didn't believe Brooke's claim that Nathan tried to rape
her. Nathan took Sierra out for dinner, where
Renee spotted them together and let it slip to Nathan
was her "adopted" daughter. She later insisted that Sierra
keep away from Nathan. Alex witnessed the spectacle
and grew more convinced that Renee was hiding something
about Sierra. Alex offered Brooke sympathy
after her ordeal with Nathan. Nathan told James
he would move out in order to give him and Brooke time
alone. Despite her mother's warnings, Sierra continued
to spend time with Nathan.
Am Curious, Blackthornes"
Alex Reynolds was on
a mission. She was convinced that by
learning what secret Renee was hiding about Sierra, she would finally
be able to stick it to her nemesis, and quite possibly
create such havoc
in her life that it would drive a wedge between her and Jordan.
Armed with enough
cash and sex appeal to overthrow a small government, she paid Eddie Distefano a
visit at his new private investigative headquarters in Beverly Hills.
Sitting in the posh, opulent office, she crossed her legs and made small
talk with the young man.
“Stormy tells me how
wonderful you’re doing in your new business,” she said with a wink. “I always knew you had a good head on your
shoulders, Eddie. Just like your father. He and I were very close once upon a time,
Eddie smiled and
swiveled back and forth in his Henry Miller chair. “Dude,
he has some stories about you, let me tell
you.” He laughed and drummed his fingers
on the desk. “I remember this one time
he told me that while on a movie set, you and he…”
“Actually I came here
for a reason, Eddie,” she cut him off in hopes that she could avoid any
embarrassing trips down memory lane with the young man. “I’d like you to look into something for me.”
Eddie sighed with
mock frustration and leaned back in his chair.
“I’d love to take you on as a client, Miss Reynolds, seeing as how
you’re Stormy’s mom and all, but the thing is I’m hunkered down with cases right
Alex frowned and
looked around the office. “You were
playing basketball with a wastebasket and wadded up pieces of paper when I got
here,” she said. “Besides, I have
cash. A lot of cash.”
He raised an eyebrow
as she slid a thick envelope of hundred dollar bills across the table at
him. Suddenly, he decided that he could
make time for a preferred client such as her.
“Have I got your
attention?” she asked.
“Good,” Alex began
again. “Renee DeWitt has a daughter,
Sierra Merteuil. She’s been at school in
Europe. Apparently her biological parents were
killed in an automobile accident nineteen years ago and Renee adopted her. I’d like you to find out everything you can
particular that you’re looking for?” Eddie asked, counting the cash in the
envelope with wide eyes.
Alex stood up and
started to the door. “Everything,” she
said, then added in a mocking tone, "Dude."
was in her room at Hotel Terranova,
pouring ice and lemonade into a glass when there was a knock at the door. She walked across the carpeted floor and pulled it open, surprised to
see Miranda standing in the hall.
she said uncomfortably. She wondered if
her step-sister was still angry with her for telling Brett about the baby. They hadn’t spoken since then, so it was a
safe bet that she was.
you have a minute?” Miranda asked.
shrugged and hovered in the doorway.
“That depends. Are you still
pissed at me?”
but not just for that stunt you pulled the other day,” Miranda said and forced her way into the
living room. She turned and planted her
hands firmly on her hips. “I still
why you betrayed me and told Brett that I was pregnant, but what I really
don’t understand is how you
could have gotten involved with him.
Stormy told me that you and Brett are sleeping together.”
blew a strand of hair from her face and closed the door grudgingly. “Slept,” she corrected her. “We slept together once. We’re not exactly shacking up every night.”
is enough!” Miranda exclaimed. “My God,
Heather, do you need me to remind you what he did to me, and to you, and to
Stormy? Why do you think I divorced him
in the first place? It wasn’t so you
could sign up for your turn on that rollercoaster ride.”
it was only once, and I haven’t forgotten
about anything. It’s just that you don’t
know what I’ve been through these past few weeks, Miranda. After the shooting I spent day after day with
Dr. Anderson. Then finally it all hit
me. I was carjacked and I walked back to
the hotel. I must have been really out
if it because I wound up at Brett’s room and he took care of me.”
bet,” Miranda said, her arms folded angrily.
it wasn’t like that,” Heather insisted.
