emotinally shut down after news of Ethan's death.
Brett's former girlfriend and business partner,
Devon Graham, arrived in town and threatened
to expose him as a con man if he didn't give her
half the money he took from Bailey in Las Vegas.
A nervous Brett insisted that he had nothing
to do with Bailey's fall from the hotel window.
After Alex and Jordan made up, Alex began
questioning her motives for considering Will's marriage
proposal. Brett became suspicious of Stormy
and Lauren's relationship so he steered Heather
to believe that there might be something going on between
them. James was forced to accept the high
risk loan from Cutty Sallis at H&Q Consolidated.
Later, Will paid Sallis, who was an actor
he'd hired as a front.
grabbed Devon’s arm and pulled her back into
the lobby at the club, covering her mouth with his hand to keep her from
screaming. She struggled to get free of
his grasp as he carried her across the lobby and threw her into a utility
do you think you’re doing?” she screaming, pounding on the door.
sorry to have to do this to you, Devon,” Brett said, looking around for something to brace the
door with. He grabbed a chair and
propped it underneath the doorknob. “But
I can’t have you ruining my big night.”
can’t leave me in here, you bastard!” Devon shrieked. “I swear to God I’ll scream my head off until
someone lets me out!”
sighed with frustration and rushed to the DJ booth in the restaurant, turning
the volume up on the music that was being piped through the sound system. Hopefully no one would be able to hear her
yelling from the closet. As soon as the
night was over, he’d let her out and deal with her then.
He turned around just as Stormy and Heather
approached him, dressed in their best evening attire.
great so far,” Stormy said, looking around happily at the crowd who had
gathered to hear Lauren’s debut. “You
really outdid yourself, Brett. Did you
know there’s a reporter here from Rolling
Brett gave him a
cocky smile. “Of course. I told you I’d make sure all the right people
were here to see Lauren.”
“I have to give you
credit,” Stormy said, shaking his hand.
“You’ve earned your mark as Lauren’s manager.”
Heather rolled her
eyes and broke away from his side. She
didn’t even know why she came tonight.
She was miserable. Everywhere she
turned people were talking about Lauren and what a great discovery she
was. They made it sound like she was the
She turned and saw
Lauren making a b-line across the room to where Stormy was standing. She looked upset, and of course Stormy was
all too happy to console her with an arm around her shoulder and his usual
seductive bedroom eyes transfixed on her.
He didn’t know when to turn it off, she thought to herself.
“I need to talk to
you,” Lauren whispered to Stormy, watching Brett out of the corner of her
eyes. She didn’t know what was going on
with him and the girl he’d been arguing with in the lobby, but something was
up. She knew it.
“You’re not getting
nervous, are you?” Stormy asked.
Lauren shook her
head. “No, it’s about Brett.” She always knew there was something fishy
about her manager, but she couldn’t quite put her finger on it. Then yesterday he started asking questions
about her relationship with Stormy. Now
she just saw him turn pale as a ghost when that girl showed up. It all seemed suspect to her.
“He’s done a great
job tonight, don’t you think?” Stormy asked, looking around at the restaurant
buzzing with activity. “Can you believe
he put this whole thing together himself?
Lauren, there are reporters here from every industry magazine. Your name is going to be on everyone’s lips
She managed a smile, realizing that she did have a
lot to look forward to. And as
suspicious as she was about Brett, she did owe a lot of it to him. Maybe she was being a little too judgmental
about his shady personality.
“So what about
Brett?” Stormy asked. “Is everything
Lauren nodded and
smiled. “Yeah. I just wanted to thank you both for
everything you’ve done for me.”
Stormy pulled her
into a friendly embrace. “I’m just happy
that your dreams are going to come true,” he said.
Across the room, Heather glared at them, balling her
fists so hard that her knuckles turned white.
After what Brett said to her earlier that day, she was more suspicious
about Stormy and Lauren’s relationship than ever. She’d held her tongue so far, but she could
only hold it in so long before she burst.
glasses clinked together as Alex and Will sat on the sofa in his hotel suite at
the Peninsula. Alex put her feet up on his lap and he
massaged them seductively.
