Episode 187

Don pulled up to his mother’s house as he shook his head not totally prepared to tell his mother what was going on with him and Shannon. He got out of his car and walked up to the door. He knocked on her door as she quickly opened the door and smiled. He half hesitated as his mother Alicia held open the door for him.

“Don? What are you doing here?” Alicia questioned happily as she hugged him tightly.

“Well I have to tell you something,” Don sighed as she held up a finger motioning him to wait.

“I have something baking in the kitchen, let me go check on it and I will be right back,” she smiled running to the kitchen as Don shook his head.

He walked to the corner of the room where she had all their family pictures up. He was about to pick up a picture as he heard her voice call out.

“So what was it you wanted to tell me?” she questioned walking over to him and he took in a deep breath.

“Mom, I am kind of married,” Don informed her as she raised an eyebrow and put her hands on her hips.

“Why didn’t you tell me? Better yet why wasn’t I invited to the wedding?” she questioned sounding a little angry.

“Well we really didn’t have a wedding,” Don began to explain with a shrug, “We kind of eloped.”

Don grabbed his face after his mother raised her hand smacking him on the cheek.

“What did you do that for?” she questioned angrily as he began to stutter.

“I don’t know, we were kind of drunk,” Don informed her as he felt another smack across his face. “Mom!”

“Don’t you dare raise your voice to me young man,” she raised her eyebrow at him angrily as he quickly nodded.

“Yes ma’am,” Don agreed not wanting to be smacked again as she began to cool down.

“So this woman, do you like her?” she questioned seeing Don nod and sigh.

“I do like her, yes,” Don answered before thinking back to Shannon as he smiled.

“How long have you two known each other?” she wondered with a smile as Don hesitated.

“You mean the day we got married or right now?” Don questioned as mother frowned.

“From today,” she replied as he shrugged knowing what was coming next.

“Between a month or two,” Don stated as he felt his mother smack him in the face again. “Mom.”

“Are you dumb?” she questioned trying to control herself as she raised her hands in the air. “I thought I taught you better than that.”

“I know mom, but she is a really good person and…I love her,” Don informed her as she shook her head and raised her hand as he covered his face.

“I wasn’t going to smack you again,” she declared as he slowly unblocked his face and she sat down at the couch and patted it slowly. “Come here and tell me everything, I mean everything.”

Don hesitated as he slowly walked to the couch and sat down next to her. This was going to take a while.


Shannon shook her head slowly as she got to the bridge and saw Kyle at the edge of the bridge looking out into the water. She walked through the crowd to get to him as she smiled.

“Gee, I just can’t get rid of you, can I?” Shannon questioned as Kyle looked back and smiled.

“Yeah,” he slightly laughed before pulling the blanket that rested on his shoulders tighter around him.

“You must be cold,” she pointed out seeing that he had no shirt on and the rest of his clothes were drenched along with his hair.

“Just a little bit,” he replied before taking in a deep sigh not really knowing what to say.

“So what exactly happened?” she questioned seeing him shrug and turn to face her.

“Well when Grady saw Jade’s car hanging over like that, he began to freak out,” Kyle explained as Shannon nodded.

“How about we walk,” she suggested as Kyle nodded and they began to walk along the bridge. “Go on.”

“Well, we tried looking in the car and when Grady couldn’t see anything he jumped in the water hoping to find her,” Kyle informed her as remembering what had happened just recently.

“You went in after him?” Shannon questioned raising an eyebrow as he laughed.

“Yeah, pretty crazy right?” Kyle questioned as she shook her head and looked up at him.

“No, that’s just like you. You are injured, but you will risk your life still to save others,” Shannon pointed out with a smile seeing him nod.

“I couldn’t save Russell’s…or Jade’s,” he sighed before she shook her head.

“Why do you blame yourself when something bad happens?” Shannon questioned seeing Kyle shrug.

“Do you think she is still alive?” Kyle questioned uneasily seeing her nod.

“Don’t give up Kyle, that’s not like you,” she reminded him as he nodded starting to feel the same way he did when Russell had died.

“I know, I just don’t know what could have happened,” Kyle shook his head putting together all the clues, “It just doesn’t make any sense.”

“I know, none of this seems to make sense,” she agreed resting her hand on his shoulder.

“I mean it, none of this makes sense,” Kyle pondered before stopping when he saw Grady who was at the edge of the water. “He almost drowned in that water, he was so desperate to find Jade.”

“I think anyone would do that if they thought their loved one was in there,” Shannon declared as Kyle nodded.

“I don’t think she is down there,” Kyle informed her shaking his head, “I just have a feeling.”


Grady bent down looking into the water seeing him own reflection as he closed his eyes. Where was she? He reopened his eyes to see the reflection of Jade next to him in the water. He reached out letting his fingers skim over the water lightly.

“Grady,” Elliot called out as Grady looked back and stood up walking over towards his father.

“Dad,” Grady sighed as Elliot grabbed him in his arms hugging him tightly.

“What were you thinking?” Elliot questioned pulling the blanket tighter around him.

“I had to save her dad, she was in there and I had to,” Grady sighed shaking his head looking back at the water.

“You could have drowned out there if Kyle hadn’t jumped in after you,” Elliot informed him as Grady nodded.

“I know,” Grady replied before looking back into the water, “She is out there dad.”

