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  1. Last week
  2. Yeah, the rain. Well, it's part and parcel. LA, well you know that old time song, "It Never Rain In Southern California?'Not exactly true, but certainly not like it is here, and so we are not as lush and green as this is." He reported. we get some, not enough, but some. " He half chuckled and finished his coffee that was now a little less than lukewarm. He looked at her a moment, "so what do you gather from this mess? Anything?" Granted he had seen some pretty brutal stuff on the streets of Los Angeles, but this was beyond any of that. The gangs could be cruel, savage and wanton, this certainly had all the traits of a psychopath.
  3. "Well maybe the simplest explanation would be the best. We just tell that we've worked with each other in the past and leave it at that." Mark half-smiled, "I know that my brother has questions about what I did in the past but thankfully he isn't pushing me to tell him. I expect your sons are the same." @Stormwolfe
  4. Akela laughed and straightened up, "The right question on Kodiak is do you think it won't rain?" Still, she trained a practiced eye on the sky, "Not for a while yet. We will be off the water before it cuts loose." She picked up her case, "I love it here, but it is a far cry from where I grew up." @Flip
  5. Liam chuckled as he mulled over the best approach. He had never outright told his children that he lived something of a double life. However, he felt sure they had guessed that he was more than a mild-mannered multi-billionaire. They had been respectful of his privacy and never challenged it. It had worked both ways. He knew that Lucian had worked assignments for the USMS that he disliked, especially while in the Witness Protection Service. Liam also never inquired about J.D.'s work which he never discussed. He had also never questioned Reagan about her marriage. As a father, he had been concerned for all of them. Liam could have called on his contacts to get him whatever information he needed. That would have irrevocably damaged the trust that held his family close to one another no matter how globally distant they were. "I canna outright lie to them. At the same time, I willna risk telling the boys and Reagan more than you want to be known. Leaves us in a bit of a quandary," Liam said to his friend. "There is the option of me coming clean, and we tell them that we've crossed paths over the years. Let them believe you're a former spook of some kind." @JulieS
  6. "I understand about not being able to tell your family about what you do. " A look of sadness appeared on Mark's face, "My parents went to their grave not knowing what I was doing. Except for the occasional email and ones for birthdays and Christmas, I didn't have much contact with them. The last time I saw them was about six months before the accident and then it was only a brief stopover on my way to another assignment. As far as they knew I worked for some big international firm as a troubleshooter. In a sense that was true, but not in the way they thought it was. Even my brother, Dave thinks I worked for some sort of big financial group. I haven't bothered to correct him and I don't know if I ever will." For all the years, he had known Liam, Mark knew that the man was a good listener. In some ways, they were both someone the other could talk about the pressures of what they did. On the few occasions, Liam had confided him, Mark had been able to give the man the support and understanding he needed. However, the time of reflection was over and they needed to get to the business at hand. After taking a deep breath, he continued, "Now about that story. It will have to be a good one as I don't think your sons will be that easily fooled with the old you were a friend of my father's line." @Stormwolfe
  7. Stephanie blinked and set down the coke, "You do?" After hearing that glorious description, she frowned, "Holy shit. I'm not some pioneer chick. I like the current century just fine, no interest in the Middle Ages. " "Maybe I should just demand they put me up in a luxury hotel? That's more my speed. I'd demand they let me stay here but Iike I said.......I don't want to bring any more trouble down on you. " "But I'll be damned if I'm gonna park my sweet little ass in some primitive dump," she huffed.
