ran away to Vegas after being blasted by James
for her role in Brooke's accident. She later
met a con man named Brett Armstrong and happily
agreed when he suggested they get married. Little
did Miranda know, Brett had argued with his business
partner, Bailey Freeborn, who later wound up
dead from a fall out of the hotel window. Will
Thomerson suggested that he and Alex team up to
get revenge on James. James and Brooke were
married, despite his uneasy feelings about Brooke's
relationship with Ethan. Kenny asked James
to help him get rid of Winter, and James suggested
they hook Winter and Ethan up in an effort to distract
him from Brooke.
Brooke woke up in her bedroom at the Blackthorne mansion,
the bright morning sun streaming in through the windows and bathing her naked
body. She stretched and yawned in the
luxurious bed, smiling from ear to ear.
Today was her first day as a married woman and she felt on top of the
world. Nothing was going to spoil her
Rolling over, she was
surprised to find that James wasn't lying next to her. She must have been sleeping so soundly that
she didn't even hear him get up. She
got up and snatched her robe off of the bedpost before making her way
She found James in
his study, already dressed and on what sounded like a very heated phone
call. She waited for him to finish, and
when he hung up, she looked at him with pleading eyes.
Darling," James said, rushing over and kissing her tenderly and then
gesturing to a tray of food on the table.
"I had Leilani bring some breakfast in here this morning. I hope you're hungry."
"I didn't hear
you get up," Brooke said as she watched James continue to shuffle papers
on his desk. She couldn't mask her
disappointment in the lack of romance the morning after her wedding day had
"I wanted to get
a jump start on some things," James replied without even looking up at
her. "Like finding Miranda for
Brooke sighed and
poured herself a cup of coffee.
"Any word from her?"
James shook his
head. "No, and I'm starting to get worried.
It's not like her to disappear for this long without saying
Just then, Leilani
entered the study with James's jet pilot.
"Mr. Blackthorne, Mr. Lane is here to see you."
James looked up
instantly, a frown on his handsome, tanned face. "What is it, Jake?"
"I thought you
should know that your daughter asked me to fly her to Las Vegas yesterday, sir," the pilot
began. "I just found out that you
were looking for her and thought I should tell you. I'm sorry I didn’t come sooner."
"Las Vegas?" James asked. "What the devil is she doing in Las Vegas?"
Lane shrugged. He had
been in service with James Blackthorne and his family for years and he had
never had a situation like this come up.
He wanted to be loyal to his employer, and serving his daughter seemed
to fall under that category.
thank you, Jake," James said, excusing the man.
Jake and Leilani left
the study as James began pacing the room in aggravation.
"What could she
have gone to Las Vegas for?" Brooke asked.
knows," replied James, staring off in deep concentration. "I hope she surfaces before long. I'd like to know just what exactly she's been
Brooke forced herself
to remain calm. She wasn't going to let
Miranda's disappearing act ruin her first day of being Mrs. James
Blackthorne. James's daughter had caused
enough stress in their lives to last a lifetime.
"Darling, I hope
you're not too upset with me for postponing our honeymoon," James began,
putting his arms around her. "But
with everything going on I just can't afford to be away from home right now.
understand," Brooke lied. She
didn't want to hurt James's feeling by admitting that she was upset about postponing their trip to Hawaii. She didn't want to seem selfish, because the
truth was she did know that James had a lot going on. Still, she couldn't help but feel neglected.
"I'll make it up
to you, I promise," James said, kissing her warmly.
He knew that Brooke
was trying her hardest to be supportive.
The truth was that he had too much on his mind to go on their honeymoon
and it would just have to wait. Miranda
running off, Will Thomerson showing up out of the blue, and not to mention the
fact that he had a movie set to premier in less than a month. It was all weighing on him.
Alex Reynolds stepped
out onto the terrace that jutted out from her enormous house on the beach in Malibu. The balmy ocean breeze sprayed gently
against her face and she leaned against the railing, gazing out at the
picturesque view of the Pacific. Her
maid stepped out onto the patio and set down a tray of coffee and juice.
Veronique," Alex said, her robe billowing in the breeze as she walked over
to get some coffee.
"Mr. Rydell is
here to see you, Miss Reynolds," said the young maid.
