For the Broken Girl is set in 2006. The prologue begins in September, and then Chapter One jumps back to April. It’s mostly a rewrite of the Lucky drug story because while I mostly liked it, I think there are things that could have been done differently.
It picks the show up at the end of March and pretty much everything that happened on the show until then has happened with a few differences.
Lucky’s story after the train crash is being rewritten, so just forget everything you know about that. The first chapter sets up most the big differences and the rest will be filled in at some other point.
I can’t remember exactly when Manny started at the hospital as a janitor–if it was before or after the virus, but in this story it’s after.
Sonny and Emily’s relationship has only just been discovered.
Port Charles Police Department: Squad Room
Dawn was breaking over the streets of Port Charles as a weary Alexis Davis weaved past the sparsely populated desks towards the small, narrow hallway that led to the administrative offices. There were few officers on duty this early, and those present were somber, quiet.
No names had been released to the press or through dispatch, but bad news had a way of spreading in Port Charles, and this…this had hit some of them really hard.
Alexis stifled a yawn as she pushed open the door to Mac Scorpio’s office, finding the commissioner seated at his conference table, staring down at a white mug of coffee. In front of him sat a tape recorder.
Alexis set her briefcase on the table across from him and took a seat. “I’m sorry it took so long to come in. The girls have a cold. Krissy brought it home from daycare.” She gestured at the recorder. “You have the tape, then?”
“Yeah.” Mac dragged a hand over his face. Stubble lined his cheeks, and his eyes were rimmed with red, lines of exhaustion etched into his features. His day had begun at five o’clock the previous morning and he was unsure if he would even be able to sleep if he laid his head down on the pillow.
“How—” She cleared her throat. “How bad is it?”
“I’m not sure it gets any worse than this,” Mac admitted. “I’ve been in this business a long time, and I—” He gently touched the recorder. “I’m not sure I’ve ever heard anything like this.”
“Okay.” Alexis managed a deep breath. “Let’s hear it.”
“911, what’s your emergency?”
If you forget the way to go
And lose where you came from
If no one is standing beside you
Be still and know I am
Be still and know that I’m with you
– Be Still, The Fray
Thursday, March 30, 2006
Elm Street Pier
Elizabeth Spencer hesitated at the top of the stairs when she found Jason Morgan seated at one of the benches that looked out over the harbor. When they had first become friends seven years earlier, they had met often on this pier, but it had been more than a year since she and Jason had shared even a casual conversation.
She was unsurprised to find her old friend sitting in quiet thought. It was a chilly night, and the icy wind blowing in from the lake dropped the temperature in the air another ten degrees down near the water. She wrapped the edges of her cardigan more tightly around her torso and started down the steps.
Jason turned slightly at the sound of her footfalls and got to his feet. “Elizabeth.”
“Hey.” She stopped in front of him and offered a half smile. “I bet your day was pretty awful.”
He exhaled slowly and looked away, out over the dark waters of Lake Ontario. His hair was longer than she’d seen it in a while, still brushed into those spikes that seemed as much a part of him as his leather jacket and jeans. His hands were shoved into the pockets of that jacket now.
“You saw the papers.”
“I didn’t, actually,” Elizabeth said. The Port Charles Sun was out of her budget at the moment—she pinched every penny to keep her two-year-old son in daycare. “Emily called me crying this morning about the press, Sonny, and how awful you were being.” She sighed.
“Yeah.” He pressed his lips together in a thin line. “Did you know?”
“Did I know?” she repeated. “That Sonny and Emily were having an affair and checking into hotels under assumed names?” Elizabeth considered this question. “I knew Em had some feelings for him, but I don’t think I would have guessed Sonny felt even a little bit the same way.” She chewed on her bottom lip. “I knew something was going on with Em, but—no, I didn’t know exactly what.”
Jason said nothing to his ramble, so Elizabeth continued, “Emily said you were really angry. That you…told her she had to stop seeing Sonny.”
“I did.” Jason met her eyes, and she blinked at the defiant anger in them—as if he expected her to argue, to defend Emily or Sonny.
Elizabeth sighed and sat on the bench, unwinding the strap of her oversize canvas bag and setting it in her lap. “See, that’s when I knew something was wrong.”
