Debralee's suicide, James convinced the D.A. to take
Nathan off of house arrest, but could not get him to
drop the rape charges. Brooke continued to grow
uneasy around Nathan, and blasted James for his callous
attitude over Debralee's death. Nathan taunted
Renee over their past relationship. Miranda met
Leigh Purcell in Acapulco, a woman who knew James from
a location shoot six year before. Miranda and
Brett's divorce became final. Alex warned Brooke
to be careful around Nathan. James grew angry
by Brooke's suspicions over Nathan. Brett and
Heather both moved into Hotel Terranova. Heather
resisted Brett's attempts to be friendly. Later,
Heather was carjacked and wandered deliriously back
to Brett's room.
woke up in Brett’s room at Hotel
Terranova and sat up while she tried to get her bearings. What
was she doing there? She looked
around the bedroom and tried to shake the groggy feeling from her head. Looking down at the scrapes on the palms of
her hands, she suddenly remembered about the carjacking the night before. She sunk into a feeling of gloom and slowly
crawled out of the bed.
steamed through the windows in the living room as she stepped out and saw Brett
lying asleep on the sofa. Details of the
previous night slowly came back to her.
After the thugs took her car, she wandered deliriously a
mile back to the
hotel. All she could remember next was
winding up at Brett’s door and crying on his shoulder. He must have held her until she fell asleep
and then carried her into his bed.
down at his face as he slept, she caught a glimpse of a part of Brett that
she’d never seen. A strong, caring and
sensitive side that seldom came to light.
It was quite baffling, she decided.
A man who could be so sleazy and corrupt, yet still made her feel safe
in light of what had happened.
opened his eyes and stifled a yawn.
Heather quickly tried to act like she hadn’t been watching him
sleep. She turned and smoothed down the
oversized tee shirt she’d slipped into.
morning,” Brett said and sat up on the sofa.
He rubbed his face and tried to force himself to wake up. It had been a long night and he hadn’t slept
well on the lumpy sofa. “How are you
smiled and sat down in the overstuffed chair across the room. “Better,” she said, pushing a lock of brown
hair from her eyes. “I don’t really know
why I came here last night. I guess I
was pretty out of it.”
I’m glad you did,” Brett said and stood up in a pair of boxers and nothing
else. “I called the police last night
and reported what happened. They said
you could wait a couple of days before giving a statement.”
they find my car?”
shook his head and poured two cups of steaming coffee. “Not yet,” he said and handed her a mug. When she reached out and took it, he saw the
scrapes on her hand and he quickly bent down and examined them. “This looks bad. We should get you checked out at the
that’s okay,” Heather insisted and pulled her hands away. She felt uncomfortable with the way he held
them. “It’s just a few scrapes and
bruises. I’ll be fine.”
least let me put something on it,” Brett said and ran a wash cloth under cold
water in the sink. He went back and
knelt down before her, dabbing the cool rag gently on her hands. His eyes traveled up and caught her looking
direct at him.
should go,” Heather said and quickly stood up.
She went into the bedroom and slipped into her clothes. “Thanks for everything, Brett. I appreciate you letting me stay here.”
shouldn’t be alone,” Brett insisted and waited for her to emerge. “Do you want me to call Jordan?”
minute later she came out of the bedroom and ran her fingers through her hair. “No, I don’t want to worry my father over
nothing. I’m just going back to my room
to take a hot shower. I’ll be fine.”
he could say another word, she was pulling open the door and racing out into
the hall. Once outside, she leaned
against the door and tried to gather some perspective. No matter how kind and gentle Brett had been
after the whole nightmare last night, she couldn’t allow herself to forget all
the despicable things he’d done.
had left the house early that morning and headed to his office at Blackthorne-Reynolds to have a breakfast
meeting with Jack Fallmont. They dined
on coffee, juice and freshly baked croissants while discussing the pipeline in Denver.
are going good with the pipeline then?” Jack inquired as he sipped his
coffee. “No more problems with the
so far,” James replied. “Particularly
now that your nephew has given up on his injunction.”
“I want you to know,
James,” Jack began, “that I had no say in what he was up to. I mean, I knew that he and Samantha were
having problems, but-“
you didn’t know that she was sleeping with my son?” James finished for
him. “Well Stormy knows that he nearly
cost me my company because he couldn’t control his hormones. I don’t think he’ll be making a mistake like
that again, especially now that he’s running Sunset Studios by himself.
