increasingly jealous of Stormy's involvement with
Lauren Spencer.Alex gave Jordan back his engagement ring. Winter continued to feel angry
about Ethan going after Brooke.
James got a visit from a man offering a high
risk loan to save Sunset Studios. Philip tried
to force himself on Alex and Jordan showed up, saving
Alex by throwing Philip out. After Ethan and
Brooke made love in Santo Domingo, the jeep Ethan
was riding in was bombed by loyalists. Brooke
flew into hysterics when she was told that he couldn't
Beside herself with anxiety, Brooke paced back
and forth in her hotel room in Santo Domingo while she waited for word about
had arrived to intervene in the
constant barrage of assaults among the Dominican Republic government. When they learned of the jeep bombing, they
began a search and recovery mission.
wrapped her arms around herself as she paused and sat down on the edge of the
bed. She reached down and picked up the
T-shirt Ethan had been wearing the day before.
Smiling, she brought it to her face and smelled, relishing the musky
scent that reminded her so much of him.
refused to believe that he was dead.
Juan and the others said that the jeep took a direct hit and that anyone
or anything inside of it would be unrecognizable. She begged them to accept the possibility
that his body could have been thrown from the jeep. Though filled with doubt, the troops began
searching the area for any sign of Ethan.
it had been an entire day since the explosion and there hadn't been any
indication that he'd survived.
Determined to hold on to hope, she decided to stay on the island and not
return home without him.
was a knock at the door and she raced across the room to open it. A U.S. soldier entered the room,
followed by Juan. Their solemn
expressions of gloom told her the news wasn't good. She looked at them, frozen in fear as Juan
held out his hand and offered her the proof she needed.
Brooke took Ethan's wallet from him, then the thin gold chain he wore in memory
of his mother. She burst into tears, sobbing uncontrollably
as she examined the items in her hands.
It was almost too much to bear.
She couldn't believe that he was gone.
and the soldier watched sympathetically as Brooke sunk to her knees and buried
her face in her hands. She didn't
think there was anything harder than losing someone you love. It wasn't fair. No sooner had they finally realized their
true feelings for one another than tragedy struck.
James was on the phone in his study trying to track down Brooke. He called Bianca, Deb, and some of her
friends she worked with at the Galleria.
No one had heard anything from her.
He was beginning to fear that something awful had happened.
top of everything else, Ethan was nowhere to be found either. Winter hadn't heard from him yet and he
hadn't been to the mansion for days. It
wasn't like Ethan to disappear like that. He was sure that they were together
somewhere. Maybe they were off at some
romantic setting and he was the last thing on their minds. The thought sent him into a panic. He hated being powerless to stop it from
happening. Granted, it was his own
fault for yelling at her like that before she left the other night. Maybe he'd overreacted to her marriage to
Philip. She claimed it was an honest
mistake. But the fact remained that
because of her negligence, they weren't legally married.
looked up when Miranda walked into the room.
"Good morning, Sweetheart," he said.
Daddy," Miranda said, yawning and stretching. "Any word from Brooke or Ethan?"
shook his head solemnly. "No, none
tried desperately to hide her enjoyment.
She knew her father wouldn't understand, but she was thrilled that
Brooke was out of their lives. She was
trouble from the start, just like she'd predicted.
hate to say I told you so, but…"
you will anyway, right?" James interrupted, staring crossly at his
daughter. "If you've come in here
to gloat, do me a favor and don’t."
shook her head and followed her father around the room. "Daddy, I'm not gloating," she
insisted. "If you think I like
seeing you miserable, you're wrong. I
just want you to be happy. Is it my
fault that Brooke didn't turn out to be the woman you thought she was?"
rolled his eyes. He loved his daughter
but he couldn't stand her incessant pushing and badgering. Sometimes she didn’t know when to leave
entered the study and approached Miranda with a kiss. "Good morning," he said, then
looked up at James. "Mr.
Blackthorne, has there been any word on your wife?"
sighed and shook his head. He didn't think
he could handle Brett this morning. He
had too many other things on his mind to worry about the slouch his daughter
let me know if there's anything I can do to help, won't you?" Brett asked,
his arm around Miranda.
you," James replied offhandedly. He
realized Brett was trying to be helpful, but nonetheless it didn’t go without
suspicion. He didn't trust the man and
the only reason he was still in his house was because he hadn't had time to
deal with him yet. So many other things
took precedence lately. Luckily he had
confidence in his spirited daughter to be able to hold her own.
