Saturday, August 1, 2009
Wordzzle 74 - Eleven is O' so lucky
It's a lucky break for you that all the details and wherewithals on this wordzzle business is available at the Raven's Nest
The 10 Word Challenge: fair warning, hormones, journalism, philanthropist, burgeoning, running the bulls, saturation, tossed in the towel, whine, indelicate details
The mini: hard labor, lurid, quick fix, sizable contributions, trumpet
In case you haven't noticed, this is an ongoing story named the "Laughlin Series". Previous episodes are available at the sidebar.
This week's Episode: California Dreaming
Thomas had given Jean fair warning to not comment on the traffic on Interstate 10. The couple had experienced varying degrees of difficulty on the oft clogged interstate into L.A. on previous occasions and McCool preferred that Jean not tempt the fates. As it turned out they didn't get into the mess of L.A. freeway traffic till Riverside. At that point the mass of elevated figure eights, exits and entrances onto and off of other freeways hit its saturation point. Another more inpatient person would have tossed in the towel and took a surface street towards downtown L.A., but Thomas knew better.
The one thing he'd learned in his years in law enforcement was that big cities, (all big cities) have districts and neighborhoods you don't go into unless you know what you're doing. He was pretty sure that beyond finding their hotel and going to the opening at the Getty, they were clueless. So; no cutting through the hood in search of a shortcut. What the unwary traveler might think of as a quick fix could turn out to a very bad idea. The constant down shifting and up shifting might be construed by some as hard labor, but the wary investigator took it all in stride and refused to whine about the conditions.
Instead, he engaged Jean in conversation concerning the case. The lurid facts of the murders and the indelicate details of the massive frauds committed had allowed the team to fix on a suspect. Indeed it was clear to all that Constance/Connie was the killer. There was ample evidence showing her involvement in the Orange county real estate scam as well. What no one had been able to find out was the new identity and whereabouts of the now law enforcement proclaimed "Queen of Disguise". "Do you suppose she'll ever be found now?" Jean asked. "It all depends" McCool responded. "If she has gone to some country that does not extradite to the U.S. we won't be able to apprehend her even if we find her." "She's been more than one step ahead of us for a long time." "It would be stupid or arrogant to not disappear" he finished.
"What do you think the Prince can add to our knowledge of her?" Jean continued. "I'm not sure, but just meeting him ought to be worth the trip" Thomas answered. The pair went on to discuss the Prince's background. It was rumored he was quite the philanthropist and had made sizeable contributions to the Getty prior to the real estate collapse. Still, the prince had attempted to maintain a low profile, in spite of the need for good press on the Saudis after the recent oil price manipulation and gouging. It seemed it just wasn't in the Prince to trumpet his charitable giving. What was really interesting in Thomas's opinion was the amount of charitable work Prince Akim had done in ""the Kingdom." It appeared that both the Prince and Princess were heavily involved with the migrant workers, their living conditions, wages and health care. This alone made the Prince the most progressive member of the royal family and something of an outcast or black sheep.
"Now how did you find that out?" Jean quizzed Thomas. "Well, I had Paul pull the FBI file and give me the highlights" he answered. "You'll be interested to know he only has one wife and they have grandkids." "Kind of old for a prince isn't he" she laughed. "It's a huge family with burgeoning responsibilities and fortunes" McCool said seriously. "The prince is one of 22 and if you include the king’s extended family it gets into the hundreds."
Thomas went on to explain that the King, the prince's uncle, was old but had brothers and sons that were in line for the crown when he died. The Prince would be a prince all his life. When the young Akim went to Oxford he took a summer in Europe where he experienced running with the bulls at Pamplona, the beauty of the Greek Islands and its inhabitants and anything else that pleased him. "From the summary that Paul gave me it seems the young Prince might have let hormones run wild for a couple of summers" McCool continued. The result was a rash of stories in the London rags (those standards of journalism) that put the prince in a very bad light indeed.
By this time they'd made it onto the 405 and found their exit for the Holiday Inn Express. Thomas was pretty sure that the Prince and Princess would not be occupying any rooms in this inn. No doubt the Saudis had a secure estate in the Hollywood Hills for family members.
Charlotte boarded her Gulfstream in Manaus and they lifted off for L.A. She would get into town a few hours before the opening, make an appearance, glad-hand the Prince and prepare for Monday's contract signing. It wouldn't be long before her plan bore fruit. If all went well she would be one of the ten wealthiest people in the world and the wealthiest woman. She was sorry to have missed her opportunity to find Jane, but that would come soon enough. After all, how could one simple nurse from South Dakota escape detection from the richest woman in the world?