FIUR and VLAMME
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***** A FEW DAYS LATER *****
Sara felt a bit uncomfortable to enter the somewhat run-down building, but she did want information. Her face darkened even more as she saw that the elevator was out of order. “Great,” she mumbled sarcastically. “I have to walk and he lives on the last floor. Perfect.” All grumbling didn’t help and so she had to climb the stairs.
Completely out of breath, she reached the fifth floor and rang the doorbell.
The door was opened hesitantly and Peter stuck his head out.
“Hi, it’s just me,” Sara said. “I’m not a secret agent. May I please come in?”
“Uh, yes. Sure.” He opened the door wider to let her in.
Sara entered the small apartment that was cluttered with computers and other technical things. She made her way past tons of cable and asked, “Peter, why can’t you live downstairs? From the way it looks the whole building is empty.”
“And why did you hesitate to let me in?”
“I have to be careful... I was in a place I shouldn’t have gone...”
Sara frowned. “What? You are speaking in riddles, but that doesn’t matter. It doesn’t have anything to do with the information you were to gather for me, does it?”
Peter sat down in front of his many flickering monitors. “No, no. To find Jack’s family wasn’t that hard. All in all, he seems to have a lot of relatives.”
“That’s great!” Sara exclaimed and smiled.
“Wait a second,” Peter responded. “I don’t know if you will be as excited once you heard the whole story.”
She sat down next to him, looking at him expectantly.
“I found his family in England, actually in the south-west of England, at the Bristol canal. They have their own homepage... and in one of their photo archives I found one picture that proves that it really is Jack’s family.”
“Just one picture?” Sara asked.
Peter nodded. “Yes... here. It’s showing his family at his graduation from university.”
Her eyes widened as she read the small text under the picture. “John Farnsworth, heir of the title ‘Earl of Haddington’, celebrating with his family.” For a minute she was stunned speechless. Then she came back to herself. “Thank you, Peter.”
“I gotta go and see Jack.”
Victoria hid her red-rimmed eyes behind a pair of big sunglasses as she appeared at the hospital. Once she heard that Dr. Lunaris wasn’t there, she walked aimlessly along the corridors. Her feet carried her to the room where Jack lay and she saw him through the small window in the door. She hesitated a moment, but then entered the room.
Jack was visibly surprised as he saw her, since he had expected Sara to visit him.
Victoria took off the sunglasses and sobbed, “Jack, you have to help me.”
“What's wrong?” he asked tenderly.
She told him everything that had happened. “What am I supposed to do now? I mean Colin Stuart is dead and so again I won’t have anybody.”
Jack smiled, “As you can see, I’m a bit unable to give you a hug. But I can still talk. I’m telling you to look at the positive side of this. You may not have a father, but you do have a very nice family.”
Greatly confused, she looked at him.
“I’m talking about your half-siblings; Chris, Liz and Taylor. Talk with them. Tell them the truth about what you found out. They will welcome you with open arms, I’m sure.”
Victoria thought about it. Then she hugged him and gave him a big kiss directly on the lips. “Thank you so much, Jack. And you really think I should talk with them?”
“Yes,” he confirmed. “They’ll be happy to get another sweet sister.”
Restlessly, Dorian was pacing in Victoria’s apartment. “Just where can she be? Why does the whole world have to be so complicated?” He took a couple of deep breaths and came to a decision. “Vicky is the perfect example to see that all money and luxury can’t make you happy, if you don’t have family or friends. And I want to have given my bone marrow out of sympathy and not because I got a million dollars for it. I will give the money back to Mr. Jones or it will haunt me for the rest of my life. Otherwise my conscience will never quiet down. I should have never taken it. Until now, I lived perfectly fine without much money or help and it will work again... it has to.”
He left the apartment, took his mountain bike and raced off.
Sara stood at the front desk of the hospital, asking a nurse when Jack would be released. She looked up and saw Victoria coming out of Jack’s room, before she disappeared into an elevator.
