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Episode 45


Release Date:  October 28, 2006

 Read the episode Recap



Following Will's murder, Ethan mysteriously disappeared.  James fired his gun in an effort to throw off ballistics tests. Jordan gave Heather the videotape Will had been hiding, leading Heather to fear her father was the killer.  Later, Brett found the videotape and decided to use it to his advantage.  Jordan told Alex that she had to appear normal if they were to avoid suspicion.  Alex grew enraged when she learned that James was campaigning to get charges dropped against his uncle Nathan, and bring him back to Hollywood.  James asked Kenny to be his alibi for the night of the murder.  Miranda warned Brooke that if James killed Will for her she would never forgive her.  Janet informed Stormy that she saw him the night of the murder. Baines informed James that Will died of a gunshot wound, but also suffered a blow to the head shortly before he died.  Later, Baines showed James Janet's manuscript that was found at Will's estate.  Brett planted the videotape of Heather in Stormy's bedroom, then placed an anonymous call claiming he'd seen Stormy leave Will's house the night of the murder.




Episode 45

"Inside Information"


Miranda was taking a shower the next morning when Brett walked into the bathroom and quickly shed his clothes.  He quietly opened the shower door and stepped inside, a mischievous grin on his face.  Pressing himself against her back, he laughed instinctively when Miranda screamed with surprise by his sudden appearance.

“You almost gave me a heart attack,” Miranda said with a grin as Brett began lathering her flawless skin with coconut-mango soap.

“Happy Halloween,” Brett said, brushing his lips against her neck.

Miranda closed her eyes, feeling his manhood pressing against her from behind.  She grabbed onto the shower door and moaned with pleasure.  She couldn’t get over the fact that in the year they’d been married their sex life hadn’t diminished one bit.  The sex was still every bit as good as the first time. 

“You’re certainly in a good mood,” she purred, letting the water hit her as they made love in the shower.  “I didn’t realize I still had this kind of affect on you.”

Brett grinned sheepishly, positioning his hands on her waist as he treated her to an expertly rhythmic maneuver.  He closed his eyes, seeing flashes of the videotape with Heather laying spread eagle on the sofa while the two men had their way with her.  He hadn’t been able to get it out of his mind since he saw it.

After they finished, Miranda kissed him blissfully and stepped out of the shower, grabbing a towel and wrapping it tightly around herself.  “Did you hear the news?” she called to him.

“What news?” Brett asked as he lathered himself with soap.

“There was an anonymous tip phoned in to the police yesterday,” she said, wiping the foggy mirror and examining her appearance.  “Apparently someone saw a man go into Will Thomerson’s house last night.  They’re trying to locate him now.”

Brett grinned, relishing the fact that his plan had worked.   Stormy had every motive to want to kill Will Thomerson.  All the police needed was to be pointed in the right direction. 

Miranda grew into a daze, wondering if the man the witness saw was her father.  If it was, she would do everything she could to protect him.  She had to.  She wasn’t about to lose her father because of a man like Will Thomerson. 

Jasmes Blackthorne

Just down the hall, James emerged from the bathroom, clean shaven and his hair neatly combed to the side.  He approached Brooke who stood by the window gazing distantly outside at the grounds.

“Penny for your thoughts,” he said, kissing her neck and wrapping his arms around her.  “Are you okay?  You look like something’s on your mind.”

She turned and looked at him with fear in her eyes.  “James, that anonymous tip that the police received,” she began.  “What if this person saw-“

“Shhh,” James said, lifting her chin and looking into her beautiful blue eyes.  “We don’t know that they saw anything.  All they said was they saw a man going into the house.  That’s all.”

Beside herself with worry, Brooke wrapped her arms around herself and paced across the room.  “I don’t know.  I have a bad feeling about this.”  She stopped and turned back to him.  “James, I don’t want you getting in trouble!  It isn’t worth it!”

“You and Michael are the most important things in my life,” James said, his voice full of promise.  “If the two of you aren’t worth it, then nobody is.   Besides, the person who made the anonymous tip gave a description of the man.  Whoever it was they saw was in their twenties.  So you see, you have nothing to worry about.”

Brooke walked over to him and embraced him warmly, burying her face in his strong, masculine chest.  “I just want this nightmare to be over,” she said.  “I just want them to forget about the murder and I want our son back and I want to live a normal life for once.”

“We will,” James said soothingly.  “We’ll get Michael back and we’ll be a family.  All of this will be a distant memory.”

“How do you know we’ll get him back?” Brooke cried.  “If Will did kidnap him, then there’s no way we’ll ever find him because Will is dead!  Don’t you see, James!  I don’t know how you can be so calm about this!”

