This is great news, Blake explained excitedly after finishing
up with a series of phone calls. She looked to the notes that she scrawled
out in front of her once the wheels of the project started turning for her.
It couldnt be going better, yet as she looked over all of the things
ahead of her, she felt herself filled with a certain sense of enthusiasm.
Standing up she walked into the living room to see Seth, Ken and Wendy seated
in the living room watching a football game.
Oh what are you two doing to her, Blake wrinkled her nose at the show on television before moving in to join them, Wendy doesnt want to watch football all day.
The game is almost over Blake, Ken waved his hand dismissively at his sister, and were down only a few points.
You men are hopeless, Blake groaned turning her attention to Wendy, How do you put up with him?
Well, its not exactly a bad view, Wendy motioned to the men onscreen in their tight football uniforms.
Good point, Blake decided plopping down in Seths lap, Tell me something Seth, did you look that hot back when you were playing football?
Blake, youre trying to distract me, arent you, Seths dark eyes fell upon hers.
She curled her finger underneath his chin directing his eyes to hers once more before nodding, Yep and its working.
Blake leaned forward to kiss Seth again as Ken let out a cheer. Seth pulled away from the kiss to see that the game was over.
Damn, I missed it, Seth muttered under his breath before his eyes returned to Blake. He slid his arm around her tugging her in closer to him, but I prefer this much better.
Hence the reason I love you so, Blake stole a kiss from him wrapping her arms around his shoulders.
Okay, um kids, Ken cleared his throat, perhaps you should put that on hold for a minute since Im sure you have plenty to tell us about this project of yours Blake since you were on the phone forever.
Oh right, Blake tore her lips away from Seths. She wiped at his lip for a moment before turning to look at them again, So anyways I finished up talking to Monica and she said that there are great things ahead for this project. We already began working out the details of the party which is going to be held just out of town at the old Patterson estate.
Really? Wendys eyes widened in surprise, I didnt think that place was still functioning. Last time I was in town it was really run down and
They have been doing some renovations and calling it a historical landmark, Ken informed her quickly, It looks pretty nice as far as I can remember from when I was there last year for a seminar.
Really? Well thats interesting, Wendy sat up straighter, I remember my parents always thought it was a special place being on the water and all
Who didnt think it was, Seth laughed lightly, I think it was everyones dream to be able to afford to go out there.
Well now we all can because thats where the party is going to take place. Its going to be elegant and festive and full of the romance that Im sure will get everyone in the mood to pitch in and help with the project. Its going to be perfect, Blake boasted proudly.
Except for the fact that you never mentioned just who it was exactly that is wanting to invest in this project. Did Monica ever mention a name, Ken spoke up above her excitement.
Well no, but Im sure itll come up later. I was just too excited about the Patterson Estate. I mean how wonderful will that be? Blake waved her brothers concerns away, I want this project to go good and if we can get enough people together for a good cause, think about how much good well bring to Coral Valley. I think its exciting.
Still Id like to check into this a little bit, Ken piped in once more.
Fine, then you check into it and Ill plan the party, Blake decided with a wide grin, because I promise you all that its going to be nothing short of fantastic all around!
Cameron sat at his desk thinking about the day he had ahead of him. If he
didnt have enough on his plate with JTs issues, then all of the
things that Angela had going on around her were enough to have him completely
on edge. Sure, she was stubborn, but sooner or later he would find a way to
make sure that things went down as they were supposed to for his younger sister.
Then again, she had always been stubborn, but he would find a way to reach
out to her. At least he hoped so.
Knock knock, Thea popped her head inside his office to smile at him. A second later she sauntered into his office carefully closing the door behind her arrival, How are you feeling this morning baby?
Perplexed, he confessed spinning his chair around to see her watching him like a hawk.
Maybe I could do something to help you with that, she suggested sashaying over to him. She sat on the edge of his desk and flashed him a bright smile, You know the work environment seems to be so much nicer now that Susan isnt working here, dont you think?
Susan is irrelevant to me right now, his gaze barely cast over her legs before he met her eyes again, Death has done her well I suppose.
Its been great for me where shes concerned, Thea kicked her leg in closer to him gently pressing her thigh in against his fingers, So tell me Cam, what can I do for you this morning?
Nothing really, he shrugged turning away from her once again, I have things I have to take care of myself.
Well here, she pulled out a few pages that shed collected before coming over. She extended the papers to him and grinned proudly, these are what you asked for regarding Diane Stevens.
Camerons gaze fell upon the papers before he stood up and walked over across his office, Just set them on the desk. Ill get to them later.
Last night it sounded like it was something was up your sleeve with Diane, but now you seem so blah, she frowned back at him leaning in against his desk, What gives?
Lets just say I have a lot going on, he cast a look over his shoulder at her, Dont think that I dont appreciate your hard work, but theres another project I have in mind right now--one that simply is going to be even bigger than the issue with Diane. Granted, I did promise JT that I would take care of her, but really what did he expect from a woman like that?
JTs a whore himself, Thea shrugged in response, I dont know what he expects in general.
Regardless of what he was, hes my brother, Cameron reminded her point blank, However as I said before JT is not my concern. I have something else I need to take care of--something that is going to shake up this town in more ways than anyone ever imagined.
Then tell me about it, Thea suggested walking over to him and placing her hand on his shoulder, because you know Im always up for some action.
Of course you are, Cameron turned around to face her, a bright grin sweeping over him, and maybe you can help me with this one. You might be able to help me put the wheels in motion for whats next.
Im all ears, Thea curled her arms around his waist, Just tell me what you want and you can consider it done.
Oh it will be done alright, Cameron placed his hand on her hip tentatively, and when it is, nothing in this town will ever be the same again. That much Im sure of.
Im sorry Im not following, Avery started wearily
not quite sure what this man on her front porch wanted with her or Russ, but
there was something behind his brown eyes that had her completely on edge.
The way that he watched her closely as if there was something he knew about
her--something that he felt was familiar, well it had her a bit unsettled.
She knew she shouldnt have answered the door that fast, but with the
constant ringing of the doorbell she was hoping to avoid waking up Erin.
Im sorry, he seemed to soften his tone a bit, his face appearing less intense as he took his foot out of the door. His stance was a bit less threatening, but there was still a seriousness brewing behind his eyes. Of course his size didnt do much to settle Avery either given that he looked like he could very easily crush a man with his biceps alone. Let me start this again.
Okay, she nodded not sure if she should just close the door on him and call for help given he wasnt your average visitor these days.
Im Kevin Adonis, he held his hand out for her seeing her hesitance in making a move towards shaking it. He dropped it down to his side again, Im Seth and Jade Alexanders cousin. We met at the memorial for Jade.
We did? she questioned tipping her head to the side and straining for the memory of him. Despite her best efforts she couldnt recall seeing him there, Im sorry, but I dont
You were with Jades boyfriend when Cameron came in, he vaguely remembered her being there. Now it all made sense--the woman that had appeared to be so much like Angela was none other than the woman that stood before him now. He could see she was untrusting, but still he needed to speak with her. I was the one who got rid of Cameron. I pulled him off of Jades boyfriend and got rid of him
There was a visible strain behind Averys eyes as she fought to remember. Still seeing nothing more than a blur at the back of her mind she stood taller making a mental note of the quickest way to defend herself if push came to shove.
