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Chapter 11

Nikolas rushed into Alexis’s hospital room, overjoyed that the doctor had just informed him she was conscious.

 

“Alexis!” Nikolas said. “I’m so glad you woke up. I was getting very worried.”

 

“I’ll be okay,” Alexis said. “Where’s Kristina?”

 

“She’s at Sonny’s,” Nikolas said. “Ned has been out of town and…” Nikolas trailed off as all the color drained from Alexis’s face.

 

“How could you allow that? How could you allow him near my child?” Alexis demanded.

 

“Alexis, he was the only person available and willing to keep Kristina around the clock for an indefinite period of time,” Nikolas explained trying to calm his aunt. “I don’t understand what the problem is. I realize you haven’t been close to him recently but you were friends and he is very good with children. I mean, look at his relationships with his own children…” Nikolas trailed off again as Alexis blanched at the reference to Sonny’s children. It didn’t take him long to understand. “Oh Alexis, she’s Sonny’s daughter isn’t she? Why didn’t you say anything? Why did you let Ned claim her?”

 

Alexis closed her eyes and tried to fight back the tears. She couldn’t answer Nikolas’s questions and it didn’t matter now anyway. Sonny had Kristina and he would never give her back. Alexis might as well have died because without her daughter there was nothing for her to live for.

 

Nikolas stared down at his aunt in silence. Seeing how pale and exhausted she was he felt bad for peppering her with questions but he did not understand how she could keep a child from her father, especially when she herself had been deprived of a mother. Sonny wasn’t on Nikolas’s Christmas card list but there was no denying how much he loved his children or how important family was to him.

 

That was how Sonny found them when he arrived for his nightly vigil—Nikolas standing silently over a pale and scared Alexis. Sonny rushed in and grabbed Alexis’s hand, momentarily forgetting that they were no longer the close friends they had been.

 

“I’m so happy that you’re awake, Alexis,” Sonny said as Alexis pulled her hand away and wiped away tears.

 

Sonny glanced at Nikolas who had remained silent and tense since Sonny had entered. At the look, Nikolas turned and abruptly exited the room. Sonny returned his attention to Alexis, who looked far too pale and thin for his liking.

 

“I’m not sure what’s going on with Nikolas but I know he is very glad you’re awake,” Sonny said.

 

“Could we not do this?” Alexis said tiredly. At Sonny’s confused look, she continued, “Could we not pretend you care when you’ve stolen Kristina from me?”

 

Sonny stood there in silence very confused. “I don’t know what Nikolas told you but Kristina was staying with me so that he and Emily could stay in the hospital with you,” Sonny said after several moments. “Ned was out of town and hasn’t returned calls. I didn’t think you’d want Kristina in the viper’s den that is the Quartermaine mansion so I agreed she could stay with me. Carly hasn’t been around and I had Viola stay with us so Kristina would at least have one familiar person who was constant until you got better.”

 

“What did you tell Kristina?” Alexis asked.

 

“That you were sick and the doctors wanted to keep you here because you needed to sleep all the time to get better,” Sonny said. “She saw Nikolas regularly and Elizabeth and Cameron spent a lot of time with her. She really likes them so I think it made her feel better. She’s sleeping through the night now. She was having nightmares at first but she has calmed down.”

 

Sonny saw the tear roll down Alexis’s cheek and his heart broke. He wasn’t sure how to fix things between them and he was terrified of making it worse but he had to do something.

 

“Please talk to me, Alexis,” Sonny said. “Tell me why you are crying.”

 

“I thought I asked that we not do this,” Alexis said. “Actually, it would be best if you’d just leave. I don’t want to spend time with the man who is taking my daughter away from me.”

 

Sonny stood there in confusion watching her. He didn’t understand why she kept saying he wanted to take Kristina from her. Sonny had thought that Alexis knew him better than almost anyone so she would know that he would never steal a child from its parents. After all, he had lost his own mother too early in life and Mike certainly was never around when Sonny needed him. The only way Sonny would take a child from its mother is if Sonny was the father and even then he wouldn’t keep the child all the time. His eyes widened as that thought passed through his mind. It wasn’t possible, was it? Kristina was Ned’s. Alexis had told him so—a few weeks after he went back to the wife who hated Alexis with every fiber of her being.

 

“Oh, God,” Sonny breathed. “She’s my daughter, isn’t she?”

 

Alexis didn’t need to say anything. Sonny could see the truth written on her face.

