1×26 “The Great Divide”

1×26 “The Great Divide”
Written by:
Chris Coleman/Kelly Zollo
Episode contains language, strong sexual situations and content

Ronan made his way through the streets of Atlas Falls he had men watching Yasmine and once he had been called that she was at her old place in the Scottswood area he made his move. There was no security that his men could see and he wondered how careless Rory could actually be but that was not his business. She stepped out of his car and one of his men accompanied him inside, people still moved out of his way as the walked up the steps. There may of been a riot happening on but he still commanded the respect he was owned on the streets. He walked up the stairs seeing a young girl about maybe seventeen throw herself at them. He let his man indulge as he came to Yasmine’s door on her apartment knocking. He waited a few moments until she opened the door and he looked at her moving his coat to the side to show her he wasn’t armed.

“We need to talk Yasmine please let me inside. I’m not armed.” Ronan said watching her eyes carefully study him as he looked at the packed boxes inside the apartment. She was smart to finally get out, she’d always been smart and he admired that about her. She was also gorgeous and pretty when naked on a pole and he shook his head he had no right to remember that or think about it. “There will be people asking questions now that Kendrick is gone, people that will and can do my business harm. You have my word Yasmine I’m not here to hurt you.” When she reluctantly let him in he stepped inside seeing how the other half lived. Paint was peeling on the walls, he was pretty sure some of the place was unsanitary. “I want you to know I never gave authority for Kendrick’s power spree he went on that includes what he almost let those men do to you at the club.”

Yasmine had come to her apartment to get a few things left here. Gina’s blanket and a box of childhood memories. After talking do Ms. Dinah she thought she could just get her shit and move on. Somehow the hood always has a grip on you no matter how far you get. When she opened the door her instincts was run to the kitchen and grab a butcher knife. He wasn’t armed though but shit could go left real quick. Ronan temper was legendary and he was coming calm but with anyone there was a calm before the storm. She’d shed enough tears to fill a ocean and no more tears. She was coming hard because she wasn’t a bitch. She wasn’t a stripper anymore and she wasn’t his employee. Most of all she wasn’t dumb. This was her goodbye to Scottswood in many ways. She’s from the hood but not of the hood.

“Those men were employed by you prior to Kendrick power spree. Whatever you here to spook me and make me say I don’t know shit about you. I already did that in my victim statement. I implemented Kendrick and I know Jamal did the same. I’m not rocking the boat I know my head is still on my shoulders because of your generosity and I’m not snitching so what else? What you want Ronan? I’m silent because it isn’t complicated to live I need to be silent. So what I know about Ronan nothing is that what you need to hear?” Yasmine with fire in her eyes. “I heard that bougie girl and you broke up. Rory said he’s going to see her today and that she is fucked up. You cold in and out of business huh Ronan.” She said moving her hair as she sat down. Sitting down at the kitchen small island and barstool. “So I’m sure we done here right?” She asked staring at that box. A box full of Gina and memories why was she so lost in her thoughts of her sister lately. Licking her lips she thought about Gina and Kendrick together finally. They weren’t right without each other but God let in Kendrick to be with her. Hell he was fight right now to get to her if they weren’t together. Before she knew it her eyes teared up. Wiping the corners she looked up at the handsome mobster. “Is that all?”

“Yes they were and they have since been terminated and reprimanded. Local police are one thing Yasmine soon the feds will be at the door that is what I am concerned about. I have the people at the police station I need. I don’t have the people I need with the feds.” Ronan said looking at her and then over at the personal effects honestly he was surprised that she was still keeping things here.He had assumed when she and Rory had gotten together that she would have left and never looked back he supposed that was not the case though. Even as an adult he still went back to his childhood home to deal with things, he was attached to it the house the memories it held and he looked over at her. It was probably the same for her though in her case it was the hell hole of the Scottswood neighborhood. “Old memories and places are hard to let go of aren’t they? I would have thought you would be at Rory’s. I had an interesting conversation with Lowell the other day your name came into play so did Rory’s.”

“I need your word Yasmine that you never saw anything you were one of my top counting the money, you know the routes, you were dealing the crack and whatever else they needed. You see you speak well that puts me in a position that I’d have to break promises I made a long time ago.  I want Raven there when the FBI questions you period you don’t get to talk to them unless it is with someone I trust and right now that list is paper thin.” Ronan said looking at her and then down at the floor as he saw a cockroach crawl across, he wondered if she ever knew that how Kenrick had come to him and begged him to not hurt her ever. To make sure that if anything ever happened to him that he would take care of Yasmine and his mother. He would hate to negate himself on that with her after everything he and Kendrick had been through. A snitch was a snitch though Benny had been the example he set and he knew men would question him letting Yasmine go. “He wasn’t the same man you and I knew Yasmine he changed this year, I didn’t want it to end like that with him.” He paused for a moment when she mentioned Brooke. “You know the business and my enemies I did what was best for her.”

Yasmine eyes narrowed what did he think she was some type of snitch? She wasn’t going to say anything but she also understood. Kendrick was trained and came up underneath Ronan. It was like a father and son relationship and to see Kendrick betray him must of killed him. Honestly she respected Ronan and the laws of the street she could do nothing but honor this. Her life was on the line and she did count money, sold coke, and she knew who was Ronan supplier. El Jefe Navarro in Mexico who controlled an entire country. She also heard rumors of Ronan being apart of connected mobsters. Either way she felt him but she wasn’t her to snitch she was here to move on and with Rory for that matter. No matter what she did he would be involved in her life for a period. She had to make peace with that fact. Moving her long hair she nodded her head as the cockroach ran past her feet. She wouldn’t miss the slum ass living conditions in Scottswood. Tears slowly formed this place held a lot of memories. “I’m surprised that old man knows my name. He’s mad disrespectful but I am stuck with Rory and it’s a blessing. It’s a mess but I am really in love with that man. I really love him.” She exhaled as she shook her head.

“As for the FBI and AFPD I’ll call Raven but don’t question that I’m loyal to you about this. I have an amazing second chance. I have a chance to live a life with the man who changed my life. I’ll always be loyal to you because our future isn’t worth jeopardizing my safety. So whatever promise you have nothing to worry about because you have nothing to worry about.” Yasmine exhaled as she walked to the box and picked it up. “I was about to lock up and return the keys so um I’m about to say this one time. Brooke is going through a rough time and you walking away. That isn’t the code of the street and you letting that Atticus fool slide right in on your woman. If I was her I would fall for that prince shit. I mean honestly he’s a prince but I ain’t trying to be all in your business but she was a rider. I heard about how she read Kendrick for filth and basically was down for you. Loyalty isn’t that what you asking of me? Something she already gave you?” Yasmine closed the door and locked the past as they walked out.

Ronan held open the door for her as he saw his man come out of the stairwell adjusting his pants no doubt finishing business. He saw the look of disgust on Yasmine’s face and he motioned for his guard to follow them. He walked with her down the stairs slowly taking in the burning of the city the thing he wanted to happen with everything that was going on. The distraction that it would case the police gave him time to make sure bases were covered ends put into place with those that were left with Kendrick’s decisions and fallout. He felt for the businesses downtown he had seen it first hand at the Rawlings the terror on the owners faces. The good thing was most of the businesses could rebuild they had the money and the resources to rebuild.

“I have no desire to harm you Yasmine, Kendrick wouldn’t want that. I remember the day he came to me after you agreed to pay off your debt it was quiet that day at my house. I was in my father’s office and he came to me not as my lieutenant or enforcer as a friend that had taken a bullet for me and he asked me to spare you from the violence. From my wrath if it didn’t work out or you slipped up.” Ronan paused as they reached the door to the office and then waited till she finished handing in her keys. He’d remember to make sure to give the building some money to help out with rebuild and repairs if needed. “I had a choice then be my father or be something else. I chose to be something else I can’t hurt you or kill you Yasmine I swore an oath to him and I keep my word.” He finished looking at her seeing her own face the memories of Kendrick. “As for Brooke my life would get her killed I can’t do that to her it killed my mother for that very reason. Killed my father and I had to do what I did with her for her Yasmine you will understand that one day if it happens to you and Rory.”

Yasmine saw how serious he truly in pain that he was about Kendrick and Brooke. He had a toxic in his dna and everything he touched poisoned. She she held the box to herself as she felt her stomach turn. Looking at him she knew he was doing the right thing. However she also knew that mobsters and gangsters weren’t monsters. Balancing the box on her knee she knew it was time to go. She had heard his warning and knew that one day that it would come into play. She however wasn’t feeling how he said that Rory and she would see. Their relationship was fine and she was a little annoyed that he implied that one day they’d enter the same crossroads as Brooke and himself. She knew better than to lash out at him so she would just simply roll her eyes and keep walking to the car Rory sent for her. As she looked at him and shook her head. “It’s sad you feel like that Ronan. Understand love waits for no one and it’s not going to wait for you.” Yasmine handed the box to the driver.

As she turned to him she looked into his eyes. “My sister was killed because of the code of the street. The street killed her and broke my family. One memory I keep inside that box is her sonogram with Kendrick’s baby. They were happy but what I’m going to tell you is simple you can live your life to the fullest. Then face the greatest sorrow in life but the streets remain. It’s always someone hungrier and ready to take your place Ronan. All I’m say is clearly you found your happiness and all I’m saying is if Kendrick hung up the towel when he found out about Gina. If he would have just simply left with the love of his life. He’d still have his, I’m not telling you to know when to hang up the towel.” Slowly moving her hair as the driver opened the door and let her inside. “Ronan please you’ve been good to me. You are showing me mercy I guess I might stepping over my limits here. You men lose your souls in the game don’t be one of them. Be a man who can have it all.” The driver closed the door and she looked back at Scottswood. Her entire body was shivering as she felt like this was the final time she’d have to be here if she wanted. That this was the last time she’d see these basketball courts full of melanin men battling like Gods. Little girls jumping double dutch and gossiping about cute boys. The local drunk Sal standing outside singing beautifully because he was in a doo-wop group back in the day. Crackheads finding licks on stolen goods that we just couldn’t afford without them. As they drove away Yasmine saw her childhood and adolescence in the rear view and her future straight ahead.

Ronan watched the car pull away he didn’t have a retort for her but he knew that there would come a time for her and Rory. She’s have to make choices just like he did with Brooke choices that would make or break someone that was the life he was called too. Kendrick could have left with Gina and he didn’t have it in him to tell her how Gina was murdered or his part in it that was a secret he would go to the grave with. A rival had gotten a hold of their routes Kendrick knew that but he’d sent him out that night knowing he was going to be with Gina. In truth he’d sold his soul in that moment and even if he felt Brooke had changed that for the time they were together he’d always have innocent blood on his hands. Walking to his car as his guard opened the door he got inside pouring himself a scotch on the rocks as his driver headed back to his empty house.


Dani sat on the exam table Jackson was late not by much to the appointment and she knew he was busy with Max but she couldn’t help the anxiety that was coursing through her. She liked Ophelia so far after they had been able to talk and go over her past with Lex. Her blood pressure was a bit high but Ophelia assured her that was something that was normal at the moment given the kidnapping. Other than that she was completely healthy and Ophelia didn’t see complications and reassured her that everything on paper looked okay. She was also showing early and given that she had pushed off the appointment after the news had broke a few weeks Ophelia wanted to do an ultrasound. Now it was a waiting game and she turned to the door when Ophelia entered with the nurse and the machine. Relenting she laid back on the table and then she heard the door open again and saw Jackson there.

“See nothing to worry about. You are late but I told her you’d be here. I need to go get the gel and I want to do one more blood draw just to check your levels again, be right back.” Ophelia said looking between them both before headed out to get what she needed.

“You’re here I was beginning to think you decided to skip out.” Dani said looking at him teasing him as she sat up again and Ophelia and the nurse went back out of the room to get everything. She laid back down on the table seeing Jackson’s face looking a million miles away she knew he was worried about Max and she gently pinched him to bring him back to what was going on. “Ophelia says I’m okay. I’m nervous though I mean what if we don’t see anything or worse.” She said calming when he reached out for her hand. “How’s Max?”

Jackson was focused on two things. Getting his sister out of Atlas Falls and telling Dani he still needed more help. When she pinched him he laughed looking at her. Moving stray perfect strands of hair from her face. He lowered his head how was he going to tell her that he failed. He failed his soulmate in such a monumental way. Drugs nearly tore them apart before but this time could he? Sometimes he started to quiver thinking about the taste of a high again. He was high on this new life but his old one always seemed to creep back in. Dani didn’t deserve this and if he didn’t get help he’d go further down the rabbit hole. He’d be so far gone he’d lose the best thing to ever happened to him and that wasn’t a option. That wasn’t because he had a child and a baby was what they deserved.

“She’s scared and in some serious shit Dani. I don’t want to even tell you how bad this is for her but um I do want to focus on our baby.” He kissed Dani’s hand and lowered his head again. “I think we are going to see the little guy or girl today right? This where we find out and um I want to know. I want to know if we are having a son or a daughter. I’m preferring a son because I can do what I always wanted to with my dad. I can have the relationship I always wanted with my father with my son. I can see in your eyes you want a girl so you can do some knitting and teach her how to be some humble little socialite. I can see you taking over moms position in the charity.” Jackson teased as he saw Ophelia knock on the door and enter.

He stood up and kissed her cheek. “Hey so I hear my kid is doing good and my um future wife is perfectly healthy. You are helping with that thank-you. I’ve been keeping her eating healthy.” He teased considering that he encouraged all Dani’s cravings. “So we get to find out if we are having a boy or girl today right?”

“Let’s see what we have in there. She’s showing a little so this is more of a dating ultrasound make sure growth is good. Sex won’t come for a few more weeks.” Ophelia said looking between them and seeing Jackson and Dani nod their heads at her

She laid her hand on Dani’s shoulder raising the shirt and applied the gel to her stomach watching the cold reaction she smiled. The machine hummed for a bit as she took a seat on the stool and she grabbed the probe applying it to the stomach. She checked the bladder which looked good and the other organs and then placed the probe on the uterus turning on the machine’s sound and pointing to the screen. “There we go strong heart beat, about one hundred and sixty BPM which is good. There is the heart, head, fingers and toes everything is there, measuring about fourteen weeks closer to fifteen.” She paused for a moment her crown furrowing watching the happiness on the other two’s face. She moved the probe to the other side pressing and then going back. She moved it down again and back up wanting to make sure what she was seeing and hearing. “That would explain why you are showing so early. There is the second right on track with the other, right on scheduled growth.  Congratulations twins.”

Dani looked at the machine the moment she pointed to that bundle inside of her and seeing their child’s heartbeat she was stunned it was perfect. All the worrying of the last few weeks overcame her and she couldn’t help the tears everything was fine. She looked up at Jackson seeing how in awe he was of the screen. She got tense again when Ophelia had went to the other side not sure what was going on and her jaw couldn’t help but fall open at the two images on screen. Twins and she had to do a double take and her mind was running a million miles a minute they could barely fit one into his apartment or her townhouse and this complicated everything again from living arrangements to how to handle it. She was still stunned when Ophelia took some more pictures for them and wiped off her stomach and Jackson looked stunned too. Stunned but completely happy and when he helped her sit back up she looked up at him and then at Ophelia.

“Are you sure? Holy shit I don’t even know what to say right now. We’re having twins?” She said still taking in things and seeing Ophelia smile at them both as she nodded her head. She knew this was a possibility Jackson was a twin and she was pretty sure there was at least one side on her family that had a set too. She still had a million questions as she looked at Ophelia. “It’s still okay be normal right with two? Intimacy is still okay right? I have to eat more don’t I? I was not expecting this.”

Ophelia nodded her head at her as she saw it was still sinking in for her and Jackson and she smiled this was a good thing. She hadn’t had a twin case in a while and she knew Lowell and Jackie would be thrilled. “You can still do all that. You’ll be monitored more closely two week appointments instead of four to track growth. Twins can be complicated a little bit some don’t make it full term but that’s normal. But everything looks perfect. Congratulations.” Her pager went off and she had to get to the delivery room. “I have to go to delivery take your time and I’ll see you in two weeks.” She shook Jackson’s hand and squeezed Dani’s hand as she left the room.

Dani looked at him when Ophelia left and she wrapped her arms around him kissing him feeling his hands grip her in return she was crying and didn’t care. Instead they were tears of complete happiness. She pulled back and she felt him tilt her head and kiss her deeper and she wiped at her eyes seeing his own emotions, he was happy. “I never thought this would happen, I’m so happy right now. I want to get married. You were right and they deserve that.” She said placing his hand on her stomach watching his face.

