For Now and Forever
EPISODE #56 (Monday
THE SUNSET HOTEL - JILLIAN & JANET'S SUITE - LIVING ROOM
"Oh, I'm going to be late!" Jillian Stokes grumbled as she grabbed her books and a light jacket and headed for the door. "I should never have let Reginald talk me into that late lunch."
The last few weeks had been exceptionally trying for Jillian. Her sisters Judith and Janet had nearly come to blows on more than one occasion, Douglas and Lorraine got married, Patterson was spending entirely too much time with Stephanie Lake...too much was going on. She rolled her eyes slightly when she thought about how things couldn't get much worse. She reached for the door knob and opened the door to leave, but was stunned to find an unexpected visitor waiting on the other side. Things could get worse.
"Hello, Jillian, don't look so happy to see me." And with those words, Mark Linford strolled into the apartment.
MANOR HILLS SANITARIUM, ANDERSONVILLE, IL
"I'm a little surprised to see you here by yourself, Miss Davis," Dr. Maynard said as he led Grace down the long hallway to her mother's room. "I would have expected you to come with your brother or Mr. Callison."
"Well, I normally would." Grace Davis paused for a moment as she thought about her visit. Neither Douglas nor Trevor knew that she was there. She wanted a visit with her mother, all her own, without their glaring eyes of scrutiny. "Let's just say I wanted to make this trip alone."
"Fair enough." He reached out and prepared to turn the knob to Louise Davis' room, but hesitated. "Miss Davis, you should be aware that your mother hasn't been feeling well for a few days. She's seemed...well...troubled, I guess you could say."
"I-I understand." She bit her lip in apprehension as her eyes stared blankly at the closed door. "But...but I really need to see her. I know she probably won't be able to talk to me, but I...well...there are things that a girl really can only discuss with her mother, even though she might not respond. I'm sure you understand, Dr. Maynard."
"Of course." He smiled warmly at her and then let out a small sigh. The Davis family had gone through so much in dealing with Louise's precarious mental health. How could he deny Grace some semblance of a normal relationship with her?
As Dr. Maynard opened the door to her mother's room, Grace bit her lip nervously. Maybe talking with her would help to provide her with the answers that she searched for. Maybe her mother's silent listening would help Grace figure out exactly what kind of feelings she really had for Trevor Callison.
"I'm glad the doctor said you and the baby are doing fine," Douglas Davis smiled as he sat across the table from Lorraine. "I hope that now that everything is settled, your nerves can calm down a little."
"These past few months have been rather tense." Lorraine Davis took a sip of her water and thought about exactly how tense. The uncertainty of who to name as her child's father and then the stress of having to tell Patterson of her decision to marry Douglas had almost been too much to bear.
"But all of that is over now." He reached across the table and gently took her hand into his. "We're married and we're going to be the most loving parents that this child could ever hope for."
Lorraine absently strummed her fingers along the table as her thoughts began to drift. She couldn't help feeling awkward with Douglas. After all, they weren't exactly a loving couple. They'd only married for the sake of their unborn child. Her entire life, she'd longed to be married. However, she'd always wanted a marriage based on two people in love. That was most definitely not what this marriage was based on. She let out a small sigh when she realized that it had been her only option...her only choice.
"Oh, um, what Douglas," Lorraine muttered as she caught only the tail end of her husband's comment.
"I said 'thank you' for letting me take your car this afternoon so I can return to the office."
"Oh, that's quite all right." She paused and thought for a second. "Where did Grace have to go this afternoon?"
"Honestly, she didn't say," he replied before taking another bite out of his sandwich. "But from the way she acted, it was something important."
They sat there filled with uneasiness until Lorraine glanced across the room, just in time to see Patterson and Stephanie walk through the door. Lorraine immediately grew nervous and she let out a small gasp.
"Hello, Lorraine," Patterson Monroe nodded curtly as he and Stephanie approached the their table. It was the first time he'd seen her since her wedding to Douglas and the tension was palpable.