Anger rose hotly in her guts and she marched to his room.
He lay on the bed and grinned at her as she entered.
Sara was speechless.
“Hey sweetheart,” Jack exclaimed happily. “How about a kiss for your poor sick boyfriend?”
“Why?” she snapped furiously. “Your face is covered in lipstick!”
“Oh, that was Vicky, sorry.”
Sara crossed her arms and glared at him. “Oh, that was Vicky, sorry – Is that all that you have to say? You really must have had a very fun afternoon.”
He looked at her, not knowing why she was so upset. “Would you please stop it? She had a big problem...”
“Of course, and to solve it she comes to you?” Sara interrupted him, seething with rage. “To you of all people?!”
“Calm down. She was beside herself and didn’t know what to do. It was coincidence.”
“Sure!” Sara nodded.
Jack sighed. “Your jealousy is completely exaggerated.”
At this point, the conversation turned into a different direction.
“Why did you keep it from me?” Sara asked softly.
Jack was confused. “What do you mean. Vicky isn’t...”
“It’s not about Vicky. It’s about...” She didn’t find the right words and so she looked at him questioningly and just blurted, “John Farnsworth?”
His face hardened as the name fell, but he didn’t say anything.
“When were you planning on telling me? Never, am I right?”
“I didn’t ask you to dig around in my past,” he replied coldly.
“You even changed your name?”
“I wanted to be independent.”
Sara looked at him in disbelief. “I want to be that too, but am I changing my name for that?”
“You don’t know my family.”
“That’s right!” she yelled, getting frustrated. “And from the way it looks, I don’t know you either.”
Jack stared at the wall. “If you think so.”
“I don’t know what to think! I thought we could talk about everything... and then you lie to me about such an important matter...”
“I never lied to you,” he remarked.
“You have a different name... that is a lie in my eyes.”
Jack looked at her and pleaded, ”Sara, you have to understand one thing. These are my family problems. It has nothing to do with you.”
“So, are you saying your family is none of my business? Is that it?”
“It is past.”
“It is a past that you will always have. Also when I become your wife, but...”
Jack swallowed hard as Sara didn’t continue her sentence.
“Suddenly you seem like a complete stranger to me... as if I would not know the real Jack,” she admitted softly.
“What do you want me to say? Thanks for acting behind my back? We could have talked about your plan,” he remarked.
Sara looked at him intently. “Would you ever have told me the truth on your own?”
Jack kept his silence, but for her it was the answer she sought. “I... I have to think... I need time...”
“What do you mean by that?” he inquired. “Our wedding... do you want to cancel it because of that?”
“Jack... I... maybe you are right. We shouldn’t see each other for a while.”
“Yes, I think we need more time,” he responded quietly.
“I will be moving in with my Dad once more.” Sad, she left his hospital room and walked to her car. “God, I am so angry!”
Matthew was at home, going over some work documents, as the doorbell rang. He went to the door and opened. His eyebrows rose in surprise as he recognized Dorian.
“Hello, Mr. Jones. I would like to talk with you about something.”
“Sure. Please, come in.” He led him to the living room and pointed at an armchair.
Dorian sat down while Matthew took his seat on the couch. “Well... I am here...” he stammered, unable to concentrate on what he wanted to say because the other man was scrutinizing him up and down. Dorian wrinkled his forehead. “Mr. Jones, is everything alright?”
Matthew cleared his throat. “Yes, of course.”
“Okay. I will just blurt it out before I lose my nerve,” Dorian stated. “I want to give back your money.”
Matthew stared at him, stunned.
“I cannot take it,” Dorian continued. “I should not have taken it to begin with. I really am sorry.”
“Oh, my boy...”
“I already told the bank to transfer the money back to your account.” Dorian rose and was about to leave. “I am happy to have helped you and Sara, and I don’t want any money for that.”
“Dorian, please, stay,” Matthew begged. “I have a confession to make.”
