You Ain’t Santa Claus
by: E Walk

(© 2009-2010 by the Author)

The author retains all rights. No reproductions are allowed without the author's consent. Comments are appreciated at...

Chapter 44 

Ungrateful Guests


When Nelson hung up, you could tell he was tense, “That prick knew I wouldn’t be home last night.  He said he was taking the night off to take care of the boys.  I should have known better than to trust him.”


Nathan looked at Nelson, “Doctor Richfield, does that mean you’re not going to be able to help Quinn?”


Nelson took a deep breath, “I’m sorry for the outburst.  I shouldn’t have said what I did in front of you boys.  Nate, I’m going to go make sure that Quinn’s tests go okay, and then your Dad Dan and I’ll decide what should be done, if anything.  I need to go back to the Minneapolis area after the tests to find out what is happening.”


I offered my services, “Nels, I can be free to take you to the airport anytime after one, if that will help.”


“Thanks, Kirk, we’ll call you when the tests have been completed and we’ve had a chance to study the results.  I’ll make reservations as soon as we get to the hospital.  I just hope the boys will be okay until I get there.”


The intercom was activated, “Little House, this is Homebase.  Is the doc going to be able to take us to school this morning.”


Dan answered, “Jacob, I’ll be taking you, as usual.  But could the three of you refrain from bragging about your penises for this morning, since we will have a visitor with us.”


Jacob sighed, “Maybe we should take the bus if you're going to put all those restrictions on us.  We’re ready to roll when you are.  Over and out.”


After Dan and Nelson had departed for the hospital, I loaded up Nate and Ryan and we started to the big house, Ryan asked, “Daddy, is Quinn going to be okay?”


“Ryan, Quinn has some very good doctors taking care of him, and the prayer that you and Nate submitted is helping Quinn a great deal.  You need to keep praying that God will help Quinn and that the doctors who are going to be taking care of Quinn can make Quinn better.”


I stopped at the big house briefly to tell them what was happening, since I was sure that Dan hadn’t had a chance to explain what was happening in Minneapolis.


When I arrived at my office, I looked at my notes for the seminar class and decided to let the class decide what they might do with Quinn’s case.  If that didn’t fill the allotted time, I could start to discuss what had happened in Minneapolis.


I figured that the seminar class might not be so full after the class had met Nathan and Ryan.  Boy was I wrong.  I was surprised the fire marshal wasn’t there counting bodies.  I explained what happened when the vegans were demonstrating and what subsequently happened when Ryan and Alex found Quinn.  The class didn’t break into groups because people kept asking questions and we went overtime again.  It was 12:30 when Sandy came in and handed me a message.


Doctor Thornton called and Doctor Richfield needs to be at the airport by 2:30. 


I thanked Sandy and went to get my car.  I went to the hospital and Dan, Bruce and Nelson were sitting in Dan’s office.  Dan looked at me, “Nelson will tell you what the tests showed and explain what’s going to happen, on the way to the airport.”


When Nelson and I climbed in the car, I asked, “Would you like to stop by Belle Monte and get your things?”


“Kirk, I don’t think we have time.  Besides, I’ll be back on Thursday so we can do the surgery on Quinn first thing Friday morning.  I have other clothes and things at home, so let’s go to the airport.  Just so you know, Quinn’s test went fine.  We found that he has a polyp on his vocal chord that makes it almost impossible for him to talk.  I’m almost positive that it’s benign, but I want to be sure.  It is not a life threatening operation that I want to perform, but I need to bring some equipment with me when we do the surgery.  Ordinarily, I would recommend that something like this be done at the clinic in Rochester, however, I think in Quinn‘s case it should be done here.”


“In the meantime, I need to find out what in the hell happened to Lars, and figure out what to do with his four sons.  It appears as if he has abandoned them.  The legal authorities are not going to let me be in charge of the four boys.  I am apprehensive about what Lars might have done to the joint account that we kept for utilities and food.”


I took a deep breath, “Nelson, I hope he didn’t have access to all of your funds?”

Nelson shook his head no, “Kirk, I may be naïve, but I’m not stupid.  I only matched what Lars put into the account each month.  You have no idea what a clothes hog the man was.  He wore nothing but Armani suits when he was working.  I swear he has at least 20 Armani suits.  I could never understand how he could afford that many such expensive suits.”


As Nelson was getting out of the car at the unloading zone he commented, “I’ll see you Thursday sometime.  I’ll let you know the details, later.”


I decided to stop by the hospital and check on Quinn.  Why I did, I don’t know.  Ryan and Nathan were on the bed talking to him.  Nate looked at me, “Daddy, go on home.  Quinn is getting tired.  We’ll be home after he eats his dinner.  He’s still feeling a little sleepy from the medicine they gave him this morning.”