"Oh, um, Patterson," Lorraine stammered as her eyes moved from him to Stephanie. "Hello."
"I just wanted to...congratulate you both on your wedding." Patterson held out his hand to Douglas. This entire meeting was difficult for him, but he realized that he couldn't change the way things had gone. Lorraine was lost to him forever and nothing he could do or say could change that.
After a moment's hesitation, Douglas grasped Patterson's hand firmly. "Thank you, Paddy. I know that must be a very difficult thing for you to say. It means a lot to us."
"Um...yes, I'm sure." Patterson quickly looked away and found his eyes landing on an uncomfortable Stephanie who stood beside him in silence.
She knew how difficult his break up with Lorraine had been on him. She also was more than aware of the odd, growing emotions that she was beginning to experience where Patterson was concerned. However, she feared forcing the issue. She'd experienced so much heartache and disappointment at the hands of Reginald and Clark that she couldn't bear to feel that way again.
"I hope you two have many happy years together." Patterson fought to hide the sarcasm in his voice, but found that to be a difficult task. Fearful that his true emotions had crept out, he quickly glanced from Lorraine to Douglas in search of their reactions. He was immediately embarrassed when he saw the faint looks of shock and pain in the faces.
"Well, I'm sure we will, Paddy." Douglas' expression grew stern as he glared at Patterson. "Especially once the baby arrives."
"B-baby?" Patterson furrowed his brow slightly as he tried to comprehend Douglas' statement. The sharp look that Lorraine gave her husband punctuated the announcement. "Oh, my god. Lorraine, you're having a baby?"
"Y-yes, Patterson." Lorraine blushed slightly in embarrassment, her secret out. "Douglas and I are expecting a child."
"Oh, my god, it all makes sense, now!" Patterson felt his blood pressure begin to rise as the pain in his voice became more and more evident. "You two had to get married!"
"Yes, Patterson." Lorraine's teeth clinched in humiliation and anger as she quickly looked around to see if anyone was eavesdropping on their conversation.
"B-but I thought..." Patterson's eyes grew wide with realization. "Lorraine, you swore to me that you weren't having an affair with Douglas behind my back!"
"Oh, Paddy, I wasn't!"
"This baby didn't just happen all on its own!"
"Paddy, calm down." Stephanie gently grabbed his arm in an effort to help keep his emotions in check.
"You want me to calm down? I find out that I've been used and lied to and you want me to calm down?" His face grew red with anger and he snatched his arm away from Stephanie's grasp.
"Oh, Patterson, that's not the way it was, at all!" Lorraine began to feel her eyes fill with tears. The last thing she'd ever wanted to do was hurt Patterson and now that seemed to be the only thing she was able to do. "It was o-only one time!"
"Only one time?" Patterson laughed at the absurdity of it all and threw up his hands as he slowly backed away. "Clearly one time was definitely enough!"
"Oh, Patterson, please!" Lorraine quickly rose from her seat and moved towards him in hopes of making him understand.
"I will not have you upsetting my wife!" Douglas' voice boomed out as he swiftly moved behind Lorraine to place a calming and protective hand on her shoulder. "You should know better considering her delicate condition."
"Yes, Douglas, you're right." Patterson took a deep breath and exhaled slowly. "I should have known better. I can guarantee you that you have nothing to worry about from me! I have no intention of ever coming near either one of you traitors again!" His eyes still blazing with anger, he turned on his heel and quickly headed for the door. A speechless and stunned Stephanie quickly followed.
"Douglas, I have to go after him! I have to make him understand!" Lorraine tried to pull away from him, but he held a firm grasp on her shoulder.
"No, Lorraine. Just leave it alone. He's too upset." He wrapped his arms around her and pulled her to him as she began to sob. "He'll never listen to you. He'll never understand exactly what happened."
"B-but I have to try!" She quickly pulled away from him and raced after Patterson.