He frowned at her, sat down. “What do you mean?”
“That’s not like you—telling people what to do. Making ultimatums. You hated Lucky all those years ago—and he gave you a reason to—but I don’t think you never came out and told me to leave him.”
“I should have,” he muttered. “I know it all worked out and you…” He squinted at her. “You’re happy, aren’t you?”
“Happy is an interesting word.” Elizabeth pursed her lips. She didn’t want to talk about her marriage and how her life with Lucky Spencer was not exactly what she’d had in mind. “For you to tell Emily she had to stop—I knew you had your reasons. I told Emily that, too.”
Some of the tension left his shoulders, and he visibly relaxed. “I thought you’d take her side.”
“I don’t know if there are sides to be taken.” She chewed on her bottom lip. “Is it…the danger? Like you used to tell me? I know you…you’ve changed your mind since then. I mean, Courtney and Sam—” She stared down at her hands, her short nails bitten almost to the quick. “But maybe since it’s Em—”
“I was wrong back then,” he said simply, but neither of them looked at one another now. “I took your choice from you. Lied to you. I tried to do better later. It’s not the danger. Emily’s not an idiot. She knows what we do. It’s—” He hesitated. “Sonny is my best friend, but I’m not blind to who he is. How he treats women.”
“Ah. I thought—” Elizabeth nodded. “I thought it might be something like that. Well, you’re the one Sonny sent to tell Brenda when he stood her up at the altar, and God knows, you’ve been there for Carly and Sam. I guess you know what you’re talking about.”
Out of the corner of her eye, she saw his face turn towards her, but she kept her eyes straight ahead, finding the lights of Wyndemere in the night. “You…agree with me.”
“Let’s just say that I see both sides. You know who Sonny is better than anyone in the world. I believe that. I also—”
She waited a moment, trying to gather the courage to say the next part—to try and explain Emily’s point of view without giving away too much. The way Emily had spoken this morning, the way Jason had been surprised at her support—was anyone listening to Jason? Was Carly or Sam?
“I know what it’s like to love someone that the entire world sees as a threat to you. As someone who will hurt you, who isn’t good enough for you.” She glanced at him and saw that he understood what she meant. “It was like hearing my own life played back for me this morning when Emily called. No one understands Sonny like she does. I don’t know how he is when they’re together—”
“So, you think I’m wrong.”
“No, I don’t.” Elizabeth hesitated. “The thing is, Jason, she’s right, too. She probably does know a side of Sonny that you don’t. And I don’t think that giving her ultimatums is what’s going to work.” She managed a half smile. “There’s a reason Emily and I are friends, you know. When someone tells us we can’t have something, we usually just double down.”
“Yeah, I remember.” He was quiet for a minute. “So, are you going to tell me to let it run its course? Let Sonny get bored and move on?”
“Is that what everyone else says?” Elizabeth asked. “Carly?”
“And Sam,” he admitted.
And outside of Emily, those were the most important women in Jason’s life, so it must be hard for him to feel alone in this.
“I honestly don’t know what you should do,” Elizabeth told him. “Because even though I agree that Emily is right, that doesn’t mean you’re not. And letting it play out—it just means Emily is going to get hurt later rather than now. Either way, she gets hurt. I don’t think we can stop that from happening. Because I’ll be honest—I’ve known Sonny for a long time, and I don’t think Emily—I don’t think it’s soul mate territory. She’s not Carly or Brenda. I don’t know what drew them together, but I doubt it’s lasting.”
“You do think I should stop fighting it.”
She thought about her answer for a long time, thought about just taking his side so that he didn’t stand alone. She hated the idea of him being on his own in this—against everyone he loved. But she owed him the truth.
“I think that ultimatums aren’t going to work,” she said finally. “Because I know what those are like.” She met his eyes. “When I resisted and pushed back, it meant cutting people out. And when I tried to give in, I made myself miserable.”
“Do you—” His voice was a bit lower now, a bit rougher. They both knew exactly what she was talking about even if she wasn’t being specific. “Are you sorry?”