 

“Why didn’t you tell me?” Sonny whispered sinking into the chair in a complete daze. “Why would you keep my daughter from knowing me?” Alexis didn’t reply, couldn’t really she was crying too hard to speak so Sonny continued talking. “I came in here every night and sat beside you telling you everything, the way I used to be able to when you were awake. I told you about Kristina’s day and my feelings and how I never should have let you go. I realized when you were laying here that I loved you. I know, it’s probably too late but I wanted you to know. It was why I ran. What was between us was too intense, too powerful, too right for me to handle it. I was terrified so I went back to Carly at the first excuse I could find because she was safe, I knew what to expect with her. She couldn’t hurt me, not the way you would be capable of hurting me. I should have known when you said the baby was Ned’s. You never would have slept with your sister’s boyfriend, no matter how much I hurt you. But I wanted to believe she was Ned’s because then I could walk away guilt free and not have to look at what I couldn’t have everyday. I realize that makes me a selfish bastard but how was I supposed to see you, to talk to you everyday when it would be like cutting out my own heart every time I had to leave and go back to Carly.”

 

Alexis was staring at him in wonder, never expecting him to say anything even remotely close to this. The only thing she had allowed herself to hope for was him to give her custody of Kristina.

 

“I’m not asking you to forgive me,” Sonny continued. “I couldn’t ask that, not after what I did but I was hoping maybe we could learn how to be friends again. I would like to be part of my daughter’s life—if you’ll let me. You are her mother and she needs you. I want you to know that no matter what you decide, I will support her and you in anyway that I can. I would really like to try to be more than civil to each other though. Alexis, I miss my best friend.”

 

Alexis furiously wiped tears away but before she could respond Steven came in to check on her. Seeing her tears, Steven immediately jumped to the conclusion that Sonny had harmed her.

 

“I don’t know how things usually work, Mr. Corinthos,” Steven said coldly. “But my patients are not to be harmed while they are recovering from a major trauma. You need to leave.”

 

“Who the hell are you?” Alexis asked.

 

“Steven Webber,” Steven said his eyes never leaving Sonny. “I was brought in to consult on your case. Mr. Corinthos, you were asked to leave. If you insist on staying, I will have you arrested.”

 

“I don’t know how things work at whatever hospital you came from,” Alexis said echoing Steven’s words, “but in this hospital, the patient gets to decide who stays in the room and I didn’t ask Sonny to leave.”

 

“Oh, not you too! What is with the women in this town that they can’t see him for the criminal that he is?” Steven said.

 

“I know exactly what kind of criminal he is,” Alexis said. “I used to be his lawyer.”

 

“Oh,” Steven said speechless.

 

“Are you by any chance related to Elizabeth?” Alexis asked.

 

“Yes, although if you ask her, Corinthos is more of a brother to her than I am,” Steven said. “Of course, her mind might be a little impaired—she is living with Jason Morgan after all.”

 

“Apparently quite a lot has happened since I’ve been in here,” Alexis commented. “The last time I checked, Elizabeth was not speaking to you or Jason any more than I was.”

 

“It’s been an odd time,” Sonny said. “Elizabeth came back from California with her baby, Cameron Alexander Webber, the same day you were attacked. Emily called her the minute she was off the plane and she came to Jason and me. Then she told us the reason she came back was that…”

 

Sonny trailed off realizing that Alexis might not know about the rape and Elizabeth might want it that way.

 

“Um, someone from her past was in jail but had just been let out,” Sonny said.

 

Alexis looked at him in horror and said, “They let Tom Baker out of prison?”

 

“So you know?” Sonny asked.

 

“Yes, I know,” Alexis said. “Nikolas told me a long time ago.”

 

“Okay, so anyway that is why she came back,” Sonny said. “She told Jason and I and then moved into Jason’s penthouse to keep her son safe. They’re in love you know.”

 

“I’ve always known,” Alexis said. “Anyone could see that those two were destined to be together.”

 

“Destined? Didn’t realize you were such a romantic,” Sonny teased.

 

“Yeah well my nephew is a prince so why would I stick with reality,” Alexis said sarcastically.

 

Sonny threw his head back and laughed. “I’ve missed this,” he said simply causing Alexis’s eyes to widen in surprise.

 

“I hate to interrupt this hallmark moment,” Steven said sarcastically, “but I need to examine the patient.”

 

Sonny looked at Alexis who nodded. The mobster shot Steven one glare before joining Nikolas in the hall.

 

“Did you know?” Sonny asked quietly.

 

“Not until she woke up,” Nikolas said.

 

“I still can’t believe it,” Sonny said.

 

“Are you going to sue for custody?” Nikolas asked.

 

“No,” Sonny said. “I grew up mostly without a father and my mother died when I was young. I won’t take Kristina’s mother from her, no matter how much it pains me to watch from the sidelines of her life.”

 

“Give Alexis time,” Nikolas said. “She’ll come around.”