James stood back and put his hands on her shoulders.  “I promise you that everything is going to be fine,” he said.  “Trust me, Brooke.  I won’t let you or Michael down.”

Realizing she had no choice but to believe him, Brooke turned and went to her vanity to get ready for the day.   James watched her from behind and smiled affectionately.

“I have to go downtown for a while,” he said after a few minutes.  Detective Baines is going to be questioning Janet Harper about that manuscript they found in Will’s house.  I’d like to be there to find out for myself what that woman has been up to.”

Janet Harper

Detective Baines led Janet Harper into the interrogation room at the police station downtown, offering her a chair and taking the one across the table from her.

“Thank you for coming down today and speaking with me,” Baines said.

She tossed her long black hair over her shoulder and shrugged uneasily.  “I’m not sure what help I can be.  You said it was about Will Thomerson’s murder?”

Detective Baines nodded, turning on a tape recorder and placing it between them on the table.  “That’s right.  In particular I’m interested in finding out what kind of business relationship you had with Mr. Thomerson.”

Janet’s eyes narrowed on him and she began to feel panicked.  “I’m not sure I know what you mean.”

Baines withdrew the manuscript from his tweed sport coat and placed it neatly on the table.  “Quite an epic you’ve written,” he began.  “Any idea how this got in Will Thomerson’s study?”

Janet looked down at her book and closed her eyes with regret.  She knew it would come back to haunt her eventually.  After all the attempts she’d made at trying to get it back from him, the police were ironically the ones who wound up with it.

“Miss Harper, you’re not in any trouble.  Yet.  We’re just trying to get a handle on some of Will Thomerson’s relationships.  If we can do that, we can find out who may have wanted him dead.”

Janet knew she was backed into a corner.  There was no sense in hiding the truth anymore.  She had to come clean with everything now that the manuscript was public.

“Will came to me and suggested that I would sell the manuscript to him and he’d purchase the Denver Tribune for me as payment.  I agreed.  But when I got back to Denver I realized that by selling him that book, I was going to be hurting the one person that I’d grown to care about throughout this whole mess.”

Ethan Blackthorne,” Baines said wryly.

“Yes.   So I decided that I would come back and try to set things right.  Will wasn’t very receptive to my plea.  He refused to give the manuscript back.   I knew I had to stop him from using it to hurt anyone, especially Ethan.”

“So did you stop him?”

Trembling, Janet tried desperately to organize her thoughts.

“Do you own a .38 revolver?” Baines questioned her.

After a moment of hesitation, Janet finally nodded in reply.  “Yes. I do have a license for it.  I’ve found that being a reporter is a dangerous job sometimes.  People usually don’t like what I write about them and I’ve had a few close calls.  I keep it for protection.”  A thoughtful pause.  “Anyway, I only intended to threaten him into giving me back the manuscript.”

“Go on.” 

She swallowed, her hands trembling as she thought back to the night of the Filmmakers awards.  “I got to his house a little before seven o’clock.  I walked up to the door and heard voices inside.  They were shouting.  I could tell it was Will arguing with someone.  I decided to wait until he was alone, so I ran back down to the shrubs along the walkway and hid.”

“What happened then?"

“I heard a gunshot,” Janet explained.  “After that there was just silence.  My heart was beating like crazy.  I wanted to look but I was afraid someone would see me.  So I waited a few more minutes...and then...I saw Stormy Blackthorne run out of the house.”

Surprised, Detective Baines leaned forward and raised an eyebrow.  “Are you certain about that?” he asked.  “You know for a fact that it was Stormy Blackthorne?”

She nodded quickly.  “Yes.  I’m positive.”

“So you didn’t go into the house?” Baines asked.

She shook her head.  “No.   As soon as he was out of sight I ran back down the road to my car.  When I heard that he’d been shot...well, I'm sure you can guess what I thought."

Detective Baines rubbed his forehead and tried putting the pieces together.  “Did you phone in an anonymous tip to the witness hotline yesterday claming that you saw Stormy Blackthorne go into Mr. Thomerson’s house?”

“No.  Why?”  Janet asked curiously.  It was the first that she’d heard about an anonymous tip.

“Somebody else saw him go into the house.  Now you’re saying that you saw him leave.  I think that pretty much places Stormy at the scene without a doubt.  Do you have any knowledge of why he would want Will Thomerson dead?”

“No, not at all.  Unless he was acting out in vengeance over the suspicions about Will kidnapping Michael."

The facts twisting in his mind, Baines stood up and opened the door.  “Very well.  You can leave now, Miss Harper, but I’m afraid you’re going to have to stay in town for a while.  I’m sure we’ll be needing you again.”