The last thing I need is Senator Fallmont pushing that injunction
hate to unload this on you when things are finally going your way, James, but-“
great, what now?”
was at the racquetball club yesterday afternoon and overheard someone talking
about Hotel Terranova,” Jack
said. “Specifically, that it was for
frowned. “That’s ridiculous. Hotel
Terranova isn’t for sale. Who did you
hear this from?”
just a few of the yacht club regulars.
One was David Jennings,” Jack replied.
James murmured to himself. “Jackie
confirmed Jack. “Trying to make a name
for himself since his father’s passing.”
reached into his desk and withdrew a magazine.
“I was just reading an expose about him the other day in Image,” he said and looked at the cover
which sported a full head shot of the attractive young man. “I wonder what he could be up to.”
and Nathan were seated at the Polo Lounge
with Eddie Distefano, dining on the world-famous brunch and waiting for Eddie’s
equally world-famous father to show.
sure I told him to be here at ten o’clock,” Eddie said and looked around
the dining room. “Maybe he got held up.”
laughed and nursed a Bloody Mary. “If I
know Victor then he’s probably either hung over from the party the other night
or he found himself in the company of some ladies.”
grinned and gave Eddie a wink. “Eddie,
what have you been up to lately?”
know what I’ve been up to if you bothered to call once and a while,” Eddie said
with a wry smile. “Just because we’re
not business partners anymore doesn’t mean we can’t hang out. I had to hear from Jordan Rydell about you
and Heather’s divorce.”
I know, I’ve been sort of caught up in my own stuff,” Stormy replied. “So what are
you doing now?”
opened my own P.I. firm,” Eddie declared proudly. “It’s a pretty sweet racket. I specialize in trailing cheating husbands
for Hollywood wives. Dude, you gotta come by and check out my new
office. It’s su-weet.”
lack of clients in this town, is there, Edward?” Nathan asked. “It seems there’s always a secret to uncover
laughed and picked up the script Stormy had brought along. “Is this the film you want Dad to do?” he
asked and flipped through the first few pages.
nodded. “It’s an action-adventure movie
about two brothers who get involved in organized crime,” he said. “Ryan procured it from a very talented
writer. We’re trying to get Eric Autumn
rolled his eyes. He hated it when his
uncle called him Ryan. Hardly anybody
ever did anymore and it sounded strange to hear it out loud. “Nathan’s playing the other brother,” he
younger brother,” Nathan corrected
him and flagged down the waitress for another Bloody Mary. “Victor may be younger in years but I’ve aged
much better than he has.”
and Eddie exchanged looks of amusement.
Glancing across the room, Stormy waited impatiently for Victor Distefano
to arrive. He wanted to pitch the movie
to him so Sunset Studios could go
into pre-production as soon as possible.
But as usual, his friend’s father was anything but dependable.
if on cue, Victor strode into the restaurant and darted through a crowd of
gawking onlookers. He shielded his eyes
with a pair of dark sunglasses and made his way to the table.
about time, you old so and so,” Nathan said with a grin and pushed a vodka
gimlet across the table. “I already
ordered for you.”
Victor remarked and swallowed half the drink in one gulp. He was a tall, distinguished man in his late
fifties with grayish brown hair, deep brown eyes and a thoroughly sexy tan. He was the epitome of the well-aged Hollywood leading man. “I’m sorry that I’m late. My limo service hired a female driver. Can you believe that?”
it isn’t so,” Nathan gawked with a knowing smile.
young thing. She can’t drive to save her
life, but she screws like you wouldn’t believe,” Victor continued, then gave
Eddie a playful wink. “What do you
scrunched his face up and sighed. “I
think you’re one of those dads who shares a little too much about his sex life.”
laughed and listened in amazement as the infamous Victor Distefano gave graphic
details about his encounter in the back of his limousine. He knew that it made Eddie uncomfortable,
mostly because since his mother died his father hadn’t slowed down with the
women for a second.
Stormy asked you here to talk about a script,” Eddie interrupted. He could tell that his father was drunk, and
it wasn’t even noon.
It was typical. “Did you look at
of course I looked at it, Ed,” Victor said and threw his hands up
dramatically. He fished a bottle of black
pills from his jacket pocket and swallowed one with a swig of vodka. “I think it’s brilliant. What did you think, Nathan?”
think it’s a go,” Nathan replied and leaned forward. “Think of it, Victor. The two of us starring in a movie
together after all this time. Our triumhpant return. The fans will eat it up.”
be the talk of the town,” Victor agreed and clinked his glass against
Nathan’s. “Not to mention all the fun
we’ll have on those location shoots.
