Volume 1 (The Family)
Tony explained that there wasn't any rush to make a decision. Tony left and then called June and told her of his idea to start using the new house. He explained what he had in mind and June was over the moon with the idea. Tony said he would let her know how things went.
The family arrived at the car dealers at ten o'clock on the dot to be met by the director of sales.
"You must be the Tony's new family." he said.
"Sort of," George replied. "After the wedding we will be a full blown family."
"I wish you all the happiness in the world. Now how can I help you? Tony called to say a runabout will be a bit small and I have to show you an estate car at least. I have a brilliant VOLVO estate that came in two days ago. We have fully serviced it and because it is only three years old and we are giving a two year warrantee on it. Plus three years free service. That is because of Tony's good custom. Please come and have a look at it."
When Gladys saw it she went a lovely shade of pink and looked at Angela. If George didn't like it he had already lost any argument. The children were permitted to sit in it and they fell in love with it straight away.
"So what do you think?" asked the salesman.
George looked him in the eyes and said. "What I want doesn't matter. This lot want it so that is that. It is sold."
"Good, now how about you take the extended family for a five mile run in it before we get to the paperwork." He took George to the office and handed him the keys. "Your licence is up to date?"
"Yes, it is fine."
"See you in a bit then George."
The family piled into the big estate car and off they went. George drove them to the Downs and they were amazed how powerful the car was. Five miles didn't take long and they got back to the dealers full of nothing but praise for the estate car.
The car needed to be double checked before it could be released and the sales boss called Tony to release the money for it. Tony cleared the cash and that was that. All the paperwork was soon signed and George could pick the car up the next afternoon.
Tony replaced the receiver delighted that Gran and Granddad had at last got a vehicle to get about with. It was time to have a break from the mornings toil. As he entered the canteen he saw Simon there with his partner John. Simon saw him and called him over. He got a coffee and went and sat with them. Simon started the conversation by telling Tony that they had both agreed to give the house parenting a go. They had discussed it fully and realised that one big thing was missing from their relationship, children. Tony shook both their hands and asked them when they could meet with June and chat with her about the plan. The next morning was agreed at 11 am, it was Simon's half day off in the afternoon so he would be on the ward and John could leave the shop to his assistant. Tony would invite June in to his office. Tony finished his coffee and left the two to their own talk.
Back in the office he called June and told her of Simon's decision and about the meeting. June said she would be there at 11 am. That meant that he would have to arrange something for Adam to do if he had finished his visit to Gordon. He quickly called Simon back and explained the problem of Adam to him. He had something in mind to occupy the lad if needed. He then called home but there was no reply, they must still be getting home from the car sales, he thought.
Where they really were was having fun on the children's playground in Hove Park. They had bought some filled rolls to eat for lunch and bottles of cream soda drink. They had been at the park for almost an hour and they had tried all the rides and swings. They all stopped playing and sat on the grass to eat and drink. George was not keen on fizzy pop and nor was Gladys so they went to get some tea from the little cafe kiosk. They got Angela one as well.
The cafe gave them a tray which Gladys carried back. It wasn't long before all the vittals were finished and they decided to go back to the house. Clouds appeared quite quickly and it was soon raining, not hard, more a drizzle and enough to need the windscreen wipers on. They got back to the house on the hill at 2-30 in the afternoon. The builders were still at it and getting on well. The drizzle curtailed being outside as it seemed set in for the rest of the afternoon.
Jamie and David suddenly remembered the plane kit that Tony had bought them, just the job for a wet day. They went and got the kit and read the instructions properly. Adam and Julie came to see what they were doing and Adam asked if he could help while Julie walked away and into the kitchen with the adults while the boys all set about solving the construction instructions. Jamie and Adam easily worked out the order of operation while David busied himself with the part that interested him, the artistic paints to decorate the plane after the construction. He watched keenly as the other two started to get everything in order to do the actual construction. As each part was constructed it was carefully put to one side to dry. Jamie tried to get David to do some construction but he declined telling them he would wait until he could do his part with the art work. Angela popped in and out but the boys hardly noticed her and she had to smile as she thought. 'Boys when they are really into something are in another world.'
The boys worked away and didn't hear Tony's car pull up or even when he stood watching them. It was only when he spoke to them.
"Hello boys. That is looking good."
So engrossed were they that they just said, "Hi dad." Only David turned to face him.
