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A Fish Out   Of Water
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    Page Three

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"Easy.." said Roy, helping him get it out.

Everyone else, except Mitch, began talking all at once.

The whole situation was a little too weird, even for the one who
was supposed to have seen it all before. Mitch rubbed his face with
a hand in irritated frustration, "Wait a minute. Wait a minute! Just..
Shhh!" he hissed.

Everybody moused down. Silence reigned except for the waves
and seabird cries.

"Not you, Trevor! I want you to shed some light on this whole

Trevor croaked meekly, "Well...what do you want to know?"
he said, turning back over onto the board.

Mitch let out all of his breath in one long, controlled sigh,
"Trev,...WHO'S out there?"

"A girl. My girl, uh..." he changed track. "A dreamy blonde.
She was out there by the reef buoy.." Trevor answered dutifully.

"Annnd?" Mitch encouraged with irritation.

"A-and she wanted me to go out....."

Mitch smiled, "That's better." Honey dripped from his voice.

"....there." Trevor finished, pointing out to sea.


Jill piped up, "Whoa. Whoa. Mitch, ....let me try." Jill was dubious.
"Trevor, when we got to you, you were alone. The launch just
confirmed it."

Cole looked at all the faces riging around him one by one, "No
way. No way!" his voice cracked. "Guys, I KNOW what I saw..."

Jill stood, "Yeah? Right! This is probably just another stunt of yours
trying to get me to start paying attention to you. Well, I've got news
for you. It's not going to work. "Going out into that rip was really
stupid, Trevor. You know that?"

"Jill, keep it down." stage whispered Craig. "You're gathering a crowd."

"We ALWAYS gather a crowd, or haven't you noticed?" she tossed
back, acidly sweet.

Mitch was determined to keep things civil, "Uh,.please don't..." he
pleaded. Craig and Jill stopped. Inwardly, Mitch gawked. His two senior
guards actually listened to him for once. Mitch could've gaped at them
all day..but there was pressing business at hand. "Trevor,..from the top..."

Trevor dropped his head, with a hollow clunk, back onto the long board,
"I tell you, I saw her. There was something.. a big green fish or--... You
see, ..there was this tail....a-and..."

Craig speculated, "It was pretty choppy out there. It was hard to see
much of anything, let alone fine detail. Perhaps one of your teenaged
devotees was playing a practical joke on you..."

"Good for her.." Jill quipped. "She almost managed to end your
useless l-"

"JILL!" Mitch roared.

The blonde woman stifled into tolerable rumbles.

By now, Trevor was nearly overcome with shaky exhaustion,
"I tell you.. I-I never saw that girl before in my life!" Tears
threatened to burst free, "She w-was so beautiful.."

"Try and relax now." Roy DeSoto comforted, feeling Trevor's wrist
for an updated pulse quality check. "Help is on the way. You'll
feel much better if you don't try and move around too much."

Trevor grabbed his arm, "So beautiful.. like a siren from Greek

Jill had had enough. She wasn't buying another minute of such
b*llcr*p. "Oh for Pete's sake! You're not really going to BELIEVE
him? Next, he'll probably tell us he saw a frickin' MERMAID!...I'm
going to go wait for the ambulance until it comes. Call me if
you need me."  She stormed off.

Mitch was muttled. He tried a different tact. "Listen, Trevor.. we all
know how sometimes a skipped workout or forgetting to take in fluids
can sometimes cause a cramp. So, why don't you just drop the charade
and adm--"

The distraught man nearly levitated, "I haven't missed a single morning's
workout and I never, EVER go on duty without drinking PLENTY of water
before, during, and after my working shift. Just ask Matt here!"

Matt Brody smiled in unconvincing support.

::Uh oh.:: Craig thought. ::Mitch absolutely hates conversations like this.::
He decided to sit out the coming ringside rounds by putting away the
0/2 apparatus. Craig was securing the last strap in its housing when
something glittered into the corner of his eye from the sand at the

Curious, he strode down to the hard pack and scooped up
the object before the next wave scurried it away.

Mitch and Trevor were still at it when he sauntered back over to them.

Roy gamely got a blood pressure off of the downed lifeguard despite all
the noise. He chose to keep out of the conversation wisely.

