Dr. Anderson encouraged
Stormy to be emotionally available to Heather for
when she finally came to terms with murdering Will.
After seeing Stormy in bed with Samantha,
Heather moved out of the mansion. Miranda
kicked Brett out and then flew to Acapulco
to get a quickie divorce. Renee revealed to
Jordan that Sierra is her biological daughter,
and that Nathan is her father. Alex warned
Brooke about Nathan. James blasted Brooke
for inadvertantly letting it slip to Ethan that
Will was his father. At Nathan's welcome home
party, Debralee snuck into his bedroom and waited
for him to enter, then angrily told him how he'd
ruined her life. Debralee shot herself in
front of Nathan.
and Brooke stood in the foyer and grimaced as the paramedics carried the
stretcher down the stairs from the second floor, a blood stained sheet covering
Debralee’s body. Police and crime scene
investigators crowded the entire mansion while Leilani escorted the last few
party guests to the door. Jordan hung behind, his arms crossed as
he went over the evening’s events in his mind.
is just awful,” Brooke said under her breath.
“That woman came into our house with a gun while Michael was just
upstairs in the nursery. She could
wouldn’t have hurt Michael,” an irritated James cut her off. He glanced up and spotted Nathan making his
way down the staircase, followed by Detective Baines.
awful, isn’t it?” Nathan said dramatically and patted James on the back, then
pulled Brooke into an embrace. “She was
so young and so beautiful. She was a
published author. So much to live for.”
idea why she did it?” James asked. “Did
she say anything to you?”
shook his head. “I wish I knew. Like I just got done telling Detective Baines
here, I was walking down the hall to my room and heard the gunshot. I opened the door and the poor thing was
dead, the gun still gripped in her lifeless hand.”
Jordan’s forehead creased in
concentration. He didn’t pretend to know
when Nathan was on the level or performing, but something inside told him this
was a performance of a lifetime.
appears there’s only one set of fingerprints on the gun,” said Baines. “We also found powder residue on Miss Scott’s
hand, which makes sense if she pulled the trigger herself.”
course she pulled he trigger herself,” James said irately. “I hope you’re not trying to turn this around
and make it my uncle’s fault. Haven’t
you done enough to him?”
one's accusing him,“ Detective Baines replied.
now that the only witness from the trial is dead, I’m inclined to believe that
the D.A.’s case no longer holds water,” James continued. “Debralee’s parents died years ago. There’s no point on continuing this. My uncle is the only victim in this whole
about Alex?” Jordan chimed in and walked
forward. He hated himself for it, but he
was beginning to doubt his former mentor more and more. “She testified and she’s still alive.”
regarded Jordan carefully. He began to question whether Jordan was on his side or not. Something told him his loyalty was slipping.
perjuring herself on the stand wiped out any harm she could cause,” James
insisted. “Now I expect you to have the
D.A. drop the charges against my uncle and have this ridiculous bracelet taken
off of his ankle.”
we not even going to ask why the woman who accused Nathan of molesting her just
shot herself in his bedroom?” Jordan asked and shot James a
room grew awkwardly silent and all eyes landed on Nathan.
was obviously very lonely,” was his easy reply. “Creative types often are.”
silence. Detective Baines pocketed his
note pad and motioned to the rest of the crime scene crew. “We’ll get cleared out of here soon so you
can all get back to your evening,” he said and turned to Nathan. “I’ll be back tomorrow to have to sign your
statement.” A pause while he glanced
around the room and then back. “Are you
sure there isn’t anything you want to add, Mr. Blackthorne? Like why this woman would have shot herself
in your bedroom the very night you returned to town?”
simply shook his head.
be in touch,” he said and started to the door.
him go. He wasn’t sure how to feel. He didn’t want to believe the worst about
Nathan. But since learning that Sierra
was Nathan’s daughter, he only wanted to protect her and Renee.
tropical breeze blew through Miranda’s hair as she sipped a pina colada by the
pool at the posh Continental Hotel Acapulco.
She grinned happily, stretching out in the sun and soaking up the rays
in a new two-piece bathing suit she bought at the gift shop.
soon as she’d arrived in Mexico, she went to a divorce attorney
and got the paperwork started. She was
informed that she should remain there for two days at which time the divorce
would be final and she could return to the states a free woman. That was all she needed to hear. Now she was intent on relaxing and enjoying
herself, celebrating the end of her marriage.
a brief moment she reflected on Brett and the romantic way they’d met. She’d been gambling at the Flamingo Hilton in
Vegas and he was in line behind her at the Roulette table. After getting drunk in the bar they ran off
to a chapel and tied the knot. She’d
never been happier in her life. Now here
she was on another impromptu vacation ending the whole thing.
me guess,” said a voice from above.