Booze and women. The paparazzi
will have a field day. And you know what
they say, a movie is only as big as the scandal.”
Stormy said with a satisfied grin.
“Shall I have the contracts sent to your agent?”
Victor replied, then waved to a waitress.
“I need another vodka please.” He swallowed another
pill, and then his
eyes traveled across the room where Alex Reynolds had just entered the
restaurant. His face lit up and he rose
to his feet. “Now there’s a vision in white.”
what are you doing here?” Stormy asked.
looked at the table, growing rigid at the sight of Nathan dining with her son
and former co-star of countless movies.
It was unsettling to say the least.
She quickly turned and darted back out of the restaurant.
was that all about?” Victor asked and sat back down at the table.
smiled, perfectly aware that Alex was still not used to his being back in Hollywood.
It was quite clear to him that she was coming unglued.
walked down the stairs at the Blackthorne mansion and started to the door when
Brooke came out of the parlor and called after her.
morning, Miranda,” she said. “On your
way to work?”
nodded. “Later. I have an appointment with Dr. Farraday.”
something wrong?” Brooke asked.
just felt kind of under the weather since I got back from Mexico,” Miranda explained and
tightened her purse over her shoulder.
“I’m sure it’s nothing. Probably that horrendous
food they serve everywhere.”
smiled. “Well you should take this time
to rest and relax. You have your whole
future ahead of you.”
Miranda thought she could handle Brooke, but other times she said the dumbest
things and she was right back to thinking she was just a poor makeup girl from
the Valley. Still, she managed a smile
and left the house after saying her goodbyes.
Uncle Nathan!” she called on her way down the circular drive to her car.
morning, Miranda” Nathan said and then walked into the house where he saw
Brooke standing in the foyer. “And good
morning to you too, my dear. It’s a
Are you going out today?”
shrugged. “I’m not sure,” she said. “Michael’s a little fussy so I thought I’d
stick around in case the nurse needs me.
Where have you been off to?”
brunch with Ryan,” he replied and plucked a tulip from a vase on the center
table. He handed it to Brooke with a
wink. “He’s putting together a deal for
my return to the screen. It’s quite
grudgingly accepted the flower and started into the solarium to pour some
coffee. She decided to make an effort
with Nathan. For James if nothing
else. “I bet you’re anxious to get back
to work,” she said. “Did you do any
acting or directing while you were in Europe?”
easy to see why Ethan fell in love with you,” Nathan said offhandedly, looking
at her in admiration.
remark cut deep and Brooke quickly spun around toward him. “Why would you say something like that?” she
shrugged. “Don’t be offended,
Brooke. James of course kept me abreast
of everything that was happening back here.
I know that things with you and him are much better now, but….well, I
just know that you must be a remarkable woman to have two men in love with you
at the same time.”
was a long time ago,” Brooke said and looked out the French doors at the
followed her and paused a relatively close distance away. “I can’t help but feel for my great nephew,”
he said. “First he lost you, then he
learned that he wasn’t Michael’s father, and now he came to the horrifying
realization that he was Will Thomerson’s flesh and blood. I tell you, it’s no wonder the boy’s a mess
think everything will work out for Ethan,” Brooke said distantly. She didn’t understand why he was talking to
her about this now. It seemed highly
inappropriate and perhaps like he was trying to get a reaction out of her.
I’m sure it will,” Nathan said with a reassuring smile. “He’s a Blackthorne after all.”
turned and looked him in the eyes. “I’d
better get upstairs and check on Michael,” she said.
nodded and watched as she left the room in a hurry. He dug his hands into his pockets and took a
deep breath, relishing the fragrant scent that resonated in her wake.
Jordan went to Alex’s house in Malibu and pounded on the door. A minute later she opened it with a flourish,
draped in a flowing white suit and her hair pinned neatly up on her head. She looked down at the documents in his hand
and stood clear of the door.
waited for you at the Polo Lounge but
you never showed up,” Jordan said and barreled into the
living room. “Did we get our wires
crossed or something?”
was there,” Alex said, thinking about the run in with Nathan. “Something came up and I had to leave. What was it you wanted to talk to me about?”
