"My God….not another" Derek thought.  "Why does it, seem to come in great waves."  "Either we have demons, evil and destruction at our every turn or worse…contributors, who want dinner parties in their honor for artifacts hardly worth the appetizers and salad course."  Nothing seemed to be going right.  First a call from the Ruling House in London about a report that should have been filed two months ago.  Then because of a "you must visit the Montreal House" command, not a request, I get stranded in not one but two airports due to fog.  Ice fog at Montreal International Airport and regular, thick  'can't let a plane fly' fog in Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.  Finally, arriving home just to find the house staff mulling about making preparations for some ambassador from some obscure country bringing an artifact for "contribution" to the Luna Foundation,  "And on top of all of this, why can't I get this damn tie tied!" Derek yelled in frustration. 

"Want some help?"  The offer came from behind him.  He forgot he left the door open to his bedroom.  He had opened it, was going downstairs and remembered he had forgotten his bow tie.  He came back, stood in front of the full-length mirror to put it on. He was dressed in a black tuxedo with tails like a symphony conductor would wear. While Derek was not real fond of 'tails', he usually went with whatever made that night's dignitary feel comfortable.  While trying to tie the tie, his thoughts recounted his past 48 hours.  The more he thought, the more frustrated he got. He turned around and saw Rachel standing in the doorway.  Black was a stunning color on her.  He made a mental note of how particularly stunning she looked tonight.  Rachel walked forward, took his tie in hand, placed it around Derek's shirt collar and made the perfect bow.

"Alright, let's go," she said in her best Irish brogue.  Rachel took Derek's arm, smiled and they both walked out of his bedroom, shutting the door.  In the hallway they ran into Nick, who was waiting for Alex to show up.  She was coming out of her room.  Today, of all days, was the need for manners and protocols.  But Derek saw Nick's upper lip curl into a smirk and he knew a wisecrack was about to be said.  "So are you two going to join us downstairs, or would you preferred to be alone up here?" Nick asked.  "No..…we will join you downstairs.  How else will we guarantee you will stay out of trouble!" Derek said with a smirk on his face.  Nick's smirk disappeared.   Rachel chuckled quietly and Alex walked up with this 'What–did-I-miss' look.  Before Nick could make a comeback remark, Henderson, the butler came upstairs to announce that the guests were arriving.  Rachel took Derek's arm again and started down the stairs.  Before disappearing, Derek stopped and turned back to look at Nick. "Please leave your weapons, upstairs.  This is a dinner party, not some saloon, waiting to be shot up like the OK Corral."  This time Rachel smirked and Alex laughed (not so quietly) and Nick's mouth dropped open in disbelief.  After Derek and Rachel disappeared, Alex turned back to Nick to say something, only to see Nick remove a gun from the back of his cummerbund.  He walked into his room, removed the clip, put both in a lock box and placed the box in the weapons portion of the dresser.  Alex stood in the doorway.  "How could you?" Alex asked with surprise and disbelief in her voice.   "What….it's not like we had time to research the ambassador's background before this dinner party."  "For all we know this could be Evil entering the LEGACY house" Nick stated with a bite in his voice.

"Or just some ambassador, plain and simple." Alex said grabbing Nick's arm, "Let's go."  Derek and Rachel were already mingling among the guests when Nick and Alex arrived.  Like Derek, Nick wore a black tux with tails. "With tails…" Nick thought.  "This ambassador liked tux with tails....And if the next one prefers Scottish kilts and no underwear, then what?" Nick said quietly under his breath.  "Did you say something, Nick?" Alex inquired. "No," Nick answered.  "Then what is wrong?" Alex asked.  "Nothing that wearing his jeans and black leather jacket would not fix," Derek said before Nick could respond to Alex's question.  Nick turned to Derek. "Who knew being stranded and lack of sleep would make you so witty?" Nick said in a slightly sarcastic voice.  Before another word could be uttered, Rachel took Derek and Alex took Nick to other parts of the gathering.  Derek saw the ambassador making his way towards him.  He expressed his gratitude to Derek for hosting the party on such short noticed.  The ambassador apologized; thinking dinner would be late.  Before Derek could respond, Henderson came out and announced dinner was ready.  Almost everyone looked surprised.  Nick, Alex and Rachel put their drinks to their lips to stifle an on coming laugh. "Shall we eat?" Derek inquired in this slightly surprised voice.  Everyone moved towards the dinning room.  Earlier that day Nick, Alex and Rachel unbeknownst to Derek, witnessed him apologizing to the staff.  He knew their cooking was excellent, but while he was stranded in the Seattle-Tacoma Airport, Derek had learned of the dinner party when he made a call to the London House. He then woke up a friend at a prestigious restaurant in San Francisco and placed his order. This catered dinner would be ready before time and they could get the guest in and out and he could go to bed, for some much needed rest.  Derek escorted the ambassador's wife in and Rachel escorted the ambassador.

