Note: Read the prologue here. This has not been edited or read over by a beta. Jerry Jacks shows up here but this was written before he came back in 2007 as psychopath James Craig during the hostage crisis. This is good natured Jerry Jacks as played by Julian Stone.
Monday, January 1, 2007
General Hospital: Locker Room
“Just the way I want to start the new year,” Robin sighed as she spun the combination for the lock and pulled it open. “A shift in the ER.”
Elizabeth glanced over from her own locker. “It could be worse.”
“Yeah, I suppose.” Robin tugged her scrubs top on. “It could be a double shift.”
Elizabeth tied her hair up and closed the locker door. “Oh…it might as well be. I’m on until three and then I’m picking Cameron up from day care, dropping him at my grandmother’s so I can work until nine at my second job.”
“You’re going to work a thirteen hour day?” Robin asked. She clipped her pager to her waistband.
“I usually work sixteen, so this will be a bit of a break for me,” Elizabeth replied, “but they didn’t need me in this morning until eight.” She pinned her ID badge to her shirt. “Did you have fun at the party last night?”
“Most of it, yeah.” Robin put her white jacket on and followed Elizabeth into the hallway. “It was weird to be sharing a holiday with my entire family. With my parents. But Jax kept Carly away from the table all night so that helped. What about you?”
“It was fine. Better than I would have expected going to a party hosted by Carly Corinthos.” Elizabeth stepped into the nurse’s station and scanned her patient list for that shift. “It was nice to see everyone together.”
“Yeah, yeah, it was.” Robin took a chart from the stack and slid it under her arm. “I’ll catch you for some coffee later?”
Robin disappeared down the hallway as the elevator doors slid open and Skye stepped out. She slowly made her way to the nurse’s station. “Hey, Elizabeth. I have an appointment with Dr. Lee.”
“Yeah, she’s running a little behind schedule. Do you want help sitting down?” Elizabeth asked.
Skye shifted uncomfortably. “Ah, no. It’d probably be better if I stayed standing.” She touched the small of her back. “Some party last night.”
“That’s what everyone’s saying,” Elizabeth murmured. “I’ve paged Dr. Lee for you, so she knows you’re waiting. If you need anything…”
“Elizabeth…” Skye bit her lip and leaned forward. “I couldn’t help but notice that Lucky was…well…he spent a lot of time at the bar. I just…if there’s anything you need…”
“It was a party, Skye. Everyone spent some time at the bar.” Elizabeth picked up a chart. “Dr. Lee will be with you shortly.”
Metro Court Hotel: Restaurant
“You’re up early,” Carly chirped. She sat in the seat across from Patrick without waiting for an invitation. “Whatever happened to sleeping in on New Year’s?” she wondered as she signaled for a waiter.
“I have a shift at the hospital,” Patrick said flatly. He took a sip of his coffee.
Carly ordered her own cup of coffee and a blueberry muffin. “So, I guess you’ve heard the news.”
“That we’re going to be step siblings?” he replied. “Yeah, sure.” He shrugged. “We’re too old for it to really matter to either of us so whatever keeps my dad sober.”
“Well, my mother doesn’t have the track record of successful marriages.” Carly thought for a moment. “She might still be married to Tony Jones if I hadn’t seduced him though.” She shook away that horrible memory. “Anyway, I just wanted to make sure you weren’t considering any insane and terrifying thoughts that end with me related to Saint Robin through marriage.”
Patrick’s coffee went down his windpipe and he started coughing. “What the hell?” he managed to say.
“I’m just making sure you’re not planning any permanent commitments,” Carly said innocently. “And from your reaction, that would be a no.”
Patrick coughed again and took a long sip of water. “Carly, I don’t know what gives you the right to ask questions like that–”
“You’re my friend and I want to make sure you don’t do anything you can’t take back. I’ve been trying to tell you for months that she’s poison–”
Patrick tossed his napkin onto the table. “You don’t know anything about Robin or our relationship.”