Jordan grew despondent and held up the
papers. “I got the final divorce papers
today,” he said. “I guess this is the
end of road for us.”
would appear so,” Alex replied rigidly and wrapped her arms around herself.
Jordan took a step closer and looked
into her eyes. “Well, you don’t seem
very affected by it,” he remarked. “I
guess the end of our marriage is inconsequential to you.”
not true and you know it,” Alex spat, her eyes stinging with tears.
Jordan shook his head, confused by how
cold and unfeeling she was acting. “I
know we have had our problems, but I honestly never thought they couldn’t be
about the way you’ve been fawning all over Renee DeWitt? Or how about your bringing Nathan Blackthorne
back here after what he did to me?” Alex insisted, then quickly added, “oh
wait, I forgot, you don’t believe he raped me either.”
never said that!”
didn’t have to!” Alex cried. “Just the
fact that you went against my wishes and helped get him off the hook for his
crimes speaks a thousand words. If you
have so little regard for me then I won’t shed a single tear about our
divorce. It’s over, Jordan.”
don’t mean that,” he said and grabbed her by the arms. “You still love me, I know you do. You love me as much as I love you.”
hate you,” she whispered, fighting her feelings with every fiber in her being.
Jordan pulled her close. He kissed her hard and felt her succumbing to
his advances. He knew that she still
wanted him. The way she kissed him was
wrapped her arms around him and ran her fingers through his hair. She grew weak with desire, her knees buckling
and falling into his arms. He carried
her to the sofa and laid her down gently.
Ripping off his shirt, he leaned in and quickly began undressing
her. He panted with desire, wanting her
more than he’d ever wanted anyone. It seemed the best sex they had was when they
were at each other’s throats.
Miranda got to her office at Hotel
Terranova, she was surprised to find her father waiting for her. She smiled and set her purse down, hugging
him gently and giving him a peck on the cheek.
what are you doing here?” she asked with a bright smile.
for you,” he said.
didn’t know you’d be coming by,” she said.
“I had an appointment with Dr. Farraday."
everything all right?” James asked with concern.
she replied. “Just been a little tired
is all. He did some tests. I’m fine though, Daddy, really. What is it you wanted to talk to me about?”
sighed and sat down across from her desk.
“I heard a rumor this morning that someone’s been taking an interest in Hotel Terranova. I thought I should tell you before you heard
it from someone else.”
kind of interest?” Miranda asked and got settled at her desk. “You mean someone wants to buy the
hotel? You’re not selling it, are you
Daddy? You know how much I love running
of course I’m not,” he insisted. “I’m
going to handle this. I just wanted you
to be aware of what was going on. Don’t
worry a thing about it.”
leaned back in her chair and studied him carefully. “All right, so tell me who is it that’s got
their eyes set on my hotel?”
Jennings,” James replied.
quickly sat forward and reached into her attaché case. She shoved a copy of Image magazine at him and raised an eyebrow. “You mean this
guy?” she asked.
dropped the magazine and folded her arms in frustration. “Well you’ve got to stop him, Daddy. I won’t have some spoiled heir to his
father’s hotel fortune moving in on my pride and joy. This is all I’ve got now. Brett’s out of my life, you have Brooke and
the baby and Uncle Nathan. Even Heather
I hate to hear you talk that way,” James said and stood up. He walked around the desk and knelt beside
her. “You have so much more than that.
You’re loved more than any other person I know. You have so much life and vitality.”
felt her eyes sting with tears and she quickly sucked in a deep breath in an
effort to control her emotions. “Yeah,
yeah, yeah,” she said and forced a smile and a laugh. “I know all that, I just get sentimental
sometimes. It seems like everyone’s
lives are going on and mine’s just staying the same.”
James said and lifted her chin. “You
have your whole future ahead of you, and it’s going to be a wonderful
future. Things didn’t go as you’d hoped
they would with Brett and it’s normal for you to be a little sentimental. But Miranda, you’re a Blackthorne. You revel in challenges and you don’t let
anything hold you back.”
smiled and threw her arms around him tightly.
“I love you, Daddy.”
love you too, Sweetheart.”
up again, James started to the door and paused before leaving. “Don’t worry about David Jennings. I’ll take care of him. No one’s going to hurt my baby girl.”