Alex frowned. "Ask him to come out, please."
into the house and moments later Jordan Rydell appeared on the terrace, dressed
casually in cotton pants and a polo.
"Good morning," he said with a wink.
early for an unannounced visit," Alex said coyly as she sat down at the
table and sipped her coffee. "What
can I do for you, Jordan?"
"I came by to
bring you this," Jordan replied, handing her a yellow
"The script for
the movie I told you about."
Alex set the envelope
down and took another sip of coffee.
"I'm going to have to get back to you on that," she
began. "I'm not sure if your movie
is something I want to do."
Jordan frowned. "I thought we agreed it was the perfect
way to stick it to your ex-husband."
are plenty of ways to skin a cat, Jordan. I’m not sure if your movie is the route I
want to take in getting my revenge on James." She lit a cigarette and slid the envelope
back across the table to him.
can't say I'm not disappointed," Jordan remarked. "Do you mind if I ask what other course
of action you're thinking of taking?"
shrugged, not wanting to divulge too much information before she knew the
details of her plan. One thing was for
certain, Will Thomerson was going to prove to be a very powerful ally.
rather not say just yet," Alex replied.
"I don't want to jinx it."
Jordan refused to back down. He knew that by having Alex Reynolds star in
his next picture, he would be sure to be the talk of Hollywood. His rivals ex wife starring in his new,
much talked about film. It was
don't you at least read the script," Jordan urged, pushing the envelope back
across the desk to her. "I promise
it'll be worth your while."
don't think so."
don't know what you're turning down if you don't at least read it."
with irritation, Alex finally grabbed the script and set it down on the chair
next to her. "Fine, I'll read
it," she said regretfully.
"But I’m not promising anything else."
Jordan grinned happily. He stood up from the table and shoved his
hands in his pockets. "Have dinner
with me tomorrow night," he said.
Alex asked, completely taken aback by his invitation.
dinner with me tomorrow night," Jordan repeated. "I'll pick you up at eight."
don't think so," Alex said with a chortle.
She couldn't see herself on a date with Jordan Rydell. Her son was married to his daughter, for
God's sake. It would be strange to say
the least. On the other hand, she did
find him to be very appealing and exciting. His reputation as a world
class lover preceded him.
are you afraid of?" Jordan asked with a sly grin. He was surprised at himself for even asking
her. He'd always found her attractive,
but she was certainly not his type. The
fact that she could help him beat James Blackthorne in the business was enough
to sway him otherwise.
me?" Alex said defensively.
"I'm not afraid of anything."
rolled her eyes. "Oh that's
pick you up at eight," Jordan said again before turning and
going back inside the house.
a long drag off her cigarette, Alex smiled at the interesting turn of events
the day had taken already.
Austen walked into the nurse's station at Cedars-Sinai, pinning her white cap
on her head as she started toward the time clock. Suddenly a hand clasped around her arm and
stopped her from taking another step.
the-" she said, shrugged her arm away from the hospital security guard.
come with me, Miss Austen," the black man said sternly.
where?" Winter asked with a frown.
"I have a shift starting in five minutes. I have to get on the ward."
security guard shook his head back and forth.
"Not anymore you don't."
dear," said a voice from behind.
Winter spun around
and came face to face with Renee DeWitt, immediately growing agitated by the
scowl on the woman's face. "What
do you want?"
Renee smiled and
adjusted her purse strap over her shoulder.
"For starters, I want you out of this hospital."
it," Winter argued and tried walking back into the nurse's station. The security guard stopped her and pulled her
back again. "Take your hands off of
"You don't seem
to understand, Winter dear," Renee continued. "You no longer have a job here at
hospital board of directors," Renee replied. "Of which I am a member of. Now please take your belongings and leave the
building before I have this strapping young man remove you physically."
Winter stared at her
blankly. She couldn't believe that
bitch wife of Kenny's was doing this to her.
If having to move out of her condo wasn't bad enough, now she was
without a job. Things were definitely
getting worse and worse.
