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Sunday, March 31, 2013

The Devil You Know: Chapter 50


Todd put his hand on her stomach.  “You’re happy about it, aren’t you?”



Blair smiled brilliantly.  “Of course I am.  How could you ask me that?”



“Good,” he said.  “I can’t wait to meet our new little girl.”  Blair’s eye grew wide with questions.  “Merrie told me, hoped it would be what brought me back.”



“Todd…?” she asked.  She didn’t like the turn this conversation was taking. 



“Merrie told me and I still couldn’t go back.  I thought, for a few minutes there, that she’d be better off without me.  I even lied to myself that Jack and Starr were for all those years I was…,” Todd said.



“Todd, none of us were any good without you,” she assured him.



“Well, Delgado seemed to make it out alright.”



Blair scowled at him. 



“I didn’t…I couldn’t face the memories…of seeing Victor, of seeing him being taken away.  But he was there.  He was with me and Merrie was with me and they helped me face it,’ Todd told her.



“What happened?” 



“The night Peter…my mother told me to run, to get out.  I did and when I got to the street, got down a ways, I ran into my twin.  He was running from a car that Irene was in.  We took off together and hid in the shed.  We were there for a while, but Irene must have found us.  She dragged him out and shoved me against a wall.  Before I lost consciousness, I heard her say she wished I was never born.  I guess something inside of me connect her with being my mother, but all the things I believed, about the diary, about who she was, glossed over the memory.  Then, when I got back to Llanview it all started coming to the surface.”



“And Chicago really brought it home?” she asked, unnecessarily.



“Yeah.  I knew it would be bad, right from the start, but I promised the kids.”  He smiled sheepishly.  “And you know how I hate to disappoint them.”



“Oh, Todd, you should have said something earlier.  You know I’d do anything to help you,” Blair told him, burying her face in his chest.



“And how often have I actually asked for help?  I don’t…I don’t like feeling needy,” Todd tried to explain.  “I keep trying to fix things by myself.”  He rolled his eyes.  “And it always works out so well.”



“Oh, yes,” she replied, her voice matching his in sarcasm.  “Real well, always has.”  She laughed, unable to keep the tone in her voice.  “Seriously, how many schemes and plans of yours have actually worked?”



Todd shook his head.  “I don’t want to think about my failures.  Only my successes.”



“And what would those be?”



“Well, I turned a rag into a number of successful tabloids.  I have a thriving media empire.”  He looked at Blair.  “Three wonderful kids and a woman…who saved me and still does.”



“Three?  I count four now,” she corrected.



“Yes, that’s right.  And the newest Manning needs a name.”



“Well, you inspired Starr’s name and let me name Jack.  I think you should actually name this one,” Blair said.



“Thank you because I kinda already had one picked out.  I have since I found out.”



Blair smiled.  She had a feeling she knew what that name would be.  “Then what is going to be our new daughter’s name?”



“Meredith,” he said, almost breathless.



Blair nodded.  “Meredith Victoria,” she amended.  When Todd gave her a quizzed look, she explained.  “Meredith for your sister, of course and Victoria for her aunt and uncle.  Because it was Victor who helped you come back to me tonight.  And Viki has always been there for you.”



“You sure about that?  I was thinking something from the Cramer side, especially to appease the head witch,” Todd said



“Are you sure you’re alright, because I can’t remember you ever wanting to appease Dorian.”



Todd turned away, his eyes getting that dreamy, faraway look to them.  Blair asked him what was wrong.  He answered, “I can’t wait to see the look on Dorian’s face when we tell her the baby’s name.  Meredith Victoria Manning.  Can you imagine that?”



With Todd, Blair could imagine anything.



While Todd and Blair were dreaming of their new little girl, at the Metrocourt, Tina was looking for Carly.   She had insisted on going and setting the place for the wedding and knowing that Carly was a friend of Todd and Blair’s, she wanted to handle it.  Starr had protested but Tina pretended not to hear and left on her mission.



She found the hotelier in the grand ballroom supervising cleanup from the previous night.  With her was a tall, blonde-haired man, devastatingly handsome with some kind of accent in his voice. She had remembered seeing him the night before.  While the two seemed to be in deep discussion, Tina decided to go up and interrupt.  “Carly, can I talk to you?”



Carly turned and looked at the new voice.  “Tina!” Her first thought was of Todd.  “How is your brother?  I heard he had to be taken to the hospital last night.  Is everything alright?”



“Yes, Todd’s fine, according to his kids,” Tina replied.  “He’s always trying to keep attention on himself.”



Carly turned back to the other man.  “Her brother, he did the “Unforgettable” skit.  I heard that right afterwards he collapsed backstage.”  Then she looked between Tina and the man.  “I’m sorry, Jasper Jacks, Tina Roberts.  Tina. My husband, Jasper Jacks.”



“Yes, I saw her last night with her husband, I’m guessing, Cord Roberts.  He’s Asa Buchanan’s grandson, right?  Buchanan Enterprises?” the man asked.  He took her hand and kissed it.  “A pleasure to meet you.”



