2×19 “Everybody Wants To Rule The World” Part 1

2×19 “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” Part 1
Written by: Chris Coleman and Kelly Zollo
Guest Starring: Harvey LeClerq (Sean Bean), Charles Hessington (Don Johnson), Lex Hessington (Adam Driver), Julian O’Sullivan (Pierce Brosnan), Amanda Creed (Gillian Anderson) and Ivanka Rezinkov (Rebecca Furgerson)
Theme Song: Everybody Wants To Rule The World- Tears for Fears

Greer dusted her cheeks in her vanity with blush. Today was her big day and her father had told her that this was her second chance to help the LeClerq family. After all Harvey and daddy had done they could after the Devonshire’s and everyone betrayed them. They were left out in the cold. Not only that but her father went to jail for a crime he didn’t commit. Her uncle had raised her for a period and she wouldn’t forgive what they did to their family. Revenge was so close. This scandal would be enough for MontCorp stock to dive. That was exactly what they needed. Her uncle had a dummy company that MontCorp would buy and from there they’d take over. If they had enough stock from the stockholders from this scandal. Forbes was about to partner with a rapist and if she could take them down while seeming like she’s helping. Greer heard keys in her condo door and her father was back. Walking to her robe she slipped it on to tighten it around her tiny waist. Strolling down the stairs she saw her handsome father and she rushed into his arms. She kissed his cheeks as he raised her off the ground. “Father.”

Greer looked into his eyes and knew he wasn’t happy with her. She wasn’t about to compromise her relationship with Brock to take down the Devonshire’s. She however knew that he was what he wanted last time she was sure he was about to declare her relationship with Brock over. She was ready for it. As her eyes narrowed seeing someone extend their arm out with flowers. Her favorite flower white roses. Whomever this was knew her and she let go of her father and took the flowers from the mysterious arm and gasped when her uncle stepped out. Before Greer knew it she began to become emotional just seeing her uncle in America. He swore off the country after they railroaded her father. As she kissed his cheeks holding Harvey tightly in her arms. “Oncle Harvey, qu’est-ce que tu fais ici?”

“Well I am here to talk to you about what your father thought you should be doing. We just had quite the conversation. I explained that you aren’t a weapon to be constantly used.” Harvey said sternly looking at his brother then turning on the charm. “I’m here to meet with an old friend but that isn’t to be discussed. I’m here to explain if you don’t want to go after Chauncey Devonshire ever again, we both support you. I however do think you are better than a Fraiser but I digress.” Harvey walked to the couch and looked at the skyline of Atlas Falls and felt his heart swelling. “I haven’t been in this city in a long time. My thinking is much more cerebral than your father. He swings the axe of vengeance, I prefer a much more different tactic. Do I believe Forbes and Lowell deserve to pay absolutely and do I want them to hurt badly deeply. I don’t think you should have to carry our burdens. So I’m here to ask you Greer if you want to continue. If you don’t then I assure you that I or your father will go meet with Forbes and the Montgomery’s today.” Harvey crossed his arms “Cher frère, dis ce que tu dois penser. Vous ne pouvez pas croire que c’est sain pour Greer?”

Pierre has been prepared to tell Greer to go back into the Devonshire fold at the moment they were winning and as much as his little agreement with Forbes had worked for now, it was time to cut their losses and get back on track with revenge against Lowell. He was tired of waiting around and playing games with Forbes and watching as Tess Blisston got her happy ending with Lowell while all the hard work and planning had been for nothing when it came to Zerick and Greer. It was also the reason he had moved on to his revenge on Walter too everyone was so focused on Forbes and the drama with Dimtiri it made his new alliance with Dru, an alliance that his brother nor Greer needed to know about. His brother simply because old wounds were hard to ignore when it came to Harvey and his love hate relationship with Altas Falls and seeing how he still carried a torch for an older but still vibrant certain brunette in town well he wasn’t going to take his chances. His plan with Dru would make sure that his attention was not just on Lowell but on the other man that had testified against him Walter everyone forgot that little part of their past in town that it was Walter who had confessed on the stand that he embezzled and for a time it was the one thing that broke apart his brother and that ungrateful bitch that was Walter’s wife. He was not so quick to forget or maybe Harvey had went soft whatever the case he wanted to make sure that both Walter and Lowell got what was coming to them.

“Greer knows what she has been trained to do since she was a child and since we let her roam Europe it was your suggestion brother that she work with Forbes and Zerick and look how that turned out. Her outed from Chauncey’s life and nothing to show for it but a little position at MontCorp. Zerick is not even on our side now nor is he on Forbes’s side. Instead Greer sits here on the outside while she should be the one getting married in a few weeks to Chauncey and thus us finally getting back in the DGI fold. Instead she is wasting her time away for Brock Fraiser of all men.” Pierre said looking at his brother and then at Greer he wasn’t going to sugar coat it for either of them they had planned and worked for years for Greer to become a Devonshire to appeal to the Devonshire name and heck even the men. Chauncey was meticulously picked over and studied to make sure she could seduce him and now it was for nothing. “I think Greer should make the decision don’t you Harvey? This is after all something she has been working for as well or are we all going to forget that I was the one that spent time in the jail cell because of what they all did? Not you, me dear brother. You helped raise her and of course Agnes if she were alive would be grateful for it, as am I. But I am out now have been for years and Greer knows where her loyalty on this needs to lie don’t you my daughter?”

Greer looked at her uncle and her father knowing that she was torn between them forever. A piece of her was raised by Harvey which meant she was softer. Her father raised her to tear down any wall in her way. That part of her hadn’t diminished and she would find a new way into the Devonshire fold in fact she already had. Through MontCorp she would get access to DGI and eventually the Devonshire’s would fall at her hands. She was close before but never had she liked losing nor was she someone to take humble pie. The truth being revealed destroyed her and Chauncey. Even though she did care about him hell honestly she loved him but that wasn’t the point. As she walked to the icebox she pulled out a crystal glass full of orange juice and a bottle of champagne. “Uncle do you remember when I was seven and I fell off that horse. You rushed out there Bode and Dusty were so scared but I did what? I stood up and I finished the show. I may have stumbled in the first round but we all know Forbes would destroy us all if he had a chance. So instead of going through a man which is so cliche in 2019 don’t you say father? I’m not going to seduce my way to the top, I’m going to use my brain. So you both are wrong. I’m not giving up at all and I’m not going to beg a man to come back to me. I refuse to stroke Chauncey’s fragile male ego that he was outsmarted by me.” Greer said popping the champagne cork open gasping at the popping sound. Going back to the icebox she grabbed strawberries rinsing them and then cutting the stems. Greer placed the strawberries on the tray.

Pouring her father and uncle both mimosa then herself placing them on a tray she walked over with the champagne flute glistening in the winter sun. The snowflakes were flickering against the hard steel contraptions outside her window. They were all in a race and that’s what the Devonshire’s didn’t get. They weren’t the only ones who wanted the power. DGI should have been a few men’s, not just Walter’s and Lowell’s. The credit seemed to always go to Walter but Lowell’s mind got them farther than Walter could dream. However Forbes, Harvey, and her father lost the most in something that should have handed them so much. Picking up a strawberry she placed it in each of their glasses. “What I’m saying father is I tried it your way but this time if I put myself in the line of fire it won’t be by your pristine plan. I think it’s foolish to just see me as just a piece of ass. I will always have Chauncey because a woman like me has her wiles and since you must know father I’m falling in love with Brock and he is special. I won’t be going down that path with Chauncey again so get over it. But I will be doing everything you taught me. You see the city hasn’t picked it’s contractor in the revitalization of Scottwood Projects. If I can convince Walter Fraiser and Hunter Kincaid that MontCorp is the company to do that well, I’ll save MontCorp but I’ll also have a win with every other board member. I will turn Forbes against his kids and his kids against him just like we did with Lowell this time it’ll be way easier. You see one of them wants the reigns and I can’t figure out if it’s Cassie or Philip but this meeting today will reveal that. So Cheers.” Greer said, raising her glass to them taking a sip.

Harvey sat back impressed at his niece; she was the lioness that they both raised. Refusing to bow at Pierre every whimsy and also still going with what needed to be done. “War isn’t easy Greer and what’s coming next is dangerous as you said Forbes isn’t to be trifled with. I won’t tell you what world he lives on but retribution is what he is about. If he figures out what you are doing then my dear MontCorp will be the least of your concern. Convince him niece and I assure you that you’ll be able to do what you want. We will run this city.” Harvey said in a gravely husk as he looked at Pierre and stared past him to the skyline. “You have no idea how many emotions are stirring inside of me. I have always longed to come back here. The team that placed DGI on the map was us. We deserved the recognition right along with Lowell and the fame and fortune he got I will never understand. I moved on but every night I am haunted. I live and die knowing that something was taken from me. That my sons should haven’t been raised not having anything they want any opportunity. So you see niece this is revenge but this is our awakening. Our family is getting it’s time and I assure you that.” Harvey cleared his throat looking at his brother to join them.

“Oh.” Greer said coyly. “Et juste pour que tu saches que je ne vais pas me faire baiser. Forbes et toute sa famille sont en danger avec le clan Devonshire.” Looking at her father. “Please understand my wishes.”

Pierre thought she was ambitious and he did admire that about her but he had a feeling that their time at MontCorp would be short lived. He agreed with that from what he understood from Tess in his mind they all should have branched out and started something on their own years ago and now was the time to do it. He didn’t see Forbes handing over and folding to his daughter no matter the pull that she and his brother seemed to think they had, Forbes always had his way; it was one of the main reasons Lowell saw fit to oust him first. “Perhaps you are right, Greer on the other hand I’ve learned and seen first hand how far Forbes is willing to go for MontCorp and I feel we should cut out losses. Your uncle has built up enough of a clientele and you have built up enough connections that we should sever our losses at MontCorp while we can. I am no longer interested in being Forbes or Lowell’s puppet and since you seem to not what to return to Chauncey’s good graces or DGI maybe that is the path we should work on.” Pierre said looking at them both he was tired of playing the game between MontCorp and DGI in his mind it was better to destroy both of them and let them fall on their own swords. He had a partner now when it came to Dru that could take out Walter. Lowell was dying and Tess and he had a deal he was willing to wait till Lowell was dead for it to happen.

“Oh I know you’ve missed Atlas Falls brother you came here first of course but I wouldn’t go to the bar to see Lauren she’s not there anymore perhaps you should visit Randall Sinclair. Seems that one Lauren finally buckled up and divorced Walter though honestly she should have picked you and left town with Braden who knows dear brother perhaps our lives would be different. She has been seeing the pristine professor Sinclair. You never did tell me what happened that night that everything happened with Lauren.” Pierre said looking at Harvey seeing the harrowed pain on his brother’s face he was always so late when it came to Lauren Cummings. He saw Greer look at her uncle then back at him Harvey had never told him what happened between himself and Lauren that night and it was something that had always bugged him. Harvey was always to protective over Lauren his first love and he envied that Lauren lived married to Walter and her children while Agnes died. “He likes to be coy Greer but your uncle has a soft spot for Lauren Fraiser hell the Fraiser’s in general though you would be hard pressed to convince Walter of anything when it comes to your plans. They tolerate you at the moment for Lauren’s dear nephew but Walter would rather turn around and burn you alive than ever sell out to you after what you and I did to his daughter.” Pierre said walking to the window looking at his brother he loved Harvey hut envied him for raising Greer and still having a flame for Lauren all these years later while he hadn’t been able to move on from Agnes.

“Tell me Pierre did you get what you want? I mean Agnes is dead and you have never been able to move forward. She’s been gone a mighty long time and the scars that I have with Lydia shows that I tried. Can you say the same? Oh niece you do know the history that Lauren stayed with Walter and I moved on. I can’t say the same for us all you see unfortunately no matter how long my brother has been free he’ll always be behind those bars. Spitefully he seems to enjoy that pain and seems to hold onto it. Walter has ruined both of our lives and I am glad to see you move forward. Or have you? Is that why you have this irrational hate for the Fraisers other than you seem to believe you’re better than me because you haven’t moved on. It’s laughable and rather sad brother that you seem to think that I’m not after their ruination. I want to see Lowell and Forbes buried just as much as you. I hate Walter because as you said my life would have been so different if Lauren would have just walked away. I even married a woman who reminded me of Lauren and it didn’t work but I have two boys because of it. Walter and Hunter will do what you say if you have something on them. Greer figure it out you’re good at finding people weakness ma petite poupée.” Harvey saw Pierre’s anger that he hadn’t obviously backed him. “My past with Lauren is just that, I actually was looking forward to seeing Forbes but I think my little doll Greer has this Pierre. Nothing to worry about she is just as strong as we raised her to be no?” Harvey said looking at his niece and brother. “Greer my petite tell your father it’s time to move on.”

Greer looked at her father and her heart sank. For some reason she loved that he just never moved on. That he never got over her mother because she was his one true soulmate. It was an amazing feeling to know they were truly in love. But it had been years and her father dated sporadically she had to agree with her uncle. If her father had someone then possibly he could understand her logic and heart for Brock. He hadn’t opened his heart but to the whores he opened his bed to. No women seemed to penetrate the great Pierre LeClerq. “Father stop teasing him, it’s fine if he held a flame for Lauren. At least he is holding onto something unlike you. I have to ask, aren’t you lonely? When you sleep at night in that big bed it must be lonely alone. Either way I have to get ready and you two are a distraction. I know what I need to do so I need space to get ready for the rest of my big day.”

Pierre looked at Harvey and saw it still he was hung up on Lauren and while he did have the boys there would always be a soft spot for her in Harvey’s heart. Greer was the only thing he had left of Agnes, the only tangible memory that he still had and he never once thought about changing that for some random woman so instead he had lovers but he never let them get too close and years in prison made him harder than before. “I think if Lauren Fraiser asked you you’d betray all of us dear brother and so I’ll keep you at a distance till I am sure that won’t happen. I seem to remember Walter sitting on a stand and testifying against me that I took that money when instead it was Lowell’s idea to put it into that hedge fund in the first place. I saw Walter railroad me and you sat in that courtroom and let him. In your grand delusion perhaps hoping that Lauren would leave him and yet she never did. I may have forgiven you for that day but Walter Fraiser will eventually get what is coming to him for his part in this and mark my words if I have to tear Lauren down in the process so be it. You’ve been warned.” Pierre said as he looked at Greer and knew it was pointless to fight with her or convince her with Harvey breathing down his neck. He agreed that they needed to be free of both the Devonshire’s and Montgomery’s but he also knew that Greer wanted to make him proud and well swiping DGI from Lowell was what he really wanted. “Who knows dear daughter perhaps you are right and you can coyly get a part of DGI with this new idea but Chauncey is not that stupid. I do hear congratulations are in order though he did propose to Natasha eventually did he not? I do wonder if they have set a date.”

Greer gritted her teeth as she stood up and finished her drink. Her father sure had a way of ruining a reunion and his bitterness was tasting far too tart for her liking today. She was in a mood to dominate and finally take on what was so rightfully hers. “I’m fairly sure you both can let yourself out but I do wonder father what would my dearly departed mother think of you pimping me out to the Devonshires? Would she love you so after you’ve whored me to Chauncey? That is what you think of your daughter correct father? I’m a whore that you can push to whatever man to get what you want. To get whatever you want. Well you go to hell, I’ll call uncle Harvey with whatever accomplishment and failures I have today. I don’t want to see you and that should be easy considering you weren’t there for the first ten years of my life.” Greer stormed away upstairs furious that he rubbed that in her face. Natasha was getting screwed over and everyone knew it. Chauncey didn’t love her and never would; it would always be about Logan and her.

Harvey looked at his brother and shook his head. “I warned you that your incessant pushing of Greer would make you lose her. Keep it up and soon your last tie to Aggie will be gone. Poof your daughter will not want a thing to do with you. Your problem Pierre is simple: you treat her like an employee and not a child. You show her almost no love or affection and expect a perfect little soldier to follow your every command. Pierre you have to start feeling again or else my niece will have me walking her down the aisle and taking your place even more than I already have. Have a good day. I have a meeting to attend. You see I have been gone but I also have a few irons in the fire. I’m flying out tonight. You can either see me off or not. I can tell you right now I’d prefer not to see you.” Harvey walked to his coat. “I’ll call Greer and tell her good-bye.”


Jackie didn’t take calls that morning and didn’t even bother to go see the twins either, something that she had been doing on and off over the last few weeks. No this morning she wanted to herself to prepare for the finality of it all and she preferred to do that in silence. The mansion was empty now for the most part except the staff preparing for the wedding and it left her alone. Alone and filled with so many memories good and bad. She found it ironic that she was going to set everything into motion to Lowell on the same day that they had betrayed people they thought were close close friends, she thought were close friends. She had put up the divider between herself and her driver, staring at the black pants of her business suit. Black felt fitting as of late though she had assured her son she would wear a more festive color to the wedding. She wouldn’t let her melancholy sink into what should be a happy occasion for a fresh start for her son, she would even be civil to Lowell at the occasion she was not about to start a war there. After however she was tired of being the meek and mild mannered Jackie Devonshire, years ago she was Jackie Davis and she had lost that part of herself over the years. She was going to make sure that Lowell knew that, remembered who she was when she took DGI from his clutches and that bitch Tess and made sure her children’s legacy was secure. She was going to make them both suffer for making her a fool over and over again. When the car stopped she got out making her way quietly inside where she met Mason who rode up in the elevator with her.

“Are the papers in order that we discussed? I want to make sure that it is all in black and white I want the mansion and half of his shares in DGI should he wish to fight me on this. Let him. I have enough dirt on him to send him to prison if I wanted and if he wants to play hardball with me let him.” Jackie said looking at her reflection on the elevator doors, there she was the lioness that she remembered that her father admired. Years ago she thought Lowell admired that too, he never discouraged her from working but he did regulate her to the country club and told her to let him handle DGI and she did. When Chauncey was born he was so happy, they were so happy or she liked to think maybe she had turned her eye to him eyeing Audrey whatever the case she missed the old Jackie Davis. She had stood her ground when she discovered Lowell with Tess the first time and over the last few months had wondered why she stayed. Of course she had been pregnant with the twins at the time and it dawned on her she was still alone. Gloria was around but they were never really the same after that night. Lauren was gone from her life and so was Katie she had no one. She had people this time. “Close your mouth Mason if your mother was here she’d tell you the same.” Jackie said as the doors opened and she followed him into the conference room taking a seat next to him as she looked at the door opening and another man step out. “I presume you are the reason Mason called me down here? Who are you?”

Julian O’Sullivan looked at Jackie and was almost insulted she didn’t remember him. He was one of many but he worked at DGI for a period and it was during the firing. He was one of the few that stayed and Lowell kept during the purge. She was ravishing as ever and he always had wanted to tell her she didn’t have to stay. She didn’t have to be his pansy a doormat to be walked on. So when the divorce papers ran across his desk he had to see her for himself. Julian had divorced and moved on with his life. His children were happily well adjusted and living their own lives. It was magnificent to see her radiating the power that she knew she had. Here she stood about to become one of America’s most powerful women. Owning half of DGI meant she’d be a billionaire in her own right and seeing what she wanted and what she was going after made him feel enthralled. He was always intrigued by Jackie wondering why she stayed for years of torture and the latest embarrassment another child. Belle Archibald had made quite the splash and this seemed to be the last straw. Which for most men he saw as a blessing. Lowell trapped one of the most vibrant women he’d ever seen in a toxic marriage. This was Jackie he never had and always wanted before him. Julian smirked as he walked over pulling out the chair for Jackie and looking at her eyes they were crystal blue. Helping her take her seat as he nodded to Mason to give them some privacy.

“My name is Julian O’Sullivan and I’m the managing partner of The Law Office of O’Sullivan & Lorde & Perretti. You have reached out to one of my star lawyers in young Mason who I believe is revolutionary in his own right but I also want to put Lex Hessington on this case. Together they are a dangerous combination. I truly believe that he could be exactly what you need to take on your husband. You’ll need a dream team and that’s why I’m offering my services to help mentor them and take on Lowell.” He bit his lip and crossed his hands. “We have offices in New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, Paris, and here. Now I’m sure my Irish accent hasn’t changed enough for you not to recall me yet? I worked for your husband and you, during this time about thirty years ago. I was one of the few lawyers he kept under Gloria. It was one of the reasons I looked after young Mason because I admired Gloria. I’ve called you here hoping you maybe remember a shy man who couldn’t look at you long because it was like staring into the sun. I hope he hasn’t broken you so badly that you can’t see so many people are rooting for you. We want you to rise and I’m here to say thank-you because you told Gloria and Lowell to keep me. It’s done me well. I learned a lot under Gloria and worked to start his firm and the rest is how I say legal history. I’m here, Lex is here, Mason is here. We will work tirelessly to get you what you deserve. I promise you that.”

