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Episode 22

 

Release Date:  May 3, 2006

 Read the episode Recap

 

Previously...

Lauren slept with Brett, fearing if she didn't give in to his demands he would tell Heather about her affair with Stormy.  News of Alex and Will's marriage spread quickly, infuriating everyone and sending Jordan into a depression.  Ethan and Winter argued over his friendship with Brooke.  James and Alex met secretly with his lawyer to discuss their plan.  Stormy told Lauren that she had been offered to go on tour, then a devestated Brett overheard Lauren asking Stormy if he would go with her.  Brooke wondered what James was up to during his secret meetings, then refused to sleep with him until she felt she could trust him completley. James's headaches worsened, still refusing to tell anyone of his terminal condition.  After Ethan lied about being with Brooke, Winter confronted Brooke with hostile accusations.  During the argument, Brooke stumbled and fell down the stairs at the mansion.


Episode 22

"Lights and Sounds"

 

The Valley Beach Club was filling with people preparing to celebrate the release of Lauren.  Dressed to the nines, everyone mingled throughout the crowd and took their seats at tables in the dining room. 

In the lobby, Ethan fished his cell phone from his pocket and quickly dialed the number at the Blackthorne mansion and waited for Brooke to answer.    After a few rings, he reluctantly hung up and looked at his watch.  He’d just seen James come into the restaurant, but Brooke wasn’t with him.  Maybe she was on her way, he thought to himself as he started off through the crowd.

Blackthorne Mansion

Winter slowly walked down the staircase, her eyes riveted to Brooke’s motionless body laying at her feet.   She stepped carefully over her and began running across the foyer to the front door.  She had to get out of there.  If anybody saw her there they’d think the worst.  And as much as she hated Brooke, she wouldn’t have done anything to deliberately hurt her.

Suddenly a pang of conscience overcame her and she turned back.  She decided she couldn’t leave without first making sure she was okay.  It wouldn’t be right.    Reluctantly, she turned and walked back to Brooke’s body.  Looking closely, she noticed that she was breathing.  That was a good sign.   But anything else was undecided, namely the fate of her baby. 

What would Ethan do if he found out that she was with Brooke when she fell?  And if she lost the baby, it would crush him.  He’d probably blame her and end their relationship indefinitely.   The prospect was too painful to acknowledge.

Suddenly a thought occurred to her.   If Brooke didn’t get treatment in time, maybe she wouldn’t have to worry about the baby.  She could leave her there just like she’d planned on doing.  Everyone was at Lauren’s party and wouldn’t be home till late.  By that time it might be too late for the baby that would surely come between her and Ethan.  

Doubts filled Winter’s head as she stood up and tried to focus.  What was she actually considering?  Leave Brooke there and hope she'd lose her baby?   At least that way she'd have no ties to Ethan.

Without wasting another second, she turned and ran out the front door to her car.  Fumbling with the keys, she started the engine and peeled out of the driveway, leaving the mansion behind like a bad memory.

Brett Armstrong

Brett walked into the dressing room and looked at Stormy and Lauren with complete surprise.   He shook his head and felt himself filling with rage. 

“You’re going on tour with her?” he said in disbelief.  “I didn’t even know there was a tour.”

Stormy gave Brett an apologetic look and took a step toward him.  “I just found out about it, man."

“The hell you did,” Brett exclaimed angrily.  “Don’t you think if anybody should go on tour with Lauren it should be her manager?”

“Look, we haven’t decided anything,” Stormy insisted, slightly annoyed by Brett’s defensive attitude.  “We were just talking about the possibilities, that’s all.”

“This is a private conversation anyway, Brett,” Lauren added smugly.

“Oh sure.  It’s private because you don’t want unsuspecting Brett to find out that you’re trying to cut him out of the picture!” Brett replied in a rage, then looked at Stormy with a threatening stare.  “No wonder you can’t get your recording studio to profit.  You’re too busy with your personal life to run it.  You betray everyone around you and-”

“You’re way off base, man,” Stormy interrupted.  “I’ve done nothing but give you the benefit of the doubt since you showed up here.  You lied to everyone, including my sister, and I gave you another chance.  So don’t tell me that I’ve betrayed you.”

