Written in 21 minutes. No time for typos.
Elizabeth’s sons returned from Disney World two days after the authorities assured them that the poison in the water had, indeed, been eliminated. She’d refused to let them return until she was confident—and even so, she’d asked Jason and Patrick to drag in gallons of water to use in their food and for baths.
It might be a while before she completely trusted the water system again. Patrick didn’t balk at helping, and Elizabeth also sent Jason to help Patrick with water for his house. The two of them even delivered water to Carly’s place.
No one was taking any chances.
“It would be nice if we could stop having this insane level of drama for like eight seconds,” Elizabeth muttered to her brother, Steven, as he joined her at the nurse’s station to grab some charts. “Aren’t you exhausted?”
“Constantly,” he agreed. But he grinned. “But it’s never boring.”
“I could do with boring.” She wrinkled her nose and frowned when she saw Brad Cooper, the lab tech she’d asked to run the maternity test several days earlier. “Hey, Brad. What are you doing up here?”
“Oh, well…” Brad slid a glance at Steven. “Just delivering some test results.”
“Hand delivering?” Steven smirked. “Brad, I told you. The lab is safe. ELQ donated enough money to keep all the positions secure for another year.” He scribbled something in a chart. “Don’t know what made Tracy get all generous, but let’s hope that it doesn’t go away.”
“I know, right? She was always worse than Edward.” Elizabeth looked at Brad. “Are those the results for Patrick? I can take them to him.” She put her hand out and Brad hesitated. She frowned, wondering if he was worried he’d get in trouble or something.
She’d told him the test was completely on the level — Patrick had agreed to run the test for her and ordered them. Jason was getting billed. All Brad had to do was run the test but maybe he was still a bit jumpy after nearly getting laid off.
Steven looked at Brad, then at his sister. “Uh, do I have to know something? Or should I go?”
“It’s fine,” Brad said finally. “Sorry, I just—Patrick told me these results were important, so—” He set the envelope in Elizabeth’s hands. “I just want to do it right.”
“Elizabeth here is Patrick’s right-hand man,” Steven assured Brad. “And you’re not getting fired for giving results to a nurse.”
“Right, right.” Brad made a hasty exit, skipping the elevators and taking the service stairs. Elizabeth stared after him, frowning in complete bewilderment.
“Oh, man, he’s weird,” Steven murmured. “Where did we find him?”
“I don’t know. Ask the lab director. She hired him. Maybe he really just was nervous—I mean, I know you’re an idiot, but other people might respect you.” Elizabeth shot her brother a smirk, and he flicked her nose.
“Quiet, Bits. What’s the test? What’s so important?”
Elizabeth shrugged. “Just a test Patrick wanted done. One of his VIPs, I think. That’s why I handled it.”
“Right. Keep your secrets. Just don’t get me sued,” Steven told her. He picked up his chart and headed down the hallway.
Elizabeth rolled her eyes and turned back to her monitor, slipping the envelope into her scrubs pocket. “One time, and he acts like I’m a walking lawsuit,” she muttered.
When she’d finished marking up her patient charts, she headed for the break room so she could text Jason and tell him to head over on her break. She wasn’t really in a hurry to give him these results, but she knew he wanted them quickly.
Elizabeth had listened to the reasons Jason thought Victor Delgado might be Danny McCall, and was reluctant to admit he might be right. Victor and Danny had been born on the same night, around the same time — without doctors. Todd Manning had been lurking in the area, as had Heather Webber. If you threw in the fact that Victor had an genetic illness that she knew some Cassadines had also inherited—
It was just—she knew that the friendship she and Jason had enjoyed over the last few months, the quiet talks, the spontaneous dinners with her and boys—it would all end. Because if Victor was Danny, Jason would rush off to bring him home to Sam, and she’d be grateful. They’d reunite and that would be that.
Not that she wanted Jason back, but she also didn’t want to lose him again in her life. Without Jake to tie them together…
Elizabeth sighed and sent Jason the text message, telling him her break was in an hour and she’d meet him on the roof.
It didn’t make her a bad person if she didn’t necessarily think it was fair that Sam got her child back while Elizabeth’s would never come home again. Particularly Sam, a woman Elizabeth loathed with every fiber of her being.
But she was also a grieving mother, so if she could relieve another mother’s mind—
Jason responded to let her know he’d seen her then, and she got back to work.
Jason found Elizabeth on the roof, looking out over the city—where she’d been a week ago when the rain had finally poured down on the city, ending a recent drought and bringing some symbolic relief to end of the poisoned water crisis.
She turned and flashed him a smile—one he returned automatically. It was rare to see Elizabeth smile these days when she wasn’t with her boys. When they’d lost Jake the year before, a melancholy sadness had settled inside of her—even he could see she wasn’t the same.
He understood — he hadn’t even been a true part of Jake’s life, but the loss of their son had cut him deeply. He didn’t know how either of them would ever really get past it.
“Hey,” she greeted. She slid an envelope out of her pocket and handed it to him. “Here are the results.”
Jason frowned as he took the sealed envelope. “You didn’t look at them?”
“No, I figured you’d want to do that.” Elizabeth’s smile dimmed slightly. “I just—I was thinking about how much—” She exhaled slowly. “How jealous I am of Sam, and she doesn’t even know it. I’d give anything to be holding a set of results like that—to just…” She looked away. “To just have hope our little boy was out there.”
Instead of lying in a coffin in the cemetery, a headstone with dates indicating just how little life their son had enjoyed.
He didn’t have the words to comfort her, so Jason opened the results and looked at the paper. He exhaled slowly and then looked up to find her studying her.
“Well?” Elizabeth asked.
“I was wrong,” he said. He carefully folded the results and placed them back in the envelope. “Victor—it’s not him.”
“Oh.” A little breath rushed out, and Elizabeth bit her lip. “I guess—I don’t know. I wasn’t expecting that.”
“Me either.” He’d wanted to be absolved of this guilt, the sin of what he’d done to Sam and how it had destroyed everything. But it wasn’t going to happen. “I’m glad I never told her.”
“Yeah, I guess.” Elizabeth cleared her throat. “I should get back to work.”
She started past him, but he grabbed her elbow and drew her back. “Hey,” he said, “why don’t I come over tonight? I’ll bring some pizza or something.”
“Yeah.” Elizabeth smiled, her face brightening slightly. “The boys would like that. Thanks. I’ll see you then.”