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Episode 8

 

Release Date:  January 27, 2006

 Read the episode Recap

 

Previously...

Alex located a man named Philip Whitacre whom she discovered was still married to Brooke.  Jordan and Will came to blows over Alex. Will arranged for James's film Angel Assassin to receive an X-rating, forcing him to pull it from release. Frustrated, James blew up at Brooke and caused her to pack her things and move out.  Miranda found a duffel bag of money belonging to Brett and questioned him about it.  Brett claimed it was his life savings, then remembered the struggle with Bailey in their Las Vegas hotel room.


 

 Episode 8

"Love My Way"

 

The Fern Bar was a tacky retro cocktail lounge in Van Nuys patroned mostly by college kids from UCLA and the occasional businessman or bored suburban housewife longing for a night on the town.

Miranda and Brett took their seats at a table with Ethan and Winter, ordered a round of drinks and snacked on a bowl of pretzels.  After Miranda introduced Brett, and Ethan introduced Winter, the group settled down for an enjoyable evening out.  It was long overdue, as the past few weeks had been a strain in every way.

“Winter’s new roommate is singing tonight,” Ethan announced.

“Yeah, I can’t wait to hear her,” Winter agreed, sipping her tequila sunrise through a straw.  “You know, I like having someone around that I can talk to.  A girl, I mean.  I’ve never had a roommate before.  I never even had that many girlfriends when I was in school.”

“How are you adjusting to life at Shay Blackthorne?” Ethan asked Brett with a smirk.

He hesitated for a minute and shrugged.  “So far so good,” he replied, kissing Miranda on her glossy pink lips.  “It wouldn’t matter where I was as long as Miranda was there.”

“You guys make me sick,” Winter joked, popping a pretzel in her mouth.

They all laughed just as the lights dimmed and a man got up on the stage and spoke into the microphone.  “Ladies and gentlemen, making her second appearance at the Fern Bar, please welcome Lauren Spencer.”

The crowed applauded as Lauren stepped out onto the stage and the band behind her started to play a jazzy rock tune. 

“This is your roommate?” Miranda asked, tapping her foot in time with the music.

“Uh huh,” Winter replied.

“Very pretty,” Brett remarked, then made a sour face when Miranda punched him in the arm.

“Watch it,” she said.

“Hey, she is,” he said with a laugh.  “But not as pretty as you, Sweetie pie.”

“Oh God, knock it off,” Winter complained sarcastically.

The table grew quiet as Lauren started to sing her number.  When the song ended, the crowd went wild with applause.   Lauren took a bashful bow and stepped down off the stage.  She spotted Winter at her table and waved, running over to join them.

“Hey you guys,” she said, trying to catch her breath.  “Thanks a lot for coming.  So whaddya think?”

“You were amazing!” Winter exclaimed, patting her roommate on the back.

“Really nice,” Ethan agreed.

“Yeah, you should be doing this for real,” Brett remarked.  “I mean, get out of this smoky dive and get your name out there.  I can see it up in lights.”

Lauren laughed and flung her blond hair over her shoulder.   “Yeah right,” she said modestly.

“Lauren, this is Miranda and Brett,” Winter said.

“Nice to meet you,” she replied.

“Listen, I’m serious,” Brett continued.  “You should really look into getting some representation.  I’d be happy to set something up for you.  I’ve done some similar work in the past.”

“Wow, thanks,” Lauren said with a bright smile.  “It’s just a hobby though.  I’m just destined to be a waitress.”

Brett laughed.  Suddenly he got an idea.  Maybe Lauren was the act Stormy was searching for.

Brooke Taylor

It was past midnight when Brooke started to drift off to sleep in front of the TV.  She’d gone to her friend Bianca's apartment in Studio City after leaving the mansion earlier that day.  Of course being the friend she was, Bianca offered her small apartment to her for as long as she needed.  Then after a long cry and heart to heart, Bianca went to her bedroom and Brooke sat up to watch some old movies.

A knock at the door sent her to an upright position, looking around as she almost forgot where she was.   Bianca came out of her room in an oversized L.A. Lakers T-shirt and opened the door to James standing out in the hall.