When I arrived at Belle Monte, Dan was already there, which I thought was unusual.  When I walked in, George directed me to the study.  Bruce began, “Good, you’re both here.  I think we have found some things about Little Mister X.  His name is indeed Quinn Danielson.  He was born in Peoria.  The authorities will be taking his foot prints to make sure, in the morning.  If he is who we think, then his parents are indeed dead.  He was put into the custody of his maternal uncle, Keith Hightower.  The investigators have been unable so far to pinpoint the location of Mr. Hightower.  He seems almost as elusive as the proverbial slippery eel.”


The conversation was interrupted by the arrival of Nate, Ryan and Alex.  Ryan came and sat down next to me, “Daddy, we gotta make it so Quinn can talk like everyone else.  He wants to be able to go to school and learn to read.  He really likes it when Nate reads him a story.”


After dinner, the boys went to the hospital with Vince to say goodnight to Quinn.  When they arrived back at Belle Monte, Nate announced, “Quinn is really scared about what they’re going to do on Friday.”


I shook my head, “Doctor Richfield said it wouldn’t hurt much at all.  When you see Quinn tomorrow, tell him that Doctor Richfield said that it would be a piece of cake.  Doctor Dad will be there watching to make sure nothing goes wrong.”


Wednesday was a quiet day, and I was actually able to get some research done that would support my writing an article about Nathan and Ryan.  While I was doing my research, I was looking at the research on the effects of abandonment on children.


Dan, the boys and I had just started to watch television when the phone rang.  I answered, “This is Kirk Richter.”


“Kirk, the boys and I are on our way to your fair city.  We’ll spend the night on the road.  That way we can get in early enough tomorrow so that I can do a pre-op exam of Quinn before his surgery on Friday.  Can we stay at Belle Monte while we’re there?  I don’t think any of my relatives are ready to be inundated by an old man and four boys.”


“Of course you can stay here at Belle Monte.  We have lots of room at Homebase, or we can all stay at the Little House.  What’s with Lars?”


“It’s as if he has disappeared from the planet.  He indeed did strip our joint account. We should be in there, tomorrow afternoon.”


The three high school boys didn’t have school on Thursday or Friday, so they were going to be available to help watch Ryan, Nate, Chase and Evan which was good, since Vince and Alex were so busy spending time with Quinn and trying to make sure everything at Belle Monte was going smoothly 


Thursday was going fine and the seminar participants had all sorts of questions about what was happening to Quinn and with the boys in Minneapolis.  I even had time to have lunch with Lanny and Lance.


After my lunch, I was working on materials for my classes when Sandy came into the office, “Dr. Richter, I think you need to talk to the young man on the phone.  He’s about to hyperventilate.”


“This is Dr. Richter.”


Nate's voice was loud and clear, “Daddy, we caught three rustlers trying to steal some of the Brangus cows from Belle Monte.”


“Nate, what do you mean you caught three rustlers?”


“Daddy, it was so cool.  We were riding our horses exercising Snitch, Snatch, Hodge and Podge and they took off running.  There was this big truck that was loading cows from the field.  Snitch and Snatch scared the men so bad because they were afraid that they were going to bite their penises.  Jacob had his cell phone and called the Sheriff’s office.  Hodge and Podge made all of the other cows move away from the truck.”


“Nate, I have to go to a class.  You can tell me the rest of the story when I get home.  Besides, Dad Dan will want to hear the story.   Remind everyone that we will be having five guests for dinner tonight.”


When I arrived at Belle Monte, I was met by George. “Kirk, I’m not  sure it’s going to work to have Doctor Richfield’s four boys stay here.  Shawn and Erik were fighting and the three youngest Sorenson boys are afraid of animals.  That includes Snitch, Snatch, Hodge and Podge.”


Dan and Nelson arrived and I don’t think anyone was expecting what happened.  Erik yelled, “Nels, we want to go home.  These people are primitive.  All they worry about is taking care of the animals.  They don’t know nothing about the neat things like video games and they even do work around this rinky dink hotel.”


Bruce was hot, but somehow, he maintained his cool, “Listen to me Mr. Erik Sorenson.  These young people have more knowledge and more money than you ever will, if you continue to act like that.  It seems to me that your Daddy has trained you well to be an ingrate and a taker.  If you persist in this kind of talk, then you can take your suitcase and move on.”


Erik was livid, “Nels, are you going to let that invalid talk to me like that?  He’s probably sponging off these people.”


Nathan went and punched Erik in the stomach, “You have no right to talk to our Uncle like that.  Either talk nice, or don’t talk at all.  You can eat in the kitchen and can fix your own dinner because we don’t allow talk like that around Belle Monte.  Come on, guys, we need to set the table and see if there is anything else that Mrs. McTavish needs us to do.”