What can I do for you Kevin, she questioned wearily, her eyes still very untrusting.
I came here because I know your husband. I know Russ, he continued to explain to her knowing hed have to do a whole hell of a lot more than that to get her to allow him inside, He and I go way back with one another and hes helping me
Helping you? Avery raised a speculative brow, With what?
Thats a good question, Kevin thought to himself realizing how lame that excuse sounded before an idea popped into his head, Hes helping me with a book Im writing. Maybe youve heard of them. Ive written a few novels and
Well hes not here right now, Avery clenched the door in her fingers, I can tell him you stopped by though.
Actually I just spoke with him, he lied wondering if shed tell him where to stick it, I called him a little while ago and he explained that he wanted to meet with me here. I had my manuscript with me and
Her eyes fell to his empty arms, Where is it?
I left it in the car. Look I know this might feel like its one of those situations you want to avoid, but he began again knowing that he was really making a horrible impression upon her, but then again what did he expect to do with Russells wife? Had he not come over here to destroy the man completely for using Angela as his plaything before returning home to wedded bliss?
However, in his time with Angela, Kevin began to wonder if maybe hed misjudged the amnesia bit given how much the woman before him looked like Angela. Yes, hed seen her wedding photo briefly and hed almost died of shock at that moment, but that photo paled in comparison to the vision before him. Hell in seeing her like this, it even caused Kevin to feel himself leaning a bit towards the old habits of embracing her, but she wasnt Angie. She wasnt even close to it.
Look, Im sure you mean well and if Russ said hed be here, then Im sure you can see him in a few minutes, but I really dont feel comfortable with, she offered up hoping that hed understand where she was coming from.
Im not lying to you, he interrupted in one desperate attempt to get her to let him in. Only this time it had absolutely nothing to do with Russell and everything to do with the fact that she looked almost identical to the impossible woman that hed loved for so many years. He found himself intrigued by the woman in front of him and more than anything he wanted for her to invite him in--for her to give him a chance to learn what it was that had made her so close to Angie.
Im sure that you arent, but Im not really big on letting strange men into my house, she confessed with a polite expression, though it was clear she was trying to give him the brush off. I can always call Russ and
Call his brother, Kevin suggested straining to remember the mans name, Call Grady. Tell him who I am and hell tell you that Im the real deal. Or better yet call Seth. Hell set things straight.
Look Kevin, I dont know any other way to put this than for me to tell you flat out, Im not going to let you inside. I can see thats where youre headed with this, but Im afraid its not going to happen, she reached for the door again.
Wait, Kevin pleaded reaching into his pocket for his cell phone, hold on. I have something to show you. Look at this.
What is it? she eyed his phone uneasily.
Just look, he held it out to her hoping that shed at least take a look. With obvious hesitation she reached out to take the phone from him, her eyes scanning the image before her.
What is this? she couldnt help but ask seeing Kevin and Russell standing side by side in front of what appeared to be a waterfall of sorts.
Press that button right there, he motioned to the right arrow key, theres one more of him that a friend took when he was cliff diving.
Cliff diving, Avery repeated with a strange expression, When did you take these?
Look its hard to explain, but the truth to the matter is that I know where your husband has been the last few months. I know whats happened to him and if you let me inside, then I swear to you that this will all make sense, he pleaded with her seeing her resolve slipping just a bit, I promise you that you have my word when I say Im not going to hurt you.
I know karate, she warned opening the door a bit further, Im a black belt.
Funny thing, Kevin smiled at her feeling her let him into her home, so am I.
Thanks Augustus, Russ let out a breath of relief hoping that
Augustus was right about Avery having gone to their home to pick up a few
things for Erin. Still the fact that Russ hadnt been able to reach her
had him more than concerned. He looked to Kyle again with a pleading expression,
Can you keep an eye on things here while I go find her?
Sure no problem man, Kyle nodded with a small wink, I can keep an eye out for your brother if youd like.
Thanks, Russ fought to stifle the grin that threatened to reveal itself on his lips.
Actually Russell I was hoping I could have a word with you, Augustus interrupted their discussion, Theres something important that Id like to talk to you about.
Sure, but right now I really need to find Avery, Russell replied giving him one quick look, Weve had a rough year and given all thats happened, I dont really want her out there alone with Erin right now. Given what your son has done
Thats why we need to talk. I think we need to talk about my son and his actions, Augustus started up again uneasily. He looked to Kyle knowing that perhaps it would be best to continue the discussion in private, Can you find the time to talk to me later?
Sure, I promise, Russell nodded before racing off to go find Erin and Avery.
Well I guess its just the three of us pops, Kyle mouthed with a white, teethy grin turning to see where Sarah was. However, she was no longer at his side. Frowning he looked down the hallway to see that she was no where in sight.
She went off a few minutes ago, Augustus informed him, I think she looked a bit tired. Shed muttered something about phone calls
Hmm, Kyle frowned wondering how hed missed that in all of the confusion. Still he decided to have some fun for a while. Well I know shes got a lot on her mind. I should go check on her in a few minutes, but first, tell me something Augustus. Have you thought about any plans for our next party? Maybe we can have a mixer around here or something and really shake things up?
Why do I sense youre trouble Kyle Houston? Augustus gave him a strange sideways glance.
Because I am. Im the best kind of trouble and hey Ive got to tell you I know you were enjoying yourself last night at the party. I saw how much you were having with the girls, Kyle winked at him, In fact, hey you know we could make this a regular deal since you seem like a pretty cool guy.
I dont think my grandson agrees with you on that, Augustus mentioned nodding in the direction that Russ set off in.
Russ is just wound up really tight, Kyle waved his hand at him, hes been to hell and back and that really changes a man. It didnt change his love for Avery though, which hey is a great story Id love to tell you if you were interested.
Is this your way of trying to convince me that they belong together? Augustus arched a curious brow.
Is it going to work? Kyle couldnt help but ask in response.
Ill tell you what. How about we have a drink downstairs and maybe you and I can find a way to convey to Russell that Im not the enemy, Augustus suggested hoping that he would be able to find a way to reach out to the grandson he never knew he had. Maybe with Kyles help that could truly happen in time for Augustus to explain the truth to Russell on good terms.
Sarah quickly skimmed her eyes over the hallway before finally making the
decision to round the corner to where Brant was. She knew full well that she
shouldnt be down here, but given that having Diego in the house was
dangerous, she had to find a way to explain to him that he needed to leave.
The last thing she wanted was for him to slip up in front of Kyle--to say
something that would give away what the both of them had shared with one another.
Feeling her pulse racing in her chest she moved swiftly to the door taking
one last look before reaching for the knob and going inside.
Closing the door behind her Sarah felt a breath of relief escape her lips now that shed been able to sneak in undetected. She spotted Diego over by Brant, his eyes now upon her after hed heard someone enter. Immediately he rose to his feet, his gaze burning down deep into her as she approached him. She knew she shouldnt be here--knew that she should turn back, but she couldnt avoid this any longer.