“What do you call this?” Brett yelled.  “You’re sleeping with Lauren and now you’re planning on going off on tour with her!  Where do you think that leaves me?  I’m kind of left holding the bag with no career because you had to have it all!”

Stormy’s eyes darted back and forth between Brett and Lauren.  He was shocked to hear that Brett knew about their affair.   “What are you talking about, man?”

“You and Lauren doing the deed, that’s what I’m talking about!” Brett yelled.  “And now you want to cut me out of the deal completely!  You know, I don’t know what she sees in you anyway!  You’re a spoiled rich kid who used your trust fund to start a business!  And even that you foul up by unzipping your pants every chance you get!”

“All right, that does it,” Stormy groaned, gnashing his teeth and charging toward Brett.

Lauren stood by helplessly, wishing that none of this had ever started. 

Just then, Heather and Miranda walked into the dressing room and immediately saw what was going on.   They both screamed at them to stop as Stormy and Brett struggled to take a swing at one another.

“Knock it off!” Miranda yelled, grabbing Stormy and pulling him back.  “What the hell is going on here?”

“Why are you two fighting?” Heather added, looking at them in confusion.

Brett stumbled back and pushed his hair out of his eyes.  He tried to catch his breath while glaring at Stormy.  “Ask your husband,” he said, turning to Heather.

“Get out of here,” Stormy barked, still being restrained by Miranda.

Shaking his head with a scoff, Brett threw his hands up in resignation and turned to the door.  “Forget you, man.”

After he left, Miranda let go of her brother and looked at him and Lauren as if demanding an explanation.   Heather walked up to Stormy and put her arms around him, sensing the anguish he was feeling.

Jasmes Blackthorne

Meanwhile, Ethan approached James and expressed his concern that Brooke hadn’t shown up yet. 

“She should be here by now,” James said.  “I told her to meet me here.”

Ethan sighed and looked around the crowded terrace.  ‘I’ll give her another call at home,” he said.

“Good, let me know if you can’t get in touch with her,” James said.  “If she isn’t here soon then I’m going to go find her.”

Ethan nodded and pressed a speed dial on his phone.  After calling the mansion and letting the phone ring a few times, he hung up and fished his keys out of his pocket.  He wasn’t going to wait for James.  He had a terrible feeling that there was something very wrong.

Alex Reynolds

Out in the dining room, Alex and Will walked arm in arm through the crowd, stopping at a passing waiter and taking two glasses of champagne.   They continued along their way and intercepted Jordan coming in through the lobby.  

He stopped and looked at them, noting their comfortable arm in arm position and looked away distantly.  Alex followed his eyes with hers, wishing she could reach out to him and explain everything.  The look on his face spoke for him.  He was deeply hurt seeing her with Will Thomerson.

“Hello Jordan,” Will said with a sly smile.  “Glad to see you made it out tonight.  But I guess it beats sitting at home licking your wounds.”

Jordan smiled evenly.  “I guess congratulations are in order for the two of you."

Alex gazed into his eyes.  She felt a chill run down her body and she suddenly debated whether what she was doing was worth it.  Sure, she was helping James out of a bind, but at what cost?  She might very well have lost the man she loved forever.

Before she could say anything, Jordan was offering a polite goodbye and then disappeared into the crowd.   When she turned back, James was approaching her and Will like a bolt of lightening.  Finally they could get their evening underway.

“Oh good, you’re here,” James said, finally able to relax after showing up at Alex’s beach house only to find no one home.

“You have a lot of nerve showing up here, Blackthorne,” Will taunted.  “As far as I know, has-been’s aren’t permitted in this club.”

“You’re about to find out that you’re the has-been,” James said, glaring at Will with contempt.  “I’d like to see you both outside in the garden.  There’s something I have to say and it can’t wait.”  He turned and weaved through the dining room toward the terrace.

Will frowned and turned to Alex.  “Do you know what that’s all about?”