“It would be a mistake,” Carly said firmly. “Because she’s always going to want something you can’t give her.” She leaned forward and lowered her voice. “She’s a family girl, Patrick. Despite her disease, she wants a family, she wants children. I know that about her just like I know that’s the last thing you want.”
Patrick hesitated for a brief moment before standing. “Put the bill on my room tab,” he muttered.
As he left the restaurant, a man stepped by him and grinned when he saw the blonde still seated at Patrick’s table. She was sipping her coffee and smiling to herself. “Hello, Carly,” Jerry remarked. “Ruin someone’s life today?”
Carly leapt up from her chair, startled. “Jerry–you-you’re supposed to be in jail–or on the run–” Her eyes narrowed and she took a step towards him. “So help me God, if you’re here to bother my mother–”
“I wouldn’t dream of it,” Jerry held up a hand. “Bobbie’s settled in her life, I understand that. I’m here to see my brother. I know he lives in one of the penthouses but I’m not sure which one. I was hoping you could direct me towards it–”
“Top floor,” Carly said, irritated. “Stay away from my mother–she’s happy now.”
“Yes, ma’am.” Jerry saluted her and headed for the bank of elevators. She glared after him for a long moment before she brightened.
If she couldn’t finish off Robin and Patrick…Jerry would be a nice addition for the Bobbie and Noah side of the plan.
Jones-Scorpio House: Living Room
Bobbie wiggled her finger in Felicia’s face. “Isn’t it the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen?” She sat next to her friend on the sofa. “And he asked in the most darling way.”
“It’s nice to see you so happy,” Felicia replied. She grabbed Bobbie’s hands and squeezed. “Since Tony died last winter, it’s only with Noah and Lucas that you’ve even smiled.”
“It was a tough year,” Bobbie said softly. “But Noah makes me happy and I know Carly will accept it in time.”
“Carly…” Felicia rolled her eyes. “She’s a harpy–do you know how she’s tortured my poor Robin this last year? It’s no wonder Mac doesn’t like Patrick, if he’s going to associate with that…” She sighed. “I know she’s your daughter, Bobbie, but she drives the rest of world crazy. I wouldn’t worry too much about her acceptance.”
“She’s my daughter, Felicia. I have to love her anyway.” Bobbie leaned back against the pillows and closed her eyes. “But she drives me crazy most of the time. I wish she would just back off Patrick–she only does it to annoy Robin.”
“That’s what I keep telling Mac.” Felicia smiled. “But no one’s good enough for his girls.” She twisted her hands together. “Which is I think we should adopt a boy. With three girls, Mac needs a boy, I think.”
Bobbie frowned. “Adopt? Boy? Did I miss a chapter somewhere? When did you two decide to adopt?”
“Before Christmas,” Felicia replied with a slow smile. “We want children but…I’m not exactly looking forward to the idea of pregnancy not to mention that neither one of us wants to wait nine months. We’ve been remarried for four months and trying just as long. I mean, if it happens, it happens but the girls are out of the house and they have their own lives…you don’t think it’s a bad idea, do you?”
“No, no–I think it’s fabulous and there’s no one that deserves children of his own more than Mac.” Bobbie bit her lip. “Not that he doesn’t think of Robin, Maxie and Georgie as his own but…well…you know what I mean…”
“No, I do know and I’ve been very lucky that my girls have had Mac in their life.” Felicia frowned. “Anyway, we’re just in the preliminary stages naturally. We contacted a lawyer who has an excellent reputation and we’re just waiting for the call now.”
“Well, I think that is going to a great year for both of us then.” Bobbie reached forward and hugged her best friend. “Just as long as nothing goes wrong.”
Felicia laughed. “Don’t tempt Fate.”
Metro Court Hotel: Jax’s Penthouse
The last person Jax expected to see when he opened his penthouse door that morning was his fugitive brother leaned against the door frame. “Hello there, little brother,” Jerry said cheerfully.
Jax frowned, glanced up and down the hallway before focusing on his brother. “You’re awfully nonchalant for someone who I last saw running from the authorities.”