“You’re here to divorce your cheating husband, right?”
sat up and shielded her eyes from the sun.
“What are you? A psychic or
woman laughed and pulled a lounge chair over to her. “No, just someone who sees a lot of women
come here who have the exact same look on their face that you do.” She smiled and extended her hand. “Leigh Purcell. I own the Acapulco Continental.”
shook her hand appreciatively. “Miranda
Blackthorne,” she replied. “You have a
lovely hotel here. I happen to run a
hotel myself back in Los Angeles.”
nice to meet a fellow businesswoman,” Leigh said. She was a stunningly beautiful woman of forty
with long auburn hair and catlike green eyes.
“Did you say your name was Blackthorne?”
nodded. “Well, that’s my maiden name,
which I plan on going back to as soon as this divorce is final.”
father wouldn’t by chance be James Blackthorne, would he?”
he is. Do you know my father?”
smiled fondly and crossed her long silky legs.
“We met when he was here filming a movie about six years ago.”
“Elena,” Miranda said with a knowing
smile. “That’s one of my favorites. I didn’t realize they filmed in Acapulco.”
some post-production shots,” Leigh explained.
“He was here with a few crew members.
They stayed here as a matter of fact.”
She drifted off into a dreamlike state and caught herself smiling
again. “Such a nice man.”
raised an eyebrow, wondering what all happened during her father’s location
shoot. He and her mother were still
married at the time, and Brooke hadn’t come into the picture yet. She got the distinct feeling that more than
post-production shots went on.
hear he’s in the energy industry now,” Leigh continued. “What a small world. I actually own an oil and natural gas
company. My late husband was the CEO and
when he passed on I took the helm. I
hope I bump into your father again sometime.
Maybe the two of us can compare industry notes.”
sure he’d like that,” Miranda said and sipped her pina colada through a curvy
would I.” Leigh grew into another daze,
staring off and recalling those magical two weeks in Acapulco with James.
The lounge at Hotel Terranova was busy with hotel guests and people out on the
town for the
night. Elegant music played and couples
sat quietly at their tables over cocktails and conversation. At the bar, Brett sat nursing a gin and
tonic. He flicked a lighter repeatedly,
staring at the flame and growing into a daze as he thought about the mess his
life had become in such a short time.
By now Miranda was in Acapulco knee deep in their
divorce proceedings. He hadn’t opposed
too much because there wasn’t a lot of hope for changing her mind. After everything he’d done; framing Stormy
for Will’s murder, sleeping with Terri, and manipulating Heather to suit his
personal needs, Miranda had every right to send him packing. He only wished that he would have been a step
ahead so he could have seen some of the backlash coming. Maybe he was losing his touch, he
wondered. A con man with no game was the
worst kind of con man.
Now he was without a job, living in
a hotel and no real friends to speak of.
Granted, he’d made some acquaintances during his stint at Sunset Studios, but most of them were
very Blackthorne-friendly, which meant they probably weren’t Brett-friendly any
Turning around on the stool, he
spotted Heather enter the lounge as she made her way to a small table in the
corner. A cocktail waitress approached
and took her order, then vanished and left her alone at the table.
Dragging himself from the stool,
Brett approached her and sat down in a chair across the table. Heather looked up and immediately grew
irritated, snatching her purse up and starting to run off in the other
“Heather, wait,” he said. “You don’t have to rush off.”
“If it’s between rushing off and
spending another minute with you, then I think I’ll rush off if you don’t
mind,” she said spitefully.
“You know, we lived in the same
house for the better part of a year,” Brett said and stood up. “I don’t think sharing a drink is exactly
crossing the line. What are you doing
“I moved out of the mansion,”
Heather admitted glumly. “I’m not a
Blackthorne anymore and I don’t belong there.”
Brett dug his hands into his pocket
and noted the sadness in her eyes. “Well
I’m living here too,” he said. “All the
more reason for us not to continue lashing out at each other.”
Heather looked at him in
astonishment. “What about that stunt you
pulled with me and Stormy?” she demanded.
“Setting it up so that I would walk in on him and Samantha
Fallmont? That’s low even for you,
“Look, I was only trying to-“
“You were trying to make me forget
that I walked in on you and your secretary having sex on Stormy’s
desk,” Heather exclaimed. “Well I’m not
a puppet, Brett. I can’t be used and
treated like a pawn in a chess game anymore.
Not by you and not by anyone else.”