Sarah, he spoke her name in such a tone that it sent shivers racing over her. Just the way he was looking at her now was making her uncomfortable--the way his eyes seemed to be making love to her
Diego we need to talk, she explained in a tight voice holding her hands at her sides in a nervous fist.
I know, he nodded before moving to the foot of Brants bed where he lay motionless before them.
Nervously Sarah motioned to Brant, feeling as if she could really damage everything if she wasnt careful, In private.
Its okay, Diego whispered in response reaching out to touch her arm, Kyle is mistaken. Theres no way that Brant is aware of whats going on right now. I mean theres always a chance, but from what I see, well, its something that I think only time can heal.
Then you mean hes, Sarah glanced over at him noticing that he appeared to be lost in his own world, never mind. Diego, you need to leave right now.
Sarah, I came here to see Brant, Diego frowned at her feeling her pull away from his touch on her arm, The hospital asked me to come over here.
And of course you knew that since I was here you couldnt pass up the opportunity, right? she snapped back at him, her dark eyes narrowing with anger, Diego you cant be here. You have to go. I cant have you around here when Kyle and I are
I didnt say anything to him, Diego replied his tone raising just a bit, If youre afraid that I will, then you dont have to think like that. Im not going to tell him about us.
There is no us Diego, she hissed her fingers digging into her palms deeper than before. She noticed the wounded expression on his face and she looked away from him, Our being together was a mistake.
No, I dont believe it was, he reached out to her brushing his fingers against her cheek lightly, Sarah, there was no mistake in my mind about what was happening between us when we made love.
Diego, we never shouldve made love, Sarah replied completely unaware of the fact that Brant was taking in each and every one of her words. Hed had his eyes closed for the longest time wishing like hell that Diego would just go away, but once hed heard the two of them speaking about making love to one another, hed practically choked in bed. He popped one eye open ever so slightly watching Diegos fingers taper off into her hair.
Oh boy, Brant muttered under his breath seeing Sarah turn her head in his general direction. He quickly closed his eyes again playing possum all over again.
Diego, you cant keep doing this to me. Im with Kyle now, she walked past him breaking the contact between them, I was always supposed to be with Kyle and only Kyle.
Sarah, that night when we were together you wanted me. I know you wanted me, Diego pleaded with her, his dark eyes filled with a sudden sadness, Im not saying that you dont love Kyle because Im sure that you do, but what we have
Can never be, Sarah cried out turning around to face him again, Diego we cant ever let that happen again. I cant risk losing Kyle by giving in to this attraction we have for one another.
But youre admitting its there. Youre saying that you are attracted to me even now, Diego searched her face for a reaction.
Diego I she bit down on her lip nervously before speaking up once more, Yes, I still am and Ill admit I cant stop thinking about what it was like to make love to you. Its still in my mind--on my memory, but it cant go any further than that.
Sarah, Ive tried to stay away from you. Ive tried to respect your wishes, but when I see you, he sighed heavily his face clouding over with longing, its like all of those feelings inside of me come to the surface all over again. I cant even be around Heather without thinking about you. Every time Im with her my thoughts always turn to you and
Every time youre with her, Sarah repeated feeling a sinking sensation in the pit of her stomach, What do you mean every time youre with her? Diego are you two ?
Shed like to be and on some level I thought that was what I wanted, but the truth to the matter is that theres only one woman I want--one woman I need, but I cant have her, Diego stepped forward in a bold movement watching her turn her back to him.
Diego, we can never be. We can never have what you want, she fought the tears that threatened to overtake her, and whats worse about it is that I know youre free to be with Heather. I know that you had feelings for her, but I hate that. I hate the idea of her being with you--of her sharing the same things with you that I did I hate
I havent been with her Sarah, Diego promised touching her shoulder gently, I havent been with anyone ever since we
Brant opened his eye again seeing that theyd moved to the other side of the room. Man, and Brant thought he was the only one having problems. If Kyle had any idea about Sarah Hell, Brant was usually good at spotting the cheaters, but never in a million years did he peg Sarah as one, but now that Diego stood beside her, his hand on her back Brant knew the trouble was only beginning.
Sarah look at me, Diego reached out to nudge her around to face him. Her tear-filled eyes met his with a sniffle, If you tell me that you want me to stay away from Heather, I will. If thats what would make you happy
Diego, I cant tell you what to do with your life. It wouldnt be fair, she explained with a tiny sob, but the idea of you being with her of her being in your life like
Sarah, I thought that I could have something like that with her once, but that was before I met you, he brushed the tears from her face, even now I cant help but think about how you turned my world around. When I lost Maria I thought that Id never find love again, but then you walked into my life. Of course the joke is on me given that you werent mine to have in the first place.
Diego, if only things were different, but they arent. Kyle and I are together again and she began in between tiny sobs.
He loves you. I know he loves you and hes a good man. You two had happiness before I entered your life and I want to see to it that you still have it, he took a step back lowering his gaze to the floor, The last thing I ever wanted to do was hurt you Sarah. I never meant to complicate your life.
Im the one who complicated it. Im the one who let you in and Im the one, she stopped herself knowing that he would walk out of her life forever if that was what she asked. The reality was that wasnt at all what she wanted. She cared about Diego--felt things for him that shed never intended to, never wanted to and now when her life was hanging by a balance between having everything shed ever wanted and everything she knew she should never have, she couldnt help but want to hold onto the one thing that had pulled her from her darkest moment. She took a step forward feeling her heart pounding with fear, Im the one who doesnt want to let go. Diego, I dont want you to walk out of my life.
Sarah, his eyes snapped up to meet hers finding her standing right before him, her hand pressed in against his chest.
I shouldnt feel it I shouldnt keep dreaming about you, but I have, she revealed her fingers fanning out over his chest, Even now I can taste your lips on mine, feel your body over me, know what it was like for us to be as one. When I think about our making love I realize that it wasnt enough--that it could ever be enough in ending it there
But it doesnt have to end there. If thats really how you feel, his fingers teased into her long blonde hair, If you want me
I want you like nothing you can imagine, she revealed her gaze dropping to his lips longing to kiss them again, I want to make love to you again and again and share what we did before, but Kyle
Sarah if you really love Kyle then you and I wouldnt be drawn to one another like this, his arm slipped around her waist pulling her in to him, If we werent meant to happen, then neither one of us would be feeling this way neither one of us would be wanting one another like this
I cant want you, she blurted out between small sobs, I cant love you because Kyle and I were supposed to have happily ever after were supposed to
I love you Sarah, Diego mouthed unable to refrain from kissing her a moment longer. His lips plunged in over hers tasting the saltiness of her tears burning deep down to his heart. Her fingers bit into his shoulders and before he knew it, her arms were wrapped around him needy and hungry for his touch.
Diego, she breathed his name tearing her lips away from his. Their eyes connected in a moment of understanding and fear, but the passion between them was far too strong to walk away from it, I shouldnt be doing this. I shouldnt be kissing you and wanting you I shouldnt be
But do you want to be, he couldnt help but ask feeling her arm slide around his waist squeezing him closer to her.