"Well I've got to get
going," Brett said, kissing Miranda again.
"I'm meeting some musicians at the beach club to audition
them. Lauren starts singing there
scowled, seeing red at the sound of Lauren's name.
thank you for speaking to Renee DeWitt for us," Brett said to James.
James barely heard him. He was at the
window gazing outside in a blank stare. Miranda shrugged and led Brett out into
the foyer. "Do you have to
go?" she asked. "I thought I'd
ditch classes today and we could spend the day together."
sighed and put his arms around her.
"Babe, I can't," he said.
"There's so much to get done before Lauren's premier tomorrow
rolled her eyes and pulled away from him.
"Whatever. I guess I'll just
spend the day by myself again."
wait!" Brett called after her as she raced up the stairs. Letting out a deep, exasperated breath, he
jogged after her and found her in their bedroom about to slam the door shut.
she asked defensively.
pushed the door open and walked into the room.
"I hate when you get upset with me," he said. "I love you, Babe. I hope you realize that."
shrugged and looked at him with a pout.
"Then how come Lauren Spencer is more important to you than I
am?" she asked. "Hell, even
Stormy is more important to you than I am."
not true," Brett said, using his best seductive voice and eyes as he ran
his hands down her back. "You're
the most important thing in the world to me.
You've changed my life, Miranda.
Can't you see that? Because of
you I'm a better man."
laughed and turned away. "I haven't
her back, he lifted her head and leaned in closely. "You have too. You stood up to your family for me. That's a big deal in my book."
closed her eyes as he kissed her warmly.
She wrapped her arms around him and they fell down onto the bed. Brett unbuttoned her blouse and kissed her
soft skin. She ran her fingers through
his hair and pulled him closer. Moments
later, they were peeling off their clothes and rolling around on the bed in a
and Lauren were seated in the living room of his house in the Valley,
surrounded by stacks of CD's and sipping iced tea on the floor. He flashed her a Barbra
Streisand CD and grinned
about covering one of hers?" he said.
Lauren rolled her eyes and laughed in hysterics. "You've got to be kidding!" she
exclaimed, rolling over onto the floor.
"Can you see me singing a Barbra
looked at the album again and shrugged.
"Hmm, I guess not," he joked.
"But we're running out of options.
I don't know. Maybe doing a cover
on the album isn't such a good idea."
sat up just as Heather walked inside from the pool and made her way to the
kitchen, scowling at them with every step.
Lauren quickly jumped to her feet and ran over to her. "Hi, you must be Heather. I'm Lauren Spencer."
know," Heather replied coldly as she poured herself a glass of iced tea at
looked around awkwardly. She
immediately got the impression that Heather didn't like her and they'd only
just met. "I've heard all about you
from Stormy. I'm glad we finally got a
chance to meet."
gave her a snide grin and tossed back her long brown hair. "Okay, that's great," she said,
adjusting the strap on her bathing suit and brushing past her. Pushing open
the sliding glass door, she barely looked at Stormy as she returned
to the back yard and took her place beside the pool.
I say something wrong?" Lauren asked.
stood up and shook his head. "She's
just been a little high strung lately," he explained, digging his hands
into the pockets of his shorts.
"Don't worry about her.
She'll warm up to you. She's
going to have to. I plan on keeping you around for a long, long time."
did you two meet anyway?" Lauren asked, taking a sip from her glass of
went to West Beverly High together," Stormy replied. "We dated since the ninth grade. Broke up for a while after high school, then
got back together and got married."
high school sweethearts," Lauren remarked with a knowing grin.
laughed, staring into her blue eyes and then at her glossy wet lips. Everything about her drove him crazy. He couldn't help himself when he was around
her. If it had been a couple of years
ago, Lauren Spencer would be a conquest that he wouldn't rest until he'd
had. But now he was married and his days
of screwing around were over. In the
words of his father, he had to keep it in his pants and start getting serious.
about we head over to the studio and work on that track we laid down
yesterday?" Stormy asked, hoping to break the awkward silence.
nodded in agreement. "Sure, let's
do it." She couldn't help but feel
like Stormy was holding something back everytime they were together. She wondered what it was that he wanted to
say to her, but never could.
handed Brooke a glass of water and removed a cold cloth from her forehead as
she laid restlessly on the bed in
her hotel room.
take this,” Juan said, giving her a small white pill. “It’ll help you sleep.”
don’t want to sleep,” Brooke replied, pushing his hand away in a fit of
hysteria. “I have to figure out what to
do. I have to tell James about Ethan….”