"Lorraine!" Douglas called out as he ran after her. "Lorraine!"
SPRINGHILL MANOR - LIBRARY
Sara Manchester sat cross-legged on the floor of the library as she straightened up a pile of manuscripts. She was doing everything she could to keep her mind of the events of the last few days...Thornton Preston was dead. Still in shock, she sat a folder down and ran her fingers through her dark hair.
His death had come quite suddenly and had been very unexpected. Mr. Preston's behavior had led her to believe that he wasn't in the best of health, but she'd never even considered that it was so bad. And to just find him like that...unconscious on the floor! A chill ran down her spin and she bit her lip in an effort to hold back a tear. She'd never considered how important he'd become to her...until now.
"What are you doing here?" Helga Grimm's voice bellowed as the housekeeper walked into the room. "You shouldn't be here! You, of all people!"
"I'm just trying to get some of Mr. Preston's things in order," Sara muttered as she tried to avoid eye contact with Helga. Secretly, she feared what would become of her job now that her employer was dead. Charles Callison wouldn't need her services to spy on Mr. Preston any longer. How would she be able to keep slipping money into her and Dane's account? How would they ever be able to pay their bills and Dane's college tuition?
"You stay away from Mr. Preston's things!" Helga's eyes glowed with anger as she glared at Sara. "You, of all people. You killed him!"
"I did nothing of the sort!" Sara jumped up and spun around to face her accuser. "You heard what the doctors said! Mr. Preston's heart gave out. There was nothing anyone could have done!"
"You caused what happened! You and your spying!" Helga folded her arms firmly across her chest as she kept her eyes leveled at Sara. "Mr. Preston was gracious enough to give you a job and take you into this house; and what did you do? You betrayed him! You're as much responsible for his death as if you plunged a knife into his heart! Instead, you plunged it into his back!"
Sara's lip quivered as Helga's accusations echoed in her mind. Could she actually be right? Could the knowledge of Sara's betrayal been too much for him to bear? Could Sara really be responsible for Thornton Preston's death?
THE SUNSET HOTEL - JILLIAN & JANET'S SUITE -
"I really need to stop answering the door," Jillian grumbled to herself as she followed Mark into the living room.
"What was that?" Mark asked as he walked over to the bar and began to pour himself a cocktail.
"I said I wasn't expecting to find you standing at my door." Of course, Jillian knew Mark Linford's arrival in Albanyville would be inevitable. He had to realize where Judith was sooner or later. Taking a deep breath, she asked the question to which she already knew the answer. "What are you doing here, Mark?"
"I've come to get Judith." He took a long sip of his drink and then sat down on the sofa. "And don't try to tell me she isn't here. I know your sister isn't in Los Angeles.
"W-what? How do you know Judith isn't in Los Angeles?" She quickly turned away to keep Mark from seeing the truth on her face. She couldn't reveal Judith's true whereabouts or Mark might discover that Janet was in Albanyville instead of Chicago. Jillian couldn't risk her father learning the truth.
"It wasn't that difficult to figure out, dear," he smirked slyly. "Not one hotel in the Los Angeles area had a room registered to Judith Linford or Judith Stokes. All it took was a little expert questioning of your mother to discover that Judith was actually here."
"M-mother told you?"
"Jillian, why don't you just stop the charade?" He rolled his eyes and took another sip of his cocktail. "Leticia told me Judith was here and now I've come to take her home. She's been gone for far too long."
"Mark, you can't! She's under doctor's orders not to travel!"
"What 'doctor's orders'?" He eyed her cautiously. What kind of scheme had Judith cooked up? Surely she hadn't come to Albanyville to divorce him.
Jillian let out a long sigh and realized that she had to be completely truthful with him or risk him ruining everything. "You see, Judith collapsed not long after she got here. The doctor warned her that traveling might not be in the baby's best interest since she's so far along. She has to stay here at least until the baby's born."
