THE LAKE APARTMENT - LIVING ROOM
won't you talk to me?" Annabelle asked as she calmed herself and sat down
on the couch. "We always used to be so close. Ever since that
blasted engagement party, you've seemed to be pulling away from me."
"Oh, Momma, no!" Stephanie
rushed to her side in an effort to dissuade her fears. Secretly, however,
she had been pulling away from her. She fully realized that her mother had
been a primary force in her renewed interest in Reginald Callison and it had
been her push that had caused her to pursue him so doggedly.
"Then why won't you talk to me
about Clark?" Annabelle would not give up on this. She knew her
daughter well and knew when she was hiding something from her. Stephanie
was truly the most important thing in the world to her. She'd given up so
much, and had done so much, to protect her and take care of her.
"Momma, just leave it
alone." Stephanie let out a heavy sigh. She just had to occupy
her mother's thoughts with other things. Her face lit up when she realized
a surefire topic changer and quickly sat down next to her. "So, how
are things going with Charles
"Oh, they're going splendidly!"
Annabelle exclaimed as her face lit up at the mention of Charles' name.
"That dreadfully boring wife of his has even started to date an eligible
doctor from the hospital! Now, if I could just convince him to officially
start those divorce proceedings, everything would be set!"
"You seem pretty sure of
"Well, darling, I am!"
Annabelle giggled with glee. "You know, it will be quite ironic when
you become Reginald's step-sister, won't it dear?"
"I'd prefer not to think about that
idea." Stephanie grumbled slightly at the mention of his name.
She did, however, have to admit that that little twist could be very
humorous. "Well, Momma, I guess it was a stroke of luck that Mr.
Callison got a little drunk at that party and let down his defenses. I
guess that if he weren't intoxicated, he might never have given in to his
attraction for you."
"Dear, luck had nothing to do
Stephanie eyed her curiously.
"What do you mean, Momma? Luck had everything to do with
it. There's no way you could have planned for him to have had too much to
Annabelle hesitated for a moment.
She'd never been completely forthcoming to Stephanie about the exact details of
her plans that evening. She'd never told her about the little bottle or
Dr. Rutherford. "I never told you this, dear..." She
paused again. Should she tell her everything that she did to insure that
Charles would be receptive to her advances? Finally, she realized that if
she couldn't trust her own daughter, who could she trust?
"Well, I slipped a little something into Charles' drink. It made the
alcohol act a little quicker and a little stronger. I couldn't take
any chances that all of my hopes and dreams would go up in smoke!"
"You drugged him,
Momma?" Stephanie gasped slightly. She'd never suspected
something like that. She'd always believed that Mr. Callison had willingly
started an affair with her mother because he was attracted to her and wanted to
be with her, not because her mother had drugged him and preyed upon his
vulnerability. "Oh, Momma, how could you?"
"Oh, it wasn't easy, dear,"
Annabelle laughed, not realizing exactly what her daughter meant.
"The first drink I tampered with got mixed up with Lorraine
drink. I didn't put a lot of the drug in it, but I'm sure there was enough
that she would have felt some effect. I've always wondered what
happened to her that night in her altered state."
"How? How could you be so...so
malicious?" Stephanie shot up off of the couch and rushed across the
room. "I always thought that he started that affair with you because
he wanted you! Not because you tricked him into it!
You're entire relationship is nothing more than a sham!"
"Don't you get all high and mighty
with me, missy!" Annabelle scolded as she glared at her daughter
angrily. "Don't forget everything you did to snare Reginald
away from Jillian!"
"T-that was different."
Stephanie hung her head in embarrassment over her actions. "I truly
thought he loved me and was only blinded by her social standing and coy
charms. I-I was sure that if she were out of the picture, he would see
that. I would never have drugged him to do it!"
"Dear, you threw yourself at
him!" Annabelle let out a small sigh. "I was so
proud. You knew what you wanted and you went after it! What's
happened to you? You've become as boring as milquetoast! Where's
that strong young woman I raised? Why, if I didn't know better, I'd say
you were trying for martyrdom!"
"Oh, I can't believe this! I
just can't believe this!" Stephanie quickly bolted from the
room leaving Annabelle to worry about the pathetic sap her daughter had turned