next morning, it was decided that Chip Morton would take the Admiral’s
car, track down Lee’s hotel room and check with the police department on
how long Lee’s rental car would be impounded.
Betty had called the City Manager and had clearance to take a few
vacation days off. She called
the library and put her Adult Reference Librarian in charge while she and
Les were absent. She would be
driving the Admiral back to the hospital.
Jamieson called after she hung up and told them that John Doe I was waking
up, but it would be a couple of hours before he would be awake enough to
recognize anyone. Jamieson
requested that the Admiral show up in his uniform, to better jolt the John
and the Admiral walked into the ICU waiting room together.
Dana had promised the night before, when she left, that she would
visit the men after she got off work.
Betty had caught the glint in Dana’s eyes when she looked at
Chip. Betty strongly
suspected that Dana hoped that Chip would be back from the Admiral’s
chores by then.
had the ICU volunteer call the nurses’ station to pass on to the doctors
that the Admiral and she were in the waiting room.
Soon Will Jamieson, Gene Morrison and Kerry McGrew came striding
into the room. Will looked at
them and started the briefing. "Okay,
he’s awake. We’re taking
him off the oxygen and we’ll have the curtains drawn around his bed. Other than the hospital staff, you will be the first people
he’ll see. We’re hoping
for the best, but we don’t want him upset since he’s just had surgery. Any questions?"
one. How much longer will
they be in the hospital?"
I’ll let Dr. Morrison answer you."
Mrs. Hazard. John Doe II
would normally be in a regular room by now, but the police have asked us
to keep them together for protection.
So we’ll move them to the ICU step-down unit tomorrow morning.
I suspect that John Doe II will be discharged by the end of the
week and John Doe I within a few days after that.
A lot will depend on how fast they heal."
we see him now?" requested Mrs. Hazard.
course. Let's go."
four went to the ICU doors and Dr. Jamieson hit the button to swing the
doors wide. Striding down to
the corner, he went into the curtained area around John Doe I's bed. As the Admiral and Mrs. Hazard approached the drapes, they
heard a familiar voice calling out to them.
Betty heard Les's voice call out, "Hi Mom," as Admiral
Nelson heard Lee's voice speaking out, "Hi Dad." John Doe II had spotted them going into the draped area.
Going through the curtains, Betty saw a silent Les looking at her.
Admiral Nelson, who saw a silent Lee gazing at him, followed her.
Seeing their assistant before them while hearing his voice
elsewhere unnerved both.
again they arranged themselves on either side of the bed and took turns
asking John Doe I if he knew them. He
looked at one, then the other and shook his head no.
"That other guy looks like me and he called you Mom and Dad.
Is he my brother? Does that make you my parents too?"
Admiral and Betty looked at each other knowing that the plans they had
made last night would have to be instigated. "No, son, we're not your
parents or the other man's parents. What
do you remember?"
and Dr. Morrison stood by the curtains listening.
Kerry McGrew had left to check on another patient. John Doe I
stared at the Admiral and then looked over at Betty.
"Nothing. Nothing. The
only one who is not a stranger is the guy in the next bed. What are we, twins? What
do you know about me? Who am
I and what am I to you?" His
voice deepened and his face grew intense.
Morrison stepped forward. "I
think that's enough for now, Admiral, Mrs. Hazard.
Could you wait in the waiting room?"
two doctors came into the waiting room shortly afterwards.
"Admiral, at this point, we can't say if their loss of memory
is physical or psychological. John Doe II will be released in a few days.
He’ll have to come back to have his bandages changed.
John Doe I will be released in a week.
He also will have to come back for the same reason."
Morrison, Mrs. Hazard and I have decided to take one man each back to
Lee's and Les's environment to see if that would jog their memories.
If that doesn't work we will switch the men.
Could John Doe II be transferred to the Nelson Institute of Marine
Research Medical Center in Santa Barbara under the care of Dr.
think that can be done since he’ll be under a doctor's care.
I want to keep him through today and I'll make arrangements to
release him tomorrow."
make arrangements for transportation for him."
John Doe I is ready for release, I'll take him with me," announced
Betty Hazard. "I sure
hope he's Les."
I'm hoping the other one is Lee," replied the Admiral.
Morton pushed opened the door to the ICU waiting room. "Admiral, the police released Lee's rental car, so I've
turned it back in and settled the charges.
I also tracked down his hotel room and have his luggage in the
trunk of your car. I found
his signet ring in his shaving kit."
so only his memory is missing. Chip,
we're taking John Doe II back to the NIMR medical center tomorrow morning.
Make the arrangements."
sir." Chip turned away
to go to the pay phone across the room.
Minutes later he came back. "I
called the Institute. Your
secretary is taking care of transportation from this hospital to the
beach. Kowalski is flying FS1
in and he’ll meet you and Dr. Jamieson there.
I'll drive your car back."
that. You and Jamieson will
escort John Doe II back. I
want you to dig into the background of Lee and Les.
Are they twins separated at a young age?
Use the Institute computers, lawyers and researchers, but get me
the answer. I'm going to stay
until John Doe I is released."
sir. Also, Lee's secretary
reports there's a problem with Lee's sports car."
repair shop released the wrong car to her.
It was blue instead of red."
Lee authorized a paint job. Chip..."
know. Look into it.
Aye, sir. Dr.
Jamieson, I've been thinking. Can
we identify Lee from the scar he got when Kruger shot him? What about from
thought of the scar too late. The
coral tore up John Doe II's side too much to tell and John Doe I's surgery
was in that area, so if there had been a scar, it's gone now.
