there was no breach of any law that Max or Christian’s daughter Samantha could find. Strange, unusual, bizarre, weird, surreal; or even immoral, but illegal?

“We ask ourselves that question on a daily basis, Senator. Our attorney makes a daily review of all articles in the field as well as any other decisions about fertility that might affect our organization. So far, none.

"But let me say that you will be the very first person to know if anything changes,” pausing to collect his phraseology, “there have been several references to a single individual peppering the infertile population to the tune of four or five hundred donations, i. e., children. The headlines appear on Monday and by Friday no newspaper in the world is bothering. And, I should add, that none of these claims have ever been proven. But the important thing for you and us is that the law in California does not prohibit any phase of our organization or our product.”

The Senator inhaled deeply. “Well, Max, thanks again. Mark’s progress is astonishing his teachers, his soccer coach, his tennis coach—all his coaches. Everything he does, he improves in every day. Very exciting. Well, I’ll let you go. Cheers!”

Max slowly lowered his phone while he thought of how this entire enterprise had fallen from doing a public service, to a seamy enterprise with blood on its hands.

He decided to call Riddick with the good news and the possible new clients. Even six out of the dozen mentioned by the Senator, would make it a profitable day.

Then he remembered Andy telling him that there were four hundred vials ordered by a citizen of Saudi Arabia. And so why was he feeling morose, defeated.

He made a mental note to call his doctor.

*  *  *

“Tom; what a terrific idea. I can get away this afternoon, can you?”

“Sure can. My shift changes around three-thirty. Is that okay?”

“Perfect, Tom.  Now, tell me what we’re looking for.”

Tom silently gulped as he held his phone away, before choosing his words.

“Let’s meet at Panera and we’ll go over the whole thing, okay?”

“Sure, Tom. And how did you know I was addicted to Panera desserts? The Cobblestone; ah, the Cobblestone. I ran six miles this morning , so I’ll have two.”

She laughed the laugh of one in love. Over the past week, she noticed the change in her spirits and decided to try to analyze her behavior, particularly her speech and laughs, to determine if love was the elixir creating the bubbling feelings of joy throughout her body as well as injecting her movements and speech; especially her laugh.

“You’re on,” Tom chuckled, “I think I’m good for at least two,” thinking,” don’t you think it’s a bit strange that we have not only the same favorite bakery but also the same pastry? Or is it?”
He laughed his version if the laugh of love as he realized that he could not bear to be away from Electra for more than the next half hour. After his shift change, he could finally hold her in his arms.

His reluctance to entangle Electra in any organization business—particularly the business of murder, was being eroded by the unique feelings and passions that flooded his being whenever his mind slipped to her image, her erotic movements, especially when she laughed. She used her entire body when she laughed. Her breasts thrust out while she twisted her torso slightly.

Depending on what she was wearing the effect could be devastating. Thinking of her now, Tom’s mind made up its mind to seduce Electra Wales.


*  *  *

Lieutenant McCall rang me from Alameda to ask about our investigation of Bill’s incident in the estuary. He stated his sorrow at Bill’s passing. I did not add anything but accepted his remarks with a sincere thank you.

I told the Lieutenant that we were edging closer to some answers about both the problems in the Clinic as well as what happened to the donations once they left our doors.

For a moment, I had this wild idea that the Lieutenant was on the organization’s payroll. However, a moment of rational thought re-calibrated my thinking back out of the conspiracy-theory mine shaft of disappearing facts.

“I wanted to tell you, Doctor, that we questioned the man with the dog again; the guy who was there the night that Mr. Richardson went into the water. He now says he was mistaken; that he didn’t really hear either a door close or the sound of a car taking off. I reminded him of his prior statement as well as the possible charge of falsifying a police report. But the guy was scared. In fact he was so frightened that I assigned two police Cadets to alternate shifts near his house until we get this thing untangled.”

These new developments fueled an increase of my fears for Fiona and myself.

I thanked the Lieutenant and promised him that I would keep him informed of both major and minor moves in our attempts to unmask and jail the organization and its killers.  

For some reason the question of fault on the part of the Harry Hope Clinicrushed into my brain for examination.

I searched my information from A to Z but for the hundredth time I could find nothing that I believed Fiona would find actionable. I determined to have a good session with her to review any possible charges against Doctor Brand—or Doug. I also wanted to review any possible legal entanglements that might ensnare the Clinic. I had to be sure that if the Clinic was producing a far superior sperm than the competition, were we –Doctor Brand and his magic machines—somehow crossing a legal line rather than simply a vague moral line. This latter aspect was one that I had never had to face in my years in the fertility community.

Now it was imperative that we all examine the issue, particularly if the evidence did turn out to reveal a donor who had been donating for over thirty years. The Kevin Bacon six degrees of separation shrunk to one in my mind as I perceived our society going the way of the nations where marrying your first cousin is encouraged and God knows what else.


* **

Tom Bubb gave Electra a long strong kiss at the doorway to the Panera Bakery. All his thoughts and emotions concerning her were contained in that kiss. Her hypersensitive awareness picked up every message, including Tom’s conclusion that the time for physical love had arrived—and the sooner the better.

“Well, Tom,” surprising herself with a blushing while she recovered her breath, “I thought this was only to be a Cobblestone date. Her smile clearly revealed her acceptance of Tom’s decision. In fact, she feared that her smile had slipped into a leer.

‘oh well, what the hell’

They ordered. While they waited for their coffees, they took each other’s hands and wore their best foolish grins.

The special coffees arrived. Once some eating and drinking passed, Tom took Electra’s hands and gave them a squeeze. “I have to tell you two things. One, I think you already know; the other is more complicated, and I don’t see any clear answer to expect from you on that part, so . . .”

He squeezed her hands a little tighter before releasing them. He inhaled deeply as he sat back, sipped some coffee, replaced his cup on the table, and leaned forward. 
“First thing, my darling Ellie, I love you. I want to marry you. I will do anything for you if you can see your way to my heart; forever. There.” 

He sat back, took up his coffee once more and peered over the cup’s rim to take in Ellie’s reaction. Her eyes were slowly filling with tears. The radiance of her smile told him that her tears were tears of utter happiness and a total acceptance of his troth. 

For a few, moments, Tom rethought the wisdom of telling her the second crucial item that he had promised her after their defining kiss before entering the bakery.

He clenched his jaw while he looked over her shoulder to the bay, where breezes feathered the water, creating dancing sunlight beneath perfectly calm white clouds.

He swallowed hard and began.

End of Chapter Forty

© Copyright 2017 Nicholas Cochran. All rights reserved.


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