When he said his name is clicked for Jackie Julian O’Sullivan was always a bit shy when it came to working for them at DGI it was one of the names that came up after the party. Lowell seemed to like him well enough and he was retained for a while until Julian and went into a partnership there was no ill will between DGI and him that she knew. He was handsome. It had been a while since she had actually admired a man and she silently scolded herself she was still a married woman. Lowell and she no longer shared a bed but she was not going to stoop to his levels of embarrassment that was something that she told herself long ago. The shame she would feel afterwards she was sure would consume her something that was vastly different between herself and Lowell; she actually believed in the words she said on their wedding day. When Mason left and Julian proceeded to talk about her legal team she got tense at the mention of Lex Hessington, there was bad blood between her son and Lex but if it was the best option for her to get her due she wondered if she really wanted to refuse his services. She folded her hands politely on the table as she looked at Julian across the table, she wanted the best when it came to her divorce to make sure her legacy was in tact to ensure that her children were given what Lowell had promised them years ago and nothing less. If that meant that Julian, Lex and Mason could sway that for her then she had no objection to hiring them.

“My son has a severe dislike of Lex Hessington if perhaps we could arrange it so they don’t have to see each other that may be best. He is after all marrying Lex’s ex fiancee in a few weeks. I do remember you Julian it just took a moment, I apologize for that I’ve been in a fog for a few years. You worked for Lowell for years how do I know that you won’t turn on me to go to him and make sure that his wishes are fulfilled over mine?” Jackie said looking at him staring him down trying to read his face but like a lawyer it was stoic call her naive she had been screwed over so many times over the years when it came to Lowell Devonshire. She realized she was clutching and unclutching her folded hands all of this was so new to her the fire she felt inside of her ready to burst and explode to take what was hers, she had it before but now it was coming back after being buried inside of her for years. “I do apologize if that came off rude but surely you have to know that Lowell has made a fool do me repeatedly over the years. He has people in his pocket that I can’t touch which is why I reached out to Mason. Lowell and Tess seemed to have moved onto their perfect little family and well you see I want to make sure that my children’s future at DGI is completely secure. I want you to assure me that this new team is completely loyal to me and my children in every way possible. Mason I know is loyal as I have pointed out I have my doubts about Lex and yourself.” Jackie said leaning back in her chair feeling her body relax a bit she had it off her chest now her wishes for her divorce.

Julian smirked as she questioned his loyalty to her which was a smart question. Lowell throughout the years had amassed connections far and wide. What Jackie was doing was brave and she was fighting someone who had done her wrong. Folding his hands at his desk he knew that he had to convince her that he was on her side right her and right now. “Your youngest son Rory was only three years old when I saw you again. It was in these very offices but the building and the firm had a different name. I was working with Nick Silverman and you saw him about a divorce then. I’ve known that Lowell wasn’t faithful to you for a long time and never leaked a word to it to anyone. Hell it was a public secret everyone knew but you weren’t ready and Nick said it then. Look I’m not a spy nor am I loyal to Lowell Devonshire. I saw where loyalty to that man got you and no offense I didn’t stick around to get my turn. If you are paying for the best I will give you the best. Mason, Lex, and myself will dismantle whatever Lowell throws at you. I don’t have any problem or ill regard for the man. I just feel like he didn’t hire the best so he’ll suffer like any other person who comes up against me. Both Lex and Mason want to be partners, trust me neither one of them will do anything to mess this up. I do my research Jackie, I know that Jackson is marrying Lex’s ex fiance Dani Fraiser. This will give us global recognition and make them into legal stars. What more can these men want?”

“On a personal note when I was younger I always thought that you didn’t get treated fairly. I would see Lowell with Audrey or Tess while out on the town. I would think why would he leave Jackie at home, he had the most beautiful wife in town. It baffled me and I have to know that some men will never understand what they have in their grasp. Just know we all aren’t fools. I’ve been divorced for ten years now the first five were brutal. The going back and forth with my wife over the betterment of our teenagers at the time. Facing that I placed my career before my marriage and finding out my wife cheated with a random tennis instructor. I knew I had made a mistake. So I understand the fear of walking into a law office, I understand that you think that everyone is against you. I assure you nobody here is on Lowell Devonshire payroll. Everyone is on my payroll here and they want to please me. I’m the head partner here and I can tell you that my firm will not only stand on its word but get you everything you want.” Julian looked at her and smiled feeling like she understood that he wasn’t a spy or anything radical. “Say that we are your lawyers and I’ll send the documents to the courthouse. We’ll start the process of protecting not just you but your children’s legacies.” Julian looked at her and then took a sip of his tea. “He broke you but I don’t see any shatters or cracks, you truly are as remarkable as this town says you are.”

Jackie considered her options with Julian; she had never question why Lowell got a new legal team at DGI, looking back she had never really questioned a lot. She had wanted to make her marriage to Lowell work no matter the cost that she paid over the years, she loved him so much and always thought he would change. He would always promise he would and she knew it would kill her parents if they ended in a divorce the failure that she would be labeled was something she didn’t think she could bear back then. She had remembered that visit with Mark with Rory in tow the other children were at school for the day, Lowell was likely off on one of his business trips looking back likely to see Tess and Bliss and she closed her eyes. She had always believed the lies he would tell she would take him back and just accept it. She trusted Mason but her guard was up when it came to Lex. Given how much Jackson disliked him and she was pretty sure the feeling was mutual she would be placing that burden on herself to deal with down the line. On the other hand she needed representation for herself and her children and then her mind wandered to Zerick and she looked at Julian feeling a small flush in her cheeks when he complimented her.

“I’ve thought about this moment for years how it would feel, liberating maybe. I try you know to get that liberating feeling when I think about it, instead it feels like the entire world is crumbling and everything I built and sacrificed for was for nothing. It feels lifeless and void probably while I wear so much black nowadays.” She said quietly forcing back tears as she spoke, she was so tired of feeling like this when it came to Lowell Devonshire, like a complete and utter failure as his wife, was she simply not a good one over the years? She realized that she was about to break and instead closed her eyes remembering who she was doing this far Chauncey, Max, Jackson, Rory and Zerick who was now her responsibility to help. Then of course there were her grandchildren Madeline, Donovan and Jolene even by extension Fox. What example was she to them if she just put up with it longer and longer? “I would like my nephew to be protected as well. With everything that has happened my sister and my nephew deserve to be taken care of if you could guarantee to help me with that I will sign the papers to start the process. I know that may be an odd request, but I married Lowell and he betrayed me in the worst way possible and my sister and nephew paid the ultimate price for that as you probably have heard. I want to make that right. If I can make anything right I want to make that right.”

“You can’t.” Julian said looking at her honestly. “The past is done Jackie, you can’t fix the turmoil they went through. All you can do is what you are right now and that’s trying to make it right. I assure you that Kathleen will get the best care and Zerick will have a piece of the pie. Now I can say that we need to also know what his last will and testament states. That is big and I do mean big issue, so what I will do is secure you even after death. To ensure your place is locked and so are your children. Either way I’m willing to take on Lowell for you.” He saw the meeting was wrapping up and knew that he had to make his move or else she wouldn’t know. “My wife and I are divorced as I told you. That feeling of emptiness, wallowing if you were good enough, and the regret that you wasted so much time. Jackie you have a beautiful life ahead of you. You have children that love you, grandchildren that adore you and friends that need you. I happen to know that when are mended and healed in your heart. You will have someone waiting on you. Hell army of men waiting to show Lowell even from the grave what a fool he truly was.” Clearing his throat he stood up and smiled at her. Extending his hand for a shake. When she touched him Julian swore he saw the rest of his future.

“Black is beautiful on you but I think it isn’t your color. You deserve to live a life full of color Jackie and I hope to help bring some that to you. I’ll be checking on you soon.” Raising her hand he kissed it before he let her go. Picking up his phone. “Hello, Margaux, would you please call Ms. Devonshire and schedule our next official meeting. I want her to be a priority when she calls also. I don’t care if I’m on a call with the President, Jackie comes first. Shall I walk you out.” He said taking her arm. “I remember the first time you spoke to me, you told me my accent was funny and you walked away. Then I overheard you telling Gloria and Lowell to keep me. I have to ask Jacqueline why didn’t you push to be in the business more? You clearly had a mind for it and I happen to think DGI might even be bigger if you possibly had a hand in it. Not to undermine what Lowell has done, he turned it into the biggest company in America right now.” He saw Mason shocked expression at him walking out with Jackie arm and arm. “Mason, please see Ms. Devonshire gets home and I suggest you start studying your marriage law. Please send the papers to the courthouse.”

Jackie was frozen as everything became real for her this was happening when Jullian had picked up the phone and made the call. Her divorce from Lowell was started and her heart clenched for a moment and then unclenched, her breathing was shallow and she willed the tears away, so this was what over thirty years came down too. The fleeting feeling of it all passing and she didn’t miss the compliments that Juluan threw her way. She was not a dumb woman she knew she was beautiful it was something she had been told since her pageant days and now it felt like an entire new experience all over again. She took Julian’s hand in hers as he lead her out to where Mason was waiting for them, she had pushed for Lowell to keep Julian at the time. She felt that he was capable but of course Lowell had other plans when it came to DGI and later she learned Gloria was whispering in her husband’s ears calling much of the shots. Someone that she considered her closest friend, had whispered to her husband and turned their lives upside down starting fires and feuds that even now burned while others were quenched or no more than a small burning. She walked with Mason to the elevators and looked at her godson as she waited.

“Thank you Mason.” Jackie said realizing that she had not thanked him for any of it, especially arranging the meeting or starting the paperwork. She patted his shoulder as she got on the elevator seeing the door close in front of her before she let out an exhale and finally let a few tears slip out as she grabbed a tissue to dab her running mascara letting finality hit her.


Brenda sat at the private booth of La Callie as she looked out the window. The flickers of snow were falling and Christmas was only days away. She had a surprise for her children and knew for a fact that they’d be enthralled. Turning the ski resort that was Brooke’s into something more like the Crestwood Hotels. Not to mention they were going to buy Hotel LaGordia and remodel it into a Crestwood. It was a part of the plan and little did the Hessington’s and her children know, Charles was her plan. She had to secure her family’s future and the hotel industry along with a substantial new husband would place her right back into the high echelon of Atlas Falls. She refused to be a dolt and wait on Walter. You see he had chosen his children over them. His fear would never allow them to be together and that was fine. She had become certain that she deserved something more. More grand and more powerful than even before. As Steven’s wife she was able to manipulate things but if she snagged Charles she’d be able to finally show Jackie and Lauren what she was. Looking at Charles being escorted into the private area and to her booth. Brenda stood as she leaned in kissing both of his cheeks.

“Charles, I have great news. I’ve contacted the owners of Hotel LaGordia and the only stipulation of the sale is that we name it Crestwood Hotel LaGordia. I told them I’d get back to them but as you see the Kincaid’s and Hessington’s are making moves to secure our place in not just Atlas Falls but the world. Darling don’t mind me I’ve ordered us a bottle of champagne, and appetizers. I do hope the governor is a fan of oysters.” She said with a coy seductiveness. Running her hands through her hair. “You said you had some documents for me to sign and I’m ready Charles. I’m ready for anything that you are here to lead me to.” She said with a suggestive nature. “So what am I signing today Governor?”

Charles Hessington owned the entire state it could bend to his will if he wanted it and in this case he wanted Atlas Falls to bend to his will more specifically Brenda Kincaid. What he was planning was iron clad and looking at her she was desperate to matter again, it should have horrified him or at least made him sad. Instead he steadied his face nodding at the server at their table to simply refill her wine glass, alcohol was always her downfall even when he would come and entertain with Steven. Her call had come as a shock a few months back and then she latched onto him like a leech and he was happy to entertain her thoughts of grandeur when it came to their friendship and what she assumed was a partnership. Anderson was fine as an assistant but she really had warped herself into believing that he was going to hand his hard earned empire over to her she would get a rude awakening down the line. His son had made sure of that for all Lex’s flaws and there was a lot he really was a great lawyer clearing up things where he needed them cleared like that mess with Skye Morgan when it came to Whitney’s happiness with Ryan. He paused for a moment thinking that over and this was his revenge on Brenda’s family, Maggie was supposed to be nothing more than a slight distraction but much like her aunt before him had thoughts of grandeur too.

“Oh well Crestwood will stay of course but I’ve had my researchers do their due diligence and we’ll be dropping the La Gordia part of the name. La Gordia is simply an outdated name and since we are selling luxury Brenda it is better this way. I can assure you that the previous owners have been spoken too about this perhaps you misunderstood?” Charles said eyeing her evenly the chain would be known as the Crestwood hotels an ample and noble name that would benefit his dead wife. As for Anderson and their partnership as he had to remind Lex everything happened in good time and this was no different he would entertain Brenda for now because she needed him too and he wanted that ski resort to turn it into their property this would do both and then his children would continue to turn out the real estate that had made them rich and influential as needed. He had almost choked at the oysters did she really think that is where this was going? She was still stunning and gorgeous but he preferred his ladies of the night that knew there were no strings between them but he could man it up and seal this that way if needed. “I have brought the papers over for the merger of hotel LaGordia to be in our new company Crestwood together. I was so happy when you agreed to use it with me, it made the blow a little less to my children now that I have agreed to groom Anderson to take over. Whitney of course being the most hurt. I plan to announce as soon as the wedding is over if that is alright with you. Lex, Whitney and Ryan will then become a part of town. Making sure that they keep our mutual enemies in line of course.”

“Why of course.” She said, taking a sip of her champagne. Picking up the pen she immediately signed the documents and smiled at Charles. “Hotel LaGordia is no more welcome to the Crestwood Hotel. It sounds more regal and powerful oh Charles I’m so happy you think this will all work. I mean my money from Steven’s death plus I’m leveraging everything to make sure this works. Us as a team will finally show those Devonshire’s and Montgomery power doesn’t come from money. That’s cute but the true power is in the policy’s. I wish Hunter had the bug because honestly out of the two of them. You believe Hunter and Anderson is just so polished and unreal which is always so special to me because he’s my prized boy.” Hunter was endearing and she saw it was too bad he ran from what was naturally there. “Either way today is a celebration. I want to inform you of something. If we merge our families then we could even eventually push DGI out of Atlas Falls. You said you never cared for Lowell and I think I know how to do it. Over twenty years ago Walter came to me and said that his father when passing in his demented state said it was oil underneath The Fraiser Pub. If that’s true which I happen to know it is then we can use the oil for what we need.” Brenda tapped her fingers onto the table.

“I don’t want Dani to convince her father out of pity to give her that damn oil. It’s a fucking college staple and if I can get Walter to give it to me well I think we both will be the better for it. However I think I deserve certain liberties. Charles, what I’m suggesting is an arranged marriage.” Her entire life Brenda had been able to read a room and figure out what and who benefited her. This could benefit them both. “The oil could change the game but Walter controls The Pub with Lauren’s iron grip. If I get him I would need to know when I dump him I’ll become not only controller of the oil rig but Ms. Charles Hessington. I need to show these women I’m not through. I’m not done and I won’t stop until I get absolutely everything.” Brenda said with enough gumption and fight that impressed her. “They all look down on me and I have had to fight for every fucking thing I’ve had. Everything this time I will end up on top even if I have to bulldoze the love of my life to get it.” She spoke with as much venom as she could muster. “They all counted me out but I have you. I have something that they can never have I’ll have that fucking oil.”

Charles watched her intently as she signed the papers with barely a glance at the writing, inwardly he wanted to scream in victory. It was all his now the resort and most of the Kincaid fortune payback was a bitch and in this case it was easy to do to someone like Brenda. Someone who was so desperate to matter in society again and thinking they were friends. He didn’t have close friends except Walter the oil bit was intriguing and he would have to pick Walter’s brain about it later. The first thing he learned in politics was you kept your damned nose clean when it came to who you fucked and he never once cheated on his late wife because of it, he knew how far that could reach. One sniff of that and it was your downfall politically, something that Anderson had yet to learn but he wasn’t going to tell precious little Brenda about that. He saw her take another gulp of her wine and she suggested that they marry, he simply nodded his head at her as he saw Walter looking at them from the bar. Her little game trying to pit him against Walter was quite interesting and he felt his phone buzz and then responded to the text. Informing Lex that she had signed the papers without question as he reached over and put them securely in the briefcase.

“I am so glad that you are willing to do whatever it takes Brenda to make this partnership work. We’ll start small at first and then go from there. I would be very interested in what you think of the Pub and it’s assets.” Charles said playing along for now he had better plans for the Pub and that oil and he was patient he would wait till the time was right to pounce on it. He also knew that he didn’t have to backstab Walter or Lauren to get it. That was neither here nor there at the moment he was going to let those pieces fall where they landed and then manipulate the board to his advantage. Whitney and Lex could easily handle that when the time came. “I have no desire to remarry Brenda but us being lifelong friends and business partners is something I am looking forward to.” He said shooting her a reassuring smile as he did and then took a drink of his wine as Walter approached the table he stood up shaking his hand. “Walter, Brenda and I were just talking about you weren’t we dear. Did Dani get my wedding gift? Hopefully it wasn’t too much. How is Tamara?” He said part of him could only imagine the look of distaste on Jackson Devonshire’s face at the check he sent.

Walter had stopped by for a brunch meeting with the city council and was on his way out of the meeting when he spotted Charles with Brenda. Charles wasn’t due in town for a few more days if not two weeks of course he had talked about moving here, Dani had told him that Whitney and Ryan were house hunting. He had been helping Lauren prepare and get Tamara and Dylan settled in at her place. Helping his son try and make sense of what happened that he hadn’t really reached out to Charles since New York. He was grateful that Charles was one of the first governors to make a statement against Dimitri when the news came out and even offered his services to hunt Dimitri down and he was grateful for him and Lex for burying the press when it came to Tamara. He looked at Brenda and he had wanted to reach out to her over the last few weeks but ever since the news about Kendall he had been reluctant, it was devastating for him to learn that she had died. That she had died alone without knowing who she was because Brenda thought to give her away without even telling him that she existed. He tried not to be jealous; perhaps they were just having lunch; surely Charles would not cross that line he was an honorable man.

“I am sure she loved it. You’ve always spoiled her and treated her like family. You’ve always held a special place in her heart, you are her godfather. Charles that didn’t change when she and Lex. She and Whitney are still best friends so not all was lost between our families.” Walter said, his voice trailing off, letting the awkward silence sit between them. He had time to let it sink in that a reunion now would never happen Donovan and Jolene had all but solidified that for him. He looked at Brenda; he knew who Maggie was and knew it was a sore spot for all of them. However, Charles  said he had put that aside it seemed when he hired Anderson and started to groom him. “Tamara is trying her best and we’re trying to be as supportive as possible after what happened. Thank you for taking care of them while they were in New York having Lex handle the legal side was something we will always be grateful for and hopefully once Dimitri is caught we can begin to heal.” Walter said looking at Charles and then at Brenda. “Brenda how are you? I am sorry I haven’t reached out with the wedding coming up and with what happened to Tamara, it’s been in the back of my mind. Would you still like to accompany me to the wedding?” He finished almost seeing Charles spit out his drink. He knew Dani would hate it but if Lauren could bring Randall he saw no reason why he couldn’t bring Brenda.

Brenda looked at Charles confidently showing that Walter wasn’t done with her. She loved this man but somehow she knew he would never give her what she needed. He would always fear losing his children more than loving her. She heard all of it before and now just seeing him jealous standing before her. “I would love that Walter. I can’t believe that you are serious about taking us public.” She said, gripping her purse underneath the table because they always had this thing. Now he was doing exactly what she wanted. Lowering her head thinking about Dimitri even near her Brooke was too much. She loved Brooke so much and her little girl was so special to her. Her entire life had been a lie from her upbringing, to her relationship with Steven and now this. She just told Charles she would be in an arranged marriage and now her feelings were exploding. Brenda looked calm as she tried not to explode on the inside. “I would like to ask you to apprehend Dimitri Kavanaugh as soon as possible. If that man is out there then my daughter is in just as much danger as those other girls. He is demented and I’m don’t think the women of Atlas Falls are safe until he’s taken in.”

“Please if you have time sit down because I have an exciting announcement. Well Charles and I have gone into business together. While you were dealing with your issues I was making moves to reclaim my life. I have to grab this opportunity.” She said looking at him. “Well I should call Renards and see if they have any designer gowns left. It seems Jackie and Lowell wasted no expense for this wedding. I hate to compete but Atticus is now the crowned prince of Isla De Cruces and their wedding next year will be so lavish. We have quite the standard to beat now.” Brenda fluffed her hair as she saw Charles and Walter rolling their eyes. So what she bragged about her daughter being a princess. It was what she deserved. People had no idea how far Brenda struggled to get to the top and how much shit she took. Her life was perfect as Jackie and Lauren. She fought to get to the top and would never stop fighting. Now that Brooke would be a princess it was another notch to the top. Anderson married Kara who was filthy fucking rich without him, and Hunter was Mr. Devonshire to Max but he truly seemed to be in a happy place with the equally rich but more mannerable Bliss. Her children were on top and that’s when a twinge of guilt ached inside of her. Kendall would never have this moment, for her to be proud of her. Tears started to form in her eyes out of nowhere. “Pardon me something must have gotten in my eye.”