She remained silent for a moment, her damp lashes revealing dark eyes filled with conflict and fear. There was so much she needed to say, so much she wasnt saying and yet, in that moment of complete confusion and turmoil everything somehow made sense.
Sarah, he spoke her name dragging his thumb over her bottom lip in a feathery light motion.
Yes, oh God yes, she announced throwing her arms around him and guiding his mouth to hers for another hot, desperate kiss, Diego I want you. Heaven help me, but I do.
Thats all I needed to hear, Diego kissed her in response, his tongue meeting with hers in an urgent tangle as Brant fought like hell to keep quiet about the shock of a lifetime that was taking place right before his very eyes!
Guy stepped into his office taking a long look around and finding himself
thinking about all the times hed spent hour after endless hour working
overtime trying to make life easier for his mother. Time after time hed
tried to do everything in his power to make her happy, but when the harsh
reality of it was that Brooke was doing absolutely everything in her power
to work against her children. Thinking about what Brooke did to Avery not
only infuriated Guy, but it made him sick. A tiny shudder raced through him
as he tried not to focus on all that had happened.
You know youre going to run your company into the ground if you just stand there all day, Mindys voice roused him from tortured thoughts.
Hey, what are you doing here? Guy spun around to see his best friend leaning in the doorway to his office, a smile on her face.
I thought maybe you might need a hand around here today, she explained taking a small step towards him, Or at least a push.
But I thought that you were busy that you had plans he replied with a puzzled expression.
Well I did, but I thought I would take a side trip to check on my best friend, she informed him with a bright smile, and its a good thing that I did because hes obviously in need of a shoulder to cry in or at the very least a kick in the butt to motivate him to pull things together for this company.
Honestly in being here all I can think about is my he stopped himself refusing to say the word, Brooke.
Yeah, well that doesnt surprise me given that this is her company, but what you have to remember is that this is a part of you as well. Guy you dedicated so many years to making this place incredible, Mindy encouraged him on walking in closer to him, You put your heart into this company and
And everything was built on lies. My mother manipulated the world to do her bidding and so many things were destroyed in building up Beholder. Even now when I think about all shes done he shuddered remembering only too well what his mothers actions had cost everyone.
Stop thinking about what shes done, Mindy shoved him slightly urging him in over towards his desk, and start thinking about what you can do to show that youre in control here. I mean surely there is a new lip gloss or lipstick that you want to start promoting right?
Theres a lot more to the cosmetics industry than just a new lip gloss, he shook his head at her before offering up a small laugh, though something tells me you couldnt care about the cosmetics.
Okay, so maybe Im not totally prissy like most women and yeah Im not big on the whole make up thing, but I am big on you, she reached for his chair patting it gently, and I want you to get back in the saddle again so to speak.
Mindy, its not going to be that easy, Guy started watching her tap the chair once again.
Guy, just quit your whining and take a seat, she pointed to the mess on his desk, We have a lot of work cut out ahead of us.
Mindy, you know absolutely nothing about this business, he shook his head at her reluctantly making his way over to his seat. This isnt at all your cup of tea. Besides, I thought you had a date.
I do have a date and Ill get to that later, but right now, she pushed him into the chair, I am going to stay here and bug you to the point of no return simply because I know how much this company means to you. Youre going to do what you can to make sure the world overlooks what your mother has done wrong. I want people to see Beholder in a new light--in such a way that the name Guy Morrison will be one of awe and intrigue and most of all it will be something that has women running out to try Beholder Cosmetics because you are just that damn good.
Okay, now youre going overboard, Guy couldnt help but laugh at her watching her wave her hands around in the air excitedly.
Hey, Im a writer. When I want to make miracles happen I just do it, she placed her hands on her hips stubbornly before raising her hand again. She started to snap her fingers in the air, So what do you say? Shall we get to work and see what we can put out today?
Mindy were not going to change the business in one day, he couldnt help but find himself amused with the way she was parading around his office.
Oh of course we can, she stopped to look at a plant that was on one of the filing cabinets. She reached for it and carried it over to the trash can. We can make the world more beautiful starting with this.
Mindy what are you doing? Guys eyes widened as she dumped the plant into the trash can.
This is ugly, she informed him matter of fact before walking over to the door to his office. She stepped outside and returned moments later with a box. Carrying it over to his desk she set it down on the center and pointed to it, Open this.
What is it? he questioned with a weary eye seeing the sparkle behind her eyes as she stifled a laugh.
Just open it, she insisted giving him a very stern look.
He did as instructed and opened the box only to find a dancing and singing Elvis lamp inside. Looking up at her, he couldnt help but laugh at how hideous it looked wearing a white jumpsuit and dark sunglasses. He reached out to it ready to place it back into the box when a classic Elvis tune started to play. He groaned.
Mindy this is hideous. I think I want my plant back, he started to argue seeing her sweep up the lamp and carry it over to the place where shed taken the plant from.
Nope, sorry. I cant do it, she set the lamp down carefully, because you need to learn how to laugh and enjoy life. You need something so ridiculous that every time you look at it youll think about me and about how fun things can be, she pointed to the lamp again, Elvis over there sings about fifteen songs and hes promised me that hes going to make sure that you do find a way to have fun at work.
You know Im just going to take that down when you leave, right? Guy admitted freely seeing her glare down at him.
You do it and youll be sleeping with the fishes, she snarled doing her best gangster impression, You dont want to piss me off Guy because it could get ugly, very ugly.
Nope Im afraid not, Guy shook his head at her, because as long as Im in the world, things will be beautiful. Thats what Beholder is all about--making the world beautiful.
Then lets get started beautifying things, Mindy sank into the chair across from him, Tell me all about the stuff I need to get myself feeling beautiful and Ill help you find a way to market it so that every female on the planet feels that she needs to buy it.
Whats in it for you? Guy arched a curious brow. I mean you couldnt have just come over here to make me shudder with that lamp and get me motivated?
Well I could have, but I didnt, she waved her hand at him, but lets just say I dont have anything in particular in mind. I just wanted to do something for you so that when the day comes around again that I need you to do something for me, you wont refuse.
He laughed at her, Okay, well since we got that clear, what do you think we should start with?
How about we hold all your calls and go to lunch, Mindy suggested with a wiggle of her brow.
But I just got to work and he spoke up only to feel her tug on his arm and yank him out of his chair.
Well you cant start on an empty stomach, so lets go, Mindy decided dragging him out of his office in the hopes of finding a way to get him motivated enough to have a good time so that he wouldnt find himself dwelling on the bad times.
Oh well, Im sorry, Nate began in a sarcastic tone as he
shrugged his shoulders taking a step back away from Trisha and Chase, I
mean, I would have never even talked to her if I knew her boyfriend was a
Excuse me? Chase took a step forward feeling Trisha pulling at his arm as he let out a small frown. You dont even know me buddy so how in the world do you figure you can judge me like that? There isnt a damn thing you can even come close to knowing about me.
Chase, just leave it alone, Trisha urged Chase to take a step backwards seeing the wide smile that developed over Nates features. Its not like I would really go out with this guy, hes not going to hurt me or anything. You have nothing to worry about?