Tears fell down his face he had to protect Max and these little guys. When Ophelia found the other heartbeat he wondered if this was a sign. What were the chances? He had to tell Dani that he used and he had to leave with Max. He knew he just had to tell her. “Well I’m sorry to tell you that you were right Dani. We need to do this right. I need to do this right because I was proposing out of fear. I love you so much and after I say this I’m sure your are going to hate me. I don’t want you to hate me because I was lost. I was so lost when Kendrick fucking kidnapped you. I know we are happy and I know this isn’t the right time baby because you three deserve better than me. I’m not having a moment of self doubt Dani listen.” He saw her face saying he was freaking out, that wasn’t the case. “I’m calm when I can say this okay. I used drugs the night you were gone during the kidnapping. I got high and I can’t explain how that feels to you because you never used anything. It’s exhilarating and it comforted me when I was in my darkest recesses of my mind. I thought I lost my wife and my kids now. We have two of them Dani and this is a gift but I won’t spit in your face anymore. I really need to get help. I need to get my shit together.” Jackson said standing up turning away from her as he placed his fist to his mouth.

Tears were falling down his face. “I failed you and I proved everyone right. I’m a fuck up but I couldn’t think of life without you. There aren’t enough thank-yous and I love you to tell you how devastated I was. I was destroyed and I can’t shake this thing. This craving to take a little bit away. I proposed because I was stressed on how to tell you. I know that’s selfish but it’s addict behavior. I want to marry you baby but I can’t do it as this man. I need to get control of this monkey on my back and I need to be able to steer what we are building. I need to just get it together and I can’t do it in Atlas Falls or another regular ass rehab. I heard about a program in Spain I need to get it together and this one is different. It’s not a spa or retreat it’s me in the wilderness in Spain. I can’t control my anxiety and sometimes it feels like I’m touching the ceiling but you are even a drug at this point. Dani I got learn to control me.” He turned around and saw her disappointed face. “That’s what I didn’t want to see. How many ways do you need to hear that I need you and this is my biggest high.” He grabbed the sonogram picture. “You and these kids but I gotta be clean and sober. I can’t slip no more so one more time. I’m asking you to trust me one more time.”

Dani did another double take as she looked at him tears springing to her eyes all over again and she knew it showed disappointment. Anger then came at him for a moment she knew it was a struggle for him and she got that. She didn’t know what to do anymore they couldn’t continue on this cycle it wasn’t healthy for either of them. What he was saying though wasn’t fair to any of them what did he expect her to do stay here while he weren’t away to the other side of the world? Go to appointments by herself while she worried about where she was going to live, where the nursery was going to go. Not to mention work who was going to run everything while he was gone he kept mentioning she was his wife but the reality wasn’t they had no legal bearing to each other and she looked at him turning him to her he didn’t get to do that push her away.

“You don’t get to do that to me push me away after everything you don’t get to shut me out. I’m livid Jackson but I get it you have issues I knew that when we started this. But what about me huh what am I supposed to do while you just get to up and leave?” She said looking at him sadly while she shook her head at him they were in this together they couldn’t turn back now. She took a breath trying to get her emotions in check trying to be understanding about everything. “Am I supposed to just stay here come to appointments by myself? I can’t even run your part of DGI why you are gone legally. I want you to go I want you clean you know that it’s best for all of us. We can’t be those parents to our children we can’t be my brother and Tamara.” She said wiping her eyes she paused seeing him crying too. “How long?”

“I’m going to make you my proxy for one more month and no more. If I am not back after that month then I will have my father take control over the project. Dani I’m not pushing you away I’m getting myself ready. I’m trying to pull myself together to be worthy of you and only you. This is the hardest thing I’m going to have to do. It’s a month and I am in the wilderness. No phones, no connection to anything just me and my demons. This is what I have to face something I wasn’t ready for years ago. It what they ask me to do every time at rehab. I just couldn’t face it then because I was scared to see who would remain. I was afraid of being a monster underneath all of this. Underneath all my bravado I was afraid to show that I need help. I won’t do our twins like my dad did me and Tamara is doing Dylan. I want to be whole for you and them.” Jackson said swallowing as he looked her in the eyes. “I’m fighting too and I know it’s hard but thirty days I’ll be home. I’ll be home you hear me for us.”

Jackson was on his knees. “Then if you will I’ll marry you in front of the entire town. I’ll marry you knowing that we can take over my parents legacy and I can’t do that alone. I have to have steps to find my way to not just you but the top. I’m aiming for them all in the most loving way possible and I want us to show everyone we are the ones to bet on. Together me and you can do anything but I need to do this on my own. I know it sucks and it’s unfair to ask a lady pregnant with twins to go head to head with my brother and siblings and father. I’m asking you because I know you are my soulmate you hear me? You are my everything and I need this to be the man you deserve. I need to face little Jackson who keeps acting out and figure out how to stop him.” Jackson kissed her hand. “One month to be the man I need to be.”

Dani was trying to be understanding and supportive she knew that was what he needed but the other part of her was angry not at him but what she knew he struggled with. She’d never struggled with addiction, never let it consume her so no she didn’t understand that side of it and she hated that side of it. That it was coming between them again right at a time when the pregnancy was supposed to bring them closer. A month was a long time in her mind but she got it, she wasn’t going to be naive about it either sometimes they needed longer at recovery and maybe this would be good for her too. She had a good support system at home with her cousins, her mother, Talia and even Bliss. She could make the decisions while he was gone and maybe the program would let her be a part of things when it was healthy for him. She knew she couldn’t just abandon him and she didn’t have it in him to cut him out or let go of him.

“We’ll figure it out. I’m just scared for you, for us about everything.” Dani said sitting down in the chair defeated as she took his hand in hers leaning her forehead into his. It was so stupid to be this emotional about it and she knew that but them not being together and stable wasn’t an option. She’d seen drugs destroy families she saw it first hand with Tamara how she ravaged her brother and put Dylan in a mess. She’d also seen people beat it with the right program and maybe she was ever the glass half full but she did think he could beat it, he had the willpower. “I promise ok we’ll figure everything out. You can get the help you need and I’ll take care of things here until you get back and then we can start our future. I’m not going anywhere, we’ll be here when you get back.”

Jackson slowly stroked her cheek. “Dani don’t tell anyone where I’m going. Just act shocked because if my father finds out I’m in rehab.” He paused as he looked her in his eyes. “Then it could ruin everything we built with SandStar. He could give it to Rory or Bliss or even Chauncey and I just can’t do that. So I’m going to have Mason draw up the paperwork to make you my proxy. I’m going to write my father a letter telling him I’m going after something new for DGI. That’s true I want to give my all to that company and my family. I want to show dad and everyone that I’m not the failure and screw up. Max said today that I was the biggest screw-up in the family basically. I don’t want to be that guy anymore. I want Max to be able to lean on me without fear of me relapsing. Then I will be able to lead this family into bigger and better. A new dawn with us at the helm of the company just like dad and mom.”

He looked at her face and saw the disappointment and sadness and that’s what he was trying to avoid. “Please I know this wasn’t what you expected or wanted but Dani let me come back. Let me come back the man you need and I’ll give you everything you’ve dreamed of. My life is all about making your dreams come true so Dani please just hold on. Face one last struggle and we will put drugs in the past. I can’t promise we won’t face anymore adversity but I can promise one of those things won’t be my past and my issues.” Jackson declared. “Now can I take you home and we make love before I leave the country?” He touched her hair and smiled at her. “I am so sorry.”


Looking at a city burning it was symbolic in many ways. Imagining what she was thinking of doing to the Devonshire and DGI would burn. Selina held her breath as she looked at passport sitting next to her. She gasped a little feeling the pressure sitting on her chest. She was about to walk away from everything and all she could see was years down the drain. Her daughter would eventually hate her because Selina wanted revenge. Chauncey did this and he should have fell on the sword. This was all his fault and her loyalty meant nothing to in the end. Her years of hard work as a executive and mother to his granddaughter meant nothing. She loved Chauncey but how could he just forget the love they once shared. He treated her like someone he never even cared about. So when she attacked she had to do the same. Selina eyes blurred as she touched the glass as she started to cry softly pulling in breaths to stop herself. Looking down at her ring finger she touched her wedding ring and started to cry harder. Everything she wanted wasn’t what she wanted. Maybe they were better forbidden? When they couldn’t be together was happier and she couldn’t get him to understand family.

How couldn’t he get it because if he was in the DA office nobody would have blamed him if some evidence against Lucy Fraiser would have went missing. Yet that didn’t happen because he wasn’t there yet but she knew he would for his blood. Not only that Selina wasn’t sure she was good enough for Braden. What she wanted to do was find a connection to show them what they loss. To acquire something nobody could stop her with.That meant being the wife of Braden Fraiser isn’t what she needed. She was about to embark on a revenge tour and nobody or nothing could stop her. Her hand was shaking as she removed her wedding ring. Pulling out her cell phone she dialed up her lawyer Daniel Malik who she informed to draw up divorce papers and send them to Braden at work.Once off the phone she saw that they were nearing the airport. Placing her phone down she took a deep breath and tried to compose herself. She tried to think about a reason to stay. She didn’t have one because honestly she was ready to enact what they did to her. She wanted to embarrass them as they have her. Leaning into the bar she pulled out a bottle of Moet and popped the cork. As the driver pulled up to security for the private landing strips. Her hand shook as she poured herself a glass of champagne. She chugged the first glass and then instinctively poured her next her nerves softening. As she exhaled looking at Atlas Falls seeming to look like a wasteland behind her. This was the worst she’d ever seen the city.

“Are you ready Ms. Fraiser?” Gaston asked as he lowered the partition.

Selina exhaled softly as she looked up she shook her head. “No Gaston please give me a few moments to collect myself. Please tell the attendants to load my bags however. I would appreciate a few moments alone.” She opened her purse removing makeup and other things to freshen up. She hated crying in front of a total stranger although this man had been driving her for months she didn’t believe in it.

“Yes Ms. Fraiser.” He began to raise the partition to separate them once again.

“Oh Gaston one more thing dear.” Selina said knowing what she was about to do was going to crush her soul.

“Yes Ms. Fraiser?” Gaston asked wondering if his job was done. If she was about to fire him.

“Please stop calling me Ms. Fraiser from now on please have the crew address me as Ms. Delacroix. That is all Gaston please leave me now.” She saw the partition close and heard the door close she gasped as she started to cry.

This was walking away from the dreams she had with Braden and her life with Dylan and Maddie as siblings. So arrogant and foolish the revenge for taking Maddie away wouldn’t be swift it would be a long game and painful. Chauncey warned her and she wasn’t just after revenge she was after recognition she pushed that SOB to the highest heights. Then to be thrown to the side like trash how dare they and she wouldn’t sleep until she felt vindicated. Picking up a napkin she wiped the corners of her eyes and her face. She began reapplying a light blush and foundation to her eyes and cheeks. Looking in her compact mirror she began to place on mascara and then started to coif her hair. Slipping on her leather gloves Selina threw all her belongings into her purse. She adjusted her cape on her dress. Placing her hands down the wrinkles of the black leather dress. Smoothing it down to look even more polished. Black leather with real red fur. Stepping out of the limo doors she placed her sunglasses on.

Walking to the runway she immediately walked up the stairs. As she saw two women scuttling to hurry. “Just get me champagne and aspirin girls.” She said as she sat down.

The pilot was now in the cockpit she smiled as the girls arrived with bottle and poured her another glass. As she fastened her seat belt Selina took a big gulp. Then she saw it her cellphone was glowing and it was Braden. He would be trying to makeup and fix what was so clearly broken. He acted like he didn’t know it was. They were broken and no amount of glue would put them together. She assumed he knew but she couldn’t answer this call because he’d stop her from getting off the plane. She was once the type of girl who had love in her arms but she now was scared. She didn’t want it and she didn’t want Braden anymore because her heart just was tired. It didn’t work and she wasn’t going to keep trying because she needed her moment. She deserved her moment. “Pardon me can you have this phone number changed by morning and new phone. Only person that is to have my phone number is Maddie understood? She is the only one because I don’t want to have any contact with anyone. Until I’m ready understood and no one is to know where this manifesto is to go to.” As she took a sip of the champagne she felt her nerves ease again. Grabbing the pills on the silver platter she took them. Opening her purse she pulled out a headphones and turned on her music. The feeling of takeoff wasn’t something no human should get used to but she felt a sense of comfort leaving everything behind. Going away and finally doing for herself. That’s what she wants to do for herself and she was going to get her time.

Looking outside of the window she saw the skyline of Atlas Falls. A place she called home her entire life. She felt it to be hollow place full of people she didn’t know anymore. Mason hid himself and has disowned himself from the family. Jamal was out here running around as a criminal without even a care in the world. Her father, her beloved daddy showed such a hateful and evil side she wasn’t sure she could ever look at him the same. She was angry at it all and when Ophelia was the one person she could count on to keep the Delacroix together it was problem. She had done a lot to keep everything together hell it was time she stepped up because she didn’t let her then. Now she would and it wasn’t a joke she needed Ophelia to be there. Closing her eyes she took a deep breath as she pulled down the shade on the window. Exhaling she turned over and closed her eyes. When she opened them she’d be in a another country. Another chance to show them all they’d underestimated her. To make distance between what she knew was a failed marriage. To get a break from the madness of her family and she wanted to be free and this was it. This was her chance to be free from everything.

“Goodbye Braden, I love you so much but goodbye. Goodbye Atlas Falls and I’ll be back as soon as I can do what I need to do. To step on whomever and get my time to be something more than one of these women you used. All of the women in this world and life get used. Jackie cheated on numerous times, Audrey with a slit wrist and waiting for years, My mother dead from the cancer of these men. No not me, not me I’ll be back and show all of you that I’m not one of those women. I will get my moment!” She said out loud screaming furiously as she saw that Atlas Falls was now behind the crew and she knew soon out of her mind.


The echo of a gunshot and her voice was the last thing he could recall. A voice of a woman he considered to be the love of his life. When he first slept with Max, he felt like they both were saying fuck-you to their parents. It was a mutual rebellion but who would have thought they’d fall for each other. For the first time in his life after Veronica he felt like he was feeling again. He felt all the love he’d never thought he’d feel again. Someone who completely get him and his darkness because she had her own. If she would have just let him tell her what happened to Veronica. If she would have just trusted him he would have never been here. The feeling was gone because he didn’t hear her anymore. Philip eyes fluttered lightly as the fluorescent light beamed into his sockets. He quickly closed them and gargled out a groan. As he finally opened his eyes he blinked a few more times as they adjusted to the brightness of the room. Looking at Cassie immediately hovering over him. Licking his lips he started to tremble as Cassie tears covered him and he felt her hugging him.

“What happened.” Philip managed to speak seeing his father through Cassie’s arms. “What are you doing here? You said Atlas Falls was ours and you wouldn’t be here anymore. This had to be bad if you’re here.” He felt the need to pull himself up as he tried to use his legs to shift upward. He didn’t feel his toes or legs. What the fuck had happened? The gunshot flashed into his mind and he knew. “I was shot wasn’t I? I can’t feel my legs Cassie!” He screamed as she used the bedrails he saw that they were still there. Yet they weren’t there because he couldn’t feel his legs. He couldn’t use them. Tears began to form in his eyes and for a moment he could swear he saw his father looking like he was about to cry. When he saw Forbes turn away from them he knew it was true. He was paralyzed from the shooting. “What happened to me? Who shot me Cassie?”

Forbes had always protects his children. How could this be happening? His son his first born was a crippled. Nothing disgusted him more than a man who didn’t have wings to truly fly. Now his son wouldn’t be able to fly. This wasn’t complicated he was about to make someone pay. Some blood would be shed because looking at the horror and hurt on his first born face. He couldn’t help but feel more rage at Lowell. Lowell Devonshire slutty dim witted daughters had been wrapped up in this. Whomever had done this was about feel something they’d never understand. There grandchildren would though. They would know that Forbes had decimated their grandparents lives that they’d never be anything. If those Devonshire bitches did something to his son he’d kill them with his bare hands.

Clearing his throat he looked at Cassandra and walked to his children and embraced them. It was awkward but he knew that they needed him. Once done he walked back to his corner and sat down crossing his legs. “Now tell me what do you remember Philip?” He saw the look in Cassandra’s eyes but ignored it. He had to find out what his son knew. Unlocking that was the key to possibly destroying Lowell girls and even revenge against Steven boy. That would be a delicious ending to wipe all three away with that fishy little story. Hunter was stunned, Bliss was stoned face not a surprise look who her mother was, and Max was a mess simmering in guilt.

“I just remember hearing the gunshot and my body felt hot. Then I heard her voice. What did Max say? Where is Max?” He looked at Cassie and his father. “What did you two do?”