“Heather-“ But before he could stop her, she was racing
off through the lounge.
Upstairs, Stormy was on top of Samantha,
smothering her with kisses as their bodies moved rhythmically against each
other. A trickle of sweat dripped down
his face as he made love to her for the third time that night. He’d left the party early when she sent him a
text message that she was in town.
Spending an evening with her was far too tempting an offer to turn
down. Samantha, clutching his arms,
pulled him deeper and then cried out in ecstasy when they both exploded in
After a few minutes of basking in
exhaustion, Samantha got up from the bed and made her way to the bathroom. She came out a minute later with a robe tied
around her waist and her blond hair falling loosely around her shoulders.
“Want something to eat?” she asked
and lifted a handful of grapes from a fruit tray on the table. “I’m starving. I couldn’t eat a thing before I left Denver and then the fat
guy beside me on the plane stole my peanuts.”
Stormy laughed and slipped into a
pair of boxer shorts. He sidled up
behind her and kissed her shoulders repeatedly.
“Well we need you to keep your strength up,” he said with a grin as he
popped a grape in his mouth.
Samantha opened the doors leading
onto the veranda and took in a breath of fresh night air. “I need to get going soon,” she said. “I have to be back in
“But it’s so late already,” Stormy
replied. “Why not stay the night?”
She turned back to him and
smiled. “I would love to, but I do have
a husband and daughter waiting for me at home.”
The very mention of her husband sent
Stormy into a tailspin. When he thought
about the way Timothy had confronted him last year about his affair with
Samantha, he wanted nothing more than to knock the smirk right off his face.
“Are things better between you two?”
Stormy asked, even though he was afraid to.
He wanted nothing more than for her to say she was leaving Timothy and
that they could be together all the time.
“They’re worse,” Samantha admitted
and flung herself onto the settee inside the room. “He’s constantly checking up on me. He thinks I’m sleeping with every man he
sees. Meanwhile, I’m positive he’s
involved with someone. He travels to Washington almost every week
and he’s never at the hotel where he’s supposed to be registered.”
“Who do you think it is?” Stormy
She shrugged and stretched
languorously. “I don’t really care,” she
said. “We’ve basically admitted that the
only reason we’re staying together is for his political career and for Christina. I don’t think she could handle it if we split
up. She’s only eleven. Se’s so fragile
as it is.
Stormy sat down beside her. “Does he know you’re in L.A.?”
She shook her head. “He’s in Washington. I finally decided to say the hell with it and
leave town for a few days.” A sigh while
she reflected on her miserable life.
“But I called tonight and our butler said Timothy’s expected home
later. I really should be on the next
Stormy put his arms around her and
drew her into a kiss. “Please tell me
that I can see you again,” he said. “The
past few months without you have been miserable.”
“Well what about your father?”
Samantha asked. “Won’t he flip his lid
if he finds out you’re seeing me again?”
Stormy thought about James and the
fact that he was instilling complete control of Sunset Studios in him. He was
determined not to let him down. But on
the other hand, he wouldn’t lose Samantha over it either.
“Don’t worry about me,” he
said. “I know exactly what I’m doing.”
Early the next morning, a paramedic led Sierra into Renee’s suite at Hotel
Terranova, helping her down the steps into the sunken living room to the
sofa. Renee followed and waited for her
to get settled. She looked at her watch
and tried to glance through the morning paper but nothing could hold her
attention. With a sigh, she flung the
paper aside and stood up and continued pacing.
A second later, the nurse left the
room. To Renee’s relief, Sierra finally
looked at her, giving her some form of hope that she’d forgive her.
“Darling, please understand,” she
Sitting on the sofa, Sierra folded
her arms and eyed Renee angrily. “How do
you think it made me feel when I found out that Kenny didn’t even know who I
was?” she asked. “I was five years old
when you married him, Mother. How could
you not tell your husband that you had a five year old daughter? Are you ashamed of me? Is it because I’m not your real daughter?”
course not!” Renee insisted. She hated
lying to her. She hated the fact that
she couldn’t tell her she was her
real daughter. “I told you, baby, it’s
“I don’t see what’s so
complicated. How about ‘Hey Kenny, I have an adopted daughter and
she lives in Europe’. What’s so hard about that?”
Renee placed a hand on her head and
sighed in frustration. “Haven’t I given
you everything?” she asked. “I sent you
to the best schools, dressed you in the best clothes, made sure that you have
everything you could have wanted.
Sierra, why can’t that be enough?”
