Episode 157

“Hey look Granny Smith apples,” Sarah smiled walking over to the tree as Kyle looked up.

“You know, they always say the sweeter apples grow at the top of the tree,” he informed her looking over at her.

“No one is ever going to get up there,” she stated watching him shake his head.

“I beg to differ,” he nodded grabbing the ladder.

“What do you mean? You think you are going to get all the way up there?” she questioned watching him put the ladder against the tree.

“Anything for you,” he smiled climbing up the ladder to a large branch climbing up the big tree.

“Be careful,” she yelled up to him as looked down and smiled.

She gasped watching him almost fall when he reached the top until he grabbed a couple of apples.

“Catch,” he yelled out dropping one apple at a time.

“Be careful coming down,” she insisted after catching all the apples.

He climbed down the tree carefully as he reached the ladder while she turned around trying to see Blake and Seth. They couples split up earlier, but it didn’t bother her. Kyle stepped onto the ladder as it fell back and he grabbed onto the tree branch.

“Sarah, a little help,” he got out grasping onto the branch as his feet dangled.

“Just a second,” she stated as he started seeing the branch break.

“I don’t think this could wait any longer,” he insisted before the branch broke and he fell down with the branch falling on top of him.

“Oh my god, Kyle are you okay?” she questioned running over to him throwing the branch to the side.

“Remind me never to do that again,” he growled turning around looking up at her. “Try those apples yet?”

“No not yet,” she smiled as he pulled her down kissing her lightly pulling her down next to him.

“What was that for?” she questioned with a smile.

“Hey, I should get something for almost killing myself,” he stated with a shrug, “And that’s the best thing I could think of.”

“Well next time don’t try and kill yourself,” she smiled helping him up.

“Try one of the apples,” he pointed out as she took a bite of one.

“Your right they are sweeter,” she smiled holding out one for him, “Try it.”

He pulled her to him kissing her deeply and he backed up, “You’re right those are sweet.”

She smiled shaking her head at him lightly, “Just like you right?”

“Exactly,” he nodded smiling.

“Maybe we should try and find Seth and Blake,” she stated with a shrug.

“Maybe,” he nodded wrapping his arm around her lightly.


“Isn’t this great?” questioned Blake walking hand in hand with Seth while his fingers gingerly pressed against the center of his palm.

“Yeah it is,” he nodded with a slight smiled finding himself amused with her.  This day had turned out to be something he hadn‘t entirely planned on, but still when he thought of what was waiting in Coral Valley, he knew he had to be upfront with her. “Blake, I need to tell you something.”

“Me too,” she smiled watching him nod.

“Go ahead,” he insisted as her eyes lit up with obvious enthusiasm.

“I asked Sarah to be my maid of honor and she said yes!” Blake jumped up and down as Seth smiled.

“That’s great,” he added watching her hug him now that she‘d taken the next step in planning for their big day with one another.

“So tell me,” she started looking up into his eyes, “When are you going to pick your best man?”

“Me? I don’t know…I have to take a look at who is good for the decision you know?” he shrugged watching her nod.

“You better judge fast,” she smiled kissing him lightly.

“I know, but it will take a while,” he shrugged watching her frown.

“I just want to be married to you.  You’re my life,” she sighed pulling him down and kissing him.  “We’ve waited so long already and I want absolutely everything to be perfect Seth.  I’ve waited my whole life to feel this wonderful.”

“I know, I can’t wait either,” he replied assuring her lightly.

“Maybe we should go and find the other two,” she suggested watching him nod.

“Before they get into any trouble,” he teased watching her smile and laugh.

“It’s not Sarah I’m worried about, it’s Kyle. He can’t seem to keep his hands off her,” she smiled with a shrug.

“Can you blame the guy? He is in love, also by the looks of things…she can’t keep her hands off of him either,” he reminded her raising his eyebrow.

“Kind of like you and me, isn’t it?” she questioned watching him nod.

