Chapter 11

June 1, 2006

Wyndemere: Bedroom

Stefan stared at him for a long moment and finally broke eye contact. “Spencer,” he said disgusted. “You are a plague.”

Luke considered this and found it to be generally true, “Okay, I’ll buy that. Spanky’s called me worse.” He strode forward and closed the doorway to the passage. “I’ll make this quick, Vlad. Why you framing my kid?” He smirked. “Or is that a rhetorical question since he’s a Spencer and you’re a Cassadine?”

“It’s hardly my fault if the incompetent police department chose to focus its investigation on your son.” Stefan sighed. “I am disappointed in the boy, myself. He once held such…potential.”

Luke narrowed his eyes. It was one thing for his daughter to insinuate that Lucky had fallen short of expectations but for a Cassadine? “You’re hardly one to talk about someone not living up to their potential. You and the Dark Prince are Cassadines in name only. Hell, even Natasha has more evil in her than you.” He pushed aside the heavy velvet curtains to peer out over the harbor. “So if you didn’t want Lucky to take the rap, what’s the use of shooting Junior Scorpio?”

“You never change, Spencer.” Stefan sighed. “The world does not revolve around you or your family. This business has nothing to do with you and if your son would learn to stay out of rooms that do not belong to him, he would not have been involved at all.”

Luke narrowed his eyes. “I don’t hear you denying you played a hand in this, Chocula.”

Stefan smirked. “No, you don’t. Rest assured, Luke, I do not wish any interaction between us other than what is necessary. It no longer matters if your son keeps quiet. This has begun to play out as I anticipated and I no longer require his help.”

“In English, Stiffin,” Luke snarled, intentionally mispronouncing Stefan’s name, a quirk of his that never failed to rile the dark one.

“I am pleased that Dr. Scorpio seems to be making a full recovery,” Stefan remarked. “It was never my intention for her to die. Only to…suffer.”

“And letting Lucky think his wife was dead?” Luke growled. “You don’t think that’s suffering?”

“No, but it was an added side benefit. You can let yourself out the way you entered.” Stefan left the room and Luke glared after him for a moment before reaching into his pocket and removing the small recorder he’d brought with him.

Petersen Clinic: Lounge

“Sam has brain damage,” Alexis blurted out. “She doesn’t remember anything.”

Jason heard the words but it took a few moments for the meaning to sink into his head. And still, he tried denial. Clearing his throat, “She doesn’t remember the shooting?” he tried.

Alexis shook her head and twisted her hands together. “She doesn’t remember anything, Jason. Her mind is a clean slate. There’s nothing–nothing about her life before Port Charles, nothing since…there’s nothing. And she keeps looking at me like I should have the answers…” She placed a hand over her mouth and took a deep breath. “The doctors think she will make a full recovery but not her memory.”

He could now put himself in the place of his parents, of his family after the accident a decade ago. He wondered if they had felt this twisting in the gut, this hollow emptiness when Tony Jones had taken away any hope that Jason Quartermaine would return.

“I want to see her,” Jason said, dismissing the voices in his head that told him to turn around and go home. He could be of use in Port Charles. He could help investigate the shootings, he could continue talking sense into his sister. There were a thousand things he could do in Port Charles but instead, he followed Alexis down the hallway and to the room.

Sam lay on the hospital bed, her skin as pale as he’d ever seen it and a vacant stare in her eyes. When the door slid open, she turned to look at them and frowned. “Who are you are?” she asked quietly. She looked to Alexis. “Who is he?”

“A friend,” Alexis answered when Jason couldn’t find the words. “He’s a friend from where we live in Port Charles, sweetheart. Sam, this is Jason Morgan.”

He waited for the name to mean something to her, to see any kind of recognition dawn in her eyes. But the vacant stare remained and when he said nothing, her frowned deepened. “And?” she prompted. “How do we know each other?”

There was a lump in his throat that kept him from speaking so again Alexis took pity on him. “Jason…he was your fiancé, Sam.”

Sam’s eyes darkened and then she looked at Jason again. “Oh.” Color flooded her cheeks. “Oh. I’m–I’m sorry. I d-don’t remember.” When he still didn’t speak, she pursed her lips. “Why…why aren’t you talking?”

“I’m sorry.” His voice sounded disembodied and he didn’t feel like he’d even said the words. “I–I have to go.”

He turned and walked out.

“I’ll be right back,” Alexis promised to a bewildered Sam before hurrying after him. “Jason–”

“I’m going back to Port Charles,” Jason said, not turning around. “She should focus on her recovery…not on a life that she doesn’t know anymore.”

