the man with the metal face episode 2

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it was warm in the store and the jc penny suit was beginning to itch. he thought about taking off the jacket but decided against it due to his mission. attorneys and missions. this was one of those mission deals.

lois cut short her reverie about the name and told the man where he could find the man with the metal face or now more to the point, burnsworth orlando osceola. the jc penny suit man thanked lois and walked out of the store and into the warm humid early summer air. now that he knew where to go his mission was back on track and the cheap suit wasn’t as itchy.

albert bustemonte or alberto as family still called him, was a long way from south florida but he had the gift of a sense of direction, no matter where he was. once he was back in the compact rental car, with the a/c on high, it didn’t take him long to find the road he was looking for. alberto settled back and gently tapped his fingers on the steering wheel to the beat of an emmylou harris oldie playing on the cd player.

albert bustemonte loved his job, especially at times like this when he got the chance to be the bearer of good news. actually, really good news. he figured burnsworth orlando osceola didn’t have a clue as to the good fortune that was about to befall him. mr. bustemonte found it hard to believe himself but that wasn’t really any concern of his. he was just the messenger and a very frugal one at that.

the blue metal building sparkled like a large sapphire stone in the warm mid afternoon sun. he turned into the long tree lined gravel drive that led to the house and metal building. he stopped the car on the semi circular driveway in front of the home. he collected his briefcase from the passenger seat, got out of the car, and stretched into the warm shade of the trees and home.

a man in a metal hat and welder’s face shield appeared on the porch. albert was almost surprised but a mission was a mission and he was more than used to the oddities of human kind.

‘mr. osceola?’

‘yes, and you sir?’

‘mr. osceola, my name is albert bustemonte. i’m an attorney from orlando, florida. may i have a few words with you, sir? i’m sure you’ll find the time spent very worthwhile.’

‘i suppose so. please, come inside and out of the heat.’

‘thank you.’

the man with the metal face opened the front door as alberto climbed the stairs. once on the porch, alberto extended his hand with a business card in it. the metal faced man took it and read it as they stepped into the foyer. the door closed and the cool inside air felt good.

‘please, follow me into the living room. can i get you something cold to drink?’

‘no, thank you. not right now. perhaps later. after we talk.’

the man with the metal face stopped in front of a comfortable looking sofa and beckoned with his hand for mr. bustemonte to sit. then he spoke.

‘i apologize for my appearance, sir. i…i was injured a number of years ago and i find this get up, as it were, to be most comforting. i hope you aren’t offended by it.’

‘oh, no. not in the least. after all this is your home and i’m the intruder. what ever makes you comfortable.’

‘fine. so what brings you here, mr. bustemonte?’

‘please, call me albert. mr. osceola, i’m here to bring you some very very good news. i know it’s been a number of years since you lived in south florida with your last foster family. you were a mere child. i’m an attorney from the area and like i said i have some good news for you.’

‘really? alright. continue. does it have anything to do with them? my foster parents?’

‘no, it doesn’t. it concerns your biological father. the father you never met and also in a way the mother you never met as well.’

‘ok. interesting. you have my attention, albert.’

‘i know some of this is old history for you but if you would allow me to go over some of it i think it will help to perhaps explain things.’

the man with the metal face nodded for albert to continue.

‘your middle name and your last name were given to you by your first foster family and your last foster family. orlando and osceola in that order. due to the fact you were born and raised for a time in south florida and both sets of parents had a sense of humor as did the superior court judges who signed off on the names. although stranger things do happen.’

‘indeed. i’ve always enjoyed both names and never had a problem with them or either set of foster parents for hanging the names on me. it’s my first name that i know nothing about.’

‘yes. burnsworth. that’s why i’m here mr. osceola. here to shed some light on the name and, well, i’m getting ahead of myself.’

as the next part of the story unfolded, albert stood up and began pacing the floor not unlike an attorney in a courtroom. the man with the metal face sat, watched, and listened with rapt attention.

‘mr. osceola we’ve discovered your mother was the daughter of a miami police department detective, leonard coombs. his daughter, melanie, is your mother. sadly, melanie passed away several months after your birth, due to a drug overdose.’

the man with the metal face said nothing and with the welder’s face shield it was impossible to determine just what his emotions were doing to him. albert forged on after clearing his throat.

‘we also learned who your father is. ty burnsworth. perhaps you’ve heard of him but probably not as the family has always been under the radar. he is the son of, william jennings burnsworth, the orange tree and juice magnate of south florida. ty took over the family orchards after his father passed away a number of years ago. to make a long story short, when your father learned he had terminal pancreatic cancer he hired us to find you. find you so he could somehow maybe do right by you after all these years.’

from behind the face shield the man with the metal face whispered. ‘yes?’

‘mr. osceola, unfortunately your father has since passed away. we were unable to locate you in time. however, your father has left you a very generous gift. an inheritance of $10,000,000. and if i may say, the best part being there are no strings attached. none.’

the room became silent and neither man spoke for several minutes.

you can find the odd number episodes and the beginning episode to this story

8 thoughts on “the man with the metal face episode 2

    ozark said:
    April 24, 2010 at 8:25 am

    out – fucking – standing! I went in the similar direction, but by a different route. too cool!