The next morning,
James stood in his bedroom, talking on the phone with a private investigator he'd hired to look
into Will Thomerson. He had to know what
the man had been up to for the past twenty-eight years. For a while it seemed he'd disappeared off
the face of the earth. But now he was in
Hollywood and poised for revenge. It seemed like a vicious cycle that would
"I don't care
how much money it takes, I want you to find out everything you can about Will
Thomerson," he said into the receiver, holding the phone cradle as he
paced the floor. He didn't see Brooke
come out of the bathroom, a robe tied around her waist and her hair wrapped up
in a towel.
casually, trying not to seem too nosey.
Will Thomerson must be the man James was fighting with in the study the
other night. She had only heard his
name mentioned. The history between him
and James was a big mystery to her.
"All right, I'll
be waiting for your report," James finished and hung up the phone.
that?" Brooke asked, sitting down at her vanity and removing the towel
from her head.
James didn't want to
get into it with Brooke. Will Thomerson
was a nasty subject that he didn't want her worrying about. "Just some business," he replied,
gathering some papers into his briefcase and hoping to change the subject. "So what do you have planned for
"I thought I
might go to lunch with Heather," Brooke replied solemnly. She wanted to call him on the way he
dismissed her so easily when she asked about his phone call. She hated the thought of being kept in the
dark. To her, being married meant you
confided in one another about everything.
James smiled. "That sounds nice," he replied,
starting toward the door and pausing to give her a kiss. "I have some things I have to take care
of but I'll see you this evening, okay?"
Brooke murmured as James flew out of the bedroom.
She studied her face
in the mirror and forced herself to remain calm. She didn't want to fly off the handle and
accuse her husband of ignoring her so soon after their wedding. It might be an isolated incident that would
never repeat itself. She hoped that was
the case anyway.
Twenty minutes later,
James knocked on the door of Winter Austen's condo at the marina. A few seconds later she opened the door with
a smile on her pretty face.
Blackthorne, this is a surprise."
She was dressed in short red soccer shorts and a white halter-top, her
platinum blond hair tied back in a ponytail.
"Please, come in."
smiled graciously and entered the spacious condo. He noted the slew of boxes stacked throughout
the living room and piles of crumpled newspaper on the floor where Winter had
heard about your unfortunate luck and thought I would offer my support,"
James said, surveying the decadent condo.
He realized at that moment just how good Winter had it with Kenny
DeWitt. There was no way she could
afford a place that magnificent on her nurse's salary.
appeared genuinely surprised by his gesture.
smiled. "Not in the way you're
thinking," he said. "I don't
give handouts. That's the difference
between Kenny and I."
what can you do for me?" she
asked, walking to the breakfast bar and taking a sip from her glass of iced tea. "Find me a new place to live? Get me a new job?"
nodded. "Yeah, I got fired from the
happened is that Renee DeWitt doesn’t like me," Winter explained, opening
the sliding glass door to let some fresh air into the condo. "Unfortunately for me, she's on the
hospital board of directors. Mr.
Blackthorne, I need that job. I have to find somewhere to live and I can't
do that with no money coming in."
paused in deep concentration, then looked at her with a smile. "I can get you your job back."
that to me," James replied. "I
do need you to do me a favor in
eyed him skeptically. Somehow she knew
there had to be a catch. "Oh
yeah? What's that?"
about Kenny DeWitt," he said directly and to the point. "You being in his life is only causing
him problems. And it
doesn't seem to be doing much good for you
glared at him with her arms crossed.
"So what am I supposed to do?"
think it would be beneficial to everyone if you attached yourself to someone
who's better for you," James began.
"Someone who is available, independent, and can give you the
attention that you deserve."
knew he was patronizing her but she went along with it anyway. "Great, who would this picture of
was stunned by his announcement. Why
would James Blackthorne be pushing her to get back with his nephew? He wasn't all that thrilled about them dating
a few years ago to begin with.
the catch?" she asked suspiciously.
didn't dare tell her the reason he wanted her to go after Ethan. She would run and tell him immediately, and
then Ethan would know of James's lack of trust in him. That was something that didn't need to happen
just yet. The most important thing for
now was getting Ethan distracted so he wasn't spending so much time with
Brooke. Especially now that he was
immersed in so many things and didn't have the time he would like to spend with
his new bride.
just say that you'd be doing me a big favor," James said. "I'm concerned about Ethan's
happiness. I know he was happy when the
two of you were together. And I would
just like to see him get some of that back."
did care about him a lot,"
winter admitted, staring thoughtfully out the window.
why not get together and see if that spark is still there?" James
asked. "I'm sure he'd be willing to
help you get settled again. Think of it,
you'll have your job back, a new man in your life, and Renee DeWitt will be off
tossed her mane of blond hair over her shoulder and smiled, thinking that James
might just be on to something.
opened the door to his house in the Valley, pleasantly surprised to see Brooke
standing outside in a blue and green flowered sundress.