“Not for a minute.” She smiled at him. “Even though I hate how it ended—that it never really went anywhere—I know that the decision to end it wasn’t someone else’s. It was mine. I might wish…things had been different. But I made my choices. And that matters. I’m sorry, Jason. I wish—I wish like hell I could tell you that you’re right. That demanding it end now is the right decision—”
“But you don’t think it is.”
“I don’t think telling her or him to stop it is going to work, but I do agree that it would be better for everyone if it were over sooner rather than later. Emily’s looking for someone who can love her, and as much I like Sonny, it’s not him. Not the way she needs.”
Her cell phone rang, and she dug it out of her bag. She stared down at the caller ID with a grimace. “It’s Lucky. I’m late getting home.”
“He must be worried.” Jason stood, and she followed suit, hitting ignore on the call and shoving it back into her bag.
More like it was Cameron’s bed time and Lucky was tired of watching her son. He probably wanted to go to bed so he could get up early for his next rehab session. She wasn’t interested in having that argument with Jason looking on.
“I should get going.” She slid the bag’s strap back over her shoulder. “Emily knows you love her, Jason. You’ve done what you can.”
“Thanks for…” He trailed off. “Thanks,” he repeated.
Friday, March 31, 2006
General Hospital: Locker Room
Elizabeth stifled a yawn as she shoved her bag into her locker and sat on the bench to unlace her sneakers. Once she had arrived home the night before, Lucky had yelled at her for twenty minutes before storming out. She had then discovered exactly why he’d been so anxious for her to get home.
Cameron had a stomach virus and spent most of the night either throwing up or—making Elizabeth wish she hadn’t potty trained him so well because diapers meant she might have managed more sleep. As it was, Lucky had had to reschedule his rehab session for this morning because Cameron couldn’t go to daycare, and they couldn’t afford to lose Elizabeth’s pay for the day. She’d already used all her sick days caring for Lucky at the beginning of the year.
Rescheduling physical therapy meant it would be even longer before Lucky could return to active duty at the PCPD. He hadn’t been on the job, not really, since the train crash earlier that November.
Elizabeth was sure that as soon as Lucky was back on full duty and full pay, he would be…better. He’d stop resenting her, her son—he’d be less angry. They had had such a bright future, such shining optimism once, and she was desperate to cling to that dream. To give that life to her son.
The door to the locker room slammed open, the heavy wooden door crashing against the plaster wall with a THUD. Elizabeth closed her eyes. She had a sixth sense for when her day was about to get worse, and all those senses were tingling now.
“You know, there are times I really don’t understand my brother,” Emily Bowen-Quartermaine declared as she dropped her bag on the bench next to Elizabeth. “He is literally the worst right now.”
“I don’t think that’s fair,” Elizabeth said wearily.
“Oh, God, can we go back to when you hated Jason? Because I don’t think I can take you being his cheerleader right now.” Emily yanked open her locker. “I stopped by his place this morning hoping he had calmed down.”
Elizabeth grimaced. “What happened?”
“Oh, he started by being nice to me. Saying he understood that I cared about Sonny, and that he wasn’t trying to make choices for me, but then he starts telling me Sonny is just going to hurt me, and Sam was trying to make him just see that it’s none of his business.”
Which meant Jason had been ganged up on by his sister and fiancée. Fantastic. That had probably made everything better.
“How’d you leave it?” Elizabeth asked when Emily didn’t continue. “You’re pissed, so something must have happened.”
“I—” Emily bit her lip, looked at Elizabeth with guilty eyes. “I told him that he has to find something better to do with his life than constantly being up Sonny’s ass. It was one thing to screw his ex-girlfriend, but—”
“What? It’s like Jason is obsessed with Sonny, and I just don’t get it. I mean, they’ve basically all been with the same women or related to them—except for you.” Emily grimaced. “I might have…also not used the word girlfriend.”
“I bet you’re really popular with Sam now.”
“Well, I don’t really like her so that’s not a loss, but yeah, Jason wasn’t thrilled when I called his fiancée a whore.”
Elizabeth squeezed her eyes shut, prayed for strength. Clearly, Jason had tried to take her advice, but Emily wasn’t interested in even giving Jason a slight break. “Em, Jason isn’t obsessed with Sonny. They’re best friends—”
“Please. How do you explain all the crossover?”