“Yeah, it kind of is,” he smiled kissing her once more. “Let’s go find them.”

“Okay, but first, I need to do one more thing before we go,” Blake decided tipping up on her toes to give him yet another kiss, “Okay, now we’re good.”


Valerie entered the sports bar thinking about her trip to Seth’s apartment.  While she’d been calling him for days he hadn’t answered.  She was hoping that he’d connect with her after her run in with Jade, but alas things weren’t working out as she’d planned.  She’d even made a special trip out to his place only to discover no one was home.
“Where are you Seth,” she muttered under her breath making her way over to one of the bar stools with an impatient huff.
“What can I get for you,” J.T. questioned from where he stood on the other side of the bar.
“How about a gun to take out the most annoying woman in the world who keeps getting in my way,” Valerie scowled back at him before shaking her head at his surprised expression, “No seriously I was just joking, so how about you get me a dirty martini?”
“One dirty martini coming up,” he nodded back at her, “so I take it you must be pretty pissed off to make a statement like that.”
“And you must be pretty bored if you’re that interested in bringing it up again,” she rolled her eyes at him, “I mean don’t you have a drink to start working on?”
“Gee, with that attitude, I’ll just jump right on it,” he replied with a sarcastic smile.  Leaning in over the bar top, he eyed her intently, “So what’s really got your panties in a bunch?”
“For your information my panties aren’t even on let alone to be in a bunch,” she glared at him, “So why don’t you take that fact with you to your wet dream tonight and bring me my damn drink?”
“Hmm…I’m guessing you’ve been voted Miss Congeniality by your friends, haven’t you?” he barbed with her while stepping back to get that drink she’d requested.
“And you are probably most pathetic of all your buddies in getting your cheap thrills out of putting your nose in their business, right?” she batted her eyelashes at him despite her icy tone, “That’s probably why you got into bartending because you’re a voyeur who can’t get enough of putting your nose where it doesn’t belong.”
“Actually I tend to consider myself a bit of an exhibitionist, but voyeurism can have it’s perks,” he handed her drink over to her, “Your drink sweetheart.”
“Here, don’t choke on the tip,” she began reaching into her purse to pay for it.
“Save your money,” he waved his hand dismissively at her, “It’s on the house.”
“On the house,” she repeated with a tiny laugh, “What are you looking to get laid now?”
“Nah, I figure if anyone is as pleasant as you are, then they had to have a really rotten day.  You could use the drink especially if it lightens you up,” he noted with a wry expression.
“It won’t lighten me up to think that you’re worth my time if that’s what you’re hoping for,” she lifted the glass to her lips taking the first savory sip.
“You’re not my type,” he confessed taking a step back while wiping the top of the bar, “Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy a good bitch every now and then, but darlin’ you’re way too high maintenance for a guy like me.”
“That’s a lie if I’ve ever heard one,” she rolled her eyes, “because I know I’m every guy’s fantasy…”
“Except for the one that you’re missing like crazy right about now,” he noted with a smirk, “Let me guess.  He’s the one attached to the witch that you’d like to gun down.”
She sat in silence for a moment before cracking her first grin, “Okay, so maybe you’re not as dumb as you look.”
“Why, I think my ears might be betraying me as I believe that was a complement that you were issuing my way,” he smiled leaning in over the top of the bar again.