She shook her head.  “I have no idea,” she said.  “Why don’t we go find out?”

Will tried to imagine what James had up his sleeve.  He should have known the fight wasn’t over.  Whatever it was that James had planned, he was certain it would be a misguided attempt at retaliation for taking his studio.

Blackthorne Mansion

Meanwhile, Ethan arrived at the mansion and walked into the foyer, immediately spotting Brooke laying unconscious at the bottom of the staircase.

“Oh my God!” he cried out, racing toward her with blinding speed.   He knelt down and checked her pulse, relieved that she was alive.   He leaned in and called her name several times, trying to jar her awake with no avail.

Desperate, he raced to the phone in the foyer and called for an ambulance. 

Will Thomerson

Back at the party, Will walked onto the garden terrace with Alex close behind.  He approached James in a secluded clearing and stopped, meeting his stare with remote curiosity. 

“All right, James.  This had better be good,” he said.   “What pathetic reason do you have for summoning us outside?”

“Actually, I have something to say,” Alex declared, stepping forward as she reached into her purse and withdrew a folded document.

Will looked at her with curiosity, then at James, immediately knowing they were up to something.  “What is this?”

“This is you getting what’s coming to you,” James said smugly.

“This is a document showing the sale of Sunset Studios to James Blackthorne for the sum of one dollar,” Alex said with a smirk, handing Will the contract and then giving James a triumphant look.

Will glanced over the paper and chuckled loudly.  “That’s preposterous,” he said.  “You can’t do that.”

“I beg your pardon,” Alex replied.  “I’m your wife.  We had no pre-nup.  Everything that’s yours is mine.  And I decided to give James back what rightfully belonged to him.  Being Mrs. Will Thomerson does have its rewards.”

“You’ve lost at your own game, Thomerson,” James said.  “How does it feel?”

Will looked up and glared at them with contempt.  “You were in on this together,” he seethed.  “This was all a setup.”

“You bet it was,” Alex said.  “Do you honestly think I would have married you for any other reason?”  She reached into her purse and removed another document which she handed to Will with a grin.  “And now that James and I have both gotten what we wanted, our marriage is over.  I had it annulled this morning.”

Will’s eyes widened as he looked at the annulment papers.  “This is a joke,” he whispered.  “This has got to be a joke.”

“It’s no joke, Thomerson,” James said, barely able to contain his excitement.

“I’ll get you for this, James Blackthorne,” he said angrily.  “You may think you’ve won but believe me I will crush you into the ground.”

“Good luck,” James said confidently, then kissed Alex on the cheek.  “Alex, it’s been a pleasure.  Congratulations on your annulment.”

She smiled.  “Thank you, James.”

After he left, Will looked back at Alex with pleading eyes.  “You can’t do this to me, Alex.  You can’t take his side over mine.  What happened to our plans to destroy him together?”

Alex thought about Jordan and the way she shamefully treated him.  “Some things are more important than revenge,” she said before brushing past him and going back into the restaurant.

Will watched her go, intent on setting things right.  James may have gotten his studio back, but he’d never let Alex get away with making a fool of him.   Never.

Miranda Blackthorne

Brett approached Miranda in the lobby and grabbed her arm, pulling her toward the door.  “Come on, let’s go home,” he said.

“Wait!” Miranda exclaimed.  “When are you going to tell me what’s going on with you and Stormy?”

“I’ll tell you later,” Brett said, simply wanting to get out of the restaurant.  After the confrontation with Stormy in the dressing room, the club was the last place on earth he wanted to be. 

On their way out the door, he spotted Lauren coming out of the ladies room and walked over to her casually, leaving Miranda waiting by the door.   He leaned in and whispered into her ear. 

“Meet me at the pool house at the Blackthorne mansion at ten,” he said slyly, then slipped back across the room to his wife.

Lauren shuddered, growing increasingly distraught by Brett’s demands.   What good were they now anyway?  He’d already told Stormy he knew about their affair.  There were no secrets anymore.   She refused to play the victim of his disgusting blackmail attempts anymore.