“Grady, I am sure she is fine,” Elliot promised placing his hands on his shoulders soothingly.

“I don’t understand any of this dad, I don’t,” Grady shook his head as Elliot nodded.

“I know it seems all unfair Grady,” Elliot agreed as Grady took in a deep breath.

“I got out just for her,” Grady began as he looked up at the sky, “We were supposed to be together.”

“You will be together,” Elliot assured him with a grin, “Believe me Grady, she is okay.”

“I want to believe you dad, but I can’t,” Grady replied with a frown, “It is just so hard to believe.”

“I know, but you must believe Grady,” Elliot declared with a sigh, “You can’t give up one her, she never gave up on you.”

“I know,” Grady pointed out before shaking his head, “Where could she be?”

Elliot said nothing as he took his son into his arms. This wasn’t how it was supposed to be. Grady and Jade were supposed to be happy after everything. Somehow this was leading them in the opposite direction.


Avery stood frozen in the doorway staring down her mother as if this moment would last forever, yet she knew that this single moment would define the rest of her life forever. She inhaled slowly looking to the man beside Brooke and recognizing him as Travis Callaway. That in itself made Avery’s skin take on a prickly feel as her heart started pounding harder in her chest.

“Brooke, can you hear me,” Travis questioned patiently, his words cool and collected in a heavy contrast to Avery’s sudden paranoia.

Brooke nodded finally taking her eyes off of her daughter, “I can hear you.”

“Good,” Travis spoke up again, “because I have a few questions that I’d like to ask you about the ordeal you’ve been through.”

“Actually before you do that I think Brooke should have a few minutes with her family,” Brant spoke up making his way through the security guards around Travis to get in closer to Brooke, “She doesn’t need to be harassed like this just yet.”

“I’m afraid that this can’t wait,” Travis wrinkled his nose at him.

“It’s going to have to because she’s not up for talking, are you Brooke?” Brant asked his dark eyes trying to reach out to her.

“She’s cohesive and I really need to get this formality out of the way,” Travis snubbed Brant before turning to Brooke again, “Now Brooke if you could tell me about the person who did this to you. Tell me about the attack and answer a few of my questions, then…”

“Now isn’t the time,” Brant argued once more as Brooke’s gaze lingered over to Avery once again, “Avery would like to see her mother after everything that’s happened. Brooke has a right to spend some time with her family.”

“Look Ashford,” Travis snarled at him, “Don’t get in my way in this investigation. I need answers from Mrs. Morrison and if you don’t…”

“Avery and I came here today because we wanted to talk to Brooke about something a hell of a lot more important than what you need to discuss with her. Your questions can wait five minutes,” Brant added gruffly.

“And just what is so damned important that I can’t do my job? I was told that Mrs. Morrison was ready to talk,” Travis glanced over at her, “That was correct, wasn’t it?”

“It was,” Brooke nodded, her jaw tightening as her eyes glazed over with a certain darkness to them. She looked to Avery, her lips turning in a bit of a scowl as she watched her daughter, “I’m ready to talk.”

“That’s fine Brooke, but first Avery and I wanted to tell you about our wedding,” Brant blurted out desperately in the hopes of distracting Brooke long enough to get Travis to go away.

“Your what?” Brooke spun her head in a sharp movement in his general direction. Her eyes widened in surprise.

“Our wedding,” Brant squeezed her hand gently, offering a warm smile towards her, “I know you’ve been through so much, but since you weren’t around when we got married, well Avery and I couldn’t wait to tell you the news ourselves. She and I were just so happy about our marriage that we felt that telling you about it would take precedence over all else.”

“You mean you and Avery…” Brooke trailed off a sudden look of astonishment passing over her face before she eyed Avery suspiciously. “You married Brant?”

“That’s right I did,” Avery stepped forward taking a bold move towards her mother, “and my husband is here to tell you that he’s looking out for what’s best with me.”

“Well, that’s wonderful, but right now I’d like to get a statement,” Travis cut through their conversation directing his attention to Brooke again. “Now, do you think you can tell me exactly what happened the day that you fell from that window over at BBK’s offices?”


“You know I really think that we should make this a weekly ritual for us,” Hart confessed hugging Jenna in closer to him as they lay together on the bed.

“If we did that, I think we’d both be out of work,” she confessed with a tiny giggle feeling the warmth of his breath over the back of her neck as she sought out his hand, lacing his fingers with hers.

This morning in particular both of them had opted to have a ‘sick day’ and spend their time together in bed catching up on some very needed alone time. At first Jenna had protested to Hart’s proposition, but after a few very persuasive words, Hart had managed to get Jenna exactly where he’d wanted her to be in setting responsibility aside for a while.

“I’m sure we could live on love,” Hart teased lightly, nibbling on her shoulder just a bit before her head tipped back to look into his intense eyes.

“Love won’t pay the rent honey,” she pointed out realistically turning in his arms.

“Okay so I guess I can make it into work a few times a week there,” he shrugged his shoulders offering up a sexy smile, “because as they say there are some perks of being your own boss.”

“Yes and while I’m sure that you’re loving every second of those perks, the fact remains that I’m not my own boss,” Jenna groaned inwardly, “I have to play by the rules.”

“Where’s the fun in that,” he smoothed his fingers through her dark hair, “Wouldn’t you much rather make your own as you go?”