Cassie had stayed by her brother’s bedside ever since she had kicked Max out with their father, she had oversaw his care when they came in to remove his breathing tube. She had handled calls from the press about the shooting, from Ronan about the club she was still in shock that it was gone now from her brother’s hands. That didn’t completely shock her, she knew her father had left for a few hours and it all added up that he wanted to take the club out of their hands it was bad for the family name.  When Philip finally started to stir in the bed she rushed over to him looking down at him as tears streamed down his face he was alive but seeing him try to sit up sent horror through her. The doctors said it was possible and now the reality was that he could never feel his legs again that they would never work. She tried to keep him from overdoing it finally, reaching to the side of the bed and the remote as she raised the bed for him to sit up wiping at her eyes. They burned into her father he knew damn well who put Philip in that bed Max did along with Bliss and Hunter. She looked at Philip and then at her father.

“You need to rest the doctors said that you need to rest, you can’t move around like that. You just had two major surgeries.” Cassie said looking desperately at her father to stop this was not the time to grill Philip when he needed rest. She then looked at Philip seeing his frantic expression he really had no clue what had happened and she for one was not going to let those three get away with anything she didn’t believe their story for one second. “You and Max got into a fight. Hunter and Bliss showed up they all say someone broke into the house during your fight with Max and shot you. Though if you want the truth I don’t think that is what happened at all. The police can’t find any signs of a break in, you were shot at close range the bullet barely missed your spine. I sent that bitch away and I’d do it all over again.”

Philip couldn’t remember what exactly happened but all he heard was bullshit. No one was able to break into his home. He felt like his stomach churned as he looked at Cassie and his father. They both had disgusted expressions on their face as she explained Max was a suspect basically in his shooting. Tears started to form down his face. He trusted that bitch. She shot him? Or was it Hunter? Or Bliss? Which one of them shot him? As he wormed in his bed feeling like it was two logs on his body. How could they just lie? As he gripped his sheets pissed feeling nothing. What type of man would he be in a wheelchair?

“You kicked her out before I got to say anything? Before I got to ask any questions?” Philip growled as he sat up because he kept sliding downward in bed. “I can’t even fucking sit up!” He flipped over his side table. “I’m fucking paralyzed and nobody is here who knows what the fuck happened to me! Neither one of you are in a bed and that bitch knows what happened to me! I’m stuck what are my fucking chances of walking again. I want someone to pay Cassie. Dad you are the king of revenge what the hell are you doing here? Huh? Why are you sitting around because I’m stuck with my legs not doing what they are supposed to.”

Forbes heard the fury in his voice as he lowered his head. He’d let Audrey down and he let his son down. He was right Philip was being forgotten because of a riot. If they weren’t careful then he’d set Atlas Falls ablaze even more. He had his hand in the fire for a very long time and watching it burn was exactly what he wanted. He never thought his son would be in this much pain and seeing this rage inside of him. As he slowly walked to the bed he grabbed his son hand and then his daughter. The first time he’d touched her since his return in town. Slowly looking at them both he knew it was time to reveal somethings of their past. Somethings that they had to know.

“Audrey’s death was at my hands. I didn’t see her lost in the darkness but I won’t fail my children again. I won’t apologize because she ultimately took her own life. This crushing feeling you are feeling Philip will subside but I won’t allow you to wallow in self pity. We will crush them do you hear me. I won’t rest until the Devonshire’s pay and I assure they will pay.” As he touched Cassie face. “You both wanted to be independent of me but I’m here and I won’t let you be the mockery of Atlas Falls anymore. Your parents didn’t fail you and the Devonshire legacy is yours and one day you will have it. Soon you both will have it.”

“Strip them of everything dad.” Philip said with tears streaking his face as he gripped his father hand. “Don’t stop until they have nothing.”

Cassie looked at her father and then at Philip as the crushing revelation of his injury sat on. She couldn’t help the sense of satisfaction towards Max and Bliss over it knowing that Max would never be in her brothers’ good graces ever again. No Max would be miserable on the outside looking in while her father ripped the Devonshire’s apart bit by bit until there was nothing left. She couldn’t help the way she felt about it, especially about Max and how she went out and destroyed lives with her brother in tow. She knew her father destroyed lives too that wasn’t a secret but perhaps having him here wouldn’t be such a bad thing this time. He would avenge what happened to Philip and her mother all those years ago finally make them pay and she could move on from his toxic relationship with Max.

“Do what you have to do father.” Cassie said looking at them both it was none of her concern she had no ties to the Devonshire’s they had taken so much from her over the years. Her mother’s death especially was the salt call she could get over what Max did with Hunter in high school and everyday since then thinking that girl owned the town. What she would never get over is how Lowell’s affair with her mother ruined their family and led her mother to do the unthinkable, that was unforgivable to her. She had new ties now with Jon and his family she could have her normal now. “Make them hurt like they have caused us all the hurt over the years.”

“I promise you that I will destroy them.” Forbes said as he thought about Audrey. His wife killed herself because of Lowell brainwashing her. It was the only way he could think they had affair. Audrey loved him and their children. The betrayal was deep and it further solidified his hatred for Lowell. He may have could have lived overseas for the twilight years in his life. He however saw how Lowell and the Devonshire had attacked his children over the years. He was going to destroy everything the loved. “I’m going to hurt them really badly. Both of you must know that you both are in the line of Lowell. He isn’t to be trifled with either remember he bankrupted me. I will decimate them and everything they have.” He grabbed his son hand, then grabbed his daughter hand.

“We are Montgomery’s and together we are going to burn the entire town and I have some things in play understand that when it happens you two will be pariahs right along with me.” Forbes gripped there hands. “I hope you don’t care because I’m going do somethings you don’t agree on. I’m going to take everything from the Fraisers, the LeClerqs, the Kincaids, and finally but not least The Devonshires. The two most powerful warriors are time and patience and I’ve been very patient. Now is the time to finally attack everyone and unleash years of secrets and pain onto everyone of those families. I have secrets on each of them and they will destroy them all. Oh Philip and Cassandra I will make you both proud of me. I’m going to eliminate them all.” Letting go of their hands. “I have to leave, unfinished business but I think your sister will take great care of you.” Forbes walked out of the hospital room and for a moment a single tear slid down his face. How dare they attack his boy. “They will all pay.” Forbes stormed away as he saw Lowell and Jackie entering the hospital as they walked away.

“Interesting.” Jackie looked in perfect health but seeing how weak and feeble Lowell looked. Then he watched them be greeted by David Rhodes. “What’s the matter Lowell.” He said with a smile whistling as he walked away.


David had finished his rounding checking in with Braden and Tamara observing as Tamara went into withdrawal. He had tried to gauge Braden’s reaction and asked if the police would be taking over and when his friend shook his head and said no he knew the cycle would begin again. Perhaps this time would be different but the pattern with Tamara had been something they had been dealing with for years. Braden had asked about the best program he know and he handed it off to his nurses to make the arrangements. Taking the iPad into one of the private meeting rooms on what the staff considered the VIP floor he saw Lowell and Jackie inside. He had been at the hospital knew about Philip’s shooting and when called Lowell concerned about the surgeon they had, he put in a call to the best surgeon he knew, he only wanted the best at the hospital. This however wasn’t about Philip.

“I’m glad you finally made the appointment. How are you feeling has the medications helped at all?” David asked as he took a seat at his desk and then looked at Lowell. Something had changed in the last few months a bit of a spark was gone his age was showing now and he supposed that was what happened when cases like this came up. “Dr. Bradshaw is the best he tells me Philip is recovering well he thinks with time the swelling will go down he could walk again. I’d like to keep talking about that you were right when you called me to call him in, but I want to talk to you and the test results from what we’ve run.”

Jackie had watched her husband most of the day carefully from the shooting with Philip to firing Selina, the kidnapping how much more could he take. When he had almost insisted on skipping the appointment she had put her foot down. No he was going to go and get the tests again and so they did. Secluded and under the radar and without worrying her children, children that they had not told anything yet. They had agreed it was best that they not know until it became apparent that Lowell could no longer run the company and then they would make the decisions, it was what was best for anyone. They hadn’t been waiting long when she saw David enter and she grabbed Lowell’s hand seeing her husband’s long hard face, mortality was a funny thing it changed men.

“Thank you David he’s stubborn. I kept insisting but he keeps thinking he can go forever. I think he is still taking the medication though he tells me not to worry he has it under control.” Jackie said seeing the gleam in her husband’s eyes at the statement they had been through a lot over the years and she knew him better than anyone. Leaning back when she saw David’s face get serious she took in the news about Philip that was a good thing in the day they had. Perhaps this would quell Forbes’s wrath on them all. “That is good to hear about Philip perhaps this will blow things over. He’ll tell you what you need to know David won’t you Lowell?”

Mortality was a complex thing. He was taking the medicines that David had given him. This was the most painful thing. He could see the lines on his face and his body felt more tight. He was becoming weaker when he needed to stand strong. He needed to be strong and no matter what they said today he was here to get stronger. His family was under siege and it clear to see with Forbes here he was there to capitalize on this moment. Chauncey had yet to learn the amplified effect of power wasn’t revenge and he also sees his family as rivals not the outsiders. Jackson was too unpredictable but he had the most potential in his mind. His transformation this year had been utterly amazing but the ending was a disappointment. This kidnapping has put him in question. His eldest rebellious princess Maximilla who touched the fire this year and forgot about her own ambition. Philip placed him in a dangerous place. Bliss his youngest daughter was hiding a child and marriage that shocked him. He didn’t know his daughter and that hurt and crushed him. Rory who has the genius chooses a stripper and to get involved with her. They all were on a path where he couldn’t choose one to takeover.

As he looked at Jackie he kissed her hand. “I’m dying aren’t I David. Say it Doctor I’m dying and I can’t die now David. It isn’t time and I need you to do whatever you have to to extend my life. To make me viable and have the will to carry on.” Lowell exhaled exhausted lowering his shoulders. “Jackie I know I act like I am doing fine but the tremors they are getting worse.” He laughed shocked at what he was saying. “I’m more tired every day and it feels like I’m fighting with my own body. Yet I can’t go through this not yet because our children are very much in danger. This year shows me they need us Jackie and I mean Bliss too because Tess is a virus to our daughter. David please tell me where to go? I can leave on a extended vacation for treatment but I have to prolong this until one of them steps up. Until I know DGI is safe in the hands of the right child. Into I know my wife will be able to help mold and guide my successor.” He looked at Jackie and kissed her. “I’m so sorry that I’m doing this to you.”

David sat down as he opened up the iPad going over the results time was short maybe a year two at max. He looked over at them both knowing that delaying the results would further hurt them. “You’re declining. We can try other medications there is a study in France they are doing it can be a trial this summer. Your MRI came back you can see the frontal lobe the change in color it’s gotten worse since the last scan which would explain the symptoms increasing. Your body is fighting that is where the exhaustion comes in this disease isn’t something we can play around with.” David said showing them on the screen behind him the scans he saw Lowell’s face fall and saw Jackie’s face fall too.

“We discussed this at your first appointment it is a slow disease Parkinson’s takes over there is no cure. We can try different medications you can try the trial in France. The lobes will grow you’ll start not remembering.” David said wanting him to fully understand the diagnosis. His time was limited and he should start getting his affairs in order there was no easy way to say that to him or Jackie. “A year maybe two I can’t guarantee you more than that. I wish I could but you should start getting your affairs into order sooner rather than later enjoying the time you have left. Once your mind and body are gone it will be up to Jackie to make those final decisions.”

Jackie’s hands clasped over her face as the words sunk in so little time left as her eyes filled with tears. She was heartbroken as an understatement this wasn’t enough time for her. She saw the tears form in Lowell’s eyes as David handed her a tissue and she dabbed at her eyes. He would have so little time declining from here on out with all the children and grandchildren Maddie, and Fox and now especially. Jackson’s child would not remember him and the tears fell down her face more. “Lowell.” She said gripping his hand as he looked at her she could barely speak and waited for it to sink in as she waited for Lowell to speak.

“We are going to go to France in a few weeks I have a meeting with Linus. So I’ll go see those doctors David. I assure you that I’ll have my affairs in order when I am ready to die. I have fought my entire life to be here. In this place of victory. To see that all my children and their children and their children reap the rewards and taste of what being a Devonshire is. It’s a legacy and my children aren’t ready. Hell my wife isn’t ready for me to die so I will be in those trials and will do whatever it takes to beat this. I will not sit and wither away and die like a poor person. I have billions at my disposal. I have so much money that I will find a way to help my family. You don’t seem to understand a year or two max isn’t a option. I need five years to see who can run and lead this family into something new. I don’t accept this and I don’t accept death. I won’t be dying and this Parkinson won’t control my body.” Lowell declared as he looked at Jackie.

Standing up he took his wife hand as he looked at her. “I won’t be leaving that easy. Didn’t I tell you Forbes and Pierre would be gone from DGI? Didn’t I promise you we would have another child and we had Rory baby I’m fighting Parkinson and it’s going to lose. I’m going to beat it okay.” Lowell looked at David and nodded accepting what he was saying. “Refill my prescription and have it please faxed to the pharmacy then have them deliver it to home and the office. I’m not going to die lying down Dr. Rhodes. David send me all the information and I’ll set up the rest.” Lowell walked out of the office. “I am going to fight do you hear me?” Lowell wasn’t going to be drooling at a nursing home. “If I can’t talk don’t let the children see me. If I am not me anymore I want to die do you hear me Jackie. I won’t go from the smartest man in the room to the one that everyone sympathies. I won’t be that man I’m not fucking Steven Hawkings I’m Lowell Devonshire. I’m the man who built DGI and outsmarted men more fucking brilliant than I. I am the man who built a dynasty from my brain and plucked the best out of others. They wouldn’t have a leg to stand on without me! I’m Lowell Devonshire and I won’t be a a infiltile degenerate not I. Not me.” Lowell gasped as he shook his head. “God this is my cross to bare.”

Jackie was still in shock the news was not something that she had been expecting, perhaps she had put blinders on to the news the first time. She had kept telling herself that David was wrong he wasn’t a specialist after all his specialty was in cardiology heart problems. Which seemed fitting as it felt like hers was going to break and fall apart into a thousand pieces and she wondered if he had a cure for that. A fix to take that away, to take what would happen in the future and make it easier on her and their children a chance for the pain to no longer be there. Looking over at Lowell she could see he saw the fear, the anger and the sadness on her face. He was dying he would be gone in a few years maybe sooner there would be nothing she could do to stop it this time. They’d been through so much over the years and overcame it in stride or so she thought. This was not something they could beat.

“Lowell please listen to what David is telling you. Hand off the company enjoy what we have left.” Jackie said pleading with him to do the right thing this time. To put aside his pride with DGI hand it over to the children to run, he could focus on other things they could travel together. He could spend time with his grandchildren. Maddie was going into high school, Fox hopefully would be here soon Jackson’s child would be born or at least she hoped and Lowell could spend his time with that generation. At some point he had to let go of DGI and hand it over to their children and enjoy what he had left. Even if Forbes was here now that was the most important thing to her his final years and them enjoying it. “Have Linus be a proxy if you aren’t ready to let go yet Lowell until they are ready. Let him handle Forbes and the messes and enjoy our time while you spend the last of it with your grandchildren.” She knew it was selfish of her and he likely wouldn’t relent but it was worth it to try.

David watched them together Lowell Devonshire was stubborn in his eyes rich men often thought they could beat death which was why he had called into Parkinson specialists when he was sure of the diagnosis. This time there was no cheat Lowell could do he could prolong it and that seemed what the plan was, but it would happen. He wrote down the prescription to take it to the head nurse they could have the medication delivered to the mansion and DGI though he wished Lowell would take Jackie’s advice instead. He went ahead and handed Lowell the card for the doctor doing the study in France as well it could be arranged from there. He was about ready to speak when his pager went off and one of the nurses came in.

“Dr. Rhodes there has been an incident in surgery they are wanting you down there.” She said, he nodded at her and then picked up the iPad and his stethoscope it wounded urgent and eh shook Lowell’s hand.

“Call the doctor and arrange the study. I’ll have your medications sent over and as soon as you are signed up for the study I can send them your medical file. I wouldn’t tell you what to do you are the patient Lowell, but I agree with your wife. I’m sorry the news wasn’t better. Take your time my nurse can show you out if you need it.” He said nodding his head at Jackie as he made his way out the door to the surgery wing.

Lowell stood looking at David and watched him walk away. Wanting to reach out and tell him to help. Tell him to fix him somehow. He’d suffered for years and knowing his children needed him now more than ever. Bliss was physically abused, Jackson was one crisis away from using, Rory was still fighting but God he was with a stripper, Max had a man shot unintentionally, Chauncey was becoming the biggest disappointment he was letting sex and revenge destroy him. Let alone revenge against his very own brother. Folding his arms Lowell slowly turned to Jackie and touched her hair.