Stormy Blackthorne

James was standing at the bar with Stormy when a waiter approached and gathered his attention.

“Mr. Blackthorne, your nephew just called,” said the waiter.  “He wanted to tell you that Miss Taylor was taken to the hospital and to meet them there.”

“What?” James exclaimed, alarmed by the suddenly news.  “What happened?  Is she all right?”

“I’m sorry, sir.  That’s all he said.”

“Oh my God,” Stormy said.  “Dad, you have to go.”

James nodded, trying to get his wits about him.  No sooner had he gotten his business life back on track than the mother of his child was hauled off to the hospital.  It was never ending.   “All right, I’m sorry, Stormy.  I know it’s your big night but-“

“Go!” Stormy insisted.  “Just call me as soon as you know anything.”

James was already flying through the restaurant to the doors.  He prayed that Brooke was all right.  If anything happened to her or their baby he would be devastated.

Shocked by the sudden news, Stormy looked around the room for Lauren, realizing that it was almost time for her to perform.   They had to get some kind of order assembled at the party.  After the incident with Brett in the back room, he thought the party would be over before it really began.   After tonight, he’d have to do some damage control to be sure that Brett didn’t tell Heather what he knew.   If his wife found out he was having an affair, it would kill her.  And hurting Heather was the last thing he wanted to do.

He opened the door to Lauren’s dressing room and found her sitting on the sofa looking miserable, blotting her smudged eye makeup with a tissue.

“Hey, what’s going on?” he asked, rushing over and sitting down beside her.  “What’s this all about?”

Shaking her head, Lauren looked up at him and tried to stifle her tears.  “Everything’s such a mess, Stormy,” she said, sobbing.  “I didn’t mean for any of this to happen.  I fell in love with you.  I just wanted to protect you. I didn’t want to put you in a bad position.”

“Lauren, what are you talking about?” Stormy asked, trying to make sense of what she was saying.  “You haven’t put me in any position.”

She shook her head in despair.  “When Brett found out about us, he said he would tell Heather unless I…”

“Unless you what?”

Cowering in humiliation, Lauren sunk back in the sofa.  “Unless I slept with him.”

Stormy shot up from the sofa in a rage.  “He made you sleep with him in exchange for his silence?” he asked in disbelief.  “Lauren, I-“

“I had to do it,” she sobbed.  “I’m sorry, Stormy.  I just knew how much you wanted to keep it from Heather so I thought that if I…and now he wants me to meet him at the pool house tonight.”

Stormy quickly ran to the door and bolted out into the hall in a rage.  He wasn’t going to let Brett get away with this.   He’d gone too far.

Winter Austen

Winter grew increasingly distraught as he paced around her apartment.  She went over dozens of scenarios over and over again in her mind, trying to predict what would happen when Brooke was found at the bottom of the staircase at the Blackthorne mansion. 

Repeatedly glancing at the phone and the door, she waited on the edge of her seat to hear any news at all.  Suddenly she stopped pacing when an unsettling fact occurred to her.

She was supposed to have met Ethan at Lauren’s party over an hour ago.  Was he coming over or calling her asking where she was?  No.  It was almost as if he didn’t even care whether she was there or not.

Before long she found herself praying that Brooke lost her baby, because if Ethan ever found out he was the father, she'd lose him for sure.

Cedars-Sinai

James raced into the emergency room at Cedars-Sinai and found Ethan pacing back and forth.  He darted toward him and grabbed him by the arms.

“How is she?” he asked in a heated frenzy.  “Tell me Brooke is all right, Ethan!”

Ethan shook his head and tried to calm his uncle down.  Dr. Mitchell is still in with her now,” he said.  “I haven’t gotten any information yet.”

“Damn!” James yelled, clenching his fists and kicking a coffee table with his wing tips.   He was suddenly reminded of a night a few months ago when Brooke was taken to the hospital after Miranda hit her with her car.  The waiting drove him crazy then and it was much worse now.  Now he had a baby to worry about as well.   “How did it happen?”