“Yeah, well don’t let it get to your head,” she sipped her drink again before shifting a bit on the chair.
“So tell me about the little witch that he’s run off with.  What has she done to get you so upset?” J.T. questioned with obvious interest.
“Let’s just say she’s moved in on what’s mine, but her days are numbered,” Valerie informed him cryptically.
“And she doesn’t even see it coming, does she?” he couldn’t help but laugh.
“She doesn’t have a clue, but it serves her right.  She deserves everything she’s going to get by the time I’m through with her,” she replied urgently, “I won’t let anyone take what’s mine.”
“I can see that about you,” he chuckled with mild amusement, “She’s in big trouble.”
“More than she could ever imagine.  Thanks for the drink,” she waved at him before rising up from where she stood, taking the drink with her.
“Wait a second,” J.T. called out to her, “I know you.”
“Come again,” she spun around to face him before offering up a tiny laugh, “Oh of course you do.  I’m Valerie Madison.  I’m sure you’ve seen my layout in Play Thing Magazine among other publications…”
“Hmm, well now that you mention it,” he gave her a very hearty once over, “that might be part of it, but there’s something else about you.  Your face and…I know it.  I saw you the other night at the bar here.”
“Is that right,” she gave him a sideways glance.
“That’s right,” he nodded remembering the show that Diane had witnessed that had driven her directly into his arms, “You were with Ben Walters.”
“Ah, so you have been spying on me,” she noted a smile tickling over her lips.  “You know Ben, huh?”
“Let’s just say that we have a mutual acquaintance,” he nodded in response, “Tell me something, would he by chance be the man that you’re caught up in right about now?  The one with the problem you need to eliminate?”
“Oh no, Ben’s just a friend,” Valerie paused giving him a once over, “but something tells me by the look on your face that you were hoping he was the one.”
“Was it that obvious,” J.T. grinned back at her, “because I was trying to be subtle.”
“Okay my curiosity is piqued.  What do you want with Ben?” she slid in closer to the bar.
“Nothing really, but there’s something he has that I want,” he mouthed in response an idea forming in the back of his mind, “but what about this mystery guy of yours?  Does he have a name?”
“He does,” she nodded, “and given that he and Ben are pals, you might know him.”
“Well, then don’t leave me in the dark.  Who is he?” he asked curiously.
“Seth Alexander.  Know him?” she raised a perfectly sculpted brow.
“As a matter of fact Seth and I go way back.  I just ran into him the other day,” he informed her with a smile, “You know maybe you and I should really get to talking Valerie.  I have the feeling we have a bit more in common than you thought.”
“Perhaps we might,” she agreed curious to learn more about the man before her, “You have a name?”
“J.T. Mahoney and I do believe that I could be the answer to your prayers if your goal is getting Seth to drop his latest girl toy and notice you,” he explained in a cocky, confident tone.
“Hmm, well something tells me that this so called ‘help’ will come at a price,” she eyed him intently, “a price that includes my friend Ben somehow.”
“Let’s just say I’d be doing Ben a favor along with helping myself.  So Valerie, are you interested in having a talk with me?” he suggested with the wheels in his head spinning in motion already.
“You know J.T. normally I wouldn’t waste my time with someone like you, but given the day I’ve had, sure why not?  I’d love to,” she replied wondering if this nosy bartender could truly help her find a way to regain Seth’s attention once and for all.