“Hello Bianca,” he said.  “I know it’s late, but I was wondering if you’ve heard from Brooke.”

Bianca did just what Brooke asked her to do.   “I’m sorry, Mr. Blackthorne, I haven’t seen her,” she said, standing in the doorway so he couldn’t see into the living room.

James appeared stricken with disappointment.  “Oh, I see,” he said glumly.  “Well if you do see her, please tell her I’m looking for her and I’d very much like to talk to her.”

“I will,” she replied before shutting the door.  She gave Brooke a sympathetic smile and a kiss on the cheek before returning to her bedroom.

Sitting on the couch in despair, Brooke pondered her decision to leave the mansion that day.   She wondered if she’d done the right thing.   Should she at least give him the chance to explain?  To apologize?

She jumped up and ran to the door, pulling it open in an instant.  To her surprise, James was still standing out in the hall, his hands dug deep into the pockets of his beige trench coat. 

“I knew you were inside,” he said.  “I was hoping you’d reconsider seeing me.  Although I must admit, I wouldn’t blame you if you didn’t.  I know I’ve been a real ass and I’m sorry.”

Taking in all of his words, Brooke wrapped her arms around herself and looked around the deserted hallway.   She felt vulnerable standing out there in her nightshirt.  But inviting James inside so they could talk was out of the question.  If she did, she would cave in a matter of seconds.

“When I signed on to be your wife, I didn’t expect there to be limits,” she finally said.

“There are no limits.”

“I’m your wife when it’s convenient for you,” Brooke continued.  “You include me in your life when it suits you.  You tell me things on a need to know basis.  I can’t live like that, James.  I just can’t.”

“I just don’t want to burden you with my problems,” he said.  “Whether it’s Miranda or my long list of enemies, or problems with the studio.  I don’t want you to be caught in the middle of all of that.  I don’t want you involved in that part of my life.”

“I have news for you,” Brooke replied plainly.  “That’s marriage.  If you can’t understand that then maybe you shouldn’t have gotten married again.” 

She went back inside and shut the door, a tear crawling down her cheek as she sunk to the floor in despair.  She hated what was happening to them.  It was too soon in their marriage for this.

Miranda and Brett walked hand in hand along the beach, carrying their shoes and letting the tide wash up around their bare feet.  The glow of the moonlight above illuminated their every step.  Several yards behind, Ethan and Winter were strolling along in the same fashion, enjoying a quiet evening after leaving the Fern Bar.

“Did you have a good time tonight?” Ethan asked with a smile.

“Yeah, did you?”

He nodded.  “I’m really glad we ran into each other again.  You’re a totally different person than I remember.   We both are.  I think we’ve matured a lot.”

“Yeah?  I think so too,” she replied, tightening her grip on his hand.  “I can’t thank you enough for everything you’ve done for me.”

“I haven’t done that much,” he said.  “You’ve done it all on your own.”

“You know what I mean.  Just having you in my life again has done wonders.  I actually feel like a worthwhile person again.  I can’t tell you what it’s like feeling like you don’t matter to anyone.  Like you’re alone in the world.”

They stopped walking and Ethan kissed her warmly.  “You’re not alone,” he said.

Winter threw her arms around him and they swayed back and forth.  Suddenly she lost her balance and fell, pulling Ethan down with her.  Seconds later they were laying ion the ground, the tide washing over them.

“You did that on purpose!” he yelled through fits of laughter.

“I did not!” she screamed as he tickled her relentlessly, soaked from the cool ocean water.

They kissed passionately, ignoring the sand that covered their skin and the water that rushed over their bodies.

Minutes later, they were in her bedroom at her apartment down the beach.  Ethan pulled her soaked blouse over her head and then removed her skirt.   His eyes filled with lust, he peeled off his shirt and pants and pushed her down onto the bed.  The moonlight emanated through the windows and cast a warm glow over their naked bodies as they succumbed to the passion.