A tear trickled down Sierra’s cheek
and she sobbed silently. “I don’t care
about any of that!” she cried. “All I
want is your love, Mother. Can’t you see
Renee felt her breath rush from her
lungs and she clutched her chest. She’d
never felt so heartbroken in her life.
“Baby, you’ve got it,” she said and rushed over to her. They hugged warmly and Renee stroked her hand
through her hair. “You’ve got it.”
James, Nathan and Stormy sat in the
solarium eating breakfast when Brooke came down the stairs and joined
them. The tenseness in the room was
evident. The events from the night
before had left the house solemn and grave.
“Thank you,” she said awkwardly when
Nathan pulled out the chair for her. She
sat down next to James. “Good morning.”
“Good morning,” James said and
barely looked at her. He was still
filled with resentment over her betrayal by telling Ethan the truth about his
father. Because of her he was still
sitting in jail at that very moment.
“You look positively beautiful this
morning, Brooke,” Nathan said.
“Get used to it, Uncle Nathan,”
Stormy said with a laugh. He decided
that a note of cheerfulness was in order after recent events. “Women in this house refuse to come
downstairs without looking perfect.
Hair, makeup, nails, the whole shebang.”
laughed in turn, then directed his attention at Stormy. “Where did you disappear to last night, son?”
he asked and wiped his mouth with a napkin.
“I don’t remember seeing you past eight o’clock.”
Stormy grinned and grew into a daze
while thinking about the fantastic sex he’d had with Samantha. “I had
some work to do at the studio,” he lied.
“I wanted to go through the books and see if Brett left any surprises
for me. I always wondered what kind of
shenanigans he was up to.”
“Brett is Miranda’s husband, right?”
“Not anymore,” said a voice from
across the room.
Everyone turned and saw Miranda
enter, glowing radiantly and smiling from ear to ear.
“Miranda, welcome home,” James said
as she kissed him on the cheek. “I was
wondering when I could expect my jet back.”
“Welcome home, Miranda,” Brooke
interrupted in an effort to dismiss James’s dry sense of humor. “I hope everything went okay in Acapulco.”
"It went better than okay,” she said
and plopped into her chair. “I’m a free
woman now. Brett is out of my life and I
can finally start living again.”
“Hallelujah,” Stormy murmured under
“Miranda, I’d like you to meet my
Uncle Nathan,” James said proudly and gestured next to him where Nathan
sat. “He’s going to be living with us.”
“Nice to meet you,” Miranda replied
and bit off a chunk of cantaloupe.
“You’re every bit as beautiful as
your mother was at your age,” Nathan said with a twinkle in his eye. “James has told me what wonderful things
you’ve done with his hotel.”
Miranda took a gulp of orange juice and
motioned to her father. “Daddy, that
reminds me,” she began. “I ran into an
old friend of yours in Acapulco. Do you remember Leigh Purcell? Some ultra glam oil chick who owns a hotel
James couldn’t help but smile fondly. “Yes, as a matter of fact I do,” he
said. “Leigh was very hospitable to us
when we were there filming about six years ago.”
“Just how hospitable are we talking,
Dad?” Stormy asked with a smile.
“She was very kind, that’s all,”
James replied, ignoring his son’s clever jab.
“I always wondered what happened to her.”
“She’s running her dead husband’s
oil company,” Miranda explained and spread a thin layer of cream cheese on a
bagel. “She had some nice things to say
about you, Daddy. Something about her
was different, though.”
“What do you mean?” James asked.
Miranda shrugged. “She seemed sad, lonely, I don’t know. I just got a weird vibe from her. She’s very beautiful but she didn’t strike me
as being very happy.”
James appeared distant and Brooke
caught on to it immediately. She quietly
sipped her coffee, wondering what exactly what James’ relationship was to the
mysterious oil heiress.
“So what have I missed around here?”
Miranda asked cheerfully.
The room grew quiet and all eyes
“Wow, that much, huh?” Miranda said
“I guess you didn’t pick up the
morning paper,” Stormy said grudgingly.
Brooke slid her chair out from the
table. “Excuse me,” she said and dashed
from the room. She darted into the
parlor room and stood by the windows in a daze.
Moments later, James followed after her.
“Are you okay?” he asked.
She turned to him with a streak of
panic in her eyes. “No, I’m not okay,”
she insisted. “I don’t understand why
you’re all being so callous about last night.
A woman killed herself in our home, James. In Nathan’s bedroom. The same woman who accused him of raping her
over twenty years ago.”
“It is a tragedy, I’m not arguing
that,” he insisted. “I’m not sure what
it is you want me to do, Brooke. You already
know what happened. It isn’t as if
Nathan was at fault.”