“Listen,” Zack started standing up, “I want to thank you for everything you did for my sister.”

“That’s not a whole lot,” Ken laughed sarcastically.

“What are you talking about? You were the only person who made her life good. If it was a good day or a bad day…if she was with you, she would always have a smile on her face. You were that one thing that was missing, that one person that could make her life complete. So, don’t ever say you did nothing for my sister because you were her everything,” Zack stated picking up a picture from the table.

“I wish I could have been more,” Ken shrugged watching Zack grab a couple of boxes.

“You were a whole lot,” Zack nodded grabbing a few things and placing them in the box.

“I know you have to pack up this stuff, so do you need help packing?” Ken questioned before Zack grabbed them out of his hands.

“I think that would be a little too much for you,” Zack insisted placing them in the box. “Listen man, I appreciate everything you have done…so here you should have this.”

Ken took the picture of him and Caitlin in his hands.

Zack watched him poignantly thinking about how much Caitlin loved Ken.  While they should‘ve had forever, he knew that fate had other plans for everyone.  Still it wasn’t fair, but Zack knew what his sister would want, “Don’t let this ruin your life…that’s not what she would want for you.”

“Thanks Zack, you really helped out,” Ken smiled despite grief he was feeling inside.

“No problem man, I will catch you around here okay?” Zack waved goodbye before Ken walked out of the room.

“Yeah later,” Ken replied taking one last look around Caitlin’s apartment before he left it behind forever despite the fact that he never wanted to let go.


Hunt walked up to the door knocking on it lightly before Mindy answered.

“Hey,” he smiled folding his arms out in front of him.

“Hunt, what are you doing here?” she questioned watching him frown.

“Remember we were suppose to go out tonight?” he questioned with a smile as he walked in.

“About that,” she started before he cut her off.

“What?” he wondered what was wrong now. “Don’t tell me you changed your mind and aren’t interested in us spending time together now…”

“No, it’s not that.  It’s…” Mindy began as the door opened further.

“Who are you?” questioned Brittany running up to Hunt as he bent down slowly.

“My name is Hunt and who are you?” he questioned with a smile.

“My name is Brittany,” Brittany smiled waving her legs back and forth.

“That’s a pretty name,” he smiled standing up.

“Thank you,” Brittany smiled running over to the T.V.

“Gabe?” questioned Hunt walking over to the couch.

“Hey,” Gabe smiled smacking hands with him.

“What’s new?” questioned Hunt.

“Not much how about you?” Gabe wondered watching Hunt frown.  “What’s wrong?”

“You see, I was suppose to take Mindy out, but she doesn’t want to,” Hunt frowned seeing Brittany run up to Hunt.

“I got an idea, we can go to the zoo,” she smiled jumping up and down.

“You see that’s not my decision,” Hunt started looking up at Mindy, “It’s Mindy’s decision.”

“Please, oh please?” Brittany begged jumping up and down.

“I guess if it’s okay with your father,” Mindy shrugged watching him nod.
“It’s completely fine with me,” Gabe nodded.

“Let’s go, let’s go,” Brittany squeaked pulling Hunt with her.

“Come on Mindy, we have to get going,” Hunt smiled pulling her along with him. 


“So what exactly happened last night?” Shannon questioned glaring over Don as he sat in the chair.

“Things got a little crazy that’s all,” Don shrugged, “Can’t say much more than that.”

“What do you mean crazy?” she wondered putting her hands on her waist.

“I mean we drank too much, ended up getting married, and then things got a little crazy,” he stated watching her jaw drop.

“How crazy?” she yelled out as he got up lifting his shirt up and turning around to show her the scratches on his back.

“That kind of crazy,” he rolled his eyes sitting back down.

“That’s it where is my racket,” she growled looking around the room.

“Why do you want to serve my head again?” he wondered watching her turn around.

“It’s not your head believe me,” she stated watching him shrug.

“Well tell me…why now?” he questioned closing his resting his hand against his head.

“You took advantage of me,” she insisted seeing his eyes flutter open.

“You have to be kidding me right?” he laughed. “You’re the one who started jumping me.”

“Where the hell is my racket?” she questioned looking under the bed to only look up and see it in his hands.

“You mean this racket?” he questioned watching her go for the racket as he put it behind him.

“Give me the damn thing,” she scowled watching him roll his eyes.

“Are you always this miserable?” he questioned watching stand up close to him.

“Give me my racket!”

“If you wont hit me with it, fine,” he replied handing it to her as she went to swing it at him as he jumped over the bed.

“I want to divorce you!” she yelled chasing him before he grabbed her hands and they fell on top of the bed.

“Before you divorce me, how about giving me the racket,” he stated before grabbing the racket throwing it behind him.

“Get off me!” she yelled seeing him look into her eyes for a quick moment before leaning down and kissing her.  For a second she fought him off, but after that she fell into his kiss…just something about him made him so dreamy. Then reality kicked in as she kicked him off her and he fell onto the floor.

“Ouch,” he shook his head as she stood up.

“See what I mean, you took advantage of me,” she stated watching him stand up.