“Oh, that.” Jerry grinned and ambled past his brother and headed for the table where Jax’s breakfast was set up. He seated himself and poured a glass of orange juice. “I made a deal of course. In exchange for some information and signing my life away to the WSB, the charges against me disappeared.”
“Right,” Jax drawled. He slid his hands into the pockets of his pants. “When did this deal get made?”
“Oh, going on seven years now,” Jerry replied. He pointed at Jax’s plate of scrambled eggs, sausage links and toast. “Are you going to eat that?” Without waiting for his brother to answer, he took the plate and set it across from him. “Sorry about not keeping in touch, part of the deal.”
“Well, I always like wondering if my brother is dead or alive.” Jax shifted. “You heard about Dad, right?”
Jerry sobered for a moment, “Yeah,” he said quietly. “I was up to see Mum before coming here. As soon as I was able to, Jasper, I came to see my family. I hope you believe that.”
“Okay, I’ll accept that.” Jax finally relaxed and sat across from his brother. “So what brings you to Port Charles?”
“Well, unofficially to let you know that I’m still alive and officially to recruit an old member of the organization to help me out on a case. I’ve tracked a girl wanted for questioning in a smuggling ring from Greece. She’s holed up here in PC and I’m looking up the old recruit to get his help. Plus, the WSB likes to remind people that even if they are retired, you never get out.” Jerry raised his glass to his brother. “Cheers, mate.”
Jax sighed and sat back. “Well, at any rate, it’s nice to see you’re alive. Have you stopped by Bobbie’s?”
“God no,” Jerry said, sounding horrified. “She would kill me. I’m staying clear of that particular redhead, believe you me.”
Spencer House: Lulu’s Room
So big brother, are you finished sulking in Greece yet? Because we could really use the big bad Cassadine branch of the family back in PC.
Life is getting kind of crazy. Mom’s her usual overbearing self–trying to make up for four years of absence. I keep telling her it’s all good but she insists on joining every parent club at school and having mother-daughter nights. I like to humor her and besides, she’s still one of the coolest moms.
Lucky is insane and I wish I meant that in a fun way. We were at this totally awesome party at the Metro Court and he got seriously wasted. I felt so bad for poor Liz, I mean, she had to go home with him. Dad and Mom argued again about them again last night. Mom wants to give them money and Dad says Lucky would never accept it which is totally right because Lucky’s got that annoying Spencer pride going for him and it makes me want to scream because he’s so unhappy and Liz is totally miserable. She works way too hard and the only time she sees anyone is when we stop by the hospital. She’s also got this mysterious second job that she’s tight lipped about.
So Dillon got a letter from Emily last week and not that I’m trying to you know make a point or anything but Em’s doing okay. I know you’d never ask, but whatever, it has to be said. Dillon thinks she’s lonely in NYC all by herself but if you ask me, that girl makes herself miserable. It’s like a train ride away and she could totally visits but she’s probably super embarrassed at the way her relationship with the big bad mobster crashed and burned.
School’s okay. It’s not tons of fun or anything, but it’s so lonely now that Georgie’s all graduated and in college. I’m the only one left and I can’t wait to graduate. Every time I bring it up, Mom gets all teary eyed like she can’t believe her baby’s all grown up. Very sickening.
So, listen, it would be tre fab if you would just come home. If Courtney wanted to be found, she would be. And she’s an idiot if she chose to run instead of choosing between you and Jax. I mean, he’s way old but he’s like a millionaire and not that I’m biased, but you’re all kinds of cute. She’s a twit and you deserve better.
So…come home already!
Lulu pressed send on her email screen and then scanned her incoming messages. She clicked on one from Georgie.
We have got to talk! Don’t call me, Dillon’s here and he’ll hear us. So, reply when you get this so we can set up a time and place.
Lulu rolled her eyes and replied to Georgie. One day the girl would have to learn that she was only Georgie’s friend because Lulu was friends with Dillon. They were not long lost soul sisters, they were not close. Honestly, Georgie grated on her nerves at times with her eternal naivety. Life was not perfect and after they’d been cut off by the Quartermaines, they’d both been forced to take jobs. If not for Georgie’s scholarships, she wouldn’t even be in college.