She ran her hands through her hair and paced around the living
room. “Miranda, he was kind and caring. I’d never seen that side of him before.”
a con man, Heather. “Remember when I
first brought him here and we found out his name wasn’t even Brett
Armstrong? It’s Rick Shively. You can’t believe anything he says, or any
emotion he claims to have. It's all a lie.”
told me that the two of you had talked about having a baby, right?” Heather
asked. “You said he wanted to have one
more than anything. Well, when I told
him that you were thinking of having an abortion, I saw the look in his eyes. He was devastated, Miranda. I truly believe that he wants that baby more
than anything. Does that sound like a
selfish manipulator to you?”
dropped her hands to her sides and turned to her. “I don’t know, Heather. Brett is just so good at lying.”
know it was a stupid thing to do, but I don’t want this to cause tension
not jealous,” Miranda claimed. “Any feelings I had for Brett are gone. Even
though you stabbed me in the back, I still don't want
you getting hurt. You’ve been
through so much this past year already.”
smiled and shook her head. “I’m not
going to get hurt. I told you that what
happened with Brett was a one-time thing.”
Walker had a private office at the marina.
The posh suite of offices overlooked the sailboat docks which made for a
very quick jaunt to work every day for Brett considering his new condo was just
a few steps away.
sat in his office talking on the phone, his feet up on the desk while he gazed
out the window at the marina.
right,” he said. “Three dozen red
roses. The card should read: Heather, may there be many more magical
nights to come. Love, Brett.”
he’d placed the order, he hung up and smiled with self assurance. Heather had been avoiding him since that
night, and he figured it was because she was having second thoughts or uncertainties
about getting involved. But he knew that
once she thought about it she’d realize how good they were together. Hopefully Stormy would stay clear and mind
his own business. He didn’t need him
filling Heather’s head with doubts.
walked into the office, dressed in a crisp navy blazer with a striped shirt
underneath, his collar spread open casually.
Behind him, Marilee followed dotingly and winked at Brett when their
and I are on our way to lunch down at the yacht club. Care to join us?” Seth asked.
I was planning on hitting the gym,” Brett replied, sitting forward and handing
Seth a folder. “But I thought you should
take a look at this. Kenny DeWitt and
the Land Commission are rejecting the variance on that land you inquired
land, Seth?” Marilee asked, peering over his shoulder while wrapping her hands
around his strapping arms.
some land development for a children's park I’m helping put through as a favor to someone,” Seth said
as if trying to dismiss her question. He
raised an eyebrow as he scanned through the documents. “Brett, set up a meeting with Kenny DeWitt. Maybe I can get the Land Commission to change
luck,” Marilee chimed in with a laugh. “I used to be
on the Land Commission, remember? Their
decisions usually stick like fly paper.”
frowned and shook his head. “Just set up
that meeting, Brett.” He set the
paperwork back on the desk and turned around.
“Come on, Marilee, let’s get down to the club.”
hung back after Seth had left the office.
Grinning mischievously, she sauntered over to Brett and pulled him up
from his chair. “Don’t use up all your
strength at the gym,” she purred, letting her fingers run along the waistband
of his trousers. “I have my own workout
in mind for us when Seth’s in session later today.”
shook his head and managed a smile.
“Sorry, Marilee, it’s not going to happen.”
beg your pardon?”
couldn’t in good conscience get it on with Marilee again knowing the way he felt
about Heather. He cared for her a great
deal and he didn’t want to mess it up already.
On the other hand, he couldn’t take the prize away from Marilee and
expect to keep his position as public relations for Seth. She’s probably trump up some reason for her
husband to fire him. Maybe he’d just put her off until he could
think of a better excuse.
just think we should wait a while,” he finally said. “You know, so Seth doesn’t get suspicious.”
eyed him carefully and then smiled. “Not
only great in bed but smart as hell too,” she said before turning and leaving
James got home that evening, Miranda met him in the foyer and kissed him
lightly on the cheek. She took his
briefcase from him and led him down the hall to the parlor room.
what’s this all about?” he asked with a grin.
“You haven’t met me at the door like this since you were eight years
sat him down on the cognac leather sofa and handed him the scotch on the rocks
that she’d just poured in preparation for his arrival. “Is there anything wrong with a daughter
pampering her hard working father?”
looked into her eyes and knew immediately that she was up to something. “Okay, that does it,” he mused. “What’s going on in that head of yours? You either have a favor to ask me or bad news
to give me. Which is it?”
her nerve, Miranda vamped as best she could.
“Umm…well, I ordered new china for the banquet rooms at the hotel. It takes a month to get it in from the
manufacturer. It’s imported from Morocco.
There’s a beautiful gold etching around the rim, and-“
began sternly. “Your new china is
fascinating, but I know that is not what’s on your mind.”
