Julian McNaney was a devastatingly handsome man in his middle thirties whose dark movie star looks unfortunately attracted the attention of a 1930's Chicago socialite, Sunny Rathbord. He never meant to fall in love with this woman nor did he bank on Sunny figuring in his last mission: the capture of a medieval French serial killer. Yes, Julian was a time traveler whose untiring, never to fail espionage techniques finally nailed Marcel Rougelot and uncovered an elaborate plot to murder Danisha Wood, Frollo's postmodern lady.
...But now, this latest caper has yielded nothing but heartache and
bad feelings. I can bet good money once Claude Frollo receives this letter,
the man won't be too happy with me...
Julian McNaney pulled out one of those stick pens and a legal pad then wrote these words:
Dear Claude,Julian sealed the envelope then made a couple of phone calls. One call was to Fern; he told her he had a message for Frollo.
By the time you receive this I'll be long gone. I don't know where but I think I've done enough damage for all concerned. I didn't intend for Plan B to go into effect but wires got crossed and all, but let me say right now that I'm sorry about what happened. I hope that someday you'll find it in your heart to forgive me, although I wouldn't blame you if you hated me for the rest of your life. Please hear me out: Plan B was solely my idea and it didn't involve getting people hurt. But it was not all my idea to involve other people in the scheme -- namely you-know-who. How was I to know he'd get in on this scheme? I know you've lost no love for the guy but his help was invaluable in exposing that conspiracy ring....
Right now though I'd bust the guy for suggesting...
Let me backtrack to that Christmas Day dinner. Johnny and Vixen dropped by to deliver presents, and Danisha received a box of candy....
...and that's what happened -- mixed up communications...The transtemporal thing was on the blink again. Only Fern got my message; Johnny and Vixen didn't get theirs. So now... I thought we'd be able to tidy things up, but here come the complications....
...OK so now you know the whole story from my end. Again I apologize for any and all anguish you've gone through. I'm thankful to have known you, and working for you has been an honor and a privilege. Give my love to your daughter, and best wishes for your retirement. Oh yes, tell her I'm sorry for everything.
What began as a botched "Plan B" soon escalated into a month of pain, grief, confusion, secrets, and stolen memories.
The woman, Vixen, had berated herself as well. Never in a million years could she have predicted the fallout from that ill-timed scheme. What had started as a simple ruse soon spiraled out of control. She, who was one of Claude's many lovers, and Danisha's friend, never wanted any part of this plan, but Julian and Johnny talked her into it. How could I have been so short-sighted! Poor Claude, to endure all this agony...She was my friend too...
"Guys, we have to think of something, and fast. This thing's gone on
long enough." So said Julian McNaney after a long silence. The enigmatic
Mr. McNaney, a man blessed with a mop of dark curly hair, deep brown eyes,
a finely chiseled movie star face, and suave manners, lit another cigarette.
His expression was rather glum as he addressed his companions. "Johnny,
Vixen, it was all a matter of bad timing. Once we set things right then
I have to figure out how to explain everything to Claude Frollo. He won't
be too thrilled
when he learns..."
"But Julian," interrupted Johnny, "it happened, OK? His Honor may not be too thrilled once...Hey, did you tell him everything -- and I mean everything -- about Clopin being in on this? I mean, the guy happened to overhear this plan then suggested we use..."
"Enough!," cried Vixen. "We all thought it was a good idea but everything got ruined! Now I've lost one of my best friends and Nadine's lost her mother. Oh my God! Poor Claude! Have you guys ever wondered what's going through his mind? He's lost one his best friends as well and it's all our fault!" Vixen, overcome with emotion, flopped in a chair and said nothing more.
It was Johnny who finally suggested, "Julian, let me take that time trip. I left the thing behind last time I checked. Last thing we need is someone asking a bunch of questions."
Julian, upon taking a long drag, pondered all the consequences of a plan gone awry. He then told his companions, "Guys, I've got a little legwork to do. Johnny, take that time trip and maybe we can set things straight this time. That was a good idea, to stash our cargo in 1962 Detroit." He turned to Vixen and said, "Honey, why don't you look up Fern for me. Tell her everything, but tell no one else, understand? She knew about Plan B and told me to nix it, but...Fern is the one who could break this news..."
He stopped himself, stamped out his cigarette, then flatly said, "I'm praying that everything will be all right."
Johnny Elmore paced the room and tried talking reason with this woman,
but it was of no use. Somewhere in the back of his mind Johnny knew that
this would happen. Dot was adamant: She had an audition with Berry Gordy
tomorrow and no way was she going to miss it. "Johnny, I know I've been
here a week and just started my job at Motown, but they heard me. They
overheard me singing to myself, so naturally..."
Dorothy decided to stop arguing with this man and bide her time. He's got to go home sometime, she thought as she examined her brightly buffed nails. Johnny watched this woman and thought he was talking to a stranger. She was beautiful with her smooth, clear, hot caramel complexion, deep brown eyes, and a wealth of dark brown hair fashioned in that ubiquitous bouffant. Her clothes were very stylish for the early 1960s -- the whole "Donna Reed/Laura Petrie" look -- complete with a simple full-skirted dress, low heeled pumps, and a strand of pearls.
Johnny absentmindedly laid something on the table then headed for the kitchen. "Dot, you got any Coke?"
"Yeah, in the Frigidaire," she coolly replied while she switched on the TV. Then she called after him, "And if you think you'll sweet talk me into going back with you, the answer is still 'NO'!" The Frollo spy simply shook his head then made up his mind to take this woman home by force if necessary.
Once Johnny disappeared into the kitchen, Dot shifted her eyes from
the television to the table. What was that thing Johnny set down? She
reached over and picked up the curious little item. What is this? It's
so pretty, must be a compact or cigarette case... ...Ooh, sterling silver
and amethysts. What's this engraved on the top? French stuff I can't remember...
"Hey, Johnny! Where did you get this?" She flipped it open then gasped at the array of buttons, the black screen, and delicate circuitry. "Get what, Dot?", called back Johnny who busily prepared for himself a snack. She said nothing else as she continued to study this wondrous item. What is this thing? And what are these buttons? Looks like something out of those Superman comic books...
Dot, now thoroughly curious, started for the kitchen, calling out to Johnny, "This thing, Johnny. What does it do?" Her finger lightly rested on the red button as she entered the kitchen. Johnny Elmore, spreading peanut butter on a piece of day old bread, looked up and nearly fainted when he saw Dot with -- gulp! -- THAT!
He dropped the knife on the counter and immediately walked toward her. "Oh man! Dorothy, give me that thing! You weren't supposed to see..."
Dot stepped back, widened her eyes, then said in a voice of triumph,
"Ooh, Johnny! Got yourself one of those secret spy toys! Now, tell me what
it does or...Hey, I got an idea. I give this back to you only if you go
away and let me go to that audition tomorrow."
"OK, then I guess I'll keep this baby for a while..."
Johnny panicked. What to do now? She's got the thing, and doesn't know the implications if she...Dot, don't!
"What does this red one do, Johnny?," she asked as her finger slowly depressed that button.
"Dorothy, stop! Don't push that...DOTTIE!"
But he was too late. In an instant, Dot disappeared in a sea of bright white light...
What happened to Dot?
...Claude Frollo and Nadine at school...Strange vibes from across the debris of time...Suspicions raised...
CLICK FOR CHAPTER TWO!
Copyright©1999 by FrolloFreak®