“We don’t have much time my dear and I assure you that I will be giving you everything. All my heart and all my soul and my time but I have to protect them. Forbes is here my love and he’s going to try to break and decimate everything I’ve built. Everything I’ve given my family he’s here to take and no matter what Max did. I have no sympathy for that boy and I have even less sympathy for his father. I am so sorry that my body is betraying what we dreamed for ourselves. I apologies my love. I am so sorry my love.” Lowell said sitting down as his flopped down. His mind felt like mush but he felt like he was a failure. “I will keep my family safe. I will make them see that they need each other to succeed.” He cried as he held Jackie by the waist. “I’m dying. Oh God why? I’m dying.” He cried into her stomach knowing that he’d sinned but nothing to be taken away from this moment he had built. He had created a American new dynasty. “I don’t want to leave you, not yet.”

“It’s not my time please just help me contact the doctors and I’ll do the rest. I’ll fight and show David he was wrong. I’ll show everyone that I will survive.” Lowell said standing reflecting on his image. It wasn’t him any longer the handsome devil was gone and there was a shell of Lowell Devonshire remaining. He felt the life slipping out of him but it also let him know his time was precious. Right now it was time to find his successor and show them exactly what I’ll do to them if they came against me.” Lowell said to his wife. “We are going home now.”

Jackie didn’t know what to say to Lowell when he started to talk about beating his condition there were times she wanted to be optimistic but this time she couldn’t be. Yes doctors were doing more and more everyday but they hadn’t found a cure to the illness. An illness that she knew would take him from her and their children, from seeing his grandchildren grow up. She walked with him to the door almost like they were in slow motion as she saw the door latch and they entered the sterile halls of the hospital. She barely had time to react as who she assumed was David’s nurse handed her the card with the other doctor’s name and number in France. She felt like the rest of the walk went in a daze as they let the hospital to arrive in theri waiting car. Once inside she curled up into her husband’s arms.

“I love you Lowell. We’ll cross those bridges when it is time. Let’s make the call to the doctor and see what he can do for us.” Jackie said trying to be encouraging as she felt Lowell’s arms around her and for some reason she knew moments like this would be few and far between from then on out.


Considering Anderson was returning home for this ordeal with Hunter, all she wanted was a family dinner. Before Hunter was wearing silver bracelets at least. She couldn’t believe how close she was too revealing the truth on how much Lowell destroyed her life. How much that man used her grief and heartbreak to his advantage to get back at Anderson. Slowly touching her leather double-breasted peplum trench coat she tugged at the waist belt to tighten it. Arriving at Gideon home she wanted to let him into her heart. To close down the swelling for a daughter she never knew. It was something that she felt passionately about. If she was going to forget about that little girl, then she had to move on. That meant finally being real with herself and getting the man she loved. Walter Frasier was her soulmate and he knew it also but it was always Lauren. Lauren got in the way but for now Gideon would consume her mind to not think of Walter. The truth was she knew why he never left Lauren his children, however they had children also. They were the ones who supposed to be together but it was clear that he had a allegiance to Lauren.

Slowly approaching Gideon door she saw it was ajar. For some reason she couldn’t stop herself. Was this the reason Gideon hadn’t gotten back to her? Was he injured maybe a heart attack or stroke because to be honest none of them were young anymore. Her feet were floating to the door, it oddly felt similar. That sent a chill down her spine because it was just how she found Steven. The door was opened and the house was supposed to be secure. With a riot happening she wondered why weren’t more police protecting their captain? She stepped inside of the home and the smell of old food hit her first. She walked through the foyer into the living room and saw Gideon sitting with a glass in his hand. On the other side she saw Rachel laying on the floor near the kitchen door. She rushed to the young woman who she saw as a protege. Flipping her over she felt her ice cold skin.

“No Rachel!” She said mumbling trying to feel for a pulse. “Please sweetie talk to me.” Brenda couldn’t find a pulse and knew a young life was snuffed out. She dropped Rachel arm and started to scream as she fell to the floor. Her designer heels scraping against the hardwood floors. She crawled to Gideon and she shook his pants leg. “Gideon please help her or help me!” With that she stood up and saw the glass fall from his hands. She screamed knowing he was dead. Her heart was pounding as a entire family was wiped out with one swipe. Who would be so brutal and kill Rachel and Gideon? Why had she found them? Was this some sick cosmic joke after she found Steven?

Walking to the phone in the kitchen, she stepped over Rachel body and started to bawl. That young woman was everything she would want her other daughter to be. God what had Gideon and Rachel stumbled into?  Her hands were shaking feverishly as tears began to form coating her freshly painted face. Picking up the phone off the charger port she started to dial 911. Once she let them know it was the police captain Gideon Morrison and his daughter. Once off the phone Brenda walked outside and let the cold air comfort her. When she placed her head down between her knees she heard a siren. She knew they were on there way and this wasn’t some sick nightmare. Standing up she saw the police blow past her and into the house. The voice were scattered but Brenda heard one thing. No pulse. The truth was she knew that they were gone and once again she started the year finding a bodies and ending it the same finding bodies.

When she felt a hand on her shoulder she jumped out of her skin. “Miranda.” She said quickly gripping the cop. She slowly buried her head in his shoulders. “They are gone dear and I can’t do this again. I just did this.”

Miranda had been on her way back from the rioting downtown after the national guard had been called in and instead had gotten the call about Gideon on the way back. She was the closest and arrived a few minutes after the ambulance had rushed inside to what she assumed was the bodies. Gideon had sent his officers home for the day she had double checked with the men that were posted, in their words he didn’t think mad chaos would break out in his neighborhood. He was partially right he lived in an upscale neighborhood on the east side of the city. No the destruction was downtown by the business district not out here where people were well off lived. Hell her parents were exactly a small suburb over crime didn’t happen there either. She saw Brenda on the steps and normally she couldn’t stand her but today she honestly felt bad for her. This was the second time in a year she had to walk in on dead bodies.

“I’m right here Ms. Kincaid. You did the right thing by calling.” Miranda said motioning for one of the medics to bring her a heated blanket she could tell that Brenda was starting to go into shock from the events. Wrapping it around the other woman she motioned for the crime scene until to head inside and she did the awful job of asking the questions she had to. Gideon had assured the men when he sent them home everything was fine.She saw one of the guys go in with a monitor to test for gas and then focused back on Brenda, Gideon’s house was older but surely he had a carbon monoxide monitor.  “When was the last time you heard from Gideon and Rachel?”

“Rachel earlier this week and Gideon just last night. I asked him about the shooting and he was very clear this was a police matter. He said that his cop didn’t do anything wrong dear.” She spoke softly as she stood up looking at Miranda. “Darling you must understand I found my husband and his mistress the same way. Dead and I just can’t be here Miranda this is bringing that whole ugly moment back.” She said softly as she looked at Miranda. “Anderson is coming home with his wife and my grandchild. Oh this was how they were to all meet. I was finding love again my dear. No longer pinning for a man who I couldn’t have and now he’s gone again. I’m right back thinking about a man I can’t have.” She stood crumbling wrapping the blanket around her shoulders.

“Please let me go I’m not a murderer and I found this. I can’t be here any longer Miranda please.” She said softly as she opened a bottle of water an officer handed her. Her eyes were blurry from the tears falling down her face. “I think this is God’s way of saying my time is coming. I have done some horrible things but this is the most painful every.” She said shaking her head as she looked at Miranda. “I need my family and time please let me be escorted to where I need to go.”

Miranda saw her stand up only to see her crumble again and she waved the other officers away as they made their way over to Brenda. She would handle it despite how she felt about Brenda and the Kincaid’s in general the woman had been through a lot that year. She watched her as she took a sip of the water and one of the techs came back out to lean in her ear whispering that the reading for carbon monoxide was higher than normal and her heart sank. What a terrible way to go out, she took the tech aside seeing Brenda’s face and tried her best to keep it together for herself. Gideon had been a good capitan he was fair to all of the department and officers in it, which she knew sometimes was not an easy task. One of the other techs came out and asked her what she wanted to do and she looked over at Brenda who was making her way to the car gripping the water bottle in her hands.

“Have the coroner run tests to determine cause of death. From what you are telling me though it looks like a tragic accident. I think he has a sister and brother we can reach out to and let them know.” Miranda said leaving both of them there to do what they needed and then she walked to Brenda. The woman was in no condition to drive she took a breath as she looked at her eyes, she knew Brenda had that ugly history with Walter and Lauren and well her parents were loyal as hell to them it was why their families were so close. But that didn’t mean that Brenda should have to keep suffering for what she thought she had done. “I don’t think you killed them Brenda, it looks like it was a tragic accident. I can take you home if you’d like I don’t think you are in any condition to drive.”

“No, no, no, no. I want to be alone right now.” She said honestly wondering exactly what accident. The universe don’t deal out second chances. If could have been Gideon and she not his daughter. Somehow this accident happened with a weight weighing on her chest. Tears formed in her eyes as she watched the techs take out the first body. Small and petite it had to be Rachel. A girl who needed a motherly figure and that’s when it dawned on her what she had to do. What she had to say to Lauren and Walter. She needed to see them both because honestly what else could she say but the truth? “I can drive alone but Miranda please contact me if you can’t find his family. I need them to have a proper remembrance. Also the force I want to do something for all of you. You must be devastated also he was your captain.”

Pulling out her keys she steadied her hands to stop them from shaking. Unlocking the door Brenda got inside of her car. “Miranda let me give your a bit of advice. Don’t waste time with a man who doesn’t truly love you. It’s something foolish I’ve done for years. I just knew that money and power were the way to go. When I should have been looking for true love.” Gripping the wheel of the car with a small smile her eyes narrowed. “Always put your family first and fight ferociously for them. I should have kept my daughter but I’m going to rectify old wrongs. You believe that.” Grasping Miranda hand through the window. “Thank-you for caring for me but I need to go face a secret because as we all see life is too short.” It was time to see The Fraiser’s because nothing was going to stop her from getting what she always wanted, Walter.

Miranda nodded her head at the former first lady of Atlas Falls not even sure why she was listening to her ot taking advice from her. She had no idea how her marriage to Steven was, but she knew from her parents and Dani Brenda craved Walter for years. Maybe that was what she was talking about looking for love when Walter wouldn’t leave Lauren for her. She got the putting family first part that was something everyone did she felt. She had done it with Quinn since KC died that was part of the reason she went undercover to begin with and she would have done it all over again. She watched as Brenda pulled away and she turned back to the techs and the other detectives that had finally arrived to give the scene a good look. She looked at Gideon’s body as the bag was being closed and she felt her heart sink a little and tears fill her eyes. She looked at the men around her they had the same look before she nodded her head at the ambulance to load the body up to take it to the coroner.


Chauncey pulled Greer to him in the bed he had everything he wanted Selina out of DGI he still had partial custody of Maddie, a slight mishap at DGI and he had successfully gotten her to leave Zerick for good. Meaning soon his father would be out at DGI he would rally the executives to vote him out as soon he placed Greer into Selina’s place. She could help him plant the seeds of doubt into the other executives little by little tha this father was weak and holding the company back. He would then get rid of Jackson’s energy projects and he and Greer would eventually marry, as soon as her divorce from Zerick was final. His mother would be gobsmacked, his siblings horrified but they would all see especially his father but with he and Greer at the helms DGI would flourish and the legacy would live on.

His hand moved up and down her bare arm they would rule the world together, she would understand his more unfortunate ways with women understood that sometimes men needed that. In turn he would do the same if she needed that for herself, he thought briefly of his father firing Selina for him and a slight sense of guilt overcame him. She did afteral help with raising Maddie stepping in when Logan died, she had been loyal to his father and DGI for years. On the other hand business sometimes was just that business, in this case it was a bit of both business and revenge. He wanted to hurt Selina by ousting her from the company, as well as out of Maddie’s life when he actually married and Greer had been his ticket to do that and the other part was business. He wanted her out of his way to not turn his father’s ear so it was a win for him.

“So now that we have got things with you and Zerick under control and you will be filing those papers soon. I do have news to tell you about my meeting with my father today, something I left out.” Chauncey said looking over at her as he reached over the side of the bed for his boxers and slipping them on. He walked to the wetbar in her room and poured them both a stiff drink handing it to her as she looked at him from the bed, her bare shoulder calling to him she dropped the sheet he may just ignore this part. “Now I had thought of calling Natasha with this offer but since you did help  me with Selina I had thought I would present this to you first. Would you like to hear it?”

Greer threw her long blonde hair back and in her head she laughed at him. He thought that he was the captain of this ship. What further infuriated her was he seemed to think Natasha was a option for this position. He mentioned Selina and she knew what he was about to say. She slowly rubbed his chest and for a moment it all felt real. Like she knew that this was where she belonged in his arms. They’d been here before scheming and plotting against the world. A piece of her wanted to tell him everything. Wanting to confess to her past and who she truly was. No she wasn’t British but a French socialite. That was in love with him and Zerick. As much as she hated him she still loved him. He had been a dear friend to her and seeing them disintegrating into nothing well that was devastating. However she was ahead of him by miles and tonight would be the start of pushing Zerick out of DGI.

“I do, I would like to hear all of this.” She said with a sensual purr in her mouth. “Retribution is due though. I don’t want my husband to sit around and be apart of a company we are going to rule. It just doesn’t sit right with your future.” Greer slowly kissed his chest as she felt her stomach fluttering with the idea of a future here at DGI with Chauncey. Then her father would come through and take everything. Once upon a time Pierre LeClerq was one of the greatest corporate raiders in the world. Not only that but she was going to break Chauncey in the best possible way. Another woman taking from him because somehow the small minded man thought. She was just a manipulative slut not someone trained by one of the greatest business minds in the world. The LeClerq’s help financially build DGI with the best investments in products and helping Lowell take over at least forty different companies to make DGI what it was. Her eyes were in tune with his. “I have a surprise for you also.”

“I thought you would. You’ve been such a key piece of this so far to me and yet you haven’t asked for anything in return from me. I didn’t ask you how you got Selina’s name on those files and her signature you’re very good. You could have blackmailed me in return but you didn’t. That tells me you are loyal to me.” Chauncey said looking at her and knowing he could get lost in her as he licked his lips at the thought. Soon enough he would parade her around town freely to the mansion and the DGI while Zerick went off to sulk after he made sure he was out of DGI permanently. He sat on the edge of the bed his fingers tracing her leg from under the sheets as he watched her take a sip of her drink and he took one of his. “I have plans for Zerick as soon as you file I’ll find a way to push him out. My siblings will back me and my father will have to as well. He won’t be a problem for us going forward. Today my father tasked me with finding a replacement in Selina.”

He saw her eyes light up at him and he took another drink yes she would do just fine. “Now I compiled a list of appropriate candidates. Some names of friends I had in college that were in my class. I even considered Natasha since I know how badly she wants SandStar out of my baby brother’s grasp. But then I thought about it more and I think you would be perfect for the role.” Chauncey leaned in clinking his glass with hers as he kissed her deeply before he pulled back she was quite the creature and tempting. “You can help me, you have a certain level of charm about you and well lets just say you aren’t afraid to get your hands dirty when needed. We can work the other executives and my siblings to vote out my father at DGI. After that we take over, you by my side and we begin by stripping the energy division from Jackson. We go bigger and with your connections the only place left for us to go is up.”

Her hand dragged against his glistening chest, with a seductive look in her eyes. This is exactly how she wanted to seep into DGI and once inside start breaking down the company. She would destroy it from the inside out. That was what her father wanted and that’s the revenge for not being there when mother died. He had me and his life was never the same. Prison wasn’t something that father spoke of but she also knew it was something that stayed with him. He wasn’t here for her birth and Lowell threw him underneath the bus. That was history not just some simple revenge plot. This man had destroyed so many lives for a fancy house and to be on TIme Magazine. She really felt a connection to Chauncey but she was going to still have to betray him. The trust he felt was misplaced he should bet on Natasha but he felt a connection also. It was simple she had been his rock and she wanted to remain that but odds weren’t in their favor.

As she turned her body letting her head nuzzle underneath his chin. “Then we will have the biggest wedding Atlas Falls ever seen. Everyone will attend it will be bigger than William and Kate. We will takeover DGI and storm the business world. Then we will have just two children because we don’t need Princess Maddie jealous. First you need a ally on the board and that’s me which I understand.” She got silent wondering if he agreed with her vision. “I was kidding about the marriage and kids you know. I don’t want all that.” It was true she never could see herself having a child. Even though she was scheming to have one right now. That kid would be in boarding school so fast it’s head would spin. It wouldn’t know her because she didn’t want it. It was a weapon and if she got pregnant it would be used and such. “Marriage and all that ruins what we have a partnership.”

Chauncey looked at her and then down at his glass which was nearly empty he wasn’t sure how to respond to he telling him they would never marry that wouldn’t work he would need a wife when he took over the company. Investors trusted in that shit they always had, his mother was gorgeous and smart and he swore his dad knew how to woo investors and their wives because of his mother. Granted she had a seat on the board and her charity to run, she was never an executive his father had hoped he would be a power couple of that caliber with he and Selina. She would marry him and if she didn’t then he would have to find someone else getting up from the bed he walked back to the bar refilling his drink and looking at her. She perplexed him she wanted the power but not the mean to achieve it.