“I take that as my cue you two obviously have to sort this out. It was a pleasure to help you Walter. I am looking forward to this weekend and of course the wedding, I am sure Dani will look beautiful.” Charles said looking for the exit not wanting to stay and answer questions about his partnership with Brenda and besides he had to get Lex the paperwork to file it as quickly as possible. He had dreamed of Dani as a daughter in law his late wife had wished for it so much Lex proposed and it still burned him and Lex she had left. Partly because Lex got cold feet and mistook a few nights of freedom for a full on affair and because he trusted Brenda Kincaid’s niece, his mistake was one he would fix. In due time he had to remind himself that just like in an election you bid your time and their mark in Atlas Falls helped that and this move with Brenda solidified that. ”Brenda we will be in touch.” He finished leaning down and kissing her hand before walking away.

Walter watched Charles walk away. He had nothing to fear where Charles was concerned with Brenda or did he? He had pushed thoughts of Brenda being with someone else out of his head for so long and now he had to wonder if he had wasted so much time? Lauren was moving on, he eventually had to and he and Dani were at least speaking again he seemed to have repaired his family for now. “Lauren and Jackie haven’t really spared any expense on the wedding. I doubt Dani issued you a formal invitation but we could go together I could smooth it all over before the wedding. I know that she upset you and Brooke the other day, I would apologize for it Brenda but I told her and Braden months ago I had assumed you had done the same. I can’t change how Dani views you in my marriage to her mother when it is the truth. But Lauren and I are moving on.” Walter said looking at her it was the best he could do Dani had a tongue and always stated what was on her mind she always would, she got that from him and Lauren and it was trait that made him proud of her. He took a seat at the table and took her hand looking at her. “Come to the wedding with me. We can put this aside to show that we made mistakes, try again Brenda without Lauren or Steven. See how it goes. Gently ease the kids into it and support each other’s children, as I have a feeling what happened isn’t going away for them. We can try and fix it though together this time.”

Brenda knew her heart was jumping at the opportunity she had just written Walter off. Here he was spilling his heart and literally trying with her. That was enough to make her see, that maybe she was wrong. Maybe they actually had a shot at happiness. “I was thinking about Kendall a few moments ago. I’m so sorry Walter for what I did. Somehow you constantly are there for me. Everytime I think we are over you find me. You find me and this time I’m not at my lowest. I’m stronger now that we are going to be together. Oh Walter it’s the only thing I’ve wanted in my life. I have my son back in Atlas Falls, Hunter is engaged to Bliss which is better than Max, my daughter is marrying the newly minted crowned prince, and to top it off I’m starting a business with Charles. This is what I mean sometimes we have to close those doors to open new ones. Steven’s death meant we as a couple could live. I’m so sorry that I didn’t tell Anderson, Hunter, or Brooke. I was ashamed of Kendall, or myself of our love but what is to be ashamed of now. Lauren is happy, and so are you free.” Brenda poured him a glass of champagne.

“If we go back to the mansion now we could have some spare time to ourselves. Or I can get us a suite at Hotel LaGordia before the name changes to the Crestwood. I’m so excited for our future together. A future that we will make the town envious of.” She leaned in and kissed him passionately as she smiled at her future. “I’ve always wanted this, I’ve always wanted us to be together forever and it’s finally happening and nothing and no one will ruin this for us. No more secrets and no more lies between us.”


Since finding out Belle was his current long lost child, Lowell had found himself in a conundrum. It looked even worse now to his family members that Belle was his but he was grateful to have a child in his corner. Belle had become something special to him. She listened to the old stories of his adventures in old Hollywood with his father. She wanted to know his past and honestly didn’t believe Zerick one bit. In fact it made him quite curious about what Belle experienced in Forbes home. He didn’t push her to tell him he instead dropped emotional bombs on her. Telling her of memories of his other children and saying how much it was killing him. The look in her eyes said it all. Belle knew more than she was letting on but his curiosity peaked with Tess. She also seemed to always be around when Belle was about to break. He loved and appreciated Tess’s loyalty to him but if she knew more than he had to know. He didn’t blame her for her silence. Tess was now getting him and had a chance to love him without Jackie. He understood that more than she knew. The love he felt for Tess was just as real as the love he felt for Jackie. It was different though. Tess didn’t try to change him and she let him be as devastatingly destructive as he wanted. Jackie didn’t indulge his darkness if anything she always wanted him to be better and that was something he admired in his wife. As his chauffeur rolled him into La Callie’s private rooms he looked up and saw Tony. Recently he’d be nostalgic maybe it was his impending death, or maybe he just wanted to clear his name. Either way the past was present and it was almost forty years since he took DGI public to this very day. The day he set up Pierre, threw out Harvey, fired Forbes, and made Walter’s legacy his very own. Today was the day of the party that changed all of their destinies.

Looking at his old friend he saw a bottle of Moet, Lowell’s favorite and what they always did to celebrate a monumental moment in his life. The moment he chose to no longer be mediocre and finally take what was his. Take power by the reigns and never let go. Truly his most beloved love would always be his first child DGI. As he looked at Tony pouring them a glass. “Tony, I have to ask you, have you fixed your relationship with Mason? Look I wouldn’t want any of my children to be a homosexual but I would love them no different. I hope you see that Mason is only doing what he truly believes to be right. You have to know that I’d do anything to have my children back.” Lowell commented as he looked at his phone. The only way to keep up with Chauncey, Jackson, Max, Bliss, and Rory was their social media. Not only that he watched Zerick’s social media praying he’d slip and leave a clue on how he and Forbes rigged the DNA test. He was sure of it. Forbes would do anything to sabotage him and this wouldn’t be the last time he came after him before his death. The man one track mind would be the reason he’d always lose. “I just miss them. I miss my family.”

Tony hadn’t been sleeping well the past few weeks so many memories were wrapped up in this week so many lies he had told over the years, lies to make an image last. He and Ophelia and been talking about getting remarried quietly with Mason, Zach, Jamal, Val, Selina and surprisingly Elliot in attendance it was going to be a private affair over Christmas his entire family in attendance they had decided it was the best way to start to heal their family. Of course they could have sprung for a huge wedding but as Ophelia had pointed out they had already done that. She was busy at the hospital and over the last few weeks in between his memories and nightmares she had begun to ask questions about what was wrong. He had lied, he really just needed to get through his week and so he had asked her to get him some Ambien to help him sleep last night and it had worked. Now that Lowell was here though he let it sink in, his best friend was dying everyone in town had turned their back on him. He was one of the few who didn’t believe that Zerick was telling the truth; he also didn’t believe that Lowell should put up with his children at the moment on the other hand. Lowell shacking up with Tess instead of fighting for Jackie was going to be his downfall with his entire family. He then did something even more crazy to call Walter to help him with what was going on with Lowell unsure if he would even show.

“After what happened with Selina Mason and I talked, we’re in a better place now Lowell it was hard at first very hard to sit and listen but what choice did I have? Losing Mason forever or accepting who he is? I would rather accept who he was than lose him.” Tony said seeing Lowell pull out his phone and check it, it had to have been hard when it came to not seeing his own children or being a part of their lives and he poured them a glass before leaning back. He wasn’t sure what the right or the wrong thing was to say when it came to what Lowell was going through. “I think they are all upset at the moment. Lowell clearly you have to understand that you brought Bliss into their lives last year and threw her in there without a care or regard to how they felt. Humiliated their mother in the process and then did it all over again with Belle.” Tony said seeing Lowell glare at him and he almost rolled his eyes. They had never held anything back from each other over the years and this would be the same. “You want my opinion on it try to be an active part of the wedding, get to the bottom of this rubbish that you are Zerick’s father instead of begging them to believe in your innocence. In over thirty years I’ve never seen you wallow, I’ve seen you be dumb as hell with women but never wallow or let a woman like Tess Blisston control the narrative. You don’t think it’s a little coincidental that she hid Belle all these years and popped up just when you think you need her?”

Lowell gritted his teeth as a mirror he had refused to look into faced him. Tony was speaking the truth, everything was all too convenient but he wasn’t going to turn his back on it. “My soul aches for my children and sometimes Jackie. I’m dying Tony and it’s not something I can quite ignore. I’m confined to a wheelchair right now and when I stand I’m winded and can barely move. My body is giving up but my mind is sharp as a tact. Zerick has been raised with Forbes and I do believe he believes Forbes lies about me. I never touched that girl and I had no interest remembering every detail of that night. Now I can’t seem to forget it Tony and I can’t escape if I reveal the truth I’ll be destroying my own. My own blood.” Lowell said looking up at his best friend. “The world somehow feels like it’s getting heavier because Camilla called. She’s doing really well and want to hear something funny? She adopted a kid and even had one. Linus hasn’t stopped calling and checking on me. He’s coming for the wedding and so is Camilla. If I reveal Zerick then I’ll be breaking a promise that I promised a long time ago. My father Tony told me to protect my own and I promised. How can I do that if I expose my biggest sin? I’ve lost everything and I’m begging because if they know, they’ll never look at me the same. I know Tony, I know who raped Katie. I know who Zerick’s father is.” Lowell looked up at his best friend not knowing who else to talk to like this. “So if Tess is getting a fantasy ending and I get a fucking child who adores me and isn’t shunning me sobeit. Don’t judge a dying man but I guess I have no choice now do I? If I don’t I think I lose my legacy and everything I’ve worked for. That just wasn’t an option and I’m not going to give up DGI that easily. I’m not going to walk away and die just easy.”

Lowell looked at Tony’s teary eyes and knew this was weighing on his friend. He closed his eyes wiping his eyes. “I won’t go easy Tony so I’m going to expose the truth of that night and there it is again. This feeling of regret and that I made a mistake that made me sell my soul over thirty years ago. I thought that I didn’t mind it but Tony I don’t want to die. I thought that I was going to be okay with this but Tony I’m dying and my family hates me. If I expose the truth then I know it might not be much to hold onto so maybe dying with this over me could be fine. Why ruin others’ lives with the past but then I remember. I’m fucking Lowell Devonshire. I’m fucking Lowell Devonshire and these bastards have made a incisive effort to humiliate me and dismantle everything I’ve built. No Tony so I’m going to tell everyone soon okay and I’m going to let that kid know who his dad is. It’s not me but I need to get another DNA test to prove it one that nobody else can tamper with.” Lowell looked over at the bar. “Pour me a damn drink. I’m crying and talking about dying and you don’t have me a drink. You bastard.” He laughed heartily. “Hell what other friend will you say you had to discuss fake long lost kids with? None but me.”

Walter had left the hotel and headed to his second meeting more like a summons from Tony and he at first thought he wasn’t going to go. Lowell had confided in him his innocence at the hospital after the twins were born but even that was hard to accept. He wasn’t sure if it was Lowell’s mind that was going, DNA was hard cold evidence hard to refute he had even went to the hospital and looked at the security cameras Rory and Zerick had entered the room as had the technician. Jackie had set the appointment, so the next thing was the lab made a mistake even then he knew it was a long shot. He had tried to ask Dani about it and his daughter gave no indication that Jackson was going to forgive his father anytime soon but they allowed him to see the twins. Perhaps the wedding was the best place for them all to resolve this and he had stayed back listening to Lowell drown on about family loyalty a line he always gave only this time it as costing him more than DGI or money it was costing him something much more. He was loyal to his family too but he would lay down his life for his children, they were hurt about Kendall but they were working through it but he certainly didn’t do it and hurt Lauren to get back in their good graces to do it. That is the part truly baffling him unless Lowell had been lying for over thirty years he still put other women above Jackie the woman he claimed to love and the mother of his children.

“Family this family that, you wanted me back in this fold and yet that is all you yammer on about. You humiliated them first, humiliated their mother first. What did you expect your children to do rollover and welcome Tess and Belle into the fold with open arms? I’ll tell you first hand it doesn’t work like that and even I know that I have the sense to know that your children are more cunning and more stubborn than even my own.” Walter said, pouring Lowell a drink as he slid it across the table and stepped out from the shadows perhaps he and Tony could convince him to just spill what in the hell was going on. The longer Lowell let this go on the longer his own children would be poisoned against him and not by Jackie or the press but his own doing. “You’re playing with a fire that is about to burn your entire house down because of a secret you swore to your father something you mention to me and Tony and neither of us can help you unless you tell us that secret. I may not be Jackson’s biggest fan but he doesn’t deserve this lie you are feeding them while you build up this fantasy with Belle and Tess hiding behind this family secret. Years ago I thought better of you when it came to the likes of Tess Blisston, I got the Audrey thing. I had Brenda you were drawn to Audrey but Tess you assured everyone was a fling. I always thought you loved Jackie more than that apparently we were all wrong you’d keep up a lie and then turn a blind eye to Tess’s sudden arrival with a second long lost child and cling to it like a life preserver.” Walter said taking a sip of his Fraiser double malt and looking at Lowell glare at him. “You want to know how this will end if you continue?”

“Tess just happened.” He said barking at his friends. “I thought I was done hurting Jackie and she came into my life like a moth and I was the flame. I couldn’t stop myself and I knew I was hurting my soulmate but I couldn’t stop.” Lowell admitted as he started to weep. “I was weak and Tess saw it in me. I always thought it was something better or something newer to have and to own. I turned my heart into a business deal and when I finally saw what I had done to my wife. She doesn’t talk about it but we were supposed to have a daughter after Max. I did this to her, I took life from Jackie when she gave me life. I gave up because I don’t feel worthy of her anymore. She doesn’t deserve what I’ve done to her. Call it guilt but Jackie thinking a monster is the worst thing I’ve done to her. I let her believe that I raped Kathleen because I know who did.” He looked at his friends and knew it was now or never. “Alright I’ll tell you but this doesn’t leave this room for now. We will together figure this out. I don’t know why Walter but you have been in my corner recently. I won’t forget it and Tony, you are the brother that I always wanted.”


The smell of freshly baked apple pie was wafting throughout the Kincaid mansion. It would be Fox’s first Christmas with the Kincaid’s and she was determined to make it perfect. Every damn gift that he wanted Santa had rewarded him with. Not only that she had Lex Hessington looking into every trick in the book to keep Dimitri away from Fox. Lex was sure they had a solid case to not only remove Fox from Dimitri’s custody but away from Isla De Cruces. Bliss would give him his legacy but only when the time was right. She wasn’t going to have Fox turn out anything like Dimitri. So the best thing to do was possibly keep him away from being a prince and the crown. A crown that had turned what she heard was a good kid into a demented rapist. She wasn’t going to let that happen to her son. She wasn’t going to let the power of a kingdom corrupt him. She walked outside watching Wyatt chasing after Fox and Miles. They seemed to look up to Wyatt and she knew that they’d all have years together. This was the first of many because of the love she felt for Hunter. This man had taken her troubles and turned it into his own. He looked at her son and said whether he was his own blood or not. That was enough to fill her with love but when he proposed and became determined to be a family. Well that showed her that she found her soulmate.

Wearing an oversized sweater dress and knee length leather boots she walked to the fire place. Stooping down she extended her hands out until she felt a hand on her shoulder. Startled, she jumped giggling when she saw it was Hunter. “Sorry ever since Tamara’s rape I’ve been a little nervous. I know Dimitri isn’t stupid enough to just be seen. He’s hiding out and if that’s the case in my opinion he’s even more dangerous. His back is against the wall and I just have to ask you a question. When we were in New York, Tamara said it was my fault that Dimitri was here. She said it was my fault that she was raped and how I brought all of this to Atlas Falls. I do think the pain was talking but the sting of it was that I sort of agree. I brought this monster into all of your lives. He’s here because of me and our son. Something Tamara said just stuck with me is it my fault? Did I do this to you all? Did I bring the devil in our lives?”

Hunter had been trying to be supportive ever since they went to New York and faced the reality of what was going on when it came to Dimitri and he had reached out to Anderson for advice. He was a bit floored at his brother’s suggest but made the call and had a private meeting without Bliss the other day in New York for the new lawyer he hired. Mason was his friend and he had given him and Bliss advice that they were still considering but getting married right now he felt was so rash and not to mention rude to his best friend and he knew Bliss felt the same. Instead he went to someone who was versed in law left nad right and that was certified in international law too something Mason had barely dabbled in. Lex had even suggested that he and Mason could work on the case as it unfolded and as necessary and he had agreed. He had yet to tell Bliss but seeing her so jumpy he knew he had too. He had thought over what Tamara had said then out of anger but he also knew she had said it out of anger at what Dimitri did to her not because of Bliss. Had Bliss come to Atlas Falls, yes had she brought Dimitri with her in a way yes but none of his actions were her fault and he saw her blaming herself in her eyes and he sighed wrapping her in his arms hugging her tightly.

“None of what happened to Tamara is your fault she was angry Bliss, given the circumstances she was lashing it out it is completely normal for that to happen. You are safe here at the house we’ve hired some extra security and we have Fox here with us. Dimitri would be a damned fool to show up here with an arrest warrant out for him in New York. Years from now Tamara is going to look back on what she said and see it was wrong and better yet you’re going to be standing there next to her knowing that she was brave enough to press charges in New York after everyone showed up to support her.” Hunter said gently rubbing her back and seeing her smile just a bit before he pulled back and flipped the light on the fireplace setting it ablaze. He could tell that the entire Dimitri thing was worrying her and he could also tell that she wanted to desperately reach out to Tamara again and she should. The wounds that she was facing, Bliss had lived through them more than he ever wanted to know but it is what he admired about her. “I need to talk to you about something Mason is one of my best friends but he’s not the best for what we are about to face. He gave us great ideas for things to come and I know we still haven’t decided when we want to get married. I hired a second lawyer, you don’t like him but you need to put that aside I hired Lex earlier this week. He’ll be here in a few days and stay till this shit with Dimitri is over.”

Bliss wanted to say she was shocked but she was more amazed than anything. She wiped her eyes and she leaned in knowing that she was right in being with him. Hunter Kincaid was the most special man she ever knew. After all the pain she went through Bliss knew God blessed her with him. It would take a little time but with Hunter she’d be whole again. Some pain was slow healing and sometimes it was like putting a bandaid on a gunshot wound. Dimitri was the latter who kept shooting her with so many bullets. As she pulled back from their embrace she smiled at him. “Hunter, thank-you I know Lex isn’t morally the best person and that might be the exact reason I need him on my side. He’ll do anything to win and I need him to do anything. Sometimes my mind tricks me and I get scared with Dimitri but you have calmed me down and comfort me so much. I hate to say it but I would marry you right now but I want to wait. It’s hard to keep my calm when I think about him even being near Fox. I want him to have his legacy and life in Isla De Cruces as the prince. It’s a beautiful culture and heritage but I don’t think I can let him out of my sight again. I don’t think I can handle that Hunter, I’ll go crazy if I can’t see him and if he isn’t near me.” She shook her head no letting him no she wasn’t going to do it. “I’ll kill Dimitri before he takes Fox from me.”

“Why do we need a date?” Bliss asked with a smile. “I mean whatever day we feel like doing it in the next week let’s do it. Let’s just get married on the day we feel like. I don’t want a big frilly wedding after all I did that already. I can marry you anytime, any place, anywhere.” She said smiling brightly. “I want to have a family with you Hunter. I want to get a little boy and a little girl who will be absolutely rotten because Brenda will make her that way. I want a fun wedding this time because this will be the last time I will ever get married. You have given me so much and I want to give you everything you want. I want to make sure you have it all Hunter.” She said walking up kissing him. “So we never discussed how many children you want? I mean Hunter, do you want a big family? Or are you alright with us, have one more and we are done? I mean I see so many babies in our future and you are looking like woman you are crazy.” She said laughing as she saw Miles and Fox wrestling in the snow. “They really like each other. Lex is in New York, still I presume after all the Hessington’s are basically staying here right now right? I mean I text with Brooke we have this Kincaid crazy Brenda thread. It’s really fun we talk about all the crazy things your mom does in a week’s span.”

“I want us to be happy. Bliss put this entire thing with Dimitri to rest. I think I’d like a child maybe two Max was never really the motherly type; she was very adamant that she didn’t want them. It caused a lot of problems for us. She knew I did want one and I tried to be supportive as her career at DGI took over and I started to work for the city. I think that was when her affairs started with some politicians’ son in law and eventually Philip. I was consumed with work.” Hunter said looking at her looking back his first mistake was marrying Max not that he didn’t love her he did they grew up together but it wasn’t the go to the ends of the earth love on her end that it was for him. His father pressured him into proposing to her and he knew it would please both their families so he did right after college and then he realized they weren’t young lovers in college they both had careers and very vastly different plans for their future. “Lex can be an asshole. It’s what makes him the best for the job to handle the case with Fox. I trust Anderson’s judgement on this. I want the best. I want Dimitri out of our lives. I want you and Fox safe here in Atlas Falls. Mason is good at the easy and the good stuff but we need someone for the not so pretty stuff. Someone who isn’t afraid to play dirty when we need them too.” Hunter said looking at her and then over at the window as Fox and Miles played.