“But–”

Jason whirled around and Alexis squeaked as she almost ran into him. “You’ve got what you want, Alexis. She doesn’t remember me. This is her chance to get out of this life, to have a new one.”

“Jason–this isn’t what I wanted–” she stopped him from leaving, putting a hand on his forearm. “I don’t want you to get hurt. I didn’t–I wanted this to be your decision, I wanted her to want a new life. I didn’t want this.”

“Well…you’ve got it, regardless.” Jason exhaled slowly. “I’m needed in Port Charles. There are people there that do remember me–I can’t sit here and pretend things are going to change. I can’t. I won’t. I won’t be like the Quartermaines, begging for scraps and wanting something that’s never going to happen. I won’t do that to myself, Alexis.”

And with that, he turned again and strode out of the clinic.

ICU: Robin’s Room

Monica set her stethoscope back around her neck and smiled warmly at her exhausted patient. “I have never been happier than I am right now to tell a patient they’re on the mend.”

There was a collective sound of three breaths being released at the same time as Mac, Anna and Robert heard from the doctor that Robin would recover.

Monica patted Robin’s hand. “When you’re a little stronger, we’ll talk about the long term ramifications of the injuries.”

Robin blinked and looked away. “Too much to hope for that it’d just heal and I’d be back to normal, huh?” she asked quietly.

“I wish it were that simple, honey,” Monica replied. “Unfortunately, your protocol is going to be reevaluated, your system took a bad hit with this. And the position of the injuries opens you to the possibilities of back problems and even heart problems in the future. But I want to wait until you’re a bit more on your feet and then we’ll see where we’re at.”

Once Monica had left (first giving a stern warning to the visitors that Robin needed her rest), Mac sat next to Robin in a chair that had seen more than its fair share of people in the last twenty-four hours. “Sweetheart, I’m going to ask you a few questions but I want you stop me whenever you’re not feeling good or too tired.”

“Okay.” Robin sighed and rested her head back against the pillows. “Is someone making sure that Patrick’s sleeping?”

Anna smiled softly. “I saw Noah marching him towards the break room a few minutes ago. The poor boy was on the verge of crashing–starting to fall asleep if he wasn’t moving.” She touched Robert’s arm. “We should leave her and Mac alone–”

“I want to hear–Ow!” Robert broke off as Anna pinched him. “Yes, dear.”

After the two were gone, Mac cleared his throat. “Speaking of Drake…who knew you would be at the hotel last night?”

Robin hesitated, biting her lip. “No one, really. Elizabeth, I guess, since she was studying and I think Patrick said she helped him set up the room. But it was really kind of a last minute…” she paused. “But I guess it wouldn’t be that hard to predict.” Her cheeks flushed. “We’ve been trading between each other’s places the last week or so and the night before, we were at mine so…I mean, we didn’t plan it to work out that way, it just did.”

Deciding he would rather not be thinking about Robin’s sex life anymore than he had to, Mac changed the subject. “When did you definitely decide to go to the Metro Court?”

“We’d have a fight that morning,” Robin said slowly. “And we both apologized–well, more so he apologized but I guess neither one of us felt like it was resolved because–well, it wasn’t. So he invited me over to talk about it.”

“Talk about what?” Mac asked, praying it wouldn’t be something wholly embarrassing or humiliating for either of them.

“I can’t really say,” Robin remarked. “It’s not like it’s a…” she hesitated. “It’s not my secret to tell, Uncle Mac. Let me make sure it’s okay to tell before I get into it. Suffice to say that whatever it was, it was kind of taking over my life. And I only told Patrick in a moment–” she coughed again. “A moment of weakness, so to speak. I guess he was a little annoyed that I didn’t spend more time thinking about him. He’s a little self-centered that way. Anyway, it wasn’t even a bad argument but I think we were both at the end of the line. It was going to have to come out and I think that’s what we would have discussed…” she hesitated. “After he invited me over, I ran into Helena Cassadine.”

Mac’s eyebrows shot up as he realized that having both Stefan and Helena in the same town at the same time would be a thousand different kinds of bad. “And what did the dark queen have to say?”

“I don’t remember,” Robin muttered. “The rest of the day is mostly a blur right now. I don’t remember much until I got to Patrick’s room. Something happened in that time, Uncle Mac. I can’t figure out what, but I went there and we didn’t talk–” she broke off and fiddled with the edge of her blanket. “We sort of–to the bed–right–” she coughed uncomfortably. “We went right to bed.”

