Time: 6:05 p.m.
Date: February 12, 2003
Place: Safe House
Jason was on his feet immediately. Elizabeth followed suit, her body tense. Jason raised his eyes toward the ceiling but no further sounds were heard.
“Jason,” Elizabeth murmured. He didn’t answer her. Instead he crossed the kitchen rapidly and pulled open one of the drawers. Elizabeth’s eyes widened as he pulled out a gun and held it out to her. “I–”
“Take it,” he said quietly. “I need to go upstairs and check out that noise but if it’s something bad, I don’t want you within five feet of me. So if you hear anything, just run.”
“Then what’s the gun for?” Elizabeth hissed.
“To make sure you get away,” Jason replied. “Elizabeth–”
“You want me to run away if you’re potentially hurt?” she whispered. “Are you nuts?”
“Elizabeth, all that matters is that you get out of here–”
“And that you do too,” Elizabeth shot back. She shook her head. “I don’t–”
“Just stay here,” Jason ordered. His eyes softened. “Please.”
She glared at him. “Don’t you dare get shot again.” Elizabeth looked away. “I don’t have any more soup at my studio.”
Jason chuckled softly. “All right. Just stay here, okay?”
“All right,” Elizabeth replied grudgingly. “Be careful.”
“You, too.” Jason disappeared through the entrance into the kitchen. She heard him creep up the steps.
Elizabeth backed up against the counter, clutching the gun close to her, her ears perked to every sound.
Which is why she was startled to feel the hand on her shoulder.
Time: 6:15 p.m.
Date: February 12, 2003
Place: Sonny’s Limo
AJ shifted uncomfortably. “How much longer is it going to be?” he demanded, not liking the idea of being in a car with Sonny Corinthos, one of his longtime enemies.
Sonny hung up the cell phone again, a bit troubled by the idea of Jason’s phone being off.
“Twenty minutes,” Sonny murmured.
“Elizabeth could be dead by then,” AJ remarked.
“Yeah, well you could be dead now,” Sonny reminded him calmly.
AJ shifted suddenly. “You gonna kill me after we’re done?” he asked. “Because–”
“I’m not going to kill you,” Sonny replied, irritated. A smile crossed his face. “I think I’ll leave the final decision to Jason.”
Time: 6:16 p.m.
Date: February 12, 2003
Place: Safe house
Elizabeth jumped and whirled around. “C-Courtney.”
Courtney smirked and raised the gun straight at Elizabeth. “Drop it,” the blonde ordered.
Elizabeth didn’t move, a little shocked to see the normally timid young woman standing in front of her, exuding confidence and arrogance.
“Drop it,” Courtney repeated, her blue eyes turning cold.
“Where’s Jason?” Elizabeth asked softly, tightening her fingers around the pistol resting against her thigh.
Courtney shook her head. “Don’t worry about it, Webber. Drop the gun now and I won’t make this painful.”
“Why are you doing this?” Elizabeth asked softly. “Jason’s not in love with me–he’s–”
“Right,” Courtney drawled. “Not in love with you. I’m not stupid, you know. And besides, this has almost nothing to do with how much I hate you.”
“Then what?” Elizabeth demanded. “Why–”
“Because losing you is the single worst thing we could come up with to hurt Jason. See, there are still people in this town that remember the way Jason searched for you when you were kidnapped–” Courtney stopped. “It doesn’t matter. Drop the gun.”
She had to distract the blonde somehow. Elizabeth’s mind raced and she took a deep breath as she settled on a course of action. She lifted her eyes to a spot near the entrance and breathed a sigh of relief. “Jason.”
“What?” Courtney asked, turning her head slightly, the gun dropping a few inches. Elizabeth made her move and lunged at the other woman.
Courtney swung back just in time and managed to fire the gun. The shot was wild–the bullet lodged somewhere in the wall of the kitchen.
They both went flying to the ground, the revolver flying out of Courtney’s hand. Elizabeth tried like hell to get proper leverage on her by kicking but Courtney surprised her by being far more stronger than she anticipated.
Courtney rolled them over and wrapped her hands around Elizabeth’s neck. Elizabeth kicked frantically and dug at Courtney’s fingers.
“You stupid little bitch,” Courtney panted. “All you had to do was put the gun down!”
Elizabeth’s leg caught the edge of the chair and it swiveled, teetered on one leg before coming crashing down on Courtney. The chair served to loosen her grip and Elizabeth was able to get away.
Before Courtney could right herself and go after Elizabeth again, Jason came barreling through the entrance and caught the other woman by the waist. He forcefully pulled Courtney’s arms behind her back.
Elizabeth was on all fours, gasping for breath, still recovering from Courtney’s death grip. She glanced up and saw Courtney and Jason struggling. Elizabeth pulled herself to her feet and grabbed one of the pistols from the ground.
Without any bit of remorse, she whacked Courtney’s across the face with it. The gun caught her temple and Courtney went limp in Jason’s arms. He let her go and the blonde hit the floor.
“Are you okay?” Jason asked, stepping over Courtney.
Elizabeth touched her neck and nodded. “Yeah…but I’ll probably have bruises.” Her eyes flickered up to meet his. “You?”
“Yeah. She threw a rock to break the window upstairs,” Jason told her. “I’d better call Sonny.” He barely spared Courtney–a woman who until this afternoon he’d been dating–a second look as he headed towards the living room for his leather jacket where his cell phone was.
Elizabeth, not content to stay in a room alone with the unconscious Courtney, followed him. Jason was standing in the middle of the room, frowning as he stared at his phone. “It’s off,” he murmured.
