The Wizard Heart

Darrin Thomas

©: 2014 - 2015

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This story is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places and incidents are either the product of the author's imagination or are used fictitiously and any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, events or locales is entirely coincidental.

This story is copyrighted by Darrin Thomas, all rights reserved. Distribution, including but not limited to: posting on internet sites, newsgroups, or message boards, or in book form (either as a whole or part of a compilation), or on CD, DVD or any other electronic media, is expressly prohibited without the author's written consent.

Chapter 16

The weekend with David's brother and family went off very well. Everyone got along great. Eli had assured the adults he would write the letter to the Judge after the weekend was over, whether or not they got along. Eli and Cody got along better than anyone thought they would.

Surprisingly it was Mitch and Cody who didn't see eye to eye. Mitch had pulled Cody to the side and had tried to warn him about ever hurting Eli again, and Cody hadn't taken it too well. After Eli and Noah stepped in, everyone was laughing. Seems they were both fighting the same side! After that all the kids had a great weekend.

David was shocked when Stephen told him that Karen and he had discussed maybe moving closer once the situation with Cody worked itself out. Stephen explained to David how hard Cody was working on getting his school work caught up with as well as learning all of his Gifts. For the first time in a long time Stephen was enjoying being a Council Trainer.

David did fulfill his promise to the Councilmen who came to visit him, he spoke to his brother about the LTC position. Stephen told David that under no terms would he ever consider taking that position. Stephen told his brother that there was a much greater position waiting for him. David was shocked by this, but tried to hide it and asked what that position was.

"Fatherhood, my dear brother, Fatherhood!" Both twins laughed with each other.

They had agreed to get together at the farm again in just over a month. All the kids would be out of school by then and they were planning a bit of a party. David had other ideas he started working on, with Matts help.

With David's guidance, Eli worked on his Gifts at the Sherriff's Department three times a week. During this time, Eli got stronger and stronger, as did Noah. Noah could not make his Gifts work at the Sherriff's Department, however he had much better control over them everywhere else. David was very pleased with both boys' progress.

Max had taken to working with Ryan on controlling his Problem Solving Gift. He really took a liking to the boy's quick mind.

Eli had been wondering about The Wizard Heart. He remembered what his dad and Uncle Stephen had said about it giving the wearer extra gifts, but that was all. He decided to ask his Grandpa Max what he knew about it.

"Well, I guess I could tell you about it. How much do you want to know?"

"As much as you will tell me. I really want to feel like I know as much about it as I can. I don't know how to explain it; it's just how I feel." Eli told his Grandpa, trying not to cry.

He really didn't know why but he had been very emotional in the last few days.

"Okay, I will let you know everything I know about it. Before I start the story, why don't we go get something to drink and find a nice shady spot to sit? This is somewhat a long story if you want everything." Grandpa Max said while putting his arm around the boy's shoulder.

After getting their drinks and finding a nice place in the backyard to sit and relax Grandpa Max started his tale.

"Now, you have to understand how the Wizard world came about to understand the story of The Wizard Heart. Wizards are a very old sub race of the human race. We started off in what is now known as Russia, before spreading out around the globe. For almost a thousand years our people fought with the other human races before we were almost completely wiped out. Around the year 1600 A.D., something changed within the Wizard World, and that is when the Classes were discovered. The Wizards of that time were either in hiding or had become what was known as sorcerers' or magicians. Many of our people went into hiding because the women of our race were being killed because people feared they were witches. In 1676 A.D. a very powerful Wizard, by the name of Walker Saluzzi, took control of the Wizard World by proclaiming he was King of the Wizards, Witches, and Sorcerers'. He was the most powerful Wizard anyone had ever seen at that point so no-one challenged him. After the Salem Witch Trials or the SWT's, he declared war against several heads of States; including the Royal Families of Russia, England, and Spain. After several bloody battles the Royal Families of those countries made a treaty with King Saluzzi and the Wizard World. In this treaty, The Marccesites Treaty, the Wizard World would agree to go into the background while the other governments would protect the knowledge of Wizards from the general public. The Governments also agreed to pay a land lease per year for all the lands being claimed by the Wizards. The lands being claimed by the Wizard world were all of Russia and the new world, now known as the United States. The treaty said they would pay one ounce of silver per 100 acres of land to the King of the Wizards every year until the year 3000 A.D. Since the treaty was signed, several changes have been made to it. One of the major changes when the United States was formed, it agreed to sign the Marccesites Treaty. The most important change was that when the United Nations came into effect the Wizard World was given a seat, as well as all members of the United Nations also signed the treaty."