“You are a genius,
Will Thomerson,” she said joyously, then sipped her champagne.
“Well thank you.”
“What do you think
James will do when he finds out you were the one who lent him that money?” Alex
asked, taking a deep breath and smiling.
“He’ll be powerless,”
Will replied. “All I have to do is call
in that loan early, when he’s incapable of paying it back, and then I’ll become
owner of Sunset Studios. He can say goodbye to his reputation and his
power in Hollywood.
There’s not a thing he can do to retaliate.”
“Are you sure about
that? James is a very resourceful
man. Revenge is one of his specialties.”
Will laughed and
shook his head. “Let him try. I’ll be the leading producer in
I’ll have his studio, and I’ll have his lovely ex-wife.”
coyly. “We’re very sure of ourselves,
“You can’t tell me
after I pull off this coup that you’ll be able to turn my proposal for marriage
down,” Will said. “I’ll be irresistible
Drifting off into a
daze, Alex thought back to her lunch with Jordan.
He’d made a very valid point, and one that she couldn’t seem to
overlook. After Will’s revenge on James
was complete, what would be left of their relationship? The only reason she was so turned on by him
was because he had the same passions that she had. Revenge against the man who exiled her from
her own home. Beyond that, she had no
real feelings for Will.
She definitely had a
tough choice to make. Ideally she could
continue seeing them both. Then once
Will’s plot had run its course, she would gently but quickly let him down and
devote her full attention to Jordan. Then and only then would she deliver her
final blow to James by telling Will that Ethan was his son.
Meanwhile, in Santo Domingo, Brooke sat on the bed in her
hotel room, holding the phone in her hands and staring at it blankly. She knew she had to call James and tell him
about Ethan. As much as she hated to
call him under those circumstances, she knew he had a right to know.
She realized she
should forget about everything that had happened lately and do what was
right. Nothing else mattered now. Not her marriage to Philip and not the way
James turned on her after he found out about it. Ethan was gone and that was all that
Taking a deep breath,
she dialed the number to the Blackthorne mansion. After a few rings, Leilani answered and
Brooke let out a sigh of relief.
Brooke,” she said breathlessly. “Is
“He went out for a
while, Miss Taylor,” Leilani replied.
Brooke started to
cry. “Leilani, I have terrible news,”
she sobbed. “It’s about Ethan.”
Stormy approached the
microphone at the club and the room grew quiet as all of the guests looked at
him in anticipation.
“I’d like to thank
everyone for coming out tonight,” he began.
“This a very special night for Good
Times Records. We’ve been lucky
enough to have found a talent that is without a doubt going to be the voice of
the new decade. Ladies and gentlemen,
It’s my pleasure to introduce Lauren Spencer.”
crowd applauded as Lauren came out onto the stage and the band began playing a jazzy number. Stormy kissed Lauren’s hand and she took her
position at the microphone and started singing.
watched from the first table, seated between Miranda and Heather who stared
with contempt at Lauren as she sang her heart out.
in the lobby, Devon yelled hoarsely and banged her
fists on the door to the utility closet, hoping someone passing by would hear
her. She heard live music playing from
the dining room and sighed in frustration.
Now no one was going to find her.
you, Rick,” she mumbled to herself. “I’m
going to get you for this.”
arrived home from meeting Jack and started upstairs to his bedroom. It was late and he wanted to go to sleep and
forget about his troubles. He felt a
sense of relief after paying Jack his money.
At least that was one thing he could take comfort in. His business relationship with the Fallmonts
was very important and jeopardizing that was something he refused to let
he reached the top of the staircase, Leilani came running down the hall toward
him, her arms flailing and her voice trembling.
Blackthorne, I have terrible news,” she exclaimed.
frowned. “What is it Leilani?” He’d never seen her so worked up in the
fifteen years she’d worked for him.
Taylor called from Santo Domingo,” she explained. “She was there with your nephew and there was
an accident….an explosion of some kind.”