The meal was excellent.  Appetizer, were Oysters Rockefeller. Next was Caesar Salad and San Francisco Oyster Stew.  The main course was tender breaded Calamari with a California Chardonnay mixed with dill dipping sauce, boiled new baby red potatoes in butter and basil. Vegetable was asparagus with mock hollandaise sauce.  Dessert was a vanilla sorbet', with a few shaved pieces of San Francisco's finest chocolate, Ghiradeli and mock butter wafers.  All of the mock items were because of the ambassador's health.  In the living room, varies liquors were served.  Cognac, champagne, scotch, wine as well as non-alcoholic drinks.  The coffee was a deep roast Kona coffee from Hawaii.  Nick, Rachel and Alex tried not to be obvious as they kept looking at their watches, wondering when this event would end.  "How much longer?" Derek thought.  Suddenly, a sharp, tingly sound rang out in the room.  The ambassador was hitting his champagne glass with a spoon.  A $100, crystal champagne glass.  But it was worth it.  Now for the presentation by the ambassador...blah…blah…blah…artifact given… blah…... blah.. blah… accepted… blah.. blah…. more drinksblah..blah…guests leaveand sleep.  "So Dr. Rayne, please accept this artifact on behalf of my country."  Derek came back from wherever his mind had wondered to and without missing a beat, proudly accepted the artifact for the Luna Foundation.  But at a second glance Derek's face showed alittle concern.  The artifact was totally black. The base was shaped as a pyramid, but not all three sides were of equal length.  It tapered from bottom to top and at the top point, there was a cobalt blue stone in it, which gave off a strange glow.  Derek made his acceptance speech on behalf of the Luna Foundation and placed the artifact in a case in a room off of the living room.  More drinks..blah..blah.  But before leaving, the ambassador and his wife held out their glasses as the ambassador poured the contents from his flask.

He told Derek he wanted to make one last toast and that Derek and Rachel had to fill their glasses from what he was drinking. 

"What harm could there be…after all the ambassador has been drinking from this flask all night?" Derek thought.  "Okay, we will, as long as there isn't any alcohol," Derek said quietly to the ambassador while looking toward Rachel.  Rachel nodded in agreement.  The ambassador assured them that there wasn't any. Rachel held out her glass along with Derek and the ambassador filled them. "To long life and pleasures soon to come", the ambassador said with a twinkle in his eye. "To long life and pleasures soon to come," everyone echoed and then drank.  Before leaving for the night, the ambassador's wife put something in Rachel's hand and whispered to her not to look until she was back in her room, by herself.  Rachel agreed.  Everyone was gone and the staff had cleaned up.  "Well I'm off to bed," Nick said starting up the stairs.  "Don't forget to get your kilts ready for the next dinner party," Derek said with a playful tone and a smirk on his face. "Yeah….right", Nick said and mumbled something else under his breath removing his bow tie as he walked upstairs. "Well, I'm off to bed," Alex said.  "Well I guess I'll be heading up also, " Rachel said as she started towards the stairs.  "Would you share one more night cap with me?" Derek inquired, while popping the cork on champagne.  "Derek, you know I do not drink." Rachel responded as she stood up.  "Not even if it is sparking peach cider." Derek responded as he turned around.