“I want to get married just not in a huge production I’ve been there and done that with Max and I don’t want to steal Jackson and Dani’s thunder either you know? Maybe we should just do it quietly immediate family like Anderson, Cara, Brooke and Wyatt on my side. You can pick who you want on your side I haven’t really asked how you felt about Lowell being at our wedding but I’ll let you make that choice.” Hunter said he was still not sure when they should do it and he jumped a little when the doorbell rang. He had wanted to talk more to Bliss about their plans on when they wanted to get married and he starred at the woman on the other side of the door and the file he had in her hand. “Can I help you?” He asked seeing Bliss step out and fear cross over her entire face.

“Hunter Kincaid?” The woman said smiling at him and then turning her hard cold eyes to Bliss. “Her royal former highness. Dimitri sends his regards I have court papers here filing for sole custody of the minor Fox Kavanaugh to be turned over to myself.” She spat looking at Bliss shaking and then saw Hunter looking between them both. “How rude of me Amanda Creed lawyer for Dimtri Kavanagh and by extension the royal family one of many lawyers Bliss and I are well acquainted. You’ll see the paperwork is in order as Fox is not a natural born US citizen and neither is his mother it really is in his best interest that he is returned to the crown. My client has requested that until a formal hearing can be issued which should happen after the New Year that he be turned back over to a proper guardian either myself or his brother.” She said looking at the horror on Bliss’s face she didn’t know who they had hired it really wouldn’t matter when it came to the law and there were ways to fight this but if Bliss bolted and just turned Fox over it looked like a complete win just what she and Dimitri needed. “Bliss turned him over to the crown when she fled and abandoned him. I’ll give you fifteen minutes Mr. Kincaid before I call the police to invoke the paperwork.”

Bliss’ heart started to pound hard. She was just saying she wouldn’t release Fox to anyone not a damn soul. She wasn’t about to lose him. Taking a deep gulp she stepped back because Amanda Creed wasn’t just a lawyer for the crown she was also a mistress. When they were married this was the first woman she found out he was sleeping with. As she stepped back she shook her head. “Amanda you aren’t getting my son! If you think I’m handing him off to you bitch you’ve lost your mind.” Bliss spat back. “She knows Hunter, she was there so many times when he beat and dragged me out of the throne room. You know how much this man is a monster and he doesn’t hit you right now Amanda but he will.” She said looking at her shocked a woman would do this to another woman. Bliss walked away to go outside and grab Fox. Waving at the nanny to get Miles and she saw Ryan walking outside for Miles also. Storming past Ryan with her son she walked upstairs and grabbed a bag. If she had to today she was leaving but Dimitri would never get custody of Fox.

“Ms. Creed.” Lex called out to Amanda with a smirk on his face. “Those legal documents are a pile of shit and if you don’t want me to have you escorted off the personal property of the Kincaids. Then I suggest you stop harassing my client. What judge in fucking America would dare place a child inside a rapist’s arms. Now you can sit here and pretend that I won’t have those documents ginsued. When I’m done embarrassing you in open court you might not have a legal career. Now I don’t think you know what you’re dealing with but as of today, I’m coming from Isla De Cruces. My friend Hunter paid for my vacation and all the dirt me and my associates dug up on not just Dimitri but you. I will bury you but I’d much rather do it in court so everyone can see what I will do to anyone who comes after Fox Kavanaugh. Dimitri has a rape charge against him and if you think any judge will let a Devonshire get fucked over by a known rapist you got another thing coming. So let’s call the police and see who the kids stay with. You know the police department that Dimitri has literally shown no respect for. He raped the fucking ADA’s fiance do you think due process is on your side Amanda get the fuck out. All I have to do is dial up my old friend Braden and those documents mean nothing. So we are at a stand still. I won’t be allowing Fox to leave Bliss custody and I have some documents for you Amanda.” Lex said incredulously as if he didn’t know what he was about to do. “These are legal papers changing Fox’s last name from Kavanaugh to Kincaid. The next is to officially cut all ties to Isla De Cruces. Bliss is giving up his succession to the crown. The final document is our court date to sever all ties to Dimitri and his parental rights. I have so many character witnesses and so much dirt that I’m daring you to try me. I’m daring you to come against me. When I’m done Dimitri will make Bill Cosby, Harvey Weinstein, and all other fucking abuser look like Barney the Dinosaur.”

Bliss stepped out with Fox in her arms as she looked at Amanda showing she wasn’t giving up her son. “Get out or else I swear I will rip apart with my bare hands. Nobody is taking my son. You know I didn’t leave him because if I stayed he wouldn’t have a mother. Get out bitch!” Covering her son’s ears so she didn’t hear the foul words that were being spewed.

Amanda looked at them all and then looked at Lex Hessington, probably one of the best attorney’s in the country when it came to private lawyers you could afford. He had called her bluff it was a reach she had told Dimtiri that when he called her holed up in a dirty hotel that he wanted her to reach for Fox. She didn’t think that Bliss would have acted so fast then again things were changing rapidly when it came to the crown too. Atticus was crown prince now, Dimitri was on the outs he was just a misunderstood man. Everyone would see that when they had him their day in court Lex wanted to shout and holler that his case was so solid he wasn’t the only one that could create a perfect little image of what was best for Fox. She knew Dimitri in and out women wanted him, threw themselves at him she was one of them Bliss was too. “I see your argument Mr. Hessington it will be a pleasure to see you all in court. For now it would seem your documents are stronger than mine and Fox does look well cared for and I’d hate to be the one that upsets him. Bliss did you tell them all how he cried in the hallway that night while you left and you simply left him behind?” Amanda said looking at her and then saw Hunter lunge. “Temper temper you surely know how to pick them don’t you? Or maybe it is just you.”

“Get out you are pathetic to think that Dimitri won’t hurt you. He hurts every woman he’s ever been around. He has broken them and hell he broke his own father. He made his father relinquish the throne to Atticus don’t you see. Or are you too busy looking at what’s between his legs? Go and tell him he wanted war against the Devonshire’s? Now he has to go up against the Kincaid’s, Devonshire’s, and Hessington’s. We will not falter in stopping him, you warn him. You let him know I’m coming for him. What he did to Tamara was disgusting and what he did to Selina was vile. I’m not going to let him hurt another woman. You let him know I’m coming for him.” Bliss said with a ferocity she had never felt before. “Tell him he’ll die before he touches Fox again.” Standing tall for the first time Bliss knew she was ready to fight tooth and nail against Dimitri to ensure Fox’s future was nothing like his biological father’s.


Forbes stood looking at the skyline of Atlas Falls unsure of what to do next. Ever since last week when Dimitri and he failed at an epic proportion MontCorp was under attack. Women from the Metoo and TimesUp movement had attacked his company. Investors for his energy division had all but dried up and he was about to lose a sizable lead over DGI. If he would have gotten Ilsa De Cruces he’d have ensured a future that his company was competition for DGI. Now he wasn’t sure he’d survive until the end of the year that bothered him deeply. As he walked into his conference room he saw Philip still pretending in that wheelchair. He respected a long game and Philip clearly was looking to make Hunter, Bliss, and Max pay. That was something he never saw out of his son, conviction. He was convinced they wronged him and was going to do anything to make them all pay. He called the two of his children that had business degrees. Both Cassie and Philip graduated at the top of their classes and although Cassie minored in silly journalism, she was a pitbull. She had to have something to help him because unlike Philip he truly saw and understood Cassie’s power. She lulled you into a false sense of confidence and then striked. Much like she was doing with Jon Harrison. Cassandra has the key to either save her relationship with that pathetic cop or end it. Depending on what and how she revealed this to him.

Clearing his throat he noticed Philip spinning around in his wheelchair. His eyes were hardened but he saw the satisfaction. The look of glee that Forbes was about to ask them what they should do. That infuriated him because he was beginning to see signs of aging. In the past he would have slithered out of this but now he was so stuck. Most of all Zerick had been calling him nonstop saying he was going to get Lowell. This wasn’t good. Zerick was exhausting all his mental space due to his rage. He looked at the calendar; it was literally the day Zerick was conceived. Ironic all this happening now wasn’t it? Sitting down at the conference room table he saw Cassie breezing into the room. She was looking confident. So confident that she was going to get everything she wanted. Forbes’ eyes narrowed because he knew as long as she was with that cop Cassie would never join his side. So he had a plan, maybe it was time for Jon to know everything. When she sat at the table he looked directly at them both. “I haven’t been a favorable father but I’m no rapist nor am I someone who condone the behavior. One of the biggest investors in MontCorp is Angelica and none other than Harvey LeClerq. He had his brother be the proxy and eventually through malcanations of Pierre he got a seat on the board. This means that MontCorp is partially owned by the LeClerq family also. Well Pierre has sent word they are sending someone to fix this. I want to know how we MontCorp fix our image? Cassandra don’t say you don’t care because I assure you that you will if you ever stop that career at that trashy little newspaper.”

Philip rolled his eyes knowing that his father needed them. Not only that he wasn’t going to let MontCorp go down without a fight. He hated his father with a thousand fires from a thousand suns but he wouldn’t let his legacy falter. What this told Philip was his father needed them because he didn’t know how to compete in the modern era. He was becoming a relic and soon the crows would be around for the old man’s death. He, unlike Cassie knew that MontCorp was a priority but he wouldn’t let Forbes know that nor Cassie. His father always favored her because of her features and beauty. She looked like their mother and he assumed that’s why out of all his children Forbes favored Cassie the most. He also seemed to hurt her deepest also he knew they shared some secret. It was all over Forbes when Cassie stepped out of line he had something to put her in her place. Hell she started off the summer saying she’d never return yet here she was. He knew if Forbes dropped dead right now Cassie would be his heir. That infuriated him. Philip knew what it was and it was so potent that it clouded his judgement about who should lead MontCorp in the future. Forbes was jealous that he was young and vital. Power was just at his cusp while like Lowell he was dwindling and becoming a shell of the man he was.

“Well father it’s simple we need to divert the media’s attention. Now with what is question after all we were about to take over the entire energy division and now we have to lay off all these people. It’s not a good look at this moment. We failed on a global scale so I’m asking you what do you want us to do to fix this? I mean it’s your choice but I say we do something new. Instead of going after Forbes let’s finish what you made your new fortune on. Construction is our strong suit. We need to make money to help stop the bleeding of MontCorp, then let’s build something that someone wants. It seems simple to me.” Philip said looking at Cassie. “You however perhaps disagree with my notion to ignore everything. I mean father has said MontCorp doesn’t condone rape and we aren’t apart of Dimitri antics. I don’t know what else it is to be done.”

Cassie had been working overtime assuring investors and then painting the picture in the papers as she needed it to be. Montcorp had been duped in the Dimitri Kavanaugh saga and then she played even dirtier making sure Bliss’s name was mentioned in every article about how she should have given off a warning if he was that dangerous. She took it a step further and ran with Selina’s name as well to the point Selina’s lawyer had sent over a cease and desist on it. Investors were pulling out but it had died down just a tad thanks to that and even Jon had looked at her side eyed when she ran the story as much as she and her father had their issues MontCorp was her and Philip’s birthright and she wasn’t going to let it go down in flames because of Dimitri. So if that meant passing some of the blame of what happened with Tamara on the shoulders of Selina and Bliss then she was going to do it. She wondered if it was costing her Jon in the process but he knew who she was when they started dating and fucking and everything in between. She was also trying to figure out what was going on with him. Jon was jumpy lately and she almost had freaked out about everything with Miles. Only a text to Miranda had confirmed for her that as far as Jon knew he was still in the dark, that was her play she was not ready for him to know. She was still trying to figure out a way to get Skye Morgan out of their lives and had instead learned that the bitch had tried out for a part in the local play and even an email to the director to fire her didn’t work.

“I’ve been diverting the media’s attention all week soon this will blow over Atlas Falls will have something else to gossip about. You know what would be good if you actually had any movement with Max, Hunter and Bliss that should be what we are aiming for instead of you playing games in a chair. Divert the attention off of the fact that father made an ill choice in a business partner and instead turn it back on the Devonshire brats and the fact that they shot you and didn’t serve anytime for it.” Cassie said looking at her brother and then over at her father she didn’t think that MontCorp couldn’t overcome this but they weren’t going to overcome it unless they didn’t have a plan. Her plan was simple put the heat back on the Devonshire’s and let the pieces fall where they may. She could handle that when it came to the family she would take care of it in the media. “I can continue to work the angle to our advantage father but you and Philip need to move on Lowell and the Devonshire’s now while they are weak if we want to get out of Dimitri Kavanaughs’s shadow and the overcast it has left on MontCorp. Let me take the lead on this and I can get MontCorp back to what it was just our family I am sure Greer is something that we can just get rid of as well.”

Philip was shocked at how Cassie barked and her tone was fully siding with father. Interesting he thought to himself, she finally saw the power of making MontCorp work. Now all of the sudden she cared after playing editor to the local newspaper that nobody gave a fuck about. She wanted to be basic so badly and she loved to pretend to be good. The fact of the matter was that Montgomery’s were all for themselves and Cassie digging into an opened wound meant one thing. She was finally ready to be the golden child. The daughter who he loved and he would hand everything over to. That wasn’t acceptable. “I have a date for a wedding coming up and so do you Cassie. You’re attending with Jon correct? Well I have a present for Bliss, Hunter, and Max that day. So you just wait my little act is almost up and I’ll be out of this seat to save this company. You throwing the scent on Bliss and Selina was cute but let’s call a spade a spade. You haven’t been invested in this company and if you were then you’d know we have to hear this bitch out. Greer is here as Pierre’s proxy because they are on the board of directors. So she’s basically Pierre’s lackey.” Philip leaned back and watched her face contort in irritation.

“You know I was wondering what you two had going on.” He said, twiddling a pen between his fingers as he looked at Cassie with a satisfied expression on his face. “I can’t recall the last time my father has personally called in our family private eye. So I had him fax over the report I said father needed me to have a copy. Wow this is very Montgomery of you Cassie so don’t judge me and my demented little game. You are hiding a baby from your boyfriend well not your and his baby more like his and Skye Morgan’s. Man that is so interesting that Skye and Jon have a kid? Do you think that they’ll reunite? I have so many questions sis on why you aren’t opening your mouth. Isn’t your love so impenetrable? So strong that you flagrantly gave up our legacy to love him so much. You don’t question me and my gumption because what I am about to do is going to get us ahead for once you bitch.” Philip said calmly as he leaned back.

Greer walked in and she immediately felt the tension and knew she could exploit it. As she smiled at them all sensing she immediately appeared at the wrong but right moment. “Sorry if I’m late but the board has called this meeting due to the financial bleeding of MontCorp. My father has placed me in charge to help you with stopping that. So effective immediately the board is stopping all funding to MontCorp energy division it’s over. It’s done and I no longer believe that it will ever be a smart move. So where do we pivot? Simple, MontCorp has made some of the most stunning monuments in the last twenty years and constructed some of the Americas and the world’s most stunning buildings. Do what we know. Go back to making things and constructing America to return to the top. I’m suggesting that Philip blackmail Hunter with the truth of his shooting. Before I was exiled completely I happened to hack Simon Rutherford’s email which he deletes daily. I saw a memo on how to clean up your shooting. So I want you to get the contract from DGI. Matter of fact Cassie you will assist him to ensure it. Forbes you were in the media so your children are going to be the faces for a period. Nobody wants to see you unfortunately the board has spoken and I suggest you make it happen. Forbes I’d hate to appoint Cassie CEO are we clear?” Greer said leaning against the wall in a flesh-tone wrap dress and a box cut half blazer.

Forbes watched his children spar Cassie like him was done with Philip’s long game and it was beginning to bore them all. He could respect it but it wasn’t what he needed from Philip at the moment. She was right and he knew it that’s why he unleashed on her. What he didn’t know was how cunning his eldest son was. It was a pleasure seeing Cassie finally exert herself in the war for supremacy and his right hand. However seeing how hungry Philip was he began to smile. That was what he had been looking for and whatever he had planned was major. The games were truly on and his son and daughter were looking more and more like the wolves he raised. Sometimes leaving your cubs is the best thing you could do for them. This was the Montgomery’s he wanted. They had his smarts and Audrey’s savvy which made them lethal. His thoughts were instantly shaken when he heard Greer LeClerq’s voice. Forbes used the money that Angelica’s family and connections made to become one of the most powerful contractors in the world. Now some smug little harlot was telling his children and him what to do with his company. “If we don’t expand then how will we fight against DGI? Construction is always there and I don’t agree that we should dismantle the newly founded energy division.”

“What part of it’s done don’t you get?” Greer said walking to the desk. “The entire board will remove you if you don’t drop this insane idea. You aren’t Lowell and it’s stupid to pretend we are. MontCorp doesn’t have the connections and the grasp to strike that way against DGI. The plan is to buy smaller tech companies and once we acquire enough of them we merge. Then we go after Rory and that app. You see Rory is generating mass revenue for them and we all know energy failed recently because of your moves Forbes. You flaunted Dimitri out there and the Devonshires and Kavanaughs crushed you. It was quite a sight to watch a titan fall on his own sword or as the old adage says the cat who ate the canary. So proud like a peacock but then they stripped you of each of your beautiful feathers. This is over and we will be going up against DGI but my father’s way. This is your first and last warning. Oh and I’ll be here overseeing everything. Are we clear Cassie? Or is it some problem? We were good enough to start this company right along with Angelica when MontCorp raised from the ashes of Lowell’s treachery. He stomped us all and he doesn’t get to live the heroes fantasy in death. So with that being said will move forward with our new plans.” Pulling out her phone she pressed her screen.“All of you should be looking into these companies to acquire. Now I ask again Cassie is there any problem because trust me you all need me on your side to steer this sinking ship. I’d hate to appoint Philip as interim CEO over you when everyone believes it should be you.”

Greer leaned down and looked at them. “As you see Cassie, your dusty old newspaper that trashed me last year is first on the list to be bought by MontCorp. Why may you ask? Well we are thinking of doing something quite revolutionary. We are going to start a media division and eventually launch a news-station it’s own channel. The paper that we want to use is the Chronicle and turn it into one of the biggest new political pundits newspapers in the country. We want to shatter expectations of political commentary not only that we are going to bring in the best editors, writers, and reporters. Your vision for the Chronicle is just laughable in the grander scheme of things. Once MontCorp acquires the paper you’re fired.” She said with glee knowing she was getting under Cassie’s skin. “You would be wise to sell considering I have a long-term document proving my plan with my father is very beneficial to MontCorp. Open your second email and you’ll see the attachment. Fox news is the dominant voice of the Rupublican party but what about the other voices that need to be heard. MontCorp could tap into the silence on the board. With Forbes having white, black, latino children well that means he’s the perfect face for this once we scrub the rapist connection off.”

Cassie looked at Greer such a vapid little bitch that thought she could come into MontCorp and demand of her father, of her brother and herself. Demanding that they bend to her father and uncle who were barely board members hadn’t been in years. Greer of course had a proxy vote but she wasn’t in charge and in a way it was laughable that she thought she was. She pursed her lips for a moment at the paper comment, a small asset that was connected to other assets she looked at Greer she would deal with Philip later. “What do you want you vapid little french bitch? I’ve stood by while you played your little game with Zerick a game that I’ll remind you MontCorp paid for and yet we have nothing to show for it and we’re supposed to listen to you because your daddy says so. For the record we have over half the shares of this company with smaller board members like your father and uncle on board. I warned him that you weren’t cut out for this years ago when Pierre came up with the idea of you and Zerick getting married to con people it worked for a while and then you just gave up the long con for Devonshire dick.” Cassie spat seeing her father eye her as she rose from her seat and walked to the desk leaning over it and looking at Greer. She may not of always appreciated MontCorp but she would be dammed if Pierre and Harvey LeClerq thought they could march down and give them orders in their own house.

“I know what the perks of running a paper entail? That perhaps I should write an article about a little long lost french girl and how she clawed her way to the top or at least what she thought was the top. You want to try and blackmail us, my father keeps tabs on everyone and his staff let me assure you is completely loyal to him. A little birdie told me that before Zerick there were other men.” Cassie said seeing Greer stare at her just as intently. She’d do it she had no problems turning the press against women like Bliss or Tamara or Selina when it came to MontCorp Greer could be just another body in her body bag as far as she was concerned. Her father always wanted her and Philip to reach for their inner wolf and this was her doing that to prove her point she took out her phone starting to type when she felt her father touching her shoulder and she looked at Greer who stood there fuming. “Perhaps we could reach an amicable agreement you want the paper so bad want the press so bad. I’ll give it you in return you exit this building and never look back and your father and uncle stay in their silent seats on the board. I think that’s more than fair unless you want to start a war with me something that I wouldn’t recommend.” She hissed seeing Phillip reach for her almost like he was begging her to not do it. The paper was a fine toy but she’d give it up if it meant it got this bitch out of their hair. “Don’t think I won’t burn your life down watch me light it on fucking fire.” She said looking at Greer.