It was all well and good to get married when they thought Dillon would die but they should have had it annulled after he got well. So what if they would have decided to tie the knot eventually? That didn’t mean they were ready at eighteen.
But she was still Dillon’s wife and Lulu respected that for the most part so she played nice and was now privy to a very annoying secret. She hated the fact that her parents had drilled into her the idea when you swear to keep a secret, you keep it.
No matter who it hurts.
Lansing Apartment: Bedroom
“Can I please…can I please just hold her a little longer?” Alexis Davidovitch asked the nurse softly. She touched the soft hair on her daughter’s head and wondered if it would turn darker like her own hair or stay the light brown like her father’s.
“You’re really not supposed to,” the nurse replied sympathetically. “But I suppose it wouldn’t hurt…” She touched Alexis on the shoulder and gestured towards the hallway. “I’ll wait outside.”
“I wish I could keep you,” Alexis whispered to her daughter. “But I can’t. I hope you’ll be given to parents who can love you without reservations, with conditions. I hope that they will love and encourage you to be whoever you want to be.”
She shifted the small bundle and grasped one of her daughter’s hands with her pinky. “I wonder what your new family will name you. I’m not allowed to do it officially but I think I’ll always think of you as Kristen, for my mother.”
There was a soft knock on the door and the nurse smiled sadly. “I’m sorry, but it’s time.”
Alexis jerked away and sat up, rubbing sleep out of her eyes. She wasn’t in a home for unwed mothers but in her bedroom, in the apartment that she shared with her husband. She looked at her daughters, Kristina and Molly curled up in the bed next to her as they napped and she bit her lip, remembering her daughter that she had loved so fiercely and so briefly all those years ago.
She had put Kristen out of her head for years, successfully pretending that she had never been a mother, never carried a child but the dreams about holding Kristen had begun haunting her when Kristina had needed a bone marrow transplant. Alexis had contemplated finding her daughter at that point–had even called a lawyer but then Sam’s baby had presented an opportunity that would allow Alexis’s secret to be kept and she had put Kristen out of her mind again.
And since the virus, when Ric had had that awful hallucination about his mother giving him up and Alexis had briefly flashed back to the moment she’d given her own child away, she’d never been able to put Kristen out of her mind again.
Alexis sighed and rubbed her eyes again. Kristen would be almost twenty-seven now. Far too old to look up and present herself as her mother. It would be ridiculous and once again, Alexis put the thought out of her head once.
PCU: Georgie and Dillon’s Dorm Apartment
“It’s a good thing you got a scholarship.”
Georgie looked up from her letter, a guilty expression on her face. “What?”
Dillon never glanced up from his computer where he was balancing their budget. “My tuition for this semester nearly put us in the red so it’s good that you had your scholarship,” he repeated.
“Oh…” Georgie sighed and looked back at the letter she was writing to Diego, congratulating him on his upcoming early release and repeating her promise not to tell his father or any of her friends. She’d been unable to keep the information to herself and since Lulu Spencer had once become privy to her letter writing, she had seemed to be the right person to tell.
Georgie had become a lot more careful about hiding her correspondence with Diego Alcazar since Lulu had accidentally found a letter on her desk when she’d been visiting their apartment last semester. She kept them under lock and key and each time she set another letter on the growing pile, she promised herself that she would tell Dillon when the time was right.
Not that the time had ever been right. After the virus and their hasty marriage, they’d been thrown into early adulthood when Tracy had cut her son off financially. Dillon had gotten a full-time job that summer and Georgie had worked, too and together they had scraped enough money together to live on this academic year but she knew she had another summer of work to look forward to.
It was worth it, she told herself every morning when she had to make a choice between paying for gas in their car or eating breakfast with her sister. Being married to Dillon made it all worth it.
She hoped that the more she repeated it, the more she would believe it.