I have nothing to worry about this guy Trisha? Did you see the way he came up to you like that or was I the only one watching that? Chase muttered looking out at Nate and seeing him shrug his shoulders. With the way he just came on to you like that--if you ever hear a man say that its dangerous because that man will only be out for one thing.
Whats that? Nate mocked itching his chin slowly before nodding slowly and looking out towards Trisha. You see, I could have just been asking Trisha if she would have liked to go with me to a nice movie or quiet dinner. For all you know, I could have just been asking her to be friends. You cant judge a person before you know them in your own words. I could have been completely friendly only to make a friend you know.
Friends, Chase nodded slowly, taking a step in front of Trisha protectively, friends dont flirt in tones like that boy so I suggest this be the time that you walk away.
I dont appreciate that way you are talking to me right now, Nate pointed out with a small shake of his head, letting out a small frown as he spoke. I mean--you dont even know me. You are making all these rude comments about me when you could be lacking in the areas Im not.
Somehow, Chase looked down letting out a small laugh and pushing Nate back in a swift movement, I dont believe that at all coming from you pal. With a personality like that--it must be showing you are lacking something there because your ego is too big for its own good.
Hey little man, Nate stood up taller basically towering over Chase with at least five inches, dont ever push me like that again you little boy.
Little boy? Chase took a step forward feeling Trisha grabbing on his wrist and trying to hold him back. He took a look back at her realizing she wanted him to back off and he allowed to give her what she wanted as he took a step back and away from Nate. I may be shorter in height, but that doesnt mean I am short in other places. Why dont you do yourself a favor and walk away now before my nerves give out and I just attack you right here, right now.
How about no, Im not going to walk away from something I didnt ever start. I got accused of doing something you dont even know if it truly happened, Nate replied pushing Chase back as Chase went to come back at him feeling another person come between the two of them.
Back off the both of you for just one second, Shannon yelled looking at her brother for a moment before pushing the both of them back and away from each other. Dont worry about him, he is just a trouble maker.
Hey now Shannon, Nate frowned looking down at Shannon and back at Chase who was now straightening out his shirt slowly as Shannon looked over at him. Im your little brother--you should be sticking up for me.
I also know how stupid you get sometimes when it comes to standing up for what you think is stupidly right, Shannon pointed out with a small shake of her head before looking over towards Chase with an apologetic tone. Again you two, I am so very sorry for what happened with him and you can just forget what happened between you two because I am going to just take him away right now before anything else happens.
I dont want, Nate let out a small hiss as he felt Shannon grab him by the ear roughly and lead him towards the front exit until he pulled away from her. They laughed at me as I walked out--you are so great I hope you know.
Live with it, Shannon pushed him towards the car seeing him going to kick at the tire before he shook his head slowly and hit at the air instead. He looked up at her with his dark glance as she shrugged her shoulders, Im the older sibling--which means I know more than you do. You are living under my household which means you are living by my every rule.
Thanks, Dean caught the end of the conversation Deidra was having
on her phone with someone, watching as she hung up the phone angrily. He had
only gone to get some coffee for the two of him and he figured he wouldnt
be long, but obviously it was too long having her standing before him angry
like this. What happened now? Who was that on the phone?
Someone reminding me about the divorce, Deidra replied with a small frown shaking her head slowly before plopping down in her desk chair. I cant believe how big of a pain this is right now. I thought Andy was a big pain when we were married, I didnt know he would be this bad when we were getting divorced.
Whats going on now? Dean took a seat on the edge of her desk before reaching out to grab her hands in his tightly. His thumb caressed the top of her hand as he watched her dark eyes look up into his. What is he trying to do.
Just trying to start something more than there ever was, Deidra replied with a small shake of her head thinking about all the information the person had given her on phone earlier. Its going to be over very soon--thats all I can tell you as of right now.
Thats great honey, Dean assured her in a calm tone bringing her hand up to his lips as he pressed a small kiss in over her hand gently. Why are you acting so down about this when that is great news? Very great news.
You see, she fought for words to explain how she was feeling, but she found herself lost at her words when the thoughts of Andy came up. There were so many things she was hoping for with this divorce the big thing was being away from Andy, but that obviously was going to be a big problem in most views. Most people would think this is going to be a good thing, but its turning out to be a worse thing in the long run.
How is that? Dean couldnt help but ask knowing that if he was in her position he would have wanted to be divorced a week ago, not waiting around like nothing is going to be happening. This guy is a complete jerk and he doesnt deserve someone as good as you Deidra--you should know that by now.
I know, but Im not so convinced that everything is going to be as easy as I thought it was going to be, she tried to explain thinking about all the thoughts that had been crossing her mind lately. Ive been ready to give this marriage up for a long time and I want it to end, but I dont think Andy is ready to let it end like this yet.
What do you mean? Dean watched her carefully seeing her stand up and walk over towards the window to look outside. He in return also stood up and walked in from behind her, setting his hands on her shoulders gently. What is he trying to do to you Deidra? I swear if he is threatening you
No, she cut him off quickly placing her hand over his before letting out a long sigh, he hasnt threatened me--at least not yet because he hasnt had the chance to yet.
What makes you think he is going to get a chance to? he couldnt help but ask seeing her turn to face him, leaning back against the window and letting out a small sigh. How is he going to get a chance to get close to you?
Because, Deidra simply answered walking away from Dean and over towards the corner of the room. Andy is coming to Coral Valley and that can only mean one thing--he is ready to start something. He is ready to try and cause all the pain possible and he will accomplish it.
Where did she go? Dave looked around the living room after taking
a seat with Carly and Kayla on the couch. He nervously looked around the room
before shaking his head slowly. I swear--I thought she was getting better.
Everybody, Coris voice echoed through their ears, telling them that Cori was in the hallway waiting to show something off as they all turned around to look over their shoulders at her. I just got this today--tell me what you think of it.
It looks nice, Dave gulped down seeing the dress that was revealing most everything of his younger sister. Dont you think its a little too
Blue, Cori finished the sentence for Dave before nodding slowly and pointing back towards the bathroom. You are so right Dave, I will be right back I am going to just try another one on.
What has you so worried? Carly questioned seeing the way the color faded from Daves face when Cori walked away. Carly shrugged her shoulders pointing back towards where Cori walked away before letting out another small laugh. She seems to be having fun.
Seems to be, Dave agreed nodding slowly as he saw Cori walk back into the room with another outfit on as she twirled around the living room slowly. It looks nice Cori, but tell me something--why did you get all these outfits?
Well for my new man of course, Cori walked over towards the tall mirror taking a look at the back of her dress before letting out a small smile. I have to impress this one because I dont want this to be another Diego instance.
Cori you might want to think about getting into a new relationship so soon, Dave pointed out seeing Cori look back at him with a frown before shrugging her shoulders and walking back over towards the hallway. Cori, listen to me for a second.
No, you listen to me Dave, Cori cut him off throwing her hands up in the air and glancing back at him angrily. She rested her hands on her hips and shrugged her shoulders as she spoke. I know this relationship is going to work out. My new guy is so much more better than Diego. He likes me for me and he would never treat me as badly as Diego did. This one is really special Dave.