Juan soothed her, holding her head up as she took a sip of water. “You need to rest for a while. You’ve had a big shock. There’ll be plenty of time for that later.”
Brooke swallowed the sleeping pill and took another sip of water. She laid back down and shook her head in
despair. “I can’t do it alone,” she
whispered. “I have to call somebody.”
rest now,” Juan said, feeling awful for the young woman’s ordeal. He knew that if she didn’t get rest she would
wear herself down and then she wouldn’t be any good to anybody. “When you wake up we’ll call whoever you
nodded, trailing off into a fitful sleep and dreaming of her last night with
sat at the bar at the beach club, squinting through the bright morning sun that
streamed in through the windows as he jotted some notes down on a piece of
paper. He picked up the phone on the
countertop and dialed the number for Rolling
please," he said, tapping his pen on the bar and looking around the empty
restaurant while he waited. He'd had a
successful morning of interviewing musicians for Lauren's opening night. Everything was lined up so far. His next order of business was making sure
all the important people in the music business were there. Lauren's success depended on it. And his
success depended on Lauren.
the editor-in-chief of Rolling Stone
came onto the line. He'd never met her
personally but he knew the type. All he
had to do was act like he was her biggest fan and he'd have her wrapped around
it's Brett Armstrong representing Lauren Spencer," he said. "Just wanted to check in and make sure
you got your tickets for the big opening at the Valley Beach Club
Spencer," Brett replied, leaning back in the barstool. "She was just signed to Good Times Records. Maybe you caught her on The
View the other day."
"I think I
"Oh really? She's the hottest thing going right now. I'm surprised you haven't-"
right, Lauren Spencer," Marjorie interrupted. "What time is the show?"
he replied with a confident smile.
"I'll have a couple of tickets waiting
for you at the door. See you then Marjorie."
hung up and smiled with exuberance.
Sometimes he was so good he surprised even himself.
look at you, Mr. Big Shot," said a voice from behind.
voice triggered alarms inside his head.
Quickly he spun around and his jaw dropped to the floor. "Devon?" he said with wide
eyes. Suddenly his heart began racing
and he almost fell off the stool.
the hell are you doing, Rick?" asked Devon Graham, a petite young girl
with feathered short brown hair.
Brett shuffled the papers in front of him and stood up. He couldn't believe she found him. She could ruin everything. "Devon, I was just going to call you."
were not," she replied with a frown.
"I bet you ten thousand dollars you were hoping you'd never run
into me again. And don't tell me you
don't have ten thousand dollars, because I know damn well you do. Unless you’ve pissed it away on one of your
get rich schemes."
backed away from her. "Listen, Devon.
I was going to come see you before I left Vegas but I sort of got
Devon squinted at him, pointing a
thick finger in his direction. "You
mean you got sidetracked running from the cops after Bailey took a fall out of
a ten story window?"
shook his head adamantly. "Listen,
I was shocked as anyone to find out about Bailey," he said. "But I had to get out of there. If I stuck around, people would start asking
questions and then our phony tour guide business would have been exposed. You didn't want the authorities knowing
about that, did you? I did us a favor
by taking off."
flash, Rick," Devon began. "The police have been asking about
you. They questioned me, thinking I had
something to do with Bailey's death."
appeared alarmed. "You didn't tell
them anything about me did you?"
didn't do anything to Bailey, did you?" Devon asked, ignoring his question.
"No! Of course not! Why would you even ask me that? I was his partner. We were friends. We were all
friends who conned people out of money for a living,” Devon said, eyeing him carefully. “Until one of those friends got greedy and
took off with all the earnings. And another
friend wound up with his head splattered all over the street.”
continued backing up away from her. If
Stormy or Miranda or anyone else walked in and saw him talking to her they’d
surely start to ask questions.
Questions that he wasn’t prepared to answer about his past.