Alex spent most of the next morning shopping on Rodeo Drive.  She left her favorite boutique with an armful of bags and started toward her limousine waiting for her by the curb.

Passing another limousine on the way, she paused when the window rolled down and Jordan Rydell appeared in the back seat.  She looked at him skeptically and took the single red rose that he held out the window.

“Are you following me?” she asked, smelling the fragrant scent of the flower.

“Me?  No.  I shop here all the time,” he replied, pushing open the door and motioning for her to join him inside.

Alex hesitated, wondering what he was up to.  He must have gotten over the scene the other day at her beach house with Will Thomerson.  At least she hadn’t alienated him forever.

She handed her bags to her driver and climbed into Jordan’s limousine, gracefully crossing her legs and accepting a glass of champagne from him.

“So you’re done being angry with me?” she asked with a playful pout.

“I wasn’t angry,” Jordan replied.  “Just disappointed.  Then I got to thinking, why would I expect the beautiful, alluring, exquisite Alex Reynolds to limit herself to one man when she could have all of Hollywood if she wanted?”

“I’m glad you see it that way,” Alex replied, sipping from her glass.

Then I got to thinking, she’s probably just waiting for someone to make her an offer she can’t refuse,” he said with a grin on his handsome face.

“Is this your Godfather impersonation?” she asked jokingly.

“No, this is me making you an offer you can’t refuse,” Jordan replied, reaching into his suit jacket and removing a small box from Tiffany.  Alex’s face turned stark white as she watched him open the lid to reveal a sparking seven-karat princess cut diamond ring.

“Oh Jordan,” she said, biting her lip.  The ring was extraordinary.  She knew what was coming next.

“Marry me,” he said with his usual boyish charm.  “Make me the happiest man in Hollywood.”

Alex was awestruck.  She didn’t know what to say or what to do.  All she could do was stare at the magnificent ring that hovered in close proximity to her face.   “Jordan, I….” she began, stammering over her words.  “I need some time.”

“Time for what?” he asked, removing the ring and placing it delicately on her slender finger.  “Look, a perfect fit.  Just like us.”

Alex smiled radiantly, staring at the ring and then back at Jordan.  She had to be level headed about this.  She was very attracted to Jordan Rydell and found him to be a very exciting man, but this was too soon.   Besides, she had an interest in Will Thomerson as well and she wasn’t ready to choose between the two men.  Not yet.

“I’m going to have to think about this,” she finally said.  “I’m sorry Jordan.  It’s not a no, but…”

“But it’s not a yes, either.”

She shook her head. 

“Well, that’s better than a no,” Jordan admitted.  “So keep the ring and I’ll ask you again sometime.  Sometime very soon.”

She sighed with relief, leaning forward and kissing him happily.  She had certainly not been expecting something like this.  What could the day bring next?

Good Times Records

Brett Armstrong drove to Good Times Records and found Stormy in the control booth playing with some new tracks he’d recorded earlier.  He stood outside the glass soundproof door and listened, waiting for Stormy to get finished.   A minute later Stormy looked up and motioned for him to come inside.

“What’s up, bro?” Stormy asked, taking off his headphones and pulling a chair out for Brett.

“You wouldn’t believe it if I told you,” Brett began.  “Have I got the perfect act for you or what?”

Stormy frowned.  “What act?”

“This girl.  This singer I saw last night at the Fern Bar.  Man, she’s outta sight.  You gotta hear it to believe it, Stormy.”

Laughing him off, Stormy went back to his control table.  “Yeah right,” he said dismissively.  “I have a pretty keen ear, Brett.  I’m very particular about the sound I like.  I doubt very much you found someone that fits the bill just like that.”

“I’m telling you, man, you will dig this girl.”

“It’s doubtful,” Stormy maintained.  “Come on, Brett.  What do you know about good music, anyway?”

“I know a hit when I hear it.  Come on, just say you’ll come with me to hear her.  I promise, if you’re not impressed, I’ll go streaking through downtown Hollywood.”

Laughing, Stormy got up and gave him a high five.  “You’re on,” he said, grabbing his jacket and heading for the door.  “Let’s roll.”

