I had set the alarm to wake me up at a specific time, but my husband has changed it to go off a few hours later. While a part of me was worried we'd be terribly behind schedule, I remembered that David was always up early and likely took care of everything for me so I could get a few extra hours. His way of returning the favor since I did most of the cleaning the day before. I took a quick shower, and changed for the day. While I was l waking down the stairs, I could smell that breakfast was already on and being taken care of. to my surprise, Jimbo was the man behind the stove as he was working the eggs as if he was working at a diner.
"Good morning, Jim." I said as I strolled into the kitchen.
"Good morning, Ma'am." Jimbo replied, "There's a pot of coffee on if you'd like to help yourself to a mug."
"Thank you," I said, walking over to pour a cup. "Thank you for taking care of breakfast, too."
"Happy to help," Jimbo said, still working the pan of scrambled eggs. "I'm happy to keep myself busy, especially this early in the morning when I have a lot of energy."
As I took a seat at the table, in the middle of the kitchen, Jimbo made up a plate of scrambled eggs, toast, and a few pieces of bacon and placed it down in front of me.
"Thank you," I said to him.
"You're quite welcome, Ma'am." Jimbo said, walking back to the stove to keep cooking.
"At least I know you'll have company every morning this weekend." I said to David, well aware of his early morning habits as well.
"Yes, that was quite a surprise." David admitted.
"For me as well," Jimbo honestly added, "I'm used to being alone in the early hours too."
"So," I started between a few bites of my food, "Did David tell you our plans for today?"
"He did," Jimbo said, and it was all smiles about it. "I think a good hike is just what this group needs after what happened last night. Get them out there and working up a good sweat."
"This is a hike, Jim. Not a job or run." I added.
"I'm aware," Jimbo replied, "It's the terrain, the distance, and the elevated slope that makes you sweat, not the pace."
"We even made lunch," David informed me. "The baskets are already packed."
"Well, thank you very much." I said, pleasantly surprised. "You boys must have been up very early today. When do you plan to wake everyone else up?"
"Very soon," David said, smiling. "When Jimbo is finished whipping up everyone's grub."
"Oh, I like the sound of this." Jimbo said, feeling a tad excited. "What's the plan?"
"I have a bugle." David answered.
"Are you serious?" Jimbo said, grinning from ear to ear. "You know the bugle wake up call?"
"I used to play it every morning," David answered, "I woke up hundreds of men every morning when I served on base."
"I used to hate that song," Jimbo admitted, "And yet I feel excited to hear it again. I'm almost finished so go ahead, Sir. Let her rip!"
"Alright," David said as he hopped out of his chair. "I'll be right back."
"That's interesting," I said as I watched David leave the room. "I think this is the first time I've seen someone so excited to hear his wake up call."
"I think I'm gonna cry." Jimbo admitted as he waited with baited breath.
Seconds later, the sound that Jimbo hasn't heard from in what felt like decades started to fill the first floor with a piercing and very sharp sound. David was standing at the end of the stairs, with his bugle pointing up at the bedrooms as he played what is known as the military bugle wake up call. The same song that was played on base whenever it was time for the grunts to get up and start their day. David stood there by the stairs and played the same song over and over again a few times until he started to get the movement he wanted from the people coming out of the bedrooms.
"Breakfast is ready," David informed his workers. "Get dressed for outdoor activity and be down to eat in five minutes."
There were a few groans but the sleepy heads returned to their room to change and comply with the orders that were given.
"Well done, Sir." Jimbo called out, as he rather enjoyed that moment. He could only imagine how grumpy Rachel was considering that they had been up late doing exercise the night before.
"Yes dear," I echoed, "Well done."
"Thank you" Davie said as he put the bugle on top of the fridge rather than back in the garage. "Might as well leave it there for tomorrow as well."
There was a few moans coming from the stairs, as the ladies finally came down to eat and find out what was going to happen that day. They seemed like zombies until they got some food and coffee into them. Nicolas was the last to come down but Josh was awol.
"He's probably still asleep." Angie replied. "He's deaf in one ear so he probably didn't hear the bugle."
"That is rather convenient," Jimbo noted, "Being able to shut out the world just by putting on ear into the pillow."
"I'll take care of this one," I said, as I was finished my coffee anyway. "Excuse me."
I handed my coffee back to Jimbo as I left the room and quickly trotted up the stairs. As I was getting up there, Joshua was actually emerging from the room and didn't need the extra wake up call after all.
"I'm up," Josh confirmed for me. "Not even a deaf ear could protect me from that bugle."
"You look exhausted," I noted, "What time did you get to bed?"
"Around four-ish." Josh answered, "I usually do my best work at night when it's quiet and there's nothing to distract me."
"Oh, you were working?" I said, rather surprised to hear it.
"Yeah," Josh confirmed, "I actually managed to get a chapter finished."
"Well, Jim made breakfast." I informed him. "If you're still tired after that, I can't see why you can't go back to bed and skip the hike."
"I'm sorry, did you say a hike?" Josh repeated, looking rather surprised.
"Yes, I did." I confirmed.
"Oh boy," Josh said, "That sounds interesting."
"It usually is," I said, patting him on the shoulder. "You should have gotten more sleep."
"I might have had I known," Josh added, "But that food does smell rather nice."
"Get some grub," I said, picking up on Jim and David's slang. "Then we'll see how you feel."
"Yes, Ma'am." Josh said, as he started to walk down the stairs.
As he was heading down, I could tell that the way he dropped each foot was different. His method of descent indicated there was something wrong with either his hips or his back. I didn't say anything about it, but took note of it. Josh was hiding something and I was more than a little curious about what it might be.
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