“Would you like me to light the flame for you?” Greer said not backing down. “You see the board of directors aren’t happy with the new direction of MontCorp. And considering my father and uncle just bought the other fifty percent of MontCorp I suggest you back down. No you thought I would come in here with no back up? Harvey LeClerq recently met with other investors and shareholders and we bought their shares. My father and Harvey are the only two other stockholders in this fucked up company. So how much is MontCorp worth to you? Or else I’ll be all up in this company and doing my absolute most to make it work in our way.” Licking her lips she saw Cassie’s fury. “So with that I’m thinking 250 million would be nice and your newspaper.” Greer looked at her and felt her rage. “Cassie, I never knew you had such a distaste for me. I mean I hear my father and your mother were best friends and it’s so sad that we couldn’t continue that. I however happen to know that is the exact amount of money these stocks are worth and if you don’t give it to us. Well we’ll tank this company and I’ll be all up in the mix. Now you can go back to owning your company or you can contemplate a moment longer and I’ll start the process of wrecking everything you all hold dear. Oh and bitch I did more than you ever did to the Devonshire’s I literally drove a wedge between them and trust me when I want to play in that pool again I will. Without having Forbes or my father controlling me. Look at me no strings but you still got yours huh? You have five minutes to make your choice.”

“Five minutes to sign over an asset your father and uncle clearly want. Not only that but reward them for their treachery by giving them 250 million dollars you’ve truly lost your mind Greer. You tell those French weak bastards that men do business and they don’t send their daughters. I assure you whatever you three have concocted will explode in your face and if you blackmail me like this you’ll forever have an enemy. You explain that to your father and I’m going to do everything to burn the LeClerq’s down and I assure you that you’ll feel my wrath. You let them know that if they do this they are going to burn just like Lowell. I’m going after Lydia, Bode, Dusty, you, Pierre, and Harvey. I won’t stop until I destroy you all. I swear it.” Forbes knew losing that much money would be a hit for the company so scaring them off might be the best way. “It would be awful for what happened to Agnes to happen to you.”

“What did you say to me you miserable little pathetic man?” Greer barked back. “My mother died in childbirth.”

“Correct you can just die.” Forbes spat back at Greer. “I have no problem getting blood on my hands.”

“You’ve heard our stipulations and now you have two minutes, what do you say?” She looked at the Montgomery family sitting before her.

“We will do it.” Philip said looking at them knowing they’d be pissed with him. “The money and the paper are yours. I assure you though Greer as my father has stated this is a declaration of war against our family. I am going to enjoy destroying you and your father whom I’ve never liked anyway. So remember when we are done this isn’t going to be over. Not by a long shot you French demented Barbie.” Philip looked back at his father and sister.

Greer smiled brightly because this wasn’t the plan at all but she had now just acquired money and the paper they wanted. “Good, I’ll be expecting the contracts by tomorrow or those company briefs about Cassie using The Chronicle to circumvent MontCorp’s true involvement in Tamara’s rape well I’d hate to expose that. Oh and you’ve been at war with the Devonshire’s all these years, and they survived. Your idle threats bore me. I’ll be seeing you around.” Walking out of the office with a smile on her face. She won. She had done something that Harvey and Pierre couldn’t; she just set in motion phase one of the LeClerq’s future.


After the meeting with Julian something ignited in her something that Jackie didn’t expect and instead of returning to the lonely walls of the mansion she stopped by the country club. Shocking the staff there, as she made a few business calls, finalized paperwork on some upcoming parties and then she clocked out. She was no longer going to hide out in the mansion and be embarrassed any longer about Lowell, Tess Blisston and their viper of a daughter. No, she was going to hold her head high and when she returned to her car and told the driver to take her to the Blisston estate he almost did a double take and she assured him he either drove her or he was fired, period. Lowell wanted to play games with her, lie to the world about what he did to Katie that was fine, he wanted to go play house with his mistress of over twenty years and their bastard child that was fine. What was not fine was her cowering in a corner she was going to tell him to his face that it was over that she hired a legal team and had officially filled for a divorce. When they reached the estate she almost lost her nerve instead she steeled herself and opened the car door with her trusted driver and security following her as she walked up ringing the bell.

“Lowell I know you are in here! I am not going to go away and hide anymore, do you hear me? You face me you coward!” Jackie shouted not caring if it was unlady like. Undignified or a million other words that she could think of he owed her an explanation to all of it. She was angry and she was so tired of being the good wife that stayed at home and just rolled over and expected it.paring

Tess and Belle had spent the day at the spa preparing for their first Christmas with Lowell. She had shopped for hours finding the perfect gifts for Fox, Belle, Bliss, and Lowell. She was finally getting her happy ending and when her daughter got a call saying Connor Hessington was inviting her to a practice. She told her to go. Tess returned to the mansion and began to hang new ornaments all over the tree. Touching Bliss’ old crystal canary she bought when she was only five to place on the tree. She missed her daughter so much it seemed that she sided with Jackie and she wasn’t happy about that at all. As she walked to the kitchen she requested dinner for Lowell, and he said a few friends were coming over. She placed Cuban cigars inside of the den that Lowell had converted into an office for himself. When she heard a certain someone screaming she began to be startled. Then as she got closer she was sure who it was. Here to grovel and get him back not this time. Removing her shawl from her shoulder she revealed a sparkling white and gold DVF jumpsuit. Raising her hand to the maid to show her she had this. Tess sauntered to the door letting Jackie beat on it a little longer to really rile her up.

Opening the doors she saw Jackie’s shocked expression. Folding her arms she extended her arm showing she could enter her and Lowell’s home. “Welcome, I was truly wondering when you’d be here. Would you like a tour or do you remember it well from when your psycho friend Patricia lived here. The Nichols were a unique family kinda like us without all the murder. You seem so uptight, but I know what’s wrong with you. The grande dame of Atlas Falls is finally seeing that she isn’t relevant anymore without her husband. So she is here to beg Lowell for your seat at the table. Well darling Jacqueline your seat has been filled now if that’s what here for then Lowell isn’t here. So you’ll have to go. I don’t know? Perhaps walk around that hollow empty mansion. It’s so funny how Lowell’s hires are still loyal to him. I heard that you cry all night and just sit. Miserable life to have Jackie.”

Jackie was sure she looked foolish, her hair flying in the wind and the snow when the door opened and she had gone to go on a rant to instead be greeted with Tess’s smug face. She wanted to attack her but she wanted to see Lowell first. That was what she came here for not to deal with the woman that was a thorn in her side for years. She snidely looked back at her to the foyer and almost laughed at the gaudiness of the festive Christmas decorations clearly this little new family she had created with Lowell was going to her head. She refused to be swayed by Tess or her vileness but then she stopped and remembered that she was going to come out of this entire situation as more than Lowell’s wife that stayed home. She would have her due and if her lawyers had her back and her way Tess and Belle would be out in the cold and she would be the one smiling down on Tess’s fractured delusional dreams. She still loved Lowell. She didn’t think you could just magically erase over thirty years together but she was not his doormat anymore. He did not get to do this to her go off and sulk and embarrass her with Tess again only this time in her hometown to their friends and associates, with his bastard child in tow why the rest of his children grieved for the man that they all thought he was. To prove her point she pushed past Tess bumping into her shoulder on her way in.

“I do have to say Tess the decor is much more mediocre than when Patricia was here, at least she knew how to properly entertain. Would you like my decorator’s number?” Jackie said, taking off her gloves and placing them in her purse. She paused for a moment and thought before the next words left her mouth. “I’m irrelevant? I think you have that backwards Tess you see you’re the one who will be when all this settles. I actually don’t have to beg for a seat. I will take half of what is mine, perhaps if you had actually hired good lawyers when you were married those few times they could have gotten you something. Instead you sold your daughter didn’t you for funds? Darling I’ve never stooped that low. Then again it seems that you’ve been forgiven of all that by Lowell by your little bitch of a British offspring, did she have a mark? I would like you to know I struck first. Seeing how no matter how much you’re warming my husband’s bed at the moment or whatever you are doing. He’s still my husband legally and I have some things to discuss in private with him. I’ll wait, will right here be alright?” Jackie said walking into the dinning room and sitting down on the seat with the table card labeled Tess and shooting her the dirtiest glare she could.

“No it won’t.” Tess said snidely as she slammed her doors. “You aren’t going to take anything. Lowell will be dead before you get your hands on anything. The fortune, the future, and DGI is mine not yours. I can’t wait for Lowell to divorce you so I can have it all. You sat on your high horse judging me for years. Why didn’t ever say what is he telling you Tess? Well I’ll tell you before Rory he was going to leave you. Your marriage was over and then you turned up pregnant again. He left me and Bliss so I’m sorry, Jackie it’s my turn. I deserve it!” Tess screamed at her as she pointed a finger in Jackie’s face. “My past isn’t as easy and perfect as yours. I didn’t get a happy ending. I had to take your scraps but I made due. I let my daughter be raised by my cousins because they are rich. They provided for Belle in ways I couldn’t. So I got a check for giving them to her. You don’t get to judge my mother, my parenting. Especially when you are the reason my father and mother hated me. You told them about the affair and I lost everything. You were spiteful and vindictive and you think I am supposed to bow at the great Jackie making a declaration of power? You can try all you want bitch. Lowell and everything that he birthed is mine now.” Tess felt so low when Jackie threw in that line about Belle but she wouldn’t crack.

“Go, Jackie before this little impromptu visit turns into a ER visit.” Tess seethed as she walked to the door. “Get out of my house you pathetic bitch. You stand there so judgemental where were you when Katie was in the hospital? Huh? I stayed by her side while she shivered in my arms. I was Katie’s sister, never you. You thought she was jealous of you? She was in pain! Locked away in a mental hospital my dear some sister you were. Don’t you dare judge me! You didn’t even know you had a nephew! I was there! With Zerick and I’ve loved Lowell through sin he’s committed but I know he isn’t a rapist. You didn’t! You didn’t and that’s why you lost him. He may have betrayed you Jackie but he was never a rapist. You jumped into every loop we need you to so I got what I wanted!.” She blurted out covering her mouth shocked she was that infuriated. “I need to finish decorating please leave, if you need to see Lowell, I’ll send him to the mansion.” Praying Jackie didn’t catch what she said. Praying her rage against this woman wasn’t her undoing. Tess walked into the foyer where she grabbed an ornament and placed it on the tree. “Shall I call security?”

Jackie sat there and listened she felt for Tess at one point the starlit girl that wanted to be part of DGI that wanted a man like Lowell to adore her. She had been young at the time in her mid twenties when she discovered the affair with Tess and she had lashed out and went to Tess’s parents she never denied her part in that, she exposed her, exposed Lowell and then she foolishly took Lowell back. “What your parents did when they found out you were fucking my husband isn’t my concern Tess it’s not like you were some bestial virgin you knew you were sleeping with a married man so please stop acting like I ruined your life. Lowell will give me half I assure you of it, not everyone in this town is completely loyal to him as he is about to find out. You’re a shitty mother, that’s the entire reason your eldest daughter looks to me for advice and protection, you couldn’t even protect her from the man that abused her for years.” Jackie spat having enough of the act that Tess was going on and on about and when Tess pointed her finger at her she stood up hearing the chair fall over with a thud and not caring.

What in the world was she talking about with Lowell? The test didn’t lie, she had evidence that she was going to use to get her due. Have her children get their due and she circled the table as she saw Tess’s face and the quick tracks she was making to cover what she let out. “Of course Lowell raped Katie I have a DNA test to fucking prove it. Don’t you ever talk to me about my sister like that ever again, she was hurt by the man I devoted my life too and I turned my back on her when she needed me the most. You do not get to take my fault in that away from me you bitch! Zerick hates you, he’s told me that so much over the last few months. If you know Lowell then you know he is a rapist unless you know something that the rest of us don’t? Clearly you know something whatever did I do that was exactly what you wanted?” Jackie asked as she slowly approached Tess and before she knew it years of rage overtook her and she wrapped her hands around Tess’s neck shaking as she did so. “Tell me what exactly did I do Tess? That played into your plans to lie for Lowell?”

Tess immediately clawed Jackie’s hands from her neck scratching the other woman’s hand free. Without a second thought she slapped Jackie right across the face. For years of her torment. Jackie wasn’t innocent and yes she slept with a married man but he told her he was leaving. That was the truth Lowell manipulated them all and some reason Jackie seemed to place most of the blame on her. She never faced the fact that she was just not right for Lowell. Or what was worst, Lowell didn’t feel he was right or good enough for Jackie. When Jackie charged at her the women instantly grappled grabbing each other slamming into the wall. Her antique Ming vase shattered as it hit the floor. “You bitch!” She screamed as Jackie slapped her again. Tess out of instinct grabbed her father’s crystal ashtray and threw it at Jackie who ducked missing the glass shattering everywhere. “You have lost your mind! I’ll kill you! You are mad that Lowell has chosen me for once!” Before she knew it Walter Fraiser had her in his arms. Tony Delacroix was now holding Jackie back.

Tess swiftly turned her head to see Lowell. “This is it! It’s me or her! I won’t allow myself to be taken down anymore. I have spent over thirty years loving you! I have hid a child and had a child with you. I know you’re angry about Belle but I did the only thing I knew. I gave her a life that I couldn’t provide and you weren’t ready too! You didn’t even want Bliss, you hate me for having her. I have suffered too Jackie! You aren’t the only one because as much as he killed you cheating. He destroyed me leaving me in the wind.” Tess stormed away no longer to handle the emotion of what she was saying.

Lowell looked up at Jackie who looked as ravishing as the moment he met her when they were young adults. Cracking his knuckles he shook his head. “Tess, wait.” He rolled away, no longer able to stand with Jackie. She had left him and he knew it was over. The only thing he could do was get his children back.

Walter was still reeling as he had entered the mansion with Tony and Lowell he didn’t necessarily agree with what Lowell had proposed. He got the logistics but he would have done it differently. He had grabbed Tess and let Tony grab Jackie and he stared at Tess and her likely fake crocodile tears and then his jaw dropped open when Lowell called after her.

Tony held Jackie in her arms and wondered how he had gotten himself mixed up in all this again years later torn between them again. He had trusted his wife the first time and now Lowell was asking to trust him. He thought the entire thing was insane, like a bad dream that he was going to wake from at any moment and his eyes met Walters in shock and horror.

Jackie bucked against Tony and years of rage that she had been through was let out in a curdling scream at Tess as her eyes bore into Lowell’s. She finally felt Tony release her as her driver went to help her realizing she was shaking about to collapse. She stopped him holding up her finger and looked her soon to be ex-husband dead in his eyes. “I’ve filed for a divorce Julian O’Sulluvan, Lex Hessington and Mason are handling my case. I’ve stood by you over the years watched as you betrayed the people you claimed to love. Watched you betray our friends including the man next to you that you stole from and made our fortune on. I waited nights for you while you were with Audrey or Tess or god knows who else, raised our children when you weren’t there. But I am done. Do not bring that whore as your date to our son’s wedding, you will not ruin this for him. If you do I will come over here and burn this house to the ground do you understand me?” Jackie said and she felt something snap inside of her as she proved her point walking to the Cuban cigars and lighting the flame on the lighter to prove her point. Putting it down when she felt she proved it when Walter rushed forward to stop her. “I’ll see myself out. I’ll be taking what I am entitled too, you can have this fantasy with Tess it’s clearly what you’ve always wanted.” She put the lighter in Walter’s hand as she began to walk out and looked at Lowell one last time. “One more thing I’ll be going back to Davis when this is all over I’ve missed that woman.” Turning around she walked out to her car.


Lauren took her signature chocolate-chip cookies out of the oven. Tamara mentioned them the other day and she had no choice but to make them today. She wanted to fatten up her daughter-in-law after all she was carrying her latest grandchild. They had packed up the house and Braden was selling it. She prayed that they possibly found something near the lake so that Lauren could spoil them right along with the twins. She saw the moving van and her heart sank. They were uprooting their lives because of Dimitri and how invasive he had been. The way Tamara talked about him knowing intimate details of her and Braden relationship. She even said that he was watching Dylan. She wasn’t sure if Dimitri was bisexual or just twisted but she wouldn’t put it past him to rape a man, woman or child. The black SUV pulling up behind the moving truck she walked outside waving at them. “Hey! Welcome!” She said looking at her grandson who just looked sick. The color had left his face and he didn’t have that quirky Dylan thing that made him so damn endearing. Walking inside of the cabin she covered her mouth trying to pull it together. For years she had been awful to Tamara and now the woman had changed, truly changed and someone hurt her like this. Not only that, look what it had done to her boy’s family.

She jumped slightly when she heard her home phone went off. She walked to the cordless phone and picked it up. “Hello.” Lauren said with a broken voice still shaken from her emotions. “Hello.” Once again silence was on the other line. “Please don’t call again.” Lauren hung up this was the fourth time someone called her. When she turned around she saw Braden rolling in a bag. “Hey the weirdest thing keeps happening.” She jumped as the phone rang again. Immediately turning and yanking the cord out of the wall. “Anyway welcome! I have your room all made up for you and Tamara. The beds are made and I also have stuff in there for bubble baths for her. I remember she loves them. Where’s Dylan?” She walked to the window and saw her grandson just walking away outside. “How is everything Braden? I keep thinking about her in the hospital. All I want to do is kill that son of a bitch. Is she alright? How is she holding up?” She was on the phone sitting in the car. “I just want you all to be okay. I hate this happening.” Lauren gasped as she turned away feeling her son touching her shoulders. “I just want you to be happy Braden. I just want you four to be a family again and not feel so broken. I keep trying to say something that will fix this. That will make you all feel better but I have nothing. You hungry? I made some beef stew I know Dylan loves my stew and I also have a cheesecake. I’ve been cooking non stop because I don’t know what else to do.”

Braden had packed the house as fast as he could, hired movers, Jon and Devin got the bugs out but he could never sit foot in that house again. Not after everything that had happened so they stayed with his father at his childhood home and when that didn’t work he asked his mother to let them stay with her. Mainly so the press wouldn’t hassle them as much and so his mother could keep an eye on Tamara. He hated leaving her at the house with Dylan, hated that no one was there with her and he could tell everything was still weighing on her. He had waved to the police patrol at the end of his mother’s drive as they approached Tamara would be watched while she was at the house. Until Dimitri was caught that was something he had insisted on, he had failed once when it was job to keep them safe. When he entered with the suitcases he saw his mother yanking the phone off the wall and made a mental note to trace the calls to the house just in case he was not taking any chances. Dylan was in the yard walking around scowling, he had taken everything so hard since New York and it was beginning to affect more than just his mood. His teachers had noted he was despondent and he almost had gotten into a fight at school too.

“He’s outside said he wanted to chill out, he’s taking this really hard. Even got a call from the school he almost started a fight the other day. I don’t think you can make this go away for me, Dylan or Tamara but you are helping us by letting us stay here. You and dad have really been there for us, hell all of the family has.” Braden said looking at her and then remembering he had a backup plan in place with Dimitri, he still couldn’t believe that Jon said yes but he would do what he had too. His soul would be tormented because of it but it was a price he was willing to deal with, Dimitri had destroyed the woman he loved, his son’s mother and his pending child’s mother and he didn’t know if that was every to go be repaired. If it happened according to his cousin it would take time, a lot of time. She had put up with so much over the years from him with Selina and not having her back this time he promised himself it would be different. “She’s not taking it well. I think she’s on the phone with Mimi I think she wants to take Dylan to and go be with her parents. I can’t really blame her. I posted another patrol down the road and Jon and Devin will be by before and after shift to check the house and on you guys. I want him caught mom but I don’t know how long that can take. So far no one’s seen him and he has enough connections and money this could go on for a while.”

Walking to the coffee pot she poured Braden a cup of coffee black which he liked. She grabbed the sugar and cream sitting at the table and she extended her hand to hold his. Watching her boy sit down by her she wasn’t sure what she could do. This wasn’t like her and she always had words of wisdom. The pain that she saw all of them in she was sure this wasn’t going to be easy. When she heard Dylan was about to fight. Maybe after the wedding spending a week or two in New Jersey might be good for Tamara and Dylan. She loved the girl but she had years of resentment more than likely in her heart for her. She did treat her like shit and she helped Walter take her right from Tamara’s arms. The years had changed her perception on those events considering she should have helped that young woman. She should have been their cleaning up Tamara and not judging. “To be honest you can leave Atlas Falls for as long as you want but you can’t run from this. You all can’t and you have to face it together but I truly feel the separation. I want to do so much more.” Lauren lowered her head as tears began to fall. “I’ve prayed and prayed to find him. I just want him off the street so she can get a moment of peace. So you can.” She looked at her son and saw the crows-feet and bags underneath his eyes.