    Leora said:
    April 24, 2010 at 9:09 am

    Dear johnhauge:

    My name is Leora Trub and I am a student in the Clinical Psychology Ph.D. Program at The Graduate Center of the City University of New York (CUNY). I am conducting a study of the reasons that people blog and what benefits it brings, which at this point are still largely unexplored in research studies. I am therefore reaching out to you as a blogger who can help deepen our understanding of this phenomenon. I believe that your voice is an important one to be heard and hope you will enjoy participating in the study. I have developed an online questionnaire that asks about specific aspects of blogging as well as asking about feelings about yourself and others in your life. The survey is a mix of numerical scales and opportunities to reflect in an open-ended format about the role of blogging in your life, and how it has changed over time.

    You are eligible to participate if you are at least 21 years of age and have been maintaining an English-language personal blog for at least six months that you update or visit at least twice a week (on average). Your participation involves completing a confidential online questionnaire. The data will be downloaded onto a secure server to which only I have access. No identifying information, such as your names or address, will be collected. If you desire, you may choose not to share your blog name, in which case I will not access your blog for any reason after this point. If you do share your blog name, it will NOT be connected to your responses in the survey. Additionally, you will be given the opportunity to be identified by a code name in research reports and to have your blog description changed slightly so it cannot be identified.

    The survey takes approximately 45 minutes to complete and participation is completely voluntary. Three participants who complete the survey will be randomly selected by a lottery to receive a $75 cash prize.

    There are no foreseeable risks to participation in the study. Although some of the questions are personal in nature, participation in the study provides an opportunity to think about the role that your blog plays in your life.

    If you have any questions about this research, you can contact me at (732) 407-7928 or, or my advisors Dr. Arietta Slade at (212) 650-5658 or and Dr. Tracey Revenson at (212) 817-8709 or

    The study has been approved by the Institutional Review Board of the Graduate School of the City University of New York and meets of their guidelines as well as all state and federal guidelines for research with human participants. If you have any concerns about the project at any time, you can contact Ms. Kay Powell, Institutional Review Board at the Graduate School of the City University of New York (212) 817-7525 or

    In order to participate in this study, I need to send you an invitation through survey monkey. If you are interested, please send an email to from the email address to which you would like the invitation sent. I hope that you will decide to participate and also that you will share it with others if you decide you would like to. Please feel free to contact me with any questions.


    Leora Trub, M.A.
    Doctoral student in Clinical Psychology
    Graduate School of the City University of New York
    365 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10016-4309

    mikidemillion said:
    April 24, 2010 at 9:22 am

    You have an interesting voice. I connected with it. Enjoyed the story, but in this excerpt I saw the money coming so wasn’t surprised. Still, I read on because I like your style of writing. There is an honesty in the style. I like that.

    By the way, instead of magnet I think you meant to say magnate. And there was one sentence where you say the “man with the metal face sat, watched and listened with rapt attention.” It took me away from the story for a minute because I thought how does he know the man is listening with rapt attention? Isn’t he hidden behind a mask? Later in the story you made another reference to it and acknowledged that the attorney wouldn’t know how Mr. Osceola was reacting, and it made sense. Didn’t take me out of the story. Maybe there’s a better way of ‘showing’ that the man with the metal face was paying attention in the first sentence. Like, how his head stayed fixed in one position without any movement for a long time. Instead of making the statement he was paying rapt attention.

    Again, this was an interesting read and I liked the writing style of the story.

    johnhauge responded:
    April 24, 2010 at 10:11 am

    thanks for reading and the comment. i just hammer stuff out and don’t edit that much, as i don’t care. if folks read it fine and i hope they like it. in the long run, if i ever get famous i’ll hire an editor. in the meantime, i’ll just carry on. thanks again.

    johnhauge responded:
    April 24, 2010 at 10:11 am

    thank you. you’ll be hearing from me.

    johnhauge responded:
    April 24, 2010 at 10:12 am

    tres cool, my friend!!! glad you dug it.

    ozarkmossman said:
    April 24, 2010 at 12:41 pm

    Sounds lke you are about to become a blogmeister. One of these days I will be able to say, “Yeah, I worked with Hauge on a few projects.” HA! Truth is, I don’t think anyone bothers with this end of the story, though. I see you are already getting comments, and no telling how many views, while I have had two views…total…no comments other than yours. But GODDAMN what a ride! “Shit yeah, and boy howdy!” As for the other thing you asked about…you’ve got my wp url up there and noted it is in novelimprov…not clear what else you were wondering. I am fairly new to this stuff, you know. But, by God, i WILL learn. Good show, bro! I smell publicaion in your future. Think I should I should put a hyperlink to your WP url, as you did mine?

    johnhauge responded:
    April 24, 2010 at 2:52 pm

    if only i could figure out how to answer comments properly. hahaha.

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