“Considering that I’ve already been suspended and put on probation twice--one of those times thanks to yours truly,” she patted his chest gently, “I’d say it’s safe to say that I don’t try to cause a stir if I can help it.”

“Jen, I know it’s been said before, but I think I owe you an apology about what happened before we were together. If I had known what kind of guy Patrick really was…” he started only to feel her press her finger in against the center of his lips.

“You knew, but it didn’t matter back then. You didn’t know me and you were looking for a big win,” she pointed out with a simple shrug, “You were just doing what you did best.”

“Yes, but I was a real jackass then. I wish that I didn’t do half of what I did in the name of making it big. I crossed a line with you and I’m just glad that you didn’t spend forever hating me for it,” he sighed heavily thinking back to his less than ethical win, “because if you’d wanted to do just that, you would’ve been completely justified in doing so.”

“You’re right I would’ve been completely justified, but if I had held a grudge, well then think of all I’d be missing out on,” she replied placing her lips over the center of his chest in a chaste kiss, “I mean let’s face it, we all make mistakes, but sooner or later we come to our senses and work on correcting them.”

“Is that how you felt about Devante?” Hart questioned thoughtlessly without thinking to censor himself.

“Oh please,” she rolled her eyes at his remark, “don’t tell me you’re starting to get insecure about that.”

“I’m not, but I keep thinking about how your mother kept hinting over dinner just how happy she’d be if you and Devante reunited,” he confessed keeping his hand over the small of her back as their eyes connected, “She wants us to be apart Jen.”

“And this matters, why?” she tossed back at him pointedly.

“Well, she’s your mother and I honestly don’t think she’s ever going to be happy with me being a part of your life. She sees me as being all wrong for you especially now that she knows about Sam,” he paused thinking about the situation that he’d happened upon with Beth.

“Look, Hart, I know it’s complicated, but if you think about it, my mother had a child with another man before she and Preston were together. He loved her unconditionally and they had something special, so why would your having a daughter be a problem for us? I mean it’s not like we won’t eventually work on a family between us one day, right?” she tossed back at him before she bit on her lower lip nervously. “Unless of course I’m just jumping the gun here on this.”

“No, not at all,” he shook his head adamantly, “I mean I’ll admit I never really saw myself as father material and I still don’t with Sam. I’d like to, but I mean how can I go in there and say, ‘Hey guess what? You don’t know me, but I’m your dad and even though I haven’t been a part of most of your life, I’d really like for us to have a father/daughter relationship with one another.’ It just sounds so…”

“So what?” she questioned curiously.

“So devastating. I mean you know my track record and for Sam to see that the man she thought was her father now isn’t but instead her dad is a jerk like me…” he trailed off.

“Hart, you’re not a jerk. You’re a good guy and sure maybe you’re a little rough around the edges at times, but I’m sure she’d be thrilled to have you as her father. You have a lot of love to give and I’m sure Sam would appreciate your being a part of her life,” Jenna urged him on.

“Yeah, well I wish I could believe that, but I have my doubts. Sometimes I wonder if I’ll ever be able to do this after Beth kept me from the truth,” he stopped himself another thought occurring to him, “but that doesn’t mean that in the future that I don’t want for us to take a stab at the whole family thing. In fact, it’s being with you that makes me believe that maybe just maybe one day I’ll get it right.”

“You will,” Jenna assured him, “and when we have children of our own eventually, well by then you’ll have already had this dad thing down pat with Sam. I have a good feeling about the both of you.”

“Jen, she’s a teenage girl--hell, she’s an adult in her own way. Do you have any idea what I’m up against?” he threw out a frightened expression.

“Oh yeah and it’s going to be hell, but I know if anyone can come out on top of this one, it’s you. I have complete faith in you Hart. I know you can do this,” she leaned down to kiss him tenderly.

“How is it you have found a way to feel so strongly about my actions and what’s ahead for me here when I’m not even sure?” he questioned blankly.

“Because as I said before I know your heart and I’m certain that if you stop doubting yourself, you’ll see the man inside of you that I fell completely in love with,” she explained honestly kissing him with a tenderness that soon grew in intensity building to a scorching fire between them.

“Jen, I so love you,” Hart whispered caging her in his arms and turning her on the mattress beneath him when the sound of the doorbell ringing filtered through the apartment.

She groaned, “Not now. I thought we were escaping the world today.”

“Think they tried paging you and realized you have your pager off?” Hart questioned with a tiny frown.

“I wouldn’t put it past them,” she hesitated thinking about her responsibilities, “but if something important is up, then I’m positive that they aren’t going to go away.”

“What gives you that idea,” he asked hearing the urgent ringing of the doorbell. Sighing inwardly, he rolled over onto his side of the bed watching as she slid out from beneath the blankets and reached for his shirt. She quickly wrapped herself up in it as he watched the material pool down just below her knees.

Turning to look at him one last time, she held up her finger, “I’ll be right back. I promise.”

“I’ll be right here waiting,” he winked back at her falling back onto the pillows as he started thinking about the things they’d talked about.

“You’d better be,” Jenna laughed lightly bringing the door to a close behind her. She shook her head before picking up her robe as well that she’d left on the sofa the previous evening. She eased into it before opening the front door to find her father standing before her.