Tony understood and went out to the kitchen to see Angela and the others. George was sitting down while the ladies of the house were preparing food for dinner. He went over to Angela and gave her a hug and kiss. "The boys seem busy love, I could have been an alien and they wouldn't have noticed."
"I noticed love; I have been in and out a lot and not a peep out of them. It's nice to see them all working so well together though."
"It sure is love." and with a grin continued, "It makes parenting easy."
"It is for the moment Tony, yes. No school, no homework, no parent teacher meetings and I don't work. I have a feeling in a few weeks time, the stress levels might rise."
Tony gave her another hug and a kiss and said. "We'll be fine love, I have a feeling the wind will be around when it feels the need."
He returned to where the boys were and said. "Come and help me lay the table boys, dinner won't be long now."
The boys carefully placed their work in safe places and went into the lounge. The task was done quickly and in no time food was on the table. It was one of grandma's recipes, steak and kidney pie. Angela could make it but somehow her mother's was far superior. The vegetables were mashed potatoes with peas and carrots. Gravy wasn't needed as the pudding interior was full of a succulent juice from the meats. The children finished theirs in short order and sat back with satisfied looks on their faces. The adults took just a little longer. Then the boys cleared the table ready for sweet. That turned out to be another of grandma's specials, treacle sponge pudding and custard. Jamie was used to it having lived with grandma but the other children found it a new experience. Praises were showered on grandma, who blushed just a little, unused to such praise for years. Tony noted there was a lot of stodgy content to the meal but with it being a rare treat it didn't matter too much. The table was soon cleared and the washing up done by which time the Brighton mob, as they were becoming known, needed to get back home. They all collected together and Tony reminded Adam about the morning. As Angela drove of Tony wondered if he was doing the right thing getting Adam to help with Gordon's problems.
David said. "You look worried dad, are you OK?"
"Yes David I am fine son. Just something about work I just made a decision and I hope it was the right one."
"It will be dad, the wind wouldn't let you do something wrong, I just know it."
"Thanks David. You have cheered me up and I am sure you are right. The wind only allows for good things to happen. Boys, how about we go for a walk while mum's away?"
"We'll feed the fox family dad." Jamie suggested.
Fine boys, go and get the feed, I will wait here for you and bring your dogs."
A little later and they were feeding the foxes when two horse riders approached down the bridleway. The foxes were gone in a flash. The horse riders stopped and spoke in a rather upper class snobby way.
"I see you are feeding the vermin, disgusting thing to do. They should be exterminated at birth, except we enjoy hunting them. We ride across this land twice a year in fox hunts."
Tony was incensed the two people could even talk that way, yet alone in front of children.
"Jamie, David, why don't you nip back home, I'll be back in a few minutes I just need to have a polite word with this lady and gentleman."
The boys ran off to go home. As soon as they were out of sight Tony put on his best smile and said very quietly. "It was nice of you stop and say hello. However I now own this land and what I do on it is my own business. If I and my wife and children want to feed the foxes on our land we shall." Then raising his voice slightly he continued. "You and your kind might well get pleasure out of pursuing dumb animals for so called sport. That is your choice. My choice is who uses my land. Please rest assured that if you set foot either on horseback or on foot I will prosecute you to the full extent of the law. I can't stop you using the bridleway but the rest of my land is out of bounds to you and your cronies. Do I make myself clear?"
The male rider said. "Well Mr whoever you are we shall see. We are very powerful in the countryside. We have always hunted over this land."
"Not any more. Incidentally my name is Tony Andrews and not Mr whoever I am. Don't forget it please, good day."
And with that Tony went on his way home leaving the pair sitting a little stunned on their horses.
As he walked Tony thought to himself. "Nice high fences all round the land. Good stiles for walkers and footpath signs. If they try to come onto the land to chase foxes they won't want to twice." Then he smiled to himself for keeping so calm.
When he got home the boys were waiting. Davis spoke first. "Dad, are you alright."
"Never felt better son. I have wanted to do that to those pompas asses for years."
"They won't hurt our fox family will they dad?" Jamie asked.
"No son not while I own the land. Don't worry I have a way to make sure that the fox hounds and the horsemen keep away from the foxes."
"Good for you dad, we love the foxes."
Tony smiled and said, "I had noticed boys, so does your mum and me."
Moments later Angela returned and Tony and the boys related what had happened in her absence. She was fuming until Tony told her he was calling the solicitor in the morning to tell him to contact all hunts in the area that the family's land was not for hunting of any description.
The family went to bed early as it had been a busy day.