“When they checked your blood... it was revealed that...”
“You are my son.”
At first Dorian laughed, because he thought Matthew had a weird sense of humor and wanted to crack a joke. Then, he looked at the man’s face and noticed that he was deadly serious about what he had just said.
“Dr. Lewis found out about it... did you know?”
Dorian shook his head. “No. Did you know?”
“No. I’m telling you the truth. I really did not know that I had another child beside Sara.”
Pale, the young man sank back into the armchair. “My, that’s a lot to take in. It’s unbelievable.”
“Your mother is...”
Dorian was just about to answer, but Sara chose that moment to storm inside the house and Matthew asked concerned, “Sweetheart, you don’t look too good. What happened? Are you feeling ill again?”
“No, I just don’t feel well,” she replied, not noticing Dorian at all. She went in direction of her former room and called out, “By the way, I think it’s over with Jack.”
Matthew was flabbergasted by the news. “It’s probably just nerves...”
“Phhh, if only you knew, who he truly is.” She disappeared in her room and banged the door shut.”
“I’m so sorry Dorian,” Matthew said. “I need to find out what’s going on with her.”
“Of course, I understand.”
“But, I want to meet with you soon, so that we can talk about everything and get to know each other better.”
“Sure. I’d like that very much,” Dorian answered smiling.
“Please, don’t tell anyone about it just yet. Most of all, don’t tell Sara. I don’t think she could handle much more excitement for the moment.”
“I swear, I won’t tell a soul.”
Both men rose and Matthew patted his new-found son’s shoulder gently. “I really can’t wait to talk with you again and get to know everything about you.”
“No problem.” Once he was outside, the smile on Dorian’s face turned to a huge grin. “I just exchanged a million for a family. Wow. That’s a real great deal.”
As Elizabeth returned home from work, she found Samantha lying on the couch in the living room. She sat down next to her and greeted her with a gentle little kiss. “Hello, my jungle princess.”
Samantha grinned, wrapped her arms around Elizabeth’s neck and pulled the blonde closer to her. “Hey, my Angel. How was your day?”
Elizabeth sighed. “Exhausting like always. What’s new, right?” She briefly looked around and then turned back to Samantha. “Where is Taylor?”
“In the park, walking Tasilo.”
“What? She left you here all alone?”
The brunette made a pitiful face and poked out her lower lip. “Yes, imagine that. I was here all alone. I only had the TV for company.”
Elizabeth giggled about her lover’s antics. “Awwww, my poor baby,” she cooed. “But now I’m back, and I will take good care of you. Do we need to change the bandage of your wound?”
Samantha shook her head. “I don’t need bandages anymore. Gillian was here a while ago and took out the stitches. Here, have a look.” Samantha sat up, pulled up her T-shirt and showed Elizabeth the pale pink scar on her rib cage.
Tenderly and carefully, Elizabeth traced it with her fingertips and tears welled up in her emerald green eyes. “I could have... I could have lost you, Sam... forever...” she whispered in a broken voice.
Samantha cupped her face with both hands and pulled it up to look at her. “But that didn’t happen.”
“Yes, thank God, it didn’t happen.” Elizabeth bent down and placed a gentle kiss directly on the scar.
Touched deeply by such tenderness, Samantha closed her eyes and a pleasant shiver raced along her back. “Oh... Liz... I love you so much...”
Elizabeth was just about to embrace Samantha’s trembling lips with her own, as she heard how the entrance door was unlocked and happy laughter rang out. “It sounds as if Taylor is back and brought more company for you,” she grinned at the brunette.
“Oh Chris! Look at that!” Karen exclaimed. “What a cute picture these two make.”
Grinning cheekily, Elizabeth turned to her sister-in-law and asked, “Do I hear envy in your voice?”
Karen returned the grin and replied, “I can’t complain about the man of my dreams.”
“That’s good to know, right, big brother?”
“You can bet on that,” Christopher responded.
