I waited for Mandar to arrive before having our team meeting, I needed to talk with him some more first. I did have a meeting with Baldwin, however, I needed to get that done right away. He was now very sorry for his outburst, especially with Rock and Annelie. He knew they were very faithful to the team, and to him. He decided to talk with them after our meeting. I hope that settled things.
I do not want to lose those two, or any of our team for that matter. But Rock and I have become such good friends that it would be hard to lose him now. We picked up Mandar at the airport in the morning, he had come on one of Baldwin’s jets. “I so enjoy those jets that Baldwin has,” he said, “I must get one for myself as well.” Once back at the chateau, Mandar and I stayed in the car to talk for a while.
Sigurbjorn and John stayed in front as guards for us. This is the best, and safest, way for Mandar and I to talk. He told me more information about Kacie Trenton and showed me pictures of her. “That certainly looks like the same woman on the DVD,” I told him. “Well, once I hear her voice and see her actions, then I will know for sure,” he said, “I doubt anyone could imitate her fully, she is a rather unpredictable woman in the way she handles herself.
And her voice is, well, somewhat irritating to me.” “Sure sounds like it is her,” I said again, “but you will get to see the end of that DVD soon. The original is gone, it basically destroyed itself right after Annelie made a copy of it.” “Hmm, that part is quite interesting,” he said, “one of the women that works for her has perfected a process that burns away a DVD, or anything else that is recorded in any way.”
“That is exactly what it looked like,” I said, “sort of like acid had been poured on it.” “That is it precisely,” he remarked, “now, you said you talked with Baldwin, not with your team. Fine, now, here is my advice to you, my good man. You must get this done now, not tomorrow, or you will be finished, and that is what this woman wants. She could have killed you easily enough, but that is not her plan.
She wants to destroy you completely, and that means destroying your whole team, The Investigators, so you will never be able to do anything again. All of those resignation ideas and Baldwin’s outburst, all playing into this woman’s hands. Now, sometimes you need to take a step back so you can see things correctly, then you can move ahead with more strength. That is what you must do now.”
We continued talking for a while. “By the way,” he added, “I still have not received an invitation. What are you waiting for, my good man? Time is wasting, and you will lose if you wait too long. That would be a very sad thing indeed.” He looked at me very sternly. Perhaps he is right, maybe I am waiting too long. Time for some changes in this team of ours. First thing was to show that video clip to Mandar. Once he had seen it there was no doubt in his mind that it was Kacie Trenton.
He then told us all something that helped us understand why she wanted to destroy us. She was actually wanting to destroy me and Muffin for killing her cousin. That was way back in our second case where her cousin had shot me and was about to do so again, which would have killed me. But Muffin managed a shot of her steel muffins which killed that woman.
Kacie, though a cousin, had grown up with this other woman in her family. They regarded each other as sisters, not cousins. That was 3 years ago now. She has waited a long time to get at us. Then Mandar and Baldwin went to the kitchen while I had a meeting with the team. At the end of the meeting everyone was firm on learning from our mistakes and continuing together as the family we have become.
Now it is our turn to strike back. But first, something else needs to be done. Everyone was soon cheering loudly. “Well, Baldwin, it looks as though I will get that invitation after all,” said Mandar. Baldwin had no idea what he was talking about. “My dear Baldwin,” said Mandar, “you really must pay more attention to things other than your business empire.” And he shook his head. Baldwin still had no idea…
To Be Continued.
©2022 Steve McLeod.