 

“You don’t know how badly I hurt her,” Sonny said. “I asked her to trust me and when she did, I broke that trust. Alexis isn’t quick to trust anyone so she’ll never let me that close again. And I can’t accept anything less from her than complete trust because I know what it’s like to have it and won’t be able to settle.”

 

“You love her,” Nikolas said.

 

“Yes, I do,” Sonny said.

 

“Then fight for her,” Nikolas said. “You don’t know how hard Emily tried to push me away to do the right thing by Xander. I simply refused to go away. You need to do the same thing with Alexis. Don’t use your daughter but simply refuse to back out of Alexis’s life just because it makes her uncomfortable.”

 

Sonny frowned and said, “I don’t want to hurt her anymore and I’m afraid that being around her is all it takes for me to do so.”

 

“It only hurts because she loves you,” Nikolas said. “She never looked at Ned the way she still looks at you, even after all the pain you caused her.”

 

Sonny didn’t reply and Steven came out of Alexis’s room and gave them an update. Everything looked fine but they wanted to keep her for a few more days to be on the safe side. Head trauma could be peculiar and some of her bruises still looked like they could be masking more serious injuries. Nikolas nodded and went back in to speak with his aunt.

 

“I’m glad you told him,” Nikolas said. “I called Elizabeth while you two were talking. She and Jason are bringing Kristina in now to see you. We thought it would be best so that she knew you were going to be okay.”

 

Alexis nodded and they continued to talk. Nikolas was trying to see what she remembered about her attack and attacker. Steven had suggested getting her to talk to see if the trauma to her head had caused any memory loss. Since she hadn’t mentioned the park or the attack upon waking up, it was being assumed that she didn’t remember it which was not uncommon.

 

Alexis continued to converse with Nikolas for a while about the Cassadine holdings and a variety of legal matters that had come up while she had been unconscious. She asked about the Tom Baker situation and how Emily and Elizabeth were holding up. Nikolas filled her in on the security and search efforts. Then Alexis heard Kristina get off the elevator and spot Sonny.

 

“Uncle Sonny!” Kristina cried happily and ran to him, arms outstretched.

 

Alexis watched through the window of her room as Sonny scooped up the little girl—his little girl—and held her close. Sonny closed his eyes as he held his daughter in his arms, knowing that at any minute her mother could take her away from him.

 

“Hey, Princess,” Sonny said carrying toward Alexis’s room. “Are you ready to see your momma?”

 

“Yes!” the little girl squealed. “But I’m not a princess, Uncle Sonny.”

 

“Oh yes you are,” Sonny said, walking into Alexis’s room with the child. “Hasn’t your momma or Nikolas explained it to you yet?”

 

“No,” Alexis said. “I was going to wait until she was older so she could understand what would happen if Nikolas and Emily have children.”

 

“She’ll still be a princess,” Sonny said depositing Kristina on her mother’s hospital bed.

 

“Mommy, I missed you,” Kristina said hugging her mother.

 

“I missed you too baby,” Alexis said. Taking a deep breath, Alexis made a choice that she greatly feared would ruin her daughter’s life as well as her own. “But your daddy came here everyday and told me all about you and what you were doing.”

 

“My daddy?” Kristina questioned. It wasn’t really a concept she understood yet. Ned hadn’t been around much in the last year and Kristina wasn’t old enough to understand that other kids had two parents.

 

“Yes, your daddy,” Alexis said looking at Sonny. It was odd to see the feared mobster who had broken her heart and soul fight back tears. “Sonny is your daddy.”

 

“Uncle Sonny?” Kristina said turning to look at him.

 

“That’s right, princess,” Sonny said. “I’m your dad. That’s why you stayed with me when your momma was sick and couldn’t be home.”

 

“Oh,” was all Kristina said before hugging her mother fiercely. “Are you going to come stay with Uncle Sonny now?”

 

“No, sweetheart, I have to stay here for a few more days so the doctor’s are sure I’m okay,” Alexis said.

 

“Kristina, you can stay with your mom for the night or you can stay with me,” Sonny said. “It’s up to you.”

 

“I want to stay with mommy,” Kristina said never relinquishing her hold on her mother.

 

“Okay but it is way past your bedtime so you need to lay down and try to sleep,” Alexis said.

 

Kristina lay down at her mother’s side and snuggled up against Alexis. Alexis stroked her daughter’s hair and looked at Sonny with a silent thanks in her eyes. Kristina also looked up at Sonny.

 

“Uncle Sonny, tell me a story,” Kristina said.