James was at the door in a flash, looking at the detective with surprise.  “Why?” he asked.  “I want that woman gone yesterday!”

“Mr. Blackthorne, please-“ Baines said and held up his hand.

Fixing his unrelenting eyes on Janet, James lurched forward and pointed a threatening finger at her.  “I read your rather amateurish manuscript, Miss Harper,” he said, enraged.  “If you think that book will ever see print then you’ll have a long wait, because I’ll see you in hell first.”

Janet shook her head in protest.  “Mr. Blackthorne, I have no intention of-“

“I should have known you were up to something all along,” James lamented.  “First you showed up in Phoenix and miraculously found my wife, then you conveniently started dating my nephew.   What else did you do to dig up dirt on us?”

“Mr. Blackthorne, please,” Baines insisted.  “Miss Harper just confessed to being at Will Thomerson’s house the night he was murdered.”

“What?” James asked with a frown.  He grew immediately nervous, backing off without another word.

“I went there to get the manuscript back,” Janet claimed.

“She also saw something,” the detective said awkwardly.  “Someone leaving Thomerson’s house after he’d been killed.  We think it’s possible the same person that the anonymous caller reported seeing go into the house.”

“Who?” James demanded, his heart racing.

“Your son,” Baines announced with some reluctance.

“Stormy?” James exclaimed in disbelief.  He ran his fingers through his hair and glared at Janet angrily.  “She’s lying.”

“James, please-“ Janet began.

“No, you are lying because you’re trying to cover for yourself!” James yelled.  “You probably killed him and you saw an opportunity to pin it on my son!  Well I’m not going to let you get away with it!”

“The description the anonymous caller gave us matches your sons perfectly,” Baines explained.  “Miss Harper contends that she was outside the house when she heard a gunshot.  A few minutes later, she saw your son running from the scene.”

Slamming his fists angrily onto the interrogation table, James tried to control his rising temper.  He knew Stormy couldn’t have done it. 

Blackthorne Mansion

Miranda walked into the library at the mansion and found Heather frantically searching through cushions and underneath pillows on the sofa.  She paused in the doorway and frowned with concern.

“Heather, are you okay?”

Barely stopping to look at her, Heather mumbled a hasty reply and dropped to her knees in front of the sofa, peering underneath for any sign of the videotape

“What are you looking for?” Miranda asked.  “Did you lose an earring or something?”

Shaking her head, Heather stood up and placed her head in her hands.  “I can’t find it,” she said.  “I can’t believe this.  It’s gone!”

“What’s gone?” Miranda demanded.

“The tape!”

“The tape?” Miranda asked in disbelief.  “You mean the one of…”

“Yes.  It’s gone.  It was here yesterday and I forgot about it in the confusion with Detective Baines and my Dad.  Now it’s gone and I don’t-“

Wondering if Heather had finally snapped, Miranda rushed up and grabbed her by the shoulders.  “Heather, we never found that tape,” she said.  “Remember?  We went there and you had that episode where you attacked Will but then we left empty handed.”

“No!  It was yesterday!  My father got it and gave it to me!” Heather cried, then quickly covered her mouth with her hands.  She couldn’t believe how stupid she was for telling Miranda about her father.  Now she would go blab to James and then poor Jordan would be in so much trouble.  They’d find out what he’d done and how he got the tape.

Miranda’s eyes flashed open wide with surprise.  “When Jordan came to the house yesterday morning he gave you the tape?”

Reluctantly, Heather nodded in reply, stifling back the tears.

“How did he get it?”

She shook her head.  “I don’t know.  Please don’t say anything, Miranda.  Whatever my father did he did it for me.  Please don’t say anything.  I don’t want him to go to prison.”

Consumed with uncertainty and confusion, Miranda sat down on the sofa and tried to sort the mess out.  Maybe her father wasn’t the person she should be worried about.  Her mother’s husband seemed to know a lot more than he was letting on.

Brett Armstrong

Brett grinned mischievously as he stood above his secretary while dictating a memo to her in his office at Sunset Studios.  It was all he could do to keep from staring down at the impressive cleavage which was practically bursting out of her low cut blouse.  How was he supposed to work with so many distractions?

“Brett?” Terri asked, waving her hand to get him to snap out of his daze.  “Are we finished?”  She was well aware that he was staring at her breasts but she was used to it.  It came with the territory of working as a secretary for a Hollywood studio executive. 

Just then, the door opened and Stormy forced his way in.  “Brett, I want to talk to you about these expenses,” he said, immediately seeing the way his partner ogled Terri from his vantage point.  “What’s going on in here?”