“Marriage is fine I would need you to agree to that eventually of course when you are secure in our partnership when my father it out of DGI. It doesn’t have to be a huge affair if you don’t want, it doesn’t even have to mean anything other than a marriage of convenience if you wish. It is what would be stable for the company.” Chauncey said looking at her as he pulled on his pants and turned on the TV looking at the coverage of the riots. The carnage that was downtown the university spray painted with graffiti, cops around the hospital. He stood looking at the pictures and smiled all this because his brother and Jamal wanted to rip off drug dealers and it went south. They showed TJ’s Cafe and the Fraiser’s Pub and then he paused when they showed DGI the security guards on the first floor some of the windows broken. “I need to call in and make sure everything is alright. Be right back.” He said leaning down to kiss her lips before taking his cell and going into the living room of the suite.

Greer laid in bed wondering if she could actually have the happy ending with Chauncey. Not with her father and his benefactor Forbes Montgomery slithering about. They would rather die than to let her stay with Chauncey. The truth was simple how couldn’t they see it? Eventually it would be her father and her against Forbes and Zerick. Too many secrets were between them so how was a happy ending in her future? Licking her lips she rolled out of the bed wondering if she just conceived her first child. Or should she stop this entire foolish plot. She wasn’t motherly like Dani or any other woman carrying a child. She was a monster and it was clear to her but others only saw a blonde bombshell. When she was really a blonde black widow. Grabbing her slip dress she felt the need to speak with her father. Everything was in place and everything was going right.

Grabbing her slip she put it on and walked to her purse. She saw a missed call from her father no doubt checking on her because of the riot. It was sad that Americans went through so much racial injustice something Europeans didn’t have to go through as much. Walking to the doorway she saw Chauncey on the phone in the foyer. He was so handsome and smart except when it came to women. When she dialed her father number she smiled hearing him answer. “Good evening papa. I have amazing news.” She walked to the bathroom and began to freshen up knowing Chauncey round two was only a mere moments away. “You are speaking with the new executive a DGI. I’m officially taking Selina spot and soon I’m going to have him destroying the company that was stolen from us.”

Chauncey had made sure everything was alright at the building and then had sent Dominique away when she came to his room at the mansion, nosey help. He knew his parents disapproved of Greer being here but that didn’t bother him in the least. They would have to adjust how many times when he was younger did he know what his own father did to his mother with those women? Enough and it wasn’t like he was bringing home random girls every night and it wasn’t like he was in bed with Esme this time either. His parents would learn to resect Greer and the place she would have at his side and if they couldn’t well they could get the fuck out of his way. He was tired of his father living on to hang onto the company at his old age when he should be retiring. He was old and senile and it was time that he was out and who better to take over DGI than himself after everything. He was the oldest it was his birthright none of his siblings had that over them and he knew to always keep his eye on the business surprise.Turning back to the bedroom he saw Greer on the phone and he smiled.

“Starting to make calls on my behalf already are you? You see this is why I knew you were perfect for the job and tasks ahead of us.” He said he wasn’t sure why she jumped a little when he spoke but he did let out a laugh before touching her shoulder. Seeing her placing her phone back down perhaps it was because of the news the riots had shaken the city he could tell on the news. She didn’t have to worry they lived in the richest and wealthiest part of town Scottswood trash didn’t come up here unless they were dumb enough too. Or unless you were his bone headed youngest brother fucking the stripper. “You’re jumpy if you are worried about the riots don’t be the police will keep it contained downtown and if they can’t my father would make a few calls to make sure it stayed down there anyway. I am curious though who your first call was too?”

Greer nuzzled into Chauncey arms as she kissed his chin and collarbone. Her heart pounded as her eyes had to show relaxation. Putting her phone down she smirked at him. “I’ll never tell.” She said seductively with a soft touch down his chest. Flipping her hair as she looked at him wondering if she should elaborate. “Well let’s just say it was a deal that I’m working on already to reimagine DGI into Chauncey’s company. A friend of mine has deal with the government for warhead missiles if we buy that company we are back in.”


“Keep the limo running this won’t take long at all.” Tess said as she walked inside of Rory’s building. As she walked to the elevators she pressed the button knowing exactly what she was going to do. It was all over the blogs and tabloids that Rory was reunited with that stripper. He didn’t get to get a happy ending. For that matter none of them did. Today she was about to reveal something to the stripper and she prayed that she took it as painful as it sounded. The security in his building went out on break at six every day. A older man whose pattern was easy to figure out with her private eye. She had no choice but to make Rory pay and make him feel as low as she felt. Used and now she was tainted. How would Lowell love her? She was alone and needy and for one moment she needed a piece of Lowell. Rory looked so much like him when he was younger. Her heart swelled so much that she couldn’t breathe because Lowell wouldn’t forgive this betrayal. It would come out but she had to do it her way. She had to show him that he had to pay in this betrayal against Lowell.

Stepping off the elevator she arrived to the penthouse floor. A wicked smile appeared because they’d together feel the pain. Relief streamed all over her body as she listened outside of his penthouse. As she lightly knocked on the door when he opened it she felt as if she was transported to the eighties again. Every time she saw him the look of innocence in his eyes reminded her of her youth. She walked inside no longer wanting to wait for an invite inside. “I heard that you’re back with that stripper with your pedigree is going down Devonshire.” She saw the girls things around the house. High heel boots and hair products invaded the bachelor life that he just had a while ago. “We need to talk and I would love a glass.” She said opening her purse pulling out a bottle of champagne. “We need to make a toast to keep our secret a secret.”

Rory had been trying to figure out whether he should go into DGI or not given what was happening on the news. Yasmine had just got back from the apartments and they had just finished making love in that window upstairs. He didn’t know what had possessed him to jump her the moment she walked through the door but he was pretty sure it had to do with Khalil. Her moans still filling his head and he smiled, she was in the shower now. He had opened up his laptop to send out an email to some of his techs to tell them he would be in tomorrow but till then to get everything ready. When he heard the knock on the door he got up and opened it up as he got a text from Brooke he needed to check on her and when he opened it to see Tess on the other side he glared at her. He could still hear the shower running upstairs as she placed the bottle of champagne on the counter he moved to it handing it back to her.

“How in the hell did you get past security? Get the fuck out of here. We have nothing and I mean absolutely nothing to talk about, what happened was a mistake between us. I already told you that. I’m not giving you the app so you can go fuck yourself.” Rory hissed at her livid that she would come here and he only prayed she left before Yasmine finished with her shower. Maybe he would tell her but not was not the time and not like this, he wasn’t even sure how he could tell Yasmine he cheated on her with the woman in front of him in a drunken one night mistake. He had regretted it since the moment it happened and that was the worst part the guilt that was eating away at him. He could see Tess’s eyes gleaming at him like she was enjoying this. “I mean it Tess get out or I’m calling security and they’ll toss you out. They won’t even ask the question as to why they just will.”

“Careful little boy throwing me out might be a mistake. Yasmine Kohl also known as Diamond her mother was recently diagnosed with MS named Trisha Kohl. I will get my respect you foolish little boy.” She hissed at Rory as she walked into the kitchen grabbing a champagne glass. She popped the cork and sat down. “You think that you can fuck me and then throw me away like your father? Never again my dear lover. Remember you called her name during sex like your father.” Tess laughed as she popped the cork of the champagne. “I hear you are about to launch a test on that app. You aren’t going to give it to me you are right but you will vote for Bliss idea coming up. You will sway your family to her side when I give her the next big thing.” Sipping her champagne she smiled as she looked around. The girl was urban looking at her hoodies and cute little sportswear. Slowly dragging her feet as she looked at Rory. “I have no need for your foolish app but do need your loyalty and I will keep it a secret a dirty little secret. Only if you help Bliss with her new endeavor.” Tess walked to the couch and sat down.

“I’ll hook that hype back on drugs so fast her head will spin. I’ll hire men to inject her with the dope and she’ll be right back on the corner. Play with me not anymore Rory. As for the stripper I can give her what you can’t. I know exactly who her father is and if you don’t calm down and listen. Well I’ll go right up those stairs and tell her how I made you my bitch. Now Rory I’m not here to do that. I’m here to resolve what this is now or later it could be a deadly blow to us both. Or a dirty little secret. Your choice little boy.” Tess hissed as she eyed a picture of Rory and the Devonshire siblings. “How beautiful handsome but a change is coming.” She said with a smirk on her face. “You won’t get a happy ending but my darling girls will.” Tess stated knocking the portrait off the wall. “So clumsy darling can’t seem to keep my hand off things.”

“Keep your voice down! I already told you I wasn’t giving you anything and I meant it you old bitch.” Rory hissed at her as she reminded him of their night together and damn straight he called out Yasmine’s name because he was near black out drunk and he wanted it to be her. He was trying to not let her get under his skin with his secret and he couldn’t believe how she just waltzed into his home and thought she owned the place. His loyalty was to DGI and the woman he loved Yasmine he had none to Tess. “You wanna know why it was her name and not yours? I’ll give you a hint because no man is ever capable of loving you as you are. No when they’re fucking you I’d bet ten to one they’re imagining the person they truly want. You’re nothing to me Tess, just a one night mistake because I was stupid with the person I love the most.” He said seeing the hurt on her face he knew he’d cut her and when she flipped the photo off he had enough.

Lunging for her he grabbed her arm she was leaving now he was tired of the mind game of her thinking that he owned her something. He was thinking about what she had said about Yasmine’s father and it didn’t matter to him as far as he and her knew he was some asshole that didn’t wear a condom and then deserted her mother. “Get out! You’re not worth my time and I swear to God you come here again I’ll kill you myself and then I’ll tell Bliss everything about what you did to me. You ever insult Yasmine again or come in here trying to threaten her I’ll go to everyone about it and who will they believe me or some washed up old hag?” Rory said looking at her staring behind him and he saw Yasmine standing between them and he let go of her wondering how much she had overheard. His chest was pounding as he tried to calm himself down running a hand through his hair. “Yasmine Tess Blisston Bliss’s mother, she was just leaving weren’t you?”

Yasmine had gotten out of the shower and heard Rory talking to someone. At first the haughty voice she thought Jackie as she listened. She heard something devastating. So Rory slept with Tess who was his half-sister mother. Her eyes started to blur in rage. What the fuck you get a good guy and they fuck around on you? She grabbed a t-shirt and some sweatpants then threw on her Adidas. No way was this happening. How could she just come in here and disrespect her mother and her like that. As she stepped between them she immediately punched Tess dead in the mouth. She was trained to fight and this old bitch was disrespecting her. “Bitch I will stomp you out don’t you ever come into my shit with that. You old tired pussy hoe! And I heard what you did to my man while he was drunk you old nasty bitch.” She grabbed Tess and threw her into the outside wall. “Gone bitch before I fuck you up straight up!”

Tess held her face as this ghetto hood urchin assaulted her. As she tried not to scream in utter rage. When Rory grabbed her first she was shocked but when this girl hit her she had enough. “I’m the old bitch who had that young stallion. He was mine for a night and no matter what we had that night. It’s fine I’ll destroy you Rory because I’m going to tell Lowell and soon your entire family will know what you did with me. We had sex and nothing you can do can rewrite that and I love the tattoo on his back my dear don’t you.” Tess pressed the elevator button.

“Bitch you better get the fuck out of my face.” Yasmine said as she stood in front of Tess. She watched her stepping on the elevator. “Don’t bring her ass back over here.” She watched the elevator doors close and saw Rory standing looking flabbergasted.

Tess pulled out her phone and immediate dialed Forbes. “Hello, Forbes we have a problem. Her name is Yasmine Kohl.”

Yasmine walked into the penthouse and she immediately started grabbing her things. She picked up her duffle bag and began to tear up. She saw him following behind her like a lost puppy. Turning around she whacked him with the bag as she looked at him. “You fucked her? You was fucking her? That old ass bitch how many times Rory? I’m out here fighting and risking my life for this and you fucking old bitches? You out here embarrassing me? You got this bitch coming to where I lay my head at and I feel safe? You fucking played me! You act all fucking innocent and shit and you ain’t nothing but a fucking asshole. You just thought this shit was going to stay silent and that evil bitch was waiting to fuck us up? You just let her come here and just talk down to me and my moms? Fuck her! I could have died fucking with you? You just don’t get it do you? I fucking put everything on the line for us! I gotta get away from you!” She screamed infuriated right now looking at him with tears in her eyes.

Rory had no time to react as he watched Yasmine starting to beat the shit out of Tess and then it hit him she heard everything. He watched as Tess slinked back to the elevator and he could feel tears in his eyes when he looked at Yasmine, her face said it all. He had utterly destroyed her by sleeping with Tess and that was what he never wanted to hurt her. He didn’t want to be that type of a man and he’d tried so hard this time and in one drunken moment he just let it get the better of him. He could blame the alcohol he had drunk a lot but that night he knew that Yasmine had been pushing him away again and running back to the damn club that had chained her to the mob and the drugs. He had been angry at her and maybe that was the real reason why he let himself get lost in Tess. Walking to her he didn’t have time to duck as the duffle bag hit him in the face and he was so angry at himself more than anything.

“Yes it was one fucking time after my mother’s party. You had been pushing me away and Ronan showed up at the party and you just left to go back to work at the club after I had tried to get you to stay and leave it. We were fighting so much and I just, I grabbed the nearest bottle and then she came onto me and I don’t know it happened. It didn’t mean anything.” Rory said it was lame when he said it and he knew that but it was the truth. It was one time he had been completely faithful from there on out he would do anything to protect her and yes he lied and hid it for that reason. “I get it Yasmine do you really think that little of me that I’d have an affair with the woman old enough to be my mother? You wanted the club for whatever reason back then we had a huge fight over it but that doesn’t mean that I don’t love and care about you or that I did this to hurt you. I was the one who tired to help you get out I know what was at stake. I swear to God on everything it was one fucking time.”

Yasmine nodded her head as she looked at him wiping her eyes. “You think I wanted to go back in that club? You think I wanted to dance after you showed me how much you cared? No scratch that you showed me love and I know I hurt you. I know when I went back in that club it killed your pride but I didn’t sleep with anyone else. I didn’t fucking betray you because I love you. I so sick of men! My fucking father is out there and I don’t know him! He was just paying my momma for her body. Then Kendrick promised to be there for me and he almost lead a gang rape of me. Then Khalil who said we’d make out together dropped me like a bad habit when he found out I was a stripper. Then I met you and everything made sense. It all made sense because you were what God was preparing me for. Or so I thought man how wrong was I? I fucking went back to that club because Ronan and Kendrick threatened you. All I knew was to protect the one man who had given me hope and love.” Shaking her head at him.

“I don’t want to be around you anymore. I don’t want to see you anymore. I will move my momma out of that house you bought her. I don’t want anything from you anymore. I don’t want to ever see you because you!” She screamed with a vicious howl enunciating on the word you. You hurt me more than any of those other men. I thought you were different and I thought you were true. If I didn’t have to hear it from that evil woman and I heard from you then you would still not be different. Now you aren’t the white knight you’re just a liar and just like your family. Hasn’t Chauncey, Jackson, and Lowell all cheated on their women? You really had to fall into that category of the Devonshire’s? Well you fucked up because I’m not your fucking mother or sisters or Selina or any of those dumb hoes who stand around when a mothefucker cheating or in your case cheated on her. I’m the bitch who walks away from a fucking cushy life. So see yo ass later Rory!” She grabbed her bag and stormed out to the elevator.

Rory didn’t know what to say or do, nothing could take back what he had done with Tess to her he had known it was wrong the moment it happened. He knew once he had fucked Tess they couldn’t come back from that, even though he had hoped they would that she would find it in her to forgive him. His mother had forgiven his father countless times for his stupidity and his wandering eye and in this case it was one time, one mistake it wasn’t an ongoing affair. He wanted to be angry at her and make her see that but he also knew he had no right to do that with her either, she had every right to be mad at him and when she gathered her things to walk to the elevator he followed. He was not going to give up on her or them that easily, they had been through too much shit over the last year for him to just throw in the towel with her and what kind of a man would he be if he didn’t try and fix it with her and rectify it with her. He softly grabbed her arm turning her to him as he watched the elevator make the climb to his level.

“I know you are mad right now Yasmine and you have every to be mad at me but don’t just throw away what we have over some old hag that I made a mistake with. We were both hurting when the fight happened both under a lot of stress and I faltered but I swear to God I am not my father there was no affair with her, it was one time.” Rory said pleading with her more than anything he hated to see her cry and he could feel his own tears springing to his eyes as he watched her look at him like he was dead to her. His hands were shaking trying to think about how he could delay the elevator and make her stay with him. He tried to take the bags away from her to no avail and then he leaned in to kiss her to persuade her to stay one he felt her shove him back. “Please don’t be like this baby, you know I love you and I want only you. Tell me what I need to do to fix this with you so we can forget it ever happened with her. Where will you go Yasmine? Who will you stay with?”