She looked into his eyes and tried
to find a glimmer of humanity. “But why
did she do it?” she asked. “There was no
suicide note, no final words. She just
came into our house, went to Nathan’s room, and killed herself? It doesn’t add up.”
“I don’t pretend to know why she did
what she did!” he shouted angrily. “But
I do know that it’s got nothing to do with my uncle. Debralee Scott was a child actress whose
parents ran her life. They trumped up
those charges against Nathan to further her career. And when that didn’t work she led a life of
misery and blamed Nathan for it. End of
With that, he turned and stormed
back out of the room. Brooke wrapped her
arms around herself and wished that Nathan had never come home. Since he had, James had quickly become a
Out in the foyer, the doorbell rang
and James pulled it open with a start.
His day had already gotten off to a bad start, thanks to Brooke, and he
was in no mood for any further complications.
However, when he saw District Attorney Ed Littleton standing on the
porch with two uniformed police officers, he realized things could change.
“We’re not dropping the charges,” Littleton said minutes later
as they stood in James’ private study.
“Especially now that Debralee Scott is dead. She didn’t commit suicide over nothing, I can
tell you that right now.”
“But it’s a victimless crime!” James
bellowed and flashed his uncle a brief look.
He realized his statement made it sound like he was acknowledging there
actually was a crime that took
place. He didn’t even believe that. “Debralee Scott was the only person still
living – besides Alex – to testify at the trial. Now she’s gone. In the interest of justice, it’s time to let
this thing drop!”
“In the interest of justice, we have
a responsibility to make an example of your uncle,” Littleton insisted. “If we let him off, what kind of message does
that send to the public? There will be a
hearing where a judge will decide if a new trial is in order.”
“And who will testify at this
trial?” Nathan asked.
“We have a couple of witnesses in
mind,” was his cryptic reply.
James sighed. “If you want another media circus just to
ensure your re-election next term, then you’ll have it. But in the meantime, there is no reason why
my uncle has to be under house arrest.
You’ve already confiscated his passport.
He isn’t going anywhere.”
“No way,” Littleton said adamantly and
shook his head.
“Need I remind that you the jury
hadn’t delivered their verdict before my uncle left town?” Jams asked. “There is no ruling against him. As far as the
state is concerned, he’s still
innocent until proven guilty. This house
arrest thing is corrupt, even for you, Littleton.”
Littleton held up his hand
in an effort to shut James up. “Fine,”
he said. “I’ll remove the house arrest
order. The satisfaction of knowing he’ll
be behind bars soon is enough for me.”
Nathan smiled devilishly, quite sure
that he wouldn’t spend another minute behind bars.
that morning, Renee walked through the lobby at Hotel Terranova, flung a mink stole around her neck and proceeded
to the elevator. She realized she’d left
her pocketbook in the restaurant, turned and started across the terra cotta
floor when Nathan approached swiftly, grabbing her arm and leading her off to a
corner by a set of house phones.
“Good morning, my dear,” he said.
“Take your hands off of me,” Renee
said and twisted away from his grasp.
She shot him a penetrating stare and clutched her purse tightly in her
hand. “What on earth are you doing
here? I thought you were under house
“The District Attorney decided to
remove that silly ankle bracelet,” he said proudly. “I’m a free man.”
Renee’s jaw dropped and she
staggered back in surprise. “Until your
“Not to worry. Since Debralee Scott’s unfortunate demise,
there isn’t much to their case. There is
the little matter, however, of my resisting arrest and fleeing the country. A
minor infraction. I’m confident James’
attorneys can get that dropped as well.
Now, where were we, my dear.”
“I am not your dear. That part of our
relationship was over a long time ago, Nathan.”
“Only because I was abroad,” Nathan
said. He was dressed pristinely in a navy
sport coat and red ascot, his dark hair slicked back away from his
forehead. “But now that I’m back we can
pick up where we left off. It’s a shame
that our last night together on my yacht had to end so abruptly.”
“I wouldn’t call it a shame,” Renee
declared. “I’d call it fate.”
Nathan put on a shocked
expression. He was quite clever about
punctuating his emotions with the appropriate face, Renee decided. He was an actor through and through.
“Don’t tell me you believe all those
bogus charges brought up against me at that trial,” Nathan said. “You heard Debralee Scott’s press conference,
didn’t you? She said our relationship
“Then why did she kill herself?”
we’ll never know.”
was fourteen when you had a relationship
with her,” Renee hissed. “A fourteen
year old girl is no match to the wits and charms of a grown man. Consensual or not, it was wrong. And how many others were there, Nathan? How many girls did you seduce by promising
them a career and a future in Hollywood?”