“Why, thank you,” Tina replied, acting all girlish.  She also noted the look Carly was giving her.  “Mr. Jacks, if you’ll excuse me, I need to talk to your wife about a few things,”



“Of course,” he said and turned to Carly.  “I’ll see you at the house.  I haven’t spent much time with Joss since I got here and you have business to conduct.  See you later.”  With that, he left.



The women watched him go.  Then, a note of exasperation in her voice, Carly asked, “What do you want, Tina?”



“Well, I have a business proposal for you,” she began.  Taking out Todd’s file on the wedding plans, she said, “My brother is at last going to remarry Blair.”  She couldn’t help but make a face, which Carly noticed and was amused by.  “I’d like to book this room for it.”



“Really?  I was under the impression from Todd months ago that when he and Blair got remarried, it would be back in Llanview at the church where they got married,” Carly said.



“Well, things have changed and I am sure that my brother will want to make it legal as soon as possible.  Whenever Blair is in the family way…” Tina commented.



“Blair’s pregnant?” Carly nearly shouted.  Then she got strangely giddy.  “Oh, they must be so happy!”  Then she calmed down, getting into a business mindset.  “When were they looking to have the wedding?”



“We, we’re still not sure when he’s going to be released from the hospital but also, they don’t know that this is being planned.  Starr, Jessica and I are making the arrangements.  We have two days picked out but the main determiner will be when Todd comes home.”  Tina told Carly the two dates and Carly checked, verifying that both were available. 



She penciled them off and, with an equally playful gleam in her eyes, asked, “So, what else do we need for this wedding?”



Tina smiled.  “The name of a party company that can supply gold balloons.”





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Friday, March 29, 2013

Author Spotlight: RKARENA59


Author spotlight featuring Karena at The Real Todd Manning Blog (Karena Feature)

Best thing about this blog entry?  She's planning ANOTHER BOOK FOR US!


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Diamond in the Rough: Chapter 53

Jack sat in the main office, waiting for the guidance counselor, when Jenna came in, still in her jacket and scarf.  He watched her without saying anything.  He feared, more than anything, the she would respond to him as she did in his dream.

The next moment, she had spotted him, and smiled, and stood at the counter waiting for the secretary.  "I need a late pass, please."  She looked back to Jack and added a wave to the smile.

The secretary told her to sit down and wait a moment, so she walked over to Jack.  Sitting right by him, she said, "I was late.  I hate these kinds of mornings."

"Me, too," he said.  Don't be dumb and let it slip that you slept in your Mommy and Daddy's room last night.  "I'm really tired."

"Why are you in the office?"

"I fell asleep in class, again.  They sent me to see guidance."

"I overslept, too.  Do you . . . have nightmares?"

He swallowed, and said, "Yeah.  You?"

"Yep.  Sometimes they keep me awake all night."

"Hmf.  Me, too."

"I started getting them when my mom disappeared."

"I'm sorry about that."

"Thanks."

Jenna was called to the front for her pass.  "I'll see you at lunch.  I'll get extra food for you." 

He watched her go, her long hair swinging behind her.

***

Mitch was on his cot, eyes still closed.  He could hear his cellmate, Jimmy Testa, walking back and forth by the bars, like a caged lion.  He ignored him, continuing to shut the light out and attempt to keep napping.

Testa waited by the bars, and then stood still when the footsteps of the guard appeared.

"What do you want, Testa?"

"You know what I want."  he was uneasy, then whispered, "I told you what I want.  Did he agree to speak to me?"

"Your boyfriend ain't coming for ya," the guard said.  "Too busy with that sexy redhead."

Mitch, hearing this, remained perfectly still, eyes shut and continued to listen.

"Shhhh."  Testa was frantic.  In a very soft whisper, he said, "Get me out of here, I want to see the Warden."  Then, as an aside, after looking back to assure Mitch was sleeping, "My roommate, he's kind of, weird, ya know?"

"Ain't any weirder than you are, Testa."

"I wanna see the warden, Stokes.  Come on, do me the favor and ask him, will ya?"

"I'll ask him, but I know he ain't buyin,'" the guard walked off.  "Oh, and, watch out for bedbugs."

Mitch did not stir.  He remained quiet, as if asleep on his cot.  Testa went to his own bunk and stripped it, shaking the sheets out, and returning them to the cot.  He sat down.  Then turning his legs, he stretched out on his back, staring at the ceiling in wait.  After a few moments, Mitch said, without moving, "You, need to Heed the Messenger, my son."

***

Todd and Blair were enjoying the limo ride, her head against his shoulder, sunlight coming through the sunroof in streams onto their legs, and the cold from outside locked out by the doors.  Her hand was intertwined with his, and his other was holding his tablet.  He was reading.  She glanced down and caught something on the screen.  She read aloud, "The Eightfold Path."

He said, "Yep."

"This reminds me of . . . Sam.  Coach Sam," she said.

He looked at her, "Yep."

"Didn't he used to tell you . . ."