“I get the picture,” Mac mumbled. “Okay, so–after all that stuff we’re not going to talk about…Patrick got called to the hospital.”

“It gets blurry again. He asked me to stay and then…I remember a lot of pain…” Robin furrowed her brow. “And there was a voice. A familiar voice–it sounded like Stefan Cassadine.”

Mac’s pen stilled and he looked up at her. “Stefan.”

Robin nodded. “But he’s dead,” she said softly. “So that’s not possible, right?”

He set his pen and note pad aside. “It looks like that might not be the case anymore, sweetheart. He was present at the hotel right before Carly was shot. Now if you heard his voice in your room last night…that means the two shootings are connected.”

Robin shook her head. “No…that’s impossible. There’s no one that would want us both dead.” She frowned. “Right?”

He sighed, troubled by the idea that Robin had been targeted by the Cassadine family. “I don’t know, Robin. But I promise you I will find out.”

June 2, 2006

General Hospital: Hallway

“Doc said that Spencer hasn’t been on the pills long enough to worry about withdrawal,” Rodriguez remarked to Mac as they approached the room where Lucky was situated. “Once he came down from the high, he was remarkably coherent and I think he’s ready to answer questions.”

“Well, he’d better have one damn good explanation,” Mac muttered, tugging the door open.

Lucky sat up in the hospital bed, staring out the window, his eyes troubled and his face shadowed. He’d walked around in a haze of pain medication for nearly a month and for the first time, he could see his life clearly.

And he was beginning to realize why he’d taken the pills to shut out his life. The never ending cycle of debt, the disappointment in Elizabeth’s eyes and the choking feeling that he’d never measure up to everyone’s expectations of Luke Spencer’s son.

It had all seemed so easy once. He wondered when that had changed.

“Mac,” Lucky said quietly. “I’m glad you came early. I’ll feel better once I get this all out of my head.”

Mac sat and studied his former officer for a long moment. “I wish you had come to me,” he said. “I wish that I could have helped you, that I could have fixed this.” He took a deep breath. “I want you to tell me everything you think I need to know and then we’ll go from here.”

Lucky nodded and he lifted himself off the bed, feeling restless. He dragged his hands through his short hair. “I’m not sure now why I thought Elizabeth and Patrick Drake were having an affair but I remember feeling absolutely certain of it. Even before Nikolas brought me those photos.” He stopped at the windows and peered out at the view of the parking garage. “I thought they’d be at the Metro Court because Elizabeth said she’d been called into work suddenly. I wanted to talk to her, Mac, I swear.” He exhaled slowly. “I went into the hotel and I took the stairs. I wanted time to think.” He chucked bitterly. “I don’t know what good that would do because I haven’t really had a clear thought in weeks.”

“When I got to Drake’s room, it was already ajar. I went in–” he sucked in a deep breath, “and she was in the bed. She was lying there and there was blood everywhere–”

“Lucky, you know that it wasn’t Elizabeth, right?” Rodriguez broke in. “It was Robin Scorpio.”

“I know that now,” Lucky said flatly. “But at that moment, at that second in time, I thought that it was my wife. I thought it was Elizabeth, lying dead in that bed. I was saying her name, over and over. And then…there was a sound from the other side of the room.”

Mac tensed. “What was the sound?”

“A sound of a glass clinking,” Lucky murmured. “Like someone setting it against other glasses.”

Mac and Rodriguez traded looks, realizing that explained the single glass of bourbon that had been poured at the minibar but not finished. There had been only Patrick Drake’s prints on it, and they had assumed it was his but the assailant could have worn gloves.

“And then he spoke.” Lucky took a deep breath and faced the other men. “Stefan Cassadine.”

Corroboration, Mac said absently. Two people separately placed the man in the room and a video placed him at the Carly shooting. “What did he say?”

“He was standing by the bar, sipping a drink,” Lucky said emotionlessly, “and he told me that it was a shame. That she had moved at the last second and the bullet had gone in the wrong direction, that instead of being merely injured, she was dying and there was nothing anyone could do about it.” His lips twisted. “He sat there, drinking bourbon, while Robin lay dying just a few feet away. I didn’t think about it then, I didn’t register that his words meant that whoever was in the bed was still alive. I just…I thought she was dead.”

“What happened after that?” Mac asked.