“There was just the one,” he
replied, although not very convincingly.
The remark caught Nathan off
guard. “What do you mean? Alex and I had a relationship as well, long
before you and I did.”
“Until James came along and you were
left in the dust,” Renee recalled. “I
remember you didn’t take it very well, but my
how you did put on a brave face.”
“If you’re going to say that you
believe her ludicrous story that I raped her…”
“I didn’t say that,” Renee
replied. “I don’t know if I believe her
or not. Alex Reynolds isn’t exactly
trustworthy. But what I do believe is
that you took something from each and every woman you seduced. What I’m not sure of is what it was that you
wanted from me?”
“I was in love with you,” Nathan
claimed. “I still am.”
Before Renee could reply, Jordan approached and put
his arm through Renee’s. “Nathan, I
heard the news that you were released from house arrest,” he said, then added
unenthusiastically, “I guess congratulations are in order.”
“Yes, yes I suppose they are,” he
said. “And now I have much to do. James and Ryan have a fantastic role in mind
for my big return to the screen. Oh, I’m
sorry, Jordan, I hope you don’t
mind that our working together will have to wait.”
Jordan shook his head. “Not at all.
It actually works out better this way,” he said, relieved that he
wouldn’t have to work with Nathan. The
more he looked at him the more he distrusted him. “Well, if you’ll excuse
us. Renee and I are golfing this morning.”
Nathan held up his hand. “No, I
can’t join you today, Jordan,” he claimed.
“Another time, though. But let’s
have drinks soon.”
“Absolutely,” Jordan said and bit down
on his lip.
After he’d gone, Renee looked at Jordan and closed her
eyes in regret. “Thank God you got here
when you did,” she said. “I didn’t know
how much longer I could put up with him.”
being free for the time being won't help matters,
either,” Jordan remarked.
won't,” Renee replied
and walked with him to the doors leading to the golf course.
Nathan watched them go, certain that
he and Renee’s past was yet to be settled.
He turned and started to leave the hotel when he spotted a young woman
looking in the gift shop windows. Smiling,
he approached and paused beside her.
“They’re lovely,” he said and gestured
to the diamond earrings in the window.
“Perfect for delicate features such as yours.”
Sierra turned and smiled at the
handsome, friendly stranger. “That’s
very nice of you to say,” she said with a grin.
“I was just browsing. A girl can
dream, I suppose.”
Happy that he still had the same
affect on women, Nathan dug his hands into his pockets and decided the young
woman was the prettiest face he’d seen in town since his return. Whoever she was, she was someone he’d like to
That afternoon, the phone rang at
the mansion and Brooke answered it as she came down the stairs to the
foyer. Flinging her hair over her
shoulder, she frowned when she realized who was on the other line.
“I told you he was dangerous,” Alex
said from her office at Blackthorne-Reynolds. “He’s in town for one day and a woman is
“Alex?” Brooke asked. “How did you-“
“The media is all over it,” Alex cut
her off. “James tried to keep it under
wraps but you know nothing that goes on in that house is ever secret for long.”
Brooke sighed and glanced up the
stairs to where they’d carried Debralee’s bloody body from. “She was unhinged. Her life didn’t go as planned and she blamed
Nathan. That’s all.”
Alex gripped the phone tightly in
her hand. “She killed herself because
she couldn’t live with what he did to her.
Mark my words, Brooke, James will continue to support his uncle because
of the way he took me from him all those years ago. He blames himself. And now you’re in jeopardy.”
Sighing in despair, Brooke shook her
head. “Look, just leave me alone,” she
said and hung the phone up again. She
bit down on her lip and considered Alex’s words. She hated to admit it, but what she said did
Brett knocked on Heather’s door at Hotel Terranova and took a step back,
swinging his tennis racket in his hand and waiting for her to answer. When she opened the door and saw him
standing in the hall, she immediately went to close it.
“Hey, hold up,” Brett said. “I just wanted to see if you cared to join me
on the tennis courts this morning.”
Heather rolled her eyes. “Brett, stop trying to be nice to me,” she
said. “I think you’ve done enough damage
already. Please leave me alone.”
The door slammed in his face and he
sighed and turned back down the hall, whistling quietly to himself while he
waited for the elevator. When the doors
opened and Stormy emerged, they locked eyes for what seemed like minutes. Wordlessly, Brett stepped into the elevator
car and grinned devilishly before the doors shut.