They just sat silently for a few moments and she saw him looking outside. Lauren walked to the pantry and began to pull out supplies for a pie. The only thing she could do when she felt like this. She saw Tamara getting out of the truck and a car pulling up. “Braden!” She said looking at Tamara literally freezing in her track at the unknown vehicle approaching. Then she saw who was in the front seat and her heart felt better. She immediately walked outside to Tamara. “It’s just Jon sweetie.” Tamara was shaking like a leaf and she saw the look on her face.

“I can’t even get out of a car without seeing him.” She buried her head into Lauren’s shoulder and she began to cry. “I just want to be happy. This baby is feeling all of this pain already. I just want my baby, and family at peace. I hate him so much Lauren. I want him dead! I swear I want him dead.” She cried into her arms.

“Oh sweetie, let me take you upstairs, run a bath for you and fix you something to eat.” She said seeing Jon getting out of his car. “Honey call next time okay?” Walking Tamara upstairs, she looked at Braden mouthing she had Tamara. Taking her to Braden and her room.

Jon looked at Braden and knew that Tamara wasn’t doing good. Most rape victims were either numb to the pain enough to keep going or be in so much pain it paralyzed them. He was seeing Tamara was the latter. “Braden, I have news. Lex Hessington reached out to AFPD and he has a tail on Amanda Creed who happens to be Dimitri’s personal lawyer and lover. We believe he’s held up in her room at Hotel LaGordia. It’s late okay tomorrow morning the force will be there but judge Mills said wait until morning. I happen to think he’s inside of there and with the DNA evidence we have, Braden it’s over after tomorrow.”

Braden looked at him and felt a flood of relief though he was annoyed that Judge Mills was taking his sweet time to sign the warrant for Dimitri’s arrest. A part of him was honestly shocked that Dimitri went that far enough to come to Atlas Falls again. “Put some guys on the hotel he moves I want to know about it. I wish Mills would have just signed it so we could bring him and then extradite him back to New York. I was worried though you know that for a moment you’d have to.” Braden said his voice trailing off he hated to put that on Jon but he was desperate to rid Dimitri from all their lives and Jon was the only person he knew that could handle it. “You want to wait a minute and I can head down to the station with you I know the chief is wanting the task force to meet today for Ronan.”

Jon looked at Braden and reached out and touched his shoulder and just stood with his friend. “I want you to know the Fraiser’s are my family. I love Tamara and Dylan is my Godson. There is no way I was going to allow him to make it. Do you understand me? I’d do anything for you all to have peace and I know it’s not much I can do but that is my promise to you. You hear me?” Jon said looking at him. “I hear we might have another informant right along with KC. We got him Braden, we are finally going to get him.”

“You boys off in a corner like when you were younger. I always knew when you two were up to something.” Lauren said looking at them. “I helped her in the bathtub.”

“Oh Braden let me step out and call in those additional officers at Hotel LaGordia. Dimitri won’t leave there without you knowing. And I was always the good one remember? He used to get us in trouble.” Taking a cookie he kissed Lauren cheek and stepped out.

“Dimitri is in Atlas Falls? Braden I need you to promise me you boys will be careful. Don’t get riled up and hurt him. I want him to suffer, do you hear me?” Lauren turned around and saw Tamara standing at the staircase with a towel around her. “Tamara I thought you were bathing.”

“I needed some air and I was going to ask Braden to take a ride with me. He’s here? He’s in Atlas Falls? I always thought me and Braden would have another kid but he’s ruined that now. Everytime I think about my pregnancy, I’ll remember the pain I was in.” She saw Jon tapping his watch at Braden. “Go be the DA. Go get em tiger. I can go on a walk around the cabin.”

Braden had looked at Jon shooting him daggers as he did, he was a bit of a trouble maker most of their brilliant ideas were his. That was something he always thought was a well kept secret between he and his friends. He looked over at Tamara and walked to her wanting o reach out and kiss her or comfort her to see her back up a bit, not yet. He looked at his mother hugging her. “Thanks mom keep an eye on her.” He said looking at Tamara. “I love you I’ll only be a few hours try and relax this will all be over soon.” He said picking up his coat on the way out the door and looking at his son in the mirror as he and Jon got in the car to head to the station.


Ronan looked out at the city skylights from the balcony of his bedroom window at the mansion. The papers made his depressed lately Atticus’s smug grin on the cover Brooke on his arm with a royal engagement as the headline the small by line of Dimitri’s rape of Tamara Wright in the corner. He should feel relief at the news instead his mind wandered to if he had made a mistake, absently he shook the thought from his head as he took a drink of his scotch. It wasn’t good to dwell on the past with Brooke when business was booming under his new partnership with Gia and his partner in Florida. Not when he had many women in his bed since he and Brooke had parted he thought of Dru Price he had hoped for a few more rounds with her, the bravado intrigued him that she had their first time. Recently however it was Gia the Italian woman that ran her empire with an iron fist that has caught his eye. It was quiet for the middle of winter in Atlas Falls as he watched the snow start to fall again and he turned on the fireplace hearing a body stir in the bed he turned to see Gia in his shirt coming to join him.

“I was wondering if you were going to sleep all night.” Ronan said seeing her curves in the fireplace light. She was his escape recently and that was what he needed to take what was his on the east coast, he needed a partner in the business and Gia fit that bill. He made that choice when he reached for the power when Kendrick was shot and had been running with it since. He had the local gangs under his influence and what Gia brought to the table made him even more lethal. “So are you staying through the holidays or headed back to New York. You could just kill him you know.  The man you married. No one would bat an eye in fact I think people would cheer you on.” He finished taking another drunk of his scotch as he put the glass to her lips helping her take a sip.

She sipped a deep gulp of the scotch as she looked into his eyes. “Why so you can have me all to yourself?” Gia said as she walked on the heated marble on the floor. She had seen him earlier staring at a newspaper of Atticus Kavanaugh and Brooke Kincaid. He had sworn he was over her but the look in his eyes showed anger. He still loved her no matter what he said. It was his weakness and one day she’d exploit it to the full advantage. “He won’t make it to the New Year, I can tell you that. His care will get too much and he’ll slip away. Just die.” She touched Ronan’s bare chest. Tonight things would change, it would be the first time Ronan burned. He would feel the fire that she had. Taking his hand she looked at him. “I wouldn’t mind being all yours Ronan. I know you have other women and I’ve ran in the mob for long enough to know no man is perfect but I want happiness.” Allusively looking away as if something was preventing her from having it all.

“So tell me if I have all this time on my hand then what will happen? Are you going to marry me? I don’t want a husband Ronan. He’s dead but we are alive and how are we going to live? Do I get to be the first Ms. Madden?” She laughed looking at him. “Or have you ever been married? What’s you secret other than your fantasy to be with that boring little girl. How did you spend a year with her and the insipid modeling that she does. She makes it sound like she was curing world hunger. But you can’t get enough of it. I see you Ronan Madden. I see you lusting after her and lusting for a chance to step away. You would leave our life wouldn’t you for her?” She took the glass out of his hand. “If you didn’t ruin it already.” Gia teased back knowing she was rubbing a sore wound. “Refill the glass.” Finishing his drink.

“Perhaps I want to have you all to myself I know you wouldn’t want to be a kept woman Gia you enjoy the power too much and marriage hasn’t been something I really consider that I want.” Ronan said the lie slipping out easier than it should have he considered marrying Brooke for a few months until things with Kendrick went south. He was advised against it when you loved people in their line of work you let them go, you cut that emotional clothes line and let it slap away in the wind. He had done that, he was trying to do that with Brooke now she would be a princess one day queen of another country that was the life she deserved the life that he couldn’t give her. It was hard but a trip to Florida had set his mind right especially after the time he spent in prison where Kendrick tried to have him killed. There would always be enemies that wanted him dead, wanted anything he had dead to send a message. “Happiness is overrated Gia you and I both know that it doesn’t last very long. Look at my parents my mother killed in that bombing, my father losing himself and almost half his empire in the process. I had to rebuild that without happiness.” He finished as he looked at her.

She asked a lot of fucking annoying questions about Brooke and perhaps he had been too focused on the papers as of late with Brooke in them but he didn’t want her to know that. Instead he went to the bar filling her cup as requested and then looked over at her again handing her the glass. “You could move your operations here let the men talk if they must, we could see each other more often. I have never been married.” Ronan said looking at her in the eyes and he meant that he hadn’t and if he had his way that wouldn’t change. He leaned down running his hand up her bare thigh handing her the drink as he did so. He could play this game with here there were no strings attached it was something he needed right now to forget Brooke and her pending marriage to Atticus. “If I had wanted to marry Brooke I would have but I didn’t and clearly she moved on Gia. Leave this life? I think you and I both know the only way you leave this life is in a body bag. I plan on living a long life maybe ending up old and impotent like your dearly soon departed.” Ronan said slyly as his hand reached higher and he saw the what flush her cheeks. He leaned in murmuring against her neck. “You know instead of discussing Brooke we could make use of the bed again.”

Thor walked directly into the room not knocking because honestly this was an emergency. The security had let him through and he told them the code to go on high alert. He was using all his senses because he almost killed his very own brother. Last year changed them both and he didn’t like who Ronan was becoming. He knew his brother was holding back his happiness and sleeping around like a teenage boy who couldn’t have what he wanted anymore. He saw Ronan reaching for his pistol and he raised his hands looking at his brother. “Look I was on Elmhurst road and I swear three vans started to follow me. I’m not sure that we are okay, Ronan some men have been outside my condo for a few days. Someone has targeted us and I want to know you have pissed off or is it you?” He said slowly approaching them.

Gia listened to him make plans for them and the inner demon inside of her was ecstatic because this meant he was falling into her web. She however was sure Brooke was a problem. His eyes told another story than his words. He was right, the only way to leave the business was death and he’d die a miserable death. She had dreamed of his death as revenge for her mother’s death at the hands of Richard Madden. When she heard Thor burst in she had to give his dumb ass credit he knew he was being tailed. Not only that he spotted her assassins. She had to give him much more credit than she thought. He was just a playboy who was also a mobster. Pretty little mobster that was about to get hit. “What did you say to me Thor?”

“I’m saying you maybe the reason we are getting hit and followed right now. Gia what is your endgame with my brother? Huh? Since you’ve come to Atlas Falls shit hasn’t been right for us.” Thor heard five loud pops. Then the sound of multiple bullets dispersing from a gun the loud thunderous claps of bullets. He saw a red light on Ronan, he dove for his brother and tackled him down as bullets started to burst through the window. “Gia get down!” He screamed looking at Ronan’s shocked expression. “Bro we gotta go. They’re here to kill us.”

Ronan looked over at Thor annoyed at the interruption when he looked at his brother and took a drink from his glass emptying it. Thor had always been a bit paranoid when it came to the business but he knew that this time he was probably right. As much as he wanted to think otherwise he knew that Thor knew his shit. He was still trying to get Gia and Thor to get along and was about ready to remind them all they were in business together. Instead he heard the bullets rip out and reached into the wet bar grabbing his pistol as they rang out and ducked for cover. He didn’t even have time to lock and laid before Thor tackled him to the ground and the motion made his hears ring, there was no blood on him and he frantically looked around the room. His eyes landed on Gia who was standing there like she had a death wish and he saw the dot on her reaching for her hand and pulling her to the ground. “Get down!” He screamed he saw his men rush in and he took Gia’s hand in his. Thor took the back as they continued to move towards the door and he saw two of his guards fall. They were falling likes flies and his mind wandered to who could be on the other end, he then shook it he rescued him from a murder attempt.

He didn’t have time to react when they turned the corner and he saw two more men approach them not his men, he fired quickly and to the point dropping them on the stairs. He was pretty sure he kept hearing Gia scream at the chaos, He let Thor take point as they made their way to the library and opened the bookcase. “Get Gia out.” Ronan said taking out three more men as they approached from the doorway he saw Thor about ready to fight with him over it and he looked at him. “I said get her out now!” He shouted just as his head of security came to take his place and he followed Thor inside the tunnel. An escape route that only he, Thor and his head of security knew about a safety precaution that his father had installed when he bought the house. He waited a few minutes till he heard the door close behind them and nodded his head at his head of security before looking at him and then at Thor. “Do we know who it was? Stavridis? O’Connor? Did you get a closer look at any of them!” He said realizing he was screaming at Thor and his security team and he ran his hand through his hair.

“I told you someone was fucking following me!” Thor screamed back at Ronan and then his eyes washed in fear. What if Skye went back to his place. “I gotta get out of these tunnels bro, what if Skye? She goes back and they are waiting on me shit!” He screamed pulling out his cellphone knowing the reception was shitty at best. Fuck he didn’t want Skye hurt in his shit. “You had me protecting your bitch and mine is in danger? Nah I’m not saying Ronan! I have to go and if I die that’s fine because I won’t die blindly. Kelly is our fucking partner, Vlad is an asshole but I don’t think he’d do this if he wasn’t here to fucking gloat. You don’t see it though one day little Ronan will get fucking big Ronan killed.” Shaking his head he felt like his brother wasn’t thinking. They had a shipment stolen, drugs were being pushed by an outside source in Atlas Falls, and now assassins were after them. He laughed as he looked at Gia shaking. “You’re good real good. But your family were mobsters corrects a couple of bullets shouldn’t have you screaming to heaven. Your mom was a renown murderer and you are screaming like! Ronan think.” He screamed at his brother. As he looked at her and lunged at Gia! Wrapping his hands around her throat. “Tell me if it was you! You bitch!”

Gia was honestly shocked how perceptive Thor was. She underestimated him and exactly what he could do to protect his and Ronan dynasty. When he lunged at her and then started to choke her she saw Ronan and his head of security rushing pulling Thor off her. “You are insane! I would never! I’d never hurt Ronan and my own business also you fucking idiot.” She said gasping for air as she looked at Ronan. “You need to control this little boy before I kill him. If you ever touch me again snipers will be the least of your concerns. I’ll kill every fucking woman you stuck your wormy dick in? Are we clear Thor. I don’t like you either but I’m not going anywhere.”


KC walked into the station and saw Devin and Miranda laughing. If he was a insecure man, he’d be worried. He was happy Miranda was starting to be herself. Recently he could tell something was on her chest but he wouldn’t push. The other day they were so close to having sex he wanted to scream. He wasn’t twelve and only getting to first base with your wife was quite infuriating. Especially when your wife had the body of Miranda Harrison Rhodes. She was exquisite and sometimes he wondered how he got so lucky. When he saw her finally noticing him he winked at her. Then he looked at Diego who had this stupid look on his face. He was always noticing when he was being sexy or what he thought was sexy. “What?” He said sitting on the desk. “I don’t know why we don’t arrest Ronan now. I mean aren’t I literal proof that he is a murderer.” He asked as he kicked his feet. Looking around he saw Jon and Braden walking into the room. “Hey, what are you doing here? You should be with Tamara!” Approaching his best friends as he looked at the guys. “I’m still considered dead so if you know want me to hunt down Dimitri and stomp him into a puddle of goo I have no problem doing that?” Jon and Braden looked at each other and KC just shrugged. “Something I said?”

“So Diego we are all here what’s this big news you have? I was having a good day with Quinn shopping for her mother’s Christmas gift. You know the cutest thing? She said she didn’t want anything for Christmas, she had us and that was enough? How the fuck did I end up with a selfless kid. I mean I monopolized Christmas. I was actually the king of Christmas and this kid is going to have the biggest fucking Christmas since Jesus was born.” Everyone was so glum and here he was still with his energy and he knew why. “Braden? How is Tams? You know I always preferred her to Selina. Honestly she gave us Dylan and I never liked Selina. Bro you shouldn’t be here. We all need to find that son of a bitch and beat his ass. I personally think since I’m legally dead I could kill him and not get in trouble. I’m dead right Diego?”

Diego wouldn’t fault KC for wanting to live his life it was one of the many perks and charms that he had about him as a friend and as man. But this was the place to be cheery he even knew that he didn’t know Tamara all that well or Braden but the woman had been raped her rapist was still at large. He almost rolled his eyes but then knew they were here for something more important and he motioned everyone to follow him down the hall to one of the conference rooms. Walking inside he saw the two women sitting in chairs and then he saw KC’s eyes go wide at them, his little sting of being not so dead would now be able be back from the dead in public. “Ladies and gentlemen I present to you Ivanka Rezinkov and her attorney Ms. Hallie Jordan. KC knows her well from his time undercover and she has agreed to turn state’s evidence on Ronan Madden.”

He saw them all taking seats around the room as he saw her lawyer lean over and whisper something to Ivanka who nodded. “Ivanka was KC contact inside and now that we have her as a star witness for the state, KC can officially come out to the press. We are running the article this evening in the paper. Ronan had assumed that KC died, never thinking to follow up with the last known escort to see him alive that night. His mistake as once KC was in the river we had Ivanka return to the organization to keep tabs here in Atlas Falls.” Diego said carefully, seeing the shock still on KC’s face and the glee in Braden’s face, he saw Braden’s phone ring and he started talking to his office to get his team down to the station for statements. “I’ve asked Ivanka here to lay out some things that she knows and has seen for us while working at the club as a stripper with Ronan.” Diego said finally as he saw Miranda take out a tape recorder and Braden take out his legal pad.

Braden was sure his day was going to be shit but this was the icing on a much needed frozen cake when it came to a case he had been working for years. Last year he had signed a warrant thinking that it was Ronan that killed Steven only for it to turn out that it was Gideon that had killed Steven because he was jealous of his marriage with Brenda. His mistake and now he stared at KC and then at Ivanka this was what he needed. He saw Diego had him papers and his face got even wider at everything that Ivanka was going to turn evidence on them for. There was a laundry list there that they could charge with RICO charges, sex trafficking and the most intriging was she had seen Benny Ruzzio at the club the night before he disappeared. Meaning that she could help him find out where Benny had gone or at the very least where the body was hidden. RICO was fine, sex trafficing was a fine charge he could easily see Ronan’s legal team getting him off on those the murder of Benny though was something that he wanted something he needed to solve so that they could nail him to the wall.

“Alright I’ll be taking point unless KC would like too didn’t you work with her for years undercover?” Braden said still looking at the shock on KC’s face.

Jon looked up at Devin and his face was colored in glee as he shockingly read all the information on the paper. His eyes focused on Kendrick information. His hands began to shake as he read the information over and over again. Kendrick’s girlfriend Gina Khol was killed by Ronan if this lady Ivanka could make this stick and really had proof. Then this would change so many lives and the rage he felt was intense because this would have changed Kendrick life if he knew. His eyes shifted to Miranda and Devin who were just as shocked as him. The sick fucker killed a pregnant woman because he found out Kendrick was planning to run away. It didn’t get any more vile than that.

“I know Ivana. I had to pretend to date her.” He looked at Miranda and saw her shock. “I courted her as if she was my woman.” Biting his lip he felt the tension rising and knowing that he just got on good terms with Miranda this wasn’t good. For two years he was a mobster. He was treacherous as them and did what he had to, hopefully Miranda understood. “I carried on a relationship with Ivana to seem like I was a part of the faction.” Looking at his wife he saw her wink at him. He exhaled because she officially let him off the hook. No doubt he’d get a scolding and a stern talking too but nothing to ruin them right now. KC knew he should have told Miranda about Ivana but either way he had to do it. Ronan literally placed the Russians in his and Kendrick lap and said have fun. If he didn’t then he’d look like he wasn’t down for the crew. It was twisted how mobsters and criminals thought but he played along and did what he had to do.

“I’m here as the district attorney of Atlas Falls to take your clients statement about her time in the Ronan crime family. Including but not limited to her time with Nico Gilespe also known as KC Rhodes. If you are ready I am as well.” Braden said seeing that Miranda had kept her cool about the reveal that KC was probably sleeping with Ivanka while undercover, he wouldn’t be the first cop or agent to do it and he wouldn’t be the last. “Let’s start at the beginning.”

Ivanka looked at them all and felt some shame as she nodded her head to her lawyer before she spoke. “I came from Russia my sister and I were sixteen we don’t know English well. He gave us to Ronan as a gift.” Ivanka said awkwardly pausing for a moment before she spoke again she saw her lawyer give the nod and continued. “Vladmir Stravidis I was there for a few years he gave me and my sister to Ronan as a gift. I was young no money, no passport so when they asked me to sleep with men in the business. I had no choice.” She paused for a moment looking at her lawyer. “YA khochu vernut’sya na rodinu. pozhaluysta, ne zastavlyay menya govorit’ bol’she.”

“I will remind you that your client came to us and has been working for us for years.” Diego said getting a glare from Braden as he looked at Ivanka again.

Reluctantly Ivanka listened to her lawyer again before looking at the room. “Nico joined the ranks in Pittsburgh Ronan had a small club there he was nice and we began to how do you American’s put it fuck.” She pauses letting out of shame it wouldn’t be the first time she has fucked a married man and not the last. “I tell him about being smuggled into the country about how Ronan makes me work the streets same as Vlad. I tell him about my friend Gina that she is getting out. Ronan is mad at her and Kendrick he tells a man named Money to make sure Gina is no longer a problem. I was at the club with her here in Atlas Falls rode home with her when the shots happened. She was my friend.” Ivanaka says confirming that Ronan Madden put out a hit on Gina Kohl and Braden leaned back in his chair his face pale.