The door to their tiny apartment swung open and an annoyed Maxie entered, dropping her purse on the floor by the door and flung herself on their couch. “I had another run in with Jesse,” she sighed.
“He’s still giving you a hard time?” Dillon asked as he saved their meager budget plan and shut the lid of his laptop. “I honestly would have thought that he’d be over that.” He tilted his head as if considering the situation again. “Then again, you did dump him for Kyle Radcliffe, so it’s understandable he’s somewhat miffed.”
“Come on, all of that crap was four years ago,” Maxie complained. “Kyle’s at Yale, you know. He’s going to law school, he’s a great guy and he makes me happy.”
“Well, Jesse thought he was a great guy and that he made you happy,” Georgie pointed out. “Can you blame him for being upset that you dumped him for someone else?”
“No,” Maxie admitted. “But it was six months ago.” She sighed impatiently. “I just want him to get over it and move on. We weren’t even together all that long, you know?”
“Nine months might not seem long to you, but it’s long to guys. It’s practically a lifetime commitment,” Dillon told her. “Just be patient, Max. Eventually, he’s gotta realize he’s mooning over you and want to smack himself.”
Maxie glared at him. “Bite me.”
Port Charles Police Department: Squad Room
Lucky dropped his coat on his chair and slumped into his chair, yawning and rubbing his face. Jesse leaned across his adjoining desk. “You’re late, you know.”
“No, I couldn’t tell,” Lucky muttered. He shook his head and reached a file on the top of pile of pending investigations. Before he could even flip it open, his named was bellowed from the commissioner’s office.
“Spencer, get in here!”
Lucky sighed and ambled his way towards Mac’s office, not in the mood to hear any litany of his behavior for the last few months. So what if he’d been late a few times? He’d done his work, he’d made his shifts. What was Mac always harping about anyway?
“You were late again,” Mac said as soon as Lucky closed the door behind him. “This is the fifth time in the last four weeks.”
Lucky shrugged. “I overslept. I’m sorry.” He clasped his hands behind his back and assumed his usual defensive stance. “What do you want from me?”
“I want you to do your damn job. You’re late, your paperwork is sloppy and I’m concerned about how much drinking you’ve been doing–”
Lucky bristled. “I don’t drink on duty.”
“Maybe not but you barely walked away from the bar last night,” Mac pointed out.
“What I do in my off hours is none of your business,” Lucky snarled. Mac’s eyes narrowed at the tone.
“No,” Mac drawled, “but when you’re too hung over to do your job, that makes it my business. Shape up, Lucky. You’re on probation as of right now. Get your act together or find yourself suspended and facing the review board, you got that?”
“Fine,” Lucky muttered. He stalked out of the office and back to his desk where he grabbed his jacket. “Let’s go,” he barked at Jesse before heading out of the squad room.
Corinthos-Morgan Warehouse: Office
Elizabeth switched her on her computer and then dialed in for the messages. As each message played, she jotted down the name of the caller, their return number and the general gist of the call. It was safe, boring work and it allowed her to wind down a bit after the difficult shift she’d just gone through.
Robin had been in a bad mood when they’d taken their coffee break that morning–she and Patrick had had one of their customary arguments though Robin seemed mystified about this particular one. She’d merely asked him what he wanted to do that night and he flew off the handle at the idea of making any plans whatsoever and Robin taking him for granted.
Elizabeth usually got the urge to smack Patrick upside the head after one of these occasions. If he’d just stop being such a man, maybe the two of them wouldn’t break up every few weeks or so.
She started to sort the mail that had come in during her last few days off and glanced up when Sonny entered. “Hey–I didn’t think you’d be in today.”
“Carly has the boys for the afternoon. I didn’t think you’d be in today, either,” Sonny turned it around. “It is a holiday, you know.” He sat in the chair across from her desk.
She smiled faintly. “Lucky had work and it just seemed like a good time to pick up some extra hours here. Besides, it’s nice and quiet here–I definitely need the silence after today.”
“Busy day saving lives?” Sonny quipped. He stood and went to the coffee machine to pour himself a cup.