“Jenna, thank God you’re here,” Douglas began pulling her into a desperate embrace, “I tried calling you, but when I kept getting a busy signal, I was afraid that something was wrong. I’d thought that something happened to you and…”

“And I was taking a break from the world for a while,” she confessed uneasily, not really sure how to react to her father’s embrace. Taking a step back, she attempted to try to be polite even though she was not really certain on what to say to Doug’s strange action.

“I was worried,” Doug confessed eyeing her intently, “Jenna, we need to talk.”

“Now is probably not the time,” she informed him pulling her robe a bit tighter around her body.

“I realize you might be a bit busy, but…” he paused giving her a long once over, “Are you feeling alright? Jenna, darling are you feeling under the weather or something?”

“Or something,” she explained with a small huff, “What’s on your mind Douglas? What’s so important?”

“It’s about your brother,” Douglas explained enthusiastically. “Jenna, Kipp is alive.”

“What?” she questioned in astonishment, “How do you know?”

“It’s a long story, but I was at my hotel when I got the phone call. Not only is your brother alive, but he’s here in Coral Valley. He came back to us Jenna,” Douglas hugged her again overwhelmed with enthusiasm as Hart stood in the doorway watching the exchange between Jenna and her father all the while wondering what the catch to all of this was.


“I’m so sorry,” Kipp attempted to soothe Heather’s tears as he held her closer to him. He felt his heart sink as she sobbed into his chest. Smoothing his fingers through her hair, he tried to ease her pain as she broke down in his arms, “I never wanted this to happen.”

“But knowing that it did, doesn’t make it any worse for you, does it?” she questioned bluntly tilting her eyes up towards him. “You hate me Kipp and even you can’t deny that seeing me in this shape feels like some kind of justice to you.”

“No,” he shook his head adamantly, “Heather this is the last thing that I wanted for you. Don’t you see that I loved you? That I wanted to spend the rest of my life with you?”

“You don’t mean that,” she replied biting back her tears.

“Yes, I do,” he continued painfully, “I wanted to share forever with you. I loved you with all that I was and when I thought I lost you…”

“Kipp, I never, ever meant to hurt you like I did. If I could, I would take it all back,” she confessed in between tiny sobs, “I’d go back to the first night we met and I’d do everything differently. I’d start over and…”

“I wish we could Heather, but we can’t go back,” he paused allowing a moment for his words to sink in, “we can only go forward.”

“I know,” she nodded before dropping her gaze to the floor, “but I’m just so afraid of what that will mean.”

“Heather, it means that we need to stop thinking about what it was that we did wrong and start focusing on what we did right,” he curled his finger underneath her chin to lift her eyes up towards him once again. Even though he could see how uncomfortable she was with him seeing the burns on her face, he stayed focus, paying no attention to them, “Heather we have a son. We might not have had it right with one another, but our son is proof that fate wanted us to make something of what we did have going on. That‘s what we need to focus on together.”

“What?” she questioned confused, “but Kipp I thought that…”

“I’m upset and I’m hurt, but I’ve had a lot of time to think about things. Being in a coma kind of puts a man’s life back in perspective and Heather, I have to tell you that when Kyle told me I was a father, it was the greatest news I’ve ever been given. Knowing that I have a son out there,” he paused choked up by emotion before easing his fingers into her hair to cup her face gently, “Heather, do you have any idea what that means to me? You’ve given me everything and now it’s my time to give back to you.”

“But Kipp…” she started again caught in a moment of astonishment at the sincerity behind his eyes.

“So we made some mistakes. That doesn’t change that fact that you, Charles and I are a family and I’d like to work on seeing to it that we give our son everything you and I never had,” he confessed leaning in towards her, his gaze dropping down over her lips for a lingering moment, “I love you Heather and time and circumstance hasn’t changed that. The fact that you did all you could to ensure our son’s safety when you brought him into the world just proves to me how much you did care for me. You could’ve done a great many things when you learned you were pregnant, but you put our son first. You chose to bring him into this world safely and that’s why I know in my heart that we can find a way to work things out. Heather we can have that chance at being a family for Charles--that is if you’re interested in trying to make it work…”

“Interested,” she repeated in astonishment, “Kipp, are you saying that you don’t hate me? That you want for us to be together?”

“More than anything,” he nodded in confession, “It’s all that I could think about when I was in that coma. Being with you--at least in my mind was the one thing that kept me from letting go of everything.”

“Oh Kipp, does this mean you‘ve forgiven me?” Heather questioned feeling him lean in closer to her, his dark eyes filled with obvious love for her.

“What do you think?” he questioned tipping down to brush his lips against hers in a slow, subtle sweep.


Sarah sighed as she ran to the door running outside to catch up with Diego. She saw him leave and she couldn’t let it just stay like that.

“Diego,” Sarah called out as Diego stopped and turned around slowly as he saw Sarah reach him.

“What is it?” Diego questioned angrily as Sarah put her hands on her hips.

“Diego, Heather and Kipp are just talking about their son and…” Sarah began trying to search for words trying to explain her sisters actions.

“You know you don’t have to give explanations for you sister,” Diego sighed as she shook her head.

“Believe me, I’m not,” she began as he cut her off once more as she tried to speak.

“Don’t worry Sarah, it’s okay. It looks like things are going right for Heather and I am sure now that Kipp is back…he can help her now,” Diego replied as he went to turn around and she reached out to him.

