"A Family Affair"

Chapter Eight

One commercial-splicing break later…

The Feud's director signaled Richard Dawson that the show's live taping had begun again.

He turned to Camera Two. "Congratulations to our victors—the Los Angeles County Firefighters from Station 51. Time now to play 'Fast Money', for a chance to win $20,000.00 for their charity…" Richard turned to the tall, blond fireman, standing beside him—center-stage.

"The Los Angeles County Fire Department's Firemen's Benefit Fund," Roy obligingly filled in.

The studio audience cheered and applauded their charity.

Dawson placed his hand on the blond paramedic's left shoulder. "All right, Roy, John is backstage in a soundproof booth. He can't see, or hear, your answers. I'm going to ask you five questions. You're going to have 20 seconds to give me the most popular answers. If you can't think of anything, just say pass, and, if we have time, we'll come back to it. If you and John—together—get 200 points, you know what you win…"

"Twenty thousand dollars," Roy confidently came back.

"That's right! Give me 20 seconds on the clock. Time starts when I finish reading the first question. Name a national park…"

"Yellowstone."

"Name a luxury car…"

"Rolls Royce."

"The number of jobs the average person holds in their lifetime…"

"Three."

"Name a popular leisure activity…"

"Fishing."

"Name the most popular breed of dog in America…"

"Labrador."

"Well done, Roy!" Dawson turned to DeSoto's shiftmates. "Don't you think he did very well…"

51's guys nodded and applauded.

So did their very supportive audience.

Richard turned Roy around, so that he was now facing the game board. "Let's see if the survey agrees with my assessment. I asked you to name a national park. You said…"

1.Yellowstone

"Survey said…"

23

"I asked you to name a luxury automobile. You said…"

2.Rolls Royce

"Survey said…"

34

"I asked you to give me the number of jobs an average person has in their lifetime. You said…"

3.Three

"Survey said…"

25

"I asked you to name a popular leisure activity. You said…"

4.Fishing

"Survey said…"

12

"And, finally, I asked you to name the most popular breed of dog in America. You said…"

5.Labrador

"And the survey said…"

28

"For a grand total of…"

122 points

Dawson draped an arm over DeSoto's shoulders. "There. You see. I was right. You did very well, indeed! Now, you can go back over there, with your 'brothers', and we'll bring that partner of yours out here…"

Roy rejoined his Station 51 family, and was welcomed with high fives and congratulatory backslaps.

"Okay. Clear the board!" Richard commanded. "Come on out here, Big John!"

'Big John' strolled back out onto the stage and shook hands with the game show host.

"Your partner got you 122 points."

Gage's head swung in DeSoto's direction and he gave him a 'thumbs up' and a grin.

"I'm going to ask you the same five questions. You can't duplicate any of Roy's answers. If you do, you'll hear this terribly annoying sound…"

*buzz! buzz!*

"And I'll say 'try again'. Because this part is a bit harder, we're going to give you 25 seconds. Now, let's remind everyone of Roy's answers…"

1. Yellowstone_23

2. Rolls Royce_34

3. Three_25

4. Fishing_12

5. Labrador_28

Total Points:122

"Give me 25 seconds on the clock, please…There we go. All right. Time is going to start after I read the first question…What is the square root of 5,727?"

'Big John's' bottom jaw dropped open.

The audience roared with laughter.

"Rela-ax," Richard urged with an impish grin. "I was just joking, John. That's not the real first question. I was merely attempting to ease the tension with a bit of levity. Let's try this one, instead. Shall we? Name a national park…"

"Yellowstone." *buzz! buzz!* "Yosemite."

"Name a luxury car…"

"Rolls Royce." *buzz! buzz!* "Mercedes."

"The number of jobs the average person holds in their lifetime…"

"Three." *buzz! buzz!* "Two."

"Name a popular leisure activity…"

"Fishing." *buzz! buzz!* "Watching TV."

"Name the most popular breed of dog in America…"

"Yellow Lab." *buzz! buzz!* "German Shepherd," the paramedic calmly replied, with a mere moment remaining up on the game clock.

The audience, and his fellow firefighters, applauded his efforts.

Richard draped an arm across the dark-haired paramedic's shoulders and turned him toward the board. "You and your 'brother' must be very close, indeed. You managed to duplicate all five of his answers. I don't recall that ever happening before. You only needed 78 points. Do you think you pulled it off?"

"I certainly hope so," Gage gulped.

"Let's find out. I asked you to name a national park. You said: Yellowstone/Yosemite. Survey said…"

16

"I asked you to name a luxury car. You said: Rolls Royce/Mercedes. Survey said…"

46

"I asked you to give me the number of jobs an average person has in their lifetime. You said: Three/Two. Survey said…"

34

"You have 196 points. You only need 4 more. I asked you to name a popular leisure activity. You said: Fishing/Watching TV. Survey said…"

42

*ping!* *ping!* *ping!* *ping!* *ping!* *ping! * *ping!* *ping!* *ping!*

Once again, the studio audience went wild.

John's 'brothers' came rushing out from behind their counter to congratulate him.

Richard smiled into the closest camera. "There you have it. Station 51's family has just won $20,000.00 for The Firemen's Benefit Fund, and, since this is Crimefighters Versus Firefighters week, here on The Feud, that means they'll be coming back tomorrow, with a chance to win even more money for their charity."

John heard what their host said. 'Tomorrow…yeah….right,' he sarcastically—and silently—mused.

During the last commercial break, the firemen had been informed that the second game's taping would begin in less than fifteen minutes.

Gage couldn't seem to stop grinning. "Hey, guys, tomorrow…what d'yah say we go for 'silly'?"

His big brothers exchanged 'Oh brother,' glances, and then returned his grin.

Richard Dawson waved goodbye to Camera Two…and blew his audience a big ole kiss.

The End

Author's Note: Once again, a mighty big 'THANKS!' to all those who have taken a moment to leave a comment. :) Reader feedback is to a writer, what a 'super energy pill' is to Underdog. LOL!

We have two seventy-foot silos filled and only have 73 acres—and two more silos—to go. Weather permitting, we then get to start baling hay for the horses and calves. By the time we finish doing that, our high moisture barley will be ready to begin combining…after that, there'll be straw to bale. Once the straw is baled, it will be time to start filling the silos all over again, with second-crop. * thud* I keep threatening to have a T-shirt printed up that says:

Why farm? When there are so many easier ways to NOT make a living?

LOLOLOL!

Weather—and time—permitting, there will be a very brief EPILOGUE to this fic.

Speaking of weather…It's been HORRIBLY 'hot', here, in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

Here's hoping everyone else is enjoying an air-conditioned and waaaaaay 'less stressful' summer. ;)

Take care! *wave wave wave*

:) Ross7