“It’s…” She pursed her lips. “Weird, I know. But Jason already knew Robin, and Courtney—well, he was helping her. And he was helping Sam. Carly—Carly doesn’t make any sense. And you know that Brenda and Jason knew each other—”
“Great, you’re Jason’s cheerleader. I thought you were my best friend.” Emily scowled, yanked off her sweater and reached for her scrub top. “Can’t you just pick a side and stick with it, or are you still obsessed with my brother?”
Elizabeth exhaled softly. “You know, Cameron’s sick.”
“What?” Emily blinked at her.
“I found your brother sitting on the pier last night, and I spent ten minutes talking to him about this. I told him to stop giving you ultimatums because it wouldn’t make it better. And then I went home where Lucky screamed at me for being late and stormed out, leaving me to take care of Cameron who was up all night with a stomach virus. I’ve slept maybe an hour at best, and now I have to pull a double shift because Lucky’s on half pay.”
“But you don’t ask about me. You don’t care about anyone but yourself. You stormed over to your brother’s apartment, screaming at him, calling the woman he loves a whore, and you somehow think you’re the victim here?”
Elizabeth tugged her scrub top over her head and got to her feet. “You knew he’d be upset about Sonny, and you lied to everyone for weeks about sleeping with him. You saw Brenda crumble into a nervous breakdown after Sonny was done with her. Carly had a nervous breakdown and went crazy trying to stab you—and you think Jason’s crazy for thinking maybe Sonny is not the best romantic bet?”
Emily’s mouth opened then closed.
“So, if what you really want to know is if I agree with Jason about Sonny being a really bad road for you travel—then, yeah, I do. I think you know it, too. But you’re going to do whatever the hell you want. You always do.”
She slammed her locker shut and stormed towards the door. She yanked it open and then stopped dead in her tracks. She just stared at the man calmly squeezing the excess water out of his mop across the hall and slammed the door shut, ducking back into the room.
Emily stared at her. “What’s wrong?”
“M-Manny Ruiz.” Elizabeth swallowed hard, pressed her hand to her chest, a closed fist over her heart. “Across the hall. Mopping.”
“Are you kidding me? There’s no way he got hired here.” Emily reached for her phone and then stared at it. “You’re going to have to call Jason.”
Elizabeth frowned at her. “Why don’t you call Sonny?”
“I—” Emily tilted her head. “I don’t know. Jason—he just always handles these things, I guess. But he’s not going to pick up if it’s me. He’ll answer you—”
“I got a new phone number last year, I don’t think he has it. And you know he doesn’t answer calls from people he doesn’t know—” Elizabeth fished her phone out anyway. “But I’m not leaving this room until I know what’s going on.” She hesitated. “I don’t have Jason’s new number either.”
“Oh, God, the two of you.” Emily rolled her eyes and read the number out to her as Elizabeth dialed. “Don’t tell him where you got it. He’ll just have another reason to yell at me.”
Elizabeth ignored her as the phone rang. Her heart was pounding so hard she could hear it thudding in her ears.
“Hello?” Jason’s voice was cautious, unsure.
“It’s Elizabeth. Um, this is my new number. Emily gave me yours—Ow—” Elizabeth shoved Emily in the shoulder after her best friend kicked in her the shins. “What are you, five?”
“You didn’t have to tell him—”
“Elizabeth, is everything okay?”
“Manny Ruiz is here. At the hospital. Mopping like he’s some sort of janitor. I don’t know if they hired him or what, but I just— I saw him and I kind of panicked.” She bit her nails, wincing as her teeth hit skin.
“Okay.” There was something on his side of the phone—she could hear Sam’s voice demanding if it was Emily, and if it was, then Jason needed to hang up and take her side of things. “Wait a second—are you somewhere safe?”
“We’re in the locker room.”
“Okay. Sam—stop it!” There was more muttering, then she heard a door closing. “I’m on my way there now. I’ll find out what’s going on. Stay there. If you can.”
“Thanks.” She hung up the phone and sat back on the bench. “What if the hospital actually hired him, Em?”
“What if Alexis and Ric are wrong about the tumor?” Their fight forgotten, the friends exchanged uneasy glances and waited to hear from Jason.