“Diego don’t go,” she pleaded with a frown, “I’m sure Heather would want to talk to you.”

“Sarah, it’s okay,” Diego began with a sigh, “I can see she is going to be happy from here on out with Kipp.”

“I’m not sure that is exactly how it is going,” Sarah stated as Diego shrugged.

“Well, by looks of what was going on, it didn’t look like she needed me around,” Diego pointed out as Sarah shook her head.

“She needs you Diego, believe me,” Sarah tried to promised him as Diego put his hand on her shoulders.

“Sarah, I would always believe you,” Diego began with a sigh, “You have to believe me, your sister doesn’t need me.”

“You don’t know that,” Sarah shook her head as Diego nodded with a smile.

“Yes, I do,” Diego laughed before looking down seeming slightly disappointed. “I have to get going anyways.”

Sarah frowned as she watched him walk to the car and she called out to him, “Diego?”

“I will be fine Sarah,” he promised her as he got in his car and drove away.

Sarah began to walk back to the front door as she shook her head slowly.

“Good job Heather,” Sarah laughed as she shook her head, “You hurt another guy.”

This one was a good guy too, that’s how it always went. Heather really never cared about other people, just herself.


“I just can’t believe this is all happening,” Jenna confessed taking a seat at the kitchen table beside Hart, “I mean for so very long Kipp was gone, but now to think that he’s back in town and he’s okay…”

“It’s a bit mind boggling, isn’t it?” Hart added with an air of skepticism. “I mean here your father has been unable to find him for months, yet Kipp just suddenly waltzes into town as good as can be.”

“Yeah, that part does sound a bit fishy, but I’m certain that Cameron has something to do with it. He’s always at the bottom of what’s going down in this town and…” she started to rant, clenching her fingers around the coffee mug.

“Yes, I realize that Jen, but at the same time, what would Cameron have to gain by Kipp being back in town? You said it yourself that he’s out to get Grady. Having Kipp show up would clearly work against this whole plot he’s had going against Grady, wouldn’t it?” Hart suggested pointedly.

“Well, yes, I suppose it would, but still…” she hesitated before shaking her head, “It really doesn’t matter. The point is that my brother is back and town and now I’ll finally be able to get a chance to know him…”

“And what happens when you take advantage of that opportunity and you discover that Kipp is just like Douglas and JT. You said it yourself that neither one of them could be trusted. If Kipp follows in that same kind of trend…” he started after a moment’s contemplation.

“Hart, I get what you’re trying to say here and you don’t even have to say it,” she cut him off abruptly, “Sure, I know my father’s a snake and there’s something about JT that I don’t trust at all, but with Kipp, well maybe he’s different. I mean when I was in the hospital with him for the brief time, I could feel something there.”

“Jen, he was in a coma.”

“I know that, but I’m telling you that there was this connection,” she sipped her coffee before shaking her head, “I can’t explain it, but I could feel it.”

“You were going through a lot at that point in your life. You were upset about the fact that your mother lied to you about Douglas. Things were all up in turmoil and I think you were reaching out for what you’d felt you’d missed most of your life,” he began with a heavy sigh.

“Hart, why are you so negative about this?” she gave him a sideways glance, “I figured you of all people would be thrilled by what this could mean for me.”

“Jen, I’m happy if you’re happy as I never wanted to see your brother wind up dead, but at the same time I remember how Doug broke your heart. I know how you had high hopes for a relationship with him, but then when he blew it…”

“That doesn’t mean that Kipp will follow the same path,” she paused wondering if she was wrong about her brother, “I at least have to try to get to know him before I make a judgment upon him.”

“I can’t argue that one,” he finally agreed with her, “but just be careful. I don’t want you getting hurt again. Just knowing that your brother was working for Cameron when everything went down, leaves me less than thrilled about the prospect of you getting involved in all of that.”

“I can hold my own,” she informed him point blank, “and besides, if Kipp turns out to be like Douglas, then you have nothing to worry about, but if there’s a chance that he’s anything like me…”

“Then I know you have to at least see,” he nodded understanding where she was on this point. “I just worry about you. You know that.”

“Thank you for your concern and I love you for that, but I can assure you that you don’t have a thing to worry about. I’m not going to make any hasty decisions on any of this after the last time that…” her words were cut off by the ringing of her cell phone. She groaned inwardly before looking to where it lay on the center of the table, “It never fails, does it?”

“Never,” he replied before reaching out for it. He placed his thumb over the power button in an attempt to turn it off when Jenna reached out to him.

“Hart don’t,” she caught his wrist before he could turn it off, “It could be work.”

“And you’ve got a day off,” he reminded her point blank.

“Even so, in my career, I’m always on call,” she confessed with a slight frown swiping the phone from him and answering.

A few seconds later she got up from the table alerting him that her suspicions had been correct. It was in fact work. Shaking his head Hart rose from the chair he’d been seated in and he started to pick up a few things in the kitchen only to hear her return.

“Hart, I hate to do this…” she began.

“But something came up right?” he questioned turning around to face her.

She nodded, her face darkening with the moment, “I need to go out to the Lake. They found a woman about a mile out of town and it looks pretty bad. They’re suspecting some kind of foul play and I’m needed down there…”

“Oh my God,” Hart’s jaw dropped, “Do you need me to take you down there?”