“What are you doing in L.A. anyway?” he asked her.
hesitated, biting the tip of her finger with a smile. “What if I said that I missed you?” she asked
shook his head. “No, I don’t buy
that. What we had…whatever we had was over a long time before I split. You seemed to be more into Bailey than me
with a vixenish pout, Devon traced her fingers down the front of his tight Lacoste
polo. “You know you were the one I
always like the best,” she said. “But
you know, things were getting so complicated.
I began to feel like we were in a three way relationship.”
real funny,” Brett said. “But it doesn’t
matter now because I’ve moved on, and so should you. We’ve been hanging around together since high
school. That’s too long.”
on huh?” she asked. “So who is she? Another rich heiress you’re trying to con
out of her trust fund?”
I’ve gone straight now,” Brett insisted.
“No more cons. I’m trying to
earn my own living and make it on my own.
All on the level.”
right,” Devon said, shaking her head
doubtfully. “This isn’t senior year,
Rick. You’re into something up to your eyeballs, I know it. I saw an ad in the paper for musicians. Contact Brett Armstrong, it said. Brett Armstrong? That was the name on a credit card Bailey
stole to get us hotel rooms.”
he said defensively. “I can’t use my
real name here. I’m trying to start a
new life, Devon.
Rick Shively doesn’t exist anymore.”
cornered him against the doors that led outside onto the terrace. “Once a con, always a con,” she said,
standing on her toes to gain height so she could look him in the eyes. “I want my share of that money, Rick. And I’m not leaving L.A.
until I get it.”
“Devon, I was going to give you your
it!” she spat angrily. “I’m staying at
the Sunset Strip Motel. Be there tonight
at ten with five thousand in cash.”
you’d rather I call the police and tell them where they can find you. I’m sure they have plenty of questions to ask
you about Bailey’s death and the
vanishing tour guides.”
stared at her with wide eyes, swallowing hard. He wondered if she would carry through with
her threats. It was a risky call, but
he hated the thought of parting with one dime of that money.
that afternoon, Alex and Jordan went to the Valley Beach Club for lunch. He escorted her to the table and pulled the
chair out for her.
“Such a gentleman,” Alex cooed, batting her eyelashes as the
hostess handed them each a menu. “You
saved me from that vile Philip Whitacre the other night, and now I’m getting
the royal treatment. When did you become
so charming, Mr. Rydell?”
Jordan smiled devilishly as she sat
down across from her. “I’ve always been
so,” he replied. “You were just too
preoccupied with James Blackthorne to notice.”
glanced across the room and saw James enter with Marilee Wells. She rolled her eyes and slapped her menu onto
the table with a loud smack. “Speak of
Jordan turned in the direction she was
looking in. “Ah, looks like your ex’s
taste in women has changed since Brooke ran out on him. I never thought Marilee to be his type.”
been friends for years,” Alex said bitterly.
“I always thought she had a secret thing for him. All those times she came over to the mansion
and sat in on James’s screening parties.
She was always the only woman in a room full of rich and powerful
men. It’s no wonder she landed herself
two husbands and wound up with a bank account the size of China. I think she's
secretly a psychotic serial killer."
Jordan smiled in amusement. “Why do I get the feeling that you
disapproved of any woman who came within ten feet of James?”
raised an eyebrow and smiled. “You catch
why should I be any different toward you?”
do you mean?” Alex asked.
we’ve gotten close these last few weeks,” Jordan explained, looking across the
table into her eyes. “Why shouldn’t I be
jealous of the fact that you see other men?
Will Thomerson for one. Philip
Whitacre to name another.”
Whitacre was a costly mistake,” Alex said. “And as for Will, I
enjoy his company. What’s the matter?
You can’t handle a challenge?
You’re not man enough to stick it out and let the best man win?”
not that,” Jordan replied. “I just want to make sure I’m ahead in the
race. What it is that has you so
captivated by Will Thomerson?”
very rich and powerful and successful,” Alex started.
he has an enormous vendetta against James,” Jordan finished for her. “Isn’t that the real reason you’re so
attracted to him? You want a piece of
the action. You want a starring role in
the downfall of James Blackthorne.”
has an appeal, yes.”
can help you with that too, you know.”
rolled her eyes. “Oh really? How?
