Chapter 19 of
As the cast and staff began to prepare for the day, a sense of tension was spreading. Those that lived in the dorm had it first. Due to interaction in locker-rooms and dressing areas, it passed to those who lived off-compound. The mechanics and technicians had come in early and worked with a fury to inspect every ride. Reassurances by Over-Watch were taken, but equipment was still verified to be in proper working order. Anything that even looked suspect was replaced. By the time guests began to line up at the gates, the last of the rides had passed their test run. All were operating as they had when first run.
Every member of Main Force Security had a hard look on their faces. They were scanning the faces of every person they could see. During the morning briefing the State Police showed up. The Sheriff had contacted the State Attorney General who in turn contacted the State Police with a warrant to search Nably's business. After that was when Troopers visited the park. Their news incited even more anger from the Security Force, Tessa and the princesses. A picture was flashed on the big screen on the wall. Joe Nably, detain and call for the State Police to take into custody.
When the gates opened, the Hospitality staff were paying close scrutiny. Over-Watch had an additional member in the monitor room running facial recognition on the entrants. The first hour passed. The second hour passed. It was just after Noon that the quietness ended.
"Over-Watch to all. Juliet November is over the threshold. Number 6." The operator announced. "Repeat; Juliet November over the threshold, number 6."
Heads turned and confirmations were subtly made. Direction of movement was relayed and ten Main Force members converged to take up a dedicated perimeter around him. Dave Wells was already calling the State Police. Troopers were en-route before he disconnected. Dave strode angrily as he made his way to Storm Bayou. Along the way he met up with Tessa and her escorts.
Over in WildForest Princess Michelle heard the announcement over the radio of her own escort detail.
"Let's go!" Michelle said and started walking fast.
Her four Security escorts kept step with her as they left her area to head for Storm Bayou.
Princess Danica in SeaSide was doing the same. "Come on guys!"
"Aye Aye Princess." One the former Marines replied and led the way.
Princess Nicole stopped in mid-joke at the announcement then turned back to the kids. "Je suis désolé les enfants, sorry kids. I get back on this later."
A collective 'awww' went out as she turned to go.
"Hommes, avec moi! Allons!" Princess Nicole waved to her escorts.
The detail were hot on the heels of the cajun. They knew she was furious and needed to be held back, or she would attack the man alone. Soon enough though she spotted him.
"See you, yeah!" Princess Nicole snarled and made to confront him.
One of her escorts caught her and stage whispered. "Not yet Princess. Wait. He's not going anywhere."
Nicole said back angrily. "Want him bad Tommy. He paid those guys mess up the rides to hurt people. Change they mind, try killing Reine Tessa 'stead."
"We want him too Princess. Stand fast though, he's trapped. He just doesn't know it yet." Tommy DeVrie informed her.
Moments later, Princess Michelle could be seen coming from the other side. She too, was stopped by her escorts. Princess Danica joined Nicole with her group. Finally Tessa arrived with her full contingent. Each princess had four escorts while Tessa had all twelve of her own. They began to move in, but had to stop as people suddenly took off baggy shirts. They were wearing t-shirts underneath emblazoned with a church group on the back and front.
"THIS PLACE IS SINFUL!" One person yelled.
A woman called out. "YOU'VE ALL BEEN LURED INTO A TRAP BY A DEVIANT!"
Tessa waved her people forward to push past the people.
Nicole growled angrily, passing through. "Knock off, noisy fool! We busy!"
The group stopped shouting in confusion at being pushed aside and disregarded. It was beyond obvious that they and their antics were unimportant. VentureRealm's royalty stood surrounding Joe Nably. Their security escorts forming a ring around them.
Dave Wells called out. "Sloan."
"Yes Sir, Captain." Jimmy answered then addressed Joe Nably. "Nably, stay where you are. State Police are coming to take you into custody. I'm a reserve Deputy for the Sheriff's Department and can arrest you myself, so don't move."
Princess Nicole snarled at him. "Can't believe you. You send you boyfriends come in here tear up rides so people get hurt and kill! All to make close down and buy for self!"