“I appreciate the offer, but it sounds like it’s pretty intense at the crime scene and they’re trying to keep it low profile before the media gets in on this,” she admitted with a sigh, “I wish I didn’t have to leave but…”

“I understand,” Hart replied reaching out to her and pulling her into his arms, “and I just want you to know that I love you.”

“I know,” she smiled up at him, “I love you too and that’s why I’m really glad that we’re able to have what we do with one another. You’ve made my life so wonderful in so many ways. I wish everyone was as fortunate as we are.”

“Yeah, well I guess we’re just one of the lucky sets there,” he grinned down at her.

“We truly are. Some people aren’t nearly as lucky as we are and that’s a shame,” she sighed leaning in to embrace him as she wondered what was waiting for her down by the water.


“Brooke, if you don’t mind, I’d really appreciate a statement,” Travis started once again his impatience starting to show after he’d been put off by Brant and Avery’s arrival.

“I’d actually like to speak with my daughter and my son-in-law first,” Brooke’s eyes lit up at the very words that fell from her lips. She looked between Brant and Avery seeing the way Brant had his arm wrapped around Avery protectively, “You two really did it? You got married huh?”

“That’s right,” Brant added once again, “I love Avery and I’d do anything for her--absolutely anything.”

“And Avery?” Brooke eyed her daughter suspiciously, “This is something you both wanted, yes?”

“Brant’s given me everything I need,” Avery added tightly trying to keep her hatred for her mother from coming through the surface in a room full FBI agents and police officers.

“I see,” Brooke replied before growing suspiciously silent.

“That’s all wonderful, but you can catch up on the details of this family reunion after I get my statement. Now Avery has given up her statement on how things happened, but I’d like to get your point of view on things Brooke considering that there were a few inconsistencies in Avery’s statement.”

“No there weren’t,” Brant protested loudly, taking a step towards Travis. His gaze shifted to Brooke. “Avery told you and Dave Warner everything there was to know about Bruce Mathis and his attack on Brooke. She told you neither one of them saw it coming when he leapt out at Brooke and did what he did.”

That caught Brooke’s attention. She eyed Brant with obvious curiosity before turning to her daughter. Her lips turned in the first beginnings of a frown before she looked to Travis once again.

“Back off Ashford,” Travis warned. “I came here to speak with Brooke, not you or anyone else.”

“I don’t care. I don’t need you harassing my mother-in-law,” Brant charged once again refusing to give Brooke an opportunity to take Avery down with Travis Callaway. He’d promised to protect her and now was no different than the day they’d gotten married. “She needs her rest.”

“And she can have that just as soon as we’re finished getting her statement. All I need is…” Travis started once again.

“To go away. Brooke doesn’t need this kind of harassment,” Brant argued his voice growing more agitated by the moment, “I can call security and have you removed if you don’t get out of here.”

“That won’t be necessary,” Brooke waved her hand dismissively despite the fact it took a great amount of effort on her part, “I’m willing to speak to Mr. Callaway.”

“No you aren’t,” Brant threw out a warning look, “You need your rest.”

“No, I really am ready,” Brooke insisted firmly, “Brant, I appreciate your concern, but this simply can’t wait any longer. I need to tell Travis the truth about what happened when I was taken by surprise at BBK.”

“Brooke, I really don’t think…” Brant started once again feeling a moment of desperation overtake him. He glanced over at Avery seeing that she appeared to be in another world as all of this was taking place around her.

“Back off Ashford,” Travis shoved him aside before stepping in closer to Brooke, “You tell me everything you need to tell me about what happened.”

“I will,” Brooke offered a weak smile, “because it’s long past time that you all know the truth about what happened to me. That you know that…”

“Brooke,” Brant began with a warning tone.

“Brant, I can’t put it off any longer. I need to tell them all about what that monster Bruce did to me,” she blurted out surprising Avery as she’d clearly snapped out of the daze she was in.

“What did you just say?” Avery questioned blankly.

“I said it’s long past due that I tell these law officials exactly what that son of a bitch did to hurt the both of us Avery. I don‘t want that son of a bitch to get away with a thing that he did,” Brooke replied with a knowing expression clearly letting it be known to Brant and Avery that she wasn’t about to turn Avery in. She opened her mouth to speak ready to recount the tales of Bruce and his actions as Brant pulled Avery into his arms relieved that somehow they’d found a way to silence Brooke with news of their marriage, but for how long?


“Go on,” Alicia laughed as Don seemed stuck on his words, “You met her at the hospital and you two got into a car accident with each other.”

“Yeah,” Don nodded before trying to think back to when they went, “And I followed her to this bar to make sure she was okay.”

“Just like I taught you,” she smiled as Don nodded trying to tell her the rest of the story.

“I tried talking to her, but we ended up getting drunk,” Don informed her as his mother frowned and shook her head.

“Not like I taught you,” she pointed out as he laughed and shook his head lightly.

“I know mom,” he began to get back on the subject, “Well the next morning I woke up with a wedding ring and her.”

“And what else has been going on with you two?” she questioned seeing him shrug.

“Nothing really, I mean we have had a couple of disagreements, but I love her mom…I really do,” he informed her as she smiled and grabbed his hand in hers.

“That’s what it is all about, love,” she smiled widely as he nodded, “Don’t let this one go if you truly love her.”