“Come on, you can’t tell me you didn’t like that,” he smiled watching her look away.

“I didn’t like it,” she answered him hearing his laughter.

“Sure,” he nodded walking over to the door opening it for her.

“Don’t do that,” she scowled watching him shrug.

“Sorry, I didn’t know I couldn’t be a gentleman,” he rolled his eyes shutting the door all the while knowing that things were only going to get more complicated with each passing moment between them.


Guy entered the apartment trying to put today’s earlier disaster with Cathy out of his mind for a while.  He’d stopped off at the supermarket and purchased one of his and Gabe’s favorite wines and a Disney movie for Brittany to watch.  While he was certain that the wine would be something he couldn’t use for a while, he sure needed a drink.  Still he wanted to be pleasant as he entered the apartment so not to tip Gabe off about the disaster that his mother had put into his lap.
“I’m home,” Guy announced noticing that all the lights were out.  Immediately he went into a panic wondering if something had gone wrong in his absence, “Gabe?”
“I’m right here,” Gabe announced as the faint flicker of candlelight arose from across the room towards the kitchen area.
“What’s wrong?  Did the power go out,” Guy questioned making his way towards the candles only to discover a romantic dinner for two set up on the table top, “Gabe?”
“I’ve been waiting for you,” Gabe confessed from where he sat sipping a wine he’d already opened for them.  He was dressed up looking more handsome than ever as he smiled up at his lover, “for a while I was afraid that you’d never come home and I’d have to box all of this for later.”
“But how did you…” Guy blinked back in confusion, “I mean where is…where’s Brittany?”
“She’s out with Mindy,” Gabe informed him honestly, “and while it’s not too late in the afternoon here, I thought maybe we could steal in a little time for the both of us since it’s been far and few lately.”
“It has been a while since we’ve been able to spend some quality time alone,” Guy nodded in agreement before eyeing his lover intently, “but how are you feeling?  I mean if…”
“Guy, I’m fine…at least the parts of me that you need to be concerned about tonight are,” he motioned for Guy to take a seat at the table with him, “The way that I see it, Brittany and Mindy are out having the time of their lives together while Mindy is on a date.”
“A date,” Guy repeated with wide eyes, “as in a guy came over here and picked her up?”
“A very good looking one at that,” Gabe nodded in confession before reaching out across the table, “but I’m well aware that we won’t have forever tonight, so what do you say we forget about Mindy for a while and concentrate on this time we’ve got together?”
“I say it sounds like an incredible plan,” Guy couldn’t help but smile appreciating the efforts his lover had made in turning his dreadful morning into a romantically wonderful afternoon.


“Gabe is a lucky guy to have a daughter like that,” Hunt smiled watching Brittany lean against the bars watching the penguins not taking her eyes off them.

“Yeah, he is,” she nodded in agreement.

“Is everything okay between us?” questioned Hunt seeing Mindy look up and raise her eyebrow.

“Why wouldn’t it be?” she wondered watching him shrug.

“I don’t know, you just seem kind of quiet,” he replied watching her nod.

“Sometimes I am quiet, that’s just how I am,” she assured him watching him shrug.

“Okay…” he started looking over at Brittany, “You know what? You and Brittany have one strong thing in common.”

“What’s that?” she questioned with a smile as he walked closer to her.

“You both are so cute,” he smiled leaning in to kiss her before Brittany jumped between them.

“Hunt! Guess what!” Brittany squeaked jumping up and down.

“What’s that sweetheart?” he questioned with a smile.

“The penguins wobble like this,” Brittany stated wobbling around like the penguins.

“That’s so cool,” he smiled watching her keep walking as his cell phone rang. “Just one second.”

He took out his phone to see the caller id said it was Brooke as he sighed putting it back in his pocket. She wasn’t worth the hassle anymore especially now that he was trying to make a new start with Mindy.  Brooke could most certainly wait. He turned around to see both Mindy and Brittany wobbling around.