Joe Nably had frozen in surprise. He had no idea where all these security people had come from to effectively surround him so fast. Like they had materialized from thin air itself. When she spoke, he stared at Tessa Frost in anger, but it was no match for the fury on her own face.
"Nably I send word through your lackey; back off. Twice. I told you, face to face, to back off. I have no idea where you come off thinking laws don't apply to you, but they do. You can't buy your way out of this." Tessa said then hooked a thumb over her shoulder. "And as for the stunt with those idiots? You forgot to mention to them about your little sabotage plan?"
"Sabotage?" Someone asked, confused.
Tessa turned around and addressed the group. "Of course. He paid six men to break into the park last night. Their task was to sabotage the rides and cause injuries. By his own words, death would be even better. I'm assuming he sent you a message highlighting myself. I'm sure he sent you a donation as well to motivate you."
People began to look at each other trying to understand exactly what was being said. One was fairly quick on the uptake.
"Are you saying he's using us?" A man asked.
Princess Michelle nodded. "He played you all like a cheap MP3 and now you look like REAL idiots. Congrats, you're stupid."
"Bunch of guppies. Little brains, BIG mouths." Princess Danica remarked in disgust.
Princess Nicole was still the most hostile. "Should take down to Breaux Bridge and strip 'im down and leave out for the skeetas. Gatorbait too good for him, yeah. That or throw bucket of beer over and drop in the Basin for them leeches."
"That will do, Princess. Even though your suggestions are entertaining, we'll be turning him over to the State Troopers." Tessa said to Nicole, but glared at Nably. "Oh yes, Mister Nably, you will indeed get your day in court. Even though any punishment they impose will always be woefully inadequet, you'll face justice. When they are done with you, it will be MY turn."
Unknown to Nably, three State Troopers were coming up behind him.
"Think any of this'll stop me, freak? I'll make bail before the ink dries and I'll hire better guys to come after you. Maybe if enough of your people go to the hospital, better yet, the morgue; you'll clear out! I'll scoop this place up for nothing and do whatever I want. I got money, I own people. Things a freak, like you, can't!" Nably snarled then froze as he was suddenly grabbed and cuffed. "WHAT THE HELL? GET OFF ME! YOU CAN'T DO THIS TO ME! I'LL HAVE YOUR BADGES!"
One Trooper was cuffing him and the other began mirandizing and actually reading it off a card. "Joseph Nably, you have the right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a Court of Law. You have the right to an attorney and have them present during questioning. If you do not have or cannot afford an attorney, you will be provided one. Do you understand your rights as you are now under arrest?"
Nably continued to shout and struggle until the Trooper pulled his Taser. "SIR! If you continue to resist, I'll have to light your non-complying ass up!"
Several people began to shout in support of the Troopers, to tase him anyway, until Tessa caught their attention. It became so silent, even a snail could be heard crawling.
"Enough." Tessa said the looked at Nably. "Count the minutes Mister Nably, the time of getting your way has just come to an end. See you in court."
The Troopers led him away to their patrol units at the gates. Tessa finally turned to the protest group. In her gown and tiara, backed by the three princesses with a large contingent of Security, she looked extremely imposing. The look of disgust she cast at them was unmistakable as well.
"One bit of nonsense down, one to go." Tessa said coldly after stepping close to the obvious leader. "How exactly does it feel to be duped by a man that would resort to murder in the name of money? The same money you jumped all over."
"We were told a deviant runs this place!" The man proclaimed only be silenced with a slap.
Tessa cut him off before he said another word. "Listen close you sanctimonoius jackass! You call me or anybody that works for me that again and I'll tear you apart where you stand! You don't know any of us! How dare you come here and insult! Your bullshit religion is as corrupt as it gets! You danced to the whims of a so-called man that paid thugs to come in here and damage the machinery here in hopes people would be injured and even killed in the pursuit of money! I can go into any church of the so-called Christian faith and find con artists, adulterers, drug dealers, thieves and even pedophiles! The con artists and pedophiles are usually at the pulpit banging their fist on a bible! So don't you dare come at us with your unfounded accusations, we have more integrity than you ever will!"
He shouted back. "I'm a man of the cloth!"