When he tried to kiss her she felt her knees buckling as her eyes burned from trying to hold back from bawling. Pressing the button praying the elevator would move faster. As she heard the bell chime and the elevator doors open. “That aint none of your business anymore Rory. I’m done with you and you are done with me. I can’t trust you anymore and I can’t trust myself around you. I knew I wasn’t shit but I could do enough to be decent with my skills. You know I made almost a million dollars stripping? Don’t worry I won’t be getting on that pole anymore but I’m a natural hustler so I’ll find away. I don’t need all of this Rory because all I needed was you. I wish you would have had the same faith in me as I had in you.” Her lip quivered as she covered her mouth wanting to scream out in pain.

“Stay the fuck away from me Rory because we are done. Understand that I can’t do it with you right now and maybe I’ll feel different after a few weeks. Right now this is really raw and when I look at you, all I get is pissed off. All I get is infuriated with your whack ass man don’t come at me like that. Don’t call me, if I want to reach you I got the number.” She said wiping her eyes as she stepped onto the elevator. “See you around Rory.” As the elevator closed Yasmine collapsed on the floor bawling. As she dug through her purse her hands shook feverishly as she dialed the one number and person she could trust. “Ma, he fucking cheated on me.” She’d never felt so raw. “Ma he fucked that old bitch Tess! How could he do that to me.” She said as the elevator reached the lobby floor. “Momma can you come get me?”

Rory watched her do and wanted to scream at her do anything other than stand there with tears running down his face as he watched her get into the elevator and the doors shut behind her. His fist flew out at the wall full force and he looked at the gaping hole in the drywall when he pulled back shaking his. Angry at himself more than her, angry at what he did with Tess in a weak moment and angry at the old bitch for coming at him for it. Showing his hands back into his pockets he ignored his ringing cell phone on the counter and all the text messages from his various siblings. He had no time or patience to deal with their drama today. He slammed the door to his penthouse before going to the counter and opening up the bottle of champagne that Tess had left. At least this time her warm body was nowhere near so when he got smashed he’d wake up with a hangover and nothing more in the morning. Raising it to his lips he looked at himself in the mirror before taking a drink and then wiping at his mouth. ”Like father like son they say, so be it.”


Everything was going better than planned he had everything lined up right where he wanted the added bonus of what was happening on the news adding in the extra distraction he needed. He still remembered the day he knew who he was when he figured it all out he had been in England with his mother when her friend visited her and she had one of her episodes, she had been upset the friend had calmed her down. He was supposed to be in bed, it was late at night and he overheard every detail how at a party the man that fathered him and taken advantage of his mother after she had taken a few too many lines, he left her afterwards on the bed clothes around her waist. No one in town believed her and when she whispered his name he knew he would take everything he held dear starting with DGI. His mother’s friend had confirmed the story and he would forever hate Lowell Devonshire and the children that worshiped him, the wife that wouldn’t even believe her own sister, his mother.

That would change now as he poured himself a brandy looking through the french doors as he heard the front door to the house open. He knew it wasn’t Greer she had left long ago in fact his guest was expected as he poured a second glass making sure to add two ice cubes, the perfect smoothness as he handed the glass to the man he looked up too. The man he admired the man that had believed his mother’s story and helped raise him when she was ill. The man that helped him through school and helped run his mother’s estate, was his godfather and Lowell’s former friend. Forbes Montgomery was a man he looked up to and admired and some days he even longed for his nightmare of a creation to be false, he wished Forbes was his father. Instead he knew the truth he had a deep darkness in him because of how he came into this world, darkness that Forbes had taught him to harness. Harness and wait until the moment was right, now it was right.

“How is Philip?” Zerick asked knowing how much Forbes children meant to him how he loved them. He had heard of Philip’s shooting at the last minute and he heard rumors of Max’s involvement his silly sister thinking she could win against a Montgomery. He hadn’t set that into motion but he had done the rest. “Greer left to meet Pierre I’ve done what you and he asked. I never told him what you and I agreed to separately. Greer will convince Chauncey to make her an executive at DGI replacing Selina. I’m ready for the next step.”

“He’s alive and finally ready to be the son I wanted.” Forbes said looking at Zerick. “The son that you were always. Good, Greer and Pierre are vital to the next move against DGI. She has turned that idiot Chauncey against his own family and together we will get DGI together. He exiled all of us and he made your mother what she is. I adored Kathleen she was a free spirit and what he did to her. He brutally took your mother’s soul and turned her very own sister against her. They pay for Kathleen as a way to hush the truth and don’t you forget it. Lowell built a legacy off of terrorizing and destroying others. For once we as a collective force have our hands inside of the pot. We are able to finally do something against the man who you share a DNA connection with. We are able to do it, we can destroy him with everything he has.” Picking up the glass he drank a gulp of the liquor. Walking to Zerick board he smiled. Looking at the picture of Steven Kincaid and Carla Luciano with red X’s on their faces. Tapping the string he looked how the next picture connected to Dante. Having Scarlett underneath his payroll was brilliant. The boy had a vengeful streak unlike any other.

“I don’t want to stop until they all are broken unlike anything they have ever felt. I’m prepared to go even further because what we have to do is more. We have to be willing to eliminate the people we’ve brought on the journey my son.” He pulled out a picture of Pierre and Greer. “You see Pierre never has had a loyal bone in his body and as much as I find Greer to be a interesting creature sooner or later they’ll strike out alone. It’s in there DNA to be snakes all but Harvey but he isn’t here for this so we will do what we have to. We will get rid of them when the time is right.” He turned to look at Zerick who had a slightly shocked expression. “They know enough to implicate us in murder and do you think when you are revealed to be Lowell’s son that it will be enough for them to try and stop us.” As he looked at the Devonshire mansion. “I’m going to see him tonight and I’m going to tell him his kingdom is falling tonight. I’m going to take it from him and soon you will be the last Devonshire standing with a Montgomery.”

Zerick looked at him and then looked at the board from here on out it was each sibling, but first he was going to go after his father and his bitch of an aunt or should he say stepmother? His hand shook and he got control of his emotions stopping the glass in his hands from shaking as Forbes looked back at him. He paused when Forbes had mentioned killing Greer and Pierre, Pierre he was fine with even if his mother had trusted him at some point. There was a reason Forbes didn’t let him in completely in their plan over the years a reason he was never allowed to tell him and Greer who he really was. But Greer, that thought sunk him just a little she was a pain in his ass half the time but they were lovers, friends and seeing her snuffed out would be hard. He shook the sentimental value away, sentiment was for the weak and the meek and he was neither he raised the glass to his lips and took a drink. The drink reminding him what he had just done to Gideon and Rachel.

“Gideon is taken care of there was a complication his daughter was there he shared the booze with her. I had to think fast. I left nothing behind and when the investigation is over the carbon monoxide reading will be what we need it to be. I assume you have your man at the coroner’s office still in play to make sure that tox report comes back clean.” Zerick said killing Gideon’s daughter had never been part of the plan but when bad shit happen they improvised it was what he had been taught. Always stay one step ahead and plan for the unexpected to happen. He had arranged everything and now it was time that his mentor upheld his end of the bargain giving him his birthright in full. “I want him to hurt, for my aunt my aunt to hurt. For my foolish older brother to fall from his new crown with egg on his face. For the junkie to just be gone take what’s important to him daddy’s love maybe even his child later. For my whore of a sister and the junkie’s twin to live in misery. For the other unwanted child to be just that unwanted and for my baby brother. I want him to repeat all of daddies mistakes and from what I understand he already is? So when do we begin?”

“Once Greer is in place and you are revealed as Lowell son well then it will be you along with Greer sabotaging DGI. So I want you to demolish Jackson SandStar deal. I also want you to help Chauncey in getting the government deals but I have plan for dismantling it.” He said as he folded his arms. “I have Tess in play and she’s gotten your baby brother Rory in her web. This is very much in our favor. Getting Selina out the way was perfect but I think I have a idea on that also. Selina is a brilliant mind and I want her intrinsically tied with MontCorp. Make it happen.” He told Zerick thus getting him started with getting Selina to MontCorp somehow. “As for Rachel Morrison her father died because he was apart of this. He killed Steven and Carla for us for one reason Brenda. That bitch has always been a pain in my ass. Brenda Kincaid is a master in chess but we need to get her off the board before she reveals what we did years ago. I don’t care that she’s dead and I don’t care that we had to keep Gideon silent. We didn’t set up over twenty years for loose ends.” Forbes said standing up as he walked around.

“I’m calling in my favors with the mobsters we know don’t you dare worry about Ronan. He thinks he’s in charge but I have a plan for him also. I don’t like that he runs this city along with the rest of us. He has to go.” He leaned back as he watched the Devonshire mansion. “It’s beautiful isn’t it? Built on the tears of so many different men and women. He betrayed his own father and family to get money to fund DGI he’s not to be trifled with but you. You are the legacy the world will see. Not those other bastards. We’ve connected ourselves to destroy DGI and we won’t stop until you and I have what we deserve. You have killed for this, I have shed blood and built this so don’t question me when I say you won’t like it. That girl Talia she is a Devonshire without their blood so you must use her. Have you set everything up since you told me they visited London? Do you think they know now?”

“I think i can persuade the board and Natasha to our side to get SandStar back under our control Chauncey has been so distracted with Natasha and Greer that he won’t see the double cross coming. I can make the calls needed to get DGI back in where it needs to be after the Cadmus incident people in higher places will be hesitant.” Looking over at Forbes he knew he could arrange both he’d start screwing Natasha himself if he had to to get her on their side, a win for him since Chauncey had been so enamoured with her. He didn’t want to know what Forbes had planned for Tony’s eldest daughter. Tony could have stopped his outing from DGI all those years ago but he didn’t and now well he knew his mentor was here for revenge. Sometimes he knew it was better to not be involved all the way the less he knew with Forbes the better. “No it had to be done. Just like everything with Steven and Carla. I took the gun they’ll never find it now and it will just be a memory residents talk about. Did Brenda know? I know she went to Steven but did Brenda know too?”

He paused hearing his own voice crack a little the pain of his being born into this world clouding his judgement. How many people had his mother told over the years and for what no one to believe her? For no one other then Forbes to care for her, that was the roughest part and he nodded his head he arranged what was needed in his office. He left the breadcrumbs for Talia and Simon to follow it was going exactly the way he wanted. He looked over across the skyline with Forbes this was what they had worked for every step. All the careful planning, years of his life put into getting here to this exact moment. Tess was a wild card he had met her a few times, his mother’s best friend. A chill hung in the air as he turned back into his office when he mentioned Talia. Yes he had been playing her and using her, but beyond that he did care about her that was something he knew Forbes could never know.

“Understood. I’ll see you out before someone sees you here.” Zerick said walking to the front door and opening it watching as Forbes stepped outside only to be caught off as Talia was on the other side her hand raised like she was going to knock. His heart was beating out of his chest he could explain this away as he looked at Forbes and then at Tala. “Talia I was not expecting you this evening. I’m sure you’ve met Forbes Montgomery?”

Talia stood shocked seeing the man and the myth standing with the man she had fallen for. As her leg shook a little she saw him eyeing her up and down. She wasn’t afraid of him but she’d heard he’d destroyed people for lesser extent. As she stepped forward she saw him for what he was. Yeah she’d seen men like him her entire life. The way he looked at her he was analyzing for some sort of weakness. Unlike many she always wore a mask of a ditz to throw off everyone. She hadn’t made it through intimidation tactics. Sticking her hand out she narrowed her eye sightly and smiled at him. “Mr. Montgomery your reputation precedes you.”

“As does yours Ms. Rose do tell your parents I’ll be contacting them about a large endowment that I once helped your mother with.” Forbes said looking at Zerick and then Talia. “I do hope that you have enough respect for Zerick that you wouldn’t go back and speak on anything you saw or heard here tonight?”

“My lips are sealed.” She ran her hand across as if she was zipping her lips. Talia zipped her lips and smiled pinsively as she opened the door. “I need to speak with Mr. Westwood alone so if you don’t mind. I mean I don’t normally come over to people house unannounced unless its a emergency and if it’s a emergency then people shouldn’t mind me coming over. I mean I guess they’ll understand and here I go babbling on. Well I’m here to talk to Zerick so I think we deserves some privacy unless I’m interrupting something then you two need privacy.” Talia said trying to seem as aloof as possible.

“No my dear, Zerick is done with speaking to me and I do hope you take me up on my offer to come to MontCorp. It’s more than DGI and with us relocating right here. Well it could be exactly what you need.” Forbes took Talia hand and kissed it. “Nice act but you aren’t as dumb as they say. Very interesting Ms. Rose.” Forbes walked out of the house.

Talia turned around and slammed the door as she watched Zerick walking to the bar. He couldn’t look at her. Tears burned in her eyes. “How long have you two been working together? Have I been some sort of weird conquest? Or a test that Greer must have failed because she’s fallen for Chauncey? You know I would think you’d go after Max at first until I figured it out. Your last name isn’t Westwood it’s Davis. As Kathleen Davis or Katie or whatever she’s called. Is your mother and you couldn’t come onto Max. That would be far too Game Of Thrones but wow me the ditzy assistant you pursued. Westwood?” She said as she picked up some mail. “What a crock Zerick Davis turn around and face me! Don’t stand there after months of lies and me begging for the truth you tell me.” She hissed at him. “You tell me right now!”

Zerick had watched him go and then turned away from Talia the way she said Davis like it was some sort of crime if only her small narrow mind knew the truth about the man she so preciously called her godfather. That deep down behind all that false bravado from acute businessman, multi billionaire and that false family and marriage he presented with his aunt it was all a sham. He knew the dark proof he was an example of it, how dark his father was, how careless and cold hearted Lowell Devonshire was to his own wife’s sister. Pouring himself a drink he looked at her when she mentioned Max and then spoke. “It’d be a little gross to fuck my half-sister and cousin wouldn’t it?” He saw her do a double take and wanted to laugh at her instead he leaned in his eyes full of hurt. “You wanted the truth Talia you can’t handle the truth about the man you idolize just like all them can’t either.”

“It’s not Davis it’s never been Davis it’s always been Devonshire. You see Lowell likes to take I warned you about that months ago and you’d find things out you didn’t like. Him fucking his wife’s sister while she was high as a kite, should be that don’t believe me I’m living proof.” Zerick finished watching her face as it finally registered and he wondered how she felt about it all now. He poured himself a brandy taking a drink and looking at the shock on her face at how candid he spoke to her about it. “He’s such a good man spare me the bullshit he raped my mother and then didn’t even have the balls to acknowledge my existence and my aunt, she’s trash too. So you want to know the truth I’m going to dismantle his entire life from the inside out and you, you were the factor that wasn’t supposed to matter, yet here you are. You are the one reason I haven’t destroyed him and all my siblings one by one. I told you, you wouldn’t like me and you should run Talia I won’t tell you again after tonight. I’m here for what is mine and I fully intend to see Lowell destroyed, my siblings destroyed one by one and my aunt too.”

Talia eyes blurred as he told his story a piece of her felt her heart drop. Wiping her eyes she felt her stomach churning as she looked at him. Tears slowly strolled down her face as she heard the pain in his voice. “I’ve never seen something so ugly inside of people. I have been afraid of what we could be but I actually see it now, Zerick. We can’t be anything because you’re so full of hate and ugliness. I hear what you’re saying but were any of us there? I think we know the answer to that question. Has there been a DNA test? This is a lot of speculation that could destroy a man’s life. Jackie doesn’t know that he may have raped your mother and if she did and stayed.” Talia shook her head not wanting that thought in her head. Biting down on her lip she shook her head. “That’s why you could never open up to me. You were full of this hate inside of you. Devonshire, Davis, or Westwood you could have had me and I see love or life isn’t enough for you. I don’t want you to be this hateful whatever happened you’re here Zerick. Can’t you be that man instead this one?”

Talia wiped her nose and it was warm inside of house the weather breaking lead to that. Clearing her throat she grabbed her clutch and wrapped her arms around herself. “I won’t tell if you are wondering that’s your secret to have and hold to death do you part. Sometimes secrets and pain suck the life out you and I wanted so badly for that not to be the man you are. Instead it’s exactly who you are. This is goodbye and since we are declaring things don’t try to hurt DGI or else. That wasn’t a threat that was a promise. You should just quit because Lowell will win. He always wins and I hate that you will lose. So think long and hard because I’m here but I can’t be here with you like this. This is evil and I don’t do that. I’m all about crystals and good energy and shopping. No you aren’t who I thought you were and that’s fine but I can’t do this you see I find myself falling in love with you. I find myself wondering who you are and now that I know, you’re a monster.” She turned to walk away. “Goodbye Zerick.”

