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The Sixth Man – Episode 115 (Final Episode)

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Well my friends and readers this is the end. I hope you enjoyed The Sixth Man. Feel free to send any comments you may have.

I’m taking a little break. There are several projects that need some dire attention. I have started my next novel. It’s entitled The Middle of Nowhere. If you receive notices by email keep on the watch.

The Fisherman

I’m looking for Charles Abbot,” a voice said.

There’s nobody here by that name,” Berta said.

Somebody said he was here.”

Perhaps you might try the house just down the street,” Berta said.

I’m certain this is the house.”

What do they want?” Papa said moving toward the door.

Somebody named Charles Abbot,” Berta said.

That’s me,” Andre said and quickly sprung from his chair and made long steps to the front door.

Berta opened the door wider.

Drake!” Andre said. “Everybody it’s my son. Come in.” Andre waved him in.

They hugged.

Drake,” Andre said. “This is our family. I have found my family; our family. These are our family.”

What are you doing here?” Andre said.

We got to worrying about you,” Drake said. “Missy and I came.”

Missy is here!” Andre said and turned to everyone. “My daughter is here!”

Where is she?” Andre said.

She’s in the car,” Drake said. He went to the door and waved at the car.

Dad,” Drake said. “Lynn is here too. We called her. She was worried and we met in Toronto.”

My other daughter is here too!” Andre said.

There’s someone else too,” Drake said a nodded toward the door.

Marti appeared slowly in the doorway.

Marti,” Andre said. “You all came.”

We were all so worried,” Marti said. “Now my daughter will know her family.”

Andre moved resolutely toward Marti. “I will never allow you out of my life again.”

And I will never let you,” Marti said. “Let me meet your family.”

Our family,” Andre said.

That was pretty much it. Andre Benoit Clement found his way home. That is not the complete end to the story. It ended well.

Andre sold his dealerships and other business interest to his employees. He remained and advisor, but after learning of his background his heart was no longer in business, cars, sales, investments, or Atlanta. His heart had always been in Burin; he just never knew it. It was always there, he was unable to recognize what the longing was that pulled him away at times.

Drake and Missy made some life altering decisions also. Drake quit the FBI and was able to qualify for a licenses to practice law in Newfoundland. It happened there was a need for a lawyer familiar with U. S. law. Missy was welcomed as a licensed physician in Burin and opened a clinic. All clinics need employees; that’s where Marti’s experience as a nurse figured in. Lynn was also employed by the clinic.

As you may have already speculated Andre and Marti married.

Andre entered the fishing business with his father and brothers. Marti became the fisherman’s wife.

 

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The Sixth Man – Episode 113

thMFH8OZ85Meeting Mama and Papa

It was not a long walk, less than a quarter of a mile. Not much was said, but much was thought.

They arrived at the door and Rene walked in with Andre behind him.

Mama! Papa!” Rene called out. “I have a visitor to see you.”

We’ll be right there,” Mama said.

Andre nervously looked around the living room. It was warm and comfortable. Knickknacks lined shelves. The furniture was leather and the floor a was beige carpeted. It was a seaman’s home. Pictures hung on the wall. The oldest was of a small boy dressed like a fisherman.

That is you,” Rene said.

Andre heard someone in the other room making there way towards them. Mama walked through the opening from the dinning room into the living room. She wore a floured house dress. Her hair was laid in long grey strands. Her face was small and had a kindly smile.

Hello,” she said to Andre and turned to Rene. “You should have told me you were bringing somebody by, we could have had something ready. Why not introduce us.”

I’ll wait till Papa comes,” Rene said.

Mama stood still and looked at Andre curiously.

Papa was heard coming through the dinning room. Mama moved out of the doorway to allow him into the living room. Papa wore coveralls and a red flannel shirt. His hands were large and rugged. His face was wind worn and tanned. Papa had a look on his face as if he walked in on the middle of a conversation. He glanced at Rene and Mama after a long look at Andre.

Who is our visitor?” Papa said.

Rene nodded at Andre. “Go ahead.”

I’m Andre Benoit Clement, your son,” Andre said.

Yes!!!” Mama cried out. “I know my son. That is him.”

They embraced and cried.

Papa slowly moved to a chair and sat. Mama took Andre by the hand and led him to Papa.

Andre kneeled down on one knee. “Papa,” he said with tears. “I have come home.”

Papa through his arms around Andre’s shoulders and pulled him close and they sobbed uncontrollably.

After a few minutes Andre sat on the floor. “Tell me what happened.”

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The Sixth Man – Episode 112

thQRRRUJ1BAndre and Little Bo

Two rugged men in working cloths quickly exited a pickup truck, hurried through the back door, and into the kitchen. Andres stood. The two men slowly moved toward Andre. Andre stood. They looked at Andre suspiciously.

