THE FOLLOWING FANFICTION STORY is based on some characters in the 1991-1993 Warner Brothers TV series, Homefront. Some of the characters/locations in this fanfiction story are borrowed from the television series/screenplay, known as Homefront, a Warner Brothers Studios/Lorimar production (1991-1993). I should like to point out that this story is offered here for amusement purposes, only. I am not receiving payment in money, or any other kind of remuneration, recompense or stipend of any kind whatsoever, for posting this story here. This story is not for sale, nor is it being offered for sale. The non-Homefront characters in this work of fiction, are exclusively mine and are totally fictitious; any resemblance between them and any actual person or persons, living or deceased, is purely coincidental and unintended. However, some of the locations in the San Fernando Valley in Los Angeles County, California, as well as some street names in the San Fernando Valley do actually exist. Some location names have been slightly altered. The rest are fictitious. There. I hope that covers it!
(This is a LONG story...bring your camping gear!)
"HOMEFRONT: TWO HUNDRED YEARS IN THE FUTURE"
This Homefront fanfiction story takes place two hundred years after the final episode of the original TV series, Homefront. Imagine what River Run, Ohio might be like in the year 2147. In the 22nd century, human technology has made alarmingly rapid advances. Men and women now travel to work, not only in highly advanced "land cars," but also fly to their destinations in "air cars" that can fly themselves, if necessary. But, has all this up-to-the-minute technology touched the town of River Run, Ohio? However, the bigger question is: Does River Run still exist?
Among other things, the mid-22nd century has given rise to another startling new innovation. Astonishingly rapid strides have been made in the advancement of android robotics. This has become extremely controversial in many sectors of society. The reaction of many to these astounding advances in cyber-electronics has ranged from awe and astonishment, to derision and ridicule and, finally, fear and outright paranoia.
The main character in our story is a man by the name of Frank Boelcke. Frank is a successful, reasonably handsome man with brown hair and brown eyes, about 6' 2" in height, whose personality is somewhat like that of James Stewart, one of his favorite mid-20th century Hollywood film actors. Frank is very much a family man. He lives in a large wood-frame two-story house, built by him and his wife, Susan. Their house is an exact replica of a house built in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania in 1857, complete with antique furniture, ersatz antique appliances, and a carriage house garage. Frank and Susan built their house on a large six-acre parcel of land, high in the hills above the north San Fernando Valley.
It was in this peaceful rural idyll that Frank and Susan also raised their two children, Ryan and Lisa. Frank, himself, is a university-educated man with three university degrees, a high-paying job in a prominent electronics and aerospace corporation, and has plenty of money in the bank. To the casual observer, it would appear that Frank's life is a happy one--except that it isn't. For more than six years now, Frank has been leading a life of desperate solitude. No, Frank and Susan's marriage didn't hit the rocky shoals of despair. The terrible truth is that Susan was killed one morning in a devastating commuter train accident while on her way to her own high-paying managerial position in a prestigious West Los Angeles marketing firm.
Picture now, a quiet Sunday afternoon--more than six years later. Frank, out of shear boredom, makes a fateful decision. He suddenly decides to begin cleaning out, and organizing a long-neglected upstairs storage closet. While thus occupied, Frank comes across a large cardboard box. However, this is no ordinary box full of family memorabilia and miscellaneous brick-a-brack. For Frank, this forgotten cardboard box becomes a portal--two hundred years into the distant past. Through the media of gaunt, faded, primitive photography, and yellowed, fragile newspaper clippings, Frank meets Susan's distant fore-bears. One of those old photo albums happens to hold a portrait of an attractive young woman, born in 1922. She seems to stare directly at Frank from across the ages with her pretty face, light brown hair, and beguiling, yet determined blue eyes.
Days later, out of a desperate yearning for female companionship, Frank consults a well-known cyber-electronics firm. His intention is to have them create an electronic cyber-woman to be his mate. And that's not all: Frank has his new mate created from photographs of the said attractive young woman. At first, the entry of Frank's new cyber-mate, if you will, throws his family into turmoil. From then on, Frank and his cyber-wife embark on a journey of amazing, and downright miraculous events that will irrevocably transform Frank's life, and that of his children.
"Lonely In Porter Ranch"
FRANK BOELCKE IS A SUCCESSFUL 41-YEAR-OLD professional man who works as a department manager for Caltronics, a company that researches and develops space vehicle designs and related computer systems for the U.S. government, as well as, for various commercial applications. The year is 2147, and prospects couldn't be better for Frank. And, due to a large windfall of cash from some smart investments he made three years ago, Frank is able to pay off the enormous custom-built two-story house that he and his wife, Susan, had built in the foothills above the San Fernando Valley in Southern California. Frank and Susan's house is an exact reconstruction of a large wood frame house, built in 1857 on the outskirts of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.