Miranda smiled in return. After he’d left, she sunk back in her chair
and thought about her life and how positively blah it had become. At least
with Brett there was always some kind of scandal going on. The excitement was probably the only good
thing about their marriage.
afternoon, Brett took up a heated game of tennis on the courts behind Hotel Terranova. A tennis pro they’d recently hired as an
instructor proved to be more of a challenging opponent than he’d
anticipated. After getting annihilated
on the court, he gave the pro a good natured handshake and went to the bench to
gather his things.
stripping off his sweaty Lacoste
polo, he took a few sips of water and felt a presence approach from behind the
said Marilee Wells-Walker with a playful pout.
She was dressed in pristine tennis whites and a visor shielding the sun
from her eyes. Brett gave her a look of
surprise and she quickly added in an off-handed manner, “the water, I
mean. I’m parched.”
all means,” Brett said and grabbed a fresh bottle from his bag and handed it to
her. He knew she was ogling him and he
couldn’t help but be flattered, if not a little bit aroused. Older women were always so appreciate of
him. Marilee Walker had to be pushing
fifty, but she still looked dynamite.
you,” she said and seductively brought the bottle to her lips. After she was sufficiently re-hydrated, she
looked at Brett again and chewed on her lower lip. “It’s such a shame. James and Alex are of course dear friends of
mine, but their daughter must have something seriously wrong with her. Why on earth she would have divorced you is beyond me.”
gave a toothy grin and put one leg up on the bench. “That’s very nice of you to say, but Miranda
and I had problems. I don’t hold any
and a gentleman,” Marilee cooed. “How divine. Have you met my husband Seth? I think he could really use someone like you
on his team. I mean, I heard that you
were ousted from Sunset Studios. Oh! I hope
I didn’t just open up a sore subject for you, darling.”
shook his head. “Nope. Your husband is the Congressman, isn’t he?”
right. He’s going to be the political
face of the future in California.
Mark my words. I’d be happy to
set something up with the two of you.
You could meet and see what kind of help you could be to him.”
never really had much to do with politics,” Brett said.
there’s always a place for someone with your charm and good looks in politics,”
Marilee said with a laugh. She stepped
forward and traced a hand down his bare chest, pausing seductively. Without warning, she tucked her business card
between his hot skin and the waistband of his shorts. “Call me.
You can come out to the house in Malibu and we’ll….talk.”
he could reply, she was traipsing across the court to the tennis pro who waited
to give her her lesson. Brett plucked
the card from his shorts and pondered her offer. He was
in need of a job, after all. But he’d
been around long enough to know that women like Marilee Walker always wanted
something in exchange for her assistance.
"Rio?” Alex guffawed.
“We’ll leave on
Tuesday,” James said to he and Renee as they met in his office the next
morning. “We should be gone three, four
days at the most.”
don’t understand why I have to go,” Alex declared. “This energy conference was your idea, James,
not mine. I have a lot of things going
on here. I can’t just pick up and leave
town for four days.”
and Renee both looked at her in confusion.
“This is our company we’re talking about,” Renee said. “It’s an excellent opportunity to network
with other oil and natural gas companies.
This could spell enormous profits for Blackthorne-Reynolds. What
could you have going on that’s more important than that?”
rolled her eyes and lit a cigarette. “I
just don’t think it’s a good time.”
threw a pencil onto his desk and shook his head in aggravation. “All right, what are you planning this time?”
“What?” Alex demanded in an insulted
crashed the party the other night, disrupting everyone with that confrontation
you had with Nathan,” James began. “Then
you fed Brooke all of your lies about him.
What’s next, Alex? Are you going
to wear a wire to try to get him to confess to raping you all those years ago?”
don’t have to listen to this,” Alex insisted and shot up from the sofa.
it,” James sighed in resignation. “I
have a meeting. I’ll talk to the two of
you later.” He paused before
leaving. “But you are going to the energy conference in Rio.
Both of you.”
he’d left, Alex shot Renee a penetrating stare and walked toward her. “I hope
you’re happy now,” she seethed. “This is
all your fault.”
fault?” Renee asked. “It wasn’t my idea
to go to this conference.”
puffed at her cigarette and shook her head.
“I’m not talking about the damn conference, Renee. I’m talking about Nathan. You know what kind of monster he is and yet
you sit back and don’t say a word.