Thursday morning arrived with pouring rain battering the windows. One downside of living high up with a view was that the wind really battered the houses. Tony and Angela got up, showered and went down stairs to find water in the kitchen where the wind had blown the rain under the door. It was an easily fixed problem and Tony would phone the builder to sort it out. Angela noted that this wind wasn't their friendly one and imagined winter up there.
Upstairs the boys were awake and chatting about the bad weather. "What shall we do today Jamie, we can't go out much in this weather."
"Granddad is picking up his car this afternoon David. We could go with him and this morning we could work on the glider. There will be some parts that you can do, the wings are ready to be papered and painted with dope to tighten it."
"That sounds a good idea. We can get mum to take us with her this afternoon because she will be picking the others up. I shall be glad when they get their car though because it is ever so cramped when we are all out together without dad's monster."
"David! You're marvellous. That's what we can call it, 'The Monster,' I like that."
"Me too Jamie, The monster it shall be from now on. Come on let's go and tell dad."
The boys were up showered and dressed in no time, anxious to inform dad of their decision.
They rushed downstairs and almost bumped into Angela. Jamie got the words out first. "Dad we have a new name for the van, we want to call it the monster."
"What a great name boys but then, what are we going to call you two, we can't have three monsters in the house."
"Daaad, you're daft."
Tony jumped up and grabbed the boys and jumped up and down saying "I'm daft, I'm daft, I'm daft and I know it." The boys and Angela started laughing as Tony changed tack and started to tickle them both. Angela was near to tears laughing along at the antics.
Finally Tony let up on the boys and they all calmed down. Tony then agreed with the boys to call the van, the monster in future.
The boys worked out with Angela about going with her and the Brighton mob to get George's car.
Tony headed of for Brighton to pick up Adam who was waiting for him when he got there. They arrived at the office at 9-30 am and before Tony went to see Simon he called his solicitor and filled him in with regard the foxhunters. The solicitor would send all secretaries of local hunts a letter informing them of Tony's decision.
Next he and Adam went up to see Simon. Adam was a bit nervous, mostly because Gordon was older than him. Simon greeted them and told Adam that Gordon was expecting him. As soon as he saw Gordon, Adam sighed with relief. He knew him from when he was at infant's school. "Hi Gordy, how are you feeling mate?"
Gordon looked at Tony and Simon and didn't say what he wanted to but just said, "Not that brill Adam, I'll tell you about it when they've gone. Adam waved Tony off and Simon went as well.
"So, what is wrong Gordy?" Adam asked.
"You remember me telling you about the scout leader touching me last year?"
"Yes I do Gordy. Why? Did he do more stuff then?"
Gordy despite his age started to cry and slowly told Adam about sexual abuse that had been inflicted on him over the last year. How badly he had been hurt, He wasn't the only boy either. Adam held Gordon as he told him the whole story between tears. Finally he stopped and one could tell the relief that he had finally managed to tell someone.
Adam went to see Simon and Tony and related very quickly what Gordon had said to him and that he wanted to tell them as well.
By the time that Tony had all the details, including that fact that Gordon had told his father who told him not to be a baby. Trying as usual not to show his anger Tony got from Gordon the names of the other boys who he knew who had been abused. Having the name of the scout leader and all the boys Tony left Adam while they had the meeting that had been arranged for 11 am.
Before everyone arrived Tony called the police station and asked for Ben or Tom. They were both there and Ben came on the line. Tony related the details to him and he heard him in the background talking to their boss. Then Ben was back on the line to say they would be right over.
Everyone slowly appeared for the meeting about, in the first event the children's home idea for a family unit as opposed to a large residential unit with wardens and assistants. Ben and Tom took a back seat for that part.
Simon and John were enthused to be house parents, with a young gay man keeping their own home clean and tidy in exchange for a place to live.
June suggested they go to the house and look it over to see the best way to use it. It was a five bedroom house with a lounge and three reception rooms. Simon and John pointed out that although they would want a separate locked bedroom they would otherwise be like any parents and share and eat everything with the children. A meeting at the house was arranged for Friday morning at 10-30 am.
The meeting then changed to the problems surrounding Gordon, his abuser and of course his father who didn't support the boy when he should.
One thing was agreed immediately. The scout leader must be arrested soon but there was a need to get collaborative stories from the other boys. Tom and Ben said they would get right on to that side of things and collected the names and addresses of the boys concerned.