"Oh Yeah? Then I will pay you a million dollars cash to prove, right here, right now; Heaven and God exists and YOUR way is correct! I challenge you and your bullshit religion! PROVE UP or GET OUT!" Tessa demanded then addressed the crowd around her. "My parents took me to every church they could get to, brought in every priest, pastor and anybody else they could call. The only things they didn't try were voodoo witch doctors, snake-charmers and Budhist Monks. I'm still ME! I wasn't possessed, I'm not deranged. I've never harmed a child, nor will I ever. I even go out of my way to ensure the protection of children here. I donate to school programs that truly advance a child to a realistic future, instead of filling their heads with pipe-dreams of professional sport! These churches and their hate-troops, do NONE of those things and never will!"
Dave took command of his troops. "PLATOON! REMOVE THESE HOSTILES!"
A chorus went up. "HOO-AHH!" "HOO-RAH!" "HOO-YAH!"
The Security force moved in and began roughly walking the protest group to the gates with Dave leading the way.
Dave glared at the leader. "And if you think we can't throw your butts out, this is private property except for the Reservation. You can be arrested for tresspassing by the Sheriff's department or be arrested by Federal Agents, take your pick. Or you can leave and never come back all on your own."
Tessa addressed the actual park guests. "Ladies, gentlemen and especially children, I do apologize you all had to endure that. Fools will always demand more attention than they should get. Please put it all from your minds and enjoy a beautiful day in the park. Princesses, take charge of your areas."
All three curtsied then turned and invited people to follow them in pursuit of fun things. Tessa herself, led the way to SnowyHill. In no time, people were enjoying games, sing-alongs and dances with the park's royalty.
Nably and his attorney sat in the Interrogation Room of the State Police Headquarters and looked up when the State A.G walked in.
"I demand the release of my client." Nably's attorney stated but was cut off.
Jeremiah Hessfield rolled his eyes. "Not happening. We're still tacking on charges. Right now we have him for extortion, bribery, conspiracy, racketeering and the hits keep coming."
Nably smirked. "You got shit!"
"Actually we got everything." Jeremiah said to their confusion. "You're pretty stupid, really."
Nably and his attorney's jaws dropped as a CD was played, the meeting that Nably hired the thugs to go in to sabotage the park.
"How in the Hell did you get that!" Joe Nably demanded.
Jeremiah smirked now. "Your computer. You mean YOU didn't set it up to record audio every day and store it on a cloud? That and you don't delete your sent emails of wrong doing. You practically handed us evidence of every illegal act you've committed for the last ten years. You're sabotage crew rolled, that gave us probable cause to get a warrant to search your office. The rest, is about to slam you in court."
The Real Estate developer and his lawyer sat stunned as the A.G stood up with smile to go, but looked back from the door. "Oh yeah, the I.R.S. are wanting to talk to you too. Something about falsifying your records, undeclared income. They have a thing about stuff like that. Good luck with them. No sense of humor at all."
At his arraignment, bail was denied. Nably was deemed a flight risk due to his many property holdings and possible still undiscovered secret funds. His time in the cells weren't pleasant. One of the Deputies was 'overheard talking to another Deputy' about how Nably had paid to have rides at the park sabotaged. For some reason, emphasis was put on the rides for small kids. That didn't set well with the prisoners and they made it very clear in blind sopt of camera coverage, between the guards rounds. Three weeks later Nably finally saw the courtroom. The judge sat calmly, but the jury grew more and more angry as evidence was presented. Evidence and testimony that couldn't be refuted by the Defense. Put simply, the case was over before it had even begun. Right after the Judge gave the sentence, Trent Valens intercepted Nably and his attorney. He served them the papers for the lawsuit. Tessa had Trent going for everything Nably had left.
Elaine Oberline sat in her office. It had taken a while to go through and repair all the damage done by Ralph Conway. It turned out, Nably wasn't his only source of money. The more the Deputies dug, the worse it became.
Roy Dodd came in. "I think we're finally done."
"About time!" Elaine groaned.
"That park has really turned this town up and around. Kind of hard to know now, which way is up." Sheriff Dodd remarked.