James asked with wide eyes. He couldn’t
believe what he was hearing.
nephew is dead, Mr. Blackthorne,” Leilani finished, her face horror-stricken.
James shouted, taking a step back.
“That can’t be!”
nodded her head. “It’s true, Mr.
Blackthorne. Miss Taylor seemed very
brought his hands to his mouth and slowly sat down on the top stair as he tried
to comprehend the news. A million
questions filled his mind. What were
Brooke and Ethan doing in the Dominican Republic together? What kind of explosion? Was Brooke hurt as well?
at the floor in a daze, he tried to figure out what he was going to do. He had to do something. Ethan was his
nephew. His own flesh and blood. He owed it to his sister Georgie to get to
the bottom of what had happened.
sat in her dressing room after the performance, dabbing sweat from her forehead with a towel when the
door opened and Heather came barging in.
got a lot of nerve!” she yelled at Lauren, her eyes flaring.
Lauren stood up and backed away from her.
“What are you talking about?”
think I don’t see the way you flirt with my husband,” Heather continued,
standing only inches away from her. “The
way you bat your eyelashes at him. The
way your face lights up when he’s in the room.
The way you secretly love it when he hugs you or touches you.”
got it all wrong!” Lauren insisted. “I’m
not interested in your husband. We work
together. That’s all.”
try to act innocent with me!” Heather continued. “I know girls like you. You think because you have pretty blond hair
and a figure that you can have any man you want. Well I’ve got news for you, you can’t have
act like he’s a piece of property,” Lauren said, shaking her head. She was beginning to regret feeling sorry for
Heather. It was becoming clear to her
that this girl was nothing but a spoiled rich brat. “He’s not a prize, Heather. He has a mind of his own.”
my husband. I think I know better than anyone what he
her ground, Lauren refused to back down from her. She wasn’t going to let her bully her and
make her feel bad about something she hadn’t even done. “What about love and trust?” she asked. “Doesn’t that factor into your marriage? Or are you so consumed with jealousy that you
just see him as a possession that you can control?”
have no interest in controlling him,” Heather replied. “Besides, it’s not him I don’t trust. It’s you.”
folded her arms and stared at her suspiciously.
“Let’s cut to the chase, Heather,” she began. “It’s not that you don’t trust me, it’s that
you’re jealous that Stormy is helping me with my career, while he ignores
with rage, Heather had to restrain herself from physically attacking the
girl. “I don’t think you know what
you’re talking about.”
I?” Lauren asked, her eyes challenging her.
“Just admit that that’s the reason you hated me from the get go. It has nothing to do with me or my
relationship with Stormy. It’s that you
think that should have been you up there tonight, isn’t it?”
was through listening to her. She wasn’t
going to let her turn everything around on her and make her look like the bad
guy. “I’m warning you,” she hissed. ‘If you don’t keep it professional with my
husband, I will make you sorry.”
unnerved by her tone, Lauren watched as Heather turned and raced out of the
dressing room. She didn’t know what to
do about her. It was obvious they would
never be friends. She had too much rage and resentment built
door opened again and Stormy and Brett entered the room, cheering and hollering
with excitement as they handed Lauren a glass of champagne.
were fantastic!” Stormy said, picking her up and twirling her around as she
laughed. “Everyone out there is saying
how outstanding you are. You’ve done
it, Lauren. You’ve officially launched
your career tonight.”
“We did it, “Lauren corrected him,
smiling happily. “You really think they
you?” he asked. “They loved you!”
can’t believe this,” Lauren exclaimed as she threw her arms around him and
hugged him tightly.
stood by, watching with a forced smile on his face. Obviously the suspicions he’d relayed to
Heather hadn’t done much to tame Stormy and Lauren’s connection. He would have to work a little harder to make
sure that nothing progressed between them.
he remembered Devon.
She was still in the utility closet and people would be leaving the
restaurant soon. Someone was bound to
hear her yelling her head off and then he’d have a lot of explaining to do.
quickly excused himself and raced out to the dining room, then proceeded out
into the waiting area. The sound of
fists hitting the inside of the door triggered alarms in his head and he looked
around to see if anyone had noticed.