"Yeah, during that self-imposed Blair drought.  He did."  Todd remembered back to the days when he and Blair were not together; when he had made the mistake, in his panic of losing everything, to ask Tea to marry him to gain custody of Starr.  "Everything else might have been a joke then, but this, it's really not that bad once you start reading it."

"You.  A Buddhist?"

"Better than nothing?"  he smiled.

"I suppose there's a first time for everything."  She put her head back on his shoulder.

He read, "The Noble Eightfold Path describes the way to the end of suffering, with the goal of freeing the individual from attachments and delusions; and it finally leads to understanding the truth about all things.'  Doesn't that sound like it makes sense?" 

"Yeah, I guess it does.  Sure."

"Hmm," he went back to reading.  She smiled to herself, and checked the baby.  "He's asleep."

As they pulled up to St. Anne's, Todd closed the tablet, and tucked Ray's blanket in around him, carefully lifting the baby's head and pulling the back of his knit hat down lower.  Blair, watching him care for his son, felt a shiver of want as she saw him, so gentle, and so strong.  She said, "There, your Daddy is taking good care of you, Little One."

He said, "Like your Mommy takes care of all of us all the time."

***

"Oh yeah?  And who's The Messenger, you?"  Testa said, turning on his side to face Mitch.

"You have clearly underestimated the power of The Messenger, and that will be your downfall."

"You talk a little bit strange, there, Laurence.  If you are this Messenger, what is the message?"

Mitch, still not having changed positions, talked as though he was speaking to the ceiling.  "Follow me, I am the Lord's vessel, the Lord's prophet.  Listen to my word and do as I say, and you'll seek favor with Him."

"This is religious stuff, right?"

"Yes, religious stuff.  And you are insolent.  You should heed, before it's too late."  It's already too late for you, insufferable loser.  

"I don't believe in God."  Testa said.  "He ain't never done nothin' for me."

"He put you on this Earth.  He gave you Life.  Heed The Messenger or perish at His hand without warning.  He will strike you down, and you will be destroyed.  Destroyed in a manner that will stop your heart."

"No one's striking me down from heaven or anywhere else."

Mitch began to ignore Testa.  The man ceased to be amusing to him, and focused on his own plan.  Yes, he would see John McBain fall.  He would relish seeing Todd Manning suffer, in the worst possible way, when his first born son was taken from him, never to be seen again.  Unless, of course, Manning wanted to turn over every...red...cent. 

***

Blair got out of the limo, and he followed, with Ray's carrier, and they made their way in to St. Anne's.  They were greeted in the lobby by Sister Rebecca Katherine.  She said, "I was hoping ya might bring the cherub."  

Blair hugged the nun, and Todd leaned in to kiss her cheek.  She said, "Come with me, Bea's waiting in the solarium for ya."

Todd said, "How is she?"

"She had a nightmare last night, woke up with lots of questions.  The poor thing was shaken.  Dr. Levin wants to help her, but she seems to be afraid of him."  

Todd didn't answer; he was already sure he knew why she was afraid.  They continued to the sun room, and walked in.  Bea was sketching, dreamily, between looks out the window at the still-present snow.  The three of them, with Little Ray in his carrier, went to her table.  Todd stayed standing, Blair sat, with Ray at her feet.  Bitsy stood, and like a child, went to Todd and stood on her tiptoes to kiss his cheek.  As soon as she did this, she touched his face, and scrunched hers in question.

He said, "Momma.  Are you all right?"

She nodded, and pointed to his scar, questioning.

He said, "Accident.  It's okay."

Sister Rebecca Katherine was relieved that Todd did not explain further.

Bitsy touched the scar, slowly, and then went to Blair, and hugged her.  Blair said, "Oh, Bitsy, Hello.  This, is Raymond Manning."  

Blair lifted Ray from his carrier, and held him up so that Bitsy could see him.  She smiled as tears sprung to her eyes.  She touched his head, and petted it, gently.  She went to her place at the table, and wrote a note.  

Can I please hold him?

Blair said, "Of course," and stood, walking to Bitsy.  She handed Ray to her, and the baby woke at that moment, and smiled at her.  

Bitsy, her face filled with joy and emotion, looked to Todd, and then to Sister Rebecca Katherine, before handing him back to Blair.  

She wrote more:  He's so beautiful.  He is your baby, your baby with Todd.  He's not mine.

Sister Rebecca Katherine said, "Yes, Dear.  He's your grandbaby."

Bitsy slowly sat down, and everyone else did as well, Ray on Blair's knee, cooing softly.

Bitsy wrote, I still get confused.  All the time.  Something is wrong in my head.  I can feel it.

Todd said, "I want to help you, Momma.  But you're not letting the doctors help."

She took the pen, and wrote, I don't like them.  The white jackets, that's what they wore at The Jail.  In The Jail, they all wore them.  They did bad things to us.  They hurt us.

Todd read it and said, "I understand.  But I know a different doctor, maybe someone else who could help.  He helped me.  Would you try and listen to him?"

