Shelby was enjoying her freedom while she could because she would be starting school soon. Scott's mother, Susan, had taken her in for her first Dr. appointment and she still hadn't gotten used to being with child. Some how it just didn't seem real unless Scott was there. She helped out all she could but she still managed to get bored real easy. She was tired of watching television and listening to the radio. It was late so she stated to go upstairs when she heard the phone ring. Susan and her husband had already gone to bed so she decided to answer the phone.
Operator, "I have a collect call from a Scott Barringer. Would you except the charges?"
Shelby's heart started racing as she became totally excited and screamed. "Scott, oh my gosh, yes I'll except the charges."
Scott, "Shelby is that you?"
"Yes Scott. I can't believe it's you. Where are you and are you ok?"
"I'm fine. I'm just trying to figure out a way to get back to you. I'm at a frigging boy's school right now and it's killing me not to be near you."
"Your grandfather sent you away to school? Can't you escape?"
"Not yet because he has someone watching me. I need to figure out who it is so that I can give them the slip. I'm also going to cause havoc so that maybe they'll expel me."
"You bad boy. At least it's not co-ed so I don't have to worry about other girls hitting on you. Boy would I love to see you in uniform."
"No you wouldn't it's not a pretty sight. The only pretty sight I'd like to see right now is you."
"You're such a smooth talker. I really miss you."
"I miss you too. Could you tell my mom that I'm at Manchester Academy? Have her contact my dad. If he comes to get me than I'll know that what my grandfather told me about him wasn't true."
"What did he say?"
"Just stuff like he really didn't want me and that he was trying to get rid of me."
"Scott you know that isn't true. I've never really met your dad but I'm sure that he loves you. I know that your mom does. She feels guilty about ruining your life and she wants to make everything right by you."
"Tell her that none of this is her fault and that she is doing the right thing by taking care of you. So how are you feeling anyway?"
"I've been meaning to ask you how you found out about me anyway?"
Shelby didn't hear a response from Scott but she did hear a lot of commotion in the background. Evidently Scott was being nailed for being out of his room after nights out. The phone was rudely hung up and Shelby never even got to say goodbye. At least she got to hear his voice again. She walked upstairs with a smile on her face. She knew that she would have sweet dreams tonight.
Douglas one of the academy's monitors snuck up behind Scott and caught him red handed using the phone past curfew.
"It's past curfew you're not suppose to be out of your room. That's 5 demerits."
Scott, "Why don't you just give me 10 because I'm planning on making another phone call."
"You're going to get 15 if you don't go to your room immediately."
"Hell why don't you just give me 50 and I'll stay here all night."
"I'm a monitor. You can't talk back to me like that. What's your name?"
"Scott Barringer. Want me to spell it for you."
Douglas became flustered because he had no idea who he was hassling. He stuttered a little trying to make things right. "Sorry Barringer. You can make a phone call if you need to. Next time just try and do it during regular scheduled hours." Douglas turned and walked away to see if there were anyone else disobeying the rules.
Scott walked back to his room a little pissed off. He walked in and slammed the door which woke up his roommate Daniel.
Daniel, "What's wrong?"
"I can't seem to get any frigging demerits here. Every time I get nailed for something and they hear my name, they then retract the demerits. How the hell am I suppose to get in hot water around here when everyone keeps kissing my ass."
"The only thing that I can think of is that it would have to be something major and not this little piddlely stuff. I'd really like to help you but I'd like to try and get some sleep here."
"Well what would be considered major to the head master?"
"I don't know, maybe hurting his family."
"He's got a teenage daughter that goes to the girls academy right?"
"Oh Scott you wouldn't? I can hear the gears inside your head turning right now. You can't harm her."
"Not harm just set up. There is a dance this weekend right? All I need is for someone to introduce me to her and someone with a good camera. All I need is one picture of her and I in a compromising situation and then we'll just conveniently make sure that the head master receives a copy of it. "
"Scott you are so evil. I would think that might do it. It will at least bring forth a board meeting with your grandfather. Now that you've got that settled we can now go to sleep." Daniel rolled over a pulled his pillow over his head. Scott smiled and thought Lilly was right. He hated the thought of using someone but this was the only way to bring forth-disciplinary actions against him. He lay down and thought of the sweet sound of Shelby's voice he had heard earlier on the phone.