 

“Alright, I’ll tell you a story about a princess named Kristina but only if you close your eyes,” Sonny said. Kristina giggled but closed her eyes. “Once upon a time, there was a princess named Kristina. She was the most beautiful and smart princess who ever lived and everyone who met her adored her. Princess Kristina was so loved that she had a mommy and a daddy and a lot of uncles and aunts because everyone who met her wanted to be a part of her life. Princess Kristina liked kitties and puppies and babies. She liked balloons and dolls and trucks because she liked her older brother’s toys and he had lots of trucks.”

 

Sonny stopped talking as he realized both Alexis and Kristina were sound asleep. He turned and saw Elizabeth standing in the doorway with Jason behind her. Tears streamed down the brunettes face and she walked silently forward, wrapping Sonny in her arms, giving him the comfort he needed without being asked.

 

CHAPTER 12

 

Sonny sat in Alexis’s room the next afternoon waiting for her to wake up again. Kristina was off with Cameron and Jason at the zoo along with an army of bodyguards. Sonny and Alexis had managed to clear the air between them after Alexis was sure Sonny wasn’t trying to take their daughter away from her. In fact Alexis had even agreed to try to work through their collective emotional baggage to see if they could be friends again. Sonny wanted her to be more than his friend but he would start with what he could get now and work on her later.

 

Alexis woke up slowly aware that Sonny was sitting beside her bed. He always was and it was starting to wear down her defenses. How could she refuse to let him in if he refused to go away? How could she not trust him when he was always there keeping her safe? She slowly opened her eyes and they immediately found his.

 

“Hey,” Sonny said.

 

“Hi,” Alexis said. “Do you ever leave? I mean, have you been eating and working while you sit here?”

 

“Yes, I have been eating and working while I sit here,” Sonny said with a smile. “It’s you that needs to eat more. You are way to thin.”

 

“Best diet ever,” Alexis joked but Sonny frowned at her. “It was a joke, Sonny.”

 

“Well, it wasn’t funny,” Sonny said. “Anyway, the doc said they might spring you today but they also said you couldn’t stay alone for several weeks. Any thoughts on where you are going to go and who will stay with you?”

 

“Well, I could stay at Windamere,” Alexis said. “I could have a whole wing and Nikolas and Emily would never know I’m there. Plus the servants are always scurrying around so I wouldn’t be alone.”

 

“And if Helena was the one who attacked you or ordered the attack?” Sonny asked broaching the subject for the first time.

 

“I thought of that,” Alexis said quietly after a while. “The problem with that theory is that she never would have left Kristina roaming free. Plus she would have finished the job.”

 

“So you don’t believe it was Helena,” Sonny said.

 

“No,” Alexis said. “Sometimes when I am sleeping, I think I dream about it but his face is just out of my vision. I know it was a male though. And for some reason I think it is someone I know. I’m just not sure who at this point. The doctors are hopeful that I’ll remember everything though so I guess it’s only a matter of time.”

 

Sonny frowned and Alexis knew he was worried. It actually made her feel better for some inexplicable reason.

 

“I know you are going to hate this idea but would you at least think about moving into the penthouse with me,” Sonny said. “There is plenty of room since Kristina is sleeping in Morgan’s room and Viola has been staying in Leticia’s old room. You can have your pick of any of the other guest rooms.”

 

Alexis looked at him but before she could answer there was a knock on the door. Alexis looked up and her face went completely white. She started breathing faster and her heart rate jumped. Sonny squeezed her hand and looking into her eyes, silently telling her to stay calm. Alexis understood the silent signal just as she knew Sonny understood the reason for her sudden panic. Her attacker had just entered the room. Alexis fought for control as Sonny turned, partially blocking Alexis, to see his half-brother standing in the doorway holding a bouquet of flowers.

 

“Ric,” Sonny said evenly wanting nothing more than to throw the bastard down the elevator shaft.

 

“Sonny,” Ric replied. “I didn’t realize the two of you were on speaking terms.”

 

“Yeah, well things change,” Sonny said before turning back to Alexis and giving her a reassuring look.

 

“What can I do for you, Ric?” Alexis said.

 

“I just stopped by because I heard you were awake and I wanted to see how you were doing,” Ric said.

 

“I’m still extremely tired and hazy from the pain medicine,” Alexis said. “I think I sleep about twenty hours a day.”

 

“Well there is another reason I stopped,” Ric said. “As DA, I do need to get your statement about the day you were attacked. The police are investigating but right now there isn’t enough forensic evidence to point to a specific suspect.”

 

Alexis was about to reply when Steven walked in and looked in surprise at Ric. “I’m sorry Mr. Lansing but Alexis is in no condition to give you a statement at this time. She is suffering from temporary, selective memory loss. She cannot remember any of the day she was attacked. It’s not uncommon in situations like this especially with the kind of head trauma she sustained.”

