GOOD HOPE CHURCH
called out as he rushed to catch up with her. She stopped in her tracks
just as he reached her. "What's wrong with you lately?"
"What do you mean?" she responded coolly.
"There's nothing wrong with me!"
"Not from what I see." Patterson put his hands
on her shoulders to hold her attention. "You've been unbelievably
short on occasion and you always seem to be drifting off into your own
"I-I've just had a lot on my mind," she muttered as
she tried to look away. She couldn't tell him how she'd been thinking
She couldn't tell him about that foggy night she'd spent with him.
"You've been very moody lately. How can you be so
harsh to Stephanie?
She's really trying to be a better person. I think she's doing a great
job, but it just takes time to change a person's entire view on life."
He watched her closely as he hoped what he was saying was trying to sink in.
"Can't you just give her a chance?"
"Are you so naive and foolish that you can't see Stephanie
Lake for the witch that she is?" Lorraine snapped. "Look at
everything she's done...she schemed to break Reginald
apart by trying to make Jillian think she was still involved with Reginald.
She even betrayed her own cousin because it fit her own selfish needs."
"Lorraine, you know that's not how it really was.
Yes, she did some horrible things to Reginald and Jillian, but she only wanted
what was best for Sara.
You know as well as I do that Dane
is not it! Steph just wanted to save her from him!"
"Well, you just blindly believe what you want to about her!
I, for one, don't plan on being fooled by her tricks!" She turned to
walk away from him, but he held her firm in his grasp.
"I know that there's really a good person deep inside of
her. You haven't seen the side of her that I have."
"That I'm sure of!" Lorraine's voice was
tinged with sarcasm and she began to feel her face burn. "I bet
you're the only person in town that thinks there's a side of Stephanie other
than the manipulative brat that everyone knows she is. She's just using
"Using me? How could she be using me?"
"Oh, pull your head out of the clouds!" She
pulled away from him and glared. "Stephanie Lake wants to convince
you that she's changed, she wants to get on your good side because you're the
only one gullible enough to believe her! That pathetic little girl sees
you as her next conquest!"
"Lorraine, what are you trying to say?" His eyes
grew wide as he tried to process her allegations.
"Stephanie just wants to get her hooks into you!"
Lorraine explained. "Stephanie Lake just wants you for herself.
To hell with me and anyone else. She's moved on past Reginald and Dane and
Douglas...you're the one who's next on her list!"
Patterson nervously ran his hand through his hair. Surely,
Lorraine couldn't be right.