Book From Here To Everywhere

Mid-June - The White House
The First Lady, Madelyn Hargrove, raised up on one elbow
and reached across her husband of twenty-four years, turning the
alarm off just before it would start its soft chiming. The middleaged
president had been fitfully tossing and turning in his sleep,
awaking his light-sleeping wife. Noting the time on the alarm clock,
she gently put her arm on his shoulder and pressed her soft lips to his
perspiring brow.
“Hmm...” he murmured, propping open one blurry eye, “I was
having a bad dream. Was I disturbing you again?”
“Just a little, but I was ready to get up any way. I have a big day
planned for Maryann,” Madelyn said as she adjusted her pillow and
sat up in the luxurious 4-poster presidential bed.
“You’re going to spoil that girl rotten if you haven’t already,” he
sat up in bed and began rubbing the sleep from his eyes. He looked at
his still-gorgeous wife with her auburn shoulder-length hair, thinking
even in the early morning, she could pose for a fashion magazine.
“Ever since she’s been home from school, you’ve scheduled her every
moment. I don’t think that girl has had any time to herself. She is
an adult now with a mind of her own. We need to start treating her
that way.” The strong voice of the president indicated both pride and
protectiveness of his only offspring. Maryann just graduated from
the exclusive all-girl’s eastern school they had chosen to send her
To Diana
-Heavenly Father took her to his bosom much too
Chapter 1

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just before his election. Political critics said it was sure to cost them
points in the polls, but where he chose to educate his daughter
hadn’t mattered in the least to the voting public. He easily won
the election, a surprise considering his newness to politics. The
former electronics firm CEO, a novice to politics when he ran for
governor of California, had the fresh charm of a new face and no
political baggage from failed campaigns. The national party eagerly
nominated him for President to overcome the embarrassment of the
previous scandal-ridden administration.
Madelyn seemed to ignore his comments as she said; “I’m
taking Maryann by train to Richmond today. Some of the senator’s
wives and I will be having a luncheon there and then Maryann and I
are going shopping. She needs a special gown for her first real coming
out party,”
“I would really prefer you flew,” her husband said firmly. “The
more I look at that rail transportation bill, the more I realize how
out-of-repair the whole rail system is. I don’t feel safe with you taking
the train.”
“Darling, I think you worry too much,” reaching over and
mussing his still-full head of jet-black hair. “This has been planned
for weeks and Richmond is not cross-country, so we should be fine.
After all, we do have our Secret Service escort to protect and look
out for us”.
The First Husband knew from past experience he was
outmatched in the argument, so he dropped it, not telling her
his disturbing dream included trains, thinking maybe he had been
concentrating too much on the railroad improvement bill. Late
yesterday, he had been busily reviewing the report of the National
Railroad Transportation Safety Board regarding the Oklahoma City
accident. A rail tanker car had jumped the track on an overpass on
a major traffic artery into the city, exploding in a murderous fireball,
enveloping several unwary travelers. He knew the disaster could have
been much worse had it happened an hour later during rush hour
traffic. The transportation board had no conclusive answers as to the
cause of the accident, but was leaning towards a deterioration of the
track as a contributing factor.
Down the hall of the executive mansion, the object of their
conversation, Maryann Violet Hargrove, awoke to her mother’s
gentle tapping at the door.
“Time to get up, sweetheart. We have a busy day ahead of us. I
do hope you had a restful sleep after last night’s gala.”
Maryann stretched and gave a wide yawn as she watched her
mother walk to the window and open the curtain letting the morning
light in. She watched the bright morning rays sparkle on the shinning
“Today is our trip to Richmond to pick out a spectacular ball
gown for you. Aren’t you excited?”
Maryann tried to match her mother’s enthusiasm as she slipped
out of bed and into her slippers and pink robe. She stepped to the
vanity and started combing her flaxen hair. The mirrored reflection
was a younger version of her still very attractive mother. “I guess, but
I’m having difficulty getting into this whole debutante thing.” She
shook her head as the blond trusses fell behind her shoulder, causing
an alluring sight in the mirror with her mother’s reflection in the
Noting the coquettish look being reflected by the mirror,
Madelyn was reminded of her conversation, but being her mother
for twenty-one years; the First Mom wasn’t quite ready to yield that
motherly influence. “I understand. You’re just having an adjustment
from school. You’ll get into the spirit of it once we start on our trip
today.” Madelyn completed adjusting the window sash, and faced her
daughter brightly saying, “Senator Gloria Steedham is bringing her
daughter along too. You saw her at the dinner last night.”
Maryann recalled Joyce had a handsome escort with her and
seemed to be caught up in her own world last evening. “Mother, she
hardly said two sentences to me all evening. She was too involved
with her escort.”
“Yes, I noticed that too, Madelyn said seriously. “They seemed
to be getting more intimate than they should unless he is more than
just an assigned escort for the occasion. I think I’ll talk to Gloria to