“Off?” Elizabeth repeated. “You never turn your phone off.”
“Yeah…I know.” Jason shook his head and turned it back on before dialing Sonny. “Sonny–yeah–I don’t know what happened. I didn’t turn it off–no wait, yeah, I know Courtney’s headed here. She’s passed out in the kitchen. Yeah, she showed up and tried to strangle Elizabeth–yeah, she’s fine. You’re bringing who? All right. I’ll see you when you get here.” Jason hung up and looked at Elizabeth. “Sonny’s about five minutes away–he and AJ were on their way here.”
“AJ?” Elizabeth asked surprised. “What’s he doing with Sonny?”
“I don’t know–but Sonny got tipped off that Courtney was on her way here and was on his way to tell us.”
“He’s a little late,” Elizabeth remarked dryly.
Time: 6:34 p.m.
Date: February 12, 2003
Place: Safe house
Sonny only glanced in at the kitchen before meeting Jason, Elizabeth and AJ in the living room. AJ was in the middle of his explanations and doing his best to avoid the evil stare of his younger brother.
“All right, so what do we do now?” AJ asked when he was finished.
“I’m going to call Johnny and Max to come retrieve Courtney,” Sonny said. “Jason, I want you to take Elizabeth back to Port Charles. Elizabeth, I am very sorry about this.”
Elizabeth shrugged. “Hey, it’s not really new for me. I mean, it’s a different approach, but I’m getting used to it.”
“You’re getting used to what?” AJ asked curiously.
“Being used to get to Jason,” Elizabeth remarked. “Not the first time, probably won’t be the last time.”
Jason frowned. “Elizabeth–”
Whatever Jason had been about to say was lost forever as a gunshot rang through the air.
AJ’s hand went to cover his abdomen as he stared up at his wife in stunned silence. “Courtney–”
Courtney stood at the entrance of the living room, a trickle of blood running down the side of her face. She raised the gun and fired a second time, throwing AJ across the room. He slumped to the ground.
She whirled to point the gun at Elizabeth who was standing in front of Sonny. She cocked the hammer and her finger tightened around the trigger.
Jason leapt into action and pushed Elizabeth down just before the gun was fired.
Courtney’s blue eyes widened as she saw the red stain spreading rapidly. Sonny blinked and looked down just as his knees weakened and he crumpled to the ground.
Jason stared at Sonny in shock as his partner and best friend lay bleeding on the floor. Elizabeth pushed Jason away and pulled his gun from the back of his jeans. She’d never fired a gun before, but she’d held one and she’d pointed it at someone.
And this time she aimed to kill.
Courtney was close to Elizabeth and the force of the shot threw her across the room. Her head cracked on the side of a table and she slumped to the ground.
“Sonny–” Jason began, pressing a hand on Sonny’s wound to try and stop the bleeding. “I am–”
“It’s okay,” Sonny murmured. His face twisted in pain. “You–”
“No, no, I should have pushed you both down,” Jason said, shaking his head. Elizabeth set the gun aside and knelt on Sonny’s other side. She took Sonny’s hand in hers.
“Jason, he needs an ambulance,” Elizabeth said quietly.
Sonny tried to take in a deep breath but started coughing. “No, no. Jason, you did what you had to do.”
“You’re a good man and I can’t say I wouldn’t have done the same.”
“Jason, give me your phone. I’ll call,” Elizabeth ordered. When Jason didn’t move, she reached over and took the cell from his back pocket. She dialed.
“Take good care of her,” Sonny told his partner. “Don’t let her go again.”
“What are you doing?” Jason asked. He shook his head. “You–you act like you’re saying goodbye. Come on, man.”
“They’re on their way,” Elizabeth said. “Sonny–”
“Make sure he doesn’t blame himself,” Sonny told her. “And tell Carly and Michael I love them.”
“No,” Jason said adamantly. “You’re going to tell them. You heard her–the ambulance is on its way.”
“They won’t–they won’t get here in time,” Sonny said. He shifted and closed his eyes. “Tell them, you will won’t you?”
Elizabeth glanced at Jason who seemed to be shell-shocked. “He’ll tell them,” Elizabeth promised. “And I will, too. Just…hang on. You know…because Port Charles…it needs a godfather, y’know? And no offense, but Jason doesn’t fit the description.”
Sonny managed to chuckle. “Don’t make me laugh. It hurts.”
“Sorry,” Elizabeth murmured. “But you know it’s true.”
“Yeah, yeah.” Sonny bit his lip and opened his eyes. “You were more of a sister than she ever was. I don’t care what genes say. I always cared about you, I didn’t always show it–”
“I know,” Elizabeth said. “And I feel the same way.”
He turned his head slightly. “Jason, take care of things okay?”
Sonny closed his eyes and his head fell limply to the side. “Sonny,” Jason repeated. He shook the older man a little. “Sonny.”
“Jason,” Elizabeth murmured. “He’s…he’s gone.”
“No, no,” Jason shook his head. “He’s not…he’s just…he’s just…”
Elizabeth let go of Sonny’s hand and placed it over his heart. “I’m sorry, Jason,” she said softly.
“He’s just sleeping,” Jason denied. “When the ambulance gets here–”
Elizabeth crawled around to Jason’s side and put a hand on his face. “Look at me,” she said gently. Jason’s frantic blue eyes met her own. “He’s gone,” she repeated.
Jason’s shoulders slumped and Elizabeth was startled when he wrapped his arms around her and buried his face in her neck. She ran her fingers through his hair and felt his tears warm on her neck.