"Well in that case, how could I refuse one last night cap." Rachel said with a glee in her voice.   Derek poured Rachel a glass and he lifted his glass of French cognac.  "To a wonderful and short evening" Derek said. "And pleasures soon to come,"  Rachel added.  They drank.  "What made you say that?" Derek asked. "Not sure, it just seemed fitting," Rachel responded. "Why", she asked. "Because I was also thinking it and was about to say the same words and you beat me to it." Derek replied. "Well you know what they say, "Great minds think alike."" Rachel chimed.  She finished her drink and again bade Derek good night.  She made her way to her room and shut the door.  She stood at the door and suddenly something came over her.  She felt such warmth and had no idea where it was coming from.  Normally Rachel slept in a tee shirt and sweat pants.  But tonight she laid out on the bed a long black nightgown with matching robe.  Next to the gown was the gift that the ambassador's wife had given Rachel.  It was a miniature replica of the artifact Derek had received from the ambassador.  Rachel put on the gown and the necklace.  She felt light-headed as though she had been drinking.  She heard something and strained her ears to determine what it was.  Someone was playing a seductive, melodious tune on the piano.  Rachel left her room to see who it was.  When she got downstairs to the piano, she found Derek sitting there.  He was dressed in a long, black silk robe and black silk pajama pants.  It was unusual to see Derek this way.  He always maintained certain decorum about himself, when he had guests in the house.  The bathrobe fell slightly opened as Derek continued to play, revealing a very sexy chest, and around his neck was also a replica of the artifact.  He looked up to see Rachel standing just beyond the piano.  "Thought you went to bed..?" Derek questioned. "I was, until I heard the music and had to come to see who was playing such a seductive tune." Rachel said as she moved towards Derek. "You found it seductive." Derek asked as he still continued to play.  "Seductive music, played by a very seductive man." Rachel said as she sat down next to Derek.  "Seductive…not sexy" Derek asked as he rose from the piano bench and went over to pour himself a glass of cognac.  "Pour me one, please," Rachel said as she got up and walked towards Derek. 

With one hand Rachel took the glass of Cognac and started sipping it.  Her other hand she placed inside Derek's robe and started fondling his chest.  Derek tried to pour himself a glass, which wasn't easy with Rachel's hand on his chest providing a definite distraction.  With a little less than half a glass of cognac left, Rachel threw back her head and downed the glass.  Derek's eyes widen and he followed suit.  Rachel open Derek's robe and began kissing his chest.  Derek removed Rachel's robe and started kissing her neck, making way to her ample bosom.  Their heads were swimming with such a lust that Derek picked Rachel up and carried her to the next room, the room where the artifact was. Both of their necklaces' stones, started glowing, as did the stone on the artifact.  Derek laid Rachel on the floor and started kissing her more wildly.  Something was coming over him, and try as he might, he could not stop.  Rachel removed Derek's robe, exposing his chest even more. Derek pulled down both shoulder straps of Rachel's gown, not quite exposing her breast.  He continued to kiss her neck and the top round of her breasts.   They were so involved with the heat of the moment that they did not see the ambassador or his wife standing over them.  Nick had been out on his usual perimeter patrol. Whenever he was forced to attend events, significant and insignificant, he always found it relaxing when he got back into a routine.  He always patrolled around the island before heading off to bed.  His solemn vow was to protect Angel Island and The Legacy as best he could.  This dedication came from his days as a Navy Seal. Feeling that all was safe, Nick started back to the house when he heard the music. Figuring it was either Derek or Rachel, Nick spied through the window, to see which one it was.  Derek would not be semi-dressed and playing the piano, Nick thought to himself. Before he could turn away, Nick saw Rachel coming down the stairs.  Seeing how Rachel was dressed, Nick decided to keep watching. 

As he was watching through the window, he remarked to himself that they did not normally behave like that and while he was alittle astonished, he had no true concerns.  He had always thought Derek should learn to lighten up or at least have more pleasures in his life.  Nick found himself smiling when he saw Rachel placing her hand on Derek's chest. He was so busy watching Rachel's hand on Derek's chest, making a mental note of the seduction scene, that he did not see the glass of liquor in Rachel's hand.  But when Rachel threw her head back and down the drink, that is when his heart skipped several beats. At first Nick thought, "she is an alcoholic and can't be drinking real liquor."   Nick knew what it took Rachel to beat that "demon" and knew she would never go back there.  Then Nick saw Derek down his and knew they both were drinking cognac, since that was all Derek ever had as a night cap.  "We've got a problem," Nick said to himself, as he saw Derek pick Rachel up and take her to the other room. Nick pulled out his gun out from behind his back, headed towards the back door of the house, and made his way to the control room via the back stairwell.   His days as a Navy Seal taught him, never to rush into a  situation without first learning all he could.  In the control room, he started surveying the room with the piano in it.  "Nothing, not even on infra-red." Nick swore under his breath and change the monitor to the artifact room. There he saw Derek and Rachel half-dressed and still pawing at each other.  "Great, now my resume will read, ex Navy Seal, member of the Luna Foundation and San Francisco Legacy House's own voyeur."  Nick knew he had to get to the bottom of what the hell was going on.  If it truly was them acting like themselves, while not wise, they deserved it.  But once he had seen Rachel down the liquor, he knew he had to investigate the situation. Derek was all about decorum and decency.