"So are the governments still paying the lease?"

"Yes they are. However, once the Council of Wizards was formed, a third of the money going to the King started going to them. I know the charter that started the Council stated if there was no King for more than 150 years than the Council could choose to claim all of the King's wealth. Best of my knowledge they have not tried to touch the King's accounts."

"Wow that must be a lot of money."

"Give or take a few, it would be about $700,000,000.00 per year in today's market. Now, don't get me wrong, that is your money, but it is also the Wizard Worlds money as well. It is for you, as the King, to take care of your people. You will also have to pay for your Royal Guard, the Dubuquas. You will also possibly need to provide some type of air transportation in case you have to fly to visit other leaders. But, we won't worry about that right now.

Now, where was I, oh yes? Right after the SWTs, King Saluzzi ordered his brother, Magnus Saluzzi, to find a way to create something that only the rightful King of the Wizards could hold or wear. Magnus Saluzzi had the Gift of Geolog, in other words he could control rocks and gems. Now this is a very rare Gift to have. He used his Gift in his everyday job of a jeweler. He had made crowns for several Kings and Queens from around the known world already, but for his brother he created the most amazing piece ever, The Wizard Heart.

The Wizard Heart is not a crown, but a living necklace. The center stone is a blood red diamond that is around 40 carats. The Hope Diamond is around 45 carats. However this diamond is very different, as it is a living stone. This means it can change with the owner. It has several special properties that allow this stone to control the whole piece to the wearer's desires, hence why it is called the Wizard Heart.

Along with the large heart shaped blood red diamond in the center with a star background, there are other precious stones on it. There are five different types of stones, all cut in the shape of a heart, each for a different element. Each type of stone has a meaning. Each side of the necklace is a mirror of the other. First, next to the center, is Malachite. Malachite is for the Earth. Then there is Lapis Lazuli for water. Next comes the Moonstone. The Moonstone is for the wind which we breathe. The Tiger Eye which is next stands for the animals we live with, and survive by. Last is Sunstone, this is for the fire which provides us with protection and tools. The Sunstone is a very rare and powerful stone which can no longer be found. Each stone is set in gold and silver on a link of its own. The stones are separated by a link in between with runes carved into them."

"That sounds really pretty, and big. How in the world would I wear that to school without everyone seeing it?" Eli asked getting a little worried.

"Well now, my Khil, I am getting there. You see part of the special properties of the center stone is its ability to change into how the wearer chooses it to appear. The whole thing is said to almost be absorbed into the wearer's body. So, if you choose to have it look like a choker, like a lot of the kids wear, then it will do so. If you want just a thin gold chain with a small pendent, then it will do so. It is what you choose, however, when you take it off it will revert back to its original form."

"Grandpa, you keep saying the wearer, but I thought only the rightful King of the Wizards could wear the Wizard Heart?" Eli asked.

"Well, that is how it was meant to be. But, not everything is how it is meant to be when it comes to Wizards. In the Mid 1800's there were two Class I Wizards born. They were twins who co-ruled and both could wear The Wizard Heart. It was the only time in known history this has happened. That is why today we say the wearer instead of The King."

"What extra Gifts does it give?"

"Well, no-one really knows because The Wizard Heart is always changing. Many believe it gives the wearer just what they need to do whatever is needed during that time. Others believe the Gifts are set and only the wearer can determine what ones are mastered."

"If I get The Wizard Heart will I have to be careful who touches it, like if dad and I hug or mom and I? Will it hurt them if they touch it?"