“Nothing,” Brett said with a frown.  “What expenses, Stormy?”

“All these expenses that are conveniently chalked up to maintenance.  That’s not good enough.  I need to know specifics.”

Brett rolled his eyes with irritation.  “I don’t have time to put every single thing into a category,” he said.  “Now quit bothering me with all this petty crap.  I’d hate to go to your father and tell him you’re being uncooperative again.”

Glaring menacingly at him, Stormy opened his mouth to reply when suddenly the door to the outer office opened and Detective Baines entered the room, followed by James and a uniformed officer.

“Dad?” Stormy began.  “What’s going on?”

“Stormy, just don’t say anything.  I’ve called Brandon and he’s going to meet us downtown.  Don’t worry about anything.”

“Brandon?” he asked in confusion.  “Why did you call your lawyer?”

“Mr. Blackthorne,” Baines began, directing his attention on Stormy.  “You’re under arrest for the murder of Will Thomerson.”

Stormy closed his eyes in disbelief, turning and clenching his teeth while the officer placed a pair of handcuffs on his wrists.  He turned back and was led out of the office, James and Detective Baines following close behind.

Brett grinned contently, thrilled that his plan was moving along so quickly.

Alex Reynolds

Miranda went to her mother’s house in Malibu and they embraced warmly in the living room before sitting down on the plush sofa parallel to the floor to ceiling picture windows overlooking the Pacific Ocean.

“How are you doing, Mom?” she asked.  “I feel awful that I haven’t really been around much since you and Jordan split up.  Are you okay?”

Sighing, Alex crossed her legs and pushed her perfectly coiffed hairdo up off her forehead.   “I’m getting by,” she said.  “We live in separate houses and we live separate lives but ever since this whole thing with Will Thomerson, I feel that we’re getting closer again.  I feel closer to him, anyway.  He just keeps pushing me away.”

Puzzled, Miranda offered a frown.  “Why is that?” she asked, desperate to get information about Jordan and his role in Will’s murder.   “Has something happened?  Do you know something?”

Alex immediately grew tense and got up to pour herself a drink.  “I just know how protective he is over Heather,” she said.  “I know he would do anything for her.”

“Including murder?” Miranda asked with a leading edge to her voice.

Alex spun around and feigned surprise.  “Why would you say that?” she asked.

Miranda sighed, realizing she couldn’t betray Heather’s trust by saying anything about the tape, even to her own mother.  “Like you said, he’d do anything for Heather.”

Their eyes locked for a few moments, breaking only when the phone rang.  Alex rushed over to answer it and spoke breathlessly into the receiver.   While she spoke to the caller, Miranda turned and looked out at the choppy ocean waves.  It made sense that Jordan would resort to murder after learning what happened to Heather.  She knew that her father would do anything for her, including committing murder if it came down to it.

“Oh my God,” Alex said into the phone and quickly hung up.

“What is it?” Miranda asked and turned toward her.

Alex shook her head in despair.  “They arrested Stormy,” she said.  “James is with him down at the police station.   I have to go!”  She grabbed her purse and headed for the door with a flourish.

“I’m coming with you,” Miranda said and followed her out the door.

Stormy Blackthorne

Detective Baines dropped the videotape on the interrogation table and placed his hands on his hips, looking down at Stormy while James and his lawyer, Brandon Marksman observed carefully.

“What’s that?” Stormy asked with a frown.

“You should know what it is,” Baines said.  “We just had your room searched and found this tucked away in the closet.”

Stormy let out a nervous chuckle and shrugged indifferently.  “I only watch them for the acting,” he said sarcastically.

“Very funny,” the detective said and began pacing the room.  “This is a tape recording of Heather Blackthorne participating in a very explicit film.”  He paused and watched the young man’s expression.  “Now are you going to tell me that you don’t know how it got there?”

Stormy shook his head in aggravation.  “I didn’t even know there was a tape,” he said.

“It has Will Thomerson’s fingerprints all over it,” Baines said.  “Stormy, we have two witnesses who claim they saw you arriving at Will Thomerson’s house the night of his murder, and then leaving again.  One witness also heard a gunshot shortly before you left, presumably in a hurry to flee the scene of the crime.”

“I was there but I didn’t know anything about the tape.  And as far as how it got in my closet, I have no idea.  Maybe somebody’s trying to set me up.”

James quickly chimed in, infuriated that his own son was being interrogated like a common criminal.  “Stormy, if you didn’t know about the tape then why did you go over there?”