She nervously bit
down on her fingernails. “Okay,” she
said. “First of all, please don’t go all
vein-popping crazy and scream. Just
drink your cocktail and listen to me before you judge.”
he brought the glass to his lips and took a sip.
Miranda said again, then blurted out her news without so much as taking a pause
or breath. “Daddy, I’m pregnant with
Brett’s baby and I’m going to have it and raise him by himself.”
blinked, setting his glass down and looking at her for a few seconds while he
registered the sudden information. He
couldn’t believe what he was hearing.
His daughter was pregnant?
Miranda asked, studying his reaction carefully.
“I know it’s a shock. I’ve been
wanting to talk to you about it since you got back from Rio but…well, things have been kind
of crazy. Are you mad?”
face lit up with excitement and he threw his arms around her, pulling her close
and hugging her tightly. “Mad?” he
asked, his eyes stinging with tears.
“Miranda, I’m ecstatic. I’m going
to be a grandfather. This is the best
news I’ve heard in a long time.”
Miranda asked, completely taken aback by his reaction. “You mean you’re not going to scream and wave
your arms around and tell me to go to my room?”
laughed and shook his head. “No, you’re
a grown woman. You’re successful,
intelligent, and independent. I think
you’re going to be a wonderful mother.”
you’re okay with me raising this baby alone?”
won’t be alone,” he said. “You have a
family who loves you and supports you.”
sighed and nodded grudgingly. She wasn’t
sure how things were going to work with Brett being in the picture. For the time being, she wasn’t prepared to
make any commitments or promises.
everything okay with you and Brooke?” she asked, deciding to change the
subject. “I heard the two of you talking
yesterday. I can’t believe that she’s
trying to accuse Nathan of attacking her.”
know about that?” James asked and stood up with his drink.
hard not to hear things like that when you live in the same house,” Miranda said
and followed him across the room.
“After all this time she’s finally
going back to her old troublemaking ways.”
that’s not fair,” James said sternly and shot her a look.
keep in mind that Brooke hasn’t exactly been a saint since she got here,
Daddy,” Miranda said. “She lied about
her affair with Ethan. For months the
two of you were on pins and needles waiting to find out which one of you was
Michael’s father. You had to fly all the
way to Phoenix to get her to come back just so
you could be a father to your own son.
Brooke is bad news, plain and simple.”
threw her hands up, deciding it was probably a sore subject. “Well, I’ll let you get settled,” she said
and started to the door. “Are you sure
you’re okay about this baby?”
smiled. “I’m more than okay,” he
said. “But your mother, on the other
hand, is a different story. It’s
probably a safe bet that she’s not going to be thrilled about being a
The next morning, Ethan
found Brooke pushing Michael in his stroller by the pond outside the
Blackthorne mansion. Shielding her eyes
from the sun, she looked up at him and smiled.
she said. “It’s a beautiful day. You’re just in time for our daily trip to see
smiled and looked down at his son. “He’s
getting so big."
growing like a weed,” Brooke said and knelt down to adjust his tiny baseball
just came by to see if you were okay,” Ethan continued. “The other day you seemed so distraught. I’m worried about you, Brooke. Are things still going badly with you and James?”
stood back up and met his gaze. “They’re
worse than ever,” she said solemnly.
“Nathan did something. Something
terrible. I told James about it and he
doesn’t believe me.”
Frowning, Ethan dug
his hands into his pockets. “What did
She looked into his
eyes, unable to admit what happened for fear that he would go back to
protective-mode and risk his relationship with his uncle. She’d learned the last time that it wasn’t
“Brooke, did Nathan
rape you?” Ethan asked, sensing the
torment in her eyes and the fear that enveloped her. It wasn’t difficult for him to believe that
his great uncle would have done something so vile. He hadn’t known him long, but he knew his
She burst into tears
and quickly stifled them away. “No, he
didn’t rape me,” she sobbed. “But he….he
tried to. He attacked me when James was
The veins in Ethan’s
forehead throbbed and he turned red in the face. Clenching his fists, he backed up and started
to the house.
“Ethan, wait!” Brooke
called after him in despair. This was
exactly why she didn’t want to say anything.
She knew it would only instill more pain in an already volatile situation.
stopped by the marina and made her way down to Jordan’s yacht slip. It was Saturday and Jordan always sailed to Catalina after
sunup, then he’d go back to the yacht club and drink beer until sundown. It had been his ritual since she could
she approached the yacht, she heard him beneath the deck and decided to board
in an effort to establish a sneak attack.
She was intent on getting him to confess whatever he knew about Renee’s
she made her way around to the steps to the lower cabin. She peered down and saw him tinkering with
tools and pipes beneath the floor.