"As long as the non-wearer isn't planning on trying to wear it, nothing would happen. If someone who isn't the rightful owner of it tries to wear it, then it will burn them. I have never known any Non Wizard to ever be in contact with it by accident."

"Why would a Non Wizard be in contact with it if it wasn't an accident? Isn't it kind of important to the Wizard World?"

"Yes, it is very important to the Wizard World. When King Saluzzi knew he was going to be dyeing soon, he called for a friend of his, a Non Wizard. This friend was given the title of Garpet, keeper of The Wizard Heart. King Saluzzi knew that the Wizard World could tear itself apart between his death and the finding of the next Dexas. It is said that the old king can see who is next in line and lets the Garpet know. No-one but the King's Maxus would know who the Garpet was to be. Remember though, a lot of this is unknown for sure; some of it is just legends. I do not know for sure how the passing of The Wizard Heart from one King to the next happens because it has never happened in my lifetime."

"So, how do we know The Wizard Heart still exists? I mean could it have been destroyed or stolen somehow?"

"That is a good question. However, the head of the Wizard Council, Councilman Ben Smith, is said to be in contact with The Wizard Heart. It is rumored it speaks to him letting him know it is still there. However, no Head of the Wizard Council has ever told how this is done; only that it is done. It will be very interesting to see what happens in the next few years. When you are at a point to choose your Garpet, I am sure you will insure the Garpet and their families for generations. That is the nice thing about having the amount of monies available to the Dexas as there are. My young Dexas please do not worry yourself about these things as of right now. When the time comes for you to choose your people, you will know what to do."

"Grandpa, why isn't there any more information on what the Wizard Heart does?"

"Honestly I do not know. What I can tell you is just legend and rumor. There hasn't been anyone who has worn the Wizard Heart for 130 or so years."

"So that is why someone is trying to make sure no one does claim the Wizard Heart! If the council can go for 20 or so more years without a Dexas, then they get the Kings accounts and all of the money from the treaty? My birth parents were killed for money!" Eli had tears in his eyes as he was saying this, but then really started crying.

David had been sitting having a cup of coffee with Sherry at the kitchen table when he suddenly jumped up and ran into the back yard. He ran right for Eli and pulled him into his arms. Max was holding his head, like he had a really bad headache.

Once David had Eli calmed down, both David and Max's pain started to lessen. Both the older Wizards looked at each other and just knew.

Eli was ready to face the council!

"Dad, what was that? Did I hurt you and Grandpa Max?"

"Well, son yes you did, but don't worry about it, you didn't really hurt us. What you did was project the pain you were feeling, very strongly. This is a very powerful and dangerous Gift you have just gotten. When you master it, later tonight," the older guys laughed, "you will be able to control who you send the pain too, and what that person will feel." David told the boy.

"Your Highness, King Elijah, I pledge my life to your service! Do with me what you want, use me how you need." Max said while kneeling in front of Eli.

Eli was shocked at what his grandpa was doing. He wasn't sure what he should do so he looked at his dad for help. David knew what Eli was asking by the look. He motioned with his hand what Eli should do, once Eli had placed his hand on Grandpa Max's head, David sent the words Eli should say.

"Thank you Maxwell Hunt. Your loyalty is welcomed! Your task is to guide me and advise me. Please arise Shielo Maxwell and stand with me." Eli told the elder Wizard.

"Very well done son. I am so very proud of you." David told his son while giving him a hug.

"Thank you for the honor of the title of Shielo my Khil. I will always stand with you and help in any way I can. I could have never asked for a better grandson than you." Max said when it was his turn to offer the small boy a hug. "Just don't tell your cousins that!" Everyone laughed.

"Son, we do need to go talk with your mom. Who would you like there, this talk is like your interview you had. I am thinking we should have the formal talk this weekend while your aunt and uncle are here."

"Well, I guess we should have the whole family there; you, mom, grandpa, Uncle Matt, and Grandpa Max. But, what is this talk about?"

"Well, this is what is normally referred to as the exit interview. This would be where I as your official Wizard Council Trainer release you from your training status and claim you a full Wizard. It is when you will be told what the Wizard Laws are. Although with you, now it will be where we let the Wizard Council know you are the Dexas. After that we will start making arrangements for your Coronation and to inform the whole Wizard World you are taking your place as the rightful King of the Wizard World."