Sighing with frustration, Stormy leaned forward and met the detective’s gaze.  “I found out that Will Thomerson had hired a director to drug Heather and film her in that scene with those two men.”

“Why would he do that?” Baines asked.

“Heather had been seeing him so she could gain easy access to his office.  She would steal movie scripts that he was planning on bidding on, then give them to Sunset Studios so we could beat him to the deal.”

“And the porn setup was a payback?” Baines asked.

James closed his eyes, horrified by the lengths that Will had gone to in getting his revenge.  He was more sick and twisted than he’d ever realized.  Dragging Heather into the fold was the act of a sociopath.

“So after you found out about this, you went to his house?” the detective asked.   “For what reason?  To pay him back for what he did to your ex-wife?”

Stormy nodded.  “I was angry.  Angrier than I’ve ever been in my life.  I wanted to kill him for what he did to Heather.  I knocked on his door and waited for a few minutes but he didn’t answer.”

“What time was that?” Baines asked as he jotted a few notes down.

Shrugging, Stormy tried to think back clearly.  “A little after six thirty,” he replied with a fair amount of certainty.  “The door was open so I walked inside.  I looked around and there was a gun laying on the desk in the study.  I picked it up and that’s when he came down the stairs and walked into the room…”

“What are you doing here?” Will asked, barely phased by the gun pointed at him.  “I’m busy so if you don’t mind speeding up your little demonstration-“

Stormy cut him off, rushing toward him and pointing the gun at his chest.   “I swear to God I’ll wipe that smug grin off your face, you son of a bitch,” he said through clenched teeth.  “Just who the hell do you think you are, anyway?  What man goes around treating women the way you do?"

Grinning, Will pushed Stormy’s trembling arm away and continued fastening the cuff links on his Armani tuxedo.   “I assume you’re talking about your ex-wife,” he said.  “I knew once she and your sister stopped by the other night that you wouldn’t be far behind.  When are you Blackthornes going to learn?”

“When are you going to learn not to leave guns lying around the house?” Stormy asked, following him across the room with the revolver.   “It’s very dangerous.  Anyone could just walk in and ….BANG.”

“You don’t have the guts,” Will said, taking a tissue from his pocket and blotting the back of his head.  He winced, lowering the tissue blotted with scarlet blood.

Glaring wildly, Stormy charged toward him.  “Is that what you said to Heather when you had her drugged?” he asked.  “She wasn’t willing to go along with your sick vendetta so you gave her a little bit of liquid courage?  A few drops of something in her drink so she’d let herself be filmed with those two men?”

Will grinned devilishly and disregarded his banter.  “She seemed like she enjoyed it,” he said, his voice filled with slimy innuendo.  “But then again, after being married to you she was probably ready to find out what a real man could do to her.”

The remark sent Stormy over the edge.  He dropped the gun and went after Will with his bare hands.  Killing him would solve nothing, he decided.  Real revenge would be making him suffer like he’d made Heather suffer.

“You sick son of a bitch!” Stormy shouted, wrapping his hands around Will’s neck and tightening them with all his might.   He drew one fist back and sent it shattering into Will’s face, sending him flying across the desk and onto the floor. 

Quickly, Will climbed to his feet and punched Stormy in return.   Stormy staggered back and tripped, hitting his forehead on the corner of the desk and wincing from the pain.  Lifting his hand, he felt the blood trickle down his forehead and then he slumped to the floor unconscious….

“When I woke up, he was dead,” Stormy finished, looking at his father and Detective Baines with intent.   “I saw the gun on the ground and I panicked.  I ran outside and went straight to the Fern Bar hoping that I could come up with an alibi.”

“So somebody came in and shot him in the ten or so minutes that you were unconscious?” Baines asked.

Nodding, Stormy flashed his father a look of desperation.  “I was afraid someone may have seen me there and would think that I killed him.”

“Where did the gun come from?” Baines asked.  “It was just lying there on the desk when you walked into the house?”

Stormy nodded in reply.

“Can you describe it to me?”

Shrugging, Stormy tried to think back clearly.   “It was silver.  A .38 I think.”

Baines raised an eyebrow and looked at James. “Sounds a lot like your gun,” he said.  “Are you sure you don’t want to change your story, Mr. Blackthorne?  Did you have that gun with you when you went to Will Thomerson’s house a few nights ago?”

“No, I told you I didn’t,” James said, shooting Stormy a look of caution.

Baines excused himself and left with Brandon, leaving James and Stormy alone in the room.   After he’d gone, Stormy looked at his father with pleading eyes.   “Dad, I didn’t kill him.  You have to believe me.  I’m telling the truth.  I was only there because of Heather.  I wanted to kill him, but I didn’t.”

