Everyone’s got to face down the demons
We can put the past away
I wish you would step back from that ledge, my friend
You could cut ties with all the lies
That you’ve been living in
And if you do not want to see me again
I would understand
– Jumper, Third Eye Blind
Monday, May 5, 2004
Morgan Penthouse: Master Bedroom
Elizabeth wrinkled her nose, sifting through the basket of shirts to use for Cameron’s top layer of clothing. “How many world’s greatest grandmother shirts did Monica buy?” she asked, looking at Jason as he emerged from the bathroom, his hair damp from his shower.
“Knowing her, one for every day of the week,” Jason replied. “Are you taking him out today?”
“I thought about it,” Elizabeth told him. She took out a long-sleeved green shirt. “I know Laura wants to see him, but he’s still sleeping and eating so often, it’s hard to take him out for long.”
He looked at the clock on the nightstand. “Speaking of feeding, I’ll go get the next bottle ready.”
“Thanks,” Elizabeth called over her shoulder as she lifted Cameron into her arms and sat in the rocking chair. He waved his tiny fist, opened his eyes, then pressed his fist against his mouth. “Hey, baby. Does that taste good?” She danced her fingertips over his stomach. “Daddy’s bringing breakfast now.”
Jason returned with the bottle about ten minutes later. As he walked past her bureau, her cell phone rang. “Trade,” he told her. “I’ll feed him while you talk to Bobbie.” He settled himself in the chair with Cameron while Elizabeth answered.
“Hey, what’s up?”
“Hey! I hope it’s not too early.”
“No, we were just getting Cam ready for breakfast.” Elizabeth smiled as she watched Jason fit the bottle to Cameron’s mouth. His tiny hand tried to reach for it, but fell back to his side. “What’s up?”
“Oh, well, Carly and I were talking about doing something for us—I’m off from the hospital, and Lulu offered to watch Morgan. We were going to go shopping and have lunch at the Grille. I thought you might want to join us.”
Elizabeth bit her lip, looked over at Jason. “Well, I can’t really go for long—Cameron needs me—”
“I’ve got him,” Jason told her, glancing up at her. “I’ll be gone a while tomorrow, so you should get today.”
“You’re sure?” Elizabeth asked. “I don’t know—”
“Meet us for lunch at least,” Bobbie offered. “We can shop on our own. I mean, I was going to stop at Wyndham’s. You know their baby section is to die for—”
“Oh, that’s not fair—” She sighed. “All right. What time?” She finished making plans with Bobbie, then closed her phone and tossed it aside. “Are you sure?” she asked Jason. “I haven’t been away from him for more than a few hours since I got home. I feel terrible—”
“Elizabeth, I have to go to Crimson Pointe tomorrow,” he reminded her. “I’ll be gone most of the day. You didn’t even blink at that.”
“Yeah, but that’s important—this is just shopping and lunch—”
“Do you want to go?”
She wrinkled her nose. “Yes.”
“Then go. You deserve it.”
“Well, if you twist my arm. I’ll let Cody know.” She paused. “You’re sure?”
“I am,” Jason replied. “I have to leave him for so long tomorrow, so I’m glad I don’t have to share him with you for a few hours today.”
“Well, when you put it that way.” She leaned over, kissed Cameron’s forehead, before brushing her lips against Jason’s. “Love you.”
“Love you, too.”
Dante & Cruz’s Apartment: Kitchen
Dante emerged from his room that morning and went straight for the coffee. “Hey,” he said to Cruz.
“Hey,” his roommate said. “Lu still asleep?”
“Yeah, she’s going to baby sit her cousin today, so she wanted to sleep in.” Dante sat down at the table.
“Yeah.” Cruz shifted. “Uh, listen, we didn’t really talk about it last night. With everyone around. No one really asked why I was there by myself.” He looked away.
“I didn’t want to assume,” Dante said carefully. “You’ve always been private about that kind of thing. I kind of wondered, but it’s not my business to pry.”
“Oh.” Cruz hesitated. “Well…I’m gay,” he said, almost off-handedly. “I just—being a cop and all—”
“It’s not a friendly atmosphere for that kind of thing,” Dante finished. “Yeah, I’ve heard the idiots in the locker room, too, Cruz. You know I don’t care about any of that. I mean—” He winced. “I mean, it’s good. No, it’s fine—” He hissed. “I’m messing this up.”