Eli was stunned. He had figured it would be years before he had to let the Council know about him. Now it is right around the corner.

"David, you are up to something, aren't you?" Max asked his great nephew.

"You could say that. What I have been thinking about is pre-empting the Council by not informing them of everything. How I was thinking this was going to go is when Stephen and Karen come up next weekend, I will ask Karen to perform her duty and do the class test on Eli. Once this is done it will be automatically recorded to the Council. They will freak and demand one of them become his trainer, at that point Eli and I inform them he has been trained and released from his training. We will also tell them we believe we are in a Mintanka. He can confront them in the Council Hall right after all this happens and inform them that he is ready to take his rightful place."

"What about the inhibitors installed at the Council Hall? He would be very defenseless there without his Gifts."

"Uncle, have you forgotten I have had him training at the sheriff's office after school for the past few weeks? He isn't affected by the inhibitors; it seems they only work on Class II and below. There hasn't been a single one of his Gifts that have been hampered while the inhibitors have been active at full strength."

"Well, at first when I was trying to float, it was a lot harder, but now I don't even notice the difference." Eli said trying to defend his dad.

"Have you chosen the members of your High Court?" Eli's Grandpa asked.

"For the most part I have, well some of them. I haven't said anything to any of them, but I am pretty sure I know who I want for the different spots. I would like to ask your advice, both of you, before I ask them to take the positions. Would that be alright?" The boy was a bit worried. Both men told him they would be glad to.

"Well, the easy ones are Noah and Nora. Noah will be my Maxus, I mean that is a given, he is my best friend. I am planning on asking Nora to be my Miluis and her mom to be her Pililuis. Deputy Evens would make a great Dubuquas Copus, and I will let him choose the rest of the Dubuquas. I was thinking about asking Mitch to be Mubuquas, I know he is very protective of both Noah and Nora." Eli told them.

"I don't want to tell you who to choose, but you have a very loyal friend in Jeremy, and I know you, Ryan, and Noah told him about being Wizards." The young boy blushed like he might be in trouble, "There is nothing wrong with letting a very trusted Non Wizards know who and what you are. I was thinking you might want to not only hire but ask Thomas and Cindy Mayfield to be your Neoielo, jointly. I know that Thomas has experience in corporate law, and Cindy is great in family and criminal law so together they would be perfect." Max told his grandson.

"Yep, I would agree with your Grandpa on that choice. Now the other High Court positions you need to choose are Scohoe, Khiclock, and Porkha. Have you given any thought to those?"

"I think so, but I am really not sure if my choices are good ones. I would like to have Aunt Kelly be my Scohoe. She is a teacher but knows how it feels to be put down for not being a higher Class Wizard. I know from talking to her she really cares about her kids and doesn't want the same thing to happen to them that happened to her. I am just worried she is going to think she isn't good enough to be on the High Court as Minister of Education."

"Son, I can't argue with any of that. I would think your Aunt Kelly would make a great Scohoe, however, I am surprised you didn't want your Uncle Stephen?"

"Well, he is my second choice, however even though he protected me; he couldn't come up with a way to stop the bullying I went through. Aunt Kelly knows what that feels like, he doesn't."

"What about the others?" Grandpa Max asked.

"Well, Aunt Karen for Docy, but I am not sure she would leave the Council for it."

"I bet if you asked her she would, she does love you, you know?" was David's response.

"I don't know about the others at all." Eli said with frustration.

"Well, you have made very good choices, but I do have a couple of thoughts. Right now you have chosen your Neoielo; High Court legal services, your Docy; High Court Minister of health. I think both of these choices are very good ones. Now you have also chosen your Scohoe; High Court Minister of Education. Your Aunt Kelly is a good choice; however, I would say she is a better choice for a different High Court position. I would put your Uncle Stephen in the Scohoe spot, and you're Aunt Kelly in the spot of Khiclock, High Court Minister of Family Services. You might not know this but she has her Master's degree in social work. The only position you haven't filled is that of Porkha; High Court Minister of Elderly Affairs. I can think of several people who would do a good job in this position, but only one that would embrace it. I am thinking of Dawn Pilgrim, Sheriff Mill's aunt." David explained to his son.