“I know, Son,” James said distantly.  “I know you didn’t kill him.”  

Miranda Blackthorne

Out in the waiting room, Alex and Miranda raced inside and spotted Brandon standing at the admitting desk.   Miranda darted over and pulled him toward her, a streak of panic on her face.

“What’s going on with my brother, Brandon?” she asked.  “Why was he arrested?”

Before he could answer, James emerged from the back and Miranda raced over to him with Alex fast on her heels. 

“James, is Stormy all right?” Alex asked in a panic.

“He’s fine,” James said, his eyes widening with surprise when Heather walked into the station.  “What is she doing here?” he whispered to Miranda.

Miranda turned her head and motioned to Heather.  “I called her, Daddy.  She’ll want to know if Stormy’s in some kind of trouble.”

“Stormy’s been arrested?” Heather asked in disbelief.  “I don’t understand.”

The confusion was halted when Brandon approached and huddled James off to the side.  “Listen, James, they want to detain Stormy for further questioning.”

“What?” James asked in a rage.  “They can’t do that!  You heard his statement!  He admitted to being there but he didn’t kill him!  He’s telling the truth, Brandon!  I know he is!”

Brandon sighed and placed a hand on his friend’s shoulder.  “Then the police are going to wonder what makes you so certain of that,” he said.  “Is there something that you know first hand that can clear him of any charges?”

Realizing he was stuck in an impossible situation, James ran his fingers through his hair and looked at Brandon with pleading eyes.  “Just do whatever you can to get him out of there,” he said. 

“I will,” Brandon replied.  “They can only hold him for forty-eight hours without officially charging him.  After that they have to let him go.”

“My son didn’t kill anybody,” Alex said, clutching her hand to her chest.  “He shouldn’t have to spent another second in this place!”

“I’m going to do everything I can, Alex,” Brandon declared.  “I just need some time.”   He paused and turned to Heather.  “Detective Baines would like to ask you a few questions, Heather.  Do you mind coming with me?”

Heather looked at him nervously, and then back at Miranda and James.   “I guess not,” she said and reluctantly followed him back to an interrogation room.

“I should call Jordan,” Alex said and fished into her purse for her cell phone as she wandered away to a quiet corner of the waiting room.

“Daddy, why do they want to talk to Heather?” Miranda asked, walking up to James and looking into his angst-ridden eyes.   “What does she have to do with any of this?”

James shook his head, unsure of how much his daughter already knew about what was going on.  “It would be better if you didn’t get involved, Sweetheart,” he said.  “Just trust me and have faith that Brandon can get Stormy out of there.”

“Does this have to do with that tape?” Miranda asked.  “Is that why they think Stormy killed him?  Because of what that maniac did to Heather?”

James took her arm and led her away from the desk.  He leaned in close and spoke in carefully indistinct words.  “Stormy was there but he didn’t shoot him,” he declared.  “He talked to him and he somehow managed to get the videotape from him.  I’m not sure why but he’s denying that he knew the tape even existed.”

Miranda frowned with confusion.  Heather said that Jordan was the one who gave her the tape.  And if that were true, then that would place Jordan at the scene and would explain why Stormy didn’t know about the tape. 

It was possible, Miranda decided, that Stormy was taking the fall for Jordan’s crime.

Jordan Rydell

In the interrogation room, Heather sat silently across from Detective Baines and Brandon.  She felt like she was being put on the witness sand, and all she did was trust the wrong people.  It wasn’t fair that she or anyone else had to be hounded by the police on account of Will Thomerson.  He wasn’t worth it.

“So you’re saying you were drugged and tricked into participating in the film shot by Joel Armitage?” Baines asked.  “Why didn’t you go to the police afterwards?  What he and Will Thomerson did to was a felony.”

“They would have gotten off,” Heather mused.  “And all I would have succeeded in doing is winding up on the front page of every tabloid in the country.  I didn’t want to go through that, or put my father through that, so I didn’t say anything.”

“When you realized there was a tape recording of the film, did you try to get it back from Thomerson?”

“Yes.  He wouldn’t give it to me,” Heather replied regretfully.  “He said he was going to use it to make all of us pay for crossing him.”

Baines offered a screwed up smile and leaned back in his chair.  “Sounds like a messed up guy,” he said with a chuckle.  “No wonder he wound up dead.”

Heather eyeballed him curiously, unamused by his sense of humor.  “He wasn’t very popular, that’s for sure.”

The detective traced his finger along the table and glanced at a few notes scribbled on a yellow legal pad.  “So did you ask your ex-husband to go see Will Thomerson that night and try to get the tape back?”

