Written in 55 minutes. Time for a spell check not but reread.
Corinthos Penthouse: Living Room
By the time Brenda got across the hall to tell Sonny what had happened, he was already downstairs and on the phone with Diane. He waved Brenda in as he continued to speak. “Yeah, yeah, I don’t know anything, but get to the PCPD—okay—okay. Thanks.” He set the phone down on the receiver, then focused on Brenda. “What happened?”
“I was downstairs and they just came in—they had a warrant—” Brenda grimaced as Carly sauntered down the stairs, running her fingers through her hair and yawning. “They wouldn’t even let her get dressed—they dragged her out in cuffs—”
“What’s going on?” Carly asked, furrowing her brow. “Sonny—what was Wally calling about—”
“Elizabeth just got arrested for murder,” Sonny muttered. “Diane’s on her way—where’s Jason—”
“He grabbed some clothes for Elizabeth and was, like, ten seconds behind the cops.” Brenda folded her arms. “I thought you and Jason said this was under control—that she wasn’t in any danger—”
“Clearly I underestimated them,” Sonny said, his teeth clenched. “Look, just go across the hall. I’ve got it handled—”
“No, I’m going down to the PCPD—”
“Neither of us are going anywhere,” Sonny snapped. “Jason and Diane will handle this. We’ll just make things worse—” He turned to Carly who was opening her mouth. “That goes for you—”
“I was just offering to help Brenda find the door,” Carly said sweetly. Sonny rolled his eyes as Brenda scowled.
She yanked the door open and stormed out. She knew Sonny was right, that there was nothing she could do at the police department, but damn it—Brenda was tired of sitting back waiting for things to happen.
This was all happening because of her. She should be able to fix it.
PCPD: Interrogation Room
“Just tell me how Morgan managed it,” Taggert said, leaning in. “And I’ll get something for you to wear.”
“Lawyer,” Elizabeth said. She took a deep breath, trying to keep from shuddering. The room was freezing cold and she was wearing one of Jason’s t-shirts and a pair of panties. Her legs were bare from the mid-thigh to her toes—they hadn’t even let her grab shoes—
“You and me, we go way back—”
“Let me spell it,” Elizabeth said, narrowing her eyes. “L-A-W—”
“Have it your way.” Taggert shoved away from the table and stalked out of the room, slamming the door behind him. She closed her eyes and finally gave into the urge to shiver—her teeth chattering. They’d handcuffed her to the table so she couldn’t even rub her arms—
She could hear some sort of commotion in the squad room and raised voices—then the door opened again to reveal a woman with bright red hair cut in a stylish crop and an elegant suit. Behind her, Jason hovered—and she almost wept in relief to see the jeans over his arm with a pair of sneakers in his hands.
“You already searched the damn clothes!” the woman called over her shoulder. “Now shut up and let me meet with my client.” She turned to look at Elizabeth, then hissed. “Come get these cuffs off of her. Now—”
“Not with Morgan in the room—” Taggert began, but Mac moved past the detective with a roll of his eyes.
“You’re determined to get us sued, aren’t you?” Mac demanded as he slid a key into Elizabeth’s cuffs. “There. I’m sorry, Elizabeth. They should have let you get changed—”
“Oh, it’s going into the lawsuit I’m preparing. Leave us.”
Mac made a face, but then closed the door behind him. Jason came around the table to give Elizabeth the clothes as the lawyer set her briefcase on the table.
“Diane Miller,” the redhead said as Elizabeth shimmied into the jeans Jason had brought, then sat back down to pull on the socks and shoes. “You didn’t say anything did you?”
“Just the word lawyer. I said it in Spanish a few times, too,” Elizabeth said. “I started to spell it, too.”
“Oh, good. I like a smart client.” Diane flipped through her copy of the arrest warrant with a sigh. “All right, they have you in the area at the time of the murder with a history of knowing the victim. It’s flimsy, but the video of you fleeing the scene shortly after the gunshots will probably be enough to bind you over for a trial.”
“But you can get me out on bail, can’t you?” Elizabeth asked. “I mean—”
“They’ll set the bail pretty high,” Diane murmured. “And there’s a slight chance they’ll decide you’re a flight risk, so we’ll see.” She hesitated. “They might deny bail at the hearing in the morning. I’ll appeal — and most of the time, they overturn those decisions particularly when there’s no physical evidence, a clean record, and no danger to the community. But—” She slid her eyes to Jason.
“But I’m a problem,” he muttered.
“You are. I’m good at this, but Port Charles does not like you. Or your partner. And many of the judges in the criminal division would love a shot at you,” Diane told him. She glanced out the window. “Baldwin’s out there. I’m going to make sure he’s put this on the docket for the morning so you’ll only be here for the night. I’ll be back.”
When their lawyer had left and closed the door, Jason dragged his hands through his hair. “I’m sorry. I told you this wouldn’t happen—”
“I know.” Elizabeth bit her lip. “But I knew you didn’t believe that even when you said it. The PCPD is always looking for a way to get to you. Taggert still thinks you did this. He wanted me to tell him how you managed it even though he knows you couldn’t have.”
“I’m sorry.” Jason sat across from her. “I’ll make this go away. Somehow.”
“I know.” Elizabeth stared at her hands, then flexed her fingers. “I’ll be okay—”
“This is my fault,” he interrupted. “They’re coming after you because of me—”
“No, they’re coming after me because of me,” she told him. “You have an alibi, Jason. You did not do this. I’m the one that—” She took a deep breath. “I didn’t trust you. I didn’t listen to you. And I wasn’t paying attention. I was reckless, and I walked right out onto that pier. This is my fault. And the only reason they can hold me is motive. Because of what happened this summer.” Her voice faltered. “All of this—this is my fault, Jason. I put myself in this position, and I wish like hell I knew how to get out of it—”
“Yeah, they’re going to offer me a deal to testify against you or Sonny or something, but that doesn’t change the fact that if I had done a thousand things differently these last few months, I would not be here right now.”