"What are you
doing here?" he asked, pulling her inside.
"I thought you were on your honeymoon."
Attempting a smile,
Brooke walked into the spacious living room and set her purse down on the
sofa. "Well, James wanted to
postpone it until he heard from Miranda," she replied. "Plus he's got all this over stuff going
on. It's just not the right time to go
Ethan looked at her
skeptically. "Why does it sound
like you're trying to convince yourself?" he asked.
Brooke sighed and sat
down on the edge of the sofa. She felt
as if she would burst into tears at any second.
"I'm trying to be supportive," she replied. "But we only got married a couple days
ago and already I feel like I'm just in the way."
Kneeling next to the
sofa, he took her hand in his and looked into her eyes. "Brooke, you're not in the way," he
replied. "James is my uncle. I've known him for a long time and I know
that he is a workaholic and sometimes he doesn't stop to enjoy things, but that
doesn’t mean he doesn't love you."
Brooke stifled the
tears that threatened to explode from her eyes.
"I know, I just thought it would be different, that's all."
"Give it a
chance," Ethan said, trying his best to soothe her frazzled nerves. He pulled her into an embrace and ran his
hand down the back of her head.
grateful for the fact that Ethan was always there for her. He was the only reason she'd made it this
far. "I feel closer to you than I
do to James sometimes," Brooke remarked, staring into his deep brown
eyes. "You're so caring and
kind. I can't imagine not having you in
Ethan gazed into her sad eyes, feeling overwhelmed
with emotion and wanting nothing more than to be close to her. He couldn't help himself. He leaned closer and brushed his lips gently
against hers. Within seconds, they were
engaged in a deep, passionate kiss. He
put his arms around her and pulled her closer.
He'd never felt this way about another woman in his life.
pulled away and covered her mouth with her hands. She jumped up from the sofa, her eyes wide
and full of regret. "Ethan, I
can't," she began. "I'm
"No, I'm sorry," Ethan said, wishing he
could take the kiss back. He didn't know
what came over him. He had way too much
respect for James to do something like that to him.
go," Brooke insisted, grabbing her purse and running for the door.
Ethan called after her, but it was already too late. She was flying out the door and down the
driveway to her Mercedes.
After she'd gone,
Ethan slammed the door and leaned up against it, closing his eyes with
remorse. He blew it, he thought to
himself. He'd crossed the line and
there was no going back. But something
inside told him that Brooke wanted the kiss to happen just as much as he did.
Alex walked into
James’s office at Sunset Studios and
rushed toward his desk in a huff. She
slammed her purse down on the desk and leaned in to him, her eyes menacing.
“How dare you not tell me what’s going on with our
daughter,” she said, slamming her first down on the desk.
“What are you doing
“I just came from
your house,” she began. “I was looking
for Miranda. Leilani told me that she’s
been missing for three days. Now why the
hell wasn’t I told about this before?”
by his ex-wife’s flair for drama, James stood up and glared at her. “She isn’t missing. She’s in Vegas. My pilot took her there the other day.”
folded her arms and shook her head angrily.
“So you just let her run off wherever she wants to now?” she
yelled. “She’s my daughter and she’s in
your care, James. I expect you to look
after her. You’re her father, for God’s
is twenty years old,” he insisted. “She
can take care of herself. She doesn’t
need me watching every move she makes.”
know how upset she’s been lately! Thanks
to you and your new bride her life has been turned upside down!”
try to bring Brooke into this,” James warned her. “This has got nothing to do with her.”
hell it doesn’t,” Alex railed away.
