Chapter Nine

"We can't go on this way," Tony whispers in Carly's ear as he stands close to her at the hospital.

Carly turns her bright, dark brown eyes on him, and smiles. "Tonight? Down on the docks?"

"I'll be there at eight."

The two move off in separate directions just as Bobbie walks into view.

"Tony?" says Bobbie, as she walks over to her husband. "What did Carly want this time? She seems to always have a reason to talk to you."

"Which is more than you have," Tony finds himself saying. "Unless it's to criticize her." Once started, Tony can't stop. "And, I'm tired of it. We rarely talk anymore, and you know something? I don't miss our little chats because now that I think of it, they were empty. I've been thinking, Bobbie-that what we had never amounted to all that much, anyhow. I've even begun to wonder if what I felt was some sort of a misplaced gratitude to you-you were always there when I was blind, and then...we couldn't make it over the rough spots. I brought BJ into the relationship, and you brought Lucas. BJ is gone, and I'll never turn my back on Lucas, but it's time for us to call it quits. All that talk with Kevin got us nowhere, just postponed the inevitable."

"And what is that?" Bobbie whispers, knowing exactly what he was trying to say.

"We're through," Tony tells her. "Finished. I'm moving out of the bedroom today. I'll take that attic apartment for the time being, so as to be close to Lucas."

"But Tony..."

"Drop it, Bobbie. The only thing we ever really had was sex."

"But Lucas..."

"I told you that I'll always be his dad, but it's over, completely over, between us. You're still young enough to find someone else, Bobbie-I know that I've never been enough for you-and I won't try any more. Let's just leave it at this. Be as civilized as possible for Lucas's sake."

Bobbie's eyes darken in pain, and anger. "Is there someone else?" she asks. "I deserve to know."

"If there was," Tony asks, "Would I still be living in the brownstone?" Hmmmmm

"Any leads yet?" asks Mac as Garcia enters the PCPD Police commissioner's office. "Anybody see anything? Hear anything?"

"Not so much as a peep," Garcia informs him. "You'd think that this was a mob hit, or something, what with the silence surrounding this killing. I mean, she was just a few yards from General Hospital, out in a well lit parking lot and nobody saw anything!"

"Which is strange, considering that Kevin, if it was Kevin, would have been wearing light blue pajamas-unless he'd managed to find a change of clothes."

"Yeah, it's strange," Garcia says. "We can't find a trace of Kevin, either. Nobody has seen him anywhere. Nobody saw him leave the hospital. It's as if he just vanished off the face of the earth."

"One thing we do know," Mac says, looking at the autopsy report. "Apparently the murderer used a hunting knife. Multiple stab wounds, and all with a hunting knife."

"So where did Kevin get a hunting knife? And, less than an hour after he vanished from the hospital," Garcia wonders.

"An hour is plenty of time, under the right circumstances," Mac says. "There are several stores within walking distance of GH that probably sell them..."

"I'll get right on it," Garcia says. "I'll have my men circulate a picture of Kevin to every place that sells the knives or anything close to them. We've already checked the records for all taxi drivers in that vicinity for that night, no luck."

"Stay with it," Mac tells him. "We have to find him. If Tom is right, and I pray he's not, Kevin is a disaster walking. Tom thinks he's completely gone off the deep end, and we know that Kevin is brilliant. A brilliant madman....." Hmmmmmm

"What do you mean, you can't find him?" demands Tom as he speaks into his cellular phone. "He can't have just vanished into thin air." Tom sits down, nervously looking around his office. "I know that. Yes, the other situation is under control. That's no problem......Yes, I understand the objective....I've never lost sight of that.....but you must understand that by now, he's completely back to normal....and if he starts thinking about can't blame me for that.....I did what I could regarding that but it was out of my hands.....yeah, she was an excellent do your homework.....but you brought a few new players into the game that way......really? I see....that puts a different light on the situation......okay, keep me informed.....yes, I'll call you if I hear anything....Tonight? No, I don't think so. Another one this soon would be a mistake. Too much chance of discovery....who do you have in mind?......You're probably right. Better if I don't know who or when...or if....You know the other weakness I mentioned?? I think that there's something affair, maybe....okay, later..... bye."

Closing the phone, Tom draws a deep breath, and then looks at the bracelet on his wrist. He turns the large bead around, looking at the tiny emblem worked into the design. A half smile turns his mouth up, and he nods. "I can't lose sight of the objective. And I can't go back now. I'm in too deep, and there's too much at stake." With that, he stands up, and heads back out into the hospital corridor. Hmmmmm

Stay tuned!!! What will Bobbie do about the impending divorce??? Does Tony plan to marry Carly? Is he in love, or......And will Garcia's men manage to turn up any clues as to Kevin's whereabouts? And, once again, we ask, to whom was Tom talking? What is this mysterious objective? What's at stake?? To what devil has he sold his soul???? Hmmmmmm