"I like that idea. Is it going to be a problem that I have so many family members on my High Court?" Eli asked.

"This is normal. The last High Court was made up of one family. However from what history tells us, they didn't do a good job. The High Court you are suggesting is very well thought out and knowing the people you have chosen, will take the jobs to heart. That is what you want, and what the Wizard World needs." Grandpa Max told Eli. "As your Shielo, I am now the head and spokesperson for the High Court. It is my job to insure everyone on the High Court does what is needed of them. I do request a Kahneu, a younger apprentice. I am very old, and I know this." He held his hand up to stop both the younger Wizards from protesting, "I will not be ready to rest for a long time to come, however, and I feel having a Kahneu will benefit all."

"Grandpa Max, do you know who you want as your Kahneu?"

"I believe your young friend Ryan has the proper gifts to make a wonderful Shielo at some point in the future."

"Dad, Grandpa Max was telling me about the Marccesites Treaty, and well there is a lot of money that I am going to be responsible for. Is there a way I can have someone help me with that?"

"You could always add to the High Court, I think that the position would be called the Curfeit, Minister of Commerce. I know that there was one years ago, but honestly that position is been looked down on due to trust issues." Grandpa Max tossed in.

"But, what if the person was already dealing with other people's money and I trusted them? Would that be alright?" Eli asked.

"Who are you thinking about son?" David asked.

"Well, Evan and Stacy's dad is a CPA, and he deals with lots of people's money, and he has never had a problem with stealing any. And I know that he would work just as hard for us as he would for the people he does now." The boy king rushed out.

"Aren't the Mears Non-Wizards? Do you really think it wise to have Non-Wizards handling your money?" Grandpa Max asked while smiling at David.

"Well, what I thought was that if a Non-Wizard is dealing with the money, and paying the bills for me, that would mean I wouldn't have to, or Mom wouldn't have to. Plus, as a Non-Wizard, he wouldn't be able to block me reading to make sure he stayed honest." Eli said with a grin.

"My Khil that is brilliant! I would never have come up with that! I think it is a great idea, one that I now truly support. Great job!" Grandpa Max exclaimed.

"Yes, son, I would have to agree, that is a great idea." David said with pride.

"Then I think we are ready to take this forward!" David said.

"There is only one thing, but I must talk with my Mom and Grandpa before I can ask you." Eli told the older Wizards before running off to the house.

When Eli entered the kitchen both his mom and Grandpa Gerald were working to prepare dinner. Eli was very nervous about what he wanted to ask, but knew in his heart he needed to.

"Mom, Grandpa, I need to talk to you, please?" Eli said from the table.

Once both the adults were sitting at the table, Eli looked at them and could see the love and concern they had for him. He really didn't want to hurt either, but he knew he needed to do this.

"Dad and Grandpa Max say I am ready to take my place. I have chosen all of my High Court placements, and have mastered all my Gifts, so far. I do not want to hurt either of you, and I hope you know how much I love and respect you both for all you have done for me. You will always be my mom and grandpa! There is only one thing I would really like before I take my place as King of the Wizard World. I would like my dad's last name."

"I think that is a wonderful idea. You have always been my grandson, and no matter what name you go by, you will always be my grandson!" Gerald said while hugging Eli.

"I have no problem with it either, but how do you propose to change your name?"

"Easy, when you and dad marry next weekend, dad can adopt me and change my name. The Monco is a judge after all!" Eli told his mother with a grin.

"Well, I am not sure David is ready..." Sherry stopped when David walked in with roses and a ring box.

"David is very ready to make you my wife! Sherry, you have stolen my heart and given me a life I never thought I would have. I would be honored if you would become my wife." David said getting down on one knee and opening the little blue box.

With tears in her eyes, Sherry nodded her head and softly said yes. David slipped the large diamond ring onto her finger then kissed her deeply. Everyone in the room was cheering.