Zerick watched her and shook his head a DNA test, he didn’t need one to prove who he was his mother’s word was enough for him, the words that haunted her in her letters to him. In the journals she kept, he knew she had told Jackie all those years ago and his aunt did nothing in fact she stood by Lowell’s side. He walked with Talia to the door wanting to tell her that eh could change and not be the person she was telling him he could be but he knew better he was everything he was raised to be. He would destroy Lowell and the rest of his family and for now his feelings for Talia would come second to that until he had done what he said he was going to do. “Goodbye Talia. I did want this to be different but I know what I have to do and that includes all the hurt and destruction that is to come.” He said quietly leaning down to kiss her cheek as he opened the door, his heart beating loudly in his chest. He saw the clouds rolling in and then looked at her. “Would you like me to walk you to your car it looks like rain.”

“I’m a big girl.” She said honestly as she wanted to kiss him and tell him to just runaway. “I don’t need you, and I need no I deserve someone who protects my heart and soul.” Leaning in she touched his face. “When you figure it all out then Zerick call me. I wouldn’t be worth it if I lose myself finding you. Storms come but I’m looking for someone who will shelter me and won’t be blown away by the wind. I can blow you over with very little breath in my body. No I’ll find my own way without you.” Talia walked out as the light drizzle of rain fell on her skin.


Trisha looked at the driver as they shut the door to the towncar as it stopped in front of the old abandoned Montgomery mansion or should she say formerly abandoned the lights were on now. Her mind flashed back to the times that she had to sneak in one of the many hidden entrances in the mansion when Audrey was at practice when he would beckon her there for company. She pulled the sleeves down on her coat nerves trying to hide those track lines and needle marks, marks he had partly caused and she shook her head. She couldn’t think about it like that they were her choices and she took a breath as another man opened the front door. The entryway was still the same as it was before the last time she had been there the portrait right by the stairs staring back at her he was in it of course, followed by the woman next to him her bright red hair and then the two children below. Anger boiled in her she deserved to be in that picture and she saw the fireplace raging in the living room. She made her way there and paused in the doorway he was still as handsome as ever.

She watched him pour himself a drink likely his third or his fourth and she walked into the room rolling her eyes at him in disgust. Love him or hate him, she wasn’t here to relive the past no she was here for the future after Yasmine had called her about Rory well she knew now was the time. The time had come and now she was here to rectify the biggest wrong she had ever done to herself and her family. She would have done it years ago but the crack had always pulled her back, after he would leave her again for his wife she always faltered back to that. Gina as she had gotten older had caught on to those binges and she had nearly uncovered the truth. She had then taken the measures to make sure it then never happened and it killed her piece by piece. She took off her sweater and knew from the look of the staff that entered they were judging her, the hood would always be part of her. He could never take that away from her and hers.

“Well I’m here but next time you can be a little more careful at how you want to approach me. I had to lie to her to get out of the new apartment she got for me and let me tell you my baby girl needs me right now. Way more than you do or ever did you made that clear all those years ago.” Trisha said her accent coming out and she saw him turn around to look at her and she swore her heart stopped beating for a moment. She always knew this time would come and it finally had after the mess with Kendrick she had enough. She had heard about Philip and when she didn’t see him in the room with them she gulped. “I know this wasn’t how you wanted this to happen but it is now. I meant it when I called you. I can’t do this alone anymore.”

Over almost twenty-one years ago she was his lover. Time had done Trisha good junkie or not but she was absolutely still ravishing and alluring as she once was. As he swirled the drink in his hand he heard her words and they stung. He tried to get Yasmine from that life but it was all or nothing with Trisha. He wasn’t taking in Gina and Trisha. That wasn’t the plan at all but he knew that he couldn’t separate Yasmine and Trisha. That girl was attached to her mother and that was such a painful reminder he wasn’t there. He’d kept tabs on Yasmine for the last twenty-one years and when he found out she was stripping it killed him. A Montgomery sliding up and down a pole nonetheless it was her brother having her up there. It was disgusting and one of the main reasons he didn’t have Philip own that club. When Yasmine was exposed as his daughter she’d have to see, her brother as a ally not her ex-brother. They’d need each other soon enough due to his moves. They’d be the most hated people in town.

As he finally sat down he felt a weight on his heart. His middle child. The one child that didn’t know who he was. Folding his arms he nodded as he looked at her tired eyes he took a gulp of his drink. “For so much of her life she didn’t know me. She’s no doubt heard about me from that Rory. I don’t think when she finds out she’ll be completely enthralled with daddy.” He said with a sarcasm and fear slowly eating at him. “Vapid people look at people through small lenses. You were a small minded. My daughter is sleeping with Lowell’s son. Don’t you think that she deserves to know before now? It’s ironic you are here and if Rory has done something to screw my daughter over well.” Forbes paused and smiled. “That might be what I need to get into her life. I want you to tell me all about Yasmine and what’s going on with Rory.” Forbes sat back watching her shocked expression. “Oh don’t be so dramatic, I’m manipulating the situation whatever it maybe to my favor.”

Trisha looked at him almost rolling her eyes the only reason he didn’t know Yasmine was because she refused to turn her over to him after she was born. Call her a selfish whore back in the day or whatever you wanted she knew men like Forbes and she knew it was better for her to be raised with her and Gina than under Forbes watch. She knew if she had gave him Yasmine she would never see her little girl again, so instead she made the choice to make sure Yasmine never knew. She made sure when he did reach out those were met with pure rejection including the money he tried to throw at them. No she rather they live near the streets and that she brought strange men to the house to do what needed to be done in order to have Yasmine raised away from the fame and the money that would come with being his daughter. She stood in front of him and as much as she despised everything he stood for there was a part of her that was always drawn to him that still cared about him after all these years.

“You were the one that made it that way not me Forbes. You wanted me to give her to you and never see her again. When I refused you were the one that instead thought money was what she needed, you were to embarrassed to have that milk chocolate in your house to claim her back then and now you want to make amends?” Trisha said looking at him speaking the truth people like him didn’t marry people like her, they didn’t leave their white wives for people like her and the children they cast aside. It happened years ago but that still stung for her the years she had to do all those terrible things to survive because she wouldn’t give her child to him. When he mentioned Rory she shook her head at him. “They were okay for awhile but she came back to me tonight, he fucked around with Tess Blisston so I guess you could say like father like son as far as Rory is concerned. You can’t buy her love Forbes, she is not Cassie or Philip or the others you have running around. She’s been burned too many times by men pretending to care about her Kendrick and now Rory. Are you ready for that for her to hate everything you stand for? But I know she needs something from you and now maybe is the time for you to actually become her father.”

“How funny you think it’s all about your race when it was all about you being a whore.” He said callously as he flippantly sat down. Not many men could call a woman a whore and just get away with it. Hell he wasn’t any man though he was Forbes Montgomery. The man who decimates lives and asks questions later. Taking a deep gulp of his drink he looked at Trisha and shook his head. “No you wanted to keep a child when at that time you couldn’t even handle the child you had already. I wanted Yasmine and honestly it was more about the fact as a white very rich man I couldn’t teach her how to be a black woman. Not like you could but clearly since our daughter was on a stripper pole. How could you let that happen? How didn’t you know?” He growled as he tapped his finger against glass. Cruel because he was the one who hooked her on drugs. As he lowered his head thinking about his daughter.

“I don’t want to buy Yasmine, I want to tell her how stupid I was not snatching her from your arms. I cared Trisha until you cared about drugs more than me and Yasmine. I’m not here to bash you. I’m here to ask you for the best way to get her into my life. Rory cheated and I will handle that but you have to… You have to tell me about her. I want to know what she loves, what does she hate, and what can I do to fix what I should have a long time ago. My daughter isn’t happy with her life and money isn’t going to fix it but what I’ve found it makes it all a hell of lot better.” Forbes looked at her. “Sit do you drink still because if so I’ll get you one.”

“If it wasn’t about that look me in the eye and tell me that Audrey would have loved her as much as her other children or that they would have welcomed her with open arms. Who would have had on staff to do her hair, teach her what she needed to know to survive because of who she was? So I did what I had to do, what you couldn’t do.” Trisha said looking at him and sitting down on the sofa across from him, she knew with anyone else she would have been livid about the whore comment. But that was a part of her journey and story, it was a part that made her who she was today an ugly part something she had to face when she got clean last time but still a part. “I got sick, she wanted me to get help to kick everything and now that we know what it was that was hurting me, the underlying issue I am getting better. I had no idea she went to Ronan and Philip until it was too late and it was done. You could have called Philip to stop it but you didn’t. You stayed in God knows where and did nothing either.”

When he offered her a drinks she felt her mouth water and the temptation flood her but instead she shook her head no. It wasn’t worth it and she didn’t trust herself enough to not get caught up in the booze that would sometimes lead to binges with the drugs. “No thank you I’ll have a club soda and water if you have that though. We can’t change the past Forbes all I know is that why I called you this time was because she will need you this time and I can’t fix this thing with her and Rory.” She saw him looking at her for a moment and all those old feelings for him started to surface and to block the past out she took a breath looking away and composing herself before looking back. “She wants to dance open her own studio she graduates this summer from college finally say what you want about her working a pole but between paying for my treatment and her debt to Kendrick she put herself through school too. I’m not sure how she’ll afford a space for the dance studio she wants to do. Now that she and Rory are over not that she depended on him, the legal things she is tied up to with the company and not working I don’t know how she will have that dream come true.”

“I’ll handle this.” Forbes pulled out his phone. “This is Forbes Montgomery yes I want to speak with Chancellor Roberts. Yes how are you chancellor, my ex-wife Audrey was a beautiful dancer and singer. She was amazing thus I want to place an endowment in the name of Audrey Montgomery and I want only the best dancer this year and I’ll keep going with the arts.” He bit down on his lip as he watched Trisha face. “Actually I’m interested in one dancer in particular. Yasmine Kohl she needs this after being kidnapped and let down by that destructive man Kendrick. I want her to see that it is good men and people in the world willing to help a victim of circumstance in Scottswood.” Leaning back in his chair. “Yes Chancellor Roberts I’ll be leaving a healthy check to the school to ensure Ms. Kohl receives this donation. Good day Chancellor and please remember who is donating to your school. I hear you have invested a large sum of money in your term at school. I will come looking for a favor again believe me.” Forbes hung up as he looked at Trisha.

“Now she’ll have the money to dance but I don’t want her to know yet. It’s not time we need time to heal some wounds. Particularly the wound of Rory Devonshire. I want your help to use Khalil Watkins and any other past boyfriend but don’t let them back together. I don’t need my daughter as collateral damage. I need her away and I need you healthy. So I’m going to write you a check and this check is to buy you and her a place. She’s a Montgomery she doesn’t have to be in the pocket of the Devonshire’s understood. I won’t say this but once a bullet broke apart Philip and Max so I’ll do even worse to split them up. Understood I won’t let her fall back into the arms of a Devonshire and once it’s public I assure you Lowell will try to use their relationship.” Folding his arms he stared at her eyes. “I’ve missed you Trisha you always knew how to tell me off and I accept it unlike all the rest I destroy them. You could come upstairs and see my new bedroom.”

Money fixed everything for rich men and part of her wanted to object to him calling in a favor with his money under an endowment for a woman she despised for a daughter he didn’t know. A daughter that she knew would need time with him to get to know that side of her roots. The other part knew that for right now this would be what Yasmine needed to dance and move forward with her dream and maybe just maybe it was part of the human side of the man that she once thought she loved. She listened while he spoke on the phone numbly she could never give Yasmine what he was giving her and she shook her head no at him when her phone buzzed seeing the text from Yasmine. Asking where she was and when she would be home, going to see the bedroom would lead them then i bed together and possibly another spiral and she shot off a reply to Yasmine telling her she was at a meeting and would be home soon.

“Thank you I know this is your way of showing her and me that you care. I need to get back though before she catches onto where I have gone, a neighbor or someone else could have seen the car.” Trisha said standing up and running her hands down over her clothes she was always trying to impress him even now. For a small moment she looked into his eyes and leaned into him only to pull back they were parents now nothing more. He was remarried to another woman that had been his mistress too she was always just that. She didn’t expect him to be a saint neither was she but she was smarter and wiser now. “We both know your bed hasn’t changed at all over the years. You’d still know how to make me a mess and I’d let you if I go upstairs but for now I don’t think that is for the best. I’ll be in touch about Khalil maybe he and Yasmine can get back what they had.” She said looking at him and grabbing her purse. “It’s different with her and Rory though you thought Philip and Max would be the bond that wouldn’t be able to be broken, I think you are foolish if anything I think that will be Yasmine and Rory. I’ll see myself out.” She finsihed leaning in and kissing his cheek before one of the guards led her out of the room and to the waiting car outside. She refused to look back knowing if she did she wouldn’t want to leave.

Forbes watched Trisha leave and he knew she was right. Yasmine belonged with her because Audrey couldn’t love his bastard unconditionally. Folding his arms he wondered if he had somehow made a grave mistake years ago. He should have saved Trisha because honestly she’d been the only woman who calmed him. The only one who knew his vulnerabilities and weaknesses. He felt inhuman and unreal because of the ugliness he’d exhibited in his own life. A life full of war and pain but leaving Yasmine out of it might have been better than having her here. Never feeling the love of a mother and one thing she knew was her mother loved her.  As he stepped forward he wanted to call out and try again. She’d matured and wasn’t the young woman who he could manipulate. She was even more strong and his hurtful words hadn’t pushed her for his satisfaction. That was interesting because she was once his friend.

“Trisha you raised a remarkable woman. Her loyalty to you is remarkable and I hope she finds the same love in her heart for me. I will fix what I broke all those years ago before I moved away. I will have you and Yasmine back in my arms.” He said strolling through the foyer of his home. “Goodnight and tell Yasmine something is coming for her. Encourage our daughter to move on and forward.” Forbes said as he closed the door and pulled out a small picture in his wallet. It was Yasmine on her fourth birthday. “I have been waiting Yasmine named after a flower and soon you will blossom into the Montgomery’s greatest weapon against DGI.”


Brenda sat outside in her car for twenty minutes. She didn’t know if this was such a good idea for years she held onto these secrets. Even when this was out she knew it was more so much more. The truth really was that she knew that this would ruin Walter and Lauren. That was the goal and after twenty-six years she was ready to finally issue her own revenge. She’d seen so many years without the child Walter and she had. A little girl who was her heart and she had to give her away. Steven would get a idea and she’d already lied once. She couldn’t do it again. As she closed her eyes she saw her younger self handing the baby girl to Lowell. Then she never saw her again. As she saw the entire damage the riot had done. The beautiful stained glass windows were broken. It looked like they’d been looted and the bar stolen from. Seeing Lauren and Walter inside made her soul jump. She was on the verge of ripping apart there future, jealousy she didn’t care. Why should she? Lauren should have never had Walter. Everyone knew she loved Harvey LeClerq back then. He was her soulmate and she wouldn’t let him forget it.

“Hello?” Brenda croaked out as she walked through the torn apart Pub. “This is very disheartening those savages destroyed a legendary landmark in this community. I don’t get why they are all destroying our community. It’s beyond self destructive.” She said walking to the bar where they both stood. “I came because you two are going to hear this very soon. Gideon and Rachel Morrison are both dead. They died from an accident in there house and I am truly shaken to the core. I could have been there and I just need to speak with you both.” Brenda felt a urgency to say or she might lose her nerve. “I just know that this will affect us all. I’m going on a search to find my daughter.” She said softly looking at the two of them. “Me and Walter’s child.”

Lauren had a glass in her hand from the anniversary of the Fraiser Pub and she tossed it at Brenda barely missing her doe eyes and face. “When! When did this happen? I want answers because I don’t believe you lying bitch! Walter and you never had a child I had his children!”

“It was over twenty-six years ago Lauren! The affair was at its peak but you made the ultimatum either it was you and his children or me! He left me alone and pregnant and I just have to tell you both. I have to tell you both how sorry I truly am.” She said wiping her eyes looking at him. “I was alone and it killed me because I thought we would be together. With her move I had none but to get rid of the baby. I went to an abortion clinic and I couldn’t do it. I just couldn’t kill a baby that was made out of love between Walter and I. I told Steven my mother had fallen ill and took the boys to the outskirts of New York. There I had my daughter with the help of a midwife and Lowell Devonshire. He saw to it that the little girl had the life she deserved. I am going to find her and bring her home and I need Walter’s help.”