“Hey, where are the little rascals?” Elizabeth inquired because she couldn’t see the babies.
Karen answered, “With the nanny.”
Christopher pulled a DVD from Karen’s briefcase.
“What’s that?” Elizabeth wanted to know.
“The disc that shows Taylor winning the Olympic Games.”
“Really?” Elizabeth was getting excited.
Karen nodded. “I recorded it.”
“Cool! Put it in! I have to see that!”
“It will blow you away,” Christopher replied, just as excited.
Taylor rolled her eyes. “Oh Chris, you are exaggerating.”
“I don’t think so,” he sing-songed back. “You were awesome and that’s why you got the gold medal.”
Caught in a trance, Lawrence’s fingers gently caressed the picture frame that showed Taylor’s face. “Yes, soon it will be the right time, my precious. Daddy will bring you home. Yes, home where you belong. We will be a family again. Everything is prepared for our future together. I even decorated a room, just for you, my sweetheart. You won’t miss anything. Daddy will see every wish in your eyes and then fulfill it.”
He put the frame back to the others that made up his ‘Taylor Shrine’, which he had built. “Now we just have to wait for the right time to carry out my plan. But, don’t worry, Taylor. Daddy will be successful and nobody will find you. Nobody will ever take you away from me again. You will not have to be without your Daddy any longer.”
A bit hesitating, Matthew knocked on the door and waited. There was no reaction coming from the room. He sighed and entered Sara’s room.
From the stereo sounded ‘The Funeral Song’ by ‘The Rasmus’.
Matthew made a face as he listened to the lyrics. “What kind of horrible music is that? It really makes one depressive.”
“It suits my mood at the moment just fine,” came Sara’s dry reply from the bed.
Matthew sat down next to her. “That’s what I wanted to talk with you about. Don’t you think you should talk with Jack and make up with him?”
“No Dad! It is far too late and it is over.”
“But little one...”
Sara jumped off the bed. “NO!” she said vehemently. “I cannot be with somebody, who’s lying.”
“Don’t you think that’s a little harsh?” he inquired. “He kept something from you and that wasn’t nice but to call this lying...”
“Why are you defending him?” she interrupted her father. “He is an adult man, he can speak for himself! But I don’t want to hear anything he has to say...”
“Sara, I can understand that your feelings are hurt but...”
“For the last time, Dad, NO! I don’t want anymore. Our relationship was nothing more but an emotional roller coaster ride, a constant up and down. I just can’t bear it anymore. It’s over and I will get over it too... somehow.”
Elizabeth was rendered speechless as she came out of the bathroom, clad in her pajamas.
Samantha stood beside the stereo in the bedroom. Her sapphire blue eyes were practically burning with passion as they regarded the blonde. She pressed the play button and the first sounds of ‘Unchained Melody’ rang out. Sam reached out with one hand. “Angel, please, dance with me.”
Elizabeth smiled and went willingly into the strong arms of her jungle princess, who held her tightly to her body.
Samantha closed her eyes and let her hands wander beneath Elizabeth's pajama top.
“Sam?” she inquired grinning. “Are you trying to turn this into dirty dancing?”
The brunette didn’t answer. Instead, she stopped, took off her T-shirt and unbuttoned Elizabeth’s top. Soon enough, she lost her patience with the tiny buttons, grabbed the top on both sides and just ripped it open. She pulled Elizabeth close to her and moaned lustfully as she felt her warm skin on her own.
Slowly, she walked back with her until the back of the other woman's knees hit the edge of the bed and she sank between the pillows, pulling Samantha with her, who came to rest on top of her.
Between hungry, passionate kisses, Elizabeth managed to gasp out, “God... honey, are you sure?”
“I need you, Liz,” she whispered back. “It’s been so long. I want to feel you... deep inside and everywhere...”
“But your wound...”
“It’s barely hurting... please, Angel... I want you so much...”
Elizabeth swallowed hard and confessed, “Anything you want. My heart, my soul, my body... I’m yours completely...”