Meanwhile, everyone in town thinks I’m a bold faced liar.”
have no idea what you’re talking about,” Renee said and started to leave the
room. The last thing she wanted to do
was talk about her past with Nathan.
so fast,” Alex said and blocked her from leaving. “You had a relationship with him. You wanted to marry him. Then when he got arrested you broke it
off. You left town for months on end. You must have seen what a horrible man he was
or you wouldn’t have done any of that.”
glared at her menacingly. “I told you
about that in confidence twenty years ago,” she said. “I swear to God if you ever breathe a word of
that to anyone I will make you very, very sorry.”
stepped back and regarded the wild look in Renee’s eyes. She realized she must have struck a
nerve. “All I meant was that you could
attest to the fact that I wasn’t making any of it up. I didn’t lie about him raping me.”
don’t know if he raped you or he didn’t rape you,” Renee said. “And I don’t really care, Alex. It’s in the past, just leave it alone.” She turned around so as not to let her see
the panic in her eyes. If Alex thought
about it long enough, there was a good chance she’d put two and two together
and realize that Sierra was Nathan’s daughter.
It was best to avoid any further mention of the despicable man.
selfish can you get,” Alex said and started to the door. “That’s right, Renee. Just keep worrying about your own pathetic
life and don’t give a damn about anyone else.”
but I do,” Renee said, then added spitefully. “I care about Jordan very much.”
smiled, still in ecstasy from her heated rendezvous with Jordan the day before at her house. “But the question is, how much does Jordan care about you?” she added
before opening the door and leaving.
David Jennings was a dashing thirty-six year old hotel
magnate who owned properties all up and down the California coastline. He was tall, exceptionally well-built, and
had a shock of thick dark brown hair and deep brown eyes. David was the son of Royce Jennings, who died
eighteen months before and left his hotel empire to him. His mother was Jacqueline Lamont, the daughter
of famed producer Jonas Lamont. Now every
beautiful socialite in California was after David’s charm, good
looks, and incredible wealth. He’d even
been profiled heavily in the current months’ issue of Image magazine.
Miranda knew all about David Jennings.
What she didn’t know was why
he was standing at the front desk of her hotel asking questions to Link, her
faithful concierge. She grabbed her
magazine and stormed across the lobby in a huff, her heels clicking
repetitively on the Mediterranean tiled floor.
me, Link, I’ll take care of Mr. Jennings,” she said and folded her arms
suspiciously. When David turned to her
and smiled, she suddenly lost her nerve.
His brilliant smile and ridiculously good looks caught her off guard
ever so slightly.
flattered that you know me by name,” David said. “But then again I’m sure you make a point of
familiarizing yourself with all of your guests.”
Miranda finally regained her footing, she thrust her copy of Image at him and raised an eyebrow. “Yeah, well you’re not a guest of the hotel.
So why don’t you tell me, Mr. Jennings, what the hell you’re doing prying
my front desk for information.”
was instantly mesmerized by Miranda’s feisty nature. He couldn’t help but smile, finding her
adorable and yet semi-threatening all at once.
the hell are you smiling at?” she asked, irritated. “I asked you what you’re doing here.”
actually came to ask for a tour of the facilities,” he replied after
maintaining his composure.
I’ll know if I want to buy you out or not,” was his matter-of-fact response.
couldn’t believe his nerve. She clutched
her fists and led him away from a group of guests checking in. “Buy me out?” she asked. “Who in the hell do you think you are
smugly gestured back to the magazine with his face on the cover. “I think you already know everything,” he
said good naturedly.
funny,” she argued. “It just so happens
that Hotel Terranova is not for
sale. My father owns it. He assured me that he was not going to sell
for sale,” David said, his cocky attitude blatantly obvious.
I’m not, and neither is my hotel,” Miranda said. She meant business, but for the life of her
she couldn’t stop staring at his handsome face, or swooning over the sound of
his deep, calming voice.
she had stormed off back to her office, David couldn’t help but smile. He didn’t know it at the time, but Miranda
Blackthorne would be on his mind for the rest of the day.
want to know why you’re targeting my hotel for a takeover,” James said to David
Jennings who stood in his office at Blackthorne-Reynolds.
smiled down at James who sat behind his desk.
“Is that why you summoned me here?
You’re worried about your hotel?”
daughter runs that hotel,” James insisted.
“It’s the first thing she’s ever really cared about and I’m not about to
take that away from her.”
dug his hands in the pockets of his expensive Gucci trousers. He thought
about his run in with the lovely Miss Blackthorne and the excitement she
stirred inside of him. “I’m certainly
not one to stomp on anyone’s dreams,” he said, then decided it was an opportune
moment to get some info about the young woman.