“No.” Cruz shook his head. “No, you’re not. I know what you’re trying to say, and I appreciate it. And…the others?”
“They figure the same, but they’re not going to ask. If you want people to be out around—you know, they’re good. Lucky would be, too,” he added. “But that’s up to you. You just—you don’t have to hide it.” Dante sipped his coffee. “I’m going to the PCPD today to talk to Anna.”
Cruz raised his brows. “Oh yeah?”
“Yeah. I’m—” Dante hesitated. “I think I’m ready. I know the rumors will never stop and that people are always going to wonder, but I can’t—I miss it. I miss working with you guys. I miss the squad room. I miss feeling like I can make a difference. All I ever wanted was to be a cop.” He stared down into coffee. “You and Lucky haven’t really pushed me on this.”
“We both saw what you went through, and Lucky knows what happened in February was also about his dad. We all got scars to carry from our families, Dante,” Cruz said. “I came out to my parents when I was eighteen and they told me I was going to hell. I could either give it up or I could stop being their son. And my grandparents were on board. And up until then, my abuela—she was my rock. My champion.”
“Shit, man—” Dante cleared his throat. “I’m sorry.”
“Yeah, well,” Cruz jerked a shoulder and looked away. “I tried it for a year. Dated a girl in the neighborhood, but I couldn’t do it. I was starting to hate myself. So I told them I was sorry, but I couldn’t live like that. If I was going to burn in hell, then at least I’d live my truth. That was four years ago.”
“They haven’t changed their mind?”
“No. You’re always going to be Sonny Corinthos’s son. But that’s biology. Family isn’t supposed to reject their kids like mine did, and they’re not supposed to hold you back. You still got your Ma.” He grinned. “You know, she still dropped lasagnas off every week while you were at the diner.”
“Well, Ma can’t stand to see anyone starving.”
Brownstone: Taggert’s Apartment
Portia made a face as he pulled bacon out of his fridge. “Oh, no. Can you skip that today—” She touched her stomach. “It’s making me want to vomit.”
Taggert closed the fridge. “Why don’t I stop at Kelly’s and grab something to go?” he suggested, sitting down to finish his coffee. “I don’t wanna make you sick.”
“Well, since your kid makes me hate all food—”
“I’m guessing it’s always going to be my kid when you’re feeling miserable?” Taggert grinned at her when she just scowled. “Fair enough. You gonna be at the store all day?”
“That’s the plan. I want to finish some designs, so we can get them into production, and I have a client coming who wants a custom gown for something.” Portia sipped her tea. “What about you?”
He hesitated. “I’m contacting Sonny Corinthos to have him come in for questioning. I have enough probable cause to get him into the box,” he told her. When Portia blinked at him, he added, “I didn’t mention it because I knew it wouldn’t be a big deal. He’ll bring his lawyer, he won’t answer anything, and that’ll be that.”
“You don’t think you’ll be able to get anything?” Portia asked. “Then why do it?”
“Because it’s the only thing I haven’t done,” he replied. “I’ve interviewed anyone who might answer questions—not a long list. I’ve read all the paperwork—there’s nothing else except to interview my primary suspect.”
She sighed. “I’m sorry, baby, I know how much you struggled with this one. It’s hard knowing you might not close it.”
“Yeah, but I guess…” He sighed. “I guess it’s not the end of the world. The thing that bothered Anna in the first place was the lack of an investigation. We might not have had an arrest ten years ago, either. At least—at least we did what was right. We investigated, we followed the leads, and sometimes…”
He kissed her forehead as he got to his feet. “Sometimes you just can’t win.”
“Come by the store when you’re done today,” she suggested. She caught his arm. “We’ll get some dinner and I’ll make sure you get your mind off it.”
“If anyone can, it’s you.”
Corinthos Penthouse: Living Room
It had been two days and Jason had steadfastly refused to even let Sonny in to discuss the attempted kidnapping. Carly didn’t want him involved, and Jason wasn’t giving Sonny a chance to show his worth.
It was exhausting not to have control over a single damn thing. To see Lily out of the corner of his eye even though he dutifully took the damn medication every day and went to see Lainey Winters every week. He could feel the difference — his brain wasn’t so fogged up and his impulses were easier to control.
He felt more in control, so why the hell wasn’t anyone giving him the chance to show it?
Max knocked lightly on the door, then pushed it open. “Hey, Mr. C. Ms. Baines is here to see you.”