“Who was that?” questioned Mindy with a smile.

“No one important,” he assured her smiling down at Brittany ready to join in on the wobbling fun.  Today was about new beginnings and Hunt intended to follow through on just that.


Avery sat in the lobby area at the courthouse waiting for Jade to finish up her visit with Grady.  While Avery and Grady had exchanged a few, brief words this morning, she wanted to allow him and Jade some alone time together.  She knew oh too well what it was like to have that ripped away from you when you wanted nothing more than to be with the man you loved.  Still she found herself rather uneasy just sitting there all by herself reflecting on all the things she’d lost.
“Avery,” she heard Jenna call out from across the room.  Looking up she spotted her best friend approaching.
“Jen,” Avery smiled at her politely, but within a matter of seconds, Jenna threw her arms around her supportively.
“Oh girl, I’ve been meaning to see you.  I heard about Russ and I’m so very sorry.  If I would’ve known sooner, you know I would’ve been there to help you through this to…” Jenna began apologetically.
“Jen, it’s okay,” Avery offered up squeezing her hands gently, “There wasn’t anything you could do--anything any of us could do.”
“Even so I would’ve wanted to be there.  I still do.  It’s just before I was in the hospital and…” Jenna started to explain.
“The hospital?  Oh my God, Jen don’t tell me you were hurt in the explosion as well,” Avery’s eyes lit up with worry.
“It was minor compared to what others went through,” Jenna replied poignantly, “but the point is that it’s over now.  What about you?  How are you holding up?”
“I’d be lying if I said I was doing okay with this,” Avery confessed with a small sigh, “but we’re trying to keep things together the best we can.”
Jenna nodded, “How’s the baby?”
“She’s good,” Avery smiled thoughtfully, “She’s really good.”
“She?” Jenna repeated.
Avery nodded, “Russ was right.  We’re having a little girl.”
“Oh Avery, that’s wonderful news,” Jenna embraced her best friend before looking around the waiting area, “Look are you busy right now?  Hart is in dealing with a client and…”
“I’m waiting for Jade.  She’s visiting Grady, but I’m sure that she will be in there for a while,” Avery shrugged after a moment.
“Then how about a coffee?  We could go down to the cafeteria and talk.  Hart will be a while too I’m sure…” Jenna suggested after a moment’s contemplation.
“That sounds good,” Avery agreed as the two women made their way downstairs to the small cafeteria. 
Once they were seated in a corner booth, Jenna spoke up once again.  “So really Avery.  How are you holding in there?”
“I feel like this huge chunk of my heart has been ripped away from me.  It’s all so surreal because I keep expecting to see Russ come walking through the front door and tell me this was all a mistake,” Avery confessed fighting to keep from breaking down in front of her best friend, “When I think of how hard we fought to be together, well it just doesn’t seem fair.  None of this seems right at all…”
“That’s because it isn’t right.  Russ is a good guy and you two deserved so much more together,” Jenna squeezed her hand gently.
“Yeah, well you know I guess fate had other plans for us,” Avery bit back her tears, “but I wish that somehow he could be here with me and our daughter.”
“Avery, I know I’m not anywhere near what you’d need with Russ, but as your best friend, well you know I’d do anything for you.  Just tell me what you two need and…” Jenna began with an afterthought, “In fact, if you want you can come and stay with me for a while if you don’t want to be alone.  Hart and I had talked about moving in with one another, but I can put that off until I’m sure you’re okay.”
“No Jen, it’s fine.  I’m at home and I think that’s really what’s best is my staying there.  At least I can have the memories of Russ and…” she stopped herself suddenly realizing what her friend had said, “You’re moving in with Hart?”
“Well, he’s moving in with me really, but still…” Jenna waved her hand dismissively, “I’m sure you’d rather hear about it later.”
“Um, no wrong,” Avery shook her head in response, “I want to hear about it now, so start talking.  How did this come about?”
“Well let’s just say that things have been going good for us,” Jenna couldn’t help but smile, “really good.”
“Obviously and here I was missing all of the juicy gossip,” Avery smiled in response wanting to focus on something other than the drama that had been taking place in her life lately, “So spill.  I want to hear all about it.  How did this come about?”