Wondering what his
ex-brother-in-law’s smug expression was all about, Stormy turned and started
down the hall to Heather’s room. He
knocked and she pulled it open with a jolt, half expecting that it was Brett
“Oh, Stormy,” she said with a breathy
sigh. “Come in.”
Frowning, he entered the room and
dug his hands into his pockets. “Were
you expecting someone else?” he asked.
“No, I just didn’t think you’d be
coming by is all,” she replied, running her hands through her long brown hair
and pausing at the tray of juice on the coffee table. “Did you want something?”
He shrugged. “I thought I was taking you to your
appointment with Dr. Anderson. You
didn’t forget about it, did you?”
She shook her head listlessly. “No, but-“
“Heather, you have to keep going to
see him. If you don’t then I’m afraid
that you’ll keep everything bottled up.”
“I have no intention of missing my
appointment with Dr. Anderson,” Heather cut him off. “But I don’t think that you should go with
me. I think it’s time that I handled
things on my own. I don’t need to keep
leaning on you and your family.”
“Heather, you don’t have to do this
alone. If this is about the other night
when you saw me with Samantha Fallmont, I-“
“It’s not,” Heather said and opened
the door. “It’s just like I said. I need to start taking care of myself.”
Wondering if she really meant it or
was just lashing out at him for what happened with Samantha, Stormy hesitated
briefly before stepping out into the hall.
Before he could turn around, she was already closing the door on him.
Brooke couldn’t get the disturbing
conversation she’d had with Alex out of her mind, so she drove downtown to Blackthorne-Reynolds to talk to
James. That morning at breakfast had
been so chaotic with the fallout from Debralee’s death, Miranda’s return from Acapulco, and the D.A.
coming by, that she didn’t think it was the right time. Now she was determined to get to the bottom
“What brings you down here, Darling?”
James asked and got up from his desk. He
walked around and pulled a chair out for her.
Since breakfast, he’d decided that he had been too hard on her
lately. Snapping at her was not the
answer. And now that Nathan was free for
the time being, he had fewer things weighing on his mind. “Do you have time for lunch?”
“Actually I wanted to talk to you
about Alex,” Brooke maintained, a forlorn look on her pretty face.
James frowned. “Alex?
What the devil for? What has she
done this time?”
Brooke stood back up and wrung her
hands together nervously. “Do you
believe her?” she asked. “About Nathan
raping her all those years ago?”
After a long period of silence James
shook his head regretfully. “Why are you
bothering me about Alex?” he asked irately.
“You know damn well Nathan didn’t do those things she claims.”
“She’s terrified, you know,” Brooke
said softly. “She told me that he hasn’t
“When did you talk to Alex?” James
“At the party last night, and this
morning on the phone. She says Nathan
can’t be trusted.”
“And I suppose you believe
her?” His forehead creased into a deep
frown and he placed his hands on his hips in a sign of anger. “Damnit, Brooke, you know better than to
listen to anything Alex has to say.”
She shrugged and pushed a lock of
blond hair from her eyes. “When I look
into his eyes I just get this feeling in the pit of my stomach…”
James was bewildered. “So now you’re going to start making
accusations against him too, I suppose,” he raged. “Jesus, can’t you just trust me for once,
Brooke? Have faith that I know what I’m
talking about? My uncle is not a threat
to anyone. Not to you, and not to Alex.”
“I do trust you!” she insisted, her
eyes stinging with tears. She knew it
wasn’t her imagination. She’d seen the
way Nathan looked at her, and the way his touches lingered on for too
long. It made her uneasy. If only she could make James see that.
“It sure doesn’t feel like it,”
James said and sat back down at his desk.
He opened a stack of folders and motioned to the door. “I have a lot of
work to do. I’ll see you at home later.”
Her head sunk as she turned and
slowly made her way out of the office.
As if everything else wasn’t bad enough, now Nathan’s return was causing
an even bigger rift in their marriage.
“I want you to stop filling my
wife’s head with your lies,” James shouted a short while later in Alex’s office
next door. “Things are finally calming
down with us for a change. I don’t want
you stirring up a bunch of drama just for your own enjoyment.”
“Is that what you think I’m doing?”
Alex asked angrily and shot to her feet.
“I cannot believe that you would just throw my feeling aside and assume
that I’m trying to cause trouble! James,
we were married for twenty-four years!
Do you honestly think that I would hold on to the same story for this
long if it wasn’t true?”
“I don’t care!” he shouted. “I just want you to leave Brooke alone!”
“That’s right, your precious Brooke
is more important to you than the mother of your other two children! Or don’t they matter to you anymore now that
you have Michael?”