Wrapped up in each other’s arms, they lay on the bed, basking in the afterglow of their lovemaking. With tender fingertips, they caressed the backs of each other.
“Angel, I... I...”
“What is it, honey?” Elizabeth wanted to know, a bit alarmed about Samantha’s stuttering.
Taking a deep breath, the brunette said, “I... I need to ask you something.”
“Oh, that sounds serious.”
The blonde sat up and looked at her. “Sam, what’s wrong? You know that you can ask me anything.”
Samantha rolled on her other side to take the small jewelry box out of the nightstand drawer.
Elizabeth’s heart began to pound strongly and the thoughts whirled in her head. What could it mean?
Gathering all her courage, Samantha took another deep breath before she said, ”Angel, there is nobody in this world that I love more than you. I have been alone for a very long time and then you came into my life and you changed it. I don’t want to be without you, never again. I cannot be without you and that’s why I... I wanted to ask... Angel... would you... would you marry me?”
At first, Elizabeth was so quiet that Samantha was beginning to get scared. “Liz?”
Then, the blonde smiled and cupped the other woman's face to look deeply into her eyes. “Oh Samantha. Nothing would make me more happy than to spend the rest of my life with you.”
***** A FEW WEEKS LATER *****
Alexander rolled his eyes in annoyance as the telephone rang again, but he picked up anyway. “Hello?”
“Hello, this is Detective McGray from the police department in Anchorage. I would like to speak with Mrs. Catherine Parker.”
“Oh, I’m very sorry, but she is not here at the moment. Do you want me to leave her a message?”
“No. I will call again later. Thank you.” The detective hung up
Frowning, Alex stared at the receiver. “The police of Anchorage? Did I miss something? I guess as soon as Mom comes home, we will have to have a talk.”
Samantha and Elizabeth stood in front of each other, barefoot on the warm sand of the beach, both of them dressed in white. They were holding on to their hands and looked deeply into each other’s eyes.
“Everything I have is yours,” Samantha stated. “I will love you and honor you in good times and in bad times, in sickness and in health. I will always stand by you and support you till death do us part.”
Christopher stepped forward to give Samantha a ring, which she put with trembling fingers on Elizabeth’s hand. Holding on to it, she placed a tender kiss against the delicate knuckles.
Then, the blonde announced her vows. “I never believed in love until fate brought us together and I saw you for the first time...”
Samantha interrupted her, grinning, ”You fainted.”
The gathered guests laughed at that.
“Well, what can I say. It was as if a lightning bolt had hit me.”
“For me too.”
Elizabeth blushed and wanted to continue, but she couldn’t. “Oh great, now I forgot what I wanted to say.”
Somewhere from among the crowd somebody called, “You’ve been talking enough anyway! Just kiss and get it over with!”
Elizabeth’s blush deepened and Samantha’s grin broadened another notch as she pulled her beloved into her arms and remarked, “I don’t think there needs to be anything added.”
“First, the ring,” Elizabeth insisted and waved Karen over to her. She took the ring off the red velvety pillow and slid it on Samantha’s finger. “Now we are bound together forever.”
The priest smiled and announced, “Yes. That’s why I declare you wife and... uh... wife. You may kiss the bride.”
“Finally,” Samantha remarked, held Elizabeth’s face in both hands and then their lips melted in a kiss that said more than a thousand words ever could.
Cheers rang out and the invited photographers shot pictures, each of them greedy to keep this moment forever stored.
Lawrence observed the wedding from a safe distance. His binoculars were not aiming at the happy couple. They solely rested on Taylor.
“Today is the day,” he muttered. “Today I will carry out my plan and take you home, my lovely child. I will take you away from these lying people that had a bad influence on you. Now, everything will be fine because your Daddy is here to take care of you.”