“Ever since that woman came into the picture, Miranda has been
miserable. You’re supposed to be her
father, and instead you’re chasing after some bimbo nearly half your age.”
on very thin ice, Alex.”
should have taken her with me when I left that house,” Alex continued, glaring
at him with contempt. “All you’ve done
is corrupt her and-“
enough!” James exclaimed. “I won’t have
you standing in my office telling me that I’m not doing my job as a
father. I love that girl and she knows
it. If I were you I’d be a little more
concerned about how she feels about you.“
"What’s that supposed to
mean?” Alex asked warily. She hated it
when he turned the tables on her. She
knew she was a good mother and he had no right to say any different.
doesn’t need to be smothered, Alex. And
that’s exactly what you’re doing.”
love my daughter,” Alex insisted. “And
if you’re not going to do anything to find her, then I will.”
turned and stormed out of the office, throwing the door open as she left.
clenched his teeth and watched her go, angry that she still had such an effect
on him. All he wanted was for her to be
out of his life forever, which didn’t seem possible since they shared two
Will Thomerson sat
behind his desk in his new office at Jaguar
Studios. He ran his hands through
his thick blond hair and shuffled a pile of papers on his desk. He had a lot to do as new owner of the
production company. The top item on his
list was bringing James Blackthorne to his knees and
making him beg for mercy. After
spending the last few days brainstorming, he finally had the first step of his
plan in place.
Their feud had begun
twenty-eight years ago in the small rural town of Windsor, Kansas. Will was nineteen and wanted nothing more
than to make it on Broadway. It was his
passion. It was the only thing he
thought about every day when he woke up in that miserable dead-end town.
While going through
the motions of every day life in Windsor, he became romantically involved with seventeen-year-old
Georgie Blackthorne. She was the most
beautiful girl in Windsor, and somehow she made life there
a little more bearable for him. They
had a whirlwind romance and Georgie seemed to fall a lot harder than he
did. When an opportunity to be an
apprentice to a Broadway producer presented itself to him, Will didn't think
twice about leaving Windsor and everyone in it behind. He made his way to New York and never looked back.
only regret had been the way he left Georgie.
Rather than have to see her face when he told her he was leaving, he
simply left without a word. To him, it
seemed the easiest thing for both of them.
Almost a year later, he called to get word on how she was doing,
probably to ease his own conscience more than anything. To his surprise, he was told that she'd died
several weeks before. The despair he
felt was overwhelming, and he channeled it into his work.
Years later, when he
got the chance to produce his own Broadway play, he told the story of a young
girl from a small town. Georgie's Song was to have been a smash
hit with the critics, but it never made it to the stage. Georgie's resentful brother, James
Blackthorn, had moved to Hollywood and started a career as a movie
producer alongside his uncle Nathan. They got wind of Georgie's Song and filed an injunction,
successfully stopping the play from being presented to the world. The bad press that followed ruined Will's
career and took years for him to recover. All because James blamed him for
Now it was Will's
turn to turn the tables on James Blackthorne.
He would get his revenge and it would be slow and painful.
His train of thought
was interrupted when Alex Reynolds sauntered into his office and rushed up to
his desk, her purse dangling from her hand and a mink stole covering her
“We’ve got to do
something about James Blackthorne,” she insisted, still reeling from her
confrontation with James a little while ago.
“I want to bury him so deep that he’ll never see the surface again.”
Will was interested
to hear what had gotten her in such an uproar.
He decided he could definitely use her to his advantage. He wasn't sure how, but the animosity between
Alex Reynolds and James Blackthorne was a powerful weapon.
"You sound like
a woman on a mission," he said with a sly grin and leaned back in his red
leather swivel chair.
Alex replied matter-of-factly. "I'm
sick and tired of the way he thinks he can control people. I want him to pay and to see what it's like
to lose everything."
stood up and walked around the desk to her.
He placed a hand on her shoulder and leaned in closely. "He will
pay," he said. "Mark my
words. Together we can crush him."
your plan?" Alex asked, turning to face him.
month is the premier of his new film, Angel
Alex clenched her
teeth bitterly. "Yes, it's the film
he was producing when he threw me out," she claimed. "I already have bad feelings associated
in the hands of the MPAA, waiting to receive it's rating," Will explained,
pacing the floor of his Hollywood office. "James
let Eric Autumn have an advanced screening of it last week. Eric told me in confidence that it's pretty
always been one to put too much violence in his films," Alex said with a
shudder. "It's typical."
stumbled on some interesting information about one of the board members of the
MPAA," Will continued. "His
daughter is in need of a kidney transplant and medical expenses are piling
up. When I offered him a check that
would more than cover her medical
bills, he was very appreciative. So
naturally I called in a favor."
