Mean while Ma down in the kitchen was preparing the morning meal. Thinking about the boy and wondered if she needed to find out more about him. Or tell anybody about him, but who would she tell? Or should she tell? She wiped her hands on the apron and felt the note, she had fold into her apron the previous night. “Could it be? I hate to simply presume or imply, but he is hurt really bad.” Thinking maybe there's away she can do this without doing more damage to the boy? “I'll just ask a few questions, that's all, I just need to know?” Ma turned around and noticed her daughter Julie. “Good morning dear, thank you for taking care of things for me last night. You were such a big help,” she said.
“Glad to help Ma, how's the boy? Is he going to be ok?” She asked.
“His hurt real bad and in a lot of pain, he has a fever, but it has come down a bit during the night, he should sleep most of the day.”
“I am so glad. I like him already and don't even know his name.”
“Julie, would you mind finishing the meal for me while I do a few things?”
Ma went into the living room where she can have some privacy, pulled out the note of EJ's. “I am just going to ask questions. That’s it, nothing more.” Then she picked up the phone.
“Hello I am sorry to be calling... I am not waking you am I? But this is important,” she said as Grandma Stewart gives her name.
“Early? No dear its fine, how can I help you?” The women on line replied.
“Do you know a little boy by the name of EJ?” Martha asked.
“Yes. He’s my grandson, can I ask who calling please?” Grandma asked.
“Oh I don’t want to alarm you ma’am, but I just have a few questions.”
“What's this all about? Who is this?” Grandma asked.
“My name is Mrs. Downing, do know where EJ is?”
“Yes, his mother and father tell me his away at Scout Camp at won't be back for couple of week’s dear. Do need him for something, you can call him at ... Wait just a minuet dear. How did get my number? ...There's something you are not telling me dear. I can tell it in your voice...” Martha voice starts to quiver to a panic, pausing.... “what do I do, what do I say?”
“Come on dear, it's just easier if just tell me. I am not fool you know, which by the sounds of things I have been.” Grandma said as she waited for the answer.
“Mrs. Stuart I don't know how tell you this over the phone, but he has been badly hurt and has had a very high fever,” she said as calm as she could muster.
“Oh My…Do you know how he was hurt?” Grandma asked.
“My husband and I have pretty good idea, but we don't won't run to any conclusions.”
“I think I understand dear, it can wait dear. You never did answer my question, how did you get my number?”
“I believe EJ was on his way to you, but he didn't make it.”
“How long ago was that dear?” Grandma asked.
“We found him yesterday afternoon, Mrs. Stuart.”
|“I see well there’s only one thing for me to do then dear.” Grandma said.
“I’ll be there about an hour; don't worry about a thing dear. His Grandma Stuart is coming and then you can tell me all about it.”
“What about his parent's?” She asked.
“Don't you worry about that either! They won’t know until we're ready. I have some conclusions of my own. You just take care of my grandson you hear? Now give Grandma the directions and she she'll be off.”
Martha said. “Down the old canal road then follow the old dirt road. You will see a farm house with big red barn, that's it come right though the old gate. That will be us.”
“Thanks dear, don’t fret. He's tougher than he looks and if he wakes just tell him Grandma's comin and you take care of my grandson and I'll take care of the rest. See ya in about an hour.”
* * *
Grandma Stuart hung up the phone her voice shook with anger as her mind calculated those conclusions, “What have they done now? My poor boy. Richard?” His Ma called.
“Pullout old Harley Davidson and hookup the sidecar then set it out along the side of the house. While I pack the saddle and change into my old leather duds, Grandma got some hell to rise,” she said going into her bedroom.
Pulling the trunk out of the closet and she lifted the lid and pulled on her leather boots, Grandmas slipped them on with the rest of leather duds and rummaged through the trunk. “Where did I put my Old Thompson knife? Oh here it is and it is still sharp,” placing it in her boot. “Well son stop gawking.”
“But the neighbors Ma.” Richard replied.
“Damn the neighbor’s boy. I never cared what they think in the first place, now get to it times a wastin. Boy. They hurt my grandson and its time for a little thunder. I feel a storm comin and I'm bringing it,” she said.
Throwing the bedroll onto the bed then putting clothes into the saddle. “Couldn't you just take the old Ford?” Richard asked as he looked out the window of the kitchen.
“Na.” grandma said shaking her head. “Can't do it,” as she pulled out her leather jacket and put it on. “I think it has a flat.” She patted down her gray hair. Robbed the wrinkles around her deep blue eyes then took the time to add a just a little rose color lipstick. She looked sharp in her old leather jacket as it brought old mummeries of yesterdays gone by. Oh how she missed her husband, who has been dead going on six years now. Oh what glorious memories. Now it was up to her to set things right as she watched her youngest boy Richard from the corner of her eye.
Richard looked shocked and some, what amazed. But knowing he was beaten goes out and does what he was told to do. Passing the old Ford just as it sat in the driveway. He turned and shrugged his shoulders as he looked at the tires, shaking his head. Thinking to him self, “I don't see any flat.” Once when he was young boy he could only remember seeing his mother dressed like this, but that was in pictures. He had heard rumors from his father, but the bike he knew all to well was a hobby of hers.
She liked to tinker with it and sometimes would ride it, but that was years ago. Things changed after he pasted away. She had mellowed he thought. Ma comes down the stairs in her finesses leathers. He was almost praying the neighbors would not see this as she loaded the bike with her saddle and bedroll.
Ma just turned to Richard. Sticks her left fingers in her mouth and pulled it out to test the air, turned. “Richard?” she says.
