It was all there in front of him, Sonny decided as he viewed the photos that had been presented to him earlier that evening. Taggert, Robin and his right hand man, Jason Morgan, standing outside the warehouse in Beecher's Corners. It was obvious to him that he'd been set up, and as his stomach twisted, he fingered the gun inside his coat. Odd, he reflected. He really hated violence. Oh, it was necessary, and he didn't shirk from it when he had to use the gun, but he found no enjoyment in ending someone else's life. It was simply something that had to be done from time to time, and if the truth be known, it sickened him. He remembered the first time he'd ever shot a man, vividly recalling the raw scent of gunpowder, and the following stench of death. He'd dreamed about it for months, and even now, occasionally awakened in the night, dripping with sweat, his mind filled with turmoil. But, never an outward sign, he told himself. Like that deodorant commercial. 'Never let them see you sweat.' Yeah, that had been his motto, and nobody was cooler than Sonny Corinthos. And nobody would be cooler than he would be tonight as he pronounced sentence on his best friends.
For a few seconds, he almost swore that he saw Stone Cates, his late associate, and Robin's former boyfriend, standing in front of him, a worried look on his face. But, the image had vanished, as if Stone had, too, abandoned him in disgust. He imagined that he saw Lily, her sweet smile turned to a scowl of anger as she realized his intent, and he banished her from his mind. "It all comes down to me," he told himself. "Me. Alone." He gave a harsh laugh and observed, "So this is what it's all about-the lonely at the top thing. Well, I wanted power, and I've damn sure got it. Besides, what choice do I have? It's them or me."
There was a discreet knock at his door, as Raoul announced, "Your car is ready, Mr. Corinthos."
Taking a last look around at the apartment where he'd always conducted business, he made a mental note to move at the earliest convenience. If he lived to move, he told himself. Sooner or later, Mac Scorpio would come after him, along with the entire Quartermaine family. That would be how it would eventually come out. Blood would always have blood. He'd have to keep on killing up until the moment he was killed, and then, then he'd have to answer for his sins. And tonight, he would make the down payment on his own death. "I'm coming, Raoul."
"Hold it right there," came a voice from the shadows, a tense, curt voice that Jared realized brooked no defiance. "Now, turn around slowly, hands up."
"I'm turning," Jared told him, finding the voice familiar. It was the same accusing tone that he'd heard not long ago, at...."Mr. White? Frank White?"
"Yes, Mr. Andrews. Jared Andrews, the murderer of an innocent young woman, my daughter. I see you must have been expecting me, knowing that I'd come for you."
"Mr. White," Jared began slowly, hands up, his mind working quickly for a diversion. "Your daughter isn't dead. I didn't kill her."
"Don't give me that," White answered, his voice raised and nearly shrill. "I saw her fall, saw the wound, and saw her die. I know what I saw, and you're going to die for what you did that day. You took my daughter from me, and you're going to die for that."
"Now, wait just a minute," Jared said, trying to ease back to the car which might afford some protection. "I have proof that she didn't die. I have a picture that was taken of her less than 24 hours ago in Port Charles, New York."
"Lies. You expect me to believe the word of a killer?"
"I expect you to listen to reason before you do something that you can't take back. I understand why you're angry, hurt, and I don't blame you for what you believe. I thought she was dead myself until about an hour ago, but she's alive."
"I don't believe you," White answered, taking aim with the gun. "So pray to whatever God you believe in. It's more than you gave my little girl."
Gil Andrews hurried down the hallway into the offices of WEB where he'd arranged to meet with Marty. In spite of his best judgments, he was going to ask for help, and he wanted to bypass Jared, if possible, to spare his troubled brother any more anxiety. Besides, he didn't want to bring any trouble to Andrews Vineyards, and he had the definite feeling that he was bringing trouble with him. Marty, Jared had once told him, dealt with trouble on a regular basis, and was the person to contact if one had more than one's share of difficulties. He thought of the information he'd discovered on his laptop, information that spelled trouble in very large letters, and had decided to take Jared's advice. He was mentally rehearsing what he'd say, when he noticed one of the guards looking agitated, sweat beading on his forehead. Strange, he thought, realizing that the offices were more than a little cold, that the air conditioning was running full blast. As he walked by, Gil realized that the guard didn't even realize that he was there, and in one instinctive move, brought the laptop up just in time to bring it down on the guard's gun hand as the man began to spray the room with bullets while people screamed and dived for cover.
A split second later, the gun wrested from his hands, the guard collapsed, unconscious and essentially catatonic. Gil stood uneasily, holding the gun as one by one, heads began to appear above bullet riddled desks. Marty stood up, and brushing the wooden splinters from her silk blouse, extended her hand, smiling at him. "As always, Travis Hope, your timing is impeccable."
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