“I won’t mom, I am trying to show her how much I care for her,” Don replied as she nodded before thinking back to the original reason she was mad.

“Did you ever think about,” she began as he cut her off holding his hands up in the air.

“Yes, I have,” Don stated before biting down on his bottom lip, “I am just trying to tell her when she is ready for it.”

“Well, you should tell her soon…or she might never be ready for it,” she suggested as he nodded.

“I know, I am trying,” he agreed before thinking back to Shannon, “I just think we need to get closer first.”

“Well, give her flowers and do a lot of romantic dinners,” she demanded before holding her hands up in the air, “We love that kind of stuff.”

“Alright mom,” he nodded with a smile, “I will try.”

“You better,” she shook her head before looking back up at her son, “I don’t want you to lose this one.”


Shannon took a deep breath as she looked around for Kyle. This was going to be hard telling Kyle what she just found out. She had walked around and talked to a few guys who told her what was up. She finally spotted him sitting by the edge of the water and she walked over to him taking a seat next to him.

“You find out anything?” Kyle questioned taking a deep gulp looking out at the water.

“Yeah, I did,” she replied seeing him nod and she sat up when she saw the water get close to them. “You do realize you are going to get wet right?”

“Yeah,” he nodded with a shrug, “I already am so really it doesn’t matter.”

“I don’t think you want pneumonia along with the hurt ribs,” Shannon stated as she held her hand out to his.

He nodded grabbing a hold of her hand as she helped him up and he grabbed the blanket off the ground wrapping it around him.

“So what did you find out?” Kyle wondered hoping it was something good, but by look on her face, he knew it wasn’t.

“I don’t know if I should be telling you this,” she sighed knowing how he always took things so deeply.

“Shannon, just tell me…I need to know,” Kyle pleaded as she nodded with a frown.

“I know, but I just don’t know how to say it,” Shannon sighed as he laughed and ran his hand through his hair.

“She is dead, isn’t she?” Kyle questioned as his voice sounded raspy and worried.

“Well, not exactly,” she sighed as he shook his head and bit down on his bottom lip.

“What do you mean not exactly?” he wondered as she looked the other way, “Could we push all of the feelings out of the way and you just tell me.

“Fine, but it is rather disturbing,” she informed him as he laughed sarcastically.

“Well I am a rather disturbing guy,” he replied with sarcasm behind his voice, “So just spit it out.”


“Where the hell is my son,” Douglas snarled as he stood on the front steps to the Ashford mansion. “I know you have him here.”

“I’m not holding him hostage,” Sarah rolled her eyes wishing like hell she hadn’t opened the door to Douglas after she so foolishly believed that Kyle could be outside. “He came here all on his own.”

“To see that whore of a sister I know you’ve got hiding in here,” Douglas roared, “and I demand that you let me in right this instant to get him out of here.”

“Drop dead Douglas,” Sarah rolled her eyes moving to close the door on him when he pushed his way into the mansion, “Hey, you can’t be in here.”

“The hell I can’t,” he glared at her watching her try to block him from getting into the house any further, “Get out of my way woman.”

“No, this isn’t your house and I’m not about to let you make a situation here at my friend’s home when you have no right to be here,” Sarah argued with him boldly.

“Listen to me you…” he wiggled his finger in her face.

“You what?” she placed her hands on her hips standing taller in this showdown he’d instigated between them.

“You can’t keep me from my son. I know that he’s here and I demand to see him right this instant,” his voice vibrated through the room, “Neither you nor your sister are going to poison his mind. I know that he’s here and…”

“And I’m not about to let you insult me,” Sarah shot back at him icily, “You have no rights in this house and I want you out. If Kipp wants to see you, then he’ll do it when he’s good and ready.”

“Don’t take that tone with me young lady. I want to see my son and I want to see him now,” Douglas snarled down at her.

“Gee, well isn’t it a bitch to want,” she rolled her eyes at him before motioning towards the door, “but the fact to the matter is that your temper tantrum isn’t going to get you any closer to where you want to be. I told you once and I’ll tell you one last time, you aren’t going to bully me or push me around Douglas, so just get out.”

“Look, I’m warning you right now, if you don’t let me see my son right this instant,” Douglas started in an uproar.

“Enough!” Kipp shouted in response throwing open the doors to the room he and Heather were in with one another. He marched out of the room, using his cane to steady himself as he faced down his father, “You leave her the hell alone Douglas!”

“Kipp, son,” Douglas’s features twisted to that of relief as he took a step towards his son, “When I heard you were in town I knew that I had to find you. I had to see you and…”

“And what?” Kipp challenged.

“There’s so much I have to say to you--so many things that I have to tell you and,” Douglas began throwing his arms around Kipp in an embrace, but Kipp only stiffened. As Douglas pulled back, he noticed the rage brewing behind his son’s eyes.

“First of all you owe Sarah an apology for what you just did in coming in here like you did and second of all, when you’re finished with that, I think it’s long past overdue that you and I have a talk. We have some very unfinished business between us,” Kipp declared in a voice that let everyone else in the room know that whatever was next, trouble was sure to follow.


