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Chapter 126: "They did what?"

"So there's me and Kayla, and we're running through the snow, trying to find some shelter. . . ."

Marlena was barely listening to Bo's story.  Truth-be-told, she had probably heard it a dozen of times before.  Unless the ending had changed and, this time, the two of them did not wind up running into the fishing shack and finding Kim in the arms of the star quarterback.  Or they did not wind up running out almost as fast as they came in.

It was obvious that Andrew had heard the story too, because he interrupted.  "Sorry, Uncle Bo, but Shivaughn and I are going to hit the Starbucks across the street.  Can we bring you lot anything back?"

After taking orders, Andrew and Shivaughn left the waiting room and it fell silent except for the soft drone of the CNN anchors on the TV in the corner.  Bo must have realized that nobody was particularly interested in hearing the Brady family foibles at the moment, so he did not continue.  Marlena could feel Bo watching her, probably wondering why she had stopped chatting.  The truth was that talking was the last thing Marlena wanted to do.  If she did talk, she might let Bo know exactly what the mother of his children was up to.

What could possibly have possessed John?  They had tangled with the ISA before.  How could he possibly think they wouldn't notice him hacking into their computers?

And Hope?  Wasn't she supposed to be sensible?

"You okay?" Bo asked.

Marlena paused before answering.  "No," she snapped.

"Hey . . . you don't have to bite my head off."  He looked out the door of the waiting room.  "Come on, Kimmie's going to be fine."

"I'm not thinking about Kimmie."  Before she could stop herself, Marlena blurted out, "It's John and Hope. . . ."

Bo sat up.  "What's going on with John and Hope?"

"Oh, they apparently are on the lam from the ISA.  John thought it would be a good idea to use Shane's computer to hack into the ISA computers."

"They did what?"  That came from Jeannie, who pulled her nose out of the textbook she was studying.  "There's no way.  To do that, they would've had to get into Dad's communications room.  That thing has more security than Fort Knox."

"Well they did," Marlena said.  "Someone told them how to get in."

Jeannie made a point of groaning loudly.  "Andy. . . ."

"Can you both step back a moment?" Bo asked.  "I don't really care who's responsible; I just want to know where Hope is."

"We don't know," Marlena said.  "But I've been trying to reach John since last night and he's not answering."

Bo already had his phone out.  He punched a couple of buttons and waited.  After a few brief pause, he grimaced.  "Hope, if you get this . . . So help me . . . I can't believe it," he said with a groan.  "Dang it, what the hell do you think you're doing?  The ISA?  I can't freakin' believe it."  He hesitated, said, "Just call me," and hung up.

"That's gonna work," Jeannie muttered, her voice too low for Bo to hear.

"So how did you find out about this?" Bo asked Marlena.

Marlena started to answer, but stopped herself.  If she said Andrew, it might raise Bo and Jeannie's suspicions about why he knew.  Marlena had promised to keep his secret; if it got out now, Kim would undoubtedly hear and that was the last thing she needed.  "The ISA called me earlier," she lied.  "They wanted to know if I'd heard from John."

"But they didn't call me," Bo said.  "Maybe they don't know Hope's involved."

Jeannie sighed.  "They'd know.  The ISA would have come down on Dad's house so fast that they'd have found security recordings.  And that's assuming the butler didn't just tell them."

"Come down?" Marlena asked, not liking the sound of those words.

"Yeah," Jeannie said.  "Dad always said there was a SAS unit nearby.  If the house was attacked, we were supposed to hide in the communications room until the reinforcements arrived."  She said that in a completely nonchalant manner.  Then she paused.  "Of course, I'm not sure if that's still the case since Dad left the ISA.  So maybe you don't have to worry about them sending the army after them."  Jeannie said that like they should be comforted by the thought and then went back to reading her book.

Marlena looked at Bo, and she could tell what he was thinking.  The army?  John and Hope might be running from the English army?  They both sat back in their chairs, struck dumb by the very thought.

After a long silence, Bo faced her.  His skin was tinged slightly green and he could only muster a halfhearted attempt at a joke.  "I always wondered what it would be like living someplace with no extradition.  How's Rio this time of year?"