The Truth Will Set You Free

Author: Daphne

Archive: Only the archive here, please

Disclaimer: All characters belong to Warner Bros. & Shoot the Moon. I just took them out for exercise.

Time frame: 10 years after their wedding ceremony.

Feedback: Sure. Please be gentle. This is my 1st attempt & it's just for fun..also I'm VERY shy...and scared to death of sharing this!! <S>

Thanks to my beta's Jess, Maria & Liz

Amanda Stetson sat next to her husband at the breakfast table. She was lost in thought as she finished her coffee.

Lee reached over to hold her hand. " A penny for your thoughts," he said.

Amanda smiled as she replied," it will cost you a nickel--inflation, you know!" She kissed Lee before she answered him. " I was just thinking how blessed we are & how much I"m looking forward to this weekend."

Lee put his arm around Amanda. It never ceased to amaze him how much she loved & trusted him. " How soon will you be ready to go?" he asked

" I just need to clean up the kitchen, and then I"m ready, " she answered.

Lee looked at his watch. " We don't need to leave that soon," he said ashe gathered her close to him.

Amanda knew it would be closer to lunch time before they left thehouse....


A few hours later found the Stetsons on their way to training camp. The camp held special memories for them and they were both glad to ge going.

" I'm glad we're not undercover this time," Lee stated. " I'm also glad we can share the same cabin this time!"

Amanda smiled as she was looking through a file folder of papers. " Lee, I dont see the roster of this year's recruits."

" Their fax machine was down. I told them I would just get the information when I arrived. This time is just a routine training, no spies, no drama. I do, however, have one surprise for you. Billy is coming this weekend"

" He is? How wonderful!" Amanda loved Billy Melrose like a father.  She smiled as she thought of him.  He was semi-retired. Like, Harry Thornton before him, Billy couldnt manage to stay retired though!!

"What does the family think we are doing this weekend?" Lee asked, interrupting her thoughts. Six months after they married, They had decided to go public with their marriage. They did however, keep the true knowledge of what they did as an occupation a secret.

" I told them we were spending the weekend in the country."

Lee laughed, " Very true! What is everyone else doing?"

"Mother is going with Capt. Kurt to a reunion of pilots. Philip is spending the weekendwith some of his attorney colleagues. I think they will be alternating between betweeb watching and playing baseball. Jamie is going to pack and say some goodbyes to his college friends."

"Any word on this job he was offered?" Lee asked. Amand'a youngest son just graduated from college and had immediatley received a job offer. He had been so busy that he hadnt explained much about the job to them.

" No," Amanda said. " I intend to have a nice long talk with him when we get back. He is always rushing around. It's hard to nail him down."

Lee laughed, "He takes after his mother"

They drove on in companionable silence until Lee saw a small cafe. " How about lunch?" he suggested. " We're about 10 miles from training camp."

"Sounds wonderful," Amanda agreed.

Ninety minutes later, Lee parked the car and went around to open the door for his wife. After helping her out of the car, he went to get the suitcases out of the trunk.

" Oh my gosh," Amanda said, before Lee could even open the trunk.

" What is it?" he asked. When he received no reply, he quickly went back to her side. As he repeated his question, he followed his wife's gaze across the campground. He saw two handsome, young men carrying their bags and laughing. " It can't be," Lee said increduously.

"But it is," Amanda whispered. As was their habit, they finished their thoughts in unison. " Philip and Jamie"

Time stood still for Lee as he stared at his two stepsons. He mentally shook himself and sprang into action. He grabbed Amanda's hand and ran into the woods.

"I dont believe this," Amanda whispered.

Part 2

Lee put one arm around her and drew her close while dialing his cell phone with his other hand. " Billy, it's Lee. We have a problem. Where are you? ....Ok, there is a cafe ten miles from camp. Meet us there." Lee disconnected and drew a in a deep breath.  "As soon as the boys get into a building we have to get out of here."

Amanda nodded. " Oh, Lee--"

" I know, I know. It will be alright. We will MAKE it be alright," Lee answered as he held her in his arms.


An hour later the three of them sat in the cafe drinking their coffee. They had filled Billy in on the recent developments.

"How do you two want to handle this?" Billy asked.

Lee looked at Amanda. " We have to tell them," he said as he squeezed her hand.

" I know," she sighed.

Billy paused a moment before speaking. " I know this will be difficult, but they are grown men and have evidently chosen this life for themselves...they will understand."

"HOW did this happen?" Amanda asked in exasperation. "We've never exposed them to this! We've tried to keep this whole way of life from them! How did BOTH boys get into this?

Lee shook his head. " I don't know. Hopefully when we talk with them we can find out."

"You know Amanda," Billy said gently after another pause, "I've been in this business a long time and I think I have a pretty good idea of what it takes to make it. It takes courage, a keen mind, patriotism, curiosity and determination. I know you didnt expose them to this business, but you certainly did a terrific job equipping them with the tools that they would need to make
top-notch agents."

Amanda's eyes watered. " Thank you , sir."


Billy, Lee & Amanda stood in the hall leading to the conference room. Jamie and Philip had been paged over the P.A. system to report to the conference room. Afterthey heard the boys come in, Billy would go in to make sure no one else was there. Then Lee and Amanda would come in.

"Are you ready?" Lee asked as he heard the boys talking to Billy.

"No," Amanda said unsteadily, " but there is no more putting this off."

Lee kissed her. "Remember, we will just speak from the heart. Ok, here we go!"