“I don’t know for sure,” Ethan replied.  “When she hadn’t shown up at the party I went to the mansion to look for her.  I walked in and found her laying at the bottom of the stairs.  I think she fell.”

“Oh dear God,” James said, rubbing his face with his hands.  “Please let my baby be okay.”

Just then, Dr. Mitchell appeared from the examining room and approached them rapidly.  “Mr. Blackthorne?” she asked, stopping when she got to James.  “I’m Dr. Mitchell, Brooke’s obstetrician.”

“Dr. Mitchell, is she okay?” James asked, stricken with concern

“She’s conscious but she’s suffered quite a shock,” Dr. Mitchell replied.  “We’re monitoring her and the baby closely.  Everything is being done to stop her contractions.”

“Contractions?” Ethan exclaimed.  “How can she already be having contractions?”

“They were triggered by her fall,” the doctor explained.  “But please don’t assume anything just yet.  We’ve had a very high rate of success in stopping contractions in cases like this one.  There’s a good chance we’ll be successful this time.  But I must warn you, Brooke and her baby are not out of the woods yet.”

James closed his eyes and spoke a silent prayer for Brooke and the baby.  All he wanted to do was live long enough to be a family.  Even if it was only for a day. 

“James, are you okay?” Ethan asked, noticing the way James was holding his head.

Trying to block out the pain, James nodded and forced himself to stay grounded.  He wouldn’t let his own illness take center stage at a time like this.  He was there for Brooke now.   “I’m fine, Ethan,” he said. 

Blackthorne Mansion

Brett creeped outside to the pool at the Blackthorne mansion and ducked into the pool house where he waited for Lauren to show up.   After the night he’d had, he was looking forward to a nice erotic interlude with the sexy Miss Spencer.  Miranda was tucked away in bed, tired from taking final exams at school all day.  Plus all the questions she was asking about his argument with Stormy.  It was enough to wear anyone out, including him.

Stormy Blackthorne

Stormy raced his Cobra II into the circular drive in front of the mansion and climbed out, slamming the door shut so hard that it seemed like it would fall off its hinges.   He wasted no time in dashing around to the side yard where the pool was.   He could see a flickering light from inside the pool house and he clenched his fists in anger. 

Making his way down the tiled surface around the pool, he threw the door to the pool house open and found Brett laying on the bed with his hands behind his head.

“Stormy!” Brett exclaimed, jumping up from the bed.  “What are you-“

“Were you expecting someone else?” Stormy asked in a rage. 

Brett shook his head nervously.  “No, I was just-“

"Who were you waiting for?"

"I wasn't waiting for anyone."

"I asked you who you were waiting for!" Stormy yelled, grabbing Brett by the shirt collar and throwing him outside onto the tiled pool deck.

Brett quickly scrambled to his feet, backing away from Stormy as he realized how angry he was.   It could only mean that he found out about him and Lauren.

"All right, so I was waiting for Lauren," he said, holding up his hands defensively.

Stormy lunged forward and drew his fist back, sending it flying into Brett's face and knocking him back to the ground.  "You were blackmailing her into sleeping with you, you son of a bitch!" he yelled, so angry that he was trembling from head to toe.  "What kind of sick pervert are you anyway?"

Rubbing his jaw and struggling to his feet, Brett let out a chortle.  "Me?" he asked in dismay.  "What about you?  Carrying on with her while your wife is at home, oblivious to everything going on around her."

"Yeah, well I guess I don't have to remind you that you're married too," Stormy continued, rushing toward him again.  "To my sister!"

Before Stormy could take another swing at him, Brett rushed forward and tackled him to the ground.  They struggled on the wet tile, grasping and wrestling violently.   Stormy got on top of him and grabbed his head, slamming it into the ground several times before Brett forced him off and delivered a powerful blow to the gut.

"Come on, Stormy," Brett said in bated breath.  "There's no point in arguing over who's the bigger sleaze.  We both got what we wanted.  It just so happened that our wives weren't the ones giving it to us.  So we had a little fun."

Stormy shook his head in disgust, dragging himself to his feet.   "The difference is I love my wife," he said, struggling to catch his breath.  "Falling in love with Lauren was an accident.   You were just using her for sex."