Ms. Baines? Sonny frowned, it clicked. Jordan. His lawyer. Maybe it was an update about the divorce. He was eager to get into court, to show everyone that he wasn’t going to let Carly push him around and pretend to be better than him.
“Sure, sure. Jordan.” Sonny smiled at her. “You want some coffee or something?”
“No thanks, Mr. Corinthos.” Jordan returned the smile, but it was thin and a bit impatient. “I have a few updates for you. We finally have a date for the first divorce hearing,” she reported. “We see the judge on June 7. Then we’re due on the adoption question on June 10.”
A month away, but Sonny couldn’t do anything about that and it certainly wasn’t Jordan’s fault. “Fine.”
“There was also a request from the PCPD to come in for questioning,” Jordan said. “Lieutenant Taggert didn’t say what the case was, so I told him I’d ask and get back to him. I’ll call him and tell him we’re not interested—”
“What’s this we bullshit?” Sonny demanded. “You don’t speak for me—”
“With the police I do—”
“You think I can’t control myself in an interrogation room?” Who the hell was this bitch to treat him this way?
“No, Mr. Corinthos—”
“Because I’ve been dealing with the cops since I was twelve.” Sonny reached for his coffee. “Tell him I’ll be there.”
“All right.” Unhappy, Jordan shifted her briefcase from one hand to the other. “I don’t see the point. We’ll simply refuse to answer questions—”
“And you can stay at home,” Sonny retorted, stopping her in mid sentence. “I can handle this.”
“Mr. Corinthos, while I’m unaware of any active investigations involving you,” Jordan began, “I think it is a bad decision to go without representation—”
“But it’s my decision, isn’t it? I still get to make those, don’t I?” Sonny demanded. “I’m still in charge here, aren’t I?”
“Of course.” Jordan drew back her shoulders. “I’ll tell them—”
“Don’t tell them I’m waiving my right to counsel,” Sonny ordered. “It’ll catch them off guard.” And then he’d control the room.
He’d remind everyone that he was Sonny fucking Corinthos, and he still had power. He was still someone to reckon with.
Someone to fear.
Port Charles Grille: Restaurant
“It’s hard to see who he’s taking after,” Elizabeth admitted as she gave Bobbie the set of photos she’d picked up on her way to Wyndham’s.
Carly tilted her head as she looked at a picture of Jason and Cameron. “I think he might have Jason’s jaw.”
“You can’t tell that on a eight week old preemie.” Bobbie rolled her eyes, but smiled and held up a picture of Elizabeth, Jason, and Cameron in the nursery. “This is a good one—”
“She took it, didn’t she?” Carly asked dryly.
“Yeah, on Friday—these are Friday’s pictures. I dropped off Saturday and Sunday when I picked these up.” Elizabeth sighed. “I can’t stop. I’m with him all the time, but I just—I guess I just want to mark every single minute.”
“Jason took a lot of photos of Michael,” Carly said. She handed the stack back to Elizabeth and picked up her mimosa. “When I, uh, left. And then while I was—” She squinted. “Detained.”
Bobbie lifted her brows. “Detained?”
“It’s how I’m going to explain not being in any photos with Michael one day,” Carly told her mother. “Until he’s old enough to understand temporary insanity, terrible mistakes, and how not to ruin people’s lives.” She shook her head. “Not like I’m looking forward to that conversation, but there’s a whole lot of people who don’t like me in this town, so it’s probably better if I get ahead of the damage.”
The waiter brought their orders and the conversation shifted to Carly teasing her mother about her undeclared relationship with Scott Baldwin. “I mean, why aren’t you guys just admitting it? How many dinners can someone share?”
“Why aren’t you guys saying what it is?” Elizabeth asked. “I mean, I don’t even see you that much, and I know you guys are dating.”
“Because every time I get into a relationship,” Bobbie said dryly, “it ends in public humiliation, arrests, and tears—”
“Oh, so you come by this genetically,” Elizabeth said to Carly. “That’s a relief.” Carly snickered, and Bobbie glared at them both.
“I liked you both better when you hated each other,” she said in withering tone. “Now you’re bickering like sisters.”
“Oh, that was mean—” Carly tossed an olive at her mother. “Take that back!”
“I had it coming,” Elizabeth admitted. Her phone buzzed and she grinned when she flipped it open. “Jason sent me a picture message—”
“Right on the hour. You have him trained so much better than I ever could.” Carly leaned over. “Oh—he’s taking a nap?”