She shrugged.

He smiled, "Hmf, all right."

She nodded, and went back to her drawing.  It was of a flower arrangement.  She was carefully coloring it with her pencils.  Todd said, "Momma?"

She looked up.

He said, "Momma, I want to help you.  I think you should move from here to this place I know of.  It's near here, Blair and I will come and see you all the time.  It's beautiful, it has a lake.  My friend is there.  He can help you."

She handed Todd her note pad, where she had written, Will you be there?

"Will I be there when?  Will I bring you there, is that what you mean?"

She nodded.

"Yes, I'll bring you there.  I'll bring you and I'll help you settle in, and I'll introduce you to my friend."

He waited, and then she handed him her note.  Will Blair come?  And the baby?

He said, "We'll see about that, Blair?"

"I'd love to be there, Bitsy.  Yes, I'll come.  I'll bring Ray, if that is what you would like."

She nodded.  She wrote one more time, and handed it across to him.  If you want me to go, I will go.  I will talk to your friend, but I don't want him to hurt me.

Todd closed his eyes momentarily, and then said, "He won't hurt you.  I promise, Momma."

"I've met him and talked to him.  He's helped Todd, and me.  He's very nice, and he won't hurt you."  Blair added.  At this, Bitsy wrote again, and handed it to her.

Was he in a white jacket?  Did he come with needles, or did he try and hurt you with his body or his hands?

Blair said, "No, not at all.  He's been at our wedding, he's the person we named Little Ray after."

Bitsy smiled and then she nodded.  Looking forlorn suddenly, she turned to Sister Rebecca Katherine and tears came.

The nun said, "I will be with ya.  I'll come and see ya, I'll help ya get settled, too, if ya like."

Bitsy brushed her tears off her face with her sleeve, and Blair, noticing it, smiled to herself.

I will need you to be there, Sister.  You know about the sparrows, and you understand.

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Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Diamond in the Rough: Chapter 52

Tina had dozed off again, and opened her eyes to a scruffy, malodorous man staring right at her.  She shouted, "Help!  Get away from me!" and shoved him back.

A buxom woman, in her fifties, with salt and pepper hair, approached.  "Hey, Fred, back it up, now."  He went on his way to get his breakfast.

The woman put out her hand.  "I'm Helen.  You?"

Tina took her hand, cautiously.  "I'm . . . Martina."

"Hello, Martina.  Nice to meet you.  You're new?"

"Yeah.  I got here yesterday."

The woman squinted her eyes at Tina for a moment, and then said, "Well, here's the deal.  We serve breakfast from seven to eight and no later.  You're just about to miss it."

Tina felt the hollow ache in her stomach and said, "Oh, I am hungry.  I am glad you told me."

"You seem different.  What's the deal with you?"

Tina smiled.  "Nothing.  I just . . . want some breakfast."

The woman backed off, and sent Tina to a table, where she sat down, clutching her bag to her to protect the contents, however small they were.  Helen served her a plate of toast, eggs and bacon. With a glass of fruit juice and a cup of coffee.  "There ya go, compliments of The Boss."

"The Boss?"

"Yeah, it's just a thing some of us here say.  The Boss wants to be anonymous, but he pays for everything you all eat.  And, the manager, his name is Timothy.  He comes and goes on occasion, you'll meet him."

"Timothy?"

"Yeah, the guy's Scottish or somethin.'  He's around."  She walked off, wiping her hand on her apron.

Tina ate her breakfast, and had not realized exactly how hungry she was.  She cleared her plate, and drank all of her juice but skipped the coffee.  "I'm already a nervous wreck," she mumbled.  

The man who had been sitting next to her said, "What the Hell for?  You got a place."

She looked up at him, and trying to look past the tattered clothing and scruff, she saw a pair of deep, brown eyes that had a great deal of expression and life.  She said, "I'm Martina."

He put his hand out, "Anthony."

She shook his hand, but in her mind, she memorized the idea of hand washing as soon as she could, though it was softer and cleaner than she expected.  She said, "Pleased to meet you."

He said, "No, you're not."

She didn't know what to say, so she laughed.

Anthony continued, "I can tell something's up with you.  You smell too good."

"Thanks, I think."

"Never met Timothy, eh?"

"No.  What's he about?"

"Most of us have drinking or drug problems.  He's a recovered alcoholic, a lawyer.  He runs the place, for The Boss."

"Have you ever met 'The Boss.'" Tina asked.  She wasn't remotely interested, but it seemed like the thing to talk about.

"No.  Very few have.  There's a guy in here, I think, who's seen him once."

"Okay.  So this Timothy . . ."

"He turned me around.  Got me help.  He's taking on my case, to get me my house back from probate court.  I lost my family."

Tina swallowed.  Suddenly, the bacon was not sitting well.  "I'm so sorry."

"Yeah, me too.  All my fault, but they're gone."

"I'm sure it's not all your fault."

"It is.  I killed them."  He took his tray, and got up, walking off.  