 

“Oh, well then I’m sorry to bother you,” Ric said. “I’ll just put these flowers over here and let you get some rest. We’ll talk when you are feeling better.”

 

Alexis just nodded and Ric exited the room. Without waiting to be asked, Sonny got up and grabbed the flowers. A few minutes later he returned with balloons. Alexis smiled at him and Steven rolled his eyes as he took Alexis’s vitals. He frowned as he took her blood pressure and read the heart monitor results from the last hour.

 

“Alexis, your blood pressure is a little high and your heart rate is no longer stable,” Steven said. “I’m not sure what is going on but I think I should run some more tests.”

 

“What’s wrong is that I want to get out of the hospital,” Alexis retorted. “You try being stuck here and see how you like it.”

 

“Well if you have someone you could stay with and you promise to come in every other day for follow-up, I don’t see a reason you can’t be released today,” Steven said. “But I want to speak to whoever you plan to stay with.”

 

“Go ahead,” Alexis said. “He’s standing beside you.”

 

Steven sputtered but was unable to form coherent speech so he slammed out of the room. Sonny chuckled at the exit but looked at Alexis. He saw the fear in her eyes that she desperately tried to cover up.

 

“You know if it was Ric, the legal system won’t do you any good,” Sonny said quietly.

 

“I know,” Alexis said.

 

“Good, then you’ll let me take care of it,” Sonny said pulling out his cell phone.

 

“No, Sonny,” Alexis said.

 

“Alexis, he has to be dealt with. He could have killed you—hell, he tried to,” Sonny said. “He could have hurt Kristina.”

 

“I am aware of that,” Alexis said. “But you are not going to kill him or order him killed. I will take care of it.”

 

“Look, Alexis,” Sonny started but Alexis cut him off. What he saw in her eyes stopped him cold.

 

“No, Sonny,” Alexis said. “I will take care of it. I am a Cassadine—no matter how much I tried to fight it, the fact remains that I am a Cassadine, daughter of Mikos, sister of Stavros and Stefan. Cassadines do not let other people handle their problems. I will take care of Ric.”

 

Alexis held out her hand and Sonny laid his cell phone in it. She dialed the number she had memorized long ago, even while she had prayed she never would need to use it.

 

“Port Charles, New York,” Alexis said. “Harborview Towers, Penthouse 2 tonight.”

 

After Alexis hung up the phone and handed it back to Sonny, he studied her for a moment and said, “It suits you.”

 

“Committing murder?” Alexis said.

 

“Defending yourself and your daughter,” Sonny countered. “Not fighting who you are but accepting that good can come from the horrors of your family.”

 

“I guess you would know,” Alexis said and the look that passed between them said more than any words could ever hope to.

 

CHAPTER 13

 

Alexis and Sonny sat in the living room of the penthouse, Sonny sipping brandy and Alexis drinking juice. They had put Kristina to bed an hour before, after eating one of Sonny’s famous creations for dinner. Both adults were simply waiting for the knock on the door that they knew would be coming. Yet when it did, they both jumped in surprise.

                            

Max opened the door. “Visitor for Ms. Davis,” he said before allowing the man to enter.

 

Sonny looked him over carefully and found that the visitor was not what he had expected. He wasn’t sure what he had expected but the tall, thin, quiet-looking man definitely was not it.

 

Alexis rose and walked toward him and Sonny immediately flanked her to prevent the man from doing her harm. The mobster was completely stunned when the man immediately dropped to his knee and bowed his head at Alexis’s approach.

 

“Your highness,” the man said demurely keeping his head bowed.

 

“Rise,” Alexis said and Sonny looked at her sharply. He had never seen her act this way and was surprised to find that it fit her. “I am Natasha Alexandra Davidovitch Cassadine. You were summoned because my brother Stefan trusted you with the life of the Cassadine heir—a life he valued far more than his own.”

 

“Yes, your highness,” the man said. “I am at your service, just as I was his.”

 

“Good,” Alexis said. “An attempt was made on my life.”

 

At that the man broke protocol and looked up at Alexis sharply, disturbed and angered by this statement. “Why was I not called sooner?” the man asked.

 

“I have only recently recovered from my injuries and did not know who had attacked me until today,” Alexis said. “I summoned you so that the situation could be dealt with immediately.”

 

“Of course,” the man said. “And you will never have to think of this again.”

 

“Thank you,” Alexis said. “The man’s name is Ric Lansing. He is the local district attorney. You will be provided with his home and business addresses. I expect this to be clean.”

 

“Certainly, your highness,” the man said. He hesitated and then continued, “If I may be so bold as to ask if you know why he attacked you. It is of course not important except in that it may help to make his punishment…fitting.”

