The Adventures of Fox Staubest! - Part IV
Proudly, the new Consul-General of Liechtenstein for Portland turns the key and enters his new office. He is returning from the wild welcoming party held in his dentist's waiting room just down the street, fully 12 people attended and two pets! On the door is the 2 foot wide hand-carved oval showing the country of Liechtenstein (at 1/4 scale) with Paul's name as the new Consul emblazoned below. He hangs his coat up, checks to find that there are no messages on the desk, briefly dusts off his set of golf clubs, then goes back out into the hall to make a phone call. The downstairs tenant, a shoe repair shop is grinding something so he waits for a minute. Then he lifts the receiver, puts in a quarter and places a call to the President of the United States.

Jorge, Gary, and Fox are quietly ushered to their usual table in a particular restaurant in downtown Manhattan. (For security reasons the name and location of the establishment cannot be revealed here.) The manager recognizes them immediately and orders that ice water be brought at once. They sit down and look out at the view of the twilight city lights of New York. Confidentially, Fox gives them a few highlights of his top secret meetings in Scotland Yard, but adds that it was boring. Jorge updates Fox on his mid-air F-18 rescue of Gary, but says that it was merely routine. And Gary says that he believes he was able to discern Dr. Rash Behindend's evil plot to take over the world - even though he was captured while trying to escape from the secret Pacific island base. And Gary adds that after 4 days, he does feel just a little bit hungry.

The food soon arrives. Fox concludes a brief conversation with Travis (via his secret agent wristwatch) and is ready to dig in - but then notices that Gary got a slightly nicer toy surprise than him. He frowns momentarily; Gary does not notice this though. Jorge looks out the window. A couple of taxis go by and a few businessmen in suits walk past. But wait - the man standing there in the long coat looks suspicious! Jorge gets ready to give the secret signal which would mean that all 3 of them would immediately stop, lock and load 30 round clips into their Baretta 9mm semi-automatics, pop on silencers, and prepare for the worst. But then he notices that just beyond the HamBurglar in the long coat, next to the tall yellow arch is Ronald - whew!, situation in hand. Thank heaven for inter-service cooperative agreements. With all the children surrounding the HamBurglar it would have been more difficult to neutralize him. They relax and each man digs into his specially prepared happy meal.

Rash sits behind a large control console built into the wall; he alternately broods and then breaks out into laughter. In front and above him arcs an impressive array of monitors, lights, knobs, and switches. He leans back in the oversized command chair. On the one hand, this day has seen the end of Gary. ...Gary the Grappler!, long a thorn in his side. Rash smiles to himself at this one victory. How glorious! But then he curses quietly that Jorge got away. When Dr. Behindend's black chopper arrived back at his secret mountain base in New Hampshire his technicians found the melted antenna array. The angle and depth of the evident laser couldn't be accounted for. He feigned that it was no mystery to him - and told them to check further for what he said they hadn't found yet or he would strap them to folding chairs, lock the doors, and make them watch Jerry Lewis videos all night long. They waste no time in looking harder for clues.

How to neutralize Fox and his daring network of secret agents...? Hmmm.... Rash types in a short message, posting it on: alt.mad.scientists.misc. Just as he sends it out a call comes in from one of his trusted lieutenants on the secret Pacific island base. Far above, in Earth orbit, Travis picks up the aberrant signal - coming from seemingly "nowhere". It's on an extremely low frequency. He hears, "Oh yes Master, everything... everything, heh, heh!... is almost ready for you, heh, heh! The tulips are growing right on schedule. We should have a beautiful 'bouquet' ready for you when you return, Master ..heh, heh.... heh, heh, heh!!...."

Travis half listens to the message with mild curiosity as he holds pens in both hands, recording test calculations with one hand while writing a letter to his mother with the other. Odd, he thinks, that such a message should be emanating from a deserted tropical island with only palm trees, an large extinct volcano, and open tubular lava flows which extend out into the ocean and down under the untouched coral reefs which completely surround the uninhabited island. He goes about his work. Meanwhile, far away in a chalet in New England. Dr. Rash Behindend sends an urgent message to his long-haired brother, Dash.

Part V  >>