Elaine sighed. "Don't I know it! Between her improvements to the schools and streets, to the two-minute uproar of her being a transgender and that developer trying to take the park away; I swear Roy, it's been non-stop."
"That Queen Tessa sure does know how to stir things up, that's for sure!" Roy laughed.
Elaine nodded. "Oh, she is anything but dull alright. I'm glad she has no intention of running for office."
"You know she's suing the underwear off that guy, right?" Roy asked.
That got Elaine's attention. "How much is she going for?"
"Don't know, but I heard it's absolutely everything of value he has." Roy said. "The real question is; what's she going to do with it?"
Elaine shrugged. "With her, it's anybody's guess. No one really knows what she's up to until its in full-swing."
Zeke had spent several hours everyday at the detox center. Ol' Mac had a rough time drying out, but somehow made it. On the last day, Tessa herself was there.
"Mister McDennett. I've not forgotten you." Tessa said.
Mac looked her up and down. Tessa wore a simple white halter dress and sandals, but in his eyes, still very much the same angel he saw on Christmas Eve.
His voice no longer sounded hollow as he said. "You're Tessa. The Queen. I remember you."
"Yes Mister McDennett. I'm told you no longer need to be here. Are you ready to go?" Tessa asked.
Ol' Mac was confused. "Go? Where am I going? I don't have anywhere."
Tessa shook her head. "That's not true Mister McDennett. You do have a place to call home. It would be best if we take you there, because you start work tomorrow. Mister Malone, we should head out now."
Zeke nodded. "Aye Queen Tessa. Come on Mac. Let's get you home. Ride's waiting."
Outside, Tessa's Lincoln waited. Zeke helped Mac into the backseat beside Tessa then sat ride shotgun up front. They drove back to the park and parked at the dorm. Zeke led the way upstairs and down a hallway to a door and opened it. Slowly Mac went inside and looked around.
"Nice digs, huh?" Zeke asked proudly.
Mac nodded. "Is this where you live?"
Zeke shook his head. "Nope. I'm right next door. This is yours. Look here. "
Zeke opened the closet and brought out a set of white pants and purple shirt with the park logo. The name Wesley McDennett was embroidered above the park logo.
"Queen Tessa hired you to work the Senior Services desk." Zeke said with a smile.
Mac was still in minor shock of it all. "I have a job now?"
"You have an important job, Mister McDennett. Children aren't the only ones to visit the park. Older people do as well. Some need assistance. I think would be the right person to help them. Would you do that for us?" Tessa asked.
Mac was more surprised and asked just to make sure. "You want me to stay here and work for you?"
Tessa smiled. "Of course, Mister McDennett. For as long as you want to."
"As long as I want? For real?" Mac asked and her nod, replied. "Yes Ma'am."
Zeke patted him gently on the shoulder. "She's your Queen too now. Queen Tessa."
"Welcome to my realm, Mister McDennett. See you tomorrow." Tessa smiled as she turned to go. "Carry on Mister Malone."
Zeke sat Mac down and handed him a packet of papers. Some needed his signature, the rest needed only to be read. Later when Zeke took him down to the cafeteria, Mac was amazed at the food there. Zeke encouraged him to try as much as he could and eat his fill. He also assured him that the others back at the alley of outcasts were going to be fed. That the food not eaten from the line would be trucked over there. When Mac laid down in his bed that night, Mac finally knew a night of peaceful sleep.
Trent Valens gathered up all he needed. Joe Nably had 4 million in liquid assets and another 8 million in properties scattered over three states. Tessa told him to go after it all. That was all Trent needed to be told. The only reason to go to court at all, was Nably was desperately fighting to hang on to anything of value now. The bulk of his wealth had already been ravaged by the courts in the form of fines and I.R.S. penalties. When he had been arrested, Nably was worth almost 30 million in assets. Much of it undeclared. He was shown no mercy.
Closing his briefcase, Trent said to himself. "Tomorrow is doom'sday for you, asshole."
If you liked this chapter of VentureRealm Park, please do Kudo. No membership needed.
If you liked this post, you can leave a comment and/or a kudos!
Click the Thumbs Up! button below to leave the author a kudos:
And please, remember to comment, too! Thanks.