The older looking of the two stretched out his arm for a handshake. “My name is Rene Clement.”

Andre shook his hand.

The other reached out. “I am Rene’s brother, Claude Clement and your name?”

Andre Benoit Clement,” Andre said proudly.

How can this be?” Rene said.

That’s why I’m here,” Andre said. “In the last year all I’ve done is try to find out who I am and where I came from. It has all led to here.”

But, how did you find your way to this place?” Claude said.

Andre reached out to Rene. He lifted the chain from his neck. Andre held the medallion in his fingers. “You were three years old when Papa put this around your neck. I was there. It has your initials and the coordinates of Burin. I don’t remember it, but Papa told me about it; he told all the family about it. It is a family story. He said as long as there was hope he would tell the story. The he stopped telling it one day; he said he lost hope.”

Rene reached and held Andre’s medallion. “You are my big brother.”

They embraced and Claude joined them immediately. There was a wailing for lost years and jubilant cries for the impossible joy.

Sit,” Berta said, “Everyone sit. I’ll get coffee.”

They all sat around the table.

We must come up with a way to break this joyous news to Papa and Mama,” Berta said.

We must get everyone here except Papa and Mama,” Danni said. “We let our husbands, wives, and children know.”

And then we all go over to Papa’s and Mama’s,” Claude said.

I can’t think of no other way,” Rene said. “Andre is here and what else can we do?”

Perhaps we can ask the oldest in the family,” Berta said. “What do you think is best?”

I think it would be good to meet your husbands, wives, and children first,” Andre said, “but if you please, I’d like to meet with my Papa and Mama alone at first.”

He is the oldest,” Rene said. “He is wise. That’s what we should do.”

I’m calling everyone in my family now,” Danni said.

Berta, Rene, and Claude called their families. Everything came to Danni’s home except Papa and Mama. For the rest of the afternoon Andre became acquainted with his new found and long lost family. He related to them his quest to find them as well as other things about his life.

It is quite strange,” Andre said after relating many things, “I look around this room and I see people who look like me. I’ve never had that before. I see not only physical resemblances, but smiles and gestures I’ve had all my life and never knew from where they came. I remember fragments of things; boats, my room, old boots, fishing gear – did Mama play piano?”

There was a collective “Yes.”

I remember,” Andre said. “And father a guitar.”

Another collective “Yes.”

Andre stood. “Little Bo,” Andre said to Rene.

You were the only one to call me that,” Rene said.

Let’s go Little Bo,” Andre said. “It is time. Take my hand and we will walk to Papa and Mama’s together.”

Hand in hand Andre and Rene walked up the incline and around the curve in the road to Papa’s and Mama’s

 

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The Sixth Man – Episode 111

Andre, Finally

You are our brother,” Berta said, “and Rene and Claude are your brothers.”

Come in, come in,” Danni grabbed Charles arm and pulled him up the steps to the house and led him into the kitchen.

Berta followed shoving Charles.

They entered the back door and he was quickly ushered through an enclosed porch and into the kitchen.

Sit,” Berta said to Charles and pulled out a chair from the table for him. “Danni, make some coffee.”

Don’t order me around in my house,” Danni said. “I want to look at him. You make the coffee.”

This is your house,” Berta said

If you just tell me where the coffee is I can make it,” Charles said.

They chuckled embarrassingly and bumped into one another as they dashed to the cupboard.

I’ll make it,” Berta said. You’re coffee is always too weak. You call the boys.”.

Danni nervously dialed a wall phone. “Rene, get Claude and come to my house right now. I don’t care if you are taking a crap. Squeeze it off and get her right away and bring Claude with you… I can’t explain, just get here now.”

No one can talk to the boys like Danni,” Berta said. “She gets results.”

Charles smiled, “But her coffee’s not so good.”

Right,” Berta said.

Danni hung up. She looked at Charles, her face twisted into tears.

I could really use the bathroom,” Charles said.

Danni and Berta stood motionless in sort of an admiring gaze with no words spoken, but hearts obviously full of joy.

A bathroom,” Charles reminded.

Danni shook herself from a trance-like state and pointed, “First door down the hallway.”

Charles returned to the kitchen. “How many brothers and sisters do I have?”

We are your sisters,” Danni said, “and your two brothers will be coming down the road in a red pickup truck in a couple of minutes.”

Are our mother and father still living?” Charles said.

Yes,” Berta smiled eagerly.

May I sit again,” Charles said.

Yes,” Danni said. “Are you hungry?”

No,” Charles said.

I have plenty of food,” Danni said and rushed to the refrigerator.

Coffee will be fine,” Charles said.

It is for you brothers,” Berta said. “They are always hungry.”

