"We're losing her," Monica said tersely, as she monitored Lila's vital signs. "Come on, Lila," she encouraged. "You've got to hang on. Edward needs you. We all need you."
Outside the room, Edward was ranting again. "What kind of security lets someone in an intensive care room? Somebody upset my Lila and she's....."
"Don't say that, Father," Alan ordered, a sick feeling in the pit of his stomach. "Mother is stronger than all of us. She's had to be."
"Not this time, Alan," Edward said, tears sliding down his worn cheeks. He turned to look into the room where Monica and a team of heart specialists worked frantically over Lila.
"Gotcha," said Taggert as he fine-tuned a picture of someone dashing from an exit of GH taken a little earlier by security cameras. What he saw chilled him. "Oh, my God. Mac? I think you'd better take a look at this one. This guy is one scary dude."
Mac Scorpio turned from interviewing the woman who had been the nurse in Lila's room, a woman still groggy from some as yet undefined drug, and asked, "What have you got?" As his eyes met the image on the monitor, he blanched. "I didn't want to believe it. God!" With a quick motion, he cleared the room of everybody except himself and Taggert, pausing only long enough to pull out his cellular phone. "Anna? Call Robert ASAP. Our boy has been at GH within the last half-hour-and, apparently visiting Lila Q....No, I have no idea as to why, but I'm about to do some serious questioning as quickly as she's able to talk."
"Lila?" Anna asked. "This is strange."
"No kidding. Look-I don't know what happened, but if the expression on his face is any indication, things are about to get nasty."
"To the ground," Faison ordered via his cellular phone. "All of it. Salt the roses. Sink the boat. Destroy all of it. No warnings. Just do it."
"Cesar," Helena began, "don't do this. I forbid it."
"Shut up, Helena," he snarled at her. "You are in no position to forbid anybody anything. Me, least of all."
For the first time in her entire life, Helena Cassadine was terrified. The man before her, a man she'd hired to wreak destruction and revenge on her son and Luke Spencer was enraged. Anger coiled around him like a snake. "What happened? Why are you so angry?"
Faison laughed, but there was no happiness in his voice. "Me, angry? You haven't seen 'angry' yet, Helena, but you will. Tonight. I promise." With that, he took an instrument from his pocket and, grabbing her by the arm, led her to the railing of her yacht. "Look. You see your island? Wyndemere?" He held out what appeared to be a remote device and clicked it. A split second later, the quiet of the night was shattered by an explosion as Wyndemere went up in a gigantic explosion. Then, he turned to her and smiled a truly horrible smile. "Now, you will see angry."
"Clear the house," Frisco ordered tersely as he entered Mac's house. "Felicia. Get the girls and come on. There's something going down and we want to make sure that you're safe."
"Frisco?" she asked, shocked. She stood there in her night gown, staring at the father of her children. "What are you doing here?"
"Later, Felicia. Get the girls and your grandmother and come on."
"But...Anna and Robin."
"They're already out."
"Wake up, Ned," V shouted, pulling him from his bed. "Get your clothes on and hurry. I've got the baby. Reggie is waking the rest of the staff."
"What the hell?"
"Hell is right." At that, there was an explosion and the windows shattered, sending glass raining down around them. With a cry, V grabbed a blanket and held it over Brooke Lynn who began to wail anxiously. "We're under attack."
"I don't know, but we've got to get out of here."
"Mr. Ashton?" Reggie yelled. "Everybody is out."
Pulling on a pair of jeans and shoving bare feet into his shoes, he grabbed the baby from V's arms and then took V's hand. "Let's go."
The four dashed down the stairs, pausing when the front door blew off the hinges. Shocked, Ned headed towards the study when it exploded in flames. Deciding that the nearest exit was still the best choice, they ran to the front entrance which was now a large hole in the wall. Seconds later, they were running down the driveway with the staff behind them, the mansion continued to erupt in more violent explosions. Pulling his little daughter closer, Ned comforted the tot who was whimpering in fright. "It's okay, Brooke. We're safe. How'd we escape?" Ned asked, as one wall of the place collapsed in, bringing down another. "You saved us, V."