Tina whispered, "Okay, this, is going to be a very long day."  She retrieved a notepad out of her bag and started writing small details for her plan.  Gotta get organized, Tina.  She began writing a list:

A)  Find a way to get to La Boulaie
B)  Credit card?  Trade with someone?
C)  Timothy.  Maybe he's nice enough to help a girl out.
D)  Helen?
E)  What about Anthony?  Can he help?

How to get there:
Walking.

Then,

A)  Find a way to get to La Boulaie
B)  Credit card?  Trade with someone?
C)  Timothy.  Maybe he's nice enough to help a girl out.
D)  Helen?
E)  What about Anthony?  Can he help?

How to get there:

Walking.  Out of the question.  Freezing.
Car or Taxi.  Maybe.  No credit cards.  Limo?

A homeless woman, calling a limousine.  She rolled her own eyes, then continued:

Bus.  Maybe.
Hitchhike.  That movie, though.  Not sure I want to take a chance of ending up as someone's love slave.  Unless it's Cord, of course.

I'll have to find out if La Boulaie is on the bus line.  That could be the answer.  Unless, I meet that Timothy first.

***

Blair was in the kitchen already when Todd came down the stairs.  He could see she was tired, having had interrupted sleep.  He said, "Hey."

She said, "Hey."

"You all right?"

"A little tired, but yeah, I'm all right."  She walked to him and kissed him.  "Thank you.  For being there for me.  And Jack, it seems.  He was in our room this morning."

"Yeah he was.  I think he had a nightmare.  Whatever it was, he couldn't talk about it."

"I'm a little worried about him.  Hope we did the right thing sending him to school today.  But at least, he's got support right now.  Breakfast?"

"All right.  I want to go see Momma.  Do you want to come with me?"

"Of course."  She wiped her hands, and put more toast into the toaster.  Buttering his, she said, "I think we ought to focus on our plan, get into our work.  Together.  Helping Bitsy, finding out some dirt on Mitch.  Maybe finding Jenna's mother.  Figuring out this mess."

He sensed what she was doing, "Okay.  We'll go all out.  We can start investigative stuff at the office, we can move Ray back into his nursery at The Sun."

She nodded.  "I was thinking the same thing."

"Okay, so we start after we go to St. Anne's.  Let's load Little Ray up with us."

"We're on the same page today.  I wanted to bring him . . . to see Bitsy.  I hoped it would help her and that he could meet her."

Todd just looked at her.  She was so beautiful, and there she was, knowing his thoughts and his heart before he had a chance to even ask her.  "If you're okay with that, it's what I wanted to do, too.  If she gets upset, one of us can take him outside or Sister can."

"This sounds good.  What's your idea of how to start our research?"  she asked, drinking her coffee.  She poked at a bowl of fruit that she had cut for herself.

He said, "I don't know.  Maybe the place she came from?"

"No luck there.  Sister Rebecca Katherine said that it closed down and that's why Bitsy came in the first place.  What about old followers of Mitch?  Would they know something?"

"If they did, would they talk?"  He took a bite of his toast, and washed it down with some coffee.  He said, "Where's the chocolate chip pancakes?  I'll have to cook tomorrow."

She laughed at him.  "Hmf, you're something else.  Go ahead, cook tomorrow.  One less thing for me to worry about, considering."

"You're a lot of things, but not a chef, that's for sure.  Though I do love your chicken, with the crispy skin and the mashed potatoes."

"Is there anyone like you, Mr. Manning?  Anyone in the world?  How many times are you going to bring up that chicken?"

"With the mashed potatoes, and no.  I'm pretty sure there's no one like me out there."

"Me, too, which is why no one can shake you.  Especially me."

"Only you," he said.  "I'm not too popular anywhere else."

"Oh, stop.  You have a growing fan club."  She flashed for a moment on Bitsy's face as she fell into his embrace for the first time.  He'd said, "I missed you," and Bitsy had nodded and used her finger to point to herself and then him.

It was decided, and forgoing the helicopter for the day, Todd called Williams to bring the car up.  After finishing the breakfast Blair made for him, Todd took her face in his hands and kissed her lips gently.  "Everything's going to be all right.  We're a team.  Who can beat us?"

She smiled, "No one.  The Mannings are here.  To stay."

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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Port Charles Chronicles: Chapter 56


       Walker put Sam to bed after he had fallen asleep during the movie.  The evening had gone much better than the afternoon, and he was pleased that Sam had stopped asking about Blair.   He looked at the sleeping boy. You almost blew it with the kid, idiot.  You should have realized he would be scared at first.   You’re going to have to take it slower.  He’s just a kid.  You just need to keep him occupied and he’ll forget all about Blair.  He left the room and walked down the corridor to Alison’s room.   He knocked.  “Alison, it’s Miles.  We need to talk.” 

       Alison opened the door.  She paused; Miles’ face seemed to shift and she felt a little dizzy.  Gripping the door, she swayed and blinked.   The dizziness faded quickly and she saw Miles standing there looking concerned.