"Well, Matt, I guess we have a wedding to plan! We got a lot of work to do, best get our butts busy!" Gerald's old friend Daniel Martin told Matt with a slap on the back.

"Speak for yourself! Don't have that much work to do at all!" Matt said back.

"I am going to go call Aunt Kelly and tell her she has to come up for the wedding. I want all of my High Court people to be here for it! This is going to be so great!" Eli said as he ran out of the room.

Eli grabbed the house phone and the little phone book his mom had all her important numbers in. The first call he made was to his Aunt Kelly.

"Hello Higgins residence, this is Donnie speaking."

"Hey Donnie. This is Eli! How is it going down there?"

"Oh Hi Eli. Things are good, nothing much ever changes down here."

"Is your mom around? I would like to ask her something."

"Sure, she is right here, hang on." Donnie said as he passed the phone to his mom.

"Hello?" Kelly said as she took the phone.

"Hi Aunt Kelly, this is Eli."

"Hello Eli, how are you doing?"

"I am great! Do you all have plans for the weekend after next?"

"Humm, not that I can think of, why?"

"I want you all to come up to the farm! Mom and Dad are getting married!"

"WHAT!? When was this decided? He can't just give me less than two weeks' notice! What is that boy thinking?"

"Well, it was kind of my fault about the two weeks, but you will find all that out when you get here. There is a lot going on, but I really want you to be here, if needed I will pay for your flights."

"Thank you Eli, but we can afford to fly up there. I will just need to talk to Eric and make sure we aren't booked. But even if we are, I will be there to see my baby brother getting married! I will let you know what our fight arrangements are as soon as I know. You tell your dad he is in trouble with me!" She said as she laughed.

After talking for a few moments they cut the call. Eli called all of the people he had chosen for his High Court and asked them to come to the wedding. Dawn was a bit shocked to be getting a personal invite as she didn't feel she really knew any of them, but it was impossible to say no to Eli.

Sherry was a little shocked to find out how much of the wedding planning David and Matt had already done. The table and chairs had already been ordered, as well as a very large pole tent. They had also booked the Deejay for the reception and talked to several different caterers. However that hadn't been decided on just yet. David had figured he needed to have Sherry help with a few of the decisions.

David told Sherry that the following Wednesday, they would be making all the final plans together, that he had taken the day off.

"You were pretty sure of yourself there, buster! What if I said no?" Sherry giggled.

"Well, for one thing, I don't think that your son would have allowed that to happen, and you forget who and what I am. You my dear bride are an open book whom we will have to work hard to teach to block Empaths. Uncle Matt and I have taken care of everything except for the caterer and your dress. Karen said all you have to do is call her and she will plan a weekend shopping trip for you down there. You can stay with them at the Manor house, and she will take you around to all the shops. By the way, she is really looking forward to this. I think this weekend would be a great time for you to get away and have some fun."

"Just so you know, my Khil, I will be paying for the dress and the trip. Your plane leaves at 5:30 pm on Friday, and will return you here at 8:00 pm on Sunday. If this is not enough time, than we will just send you down again." Uncle Max told Sherry.

"Now, Uncle Max, you do not have to do that!" Sherry protested.

"Well, it is my wedding gift to you. After all, this lug head you're about to marry has more money than he knows what to do with, so there really isn't anything for me to get you."

"Wait, what was that!?" Sherry almost yelled.

"Boys, I do believe it is feeding time out in the Fish House, will you please join me!?" Uncle Max said while making a hasty retreat.

After all the others had left David and a fuming Sherry alone in the kitchen, David tried to explain.

"I had told him I was going to tell you, he should have trusted me. Alright, I guess I can't delay any more. You know that I received a large sum from Uncle Max, and an equally large sum from the death of my parents, well there was also my pay from the Military, which I never had to touch. All of these monies have been in high interest bearing accounts, some for over 20 years. I got paid a lot of money when I was younger for writing a program that the Council of Wizards still uses to this day, more than I could ever need." David tried to explain to her.