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“Mr. President! Mr. President! Wally Tasker, head of the Secret
Service, came rushing into the Oval Office with a cell phone held
close to his left ear, an odd match for the standard Secret Service
earpiece in his right ear.
President Hargrove was sitting in the Oval Office with his
personal confidant, Mark Petersen, White House chief of staff and
Senator Henry Carmichael, his chief liaison in the senate. The three
were working on how to present the Railroad Bill to improve its
chances for passage. They quickly looked up at the anxious and
usually very composed Wally as he took a second to catch his
“Mr. President, we’ve just been informed the train your wife
and daughter are on has jumped its track halfway to Richmond
and several rail cars are hanging over a precipice. We’ve dispatched
rescue helicopters, but they may not get there before some of the
railcars fall over the cliff. A news helicopter is there now.” Wally
rushed to tune the TV on a trolley near the credenza, to the station
broadcasting the disaster as the president anxiously stood up.

With the whir of chopper blades in the background, the TV
camera zoomed in on the wreckage, showing several rail cars twisted
and mangled scattered along the rocky countryside with more than
one of them in precarious positions. President Hargrove watched in
horror as one of the rail cars suddenly teetered and went over the
side of the steep cliff. The television camera followed it down, as it
shattered at the bottom in a cloud of smoke, leaving no doubt the
occupants were either dead or critically wounded.

There were still other rail cars vulnerable to the same fate
and the camera lens zoomed in where injured individuals could be
seen through the windows, wildly waving and screaming. President
Hargrove silently prayed for the victims of the wreck and that his
wife and daughter had not been in the destroyed rail car at the
bottom of the treacherous cliff. As he was thinking this, the TV
camera went into a long shot of the disaster scene. It was a gruesome
sight. Some rail cars were broken and split wide open. Black smoke
billowed from a few of them. Suddenly a person appeared in a flat
make sure she’s aware of it.”
“Well, wait until I talk to Joyce today. Maybe she will tell me
about him. After all, we did go to school together.”
“I never realized rural Virginia was so pretty.” Maryann was
viewing the countryside through the large window in the parlor car
the railroad provided its VIP guests. The excursion train was winding
up a steep grade providing an expansive view of the rural landscape.
Maryann noted the lush green valley below as the train passed on the
edge of the mountain.
“You were raised in California, weren’t you? I’ve only been to
California once and that was when I was very young.” Joyce was
trying to make polite conversation, but Maryann could obviously tell
her mind was elsewhere.
“Who was the handsome guy you were with last night? Are you
two involved?”
Joyce’s face radiated, “Oh, Maryann, we are involved and last
night Stan proposed to me and I accepted, but don’t say anything yet
because we haven’t announced it. Not even to my parents.”
“Oh, I am so happy for you!” Maryann gave her a sisterly hug
and held her at arms length. “ Let me know when I can tell my folks.”
Just then there was an unexpected and sudden jolt!
Eeerrr...crash! ... screech ...
Instantly the rail car jerked with a loud crunching and horrible
screeching sound of metal upon metal. The rail car was twisting off
the tracks and Maryann and Joyce started screaming. They and their
baggage were being tossed around unmercifully. They were flung from
the ceiling to the floor and back again as the parlor car was turning
over and over roughly knocking against trees and bumping against
boulders as it careened down the rocky mountainside. Maryann was
knocked unconscious as she fell in a solid lump from the ceiling to
the floor. The First Lady tried to grab a handhold, but her fingers
quickly slipped as the rail car took a horrendous soul-wrenching
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6                                       Robert Lee Joseph                                                                                               From Here To Everywhere                                     7
“I t-tthink mother is dead,” Joyce said, sobbing as she sank to
her knees.
“Maybe she’s just unconscious.” Madelyn hopefully said as she
shredded a piece of her now-tattered dress and placed it as a dressing
on Joyce’s open wound. “Gary, will you please go see if you can help
Senator Steedham?”
Noting his number one concern was free of any imminent
danger, he said, “Yes, I’ll see what I can do,” and holding his left
arm to his side, he went back into the wrecked parlor car with Joyce
holding the make-shift bandage to the side of her head, following
As the First lady watched the two disappear back into the
wrecked parlor car, Madelyn took stock of the situation while
gently rocking her unconscious daughter in her lap. They had been
miraculously rescued from falling over the cliff by this mysterious
person who had suddenly appeared inside the rail car with a minicam
and strange looking hand-held device. Their parlor car had
suddenly been placed on solid ground and the man-in-white had just
as strangely disappeared after carrying Maryann to safety. Just as
suddenly he was there again, but this time with an ambulance. He
smiled at her as he spoke to the ambulance attendants pointing to
her and immediately disappeared again.
In the Oval Office, Mark Petersen watched the action unfolding
on the television screen in amazement. Mark was as new to
Washington as the chief executive. He had a successful marketing
firm when his former college roommate tapped him to lead his
election campaign and then assist him in the executive mansion.
Mark was confused.
How is that mysterious man able to appear and
disappear in such a manner? This defies physical laws as we know them.
Who is he and what does all this mean?
The television cameraman mirrored Mark’s thoughts to his
Folks what we are witnessing is not any kind of special affects. What
you and I just saw was real and amazing. I don’t know how, but that rescuer
area off to the side of the scene of wreckage and carnage; an area the
president was sure had been vacant an instant before. The president
noted the man was dressed in white coveralls with a white baseball
cap pulled low over his brow preventing a clear view of his face. The
individual was holding and pointing what seemed to be a mini-cam
at one of the rail cars with his left hand and a small hand-held device
in his right hand. Suddenly the camera was not there! It had just
completely disappeared. Then, just as incomprehensible, the camera
was there again and then the person and camera disappeared! An
instant later, the rail car, which had been the most vulnerable of being
the next victim of the deep and dangerous ravine, was now safely
where the man-in-white had been. They astonishingly watched as the
white-clad person came out of the rail car carrying one of its injured
passengers. The camera zoomed in and President Hargrove almost
cried in relief when he recognized Maryann, whom the rescuer
was gently carrying. She looked limp and unconscious with severe
lacerations on her forehead.
The occupants of the Oval Office along with the rest of the
TV audience witnessed the mysterious rescuer gently place Maryann
down on the ground, look around and disappear again. Seconds later
an ambulance appeared with the same person holding onto the front
of it. The mysterious individual spoke to the ambulance driver and
pointed to Maryann and other victims who were just then struggling
out of the rescued rail car. The president was further relieved when
he recognized Madelyn, hair all askew and torn dress, as she rushed
to Maryann’s side with one of the Secret Service agents, one arm
dangling uselessly at his side, hurrying after her. While the president
was focused on his injured daughter, the unknown rescuer kept
disappearing and reappearing with ambulances for the other injured
whom he also assisted where needed.
As Madelyn held Maryann’s head in her lap, she felt her
daughter’s hand, thankfully noting a faint pulse, and then noticed
a shadow over her shoulder and saw Joyce Steedham with blood
streaming from an open wound on the side of her head, come limping
up to her.