Lauren gulped hearing that Lowell helped her as she gripped the bar stool she started to choke out tears. Shaking her head she looked at Walter’s face and knew it was the truth. He just had some blank and aloof expression on his face. “You fucking knew that she had a kid by you? How long? That was the one thing I thought I had over her. I thought that I was the only one to have your children. You are disgusting and you finally have what you want. You can finally have him because I can’t do this anymore Walter. She can walk into our lives with how many secrets. How many lies do I have to protect myself from you? You’re a constant disappointment as a husband. You know how many men loved me? How many men wanted me but I choose you. I married you because you said you loved me when you loved her! You should have married her and I wouldn’t feel unwanted right now. I wouldn’t feel like I have no one to care about me. I hate you for this. You find your daughter but you lost a wife. I want a divorce you sonofabitch. I want you to stay away from me and find your daughter but you tell your kids. You tell the community why I’m leaving you and you tell your family for once I wasn’t a bitter bitch. I was the one who was loyal!” She walked to Walter and slapped him. She started to slap him over and over again. “I hate you!” She screamed at him.

“Don’t touch him.” Brenda said walking to Lauren before she knew it she felt her fist impacting her face. She flew to the ground scared shitless from the reaction

Lauren held her fist. “You bitch! You don’t touch me you slept with my husband and thought I wasn’t going to attack you? You stupider than I thought. No what do you have to say? Huh? You slipped up and fucked this bitch? I don’t want you anymore. I don’t want to love you anymore and I want a divorce.” Her voice quivered softly. “ I don’t want you anymore. I don’t want you anymore no more.” She cried as she collapsed onto the ground.

Walter had left city hall as soon as it was safe thank God no one had been in the pub when the riot happened. However when he and Lauren had arrived to the destruction his heart was heavy for all of it, for what the city was going through. For the moments and the memories that were now shattered glass on the floor. They had started to pick up the pieces when Brenda had flew in and he stared at her as she spilled everything about their daughter being alive. He didn’t know what he could say to the truth there was nothing left to say, his daughter with Brenda was alive and he had barely found out the truth right before the kidnapping. He had been trying to decide if he would ever tell Lauren the truth or Braden and Dani. Now had not been the time in his mind with Tamara in the hospital and Dani getting kidnapped. He had stood frozen and then pushed Brenda back when Lauren lunged seeing the look on her face and hearing her words. Divorce would ruin him, ruin his image and he pleaded with her to hold onto that. He let Lauren slap him he deserved every bit of her rage.

“I barely found out Lauren you have to believe me she just barely told me the truth right before we heard about Dani. I had no idea she had the baby all those years ago you have to believe me! What reason would I have to lie about this like that?” Walter said looking at his wife on the floor and then looking at Brenda how could she be so heartless.This was his business to hell his family he was certain had he marched in and told Anderson, Hunter and Brooke like that she’d be furious at him. “Did you have to do it like this right now? You and I agreed to tell our families on our own. Should I go find your children and just blurt this out!” He said raising his voice to her and then closing his eyes his temper was flaring and he felt Lauren pushing him away and he opened his eyes looking at her. “You would ruin everything if you did that Lauren the image we built, you’d let someone else move into mayor? What would we tell the children after everything they are going through right now?”

“I ruined it or did she fucking ruin it? She just waltz inside here and say that she has your child. Your child and she betrayed you because she gave her away. Yet this is what you’ve loved for our entire relationship? You are a monster Walter! You sit here and ask me if I can dismantle this life? What life have we had because our entire marriage you loved her more than your family. Our child died and here you are having another daughter! I can’t do this anymore and stand here and be the dutiful wife. I’m not here for this anymore. I’m not here for this with you. I don’t want to love you anymore. I don’t want to see you anymore. I don’t want you anymore no I don’t.” She cried out finally feeling like the shackles on her life have been removed. “You have kept me prisoner for your own sick reasons when this woman can come into the business we built and say she has your baby. A baby, another child. How could you Walter! How could you hurt me like this.” Lauren looked at Brenda and shook her head.

“You are the most vile woman I know. You are evil personified because you sit on your perch judging everyone. Looking your nose down at all of us and I now you stand here pretending that it’s about a child you gave two shits about! You carried this secret for years and now when our marriage is the most vulnerable it’s been in twenty years? You win Brenda you can have him Brenda! You’re better than me! You are the woman of the year and the most beautiful. You have him so please both of you stay away from me! I don’t care anymore. I don’t! You two can have each other because you deserve each other. But you!” She turned to Walter. “You!” Lauren pulled off her wedding ring. “You keep this because when you are impeached from mayor because of you not being able to keep it in your pants. You’ll need it too fucking have a penny because I’m taking everything. The Pub, our children’s love, and most of all my dignity back! You stripped down all of my soul and I never expected the man who gave me my greatest gifts is the same man who broke me! You broke me!” She screamed as she grabbed her purse. “Fix my bar and I’ll contact you when I find a lawyer. Please find a fucking room tonight! I’ll find somewhere to stay I assure you.”

Brenda stood back as she exhaled looking at Walter fuming and Lauren storming away. She watched her slam the door and the rest of the glass fell out of the window. She jumped back and felt her stomach dropping. As much as she planned the raging of Lauren those words nearly killed her. Gasping as she felt her love hating her right now. She could feel Walter’s eyes on her and she knew she had to say something. “I don’t care either.” Brenda finally looked up as tears fell from her eyes. “I don’t care because now is our time. Gideon death was a wake up call we have to find her and we have to show the world we belong together. Yes in the past we kept up a show but two men we knew are gone now and I can’t lie anymore. I love you Walter Fraiser and you love me. So why is this a bad thing? We can finally be together.”

Walter stood there shell shocked as Lauren fumed at him, yelled at him and then gutted him when she just threw it all away. He knew he wasn’t a good husband over the years, hell he was a barely decent parent but he had been trying lately. Over thirty years he had stayed with his wife and they tried to make it work and he couldn’t help but bend down to pick up her rings as he watched the rest of the glass shatter from the window. He loved her at one point and then his eyes raged at Brenda he wanted to strangle her and then he wanted to wrap his arms around her all at the same time. His children would never forgive him for this and he wasn’t even sure how he could fix this with them. He had always told Braden to do the right thing with the woman he loved. He and Dani had barely started to speak again let alone get along and he knew how much they loved their mother. How they would turn on him as he looked at Brenda slipping Lauren’s rings inside his pocket.

“You should have never come here like this. I can’t even look at you right now after what you just did. I need space away from you till I can sort all of this out. I will lose my other children because of this do you not comprehend that at all? Or do you simply not care because you finally got what you wanted?” Walter said looking at the woman he at one point wanted to leave Lauren for as he shook his head at her. He cared for her still that was the worst part he would always care for Brenda and that was part of the problem. “I need time Brenda. Call me when you want to start searching but right now we can’t be together.” He said walking to the office in the pub and slamming the door shut behind him, tears finally releasing from his eyes he had ruined everything with his family and while he should have felt relief maybe a part of him was dying inside because of it.

Brenda smiled as she watched Walter stalk off. She’d freed him and he wasn’t ready to deal with the fact they were soulmates. Her eyes were watering because of how angry he was. He’d understand one day and it’s going to be the beginning of a fresh start. As she strutted to the bar she laughed a little. Well she might be a deplorable woman but at the end of the day she’d just solidified her future. No matter what happened after today she was going to be Ms. Walter Fraiser very soon. Picking up a bottle of scotch she smiled pouring herself a drink. “Cheers to me winning the game.”


This mansion housed a lot of memories as he strolled through the outside rose garden. Leaning down he took in the smell of the most beautiful flowers. When Jackie first asked to build the roses he felt she was being basic. As he folded his arms he looked at her hard work and smiled. She’d remodeled the entire home before he knew it and this house was their relationship. Seeing her hard work and he felt tears forming. How could he be dying? This was ballsy move God to taking him while his family was under siege. As he folded his arms he looked at the guest house as he took a rose from the ground. Never once truly did he see that his life would be this. This was painful after all this time on earth, he’d leave a shaking mess. He wouldn’t blaze a trail like he’d done his entire life. He would be a shell of the man who built a modern dynasty. Julius Caesar couldn’t have conquered what he had. No man could and he felt that’s why God was punishing him. He threw his best friend away like trash and Walter didn’t deserve that. Pierre was about to take DGI so he set him up and fired Harvey. Colin Westwood was fired after he planted a scandal. He set up people and God was punishing him. His legacy with his family would prevail but how without him?

As he looked at the plane docket they’d be leaving to Europe tonight. He had to see if there was a major breakthrough then he’d have it. This illness couldn’t and wouldn’t kill him as he folded his arms. He would fight for the rest of his life as long as it was air in his body. Taking a deep sniff of the roses he picked a flower looking at the man standing over at the doorway. Security would be fired how could he come in his home, his castle. No Forbes Montgomery wasn’t welcomed and through the years they’d grown to hate each other anymore. He looked healthy something he was clearly jealous of. As he walked to Forbes he shook his head knowing that this would be the first of many meetings. Forbes was after DGI that was why he was back and only a fool would think otherwise. “So tell me who do I have to fire for letting you inside?”

Forbes chuckled as he touched the lawn furniture as he looked up at Lowell. He looked fragile but he could tell he was ready to fight. Did Pierre and he try to take DGI years ago after Lowell booted Walter? Of course because he wouldn’t do us like that or so they thought. He used to care about this man as if he was a brother. Seeing him again brought up insecurities that he just couldn’t shake off. Audrey was the main reason that he hated Lowell. His first wife wasn’t his great love it was Trisha. Audrey became a tug of war through the years. She was his wife who he shared with Lowell for years. Her mind and spirit was his but her body was Lowell’s. Forbes wasn’t a fool, he knew he pleased his wife but she couldn’t handle who he was as a man. A man who loved her no matter what. How could she betray him for all these years and knowing  he dreamt of destroying Lowell. How couldn’t she say she was moving forward with that man. That night he threatened Audrey with taking Philip and Cassandra from her forever. Hours later he was standing in a hospital preparing to tell his children she was gone. He threatened her and she slit her wrist. She killed herself and no longer could he hear her voice anymore. A voice that would never soar in operatic melodies again.

“I threatened to put the man’s family on the street. So don’t be too hard on him.” Forbes said walking to Lowell and finally sitting across from the other man in the gazebo. “For the last ten years my life has been on a upswing. I started a very successful company finally expanding to America. I have remarried and have two young children. Well they are about to be teens soon but they have never had my full attention. Every night I would read the New York Times and it would have a story about your gains. I used it as fuel for pushing me harder and faster. I tried my best to do what I could to keep myself from being consumed. Yet I find myself drawn here to tell you one thing Lowell, I’m going to reign utter destruction on your life. I’m going to first take your first love away which is DGI and then I’ll make Jackie feel like she’s lost it all because I’m going to remove her from this very house she built with you. Then your poor children I’m going to dismantle each and every one of their lives. Bad things that you think they’ve been through are going to look hiccups to them. I’m trying to make your entire life is mine and when it’s done I’ll crush everything you’ve acquired from love, business, and family. You never wanted to bring me with you. I was a stepping stone and now I’ll step on you.”

Lowell listened to the dark words he was spitting and they seemed to hit harder since he knew he was dying. His life was on a timetable and if he didn’t get rid of Forbes his family would have to deal with him. To be honest he could shoot him right now and by the time the trial rolled around he’d be dead. Murder wasn’t above him and he didn’t need to pretend or play nice. Placate his wife or children feelings for once he knew that he could unleash. “If you think that you’re going to step on me you’re more foolish than you were over thirty years ago. Only man I’m afraid of his God himself and unless he comes down here and tells me to fear you I don’t. Stop threatening my family or I’ll kill you where you stand. You don’t come into my home and threaten what I’ve built. Did I do it off you idiots back yes but not everything in DGI is off of your minds. It was my business savvy that made this company a billion dollar enterprise so don’t come here and think I owe you anything. But a bullet in your temple you push and I’ll push back until you’re in jail or dead.”

As he stood there seeing the fury in Forbes eyes he spoke again. “This isn’t about DGI, or anything else. You’ve remarried but yet to move on. I slept with Audrey and you can’t handle that. You can’t handle that she loved me and what I gave her. This is all about Audrey and you not holding onto anything years ago. You are pathetic Audrey is dead and you can’t let her go. You will leave my family alone or I swear I’ll use every dirty trick and tactic to demolish your future. You have your little company Forbes keep it before I eat it alive and snatch the second thing from you. I don’t want to fight anymore we are old but if you choose to make that choice. I’ll set you ablaze before you step on me. I’ll ripple every choice you make into your very own destruction. I wish you the best but now get the hell out of my house.” Lowell said with a bark that was enough to end the conversation with most people when he saw Forbes sitting back.

“Audrey is that what you believe this is all about? A woman? A whore who fucked up so badly that she had to slit her own wrist? No Lowell, we were brothers and you choose let that go to dismantle my life. If you’re looking for a the big picture then look at the mirror. I spent over twenty years figuring out how to attack. It took time and dedication but I have both of them because you blacklisted me here in Atlas Falls. You stole everything from me. You left me in a state of utter devastation between my children who you didn’t care about and my wife you you drove mad. I’m going to do everything in my power to strip the breath out of your body. I want you desolate and once that happens I want you a forgotten memory erased out of the history books. You won’t have to worry if this is about Audrey no this is all about your greed and betrayal of me!” Forbes bellowed as he slammed his fist on the glass table.

“You are so arrogant and I can’t help but to think you must be senile to think that Audrey is the reason. No Lowell the reason is you and what you’ve accomplished. A house that should be Walters. A wife that should be Colin’s. Children who have shot my son. Oh Lowell you let your daughters shoot my son and don’t lie. Philip is paralyzed right now and I want you to remember you drew first blood. You did this to yourself. Nobody can question what is coming, it’s your reckoning. You stand before me as a God but I will make you just a mortal. I will strip every ounce of your life away.”

“Shut up!” Lowell screamed as he stood. “I’ll kill you in my own home before I let you take your hatred on my family! My daughters stopped your son from being killed. You should be kissing there feet. Your pathetic ass son even touched my daughters. If you want war then it shall begin but understand nothing is safe in war. Your two puperbecent teenagers you are so happy about. I’ll have my connections chop those kids up into tiny pieces if I have to. You think you mourned Audrey I’d kill your new wife right Claudia? She’s in Europe still more than likely sleeping with another man because we know only woman you satisfied was your junkie whore who you kept a mystery.” Lowell barked back getting just as nasty. “I’ll do whatever to protect my family and if you think that I’m going to sit back and let you threaten me and mine well Mr. Montgomery you’re more foolish than I believed.”

“Justice was served because you were plotting to take DGI away from me. You were doing everything to undermine my control on my company. Devonshire Global Industries you put money down but not your legacy. My name is on this company and since we are meeting again old friend, I’ll tell you like I told you years ago when I fired you. You aren’t of my calibur and I am disgusted that you got so close to me. We could have gotten to the sun but your wings are burnt.” Lowell said looking at him. “You are blind with revenge and only one of our deaths can end this. So consider this a warning if you continue, I have connections to the mob and I’ll make those kids vanish, I’ll make your eldest children vanish, I’ll make everyone you care about die and wither in the ground as a corpse. Hell I bury them all alive and let you see them dying. I’ll send it to you every year on their birthdays. I assure you fucking Audrey was a delight but fucking is going to be so much better.”

Forbes laughed seeing his hand shaking feverishly he was enraged and that’s what tonight was about. He took each of the threats into his heart. He wasn’t afraid that Lowell would touch his children. A big bluff for a little man. “I think I’ve given you a fair chance to relent and I knew you were foolish enough to act as if you are powerfuller than me. I’m going to enjoy ripping everything from you. My children are safe and again yours though. Oh Lowell what I’ve done to each and every one of them. It’s going to be delicious to see you scrambling to figure out how to save them. Sadly they only see unconditional love daddy not daddy who will run away and let them burn. You’re going to be the one in pain when I attack all of them. My children will never be touched. So have a great night Lowell and remember I’m back. I’m here and I’m going to get what was due to me.” Walking through the rain if he believe in God he’d feel like he was shining on him right now. This moment was his reckoning and Forbes would win this war. A great war was coming and today was his day. His day to show Lowell he’d already won.

Lowell watched Forbes walking away and knew that this was about to be a dirty conflict. How couldn’t it be a dirty conflict over thirty years of hatred between the men. His eyes glazed over as thoughts of Audrey flashed into his brain. Then Tess who he loved just as much as Jackie at one time. Then he saw his wife the most perfect woman ever. She’d stood by him in many different trials and this was the biggest. He was fight Parkinson and Forbes Montgomery how would he come out of this unscathed? His life was over as he knew it but he’d fight for his family. Walking up to his wife he grabbed her hand and kissed it softly. “I have booked the flight to Paris we’ll be leaving tomorrow. I have to get stronger or prolong this because he’s going to do anything to destroy us and what we’ve built.” Lowell kissed Jackie. “Just help me because I’ll need you more than ever if I’m going to fight both of the biggest threats in my life.”