"Now I know why you're the boss," Jax comments to Stefan who is silently seething at the confrontation with Luke Spencer. The men have gone to the mansion on Spoon Island and are in the library. "I know Luke Spencer for what he is--I've seen his files. I'd have taken great pleasure in killing him."
"I didn't for the same reason that you have not killed Corinthos. You and I have killed, but we are not murderers. Besides, for all their shortcomings, there is some good in both men, though, admittedly, one must excavate layer upon layer of defense mechanisms to locate it. And, of course, Lasha, as Laura, loves him, and she has had more than too much pain. I will not hinder her healing processes."
"How is she?" Jax asks.
Both men know that Jax doesn't want to examine Brenda's feelings for Sonny too closely, so Stefan continues. "Physically, she is well. Mentally, she is torn between two families, two sons, two men, and the daughter that we both claim." He shakes his head, and vows, "My mother, that predatory, evil woman, Helena, will answer for this. I will see to that. Lasha's pain is Helena's revenge. She saw Lasha's greatest strength, her ability to love, as a weakness, and did her best to create a situation that would destroy Lasha."
"Why?" Jax asks.
"Because Helena loves control. Indeed, she requires it, and what she cannot control, she destroys. But not neatly or quickly. Not mercifully. Helena wants her victims to suffer for their lack of submission."
Jax is curious. "So how did you escape her clutches?"
Stefan grins, and not for the first time, Jax sees the feral gleam in his eyes. "Because I found out her secrets, and she knows that I know. That was enough when I was younger--she could not bring herself to kill me--I am her son--but I am not the son of her husband." Stefan smiles. "I tell you this now, because it may become important later--nobody else knows, though the documents are to be revealed upon my death, or disappearance, should that come about before I order their release."
Jax is surprised. "You mean, you're not a Cassadine?"
"Not by blood, and neither, therefore, is Nikolas, the heir. I do not know who my father is--I have not been able to track down that information, and she will not tell. But, I think that he is an Australian, from things she has mentioned."
"And now?" Jax asks. "Why hasn't Helena killed you?"
"She has tried, a couple of times," Stefan confesses. "But I have made her understand that to kill me is to lose Nikolas and control of everything she values. Nikolas is, for all anybody else knows, still the last Cassadine. You see, my uncles refuse to sire more children."
"Because, in an effort to keep the Cassadine bloodline pure, and the wealth together, the family intermarried--for many, many generations. Now, their legacy is vast wealth, madness, and genetic defects. You know how insane Mikkos was--and how Stavros was obsessive. There were some physical problems that very few know about. Tony and Victor are also victims of mental problems, and both of them have fathered sons who mercifully died at birth. Knowing that the Cassadine line is ended through them has driven them closer to the edge, and they seek cures from the incurable."
"But they seem normal, physically."
"Seem being the operative word," Stefan nods. "Both suffer from physical complaints, as well. What I have discovered is, that Helena was an illegally adopted child--her birth mother was not a Cassadine, nor was her father--the defect that the real Helena inherited, was apparently so horrible that her mother killed the child almost immediately. But, she stole my mother and presented her as Helena, and the family was so grateful to see a normal child that they accepted her without question. She was brought up to revere the Cassadine name, and to expect all the privilege that came with it as her due.
"Marriage to Mikkos was arranged, and she had several children. Stavros was her first, and he appeared completely normal, so she had more children. She had at least three more sons, two of whom she killed shortly after they were born. She had two daughters about whom I was unable to discover anything.
"Then, apparently because she discovered something unbalanced about Stavros, she had me--I was conceived simply to give her a spare child should Stavros prove unsuitable or die. She dared not chance another child by Mikkos, though she feared that he would discover her secret and banish her, as well as me, from the family. So, she became everything a Cassadine should be. She became the embodiment of his dream."
"Why didn't you simply tell Victor and Tony and let them destroy her?"
"Because she already controls them. They are willing accessories to her plan."
"Immortality," Stefan concludes. "She has promised them immortality." Hmmmmmm
"I've got to find him," Lucy exclaims as Luke and Sonny hold her back. "He's out there-running around thinking that I'm dead."
"You can't go out there," Luke insists. "If the bad guys find you, our insider is in deep ****."
"If they find him, they'll..."
"We'll find him.," Sonny assures her-I mean we know he's out there this time. Before, he wasn't."
"But he won't be thinking clearly," Lucy says. "I mean, how could you be if your....."
She pauses, staring at both men. "I'm sorry..."
"Lucy," Luke begins, brushing aside her faux pas. "We'll get whoever is responsible for what happened."
Sonny nods. "And while your Doc is a bit more polished...."
"and more civilized," Luke injects.
"He's not a weenie," Sonny finishes. "He's a man, you're his lady..."
"So this is a macho thing?" Lucy squeaks.
"Exactly," Luke assures her, and in his best John Wayne imitation, says, "A man's gotta do what a man's gotta do."
"But he doesn't even know who's behind it."
"He knows that Cassadine is involved," Luke says, "And that Ryan is lurking around in the woodwork somewhere. And, we know that Jax is tied to this."
"Jax?" Lucy gasps. "Jax?? Not Jax!?!?! I trusted him!! Ohmigosh, Brenda trusts him!!"
"He called us," Sonny reminds her. "Take it easy. They all know. Everybody is looking for him. I mean, how hard can it be to find a man wandering around town with a little red wiener dog and a fat black and white cat in tow?" Hmmmmmm
"How the mighty have fallen," Kevin grumbles as he pushes a stolen shopping cart loaded with rags, bags and assorted debris around. He refuses to allow himself to think about Lucy, finding only dark despair there. Instead, he focuses on revenge and the changes in his life.
"Imagine, only a few weeks ago I was wearing English suits, driving a nice car. I was a well respected man. Head of Psychiatry at General Hospital. I had everything. I had Lucy."
A little red muzzle with a black nose is poked out from the rag pile followed by chocolate brown eyes. Maverick whines.
"Be quiet," Kevin orders. "Then somebody, probably my twin brother, and whoever he's working for, screwed me over royally, killed Carly and Gina, tried to kill Bobbie, killed Tom and Kat, and now, his voice breaking to a hoarse whisper, "Lucy." There is a long pause, as he regains his composure. "I'll kill them," he vows. "If it's the last thing I do, I'll get them."
"Meow," comes from the basket atop the cart.
"Shhh," Kevin says. "We've got to think."
It was odd, but the animals had a calming effect on Kevin. Without thinking, he reaches out and pats the little dog on the nose and Maverick licks his hand. As Kevin steals himself to go on, the first snowflakes for the evening begin to fall. The lonely white haired figure pushes the cart down an alley lit only by the occasional light. Hmmmmm
Stay tuned!! Stefan not a Cassadine??? The whole family bloodline tainted??? Good Grief!!! Immortality?? What the heck??? Will Lucy find Kevin before he kills someone?? Will Kevin freeze to death out on the streets?? Hmmmmmmmmm