Just then, a waiter brushed past him and approached the door.
someone in here?” he asked, moving the chair away from the door.
Brett exclaimed, trying to stop him.
his plea was no use. The door quickly
flew open and Devon came charging out of the closet
in a panic. Wheezing and trying to
catch her breath, she pointed at Brett and gritted her teeth.
better do something about this guy!” she yelled. “He locked me in that damn closet for over an
are you alright?” asked the waiter.
fine,” Brett interrupted, grabbed Devon
by the arm and attempting to
lead her out the front doors.
I’m not fine!” Devon insisted, pulling away from him.
then, Miranda appeared in the lobby.
Brett turned to her with wide eyes, realizing he was in trouble. Of all people to show up at that minute…
who is this woman?” she asked, walking over and stopping at his side.
no one,” Brett replied quickly, trying to get Miranda back into the restaurant.
“No one?” Devon
asked. “I slept with you for two years and now all
the sudden I’m no one?”
Miranda began in confusion.
name isn’t Brett, honey,” Devon announced as a crowd of onlookers assembled around
them. “It’s Rick Shively. And I’m sure his name isn’t the only thing
he’s lied to you about.”
Shively?” Miranda asked, more confused than ever. She put her arm around him and looked into
his eyes. “What is she talking about?”
no, don’t tell me you fell for his lies and got involved with him too,” Devon continued with a smirk. “Honey, you’ve screwed yourself. What are you?
Some rich debutante that fell for his charms and good looks? Did you sign over your trust fund to him
his wife,” Miranda replied evenly.
Devon laughed out loud and covered her
mouth. “Oh my God, you are one dumb
girl,” she said, then looked at Brett.
“How did you get her to marry you?
Did you tell that you were dying?
Or that you’re the successor to the throne? Which con was it this time, Rick?”
“Devon, I think you’d better leave
now,” Brett said anxiously.
arrived on the scene with Heather, both wondering what all the yelling and
commotion was about. Lauren followed
seconds later. She recognized the girl
from earlier. She knew something was up,
and now she’d find out exactly what.
me tell you something else, Sweetie,” Devon said, moving toward
Miranda. “I wouldn’t just be afraid of
losing my money. People have lost their
lives because of this guy.”
enough,” Brett said, grabbing hold of Devon’s arm.
go!” she shrieked. “I warned you,
Rick. I gave you a chance to make things
right and you chose to ignore me. You
locked me in a closet to shut me up. But
there’s nothing you can do to shut me up now.
You’re going to be very sorry you crossed me.”
turned and stormed out of the restaurant, leaving Brett and Miranda standing
behind with blank expressionless faces.
Brett looked around the room, realizing everyone was staring at him as
if waiting for an explanation.
told you!” Brett said a while later as he and Miranda paced around their
bedroom at the Blackthorne mansion. “Devon
and I met in high school. We used to be involved. I broke it off and she isn’t taking it very
what was all that about people losing their lives?” Miranda asked, her hands on
her hips and she stared at him. “What
did she mean by that?”
Brett shrugged and
stammered out a reply. “She’s
exaggerating, of course,” he said with a casual laugh.
made you out to sound like some kind of con artist!”
Brett began, taking her hand and sitting her down on the bed. “I’m not proud of it, but I’ve done things
that I probably shouldn’t have. I
wasn’t always so career-oriented, Miranda.
Devon and I used to come up with
schemes to get rich. None of them
really worked and so I got out of that whole scene. That’s when I told her it was over. Naturally, she was upset. She didn’t think she could pull them off by
what about your name?” Miranda demanded, standing up again. “She said Brett Armstrong isn’t your
name. Is that true?”
realized there was no getting around the issue. He already told her about his past as a con
artist so telling her that he changed his name wasn’t going to matter much.
my real name is Rick Shively,” he admitted.
“I gained a few enemies because of my past and I had to be careful. I had to change my name so they wouldn’t
catch up with me.”
this is just great!” Miranda exclaimed, pacing the room again. “I don’t even know the man I married! This is unbelievable! My father was right all along!”