  8. "Ohhh...yeah, I know that place." Well, no, Kat didn't, but why pass up a chance for some teasing? "Yeah, no running water, generator for electricity, outhouse...and no internet! Good luck out there. But I do think you'll be pretty safe, no one would think of looking for you there, it's nearly uninhabitable." She munched on a piece of pizza. "Good luck. I'll give you a couple extra blankets in case the generator doesn't work!" @Wayfarer
  9. Earlier
  10. "I've done a little work with Lucian on Storm Shelter cases. He is usually very careful about not crossing legal boundaries. However, when he takes on a client, their safety and needs come first with him." “Understandable. One can’t put the client at risk, poor business practice,” Dryer responded. To him, none of the MacLeods sound like poor business people.” Rick surmised, not really knowing much about the family other than the usual public knowledge things, and of course the legal record of Lucians time with the Marshals service. She sighed and began packing up her case. Indicating the launch that had brought her to the scene, Akela asked, "Want a ride back? Beats the rubber boat you came out in." She grinned and winked. He took a swallow of his coffee and smiled at the offer.”Missus Dryer raised no fools. I’ll take that ride and anything beats that rubber boat. At least the driver had the common sense to head back til I called for him." He scanned the dark sky with a crack of light in the east. "Think it'll rain? Tag @Stormwolfe
  11. "We have one more local resource," Liam said, a smile crossing his features, "providing you are still a hand with the ladies. Akela Noelani. She is a special agent with the Coast Guard Investigative Service, senior forensic specialist. I know she has assisted Lucian when Storm Shelter has taken on private investigative cases." He also knew that Lucian had not asked anything of her that was strictly illegal. Liam knew the woman from her after hours work helping out on his or Lucian's tour boats. "Lucian also has one of those I might know a guy networks," Liam added almost as an after-thought. "We also need a backstory that covers you stopping in to see me on a regular basis once I'm out of this place." He tilted his head and studied Mark, "Thing is, I don't want to outright lie to Naomi or the kids. I never have...I've just not told them everything." @JulieS
  12. Akela nodded her understanding. She did not know anyone on Kodiak that could be considered a confidante of Liam's other than his wife. The man was not reclusive, but he was very reserved about his private life and he had the finances to make sure it stayed that way. "I've done a little work with Lucian on Storm Shelter cases. He is usually very careful about not crossing legal boundaries. However, when he takes on a client, their safety and needs come first with him." She watched as the ME got the body situated in his launch. He left one of his assistants with Akela's forensic team and headed back to port. Time was of the essence when it came to processing the body. Akela was not wild about having to go to autopsy but she would have to stop by to pick up any forensic evidence. She sighed and began packing up her case. Indicating the launch that had brought her to the scene, Akela asked, "Want a ride back? Beats the rubber boat you came out in." She grinned and winked. @Flip
  13. "Sorry..." Kat replied, "Are they all right? Do they need a place to stay?" Her grin widened. "I have plenty of tents for over night trail rides, and there's the barn...top-notch accommodations, and a shotgun...Uncle Mason won't get here." "None of it was your fault, nothing for you to be sorry for. But it is mine. It was my brilliant idea to bring them along on my little trip. They don't have any money so I offered to pay for everything. I should have thought it out better and realized that my uncle might lash out at them too," Steph confessed, she genuinely felt rotten about it. "But thanks for the offer, they're gone though. Lawyer lady bought them plane tickets to go back home - where they belong. The war is between me and my uncle," she answered Kat. "You won't ever see my uncle show up, he never does anything himself. He sends people to do his dirty work. Lawyers, thugs...he's got 'em all. Speaking of which, if a big dude with a Russian accent shows up here, do not let him in. He is my uncle's main thug and he is as mean as they come. He beat up Louis. He killed my dog. And I'm pretty sure he has killed people too. Shit, I might well have dragged you into this mess now too....not intentionally, but my two rescuers by bringing me here." Kat now called out that lunch was on as she stood by the door. "I'd love to stay here, you got a great place but I would only make it unsafe for you. And Lucian and his brother, Attila the Hun, want to take me to some hideaway on another island I guess. We'll see if I can stand it there," Stephanie shrugged. @Bongo
  14. “I was told your people were great to work with. Not duplicating work is always a plus, and the fact we get what we need without the long waits from the State labs. Makes a difference.” He said appreciative. “I’ve had the occasion to cross paths with Reagan McLeod, straight forward, no BS, and that’s a good thing. Lucian, well, I like him. Seems like he has info I like to have, but I suppose time will tell, and Liam? Well, we’ll see what happens.” He looked to the body. “Poor man, bet he thought he’d be set for life.” Rick knew that he'd have to have the McLeod's co-operation to get anywhere with either case. And, maybe Liam would be the key, or just another block in the way of solving these murders. Tag @Stormwolfe
