Second Chances: In With The Old

A new year brings changes to the Simon family, with one Simon learning to let go of old ideas, and another in danger from an unknown enemy. Only with the help of friends and the next generation of Simons can they survive both situations.

(This is a work of fiction. No money is being made on it, and the characters are owned by Universal Studios and are only being borrowed for a little while. .)

A/N: For any new readers, "Second Chances" is my "what if?" for Rick and A.J. Simon...What if they didn't end the partnership or A.J. didn't marry Janet or Liz... What if Rick had a long-lost sweetheart who needed protection from a crazed stalker? And...what if Rick and his girl fell in love, adopted her niece and nephew, and made a home first in San Diego, then in Arizona? These "what if''s" are the basis for my continuing "Simon & Simon" as if they never went off the air. This series also includes crossovers from Six Million Dollar Man/Bionic Woman and Dark Shadows...so feel free to read my other stories for the whys and wherefores of these three worlds meeting

"Three, two, one….Happy New Year!"

On the television the old standby was kissing his wife in front of the crowd at Times Square, while in the old ranch house various members of the Simon family were engaging in the same thing.

"Many, many more, Mom, Dad..thank you so much for making us so happy!" Laurie Simon joyfully hugged Oscar Goldman and his new bride Cecilia Simon Goldman.

Grinning like mad, Rick Simon took his turn, embracing his mother then making a show of clasping Oscar's hand while saying, "Yeah, thanks for making her an honest woman, Dad…."

"Very funny, son…but I'll ignore that because …." Cecilia began, then burst into laughter as Oscar broke in, "because it's true!"

As the group of friends and family joked along, Rick noticed his younger brother A.J. determinedly not joining in, but knocking back a beer.

"Hey, little brother, Happy New Year!" Rick picked up his glass and clinked it against A.J.'s can.

"Oh, Happy New Year to you too, Rick….and thanks for having us stay over…..that ice on the road was something…" he replied, brightening as his wife Linda came over and planted one on his cheek.

"Thank God you're such a good driver, honey….there's no way we'd have made it, Rick, if it weren't for A.J.'s getting us here…"she added, as her brother-in-law slung an arm around her.

"Well, I did teach him everything he ….hey, watch it!" Rick howled as A.J. poked him indignantly.

"Excuse me….but I learned from the best…Mom."

"Well, the basics, but who taught you to do a donut?" Rick puffed out his chest when A.J. admitted reluctantly, "You did….much good that's done!"

"We'll we want the Simon School of Driving to go into session as soon as Robin takes Health and Safety next year…." Linda giggled, as her husband kissed her.

"That'll help, no more rides to school until Melly goes to High School." He added with a wink.

Just then a loud howl from the corner of the living room let them know the youngest Simon was tired of celebrating. Immediately it was a race between Robbie Simon and his father to pick up Chelsea from her car seat.

"What's the matter, little elf? You tired of noisemakers?" Rick got there first and whisked the teary eyed infant into his arms.

"I think so, Pop….just look…" he marveled, as Chelsea, stopped in mid-wail to look up at her grandfather. "She really takes to you."

"That's because she knows who's going to baby-sit her and take her on rides.." Rick bragged, then gently handed her off to Robbie.

"And her daddy's going to take care of her and keep all the big bad boys from bothering her…" he added, smiling as Chelsea yawned then went to sleep.

"Boy, she's really a daddy's girl….look at that." Ramona got up from the sofa where she'd been laughing at the two men, then took the baby and whispered, "Bedtime."

"Honey, can I put her to bed?" Cecelia asked, and beamed when Ramona handed her Chelsea. "Thanks, Grandma….I think she'll sleep extra good tonight."

"You're right, Ramona….somebody's had a big day….yes, she has…." Cecilia cooed at the child, then whisked her off to the guest bedroom.

"Told you, honey that you made Mom's year." Rick smiled as Ramona blushed.

"Well, she makes mine everyday….Dad, did you know Grandma started a Christmas Club for Chelsea, just like the other kids?"

"Yes, and your mother and I did the same thing….we never want either of you to worry about money." Rick explained, turning red as his daughter-in-law kissed his cheek.

"Thanks to you and Mom, neither of us have. You've always supported us, and starting the New Year with no bills really eases my mind."

"Well, after all the years of scrimping and saving that your uncle and I did….it's only right, honey." He began, only to be interrupted by the phone ringing.

"I'll get it, Pop…" Robbie grabbed the extension, answering "Simon residence."

Suddenly the color drained from his face as he blurted, "When did it happen?" Rick saw Laurie come out from the kitchen, a terrified look on her face.

"Son?" he whispered, and immediately Robbie mouthed, "It's Ricky …he's been in an accident. .get Uncle A.J…"

Immediately Rick turned and went into the kitchen, where his brother was helping empty the trash can. Linda was holding the garbage bag, and the smile on her face when she saw Rick froze when she saw his expression.

"A.J…..Linny, go ahead and leave that….Robbie wants you….there's been an accident."

He began, then motioned the couple to follow him. Immediately Laurie stepped forward and took the bag from her sister-in-law as A.J. trailed his brother into the living room.

Already Robbie had hung up the phone and was scribbling a note. A.J. came up to him and asked, "Son, what's happened?"

"Uncle A.J…..it's Ricky…." Robbie swallowed hard but kept going. "There was an accident near the Heritage…did he and his friends go to a party there?"

"Yes…he and Stacie Lyn and some of his stunt friends…why?" A.J.'s face crumpled

when the young sheriff told him, "There was an accident on the street outside the hotel, one car tried to pass another car, then a driver going the wrong way hit both cars and they crashed. Everyone in the first car died, as well as the passenger in the one going the wrong way. The second car….Uncle A.J.. it was Ricky's car…the police say the driver was killed instantly."