Frowning, she walked the rest of the way down and cleared her throat to
announce her presence.
Jordan jumped with a start, hitting his
head on the trap door that covered the inner-workings of the hot tub
controls. He winced from the pain,
rubbing his head and dropping his wrench with irritation. Alex gasped and rushed over instinctively.
sorry,” she said and knelt down to examine the bump on the back of his
head. “Are you okay?”
shot her a look as if to say what do you
think, and stood up with a groan. He
was shirtless, his stocky, muscular body drenched in sweat and smeared here and
there with black bearing grease.
are you doing here, Alex?” he asked. “As
you can see I’m busy.”
cranky attitude caused her to forget all about feeling sorry for him for making
him bump his head. She set her purse on
a table and stared at him intently. “I
came to talk about Renee,” she said.
“What was that the other night at Hotel
Terranova? She almost blew a gasket
when she saw her daughter with Nathan.”
told you before to mind your own business,” Jordan complained, wiping his greasy
hands on a rag and throwing it down onto the floor. “If you don’t mind, I’d like to get back to work. The hot tub went out.”
smiled in amusement. “Why don’t you just
have someone fix it for you?” she asked.
“That’s what having money is good for.”
it takes my mind off of things,” he replied and went back to the hot tub motor.
what?” she asked, growing aroused by the way his muscles bulged each time he
turned the wrench. “What is it you’re
try, Alex,” he said.
sighed, throwing her hands in the air and turned to leave. She was in no mood for his bad attitude
today. She started up the stairs, then
paused, having forgotten her purse and turned quickly to retrieve it. Suddenly, she slipped on the discarded greasy
rag and she tumbled to the floor with a loud thud.
Jordan heard the commotion and quickly
raced over to her. “Alex, are you
wriggled to an upright position and shook her groggy head. “Yeah, I think so,” she said
breathlessly. “Just knocked the wind out
of me a little.”
feeling like an ass for having been so short with her, Jordan lifted her into his arms and
picked her up with ease. Their eyes met
and lingered for what seemed like eternity.
He felt the desire welling up within him, the passion and the heat that
developed every time they were around one another since their divorce.
okay, really,” Alex said, privately wishing that he would hold her in his arms
forever. It felt so natural and right
that she didn’t even care how sweaty and greasy he was. It only added to the attraction.
Jordan carried her to the bed in the
next room and gently laid her down.
Kneeling above her, his chest heaving, he felt himself wanting her more
than ever. Without wasting another
second, he bent down and kissed her passionately. Alex slid her arms around his body, pulling
him closer and running her fingers through his hair.
with desire, Jordan undressed her quickly. She reached up and unfastened his
shorts. Within minutes they were making
love with a desperate sense of urgency.
was in his study catching up on work when he heard the front doors slam violent
closed. He frowned and looked up as
Ethan entered, an intense look on his tanned face. It was only a matter of seconds before he
realized why he was there.
is he?” Ethan demanded.
Ethan, if this is about Brooke-“
would you take Nathan’s word over Brooke’s?” he asked.
complicated. I don’t expect you to
understand that your wife is a wreck because of that man,” Ethan insisted.
you’re presuming to know more about my wife’s feelings than I do,” James
replied and shot to his feet. “This is
beginning to sound vaguely familiar to me.”
knew exactly what he meant. But that was
all in the past. Brooke had made her
choice, and it wasn’t him. Even when he
professed his love for her several days ago she maintained her devotion to
James. This was a totally different
do you really know about Nathan?” Ethan asked.
“He’s been away for twenty years.
How do you know that he couldn’t have done this? He may not be the same man that he used to
know my uncle and I know that he isn’t capable of what Brooke claims he did to
shook his head doubtfully. “Does that
include what he did to Alex? And Debralee
Scott? And who knows how many other
knew his radical devotion to his uncle was difficult for people to understand,
and he frankly didn’t understand it himself.
All he knew was that Nathan couldn’t be guilty of the crimes he’d been
charged with. He was his idol. He’d looked up to him since he was a little
boy back in Windsor, Kansas.
won’t have to worry about Nathan anymore,” he said. “He’s moving out.”
threw him out?”
sighed and walked across the room. He
picked up a picture of him and Brooke on their wedding day, wishing that they
could go back to how happy they were back then.
“I didn’t ask Nathan to leave,” he said.
“He’s leaving on own free will.