8                                       Robert Lee Joseph                                                                                               From Here To Everywhere                                      9
family, not realizing due to his recent help on a special project, his life
was about to change dramatically. ...
At the same time a NASA scientist in Florida was viewing the
same amazing scenes with his wife and wondering if a recent request
he had answered had anything to do with what he was seeing on the
TV screen? ...
In Dalton, Georgia, a mother and father witnessed the same
events and proudly recognized their son! ...
has some very special abilities to do what he just did. We will try to keep him
on camera.”
Just as the cameraman spoke, the mystery man went to the now
loaded ambulances and the one with Maryann and the First Lady and
her Secret Service escort instantly disappeared! President Hargrove
concerned quickly looked at Wally Tasker for an explanation.
The Secret Service head was intently listening to the cell phone
which now seemed as attached to his left ear as the earpiece on the
right one.
“Mr. President, the First Lady’s personal agent reports their
ambulance just instantly appeared at the Fredricksburgh General
Hospital emergency entrance and the man-in-white just waved at
them and disappeared again.”
The TV screen showed the reappearance of the rescuer and
then other ambulances started disappearing.
“Central Control is dispatching a Medivac unit from Bethesda
Naval Hospital to Fredricksburgh and your wife and daughter will be
brought back to Bethesda unless you want to go to Fredricksburgh?”
“No. I will meet them at Bethesda. Mark, find out everything
you can about that man and what he did. Get the Joint Chiefs
together and the National Science Committee. What we have just
witnessed is something incredible and we need to get on top of it as
quickly as possible.”
Dallas, Texas...
“It can’t be!” the
Dallas News editor said aloud, watching the
unprecedented action take place on the TV monitor. He astonishingly
recognized the man-in-white when, for a brief instant, he had
inadvertently looked up. The editor also woefully realized he might
have made an unknowing terrible and costly mistake. ...
Just a short distance away in a nearby building, a dynamic
redheaded TV reporter was wracking her brains, knowing she knew
the person in white, but not immediately recalling who he was. ...
That evening in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, a young scientist
witnessed the news of the miraculous day’s events with his wife and
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The Everywhere Book Series by Robert Lee Joseph