Victoria lay on the comfortable, black leather couch in Elias’ office, her face a mask of sorrow. “I just don’t know what to do,” she whimpered. “Should I say something? Should I rather keep it to myself? I’m so confused. There are so many thoughts and feelings in an uproar inside me. My real father is dead but I have 3 more siblings. I’m sure though they are not going to welcome me with open arms into their family.”
“You cannot know that, Victoria,” Elias responded.
“Oh yes, I do know that. You see, Dr. Lunaris, I was not always a nice person.”
“But people can change. You are the perfect example for that.”
She looked at him with her doe-brown eyes and asked in a small voice, ”You really think so?”
“Yes. I’m sure that a while ago you wouldn’t have given the feelings of other people a second thought, am I correct? It wouldn’t have mattered if you would have hurt them or their feelings with whatever you were doing or saying, right?”
She nodded. “I wouldn’t have cared at all. I would have done anything as long as it would get me what I wanted.”
“What are you planning to do? What is it that you want now?” he inquired softly.
“I want to get to know my sisters and brother better and I want to find out more about my father,” she answered. Nervously fiddling with her fingers, she added, “But I’m scared of their reactions. What if they think that I’ve completely lost my mind?”
Elias shook his head. “I don’t think they will do that. The Stuart family is a bunch of very understanding people. I’m sure if you would talk with them, everything will turn out alright. But, you will have to be the one, who takes the first step.”
Victoria exhaled sharply. “You are right. It is worth a try.”
“And maybe you should talk with your mother about your real father.”
Making a face, Victoria replied, “She will deny it.”
“Talk with her,” the psychologist insisted. “Don’t let her get by that easily. She owes you the truth.”
Her mind began to work. ‘Yes, she owes me the truth. And if she doesn’t want to tell me, I have to use a trick to get the information.’
Silently, Sara and Rose sat together in the kitchen, having dinner. “How was the wedding?” Rose wanted to know, after she couldn’t take the absolute silence anymore.
“Beautiful. Taylor is totally excited that Sam and Liz finally got married.”
“Was Jack there?”
Sara rolled her eyes, nerve-wrecked. “Do you honestly think I would have made an appearance at the wedding if HE would have been there?”
Rose blinked a couple of times at her angry tone. “Don’t get upset. I was just asking a normal question.”
“Yes, exactly! It’s one that’s really getting on my nerves. Can you and Dad not get it into your thick heads that it is over between Jack and me, once and for all? Or do I have to paint it in bold letters on the house wall?”
The young woman jumped off her chair. “I’m going to my room. Thanks a lot, I just lost my appetite!”
Shaking her head softly, Rose could only watch her storm out of the kitchen.
Elizabeth was putting some clothes into a suitcase when Samantha came up behind her, wrapped her arms around her and began to place gentle kisses along the nape of her neck.
“Oh sweetheart,” the blonde gasped. “You have to stop that...”
“Why, my Angel?” Samantha breathed. “Don’t you like it?”
“I do, that’s the problem. I need to get finished with packing. As you know, we want to go on our honeymoon tomorrow.”
“Mhh, I can’t wait,” the brunette purred. “For three weeks, 24 hours all alone with you on a cruise. I’m so happy.”
Elizabeth turned around, cupped Samantha’s face and whispered against her lips, “Me too. Now we are married and nobody can come between us.” Her hands traveled under the tall woman’s T-shirt to caress her back.
“Do you want me to help you with packing?”
And before Samantha was able to get out another syllable her lips were covered by Elizabeth's.
Annoyed, Alexander burst into his mother’s study. “Mom, we have to talk,” he announced.
Catherine looked up in surprise. “What’s wrong?”
“We had a call from Anchorage this morning while you were gone.”
“The police of Anchorage wanted to talk with you,” Alex clarified.
“Is there anything you would like to tell me?”
Before the head of the Parker family could answer, the door flew open once more and Victoria entered the room. “Mother, we have to talk!” she demanded.
“Uh... Vicky, sweetheart... Can that wait? As you can see, there is something I need to talk about with your brother.”
“Half-brother, you mean,” Victoria stated.