Braden looked up at Diego he finally has an eyewitness to Yasmine’s sister murder not hard proof but it is proof enough to warrant at least a discussion with Ronan by bringing him in. He takes a few notes on his pad as one of his assistants finally arrive and he brings her down to his ear telling her to get Judge Mills on standby in case the interview goes somewhere. “So you are confirming that Ronan Madden ordered a hit and killed Gina Kohl?”

Ivanka nods her head and looks at her attorney who simply points to the next article she is going to testify too. “I was with Nico the night he was shot. Ronan was mad at him calling him a rat, he drug me out of the car and pointed a gun at my head. Nico tried to stop him. Kendrick calmed him down calling me loyal. He threatens my sister if I don’t tell him how things keep happening I tell him that I tell Nico he shot him.” Ivanka looks at KC with anger to him at his lies and shakes her head. “I saw Kendrick throw him in the water and they left me there. I called an ambulance and rode to the hospital. I waited and Diego came out to tell me that Nico is dead that they need me to put Ronan away. I trusted Nico, after Gina I only had him and my sister and I loved him so I agree.” She watches as Miranda looks at her and then at KC and waves her hand lighting a cigarette.

“I wear wire on and off for you over the years Diego. I was there the day Ronan dragged Benny into his office. Benny left with Ronan that day.” Ivanka finished leaning back and taking a drag of her cigarette. “I tell more as soon as you guarantee my safety Diego and you find my sister. Ronan sent her away probably back to Vladmir.”

Braden finished jotting down some notes before he got up from the chair and went into the hallway he saw KC and Diego following him. Eventually Jon, Miranda and Zach came out. He was Miranda looking at KC and was actually shocked she was so chill but in a good way it wasn’t like KC wanted to be Nico. His eyes met KC before he spoke again. “How reliable is she as a witness? You know her, you shared a bed with her. If I sign something today to bring Ronan in it needs to be iron clad this time. Ironclad.”

“She’s telling the truth I know for a fact she’s been in sex slavery since twelve. Her sister and she worked their way up from Chicago to Atlas Falls and was given as a gift to Ronan for expanding. At the time the girls came from a brothel that Vladmir’s sister Karolina ran and she was sadistic. Ivana has permanent scars all over her body to show it. Ivana and Gina formed a tight bond due to me and Kendrick. We had a friendship so to speak or at least Nico and him did. This girl has been through hell and high water this is your smoking gun ADA Fraiser. Not only that you will be the person to end Ronan Madden and the Madden men reign on Atlas Falls. Your call if it’s ironclad or not.” KC said, getting irritated as he looked at Braden and the rest of his team. “This is it damnit. He’s going down now do you agree with me or not? ADA Frasier?”


Miranda knew that her parents had Quinn for a little bit now that her and KC were back at work and after she left KC still at the station she made her way to the condos. A few questions later she was on her way to the opera house, strangely the karma was not lost on her as she approached the Audrey Malatov opera house seeing what both she and Cassie knew. She gripped the steering wheel for a moment, debating if she was actually ready to do this and then decided to screw it, she knew that she wanted confirmation ever since that day with Dani and Whitney where she stared into her nephew’s eyes. She wanted the bitch to look her in the eyes and deny it and catch her in a lie that her brother had a right to know about. Then she would tell Jon once she had confirmation that Skye gave away her nephew. She was not crazy, Quinn was not crazy and Cassie had a shit ton of evidence to prove that it was true and when she saw Miles she knew. Hell she was surprised that Jon didn’t pick up on the name or how much Miles had his own eyes. She walked into the opera house and saw Skye on stage auditioning for a part and locked eyes with her seeing her nervous. She should be, she waited till everyone started to clear out before she made her way to the stage.

“Quite the rise from the gutter, you’re quite the actress. You come to town after years away try to sleep with Jackson who rejected you. Then you go after Jon again but he chooses Cassie and you’re with Thor now right?” Miranda said seeing Skye look at her shooting her daggers and she wanted to laugh at her. She was really going to look at her and pretend to not have some ulterior motive to wanting to be back in town. “Quite the actress in more ways than one from what I hear. The wedding is coming up, so I thought we should talk woman to woman. You’re invited right? The Hessington’s sent you an invite didn’t Ronan donate some money to Charles a few years ago?” She paused seeing Skye flinch at the mention of the Hessington’s. “Whitney is the maid of honor. I was actually shocked by that a bit, I always thought Dani would pick me. Quinn’s the flower girl she’s been practicing with a little boy named Miles for the ceremony. Sorry did I say something upsetting?” Miranda said seeing Skye fuming even more at her.

Skye teeth gritted as Miranda Harrison Rhodes walked up on her. It had been a long time since they were face to face like this. Last time she had that look in her eyes was when Jon told her it was over the first time. Miranda had always hated her but the bitch was absolutely gleeful at this moment. She knew about Miles but she refused to say a word. The fact she even brought her son up was confirmation but how did she find out. Even more pressing is who did she tell? Skye walked around the stage uncertain of how to broach Miranda. “You really have me pegged don’t you? I’m just a gold digger looking for the best come up. Fortunately that doesn’t mean Jon so why are you in my face? I’m over Jon Harrison and I’m happy can’t you be the same? Oh right your husband is dead and you a miserable lesbian who can’t admit it to herself. I’ll tell you what though Miranda, I’ll call our resident carpet muncher Kelsey Fraiser and let’s see if you can have your shot.”

“It seems you have something to say so go on and say it Miranda. Don’t beat around the bush and stop playing with me. You have a question then ask it. You might get a response you never thought. The truth of the matter is Quinn and Miles should get along swimmingly. They are cousins but you already knew that. You were the last person I would think would expose this. I thought about Lowell telling the world but he doesn’t like Jon. Then I sort of had this moment where I prayed that Merci would blab it to Devin. You know I read an article in the Chronicles about Bliss Devonshire. She left her own son because she was being abused by this man, a powerful man. I gave up Miles because I was a junkie and your brother was severely depressed and abusing his prescription drugs. Do you recall my first overdose off his medication? That you didn’t report. I don’t expect you to stand here and understand anything about me but you will give me the opportunity to tell Jon. I’m Miles’ mother, you are his aunt and we aren’t anything to him. He has a family Miranda and he has a life outside of us and if you have a heart.” Her voice crumbled as she looked at her. “You know what Jon will do when he finds out. He’s going to uproot Miles and it’s going to be horrible for him. He doesn’t know us. He isn’t ours anymore and I just thought the Harrison’s wouldn’t want him. You all chastised me and talked to me like I was dirt because Jon indulged in me. Please stop this, let Miles be happy and let Jon be happy. He’ll have a kid with Cassie and he’ll never know. But if you do this. If you make me tell Jon then I swear. I swear nothing will stop me from ending you.”

“You know what leave Kelsey out of this. For the record I think you’re just pissed that for a moment in time last year Merci didn’t have Devin, you didn’t get to play my brother and Jackson against each other so instead you want to take shots at me that’s fine.” Miranda said looking at Skye she had half expected her to deny any of it, so that was a change but the way she justified it made her so fucking angry. She had no problems screwing her brother and then screwing Jackson back then. Lying to the both of them and playing them against each other, got pregnant and then wasn’t even mature enough to tell either of them. Jon had a right to know and this bitch acted like they wouldn’t have rallied for her brother and Skye like they would have turned their back on their own flesh and blood. Did she even know who she was in bed with? Sure she could have seen the Devonshire’s getting rid of Miles, Jackson paying for an abortion but if her brother and Skye wanted to keep him they would have made it work. “So you admit it then?”

“You really are a trashy piece of work aren’t you? My parents would have gladly taken Miles in until you got your shit together and the best thing that ever happened to Jon was your overdose so he woke the fuck up and saw what a train wreck you were in his life.” Miranda said looking at her when she mentioned Lowell that cleared up one question she had how sure Cassie was in the paternity, not that she saw Jackson when she looked at Miles he looked like Jon at that age. Lowell would have used that and put a dent in Jackson’s relationship with Dani had Jackson been the father which he didn’t do. She saw Skye plead with her and laughed right in her perfect little. She expected her to keep lying to her brother, which was pathetic. “You wanna know how I found out let’s just say you messed with someone way more vengeful than Lowell ever is. Jon’s not fucking stupid either you really don’t think Whitney is going to tell Dani if she hasn’t all ready? Jon is going to the wedding. He’s going to stare at Miles a lot longer than five minutes in an ice cream shop.” Miranda said looking at her shocked face and she knew what would set her off as she spoke calmly. “Whitney and Ryan are house hunting and they’re moving into town. I’m telling him I’ll give you to the wedding but one way or another you don’t get to snake your way out of this one. Jon has a right to know what you took from him, how you lied to him for years about the son you found fit to hand off without him even having a say.”

“You’re miserable and jealous.” Skye said, clicking her tongue. “It’s almost incestuous how involved you are in Jon’s life. That’s fine though more than enough to tell him the truth. You know what I love? How you sit back and act like I am afforded the same opportunities as you.” Shaking her head she threw her script down read to brawl with Miranda if need be. “I wanted to tell him, I did but I saw you. I saw you, Jon, you parents, and Dani all at this restaurant. You guys were celebrating Jon being sober and you made a toast that night do you remember what you said?” Noticing the casting director coming back in but she wasn’t afraid to stop. She wasn’t going to be ashamed. Dramatically raising her water bottle to Miranda. “You said to my brother to detoxing the poison out of your life. You said that I was bad for Jon and that you were grateful that I had left. Does that sound like my fucking son would have been welcomed? No? So I did what any orphan would do. I made sure my kid was adopted by rich people. They’d never let him struggle or not have every fucking thing he wanted. You don’t stand on your perch of perfection Miranda. I ran around in circles trying to please your brother but you knew I would never be good enough for Jonathan Harrison. This must kill you to know Jon’s first born is mine.” Seeing she was getting under Miranda skin. “Your words solidified my choice to give Miles up for adoption. But I remembered what Jon said if he ever has a son his name will be? Drumroll please? I think you know the rest.”

Skye looked at her. “If you are done Miranda I’m at an audition and I don’t want to lose this opportunity so can you please leave. It’s a new day you don’t get to come here and make me feel badly for my choices. Jon can but you won’t place your shame on me. I regret not keeping Miles but I don’t regret doing this. Miranda you are miserable and alone. I have Thor and you have who? You’re going to die all alone and Quinn will be a orphan like me. I can’t wait for you to get a bullet or something because honestly the world would be so much better without hypocrites like you. I’ve never pretended to be anything but Skye but you. You will get yours for this and all you’ve doing to me. Jon deserves to know but tell me who else knows? You didn’t figure this all out on your own. You’re not that smart.”

“You’re a toxic vile bitch no wonder your parents didn’t want your ass or whatever the hell your story is. You are the actress aren’t you? I remember you in a pile of your vomit begging Jon anyone to help your sorry ass and my family did. Checked Jon into the VA for the help he needed and called an ambulance for you. Some days deep down I just wish I left you there because back then you were a selfish junkie bitch and now you’re just a bitch in general. I’d do anything for my brother including ridding you from his life.” Miranda snapped back at her and she felt like knocking that water bottle out of Skye’s hands but didn’t. She remembered that dinner where they all celebrated them and the Fraiser’s and she looked at Skye gleefully when she spoke again. “It probably killed you that day didn’t it? The way Jon looked at my best friend, like he looks at Cassie now. That the world set on them and he looked at you like he always has that little nice roll in the sheets even last year when you threw yourself at him. Just you wait till he learns you gave up his kid there is no coming back from that Skye.”

“You count your days with that happy ending you’ve been dreaming up with Thor I guarantee you it’ll be shorter lived than you think. I have my family, my friends, my daughter.” Miranda said leaning in close to Skye’s ear for the last part not even thinking before she said it. “My husband.” She whispered taking a step back as she looked at the surprise on Skye’s face. “You have your fake clothes, your fake career here and a man that’s going to end up in a six foot grave due to the lifestyle he chooses, but just you hold onto this virtue that you keep clutching about Miles. Karma’s a fucking bitch and I hope she comes hard for you when it comes to Miles and how you did my brother dirty. Cassie sends her fucking regards and sweetheart she is twice the viper I am. It took her a few phone calls and a private eye you really thought this would just stay buried? If you didn’t want it out you should have ran the moment Dani’s wedding announcement ran in the paper considering how close her entire family is to the Hessington’s. That’s on you, not on me or Cassie no all of this is on you. You have until the wedding unless he doesn’t figure it out first.” Miranda finished looking at her one last time her fists clenched as she walked away and out the door. Not sure if she just started a war or not but for the first time in weeks not wanting to vomit for lying to Jon.

Skye’s eyes narrowed as she grabbed a microphone stand and began to destroy every prop around the room. She began to destroy everything in her wake as she fell down infuriated. Then it hit her what she said, what did she mean about her husband? Not to mention she was threatening Thor her eyes became enraged. No she wouldn’t get Thor. Nor would she hurt him or Ronan. Grabbing her purse she looked at the casting director and he grabbed her hand.

“You got the role kid.” He said to her.


Tamara had on Dylan’s black Chainsmokers hoodie as she walked through the woods. The smell of pine was still strong in the cabin. He was still in Atlas Falls and she wanted to do something. She had to do something because if she didn’t she wouldn’t be able to live with herself. Looking back she saw Lauren and Dylan outside giving the guards food. She started to walk toward the roadway as she slowly made her way up the steep hill. Taking a deep breath she rubbed her belly. “Hey little guy or girl.” She said looking back, no sirens or screams of her name yet. So she had escaped with ease, digging into her pocket she pulled out her cellphone and ordered a Uber. After five excruciating minutes she saw the black SUV pulling up. She stepped inside and smiled. First stop was her home. As she saw the forest in the rearview she closed her eyes and in fifteen minutes she was at her old home. She could hear echoes of the once happy family that lived here. Walking to the back porch she kicked over a flowerpot and picked up the spare they hid. Unlocking the back door she looked at the empty house and it felt much like her, empty. Strutting upstairs they’d left a few things and she was sure Braden didn’t know about this. Going to the attic she pulled down the latch and climbed the stairs. Walking to her belongings he said they’d come back and get. Dylan’s childhood toys were up here and she picked up a teddy bear and sniffed it. “You know your big brother loved this, I’m sure you will also.” Biting her lips she saw her old suitcase. Unzipping it she pulled out a 9MM pistol and nodded her head.

She walked down the stairs of the attic. Making sure to place everything back in its place. As she strutted to the kitchen she opened the fridge and pulled out a bottle of wine. “Okay they say we can have a glass right?” Pouring herself a glass she paced back and forth with the gun in her hand. Drinking her entire glass of wine in one sip she looked at her reflection and she wanted to stop. She wanted to not do what she was planning in her head. But she wouldn’t live with herself if she didn’t hurt him back. If she didn’t see him dying. Braden was an amazing lawyer and she could plead insanity, temporary that is. He wouldn’t let her go to jail and she knew he’d do anything for her and the baby. For their family which was hurting so much. Placing her gun underneath the hoodie in her pants she snickered for the first time noticing her bump. If the doctor hadn’t told her she was pregnant Tamara was sure she’d figured it out. Tamara envisioned how it would have been to simply surprise Braden and Dylan with her being pregnant rather than being raped. She walked out of her house not even bothering to lock up. As her black boots crunched on the icy streets. When she felt her phone buzzing it was Lauren. A few moments later Dylan. Finally after two minutes Braden. No they didn’t need to find her right now. She threw her phone in the snow and stomped it a few moments. Screaming in frustration as she continued to destroy her phone. She literally would have to walk a few miles to get to Hotel LaGordia. Pulling up her hoodie she walked to the bus stop and in ten minutes she’d be at the hotel.

It was colder now because the sky was darkening and nightfall was settling over Atlas Falls. Tamara stepped off the bus and felt foolish about how she would get to find out where Dimitri’s room was. Then she smirked to herself Braden had told her enough stories of how Jon and the police force had tricked concierges and others to let them into place. She walked to the concierge and had two crispy hundred dollar bills. “Hi, I just need to know which room is the prince’s room.” Sliding the money to the man. After a few moments of reluctance he took the money and slid her a room number. Tamara stood at the elevator for a moment completely shaken that she would have to even see that son of a bitch. Walking on the elevator each floor she started to flash images of him on top of her. Images of his fist pressing into her. How didn’t she lose her baby? This baby was a blessing and she wasn’t going to live without a peace of mind. She wasn’t going to sleep wondering if he would haunt her. Walking to the door she placed a finger on the peephole and knocked on the door. “Room service.”

Dimitri had been speaking to Amanda more like yelling at her incompetence when it came to securing his son, of all the lawyers for the crown she was the only one that stayed. Proving to him her loyalty not only as his mistress over the years but as a woman in his corner. How would that look to Bliss in court now or Tamara, he had a woman to defend him and a damn good attorney at that. He looked at Amanda who was on her computer running some numbers and making sure that their court documents were in order and then saw the news and the manhunt in New York for him, he wanted to laugh and saw Amanda’s face upcurl a bit at him stupid people thought that we was going to hide in New York and get arrested not when his son here in Atlas Falls. He heard the knock on the door and his ears perked a bit at the voice behind it satisfaction creeping on his face, stupid bitch did want it. He saw Amanda stop typing and he looked at her. “It’s Tamara Wright, I told you she wanted it.” He said his voice low as he walked to the door and opened it.

“I knew you would be crawling back to me after Braden can’t look at you. It’s a good thing you can clear all this nonsense up that you have placed on me back in New York.” Dimitri said icily as he saw Amanda approach them looking between the two of them. He then looked at Tamara who looked a little worse for the wear her face had healed a bit but the bruises were faintly there and he saw Amanda look at them and then him. “She asked for it. I simply complied with her request.” Dimitri said calmly, Tamara had seduced him and he was tired of her games and so he took what was his. He had made her see what a real man was and even then she was lacking when he did so, he saw Tamara look at the ground for a moment and nearly laughed she was just as pathetic as Bliss used to be. “While I am flattered that you tracked me down this little rape charge needs to go away. You’d been flirting with me for months at MontCorp and invited me into the room. You remind me a bit of Bliss right now, though she has an elegance about her and you’re just a junkie so there really can’t be a comparison.” Dimitri finished waving his hand at her motioning for her to leave.

“Bitch get out.” Tamara said, pulling out the gun looking at Amanda. “If you want to live I suggest you go.” She swiftly shot the lamp by Amanda and she heard her scream in shock. Dimitri’s eyes were wide. “Say it again Dimitri. Say I wanted you? I never wanted your little dick in me! When she saw Amanda slowly going for the door. She shook her head. “No! Place your phone down and go in that room. Now bitch! How could you fucking represent this vile little man. You did this to Bliss too huh? She should have stabbed you in your sleep or slit you fucking throat when you weren’t looking. That’s fine, she can get abused all she wants but not me! Not me! You raped me!” She screamed at him. “I’m not leaving. I’m not leaving until you feel exactly how I feel. Say it. Say it damnit! Admit it to me if nobody else. You say what you did to me! You tell me! Stop lying and say it.” She said shooting the other lamp on the other side of Dimitri. “Get on your knees!” Tamara said watching him raising his hands and lowering himself to the floor. Walking around Dimitri never letting the gun leave his sight. Then she pressed the gun in the back of his head. “Do you want it? You bullet in your head.” Tamara with all her might whacked him directly in his perfect face and he sprawled against the floor. “Get up! Don’t you want it? Huh?” She screamed at him.

Looking at Amanda shaking in the other room crying. “Does this look like a woman who wanted him? You’re a sick bitch to fuck him! You’re a pathetic excuse for a woman. Does Bliss look like she wanted him? Do I look like I wanted him.” She screamed, flipping over the table. Glass going everywhere and Dimitri shielding his eyes. Tamara felt such glee seeing him squirm. “Get up! Get up right now. Say it? Tell me what you did to Selina. No Amanda come on out bitch! I want you to confess to your sins. Tell her what you did to Bliss, tell her what you did to those women in Isla De Cruces, tell her what you did to Selina, and you tell her what you did damnit! You tell her so she can see what she’s dealing with. Or do you already know. Maybe I should take both of you out. Because if you think that this is acceptable then you aren’t right in the mind.” Stooping down in front of Dimitri she saw his shocked expression. “You raped the wrong girl bitch. Now if you don’t get up I’m gonna shove this hot pistol up your ass and shoot. Get on your knees and tell her!”

Amanda had looked between them thinking that Tamara was crazy and her phone she called 911 simply turning the mute button on when she did. When Tamara shot the lamp she jumped and screamed before going to the other room. She didn’t know why she was so scared but she was and she saw Dimitri playing along with Tamara’s game and that scared her more. Did he have a death wish maybe but he wasn’t that dumb.