“He said that if I told anyone what happened, that if I even breathed a word, he wouldn’t stop at killing my wife. He’d kill me and he’d kill Cameron.” Lucky shook his head. “I’m not proud of myself, Mac. Not for anything. But I couldn’t let anything happen to Cameron. I thought Elizabeth was gone and I knew she’d want Cam protected. So I just kept that in my head the whole time and I went to Audrey’s to get him. He was in the crib she’s got in the living room and Audrey was in the kitchen making something. I just called out to her that I was picking him up–that Elizabeth was held up.” He exhaled harshly. “She never even saw me.”

“And then you headed for the border.”

“Right. I stayed there until Rodriguez found me the next morning.” Lucky met Mac’s eyes. “I’ve made a lot of mistakes, Mac, and I’ve done a lot of things that I’m not proud of. But I would never hurt Elizabeth. Even if she’d been having an affair and I know now that would never happen. I love her. She’s my life. I would never hurt her. I went there to talk to her.”

Mac wasn’t sure if he believed him because he quite simply needed to or because he thought Lucky was actually telling the truth. But he did believe him. He flipped his notebook shut. “You’ve got a tough road ahead of you, Lucky. And I don’t mean about the pain pills–”

“Elizabeth is never going to forgive me,” Lucky cut in softly. “It doesn’t matter that I was on pain medication. I took her trust in me and I shattered it. And I deserve whatever I get coming to me because of that.”

General Hospital: Hallway

Patrick emerged from the locker room, dressed in his scrubs and ready to do some actual work instead of just floating through his rounds like a dead man. His father had forced him into the break room against his will and while he was still kind of irritated about it, the second his head had hit a pillow, he’d passed out and hadn’t woken until just an hour ago. He’d showered and changed but he still hadn’t left the hospital.

The last time he’d left the hospital, he’d gone to the Metro Court to grab some of his things and he’d seen that room. Somehow, the hospital felt safer. More secure.

He stopped in his tracks when he saw Lulu and Dillon leaning against the opposite wall. “The two of you aren’t looking for me right?” he asked hopefully, remembering the last time they were in together and that it had resulted in a not so fun adventure.

“Doctor Hottie, have we got a story for you,” Lulu remarked brightly. She wound her arm through his and started to lead him down the hall. If he thought he’d hit rock bottom the day before with the passing out he’d done on available surface, being led around by a kid pretty much topped that.

He listened as the perky blonde explained that they had their own theory about Robin’s shooting and that it led back to John Jacks’s paternity–a thought which hadn’t really crossed Patrick’s mind since he’d never pegged Jasper Jacks as the homicidal type. But Lulu’s explanation made scary sense as he realized the chain of events was very disturbing–coupled with the fact that Robin had had a run in with Helena the day of the shooting.

When Lulu had finished her explanation, Patrick frowned at her before looking at her resigned companion. “And what is it that you need from me?” he asked curiously.

“Well…” Lulu sighed. “We’re kind of over our heads with this. For one thing, we don’t even know who John’s father is for sure. And what Robin might have been thinking yesterday. Plus, there’s this weird thing about Jesse being connected to the Cassadines, so we were hoping to borrow your expertise.”

“My expertise…” Patrick repeated. “To do what, exactly? Why can’t you take this to Mac?”

“Well, for one, thing we have no proof that any crime has been committed,” Lulu pointed out.

“Except by us when we broke into the records,” Dillon admitted sheepishly.

“Yeah…” Patrick drawled. “We’re going to have to have a discussion about that when this is all over.” He sighed. “And you’re dumping this on me because…?”

“Well, we had to think of someone who could help us, who cares what happens to Robin and isn’t exactly too worried about blurring the lines of the law,” Lulu explained. She grinned. “You could be a hero.”

“I thought we talked about this,” Dillon hissed. “He’s too old for you to flirt with to get your way.”

“That’s silly…” Lulu smiled up at him and for a second, Patrick felt a little dizzy. At seventeen, this girl had a bright future as either a con artist or a heartbreaker ahead of her, he decided. “I’m not flirting to get my way. Patrick understands that it’s in Robin’s best interest that we find out what’s going on with this.”

Patrick narrowed his eyes. “Maybe you didn’t get the memo about how I don’t do anything that doesn’t benefit me in the end.”

Dillon rolled his eyes but Lulu wasn’t deterred. “Well, even I’ve heard the gossip about you and Robin and I’m willing to bet that if you help catch the idiot who did this, it’s going to mean some sex for you.”

Dillon’s jaw dropped and smacked her shoulder. “Lu!”

