Tum nodded silently, agreeing with everything they had and hadn’t said. Colt, however, had something else on his mind now that his primary issue had been resolved.
“I just realized something.”
“What?” Rocky said absently, doing a couple of knee bends before reaching up to stretch. It was nearly lunch time; maybe he could get inside and nab the last of the roast beef before his voracious brothers (Tum Tum) got to it.
“You agreed with me.”
“Yes. That happened. DOn’t get used to it.” He retorted dryly.
“No. I mean you actually agreed and said that Grandpa was wrong.” Colt moved to face him, his eyes sparkling with mischief. “You, Rocky, Mister Self-Control and Discipline, sensei is always right, I am stone and occasionally a Rock-bot, actually said that our wise and honorable Grandfather was wrong.” His voice was full of awe. “Tum, I think he was officially hit in the head too many times.”
“Either that, or he was abducted by aliens.” Tum said thoughtfully, striking a defensive stance. “Who are you and what’d you do with Rocky?” He demanded, before snickering and relaxing. “And whatever you did, you can keep him. We like this one better already.”
“Oh yeah? We’ll see about that!” Rocky cried, lunging.
Tum yelped, and took off, with both of his brothers hot on his heels. In the kitchen, their grandpa shook his head, watching their antics. As smart and as keenly observent as his boys were, they were still kids who often missed the obvious – like the wide open window, through which he had heard the entire conversation. Despite Colt’s assumptions, he knew that they had not fought with the intention of becoming heroes, or wanting attention. Still, the sound of the flowers lesson was timely, and a good one to have, so he would let the impulsive teen keep his misconceptions for now. He resolved to do a bit of research on this Jack Harding and his lackeys, just in case. After the trouble with Synder and the alarming tendency of corrupt men to use children in order to control the adults, one could never be too careful. He’d give his son in law a call at the FBI tomorrow.
Rocky, Colt, and Tum Tum burst into the house, dishelved and dirty. Tum Tum leapt over the couch, putting it between him and his brothers. “C’mon guys!” he whined. “I was only joking!”
“Uh huh.” Rocky agreed.
“Sure you were.” Colt added.
They bracketed the couch, each stalking from a different direction. Tum split his gaze between them and the couch, gauging the distance to go back.
“Ahhh!” He bolted, but they moved faster, pinning him to the couch and tickling unmercifully as he laughed and squirmed. Colt sat on his chest, and Rocky his legs as Mori cleared his throat loudly. They shot him identically innocent smiles.
The man stifled a smile. “Rocky. Colt. Have you seen your brother? It is lunch time.”
“Nope, haven’t seen him. Rocky?”
“Not in the last few minutes, but Grandpa, you should really get your couch replaced. It’s all lumpy. Especially right here.” he sat down hard, eliciting a muffled grunt. “Oh, hey Tum. Didn’t see you there.”
“I’m gonna kill you–”
“Boys. Cease fire and wash up for lunch.” Mori interjected, amused.