Brett insisted, standing up and pulling her toward him. “He wasn’t.
I’ve done some things I’m not proud of, but that’s all in the past. I’m a changed man, Miranda. I told you that a long time ago. I’m not into all that stuff anymore.”
that where all that money came from?” she asked. “From you conning people?”
nodded reluctantly. “Yes.”
so I’m harboring a criminal,” Miranda said, slapping her hands to her sides.
you’re not!” Brett replied. “I’m not a
criminal, Miranda. I’m on the level and
working for an honest living now. And
all that stuff that Devon said about your trust fund is
bogus. You know I’ve never asked you for
any money. I want to provide for us
myself. And pretty soon I want to move
us out of your father’s house and into our own. It’s about time we started our own life.”
couldn’t help but smile. She loved it
that he was planning for their future together.
can we please just drop all of this?” he asked, putting his arms around
her. “I don’t want to hear the name
Devon Graham or Rick Shively ever again.
That part of my life is over. My
life is here with you now.”
by his poetic words, Miranda kissed him passionately and held him close. She knew that Brett wasn’t the sleazy louse
that girl made him out to be. She would know if she’d married someone
next morning, Stormy arrived at the Blackthorne mansion to see Brett and find
out what the hell happened last night.
When he started through the foyer, her saw his father coming down the
stairs with a suitcase in hand.
are you going somewhere?” he asked.
stopped beside him and put a hand on his shoulder. “Stormy, I got some bad news last night.”
eyes widened. “What? Dad, what-“
put his hand up. “I don’t know many
details,” he said. “Apparently he and
Brooke were in the Dominican Republic and there was some sort of
accident and….and Ethan was killed. I’m
going there now to see what I can find out.”
was devastated. This had all come as
such a shock and without any warning.
“Do you want me to go with you, Dad?” he asked, his heart sinking at the
thought of his cousin Ethan not being around anymore. It was almost too much to take in.
His eyes stung and he stomach churned uneasily.
you stay here,” James replied. “I’ll
phone you the minute I hear anything.”
nodded and gave his dad a hug. “Give my
love to Brooke,” he said.
will,” James said as he picked up his suitcase and headed for the door.
tried shaking off the morbid feeling he had in the pit of his stomach. He turned to Leilani as she entered the foyer
from the dining room.
have you seen Brett this morning?”
in the gym, Mr. Blackthorne,” Leilani replied.
headed down the hallway and walked into the gym, spotting Brett at the bench
press as music blared from the stereo.
looked up at him and set the weights down.
“Look, if you’re here to fire me then just do it,” he said. “I don’t need any lectures.”
shrugged. “Lauren’s the only one who can
fire you. Personally I don’t care what
you did with your life before you came here.
The only things I care about are that you make my sister happy, and that
you do right by me and my record company.”
all I want to do,” Brett insisted, breathing heavily as he moved across the
room to the leg press.
we have no problem,” Stormy said.
looked at him and bit down on his lip.
“What about Lauren? What does she
will be fine,” he replied. “She knows
you were the reason that last night was a success and she’s not about to forget
positioned his feet on the pedals and began pushing the weights with his
legs. “Good, then we’re all set.”
quite,” Stormy replied, a solemn look on his face.
Brett stopped and looked at him curiously.
I need to get changed and then beat your ass on the racquetball court,” Stormy
continued, then broke into a devilish grin.
Brett got up and followed him out of the gym.
“You’re on. But I have to warn
you, I’ve been known to clean up on the court.”
we’ll see,” Stormy replied, playfully punching his arm as they walked down the
warm breeze blew through the windows of the dining room at the Blackthorne
mansion. The window slowly opened and
Devon Graham climbed inside, crouching to the floor as she scanned the room to
see if she was alone.
ran to the door and peered out into the foyer, gawking at the amazing luxury
that Rick was living in. The ornate
mansion was so old Hollywood it was almost a cliché. She’d read about places like this in the
magazines but never thought she’d see one up close.
sure the coast was clear, she dashed across the foyer and ran up the
staircase. Racing down the hall, she
ducked into one of the bedrooms while the maid passed by. Her heart thudding inside her chest, she peeked
out into the hall saw that it was empty again.
checking several of the bedrooms, she finally went into the one that she was
sure belonged to Rick and that wife of his.