 

Alexis’s eyes met Sonny’s and never wavered as she said, “He was attempting to gain my cooperation in stealing the children of his brother through the court system. I refused to aid him in a plot to harm innocent children and he was aware that I would feel an obligation to warn the father of the children so he thought to remove me.”

 

“A response befitting a princess,” the man murmured before rising. He kept his eyes averted as he asked, “If I may take my leave, I will deal with this situation immediately.”

 

Alexis waved her hand in dismissal but Sonny stopped the man by saying, “There is another matter that you might assist in.”

 

The man raised his head and looked directly at Sonny. The two weighed and measured each other for several silent moments before the man nodded, signaling that Sonny should continue.

 

“A man by the name of Tom Baker was released from prison a day or two before Alexis was attacked,” Sonny informed him. “This man may attempt to harm Nikolas Cassadine and his fiancée Emily.”

 

“Who is Alexis?” the man asked in confusion.

 

“That is how he refers to me,” Alexis said.

 

The man’s eyes widened and he realized the owner of the penthouse must be very close to the princess to be able to call her by a nickname. His respect for him grew.

 

“Anyway,” Sonny continued, “if this Tom Baker is in Port Charles he needs to be dealt with, would you be willing to solve that problem?”

 

“If the princess allows, I will see to this matter as well,” the man said.

 

Alexis nodded her agreement and said, “I will contact you with the details regarding that problem at a later date.” Handing him a piece of paper, she said, “Here is the information on where to find Lansing.”

 

The man backed toward the door after reading the paper and throwing it in the fire. He bowed low at the waist once more before exiting the room. Sonny stared at Alexis who seemed unaware of the oddity of the scene that had just played out.

 

“Who was that?” Sonny finally asked. “And don’t say a hitman.”

 

“That,” Alexis said looking at Sonny, “was Alexei Poposovitch.”

 

Sonny swallowed hard, realizing he had just been in the same room with the most feared assassin in the world. “How do you know him? And what was with all the princess stuff?” Sonny asked.

 

“Alexei is an Imperialist Russian,” Alexis said. “His loyalty to the royal family is absolute. Stefan told him long ago that Alexei was responsible for the safety of the Cassadine family and Alexei takes that very seriously. He loved my father and because of that he considers me to be as much a part of the royal family as Nikolas or Stefan. That means of course that he will kill anyone who threatens me or anyone I tell him to. When I was a teenager, Stefan made me memorize Alexei’s contact information so that if anything were to happen, I would be protected.”

 

“And I was always so worried about your safety,” Sonny said.

 

“That is not a number I would have dialed while Stefan was still alive,” Alexis said. “You should be thankful since that is why I didn’t call him after my sister was killed.”

 

“You would have sent him after me?” Sonny asked incredulously.

 

“Yes,” Alexis said. “My grief was all-consuming and pregnancy hormones were not helping.”

 

“I guess I should thank Luke for not killing him sooner,” Sonny said.

 

Alexis just looked at him and shook her head.

 

~          ~          ~          ~          ~          ~          ~          ~          ~          ~          ~          ~         

 

Meanwhile across the hall Elizabeth, Emily and Sam sat in Jason’s living room giving themselves pedicures—fire engine red for Elizabeth, bronze for Sam and mauve for Emily. Emily and Sam had arrived saying it was to celebrate that Alexis was out of the hospital but really they wanted to try to get Elizabeth’s mind off the lack of clues to finding Baker. Jason had stuck around for a while but then made his escape to pick up the Chinese food the girls wanted. Sam had laughingly called him a coward on his way out the door.

 

When the knock sounded at the door, Elizabeth got up and walked over, mindful of her nail polish. Marco stood on the other side carefully watching the two men in the hall. The older and obviously more important man stepped forward and glanced around the apartment.

 

“I need to see Jason Morgan,” Sal said.

 

 “Jason isn’t here at the moment although I expect him back shortly. Would you like to wait for him?” Elizabeth said.

 

Sal looked at Elizabeth for a moment and said, “That would be nice. Thank you.”

 

Elizabeth opened the door to let him in and said, “I’m afraid your employee will need to wait in the hall with Marco.”

 

“Understood,” Sal said looking at the other two brunettes on the couch who both looked back at him curiously.

 

“Would you like something to drink?” Elizabeth asked playing hostess.

 

“No, thank you. I’m fine,” Sal said.

 

“Please, have a seat,” Elizabeth said. “Jason just went out to pick up some food for us.”

 

Sal nodded and sat in the end chair. He looked around curiously, having never been in Morgan’s penthouse before. Of course, he had never personally met Jason’s girlfriend and sister before either.