Brett smiled slyly and wiped a trickle of blood from his nose.  "I thought she needed to find out what real sex was all about," he said.  "She sure wasn't getting it from you."

"You son of a bitch," Stormy said, charging at him again and knocking him straight into the pool. 

As he fell, Brett grasped for Stormy's arm and pulled him in with him, their weight sending water splashing out onto the deck.   They emerged to the surface and waded toward the shallow end.   Running up behind him, Stormy grabbed Brett from behind and pushed him back down into the water.

Before long they were exchanging powerful blows to one another, blood splattering in the wake.   Neither of them noticed Miranda running toward the pool to see what the commotion was all about.

"Brett!  Stormy!" she called helplessly from the deck.  "What are you doing?"

Just then, she turned when she heard Heather yelling from across the yard.  She came racing down the hill to the pool and stopped by Miranda's side, watching in horror as their husbands beat each other to a pulp.

"Stormy!" she cried.  "Knock it off!  Get out of the pool!"

Stormy delivered a final blow to Brett's jaw and sent him falling back into the shallow end of the pool.  Wheezing and gasping for breath, he dragged himself out of the pool and stood on the deck in his soaked tuxedo. 

"Stormy, what is going on?" Heather demanded, staring at him in the eyes.  She was so confused by what was happening between her husband and Brett.  Whatever it was, she had a sinking feeling that it was about her marriage. 

Stormy shook his head and turned back to the pool where Miranda was helping Brett out onto the side.   "Nothing's going on," he said when he turned back to Heather.  He started up the hill to the driveway, leaving Heather behind with a perplexed look on her face.

She walked over to Miranda and helped her get Brett's weakened body out of the pool.  "Would somebody tell me what's going on?" she asked.  "Where is Stormy going?"

Brett climbed to his feet and laughed at her.  "Where do you think he's going, Heather?" he asked.  "He's going to Lauren."

"Lauren?" Heather asked with a frown.

Wiping blood from his lip, Brett put his hand on Miranda's shoulder to hold himself up and laughed at Heather again.  "Wake up, Sweetie.  You think your husband is just helping her with her career?"

Heather looked at him in frustration, wishing he would just come out and say what he wanted to say.    But she had a feeling she knew what was going on.   And there was only one way to find out for sure.   Fighting back tears, she turned and ran up the hill to her car.

Brooke Taylor

Meanwhile, James opened the door to Brooke's room at the hospital and approached her tenderly.   Ethan followed him close behind, praying that the doctor would have good news for them soon.

"Hi," Brooke said with a faint smile as she looked up at them. 

"How are you feeling?" James asked, taking her hand in his.   "The doctor says you're going to be fine as long as they can get the contractions to stop."

She nodded weakly, a tear forming in her eyes.  " James, I don't want to lose this baby."

"Shhhh," he said, leaning down and pulling her close.  "You're not going to lose the baby.   Dr. Mitchell is doing everything she can to make sure that doesn't happen."

"She's the best obstetrician in the hospital," Ethan added.

Brooke wiped her eyes and tried to think positively. 

"Brooke, can you tell us how this happened?" James asked softly.  "Did you fall down the stairs?"

She nodded.  "Yes."

"How?" Ethan asked.

Thinking back to the events that occurred earlier that night, Brooke squinted and tried to piece everything together.  "The doorbell rang and I started downstairs to answer it," she began.  "Then Winter came in and she came upstairs.  We argued on the landing."

Ethan's eyes widened.  "Winter was there?" he asked, shooting James a deliberate look.  "Brooke, did she...did she push you?"

Brooke closed her eyes and tried to remember.  It all happened so fast.  "I don't know," she said.  "She was yelling and screaming at me."

"About what?" James demanded.

Ethan knew the answer without having to hear Brooke's reply.  Because Winter was jealous of her.  She couldn't stand the fact that he was spending time with her.

“Damn her,” James whispered under his breath.

“She’s not going to get away with it,” Ethan murmured before turning and running intently out of the room.