Frank's two children, Ryan, age 21, and his daughter, Lisa, age 19, are both attending USC, and UCSB, respectively. They live in dormitories on their respective campuses. Yes, at first glance, Frank's life seems the equivalent of the LA "good life." However, a dark, jagged diagonal line rips across the perfectly structured grid of Frank's good life: Frank has been a widower since his wife was tragically killed six years ago in an explosive ZipRail crash when the car in which she was riding on her way to work, was rammed by another train traveling at 65mph. The resulting horrific, fiery collision was caused by a computer glitch in the track-switching system. Susan's body was completely incinerated. There was nothing left of her, nothing to bury.
All that is recovered of Susan's personal effects, is her charred and half-melted briefcase. When it is delivered to Frank by the Los Angeles City Coroner's Office, he could not bring himself to look at it. Needless to say, all of this was particularly hard on Frank and his children. And the $6.8 million that Frank and his children receive through a class-action lawsuit against the City of Los Angeles Transit Authority, does nothing to quell the terrible, aching sense of loss they have felt to the present day. Frank and Susan were soul-mates; they had everything in common. Susan was as loved by their children as she had loved them.
Frank's children do what they can, to ease their father's painful grief and loneliness, while struggling to deal with their own sorrow. But-try as they might-they can do little about the silence of the huge empty house when their father comes home from work, or the nights of tomb-like stillness when he goes to bed. Frank longs to feel Susan's arms around him again, and her kisses as she would whisper, "Good night, Frank; I love you."
Two years after Susan's death, Frank finally feels ready to date other women. However, the women connected with him by various dating agencies, share little in common with him. For the most part, they seem more interested in Frank's bank account, than in him.
In an attempt to take his mind off things, Frank delves even more into his favorite pastime. He belongs to an antique gun club which meets once a month at a shooting range in Ventura County. There, he and the other members shoot at paper targets with their primitive 19th century black powder single-shot Springfield "trapdoor" rifles. Frank owns three of these highly collectible and historic firearms.
ON a quiet Sunday afternoon Frank is casting about for something, anything to drive away the numbing boredom. He suddenly remembers the main walk-in storage closet upstairs. He had promised himself for sometime that he would get it cleaned out and organized. After entering the closet, Frank begins to poke about at all the miscellany, stacked against walls and under shelves. It isn't long before his attention is drawn to the large box of very old photo albums and scrapbooks that once belonged to Susan's family. It reposes, undisturbed in it's dark hideaway, where Frank had shoved it many years ago. Frank never had any real inclination to peer into the box. Neither did Susan, who never said much of the over-sized, age-discolored carton after it was delivered one day by special carrier from Ohio. So, there, it sat for several years, waiting for the day when someone would finally take an interest in it.
Frank finds himself struggling downstairs with the huge, heavy box. On entering the living room, he sits the box down next to the sofa. On top of the box, someone had scribbled in what is now faded black marking pen, the name, Metcalf. The return address on the shipping label is marked Youngstown, OH. Frank knows that Susan grew up in Youngstown, though she was actually born in a town called Riverton, somewhere south east of Cleveland. When he opens the flaps of the old cardboard container, Frank has no idea that he is about to embark upon a life-changing odyssey that will take him not only into Susan's past, but also into that of her distant ancestors.
In the last century, or so, someone had taken great pains to organize all the photo-albums into chronological date order. The album containing the oldest photographs is dated 1890-1920. There are also several scrapbooks containing clippings that carry birth notices, obituaries and other items concerning the Metcalf family. These clippings all seem to come from a newspaper called The River Run Courier.
Frank begins casually to thumb through the albums. One album that especially catches his attention is the one labeled, 1921-1950. Under the dates, some unknown hand had written, Szabo-Metcalf Families. "Hmmm...Szabo?", says Frank to himself. "Never heard Susan mention that name before." Frank begins to turn the pages of this album more slowly. The pictures of a girl named Virginia Szabo seem to leap off the page at him. He sees that, at age 16, she is already very attractive.
As Frank views later photos of Virginia, he is struck by her haunting resemblance to his wife, Susan. Another photo is captioned, Ginger, 22 years old. Ginger Szabo reminds Frank of Susan when she was at that age. A lump forms in Frank's throat. It isn't long before he finds himself holding back tears. After regaining his composure, Frank continues to page through the ancient album. He soon comes to the four photos that show Ginger Szabo on a stage wearing a rather short and skimpy outfit. The caption reads, Ginger, the LEMO Tomato Juice Girl. On the facing page, is glued a newspaper clipping titled, Tomato-Hawker To Wed Apple-Knocker. Below this, are pictures of a young man in a baseball uniform. These are labeled, Jeffrey Metcalf - Cleveland Indians.
Frank's attention is suddenly drawn to the antique regulator clock in the living room, which has has just begun to chime the hour. It's already 10 o'clock--time for bed. Frank carefully lays the old album on the coffee table, keeping it separate from the others. He then slowly plods up the stairs to his bedroom as spectral images of Ginger Szabo and Susan drift through his mind.
To be continued. . . .
Watch for the next installment!