Alex's eyes narrowed
on him. "What kind of favor?"
"In exchange for
my saving his daughter's life, he agreed to ensure that Angel Assassin is given the much dreaded X rating," Will replied, then broke into a devilish
laugh. "The only places that will
show his movie will be the porn theaters in West Hollywood.
He'll have no choice but to pull it."
Alex said, growing more attracted to Will Thomerson by the minute. She loved how devious and conniving he
was. It made him even sexier than he
"I have no doubt
that James had to borrow from every investor in his portfolio to finance this
film. And once those investors find out
their return will be delayed, or lost altogether, James Blackthorne will be in
a world of financial trouble."
"I happen to
know that Jack Fallmont alone invested most of the film's production costs," Alex remarked, then
smiled. "Just something I caught
wind of before we divorced. I guess
being the former Mrs. Blackthorne does have its rewards."
agreed. "Jack certainly won’t be
happy about losing his investment. James
will probably have to mortgage his house just to pay him back.”
smiled. “I think this calls for a
toast,” she said.
opened a bottle of champagne and poured them each a glass. “To our victory over James Blackthorne,” he
said, raising his glass.
Alex replied, clinking her glass against his and taking a sip. She decided to throw caution to the wind and
ask Will something that had been on her mind since she ran into him the other
day. “Incidentally, what exactly
happened with you and James back in Kansas?
Why all the animosity?”
never told you?”
many details, no.”
grew into a daze and stared off out the window.
“He thinks I’m responsible for his sister’s death.”
raised an eyebrow. This was new
information. She wondered why James
never mentioned anything about it in the twenty-five years they were married.
Austen parked her red convertible VW Bug in the parking lot at Sunset Studios. She got out of the drivers seat and walked
around to the front, bending down and jabbing a pocketknife into the tire. The air leaked out quickly, leaving the tire
flat against the asphalt. She stood up
with a satisfied grin on her face. She
looked around, making sure no one saw her, and dropped the knife into her
and Ethan left the offices at Sunset
Studios and started outside to the parking lot. They passed the guard at the door and offered
him a friendly hello before proceeding out to their cars.
spotted Winter right away, standing by her car looking like the typical woman
in distress. He glanced at his watch,
seeing that she was right on time. So
far his plan was working perfectly.
Before he knew it, Ethan would be back with Winter and Brooke would be a
distant memory to him.
that Winter over there?” James asked, pointing across the parking lot.
squinted through the bright afternoon sun.
“Yeah, looks like she’s having car trouble.”
approached her car and James gave her a knowing smile of approval.
everything okay, Winter?” Ethan asked.
He hadn’t seen his ex girlfriend in months, and it had been years since
they dated. Seeing her again brought
back a lot of good memories. Somehow the
bad ones didn’t seem as bad after so much time had passed.
what a surprise,” Winter said with a bright smile. She’d forgotten how dashingly handsome he
was. He still looked good after all that
time. She looked down at her tire and
threw her hands up in resignation.
‘Yeah, I guess I drove over a nail or something. I called the auto club but they said it
would be a few hours before they could send someone.”
you need a ride?” James asked, patting Ethan on the back. “I have to get home to Brooke, but Ethan here
will be happy to take you home, I’m sure.
looked at his uncle and then nodded uneasily.
“Yeah, sure,” he replied.
I’ll see you later then,” James said, starting over to his Mercedes. “Nice to see you again, Winter.”
smiled, following Ethan to his car. “I
really appreciate this,” she said, looking at him with renewed excitement. She agreed to James Blackthorne’s
manipulations so he would get her her job back at the hospital, but now that
she was standing next to Ethan she had a genuine desire to have him back in her
life. Since they’d broken up a few
years ago, her life seemed to have gone downhill. She’d become someone that she didn’t like
very much. Sleeping with married men,
throwing herself at them and using them for money. The truth was all she wanted was someone to
be there for her and to enjoy life with.