"All right, already!" the shaken Australian shouted. "Perhaps the sun
WAS a little too warm today. Perhaps I didn't see anything. Perhaps....
I was hallucinating! But I tell you, it was the most realistic hallucination
I've ever seen. I mean, I could HEAR her, smell her perfume.."

Mitch narrowed his eyes, shrugged, and mulled over it, licking dry lips.
Finally he said, "You'd be surprised by what sunstroke can lead you
to believe.."

Trevor was incredulous, "Sunstroke? Sunstr--?!" he broke off, miffed.
"All right, have it your way, guys. I didn't..see..a thing. To Jill, I was
playing up to her. To you Mitch, I had a cramp brought on by too much
sun! Ok. Fine! I didn't see ANYTHING real at ALL!"

Trevor let his head fall back, ( Matt missed catching it) with a heavy
clunk (Roy winced) and folded his arms crossly.
"Then how do you explain this?" a voice interjected. It was Craig.
He tossed the object he had found onto Trevor's chest.

It was an exquisite ivory comb encrusted with what could only be
myriads of emeralds, rubies and more of those eerie black pearls.

The group was stunned.

Trevor stuttered. "Q-Quit joking with me, guys. This isn't funny."

"Well, neither is this!" Matt said flinging the intricate pearl
and seaweed shell necklace to Cole. "We found THAT, around
your neck."

Trevor paled at the heavy weight and undeniable reality of the
crusting jewels held in this hands.

Mitch extricated the delicate comb from Trevor's numb fingers.
He gave a low whistle of appreciation. "This has got to be worth
millions..Craig, I think we should give Garner Ellerbe
and Vince Howard a call."

"Yeah.." he entoned, slinking off to the Venice Beach skate
path to do the errand.

Trevor laid back down again, "I-I-I don't feel well all of the sudden.
uh...This isn't happening to me." and he started shivering even as
his rich tan washed into transparency.

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Mitch pulled the blanket more snugly around Trevor's shoulders,
"Whoops, it's shock closing the gap. Don't fret, mate." he soothed.
"Maybe that girl you saw WAS a mermaid."  He laughed heartily
as he replaced the fallen resuscitator mask back onto Trevor's

Trevor Cole didn't smile.
For once, Trevor Cole had nothing to say.

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Roy DeSoto picked up his radio and notified Sid in dispatch
of the vital signs he had taken and asked for the ETA of
the ambulance coming to the beach tarmack parking lot near
their lifeguard tower. "Baywatch, I've a male, around 24 years of age.
Submersion blackout, now conscious with possible associated
sun poisoning. Vitals signs are : BP 90/54, Pulse 120. Respirations
are normal at 16 on ten liters of O2. Notify the attendants that
we may need cooling measures."

##Copy, Baywatch 7. Relaying to Malibu General Dispatch.##

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From:  "Roxy Dee" <>
Date:  Sun Feb 13, 2005  5:36 pm
Subject:  Something Fishy..

Hobie was free.  It was Saturday; he didn't have to worry
about anything at all. No chores, no junior lifeguards,..
nothing except the smooth ribbon of concrete weaving under
his lime green roller blades. And about his two new buddies, who
were an infuriating fifteen feet in front of him, "Chris! Carly!
No fair ducking underneath couple's arms. We race the straight
way, up the middle!" Hobie sucked in the wind between his teeth
and skated like mad down the asphalt path after his two friends.

Carly laughed, doing a 360 around a bikini clad, walkman
infested jogger, "What's the matter Hobie? Getting old? Let's go!"

"Yeah!" Chris DeSoto echoed, "Hurry up or we'll miss her!"

"Miss who?" Hobie wheezed as the three of them hit the top
landing of the Fifth Street stairs starting the descent down
to the beach sand dunes below. They vaulted over the edge....

"AhhhHHHHHH!!!" Their three kid voices sang in terrified treble.

Plastic wheels vibrated down the stone steps, threatening to
rattle the neon helmets off of their heads. Rocketing momentum
carried the trio bladers down and across the sidewalk flats at the
bottom, startling a mob of frisbee players collected along the
ocean wall, "Hey, look out!" one of them yelled, "What are ya
doing? Trying to kill someone?!"

Hobie sliced up the sharp curve with ease, "That's the idea, mister.."

"Yeahhh!" Carly hooted.

"You guys are only worth ten points, though." Chris added.

"How come only ten?" a blonde stud asked.

Chris howled, "Because you look like a Neanderthal, man. My
dad's got better lookin legs than you do."