“I could have done things differently, too,” he insisted. “We both made mistakes—”
“Not like me.” She closed her eyes. “You told me one lie. How many ways did I hurt you?”
“What I did—” He paused. “It wasn’t just one lie. It was weeks of lying to you. Don’t let me off the hook. I don’t deserve that. I lied to you, I didn’t trust you to keep Sonny’s secret, and then instead of trying to make you understand, instead of apologizing, I nearly married another woman.”
“You didn’t want to marry her,” Elizabeth said with half a smile. He reached across the table to take her hands in his.
“No, but I nearly did. I was standing at the altar, and I realized—” Jason waited for her to look up, to meet his eyes. “I realized that the only person I wanted to make promises to was you, and there was no way I could ever get you to listen to me if I came back to Port Charles with Brenda as my wife. I promise you, I was going to stop it before you and Sonny showed up.”
“Really?” Elizabeth asked. “I mean—”
“I hate that Sonny lied to you, I hate that you were hurt, but I’m glad you were there. That I could get you to listen. You deserve more than that stupid chapel,” he continued, “but I don’t regret any of it.”
“Me either.” She waited a beat. “I’ll be okay in here,” she promised him. “You and Sonny—you only hire the best. Even if she loses tomorrow—”
“But if she does,” Elizabeth continued, “I’ll be okay. I know you and Sonny will get me out.”
“Count on that,” he promised. He got to his feet and came around the table to pull her into his arms. She sank into his embrace, burying her face in his chest, his strength chasing the last bit of chill.
“I love you,” she said softly. Elizabeth tilted her head up to meet his eyes.
“I love you, too.” He leaned down and kissed her.
“Enough of that—”
They both jumped when the door opened and Taggert’s voice barked out the command. “Anger Boy, you’re done. She’s heading to booking and lock up.”
Elizabeth could feel Jason’s muscles tensing beneath her fingers. “I’ll be okay,” she reminded him. “And I’ll see you in the morning.”
“Let’s go,” Taggert said. He reached for Elizabeth’s arm. “Now—”
“You know, I used to respect you,” she snapped as she followed him into the squad room.
“Yeah, well, I used to think you were a good person,” he retorted. “I guess we’re both disappointed.”
Jason followed them out of the interrogation room, but wasn’t able to go any farther when Taggert took her into another room—to be fingerprinted and have her mugshot taken.
“I’ll get the fingerprints thrown out,” Diane murmured. “And the mugshot destroyed. There won’t be a record of this when we’re done.”
Jason gritted his teeth, then stalked out of the PCPD, irritated at the idea of Elizabeth spending the night in lock up. If Diane couldn’t get her out of here legally, Jason would get her out any other way he could.
She wasn’t going to spend a minute longer behind bars than necessary.
Morgan Penthouse: Living Room
Brenda jumped off the sofa and Sonny turned away from the terrace window when Jason came in. “Is she okay?” the brunette asked. “I wanted to come down—”
“Better you stay away,” Jason muttered, dropping his keys on the table. He glared at Sonny. “What are you doing here?”
“I wanted to see if there was anything I could do,” Sonny began. “Jason, we both knew there was a chance—”
“When she came to you after being shot at, why didn’t you take care of it?” Jason demanded.
“I did—I sent men down to the docks—”
“If she’d had Marco—if she’d had the guard I gave her, he never would have let her go down to that pier—” Jason growled. “He told you he was working on a job for me, but it didn’t matter to you, didn’t it?’
“Listen—” Sonny bristled. “If you hadn’t screwed up with her in the first place or just asked Marco—”
“Okay, okay—” Brenda stepped between them as Jason fisted his hands at his side. “This isn’t helping anyone. We need to focus because Luis is going to hear about this, and he’s going to know you’re distracted,” she told Jason. “Which means he’ll come after Sonny —and me. So while Diane is getting Elizabeth out—”
“Alcazar is your problem,” Jason told Sonny. “Take care of it yourself. Elizabeth is the only thing I’m worried about.”
“But—” Brenda began.
“I’ll take care of it,” Sonny said stiffly. “Make sure Elizabeth has what she needs.” He stalked out of the penthouse, slamming the door behind him.
Brenda wrinkled her nose, putting her hands on her hips. “Well, this was productive—”
“Go to bed,” Jason muttered as he went over to the sofa.
“What about you? You need some sleep, too—”
“Go to bed,” he repeated, turning back to face the other woman. “Please.”
“All right.” She hesitated. “Jason, you’ll get her out. I know you—”
“I’m going. Good night.”
Jason waited until he heard the door upstairs shut before he sank onto the sofa and put his head in his hands. Even if he could sleep tonight, he wasn’t going upstairs to sleep. Even after only a few nights, he knew that the room and the bed would feel empty without her.
“Last chance,” Taggert said as he pulled the cell closed behind her and slid a key into the lock. Elizabeth looked around at the small space, with the cot in the corner. She was the only prisoner in this part of the jail tonight—the only woman in lockup.
She turned to face him. “Good night, Detective.”
He scowled, then stalked out. A few minutes later, the lights in the lockup went out — the cell was now pitch black.
She closed her eyes, took a deep breath, and felt her way towards the cot. It wasn’t the crypt. It wasn’t the same. She was safe.
She found the cot, laid down, and curled up in a ball. It wasn’t the same, she reminded herself again. Jason was going to get her out. Just like he had before.
But she still didn’t sleep.