Episode 378

“Jenna, come on,” Hart followed Jenna into the kitchen knowing only too well that he wasn’t any closer to making any progress with her than he was when she’s returned to the apartment around three thirty in the morning. Judging by the way she’d been giving him the cold shoulder he knew only too well that they were about to be in for a long morning, “Jenna honey…”

“Don’t you honey me,” she huffed reaching for the refrigerator door and slamming it open in his direction. She hit him with it before retrieving her orange juice from within. She turned around ignoring his forward movement as he closed the door behind her.

“Jenna, I don’t understand why you’re so upset with me,” he blurted out with a frown watching her slam her cup onto the countertop with a huff.

“You don’t understand?” she replied spinning around to face him again with wild eyes. “Hart, how can you not understand why I might be a tad bit upset about you running out of here like a maniac to go off and attack your father?”

“Look Jen, I told you it was no big deal,” Hart threw his hands up in the air, frustration carrying over him. “I couldn’t just sit back and let him manipulate the situation when…”

“Hart, you raced out of here like a crazy man possessed with rage,” she blinked back at him with a frown building over the corners of her lips. “Do you have any idea how much that frightened me? Or worse, do you know what it felt like when I tried to go after you only to get the call from work that there was a major car accident on the highway? Can you even begin to imagine what was in my mind when they called me in because it was fatal?”

“Jen I…” he softened his tone a bit seeing something else beyond the anger in her eyes.

“Do you have any idea how frightened I was when I realized that the accident happened only minutes after you’d left the apartment? It was on the way to where Walt is and for all I knew you would’ve let your rage drive you into that ditch off the highway and…” she choked up on her words remembering only too well how upset she’d been when work had phoned her in.

“Jen, I’m sorry about that, but I promise you that I was in more control than that,” he offered up apologetically while taking a small step towards her. He reached out to her only to feel her swat his hand away from her.

“No Hart, you weren’t in control at all when you left. You were angry and irrational and it could have cost you your life,” she lashed out at him further. “You were too concerned with setting your father straight that you completely ignored the fact that you have a lot of other options in all of this.”

“I’m not going to let my daughter leave me when I’m just getting to know her. Walt’s not going to take that away from me,” Hart informed her with a matching frown of his own. “Beth already stole so much time from Sam and I and…”

“And last night you were spouting off about how you were going to team up with Beth to keep Sam here. Hart, do you realize what you were implying?” she blinked back at him with a heavy sigh. “You were ready to bring in someone you loathe in order to trump your father.”

“My father is being impossible. He’s trying to agitate me and I’m not about to stand for it. I’m not going to let him manipulate Sam and after last night I’m sure he’ll finally be able to see that,” Hart blurted out with a huff watching as Jenna shook her head.

“That’s just it Hart,” she moved across the room to pull out the toaster. Looking to him again she couldn’t help but toss out a look of heavy disapproval, “where does it end? I mean really what happened last night?”

“Nothing happened,” he shrugged his shoulders and leaned back against the counter. “I did what I had to do and if Walt is smart he’ll just back off and leave things alone.”

“Did you threaten him?” she questioned casting a glance over in his direction. “Did you attack him?”

“I took care of it,” he answered cryptically.

“Took care of it,” she repeated knowing only too well that his demeanor wasn’t offering up any assurances to her. “That’s all you’re going to say?”

“That’s all that needs to be said,” he nodded standing taller as her eyes darkened with rage.

“Well, then I guess you and I know where we stand on this issue,” she huffed back at him.

“Jenna, I don’t tell you how to run things with your father, so why are you getting on me about what I do with mine? You know that I’m trying to do what is best for my daughter,” he continued to explain himself despite the fact he felt he was in the right on the situation.

“The last thing you should have done was go over there when you did Hart. You were totally out of line,” Jenna sipped her juice before glaring up at him. “You were being a total jerk and…”

“A total jerk?” he repeated with wide eyes. “Jen, the man was about to steal my child from me. He’s trying to convince her that she doesn’t need me around. I’m not just going to let her slip out of my life again because it will cause conflict if I raise a fuss about it. I’m just protecting my rights Jen and if you can’t understand that…”

“That isn’t the problem I’m having. Hart, I know you love Sam and I understand that you want a place in her future, but what about her? What about what is right for her? Do you honestly think if you go around stomping your feet and pouting that you are going to make any ground in your relationship with her? Do you think if you go and attack Walt that she’s going to believe you’re doing what you’re doing out of the kindness of your heart? Out of some misguided need to protect her from her grandfather?” she questioned.

“Walt is trouble. You know that as well as I do,” he pointed out with a huff.

“Yes, I realize that Hart, but Sam needs to find out for herself. I’m not saying that you should let him take her under, but she wants a relationship with him. She wants that opportunity to be a part of her family which includes you as well as him,” she stressed her words as her toast popped up out of the toaster. She reached for the pieces of bread and set them down on a plate. “Hart, I know that you want to find a way to bring about a correlation between your past with Walt and her future, but from what I’ve seen he’s been nothing, but good with Sam.”

“That’s because he’s setting her up for a fall and promising her that she can fly off to London without any strings attached is just another shining example of that. This isn’t about Sam. It’s about hurting me,” he informed her with a low grumble, “It’s always been about hurting me.”

“Maybe just for once Walt is trying to do the right thing. Maybe just maybe it isn’t all about you,” she replied with a groan as she reached for the blackberry jam. She began to spread it on her toast. “Maybe he wants to start fresh with Sam.”

“Sam’s only purpose in his life is to use her to get to me. He’s manipulating her and I can’t believe you of all people can’t see that. I would have thought that you would get it Jenna,” Hart snapped in response feeling anger bubbling over him at having to defend his actions to the woman he loved where his father was concerned.

“What I see is you setting yourself up for a big fall Hart and if you’re not careful you’ll find up being the bad guy in all of this,” she admitted taking a step forward and watching him open his mouth to speak again. She deposited a piece of toast between his lips to silence him before taking a step back. “Hart, I love you and I don’t want to fight with you, which is why I think this is best left with us agreeing to disagree. It’s plainly obvious that you’re not going to change your mind about your father. Obviously nothing I say will make an impact on that either, so I’m not going to continue arguing with you. If you want to go about this the wrong way, it’s only going to blow up in your face, but as you said the choice is yours. Sam’s your daughter and you have to do what you feel is right even if I don’t approve.”

“Jen,” Hart sighed swallowing a bite of the toast before making a small movement towards her.

“Hart, I just don’t want to see you crash and burn,” she explained with a heavy sigh moving in closer to him. She touched his cheek lightly before offering him up a quick peck on the cheek, “I have to go…”

“But…” he watched her retreat seeing her take her juice and her piece of toast to the door with her. “Jen…”

“I have to finish up what I know is still waiting for me at work,” she explained making her way to the front door. “Disaster doesn’t go on hold just because we are having issues…”

“We’re ok though, right?” he eyed her wearily watching as she slid the strap of her purse over her shoulder.

“Deep down I know this has nothing to do with us, but I can’t help but worry about where you’re headed. It’s part of being in love I guess,” she shrugged her shoulders before offering up one last pleading look. “Just use caution with whatever direction you try to take after this because one wrong move could end up costing you all the ground you’ve made with Sam and I know that you don’t want that.”

“Jen,” he paused before nodding, “ok. Just drive safe ok?”

“I’ll call you when I get a break,” she promised with a small wave before leaving the apartment.

As Hart looked around the room he thought about Jenna’s words of advisement and in that moment he realized that perhaps going after Walt first wasn’t the smartest of ideas. Now after the fact he knew only too well that there was one way to deal with this situation and ensure that he wasn’t totally the bad guy in the situation with Sam. Reaching for his jacket and his keys he decided that perhaps it was time to make his way to the hospital to talk with Beth once and for all about their daughter.


“And this little piggy went to the market, this little piggy stayed home and this little piggy,” Russ sang out to Erin watching her kick her legs out in the air as he tickled her toes. She laughed wildly, the tiny dark ringlets of her baby fine hair moving with her giggles as Avery entered the room to see Russ on the ground with Erin playing on her blanket.

“You’re going to give her hiccups if you’re not careful,” Avery warned watching Erin clap her hands together wanting her father’s attention all over again.

“I’m sure she’ll be fine,” Russ repeated the same song reveling in the sight of his daughter so happy to have his attention. She blinked up at him watching him do the same and she laughed reaching out for him.

“Come here you,” Russ picked her up in his arms kissing her tiny head gently, “Have I told you how much I love my beautiful little girl?”

Erin made a small sound before laughing and burying her head in his chest.

“I think she already knows that one and she loves you too daddy,” Avery smiled watching the both of them interact with one another. She couldn’t help but think about how long Russ had wanted to have a family--to have all of this in their lives and now that they had Erin it seemed as if everything they could’ve asked for was finally theirs for the taking.