He said he wanted to give Brooke and I time alone together.”
certainly makes you look like the hero, doesn’t it?”
turned to him and shrugged. “You can
think ill of me all you want for it, Ethan, but you know that Brooke is my
you’re just going to sweep it under the rug like it never happened?” Ethan
asked with a twisted up face. “That’s
convenient for you, James, but what about Brooke? Do you think that she’s going to be able to
just forget about what Nathan did to her?”
didn’t do anything! What is it going to
take to make everyone believe that?”
“No! What is it going to take to make you believe that he is a monster!” Ethan
yelled. “How many more women does he
have to attack? How many more, James?
But I swear to God, if he ever comes near Brooke
again, it'll be on your head!"”
“I won’t betray him
the way you betrayed me!” James’ voice
boomed so loudly that it nearly shook the windows in the study. A second later he took a breath and tried
calming his erratic breathing.
Ethan realized how
much pent up anger James still had over his affair with Brooke two years
before. He knew that nothing he could
say would make him see the light where Nathan was concerned. Too many
things were working against him.
Angrily, he turned
and walked back out into the foyer. He
quickly left and got into his car, confident that if he ran into Nathan he
would rip him to shreds with his bare hands.
rolled over on the bed on Jordan’s yacht, running her hand over
the fine hairs on his chest and kissing him gently. His eyes were closed so she couldn’t tell
what he was thinking. Usually she could
look right at him and know what was on his mind. Her fear was that he considered their tryst a
mistake. Even more so was the fear that
he would get up and go back to Renee.
certainly have a way of getting what you want,” Jordan suddenly said with a smirk.
remark didn’t sit well with Alex. “I beg
your pardon?” she asked and sat up, clutching the sheet over her chest. “You wanted it as much as I did. Maybe more.
I didn’t ask you to pick me up and carry me into bed.”
thought you were hurt,” Jordan said, sitting up and watching
her get dressed. “You made the first
move with that artfully staged fall.”
really are full of yourself,” she shot back.
“I only came here to pry you for information about Renee’s big
Jordan asked with a frown. “How do you know that-“
there is a secret. Does it have anything to do with that scene
the other night with Nathan and Sierra?”
he said, hoping his tone was convincing enough.
rolled her eyes and zipped her skirt in the back. “Well, if Renee’s worried about Sierra
spending time with him, she has every reason to. Especially after what he did to Brooke
Jordan frowned. “What did he do to Brooke?”
attacked her. She fought him off, but
the poor woman is just a wreck. What’s
more is that James doesn’t even believe that it happened. Sound familiar? It’s exactly the same thing he did when I
told him that Nathan attacked me all those years ago.”
Jordan’s head began spinning. He shot to his feet and grasped for his
clothes as fast as he could. “If Nathan
attacked Brooke, then that means I was right.”
He’d realized shortly after Nathan’s return that he was a predator, but
not until now did he realize the lengths he’d go to.
do you think I’ve been trying to tell everyone?” she asked angrily. “Don’t tell me you believe her but you still don’t believe that it
happened to me.”
“I do believe you,” he said, zipping his
shorts up and reaching for his polo.
“I’m sorry that I didn’t believe you before, Alex.”
believe me?” Alex asked, elated. She
watched him slip into his boat shoes and grab for his keys. “Wait, where are you going?”
have to stop him before he does the same thing to Sierra,” he replied and
started bounding up the stairs. “He has
no idea that she’s…”
frowned and raced after him. “That she’s
what?” she demanded, but it was too late.
Jordan was racing down the docks to his
then, Alex’s cell phone rang and she snatched it out of her purse. “What?” she asked hastily.
“Dude, it’s Eddie Distefano.”
heart racing, Alex turned away from the wind on the deck. “Eddie, what is it? What have you found?”
had a hunch on Sierra Merteuil so I checked into her medical records. Then I made some calls to Europe,” Eddie replied from his car
phone while steering down the 101 in his Mustang. “I had copies of her passport and her birth
certificate faxed over this morning.
They didn’t match.”
do you mean they didn’t match?”
had two birth certificates because Renee claimed her first one was lost after
Sierra’s biological parents died. The
reprint lists Alfred and Maddie Fine as the biological parents. The original listed Renee Merteuil as the
biological mother, and father unknown.”
frowned and turned around quickly. “What
does that mean?”
connection began to break up and Alex strained to hear clearly. “Eddie, I can’t hear you. What did you say?”
said she wasn’t ..p….ed.” Eddie
repeated through the wind in his convertible.
wasn’t adopted!” Eddie screamed. “Renee DeWitt is her biological mother!”
eyes flashed open in surprise and she dropped the phone to the wooden deck of
the yacht. She could hear Eddie’s tinny
voice still shouting over the connection.
would she lie?” Alex murmured to herself.
