Dara hung up the telephone and breathed a sigh of relief. District Attorney Harris had agreed to reschedule their afternoon meeting. Her mind was in a thousand places and she knew she wouldn’t have been able to concentrate.
She thought about her family. So many things had changed since she moved to Port Charles. She couldn’t believe how rude her father had been. He’d always been a tad overbearing but she had never seen him dismiss her mother before. Her parents had always been a couple who seemed to be so much in love. Stop it, she told herself. The stress was getting to them because it was definitely getting to her.
She heard the front door slam and left her bedroom to see if her parents left. It wouldn’t be like them to just leave without saying good-bye. Something was up.
She entered her living room and found her mother sitting on the sofa. Her head was down and her body gave off a defeated air. Dara moved to sit beside her.
“Mama, what’s wrong? Where did Daddy go?”
Her mother shook her head. “I don’t know where he went. He said he needed some air. I guess he left to get some,” Carrie replied with a hint of sarcasm.
“Is something going on between you and Daddy?” Dara asked. She didn’t really want an answer, but they were her parents. If something was wrong…
“No, baby. Listen, don’t pay attention to me,” she sighed. “I’m so worried about your sister that I can’t think straight.”
Dara didn’t believe her mother, but she knew enough to respect her wishes. She’d consider asking her again later.
“Your Detective seemed to know what he’s talking about,” Carrie said, taking a good look at her daughter. She noticed something between Garcia and her daughter and she wanted to know if her assessment was correct. Dara’s sharp intake of breath told her that she was indeed right. Dara was attracted to him. Oh, she hid it well, but a mother’s eye never missed certain things.
“Mama, he’s not my detective. Just because I’m the ADA doesn’t mean the police officers work for me,” Dara said, defensively.
“Well, excuse me then,” Carrie said, standing to rise. She picked up the empty coffee mugs that were on the coffee table.
“Mama, I’m sorry. You don’t have to do that. I can get that,” Dara said as she took the mugs from her mother. “Why don’t you unpack? When Daddy returns, we can get out of here. Alex has my cell phone number. He’ll call if he hears something.”
“That sounds like a good idea. I’ll only a be a few minutes. If Robert isn’t back by then, we can go without him,” she replied as she headed for the guestroom.
“Okay. I’ll bite. Where is she?”
“She’s here,” Stefan replied, rising to stand in front of the fireplace, tapping the folded newspaper against his palm. He was certain that Nikolas was hiding something last night. Now, he was proved correct.
“What is she doing here?” Alexis questioned. “Please, tell me you didn’t have her brought here.”
“Of course not. Nikolas brought her here last night.”
“But, why? She’s from New York. How does Nikolas know her?”
Stefan opened the newspaper and reread the ad, trying to determine some kind of connection between his nephew and the missing girl. He couldn’t find one.
“I don’t have the answers to your questions, but I will soon,” he promised.
Nikolas continued to hold Dawn within the circle of his arms. Her head rested in the curve of his neck. One hand was caressing his broad, muscular back. The other rested over his heart. She could feel his heart, beating rapidly against her hand. She was certain that her heart was beating just as fast. Neither of them said a word. The intensity of their second kiss left both of them breathless.
Slowly, Dawn pulled herself from Nikolas’ arms. Holding his hands in her own, she looked up at him. The way he was looking at her tempted her to kiss him again, but she felt that it wouldn’t be a good idea. Things had already progressed too quickly, and she needed to get her head together.
Seconds passed and neither spoke. Both of them were waiting, but neither of them knew what they were waiting for.
“Nickie, is there somewhere we can go to talk in private?”
“Yes. We can go to the stables. We could go horseback riding, we could go for a walk along the shore, or if you’d like, we could go for a drive. Whatever you prefer,” he replied.
“A walk along the shore sounds good.”
“The walk it is. Would you like to eat breakfast first?”
“Hmm…your uncle…uh,” she began.
“Say no more,” Nikolas said with a smile. “We can take a few scones from the kitchen. He’s usually in the library before breakfast. We can exit the back without seeing him.”
“Thanks,” she smiled at him.
“The impression Uncle has made on you...,” he laughed. “He’s not that bad. Honest.”
“I believe you. He raised you. You haven’t turned out so bad,” she said with a smile.
Two smiles he thought. And two kisses. So far so good.
Her stomach rumbled and her eyes flew to his. They laughed.
“I think your stomach is trying to tell us something. Follow me and I will lead you to nourishment,” Nikolas said.
"Lead on." She laughed as he pulled her towards the kitchen.