He would have played this scenario out in his room, in private. To put Rachel in a situation of someone catching him or her and embarrassing either of them was not Derek's style.  Nick saw something, faintly moving on camera.  Once he saw the ambassador and his wife materialize, he picked up his gun, loaded a round into the gun chamber and headed downstairs with his infra-red goggles in case the intruders decided to de-materialize.  The ambassador and his wife were so taken by the passion that was passing between Derek and Rachel, they did not see Nick standing behind them.  They did, however, hear him as he cocked the gun and dare them not to move for he would shoot.  Derek and Rachel were still at it on the floor.  "How did you get in here and what have you done to them?" Nick asked with anger in his voice.  "We gave them pleasures…something they both needed.  They explained it was like A Mid-Summer Night's Dream.  Like Puck, no harm meant.  Nick demanded they make Derek and Rachel stop.  Nick tried to explain that this was out of character for both of them.  "If this continues, nothing will be the same between them", Nick stated.  The ambassador and his wife both smiled, sorrowfully apologized and then disappeared before Nick's eyes. Nick immediately pulled the goggles down to his eyes and started looking for them.  "Wonder if a shoot out would have worked." Nick question under his breath. Satisfied that they were gone, Nick returned to the Relics room, where Rachel and Derek were still kissing passionately on the carpeted floor.  Nick realized that the moment was getting ready to move to another level, when he saw Rachel, slowing removing Derek's pajama pants.  Nick put his gun back in his waistband.  He noticed that the artifact's gem in the case was glowing.  From the corner of his eye, he saw the gem glowing on Rachel's neck.  When they rolled over, he saw that Derek was also wearing the same thing.  He grabbed Derek's chain along with Rachel's and yanked them off their necks.

He took the necklaces outside and with the butt of his gun, smashed the blue stone on them.  Nick went back inside and arrived at the Relics room to find Derek and Rachel both unconsciouses on the floor.  "Good thing, one more moment and they both would have been totally naked," Nick said under his breath.  Derek's robe was off and his pajama pants were down enough to reveal the top of his butt.  Thank God, he was lying on his stomach.  Rachel's gown was slightly down, still covering the majority of her breasts, but Derek had hiked it up quite a bit on the bottom to reveal Rachel's bare leg up to the bottom curve of her butt.  Nick raised Derek slightly and pulled up his pajama bottom, picked up Derek's robe and placed Derek over his shoulder. With a deep grunt Nick lift up and carried Derek up the stairs and put him to bed. "Mid Summer's Night Dream, hopefully they will have no memory at all." Nick thought as he looked down at Derek.  He went back downstairs, pulled the bottom of Rachel's gown down and placed the gown back on her arms.  He grabbed her robe and carried her upstairs.  After putting Rachel to bed, he left her room chuckling to himself. The next morning Nick was downstairs with Alex when Rachel and Derek arrived. They looked none the worst.  Although Rachel had, had alcohol, it appeared to have had no effect on her.  Derek also appeared to be fine. The only thing Derek and Rachel wanted was coffee.  "So how was your night?" Nick asked.  "Fine, slept like a baby," Rachael responded.  "Uneventful.  Why do you ask?" Derek asked noticing a smirk on Nick's face. "No reason….." Nick said as he sipped his coffee.  "Well I have to get back to the control room to research our new addition to the artifacts." Alex said as she left the kitchen.  Nick got up and before leaving the kitchen, raised his coffee mug and said "To long life and pleasures soon to come" and left.  Derek looked at Rachel.  They both felt a chill and quickly it past. 

They continued to drink their coffee, not sure, what was going on, but decided to leave well enough alone.  "Somethings are better not knowing" they both thought as they drank their coffee.