Status: Finished

Genre: Thrillers



Status: Finished

Genre: Thrillers



When Doctor Michael Barnes agrees to be the interim Director of the Harry Hope Fertility Clinic, he discovers that the genesis of a worldwide black market in superior sperm originates a couple of subbasements below his office.
That's okay, you might say, but what happens next involves murder, mystery, suspense, romance, humor . . .shall I go on?
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When Doctor Michael Barnes agrees to be the interim Director of the Harry Hope Fertility Clinic, he discovers that the genesis of a worldwide black market in superior sperm originates a couple of subbasements below his office.
That's okay, you might say, but what happens next involves murder, mystery, suspense, romance, humor . . .shall I go on?

Chapter50 (v.1) - TENSION TIGHTENS

Author Chapter Note

Max Wales sobers up but maybe too late.
Tony Wales begins his mea culpa answer to Fiona's cross-examination.
Electra and Tom are in and out of the coal basement and on their way to surprise.

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: February 12, 2017

Reads: 60

A A A | A A A

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: February 12, 2017




A Serial

Nicholas Cochran

Chapter Fifty


Fiona waited. I waited. Christian and Melinda waited. We all had liqueurs. The bouquet of fresh coffee wafted from the kitchen.

Fiona took great pains to achieve the perfect lighting for her dinner party. In truth, she missed nothing necessary for a smashing culinary and ambiance success.

Tony waited.

I imagined that he was waiting for not only the correct words to form his answers but also to think ahead; to discover ways in which he could defend his actions leading to the resulting Midas-mounds of millions that he lavished upon his parents and others in his family as well as Tarquin and June.

At this point Tony’s face recovered some of its sunny color. His lips were making a sincere attempt to smile.

Abruptly he took in a huge breath, sat up straight, looked each of us in the eye and began.

“Okay; okay. You want it? Here it is.

“Number one, I started all my adventures in the family business when I was eighteen. By that time, clients around the world had sons and daughters who were excelling in every facet of life. A number of these wunderkinds were the children of African dictators, Generals, or the leaders of the coup-of-the day. 

"They knew about our organization—our business, and everywhere I went on my virgin trip around the world of extremely satisfied clients of the Wales business, I was treated as a son, a brother, a first cousin, or a magical person as a result of my association with Edward and Edwina’s family—my cousins, and their families.” 

Tony’s eyes were flickering flames of excitement and pride as he recalled those halcyon days.

“Everyone went well out of their way to lavish me with praise, gifts, contracts, deals, stock, oil and gas interests. It was truly unbelievable. And being only eighteen, it took every caution, counsel, advice—warnings of danger—from Mom and Dad to keep me from straying off down long dead-end paths to drugs and sex.

“All existing clients as well as all the clients-to-be, treated me like the god of the cargo cult; the cargo here being the guarantee of well built, fast, smart, adaptable, good-looking children. The atmosphere was heady.

“As I said, but for Mom and Dad’s meticulous upbringing and guidance, I would have been dead at nineteen from any number of sybaritic diseases of the body and mind.

“But I didn’t succumb to these temptations,” pausing to rearrange the order of words for his next statements, “but I did succumb to the diverse and seemingly endless opportunities handed to me to make money.

“Even though these men and women around the world paid large amounts of cash for their super-kids, they treated me as one of their own on whom they felt compelled to bestow dizzying riches. 

"On that very first trip over twenty years ago—a I recall—I ‘brought home’, so to speak, somewhere in excess of half a billion in oil leases, gifts, cash, diamonds, gold—even black rhinoceros horns; and ivory.

“I’m sure I‘ve forgotten some of the spoils I brought back from that first venture but they were the seed money for the real moneymakers for everyone: investments.”

Tony stopped to take another deep breath as well as good swallow of his brandy. 

The twitches at the corners of his mouth slowed, although they continued to occur in a bizarre rhythm. His eyes were now clear and gleaming.

Both his body language as well as the timbre of his voice indicated very plainly that he considered himself to be over half way through Fiona’s cross-examination.