Polo Lounge

James met Jack Fallmont for drinks at the Polo Lounge and ordered two straight bourbons before they even started talking business.  His nerves were a wreck.  The fact that his marriage was in trouble, on top of his financial problems was enough to send him over the edge.

“Word around town is that Angel Assassin is not going to be released,” Jack said, rubbing his chin in concentration. 

“It just need some edits,” James replied.  “When that’s done I’ll resubmit it and it’ll get an R rating.   I’ll be a little behind schedule but I’ll get it released, Jack.  I will.  And all the publicity over this X rating will only help our box office business.”

Jack shook his head doubtfully.  “I’m not so sure about that, James,” he said matter-of-factly.  “History shows that movies that get this kind of start fail at the box office.  Some theaters still won’t show it.  You’ll be dealing with a limited release.  You can’t make back the money you spent under those circumstances.”

“Come on, Jack.  We’ve been friends a long time.  You can give me the benefit of the doubt, can’t you?  There’s a good chance the movie will still succeed.”

“And there’s an even better chance it won’t,” Jack insisted before taking a swig of his whiskey.  “I’m sorry, James.  I can’t afford to lose that much money.  Adrienne will have my hide if she doesn’t get to go on her annual cruise this summer.”

“Jack, we’re not talking about that much money,” James claimed.  Fallmont Industries is one of the top importers in the States.”

“It’s all tied up in investments that I can’t get out of,” Jack confided.  “James, I have my family to think about.  My hands are tied, I’m sorry.  I have to call in that loan now.  If I don’t, I’m afraid I’ll never see that money again.”

James shook his head in desperation.  He was at a loss.  He didn’t know what to do.

“It’s nothing personal, James,” Jack continued.  “It’s just business.”

“Sure, just business,” James said, staring across the room in a daze.  He had to think of something fast. 

Ethans House

Ethan opened his front door and found Brooke standing there about to knock.  “Hey,” he said with a smile.  “What’s going on?”

Before she could reply, Winter stepped up to the door and wrapped her arms around Ethan from behind.  “Lunch is ready,” she said, then turned her sights to Brooke outside on the porch.

“I’m sorry, I can see you’re busy,” Brooke began.  She turned and started down the driveway, knowing she shouldn’t have gone to see Ethan.

“Brooke, wait!” Ethan called after her.  He broke away from Winter and ran down the driveway.  “What’s wrong?” he asked.

Winter watched them from the doorway.  She wondered what Brooke Taylor was doing there.  Whatever the reason, Ethan was certainly eager to jump to her aid. 

“Nothing, I just thought-“ Brooke started, shaking her head in frustration.  “It’s nothing.  Just forget it.”

“Wait, please talk to me,” Ethan demanded, his hand clasping around her arm.  He pulled her back and looked deeply into her brilliant blue eyes.  “I can tell something is wrong.”

“I left James,” she finally said, staring at the ground uncomfortably.

Ethan was shocked.  He’d just seen James yesterday and he acted like everything between them was fine.  “Why?  What happened?”

“I just couldn’t take all of the secrets and the way he constantly pushed me away,” she explained.  “You saw the way he treated me the other day in his office.  He thinks he can have two separate lives.  But I won’t be disregarded.  I don’t want to live like that.”

He could tell how upset she was.  He pulled her close tried to soothe her distraught state of mind.  Damn James for treating her this way.  Didn't he know what a good thing he had?  But he went ahead and ruined it anyway with his bullheaded attitude.

"I’m so sorry," he said, smoothing his hand down her silky hair.

Brooke looked past him and saw Winter glaring at her from the house.  She realized she was overstepping her bounds.  They'd promised each other that they weren't going to run to each other anymore.  They had to stand on their own.  Ethan had obviously gotten over whatever feelings he had for her.  She had to respect that.  It was only right. 

"I should go," she said, pulling away from him and starting toward her car.

"I don't like you being alone when you're this upset," Ethan said, his eyes pleading.

She shook her head and got into her car.  "I'll be okay.  I'm sorry I came."