"Why you--!!"

The brown-headed boy easily dodged a low flying beer can.

Hobie smirked. He was pulling ahead, "Come on you slackers! Get
the lead out!!"

The seabirds were getting louder by the second now. Hobie looked
down the path in eager anticipation. Deadman's Curve lay ahead
and he knew he was going too fast... He couldn't help it, a blood
curdling scream got out, "OhhhHHH  SHHIIIII---------!"

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Fortunately, his skates banked the sharp left through no volition
of their own. Hobie felt his right skate clip the leaves off an
overgrown border hedge inches away from the retaining wall's steep
drop off. He opened his eyes and was amazed to find that he was
still alive. Buoyed, Hobie surged ahead. "Ha!" he thought, "Now I'll
show them. It's time for the grand finale."

A second flight of stairs neared. Hobie swiveled, backwards,
"Top this, dudes!" he challenged.

He was airborne.

Chris and Carly gaped as their friend spun once, high in
the air. Hobie landed neatly at the bottom. Still grinning, the blonde
boy smiled at his own tenacity. He saw that his two pals had chickened
out at the last minute, buzzing the stairs nose forward. Hobie
Buchannon crowed, "Scud wads! I'm champion of the world!"

Hobie turned ahead, pleased with his success, when the sidewalk
ran out.

He had a brief impression of tan sand and blue sky. Twice. Then
he hit like a ballistic brick. A huge plume of granite crystals sprayed
high into the air. And down in a powdered arch of golden color..

Two teenagers sat up from their towels with a cry, their piled backs
festooned in earthen khaki sparkles.

"Bummer, man." Carly called from the safety of the landing.

Chris squeaked in mirth, unable to talk.

Hobie was further humiliated when two highschool aged girls rushed
up to him, "Oh!" they fluttered, "Are you ok, little boy?"

Hobie sat up, spitting out sand, "Yeah," he said holding up his detached
red helmet, "Saved by five pounds of fiberglass." Hobie faked a moan. The
girls huddled in closer. "Do me a favor, huh? Would ya kiss my owie?" he
pointed to a scraped knee.  

His would be rescuers straightened, "We're not that stupid. Don't
press your luck, kid. Why don't you flag down that more attractive
lifeguard over there?" They jogged off.

Hobie looked toward the nearest tower with brightening eyes, "Hey, yeah,
I never thought of that ang--"

A huge Arnold Swartzenegger type was assessing Hobie's status
through his binoculars. Hobie shot to his feet and waved his healthiest
hand vigorously. The lifeguard turned away.

Carly and Chris died on the sand,
"Crashed and burned!"
"Strung and hung!"
"Shut up!" Hobie scowled.
"Ooo, we're quaking." Chris teased.
Carly looked up from the skate she was unlacing, "Are you two snagwads
finished yet? Look, uh, Hobie, when you're done feeling sorry for
yourself, she's right over there."

Hobie chucked off his last skate, "Where?"

"Over by the jetty, man. You blind?"  

Carly was already light years ahead of the two of them, stepping
over the rocks at the foot of the jetty. She began gesticulately wildly,
"There she is! Come on you guys!!"

Hobie stood, but he didn't move.

"What's the matter, Hobe?" Chris asked.

"I-I can't go out there.."

"Why not?"

"It's too dangerous."

"Awww, who says?"

"My dad does. He says the rocks are loose out there. You could
fall in."

"Oh," Chris huffed, an irate hand on a hip, "And for that we're
just supposed to forget the whole thing? Not me. Suit yourself."
The irish boy lugged his skates onto a shoulder and took off for
the jetty.

Hobie fidgetted. If he was spotted on the jetty by the lifeguard,
his dad would probably find out about it. Most likely, he'd be
grounded for a whole month! But he really wanted to know who
"she" was....

Gingerly, Hobie looked up and down the beach. He saw that his
lifeguard sentinel had gone into the water for a workout. And
there were no beach patrol trucks in sight... Maybe if he was only
out there for a minute.. then immediately back again..

Hobie made up his mind, and ran after his friends.

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Garner was eating lunch. A huge chili dog and onions, insisted on
spilling all over his shoes. He groaned, trying in vain to stuff two
thirs of it into his mouth as he walked the beach. A seabird dove
low at his face."Akk! Get away!" Garner only succeeded in losing
even more cheese onto his shirt, "Ah, wonderful. Just.."