“Yeah, he’s sleeping a lot. Up for an hour or two—usually to eat, then sleeping for two to three hours. On repeats,” Elizabeth said. “Jason and I mostly take turns, but I’m worried about my surgery. I won’t be able to do anything for almost a month—”
“Well, you know you just say the word and Monica will move into the guest room.” Bobbie wrinkled her nose. “Don’t let her hog my baby—I’m gonna want to help.”
“Oh, this is not going to be like the hospital,” Carly complained. “Emily better let me take a turn—”
Elizabeth pressed two fingers to her lips as tears suddenly burned in her eyes. “I’m okay—” she said when Bobbie frowned. “I just—it’s um—” She took a sip of water. “Last year, when I was pregnant the first time—” she looked at Carly. “I was so scared.”
“I remember,” Carly murmured. “I saw you at the hospital. I can’t decide if I gave you good advice or not—”
“I appreciated it,” Elizabeth told her. “But I was alone. Gram was gone, and Emily was out of town. I was barely friends with Nikolas. I just—I didn’t think there was anyone I could turn to, and now—God—less than a year later—I have people fighting over who gets to help—”
Bobbie covered her hand, laced their fingers together, then squeezed. “I should have been there for you after losing Audrey. I’m so sorry, baby.”
“It’s okay. Um, I’m not sorry about what happened last year. I mean, other than—” Elizabeth looked at Carly, “—obviously if I could have everything I have without either of one of us going through what we did—”
“But since we can’t take any of it back,” Carly said, “and we’re not going to get a real resolution, at least we can point to a silver lining. You and Jason have Cameron, and that wouldn’t have happened.”
“You don’t feel like it’s resolved?” Bobbie asked with a frown. “I mean—Ric is dead—”
“He is. But I didn’t—” Carly leaned back in her seat, hesitating. “I didn’t get to be part of it. He didn’t pay enough.” She squinted at Elizabeth. “Do you know what I mean?”
“Yeah. I remember arguing with Jason—” she paused. “At Thanksgiving, when we were still kind of dealing with the idea of him being out there—what would happen when he was found—I told him that the only way Ric being dead would feel fair was if I got to pull the trigger.”
“Exactly. Otherwise—” Carly stabbed her fork into her salad. “It will never feel over.”
Elm Street Pier
Claudia was right. Nadine did like to sip a hot chocolate while walking on the pier.
Johnny swallowed hard and started down the steps towards the pretty blonde nurse sitting on the bench looking over the water. She turned her head at his entrance and smiled. “Hey! I don’t usually get to see you in the daylight.”
“Yeah, I keep crazy hours at the club.” He sat next to her, then stared at his hands. He should break things off. It hadn’t really even started. A few dates didn’t mean anything, and maybe it wouldn’t go anywhere.
But Claudia already knew about her.
“Johnny?” Nadine frowned at him. “Are you okay? You have the strangest look on your face.”
“That guy who came to the club the other night—he’s one of your patient’s fathers,” Johnny said.
“Yeah. His son was in the NICU for a while.” Nadine’s smile faded. “You work for him. I know that. I read the papers, Johnny. He’s Jason Morgan and you’re Anthony Zacchara’s son. I’m not stupid. What’s going on?”
“I—You never said anything.” Christ. He hated this. He didn’t want any of this. He stared back at his hands. “I never should have walked up to you at the club,” he muttered.
“Is it because I took care of his son? Does he think something’s going on? I don’t know anything—”
“No. That’s just a coincidence.” Johnny sat up. “I know something bad is going to happen,” he told her bluntly. “But if I say anything to stop it, something might happen to you.”
Nadine stared at him for a long moment, then turned to look out over the lake. She sipped her hot chocolate. “How bad?” she asked.
“I don’t know. But it probably involves that kid you took care of.” His sister was crazy that way, and if she needed to get to Jason Morgan, the quickest way was through his wife and son.
“He was so small when they brought him in,” Nadine said softly. “Preemies don’t always make it, you know, and it’s hard. You tell yourself don’t get attached. Don’t get involved. But you can’t help yourself. Sometimes the parents don’t visit because they know and it hurts too much, but someone has to love them.”
“He’s a baby, Johnny. If he’s in danger, if someone is going to hurt his family, I want to help them. I’m a nurse, and I’m an adult. I can take care of myself, okay? You can tell me where to go and what to do.” She lifted her chin. “But you know what you have to do.”
