DEATH IN THE FACULTY ROOM-CHAPTER XIII

We left in the morning and it took us about five hours to get to Quantico. Route 95 had not yet been built and would have cut off about an hour from our drive. We stopped for lunch and arrived in Quantico at about 2:00 p.m. I asked for directions to the FBI training headquarters and was told that the guard would call ahead and someone would be there to meet us in a short while. We pulled over to the side of the road and, in fact, just a few minutes later a late model Ford pulled up to the guard shack, said a few words to the guard and the gate was open and we were told to follow the Ford.
The Ford wound around the base and stopped at attached houses at the rear of the base. The van that had arrived that morning was parked in front of one of houses. We assumed, and rightly so, that was our home for the next ten weeks. The FBI had used the marine facility since the 1930’s and had built its own training facility, classrooms, firing range and dormitory. Daphne and I were allowed to use the home because of our special circumstance. It was not until later that year, 1965 that the FBI got permission to build a more adequate facility to train new agents, police and law enforcement people from all over the world.
For that first night, Daphne and I just unloaded all of our stuff and kind of flopped down on a couch. We had brought some food with us for a few days, hoping that we could use the PX to go shopping. That evening was somewhat special. We really had not been away from our home in Abington since we bought the new house. It was all very strange to us. Maybe that’s why we clung to each other, not knowing what was going to happen.
As the evening wore on, we realized how tired we were and went to bed early. I guess we had not been having sex regularly since all of these events had occurred. Daphne’s pregnancy had also interrupted what had been a great physical relationship. That night we resumed our normal way of making love. It was sort of frantic, but also very comforting. We fell asleep in each other’s arms and did not stir until morning.
If you are on a marine base, no matter where you are, you will hear the sound of reveille. That happens variously from 5:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. fortunately we had gotten a good night’s rest. At about 6:30, there was a knock on the front door. I went to look in the keyhole and beheld a man of average height, wispy blonde hair, a reasonably bulky frame (not fat), and the most piercing blue-grey eyes that I have ever seen. I asked for his name and he barked, “Aramis Baumgartner.”
I quickly put on my bathrobe and let him in.
He was not the most cordial of people and said that I should get into my civilian clothes and prepare to begin my training immediately. He told me that I would be back sometime after 6:00 that night and that he would pick me up each morning at 6:30. I relayed this to Daphne and kissed her goodbye. At that point, I was not too enthused about the next ten weeks.
Baumgartner gave me a rundown on what would be happening in my training. He said that he does some of it, but mostly it is run by former marines and former agents. Because I was coming there three weeks late, there would be a lot to catch up on. Boy, was he correct. The first day was brutal. Besides the physical activity, there were tests, lectures and some lab work. This was the FBI of J. Edgar Hoover. There was still a concentration on the ten most wanted list and organized crime. We had not yet gotten into the era of terrorists, both domestic and foreign.
I was impressed with the quality of individuals who were in the class. We were not encouraged to make friends because we would all be shipped to different offices around the country. The instructors were all non-smiling. I don’t think I heard a joke or anything amusing during all of my time there.
The dourest of our instructors was Aramis Baumgartner. When he appeared in a t shirt that first day, I was shocked by his build. Yes, he was of average height, but his musculature was one of a body builder. He could also run like the wind and seemed to take some joy in being at the front of every single exercise. He was not showing off, just being the athlete that he was. I learned that he was a Harvard graduate, who had served in some intelligence corps during the Korean War. He appeared to be in his 40’s, but could have been older.
His teaching was also quite good. Because of my education background, he appeared to stand out as much more accomplished than his sidekicks. I believe that I learned more from him that all of the other instructors combined.
The weeks, Monday through Saturday, were grueling and did not go by in the twinkle of an idea. I re-learned how to shoot a pistol and a rifle. Ordnance was a little beyond my scope, but forensics was right up my alley. I became fascinated with some of the new techniques in identifying the perpetrators of heinous crimes. We were not, as yet, into DNA, but were getting closer.
Firearms shooting with a 22 Glock or .40 SW were a daily happening. Disabling those with arms and rifle shooting were also part of the daily routine. Aramis Baumgartner was particularly involved in hand to hand combat. It was evident that he was expert in a number of techniques from Ju Jitsu to Karate. I certainly did not want to face him in either are dark or lighted alley. I was kind of happy that he was on my side.
The ten weeks really did not go by slowly, although they did for Daphne. Since my only day off was a Sunday, we did go on some day trips, and did some heavy duty picnicking. We were still getting along well and were planning names for are child. We must have read every single baby naming book. We finally settled on Daniel if it was a boy and Dana if a girl. Fortunately later in life we had both a boy and a girl so that both names were useful.
Somewhere at the end of the ninth weeks, Aramis Baumgartner asked if he could speak to me privately. I agreed and we went over to the officer’s club on base. After a few beers, he told me that our house was now in shapes to move in and that a bill would be on the kitchen table when we got home. One piece of information did startle me. Evidently, at some point in the last week, our house was broken into, but nothing was taken. Every drawer in the house was overturned, and closets were ripped apart. Fortunately nothing was taken and the cleaning crew was able to put things back in order.
I told Daphne about it that night. She was truly upset. Our home was our castle and someone breaking in was a personal kind of thing. Truth be told, I was also upset and maybe now, more than ever determined to find Driggs and Miss Reinhold’s killer. My first thought was go find out more about Mr. Driggs and his family, which was a good starting place.
The ten weeks were up and we went home to begin our new adventure.

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