The room was like something out of a home and garden magazine. Everything was pristine and perfect, just the
opposite of what she was used to.
the door quietly behind her, she began searching through dresser drawers and
under the bed. When she came up with
nothing, she stood and looked around the meticulously decorated bedroom.
I were ten thousand dollars, where would I hide?” she said to herself.
across the room to the closet, she threw open the doors and gazed in at the
amazing wardrobe the girl owned. It was
enough to make her green with envy.
Designer labels literally lined the walls of the huge walk in.
the hell are you doing here?” asked a voice from behind.
Devon spun around and came face to
face with Miranda. She pressed her lips
together and tried to think of what to say.
“I’m just getting something that belongs to me and then I’ll be out of
walked up and shut her closet doors.
“There’s nothing here that belongs to you,” she replied. “Now why don’t you give me one reason why I
shouldn’t call the police right now?”
don’t think you’d do that,” Devon said smugly.
don’t think so?”
Devon replied. “And I’ll tell you why. Because if the police get involved, then I
guarantee your husband will go to jail.
Do you have any idea how many laws he’s broken in the past few
years? There’s probably a list of
warrants out for his arrest.”
what you say,” Miranda spat.
that’s a fact, Sweetheart. You’d better
wise up or you’ll be sorry you ever heard the name Brett Armstrong.”
folded her arms and smiled wickedly. “I
really do have to offer my apologies,” she said. “It must be so hard seeing the man you loved
since high school married to someone else.
But trust me, it gets easier in time.
Before you know it you’ll be back out there dating again. I’m sure of it. A girl with your spunk and all.”
Devon could see right through her
sarcastic jibes. “Believe me, there’s
nothing about Rick that I miss,” she said.
“You can have him. I’m sure the
two of you will be perfect together.
Just remember what I said. Watch
brushed past Miranda and started out of the bedroom and down the hall.
the way,” Miranda called after her, following her to the staircase. “The next time you break into my house, I’ll
break your nose.”
Devon didn’t look back. She ran down the stairs and out the front
door. Outside on the porch, she wrung
her hands together anxiously.
Rick, you asked for it,” she murmured quietly to herself. “Nobody treats me this way. I’m going to pull the rug out from under your
happy little life here in sunny California.”
afternoon, Alex showed up at Jordan’s house in Beverly Hills.
She felt guilty after having lied to him the night before about why she
couldn’t see him that night, when in reality she spent the night celebrating
with Will Thomerson. Perhaps a mid
afternoon rendezvous would smooth things over.
She had to be careful not to alienate him. She was
playing a dangerous game with the
two men in her life. One wrong move and
she could send them running in the opposite direction. She was having too much fun to let that
the butler showed her into the drawing room Jordan was just finishing up a phone
call. A disturbed look covered his face
and Alex could tell right away that something was troubling him.
is it?" she asked, walking toward him.
Jordan moved away from the desk and
took hold of her hand. "That was
Heather," he began.
"Apparently Ethan was caught in an explosion down in the Dominican Republic."
Alex asked in shock.
didn't know too many details yet, but James is on his way down there right
now," Jordan continued. "They do know that he's dead."
Alex whispered under her breath.
thoughts immediately turned to Will. He
was Ethan's father. He should know what
was going on with his own son. He had
a right to know. Damn James for keeping it from him all these
years. He was playing God.
telling Will now would only complicate matters.
they sure he's dead?" Alex asked.
Jordan shrugged. "They haven't
found a body yet, but then again there might not be anything left of it. It's a tough call, but apparently they've
called off the search."
was he doing there?" Alex asked.
don't know, but Brooke was with him."
eyes shot in his direction.
"Brooke?" she asked.
"What were they doing in the Caribbean together?"
thinking for a minute, Alex grabbed her purse and started to the door. "I have to go there," she said.