 

“I’m sorry, but do you often let Jason’s business associates wait for him in his apartment?” Sal finally asked.

 

“Jason’s business associates don’t come here,” Elizabeth said.

 

“I don’t understand,” Sal said.

 

“I know who you are,” Elizabeth said. “I wasn’t going to leave you standing in the hall and since I knew you were unarmed, I didn’t see any reason you shouldn’t come in.”

 

“I can see why Morgan is so taken with you,” Sal said.

 

“So why are you here?” Sam asked.

 

Sal glanced at Elizabeth and said, “I’m sorry but that’s something I can only discuss with Morgan.”

 

“He has information on Tom,” Elizabeth said.

 

Sal’s head whipped around and he stared at Elizabeth. “How…”

 

“That’s the only reason any one from your business would show up here,” Elizabeth said. “If it had simply been about business, you would never had come to this building. If it was about Alexis, you would have gone across the hall. That only leaves Tom Baker.”

 

“You are very astute,” Sal said. “Morgan is a lucky man.”

 

Before Elizabeth could answer Max and Jason walked into the apartment. Both men glanced at the other mobster and then at Elizabeth who smiled sweetly at them.

 

“Morgan,” Sal said in greeting.

 

“Sal,” Jason said.

 

“I need to speak with you,” Sal said.

 

“It’s about Tom,” Elizabeth said receiving a glare from both men which she returned. “There is no way in hell you are going to discuss this without me so you might as well deal with it now.”

 

Elizabeth,” Jason started and then stopped when all three women in the room stood side by side and glared at him. “Alright, this isn’t business and you do have a right to know. Talk, Sal.”

 

Sal walked over and opened the door, motioning Jimmy into the room. Jimmy stood there, shifting from foot to foot and staring at the floor.

 

“This is Jimmy. He works on my construction crew,” Sal said. “This morning he came to me with some information regarding this Baker guy. Tell them, Jimmy.”

 

“Um, when I was in prison I met a guy named Tom Baker,” Jimmy said. “He was in for extortion and was an okay guy. Anyway, he got out a little while ago and called me up. I got him a job with the crew. Figured he helped me out in prison, I was just returning the favor. I didn’t know anything about who he had tried to get the money from or anything like that.”

 

“Why come forward now?” Jason asked.

 

“Well, it’s like this,” Jimmy said, “a few days ago, he and I were walking through the park and he stopped suddenly and started staring at these two women and a baby. I stopped too and when I looked where he was lookin’, I saw that it was Elizabeth Webber and Emily Quartermaine. Now, everyone on the crews knows, you just don’t mess with those two. So I told Tom that figurin’ he didn’t know who they were and just thought they were hot or something. But Tom says he knows who they are and why am I so afraid of two women. So I told him it was because they had protection from Mr. Corinthos and Mr. Morgan and Tom got real quiet. Then Mr. Morgan shows up and Tom hides. I figured, if he was hiding it meant that he had something bad planned.”

 

“I repeat, why now?” Jason asked.

 

“Well, I wanted to find out what he was planning before I said anything since I didn’t want him to get in trouble if it was nothing,” Jimmy said. “But then I went to his apartment to pick him up last night to go have a beer and while he was still in the shower, I saw he had all these newspaper clips on his desk. They were all on Ms. Webber, Ms. Quartermaine, Mr. Cassadine, and Mr. Spencer. It seemed like these went back all the way to when he first got in prison. I decided I couldn’t wait any longer to find out what was going on so I got him pretty drunk last night and went to Mr. Pomantino first thing this morning.”

 

Elizabeth headed for the phone and Jason intercepted her.

 

“What are you doing?” Jason asked.

 

“I’m going to have the bastard arrested,” Elizabeth said.

 

“He hasn’t broken any laws,” Jason said quietly.

 

“As if that matters to the PCPD,” Elizabeth retorted. “Lucky’s a cop now, remember? And let’s not forget my ex-husband is the DA.”

 

“What exactly do you expect to happen?” Jason asked.

 

“I expect that Lucky will arrest him, Ric will put him in lock-up, and he won’t make it to trial,” Elizabeth said.

 

Elizabeth,” Jason said.

 

“No,” Elizabeth replied. “You are NOT going to kill him. He doesn’t deserve that kind of honor. He is going to be cut down by some two-bit hustler in jail for a hundred dollars. That is what he deserves.”

 

Sal looked at Elizabeth with growing respect and asked, “Could you really have him arrested and put in lock-up?”

 

“In a heartbeat,” Elizabeth said. “I’ll even contribute the hundred it takes to kill the son of a bitch.”

 

“No,” Jason, Max and Sal all said at the same time.