Blackthorne Mansion

Miranda sat Brett down onto their bed and delicately dabbed his wounds with a cotton ball and alcohol.  She winced uneasily, realizing he must be in pain from the assortment of cuts and bruises.

“So was that the truth?” she asked.  “Is Stormy having an affair with Lauren?”

Brett considered his response carefully.  “Yes, why do you think we were fighting?” he asked.

Miranda raised an eyebrow.  “Well I guess I didn’t realize you and Heather were so close.  At least not close enough to be willing to defend her honor like that.”

Brett shook his head and howled in pain as she dabbed a cut on his cheek.  “It wasn’t that,” he said.  “It’s because of Lauren.  We’re supposed to all be partners and he goes and sleeps with her.  Then he tries to cut me out of the deal and starts making plans to go on tour with her.”

“He’s going on tour with her?” Miranda asked in disbelief.

“She asked him to go,” Brett replied, happy that he’d successfully left all of his misdeeds out of the scenario.   Now he just hoped that neither Stormy nor Lauren decided to blab to Miranda about his blackmail efforts.   If they did, his marriage would be over.  “I don’t know if it’s been decided for sure, but-“

“You know what?” Miranda asked, kissing him on the forehead.  “I should have warned you not to go into business with my brother.  He’s just bad news.”

Brett nodded, unsure of what was going to happen next and if he was going to be implicated in any of it.

Alex's House

Alex stood on the balcony of her house in Malibu, taking in the fresh ocean air as she gazed up at the moonlight.    She had a feeling of great accomplishment after the triumph her and James pulled off earlier that night.    It was just like when they were married.   Working together as a team.  It felt exhilarating.

With a sigh she turned and shrieked at the sight of Will Thomerson standing directly behind her.   She looked at him with wide eyes, slightly frightened by his sudden appearance.  "How did you get in here?" she asked.

Will stepped forward, so close that she could feel his breath on her face.  "I've been asking myself all night, how could she do this to me?  Why would she betray me like that?" he began in a low, ominous voice.  "Then I remember, she's never completely fallen out of love with her first husband.   She'd do anything, sacrifice anyone to help him."

"I think you'd better leave," Alex said, watching him skittishly.  He seemed unbalanced. Perhaps she'd underestimated him.  Maybe her and James's deception had sent him into some kind of downward spiral.

Suddenly he reached up and clasped his hands gently around her neck.  Alex shrieked quietly and stared at him with wide eyes.   "I think to myself can you let her get away with it?” said Will.  Can you let her make a fool of you and just walk away?"

Alex looked into his eyes, praying that he would let her go and just leave.

"What do you think?" Will continued, keeping his hands around her neck.  "Can I just walk away?"

"You have no choice," Alex said evenly.  "Now take your hands off of me."

Slowly Will lowered his hands and stared at her with a blank, emotionless look in his eyes.    "I won't forget this, Alex.  If you believe nothing else, believe that."  He turned and disappeared into the house, leaving through the front door. 

Unnerved by the incident, Alex dashed across the room and locked the door securely behind him.   She let out a deep breath, relieved that he left without much more of an incident.  It made her wonder what else he was capable of.   What if next time he wasn’t so easily warned off?  Just how dangerous was Will Thomerson?

Winter's Apartment

Winter sat on the edge of her sofa, nervously biting her fingernails as she flipped through the channels on the TV.   Why hadn’t she heard anything?   The suspense was killing her.

Just then, the door opened and Ethan came barreling inside.  She immediately shot up to her feet and turned toward him.  The look on his face told her that she was in big trouble.  Brooke must have recovered from her fall and told him everything.  She had to remain calm, she told herself.   She didn’t do anything wrong.  She didn’t push Brooke.  She tripped and fell on her own.   That was the honest truth.

“Ethan, I was just going to call you,” she said.

Before she could finish her sentence, he was rushing up to her and grabbing her by the shoulders and shaking her forcefully.  “What were you hoping to do?” he asked in a rage.  “Get her out of the way because of your paranoid delusions?”