“The winds blowing to the south,” puts on her leather gloves on climbs on the bike.
“Oh Richard, before I forget. You mind setting up a bed for little Danny and call my sisters to meet me in Santaquin in about three or four hours or so in front of Judge Parkers place please? No one else mind ya and, keep it under your hat. Very import and I stress this for EJ sake and little Danny. Don't let the cat out of the bag just yet. For now at least until Grandma Stuart has had her say, is that clear?” She asked.
“Yes Ma, how bad is?” He asked.
“It's real bad son so I’ve been told,” she replied. With a final nod of her head, she put on her helmet, slings her blue scarf behind her then she jumped on the peddle bring old Harley to life. With rumbling roar as she rives the handle, with white smoke blowing out the back of the mufflers; black streaks on the road as she peeled out of the driveway. She popped a quick wheelie on the bike and off she went down the street.
Richard quickly looked around as the noise and dust settled. He could see some of the curtains and doors closing. With a smile on his face he yelled. “Gock all you want, for that's my Ma and she taming the wind today!” He would have never thought he would ever see the actual day his mother tamed the wind of yesterday.
Richard went back into the house wondering what's going to happen, but knowing he better do what his mother said. For they tricked her now, they made her real mad and the storm was coming. Richard stood alone in the kitchen thinking what in the world is he going tell her sisters? He looked up at the clock. “I better do it soon to because, she will be awaiting and she will not be in the mood.” Richard picked up the phone...
“Hello aunt Lizy this Richard,” he said.
“Ma wants you and your sister to meet her in Santaquin in about 3 hours in front of Judge Parkers place.”
“Did she say why Richard?” She asked.
“I can't go into details. She says, she will explain everything when you get there... All I can tell is this though, she’s dressed in her old leathers and she taken old Harley with her.” He said looking back at the clock on the wall.
“Did you say Old HARLRY? OH MY! Old HARLRY! You did say?”
“OOH MY! This is serious. All get Mary. Richard did she give any other instructions?”
“Then I would. OH MY! I. I just can't believe it! I better go dear the Harley.”
* * *
“Will, Robert, Pa needs you out in the barn to help finish loading pickup then you can pull the old pickup to the front of the house. Then you are to go out to the horses and feed the chickens before you leave ok?” Ma yelled down the hall.
“Ma, what about the boy?” Will asked.
“Is he still sleeping?” Ma asked as Will looked over as he finished tying on his shoes.
“Yes Ma, it looks like his doing better.”
“The medicine I gave him should work, let him sleep then we will check in on him in a little while... Anna you and Sam finish your breakfast then help me clear the table.” Ma said taking control of her house once more.
“Ok Ma,” Anna replied.
“What do want me to help you with Ma?” Julia asked.
“You dear get to help me make the list of things I want your Pa to pick up in town then we will go check on the boy, alright,” she said.
EJ awakens from his restless sleep, still heavy with fever. He heard noises all round him. Confusion is lost among the pain. He tried to move, but felt confined. Fear builds in his mind and not knowing where he is frightens him even more. He opened his eyes and finds himself in a strange room.” Where am I?” He muttered.
He can barely see, he tried to move, but every muscle is strained and his vision is blurred and little confused. Thoughts of being captured of being taken back home, he felt he must escape. With all his will power he could muster he managed to slide himself onto the floor.
“Ma did you here something?” Julie asked as she looked towards the hallway.
Ma, Julie paused. “No, must be the boys outside.” Ma said and returned to their work of gathering their list of supplies.
EJ noticed his wounds had been dressed. He looked around the room to see if by chance if Mr. Scarecrows clothing still lay around room. But not wanting to wait for the final surprise, fearing they might check on him at any moment. Thinking it will be his last. he must escape his captures.
EJ slid over to the dresser and finds a large shirt. Not the one he lost. His head filled with dizziness, the pain was agonizing. “I must at all cost escape, I can't go back. And I won't be able help little Danny if I get caught.” His mind worked feverously.
Gritting his teeth, he put his arm in the shirt and pulled it over his left shoulder. His breathing heavy and hard, fighting the throbbing from his side. EJ gritted his teeth once more as he put his right arm through the other side. He needed a moment to catch his breath as he leaned against the bedpost, wondering were his captures had him and who they are.
“I need to get out of this room and find my grandmother. She’s only one who can help me now, but to do that I must escape.” His mind says as it worked as thoughts of only escape. Opening another drawer he finds a pair of pants, “I am glad their big because I can’t bend my left knee.” He looked down. He noticed a large bandage around his thigh it’s very painful to touch. Thinking of little Danny and his grandmothers awaiting arms, he gritted his teeth, groaned and laid back on the floor.
EJ scooted himself into the pants. He rested a couple minutes more. To gather his remaining strength, the sweat poured down his face from the fever and the pain. He was so dizzy and in so much pain he wanted to scream. But knowing that would give him away. EJ covered his mouth against his arm to silent the sounds of pain and heavy breathing.
He knew he couldn’t walk or stand up strait not without help. He looked around the room to see if at least the crutch is in the room, not finding it. “Only option is for me to try, is to crawl out the door on my stomach. And find some support outside the home and make break for it, before they come back.” As EJ approached the voice grew closer than he would have liked. “I hope they can't hear me,” he stopped at the edge of the hallway and listened.
“Julie dear, how are you coming?” Ma asked.
“Just fine Ma.”
“In just a bit, I think about 10 min or so that broth should be ready and we can give it too the boy. Do mind helping me with him dear?” she asked.
“No, I would like that.”
EJ knowing his time was nearly up needed to hurry if he was going escape being captured.
“Julie?” Ma asked.