She paced back and forth, racking her brain until she stopped in her
tracks and everything became clear to her.
“Oh my God, she didn’t want anyone knowing she was having Nathan's baby.”
set was closed by order of the director.
Security was posted around the perimeter of the outdoor lot at Sunset Studios and only the necessary
crew was on hand for a key scene of Donnie
& Johnny. Stormy was determined
not to allow a single frame of the film to be leaked onto the internet. His director, Eric Autumn, appeared put out
by the inconvenience of the limited crew, but after some coaxing, he went along
with Stormy’s way of thinking.
Jordan, on the other hand, didn’t let
the thick security stop him from entering the set. He knew everyone in Hollywood and they knew him so he was
allowed to pass without too much convincing.
ahead Mr. Rydell,” said one the guards after getting an autograph for his son who
attended film school at UCLA.
Jordan entered the closed set, the
director called cut and the actors broke for lunch. Nathan spotted him and grinned, ambling over
and giving him a friendly pat on the back.
ol’ boy, you’re just in time for lunch,” he said. “Care to join me in the commissary?”
Jordan’s eyes narrowed ruefully as a
few crewmembers passed and offered their praise for Nathan’s performance in the
scene. He realized they weren’t exactly
alone so he stepped closer and whispered quietly, yet intensely in Nathan’s
did it, didn’t you?” he asked through gritted teeth.
frowned. “Did what?”
was telling the truth all those years ago,” Jordan continued in a thoroughly
threatening manner. “You did rape her. We thought she was making it up and we
dismissed her, but you did it. You
attacked her, just like you attacked Debralee Scott and all those other
girls. And the other day you tried to
sound as crazy as the others,” Nathan said with ease. “Jordan, we’re old friends. I was there for the beginning of your
career. I practically introduced you to
Suzanne. What’s happened to make you
doubt me? You’re a smart man. I’ve always thought so. Why are you now questioning me?”
not a smart man,” Jordan replied. “I feel like a fool for trusting you and for
believing in you, not to mention for helping you back here.”
I know you’re anxious to get me to star in a Rydell Productions feature, and I promise as soon as I’m through
filming Donnie & Johnny I’ll sign
up for whatever picture you see fit.
After a brief holiday, of course.”
wouldn’t have you star in anything from Rydell
Productions, you filthy bastard,” Jordan said angrily. “I’d just as soon kill you first before I let
you taint anything that belongs to me, or hurt anyone that I care about. And that includes Renee and Sierra.”
folded his arms and pondered Jordan’s words. “Sierra?” he asked. “I find it strange that you and Renee are so
against my friendship with her. What is
it that you’re afraid of?”
you’ll do the same thing to her that you have to every other woman you’ve ever
been in contact with. Leave Sierra
is just as into this relationship as I am,” Nathan said stubbornly.
God sakes, Nathan, she’s your-“ Jordan began, stopping himself before
he revealed the truth.
Jordan shook his head
dismissively. “Just leave her
alone. You’ll regret it if you don’t.”
regarded him carefully, still unsure of why Jordan was so defensive of Renee and
Sierra. An answer slowly began to occur to him.
Brett still hadn’t
heard from Heather so he went to her room at Hotel Terranova and cast a brooding, sultry look when she opened
the door. From his vantage point, he
could see the roses he’d sent her sitting prominently on the bar top in the
she said softly.
I come in?” he asked.
stood clear of the door and gestured inside.
“Thank you for the flowers,” she said and gazed at the enormous petals
on the African roses. “They’re
beautiful. I was going to call you,
should have,” Brett cut her off, doing his best to offer his most charming
in confusion, Heather walked across the room to stand clear of him. She was more than a little attracted to him,
especially after they’d slept together and she discovered what a wonderful
lover he was. Being near him made her
throw all caution and sense out the window.
I’ve been thinking about the other day, and-” she began. “It can’t happen again.”
looked at her with surprise. “What? But-“
just can’t work out between us. You know
that as well as I do.”
thought we were getting along. I mean,
we had something together. You can’t deny that there was chemistry.”
bed, yes,” she said, running her fingers through her hair. “But long term, no.”
becoming defensive, Brett threw his hands up in the air and shook his head with
frustration. “Is this because of
Stormy?” he asked. “Did he get to you
and convince you to do this?”
she exclaimed, angry that he would even suggest it. “I make my own decisions now, Brett. I don’t let Stormy or anyone else run my life
for me anymore. I don’t think that
getting involved with anyone is a good idea right now, least of all you.”
chuckled with amusement and folded his arms.