Is that right? Dave questioned seeing her nod slowly before he shrugged his shoulders and stood up from the couch slowly, well--I guess then all I could say to you is be careful. We dont want you hurt again like all the other times Cori. Just be careful with this one and take it easy.
I know how to handle myself Dave, Cori assured him with a small smile beginning to walk down the hallways with a small laugh, Im a big girl now.
Right, Dave muttered to himself hearing his bathroom door shut and he ran his hand through his hair sluggishly, letting out a small sigh. I dont know what I am going to do about her. I really dont know what I am supposed to do about this new guy in her life. She sounds like she
What has you so worried about this Dave? Carly couldnt help but ask seeing him shrug his shoulders and slide his hands into his pockets as his dark eyes searched hers. She seems to be having a good time.
Right, but the thing is, Dave was about to explain everything to Carly before shaking his head slowly and hearing the doorbell ring. He held his index finger up in the air before motioning her to wait. Hold that thought.
Dave walked over towards the door opening it slowly and gasping as he opened the door seeing the one person he thought he would never see again right before him.
What the hell are you doing here? Dave questioned in a small, angered hiss as Andy took a step forward from where he was standing.
Why hello Dave, Andy smiled widely reaching out to pat Dave on the shoulder gently, its nice to see you too.
So whats really on your agenda Cam? Thea frowned watching
him get off of the telephone after theyd been interrupted earlier. Whats
your grand scheme?
Ill get to that later, but right now Im going to need you to put a few things in order for me, he explained his tone turning completely to business again. I have a few things Im going to need to have set soon before Heather can get her company off of the ground. Shes already got it started, but
Oh please, Thea rolled her eyes at his request, Dont tell me that youre actually serious about letting her have her little company that she wants. Its going to be a financial drain and
Heathers a smart business woman, Cameron cut her off abruptly, Shes got a good head on her shoulders and Im sure that she can make gold out of straw so to speak.
Oh right, Thea rolled her eyes again, Heather is an airhead. She was a waste of time before when you were married her, so what makes you suddenly have all this faith in her? She hasnt proven that she is really worth anything in my opinion.
Youve underestimated her, Cameron frowned up at his assistant. I realize that you werent rather fond of my ex-wife and I wasnt most of the time either, but regardless of my personal feelings for Heather, there was always something extraordinary about her. Even I knew that when I was bringing her in as a pawn. Looking back I must admit Im a bit disappointed in how things ended because Heather did have a great many redeeming qualities about her.
Okay, Thea tipped her head to the side, Who are you and what did you do to the real Cameron?
Thea, knock it off, Cameron glanced over at her again, Heather is going to bring great things my way. Im sure of it and while our marriage didnt pan out to give me what I was seeking out, Im quite certain that in the area of business she will prove to be one of my greatest assets.
Youre a fool to believe that when a woman like Heather is only a liability that shouldnt be in control of a multi-million dollar investment. Youre a fool to keep her in control of that especially when Thea continued to argue with him not liking that Cameron continued to keep Heather in the loop.
Ive made up my mind Thea and thats all there is to it. Heather can have her company and you should focus on other things, Cameron suggested with a snide look, Like your freedom considering that Kipp was more than ready to rat you out to the police after what youd done.
My only crime was not killing him when I shot him, Thea grumbled further, Hes a weasel and doesnt deserve to be in a position to believe he has one over me. For the record he doesnt by the way. I could very well easily finish the job I started on him and then you wouldnt have to let Heather have that company if thats really what has you concerned
Im not concerned about Kipp and as I said before I have faith in Heather. Shes going to give me more than I had anticipated, Cameron grinned widely thinking about the investment he was making in Heathers company, It might actually put me on the right side of the law for a change if you will.
Why would you want to do that? Thea scowled down at him, Youre good at being bad and thats something youd be best suited not to change. Being a civil and obedient citizen is highly overrated. You should be well aware of that.
Im aware of the limitations it brings on, Cameron noted leaning back further in his chair, but to get where I am in the world you have to play the game and work with the hand youre dealt. Angel is in town and
And of course you want to look like you are the good guy, right? You want her to believe that youre her almighty brother who isnt going to get himself into any kind of trouble? she groaned inwardly thinking about Camerons meddlesome younger sister, Shes another pain in my
Watch it, Cameron warned her sharply, his brown eyes narrowing at her, My family is everything to me and I would hope that you should know that by now.
I do, Thea sighed biting on her tongue about her thoughts and feelings where Angela was concerned, Speaking of which we had an update on Diane Stevens. While you were on the phone something came in that I think youll find rather interesting.
Do tell, Cameron held his hand out seeing the paper she extracted from her pocket.
It seems that JTs dream girl has even less of a spotless history than wed assumed before. Shes got a few secrets that shed like to keep buried and I was thinking that perhaps now was the time to expose them, she informed Cameron handing over the page that was faxed to her.
Yes, Cameron nodded in agreement a smile touching over his lips, I would have to agree with you on that. I think that now is the perfect time for Diane Stevens to get whats coming to her--in more ways than she thought possible.
This is so exciting, Blake announced after Ken and Wendy left
the guest house, I mean cant you feel the promise of this all
around us in the air?
Of course I can and you bring it to life even further, Seth laughed lightly seeing all the thoughts going through Blakes head, This is going to be so great. Its going to
There was a knock at the door.
I wonder if Ken and Wendy are back to celebrate with us, Blake half questioned making her way over to the door to see Ria standing there with an oversized bag in her hands.
Hey, Ria smiled at her, can I come in?
Sure, of course you can, Blake hugged her excitedly, Congratulations by the way. I heard that you and Kevin finally decided to go public with the wonderful news of a wedding ahead
Word travels fast doesnt it, Ria laughed lightly looking over her shoulder to see Seth in the room, I take it Im still invited around and not on the hates list for keeping you in the dark about this.
Of course not, Seth shook his head at her, getting up from where he was seated to join in a group hug, Im just happy to hear that youre going to be part of the family. I could use another family member around since my family isnt as big as it used to be. I know that Jade would be thrilled to see you two together.
I hope so, Ria smiled up at him, because I wouldve loved to share this with her. This is something I wouldve loved to have her around for.
Me too, Seth replied with a soft smile, and I know that shed want us to celebrate and enjoy this to the fullest.
How about a toast, Blake suggested with a small smile, We can make it to Jade and to all of our good news.
All of our good news, Ria repeated with a strange look, Are you two having a baby now? Did you find out youre pregnant?
Not yet, but were still working on it, Blake boasted proudly, However on another note Im putting together this community center in both Jade and Caitlins honor and everything is coming together for it beautifully.
Well in that case we do have reason to celebrate. In fact I brought bagels too, Ria decided letting Blake lead her and Seth into the kitchen.
Blake pulled out a bottle of sparkling cider and held it up for both of them to inspect, I have to keep things alcohol free here.
I understand, Ria nodded as Blake poured each one of them a glass.
To the future, Blake held her glass out to each one of them as the trio shared a toast celebrating the things to come for all of them in the hopes that only good times were ahead!
