"He's in a bad way," Kevin reported to Marty as he sat in her office. "I tried to ask him questions about the last couple of years, but short of hypnosis or drugs, there's no way he's going to come up with any answers right away."
"No drugs," Marty said, adamantly. "We'd be no better than the swine that did this to him."
"All I got out of him was that he went to Monte Carlo where he saw a man betting heavily and that same man getting an envelope of money from another man."
"That's Monte Carlo for you. Still, if that was the last thing he remembers, then it may have some significance. He was kidnapped for a reason-though it may have been because he was Tom Hardy, and nothing more."
"He did say something interesting-he wonders if his father's death was natural causes."
"Makes sense to wonder, given his circumstances." She paused, then asked, "You were there when it happened, weren't you?"
"More or less," Kevin admitted. "There were strange things going on in my life back then, as you recall."
"I know. And all of this took place after the other Tom returned from Africa."
"True." Kevin rubbed his jaw thoughtfully. "That whole time is a bit hazy for me, to tell the truth. I was trying to help Mac Scorpio determine who Felicia's stalker was. At that point, we both thought it was Tom."
"While I don't remember everything about the stalking, I remember suddenly finding myself on Jasmine Island. I remember things I wish I didn't about my mother, and about my childhood, but I don't remember actually doing the stalking."
"But you had a lot of therapy with Gail Baldwin, didn't you?"
"Some. Enough for me to know that I have serious problems that I need to work through."
"Problems involving whom?"
Shifting uncomfortably in his chair, Kevin asked, "Marty, I thought you wanted me to work with Tom Hardy."
"I do, but Kevin, it appears to me that your problems and his seem to be inextricably entangled. Since we have two Tom Hardys, and we think that we have the real one here, then that means that the other one is a ringer. He did his share towards discrediting you, didn't he?"
"No more than I did myself," Kevin argued. "Marty, it was hard enough for me to accept that I did those things. You know that my recovery is dependent on taking complete responsibility for my actions. I can't blame what I did on somebody else."
"I understand that," Marty said, gently. "But did anybody actually see you do any of the things you stand accused of?"
"I apparently kidnapped Felicia."
"According to the accounts I received, Felicia went with you of her own free will, after knocking Garcia out-Garcia, whom she thought was the stalker at the time. You had ample time to hurt her, had that been your intent, but you didn't. You didn't kidnap her."
"I held her on that island against her will."
"You weren't yourself at the time. Lucy, Mac and Felicia-even Tom Whoever he is, could testify to that."
"Yeah, I was really around the bend."
"Hell, I don't know! I have blank spots in my memory from that time." He was anxious, standing up and pacing the room. Shoving his hair back from his face, he turned to Marty and said, "I didn't tell Gail this, but every time I try to remember certain things, it's like I hit a wall or something."
"Tell me about it."
"I get like this-all anxious and my heart starts pounding. It's scary as hell."
"Classic anxiety symptoms?"
"I guess, but why? I didn't hurt Felicia-even at the worst, all I did was sneak around, play computer head games with her and mess with her credit ratings. Though, I don't know how I did that. Except for the word processing package, I'm not all that computer literate. I mean, I can surf the net, but I don't have a clue about programming."
"Interesting," Marty commented. "So, somehow, in your altered state, you suddenly manifested greater skills in computer programming, and a yen for stalking Felicia."
"That about sums it up."
"Tell me, Kevin. Did your doctors run any tox screens on you?"
"I don't know." He looked at her warily. "You think that I may have been drugged?"
"Kevin, I'm fishing here. We know that our Tom was kidnapped, drugged, and held captive for some reason while the fake Tom went to GH and thereafter, Steve Hardy died, and you..."
"Weirded out," Kevin finished, thoughtfully. "I always just accepted that this whole thing was because of my childhood. I mean, Ryan was in worse shape than I was, so I guess this didn't seem so bad, given what became of him."
"Makes sense to me. So, assuming that you might have been drugged, and that it might have been done by Tom, we need to backtrack over your past." She chuckled, and then asked, "Been to Monte Carlo in the last year or so?"
Kevin's eyes widened, and he nodded. "Now that you mention it, I did stop there on my trip to England some months back."
Drunk again. Frank White looked over at his wife who lay passed out on the couch in their home. Clean, elegantly decorated, but empty of any warmth, he thought, surveying the place. Sort of like Linda. She wore only designer clothes, and her hair was carefully coifed, but her heart was as cold as a tomb. Their daughter's tomb. His eyes teared even now as he recalled the laughing face of the young woman on their last day together. The trip was to have been a time to get to know each other, to reach across the chasm that had separated them since she'd hit college. As he walked out the door of his house, he thought of the changes that had turned his daughter from a fun loving, mischievous girl into a troubled woman. It had started when she'd learned that she was adopted, something that Linda had insisted on keeping from her. Not that it had really mattered to him. He'd loved the girl, nurtured her, and wanted only a daughter's love from her.
Unfortunately, on the day she'd found out, Linda had been more than a little tipsy. She'd had a drinking problem for years, ever since she'd learned that she couldn't have children. For her, that had been some kind of a personal failure, something other than the accident of nature that Frank considered it. But, Angie had been taking biology, learning about genetics, and thereby learned that her blood type wasn't compatible with her parent's types. Instead of accepting it good naturedly, she'd turned on her parents, accused them of lying to her, and things had never been the same. Indeed, they had deteriorated from there. Drugs, alcohol, and heaven knew what else had gone on before Frank had gotten wise to the severity of Angie's problems. By then, Linda had crawled completely into the bottle and Angie had run away from home. He'd thought then that things couldn't get any worse. With a bitter laugh, he realized that not only could they get worse, but they did. He just hoped that things didn't go down from here.
As he got into his car, he reflected that undoubtedly would things get worse, and that it was unlikely that life would ever be worth living again. Linda was a hopeless drunk, and Angie was dead. Hopelessly dead. Not like those damned soap operas where people died and came back to life with appalling regularity. No, Angie was dead and Linda might as well be. How did a man live with pain like this? He did the best he could, and got help from a professional. It was part of the therapy that had been suggested by the doctors on the Island where he'd been visiting when Angie had died. He hadn't told Linda that he'd been meeting a therapist on Grand Bahamas Island, and that the visit was carefully staged by him as a last ditch effort to regain his daughter. The therapist had been reluctant, but finally had okayed the trip, and Angie had agreed to meet him there, not knowing that the man in the villa adjoining theirs was the therapist.
Frank battled his anger, his anxiety and drove carefully to the office on the other side of town where he parked his car in front of Valley Psychiatric Clinic. Only a few months had passed since the shooting, but the pain was as fresh as ever. Like a wound that wouldn't heal, the ache seemed to fester and grow. But, then, that was how the doctor said it would be, so Frank gritted his teeth and walked into the office where he would meet with the man who was working with him to put his grief behind him. The receptionist motioned him into the inner office.
Once inside, his therapist turned to him, and smiled, speaking in a thick accent. "Frank, come on in. It's good to see you again." He clicked the mouse on his computer and ended the program he was running. "I find that I must do some counseling via e-mail," he confessed. "And how are you today?"
"Not so good, Dr. Cesar," Frank answered honestly. "Not so good."
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