“No, this has Stormy’s name written all over it,” he said. “Or at the very least Miranda. Has she been to see you? Did she tell you what a mistake it is to get
involved with me?”
already told you. I don’t let anyone
tell me what to do anymore, and that includes you. Now please just accept it and leave.”
eyes burned into hers as he walked up to her.
He paused inches from her, so close that she could feel his breath. “You can deny it all you want, but you know
that you feel something for me.”
I don’t,” she said and turned away.
falling in love with you,” Brett said in a low voice. He turned and went to the door, pausing
before he left. “I just came over to
tell you that.”
closed her eyes, more confused than ever.
She heard the door shut and threw herself onto the sofa in a fit of
Brooke started down
the stairs in the foyer. When she
reached the bottom landing, she turned and saw their limo driver coming down
the stairs with a suitcase in each hand.
Behind him, Nathan walked purposefully toward her, his smile as big as
backed up a few steps to steer clear of his path, still terrified of being in
the same house as him, let alone the same room.
evening, Brooke,” he said and then turned to the driver. “You can put those in the car. I’ll be out in just a minute.”
watched the driver take the bags outside, then turned back to Nathan with an
inquisitive look on her face.
it’s exactly what it looks like,” Nathan continued, still ogling her even as he
stood there. “I’m moving out. Back to my old place on Alvarado Court.
It was quite the pad back in the seventies
and eighties. There were parties every night. Loads of stars. You wouldn’t have believed it.”
then, James and Miranda emerged from the parlor room. Brooke turned to look at him and saw the
rigid look on his face.
all packed?” James asked.
would seem so,” he replied and extended his hand to his nephew. “Thank you for your hospitality, but I fear
it is time for me to move on and regain some of my identity.”
don’t have to leave, Nathan,” Miranda said, shooting Brooke a penetrating
really should, sweet Miranda.” He leaned
over and kissed her gently on top of her head.
“But never fear, you’ll see me all the time at your lovely hotel. The bartender there makes a vicious gimlet.”
walk you out,” James said and put a hand on his back. He led him to the door and outside to the
they were out of earshot, Miranda rushed up to Brooke and stared at her with contempt. “I hope you’re happy,” she seethed
angrily. “You got exactly what you
wanted. But why should that surprise me? Ever since you came into this house you’ve
manipulated everything and everyone to get what you want. This latest stunt with Nathan is just another
one of your specialties.”
attacked me, Miranda,” Brooke retorted.
“I don’t care whether you believe me or not, but it’s the truth. I didn’t force Nathan to leave. That was your father’s decision.”
it was then it was because you gave him an ultimatum!”
can you defend that man?” Brooke asked in amazement. “You know what he did to your mother. Are you saying that you don’t believe her
either? Do you think she and I are
involved in some kind of conspiracy to send your uncle away?”
chuckled and folded her arms. “Don’t try
to align yourself with my mother,” she said.
“You’re nothing like her. And
besides that, she admitted that she lied when she accused him of raping
her. I read all the stories about
it. I know what happened, so don’t try
to use my mother as an ally.”
she could respond, James re-entered the house and started over to Brooke. Miranda skirted off to the kitchen and left
them alone, refusing to spend another minute arguing with her father’s manipulative
you okay?” James asked, standing before Brooke with his hands in his pockets.
nodded. “James, thank you,” she said
breathlessly and threw her arms around him.
“Thank you for asking him to leave.
You don’t know what it means to me that you believe me.”
put his arms around her. “Actually, Nathan left on his own.”
pulled away and looked at him crossly.
“He did?” she asked. “But I
thought that you told him he-“ She
stopped, the look on his face telling her that nothing had changed. She pulled away and started back up the
what difference does it make?” James called after her. “He’s moved out, isn’t that enough?”
turned back, staring with watery eyes.
“Do you believe me?” she asked.
heard me. Does Nathan’s leaving mean
that you believe me that he tried to rape me?”
silence echoed through the foyer.
Brooke, now more angry than hurt, turned and raced back up the stairs.
town at Hotel Terranova, Alex waited
impatiently at the front desk, drumming her fingers on the counter and staring
at the fax machine.
believe this is it,” said Link, the concierge, as the fax beeped and a piece of
paper came spitting out. He tore it
from the feeder and handed it to her with a smile.
you,” she said and turned. Glancing over
the document, a smile spread across her face and she spotted Sierra coming off
the elevator. Jackpot, she thought to herself as she ambled over to the young
woman. “Sierra, how lovely to see you.”
turned and her face lit up. “Hello, Miss
Reynolds,” she said, flattered that the mega movie star remembered her.
glad I ran into you, Sierra,” Alex continued.