He heard the sound of truck tires behind him. He turned. It
was Craig Pomeroy on pier patrol. With him was Vince Howard.
The slender lifeguard grinned in recognition. "Hi, Garner. How's
it hangin'?" His eyes flickered to the mess running down the
policeman's shirt.

"Very funny. Did you see that? I nearly lost an eye to one of
those d*mned seagulls!"

Craig shrugged, "Well, you are eating on their beach.. and you
do look well fed and kinda slow."

Garner stopped chewing. "What does that supposed to mean?"

"Good pickings. You were easy to steal from."

Vince Howard stifled a chuckle. "A paramedic friend of mine
considers them just as foul feathered as you do."

"Glad somebody shares the sentiment. They're an absolute menace!
They should trade places with the Passenger Pigeons, man,
and become extinct!"

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A commotion drew away their attention. They heard thrashing
inside some bushes from behind a retaining wall in one of the
beach front backyards. It was followed by furious watch dog
growls and sounds of struggle. There was a hollow thud, and
suddenly, the frantic barking ending in a keening whine and

Garner instinctively ducked behind Craig's truck. He opened
the passenger side door, keeping low, "Something definitely
odd's going on over there."

Vince drew out his gun and set it muzzle forward onto
the dash board, leaving the safety on. "Let's get under some cover."

Craig nodded, waiting for Garner to get inside of the cab. Then
he drove the yellow truck into the shadows beneath some low
fronded palm trees a short distance away from the beseiged house.

They all froze as a wooden slated crate dropped right in from of
the truck's bumper. Two black trousered legs inched down the wall
and a unmasked robber dropped onto the beach sand. The figure's
eyes were so intent on the beach crowds that he never noticed the
beach truck behind him. Hands picked up the crate and the
prowler started creeping down the fence line. Garner motioned
Craig to sink down into his seat. Then he too, drew out his gun.
"Freeze, mister! Police!"

The intruder whirled and saw Garner shielded behind one truck
door, Vince behind he other, and the wink of two badges.

He ran out into the bright sunlight.

Garner flew out of the truck, "He's unarmed! Call it in!" he shouted
after putting his gun away. Ellerbee took off after him, motoring
powerfully. "Halt! Or I'll shoot!" he said anyway. Vince followed
him close on his heels, holstering his weapon as well.

The robber ignored him, gaining speed in spite of having the heavy
crate in his arms.

"Aww, man." This was just what Garner hated. An unknown assailant
loose in crowds of innocent people. He forced himself to go faster.

"What's the problem?!" Vince shouted to him as they ran side by
side together in chasing pursuit.

"A far too common tactic. He's trying to ditch us in the crowd!"

Craig saw them chase onto the sand along the water. He grabbed
the C.B mic, "Baywatch! This is Pomeroy! I'm just shy of the seventh
street cul de saac. Garner and Vince are in pursuit of a man in a black
jump suit. It looks like a robbery in progress. A pet dog was probably killed.
Roll police jeeps my way on the double! The suspect's heading north."

"10-4, Craig, " Sid answered, "They're on the way."

Craig spun tires as he went after them. He didn't know what to
do except be a visual reference for the coming police units.
He followed the chase a short distance away, clearing the beach
with his lights and siren. Beach flockers fled to either side of the
activity with startled cries. Garner felt more confident with each
passing second. So far, the robber either had no other weapon, or
he wasn't planning on using it. And the man didn't appear to be in
the greatest of physical shape either.

The intruder stumbled and grabbed a child. He hurled him into Garner
with one arm, holding tightly to the crate with the other. Garner caught
the screaming little one and absorbed the impact by rolling with him
onto the sand. He sat up cradling the boy's head, checking him over,
"You're ok, son." Garner ferociously waved Craig on ahead to intercept
the burglar. "He's ok. He's ok! Craig! Vince! Go on!"

When Craig saw the tiny boy go down, something inside of him
snapped. "..No.." The he saw Garner wave that the child was
uninjured and to stay on the man.

He did so, literally. He cranked the sirens to full volume and
sped inches away from the man's heels...

Garner was left behind.

Vince jumped onto the landing of the lifeguard truck, hanging on
by the mirror so Craig could get him closer. "Get me closer!
I'll try to tackle him!"

