What’s in a name?

by Twyla Jane

The disclaimer is and always will be I don’t own ‘em and never made a plug nickel off ‘em. Wish I did. This is a series of stories where Ezra’s a child and the remaining seven are adults. In a Modern universe where the boys are working in Chris’ and Buck’s 4C agency as private investigators, bounty hunters and body guards. This ficlet takes place after "Conversations". 10/26/01

Ever wonder what’s in a name? Ezra Standish did as he sat on the edge of his bed staring at the photograph of a smiling man, woman and little boy he held in his hands. He was born with one name and went through the eleven years of his short life with dozens of others. Although he had never mentioned it Ezra often wondered why his father didn’t try to call him Adam. Probably the same reason he didn’t call Chris dad.

A professed loather of early rising, the boy was up as the sun crept over the horizon. The school year had finished without him in a few days he would begin the summer school session from the ranch. Mrs. Wells would be teaching him, she was a friend of Mr. Tanner’s. But he wasn’t thinking of that it was just a thought that skittered through his mind. Ever since he had stepped foot into the Avery Arms he hadn’t really had time to think what had happened and now it preoccupied his mind.

The sudden onslaught of family... Strange before Maude had been his only family. His mother… but that was a lie she wasn’t. The pretty lady in the picture he held was his Mama, the one in his dreams, and Chris was his Daddy. Ezra still woke up in the middle of the night screaming, not every night now that he had started talking to Dr. Travis. His horrifying dreams were real and had happened to him in another lifetime when he was a not quite six year-old Adam Larabee. When the dreams came so did the enveloping comfort, Ezra has vague memories of the older man cradling him. Rocking him whispering soothing words in the darkened bedroom as he was held against Chris’ chest. The frightened boy didn’t hear the words just the steady comforting beat of his father’s heart. Last night he dreamt of the barbeque they had had after Grandpa Hank got home from the hospital only when Tilly and he had climbed onto the roof his sister had turned into Isabella Caidin and was bent on killing his entire family.

Ezra smiled at the sleeping form of his father and snuggled closer to him before saying his name.


The only response he got was a snort that evolved into soft snoring.


The boy tried again.

Larabee heard someone softly call his name after a moment’s confusion he remembered where he was and blinked open tired eyes to see his son’s pensive hovering next to his. Chris reached over flicked on the light and rubbed the boy’s shoulder before settling back his hand never losing contact with the youngster.

“You okay?”

Ezra didn’t say anything. A sad look over took the child.

“What’s wrong?”
The boy just shook his head and looked like he was trying to hold back tears.

“Why don’t you call me Adam?”

The question was barely a whisper.

Ah hell… Chris had wanted to talk to him about this but that had been before the world went to hell.

“I didn’t think you wanted me too… Do you?”

Larabee sat up in bed as he looked at the boy’s downcast eyes.

“I don’t know… Maude kept changing our names… I started calling my sister Matilda and she in turn began calling me…”

“I understand…you’ve been Ezra for a long time… but believe me when I say it doesn’t matter what your name is because in my heart you will always be my son. And before you ask you can keep calling me Chris because no matter what you call me because I will always be your Dad.”

Chris smiled at Ezra, pulled him into a warm embrace and held onto him until he felt the boy’s tense body relax against him as sleep claimed him. The father kissed his son on top of his head. I have my son back what is in a name that matters more than that?