“No, Mother! I will not wait any longer. You’ve lied to me for 25 years of my life. But, I know the truth and I want to know everything about you and Colin Stuart... my real father!”
Catherine glared at Alexander, who raised his hands in a defending motion. “Don’t look at me like that, Mom. I didn’t tell her anything.”
Victoria’s shocked eyes turned to him. “You... you knew about it the whole time?”
“Well.. uh... um...”
“I can’t believe it,” Victoria hissed. “What kind of a family is this?!”
Catherine rose from her chair and reached for her daughter. “Please, Victoria, calm down.”
“You want me to calm down? I don’t know why I should?!”
“Alex, would you please leave us?”
He nodded. “Sure thing, Mom. I’ll be back later so that we can finish our talk.”
After he had left, Catherine walked over to the small bar in the corner of the room and poured herself a drink. “Would you like one too?” she asked her daughter.
“No, thanks. I only want information about my father. And if you refrain from giving me any, I’m going to the press with the whole thing.”
The glass almost slid from her fingers as Catherine heard that. “You would do that?”
“Why does that shock you so, Mother? That’s the way you always handle things. I think I may have learned that from you!”
Sara stared out of the window in her room.
Unstoppable, the raindrops hit the glass and the bad weather was not exactly helping with the bad mood she was in.
Spontaneously, she grabbed her cell phone and dialed Taylor’s number.
“Hey you. It’s me. What are you doing?”
“Nothing exciting,” the teenager answered. “To tell you the truth, I’m pretty bored at the moment.”
“And I feel like the walls are closing in on me. Do you want to do something? We could go and see a movie,” Sara suggested.
“Okay. Do you want me to come and get you?”
“Yeah. Can you come with your motorcycle? That would be real cool.”
“Uh... Sara, in case you didn’t notice... it’s raining outside.”
Taylor took a deep breath. “Riding a motorcycle in such weather is not exactly fun.”
Sara chuckled. “Oh, are you trying to tell me that you are scared of a little bitty water from above?”
“No. I just don’t want you to float away.”
“That’s not going to happen. So? What do you think?”
Taylor relented. “Okay, I’ll be with you in about an hour. You can already pick a movie.”
“Okay, until in a bit.”
Jack was very surprised as he opened the door and found Matthew standing in front of it. “Mr. Jones? Isn’t it a little bit late for a visit?” he asked him.
“We have to talk,” the older man responded. “It’s about Sara.”
Fearful, Jack looked at him. “What is it? Did the sickness come back?”
Matthew shook his head. “No, nothing like that. It’s a matter of the heart.”
“I can’t help with that, I’m sorry,” Jack replied quickly
Sighing, Matthew shook his head. “It’s really unbelievable. You are just as stubborn as she is.”
“It’s over between us. I have finally accepted it.”
“But you love each other!”
“Yes, and I will never love another woman like I did Sara, but it isn’t meant for us to be together.”
Matthew watched him intently. “Is that your last word?”
“Yes. Good night, Mr. Jones,” Jack said and closed the door right in front of the stunned man’s face.
‘That really was the most stupid idea ever,’ Taylor thought to herself as she steered her motorcycle through the rain, which got heavier by the second. ‘Damn it! I can barely see anything!’
The loud roaring of an engine made her glance into one of the rearview mirrors.
A dark car was driving closely behind her. In fact it was a bit too close for the girl.
‘What kinda idiot is that? Did they never hear of keeping a safety distance?’
She drove a bit faster and the car followed her example. Taylor sped up even more and again the car behind her did the same.
Fear rose inside her.
The car accelerated even more and rammed the motorcycle.
Taylor fought with the handlebar in order to keep control of the machine. ‘That guy must be crazy!’
The next ramming was so hard that the motorcycle skidded on the wet road.
Again the car rammed it and this time the motorcycle slid off the road. Taylor was thrown over the handlebar. She landed hard and lay there unconsciously.