Up ahead, breathing hard, the running crook saw the red flashing
lights up the beach from the other responding police units coming
toward him from the north.

He swerved away from the ocean, making for the pedestrian tunnel.

"Oh, no you don't!" Craig cut him off and the robber's hip bounced
glancingly off the truck's fender.

It was time to end this chase, once and for all...

"Hang on Vince, I'm about to try something.." he warned
the Los Angeles County cop, clinging like a leech, to
his passenger door.


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Hobie negotiated the last of the salty stones at the end
of the jetty.

"There she is!" Carly called in triumph.

Hobie couldn't believe his eyes.

A small, gray dolphin frolicked in the water. Her
body was fully covered with steel blue freckles from
nose to tail and a light pink flushed her belly. She
was quite near the humans, chuckling merrily.

"Close your mouth, Hobe, or you'll gather fruit flies."
Chris quipped.

"Huh? I wonder if she's tame."

"Of course she is, Dumbo. Why else would a dolphin
like to follow people?" Carly smiled. "When we left
her this morning, she hung around by us all the way
back to the beach."

"She followed you?"

"Sure. Watch!"

Carly and Chris started down by the water's edge to
a ledge traversing the length of the manmade jetty. It's
width was very narrow.

"Be careful you guys." Hobie cautioned, as a wave sprayed
them all in a cloudy mist.

"We will." Carly said, "But you're going to have to come
with us or she won't go along."

Reluctantly, Hobie jumped down to the ledge, clinging to the
back wall like glue. The waves made him dizzy.
"Come on!!" His friends yelled over the sea's crashing din.
Hobie went. Deep inside, he was thrilling at the nearness of
the cavorting animal. She seemed to stick closest to him,
chattering to herself all the while.

They made it to the pathway at the foot of the jetty near
the concession stands in three minutes.

"Whew," Carly sighed, "I'm thirsty. Let's go get something
to drink."

"Yeah!" Chris cheered.

Hobie stopped them with a hand, "Wait a minute." he
beamed. "I've got a great idea!"

"What?" came two echoes.

"Let's go get some fish to feed Suzy."

"Why did you name her that?" Chris asked.

"Because I liked it. Well, how about it?"

His two buddies agreed, "Let's do it."

They ran around the concession stand to the bait shop
behind it. The three children had barely enough money to buy
fifty small mackerels in a styrofoam bucket.

"Must be a good day for fishing, eh, kids?" the baitman
laughed, "Gonna catch a big one for sure?"

"We already have." Chris said seriously.

"Oh, yeah? How big?"

All three of them stretchd out their arms as wide as
they could reach. "Bigger than THIS!" the blonde haired
Carly claimed, as they ran away excitedly.

"Yeah, sure." the fat man mumbled as he turned back to
his work, "Everybody's a storyteller these days."

Hobie and his friends had a wonderful time feeding Suzy.
They were so absorbed in their task, that they failed to
notice a shadowy figure sheltering under the concession
stand eaves. The figure spoke. "She's being a pig, guys,
but I'd go easy on the mackerel. She might get a sore
stomach if she overeats."

The children whirled about. The dolphin started a happy
chorus and began leaping in huge archs over and over
again in a noisy spectacle. Hobie couldn't figure that out.
Suzy wasn't acting that way before the woman came,
"Boy, she really seems to know you.." he exclaimed.

The seated woman smiled and began braiding her long
blonde hair, "Coincidence, I'm sure. See the ripples next
to the sea wall? The dolphin's spotted a school of scalpin
there. That's why she's excited."

Carly and Chris were a shy act and stayed by the dolphin.
Hobie went nearer to the skinny lady. Only then did Hobie
see that she was confined to a wheelchair. He didn't ask
about it. "What's your name? I'm Hobie Buchannon."

"That's a solid sounding name. Glad to meet you, Hobie.
I'm Cory Davison."

"Hi. The two rude ones over there are Carly and

"I know. Carly and I are very acquainted with each other."

Hobie went on eagerly, not really hearing what Cory had
just said. "They're the ones who found Suzy..."

The small woman frowned, "Su- Suzy?"

"Yeah, the dolphin. I named her." Hobie clarified.

"That's not her name." Cory said softly.

Hobie didn't quite catch what she said, "Pardon me?"

"Oh, nothing."

Hobie smiled politely and went back to his friends. Chris
poked him in the ribs with a discreet elbow, "She's
a little on the weird side, wouldn't you say?"