The four Sorenson boys just sat as we talked about Quinn’s surgery.  Ryan came in and announced, “Dinner is ready.”


The four Sorenson boys walked to the table and sat down without being told where to sit.  I was waiting for someone to say something, but no one did.  Nels sat beside the youngest boy, Dieter, so he would be able to help him.


The Sorenson boys had their eyes opened when the guys brought the food, so it could be served family style and sat it front of me and Dan.  The boys helped Tessa and Eva get seated and Nate said a prayer of thanks, “Dear Lord, we thank you for this food and we ask that you make  the food nourish the hands of the doctors who are going to be fixing Quinn, so he can talk. Amen.”


Stefan asked, “Why did you say something dumb like that?”


Nelson  scolded, “Stefan, this is Nate and Ryan’s home.  That’s the way they want to do things.  If you can’t say anything nice, then don’t say anything.”


When the food was being passed, Dieter asked, “Aren’t we going to have anything I like?  Why can’t we have stuff out of the freezer like we do at home?”


Ryan was eating his fried chicken leg with his fingers, “You better eat, because there isn’t going to be anything else until breakfast.”


Karl asked, “Why are you people eating your chicken with you fingers?  Don’t you know that’s gross?”


Nate laughed, “I guess you don’t know how to eat chicken.  How else are you going to make sure that you get all of the meat off of the bone.  How are you going to eat your corn on the cob, if you don’t pick it up with your fingers.”


Erik shook his head, “You people are really crude.  At least you could put those little holder things in the corn on the cob so you wouldn’t get so messy.”


Shane took a deep breath, “If all you guys are going to do is complain, then I suggest that you sit and be quiet so the rest of us can enjoy our dinner.”


Everyone, including Nelson, was eating and visiting and the guys were regaling Dan and Nelson with their experience with the rustlers.  I noticed that all four of the Sorenson boys were eating everything on their plates. 


When Ryan said, “The sheriff took the three bad guys away and took the truck to the pound.”  Ian laughed, “Ryan, the sheriff’s people took the truck to the impound yard.  Old man Corman and his two sons have been suspected of rustling cattle for several years.  This is the first time that they have tried to rustle any of Belle Monte's livestock.”


Shane complained, “It took us nearly three hours to patch the fence where they had cut it.  The jerks must have heard that Alex and Vince were busy babysitting.


Vince frowned, “Sure, blame us.”


Erik blurted out, “You people are not only crude you have lost touch with reality.  Dogs and cats can’t catch rustlers.  Beside why would they want to take anything from this tumbled down place.”


I expected someone to respond to Erik’s last outburst, but no one did.   Instead Jacob diverted everyone’s attention, “Okay men, we ate.  We need to take care of the cleanup.  Who’s going to the hospital?”


Nate answered, “Uncle Vince is going to take Ryan and me, so I can read a story to Quinn.”


Nate stood and asked, “May we be excused Uncle Bruce?”


“You certainly may be excused.”


As Nate was picking up his utensils, he turned to Tessa, “Thanks for another great meal, Mrs. McTavish.”


The guys took all of the utensils and dishes except the things the four Sorenson boys had used.  Finally Erik asked, “How come you’re not taking ours?”


Shawn wheeled around, “Look, Mr. Sorenson, we’re not your slaves.  I suggest that you get your eating utensils into the kitchen or this is the last meal that you will be eating here.”


Ian pointed at Shawn, “That’s enough, son.”


Bruce pushed away from the table, “Ian, I happen to agree with what Shawn just said.  Nelson, I guess you will need to take the boys to a motel.  Our young men don’t need to be subjected to this kind of ridicule, or be around people who are afraid to do a little work.”


Dieter looked at Nelson, “Nels, why don’t these people like us?”


Nelson stood, “Probably because of the way the four of you are behaving.  You act like you’re prima donnas and that’s going to stop.  I suggest that you take your dishes to the kitchen, and then you can spend the next two days cooped in a motel room since you don’t know how to be gracious guests in someone’s home.”


To be continued...


Editor's Notes:  My goodness, I don't care much for the prima donnas. I am kinda hoping that Dieter will be able to learn how to behave.  He is still pretty young, so there is a better chance that he can change his behavior. I don't hold out much hope for the older boys. Of course, things could change.


If I were Nels, I would at least think about just letting the department of child services take the three older brats, put them in a group home,  and let them see just how the cookie crumbles. I suspect, though, that he won't do that.  After all he has integrity, unlike Lars. 


I suspect that the boys are pretty much imitating Lars' behavior.  


I wonder if something bad has happened to Lars.  I don't know why, but I suspect that he has a gambling problem, and is up to his neck in debt. 


Maybe we will find out in the next chapter, which I hope will arrive shortly.


Darryl AKA The Radio Rancher


Posted: 06/04/10