Picks up: 14 February 2014, post the Elizabeth/Britt confrontation in which Elizabeth tells Britt she knows the truth about Ben’s paternity, and before Nikolas comes home at the end of the episode.
Why was it that after an argument, she could always think of at least a thousand things she should have said instead of remaining silent or offering weak protestations? Why…why had she allowed Britt to have the upper hand?
Elizabeth stepped off the launch and stood motionlessly on the docks for a moment, trying to find the righteous anger she’d had when she’d gone to Wyndemere that evening. Yes, what Britt had said was true. She did still care for Nikolas, and in many ways, did hope that the news Britt had used Dante’s sperm to impregnate herself would separate them, but not for the reasons Britt had insinuated.
Before their affair, something for which Elizabeth would never forgive herself, they had been family and best friends for most of her life. How could she allow Nikolas to continue falling in love with a woman who would do something like this? Yes, she had lied to Jason about Jake, and she wasn’t proud of it, but she hadn’t tricked Jason into fathering Jake.
Elizabeth withdrew the second copy of the paternity test. She didn’t like Britt–that was for sure. In fact, she loathed her for all the pain she had brought to Patrick’s life, for the way she had tortured Sabrina, and for what she was doing to Dante and Lulu. She wasn’t close to either of them these days, but once, Lulu had been part of her family—was still the aunt to her boys.
Why hadn’t she just listed those reasons? There were a thousand reasons someone should have hunted down the truth.
“Aunt Liz!” Spencer rounded the corner and grinned. “Hey!” He narrowed his eyes. “Where’s Cameron? He’s not with Emma is he?”
“No.” Elizabeth smiled and lifted her eyes to Nikolas. “No. I just came from speaking with Britt.”
Nikolas frowned. “About what?”
She tapped the paper against her hand, but Spencer was present and didn’t deserve to be in the middle of this. “I think you should ask Britt why. I’m going to see Dante and Lulu.” She started for the stairs but turned. “And when you know, remember that it has nothing to do with what she thinks it does. I did it because it was the right thing to do, and that should be enough for everyone involved.”
“Elizabeth—“ He looked down at Spencer. “Go wait for me on the launch.”
“But Dad—“ Spencer closed his mouth when he saw his father’s look and left.
Nikolas looked at Elizabeth. “I thought you were going to start over with Britt.”
“I may have three children with three men,” Elizabeth began, “and I know I had an affair with my fiancé’s brother, and maybe I can be sanctimonious at times.” She pursed her lips. “But I don’t think that just because you and I have a history, I should be expected to ignore when people are doing reprehensible things to people I care about and respect.” She tilted her head. “I lied to you. I had no intention of starting over with Britt. I learned something about her today that just confirms what I knew all along. I may not be the best person on Earth, but on my worst day, I don’t come close to Britt Westbourne.”
“Damn it, Elizabeth—“
“And if she doesn’t have the courage to tell you everything she’s done to your face…well,” Elizabeth shrugged. “She didn’t deserve the courtesy head’s up I just gave her before I go blow her secrets up.” She paused, a foot on the step. “I will always care for you, Nikolas, and part of me wishes we could have been something else, but the damage we caused will always be enough for me to step back and stop from doing it again. My self-respect is worth more to me. I’ve worked hard to get it back after everything that happened.” She eyed the island, in the distance. “You should go home and ask Britt what’s going on. If she loves you at all, she’ll tell you the truth.”
She turned her back on her oldest friend and walked away to tell Dante he was a father. She could never go back in time and tell Jason the truth from the beginning, not have an affair with Nikolas, or tell Jason the truth about Sam’s baby.
But in this case, she could do the right thing from the start.