"Her?!" Hobie asked, jerking his head over to Cory.

Chris nodded.

"Nah,..she's just a little preoccupied, that's all." said
Hobie. "Something's made her very very sad, I think."


Image of kokoclose.jpg Image of wheelchair_lady.jpg Image of dolphinkidsfeedfish.jpg

From:  Sam Iam <lafddispatcher@y...>
Date:  Wed Feb 16, 2005  11:00 am
Subject:  A Story To Tell..

Craig decided to get the man into his element. He pulled hard
on the beach truck's wheel to the left, forcing the fugitive to
either head for the water or get run over by two tons of Chevy

A high wave tripped the robber, making him drop his precious
load. Pounds of jewels and museum artifacts poured out onto
the sand and kelp piles.

Craig's eyebrows rose, "Just look at that, will you?" he mumbled
to Vince as dozens of beachgoers scooped up the glittering booty
in greedy handfuls.

Two black and whites burst into the circle of looters,
"Don't move an inch, people!"

The arrival of the police jeeps froze everyone in their tracks.

The treasure hit the sand musically as people abandoned their

Vince and Craig and a third police unit stayed on the thief's trail,
keeping track of the man's whereabouts even through the ensuing
hubbub of the excited crowds.

Craig timed the waves and drove the truck as far onto the hard
pack as he dared.

Quite suddenly, the man dove directly into the sea, heading out.

"Got you!" Craig said as he screeched to a halt, flicking off the siren.

He stepped out of the truck but kept the rover's lights flashing
brightly for Baywatch backup to see from the tower.

Garner caught up with them, puffing badly, "He's getting away..."

Craig just smiled. "Not in those clothes he isn't." he sighed in
effected boredom, "Shall I go get him?" he asked, putting on the
elastic band of his rescue can, "You're too tired to go for a swim."

"Ha. Ha. Just be careful. He may have a knife or something."
Garner said.

Vince, just stood there, laughing. "I get it. He's as good as sunk.

"You guessed it." said Craig. "I'll be right back."

Pomeroy went in, neatly diving under the huge waves. The man
in black, on the other hand, was taking the full force of each wave
into his face.  The man sputtered, feeling the pull of his weighted
clothing trying to bear him down.

Craig noticed his troubles. "Hey mister!" he shouted across the
twenty feet separating them. "You're gonna haveta kick off your
boots and pants soon, or you're not gonna make it."

The robber coughed, "I'm doing * choke* fine.. Just stay away, ok?"

"Look, uh, sir, either you can come back to the beach now or I'll
get you after you sink in a few minutes."

"Just shut up, lifeboy. I'm trying to concentrate here."

Craig shrugged amicably, "Suit yourself.." He waited patiently, floating
easily on his can.

The exhausted robber took in a mouthful of seawater and nearly lost
his fight to remain at the surface.

Craig hovered near, pushing his float towards the man, "I think you
oughta take this now. You get any more water into your lungs, and
you'll end up getting pneumonia for sure."

"I said shut up!" He lunged for Craig, who neatly pinned him in
a shoulder tow grip. The robber was effectively immobilized.
All the fight went out of the man and he went limp, out cold, from
emotional stress.

Craig kept the man's head out of the water as he swam him to
shore, "Why do you thief guys always do this the hard way? You can't
win." He tightened his grip, "Hang on, we're almost there." he said
out of pity into the man's ear.

On the beach, a second lifeguard team had seen Craig begin his
game of wait and fetch and was now set with a warm blanket for
the comatose crook.

Image of beachpatrol.jpg Image of craiglookdown.jpg Image of burglar.jpg
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Johnny Gage was with them, standing over medical gear.

Craig couldn't help but snicker at his leisurely accomplishment.
He would be sure to not let Garner hear the end of it any time soon.
The lifeguard looked down and felt a surge of compassion for
his victim. "I wonder what drove you to steal that stuff?"

On the hot sands, Garner Ellerbe wasn't so nuturing, he just itched to
slap on a pair of solid steel handcuffs around his quarry's wrists. "Did
ya have ta hurt him at all?" he asked Craig, pausing before he even
touched the robber's limp hands.

"Nah, he fainted before any blows were needed." Craig answered.
"Go ahead and restrain him."