“I think it’s time we bring mommy in on this too, huh Erin?” Russ questioned seeing Erin moving her head around, her big eyes taking in everything that the room had to offer.

“I can always use a little more love from you both,” Avery walked over to join the both of them reaching out to take Erin as Russ pulled himself up off of the floor. Avery hugged Erin closer to her while Russ moved in beside them, wrapping his arms around the both of them.

“Now look how lucky I am. I’m holding of the most beautiful women in the world and I couldn’t be any happier than I am right now,” Russ confessed kissing Erin then Avery and then Erin again. Erin let out another laugh and reached out to pinch at her father’s nose with obvious amusement.

“I think she’s got you now daddy,” Avery laughed lightly feeling Erin wiggle in her arms.

“No, I’ve got her,” Russ scooped up Erin out of Avery’s arms and danced around the room with her. He held her close to him while humming a tune, “I’ve got my little princess now.”

“And she’s eating it up,” Avery smiled warmly motioning to the kitchen, “Speaking of eating I came out here to tell you both that breakfast was ready.”

“Uh oh, should we be worried,” Russ teased whispering to Erin, “I know we agreed that your mommy shouldn’t have full run of the kitchen considering that the last time she tried to burn it down, but…”

“Stop,” Avery swatted at Russ shaking her head at him, “Your father is lying Erin. I’m not that bad of a cook.”

“Yes she is, but it’s okay. We still love her,” Russ teased further winking over at Avery before laughing, “She’s good at a lot of other things.”

“That I am and I’m decent at breakfast too,” Avery reached out to take Erin again, “and as for breakfast whether you love it or hate it, I’m going to make you eat every last bite of it just like Erin is going to.”

“Erin’s got the better deal in this. I think that her bottle is much more appealing than the last meal we had together when you were cooking,” Russ continued to poke at her catching the glare she shot out at him, “but for what it’s worth eggshells and all I will try it.”

“You’ll try it and you’ll love it,” Avery added with a confident air about her taking Erin into the kitchen.

“That’s what you think,” Russ mouthed under his breath following Avery into the kitchen to see the table was already set up for him. He looked at the plate in front of him seeing the bacon and eggs neatly piled on the plate beside a portion of hash browns. His green eyes widened as he took a long look at it, “Wow this actually does look good.”

“And I’ll bet it tastes even better once you stop whining,” Avery warned placing Erin in her chair before walking over to get Erin’s bottle. She returned to the table watching Erin stretch her arms out. Avery laughed lightly before feeding Erin her bottle and watching Russ eye his plate suspiciously.

“It does look good, but still,” he reached for his fork before eyeing Avery curiously, “Why aren’t you eating any?”

“I’m feeding Erin,” Avery pointed out turning her attention to where her daughter was. She reached for the bottle watching Erin wiggle in anticipation before chomping down on the nipple and taking a hearty sip. “I’ll eat later.”

“I don’t know,” Russ pushed a piece of eggs onto his fork lifting it up for inspection.

“Just eat it or your going to wear it,” Avery warned sharply watching Russ deposit the bite into his mouth.

“Wow,” Russ murmured behind his breath before moving in for another bite, “these are really good.”

“I told you so,” Avery laughed lightly shaking her head at his previous hesitation, “and here you doubted my ability to take control of the kitchen.”

“I didn’t doubt your ability. I just knew that you weren’t exactly a master of the arts in this department and there’s nothing wrong with that,” Russ added reaching out to test his bacon and finding himself impressed, “Though you’re getting really good at this.”

“Of course I am,” Avery piped in brightly smiling over at him, “Kevin has been helping me learn how to cook.”

“Really?” Russell’s eyes widened in response, “You’re kidding, right?”

“No I’m totally serious. He’s been showing me a thing or two on how to work my way around the kitchen and judging by your responses this morning I can see it’s been paying off. You’re impressed admit it,” Avery tossed out at him with a flirty smile.

“Okay, I’m very impressed. Are you happy now?” he reached out to place his hand on top of hers.

“Very impressed,” she nodded with a small laugh, “Oh how I must be moving up in the world now that I have your seal of approval.”

“You’ve always had my seal of approval, but with this,” he held up a forkful of eggs. “I will never doubt you again and I will thank Kevin for the tutoring.”

“Yeah, yeah sure,” she waved her hand over at him, “You should be thanking me for not beating you up for doubting me.”

“I’m so sorry Avery. How can I make it up to you,” he questioned reaching out to place his hand on her knee underneath the table.

“Don’t get fresh with me,” she swatted at his hand, “because it’s not going to help you out of this situation you’ve put yourself in.”

“Not even a little,” he winked at her, batting his green eyes in her general direction.

“Not the slightest bit,” she shook her head firmly refusing to give him an inch. She felt him slide his chair in closer to her bringing his lips over the side of her neck.

“You sure about that?” Russ questioned placing a feathery light kiss over her skin.

“Positive,” she sighed tipping her head back ever so slightly to give him more access to her neck before she let out a groan. She looked over to Erin and shook her head, “You see what I have to deal with from your daddy? He’s trying to manipulate me again.”

“And it’s working judging by your reaction,” he teased with a small laugh leaning in to kiss her again.

“Or so you think,” Avery pulled back shaking her head at him.

“No I know,” Russ curled his finger underneath her chin and pulled her in for a kiss before Erin let out a tiny squeal.

“See even our daughter knows you’re full of…” she started to joke again only to feel him place his hand over her mouth.

“Be careful what you say in front of Erin,” Russ warned with a playful wink before he spotted something just beyond where they were seated. “Hey, is that that mail?”

“Yeah I brought it in yesterday, why?” she questioned seeing him stand up and walk over to the pile.

“This is from the mortgage company,” he frowned recognizing the name on the envelope. “I wonder what this is all about.”

“They are probably telling us to be ready for our next payment,” Avery shrugged her shoulders before pulling Erin out of her chair to burp her. “You know how fast one bill comes after another.”

“I just paid this,” Russ frowned tearing open the envelope and pulling out the documentation inside.

“Then maybe they are thanking us for doing business with them,” Avery shrugged holding Erin close to her.

“No that’s not it at all,” Russ frowned skimming over the page, “I don’t believe this.”

“What’s wrong?” Avery questioned noting the twisted expression on his face. “Did they not get the payment?”

“No that’s not it at all,” Russ tipped his head up to look over at her, “It says here that the mortgage is paid off on the house, but I know that can’t be possible.”

“What do you mean?” she questioned seeing his frown intensify.

“It’s saying here that the total remaining balance on the house was paid off last week and they are sending me back my payment, but I know for a fact that it isn’t possible. There’s no way I could’ve paid this off.”

“But if you didn’t, then who did?” Avery couldn’t help but ask seeing Russell’s green eyes flicker with irritation.

“I think I have a pretty good idea who did and I wish they wouldn’t have,” Russ announced with a frown knowing full well what the house being paid off meant and he didn’t like it one bit.


“Oh my god if someone told Kyle about this, he’s going to hate me for sure. If he thought that Sarah was bad, then he’s going to know I’m worse because I…” Heather continued to panic fearing that her husband would find out about her past in the adult film world. “He has no idea about any of this and it’s going to kill him if he…”

“First of all Heather Babes you need to calm down,” Kellen placed both of his hands on her shoulders urging her to turn around and face him, “and second of all you are nothing like Sarah. She doesn’t have a loyal bone in her body. What you did was not something that anyone should hold against you. You did what you needed to in order to survive. We both did considering that neither one of us knew that sleaze bag was going to push us into that kind of situation.”

“Even so I should’ve kept from doing it,” Heather brought her hands up into her blonde hair, feeling her heart hammering in her chest with worry, “I should’ve thought twice about being bullied into doing that film and…”

“Heather you need to relax,” Kellen tried to reason with her knowing only too well how hard she was taking this situation that she’d been presented with, “Kyle isn’t going to find out about this. There’s no reason why he would ever learn anything about what happened and I’m sure if he did, then you could explain everything to him. I’m sure he would understand.”

“No he wouldn’t,” Heather shook her head firmly, “No man ever understands something like that. Kellen you know as well as I do that he would never look at me again. He would see me as a slut--as someone who isn’t worthy of his love after what she’s done…”

“Heather this is Kyle you’re talking about. He’s not going to turn his back on you because you had sex with someone other than him,” Kellen frowned hating to see her beating herself up over the situation, “You wouldn’t hold that against him.”

“It’s not the same Kellen. I had sex with someone for money. I did that movie because I wanted to eat and stop living on the streets, but when someone sees that movie they aren’t going to see me as someone who is trying to survive. They are going to see me as some slut that couldn’t cut it in the real world of Hollywood so she took to doing those kind of films because she had no real talent.”