Part 3

The boys sprang to their feet as Amanda and Lee walked into the room. The boys expressions were similar to the ones they wore the day they had tried out their volcano in the kitchen. Lee had been watching thru the window as Amanda discovered the mess and as she reprimanded them. Lee suppressed a smile. He knew the next few hours would be no picnic, but he couldn't help but swell with pride and love as he thought of his family.

Amanda hugged the boys and sat down at the table. No words had been exchangedbetween anyone in the room, making Amanda nervous. Feeling uncomfortable, she began  playing with her necklace.

 Lee looked over at Billy. "It's your show," Billy said quietly. Billy wanted to give all the love and support he could, but this wasn't his story to tell. He would, however, answer any questions he could and have the final say in whether things were too classified to share.

Lee nodded and cleared his throat. " Fellas, I'm sure you are wondering what we are doing here.We definitely are wondering how you came to be here. So, if it is all right with you, your mom and I would like to tell you a story. When we are done, you can ask all of the questions you want, and then you two can  explain how you ended up here. Fair enough?"

The boys exchanged looks and nodded mutely. The only sound that could be heard in the room for the next hour was the sound of Amanda's voice as she told the boys about her secret life that had started all those years ago with a 'simple' trip to the train station. Amanda finished the story with the explanation of why they were at Station One that weekend. With a deep sigh, she leaned back in her chair and closed her eyes. She was physically and emotionally drained.

In the silence that followed, she gratefully accepted the glass of water that Billy brought her. She opened her eyes as she felt a pair of arms hug her and felt a kiss on her cheek. It was Jamie. He steeped back to allow Philip to hug & kiss their mother.

Lee and Amanda looked at each other in astonishment. Wordlessly, they watched as the boys drew their chairs closer to their mother and to the man who had become a father to them.

The boys looked at each other and after a nod from Jamie, Philip began to speak. " Mom, I don't know if I can put into words everything I am feeling right now, but I am going to try. I always thought you loved us and that you were a great mom, but until today, I never knew how truly amazing you are. I'm so proud of you Mom."

Tears were streaming down Amanda's face as she reached over to hug her eldest son.

Jamie got out of his chair and knelt on the floor next to his mother. " Mom, I know that you probably have a lot of stories you could tell us and I am really looking forward to hearing them. I have a feeling that I will be seeing my childhood with new eyes as you share your stories with us." Jamie smiled at his mother. " For now, just know that I love you and I really do understand why you never told us before now.

Part 4

Amanda wordlessly held her boys close to her for several minutes. The embrace told them how much she appreciated their understanding.

Finally Lee spoke up. " Fellas, could you now tell us how you ended up here?"

Again, the boys exchanged looks. After a nod from Jamie, Philip began his story. "A month ago, a man came to see me at the law office. I had assumed at first that he was a potential client. He started out our meeting asking me questions about my education and academic standing. This was not unusual for a possible client to do. When he started to ask me about my personal life was when I asked him why he needed so many details. He just laughed." Philip paused. " He really is a strange man. He mumbled something about 'eyes that do not see'." Philip shook his head at the memory and continued on. "He then told me he wanted to recruit me for service to my country." Philip ran a hand thru his hair, a trait he had picked up from Lee years ago.

Jamie continued the tale. "The day after he went to see Philip, this man came to see me. I was notified  to come to the recruiter's office. I had assumed he was a representative from one of the firms I had sent my resume to. My conversation with him was similar to the one Philip had with him. He never mentioned seeing Philip. After he left, I was uneasy about the whole thing. So, I called Philip and we arranged to meet at Philip's apartment. That's how we found out we both had been contacted. We decided we would accept the offer." Jamie gave his mother a weak smile. "It wasn't until this past week that we heard from him again. We  received telegrams telling us if we were going to accept the offer, to go to a bus stop and get on the bus. No questions asked.And here we are. That's all we know."

"The hardest part of this whole thing, was you Mom." Philip said. We hated lying to you about our plans. We thought we were protecting you from worrying about us and  keeping you safe."

"Who is this man?" Lee asked.

"I'm surprised at you, Scarecrow. I thought you were sharper than that."

The five people in the room whirled around to look at the owner of the voice.

" Dr. Smythe," Lee fairly spat out the name, " I should have known."

The boys stared in silence at the man who had recruited them.

"Yes, you should have, Scarecrow. Did you think you could live a life as complicated as yours and not fall off the wall you were perched on?" Dr Smythe asked.

Amanda shook her head in amazement at the turn of events.

"Dr. Smythe, what is going on here?" Billy asked.

"Relax, Melrose. Just putting the epilogue onto this story we have all been living."

"Come on Smythe! Explain why you are pulling the strings of our lives as if we were damn marionettes," demanded Lee.

" Tsk, tsk. all in due time Stetson. All in due time. I'm doing you a favor. Ever heard of the phrase 'the truth will set you free'? The truth is out to all the players and now you are free."

"WHAT?" Lee asked incredulously.

Dr. Smythe had made his way over to the door. "Couldn't have the new head of The Agency having secrets that could destroy him, now could we? This is my gift to you and to The Agency."

"WHAT?" Lee was incapable of any other words.

"You have an amazing family of agents here. Use them well. Good-bye kiddies."

"Dr. Smythe, please wait," Amanda said. " I don't understand what you are saying."

"It's easy, King. My time has come. It's now time for 'The Scarecrow' to take charge. Take care kiddies," and with that Dr. Smythe walked out of the room and out of their lives.