"Simple syncope?" Johnny Gage asked Craig, waiting for the cops with him
to search the man for hidden weapons or more jewels from the museum

"Most likely. His pulse's real regular. But he might be a bit bubbly. He
was breathing in water more than he was hurtling threats. I'd say a
mouthful or two got in."

On cue, the man woke up, rolled over, and promptly puked on the sand.

Gage scrambled backwards a few feet and moved to the man's other
side to take a blood pressure. He grinned, "Sir, never ever swim on a full
stomach. It'll always come back and bite ya. Didn't your mother ever tell you
that?" His next question to the groaning crook was straight to the point, "How
are ya doing?"

"Just peachy.. thanks. I want my lawyer. Now!" he gagged.

"You'll get one, mister, have no doubt of that. Can you tell us
your name?" asked Vince.

The robber buried his cheek in the dry sand, trying to rub some
of the wet sand off his mouth and lips. "I've a right to remain
silent.. I've a...*cough* right to an attorney. Anything I say can
and will be used against me in a--"

"..court of law. Yeah, yeah. Ok, Johnny, you can go ahead with
that oxygen.." said Vince. "I'll get his I.D. from the wallet they
just found in the yard next to the home owner's..
*he winked at the others*..dead dog." he said listening to his radio.

"That mutt's not dead!" came the robber's muffled angry reply. "I
only tranquilized him with a dart gun." he spat through his oxygen

Vince crouched down near the man's head. "Thanks for the confession,
bud. Let's see, evading arrest, assault of a minor, and now ARMED
robbery added as an upgrade." he said, writing into his report book
with a delighted flourish. "Keep it coming, mac. Honesty's real good
for the soul."

The robber clammed up, gritting his teeth hard for flapping his
gums too much.

Vince went on, "Craig, they doubly tied up the dog. According to
a neighbor, he's a watch dog tracker, who might decide to come
after a few pieces of this guy as pay back."

"That's fair enough justice in my book. Turn him loose!" Garner said sharply,
smiling hard. Then he guffawed loud and long to beat the band.
"I recognized the crate, boys. I ran by it where it was sitting on the hood
of a police jeep, while getting that kid back to his mother. It's from the
La Jolla Museum's Atlantis exhibit. Those artifacts were on our photo
briefing board at HQ as merchandise to watch out for on the black market
and in Venice Beach pawn shops."

"No kidding. Anything missing?" Vince asked him.

Image of johnnymadbricks.jpg Image of robbercaught.jpg Image of treasuresand.jpg

"Don't know yet. My boys are going over the sand with metal
detectors right now. We'll check that house out later, too,
for any more stolen items." Garner replied.

Gage cared for the man until the next set of paramedics
on the arriving street ambulance took over. "Simple faint. Mild
seawater ingestion. Elevated BP. Negative on cardiac symptoms.
The O2's precautionary for the syncope.." he reported.

Then he stepped back and the robber was carted off.

After the rig's sirens had died away, he turned to Garner, smiling,
"Any bet on your lunch still being intact on top of that picnic table?
I saw the birds harrassing you from the watch tower."

"You fellas were watching me?" grumbled Garner, trying to be happy.

"What else were we supposed to do? We're firemen trying
to learn about your trade. Of course we were watching you, we're
supposed to be acting like lifeguards, remember?"

Garner wasn't pleased that anyone saw the reason why his chili
spilled down the front of his shirt so he said nothing, concentrating
instead on getting the sand out of his shoes, socks and shorts
by brushing his hands over them and much body shaking.

Craig crossed his arms over his chest and just waited for
the outcome of the current conversation. This was deep into Garner
pet peeve territory. ::If Jill Riley were here, she'd think this
was funny as h*ll.::

The Los Angeles County firefighter paramedic stopped needling
Garner immediately and surprisingly turned politely accommodating.
"Tell you what. Let Vince and I buy you a replacement lunch.
We've learned more about beach policing today than we're ever
gonna learn at our convention. Maybe you and Craig here can
share a few more beach tricks of the trade. Like that herding stunt
both of you used to end the chase. Chet Kelly was literally rolling
on the floor because he was laughing so hard at the sheer simplicity
of it." Johnny smiled. "You should've heard him. The lifeguards thought
he was having a down and out coronary." he chuckled.

Craig Pomeroy blinked in utter astonishment when Garner Ellerbe
took them up on the offer, chattering animatedly. "O.k. Done.
Who's this Chet Kelly fellow?"