“Heather you were pushed into it by that jackass your mother was dating,” Kellen reminded her firmly, refusing to let her slip into a depression, “He manipulated you into that world and you couldn’t help but give in to what he was asking from you--from both of us.”

“Yes, but it’s not like I didn’t have any other options. I’m not weak Kellen. I could’ve walked away--I should’ve told him where to stick it and…” she trailed off her hands shaking at the memory, “I’m not a victim Kellen. I refuse to play the victim because that son of a bitch did what he did to me--to us.”

“Hey,” Kellen reached out to touch the side of her face urging her to meet his eyes, “I know it’s painful to look back on, but I promised you back then that it wouldn’t hurt you and it’s not going to now.”

“Kellen,” Heather sighed thinking back to when they’d worked with one another on the set, “You and I both know that something like this could destroy us in the future. If Kipp ever found out that you and I were together…”

“He’ll just have to get over it,” Kellen mouthed in response thinking about his lover, “I mean it’s not like he hasn’t slept with you either.”

“Kellen, it’s not the same,” she frowned over at him, “You’re not getting it.”

“Heather, Kipp knows that you have a past--that you had an agent who was a real creep. He realizes what you’ve gone through,” Kellen reminded her thinking about what Kipp had mentioned about Heather in the past, “He’s never held that against you.”

“That was before he knew it was us together Kellen,” Heather shook her head wearily, “It could change everything. He would be furious with me and with you for not telling him and he could take Charles away from me.”

“He wouldn’t do that. Kipp may be a jackass at times, but he would never, ever take Charles away from you,” Kellen stated plainly thinking about his lover, “Sure, he might’ve threatened you with it once, but it was only because he was feeling wounded over the fact you didn’t love him.”

“Even so what happens when someone tells him or Kyle about this? Where will that leave us?” Heather questioned with a worried expression, “How do I explain to Kyle that not only did I run away when he and I should’ve been together, but I wound up living in some gutter selling myself for money? How can I tell him that when I promised to save myself for him I wound up sleeping with you and then we did that movie and…”

“Hey, Heather listen to me. I don’t know who sent that fax to you, but I’m sure we can find out,” Kellen promised seeing the tears that clouded her green eyes, “and when we do I’ll personally go on over and have a word with them. This won’t hurt you and Kyle.”

“I’m so afraid it already has,” Heather mouthed fighting to keep her fears under wraps even though she imagined what Kyle would do when he found out about her. “If he knew the half of what happened to me…to us…”

“He’s not going to find out like this. Nether one of them will. Kyle and Kipp will never, ever hear about any of this unless we want them to. They aren’t going to know anything,” Kellen promised in a firm, commanding tone hoping to get her to snap out of the worry she’d pushed herself into.

“Anything about what?” Kipp questioned causing the both of them to jump back startled as it was clear that they weren’t alone any longer.


Kyle sank onto the chair behind him trying to process what he was seeing on the screen in front of him. It was Heather, but it couldn’t have been Heather--at least not the Heather she was now. Yet as Kyle watched her flipping her damp blonde hair over her shoulder to reveal herself to the camera, he couldn’t help but feel his heart thud in his chest. She was touching herself, moving in such intimate ways that Kyle couldn’t help but feel a sudden heat carry over him in the room. He adjusted his collar trying to process it all, but there was no denying that the woman on the screen was in fact a younger version of the woman he’d been making love to the previous night.

“Damn you never told me about this,” Paul sat up straighter his eyes glued to the screen in front of him, “Wow.”

“Paul, it’s…” Kyle tried to think of something to say, of a way to will himself to look away from the screen, but as Heather blew as kiss over at the camera, Kyle found himself back in time remembering what it had been like when the two of them had been alone together. She’d been every bit as beautiful, every bit as flirty and watching her in such a private moment caused him to feel a tension sweep over his body, a sudden desire that carried through every inch of him.

“I’ve been waiting for you all day big boy,” Heather’s voice slurred as her green eyes sought out something, reaching out to someone and Kyle felt as if he’d been beckoned by her. His heart was hammering in his chest, his skin on fire. Suddenly everything seemed to freeze and the moment had him wanting his wife just as much as she was obviously wanting him on the television screen, only the fantasy came to a screeching halt when a man appeared on the screen joining her in the shower.

“Don’t make me beg for it big boy,” she purred scratching her nails over his back while his fingers sank into her wet hair, pulling her head back just enough for him to devour her neck.

“Turn this off,” Kyle answered tightly watching the man on the television pinning Heather in up against a wall, turning her away from him while his hands roamed over her curves. “Paul turn it off!”

“We’re just getting to the good part man,” Paul objected watching the man with Heather pull her back to him, his hands pressing in over her breasts before moving southern in a possessive movement between her thighs. The camera left nothing to the imagination as Heather arched and bucked against the man, tossing her hair over her shoulder before he pushed her down onto a bench at the far end of the shower. She lay on the bench, the camera angle changing as the man moved in over her and she reached out to him stroking his manhood in a brazen movement.

“Turn it off!” Kyle snapped, his jaw tightening as he watched Heather doing things he’d never imagined possible. Okay, so he’d imagined them possible, but he never thought he would actually see her doing them with another man.

“Kyle, it’s only a movie,” Paul offered up glancing over at Kyle seeing the way that Kyle’s face grew red with anger as the man onscreen guided Heather’s lips over him.

“I said it’s enough,” Kyle snapped furious with what he’d been seeing when he heard the man speak up at last.

“That’s right baby. You like that don’t you,” he heard the man taunting her, belittling her with his tone, yet even in the poorly scripted display onscreen there was something familiar about him.

“Wait,” Kyle reached out to Paul grabbing Paul’s wrist before he could shut the film off.

“I thought you said that you didn’t want to watch anymore of this. I was just trying to do what you asked man, but…” Paul offered up with a shrug of his shoulders.

“Give me that,” Kyle pushed Paul aside before taking the remote and pushing forward. He watched as Heather was shifted around into various positions the camera offering up no secrets about all that she was as the man moved in over her taking her from various angles. However it wasn’t until he spun Heather around urging her down onto the shower floor on her hands and knees that Kyle got the answer he was searching for. He paused the tape taking a long hard look at the man who was kneeling in behind her.

“Man, why did you stop it? I mean if you’re going to force yourself to watch it, don’t pause it on him. Let’s at least see what she’s got to offer,” Paul suggested with a hint of a smile, “You’re a lucky man Kyle considering how hot she is.”

“I know him,” Kyle mouthed his jaw flexed with anger as he found himself staring at the man who had been ravishing Heather with such a brute force and an unyielding relentlessness on screen.

“No kidding,” Paul’s jaw dropped as he watched Kyle seeing the way Kyle’s eyes sparked with pure rage. “Who is he?”

“A dead man,” Kyle frowned knowing full well that this was one secret that Heather must’ve kept from him for a good reason, but now that he saw her with Kellen Meloni doing things that he never would’ve thought possible, he found himself wanting to tear Kellen apart limb for limb.


“You sure do look happy this morning,” Cameron smirked walking into his dining room to see a smiling Sarah before him as he watched her pick at the food on her plate. Taking a seat across from her at the table he reached out to push the vase that was in the center of the table aside to get a better look at her. “What’s so different about today than any other day?”

“Why can’t I just be happy because it’s a beautiful morning?” Sarah muttered seeing the look behind Cameron’s dark eyes as she let out a small sigh and went to reach for her juice. Watching his expression over his face she let out a small laugh before taking a sip of her juice. “Okay, so maybe my day is looking up for certain reasons.”

“Would I get to know those reasons or is this going to continue on as the guessing game?” Cameron smirked seeing the way she smiled and set her juice back on the table, leaning further back in the chair. A smug expression passed over her bright features as she pushed back her blonde hair and shrugged her shoulders. “So?”

“So maybe I am in a cheerful mood because of last night,” Sarah informed Cameron seeing his eyebrow perk up in interest knowing that she was giving him only a small amount of information to get him worked up. A smirk pressed in over his features and he could tell that they were just playing some kind of a game to fit into the mood she had at the moment. “You know, the kind of events that put you in a glamorous mood.”

“Well, I’m glad you have perked up. You were starting to become a drag around here,” he pointed out adjusting in his seat before reaching out to grab her juice and drink the rest down quickly. “You are supposed to be pregnant, you need to have some type of glow to you. Instead you were dragging around the house, bringing everyone into the same darkness you had.”

“Well, let’s just say I’m having a good day because I know certain other people are having a miserable one,” she teased him with information further watching him stand up from the chair and move over toward her reaching for her hand to pull her up in closer to his chest. Pushing her long, blonde hair back behind her ear he grabbed a soft hold of her hand leading her toward the library where he dropped down to the couch bringing her in over him. “”You know how that is, don’t you Cameron?”