  15. "I have no doubt that there is." Mark smiled, "They are your sons after all." Mark nodded, "Yes Mason Stroud can be a tough man to stop. The organisation had a couple of run-ins with him or to be more precise, activities he was backing. Thankfully, they were able to ruin his plans on both occassions. If he wants his niece gone bad enough, he will do anything to make sure it happens." @Stormwolfe
  16. "Nothing for your guys, Lieutenant," Akela answered. "My team will bag and tag everything. Once we've gotten forensics off it, we'll put non-perishables in your evidence lock-up." CGIS had a good working relationship with the Kodiak Police Department. It suited both organizations since it meant cost breaks on both sides. On top of that, KPD did not have to try to field the expense of a full forensics lab or wait, sometime for weeks, for evidence to be processed at the state-run labs. It was a win-win. "The MacLeods are generally well-thought of around here," Akela added. She knew Lucian fairly well and had met Liam, Naomi and Reagan on a number of occasions. She had not met J.D. yet, but had to assume he had been well-raised just like Lucian and Reagan. "I know that won't guarantee Liam's cooperation." Tags @Flip
  17. Lucian heard Kat's summons from where he stood near the barn with J.D. They had walked the immediate perimeter, making sure that everything was secure. That was the downside of small-town life. The rumor mill worked faster than any newspaper. Word would already be out about the MacLeods being detained along with a young lady not-local to Kodiak. Going from the premise that what Stephanie said was true, that information would get back to her uncle and his minions in no time at all. Lucian and J.D. really had no reason not to believe her after seeing the state that Louis was in, not to mention the preliminary information J.D. had gotten on the uncle's head of security / enforcer. He glanced at his brother as they turned to walk toward the house, "We need more information on Vitaly Lysenko. We also need to make sure that Liam is alright and look into why he and Mother were shot." J.D. shrugged a bit. "I can ask some more questions, but with him working in the private sector it limits some of my lines of information..." J.D. walked along for a bit before he spoke again, "...is there anyone else we can ask about how he ended up shot? I'm not saying he's lying, but he could definitely be holding back on what he knows." Lucian considered J.D.'s question regarding who might know something about Liam's private affairs. It occurred to him that he really did not know very much about his father's life. He shook his head, "I cannot think of anyone we can ask other than Mother." His tone of voice made it clear that he would rather not pursue that course of action. "However, I might know someone that can help us on the Lysenko front. There is a private investigator that recently moved to Kodiak. I have not had a need to contract out investigative work lately. We can see if Mark Carson is available and if he will take on the job." J.D. glanced over as they walked. "Who is Mark Carson? That doesn't ring any bells for me." "He and his brother, David, moved here last year. Brother works in IT and Mark Carson opened a private investigation and security business. I have been meaning to talk to him because I do use independent contractors for some of Storm Shelter's jobs, especially if they involve travel. I cannot stay away for long because of the bar and charters," Lucian explained quietly. "Depending on what Liam has landed us in the middle of, we might need help. And I know a guy...or rather...a girl that can help out with some things. She is with CGIS." "CGIS? Will that end up causing problems for us down the road? We don't really need LEO's looking over our shoulders any more than they already will be..." J.D. had his hands tucked into his pockets as they strolled along. Tags
  18. "Aye, lad. This is my home and I didna come here to hide," Liam stated adamantly. In fact, he still did the same job that he used to do for some large organizations that preferred to remain anonymous. Liam ran survival training camps for people that wanted to know how get out alive if they ever found themselves stranded in the wilderness. It was a practical how-to sort of course. At the end, the trainees would be dumped somewhere on Kodiak and told to get back to civilization. It was all carefully monitored, of course. "I have a few contacts I'll be getting in touch with soon," Liam admitted. There were a few people he could still trust. He also did not want to ostensibly tread on the toes of local law enforcement. "I will recommend that Lucian consider contracting with your agency. Of course, there's more under the hood than he and J.D. show to the public." Lucian had been a United States Marshal and during that time he had brought in some of the most dangerous criminals ever known. He had worked with Interpol and other international law enforcement organizations. He had taken on extreme training and, although he would only use it as a last resort, was a world class sharp shooter. J.D. had a long and distinguished military career and had most recently been working with a task force that dealt with the ultimate dangers...rogue military personnel that snapped and went to work for the wrong side. On top of all that, Liam had put all three of his children through his survival training. Even Reagan could bring herself out of the wilderness despite all odds being against her. Liam was proud of all three of them. They would get the job done, no matter what. If he could provide them with some additional help and leverage, he was glad to do it. "On top of the shooting, there is the Stroud girl's situation," Liam said. "I am expecting an update, but so far, have heard nothing from the boys. Reagan called just long enough to say that everything was in hand," Liam added, his voice dropping to a mutter, "whatever that means." Tags @JulieS