“Did I hear she recently got divorced?”
she did,” James replied. “Which makes
her even more fragile right now. So any
ideas you have of trying to buy Hotel
Terranova, you can forget about
it. Do I make myself clear? David, your mother and father were friends of
mine, but I don’t think they would approve of your tactics.”
if letting the lecture go in one ear and out the other, David shifted subjects
with gleeful abandon. “Does your
daughter like flowers?”
“What?” James asked in frustration.
mind. I’ll figure something out,” David
said and started to the door. He paused
before leaving and turned back to James.
“Your hotel’s safe. I have no
interest in ruffling your daughter’s feathers.”
he left, James scratched his head, confused by the odd behavior the young man
exhibited when he mentioned Miranda.
that night, Jordan and Renee sat by the fireplace in his house in Beverly Hills.
They were on the floor, sipping wine and holding one another in the glow
of the fire. The sound of the doorbell
ringing interrupted the moment. Renee
started to sit up but he waved his hand and shook his head.
“Gordon will get it,”
he said. “I want you right here with me
later, the butler entered the room and cleared his throat awkwardly. “Mr.
Rydell, you have a visitor.”
Jordan looked up and his eyes flew open
in surprise at the sight of Alex standing in the doorway of the living
room. She glared menacingly at them both
and took a few steps forward
this cozy?” she asked coquettishly.
“Kind of a warm night for a fire though, don’t you think?”
is getting rather hot in here,” Renee
spat. “Alex, what do you want?”
wildly, Alex thrust a bottle of champagne at her and then shot an evil look in Jordan’s direction. “I honestly have no idea,” she said,
desperately trying to hide the hurt she felt.
Just the day before she and Jordan had shared a passionate afternoon
together at her house, and now he was back cozying up with Renee DeWitt. She felt
like a fool for thinking things were going to be different.
listen-“ Jordan began.
forget it,” she said and snatched Renee’s glass of wine from her hand. “I have an idea, why don’t we have a
toast? Here’s to my long overdue divorce
from the jackass of the century.” She
clinked her glass against Jordan’s and then drank the whole thing
down in one gulp.
a minute, Alex,” Jordan said and jumped up to go after
“Jordan, where are you going?” Renee
paused in the doorway before leaving.
“Yes, Jordan, where are you going?” she asked hatefully before turning and racing to
the front door.
she’d left, Jordan turned back to Renee and threw
his hands up in resignation.
was the next morning when Miranda walked into her office at Hotel Terranova and found a bouquet of
African roses placed neatly on top of her desk.
Her eyes lit up brilliantly and she raced over to examine them. Taking in a deep breath, she inhaled the
amazing fragrance and turned them around in the vase to take in their full
feeling a little more upbeat since her talk with her father, she plucked the
card from the plastic stem and tore it hastily from the envelope. Her eyes narrowed suspiciously on the
handwritten note inside and she smiled with exhilaration.
Dinner tonight at your hotel? 8:00pm.
She felt butterflies tripping through her stomach as she
looked back at the roses and then at the card again. Something about David Jennings had a hold on
her and she couldn’t deny it. Sure, he
was pompous, arrogant, self-assured and cocky, but he made her feel more alive
that she had in months.
the card neatly in her purse, she started back to the door and decided it was
time to head back to the hospital to find out the results of her blood
tests. Hopefully Dr. Farraday would have
good news and prescribe her an antibiotic to kill whatever bug she had. At least now she had something to look
forward to. As much as she hated to
admit it, she was intrigued by the prospect of a rendezvous with the handsome
stepped onto the elevator from the lobby and waited for the doors to
close. Before they did, Brett jumped
into the elevator car and smiled brightly at her.
up?” he asked with a grin.
managed a faint smile and pulled her room key from her purse. “Hi,” she said. “Thanks again for the other night,
Brett. I really don’t know what I would
have done if you hadn’t been there for me.”
dug his hands into his pockets and smiled again. “It was my pleasure, really,” he said. “I’m just glad that you’re okay. As if the carjacking wasn’t bad enough, but
coming to terms with…well, what happened with Will Thomerson must have been
awful for you.”
sighed and threw her hair over her shoulder.
“I saw Dr. Anderson today and we talked a lot,” she explained. “He thinks I’m making real progress. Dealing with the murder was the first
step. He thinks I’ll be fine.”
know you will be,” Brett agreed. When
the elevator stopped on his floor and he started to step out into the hall, he
propped his foot over the sensor and held the door open. “Hey, would you like to have dinner with me
tonight? We can talk. I’m a pretty good listener, too, you
know. And I don’t charge a hundred and
fifty dollars an hour.”
looked at him warily and shook her head.