It seems that Blake is really having a good time with this whole party
thing, Wendy pointed out taking a step on the outside deck to the Ashford
mansion feeling Ken step in behind her slowly. I think this is a very
Me too, Ken agreed wrapping his arms around her shoulders loosely before kissing the side of her cheek gently. Its really helping out with lifting Blakes spirits. Ive never seen her so happy in my whole life. Its like this thing is making her happier than anything ever could.
Im glad that this is making her happy, Wendy began in a deep sigh before turning around in his arms and looking up into his dark eyes, but its not all about her. I think she is a hero for starting this, but it is also good for the kids that she is doing this for. She was smart enough and heroic enough to realize that sometimes these kids need a place to be. A place to hang out--where they can feel at home where sometimes in their real life, they never do.
Right, Ken nodded slowly before dropping his arms down around Wendys waist and leaning forward to kiss her lips gently. I mean, I know how that is. You cant get that feeling at home, so its better to get it elsewhere if you can. This place is a place that you can feel at home and have fun. Tell people how you feel and let them become your family.
Exactly, she agreed feeling his hand slide up her back gently before caressing her neck gently as she looked out at him. She leaned forward and pressed a small kiss against the side of his cheek, running her fingers through his dark hair slowly. I look up to your sister for doing this because she is going to be making a dream for these children if her plan goes through. Its something I wish I could do. Make someones life happier and more bright every time they have something to go to.
Why do you wish for that when you already have that Wendy? Ken questioned with a small grin, reaching out to run his hand through her silky, dark hair. I mean--every time I see you, my life just brightens. You make my dreams come true, am I not good enough for you?
Of course you are, Wendy went to go say something else before feeling light headed and falling backwards only to feel Ken grab her in his arms tightly.
Wendy, Ken gasped holding her tighter in his arms before leading her towards the benches over on the corner of the deck and sitting her down slowly. He ran the back of his hand over her forehead gently before letting out a small frown. Are you okay sweetheart?
Yeah, Im sorry, Wendy apologized in a low, shallow breath. She felt Ken push a piece of hair behind her ear gently before she tried to sit more straight in her seat. Thats something that happens a lot--Im so sorry about that.
Well, you are going to have to tell me what happens all the time, Ken took a seat next to her on the bench wrapping his arm around her tightly as he rested his forehead against hers. I need to know this so we can try and stop it.
Brants eyes widened to the point of ridiculousness
as he watched Diego pick Sarah up in his arms and pin her against the wall.
His mind was reeling with thoughts of how he could manage to slip out of the
room and pretend that he wasnt around to see this. He knew full well
that when Kyle found out, someone was going to end up losing a limb or their
life. Brant wasnt quite sure.
Brant heard Sarah speaking Diegos name in between kiss after heated kiss and in that moment Brant felt more sorry for Kyle than ever. Brant knew first hand how horrifying and humiliating it felt to think someone you loved was faithful to you only to discover that their devotion and loyalty was nothing but a rouse. He wished that he didnt have to witness this--wished that he could just turn away, but it was like watching a train wreck as Diego and Sarah continued to make out with one another. He watched her leg curl around Diegos torso, his body moving in over her and Brant looked up to the ceiling.
I know Ive done some rotten things, but Im going to go to hell if you keep me in here with them, Brant tried to reason with God certain that this was his punishment for his lying to everyone about his condition. Sure, it had been wrong and yeah maybe on some level it was immoral, but as he heard Sarahs soft moans, he realized there was nothing he wanted more than to see it stop.
Diego wait, Sarahs heavy breath spilled from her lips, We cant do this.
Thats right you cant, Brant thought to himself glancing over to see that their make out fest had come to an ending, Just walk away now. Forget being all dramatic and get out of here before Kyle comes in and tries to kill me for being here.
Sarah, Im sorry, Diego backed off ever so slightly, I didnt mean to get so out of hand here. I didnt think that we would
I cant do this here, Sarah replied her arms still wrapped around him.
I know he nodded touching her face lightly, his dark eyes filled with a sudden sadness, I dont want to make love to you like this. You deserve better than a stolen romp in someone elses home with Kyle here.
Kyle, Sarah spoke her boyfriends name guilt racking over her, Oh God. How can I be doing this? How can I even think about being with you when I have Kyle?
Sarah, we cant ignore what we feel for one another, he reached for her arm pulling her back to him.
We have to. We cant do this to Kyle, she pleaded with him wiping at her face, We cant hurt him like this even if it hurts us to be apart.
Sarah, you said that you wanted me that you love me, Diego pleaded with her, I know I didnt imagine that.
No, you didnt, but Diego I shouldnt be doing this. We cant ever be together and we have to accept that. I have to come to terms with the fact that my feelings for you will go unfulfilled. This desire will have to be unquenched she explained to him sadly.
Smart move, Brant mouthed under his breath, now get the hell out of here.
Sarah, is that really what you want, Diego sighed reaching out to her once more, Is that really what youd like me to do?
No, she shook her head her lower lip trembling, but its what we have to do. We cant be together Diego. I know that now.
Then at least let us have one last good-bye. Let us share one more moment with one another, he whispered cupping her face in his hands, Let me remember you and what we feel with one another if only once more.
Diego, I want to, but she stopped thinking about all the thoughts that had consumed her lately.
Tell me we can have one last day with one another--that we can bring closure to this in our own way, he whispered his finger brushing over her lips, Please Sarah.
I want that too Diego. I think I need that and then we can let go, she explained pulling him close to her once more, I need to feel you beside me one last time before we say good-bye.
Oh God, please make it stop, Brant pleaded with the heavens above ready to gag at what he was seeing as it was clear Sarah and Diego went back to making out with one another. It didnt take much for him to tell by the sounds of their kissing that they were only delving into more trouble. Repressing the urge to strangle them or vomit Brant closed his eyes again just wishing that they would stop until he heard a clicking noise.
Brants eyes snapped open with a gasp as he noticed the doorknob was turning. Someone was coming inside someone was opening the door!
Oh God. Oh God! Brant repeated over and over in his mind knowing that this was it. This was going to be the moment when all hell broke loose and if those two idiots over at the other side of the room didnt stop mauling one another someone was going to die. It was going to get ugly.
Saying one last prayer Brant hoped it was Don or Hart who had happened upon the scene. That might be easy to blow off. They wouldnt care. They wouldnt be bothered by this, but if it was one person in particular. Oh was it going to get ugly. It could be Don and Hart though. In theory it should be them, but when Brant heard a voice sound he felt his worst fears confirmed.
Hey, whats going on in here? Kyle questioned as Brant felt his heart stop for a brief moment knowing that there was about to be a situation that he wished he was a million miles away from.
Avery watched the man in front of her wearily, her own mind filled with a great many questions about who he was and what he was doing there. Hed tried to convince her to trust him at face value, but given the year Avery had been experiencing she knew better than to trust anything in front of her. She had to play it safe. She casually walked over to Russells desk remembering the pepper spray shed kept tucked away in the top drawer.
This is a nice place you have, Kevin began making pleasant conversation
with her. He walked around to see the wedding photo that had tipped him off
about Nicks true identity right before everything blew up. He picked
it up and turned around to see Avery standing near the desk. Nice photo.
Thank you, she replied taking in a breath and discarding her thoughts of attacking him, Russ and I had that taken at our wedding.