“What?” she huffed. “It benefits him right? He wants to play this like we don’t all know he’s crazy about Robin then we’ll just appeal to the man whore in him.”

Torn between being amused and offended, Patrick crossed his arms. “Yeah, you’re not winning your case here, cupcake.”

“C’mon!” Lulu stamped her foot. “Why am I the only one this is driving crazy? I have to know! I have to know why there’s a third test that Robin accessed just hours before getting shot and I want to know who else hacked into the records! Why doesn’t anyone else want to get to the bottom of this?”

“If you help, she’ll shut up,” Dillon supplied. “I think by now, that should be reason enough.”

Patrick sighed. He’d never broken the law or blurred the line of ethics before coming to Port Charles and now he was on his third round in less than a four months. Life had definitely been simpler before Port Charles and Robin Scorpio. “Fine,” he said resigned. “I’ll run a paternity test. Give me the test details.”

Lu brightened and happily handed over the list of tests, the user accesses and the results of each. Patrick scanned them idly but hesitated over the mysterious third test that listed neither Jacks nor Cassadine as the father. “Robin didn’t access this the other day.”

Dillon frowned. “Yeah–it says right there–”

“No…” Patrick frowned. “She created it and then backdated it. This test wasn’t performed in February, it was created May 31. And it wasn’t actually performed so much as Robin just entered the values.”

“So, wait…Robin created a test that said neither of them were the father?” Lulu said. “That’s crazy. Why would she do that?”

She’d created it after her meeting with Helena, Patrick realized with a sense of dread. He’d never had the pleasure of meeting the crazy Cassadine matriarch but it was difficult to live in Port Charles for any length of time and not hear the lengthy tale of the Cassadine family legacy. Helena, while not being especially successful in the last few years, had a history of bad deeds and ominous threats.

And one of those threats had scared Robin so badly she’d decided to create this test. Suddenly, Patrick wanted to get to the bottom of this as badly as the impatient blonde girl in front of him.

ICU: Robin’s Room

It had taken fifteen minutes for Monica to get Brenda out of the room and the ex-model had been very vehement about her god-given right to stay in her little sister’s room until the very end.

But when Robin had politely requested some time alone, her best friend had reluctantly acquiesced to the request and now Robin was alone.

She took a deep breath and closed her eyes. Not to sleep, but to force herself to remember the events of May 31. There was something in the hours between Patrick’s invitation and her arrival at the hotel that was significant and if it took the rest of her life, she’d remember it.

She’d been on the docks, she could remember that much. She’d wanted to go see Nikolas, Robin realized. To tell him the truth. Because she’d realized Patrick was right–not for the reasons he wanted to be right but it was way past time for her to start concentrating on her own life and if she wanted this…whatever it was between her and Patrick…if she wanted it to work, she’d have to put the effort in and if she kept dividing her concentration, it wouldn’t.

But Helena had stepped out from the shadows and the more Robin pictured the scene, the more the words came together for her. Phrases came to mind and she fought to put them in order. To make some sense out of them.

“It’s a shame that he’s not my Nikolas’s child. I could have had such plans.”

“He’s just a child–“

“Though I wonder…if it’s possible…I suppose I could just find out for myself.”

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“I could just take him, find out for sure.”

“And if he’s not?”

“Dispose of him, I imagine.”

The words were jumbled and she couldn’t be sure that they were even right but the more Robin thought about it, the more she pieced it together. Helena had threatened to kidnap John and kill him if he turned out not to be Nikolas’s son. Even though Robin was mostly sure about the paternity, it was a chance she wasn’t willing to take.

She closed her eyes and wished she had more strength. That she could move or that she could get out of this bed and get on with her life.

There was a creak and Robin opened her eyes, wondering which of her family members hadn’t received the memo about her needing some alone time.

Instead, Helena stood here, with a smirk on her face. “Hello, my dear. As usual, my darling son can’t manage to carry off even the simplest of orders.”

Robin opened her mouth but the talking she’d done all morning had left her hoarse and somewhat weak. She couldn’t move her hand to the call button; she couldn’t call out for help.

She could only watch in horror as Helena took a syringe from her purse and injected it into her IV.

“Sleep well, my dear Dr. Scorpio,” Helena murmured. She watched as Robin’s eyes slid closed and then she watched as Robin’s vitals slowed and when the heart line flattened, the machines started to shriek.

She took that as her cue to leave, exiting the room as Audrey Hardy’s panicked voice sounded over the speaker.

Code Blue, Room 314. Code Blue, Room 314.

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