“The pain of others making you have a better day?” Cameron muttered seeing the look in her dark eyes as she nodded while he moved up to press a small kiss against her neck. “I know exactly how that feels Sarah, it’s awkward that after all this time, you have turned out more like me each day.”

“I’m nothing like you,” she moved in over his lap more sturdy running her fingers through his thick, dark hair watching the way he rested his head back against the couch for a moment while closing his eyes tightly. “How could you honestly tie me in with anything that has to do with you?”

“Sweetheart, you were known for being little Ms. Innocent,” Camera smirked teasing his palms in over her hips while bringing Sarah in closer to him. Tipping up he skimmed his thumb in over her bottom lip before letting out a long sigh and shrugging his shoulders. “Heather was the one that everyone thought you would never be, but look at how wrong all those people were.”

“You have no idea what you are talking about,” Sarah pushed at the center of his head seeing his head lay back as he let out a small laugh and shook his head slowly. “Just because I get the pleasure of someone else’s pain…,”

“Makes you all the more interesting,” he bit down on his bottom lip before moving his palms up and over her thighs watching her dark eyes glancing down into his. “So you never explained to me, who is in what kind of damage to make you this happy?”

“Well, I’m sure you could take a guess,” Sarah pointed out with a small smirk tipping down to press a rough kiss against his lips pulling back and gently nipping at his bottom lip. “There are so many, but so few I love to see in pain.”

“And would that be Diego?” he questioned eagerly watching the way her eyebrow perked up as he let out a small laugh and reached up to press his fingers in against her cheek. “Or would it be your sister and Kyle?”

“I’ll leave it up to your imagination,” Sarah answered moving up and off of his lap, toward the chair in the corner of the room watching the frown that spread out over his features. He sat up straighter and folded his arms in front of his chest seeing the pleasure she got from continuously teasing him. “Though, I can only imagine the pain that Diego is feeling right now.”

“I’m sure all of us can,” Cameron shifted in his seat uneasily letting out a small laugh at what Cori had done to Diego before leaning forward and thinking about another subject. There was no use in trying to get more out of Sarah considering she was all up for games today and that wasn’t really what he wanted at all. “The house seems really quiet for having JT and his companion around.”

“Speaking of JT,” Sarah smirked letting out a tiny chuckle at the rumors that came from JT Mahoney, “I didn’t think he had companions, well--at least ones that stayed the night.”

“Well, this one is different and there is something about her,” Camera itched his chin before pushing back his dark hair, letting out a small sigh still not being able to put his finger on it just yet. “She is so familiar, I just can’t think of what it is that links her to something I know.”

“Sure she wasn’t someone you slept with in the past?” Sarah questioned seeing Cameron roll his eyes at the comment and shake his head slowly before resting back in the chair. “Then I have absolutely no idea.”


“JT,” Evie whispered letting out a long yawn as soon as the light from outside shined through her eyes once someone opened them up. A small groan escaped her lips as she stretched out in the bed letting out another exhausted yawn. Pressing her hand back behind her she felt the bed where JT should be sleeping, instead felt the cool sheets behind her. “Where are you?”

“What? Did you think the blinds opened themselves?” JT smirked jumping back into the spot he was in earlier seeing her chocolate brown eyes staring into his. Leaning in closer to her, he pressed a small kiss against her lips before resting back on his elbow. “You sure are a deep sleeper I hope you know.”

“Well unlike some people I actually like to rest,” she teased with a small smile wiping at her tired eyes, turning in closer to him so that she was facing him more clearly. His fingers pressed in against her cheek as she smiled feeling him press her long, dark hair behind her ear. “I guess it’s just make-up time for all the days I didn’t get any sleep.”

“Don’t worry, other days I will surely let you sleep. Just today, I was ready to do something with you, I want to have some fun,” JT informed her with a proud smile grabbing her hand in his and bringing it up to his lips to press a small peck against the back of her hand. “What would be the best thing to do today for you?”

“I don’t know, but I really like the idea of having something strawberry. Maybe some pancakes if you are interested,” she muttered in a tired whisper pulling her hands away from him, reaching her hand out to press it in over his hip and sliding her fingertips up the side of his body. “That’s if you are interested.”

“When doesn’t something strawberry sound amazing to you?” JT teased seeing the blush that pressed in over her cheeks and he moved forward to press a gentle kiss against her cheek. “Trust me honey, that’s one thing I love about you, so it’s really okay.”

“I don’t know why, but it’s something I always seemed to like. I never got a lot of them, it’s just when I can get anything strawberry I am all over it. You’d think I got it from my parents or something, but I didn’t,” Evie shrugged seeing the way JT smiled out at her before shaking his head slowly and reached out to stroke her cheek gently. “I guess I just like the taste or something.”

“Understandably so,” he whispered in a small nod taking in a deep breath while looking into her beautiful eyes. Tipping forward he pressed a kiss against her forehead feeling her fingers fan out over his rough cheek. “They taste great so I have nothing against that. Before we go downstairs, how are you with the whole subject of Cameron. Have you been able to get along with my brother?”

“Oh Cameron seems great,” Evie nodded turning onto her back and resting into the pillows more comfortably feeling him moving in closer to her. “I can’t tell you the same about Sarah though, she seems like a real…,”

“Bitch? Yeah she is,” JT finished for Evie hearing a small chuckle escape her lips as he nodded slowly and let out a sigh of exhaust. Thinking about his brother, he thought of all the women Cameron had been with in the past and how wretched they all could be, but Sarah was the absolute worse. “I don’t know how Cameron continues to pick these horrible women, he has such bad taste.”

“He could say the same thing about you,” she teased feeling him move in closer to her, wrapping his arm around her waist before pressing a tender kiss against her neck.

“I would have to give him a serious beat down then because you are the best woman I have ever laid eyes on,” JT smirked feeling her fingers fan out in through his hair as she tipped up half way to meet his lips in a small peck. “My taste was horrible until I found you, but I guess they all had to be horrible, so I could find the love of my life.”

“I guess I’m just lucky because the first time I fell in love it was with the man of my dreams,” she stated firmly seeing him smile widely and move back to grab her hand in his and pull her up from the bed into his chest. “I absolutely hope he feels the same way about me too.”

“Trust me honey, I feel something so strong for you. Something that I could never feel for anyone else in this world, you are it for me Evie and it’s only you,” JT sighed watching the way her smile expanded as he cupped her face in his hands lovingly tipping down to press a tender kiss against her lips. “I thought you would have figured that out by now baby, you are it for me that’s all there is. It’s just you I see, only you.”

“I love you,” Evie kissed him one more time before feeling him tug her down the stairs as she let out a small laugh as he tugged on her hand a bit more. As they walked past the kitchen she stopped seeing the way that JT stared back at her. “Aren’t we going to have breakfast with Cameron and Sarah?”

“You see, I thought about that,” JT nodded motioning her to follow him out through the back and into the yard. He could see the confusion behind her light brown eyes as she was led toward the back. “But I felt I could think of something better than that. Something that was more your style.”

“And that is?” Evie went to ask him again until she saw two horses out in the field a few feet away from them. Letting out a small gasp she looked to JT seeing the wide smile pressed in over his features and she nodded slowly. “Oh yeah, this is going to be better than breakfast with Cameron and Sarah.”


“Would someone like to explain to me what’s going on here?” Kevin pulled the pancake off of his shirt and held it up in the air, “Starting with this.”

“Kevin, it’s not what it…” Brant started realizing how strange it must’ve looked to see him and Ria on the floor with one another.

“We were just waiting for you two and got carried away,” Ria replied wiping at her hair knowing full well it didn’t make a bit of difference in helping the situation. She cleared her throat uneasily before pulling herself up off of the floor and meeting Kevin’s unhappy gaze. “You two were late.”

“Not that late,” Kevin’s jaw flexed with anger as Angela let out a small laugh.

“It looks like we missed out on something for sure,” Angela noted the mess that surrounded them.

“Not really,” Brant shrugged his shoulders getting up off of the floor as well before walking across the room to retrieve the bottle of syrup that he’d tossed earlier in the war with Ria.

“Oh no it looks like something was certainly happening here,” Kevin stepped forward seeing Ria move over to stand beside Brant.

“You’re right. Something is happening,” Ria decided snatching the bottle from Brant’s hand and marching over to Kevin. She stood up taller meeting his jealous gaze before issuing him a smile, “You need to be sweetened up Adonis.”

“Excuse me,” Kevin blinked back at her only to feel her squirt him right in the face with the syrup. He brought his hand up to his cheek before wiping at the syrup. He pulled his hand back before bringing his finger into his mouth and taking a small taste of it. Once he let the syrup settle on his tongue, he flashes Ria a mischievous smile, “You’re so going down for that one.”