Dimitri saw the gun and then saw Amanda trying to make a run for it and held his hands up Tamara Wright was not going to shoot him. Not if she ever wanted to see her son again or that baby inside of her belly. He waved his hand at Amanda who was screaming her head off to go into the other room. He placed his hands up and then he got on his knees as she commanded that he answer her about fucking her he was not that stupid and he stared at her defiantly. He felt the cold barrel of the gun in the back of his head and almost laughed if she was going to kill him she would have right then instead of going to a table and flipping it over. He shielded his eyes when the glass flew and watched her looking her in the eyes before she turned her rage to Amanda and told him to get up and he did looking at her again.

“You opened the door and let me into your room, you’d flirted with me for weeks at MontCorp and were jealous when I stayed with Selina. You wanted to fuck a prince and I simply obliged and then you created this rape fantasy in your head to cover your tracks. You want to talk about my past? Shall we discuss yours? Snorting up cocaine and heroin when you were pregnant with your son?” Dimitri said seeing her shake at the mention of the drugs he knew how to break women like her, women that were weak and in this case she was a weakling. He almost laughed at her and the gun she was holding. “Who’s going to believe your outrageous claims? There is no proof I forced myself on you. You want to tell me you’re going to shoot me you should just do it already then again maybe you don’t if you ever want to see your son again. I die, he dies because he’ll lose you, maybe he’ll go down your road, your unborn child never sees you again. Likely in a halfway house after you give birth to it.” Dimitri said looking at Tamara still shaking with the gun in her hand and he let out a laugh. “You picked the wrong man to go to war with if you think I’m confessing anything to you.” He finished.

“Then you can just go to hell.” Tamara hand steadied and she took one deep breath and squeezed the trigger. One time. Two times. Three times. Three loud pops rang out and she saw Dimitri on the floor. She wasn’t crazy, she wasn’t deranged, she was completely hurt and him lying on the ground with blood trickling out of his body she knew she did what she came to do. “I never wanted you. I never flirted with you. Why me? Why did you pick me?” Then his words clicked in her head. “Bliss is better off without you. Do you hear me?” She wasn’t sure if he was alive or dead. She closed her eyes on the last two shots her hand was shaking so badly. “I’m gonna go now.” Tamara said stepping backwards unsure of what she had done. Unsure if she killed a man. She wasn’t ready to find out she just saw so much blood. Tamara began to run away from the scene completely frazzled and lost.


Zerick ventured to the hotel for a few drinks, drinking in his room wasn’t his most ideal night of fun but in this case he wanted to get out. His aunt had called and he was proud of her, also a bit shocked she had finally done it and actually signed the papers to divorce Lowell. He still wasn’t sure what to call him Lowell? Uncle? Father? So instead he settled on his preferred word for it monster rapist. He took a seat at the bar and ordered his martini dry one olive and looked up at the screen of course the stock number flashed on the bottom and he had to smirk both DGI and MontCorp were circling the drain when it came to the people’s good will. His eyes went back down to his drink wondering if he should give Dru a call and then his ears perked back up when the name Dimitri Kavanagh came on and they began running the story. A story that he knew all too well and he only hoped Tamara Wright didn’t turn into the woman that birthed him over it. Lowell was walking free so men like Dimitri felt they were free to do the same, which was the sad reality. He went to bring his glass to his lips when he saw a blonde woman fleeing from the elevator wearing a hoodie, she turned her face for a moment. He didn’t know what came over him as he quickly left his drink on the counter and followed her only to eventually catch up to her, touching her shoulder and seeing her holding a gun in her hand he threw his hands up.

“Ms. Wright what did you do?” Zercik asked calmly and a sinking feeling sat in his stomach and he silently cheered her on if she had done it. If the man that violated her was in this very hotel and she tracked him down and made him feel an ounce of what she was. He saw her eyes were wild she was barely holding herself together to steady the gun, not to mention the fear and partial satisfaction that was on her face. “I’m not going to hurt you. You and I have something in common you see. My mother was never able too.” Zerick said his voice trailing off as he saw her almost crying and shoving the gun at him.

“I went to his room.” She said her voice was shaking. “I had to make it stop. Everytime I close my eyes I see him. Whenever someone touches me, I feel him. I can still smell his breath on me.” She wailed holding the wall taking a deep breath in starting to hyperventilate. Tears began to fall down her face as she used the wall to steady herself. Her back was literally against the wall but she never let down the gun. That’s when she finally saw who it was. Zerick Westwood or whatever his last name was. His mother was raped and she saw he had had compassion for her. Tamara lowered the gun and her body slid down the wall as she looked at the man before her. “I shot him in front of someone. I don’t even know why I’m running. She’s going to tell them it was me. I just couldn’t let him get away with what he did to me. I don’t think I deserved to be beaten and he stole my body from me.” She whispered body imprinting into the snow. “Those thirty minutes felt like an eternity. He used my body like I was a toy to be played with and disposed of when he was done. You don’t have to stay with me. You can go so you’re not apart of this. Lauren speaks very highly of you. She says you’re a good kid, don’t let your conception rule who you are. Zerick you are so much more than the monster that helped bring you into this world. I found out I’m pregnant but not with his child thank God. It’s my fiance’s but he’ll hate me after what I’ve done. I just had to make him pay!” She shrieked punching the ground over and over again until she saw her knuckles were bleeding.

Looking over it was a small puddle of water from the melting snow. It was funny how it altered her thoughts and how she couldn’t even look at her own reflection. She was scared seeing who would look back at her. Standing up she felt the wetness from the snow. She knew she had to run or do something. “I gotta go.” She looked at the gun and felt her entire body shiver. “I need to see my son before they take me to jail Zerick can you please take me home?” She whimpered as she felt her stomach churning. Tamara turned around and vomited.

Zerick let her get her anger out as he followed her and he wondered if she even realized she had made her way down the hallway and outside the door. She was not okay and he wasn’t that much of an asshole to just leave her there. When he saw her having a panic attack with the gun in her hand he kept moving out of it’s way just in case it went off.  When he saw her sink to the wall he slowly approached taking the gun out of her hand and wiping it down with his handkerchief and pocketing it in his pocket. No one would find the weapon if he had anything to say about it men like Dimitri was that they deserved whatever they got from the women that they hurt, he only wished sometimes that his mother was strong enough to let Lowell have his. When she told him he was good he wanted to laugh at her he was born into turmoil and sadness and had known nothing but deceit and hate out of it. He hardly considered that good and the way he came to town with Greer how he used Talia none of that was good.

“Mmm some men hide behind their goodness Ms. Wright I’m not one of them. I’ve done things and I am not a prince charming.” Zerick said remembering that he was the one that sent the bottle to Gideon and Rachel Morris. He still had nightmares over that but he did what he had to do that day for his mother he didn’t honestly think that Gideon’s daughter would be there or that they would share a fucking drink over breakfast. He did it for his mother, his mother had went to Gideon about Lowell years ago and he laughed her right out of the office or at least that is what Forbes told him growing up Forbes and Tess. Steven too none of them had lifted a finger to help his mother and as he heard sirens he stepped in front of Tamara shielding her from the police cars and the ambulance as he did. He didn’t even bother to ask her as he helped her up and led ehr towards the back of the hotel being careful to avoid the cameras. “Head down, don’t look up at the camera’s. You lost your way and came to hotel, there is no gun. You saw Dimitri and then left the room you were not armed.” Zerick said and they turned a corner and his eyes shot up to see Dru Price there.

“Thank-you, Zerick.” Tamara said rushing out of the building and keeping her head down like Zerick told her. She saw a taxi and her entire body felt relief as she opened her door. “Please get me out of here.”

Dru leaned against the wall as she saw Tamara Wright rushing away from Zerick and she saw the shiny 9MM gun. “You know there are a few cops coming down the street and those sirens have to be about those gunshots. I grew up in a trailer park. Zerick I know when I hear gunshots. Plus the rich people around us are running and ducking. So tell me who did Tamara just shoot? I mean one guess says that Dimitri Kavanaugh. I have a definitive question for you what are you going to do with that gun?” She whispered, touching his chest. “I can get rid of it for you.” This was too magical to let this slip through her fingers. “Let me help her and you?”

Zerick made sure that Tamara was safely in the car as he saw the ambulance and another woman rushing out to with Dimitri and from the look of it he looked in rough shape. Good someone had to put monsters in their place and he saw some police cars pull up and hoped that Dimitri lived just so he could face a trial and Tamara could get justice, death was too nice in his opinion for rapists. “I’m going to get rid of it.” Zerick said looking at her and when she offered to take it from him he thought about his options. If he took it home it looked bad all around and he could dispose of it but if he gave it to her maybe she could get rid fo it better than he could. He had already buried a gun and didn’t need another one to the one he already threw in the lake. “Okay.” He said passing the gun to her in the shadows. “I need to go make a call.” He said quietly walking away looking back at her.

Pierre had arrived at the hotel after apologizing to Greer and seeing Harvey off at the airport ready to have a drink or two and he spotted Dru in the alleyway and saw her with Zerick Davis and almost wanted to tell Dru the truth. He thought better of it, it was better this way for Zerick to not know a thing he had after all promised Tess as long as he got what she promised her secret was safe with him. He saw Zerick pass Dru the gun and then got out of his car walking to Dru and watching them load Dimitri Kavanaugh into the ambulance. “You’re moving slow Ms. Price such a pity that time at the Pub just bartending. One would think you’d want to up your game a little surely by now Lauren Fraiser places some amount of trust in you otherwise you’re wasting your time and mine and my dear I hate my time to be wasted.” Pierre said seeing her look at him and he meant it he wasted so much time in prison behind bars thanks to Lowell and Walter and well Dru was bidding her sweet time.

“They deserve it you know Walter and Brenda for tossing you aside for their prized children. Think about it your oldest sister is marrying into one of the richest men in country has everything simply handed to her. Your younger sister is marrying the prince of Isla De Cruces and you are simply rolling in the sheets with Philip Montgomery and waiting tables at the Pub. Perspective Ms. Price now I told you I was willing to help you so you tell me what you need.” Pierre said looking at her and seeing her look down at the gun in the shadows between them and he clicked his tongue on the roof of his mouth for a moment. “It would be such a shame if that gun turned up later didn’t it to ruin Braden Fraiser’s career and let everyone in town know that Tamara Wright is an attempted murderer wouldn’t it?”

“I need you to be patient. My mother and father think I’m dead and that is my strongest weapon. Do you understand what I just got with just being at the fucking right place and spinning a web. You are impatient Pierre. So I am telling you Mr. LeClerq I have everything I need because I’m not your daughter. I do quit and I’m not in love with Philip. At the wedding Philip will do exactly what I want him to do. I’m going to get him to ruin everything for another lost one.” She laughed biting her lip. “You think that I’ve been twiddling my thumbs just fucking and playing? No Pierre I have a plan and the first step is the wedding. So you just sit back and watch if you’re attending correct?” Seeing his eyes light up in anger as she spoke about his daughter. “I need you to break into my apartment and steal everything. I’ll have all that I want in my purse. Tomorrow I’m going to Lauren and I’m going to take the last room in the cabin. Then I heard her say Dani is looking for a nanny for the twins when she returns to DGI. Once I get in good with Dylan well the job will be mine. Thus my insertion into the Fraiser and Devonshire continues. That’s what you can do.” Dru looked down at the gun in her purse.

“I am nobody’s fool Mr. LeClerq and I’m playing a long game. I faked my own fucking death and left the trailer parks to get right here and I won’t apologize for my methods. I have waited and thought about this a long time before you came into the picture. You know who I am. You know what I want and I need that. This gun changes everything the golden boy’s wife just had a fucking psychotic break. I have a direct tool to take down Braden and show his duplicity and then my father. I dreamed about how I was going to make them all pay. So I have nothing but hate for that fucking bitch and that sonofabitch. So don’t question why just sit back and watch. I’ll call when I need you. You’re my fucked up fairy Godfather. So I’m going to leave and put this somewhere safe. I hope you understand what my plan is because I’m not altering it for your instant gratification.” Dru placed the gun inside of her purse and was sure she would have this for safe keeping. “See you around Mr. LeClerq.”


Ronan looked around the safehouse as the head of security checked the doors over and over again Gia was inside one of the bathrooms showering, once they reached outside they realized the shirt she was wearing was covered in blood spatter. He walked to the bar in he room pouring himself a glass as he looked at Thor he should have never touched Gia like that and he should have never let him, he took a drink letting the anger roll off him. Gia was their business partner as much as much as Thor hated it that was the way that things were now, it was his decision. He waved his hand sending the head of security out of the room as he paced. “You ever lay a hand on Gia again brother or not I’ll make sure you’re at the bottom again do you understand. I may not approve of your relationship with Skye Morgan but I’d never place a hand on her, You’d do well to remember that next time or I’ll make what I did to Benny look like a walk in the park when I make an example of you.” Ronan said his voice ice cold as he looked at Thor and then he took a seat on the couch letting the stress and anger roll off of him.

“Now instead of riling up our business partners and threatening then or choking them out tell me what you know.” Ronan said pulling out his phone and sending a text. It was still on his mind who was on the other side of the gun that was taking shots at Thor, him and Gia there were few snipers that good and he had to confirm. When the text came back with the laughing emoji and a picture it put his fears at ease that partnership had been arranged since they were both toddlers. “It wasn’t the O’Connors I do know that much now. You don’t like Gia I understand that but we need her and her connections to move the product where we need it to go. You wanted us to take our place on the east coast up north this is how we do it, while working with her and our partners in the south.” Ronan said motioning to the bar if Thor wanted his own drink he could pour one.

“Still threatening me? Didn’t last year when I nearly toppled you teach you anything? Yeah but Ronan you have to admit I have fucking point. Earlier this week we lost fifty-thousand dollars worth of coke, pills, and meth. Someone who knows us is hitting us. They knew how to take out the guards now if it’s not the O’Connors and it’s definitely not Vlad because we’d know it. They didn’t nickname him the Impaler for nothing. So who does that leave huh?” He lowered his voice so that she couldn’t hear their conversation. “You knew she had issues with our dear old dad. Beef like that doesn’t just vanish in our world. It’s a eye for a fucking eye and I’m sorry Ronan but this smells like a rat is in mist. We’re getting hit left to fucking right here. It was snipers around your estate man. That doesn’t fuck with you?” Thor grabbed a glass as he poured a drink. “Gia killed everyone in her last family with poison. I hope pussy isn’t poisoning your mind to see the bigger picture. Ronan we are brothers and I’m sorry if I choked that woman. I don’t place my hands on women but I also don’t look at her as just a woman. She is every bit as capable of being a killer as us. Now you can close your eyes and stick you fucking head in the sand. But ever since she showed up we’ve been in danger and it hasn’t stopped.”

Biting his lip he looked at his brother. “I wish you never would have left Brooke.” He mumbled underneath his breath. He respected Ronan enough to know he was in charge. Thor also knew he had a voice in this operation also. He wasn’t going to be silenced and wasn’t going to just pretend he didn’t see the coalition with Gia and their recent troubles. “Who have we pissed off for all this heat to be coming at us? Nobody we’ve made our payments or suppliers are happier than ever. What has changed but we are expanding into Canada and all of the sudden all hell is breaking loose. In any other business we could shrug and say growing pains in our somebody is fucking coming for the castle and we are unprepared for the battle.”

“Gia’s ruthless that makes her an ally that I need Thor that this business needs. There could be any number of explanations as to who is targeting us the Chinese hell the Ukrainians, the Mayans I could make a list but you automatically assume it is her. Who knows perhaps I should accuse Skye of the same wasn’t she at one point fucking a cop? How do you like it when I throw wild and outlandish accusations out?” Ronan shot back and he took another sip of his drink he didn’t want to fight with Thor like this they were finally in a good place as brothers. He let Thor’s word sit between them he knew about his father’s beef with Gia’s family she and he had discussed and then fucked it wasn’t like he was naive to that. “If she still harbored such ill feelings towards us she wouldn’t mind my cock in her every night and I happen to know she begs for it. I talked to her about it and we agreed the feud was over once we became business partners.” Ronan said running a hand through his hair and saw Thor stewing at him again.

“There are any number of reasons that a partner can turn Thor why do you think that father let Carla raise you alone? Because it was safer that way, things were calm for a bit it happens business lulls but friends can turn into enemies at any given moment.” Ronan said looking at him he was still trying to figure out in his head if he had made an error or not when his phone rang and he looked at the number. He showed it to Thor and held up his finger to make sure they both didn’t slip up just in case the phone was tapped. “Hello. I see the oranges are starting to rot in the sunshine state ruining our shipment. How is the weather outlook for the next few weeks?” He waited a moment clutching the glass in his hand and waited for the caller for a moment before he slammed the glass into the wall. “I understand cloudy with a chance of a hurricane. I’ll make sure to cancel our arrangements to the orchard.” Ronan said looking at Thor as he went the desk and took a pen out writing on it. Feds, charges and a rat on their end of the organization. When he was sure it was safe he spoke again. “What do you know about that? Inside job she confirmed it.” He didn’t elaborate the she part his brother was an idiot if he didn’t know who he was talking about.

Kelly O’Connor. He knew who Ronan was talking to and he knew what that meant. It was cloudy meaning the police were now involved. What the fuck was going on? Thor leaned back and looked at his brother and shook his head. If Ronan was so sure it wasn’t Gia then he owed her an apology. After all he seemed to be enjoying this bitch and somehow Skye was dragged into this mess. He hated to do it but tomorrow he’d be calling Kelly himself. He had his ways after all Thor inherited the Luciano fortune and power and he hadn’t circumvented it to his brother he just joined him. He wasn’t going to betray his brother, he was going to get extra eyes to look into Gia. She had a story and someone knew it and Carla told him one no woman wasn’t scorn in some way. When a woman was scorned they were unpredictable and that was a lesson he wasn’t willing to have. “It makes sense someone on the inside would be doing this. The question is who Ronan? Someone is after you and willing to kill me to get to you. So I’m not exactly sure if it’s safe but I’m getting to Skye now.”

Smoothly finishing his drink as he stood feeling like he was furious at whomever the snitch was. This was the lowest thing you could do in their lifestyle and sometimes rats got handled. He couldn’t fucking wait to torture whoever the fuck was ratting. Thor pulled out his phone and saw a text from Skye. “Ronan, I’ll be okay alright I’ll lay low and be in one cars nobody will know okay but Skye is a weapon against us if they get her it’s leverage. She doesn’t know shit but I fucking love her and she’s my girl okay? So I gotta find my woman and bring her here. You might want to call that redhead and tell her to kinda be on the downlow. Whatever is going on we’re about to find out alright bro I promise?” Then his heart sank as Lito his mother’s old right hand sent him a cross emoji. It meant so much and he looked up at Ronan. “The feds they are after us? They think they got something and Lito is shutting down the corners. While I’m out I will collect every penny man because if they think they know something. They are going to make a big fucking show of this. Ronan what if they actually have something?”

Ronan looked at Thor and wanted to just put all the nonsense with the hate between them away. Thor was dead set on hating Gia and he didn’t blame her but they weren’t getting anywhere disagreeing at the moment. Ronan wasn’t going to object to Skye being protected but he also wanted to point out it was actually safer for Skye to be at the very nice condo she shared with Merci Dubois instead of here and a target. He also didn’t agree with Thor wanting to rush out of the safehouse and run to her, he was an asset to the business if something happened to him he had no heir apparent if he were to die. “I’ll send Julio over to get her you can trust him he is the head of my security team. You can’t go out there even in an unmarked car are you mad?” Ronan said looking at him and then went to walk around the desk and the door to the bathroom opened and Gia stepped out freshly clean and dressed and he looked between them. “Are you alright?”

He had waited for an answer only to be shook when he felt something rock the house and fire shoot out outside and realised they were being attacked again. Reaching over he pulled Gia down placing his body over hers and his eyes shot frantically around for Thor. He saw him out of the corner of his eyes and then heard the bullets zoom in through the windows. He moved to get to his brother only to instead watch him fall to the floor just as Julio burst into the room. The shooting stopped and he saw the other two members of his security on the phone as Julio made sure Gia was secure and motioned to him that it was safe to get to Thor. Once he reached his brother he checked him and was horrified that he had two bullet wounds in him one on his side and one in his right arm. He saw Thor try to get up and instead along with Julio pressed clean towels into his wounds. “Stay still.” Ronan said quietly his voice in a quiet rage as he looked at Thor who gripped his hand in his own, staining it bright red.

“Sir a car bomb went off outside, drive by no one else is near the street. The ambulance is on it’s way. Site secure.” Vito said helping him move Thor to sit up slightly.

He saw Thor go to speak and shook his head no at him. “Save your strength brother. I’ll make sure Skye is safe you rest.” He saw Thor’s eye close as he continued to scream and moan in pain and whispered to Vito to put more security on Skye nad bring her to the hospital when it was safe. He wasn’t sure who was after them but he would make sure they all paid whoever it was.