The car stopped. A man climbed out and walked over to the unconscious girl. Carefully, he took off the somewhat dented helmet.
He jerked as suddenly loud, electronic music sounded.
It was Taylor’s cell phone that vibrated wildly in the small pocket on her belt.
He took it and flung it onto the road, where it burst into pieces. Then, he carefully lifted Taylor into his arms and carried her to his car.
“Now we are together, my child,” Lawrence whispered. “Nobody will ever take you away from me again.”
The loud ringing of the telephone woke Elizabeth and made her jump out of Samantha’s warm embrace. “I wonder who that could be?” Sleepy-eyed, she fumbled for the phone and fell back into the pillows.
Samantha placed her head on Elizabeth’s chest and snuggled up to her.
“Uh hi, it’s Sara. I just wanted to know what’s keeping Taylor? I already tried her cell phone, but she’s not answering.”
Elizabeth frowned. “I thought you two wanted to meet to go see a movie or something?”
“Yes, that’s why I’m wondering why she isn’t here yet.”
The blonde squinted at the alarm clock on her nightstand. “But she left here 3 hours ago...” Her eyes widened and she sat up quickly. “Oh my God... I hope nothing happened to her...”
Crying, Victoria sat on the bed in her hotel room. The conversation with Catherine about Colin had caused her emotions to be in a complete uproar.
“I still can’t believe it,” she sobbed in despair. “I am the product of a one-night-stand! That’s so horrible. And only because Colin didn’t want her, Mother did want the Stuart movie company... for revenge. And she didn’t want him to take care of me. Instead, Mother claimed for years that Jonathan is my father. God, I hate you, Mother. I hate you so much! You raised me to be a bitch like you! But, I have enough of that now. I’m a member of the Stuart family and I will stand by MY family against you and your nasty schemes. Tomorrow, I will go to talk with my sisters and brother.”
Taylor awoke and was in pain. Every part of her body was aching. She groaned and a warm hand was placed tenderly on her forehead.
An unfamiliar, male voice told her, “It’s alright, it’s alright, precious. You are safe.”
Then she felt the prick of a needle in her right upper arm.
“I’ll give you something against the pain. You will feel better soon.”
A veil fell over her senses and now the voice of the man sounded from very far. “Yes, sleep. Rest. Daddy is here and takes care that nothing will happen to you.
Before she lost conscience again, a last thought raced through her mind. ‘Daddy? But he is dead...’
***** THE NEXT DAY *****
Restlessly, Elizabeth paced through the house. She was very concerned because there was still no news about Taylor.
The entrance door opened. Christopher, Karen and Samantha entered.
The hope disappeared from her eyes as she saw the sad expressions on the other’s faces. They had been driving around outside the whole night, searching for the teenager.
“And?” Elizabeth asked.
“Nothing,” Christopher replied.
“The same here. I called all the hospitals... nothing... absolutely nothing...” despite her strong will, Elizabeth began to cry. “The police is searching for her... Oh God... I’m so scared... there are so many things that could have happened to her...”
Samantha pulled the blonde into her arms, trying to console her.
Christopher also tried to calm his sister down. “Liz, don’t think about stuff like that...”
They were interrupted as the doorbell rang.
Elizabeth stormed to the door, flung it open and looked into the sad faces of two police men. “Ma’am, we found something. If you would please come with us.”
They followed the men outside. There, on a pick-up truck, lay Taylor’s dented motorcycle.
“Ma’am, is this the machine of your sister? We also found a few pieces of a destroyed cell phone and we found this...” He gave Elizabeth a motorcycle helmet.
Elizabeth began to tremble as she held the helmet and she lost it as she recognized the motorcycle. Sobbing, she slid to the ground. “Oh God, no... not like Daddy... TAYLOR!!! NO! NO! NOOOOOOOOOOO!!!” she wailed. "TAAAAAYYYYYYLOR!!!"
*****STAY TUNED FOR THE NEXT EPISODE...
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