“Catch me if you can,” Ria squirt him again before darting off across the kitchen.

“You are so going to get it,” Kevin looked around the room before spotting the juice that was on the counter. He grabbed the pitcher and chased off after Ria ready to launch his own attack.

“Oh boy, this is trouble,” Angela laughed lightly watching Kevin, Brant and Ria pick up right where everyone had left off in the previous food fight.

“Nah, it’s just pure fun,” Don motioned to the powdered sugar that was on the counter. “Why don’t you join in? Brant will love it.”

“Oh come on. It’s a mess in the making and…” Angela tried to argue with Don only to feel him shake the powdered sugar at her. She huffed, “What was that?”

“Either you join in or I’m going to have to take you out,” Don teased again hearing Ria and Kevin squeal in the background as they continued to attack one another. He shook the powdered sugar over at her before she eyed the counter seeing what else she had to work with.

“You’re asking for it now,” Angela warned him picking up a handful of hash browns and chucking it in his direction. Don, however, bent down and the potatoes crashed into Brant causing him to turn over in their direction.

“Hey, what was that for?” Brant curled his lip in a pout.

“She did it,” Don pointed over at Angela and stepped out of the way.

“No it was all his idea,” Angela shook her head furiously watching Brant doubling around ready to attack her now that he was covered from head to toe in syrup.

“Is that right?” Brant wiggled his brow at her seeing her backing away, but before she could get out of his reach, he leapt forward caging her in his arms. “Now you’re going to get it.”

“Brant please,” she felt him shake his head, sending all the syrup in his hair all over the place including on her. She spat out bringing her hands up in the air to fend him off, but in the midst of her counter-attack she felt him tickle at her side. “Brant come on…”

“Nope, you asked for it,” Brant shook his head firmly prepared to initiate Angela into the morning food fight that he and Ria had started. Out of the corner of his eye he spotted Ria and Kevin in a corner with one another still having their own food fight with Don seated over by the table trying to munch on what little was left of breakfast. Kevin sent something flying over in Don’s direction and he bent down before sitting right back up to eat his food.

“Brant come on,” Angela giggled wiggling in his arms as she ran her hand over the side of his head. She collected syrup from his hair and rubbed her palm into the center of his face.

“Oh that’s it,” Brant picked her up in his arms catching her completely off guard while he carried her over to the countertop ready to set her down in the pile of strawberry waffles that had gone untouched until now.

“Brant no! Brant put me down!” Angela kicked her legs out holding onto him even though she was asking him to release her. She kept her arm around his shoulder feeling him move forward with a wicked determination. “Brant I mean it put me down!”

“If you insist,” he shrugged setting her down on top of the plate of waffles and causing the whipped cream and syrup to mash right into her pants.

“Oh you,” she winced feeling the smooth, creamy foam of the whipped cream soaking through her pants. She reached out beneath her and flung some whipped cream at him before snubbing her nose, “You’re such a child.”

“Am I really?” Brant wiggled his brow at her before sticking out his tongue at her. “I just look at it as I’m still a pretty fun guy.”

“Insane is more like it,” Angela mouthed in confession, laughter spilling over her lips. She watched Brant push the syrup away from his own face revealing his goofy grin before he reached out to wipe some of the debris away from her cheek.

“I thought you always liked a little insane,” he spoke in a low, quiet whisper as Angela found herself acutely aware of the nearness they had between them. She couldn’t help but find herself drawn to his lips feeling something stirring inside of her now that he was touching her. He’d just brushed syrup from her face, yet there was something about the warmth of his thumb against her skin, the way that he was looking at her--watching her with such a warm, compassionate stare that had her thinking things about him that she was sure she shouldn’t. She closed her eyes for a brief moment and envisioned the two of them together bodies intertwined in some kind of forbidden dance that was filled with laughter and passion--a spell of seduction and desire--something that most certainly couldn’t be real.

“Angela,” he spoke her name in a soft, soothing tone and she felt his finger slide into her dark hair, “Are you alright?”

“I’m fine,” she snapped her eyes open feeling her face flushed at the outlandish fantasy her mind had created about him. She cleared her throat before attempting to get off of the countertop. “I guess I was just feeling a bit winded.”

“That’s all?” he searched her eyes hoping that it was something more.

“Yeah,” she nodded clearing her throat again before seeing something fly across the room at Don. She couldn’t help but laugh, “Looks like we’re missing out on the thick of the food fight.”

“I don’t really mind,” Brant admitted honestly unable to take his eyes off of her, “I was rather enjoying talking with you.”

“Yeah, well we should probably get back to everyone else,” she replied glancing over her shoulder to see Kevin picking Ria up in his arms and carrying her across the room over towards the table where Don was at. Kevin spun Ria in his arms and let her spray Don with syrup causing Don to stand up from where he’d been seated.

“That’s so not cool guys,” Don grumbled before reaching for a piece of food off of his plate and sending it in their direction. Kevin pulled Ria out of the way, but instead of Don completely missing his mark, he found himself hitting Augustus dead on with his attempt to get Kevin.

“What in the world is going on in here?” Augustus asked looking down at the eggs that Don had flung at him. “Never mind. I don’t want to know.”


“You can imagine my surprise when my secretary told me I had a visitor waiting in my office for me,” Beth explained closing the door behind her only to discover Hart standing near the window at the far end of the room. “Double that with the shock that followed in finding out that the visitor was you.”

“I hope you don’t mind that I took the liberty of waiting in here,” Hart looked around Beth’s office. He rubbed his palms together and took in a nervous breath before making a small, forward movement. “You’ve done pretty good for yourself here from the looks of things.”

“Yes, I have,” Beth nodded in response before offering up a small laugh, “though let’s face it Hart, what you really want to say is that it’s quite a step up from being a medical student working at Hooters for me, right?”

“No, that’s not what I’m saying,” Hart frowned taking in another breath.

“Oh come on Hart, I’m sure that you’d just love to throw in a jab about that one,” she rolled her eyes at him before moving towards her desk again. “Face it, you’ve just been dying to throw all of my past crimes in my face whether it’s about my less than moral beginnings or about the fact that I chose to stay with Travis and tried to make the marriage work for years before it fell apart.”

“If I came here to throw stones at you I probably would have started with the fact that you felt the need to suppress the news that I was Sam’s father from me,” he couldn’t help but snap back at her watching as she took a seat in her oversized chair behind the desk. He followed the movement and sat in the chair across from her. “That one still kind of stings.”

“I did what I had to in order to protect Sam,” Beth replied with a frown. “You and I weren’t meant to be anything serious with one another when we started fooling around. You made it painfully obvious that you weren’t looking for anything long term, nor were you in a position to really be an adult, so what would have been the point in my trying to contact you about Sam?”

“I would have been a good father to her,” Hart explained feeling his anger resurfacing over the situation. “I had a right to be a part of her life.”

“Why? So you could jus disappoint her like you disappointed me over and over again?” she shook her head at him. “Hart, I know you well enough to know that if I would have told you she was ours, you would have skipped town and never looked back.”

“You were quick to make that assumption about me Beth, but it was the wrong one,” Hart informed her point blank, “I wasn’t like that.”

“Sure you were, which is why I did what I felt was necessary to protect my daughter,” she let out an ironic laugh, “A lot of good that wound up being.”

“I would never, ever hurt Sam,” Hart informed her with a sudden seriousness. “I never would have turned my back on her.”

“Hart, you weren’t even in control of your own life. Why would you even begin to presume that you could take care of a child?” she blinked back at him. “Our sleeping together was for sport and it didn’t bring about anything positive other than Sam.”

“Maybe we weren’t together for the right reasons, but I would have…” he started again feeling the pain of knowing how much time he’d missed out in Sam’s life.

“You would have what? Tried to do the honorable thing and married me?” she couldn’t help but laugh. “Hart, you are by far the biggest commitment-phobe that I know and you can’t stay loyal to any woman. I knew that when we first started sleeping together and I saw it all over again when we spent that other night together…”

“You mean years after you’d already had Sam, but never felt the need to tell me about it?” Hart challenged with a huff. “Why not tell me then since you and Travis had split up?”

“Do you really think our hooking up during that convention weekend really constituted the beginning of something wonderful between us Hart?” she couldn’t help but chortle at the thought. “All weekend long we said about five words to one another and they weren’t anything substantial.”

“Even so, I had a right to know,” Hart shuddered at the memory. “That would have been your chance to clue me in on Sam’s life…”

“Hart, you weren’t ready for the truth then and even now sometimes I wonder if you’re even ready for it now,” she rolled her eyes at his accusations. “Sure, Sam undoubtedly thinks you’re a saint, but she has no idea what kind of man you truly are.”

“I love my daughter,” Hart frowned in response.