The next morning Shelby told Susan that Scott had called the night before and that he was at the academy. She was concerned that he was beginning to believe the things that his grandfather was feeding him about his father. Susan needed to get in touch with Martin so that she could let him know where there son was held up. She had been trying to reach him for several days now and there has never been an answer at his home. Susan even tried calling him at work but they said that he had taken a leave of absence. Things were getting stressed at her home because her husband was getting real jealous of the whole situation. He thought that Susan was spending way too much time hunting down the son that she didn't even have custody of. What made things worse was the fact that she even brought her son's pregnant girlfriend into the picture. Things were getting tense and their relationship was beginning to suffer.
Susan had an art class to teach that day so she told Shelby to keep trying to call Martin on the phone. If Shelby were to ever get through than she was to give Martin her number at work and tell him to immediately call. Shelby did little things around the house to keep busy while she keep dialing Martins phone number. Susan's husband George was home early from work and sat around drinking and watching Shelby.
"Who do you keep calling?" George approached her and asked.
"Susan wants me to keep calling Martin and see if she can get in touch with him."
"Well knock it off because you keep tying up my phone line. I also heard that you accepted a collect phone call last night."
"Yes Scott called but you both were asleep so I took the call."
"Well little lady let me set some grounds rules for you if you are going to be staying here. First, you can only use the phone with my permission and second, you are never to accept another collect phone call again. I'm the one paying the bills around here and unless you make it worth my while than you can just stay off."
Shelby was in shock. Could he be suggestion what she thought he was? "What do you mean worth your while?"
"Don't act stupid. I know were you came from and I know what kind of a girl you are so don't act so innocent. The only way you can get what you want these days is to use what you have available. So if you want to be staying here than you need to keep me content and if you tell Susan about this than you can just learn to survive in the streets again." He walked over to her and brushed the hair out of her face. Shelby was trembling because she didn't know a way out. She knew that this is how things worked out in the real world. Nothing was free and she was taken advantage of there hospitality. Why did men all have to be this way? She could feel that things were becoming strained between him and Susan. She had no idea that he would turn on her like this. She just closed her eyes and trembled as he touched her face and ran his hands down the front of her body. She was trying to block out any feelings and just go numb to what was about to happen. The phone ringing brought her back to reality. She made a dash to the phone and picked it up.
"Shelby this is Susan how are things going? Have you got in touch with Martin yet?"
Shelby's voice was weak and trembled as she spoke. "F-f-f-fine. No I can't call him I mean I haven't been able to reach him."
Something was wrong. Shelby didn't sound right to her. "Shelby is everything ok?"
She hesitated and said, "Yes, I'll let you know if Martin calls."
"Shelby you are the one that is suppose to be calling him."
"I know good-bye."
Susan sat back and thought that what just took place was very odd. Something wasn't right. She gathered her things and ran out the door to go home. Luckily she was only 15 minutes away from home. When she got home the first thing that she noticed was that her husbands car was in the driveway. She had a bad feeling about this. She didn't want to just burst in so she came in as quiet as she could and headed back to the bedroom. What she saw and heard made her sick to her stomach. George was trying to force himself on Shelby as she was trying to fight him off. She heard Shelby begging and pleading for him to stop as he threw her down on the bed.
"GEORGE, GET THE HELL OFF OF HER." Susan screamed.
George stopped and turned as Shelby gave him a big push and he fell off the bed. Shelby got up and ran towards Susan crying and all out of breathe from trying to fight him off. Susan put her arms around her and tried to get her to calm down.
"Shelby go pack your things because we are leaving." She turned back to George and looked on at him with total disgust. "You make me sick. How could you take advantage of a poor innocent girl? You better contact your lawyer because it is over between us. I want a divorce. You can reach me at Martin's house."
George staggered up off the floor. "Fine. I couldn't stand the way that you were spending all your time pre-occupied with the poor troubled Scott and all his problems. Like we didn't have enough problems of our own to worry about."
"Listen just because you never had any children don't think that I can just give up on my own. You just don't understand what it's like to be a parent. Your children always comes first."
"That's funny coming from you. Aren't you the one who walked away couple of years ago to find yourself?"