“No,” Heather said with a frown.

“Did you ask him to kill him for you?”

“No!” she lamented, growing irate by his questions.

“Detective, you’re out of line!” Brandon yelled, leaning forward and shooting him a look of warning.  “Mrs. Blackthorne is not a suspect.  You have no bearing for making accusations that she’s committed a crime or coerced anyone into committing a crime.”

Baines shook his head with a cocky grin.  “Everyone’s a suspect until I decide they’re not,” he said.  “And as Mrs. Blackthorne stated, Will Thomerson wasn’t very popular.  Half the community of Hollywood probably wanted him dead.”

“Well stick to the one suspect you currently have in custody,” Brandon ordered.

Shrugging, Detective Baines referred again to his notes and then directed his gaze back on Heather.  “Stormy Blackthorne maintains that he did go to the deceased’s home the night he was murdered but he didn’t leave with the videotape.  He claims he didn’t even know it existed.  Apparently he just went there because he felt a strong protective nature for you.  Has your relationship always been like that?  The two of you looking out for each other?”

Heather shrugged indifferently.  “I don’t know.  We’ve had our problems.  We got divorced but we’re still friends I guess.”

“And you still live at the Blackthorne mansion, don’t you?”


“So you’d have access to Stormy’s bedroom then?” Baines asked.

“Yes, why?”

“I’m warning you, Detective,” Brandon started.

Ignoring the lawyer’s attempts at rebuffing his questions, Brandon leaned forward and stared at Heather head on.  “Did you plant the videotape in his closet and then phone in the phony report in order to get him charged with the murder?”

“No!” Heather lamented, looking at Brandon with pleading eyes.  “Why would I do that?”

“Maybe to protect yourself,” Baines said.   “Maybe you went to Thomerson’s house that night, shot him, and then framed your ex-husband for the murder.  Maybe the affair he had last year is still a source of resentment for you and this was your way of getting back at him!"

“That’s not true!” Heather exclaimed.  “I didn’t go to Will’s house that night!  I was asleep in my room!”

“Then how did the videotape mysteriously get in Stormy Blackthorne’s closet?” Baines demanded.  “Someone had to go to Thomerson’s house and get it.  And my guess is he didn’t hand it over willingly.”

Heather buried her face in her hands, torn between her father and Stormy.  She couldn’t tell them that Jordan had been the one to get the videotape from Will.  It would be like turning against her own father.  But on the other hand, she couldn’t let Stormy take the wrap for something he didn’t do.

“I don’t know,” she finally said.  “Look, when can I see Stormy?  I just want to make sure he’s all right.”

Brandon reached across the table and shook his head.  “It might be a good idea to keep your distance from Stormy from now on, Heather,” he said.  “They could still try to claim that he killed Will as a favor to you and that you knew about it all along.”

Heather’s eyes widened and she nodded obediently.  The last thing she wanted to do was make matters worse for Stormy.

“You can go now, Mrs. Blackthorne,” said Baines skeptically.  “But please don’t hesitate to give me a call if you can think of anything else.  You never know, maybe something will jog your memory.”

Heather looked at him with a scowl before opening the door and following the guard down the hallway.

Alex Reynolds

Back out in the waiting room, Miranda sat in a chair next to Alex, her hand resting comfortingly on hers as they waited for news about Stormy.  Alex looked at her watch and wondered where Jordan was.  She knew he’d want to be there after they got done questioning Heather.  On the other hand, maybe he wanted to stay as far away from the police as he could.

“Will certainly picked a good time to get himself murdered," Miranda said ominously, then looked at her mother.  "Today's Halloween.  We're all wearing masks it seems."

Alex pushed the remark aside and put her arm around her daughter.

"When are they going to tell us something?” Miranda asked as she stood up and began pacing the lobby.

“They can only hold him for so long,” Alex said in distress.  She buried her face in her hands and sighed heavily.  “I wish I’d known about that tape sooner.  I could have done something.  Maybe then Stormy wouldn’t be in custody and Jordan wouldn’t-“

Miranda stopped and looked back at her.  She was growing increasingly suspicious of Jordan’s role in Will’s murder, and of her mother’s.  “Mom, do you know something?” she asked.  “Do you?  Because if it can help get Stormy off the hook then you have to tell Detective Baines.  You have to.”

Alex looked at her daughter with watery eyes, unsure of what to do about the whole situation.  Why did she have to go back to Will’s house that night?

Just then, Heather emerged from the interrogation room and quickly darted over to Miranda.

“Are you okay?” Miranda asked.  “What did they want to talk to you about?”