“I don’t think so, Brett. I’m
sorry. You’re being very nice and
frankly it makes me a little nervous.
Let’s face it, you haven’t exactly been a friend in the past. I don’t want to risk getting hurt again.”
he could respond, she pushed the door close button and the doors shut between
them. Sighing, Brett leaned against the
hallway and tried to figure out what was going on. Was it his imagination or was she trying to
convince herself more than him?
slowly walked out of Dr. Mitchell’s office at Cedars-Sinai Hospital, clutching a stack of pamphlets
in her hand and teetering back and forth on her feet. She paused at the admitting desk and stared
off in a daze. The results from her
blood tests had been a complete shock to her.
She hadn’t planned on walking in and hearing that kind of news.
her purse on the desk, she pulled it open and began to stuff the pamphlets
inside. Pausing, she pulled one back out
and read it over and over again in her mind.
“What to do if you’re pregnant”.
Brooke was standing outside on the terrace that jutted out from the family room
at the mansion. She took in a breath of
fresh air and turned with a start when she heard someone enter the room. To her surprise, Ethan was standing by the
door, and looking better than she’d seen him in weeks. He was clean shaven and his normal color
seemed to have returned.
you’re back,” she began awkwardly. “I
thought your sentence wasn’t complete until next week.”
sentence was commuted,” he explained.
“Good behavior and all that. The
community service and the AA meetings start tomorrow.”
walked toward him, unsure of what to say or how to act after everything that
had happened. “Are you okay? I can’t even imagine what it must have been
quickly dismissed the rest of her remark.
It was just a formality, anyway.
“I was hoping to see James.”
not home,” Brooke replied and walked inside the house. She studied him carefully, praying that he
wasn’t about to unleash into another tirade about Michael. “What did you want to see him about?” she
“I wanted to tell him
that I understand why he did what he did,” he announced after some hesitation. “About keeping the truth from me about my
smiled brightly and rushed toward him.
“Ethan, that’s wonderful,” she said with a sense of relief. “He’s been miserable ever since this whole
thing started. He loves you so much.”
had a lot of time to think the last few weeks.
After what happened….after what I did, who am I to judge him?” he said
softly, then shrugged and backed up a step.
“Anyway, I can come back later when he’s home.”
stay,” Brooke said with a hint of hope in her voice. She hadn’t seen him so happy and stable in so
long. He reminded her so much of the
Ethan that she fell in love with two years ago.
outside, Nathan was walking up from the lawn onto the terrace. He stopped when he heard voices and peered
inside through the curtain filtered doors.
Staying hidden from view, he paused and listened to Brooke and Ethan’s
thought I’d ask James and Stormy if I can go back to work at Sunset Studios.”
nodded hesitantly. “That’s great. I think it’ll do you some good to-“
do you keep saying that, Brooke?” he cut her off. “You keep talking about what you think is good for me. Do you really care or are you just trying to
keep me from focusing on my son?”
shook her head adamantly, even though she knew it was the truth. She wanted him distracted and happy, not
obsessing over Michael and the fact that he was his father.
Nathan listened intently. He processed
the information, although not very surprised by it. He could tell just from their chemistry that
they were protecting a lie. Now he had
confirmation that it was true. James was
not Michael’s father.
it’s not that,” Brooke lamented. “I just
know how miserable you’ve been lately, and-“
not going to say anything to James,” he said.
“I have no intention of breaking up your family. James kept my father from me because he
wanted to protect me. You’re keeping
Michael from his real father because you don’t want to hurt anybody. I understand that.”
he said. “Don’t say anything,
Brooke. This has been a very hard
decision for me. I’m not thrilled about
it, but I respect your decision.”
she could say anything, Ethan turned and walked out of the room. Brooke stood behind, relieved that he was
finally over his anger and resentment over the lie she forced him into. Maybe now she could relax and try to have a
normal life for once.
she left the room, Nathan emerged from the terrace. He swirled a scotch rocks around in a glass
and smiled deviously.
date with David doesn't go so well. James, Alex
and Renee head to Rio for the energy conference. Miranda
goes to Heather with her secret. Brett moves into
a condo at the marina and gets a personal welcome from