Dinner Party

Chapter 1

"Will you walk into my parlour?"

Mason and Julia were dressing for a dinner party.
"Why in the wide world is your father gathering all these people?" asked
Julia. "Kirk Krenstone, Robert Barr, Cruz Castillio, Peter Flint,Keith
Timmons..Is it an attempt to discover the fittest?"
"No- rather to replay the Leipzig folksbattle."
"Fine! And what empire is expected as first?"
" I suppose, Japan - in the magnificent personality of Kirk" came the
ready answer.
"I am not sure that Japan took part in that battle"-Julia was evidently
non-plussed.
"We are doing it on a larger scale" reassuringly smiled Mason.

Mason and Julia entered the sitting-room. Among those already present
were:1) Kirk, busily calculating how much dynamite it would take to
convert the Capwells mansion into a model of early Celtic pyramides,
2)Barr,mentally sizing up the emerald ornament of the fireplace, 3)
Castillo, trying to figure out the number of handcuffs necessary for the
hold-up of this merrry company.
"I gathered you here to inform you" began CC...
"That Eden made up her mind to return to me" cut in Castillo with the
implacability of a unicorn confronted with the theory of the
impossibility of his existence.
Kirk reached for his revolver evidently about to confirm his reputation
of the man who first shoots - and then asks questions.
Cruz immediately cocked his with the professional gesture of a superman-
one who survived a 5 years "modern Zorro or Brave new world " course in
Police Academy and sometimes actually managed to hit the target.
Robert put himself between them, mentally cursing the Dobbsons for the
allotted him portion of noble- mindedness.
"Sorry for interrupting you, gentlemen, but" began he.
"Someone stole my diamond!" exclaimed CC who was evidently bent on being
the sole director of the show.
"Now your shares will slide down" stated Barr joyfully."Tomorrow
Capwell - Enterprisers will be mine".
"I will kill you!"CC succumbed to the example set by Castillo and
Crenstone and produced a revolver.
Robert, having found himself facing 3 weapons, felt the thrill of a
gladiator in front of a troop of valiant USA marines.
"I am gratly flattered by your atention, gentlemen, but it seems to me I
hardly deserve to be the lion of this party" –Here he was interrupted. Brandon shot into the room and
breathlessly announced:"The keys of your safe are gone!"
"Never mind" smiled Barr. " I will open your safe with the carefree
adroitness of legal blindness"
"I will enlighten you" sprang up Cruz.
"I will kill you" repeated CC with the iron determination of an atomic
reactor.
"CC, as far as I know there are no DIYmanuals on safe - breaking on sale
yet. You need me" tried to reason with the new Terminator Barr.
"You may shoot" announced Quinn suddenly entering the room. "May I
introduce myself? Robert Barr-2. No Eden - related problems. Improved
compatibiliti with the Capwells in toto."
"I am the only Robert Barr" protested Robert." All falsifications are
prosecuted. The law.."
"The law- cest moi." informed everyone Keith Timmons triumphantly
entering the parlour.
"The also-ran list is now complete" summed up Mason.