He turned to his assistant who stood shivering in a large beach towel. In spite of the horror of the raging fire behind them, Ned managed an appreciative grin. "Um, V, a towel?"
She gave a sheepish grin. "I was taking a moonlight swim. You said that I could use the pool whenever I wanted."
"Skinny dipping by moonlight?"
She smiled self-consciously and nodded. "That's how I knew that something was going on. There were people everywhere-people who don't belong here. I was scared. I called the police, but it was too late from the start, I think." She turned back to the house. "I'm sorry, Ned."
Ned turned back to the roaring fire that was feasting on years of Quartermaine accumulations, the flames hungrily licking at the trappings of wealth that had surrounded the family. Oddly, standing there with his daughter and V, he felt no loss at all. "I'm not," he said, in a wondering tone. He turned to V and smiled. "Actually, I'm sorry about only one thing."
"I'm only sorry that you didn't invite me to swim with you tonight."
Shocked, V met his heated gaze with a wondering look. "Ned?"
One arm around his daughter, Ned put his hand behind V's head and pulled her to his mouth.
"Kissy," Brooke muttered in disgust. "Daddy and V kissy!"
Luke jerked upright on the couch in his home where he'd decided to camp the night. No way was he leaving Laura or his family alone tonight. He and Laura had a long ways to go before they patched up their marriage, if indeed that was possible, and Lucky was back upstairs in his bed. Whether or not Lucky would stay with them, Luke couldn't say, but like his father, this night was one for the family being together. Even Nikolas had stayed in the guest room, and though Luke wasn't overly fond of the young man, he was too glad to have Lucky back to grumble about it. For one night, they were all together under one roof, sleeping peacefully....
"What the hell?" he said, instantly awake, aware that something had just happened. All around him, sirens wailed. In the distance explosions rocked the town.
"Laura!! Lucky!! Lulu!! Nikolas!!" he yelled, grabbing his pants. "Hurry!!!"
"What?" Lucky called down the stairs.
"Something's going down. Make sure everybody is up and ready to go. We're clearing out for a little while."
Luke turned on the television, going to the news channel.
"My God," Nikolas muttered, as he stared at the television. "That's Wyndemere. Burning."
"Shhhh." Luke ordered. "Listen."
The newscaster began..."Tonight, in a shocking series of explosions, Wyndemere, owned by the Cassadine family, and the Quartermaine mansion were both destroyed. Firefighters are on the scene at the Quartermaine home, though destruction is believed to be complete. Arson is suspected in both cases. There are no injuries or fatalities at the Quartermaine home, but we have no reports on the Cassadines as yet."
"What?" Laura asked. "What happened?"
"I don't know, but it involves Qs and Cassadines, which means that we'd better get the hell out of here ASAP."
Seconds later, the group piled into Luke's car, with Nikolas and Lucky following close behind.
Lucky turned to his brother. "See, Nik? It's like I told you. Dad's always got a plan..."
Faison smiled as he hung up the cellular phone. "Put down the gun, Helena."
"What are you doing?" she asked. "Giving orders to destroy Cassadine property." She held the gun on him. "Who do you think you are, anyhow?"
Faison laughed. "This is where I should say, 'I am your worst nightmare.' Indeed, I am that and more."
"I don't understand."
"You never have, Helena. For your entire life, your outlook has been pathetically limited. Everything and everybody was about you. Is it any wonder that your husband's eyes wandered?" He noted her angry look. "Yes, I know about his many mistresses. Does the name 'Kristin' mean anything to you? Ah, yes. I see that it does. She was the mother of Alexis, half-sister to your son, Stefan. Did you also know that she was the woman I loved? That she bore me a son, that the boy you had slaughtered that night along with her was my son? My only son?"