Simon was to keep Adam on the ward with Gordon to talk and play with the younger children until June and Tony had returned from going to see the father. Simon and John went off together, Ben and Tom went to do the rounds of the boys concerned and June and Tony went to the fathers address, a public house in London Road.
When they got there and asked for the father, a slightly drunk man came to the bar and asked what they wanted. They introduced themselves and June suggested they talk in private. When June told him what his son had told Tony, he answered in a rather gruff voice. "Yes he told me and I told him to grow up. It is part of life. It happened to me a lot as a boy."
Something showed in the man's eyes, like the beginning of tears.
"You had better come to the office," he said.
In the office he really broke down.
Through tears he told them that he had hated being abused but nobody cared. He just had to get on with it. It was the reason he drank so much, more so since his wife left him with Gordon to look after. Tony lost his anger almost immediately as did June. This was an old story that continued still.
June spoke to Mr. Anderson. "Mr. Anderson. It is not just your son being abused by the scout leader but a large number of other boys. They need help as well. What I suggest is that I get you some counselling to help you put your demons to rest. The man I have in mind will come and see you here at a time to suit you. Meantime your son needs your support right now. He is miserable and very upset at you for not helping him when he needed you."
"I'll come now with you." He said. "I love Gordon so much it hurts sometimes. I will hand over the pub to my assistant."
Minutes later they were on their way to the hospital. When they got to the ward Gordon spotted his father and ran to him. His father grabbed him in both arms and hugged him tightly.
"I am sorry son for not helping you. I love you so much."
"I love you too dad. I was so angry with you though for not helping me."
"Gordon, from now on I will be there for you all the time. I was offered the area managers job recently. I can take it and we can live normally, father and son under the roof of our own home. I am going to get help with my problems and you will get help with yours."
The ward door opened as they hugged together and a discernable breeze wafted around them both and was gone.
Tony and June looked at each other and decided to leave them both alone. June could contact Mr Anderson later.
Adam came over and asked Tony if Gordon was alright now. Tony could truthfully answer. "Yes Adam they are fine. Thank you for all you did. It couldn't have been easy. Let's go home."
"It's funny dad, I found it very easy to help Gordon."
Tony winked at him and said. "No matter Adam, I am still very proud of you."
He bade farewell to June who would doubtless see him later. In return she did the same.
Tony was just leaving his office after checking for messages when his phone rang. Ben was on the line and told him that they had taken statements from nine boys so far and sadly the list was growing. Each boy had given the name or names of more boys, and rather than being a simple one man abuse story it was now looking like a very large ring. The list now contained the names of 29 boys.
Tony thanked Ben for the updates and shook his head at the inhumanity of some men. Time had flown by and it was already 1-30 pm. Fortunately Adam had been given a meal by Simon on the ward.
He took Adam home after what was, in most cases, a good morning but he still held some sadness in him. Adam noticed and snuggled up along the big seat. Sometimes, thought Tony, children know just what to do at the right time.
Back home the rest were getting ready for their trip to the car dealers to pick up granddad's new car. Adam wasn't slow in booking a place and Tony said he would go with them and have a sandwich when they got there. They all loaded up.
Spot on 2-30 they arrived at the dealers where the children immediately spotted the gleaming car on the forecourt with a large SOLD sticker on it.
Tony hadn't seen the car but knew of the make. He had a quick look round it and said to George, "Dad that is a great motor." and with a smile said. "Make sure you don't get lost in it though."
Granddad George made a face at Tony with a smirk that let him know he knew he was joking. He went to the office where everything was ready for him to go. "There is a full tank of petrol and a bunch of flowers on the front seat from us to say thank you to your good lady. If you have the slightest problem please ring us immediately and we will send our mechanic out to you. Also all the services for three years are free with our compliments. George thanked him and went to the car. All the children wanted to ride with granddad so picking up her flowers and smelling the lovely scent Gladys joined Angela in her car. Tony saw them off and went to thank the dealer for all the help. Then leaving the van there he went along the road to get a sandwich at the cafe. He sat down and the owner brought his sausage sandwich and tea. Tony got stuck and surveyed the cafe. It wasn't too busy and little conversation. Suddenly the cafe door opened and Ben and Tom came in and went to a table in the corner where a man and three young boys sat. Next thing the man was in handcuffs and the boys were in the company of a woman police constable who had also arrived. It all happened so fast, Tony didn't think Ben and Tom had seen him.
End of part 16
Please let me know your thoughts on the story.