"Yes, that was one of the biggest mistakes I've ever made and I planning on rectifying that." She turned and grabbed a suitcase and started packing her things. George took off because he couldn't stand being in the same room as her anymore. Susan started to call the airlines to make reservation but than it occurred to her that she didn't know where to go. If Martin wasn't home than how could she get in the house because she didn't have a key to his new house.
She called Manchester Academy and asked to speak to Scott Barringer that she was his mother. The academy claimed that only his grandparents could get calls through to him. Susan slammed the phone down almost in tears because she didn't know what she was going to do at that time. Shelby walked over and put her arms around her and they wept together. Susan was responsible for Shelby and she felt like she was letting her down. They were two lost souls searching for an answer.
The phone rang and it was finally Martin. He had called in at work and they told him that Susan had been calling for him. Susan told him everything that was happening and where Scott was. Martin made arrangements for Susan and Shelby to fly to Washington to his house. He would meet them there and then they would discuss what to do about Scott.
The weekend had finally come and all the guys were getting ready for the big dance. The girls spent most of their day primping themselves to look there best. The bus loaded up the boys and drove them over to the girl's academy. The guys in Scott's group had everything all planned out for the big set up. They all were given the big lecture on how to act like gentlemen and were threatened if anyone were to misbehave.
Scott walked into the big ballroom and it brought back beautiful memories of the morp at Horizon. He stood there looking around when he realized there were a group of girls lining up to dance with him. Evidently word spread to the girls academy about the young single bachelor heir to the Barringer estate. It was like Prince charming in Cinderella. Everywhere Scott turned he had some young dame batting her eyes at him. He thought that he would never get away. He was dying of thirst so he told them all that he would be back after some refreshment. About 10 girls all ran and got him a drink. The only place that he could go that his groupies couldn't follow was the bathroom so he headed over there so he could get a breather. Daniel and a couple of other boys followed him so they could talk to him.
"Man they won't leave me alone. You guys have to help me. Has anyone located the headmaster's daughter yet?"
"Yea she was playing hostess for awhile but I think that we can make the introductions now."
"Ok. Once we are introduced than make sure all the others leave us alone. If someone tries to cut in than make sure you come and ask them to dance to keep them busy. When you see me head for the gym make sure that you follow and make sure you wait for the proper time to take the picture. Let's go."
Everything was going according to plan. Scott was introduced to Cecilia and they danced several dances. Several other girls tried to cut in but another boy intercepted them. Scott used his charm to sweet talk Cecilia and eventually she was hanging on his every word. He asked if they would like to go get some fresh air because it was getting really hot in the ballroom. She agreed and he took her hand and they walked out of the dance. He had to make sure that none of the chaperones were watching because they wouldn't allow them to leave the room without being followed. They walked around outside for awhile talking and he finally lead her into the gym so that they could be alone. Cecilia seemed to connect with Scott right off the bat so she was actually looking forward to them spending some time alone. It didn't take lone for the time alone to turn into something physical. She had his shirt off and he had her topless necking pretty intense when the flash of a camera blinded the darkness. Cecilia screamed as Scott used some profanity. They both grabbed their clothing and was putting them on when the perpetrators took off running.
Cecilia, "Who were those assholes. God if those pictures get out than we're in big trouble."
"Don't worry about it. I'm sure it was guys at Manchester and I'll be able to track them down and make them pay."
"Are you sure? My father would have no mercy on you if he saw these pictures."
"Don't worry about it. I'll take care of it. Let's head back into the dance before the chaperone's come looking for us." He couldn't help but smile at the result of tonight's activities.
The next day was Saturday and Scott had a football game to play. It was a free day to all the students. Daniel spent his time in the photo lab at school developing the pictures that he took. He couldn't believe how good they turned out. You could definitely tell who the two people were in the picture and definitely tell what was going on. He took the best copy and put it in a large envelope and addressed it to the headmaster. Now it was just a matter of time.
After the game Scott came back to the room and Daniel told him to be prepared for dooms day. Scott had to get the next part of his plan in motion. He called his mother but was told by an rude and angry George that she didn't live there anymore. Before Scott decided to panic he decided to call his dad's house. His mother answered the phone.
"Mom what are you doing there? George almost bit my head off?"
"Don't worry about it Scott. George and I are separating. I need to know how you are doing."
"Does dad know your there?"
"Of course he's here also."
"Has dad given up on me?"