  19. "I know about Lucian and Storm Shelter. It's hard not to in a town this big," Mark smiled. "I suppose I've done nothing to warrant any attention from him. He leaned forward a little, "In a way I do like being in something that doesn't get me noticed. It's what I've been doing all these years. But there are times where I will and do come out in the open. If Lucian wants my help in solving this then I will be happy to oblige." Leaning back in the chair, he continued, "From what I can gather this isn't just some ordinary, random shooting. If they wanted to kill you they've had plenty of opportunities to do so. You're not exactly keeping a low profile here by running a tour company and being a prominent town member. More than likely, it was to send you a message. From who, I don't know. I've sent out feelers to my former colleagues to see if they've heard anything. You know, it's times like this that being part of an international network comes in handy." @Stormwolfe
  20. "Coke! I'll take a coke please!" "Got it!" She poured soda over ice and set it out on the table, then poured herself some iced tea. "Ugh, I can't stomach cold pizza..........or warmed over pizza...........it's gotta be fresh and hot or it's not pizza," "More for the rest of us!" Kat grinned, knowing that not everyone liked cold pizza, and glad that the girl was happy with salad...otherwise, it was peanut-butter and honey, there wasn't time to cater to whims. She could put more effort into dinner. Grabbing another slice of cold pizza, she continued with making sure there were plenty of paper plates, cups and ice for everyone, as well as a few bottles of HooDoo Stout Ale. Thanks for everything. This is a cool place. And I'm sorry you got dragged into this mess but most of that was the fault of my .............employees. " "I don't mind." She shrugged, then grinned. "Well, kind of I do, but it's barely an inconvenience, and it helped to keep you safe." She would have hated for anything to have happened to Steph, and wouldn't have wanted her anywhere else. "I know you didn't go into the motel room back there but one of my uncle's thugs really beat up my friend Louis. He threatened both of them. And little Ava is like the nicest mousiest girl you'd ever meet. She is the exact opposite of me. I hate that almost everyone I know gets sucked into this death struggle with my Unky Mason. It's bullshit." "Sorry..." It sucked that her uncle made her feel guilty by dragging her friends into this. "Are they all right? Do they need a place to stay?" Her grin widened. "I have plenty of tents for over night trail rides, and there's the barn...top-notch accommodations, and a shotgun...Uncle Mason won't get here." She headed for the front door and called out, "Lunch is on!" With her 'helpers' fed, they would work more efficiently, and soon the place would be in order.
  21. Rick smiled wryly, "Murder's murder. No two ways about it. But you're right about this one, we've zero to go on but the stiff, excuse me, the body. " He caught his faux pas, too much time on the streets of LA. "We'll see what the lab turns up, if anything, and I'll have a chat with Mister Liam MacCloud. Doubt we'll get anywhere with him, but hey, he could surprise us." He added. as his coffee arrived. He nodded to the seaman, "Thanks. So, what's left to do here, anything?" Tag @Stormwolfe
  22. "Not yet," the ME answered. "Been in the water too long for our fingerprint scanners to work and no ID on him. We'll have to get him back to base before I can give either of you any more information." Jonas Chamberlain rose to his feet. "Wrap him up for transport. Be kind." Akela smiled slightly despite the situation. Jonas always took the dead to heart and demanded respect for his patients. He was also one of the most competent medical examiners that she had ever worked with. Chamberlain was so intuitive when it came to his work, he practically solved some of the cases before forensics finished their work. Of course, this was also the most distressing part of her job. Until the reports came in from Jonas and his people, as well as various samples to be tested and analyzed, Akela was in waiting mode. "Even if the man is...or was...our shooter," Akela said to Rick, "he did not deserve to die like that. Perhaps Liam MacLeod can shed more light on what is going on. I don't envy you the job of trying to get to the bottom of all this." @Flip