Will it be possible for me to meet my mother and father?” Charles said.

Oh yes,” Berta said, “but we just can’t walk in on them.”

Are they frail?” Charles said.

Frail!” Danni said, “ Papa still fishes and Mama goes with him sometimes.”

Where, oh where have you been my big brother,” Berta said. “I used to dream of what kind of man you would be, but now here you are and now I know. You are strong and handsome. Do you have children and a wife?”

I have children,” Charles said.

Tell us about them, Andre,” Danni said.

First of all,” Charles said. “I don’t go by the name Andre, it is Charles, Charles Abbot.”

It is Andre,” Danni said. “From now on that is your name. I don’t care what you are my big brother, Andre!”

Andre, it is,” Andre said, “and I can’t tell you how proud I am to finally know who I am and what my given name is, Andre Benoit, Clement.”

The children,” Berta said, “Your children.”

I have recently found out I have a daughter,” Andre said. “Her name is Lynn.”

Danni interrupted, “Oh my god, a playboy Casanova.”

No,” Andre said. “It’s a long story.”

Thank god,” Danni said. “Such news would have put Mama in the grave.”

And Papa would fall in right after her,” Berta said.

I have a son, Drake and another daughter, Melissa, who we call Missy,” Andre said.

And you wife?” Danni said.

I’m divorced from my only wife,” Andre said.

We should be careful how we break that to Mama,” Danni said.

Well she’s in prison,” Andre said.

Oh, no,” Berta said, “are you a criminal and she took the rap for you?”

Andre smiled. “It’s complicated and I have a very long story tell.”

If it involves a lot of sex don’t tell Mama,” Berta said.

Danni craned her neck and looked out the kitchen window. “Here come the boys.”

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The Sixth Man – Episode 110

th13Y7UII5A B C

My name is Charles,” Charles said. “Why do you ask?”

The people who live in that house lost a child, their oldest, many years ago,” she said and added sternly. “They don’t need to be reminded of it.”

His name was Andre?” Charles said and his heart began to beat heavily and he found it difficult to gain a breath.

Yes,” she said.

What was his full name?” Charles said. His chin quivered.

Her lips quivered. “Andre Benoit Clement.”

Charles nervously removed the necklace and handed it to the woman.

It has the initials A B C on it,” Charles said.

She looked at it. She sniffed. “Where did you get this?”

It has been with me as long as I can remember,” Charles said.

Oh my god!!!” she cried out and embraced Charles. “Andre, Andre, it is you!”

She let go and hollered to the house Charles had just visited, “It is Andre!!! He has returned!!! He is here!!!”

The woman from the first house came running. “Leave her alone!!! Has he hurt you!”

No, Berta, no,” she said. “This is Andre!!! This is Andre!!!”

Our brother! Our brother!” Berta said. “How do you know, Danni?’

He has the medallion,” Danni said in tears. “And like you said, he looks like Marcel.”

Quick we must call Rene and Xavier,” Berta said.

Charles was near panic and euphoria and yet stood in the middle of hysteria which he could not grasp. “What is going on?”

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The Sixth Man – Episode 108

Manfred's-BurinHway-850[1]The Road To Burin

The plane started it’s approach and Charles felt an excitement in his chest, but his eyes were heavy. He had experienced this many times before; working hard and late on a project for his business, being driven by adrenalin and the desire to succeed. This was a situation he could not force or maneuver. It was beyond his control. He would find a hotel, rest, and rent a car. Tomorrow he would be in Burin.

Charles was up with the sun and on the road. He drove while sipping a Tim Horton’s coffee and pulling on a bagel.

Newfoundland was rugged and green. Small sloughs sprinkled the landscape along the Trans Canada Highway. Only a half hour from the airport Charles felt he was in complete wilderness. No homes were visible from the highway. The only life was on the highway.

Charles put his life on hold. He had no thoughts of the future. He did not think about the business, investments, or any sort of plans. First he must put Burin behind him whether there was something there or not.

His mind wondered. ‘If the medallion is a coordinate that leads me to Burin, how did this all come about? Are there people there who gave me away? Was I an illegitimate child, an inconvenience and given away? Am I a secret lovechild? Or perhaps this is all nothing.’

He speculated on each question and realized that sometime, most of the time, things are seldom driven by reason and the plausible. It is often the thing not thought and unexplored. Nothing in his life to this point had followed a straight line of reason. His life was made up of a strange sort of unexplained and unforeseen episodes. ‘Lives have beginnings, middles, and ends; my life has been a series of middles. It has been as if I was cast for a play that had already started and asked to create a role from nothing.’

And I haven’t done so bad,” Charles smiled.

Before turning southwest on to Highway 210 and he stopped for another coffee. Not knowing where the next gas station might be he filled the tank. He was soon on the Burin Peninsula called by locals “the boot.”