“I’m not really sure actually.  We just kind of brushed over the topic one night when he mentioned it.  After the accident, well I just thought that maybe it was time to put my priorities in perspective.”
“Wow, that’s saying a lot considering that you vowed never to do the whole co-habitation thing with anyone after what happened with you and Devante,” Avery noted reaching for her coffee mug.
“Yeah, well Devante was a lifetime ago and I think that it all went the way it did for a reason.  Hart is just,” Jenna couldn’t help but smile, “amazing.  Avery, I really think that he’s the one.  Each and every moment I spend with him says that…”
“Then keep following your heart.  Clearly you’ve found that special someone and you shouldn’t even think about walking away,” Avery offered up brightly, “Love like that doesn’t happen twice in a lifetime.”
“No, it doesn’t, but love isn’t always easy either,” Jenna thought about the messy confrontation they’d had with Beth at the hospital the other day.
“No, it isn’t, but somehow I think you’ve got something specific on your mind.  What’s going on?” Avery questioned watching her friend’s smile fade.
“It’s a long story and I really don’t want to burden you with it…” Jenna frowned slightly.
“It’s not a burden.  You’re my best friend and I want to hear it, so spill,” Avery urged her on again.
“Well, the truth is that Hart just recently found out that he has a daughter,” Jenna blurted out with a heavy sigh watching Avery’s jaw drop.
“No, no way.  Are you serious?” Avery asked.
Jenna nodded, “And to make matters even more complicated she’s Wayne’s girlfriend Sam.”
“You’re kidding,” Avery’s eyes widened.
“I wish I were, but I’m not.  It turns out that quite a few years ago Hart had a relationship with Dr. Elizabeth Raines.  Maybe you heard of her,” Jenna started.
“Oh yeah, a real ball buster from what rumors are saying,” Avery rolled her eyes at the mention of the woman, “From what I’ve heard she’s got bitch written all over her.”
“Yeah, well the rumors are right.  She’s downright miserable and the fact that Hart has a daughter with her is something that I’m sure is going to be a challenge to our relationship,” Jenna sighed, “Granted Hart has no feelings for that woman other than contempt, but I’ve seen her try to throw herself on him and manipulate him.”
“And you think she’ll do it again,” Avery questioned.
“I wouldn’t doubt it, but at the same time I know that Hart wouldn’t take the bait,” Jenna brought her finger up through her hair.
“So then the problem is?” Avery gave her a sideways glance.
“That I don’t think Beth is the kind of woman to take no for an answer.  To make matters worse Sam doesn’t know that she’s Hart’s daughter.  Beth hasn’t told her and while Beth wanted to scream from the rooftop during the crisis that Hart was Sam’s father, now she’s trying to keep him away from Sam.”
“Okay, she sounds like she’s a bit off balance there,” Avery noted watching the expression on her friend’s face, “But how does Hart feel about this?  What has he said?”
“He’s not too happy to be linked to Beth, but with Sam, well I think he’s got mixed emotions.  Part of him wants to get to know her, but another side of him is afraid of what it could mean to the future…” Jenna continued to explain while fidgeting with the mug before her.
“You mean to the two of you?” Avery noted watching her friend nod.
“I think he’s afraid of what could come of it.  I think he fears that I would leave him as things get more emotional,” Jenna divulged honestly.
“Well, would you?”
“No, that’s not even in my mind,” Jenna confessed honestly, “In some ways I can understand where Hart is in all of this because my mother did the same thing to Douglas.  When I learned that my father was still alive, well I wanted to see him--to get to know him, but then when I saw him as he truly was, I almost wished I hadn’t.”
“So you think Sam might be in the same boat, then?”
“No, that’s not it.  I mean Sam already believes that her father is with her and alive.  She thinks that Travis Callaway--the man that raised her--is her true father and Hart is afraid to upset her.  He doesn’t want to disturb the balance in her life anymore than it already has.”
“But with a mother like Beth, he’s not sure he can avoid that, huh?” Avery noted again.
“Not at all and judging from the looks of things, it’s only going to get uglier before it gets better,” Jenna sighed heavily wondering if this was only the beginning for terrible things to come in dealing with Elizabeth Raines.


