Picture Perfect 112
The only snag Dan hit for the Hippo Centennial was that Peter wouldn’t be able to join him because of his Carafe duties, until the Sunday morning of the event. QTel had booked his flight to leave on Thursday so they would have a day or so to do their Cold work without interfering with Kilpatrick’s Centennial Special.
He was was waiting at the Depot for the limo QTel had arranged to pick up the crew they were sending for the occasion.
Peter had come by with the morning coffees & muffins for Sandy & Ushio. A car horn beeped a couple of times at the curb.
“That’s some car they’ve sent for you.” Sandy said.
The car door opened & Ashley Moxham got out & ran into the store.
“Come on Dan. We’ve got a tight schedule.” She said.
“Ashely?” Dan reached for his suitcase.
“Yep. I’m going too, so to save money I’m going on your ticket. Now that the muffin man isn’t going.”
“What!” Peter said.
“Just kidding but we’re taking the same flight & Dad thought it would fun surprise for you to join us.” She went to the window & waved to the limo.
Jeremy stepped out of the car to wave back.
“Better get a move on, sir.” Peter said giving Dan a quick kiss. “You master calls.”
“Thanks.” Dan sat in the back seat. “I appreciate the lift.” He squeezed Jeremy’s hand.
“You can kiss him” Ashley said leaning over the front seat.
“Seat belt! Miss Moxham.” Max, the driver, said pulling her to face forward.
“Humph. I have seen people kissing before you know. Even my Dad.”
“What’s with her?” Dan asked.
“She has a crush on you I think.” Jeremey said. “Ever since ‘Back to you, John.’ …”
Ashley said “Back to you, John.” as Jeremy said it.
“She’s been on to me everyday about when would I see you again.” Jeremy shrugged.
“Don’t lie Daddy. You’ve been looking at the Cold footage every day. You wanted to see Dan, too.”
“True.” Jeremy said. “I did.”
“Really” Dan wasn’t sure what to say.
“In my role as executive producer.”
“Ahh. Then I guess you were really sweating it when we almost got busted for child porn, when the car rolled in the rain, when the motel blew the fuck up.”
“I was in constant contact with Stephanie through everything.”
“Thanks for the flowers.” Dan didn’t understand his anger.
“Flowers?” Ashley asked. “Did you send Dan flowers without telling me?”
“No. Dan’s making a joke. Ah here we are.”
Max pulled into the airport.
“We can talk about this later.” Jeremy said once Max had stopped the car.
Ashley got out ahead of them.
“We’re on the same flight. So there’ll time for me to … apologize. I was concerned.”
“Oh yes in your investment.”
“No! About you but I didn’t see any reason to … send flowers.”
Max put Jeremy’s bag on the sidewalk beside Dan’s battered suitcase.
“I wish I wasn’t staying home.” Ashley said. “This is Mom’s weekend.”
“Oh! So, it’s just the two of us & rest of the Cold crew?” Dan said.
“Yes & no. Look we’d better get a move on. We have an earlier departure time than the one you originally had.”
After they went through the security checks Jeremy guided Dan to the private members lounge. A flight attendant greeted them there.
“Mr. Moxham. Mr. James.” He handed them each their boarding passes. “You can board now.”
“Your private jet?” Dan asked.
“No.” Jeremy laughed. “A charter.”
As they entered the plane Jeremy was glad handing some people who recognized him.
Jeremy insisted Dan have the window seat. “I know you’ll want to take pictures. “Hope that didn’t bother you?”
“I can help you being who you are. As long as they don’t think I’m your p.a. it’ll be fine.”
“As long as they don’t think you my son I’ll be happy. Once Cold East hits the screen you’ll be a household name too.”
The plane had been chartered for the special guests invited to the gala so they could travel away from, what Jeremy called, their hoards of fans.
As the plane taxied Jeremy said. “Dan, I’ve always been more comfortable staying out of the way. I have more assists than goals.”
“I’ve never been one to be that direct so I’ve been keeping my distance from you while the show was shooting. But in the distance I was …”
“Yes. Why do you think John dropped his suit?”
“He dropped his suit! I was wondering why I hadn’t heard anything more.”
“It wasn’t that easy, mind you, especially after the ‘Over to you.’ That’s when I had this idea that I hoped would … assuage his rage.”
“Yes QTel offered him a new series with a new … sensibility. Reporting on crime is grim, to say the least, so he’ll be spending A Week In The Circus. Did you know there are travelling carnivals across Canada. Each province has at least one plus big expositions like the CNE.”
“Jeremy Moxham! What luck.”
He was interrupted. Dan recognized actress Della Kincaid. She she took Jeremy hand. “I was so hoping I’d have someone interesting to talk to on the flight. All these boring politicians. Every conversation is a policy speech.”
“Yes.” Jeremy said.
Della Kincaid was the first Canadian actress to be nominated for Oscars two years in a row, winning neither time.
“The seat next mine is free. I’m sure they won’t mind if you join me here.” She pulled him to his feet then got into her seat, encouraging him into the seat beside her. “I hate flying. No I love to fly but I hate taking off. It’s like the first day of rehearsal. You’re not sure if things are really to work this time.”
“As you can see we are safely in the air.”
Jeremy spent the rest of the flight talking to her.
Her hands would touch him when she laughed at his remarks, or when agreeing with him. Jeremy tried to bring Dan into the conversation but she didn’t acknowledge his presence.
“You’re staying the Astoria Regent.” She asked as they exited the plane.
“Yes.” Jeremy said.
“Perfect you can join me in my limo. I’m know we’ll have a great weekend. I wasn’t looking forward to this command performance, as it were, but now the fates have interceded.”
Jeremy took Dan aside in the airport with a pained face. “Look I’m sorry about this. How can I shut the bitch up?”
“Tell her you’re with your boyfriend.” Dan said.
“If she shuts up long enough I just might. Here … ” he reached into his sport coat pocket and gave Dan the car rental printout and the hotel reservations. “I’ll see you in your room there. It’s across the hall from mine.”
“Not on different floors?”
“Don’t be like that. Her room is definitely on another.”
Dan picked up the rental Jeremy had arranged. He was both amused and angry. Clearly Jeremy was protecting his image. But that he didn’t even introduce him to Della he was pissed. But not as pissed he figured Jeremy would be to find that Dan wasn’t staying at the Regent. He’d made his own reservations at the Waterside. No one in the Quintex office knew he was staying there. Warszawa had made it clear it was someone inside the production company that had tipped off the RCMP. No one would tip anyone off this time.