There was a serene and unaffected majesty to the land. It was a land that was in the way of getting to the continent and merely passed over or sailed around. Charles thought of it as a land settled by people who did not have the energy or adventure to go further. It was a land without passion.

It was just past 11:00 AM when Charles pulled into a gas station to use the restroom. Again he filled the tank. He was in Marystown, less than 20 miles from Burin.

Before pulling onto the highway he checked his map more closely. The exact point of the coordinates on the medallion was just off shore a hundred yards or so. That is what baffled him; why were the coordinates just off shore? That was his argument that it may not be a coordinate; why would some one give a coordinate just off shore?

The coordinates were in a small cove named Back Cove.

In Marystown Charles crossed a bridge, his final leg on his journey. On the other side of the bridge a sign directed up straight ahead to Burin. Just seeing Burin on a road sign created an anxious fear within him. His stomach churned as if taking a plunge on a rollercoaster.

The road hugged a river-like body of water to his left. It was dotted with small well-kept houses. Suddenly the road turned from southwest to directly south. Again he found himself a rural setting with small pines on both sides and where houses were sparse. Clusters of homes and businesses suddenly appeared as if to let you know the land was not forgotten by time and progress.

To his left huge hills folded into the water to his right. He was getting close. The excitement was intoxicating.

He came to a raise in the road.

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The Sixth Man – Episode 107

th3HVGAUTSThe Newfoundland Book 

There was nearly a three hour layover in Toronto. Charles relaxed in his seat in the terminal and checked his itinerary. He would not arrive in St. Johns until after midnight. He purchased a book about Newfoundland at a bookstore. He sat in a restaurant and ordered a sandwich and beer and started to read the book.

A waiter in his mid twenties brought the sandwich and beer. “Your first trip to Newfoundland?”

Charles smiled politely. “Yeah, you ever been there?”

I’m from St. Johns,” the waiter said. “The book you have there is far more exciting than Newfoundland itself. If you like cold damp weather it‘s the place to be.”

What about fog?” Charles said.

Fog is the weather,” the waiter said, “at least in St Johns and the east coast.”

Have you ever been to Burin?” Charles said.

Heard of it, but can’t say that I’ve been there,” the waiter said. “It’s just one of those little fishing villages that no one ever goes to. Is that where you are going?”

Yes,” Charles said.

You have family there?” the waiter said.

Perhaps,” Charles said.

Oh, I see,” the waiter said, “searching your roots.”

I guess you could say that,” Charles said.

Well, good luck with that,” the waiter said. “I’ll let you enjoy you’re meal. If you need anything else just get my attention.”

The book supplied little information that he was looking for, but it was good as a distraction. After the meal Charles found his gate for departure and continued reading.

There was a page having the map of all North America. Newfoundland seemed near the top of the world, sort shoved in the corner away from the rest of the continent. It was as if it weren’t meant to be, just left over material from the mainland. There was no place else for it so it was scraped together and shoved to the side. That was likely what the waiter thought also.

Charles slumped in his seat and rested the book on his chest. He tried to visualize Burin. He pictured fishing boats anchored near a small village that was alive with happy hearty people doing the work of the sea. He tried to imagine what he might find there. Perhaps nothing, perhaps the numbers on the medallion are meaningless or have a meaning far removed from his plight. For all Charles new he could have been born in a baby factory and the medallion was the only way to keep him separate.

The sun was near its setting and darkness began to slowly creep in from the east. Charles’ flight was called to board. Charles settled into his seat. He sat alone. The flight was only half full at best. The plane climbed to cruising altitude. He turned to the index in the book and found “Burin.” He turned to the page. There was a bright colorful picture of a small village teaming with small fishing boats. He smiled. It’s what he imagined. He drifted off to sleep with the book on his chest and that vision in his dreams.

It was the turbulence that awakened him. He looked out at the infinite dark with lonely specks and cluster of sparkles below.

Refreshment, sir?” the stewardess said.

Ginger ale, please,” Charles said.

She poured a cup and placed it on his tray.

How long to St. Johns?” Charles said.

We should be at the gate in about an hour and fifteen minutes,” she said. “We’re right on schedule.”

Charles smiled. “Thanks.”

But he was unsettled. Every step of his journey to find out who he was only led to other questions and deeper mysteries. He was not sure he could withstand another. Yet if he were to turn around the next morning and head back to Atlanta that would leave him always wondering.

A falling star flashed across the sky. It was almost as if he could discern the particular of burning elements and crackling embers. “What if there is someone there for me, waiting.” He turned on the overhead light and read about the southern coast of Newfoundland. He allowed his finger tips to pass over the photograph of Burin. He was certain he could feel it.

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