Chapter Sixty-One

"Any idea where they might have taken Lucky?" Mike asks. "You think Spoon Island-the Cassadine stronghold?"

"Too obvious," Luke answers, shaking his head. "Besides, if they just wanted to kill Lucky, they'd have done it on the spot. No, the kid is bait." He picks up the phone, and makes another call. "Frisco? Luke Spencer. I need your help. Lucky is missing and I think......they are??? I see. Any ideas?? Okay, I'll wait for a little while."

Luke hangs up and turns to the others. "This is weird. Frisco's daughters and Felicia's grandmother are missing, and so is Brenda Barrett Jacks."

"That bastard," Sonny rages, suddenly, explosively. "Dragging Brenda into danger because of his greed! He's working hand in glove with those !@#$%^&* Cassadines!!"

"Relax," Luke tells Sonny. "That means that she's probably safe, just stashed for now, because everything is going down shortly. They don't want us taking her as a counter hostage."

"I'll kill him," Sonny fumes, taking great pleasure in that thought. "He has no right to use Brenda like that."

With more than a casual sense of purpose, Sonny heads into the back office where he finds a gun and a few extra clips of ammunition. "They're going down," he vows. "Tonight." Hmmmm

"Mrs. Jacks?" comes a familiar voice.

Opening her eyes, Brenda sees Reggie who is kneeling beside the couch on which she's reclining. A glance at her watch reveals that she's been there several hours. It's nightfall, and she's worried.

"Reggie? What??"

"Shhh," he warns, and his eyes direct her to a plant from which a not too well hidden camera is panning the room. "You okay?"

She nods. "Yeah. What's going on?"

"I think we're hostages," Reggie explains. "At the very least, we've been kidnapped."

"Yeah," Brenda comments as Lucky leads the Jones girls and Maria into the room.

"Brenda and Reggie?" he says, incredulously. "What are you guys doing here?"

"What are any of us doing here?" Reggie asks.

Maxie and Georgie are very wary, but Maria tells them, "Don't worry, girls. Your daddy and mommy will get us out of here."

Brenda, her heart going out to the scared children, picks up the smallest, Georgie. "Hi," she smiles, and the little girl smiles shyly back. "I'm Brenda and we're all going to be all right."

As she holds the child, a section of the wall rolls away, and a series of television screens is revealed.

"What the heck?" Reggie wonders, aloud. Hmmmm

Helena is standing in front of a series of television screens, none of which are operating.

"What's going on Grandmother?" Nikolas demands. His uncles Tony and Victor have entered the room along with a few other people he doesn't recognize.

"Nikolas, allow me to present Caesar Faison, and Tracy Quartermaine."

An odd looking man with lank, shoulder length brown hair and an elegantly dressed dark-haired woman nod in his direction. "They are working with me," she explains to Nikolas. "With us. You, Nikolas, will appreciate my planning very soon."

"I want to speak with Uncle Stefan," Nikolas insists, with the definite feeling that perhaps Luke Spencer had been right about more than a few things.

And, if he had been, Nikolas realized, then things were about to get downright dangerous in a hurry.

Helena shakes her head. "Nikolas, my grandson, Stefan has betrayed us." She smiles, and for the first time, Nikolas sees the gleam of what might well be madness in her eyes. Helena continues. "Stefan, my son, has worked against our family. He has cost the Cassadines greatly, and for this, he must be exposed and punished. One doesn't betray the Cassadines, and for a family member to do so is unforgivable."

Nikolas nods in agreement, figuring that playing along with her was his safest move. "Yes, Grandmother. What do you have in mind?"

She smiles, and Nikolas suppresses a deep shudder. "It is time that you exact the punishment," she tells him. "Time that you give the orders that will end his time as your regent."

"And then I will be the head of the family?" Helena nods. "Once you see how your orders will be carried out, then you will understand the true measure of your powers. I will, of course, be available to guide your hand."

"Of course," he nods solemnly. "So when can I do this?"

Helena smiles, switching on the screens, says, "For now, we wait until our guests begin to arrive."

To his amazement, Nikolas recognizes the catacombs, and as he watches, out of the darkness, several figures begin to move stealthily. They're armed, and as he watches, Helena tells him,

"They're approaching this area, Nikolas. They're preparing to attack us, to attack all that we hold dear. Do you choose to defend us?"

"Who are they? I don't recognize them-wait, there's Luke Spencer. And, that's Sonny Corinthos." On another screen, he sees others. "I don't know that blond man, but wait, that's Uncle Stefan. Who are those two other guys? Why are we being attacked?"

"Do you choose to defend us?" Helena demands, her anger rising. "Answer, Nikolas, or be branded a traitor here and now!"

"What do you want me to do?" he asks, as the door to another room opens and Lucky Spencer is brought in. "Lucky-what are you doing here?"

"You tell me," Lucky snaps. He sees the concern in his brother's eyes, and realizes that he's in the deepest **** he's ever been in. "What's my dad doing there? What's going on here?"

Helena moves closer to the brothers, and says, "It's time to choose, Nikolas. We are under attack."

The camera focuses briefly on Luke, who is wearing black with a red target painted on the back. "How appropriate," Helena smiles. "Never mind, Nikolas. I just wanted to see if you had what it takes to be The Cassadine. Our defenses are automatic. Watch...."

Suddenly, there is a hissing sound from the screens, and the figures gasp and fall, then lie still.

Horrified, Nikolas turns to his Grandmother who is smiling. "Tell me that they're sleeping, Grandmother!"

"Eternally," she tells him. "And now, to end the world of the Spencer line."

Lucky moves swiftly, and in one quick move has fallen under and tripped Helena who goes down with a shout. Shots ring out! Hmmmmm

Stay tuned!! Tonight's the night!! What's going down?? Sonny is angry with Jax for putting Brenda in danger's way. (Pot calling the kettle black?) Will Brenda manage to keep the kids quiet, or will the room erupt in hysterics soon? Eternal sleep?? Our heroes?? Whose gun was fired?? YIKES!! Hmmmmmmmm