By starring in your movie? Come
on, Jordan, that’s child’s play. Will and James have almost thirty years of
animosity between them. Can you imagine the scene that will unfold
when Will triumphs over his mortal enemy?
Who wouldn’t want to be part
Jordan nodded. “Okay, but how far can you take a
relationship with a man whose only passion in life is revenge?” he asked. “A few months maybe? Then what are you left with? An empty bed and an empty heart, that’s
Jordan, stop it.”
mean it. You deserve a lot more than
that, Alex. You deserve a man who sweeps
you off your feet and stands by you, not because of some vendetta, but because
he adores you. Admit it, that’s what
you really want.”
looked at him in shock. She’d never
heard Jordan talk so passionately about
anything. Maybe he was on to
something. Maybe she was wasting so much
energy on revenge that she wasn’t taking time out to make herself happy.
sorry, James, I can’t help you,” Marilee said to James as they sat at their
table in the corner of the restaurant.
“I can’t just loan out millions of dollars without some kind of
security. Think about it. You’re struggling to pay Jack the money he
loaded you. If I loan you the money to
pay him, you’ll be in the same position with me.”
sighed and shook his head. “I’m running
out of options, Marilee,” he said, slamming his fist on the table.
your house up as collateral,” Marilee suggested. “Or your studio. I’d love to help you, James, but I can’t.”
understand,” James said, racking his brain to try to come up with something.
and Lauren raced out of the water at the beach, laughing and chasing each other
up to her apartment building. She
stopped on the steps and tried to catch her breath before handing him a towel
to dry off with.
was not fair!” she yelled between
hurried breaths. “You had a head start!”
sure,” Stormy replied, playfully pushing her away. “You’re just a sore loser.”
not a sore loser!” Lauren insisted, sticking her foot out and tripping him as
she laughed hysterically.
yeah?” Stormy asked, laying on the hot sand in his red swim trunks. “What do you call that?”
then, Brett walked out from inside the apartment building, digging his hands
into the pockets of his jeans and
watching them suspiciously. “What’s
going on, guys?” he asked, seeing the way they were laughing and joking
together, frolicking on the beach like they were young sweethearts in love.
Brett, what are you doing here?” Stormy asked, climbing to his feet.
went by the studio and Eddie said you guys took off a while ago, so I stopped
by to see if you were here,” Brett explained.
“I thought we were going to spend the afternoon in the studio.”
but who can work inside on such a beautiful day?” Lauren asked, drying her hair
with a towel. “Why don’t you join us,
why not.” He didn’t take his eyes off of
think I have an extra suit in my car,” Stormy said. “I’ll be right back.”
ran off to the parking lot and left Brett and Lauren standing on the
steps. After a minute of awkward
silence, he turned to her and smiled.
like you and Stormy are getting pretty tight,” he said.
Lauren said with a smile. “He’s
great. I can talk to him about
pressed his lips together tightly, fidgeting anxiously with his hands. After another minute, he looked back at her
and shrugged. “Is that all it is?” he
asked. “I mean, is there anything else
going on with you two?”
remark took her by surprise. “What do
you mean?” she asked.
just seems like you two are getting along really
well, that’s all.”
shrugged. She wasn’t sure what he was
getting at, but from his tone she could tell he was accusing them of
something. “Yeah, but that’s all. Stormy’s my producer, Brett.”
took a step closer to her. “Yeah, and
I’m your manager. I just worry that any
decisions you make about your personal life might affect your career. I’m trying to look out for your best
smiled and patted him on the shoulder.
“I appreciate that. I’m glad I have
someone like you on my side. But I don’t
think that my friendship with Stormy is going to jeopardize my career. Nobody even knows who I am yet. I’m a nobody. I don’t think the press is going to be lining
up at my door anytime soon.”
smiled back at her. “With me as your
manager they will be before you know it.”
returned to the beach with a pair of red swim trunks and handed them to
Brett. “Here ya go,” he said. “You can change inside. Don’t worry, Winter’s at work.”