“Yeah.” Johnny nodded. “Yeah. I do. But first, I’m going to make sure you’re safe. Come on.”
PCPD: Commissioner’s Office
“I know that it’s unlikely that Jordan Baines will allow Sonny to answer any questions,” Anna said to Taggert, “but there’s a chance that simply bringing up Oliver Joyce will disarm him.”
“Yeah, that’s my best shot at this. He’s not going to be looking for that case to come back. As far as I can tell, I don’t think he’s even connected Kelsey to her father. All I need is him to say one thing,” he muttered. “One thing I can use to investigate.”
“It’s more likely that this will be the last step,” Anna said gently. She looked up at the knock on her door. “Yes?”
“Sorry, Commissioner,” her secretary said. “I know you’re in a meeting, but you told me if Dante Falconieri ever showed up—”
“Yes, yes—” Anna went to the doorway to usher the young man in from the waiting area. “Dante.”
“Hey.” Dante winced when he saw Taggert in the office. “I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to interrupt anything—”
“It’s fine. We were finishing up. What can I do for you?” she asked, almost eagerly. “How are you?”
“I’m good. Um, I was—I’ve been working through a lot the last few months,” he told her, then looked at Taggert. “I was hoping the offer to get my badge back would still be open.”
Taggert’s shoulders slumped in relief. “Hell, yes.”
Anna arched a brow, amused at Taggert’s impatience. “The lieutenant is correct. We desperately need good officers, and you were one of our best.” She went over to her drawer and drew out the badge. “There will be some paperwork, so you won’t be back on the job for a few days, but this is yours.”
Dante took it from her, then looked down with slow exhale. “Yeah. Yeah, that’s mine.”
“It’s good, actually, that you can’t start for a few days,” Taggert told him. “We’re pulling Sonny in for questioning on a case. It won’t go anywhere,” he added when Dante just sighed. “But the dust will probably settle on it before you start.” He extended a hand. “Welcome back.”
Dante shook the lieutenant’s hand. “Thank you, sir.”
Port Charles Hotel: Parking Garage
“I’m still surprised Jason didn’t send you with a guard,” Bobbie said to Carly as they left the elevator and started for the section where their cars were parked. “After Friday—” she looked at Carly with narrowed eyes. “Shouldn’t someone be following you around?”
“Things have been quiet for months,” Carly pointed out. “Literally since everything happened with Ric in the first place. And—” She handed her shopping bags to Cody who already had Elizabeth’s. He started for the car.
“Other than Vinnie Esposito,” Elizabeth said. She gestured at the end of the row where her car was parked next to Carly’s. Cody had gone ahead with their bags and was maybe fifteen feet away. He met Carly’s driver, Chris, at the car and opened the trunk.
“I suppose,” Bobbie murmured. “But you know me, I’d wrap my girls in plastic wrap if you’d let me—”
“See, when she calls us that,” Carly said to Elizabeth, “I think she’s just trying to mess with us.”
“Don’t take the bait,” Elizabeth replied. Bobbie rolled her eyes.
“I’m just saying—”
They stopped as a blue sedan slowly rolled past them, down towards the next level—but then it stopped in front of them.
Carly blinked, took a step back. Elizabeth locked eyes with Cody—grabbed Carly’s arm—reached out for Bobbie—But a woman with long black hair swinging over her shoulder was out of the car before Elizabeth could reach her—and had a gun to Bobbie’s temple.
“Get in the car—”
The guards were already running towards them—but—
“Get in the car or I’ll blow her brains out right here,” the woman snarled. Carly rushed forward, fumbled with door latch.
“Don’t hurt my mother—” she said, turning to Elizabeth who was already behind her. “Don’t hurt her—just leave her—”
“No chance—” When Carly and Elizabeth were inside, the woman hurled Bobbie in after her—then got into the car, stopping to wave at the guards—it squealed away just as Cody and Chris reached them.
“Damn it—” Cody panted. “Get back to the car—call Jason—”
He winced as he heard the car squealing on the lower levels—they’d never get back to the car in time and catch up. “Fuck!”
“That was Claudia Zacchara,” Chris said. “She waved at us—”
“She fucking smiled—” Cody hissed. “She wanted us to know—” He yanked his phone out of his pocket. He’d walked away from Elizabeth for less than a minute, and she was gone.