       “Are you alright? You looked like you were going to faint.”  Walker feigned concern.  He waited to hear Alison’s response.

       “I’m alright, just a little dizzy, I must have gotten up too fast.  I guess it’s because I brought you his son, but for a moment, I thought you were Victor Lord Jr.  But, that’s silly.  You don’t look anything like him.”

        Walker frowned, this was an unforeseen complication.  He had hoped to keep Alison around to help him with Sam, but the programming was losing its effectiveness.  It was much easier to just get rid of her than to let her see him as Victor again.  She had gotten Sam for him.  It was time to send her on her way.  “I’d like to talk to you about today and your accomplishment.  Would you join me in my office in twenty minutes?” 

         Alison nodded and watched Miles head down the stairs.  A short while later she knocked and entered his office.  Miles gestured to a chair in front of his desk and she took it.

         “If you would begin, Alison.” Walker leaned back in his chair and listened.

         Alison told her tale and waited for Walker to speak.

        "So, if I understand you correctly.   You were forced to sedate Addie and you left her tied up in the room.”

         “Yes, I had hoped to get Sam out of there before she exited her bedroom but when that didn’t happen, I went to plan B.”

         “Did she see you?”

          “Just for a brief moment before the chloroform knocked her out.  I don’t think she recognized me.”

          “I see.  Did anyone else see you, after you took Sam?” 

          “I ran into the hotel manager and she read me the riot act for not being finished on the dumb floor, but she’s clueless. She believed me when I said one of the other rooms on the floor was a mess from a party, and that was why I was running behind.   She never even realized I was walking Sam past her in my basket.”

          “Sam said you threatened Addie.  Is this true?”

           Alison squirmed in the chair.  “Well, I might have hinted at it.  I needed him to be quiet until we were safely out of the hotel.  I assure you, Miles, all I did was knock her out with the chloroform, nothing else.  At dinner, he seemed to have calmed down from earlier.  Did you make progress with him tonight?”

         “Yes, I believe we’re going to be alright.  Alison, I’m afraid this is where we have to part company.  It highly possible they’ll be able to figure out you are the one who took Sam and I can’t have the police tracking you here.  I’ve arranged a private jet to take you to the Caymans.  There is no extradition there, and you should be able to live without worry about the law.  My associate will be here within the hour, that should be sufficient time to pack.”  Walker reached into his desk drawer and pulled out a manila envelope. “This should be enough to set you up nicely down in the islands.”  

          Alison was stunned, she took the envelope and discovered a great deal of cash.  “This is unexpected.  I thought you wanted me to stick around and help you with the boy.”

          “That won’t be necessary.  I’ll take it from here.  You’ve been a charming companion, but now that I have Sam, I no longer need your services.”  The cell phone rang and Walker looked at the display.  It was Tomas.  “I need to take this.  You should go, your ride will be here shortly.  Goodbye.”

          Alison stood up.  She was disappointed, but then she shrugged her shoulders.  She had money and a free ride to paradise.  She had repaid Miles by helping to get the kid,   He was right, she needed to leave.  She walked to the door and then turned to say goodbye.  The words stuck in her throat as once again she found herself looking at Victor Lord Jr.   “I... I..” She blinked.  What is wrong with you?  That guy is dead, you’re looking at Miles.  She fumbled for the door.

         “Hold on.” Walker paused his call and looked at Alison. “Yes, what is it?  Spit it out,” he was impatient for her to leave. 

         Alison shook her head and found Miles staring angrily at her.  “Um,  it’s nothing.  I just wanted to say goodbye.”  She left, still wondering why she had started seeing Sam’s father.  It wasn’t like she had ever really had much to do with the guy.  Get over it Alison.  It’s because of the kid.  You’ve got some packing to do.

         He watched Alison leave and got back on the phone.  “Okay talk, Tomas.  Did Zacchara’s lieutenants take you on as their new boss?” 

        “Yes, everything went smoothly.”

          “Excellent.  You’ve received the info concerning the shipment.”

         “It arrived by special  messenger this morning.”

         “I want no mistakes.  Do not, under any circumstances, mess with this, Tomas.  I know you hate Corinthos, but we’re going to do this my way.  As far as your other request, that is a go.  I’ll expect an update soon.” 

Just as he finished his call to Tomas, Calmar walked into his office.   “Good, Claude, you understand what I want?”

“Yes sir, I’ll handle it personally.”  They walked out into the front entryway and Alison met them at the bottom of the steps.  

“Alison, this is my associate, Claude Calmar.  He’s going to see that you get to your final destination.  Thank you for bringing Sam to me.”

Alison looked at the dapper man standing next to Miles. “I appreciate all you’ve done for me, Miles.  I’m ready to go, if you are, Mr. Calmar.”

“Mademoiselle, it will be my distinct pleasure to accompany you.  Allow me to carry your bag.” 

Alison was very flattered. She studied Mr. Calmar and decided he would indeed be nice to have along for the journey.