Ethan watched as she peeled out of the driveway and sped off down the road.  He felt horrible for her.  He had no idea things were that bad with James.  Slowly he turned back and started up to the house where Winter was waiting.

"What was that all about?" she asked.

"She left James," Ethan explained.  "She's very upset.  I feel like I should go after her so she isn't alone."

Winter put her hands on his shoulders and looked into his deep brown eyes.  "You can't be there for Brooke every time something goes wrong in her life. "

He nodded with agreement.  As much as he hated to admit it, he had to stay away from Brooke.  It was for the good of everyone involved.  He started down the hall to the kitchen while Winter stared out the window in a daze.  Suddenly she realized something that she should have known all along.

James must have been worried about Ethan's connection to Brooke.  That's why it was so important to him that she start seeing him again.  That was why he set up the "accidental" meeting that day.

The prospect disturbed her to no end.  If James was that worried about his wife and Ethan, then she should be too.  She'd have to keep an eye on Brooke from now on.  No way was she going to let her swoop in and wreck everything that she had worked so hard to get.

Blackthorne Mansion

That evening, Miranda walked into her father's bedroom and found him staring out the window, a voided look on his face.  She knew he must be agonizing over Brooke's leaving.  It killed her that her father was hurting.

"Hi Daddy," she said, walking up to him.

He spun around quickly, barely cracking a smile when he saw her.  "Hi Sweetheart."

"I'm sorry about Brooke," she said.

He shook his head.  "It's okay, we'll work it out."

Miranda was shocked by his response.  "You mean you would actually consider taking her back after she ran out on you like that?" she asked bluntly.  "Daddy, don't you have any pride?  You saw the way she walked out of here the other day.  She didn't even bat an eyelash."

"Miranda, please-" James protested.  He didn't want to hear her badmouthing Brooke right now. 

"I'm sorry, I just think she's used up all of her chances," she continued.  She knew the words would hurt her father but she had to say them.  She had to get through to him that Brooke was bad news.  "She just bailed as soon as things got tough.  Is that the kind of wife you want?"

"You don't understand, Miranda.  It's not as simple as that."

"Yes it is as simple as that!  She's supposed to be your wife!  She should stick by you no matter what.  But she's doing exactly what I said she would and leaving you high and dry."

"That's enough!" James yelled angrily.  He'd listened to all he was going to.  He couldn't take anyone bad mouthing Brooke when he was the one to blame.  He grabbed his jacket and keys and headed for the door.

"Where are you going?" Miranda asked.

"I'm going to bring Brooke home," he replied before storming out into to the hall.

Shaking her head in frustration, Miranda plopped down onto the bed and leaned back.  She stared at the ceiling, wishing her father wasn't so blind to Brooke.  She was bad news and after everything she was still the only one who knew it.

Lauren Spencer

Meanwhile, Stormy and Brett were seated at a table at the Fern Bar listening to Lauren sing another tune, this one a slow ballad.  The waitress brought them each a drink and they handed her a fistful of cash.

"What did I tell you?" Brett asked, yelling over the music.  "She's fantastic, isn't she?"

Stormy hesitated for a minute and then broke into a grin, giving Brett a nod of approval.  "Okay so you were right.  She's fantastic."

"I knew it!" Brett exclaimed, pushing a lock of brown hair from his forehead.  "I'm telling you, man, she's your next big star!"

Stormy nodded in agreement, watching Lauren carefully.  He loved everything about her.  She was a natural talent with a lot of stage presence.  He had to meet her.

When the song ended she disappeared into the crowd of bar patrons.  Brett stood up and flagged her down.  Smiling, she walked hesitantly to their table and eyed him suspiciously.

"You were here last night, weren't you?" she asked, wondering if he was some kind of stalker.

Brett nodded.  "Yeah, I thought you were so good I had to come back," he said, then gestured to Stormy.  "This is my brother-in-law, Stormy Blackthorne."