“Busy day playing best friend to a pair of idiots,” Elizabeth replied. She slit another letter open and stamped it received. “Patrick is getting his monthly dose of cold feet and Robin’s being snarky about it. Nothing puts her in a bad mood more than remembering she’s dating the definition of a ladies man.”
Sonny scowled and sipped his coffee. “She deserves better than Patrick Drake,” he muttered. “She deserves someone who will give her the family and the attention she deserves.”
“Oh, he’s in love with her,” Elizabeth assured him. “He won’t admit it to himself or anyone else, but you’d have to be deaf, dumb or blind not to see it.” She considered it. “Or you’d have to be Robin. Anyway, he’s mostly a good guy. I was actually surprised to hear he was up to old behavior. They’ve been doing so well.” She shrugged. “Have you been to the club today?”
“Nah, I’ll stop by tonight for the New Year’s Day party. Are you going?” Sonny asked.
“I can’t. Lucky’s on until midnight and I want to spend some time with Cameron. I feel like I’ve barely seen him.” Elizabeth gathered up the mail and the various messages before she stood.
“We’ve talked about this, Elizabeth,” Sonny said quietly. “Anytime you want to come here full time–I’d make it worth your while. Flexible schedule, excellent pay.”
“You shouldn’t tempt me on a day like today,” Elizabeth replied with a wry smile. “I love my job and eventually, I’ll have some room to breathe and I won’t have to work myself so hard.”
Sonny sighed and reached for his stack of mail and messages. “Is Jason in yet?”
Elizabeth shook her head. “No, I’m not sure when he’ll be in today but he said he’d be in. Do you want me to send him in when he gets here?”
Sonny nodded and disappeared into his office. Elizabeth set Jason’s mail and messages on his desk and then went back to the outer office to type some memos and made herself busy. She knew they didn’t really need a secretary when she’d began working but Sonny had been kind enough to create this job for her when he’d become aware of her financial difficulties.
Shortly after returning from his search for Sam, he’d been down on the docks and Elizabeth had been sitting on a bench staring at the latest of the collection notices. They’d cut her hours at work and Cameron’s medical bills had sent their debt soaring. She’d been on the verge of tears and really, it had only taken a kind word from Sonny before all the depression, desperation and bitterness had flown from her like an angry wave.
He’d handed her a handkerchief from his coat and told her to come over to the warehouse so they could work things out. She’d been at such a low point that she’d accepted a position that had been really no more than charity at that point but Sonny had sworn off romance and instead threw himself into the legitimate side of his business so by the beginning of the new year, the orders were pouring in and Elizabeth actually had something to do. It had helped her financially but with the longer hours away from home, it was slowly breaking down her marriage.
She put that out of her mind and focused on the task at hand. Jason came in, looking a little tired and got himself a cup of coffee. After some small talk–he always asked about Cameron–he disappeared into his office.
No more than ten minutes later, Jason exited with a thin manila envelope in his hand. Elizabeth knew that envelope–she set it on his desk every week without fail and hoping that for once, it would hold some good news. After he and Sonny had given up the personal search for Sam, Jason had hired a private investigator to keep up the effort and each week, he sent his progress report.
And each week, it held same words. No sign of Samantha McCall.
“I want you to throw this out,” Jason said. He set it back on her desk. “And I need you to contact Andrews to tell them that I no longer require their services.”
Elizabeth bit her lip. “Jason, are you sure? I mean, they could still find her–”
“It’s been a year,” Jason interrupted. “A year with no word. If something had happened to her, I would have…there would have been something to go on. But there’s been no sign of her. She doesn’t want to be found and I’m through caring about where she went.”
“Okay,” Elizabeth agreed. She took the envelope and set it aside her desk before reaching for her telephone book to find the number for Andrews Investigations. “You’re not even going to open this one?”
“No,” Jason said. “It’ll say the same thing the last fifty have said. There’s no word. Just toss it, okay?”
“Okay,” Elizabeth repeated. When he was back in his office, she set it inside a drawer in her desk. Just in case.