"Uhh, you'll like him. Needles worse than I do and he's a master
prankster. And he really looks up to authority figures. Cap makes
him cower all the time." Johnny related. "I tell you, he'll be the
perfect listening audience for all your stories, Sergeant Ellerbe."

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From:  "Cory Anda" <andacory@h...>
Date:  Wed Feb 16, 2005  12:30 pm
Subject:  Girl Talk and Guy Talk

It was busy in the breakroom. Two radios were going at the
same time. Most of the male lifeguards were clustered around
the coffee machine, listening to the Oakland A's game and they
were getting louder by the second.

Shauni McLane turned up the volume on her own radio. It was
a news update on the status of the escaped dolphin last seen
around Crystal Pier.

##...........Coast Guard officials lost the marine mammal when the
animal disappeared into a coral cove too shallow for the
capturing clipper vessel to continue following. ##

"Yeyy! She got away!" Shauni celebrated.

Jill looked up from her Smithsonian magazine, "Hmm?"

"The released dolphin some crazy guys let go from the Naval
Institute. It's still free.."

"Oh, oh. oh. ok." Jill sniffed, figuring it out. "It's a shame
it won't live for long."

"Won't live f-- Jill, what do you mean?" Shauni asked.

Jill chewed on her reading glasses, "Think about it. All this
creature has known is the confines of an eighty by three
hundred foot tank. There, it knew no sharks, or fishing nets,
or even the reality of a large, open area. The sheer size of the
sea has got to be overwhelming to the poor thing. Yeah, I'd
say the odds are stacked against him."

"Her." Shauni corrected, clearly becoming distraught at her
friend's speculations.

"Whatever. Shauni, it sounds like this is really getting to you.
Maybe you should stop listening to all the new flashes until
things settle down."

Shauni sat a little straighter in her chair, "I don't think I'm over
reacting. It's just that dolphins are"

Jill stifled the broad smile threatening to surface, "Uh, huh. And..
you want to know what uses the Navy might have planned for her
in case she ends up back at the Institute?"

"Well, that thought did cross my mind." Shauni admitted.

Jill relaxed into her seat, once again amazed at people's
curiosity over dolphins.


As a graduate student, Jill Riley had once been as attracted to them.
In fact, Jill had spent four years on an exploration vessel traveling
the world, filming the friendly animals.

And she had past up one or two marriage proposals because of her
rich devotion to her work. Jill liked to think that those failed
relationships hadn't effected her; she was wrong. Eventually, Jill
linked up with a biology professor at the University of San Diego
as a teaching assistant.

One day, Dr. Croft and she were in his office, grading papers, when
he suddenly collapsed from a massive heart attack. Jill was horrified.
She didn't know what to do for him. She had never taken a first aid class
in her life. It took only two minutes for CPR trained people to arrive but
nothing seemed to help. Dr. Croft was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Jill never forgot that day. She felt herself entirely at fault. She couldn't
stop thinking that somehow, her own ineptness could have possibly
contributed to her mentor's early death.

She abandoned her job at the college and enrolled herself into every
first aid class she could find, vowing never to be caught unprepared in
such a situation ever again. Her new schooling took her into the budding
paramedical field with Karen, the first female paramedic in Los Angeles,
and then onto beach lifeguarding.

That had been seven years ago; but she never forgot her time with
the dolphins. They were always going to be a part of her, like Professor
Croft had once been.


Jill Riley smiled at her young friend, "Uses for dolphins,.. oh, let me see now."
She met Shauni's gaze with a reluctant look, "What do you want first? The
good news or the bad news?"

"Give it to me straight, " Shauni breathed, "I can't stand it."

"Well, ... the navy has been known to...strap bombs on their backs..and--"

Shauni sucked in her breath, "Ooo, they don't!" she fervently wished.

Jill bit her lip, nodding. "Yeah, they do. I once saw some photographs
from Pig's Bay, Cuba, where a dolphin took out a passenger ferry
liner accidently instead of his target dummy boat. I mean, there was
absolutely nothing lef--" she broke off. "I'm sorry, you didn't want to
hear that." Jill frowned.

Shauni held up her hands in supplication. "No, no. It's all right.
I asked for it." She took a huge gulp of her coffee and grimaced;
it was cold.

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A Fish Out   Of Water
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