“Yeah sure,” she couldn’t help but mock his tone, “Just like you loved every other woman in your life. Face it Hart women are irrelevant to you and any time you have to actually step up and be a grown up, you balk in the other direction and never look back.”

“You know that’s entirely not true. I’ve changed,” Hart continued to argue with her wondering why he’d thought that visiting her would be a good thing.

“Oh, you mean with your little medical examiner?” Beth chuckled with obvious amusement, “Hart, you aren’t fooling anyone. Sooner or later you’ll be bored and when you do, I’m certain that you’ll find your way to bigger and better things.”

“I love Jenna,” Hart began to argue with her before rethinking the thought. “Look, I didn’t come here to fight with you. I came here to talk about Sam and what’s best with her.”

“Oh like after a few months you’re suddenly an expert,” Beth rolled her eyes at him. “Of course I would imagine you would think that considering that your ego knows no limits. Plus I’m sure Sam is feeding into it even more considering that she hardly talks to me anymore.”

“I didn’t want for that to happen Beth. Despite what you and I think about one another, I do feel that Sam needs her mother now more than ever,” he softened his tone a bit, “Beth, she needs both of us right now especially considering that she’s thinking about turning her world upside down.”

“What are you talking about?” she questioned curiosity brewing over her.

“It turns out that Sam has decided that she wants to go to school in London,” Hart explained preparing himself for her reaction.

“What? Why?” she couldn’t help but ask.

“There’s a program out there that she wants to get into and she and Wayne have talked about leaving with one another. Naturally I’ve listened to what she’s had to say, but I don’t think it’s a good idea,” Hart explained his position on the matter.

“Of course it’s not a good idea. I mean if she’s doing this because she’s angry at me, then there’s no way that I can sit back and let this happen. I can’t lose her especially not now after all the years of suffering she and I went through with her being sick,” Beth blurted out with worry behind her eyes. “Hart, I know that she hates me right now, but I can’t lose my daughter. I don’t want her punishing me for not being honest with her like this. I mean I know she’s angry, but…”

“I think she’s just confused and to be honest with you as much as you and I don’t get along, we’re both in agreement that we don’t want to see Sam in London,” he explained laying the foundation for what had prompted him to visit Beth in the first place. “While you and I have a lot of tension and anger between us, the fact to the matter is that I don’t want to lose my daughter any more than you do, which is why I feel that the only alternative that you and I have in all of this is working together to show Sam that London is the worst possible idea for her.”

“You mean as in us working like a team on this?” she arched a curious brow.

He nodded, “As much as it pains me to admit this, I need your help. I don’t want to lose Sam all over again.”

“Neither do I and if it means that I’ll have to force myself to play nice long enough to ensure that she stays, then so be it,” she reached out across her desk to offer her hand up to him, “You’ve got yourself a deal Hart.”

“Great,” he replied reluctantly reaching for her hand.

“So the question is now what do we do to ensure she doesn’t leave?” Beth questioned ready to dive into a plan to keep Sam around.

“That seems to be the million dollar question of the hour, now doesn’t it?” Hart pondered out loud wondering if there was in fact a way that they could reach out to Sam without making them look as though they were the bad guys in the situation. Still as he glanced over at Beth, he realized if anyone could help him find a way to persuade Sam into staying in Coral Valley, she would be the one to do it. Apart they might have had problems, but together they were unstoppable.


“Yeah, come in,” Jenna called out after hearing a knock on the door to enter her office as she set down the papers she was looking through on a certain case she was trying to figure out. Making things a bit neater she let out a long sigh before seeing Diego push her door open softly. “Diego, hey. What are you doing here?”

“I wanted to talk to you,” Diego softly closed the door before moving over toward the chair in front of her desk as he sat down and let out a small sigh. “I’ve been thinking about some things and I didn’t want to actually go forward with it until I talked to you. I thought it was necessary.”

“What’s wrong Diego?” Jenna questioned pushing back her long, dark hair before taking in a deep breath seeing the hurt look behind Diego’s brown eyes and she saw the way he met her glance. “What’s wrong?”

“I’ve been thinking about things and I’ve come to a decision,” Diego began taking in a long breath folding his fingers out in front of him before shaking his head slowly. Adjusting in his seat, he knew it was going to get hard to get used to his decision, but it was something that had to be. “I know it’s something that’s the best for me and my sister helped me realize it Jenna. I’m probably going to be leaving town for a while.”

“Well why would you do something like that?” she pondered the thought herself before letting out a small noise of disbelief as she moved forward in her seat. “Diego, this is where you belong, this is where your friends are. Why would you want to leave?”

“Haven’t you heard the rumors Jenna? I don’t belong here at all,” Diego pointed out with a small laugh throwing his hands up in the air and shaking his head slowly. “You have no idea what people say about me, you have no idea of what it’s like to have everyone in town against you.”

“Diego, I heard the rumors, I heard everything. I just didn’t think you were the type of person to let people get to you,” Jenna reached out to touch his hands as he let out a sigh of his own knowing that his decision had been changed over and over again. “Why would you let people get to you in this town, you have friends in this town. What about me? You should know that one friend can outstand the rest of the world.”

“Jenna I know, it’s just I have been thinking long and hard about the decision. If you think about it, my career is basically over, there isn’t much more you could do for it,” Diego added seeing her watching him carefully as he thought about all the problems that were going on for him. “I know most people in this town hate me and I keep hurting too many people. Even if I leave, we can always still be friends, there are the great people in this town, but there are some people that just don’t need me here. I’m a jinx in this town and there is nothing I can do to change it Jenna. I need to change myself and maybe after everything changes I can come back, but I need to become someone else. Not this washed out version of what I used to be.”

There was a long sigh between the two and she knew that there was nothing she could do to change his mind. Diego was surely one of the type of men that once he had his mind set, it was hard to change it.

“I’m going to find out if I’m really the father of Sarah’s baby. If that’s my child, I’ll be here for my baby, but if it’s not mine,” Diego took in a long breath watching the way her eyebrows tensed together with sadness and he knew that Jenna was one of his friends and it would effect her in that way. “If it’s not my baby, I’m going to leave and start over Jenna. That’s the thing I have to do, start over and become something new. I have to start over and become the person I know I used to be.”

“I’ll stand behind you no matter what your decision is Diego, you’re my friend and I respect anything that you pick in your life,” Jenna stood up from the chair and moved over toward Diego seeing him stand. Reaching out to him she gave him a friendly, tight hug before letting out a long sigh. “I wish you the best luck Diego if that is the thing you do decide to do with your future, I hate the fact that you are leaving because you are my friend. I will always be behind you no matter what, I promise you.”


“So now that we are onto some better topics,” Cameron stood up from his seat seeing the way her dark eyes stared up at him as he moved over toward the desk and leaned against it. “About this paternity test with the baby Sarah…,”

“God Cameron, don’t get me started on it,” Sarah took in a long breath rolling her eyes at the thought of what could actually happen once they found out who really was the father. “I could tell you who I would really like to be the father though.”

“Yeah, yeah. We know, you want it to be Kyle,” Cameron rolled his eyes at the thought before shaking his head slowly and letting out a small groan. “Which isn’t going to be happening anytime soon, so you may as well get over the whole idea you may have planned with him. So really let’s get onto this whole subject, we are supposed to know what we are planning on doing.”

“Yeah, but it’s really something I don’t want to be talking about,” Sarah pointed out placing her feet on the coffee table in front of her and let out a tiny laugh. “I could always make something happen with Kyle, you know how I work Cameron.”

“You worked so great with Kyle in the past, so good to the point where he is with your sister right now. Making love to your sister, saying the words of sweet love with you sister,” Cameron saw the anger rising in Sarah’s features as he let out a small laugh and shrugged his shoulders. “What can I say Sarah? I only speak the truth about what I see and here it is Sarah, Heather and Kyle are happy. Whatever you have planned is never going to happen.”

“Mr. Non-stoppable is finally stoppable,” Sarah frowned watching the way he stared out at her with his dark eyes and she set her feet back down on the ground, she stood up and moved over toward him teasing her fingertips in over his chest. “I thought you could do anything to get someone’s attention.”

“I don’t want Kyle’s attention honey,” Cameron added right back seeing the way she glared out at him and he let out a small laugh. “Well what do you expect? What would I get out of it if we had Kyle be the father?”

“It’s not all about you,” Sarah added seeing the way his eyebrow perked up before he let out a small laugh and shook his head slowly. “You have no idea the kind of things we could do together Cameron, you have absolutely no idea.”

“I have an idea Sarah,” Cameron smirked tipping down to skim his breath in over the side of her neck as his fingertips pressed in over the top of her blouse, playing with the buttons before stopping and shaking his head slowly. “I just don’t really care about it right now. When it comes to the paternity test honey, you and I are going to deal with it later. Tomorrow the situation will continue to work itself out. There is nothing to really worry about because this is something that is going to happen and we will be dealing with it Sarah. One way or another.”