"Shut up, you evil old hag. Kristin was unfaithful to me-she was seduced by an older man of wealth and means, but my son was an innocent child." He gave her a disgusted look. "And you will pay for his death. His blood is on your hands, and I will have yours on mine before the night is through. Still, do you know what else I learned tonight? I learned that Kristin's older lover was my father." Faison watched as that bit of information sank in, as Helena's face registered the shock of yet another of her late husband's infidelities. "Is that not an ironic twist in a life filled with them? I learned that Lila Quartermaine was my mother, and that because of your evil family, she gave me and my brother away-to spare us, she said, the horror of being Cassadine sons. Because of your family, I was denied all that should have been mine. I should have been a son of a wealthy family, privileged. Educated. A man of means and all that it entails. I would have held the reins of power. My son would have had all that I could have given him but because of you, he's dead, his little throat cut. Instead, I was raised by a woman who didn't really want me."
"Shut up, I said."
"I'm holding the gun."
"And I'm holding this." He held up another device. "The boat is wired to explode if I release the button without disarming the mechanism. Shoot me, and we both explode."
"Don't test me, old woman."
Faison walked towards her, a look of deadly determination on his face.
Sean looked at Zandor as both listened to the heated conversation that was taking place on Helena's yacht, courtesy of a few strategically placed bugs.
"Now we know," Zandor managed. He drew a ragged breath. "Give me the microphone. Maybe we can stop this before..."
One last explosion tore through the night in the harbor of Port Charles......
And then it was over. Helena Cassadine's yacht gone, nothing remaining but bits of debris floating in the water, and an oil slick where the boat had been.
Robert and Anna had returned to Port Charles along with Robin who was not certain if she was going to stay. She loved Paris. Jason did, too. Besides, Zandor had asked them to return with him.
Sonny died tragically when he apparently got inebriated and fell from the balcony of his penthouse suite. His wealthy widow married Moreno a few months later.
Tom Hardy spent several months with Felicia and her grandmother, as well as with Lucky Spencer, making certain that there were no residual effects from whatever had gone on with Faison and his henchmen. He would always be a little uneasy about things, but it was all that he could do. Mac dumped the job of police commissioner in his brother's lap. The Outback needed his time, as did his family. No way was he going to sit idly by while Frisco and Tom were in the area. Besides, they had a lot to sort out, what with Felicia learning the truth about who she was. Being the granddaughter of the late Lila Quartermaine and Mikkos Cassadine, and the niece of Cesar Faison had come as a shock. She'd decided to keep that bit of information from the girls for now. Maybe forever. There were some things that one didn't necessarily need to know about one's family history.
It was later learned that on the same night that Wyndemere was destroyed that almost every other Cassadine holding worldwide had been also destroyed, and that oddly, all the insurance policies had been canceled only days before. Stefan's legal bills alone finished what was left of the family fortune which had vanished from banks and vaults under mysterious circumstances. The Quartermaines were left with what they wore, and what jobs they held, their holdings having met with similar misfortune. Strangely, Ned wasn't too concerned. Oh, he'd miss his grandmother who had passed away that night, but Edward was determined to rebuild the family enterprise. Ned, however, took his new wife, V, and hit the road. Leather pants never fit so well! Lois was miffed, but that didn't bother Ned. Miguel went back to touring with a little spying on the side.
Oddly, nobody noticed the mini-sub that had sped away only seconds before Helena's yacht blew up. Nobody knew that the woman who was forced aboard it wished that she'd remained on the yacht that night.....................
So, readers, this is the story we'd love to have seen. The storyline is reset. Characters have been redrawn, ready to continue on in their various lives, yet with tales left untold. What was the secret to do with Lucky's blood? Will Luke and Laura reunite? Can Stefan survive without his family fortune? Will Edward rebuild? What happens to Qs without their money? Do Tony and Bobbie come to a greater understanding? What happens to Carly, who was also a victim of Faison? Will their lives intersect at a later date? We intentionally left questions unanswered as this is the nature of a soap, an ongoing storyline in which future stories are drawn from the past.