 

“Whatever,” Elizabeth said.

 

“You’re sure this is how you want it to happen?” Jason said.

 

“Yes,” Elizabeth said. She looked at Emily who nodded so she repeated, “Yes.”

 

“Okay, call Lucky and Ric,” Jason said.

 

CHAPTER 14

 

Elizabeth walked into the police station followed closely by Emily, Sam and Jason. Emily immediately went into Nikolas’s waiting arms. Sam stopped next to them and Lucky but Elizabeth didn’t even look at them. She walked straight back to the interrogation room.

 

Entering the room, Elizabeth said, “Leave, Ric.”

 

Elizabeth, I am not going to leave this room until I know what is going on,” Ric said.

 

“Leave,” Elizabeth said and for the first time, looked at him. Ric blanched at what he saw in her eyes. The DA glanced at Jason who nodded and Ric exited the room.

 

Jason stood silent in the corner while Elizabeth looked at Tom across the table. Tom looked back and for that alone Jason wanted to kill him.

 

“I thought I’d feel something when I saw you out of prison,” Elizabeth said. “Rage, hate, something. Disgust is pretty much the best I’m going to be able to do. Did you really think you’d get away with it? Did you really think you’d be able to hurt us this time when you couldn’t years ago? We were teenagers and we beat you. What made you think you stood a snowball’s chance in hell that you’d be able to do any better now?”

 

“You’re real sure of yourself with a mob enforcer in the room to protect you,” Tom said.

 

“Oh, Tom,” Elizabeth said with obvious amusement. “He isn’t here to protect me. He’s here to protect you.”

 

“Excuse me?” Tom said.

 

“That’s right,” Elizabeth said. “Jason’s here to keep me from killing you. The DA may be my ex-husband but even he couldn’t refuse to charge me for a murder committed in the police station. The PCPD is pathetic but even they would notice you were killed.”

 

Tom looked into Elizabeth’s eyes and realized they were as cold as Jason’s.

 

“So the rumors about you killing that Xander guy were true, huh,” Tom said. “Got to admit, I didn’t think you had in you but you were always spunky.”

 

Elizabeth smiled and the smile made him shiver. She leaned across the table and spoke very low so that only he could hear her.

 

“You are going to go to jail again and this time you are going to die there,” Elizabeth said. “I won’t let Jason kill you because that would give you a stature that you don’t deserve. Just know that there is someone on the inside who has already been paid to do the job. So when you feel the life draining from your body, remember this conversation. Enjoy the rest of your life and know that it was only worth a hundred dollars.”

 

Elizabeth stood up, turned her back on him, and walked out the door. She kept walking straight out the door and onto the sidewalk. With Jason beside her, she headed toward Kelly’s. Ric followed them out of the building as did several other people, including a few cops. Suddenly, as Ric was jogging to catch up with them, he stiffened and fell.

 

Chaos ensued with Elizabeth stopping in shock and Jason catching her as she fainted. Emily, Nikolas, Lucky and Sam all ran over but Elizabeth was already waking up.

 

“Sorry, it’s been one hell of a day,” Elizabeth said. “Is he dead?”

 

“Yes,” Lucky said. “A sniper from a roof top.”

 

Elizabeth nodded and leaned against Jason.

 

“Do you need to go to the hospital?” Nikolas asked.

 

“I just want to go home,” Elizabeth said.

 

Jason picked her up and carried her to the car. He drove in silence back to Harborview Towers knowing Elizabeth didn’t need conversation. To his surprise, Elizabeth turned towards Sonny’s penthouse when they got off the elevator.

 

“Ric’s dead,” she announced as soon as she entered, “and Tom Baker will be in a few hours.”

 

“Are you okay?” Sonny asked.

 

Elizabeth nodded and looked at Alexis. “Ric was the one, huh?” she asked.

 

“Yes, he was,” Alexis said.

 

“I wish I could say I was surprised but after everything else he has done, I guess I’m just surprised he didn’t manage to actually kill you,” Elizabeth said.

 

“How did you know?” Sonny asked.

 

“That’s the only reason Ric would have been shot in broad daylight on a street full of cops with Jason as a witness,” Elizabeth said as she flopped down into an armchair.

 

Jason walked up behind her and she automatically reached up to take his hand in hers.

 

“So did things go the way you wanted?” Sonny asked.

 

“It was weird,” Elizabeth said. “I expected to feel hatred or rage but it just wasn’t there. I needed to do it though. I needed to stand face to face with him and know that he will never be able to hurt me or those I love again.”

 

“I’m glad we all ended up being able to put the past behind us,” Alexis said as she took Sonny’s hand in hers.

 

The two couples exchanged smiles.

 

FIN

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