  23. Liam settled back against his pillows and reached out to tap the button on the inside of the bed's safety rail that raised the head higher. He laid both his iPad and glasses on the bedside stand before returning his dark-eyed gaze on Mark Carson. His expression softened from gruff old bear to almost fatherly or, in his case, grandfatherly kindness. He also mentally reviewed the various irons that he had in various fires. Kodiak Island was the second-largest island in the United States and the eightieth largest in the world. Still, it was a remote island and sparsely populated. Unless you were the kind of person that buried your head in the sand, you heard things. Liam was known around the island and had close friends from all walks of life. He was also known around the world for his business acumen, for being scrupulous in his dealings, fair in all things, kind to those in need, and his billions of dollars. Aidan O'Quinn, Kodiak's Chief of Police, had already been in touch about his sons' brush with the law. Liam would have words with them later for how that operation had come off. Yet, they were handling it and taking care of Stephanie Stroud. Liam's instincts told him that she was in danger. No good could come of Mason Stroud wanting his niece located. That was why he had told the boys not to contact the man's representative when they found her. He had told them to take her someplace safe and find out from her how much danger she might be in. Liam's orders had not included having her forcibly removed from a public place. Lucian and J.D. could handle the situation. They were both more than competent and at the top of their game professionally. There had to be something else going on that had prompted the ruckus at the Rave. Unfortunately, it might bring the attention of Björn's criminal operation onto them. That would be dealt with in due time. "Private investigations and security, hmmm? Surprised you have not met Lucian yet. His company, Storm Shelter, is in the same line of work," Liam paused briefly and met Mark's eyes directly, "Nothing will stop my sons from looking into this shooting. Right now, I've distracted the lads with another job I'd been asked to do. This means that I will have to tell them a bit more than I've wanted to about my...extracurricular activities. They and I will need help with both situations." Liam wanted to see how much Mark knew before he continued. He also needed to see if the younger man would even consider working in concert with his sons. @JulieS
  24. "Coke! I'll take a coke please!" Stephanie called from upstairs as she grabbed her few things that she had left behind. Her top (and cell phone) were still back at that rave place where she got kidnapped...wait....rescued. She would have to get another phone, the top wasn't important. Soon enough she was back down to join Kat in her kitchen. "Ugh, I can't stomach cold pizza..........or warmed over pizza...........it's gotta be fresh and hot or it's not pizza," she made a face at the pizza but sat down for a salad. She ate a lot of those so she could keep that toned tummy of hers. Sipping the coke between bites of salad she looked over to Kat, "Thanks for everything. This is a cool place. And I'm sorry you got dragged into this mess but most of that was the fault of my .............employees. " "I know you didn't go into the motel room back there but one of my uncle's thugs really beat up my friend Louis. He threatened both of them. And little Ava is like the nicest mousiest girl you'd ever meet. She is the exact opposite of me. I hate that almost everyone I know gets sucked into this death struggle with my Unky Mason. It's bullshit." Tags @Bongo
  25. "That's all right, I can get it." Kat shrugged as she started to rummage through the fridge, finding some leftover pizza and pre-mix salad makings that she set out on the table. Not gourmet, but filling and easy, and Steph could nuke her pizza if she wanted it warm. "I have iced tea and Coke," she called, "or water..." She grabbed a piece of the pizza to munch on as she set out plates and cups, then dished some of the salad onto a plate for herself. The pizza would be enough, but the salad was 'healthy', and she was trying to behave. She'd scarf it down quickly and be on her way, so she might have some free time in the evening to go for a ride. @Wayfarer
  26. Mark nodded. "It does but I'm getting used to it. I've got my kid brother to keep an eye on now that my parents are gone." Pausing for a moment, he gazed at the old man. For someone who had just been shot and despite his age, he looked like he was recovering quite well. No doubt he would be up and about within the week unless his wife had something to say about it. Liam was not the type to let the grass grow under his feet. "I've taken up some private investigation and security work. It's the closest thing I can get to what I used to do that won't raise any suspicions. It keeps me busy but telling you what I've been up to is not what I came here for. The reason why I came was because you're a valued friend and I wanted to see how you were doing. I also want to offer my services...if you ever need them." @Stormwolfe
  27. "Ah yes, Reagan MacLeod dealt with her on the kidnapping fiasco. She's CEO material if I ever saw it." Rick recalled. "This, well this looks almost like revenge of some sort. More than just to silence someone. Hell, one round would accomplish that." The condition of the body bespoke of a disturbed individual either hired or working on their own to kill this man. But if it were a simple case of murder and not this disembowelment they were looking at, then why was the rifle found with the body? Was this in fact the shooter, or someone made to look like the shooter? "You have an ID on this guy yet?" Rick asked, hoping the ME had found something. TAG @Stormwolfe
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About Storm Shelter

Storm Shelter brings crime drama and not quite soapy soap-opera to the online written RPG world. Set in one of America's last frontiers, the residents of Kodiak Island and Storm Shelter Air & Rescue encounter bad guys and storm gales in equal measure. The RPG offers guided site-wide plots and open character driven stories..

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