Lauren's gaze met Stormy's and she became immediately mesmerized by his deep blue eyes.  There was something about him that made her tingle from head to toe.  "Nice to meet you," she said, shaking his hand and suddenly feeling weak in the knees.

"You were amazing," Stormy said, admiring her gorgeous blue eyes and full pink lips.

She blushed and smiled from ear to ear.

"Stormy is a record producer," Brett remarked.  "Ever heard of Good Times Records?"

Lauren shook her head, still fixated on Stormy and his boyish good looks.  "No, I’m sorry I haven't."

Stormy laughed.  "It's okay, we're still pretty new," he said.  "I've been looking for a new singer.  After hearing you I think I've found her."

"Me?" Lauren asked in disbelief. 

"You have something that I like," Stormy explained.  "And believe me, I don’t say that about many people."

"Believe me, he doesn't," Brett interjected.

"Well, what are we talking about here?" Lauren asked.

"A record deal," Stormy replied.  "An album, promotional appearances, you name it."

Lauren burst out into a fit of excited laughter.  "Oh my God, I can't believe this is happening to me," she said.  She thought it was too good to be true.  Suddenly a thought occurred to her.  "Wait a minute.  Is this some kind of pick up scam?   I mean, are you guys for real or are you just trying to get me into bed?"

Brett laughed.  "It's legit.  Stormy's father is James Blackthorne.  His mother is Alex Reynolds."

"Alex Reynolds, the movie star?" Lauren asked in disbelief.  "Now I know this is too good to be true."

"It's for real," Stormy said.  "How long have you been singing here?"

"I just started this week."

"Where did you sing before?" Stormy asked.

She shook her head.  "Nowhere, really.  In the shower mostly."

"How cute is that?" Brett said.

"Are you free tomorrow morning?" Stormy asked.  He felt himself growing aroused by the close proximity of their bodies.  She had an effect on him like no woman ever had.  "I thought we could go down to the studio and do some demos."

"Yeah," Lauren exclaimed.  "That would be great."

Stormy smiled in satisfaction.  Finally he had the new act he'd been looking for.  He saw great things ahead for him and for Lauren Spencer.

Alex's House

Alex was at home in Malibu, laying on the sofa and admiring the giant engagement ring Jordan had placed on her finger.  The doorbell rang and she looked at her watch, wondering who would be coming by so late.

Ambling across the plush carpet in her stiletto heels and white nightgown, she pulled open the door and smiled at the sight of Will Thomerson standing outside with a bouquet of roses.

"I'm sorry for overreacting," he said.  "Can you forgive me?"

She smiled and stood clear of the door.   Will came inside and set the roses down onto a table. 

"Of course," Alex replied, putting her arms around him and pulling him into a passionate kiss.

"Good, I was hoping I wouldn't have to celebrate my victory over James all by myself," Will said, leading her to the sofa.

Alex's expression dimmed a little.   She got the feeling Will only wanted her to help him in his vendetta against James.   Granted, she had been initially attracted to him because of their mutual hatred for James.   But after they spent the night together she began to feel that there was more to it.   Now it seemed that Will was still only looking at her as an ally.

"Stage one of my plan has gone off without a hitch," Will said.  "James has recently learned that his film will not be released.  He's losing money as we speak."

"That's wonderful," Alex replied uneasily.   She couldn't help the fact that she wanted their relationship to be about more than the vendetta.

"Wait until you hear about my next idea," Will continued.  A sparkle from her hand caught his attention and he looked closer, examining the enormous ring on her finger.  "What's that?"

She sighed and gave a nonchalant shrug.  "An engagement ring."

"I know what it is," he said.  "Where did it come from?"

Alex paused and stood up to fix herself a nightcap.  "Jordan Rydell asked me to marry him today."

Will nearly fell out of his seat.  He was stunned that things had progressed so far with Alex and Jordan.   "Really?  Well, that's wonderful.   What did you say?"

She turned to him and took a sip of brandy.   "I told him I'd have to think about it," she said, her eyes unrelenting from his. 

"I see," Will said, getting up and walking to her.  He took her drink and set it down then grabbed her by the arms and pulled her close.  "What exactly are you waiting for?"