"David, I only have two questions for you. First, why didn't you tell me, and second, just how much are you worth?"

"Well, I didn't want to tell you about it for the same reason Eli wasn't wanting his friends to know at first about his fish. He didn't want to come off as bragging. Had I told you right from the start that I never needed to work a day in my life, would you have still thought the same about me? I mean let's be honest, you have worked hard for the past 12 years to provide Eli with a good life, by yourself. Then when it comes to being part of the Wizarding world, a stranger steps in and pretends to be your fiancé, but doesn't wish to work, how would you have taken that?"

"Well, honestly I can tell you that it wouldn't have gone over at all! But, David, when you took the job of part-time EMT, I thought you were doing it because of the money. I thought you felt you needed to provide more for Eli and me." Sherry said with tears in her eyes.

"But, Sherry, I told you that it was volunteer work, I am doing that because it is the right thing to do, not for a payday."

"I know that was what you told me, but then that check came in the mail, and I thought..."

"What check? I haven't seen any check come." He asked quickly.

"Oh, I forgot to tell you about it, it was for $300 even. I just deposited it into the joint bank account with your paycheck from the school. I forgot to tell you about it I guess. But, if that wasn't a paycheck, then what was it for."

David started laughing and pulled out his phone to send a text message, but was still laughing too hard to get it done. He figured he would just call Nevin tomorrow and let him know.

"Want to tell me what is so funny?"

"I am sorry, Sweetie, but I just jumped Nevins ass today about that check. That was the reimbursement for the emergency lights on my Explorer. The county was going to reimburse me for up to $300, but I hadn't seen the check. I was giving him hell about. Now I am going to have to apologize to him for it."

"Oh you had told me about that, and the amount. Oh how could I have been so stupid?" Sherry said while starting to cry a little.

"No, Sweetie, you are not, nor have you ever been stupid. This is one of those miscommunications that all new couples have." David said while hugging her tightly.

"So, do I want to know the total worth of my soon to be husband?"

"Probably not, but let's say for time sake that it is in the ballpark of 150 million."

"WHOLY SHIT DAVID!" Sherry yelled.

"MOM! You said you shouldn't cuss!" Eli said walking into the kitchen. "I take it she now knows you are like rich, Dad? Good, now Grandpa George said there were some brownies on the side, and that I could have one with some milk. Do you two want one, too?" Eli said getting out a glass for his milk.

"I would son, but I don't think milk is going to be strong enough for your Mother for a while. Maybe I should go fix her a glass of wine. Sherry would you like that?"

"Yes, please, but not too much. I do have to work tomorrow." Sherry said while still shaking her head.

When David came back into the kitchen, he placed a glass of red wine in front of Sherry, and one down for himself. "Well, you shouldn't drink alone. Eli, you are going to have to eat and drink mine as well." David said laughing.

"Okay!" The boy said with a smile and a mouthful.

"Sherry, there is one thing I would like to talk to you about, well there are plenty, but for now is just one. That is your job. Now, before you start getting upset, let me tell you what you do is totally up to you all the way. I will support you no matter what you want to do. However, should you choose to, you can quit your job, start your own company, or keep working where you are, or any combinations of those? There will be no prenup, and when we are married, what is mine becomes yours."

"Now David..." Sherry started to interrupt.

"No Sherry, this means a lot to me. You and I will become partners, life partners, bed partners," which caused the 11 year old in the room to start giggling, "and partners in parenting. I would hope you would see me as an equal as I do you. Therefore, we become partners in our financial states as well. That is unless you don't want to be partners?"

"Now that isn't fair, David. Of course I want to be partners in every way, but, equals means that I come to the table with as much as you do! I can't do that!"

"Really Sherry? What do you think Eli is worth then?" David shot back.

"Eli is priceless!" Sherry snapped.

"Yes he is, and I am only bringing money to the table, you are bringing priceless! Don't think I can compete with that one!"

"He got you good there, mom!" Eli snickered.

"ELI, go take your shower!" Both the adults said at the same time.

"Jeez, what did I do?" Eli mumbled as he headed up the stairs smiling.

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