James shook his head angrily. “This has nothing to do with our children,”
James lamented. “If you won’t admit to
yourself that you lied about Nathan raping you that’s fine, you can continue
living in denial. But I’ll be damned if
I’m going to let you stir up those ugly memories for Brooke or anyone else!”
“James, a woman died in your house
last night because of that man. Are you
really so blind that you’ll overlook that?
Maybe the police don’t have anything on him anymore, but you have to
know that he’s a guilty man. You have
She cried out in frustration when
he turned and stormed out of the office.
She grabbed a heavy crystal paperweight from the desk and hurdled it
across the room in a rage. Glass
splintered and shattered in every direction and she sunk to her chair in
devastation. She was sick of being
treated like a liar and a manipulator.
She was beginning to feel like she was alone and had no one to turn
That night, Heather left Dr.
Anderson’s office and made her way back home to Hotel Terranova, steering her yellow Corvette through the
valley. She thought about her session
and the things that Dr. Anderson had told her to think about. As much as she wanted to, she didn’t think
she could. It was too painful. It was easier to block it out and forget that
it happened. Sure, Stormy said that
she’d wind up a shell, devoid of feelings and emotions, but it was easier than
accepting the truth and dealing with that night at Will Thomerson’s house.
Stopping at a light on Van Nuys Blvd, she grew into a
daze and thought about Stormy and how horrified she was walking in on him and
Samantha Fallmont. She felt like a fool
for thinking they could ever get back together.
It wasn’t what Stormy wanted, and the fact that she even thought about
it made her seem weak and desperate. She
vowed not to let that happen again.
“Get out of the car!!”
thunderous voice exploded into her ears, jarring her back to reality.
Startled, Heather turned to the open
window and saw two hulking black men standing just outside on the street. She recoiled in horror when they each produced
a gun from their black jacket and waved them threateningly.
“Please, don’t hurt me,” Heather
whimpered, unable to take her eyes from the weapons pointed directly at her.
“Then get out of the freakin’ car,
bitch!” one of them yelled and pulled at the door handle. “Unlock the door! I swear I’ll freaking drop you, barbie
doll! Unlock the door and get out of the
Heather tried desperately to think
fast. Carjacking was a common
occurrence in L.A. She could make a
break for it. The car was still
running. She could shift into gear and drive
off before they could hurt her. Her
hands trembling, she reached down for the gear shift and attempted to move it
Suddenly, a deafening gunshot rang
out, stinging her ears and sending alarms tripping through her entire
body. Glass from the back window
shattered all over her and she screamed hysterically. Petrified, she quickly succumbed to a dark
panic and everything went blank.
of her in Will Thomeson’s study came at her like flashes from a camera. She saw herself pulling the trigger, the
earsplitting crash coursing through her head.
she snapped back to reality. All she
could remember next was being pulled from the car and thrown onto the
asphalt. The sound of tires squealing
was the last thing she heard before she went unconscious from sheer panic.
Brett sat on the sofa in his room at
Hotel Terranova, flipping through a
magazine and nursing a scotch on the rocks.
He ran his hand over his bare chest and thought he heard the faint
sounds of crying from outside the room.
Frowning, he got up and walked to
the door. Outside in the hall, Heather
was crouched on the ground, rocking herself back and forth with tears streaming
from her eyes. She sobbed hysterically,
seemingly unaware of what was going on around her. Brett quickly raced over and knelt down beside
her. Luckily he couldn’t see anything
that would indicate she’d been hurt.
“Heather, are you okay?” he asked
and swept a lock of hair from her eyes.
“Tell me what happened.”
She cried and cried, finally looking
up at him and murmured in despair. “I
killed him,” she said in horror. “I
walked through the tunnels and I picked up the gun and I shot him. He didn’t even have a chance to defend
Brett suddenly realized that Heather
had finally come to terms with killing Will Thomerson. Something tonight must have triggered it.
“Oh my God, Brett,” she whispered
between shrieks. “I killed someone in
cold blood. How could I have done that?”
Slowly, he picked her up in his arms
and carried her inside the room. Setting
her down on the sofa, he stroked her hair back comfortingly and tried to soothe
her as best as he could. Heather pulled
him close, holding him with all her might and crying softly into his shoulder.
Brett, overcome with feelings of
helplessness, held her in his arms and rocked her back and forth until she
eventually fell asleep.
Miranda learns she's
in danger of losing Hotel Terranova. Stormy
begins work on a film to reintroduce Nathan to Hollywood.
Brett gets an offer from Marilee Walker. Ethan
is released from jail and goes straight to Brooke.