“Kyle, look man, I think it’s best if you just hand me that,” Paul suggested noting the way that Kyle’s grip had intensified on the remote control he’d been holding. Paul reached out to Kyle’s wrist and tried to guide the remote out of his friend’s hand but came up short on the attempt. “Come on man. We need to turn this off. I think you’ve seen more than enough.”

Kyle said nothing, his jaw still taut and flexed with animosity and jealousy unlike anything he’d ever experienced in his life. Heather had told him in the past that things had happened to her--things that no one had understood, but now as Kyle saw her on the television screen in front of him he full well understood what she hadn’t been able to share with him. He squeezed down on the remote again crushing it into little pieces in his hand as the DVD started to play again.

“On second thought,” Paul stood up and walked over to the DVD player pushing the power button, “I think this works just fine.”

“I don’t believe this,” Kyle shook his head seeing the fragments of the remote control falling to the floor at his feet. “I just can’t believe that…”

“Hey, it’s okay,” Paul offered up supportively, “I mean it’s not everyday that a man learns his wife is not only a vixen, but one hell of a hot film star.”

Kyle tipped his head up to glare at Paul with such a malicious eye that Paul stepped back raising his hands in the air.

“Or not. I mean hell this is one movie. You know with Jewel she’s spreading it all over the world and we’re still married,” Paul tried to reason with Kyle knowing that it wasn’t really helping, “At least it’s clear that Heather was a bit younger in that. I really don’t think she ever had any intentions of letting that make it’s way to you if you didn’t know about it already.”

Kyle sat still for a moment before finally nodding, “You know you’re right man. You’re absolutely right.”

“I am?” Paul half questioned before standing up straighter and offering up a nervous laugh, “Yeah I mean I know I am.”

“Heather didn’t want me to know about this. She was afraid of something and I could feel it,” Kyle thought to all of the clues he should’ve picked up over the time he and Heather had come into contact with one another. “That had to be why she didn’t try to fight it when Cameron hurt her and why she constantly felt like she wasn’t worthy. Something like that was bound to kill her spirit and…”

“She looked pretty spirited to me with that guy on TV, but…” Paul quipped seeing Kyle glare at him again, “Sorry. My bad.”

“Heather was really young back then. It had to be when she ran away from home,” Kyle shook his head a pained expression carrying over him, “Damn it if Sarah hadn’t taken that letter away from me, then I could’ve stopped it. I could’ve kept her from having to live through that and…”

“Hey, it’ll be okay,” Paul offered up thinking about what his friend was taking in.

“I know. I mean I‘m mad as hell about what has happened, but I’m going to have to find a way to make it better for her. If Sarah hadn’t kept us from finding one another, then she never, ever would’ve felt like she had to do this,” Kyle paused remembering the expression on Heather’s face during the film. At first she’d seemed seductive and inviting, but as it went on he recognized the frightened and numbed expression behind her lost green eyes. Sure, she was acting like she was loving every second of what was taking place onscreen, but Kyle knew better. He saw the void that was inside of her--the emptiness that had carried over her that most would’ve missed.

“So what are you going to do man?” Paul questioned curiously. “What are you going to say to her?”

“I’m going to tell the guy at the video store that I’m going to pay off the balance that I owe because I lost the DVD,” Kyle finally decided glancing over at Paul, “and then we’re going to go into that store and any other video store in Coral Valley and make damn sure that we get our hands on every last copy of that DVD.”

“Now we’re talking,” Paul rubbed his palms together enthusiastically.

“And no you’re not getting a copy of it,” Kyle warned sharply, a hint of agitation in his tone. “We’re going to get them and then we are going to destroy them.”

“Are you serious?” Paul’s eyes widened before he saw the expression on Kyle’s face. “Okay, you’re serious. So then what? What are you going to say to Heather about all of this?”

“Nothing,” Kyle confessed honestly thinking about what he’d witnessed in the last half hour, “I’m not going to mention it to her because when she’s ready to talk to me about it, I’ll be there to listen. Until then I’m not going to act like anything has changed.”

“Well has it? I mean has it changed for you?” Paul couldn’t help but ask Kyle. “I mean can you really just pretend that nothing’s going on there?”

“I’ll do what I have to in order to make sure that this never hurts her again,” Kyle vowed promising himself that he would find a way to make up for the past that still clearly haunted Heather years after she finally got her life together again. He wasn’t about to let something as simple as this destroy her. He would do what was needed to protect his wife at any cost!


“What am I not going to know Heather?” Kipp took a bold step forward watching Kellen’s blue eyes widen as he let out a small gasp and reached for the magazine on the table. “What were the two of you talking about? What do you not want Kyle and I to know?”

“The details on the wedding honey, it’s a girl thing,” Kellen answered for Heather seeing the way that Heather’s green eyes stared into his as Kellen tossed the magazine out on the coffee table in front of him. Wrapping his arm around Heather’s shoulders he pulled her in closer to his muscular body before letting out a long sigh. “Heather Babes and I have been working on this for quite a while, it’s a bride and maid of honor type of thing. Right Heather Babes?”

“He’s telling the truth Kipp, he’s been really suspicious about some things,” Heather nodded slowly seeing Kellen smile widely and his dimples showed clearly. She tapped him on the stomach lightly before letting out a small laugh and nodding. “Sometimes he forgets to tell me all his secrets.”

“You two have to be kidding me,” Kipp pointed out with a small shake of his head knowing what he walked in on seemed much more serious and he could see the mask of what was happening over her face. She was so worried before, but now she was trying to mask it and Kipp knew her too well to believe something wasn’t wrong. “It seemed much more serious than that, but I believe you. I hope it turns out okay for you.”

“It will, Kellen here has some great ideas,” Heather moved away from Kellen’s arm seeing the way that Kellen’s blue eyes stared out at her as she nodded slowly and let out a small sigh. “I’m actually not feeling so great, so I’m going to head out to get some air if you are okay with that.”

“Oh yeah, sure,” Kipp motioned for Heather to go ahead and he pecked her on the cheek quickly before shutting the door after Heather left the room. Moving forward he saw Kellen looking down at the ground like he was trying to avoid Kipp and he just knew it. “So what’s really going on.”

“Don’t worry about it,” Kellen motioned him to move away as Kipp let out a long breath watching the way Kellen went to walk away and Kipp wasn’t about to let him go now. “Kipp, trust me you are missing nothing so great.”

“That’s not why I stopped you Kellen,” Kipp looked up at the much taller man before him and let out a small sigh seeing the way Kellen’s light blue eyes met his . “Kellen, baby I am so sorry I was acting like such a jerk. After what happened, I set Beccca straight Kellen and I won’t let anything like that happen again.”

Silence filled the air as he watched Kellen’s jaw clench and he saw nothing behind Kellen’s eyes. No hint if Kellen was still mad or if he was okay with what Kipp was saying, so there was no other choice than to continue with what he was saying just to fix the most important relationship he had.

“Kellen, baby I love you so much. You’re my blue eyes, the blue eyes I missed this morning when I woke up, it’s you I love honey and you’re the only person in my life. I thought it would be obvious because my heart is right here in your hand Kel,” Kipp grabbed Kellen’s hand in his seeing the smile that cornered in over Kellen’s lips and it made Kipp’s heart flutter at the sight. “I trust you more than life itself, you are my Kellen and you are the only person I love so much.”

“I love you too Kippy,” Kellen wrapped his arms around Kipp picking him up in his arms and let out a long sigh as Kipp kissed him softly. Thinking of what Kipp said, the worst trust was something that meant much more to him than anything else other than the love. “I’m glad you trust me Kipp, that’s all I care about. Thank you.”

Just because of that it made him feel even worse with how great Kipp had been for him. Sure, it was the past that was haunting Kellen’s life, but that didn’t mean he didn’t deserve to know. It was hard that Kellen couldn’t tell Kipp just what happened…not yet at least.


Heather stepped further out into the hallway giving Kipp and Kellen a moment of privacy with one another now that it was clear that the couple clearly needed to get a few things off of their chests. She tiptoed down the hallway thinking about her husband at home and wondered how she would be able to face him after she’d been confronted by her past in such a shocking fashion. Closing her eyes she realized that telling Kyle about what had happened would be one of the hardest things she would ever have to do in her life and even now she feared that her courage would fade away from her before she was able to be honest with him.

“Heather hey,” Becca spoke out beckoning Heather from her worries.

Heather opened her eyes and realized Becca was walking right towards her. Knowing that Kipp and Kellen were in Heather’s office and already fighting over Becca, Heather stood up taller and motioned to Becca to follow her into one of the empty offices across the hall. Once they were inside, Heather closed the door and turned around to face Becca again.