"No Scott of course not. He loves you. Don't believe anything your grandfather tells you. Your dad had been spending a lot of time with different attorney's to try and fight your grandfather in court. He and I just spent the last two days talking and we've come to the conclusion that we still care for each other. We decided to take some time and see if things could work out again for us. We both want our family back again and that also involves you."
"That's great mom. I need to talk to dad because I've set myself up for a big fall here and I need him to come in at the right time and bail me out."
Susan passed the phone over to Martin and Scott explained what he had done. He knew that once the picture was seen then they would be calling his grandfather. His grandfather would be so embarrassed that he should be happy to give Scott up. Scott needed his dad to be at school when they hold the meeting so that he could barge in and claim Scott as his own.
The next day Scott was sitting in his room reading when two men that he's never seen before came in and forced him to go with them. He knew that the wheels were now in motion. This was a clue for Douglas to call Martin that was staying at a nearby hotel to come to the campus.
Scott was brought into a room that had the headmaster and his grandfather standing there looking like they were the riflemen at a firing squad. Scott tried to be as casual as possible. They pushed him down into a seat and slid the picture across the table to him.
"You want to explain this?" the headmaster asked.
Scott became cocky and answered "Well it looks like two people making out. You guys into porn around here?"
That's all it took for Edward to lose his temper and he backhanded Scott across the face so hard that it caused his mouth to begin bleeding.
"How dare you patronize me. Do you have no self-respect? Is this not you and my daughter Cecilia in this picture?"
"Well she did say her name was Cecilia but she didn't offer any info on her family."
"Do you want to be charged with rape boy? I've got definite evidence here to take this little matter to court."
"That picture doesn't prove rape and it also doesn't show that she was a willing partner." Scott was beginning to think that his plan might have done more damage than he wanted it to.
"I've already talked to Cecilia about this and she claims that you forced yourself on her."
"That bitch. She was all over . . ." His grandfather backhanded him again this time knocking Scott completely out of the chair. Scott's face was starting to welt up and bruise. Just when he didn't know how much more he could take, Martin burst into the room.
Edward, "Well Martin, you seem to like to make grand entrances."
Martin went over to help Scott up off the floor. "Well father. It appears that you are the abuser now. I'm sure my lawyers will love to hear this."
Headmaster, "What's going on here?"
Edward, "This is my son Martin and he is the father of Scott."
"Well who is going to take responsibility for him? He has been nothing but trouble ever since he came here. We have actually let a lot of what he has done slip by but this situation can't be ignored. I'm sorry Edward but I have no choice but to expel Scott from this school."
Martin, "Don't worry because I plan on taking Scott home with me where he belongs. Father you can take me to court if you want to but Susan and I are getting back together and my lawyers say that you won't stand a chance in court. "
"Fine the boy has to much of you in him anyway. If I had gotten to know him when he was a lot younger than maybe he would have had a bright future."
"That's where you're wrong dad. Scott is very bright and talented. He could have any kind future he wants if he just puts his mind to it."
It had been a long time since Scott heard his dad speak so highly of him. He was beginning to think that maybe his dad really did love him. He went over to his dad and looked him in the eye. "I'll make you proud of me dad if you just give me another chance I promise." Martin reached out, drew his son to his chest and gave him a big fatherly hug.
"I've always been proud of you Scott. I didn't always agree with some of the choices you made but I've never stopped loving you and I would never give up on you."
Scott looked up teary eyed and said, " Take me home. By the way, I'm sorry about the pictures. It was actually a set up to get me kicked out of here. Nothing happened to your daughter beyond those pictures. "
Martin put his arm around his son's shoulder and turned to Edward. "I'm taking him home where he belongs dad."
Edward was starting to see that bond that Martin had with Scott. It was a bond that he never had with Martin and he knew that he was wrong in braking that up. He nodded his approval to Martin and said, "Scott don't be such a stranger. Corinne would kill me if you didn't keep in touch."
"Sure, tell her I'll write to her. I like having a grandmother."
"Maybe someday when this all boils over you'll like having a grandfather too."
"Maybe. Just don't force me. I'll come when I'm ready."
Edward held out his hand. "It's a deal. Take care of that great-grandchild of mine." He winked at Scott.
Martin stopped suddenly and asked "What great-grandchild?"
Scott pushed his dad out the door. "Let's go dad, I've got some explaining to do on the way home."