Heather sighed with despair, wishing the whole nightmare would be over.  “Just about the tape and about Will,” she replied.  She hated the fact that Stormy was being accused of something so horrible.  She only hoped that they would realize his innocence and let him go before long.

“What about Stormy?” Alex asked.  “Did they say anything about him?”

Heather shrugged and turned just as Brandon emerged from the back.  He approached them and James followed intently.

“What’s happening?” he asked.  ”Are they releasing Stormy?”

Brandon looked at them and shook his head fervently.  “They’re going to charge him,” he said.

“No!” James yelled angrily.

Alex burst into tears and clung to James’s side, shaking her head in agony.  “They can’t charge him with murder!  Brandon, you have to do something!”

“I’m going to try to get him bail,” Brandon attested.  “His arraignment is in the morning and the judge will decide if-“

“You can’t let my brother spend the night in jail!” Miranda exclaimed.

When Detective Baines walked out from the back, James charged toward him in a blind fury.  “What the hell do you think you’re doing?” he demanded.  “Stormy gave his statement and he said he didn’t kill Will Thomerson!  You heard him as well as I did!”

“I’m sorry, James, but the facts show otherwise.  Your son was the only person in the house at the time of the murder.  Janet Harper saw him flee the scene minutes after hearing a gunshot.  And besides that, we found the videotape in his bedroom.  The same videotape that shows his ex-wife participating unwillingly in a pornographic film.  That’s plenty of motive in our book.”

“What about the weapon?” James asked.  “You don’t even know where it is.”

“He got rid of it,” Baines said plainly, then held his hand up in protest.  “Look, he’s going to be charged and there’s nothing you can do about it.  As far as bail, we’ll wait and see what the judge says tomorrow at the arraignment.”

Alex fought back a flood of tears and ran down the hallway, darting around the corner and ducking out of view.  She tried catching her breath, torn over the predicament she was in.  She had to tell the police the truth.  She couldn’t let Stormy be charged with something he didn’t do.

Heather followed Alex down the hallway and caught up with her, grabbing her arm and pulling her toward her.   “I know what’s going on,” she began.  “I can tell by the way you’re acting.  You don’t think Stormy killed Will, do you?  You think my father did.”

Alex nodded reluctantly and wiped her watery eyes.  “I know he did,” she declared.

Heather closed her eyes, consumed with despair.  She knew it.  She knew when her father gave her the videotape that he’d done something awful in order to get it.   “What did you see?” she asked.

Alex closed her eyes, remembering the awful sight vividly…

Alex walked into the house, pausing in the doorway of the parlor and spotting her husband kneeling over the body wiping fingerprints off of the gun.

Jordan!” she gasped, her hands plastered to her mouth.  “Is he dead?”

Jordan looked at her and then back at the body.  He shoved the handkerchief in his pocket and raced over to her, grabbing her by the shoulders.   “Alex, go home,” he demanded in an authoritative manner.  “You shouldn’t be here.”

“I was afraid you were going to do something drastic so I came here and-“ Alex stammered, too strained with despair to think straight.  “Oh God, Jordan…I can’t believe he’s really dead.”

“Alex, you have to go!” Jordan exclaimed.  “I cannot afford to be seen here!”

Nodding, Alex backed up out of the room, her eyes still riveted to the body.  “Okay,” she murmured, bumping into the door and jumping with a start.   “Are you coming?”

He nodded and ushered her out the door.  “Yes.  Just go home,” he said.  “And Alex, don’t say a word to anyone about this, okay?”

She stifled back the tears in her eyes and turned, racing down the drive to her car and peeling out onto the main road….

Heather felt her eyes stinging with tears and she covered her mouth in horror.   The imagine of her father killing Will Thomerson for her was haunting.  She never thought in a million years that he’d go to such lengths to protect her.

“What should I do?” Alex asked.  “I can’t let Stormy go to prison for something he didn’t do!”

Heather grew into a daze, shaking her head in despair.  “Alex, you can’t say anything about this to anyone.  I can’t let my father go to jail for this.”

“But what about Stormy?” Alex cried.  “He’s innocent!”

Heather grabbed her by the shoulders and shook her forcefully.  “You can’t say anything!” she sobbed.  “Please, Alex!  Promise me you won’t tell anyone what my father did!”

Alex stared at her blankly, devastated by the choice she was faced with.


Next time....

Renee has strong words of caution for James.  Alex and Heather argue over who should be prosecuted in the murder.  Brett tells Miranda he wants to have a baby of their own.  Stormy's arraignment begins.  Renee catches Kenny in another compromising position.  

 Read Episode 46



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