Jordan asked. "Alex, this has nothing to do with
you. Besides, it's dangerous. There's a war going on there."
don't care," she replied willfully.
"I can't explain why, but I know that I have to go there. I have to find out if Ethan is alive or
dead. So much depends on it, Jordan."
could sense the seriousness in her tone.
He didn't know what she thought she could do to aid in the situation,
but he trusted her instincts.
going with you," he said, starting toward her.
looked at him in awe. "I can't ask
you to do that," she said.
not letting you go alone," Jordan insisted, grabbing her arms and
looking deep into her eyes.
finally agreed, seeing another side of Jordan that surprised her. Every day he became more and more appealing
to her "Thank you, Jordan."
just call my pilot and have him prepare the jet," Jordan said, running
over and dialing the phone.
and Lauren sat alone in the control booth at Good Times Records. They
listened to the playback of a song they'd recorded several days earlier, and
Stormy jotted notes down as the track played.
think that part needs work," Lauren suggested. "Too much reverb, I think."
Stormy backed the tape up and listened to the segment again. "Yeah, I think you're right," he
said, then looked at her with a smile.
"How do you know so much about all this technical stuff? I thought that was my job."
like to stay informed," she said with a smile.
couldn’t take his eyes off her.
"You're amazing," he said, his eyelids growing heavy as he
felt butterflies trip through his stomach.
it!" she joked, hitting him and turning away bashfully.
I mean it," Stormy said. "I've
never met anyone like you."
gaze met with his and her smile faded.
She hated herself for thinking it, but she was falling for him
fast. Every minute they spent together
was a joy.
Suddenly she felt
like a hypocrite for swearing to Heather last night that there was nothing
going on between them. Truthfully there
wasn't. So what if they had feelings
for each other? That was normal for people
who worked so closely together. Sure,
Stormy was funny, smart and devastatingly handsome, but that didn't mean she
would act on her feelings. They had a
professional relationship and that was all.
far out yourself," she finally said to him, then looked away nervously.
Stormy turned back to
the mixing board and laughed. "I'm
"No, you don't
have anything to be sorry about," she replied.
"No, I mean I'm
sorry for this," Stormy began, then leaned in and kissed her full on the
lips. At first he felt her pull away,
but something must have eased her mind because a second later she was returning
Stormy put his hands
on her waist and savored the sweet taste of her lips. It felt so right that he didn't want to
stop. To his surprise, the guilt that he
expected to feel wasn't there. He
didn't think about Heather at all. His
full attention was on Lauren and her soft kisses.
Meanwhile, Brett and
Miranda started down the staircase at the Blackthorne mansion, their tennis
rackets in hand as they prepared to leave for the Valley Beach Club.
"You're going to
kill me out there," he said and gave her a playful nudge. "Stormy just kicked my butt at
racquetball this morning. I'm going to
be worn out by the end of the day."
Miranda laughed and
kissed him lightly. "Don't get too worn out," she said
seductively. "You'll need some energy
A grin broke out
across Brett's face and he chased her the rest of the way down the stairs just
as the doorbell rang. Leilani appeared
from another room and ambled over to answer the door.
A police officer and
a plain clothed detective entered the foyer and showed Leilani their
badges. "Excuse us, Ma'am, is
there a Rick Shively residing at this address?
He might also be using the alias Brett Armstrong."
Brett and Miranda
both snapped to attention, their eyes riveted to the police officers standing
in the foyer.
Armstrong," Brett said with a frown.
His heart began beating wildly and he could feel Miranda's eyes burning
into him. This definitely didn't look
good for him.
The detective removed
a pair of handcuffs and took Brett by the arm.
"Mr. Armstrong, we're placing you under arrest for the murder of
Bailey Freeborn," he said, twisting his arms behind his back and latching
the cuffs around his wrists.
Brett rolled his
eyes, knowing immediately that Devon's name was written all over this. She said she would call the police and tell
them where to find him, and she followed through with her promise.
He looked at Miranda
who stood, perplexed at the sight of her husband being arrested for murder.