Its a lovely picture, Kevin noted setting it down on the tabletop once again, I take it you two were very happy with one another.
We are very happy with one another, Avery corrected still hesitant to open up to Kevin right away, I hate to be rude Mr. Adonis, but youd mentioned that you could tell me what happened to my husband--that you could explain that picture to me and tell me where hes been.
Im surprised that he hasnt yet, he replied with a cryptic expression, although on some level I suppose Im not. Tell me again, how long have you two been married?
Weve been married, Avery started ready to say something about her wedding to Russell, but the current situation was fresh on her mind making her shudder involuntarily, Weve been together for most of our lives. Why do you ask?
Well Im asking you because Kevin started ready to tell her all about where her husband had been until he heard another sound rise through the house. Panic swept over Averys dark eyes and it was obvious that this was something she hadnt planned on.
Mr. Adonis I Avery seemed torn about how to react to the situation.
Ill wait, Kevin promised taking a seat on the couch as Avery looked to the hallway. Reluctantly she moved down the hallway as Kevin tried to place the sound. At first hed thought it was another person, but it sounded a bit more like a pained cry. Maybe it was a pet--a dog or a cat or
A baby, Kevin gasped seeing Avery returning down the hallway with a little one in her arms. She seemed a bit more worried than she was before, but Kevin was smart enough to have figured out that she would no doubt have found something to protect herself with in her retreat. Not that he could blame her given that hed probably be terrified to see himself on his doorstep too, yet she was the one who had him completely shell-shocked and out of sorts now that she had a little girl dressed in pink in her arms.
Look Mr. Adonis, she spoke his name a bit flustered by the situation.
Call me Kevin please, Kevins voice softened as he couldnt help but find himself mesmerized by the little girl in her arms.
Seeing Avery standing there in front of him holding her daughter, it took him back to another time and place to a life that couldve been his--a life that shouldve been his had his daughter not died all those years ago. Unable to help himself he rose to his feet making a step towards Avery as thoughts of his chance at a family with Angela returned to him. He saw Avery step back cautiously and he forced himself to keep his distance.
Shes beautiful, Kevin spoke up in awe of the little girl in front of him imagining that his daughter wouldve looked just like the beautiful child in Averys arms. Whats her name?
Erin, Avery replied her tone shifting as well. She took a small step forward somehow catching the way that Kevin had looked at Erin. There was something behind his eyes--in his face at that particular moment that had him seeing that perhaps she had misjudged him. His eyes were glazed over with a sudden admiration for her daughter and it was obvious that he was effected by her presence in the room, Erin Leigh.
Well Erin Leigh, Kevin smiled at her reaching out to touch her little hand, you are by far the most beautiful little girl I have ever seen. I can see why your daddy rushed home to be with you.
We thought wed never see him again, Avery explained watching him closely, When that bombing took place, we thought that hed been lost to us forever. None of us had any idea what Susan was capable of, but in that day I thought Id never be able to see him again--that Erin would grow up without her father
You mean he was one of those that everyone thought was Kevins jaw practically dropped at her admission.
She nodded her eyes clouding over with emotion, When they told me he was one of the casualties my whole life passed before my eyes. I thought about all that we had together--all the dreams we shared and I thought of Erin. I was so afraid that Russ would never be able to see her again--to hold her and know her. It broke my heart when he was gone.
Im sorry, Kevin replied genuinely meaning it as he saw how upset she appeared to be. There was something behind her eyes--something that had him wishing like hell he hadnt made that decision to come over today, yet as he looked to Erin, he felt as if hed stepped into a moment from his past. This was what life wouldve been like if he and Angie had been able to hold onto their love. He would be a proud father with his daughter in front of him and her mother cradling her so lovingly.
Its okay. Hes home now and thats really important, Avery paused thinking about the reason shed let Kevin into her home, Kevin I know you mentioned that you knew where my husband was when he was gone, but unless its something that I need to know in order to protect our future together, then right now Im afraid I really dont want to get into it.
It doesnt matter now, Kevin half smiled at her, All I really had to say is that I know how much he loved you. How desperate he was to find himself and to be with you. He knew on some level that you were out there--even when he wasnt sure of who he was--of what he was doing, you were always in his thoughts. I dont doubt that for a second.
You say that as if you know something that youre not saying, Avery tilted her head to the side to watch him closely.
All I had to do was see your daughter to know with all my heart how much you both mean to him, Kevin motioned to Erin again, Shes amazing. Would you mind if I ?
Avery watched him hold his arms out and for a moment she tensed up not really ready to release Erin just yet, however she found herself nodding. Of course. Why dont you go sit on the couch?
Kevin nodded moving over to the sofa as Avery followed carrying Erin close to her. Taking in a small breath she leaned forward carefully placing Erin into his strong hold before she sat down beside him.
Shes so small, Kevin noted seeing Erins wide eyes gazing up at him curiously, How old is she?
Actually, Avery paused realizing the very thing that had overlooked her mind last night when shed been at Brants side, Shes two weeks old today.
A whole two weeks, Kevin replied grinning goofily down at Erin, My you are a little one, arent you?
Erin sounded out with a tiny sound.
But feisty huh, Kevin laughed lightly tipping his head to look at Avery once again, I suspect she gets that from her mother.
It depends on who you ask, Avery answered with a small blush seeing the way her daughter had taken to Kevin. She was about to ask him something else when the front door opened and Russell stepped inside.
Avery, he called out her name worry evident in his tone, but as his eyes fell upon her on the sofa he let out a momentarily breath of relief, Oh thank God.
Russ, whats wrong, she asked stepping up to see him. She moved in front of him catching the worry behind his eyes, What is it?
Thank God youre okay, he hugged her tightly thinking about how fearful hed been when hed awakened to discover she was gone, You scared me.
Im sorry, Avery pulled back ever so slightly to gaze up at him, Erin needed a few things that I knew I had here and I told Augustus I would be back shortly if you were looking for me and
Its okay, he touched her cheek gently, I guess I just got to thinking the worst with that man still being out there and
His words came to an abrupt ending as he spotted Kevin on the corner of the couch with Erin in his arms. His throat went dry as Avery reached for his hand.
I just thought that youd known we were here since you were meeting Kevin and all, Avery started to lead him towards our guest.
You know Kevin Russ spoke up shakily feeling the walls suddenly closing in on him as his one time rival on the island sat in the middle of his home with Erin in his arms.
Yeah, were becoming fast friends, Kevin blurted out a smile crawling up over the corners of his lips, So Russ, long time no see, eh?
I um Russ started wondering if hed lost his mind completely. There was no way that Kevin Adonis would be here in his living room with Avery. This couldnt be happening. It shouldnt be happening.
Russ, you look a little pale, Avery noted a crease in her brow, Im sorry I scared you before, but
What are you doing here? Russell couldnt help but ask worry evident in his voice. Russ found himself at a loss suddenly fearing that his past was about to come back and deliver the final blow to his chance at happiness with Avery.
Oh you know, I was just telling Avery all about your time away on the island, Kevins grin expanded, Tell me something Russ, would you like to fill her in on the details or should I?
...to be continued...