What is Mine
~ Twenty-Two ~


Doctor Jack Whelan struggled to regain his equilibrium. Inside he felt as though he was sliding down a steep slope in a furious freefall; outside, however, he managed to maintain a somewhat stoic expression.

“I am afraid,” Jack insisted, “that I have no idea to what you refer.”

“Please, do not insult my intelligence.”

Jack stood abruptly. “I'll have to ask you to leave,” he demanded quietly.

Stefan did not react. “Doctor Whelan, my presence before you here today is a courtesy I have extended out of consideration for the care your young wife has given my son over this past year. Despite the illegality of your act, he has been nurtured and secure.”

“I have nothing else to say to you,” Jack uttered through clenched teeth. “If you continue to harass me, I will contact-”

“The authorities? We both know that you will not.” Stefan's eyes were ice cold. He picked up the medallion from the desktop. “You have until tomorrow morning at eight a.m. to prepare your wife for what is to happen. At that time, I expect my son to be delivered into my hands.”

Jack was incredulous. “Are you mad? Even if I knew what you were talking about, do you really believe I would just deliver that little boy to you without a fight?”

Stefan gave a little half-smile. Everything about his expression said that the doctor's answer was exactly what he'd hoped it would be. “What weapons will you use, Doctor? The despicable actions you took in kidnapping my son from a father who lay injured and dying on the side of the road? The cowardly actions you took in reporting the accident anonymously? Or perhaps you hope to fight me with the unethical attorney who arranged for your illegal adoption of my son?”

Jack's mouth opened and closed abruptly. The depth of information that the other man had somehow managed to garner shook him.

“Know this, Doctor Whelan,” Stefan continued. “My son is heir to a kingdom. My family has wealth and contacts beyond any you are even able to conceive. I will not hesitate to exhaust it all in the recovery of my son.”

“And if I am forced to decimate both you and your young wife in the process, I will do so. Without hesitation.”

Stefan turned and headed for the door. Halfway there he turned. “Be aware. Should you consider an attempt to flee from here with my son, know that I am prepared to stop you.”

“Good day.”