None of us spoke. We all sipped our drinks.
*  *  *

Maxwell Wales tried to call Electra once more. Again, there was voicemail. He left another desperate plea for her to call him; but more importantly, he warned her that the Kosovo brothers were now lining up her and Tom for elimination.

The effects of the alcohol on his emotions lessened. Max began to return to his adult responsible self. Almost immediately following the unsuccessful call to Electra, he decided to go and see the boss; to plead for the lives of his daughter and TomBubb.

Max determined to meet the boss and give himself up for liquidation in return for the safety of Electra and her love.

For a moment, he considered taking a pistol or two but realized that he would certainly be searched and perhaps have all his cavities examined to insure the safety of the organization’s commander-in-chief.

He made a token attempt to gather himself by changing his soiled shirt and suit. 

He instantly felt better with a fresh change of clothes. Some of his swagger returned. Rather than take his own car, he called Uber.

Halfway to the boss’s lair, his thinking broke through the remaining alcoholic cobwebs. He repeatedly went over his speech to the boss before the driver announced that he was near and where did Max want to get out.

Max decided to walk from the street to the house. After bestowing a twenty-dollar tip on the stunned driver, Max approached the house. Before reaching the front door he spied Riddick Malcolm’s car in the garage. 

Max’s confidence in his self-sacrifice teetered at the thought of Malcolm being there. The two had barely gotten along over the years.

Despite his hesitation, Max never broke stride on his way to the door. 

When he knocked, Jamison opened the door giving a lift of his eyebrows in surprise at seeing  Mr. Wales.

“Good afternoon, sir. They are all in the usual place. I’m sure you remember the route.”

“Yes, Jamison; yes, I do. Thank you.”

“And your sons are here along with Mr. Malcolm. Good day sir.” Jamison produced a gentle inclination before shimmering away through the first door of the hall.

Max entertained second doubts. His sons he could understand—and handle.

Malcolm was a challenge. Despite his reluctance, Max walked down the hall, through the passages until he descended the first steps that eventually would lead him to the boss and perdition.


They were grey relics of the days when coal came to the house through the doors to form a big pile on the floor. Servants would collect the necessary supplies in scuttles or feed bags and carry them to the appropriate rooms and fireplaces.

To Tom, Ellie appeared to arrive at the doors much sooner than he expected.  She turned, looked left and right, then up toward the windows on all four floors. Seeing nothing, she gave Tom a thumbs up.

Tom Bubb, a six foot five speedster ran the fastest forty of any of his careers in sport. He, as well as Electra, was surprised at how fresh he felt and appeared.

She noted this cheering particular for use in their long-awaited, at-least-two-weeks-in-bed-together happening.

Tom easily pulled up the two doors and once inside, lowered them. The basement was total blackness. His admiration for his darling Ellie increased even more as she flicked on a flashlight to give them a path of light to follow to the door of the coal room that opened onto the remainder of the basement. 

“This is not the basement we want,Tom." Ellie murmured before she moved silently across the large room toward another door.Tom followed. The door was locked.

Ellie produced her magic key ring. After a few unsuccessful keys, she found the perfect fit. She eased against the door. An open elevator shaft surrounded with webs of grillwork sat twenty feet from them.

“This is the elevator to the subbasement, hissed Ellie, “problem is, there is no stop on this basement. You pass it on the way up or down. We have to go up. I think there are stairs around the other side."

She moved quickly with Tom following. As they reached the opposite side of the shaft, the elevator was activated. Tom and Ellie immediately stopped, stooped, and crouched while they moved into the darkest corner away from the shaft.

Both were surprised at the speed of the lift. It was there and past them in a couple of seconds. Neither Ellie nor Tom recognized the occupant. Even the gender was undetermined. They heard the elevator stop on the floor above, followed by the sound of footsteps walking away from he shaft.

Electra turned on her light as she took Tom’s hand. She led him to yet another dilapidated door with enormous hinges.

Ellie found a key to fit.The duo entered the tight space that housed the stairs leading only up.

“And away we go, Tom."

End of Chapter Fifty

© Copyright 2017 Nicholas Cochran. All rights reserved.

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