“I wondered if we might sit down and talk. There’s something very important that I think
you should know.”
blinked a few times, for the life of her having no idea what the infamous woman
would want to talk to her about. Her curiosity got the best of her and she
followed Alex to a cozy corner furnished with plush chairs and a roaring
is it, Miss Reynolds?” she asked nervously.
“Is everything okay?"
exactly,” Alex replied with a devilish smile.
She unfolded the piece of paper in her hand and looked at it with
satisfaction. Finally she would put
Renee DeWitt in her place and get back at her for stealing Jordan, and for insinuating
herself in her company. Once Sierra learned the truth about the
secrets they were keeping, all hell would break loose.
leaned forward and looked into the pretty young woman’s eyes. “Sierra, your mother has been lying to you,”
she began. “I only just found out about
it by mistake. I have a daughter myself,
you know, just a few years older than you, and I couldn’t in good conscience
keep this information to myself.”
mother is lying to me about what?” Sierra asked somewhat defensively.
your parents were not killed in a car accident,” Alex informed her. “They’re very much alive.”
“What?” she asked in a shrill voice. Her first instinct was to jump up and run
away but she forced herself to hear her out.
is your biological mother,” Alex continued.
“She didn’t adopt you.”
instinctively set in, the news jarring Sierra back against the chair.
had you out of wedlock and she didn’t want the public to get wind of it, so she
gave birth to you in private in Europe and then hired an attorney to draw up papers to make it
appear that you were adopted.”
took the birth certificate from her and looked it over in disbelief. She didn’t want to accept it, but it was
right there in black and white. Certificate of live birth dated September
1987. Birth Mother Renee Merteuil. Father unknown.
sure you can see why I would want to bring this to your attention,” Alex said,
watching the bewildered look on Sierra’s face.
She hated to bring such misery to an innocent young woman, but it was
for the good of her master plan. “I could never deny who I was to Miranda. She’s my
life. I just thought you should know.”
stood up, tears flooding her eyes. She’d
never felt so betrayed in her entire life.
Without another word, she turned and darted through the lounge to the
back patio where she ran directly into Nathan.
Alex sighed with frustration. She’d only
managed to deliver half of the bad news.
The fact that her father was Nathan Blackthorne was the icing on the
cake. She’d have to work on another
meeting where she would deliver the final blow to Renee’s happy existence.
dear, what is it?” Nathan asked outside, immediately sensing the despair in the
pretty young girl’s eyes.
threw her arms around him and buried her face in his chest. “Please take me away from here,” she
cried. “Please, Nathan, you’re the only
one I can trust.”
started down the stairs at the mansion, a suitcase in each hand and Leilani
following close behind with Michael tucked gently in her arms. They neared the bottom landing in the foyer
when James emerged from his study. He
looked at her and then at Leilani and immediately knew that something was
he asked. “Where are you going? Where are you taking Michael?”
leaving, and Michael is coming with me,” she insisted, looking at him with red,
ran his fingers through his hair and looked at the uncomfortable look in
Leilani’s eyes. “Why?” he demanded. “Brooke, we can work this out.”
don’t see how.”
let’s just go upstairs and talk about this,” James said.
you or do you not believe me?” Brooke demanded angrily. She hated that she had to continuously ask
that of her own husband. It was
degrading and she had had enough.
sighed and ran his hand over his face.
He couldn’t tell her what she wanted to hear. As much as he wanted her to stay, he didn’t
believe that Nathan had done the despicable things she accused him of.
shook her head in despair. “That’s what
I thought,” she said, motioning to Leilani and starting for the door. She ran directly into a woman coming up to
the porch and hastily brushed past her as if she wasn’t even there.
James yelled after them. “Brooke, come
got into the back seat of the limousine and Leilani gently handed her the
baby. The driver closed the door and
started off down the driveway.
and angry, James turned and started back inside. He’d been so distracted that he didn’t notice
as the woman entered from the porch.
asked Leigh Purcell, her face stricken with concern. “What’s going on?”
Her curiosity about the Blackthornes was immediately
satisfied. One minute inside their house and there
was already theater-level drama.
turned around and they came face to face.
Seeing Leigh again was the last thing he expected to happen, but he
couldn’t help but feel that she was exactly
what he needed right now.
James' finally realizes
the truth about his uncle, but will it be too late?
Renee confronts Alex about her latest stunt. Brooke
and Ethan grow closer. Alex, Jordan and Renee
race to get to Sierra in time.