Winter shook her head in despair.  “No, Ethan, I didn’t-“

“Brooke is laying in the hospital right now, not knowing whether her baby is going to live or die, and it’s all your fault!” Ethan yelled.  He couldn’t remember when he’d been so angry in his life.

“I didn’t do anything!” she exclaimed, tears forming in her eyes.  “It was an accident!  She tripped and fell!  I didn’t push her!”

“You’re lying!” Ethan replied.  “You’re jealous of my friendship with Brooke and you always have been!”

“Well can you blame me?” she screamed.  “You pay more attention to her than you do me!  Whatever Brooke wants Brooke gets!  Whenever she needs you you’re there, by her side, holding her hand!  When is it going to be my turn, Ethan?  When are you going to go out of your way for me?”

He shook his head in disgust.  “Listen to yourself!  You sound like a jealous high school girl!  Brooke is my friend!  We’ve been friends for a long time!  I can’t just give that up!”

“She loves you!” Winter cried.  “How am I supposed to compete with that?”

Ethan glared at her and finally let go of his grasp on her.  “That’s your insecurity talking, and I can’t be held responsible for that.  Don’t you see what it’s made you do?  A  woman is laying in the hospital right now because you thought she was competition for you.”

“No!” Winter cried.  “That’s not it!  I went over there to tell her to stop seeing you!  I didn’t hurt her!”

“I don’t believe anything you say,” Ethan said, backing up and walking to the door.  “I never want to see you again.  And if you ever come near Brooke again, I’ll make you very sorry.”

He passed through the open door and disappeared down the stairs.  Winter raced to the door and started to call after him but it was no use.  He was gone and he was never coming back.  She turned and slammed the door behind her, sinking to the floor and crying hysterically.

Beach Club

Stormy and Lauren laid naked under the blanket on the sofa in her dressing room at the Valley Beach Club.   He hugged her close, trying to comfort her after their exhausting night.    He kissed her warmly, tracing his finger down her lips and gazing into her brilliant blue eyes.

A knock at the door interrupted the tender moment and they both looked up with surprise.    A second later, the door opened and Heather walked in.   Standing in the doorway, she watched them lay naked together on the sofa.   Her eyes began to fill with tears and her mouth opened wordlessly.   She suddenly felt like a complete fool.  Brett was right.  All this time she thought Stormy was just helping her with her career.   Now it was clear there was a lot more than that going on.

Finally turning around, she raced out the door and down the hall.   Stormy jumped up and called after her.  "Heather, wait!" he yelled in despair, hating himself for being so careless.

Stormy and Heather's House

Heather drove her car into the driveway at their house in the Valley.   Her vision blurry with tears, she climbed out of the car and raced inside the house.  She turned and looked through the window and saw Stormy drive up in his car, the tires squealing as it came to a halt.   She watched him jump out and race to the door.  Quickly, she locked it with the chain and backed away.

"Heather!" he screamed, pounding on the door.  "Let me in!  Please!"

"Go away!" Heather screamed, shaking her head sorrowfully.

"Please, Heather!  Let me explain!"

"I don't want to hear anything you have to say!" she cried, sitting on the bottom step of the staircase.

"Heather!   You've got to listen to me!" Stormy yelled, banging his fists firmly on the door again.   He could hear the chain rattle inside but it wouldn't budge. 

Heather suddenly jumped up and ran up the stairs.  She went to their bedroom and grabbed an armful of Stormy's clothes out of the dresser drawer and proceeded to the window.   "Here!" she screamed, throwing the garments out onto the lawn.   "Take your stuff and leave!  I never want to see you again!"

Stormy ran into the grass, watching as she threw everything he owned from the window.    He rubbed his face with his hands and sunk to his knees, realizing that he'd blown it with Heather and ruined his marriage.

 


Next time...

Season 1 draws to a close.  Several people leave town, leaving those left behind in a state of turmoil.  Desperate, Winter tells all.  Miranda plays matchmaker. Heather feels she's lost Stormy forever.  James and Ethan demand answers from Brooke.

 Read the Season Finale

 

 


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