****

Several hours later, Walker heard the front entrance door open.    He walked out of his office to see who had arrived.  “Well, I didn’t expect to see you until tomorrow morning.  Did everything go as planned?”

“Alas, Monsieur Flynn, it is my unhappy task to inform you that Mademoiselle Perkins met with an unfortunate accident.   The FAA informed me that the plane disappeared from radar  about two hours into the flight.  They were over the ocean.  A search has been initiated but there is little hope much will be found.”  Calmar approached Walker and pulled a manila envelope from his pocket and handed it to him.

Walker checked the contents and smiled.  “That is truly a tragedy.  There is no doubt that Ms. Perkins is dead.”

“Absolutely none.  A plane crash over those waters will surely bring out the predators; and if by chance the plane is located, the occupants will look like they died on impact.  I must say it is a shame she died.  I found her quite charming on the ride to the airport.”

Walker nodded.  “I’ll miss her, but it was time for her to go.  She saw me for a moment instead of the image of Miles.  It was too dangerous to keep her around.  It’s time to reinforce Zacchara’s  programmed memories.  It wouldn’t do to have him questioning his actions in regards to his grandfather’s death or his part in Starr’s daughter’s death either.  When  the time comes, I want him ready to confess everything.  By the way, did you get Tea to back off looking for Tomas?”

“Oui.  All of her attention is focused on Daniella.  It seems Daniella has been receiving some threats at college and Tea is now in protective mother mode.  I believe she’ll be too occupied with that to worry about her brother.”

     “Good. Tea’s a handful I’m going to miss, but things happen.  With regards to her brother,   I want you to keep a close eye on Tomas.  I don’t want him to forget who he is working for and it’s up to you to keep the feds off his back.”  With that, Calmar departed and Walker took the stairs to check on his son before turning in. Things were finally going as planned.  He had Sam, Alison was dead and couldn’t be connected to him, and Tomas had secured Zacchara’s organization.  All was right with his world.

****

Tomas had just completed his meal and turned on the news to see if there was anything concerning the tragedy at the Metro-Court.  He frowned when he realized there wasn’t.  “That doesn’t make sense.  I saw them remove a body.  Why isn’t it being reported?”  He checked out a couple of other broadcasts, but they too had nothing.  “Stop worrying.  Blair probably didn’t want to have the story broadcast before she let Vicki know.  Poor Blair, I’ll have to reach out to her as soon as they let out the news.”  He smiled to himself, picturing his reunion with Blair.  She would be all in tears and he would give her his shoulder to cry on.   Soon they would be back together, this time with no Manning between them.  

He reached for some papers sitting next to him on a table. Time to stop daydreaming.  You’ve got more business to attend to.  He looked over the orders for the next shipment of guns due to arrive.  His newest associates had been brought up to speed and had their instructions for breaking into Sonny’s coffee warehouse, just long enough to plant the guns.  At the proper moment, an anonymous tip would be relayed to the FBI.  Sonny would have no idea what hit him.   He owed Sonny and he was going to get his revenge.  He had loved Carly and Sonny had taken her away.  As much as he would have like to take Sonny out the way he had just taken Manning, Flynn didn’t want him dead.   He wanted Sonny in prison and his organization wide open for takeover.  He did give permission to get rid of Jason Morgan and Tomas settled in to study his next target.  Morgan had tried to kill him and almost succeeded.  If Calmar hadn’t been around, Tomas would have really disappeared for good.  As it was, Calmar was able to grease the palms of Sonny’s goons and had spirited him to France to recuperate.  Turnabout was fair play.  This time Jason would disappear.  “Too bad for your wife, Morgan.  She and your son will just have to get along without you.”  He glanced at his watch.  It was only 11:00 pm.  It wasn’t too late. He got up and retrieved his gun case.  In minutes, his gun was loaded and he made his call.

  “Morgan, I’ve got a tip for you.  Someone is moving in on Sonny’s territory.  Meet me at Pier 37 and I’ll give you the info....  Who is this?  Someone who owes Sonny.  Just meet me.”  It was set.  In less than an hour, Jason would be swimming with the fishes, only there would be no Calmar to save him.

Tomas left his apartment and hailed a cab.  As his cab left, an unmarked police car pulled up and parked across the street.  They had the picture of the man they were to watch but had been ordered not to approach.  Uncertain whether their suspect was home or not, all they could do was sit there and wait.   Officer Carlson looked at his partner.  “What do you think this is all about?  Falconeri was sure mysterious.  Any idea who this guy is?”

Officer Hennesy looked back. “Hell, I haven’t the foggiest.  I’ve only been with the department for a couple of years.  I heard Falconeri say something about this guy having a past with Corinthos.  Could be this guy has something to do with the mob.  Whoever he is, our job is just to keep an eye on his comings and goings.  We might as well settle in, it’s probably going to be a long night.”

****

Tomas was standing in the shadows.  As he figured, Morgan showed up alone.

Jason looked around and spotted the man standing in the shadows.  “Who are you and what have you got to tell me?"

Tomas stepped from the shadows and fired.  