James sat in the back
of his jet on the way to the Dominican Republic. He tapped his foot nervously on the floor and
repeatedly looked at his watch. He
didn't think he'd be able to keep his sanity for much longer. Glancing out the window, he saw the welcome
sight of land in the not far off distance.
Hitting the call
button on the PA system, he called to the cockpit and spoke to the pilot. "Jake, how much longer?"
few seconds later, the pilot's crackling voice sounded over the intercom. "We're
coming up on the island now, Mr.
Blackthorne," he said. "I'm
going to start our landing now."
with relief, James leaned back in his seat and tried thumbing through a
magazine to keep his mind off of Ethan.
The attempt was futile, as his mind continuously raced in a hundred
different directions. Questions nagged
at him relentlessly. What were Brooke
and Ethan doing on the island together?
Were they having an affair? And
what led to the explosion that took his nephews life?
violent bump in the cabin caused him to jolt back to reality. He looked out the window and wondered what
was going on. They must have hit some
turbulence. But from the looks of
things, it was a relatively calm day.
it off, James laid his head back and tried to focus on the task that lied ahead
of him. Seeing Brooke after the way he
treated her several days ago was going to be difficult. Her state of mind was a mystery. He didn't know what to expect. All he wanted was to get her back home with
him so they could start over again. He
loved her more than anything. He would
do anything to get her back.
violent jolt caused him to sit up with a start.
Within seconds the small jet was rocking back and forth with such
intensity that he felt his stomach doing flips. A loud explosion in the back of the jet sent
alarms off in his head and he quickly called up to the cockpit.
"Jake! What's going on up there?" he asked in a
speaker popped and sparked as the pilot's voice came out in broken
syllables. He could barely make out what
Jake was saying.
blew….." said the pilot, yelling over the sound of the thundering noise
that erupted from the craft.
"….tail breaking apart…..malfunction….hold on."
severity of the problem sunk in and James quickly fastened his seat belt. He couldn't make out what the pilot was
saying but it didn't sound good. He
felt the plane spiraling downward, aimlessly and out of control. Closing his eyes, he braced himself for the
worst. They were going down and would
surely wind up in a fiery ball of twisted metal.
of Brooke flashed through his mind. He
feared the finality of it. He would
never have the chance to make it up to her.
To make her his wife again and live the life that they'd dreamed about.
Brooke was standing on the terrace at her hotel room in Santo Domingo, staringout at the blue ocean in a daze. She felt a
tear trickle down her cheek as she thought about the mess her life had become. Just a few weeks ago she was so blissfully
happy at the prospect of being married to James for the rest of her life. Then Philip showed up and
put a stop to that. In a weak moment she ran to Ethan and they
discovered the love that they'd been denying for so long. Then tragedy struck and she lost him
traumatic turn of events was enough to send her into a deep depression. She should have left the island days ago but
she couldn't bring herself to. She
couldn't face anyone back home. What
was more, she couldn't leave because it would mean she had accepted that Ethan
was gone forever. She wasn't prepared
to do that. She couldn't leave him
jet quickly descended toward the island, rocking back and forth as the pilot
tried desperately to level it out. He
had to find a way to bring the jet down as safely as he could, but it seemed
like an impossible task. They were going
too fast and he struggled to bring the nose up.
the rear, James gripped the sides of his seat and prayed for a miracle. He looked out the window and a saw the tops
of palms trees. He closed his eyes and
seconds later he felt the jet hitting the trees, snapping them like toothpicks
as it barreled through a vast jungle.
jet broke apart quickly and minutes later it finally came to its resting place
amidst a grove of trees. The pilot was
slumped over the steering wheel, crushed between the collapsed cockpit.
entire side of the plane had been ripped off like a sardine can. James lay in his seat on its side,
unconscious and bleeding from a ghastly wound on his forehead.
Alex and Jordan
arrive in Santo Domingo in time to learn of the
plane crash. Alex demands answers from Brooke.
Miranda is Brett's alibi. Miranda attacks
Devon. Brooke desperately searches for answers
for about James.