"Oh, yes, the baby." he muttered dryly. "How could I forget about the baby?" He couldn't forget about the baby. The fact was, he'd tried to forget about the baby...Judith's baby with Burt Lamont. "She is alright, isn't she?" The concern in his voice was genuine. No matter what problems they had, he did love her...well, at one time, at least. No matter whose child she carried, he didn't want anything to happen to her.
"She's fine, Mark, but she just can't travel." Jillian lifted her hand to her forehead and began to gently massage her temple. She suddenly felt a headache coming on.
"Well, where is she?"
"She didn't want to stay here with me and..." She hesitated for a moment. Had her mother told him everything? Did Mark know that Janet was also in Albanyville? She sighed again when she realized that she wouldn't be able to hide Janet's presence from Mark. "She didn't want to stay here with me and Janet, so she rented a penthouse, upstairs."
"Don't worry, Jillian. Your mother told me all about Janet's impetuous trip here." He thought about his wife and rolled his eyes sarcastically. "Leave it to Judith to only want the most opulent comfort. Well, I guess that settles it."
"I guess I'm staying here until Judith is able to travel." Mark quickly sat his glass down and rose from the sofa before walking towards the door. "What penthouse is she staying in?"
"She's in penthouse C." Jillian's eyes followed Mark as he walked across the room.
"Well, I guess it's time I had a little reunion with my wife. Good to see you again, Jillian." He nodded politely to her, noting the look of worry on her face, and then promptly headed upstairs.
"Lorraine, wait up!" Douglas called out as he raced after his wife. "Chasing after Patterson isn't going to do any good. He's not going to listen to you. He already has his mind made up."
Lorraine reached the railing at the edge of the docks and stopped, the crisp autumn breeze blowing against her tears. "Oh, Douglas, he must hate me now! I've just got to tell him what really happened!"
"He's not going to listen to you." He put his arms around her and pulled her close to him so that her head rested on his shoulder. "He's too upset...too angry. There's nothing you could say to him, right now, that would make any difference to him."
"I could tell him the truth! I could tell him what really happened that night and why!"
"He's not going to listen. Not yet." Douglas gently stroked her hair as she tried to swallow back her tears. "Just give him some time. Let this news about the baby sink in. You know this has to come as a terrible shock to him."
"I-I know." Everything must have come as a terrible shock to Patterson...Lorraine's sudden marriage to Douglas, the revelation that she was carrying Douglas' child...everything.
"You knew this was going to happen eventually. You couldn't hide the baby forever."
"I'm just so worried about Paddy. He feels so hurt and betrayed." Lorraine paused to take a deep breath in an effort to quell her tears. "And who can blame him after everything I've done."
"Darling, stop blaming yourself. You did the best that you could do under the circumstances." Despite the seriousness of the conversation, Douglas was discovering that he rather enjoyed the feel of Lorraine wrapped in his arms. Suddenly, it all felt so right. "Paddy's going to realize that, eventually. You've just got to give it time to all sink in. This is the way things have to be. There's no changing that. Paddy's just got to accept that."
"I-I know, Douglas. I know this is the way things have to be." She fought back another tear as she let out a sigh. "B-but what must he think of me? What kind of horrible, evil person does he think I am? Surely, Patterson thinks I willfully and maliciously had an affair with you behind his back and then lied to him about it." She began to feel the tears well up again, when another, more urgent, feeling struck her.
"Lorraine?" Douglas asked tentatively when he noticed the sudden change in her demeanor. "Are you alright? Lorraine, what's wrong?"
"D-Douglas, I...I'm not sure." She winced slightly as a sharp pain when through her. Instantly, a look of terror covered her face. "Oh, Douglas, something's wrong! Something's...." Her voice trailed off as her body fell limp in his arms.
"Lorraine? Lorraine, sweetheart!" He held her in his arms and slowly sank to the ground, carefully cradling her unconscious body. "Oh, my god! Lorraine!"
TO BE CONTINUED
Douglas seeks help from an unlikely source.
For Now and Forever
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