        Jason never even had a chance to pull his gun.  He  collapsed to the ground staring up at the man he had thought dead. “Alca.. zar.,” his lungs were burning, there was a metallic taste in his mouth.  He knew he was dying. 

        Tomas stood over him.  “You should have finished the job yourself.  Big mistake.  I owed you, and Sonny’s next.” Tomas fired one more time.   He waited until Jason was completely dead then rolled his body off the pier and watched him sink.  One more obstacle out of the way.  It had been a fruitful day.  Removing the silencer, he pocketed his gun and left.

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Monday, March 25, 2013

Spidey Sam: Chapter 8


Todd stood outside of Blair's suite door. He was about to knock when the door opened. Blair walked out like she didn't have a care in the world. Jack walked out carrying a very scared looking Sam. They walked to the elevator and, Todd followed.

"Hey where are you guys going, Todd asked?"

"We are going to meet Tomas for breakfast downstairs," Blair answered Todd.

"Hey, Buddy, are you ok with that?" Todd asked Sam.  "Blair, why are you making him do this?  The kid doesn't want to go, can't you see that Blair?"

"Sam, will be fine.  It's just a breakfast, Todd."

Sam held onto Jack for dear life. He hadn't said a word at this point. He picked up his head from Jack's shoulder. He looked at Todd with sadden and fear in his eyes.

"Jack, give him to me, he doesn't want to go, can't you see that?"

Jack looked at his mother to see what he should. He knew Todd was right and that Sam didn't want to go to breakfast with Tomas. Jack looked down at his little brother who he was holding. He then looked at his parents. Jack handed the boy over to Todd.

"Jack, what did you do that for?" Blair asked.

"Mom, Scarface is right.  The kid doesn't want to go and, I don't see why I should have to make him."

"Todd, give Sam back to Jack."  Blair said.

"No, Blair, I'm not going to give Sam back to Jack!"

"Fine!"  Blair leaned into Todd and tried to take Sam from Todd. Todd backed away and wouldn't give Sam up. He started walking with Sam in the direction of his suite.

"Todd, Where are you taking him?"

"I'm taking him to my suite.  If your boyfriend wants to explain himself he can do it in my suite where Sam feels safe."

Jack began to walk in the direction of Todd's suite. He stopped at Todd's door and waited for Todd to open the door. Todd walked into the suite still carrying Sam and Jack followed.

"Thanks, Jack for backing me up out there with your mom."

"I didn't do it for you Scarface, I did it for Sam."

"Well, thank you anyway."

"Uncle Todd can I go watch some TV, please?"  Sam asked.

"Are, you ok, Sam?"

"I'm fine Uncle Todd, now that I don't have to have breakfast with him."

"You, know your mom is going to bring him up here in a bit and you will have to see him?"

"I know Uncle Todd but, your here and I'm not afraid."

"Ok, Sam you go and watch TV now.  Your mom and Tomas will probably be here shortly."


Sam walked into Todd's bedroom to watch TV, leaving Todd and Jack alone for the first time since arriving in Todd's suite. Todd and Jack stood on opposite ends of the room just staring at each other for what seemed like forever.

"Why is Mom making him see that creep again, doesn't she believe Sam?"  Jack finally said.

"Jack, I think your mom doesn't want to believe that she could be wrong about yet another man."

"So what she is going to do is torture Sam to prove that she is right?"

"Jack, believe it or not, your mom isn't trying to hurt Sam."

"Why are you on her side?"  Jack said.

"I'm not on her side far from it Jack.  I just kind of think I know why she is doing this.  Besides, you and Sam don't have to worry about it, I'm not going to let Tomas hurt you guys ever again."

"I can only think of one way to keep Tomas from hurting us ever again, Scarface."

"I know what you are thinking Jack, and yes, the thought has crossed my mind, but no, I'm not going to kill Tomas."

"So, what are you going to do?"

"I'm going to keep you safe, another way."

"I'm not going to agree to living with you, Scarface."

"What, if it was what is best for your brother, would you do it then?"

"Mom is never going to let you have us without fight."

"I know, Jack."

"I don't think this is a fight you can win, not legally, anyway."

"Hey! Jack, you think you could knock it off with the Scarface?"

"You don't have to call me Dad, you can call me Todd.  It's rude!"

"So, was killing my dad!"

"I didn't kill your dad, he is standing right here."

"You know what I mean!"

"Jack, don't raise your voice at me!"

"Why, because your my father and I should respect you?"

"No, Jack that would be too much to ask, how about because your little brother is in the next room and he is scared enough without hearing us fight."

Jack didn't say another word after that last exchange with Todd. Todd and Jack sat in silence until their was a knock at the door. Todd got up from his seat on the couch and walked to the door to answer it. Sam heard the knock at the door from inside Todd's room, and he walked into the living room area before being called. Todd opened the door to find Blair and Tomas standing in front of him. Blair and Tomas walked into Todd's suite. Todd took one look at Tomas, and before a word could be exchanged between the two them, he knocked Tomas on his ass with one good punch.


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