“Are you okay?” Becca couldn’t help but ask seeing something was clearly bothering Heather. “Is something wrong?”

“Let’s just say I’m having one of those days where I question why I even bothered to get out of bed,” Heather mouthed in confession thinking about the fax that Kellen had torn up in her office.

“I’m sorry to hear it,” Becca paused for a moment, “though if you need someone to talk to, I’m always available to listen.”

“Thanks Becca, I really appreciate it, but the truth to the matter is that this is something that I really don’t feel like talking about,” Heather confessed making her way over to the couch in the office and taking a seat. “I’d love to forget about it if I could.”

“Forgetting about your problems is never a real answer,” Becca followed her over to the couch and took a seat on the other end. “It only makes things fester inside of you until you explode one day.”

“I know,” Heather nodded in response, “but right now I think I need to let it fester for a little while--just until my head clears up.”

“It’s that bad, huh?” Becca searched Heather’s eyes watching her nod.

“Yeah it’s that bad,” Heather admitted wondering what Kyle would do or say when he learned about her horrible secret past.

“I’m sure that it’s not nearly as awful as you think it is, but rather it’s something that you can turn around. It’ll make you stronger in the future and you’ll see that in the grand scheme of things it was nothing,” Becca replied brightly hoping to give Heather a pep talk.

“I wish it was that simple,” Heather added with a weak smile before focusing in on Becca, “but what about you? I heard about what happened with you and Kipp last night. Kellen’s upset.”

“It was a mistake,” Becca folded her hands in her lap and looked to the floor. “I know that now and as much as I wish that I could take it back I can’t. I know that sounds stupid, but…”

“No, I can understand, but I’ve got to tell you Becca,” Heather sighed leaning in against the back of the couch while she turned to look at Becca more completely, “If you’re starting to think that you’re falling for Kipp, maybe you should take a step back.”

“A step back,” Becca repeated with confused eyes, “Wait are you saying that you’re firing me?”

“No, not at all,” Heather waved her hand around in the air hoping to reassure her, “but maybe you and Kipp need to keep from working so close to one another. I mean I don’t want to sound like the bearer of bad news, but he’s in a relationship with Kellen and…”

“I know,” Becca nodded in response, “It’s just it’s been so long since I’ve had someone be nice to me. I mean really nice to me. Kipp treated me like I was a person and I don’t get that a lot where I’m from. People just don’t really take to me.”

“I seriously doubt that,” Heather replied seeing a sadness behind Becca’s eyes.

“It’s true,” Becca offered a weak smile, “while people might think that I have it together and that I’ve made something of myself, the fact to the matter is that I still can’t find myself breaking out of the rut that I was stuck in growing up. I mean you know the story. My father was never in my life and my mother, well let’s just say she was known as being the woman who got around the most in our town if you catch my drift. She was gone most of the time with the boyfriend of the moment and my sister, well she was constantly rubbing it in my face that my mother never wanted me to begin with. I know it sounds stupid to say this to you, but I guess that gave me a complex.”

“I understand completely,” Heather admitted surprised by Becca’s words as she thought of her own past, “People can be hard on someone when they are growing up.”

“Yeah, tell me about it,” Becca nodded in response finding the strength to meet Heather’s eyes, “and then my mom had this sleazebag boyfriend that paid me attention. I thought it was something great--you know to actually kind of have a father figure in my life, but then he tricked me into taking these pictures with him--these pictures that a twelve year old never should’ve posed for.”

“Oh Becca,” Heather felt her heart drop knowing full well exactly what Becca had wound up in. Suddenly she thought of her own situation and a lump formed in the back of her throat, “I’m so sorry you had to go through that.”

“I’m sorry I’m telling you about this,” Becca wiped at her face feeling tears coming to her eyes, “I don’t really want pity on me and I’m not trying to say this to you because I’m afraid you’ll fire me. It’s just that you’ve been so kind to me and you seem to understand.”

“I do understand. More than you know,” Heather offered up sympathetically reaching out to pat Becca’s shoulder, “No one should ever have to face any of that, but you need to know that it isn’t your fault. What happened with that jerk your mother was dating was wrong, but not because of you. He took advantage of you and he should’ve been punished for that. He was the one who was awful, not you.”

“That’s what my therapist said,” Becca let out an ironic laugh, “but it’s easier to hear than believe. I mean I guess that’s why I always reach out for the impossible relationship. I always find myself with the wrong guy because I don’t think that I deserve the right guy. I collect the jerks and the men who would rather hurt me, then someone who actually seems to care. I guess that’s why I read the lines wrong with Kipp. He’s just so sweet and…”

“And it’s easy to fall for him,” Heather noted thinking about what a good heart Kipp had.

“Obviously you loved him once,” Becca half questioned looking to Heather again.

“Yeah I did,” Heather revealed thinking about her brief relationship with Kipp, “But I honestly didn’t treat him like he deserved to be treated. He was really good to me and I walked all over him.”

“You two are close now though, right?” Becca asked further.

Heather nodded, “Yeah, but it’s only because of Charles. Our son keeps us from killing one another I think. It’s because of Charles that Kipp and I have been able to overcome a lot of what’s been between us. Charles has erased a lot of hurt and I’m thankful for that. He’s a good man that looks out for me and I am happy that I have that in my life.”

“It must be nice,” Becca sighed slumping down on the couch, “I mean you have Kipp and Kyle and even Kellen.”

“You’ll have people too. I mean I know Kipp cares about you, but you have to understand that there’s only friendship that will remain between you,” Heather tried to reason with Becca gently, “He might seem like he’s a prince charming right now, but when it gets down to it one day you’ll meet someone who can love you like you deserve to be loved.”

“Kind of like you have Kyle,” Becca arched a curious brow watching Heather nod.

“Yeah, just like I have Kyle,” Heather noted as her thoughts lingered back to the fax she received and she wondered just how long she would have Kyle if he ever learned her terrible secret.

“Well if you can have that, then maybe there is hope for me. I promise I won’t make the same mistake I made with Kipp before. I mean that’s kind of the point of mistakes right. We’re supposed to learn from them, yes?” Becca questioned as Heather found herself lost in her own train of thoughts.

“Yeah,” Heather replied her thoughts lingering to Kyle again. Somehow she found herself fearing more and more that he would never understand--that regardless of what he felt for her, he wouldn’t be able to take the awful truth about the person she once was and it scared the life out of her in more ways than she cared to admit.


“Sorry about the mess,” Brant began apologetically stepping around a pile of discarded food that was beneath him. “We were just…”

“With you and Angela I’ve learned not to ask questions,” Augie offered up a small laugh shaking his head at them, “You two still enjoy playing around with one another don’t you?”

“What?” Angela questioned tipping her head to the side to see the way that Augustus was smiling at her.

“He just means that we all like to have a fun time around here,” Brant added quickly as Kevin stepped forward joining them.

“Yeah, um we’re really sorry about the mess. We’ll clean it all up after we’re finished in here and…” Kevin offered up seeing the pained expression on Brant’s face.

“Hey it’s his house, not mine,” Augustus shrugged his shoulders before letting out a hearty laugh. “He has to deal with it, not me.”

“That’s right and we’ll deal with it. Don and I will clean it up if necessary,” Brant motioned over to where Don was seated at the table munching on the only remaining breakfast that was edible.

“Hey Augie,” Don waved over at him with a bring grin.

“Don,” Augustus nodded in recognition before looking over at Ria and seeing that no one was spared of this particular food fight. “I suppose I’ll let you all get back to what you were doing and I’ll just go away for a while.”

“Not so fast,” another voice erupted through the room as all eyes turned around to see Russ standing in the doorway. He blinked back at the surroundings seeing the mess that was painted over the kitchen, but he didn’t let it distract him from what he came there to do. “Augustus I know what you did and I came here to tell you that I don’t want any of it. I’m not accepting it.”

“What?” Augustus replied glancing over at Russ just in time to see a pancake slap Russ right across the side of the face.

“What the…” Russ blinked back registering the syrupy pancake that slide down his cheek. He reached for it and glared over at the rest of the group, “Ok who did this?”

“I have no idea,” Don mouthed whistling a tune to himself as Russ snarled at him.

“Leveski, I’m going to kill you,” Russ hissed ready to go over and launch an attack on Don.

“No you’re not because the last time I checked Russ you weren’t invited here. In fact the last time I looked, I was pretty sure that you and I had no business with one another, so why don’t you get the hell out of my house?” Brant stood taller getting in front of Russ before he could go over to Don. “You don’t belong here.”

“Whether or not I belong here, Augustus brought me over here with what he’s done and I’m not leaving until we get it settled,” Russ challenged ready to take on Brant if need to be to get his point across once and for all.


...to be continued...