Brett gave Lauren a final glance before turning and walking up the steps to the
building. He walked up the two flights
of stairs and went inside the apartment.
the door, he leaned against it
and shut his eyes. He didn’t know why
he was so unnerved all of the sudden about how close Stormy and Lauren had
become. Why did he have a reason to be
jealous? He was married. Stormy was married too. Lauren was off limits to both of them.
next morning, Heather went to the Blackthorne mansion and found Miranda in the
game room playing X Box. She took a deep
breath and walked over to the sitting area.
what’s up?” Miranda asked, barely looking up at her sister-in-law.
are you going to do about Brett?” Heather asked, her tone demanding as she
placed her hands on her hips.
frowned. “What about him? He’s upstairs taking a shower.”
rolled her eyes and grabbed the remote control, hastily switching off the
television so she could have Miranda’s full attention. “I’m talking about Lauren. Brett and Stormy are obsessed with her! Doesn’t
that bother you?”
up on the sofa, Miranda looked at her with annoyance evident on her face. “I don’t know about you, Heather, but my
marriage is rock solid. I don’t have to
wonder what Brett is doing every minute of the day. If that’s the way you and Stormy’s marriage
is, then I’d consider seeing a therapist.”
got up to walk out of the room when Heather pulled her back. “It doesn’t bother you at all that our
husbands spend every minute of the day with her?” she asked, shaking her head
in dismay. “My marriage is secure too,
but I still think it’s suspicious. I
would think you of all people would see right through it. You don’t trust
anybody. I mean, look at the way you
warned everyone against Brooke. And you
were right. She took off and left your
I was right about Brooke,” Miranda beamed proudly. “But you’re dead wrong about Brett. He loves me and he would never do anything to
hurt me. Stormy, on the other hand, has
always been a playboy. I don’t know how
your marriage has survived this
long. So if anyone has anything to worry
about, it’s you.”
that, she turned and stormed out of the room, leaving Heather alone with a look
of frustration on her face. Why was
Miranda turning a blind eye to what was going on? Lauren Spencer was trying to steal their
husbands away from them and she couldn’t care less.
bounded out of the room and down the hallway to the foyer. Before she could open the front door to
leave, Brett came down the stairs and called after her. She turned and stopped in her tracks, eager
to confront him.
going on with you and Lauren?” she insisted, her eyes menacing.
frowned as he came off the last stair and stopped before her. “What do mean?” he asked. “Nothing’s going on with me and Lauren.”
Stormy ever talks about is Lauren.
Lauren this and Lauren that. “
She threw her arms up in resignation.
“Well I’m sick of it!”
his arms across his chest, Brett looked down at the pretty girl. “I’m Lauren’s manager,” he said. “So obviously I have to spend time with
her. But that’s the extent of our
please!” Heather exclaimed.
an idea occurred to Brett. He realized
that if he fueled Heather’s suspicions, maybe she would confront Stormy about
it and he would have to reassure her by spending less time with Lauren. If that happened, his problems would be
over. The jealousy he felt over their
closeness would be a dead issue.
is going on with Stormy and Lauren is something else all together,” he
continued. “I know they spend a lot of
time together when I’m not around, but I guess you’ll have to ask him about
turned and started down the hall, smiling wickedly. After just a few steps he heard Heather race
out of the house and slam the door shut behind her.
night at the Valley Beach Club, the restaurant was quickly filling with
customers in anticipation of Lauren’s debut.
Brett was rushing around the dining room, ensuring that every last
detail was taken care of. When Marjorie
Stahl arrived with several other reporters from Rolling Stone and other big industry magazines, he spent a few
minutes telling them how lucky they were to have received tickets for such a
highly anticipated event.
going to be a star!” he said repeatedly to reporters from Image and Feature
magazines. He figured if he was going to make a go of
living life on the straight and narrow, he might as well put all he had into
it. There was definitely money to be
made with Lauren Spencer.
across the room, he felt someone grab his arm and he spun around with a toothy
smile, prepared for anything. Except
didn’t show up last night,” Devon Graham hissed, glaring at him and pointing
her finger inches from his eyes.
sudden appearance threw him into a panic.
That night was much too important to have her ruin it for him. “What are you doing here?” he whispered,
grabbing her arm and pulling her out into the lobby of the restaurant.