Jade walked out of the visiting area feeling a bit better about the situation after she’d spoken with Grady.  He’d been a bit wound up, so she hadn’t told him what had gone down with Cameron.  Instead she took the time to savor the few minutes that they’d been given with one another.  Each time she had to leave, she’d always hated that part.  That was one of the worst parts about him being locked up, well other than the obvious.
“Ms. Alexander,” one of the secretaries at the courthouse approached her.
“Yes,” Jade turned her attention to the woman beside her.
“Mrs. Denton wanted me to tell you that she would be downstairs in the cafeteria when you were finished up in here,” the woman explained politely.
“Thank you,” Jade smiled at her before turning to go meet up with Avery at the elevators.  While Jade had been determined to get Grady out of jail before, after Cameron’s little visit, she was ready to pour all her thoughts and efforts into helping Avery prepare her case.  One way or another they would show the jury who the real monster was.  With that thought in mind Jade stepped into the elevators ready to prepare for battle.
“Hold the elevator please,” she heard a woman call out to her.  In her normal polite fashion, she held the doors open only to discover Susan entering the elevator.  Frowning Jade took a step back watching as the doors almost nicked Susan in the process.
“Gee thanks,” Susan sneered upon realizing who she was standing in the elevator with, “Oh gee, now why doesn’t this surprise me?”
“Hmm, the fact that you’re still showing your face in this town is always a surprise to me,” Jade remarked snidely, “Oh and if you were coming here today to try to bother Grady, Avery has made sure that you won’t be getting that opportunity again.”
“Afraid of a little competition,” Susan taunted with a dark crimson smile.
“Not at all,” Jade shook her head at her, “because I don’t see any before me.”
“That’s where you’ve made your first mistake little girl because Grady and I are meant to be together.  Regardless of what he’s told you about being over me, he’s far from it.  I’m so deep in his system that he’ll never be able to let go.  You’re only a phase and once he gets over it, he’ll be right back to me,” Susan promised her with a cocky expression.
“Keep telling yourself that Susan, but once you get over your delusions, you’ll realize that you weren’t all that important to Grady other than you taught him what he didn’t want in a relationship,” Jade stood taller, stepping up in Susan’s face, “and furthermore, you can go and tell your boss that he’s not going to have me either.  In fact, why don’t you and Cameron do us all a favor and leave Coral Valley?”
“You’d like that wouldn’t you,” Susan moved in closer to her, “Then you wouldn’t have to deal with the knowledge that your days in Grady’s life are numbered.”
“Oh Susan, when Grady said you were an idiot, well I just assumed that he was exaggerating, but now I realize he was being polite,” Jade laughed in her face before growing suddenly serious, “Now I’m warning you only one time.  You and Cameron back off or else…”
“Or else what,” Susan couldn’t help but be curious by Jade’s threats.
“Or else you’ll wish you’d never set foot in this town again.  Neither Grady nor I will be intimidated by your little bully tactics.  Cameron is going to get what’s coming to him and so will you if you don’t back off,” Jade heard the doors opening on her floor as she took a step away from Susan.
“Is that a threat,” Susan questioned with a deep scowl.
“No, that’s a promise--one that you would see fit to remember,” Jade finished exiting the elevators.
“Oh you can rest assured I’ll remember because after this, I’ll make sure that you get something you’ll never forget,” Susan whispered watching her in a fury while vowing to find a way to make Jade disappear forever.

...to be continued...