Jenna opened the driver’s side door of her car, seeing the flashing blue and red lights of the patrol cars up ahead. This was always the part of the job she’d hated the most. Sure, maybe working in the morgue was unpleasant, but it was in the crime scene situation that she always found herself most at a state of unease. Clicking the remote lock on her door, she stepped forward feeling the mud on the ground mush beneath her feet as she spotted a few uniformed officers near the water. She could smell the chill in the air mixed with the faint scent of pine trees and some kind of smoke in the air. Perhaps someone had attempted to barbeque on a day like today when the weather hadn’t been that horrible, she thought to herself remembering that there was a park nearby. Still, when she thought of what she’d come here today, she knew that whatever had happened to the woman who had washed up ashore, it couldn’t have been pretty.

“I’m glad you got here as fast as you did,” she recognized the officer before her, “We were hoping to wait for your arrival, but then someone else came in and…”

“Someone else?” she repeated blankly, “Who?”

“I did,” Devante explained stepping up alongside of her, “but I’m glad you’re here. This one isn’t pretty.”

“Devante,” she spoke his name watching the officer who’d greeted her walk away to deal with a few new gawkers in the crowd who’d stopped to see the commotion, “what are you doing here?”

“I didn’t get a chance to tell you the other night, but I’m transferring to Chelsea,” he explained quickly while motioning for her to follow him towards the water, “They offered me a position there and I’m taking it.”

“So this is really your territory then, huh?” she replied thinking about the small border that separated the two towns.

“Not yet,” he explained with a small sigh, “I don’t officially start until next Wednesday, but I figured that since I’m already sort of here, I could lend a hand. Plus, once I knew they were having you come in, I thought maybe I could lend a hand. You always were one of the best at this.”

She offered up a small smile at his words before turning straight to the point at hand, “So what are we looking at?”

“It isn’t pretty,” he confessed with a frown, turning suddenly serious, “This one looks like there was a bit of a struggle. From a preliminary glance, it looks like there was a possible sexual assault and she has rope marks on her body. I’m guessing some kind of asphyxiation, but we won’t know until we get her out of here.”

“Which means we have to work fast,” Jenna noted the setting sun in the distance before she looked to the officers around the scene, “especially since it looks like a class reunion down by the water.”

“Yeah, I tried to get them to back away from the crime scene, but you know how entitled some of the fellow law enforcement officers are,” he groaned inwardly shaking his head as he noticed two of the said officers engaged in a talk about the previous evening’s basketball game.

“Yeah, well don’t remind me,” she groaned remembering her fallout with Patrick.

“Yeah, I heard you kind of got slapped on the wrist for not paying one of them too much attention after I left,” he noted holding out a pair of latex gloves for her.

“Truth be told I wish I would’ve slapped him with something more before he brought up those bogus charges,” she confessed slipping into her gloves, “It would’ve served him right.”

“Yeah, well I wish I was around at the time. I would’ve taught him a thing or two about respect,” he shook his head at the officers he’d been watching earlier, “which clearly a lot of them are lacking these days.”

“Yeah, well right now the only respect I’m seeking out is that for the woman who washed up on the shore,” she replied pointedly weaving her way to the crime scene.

“I think I can help with that,” Devante assured her doing his best to shoo the officers away to give Jenna enough room. After a few minutes she made her way to the body.

Just as Devante had promised it was ugly--very ugly. There were weeds tangled in the petite woman’s long, dark hair and as she lay in a torn and tattered rose-colored slip, Jenna felt sorry for her. She’d never felt comfortable about this part of the job and to have people around who were more interested in talking about tedious trivia and swapping jokes at a time like this had her absolutely livid. Still, she had a job to do and that had to take precedence. She had to focus. Kneeling down to take a closer look at the woman, she felt her heart stop as a gasp fell from her lips.

“I told you it was bad,” Devante spoke from above where she knelt.

“This poor, poor woman,” Jenna replied reaching out to pull the woman’s hair from her face when she felt another gasp overtake her once she had a good look at the dead woman before her, “Oh my God!”


Kyle took in a deep breath not wanting to do what he was about to do.

“I have to do this, he is my best friend,” Kyle repeated to himself quietly as he slowly walked up to Grady.

Kyle put his hand on Grady’s shoulder as Grady’s head turned and looked back at him.

“Kyle,” Grady almost whispered his name as he turned to him seeing the expression on Kyle’s face. “What is wrong man?”

“I have to tell you something,” Kyle declared as he took in a deep breath and shook his head slowly.

“What?” Grady questioned a little uneasily before laughing watching Kyle look down. “What is it man?”

“Grady,” Kyle began trying to search for words as he felt his heart begin to ache looking at the expression on Grady’s face. The worry…the fear.

“Kyle, what is it?” Grady questioned quickly as Kyle gulped down deeply.

“The police found a body Grady,” Kyle informed him trying to tell him the rest. “It fits Jade’s description.”

“What?” Grady questioned with a half laugh. “Please tell me you are joking.”

“I’m not joking Grady,” Kyle shook his head wishing he was joking, “They pulled the body out of the water just a little while ago.”

“No,” Grady shook his head not wanting to believe what his best friend was telling him, “This can’t be happening.”

“I’m sorry Grady,” Kyle sighed as Grady’s eyes started to blur over with moisture.

“Please tell me this is a dream and this isn’t happening,” Grady pleaded as Kyle shook his head and tears started burning behind his eyes. “This can’t be happening.”

Kyle hugged Grady as Grady cried. Life seemed like it was all replaying over again. First Russell and now Jade.


...to be continued...