“I told you that if you didn’t come to my motel room last night with the money,
I was going to make you very sorry!" Devon shrieked. “I swear I’ll tell the police where to find
you, Rick. You’ll go to jail and
whatever life you’ve assumed this time
will be over.”
you keep your voice down,” Brett demanded, gripping her arm tightly.
of them noticed Lauren watching them from behind a pillar in the lobby, dressed
for her performance in a blue sequined gown and hearing every word they said.
get you your money. I’ve kind of had my
hands full. Now go back to your motel
room and wait for me there. I’ll bring
it by tonight after the show.”
Devon shook her head in
frustration. “What show?” she asked,
looking in at the crowd of people gathered into the restaurant. “What exactly are you doing here, anyway?”
told you, I’m starting a new life here,” Brett insisted. “Now leave before you ruin it for me.”
Devon shrugged his hand off of her arm
and pulled away. “Leave you alone so you
can get away with murder?” she asked in disbelief. “I don’t think so. I’m going in there and telling everyone what
a fraud and phony you really are.”
turned and started back into the dining room.
Brett watched her with wide eyes, sweat pouring from his forehead.
at the Blackthorne mansion, James was sitting in his study when Leilani entered
and got his attention.
a Mr. Sallis here to see you,” she said.
you, Leilani,” James replied, standing up as Cutty Sallis walked into the
study, briefcase in hand.
walked around his desk and shook the man’s hand. “Thank you for coming so quickly, Mr.
Sallis,” he said. “I realize it’s a bit
unorthodox to hold a business meeting this late, but I understand you’re
leaving for the east coast in the morning.”
take it your calling me has something to do with the offer I made you the other
day in your office,” Sallis said.
for a minute, James finally nodded and walked over to his desk. “I’ve decided to take you up on your offer,
” he said. “That is, if H&Q Consolidated is still willing to
loan me the money.”
terms of the loan will remain as we discussed,” Sallis replied. “I cannot alter them, Mr. Blackthorne.”
nodded regretfully. “Twenty percent
interest, and Sunset Studios as
collateral.” The high interest rate he
could deal with, but putting his studio up as loan security made his stomach turn flips. It was a risky endeavor, but he had no
choice. He had to get that money to pay
Jack Fallmont back.
opened his briefcase and removed a set of contracts. He handed them to James and them showed him
the check. “Sign on the places
indicated,” he said, pointing to several pages of the document.
took a deep breath, picking up a pen and watching his hand trembling
uncontrollably as he brought it down to the paper. Closing his eyes, he tried to think of the
bind he was in. He had no other alternative
but to go with H&Q Consolidated’s
he couldn’t put it off any longer, he pressed down with the pen and quickly
signed his name on all three pages.
Slamming the pen onto the desk, he grabbed the check from Sallis and
looked at it, somewhat relieved. He had
to keep telling himself that it didn’t have to be a big deal. He would simply pay it back and everything
would work out fine. His studio would
never feel the brunt of it.
been a pleasure doing business with you, Mr. Blackthorne,” Sallis said, shaking
his hand and starting to the door.
to you,” James replied. “Leilani will
show you out, Mr. Sallis.”
he’d left, James walked to the window and stared outside at the night sky. With a sense of relief, he picked up the
phone on his desk and dialed Jack Fallmont.
it’s James,” he said into the receiver.
“I’ve got your money.”
Thomerson sat behind his desk at Jaguar
Studios, swiveling back and forth in his chair as he gulped down a scotch
neat. He looked up when the door opened
and Cutty Sallis walked inside, handing him a few pieces of paper.
signed it?” Will asked, smiling with exhilaration as he leafed through the
just came from his house,” Sallis replied.
stood up, staring at the contract baring James’s signature. “Poor James,” he began. “If he only knew who he was actually
borrowing this money from.”
did you come up with the name H&Q
Consolidated, anyway?” Sallis asked, pouring himself a drink.
snatched the glass away from him. “The
phonebook,” he replied. “You can go
now. I didn’t hire you to drink my
booze. I hired you because I needed an
actor to play a part.”
actor shrugged and left the office, leaving Will behind with a triumphant look
on his face. Finally he would get his
ultimate revenge on James Blackthorne.
It was only a matter of time now.
Soon he would have control of his beloved Sunset Studios.
tries to keep Devon from exposing him. Alex
and Will celebrate James's impending downfall. James
learns of Ethan's fate. Heather issues a warning
to Lauren. Despite his best efforts, Stormy
gives in to an intimate moment with Lauren.