Maybe Ethan was that person.
problem,” Ethan replied, opening the car door for her and pausing to look into
her dazzling blue eyes. “You look really
beamed like a ray of light. “You too.”
his way home, James went to Kenny and Renee’s house in Bel Air to keep his end
of his bargain with Winter.
on earth would I give that jezebel her job back!?” Renee exclaimed as they
stood on the patio by the pool. “She
slept with my husband! Surely even you can’t condone something like that,
had to laugh at her theatrics. He
wondered how Renee DeWitt had lived in Los Angeles for her entire life and never
been in show business. She was a
promise you she’s out of your lives for good,” James insisted. “She’s going to leave Kenny alone, she’s
moving out of the condo at the marina, and all she wants is her job at the
hospital. Come on, Renee. You can’t deny her that, can you?”
knew Kenny was sleeping with her all along, didn’t you?” she said in an accusatory tone. “Of course you did, you’re his best friend.
You tell each other everything.”
knows he made a mistake,” James argued.
“Can’t you leave it at that?”
scowled at him and gulped down her scotch and soda, realizing that James was
not going to back down until she gave in.
with his victory over Renee, James returned home and found Brooke setting the
table in the dining room.
evening, Darling,” he said, kissing her on the cheek. “Sorry I’m late. It’s been one thing after another today.”
smiled vaguely, barely looking at him as she arranged a place setting at the
table. “Leilani says dinner will be
ready soon,” she said, all the while not able to stop thinking about the kiss
she and Ethan shared earlier that day.
She was racked with guilt. She’d
only been married a few days and she was already kissing another man. Her husband’s nephew, to make matters worse.
just going to go up and change and I’ll be right down,” James said, setting his
briefcase on the table in the foyer and starting up the stairs.
he reached the second floor, he heard the front door open and loud voices
carrying into the house. He turned
around, surprised to see Miranda there, a brilliant smile on her face.
he called anxiously, starting back down the stairs to the foyer. “I’ve been so worried. The pilot said he took you to Vegas.”
nodded with a smirk. “That’s right,
Daddy. I had to get away for a while.”
are you all right?” James asked.
more than all right.”
looked her up and down, full of suspicion.
“You haven’t been drinking again, have you?’ he asked.
shook here head. “Nope. I’m stone cold
you left without saying anything,” James continued, not sure whether to be
angry with her or happy that she was home safely. “You weren’t even at my wedding. How do you think that makes me feel?”
her eyes, Miranda took off her jacket and handed it to Leilani. “Daddy, I don’t want to get into it,” she
said. “I’m in too good of a mood right
realized she was right. What’s done was
done. There was no sense in going back
and rehashing everything. “I….feel bad
about what happened,” he said. “I
shouldn’t have said those things to you.”
she could respond, Brooke emerged from the dining room and looked at Miranda
Brooke,” Miranda said awkwardly. She
wasn’t sure how she would feel seeing her again. She knew they were married now and there was
no changing anything. It was something
she was going to have to learn to live with and accept. Accepting Brooke, on the other hand, was not
going to be easy and she had no intention of befriending her new stepmother.
Miranda,” Brooke replied. “You’re just
in time for dinner.”
hope there’s room for one more,” Miranda said with a giggle.
frowned. “One more?”
nodded and went back to the front door.
A few moments later she reemerged into the foyer with Brett Armstrong at
her side. “Daddy, I want you to meet
Brett,” she announced proudly. “My
eyes widened in disbelief. At first he
thought he was hearing things.
husband?” Brooke asked, walking further into the foyer. “What are you talking about?”
and I got married in Vegas,” Miranda explained.
“The last few days have been the happiest days of my life.”
moved forward and extended his hand to James.
“It’s a pleasure to meet you, Mr. Blackthorne,” he said. “I’ve heard a lot about you.”
didn’t move. He was paralyzed with
shock. He couldn’t believe the latest
stunt his daughter had pulled. She was
out of control.
tries playing peacemaker between James and Miranda.
Alex and Jordan spend the night together.
Ethan and Winter grow closer. Ethan
questions James about his father. Alex overhears