Alex closed her eyes in ecstasy as he brushed his lips against her neck, driving her wild.  "I don’t know," she whispered.  "What should I be waiting for?"

Will ripped her nightgown open and ran his tongue along her cleavage.  He threw her onto the sofa and climbed on top of her.  "Forget Rydell," he said between hurried kisses.  "Marry me instead."

Grabbing hold of his thick blond hair, she pulled him close and kissed him hard.  She was totally into Will Thomerson.  He was exciting, full of sex appeal, and powerful.   On the other hand, so was Jordan Rydell.   She was so confused.  How in the world was she going to choose between them?

Jasmes Blackthorne

James pounded on the door with his fist, calling Brooke's name from out in the hallway.

"Brooke!  Open up!"

The door to Bianca's apartment instantly opened and Brooke stood there, her eyes red and swollen and a dismal look on her pretty face.  They stood in silence for what seemed like an eternity before Brooke finally opened her mouth to speak.

"What are you doing here?" she asked.

"I want you to come home with me," James said, his eyes pleading.  "You don't belong here, Brooke.  You belong at home with me."

She shook her head, sobbing hysterically.  "If I come home nothing will change," she cried.  "You'll shut me out just like before."

"I won't," he insisted.  "I promise.  I want to include you in my life but you have to help me.  You can't get upset and leave every time something goes wrong.  We have to be able to talk about it."

Brooke realized that James wasn't asking for too much.  With some open lines of communication their problems might very well be solved.  She wanted to go home with him more than anything.  She hated how things were.

"Please, Brooke," James continued, holding his hand out to her.  "Please come back with me."

"I don't know…" she hesitated.

James gritted his teeth and grabbed her by the arms, pulling her toward him.  "God damn it, Brook!  You're my wife!  You belong with me!"

She fell into his arms in a fit of tears, sobbing on his shoulders as he held her close and rocked her back and forth.  She knew it was useless trying to stay away.  Since the day they met all she wanted was to be with him, and nothing had changed.

They stood in the hallway for a while, holding each other and expressing their love for one another.

Blackthorne Mansion

They drove home and walked into the mansion.  James stopped and brushed a strand of blond hair from her eyes.  "Why don't you go upstairs and start a bath.  I'll meet you up there."

Brooke nodded, managing a smile as her husband kissed her several times.  She started up the stairs when Leilani appeared and called after her.

"There's someone in the parlor to see you, Mrs. Blackthorne," she said.  "He's been waiting for a while.  I told him I didn't know if you would be home but he insisted on waiting."

Brooke frowned and glanced at James.  "I wonder who it could be," she said, walking back down the stairs and across the foyer.   James followed her into the parlor, his hand resting gently on her arm.

When they entered the room, Philip Whitacre stood up from the sofa and turned to Brooke.  "Hi Sweetheart," he said with a big grin.  "Did you miss me?"

Brooke's eyes flashed open and she staggered back a step.  She couldn't believe Philip was standing right in front of her after all these years.   What was he doing there?

"Brooke, who is this?" James asked, glaring wildly at Philip.

Unable to speak or even move, Brooke simply stared in disbelief.  He was going to ruin everything.

"Brooke?" James repeated, growing suspicious of the strange man in his house and Brooke's odd reaction to him being there.

"Don't keep him in suspense, Sweetheart," Philip said, his hands dug deep into the pockets of his shorts.   "Tell him. "

"Tell me what?" James demanded.

Brooke looked at James and swallowed hard.  She began to feel light headed, like the room was spinning and she couldn't stop it.

"Tell him, Brooke," Philip said.  "Tell him that I’m your husband."

Brooke felt herself growing weak.  She was so dizzy all of the sudden.  She couldn't believe what was happening.

 


Next time...

James's words send Brooke fleeing again and she winds up at Ethan's doorstep. Winter sees red when Ethan puts everything on hold for Brooke.  Stormy and Brett go to work on Lauren's record.  James asks Kenny to help him bail out Sunset Studios.

 Read Episode 9

 

 


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