As far as dental records, Lee had good teeth, no cavities, so there
would be nothing unique in his dental records to identify him."
same with Les. The library
staff teased him about not supporting his dentist right, because he had no
cavities," inputted Betty Hazard.
are we going to tell these men apart?" quizzed Chip as he rubbed the
back of his neck.
guess we're going to have to hope they will tell us when we get them back
to familiar territory."
I hope you're right, Admiral."
Thinking for a moment, Chip Morton turned to Will Jamieson.
"Can we get footprints of the John Does?
When I was born, the hospital gave Mom a copy of my footprints. I wonder if we can trace them down by theirs?"
thought. Let's do it."
The two doctors left and within ten minutes brought back footprints
carefully labeled with I and II.
next morning John Doe II was released and transferred in FS1 to the NIMR
medical center. He showed no
recognition of the flying sub or Kowalski.
What was alarming to Chip was that he willingly went to the medical
center and settled in fast.
Huntington Beach, Admiral Nelson stayed with Betty Hazard as John Doe I
continued to improve. As
Betty went back to work to verify the library was running smoothly,
Admiral Nelson followed her directions to Les Wayne's beach house. Using Les' house key that was part of his personal effects
from the hospital, Admiral Nelson let himself into the home.
The interior was not what he expected from his notion of a
librarian. The walls in the
living area were light green, framing patio doors that stepped out on a
deck overlooking the ocean. Trees
and large flora plants were scattered throughout the room, along with
oriental statues, screens and paintings.
Wandering through the house, he found the oriental influence was
reflected in each room. The
study had bookcases filled to the ceiling.
As he browsed the selections, Admiral Nelson noted the excellent
selection on naval history. Realizing
that time was getting away from him, he went on to the master bedroom to
gather up some clothes for John Doe I to wear. He found on the dresser Les
Wayne's class ring, rosary and wallet.
Gazing around the room, he found a popular poster hanging on the
wall. It had to be important to Les as it was framed.
The scene was of an oriental style painting of an ocean wave
changing from left to right into a computer image of that same wave.
again at his time, and knowing that John Doe I would be released the next
morning, Admiral Nelson took the poster from the wall, closed up the
suitcase, and took them out to his car.
Going back to the door, he went in, watered the plants, locked the
house and drove away.
night at the six o'clock news, the announcer returned to her earlier
story. "This reporter
has been following the story of duplicate men, Captain Lee Crane of the
submarine Seaview and our own Les Wayne, Assistant Library Director, who
were found injured and unconscious. An
attempt was made on their lives and they were put under police protection.
Hospital and police spokesmen will not comment on their condition,
but a source close to this reporter indicates that both men are healing
and are awake. One of them
was transferred to the NIMR medical center in Santa Barbara and the other
will be released from the hospital tomorrow morning. Unfortunately, my question has not been answered, "Are
they doppelgangers, twins or Memorex?"
Sand was listening and managed to keep his temper this time. Going to his closet, he pulled down a leather case containing
his high-powered rifle. Opening
it, he verified that he had plenty of ammunition to finish his job.
He needed to scout out the territory, so he put away the case,
grabbed his keys and left the duplex.
around the hospital neighborhood, he found what he wanted.
Across the street from the patient drop off and pickup area was a
theater. He parked and bought
a ticket for the night's movie release.
It made no difference to him what was showing, as he was more
interested in the layout of the building and access to the roof.
He waited until the lobby was crowded and employees were busy with
customers, then he made his move to explore.
Quickly he found the hours of operation, memorized the layout and
verified the roof access. Going on top of the roof, he used his binoculars
to gauge the distance to the hospital door and the right place to set up.
What he found greatly satisfied him and he made his way back
through the lobby to the outside doors.
He walked around the building, through the alleyways, and mapped
out his egress. All was ready
for the next morning's event. Getting
into his car, he left to get a good night's sleep.
He had important work to do early the next morning.
woke up in a good mood the next day.
He whistled as he went about his preparation for the day's
activities. Soon he pulled on
his gloves, picked up his leather case and was on his way to the theater. When he arrived, he drove around the block and parked his
black Chevy on the street behind the theater.
He made his way to one of the back exits, jimmied the lock and went
into the darken theater. Remembering
the layout, he went through the lobby and to the exit that led to the
roof. He went over to the
side of the roof and verified by binoculars that his target was still in
the hospital. That gave him
time to set up and get comfortable.
hour later, he saw through his binoculars his victim surrounded by an
older woman, man and a cop. Switching
to the scope of his high-powered rifle, Joe controlled his breathing as he
waited for his opportunity. Then it came. As his victim lifted himself out
of the wheelchair to walk to the waiting car, the policeman stepped back
to give him room to stand. Joe
sighted, squeezed the trigger slowly, and anticipated the kick to his
shoulder as the explosive bullet sped toward its target and burned into
the man's chest.
to make sure of his kill, Joe shoved a bullet into the chamber, aimed at
his victim on the sidewalk and pulled the trigger.
The policeman shoved the older red-haired man down and jumped to
protect his assignment. The
second bullet missed its first target and buried itself into the cop's
shoulder. Verifying that
there was no movement from his two victims, Joe broke down his rifle,
gathered his spent cartridges, and packed his case.
Hurrying back into the theater, he swiftly went back to his exit
door. He slowed down when he went outside and casually strolled to
his Chevy and put his case into the trunk.
He started the car and leisurely pulled away from the curb.
He laughed as he drove to the freeway that would began his journey
to the Nelson Institute of Marine Research in Santa Barbara.
|Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea Contents|