Tommy gazed at his opulent surroundings in disgust which he successfully hid from Justus. Here, Justus Ward lived in luxury with his leather sofa, lily white carpet, and marble fireplace while Tommy had lived in hell. Tommy vaguely remembered his dislike for Justus years ago when Justus broke up his family and then left he and his mother high and dry, but now his childhood emotions were replaced with adult hatred.
He hated Justus for having a home. For having clean, expensive clothing. Simply, he hated Justus. But he couldn’t allow himself to dwell on his feelings. He needed Justus, and if Justus sensed his true feelings, he might not feel inclined to help him.
“Excuse me?” Justus asked. “Why do you need my help? Are you in trouble with the law?”
Of course, he would think that, thought Tommy. He swallowed hard. He would have use every piece of willpower he’d obtained over the last few years to survive this meeting.
“This doesn’t have anything to do with the law,” Tommy replied through clenched teeth. “This has to do with my mother.”
“Simone? Where is she? What’s wrong with her?” Justus asked with concern.
“Sit down,” Tommy said. “This may take a while.”
“What kind of place is this?” Carrie asked as she stepped from the launch onto the pier at Wyndemere. “Who in the hell would live here?”
“Mama, I told you before. This is where the Cassadines live. Recently, a murder was committed here,” Dara replied.
“A murder?” Carrie felt a chill go up her spine. If her daughter was indeed here, she prayed that she was safe. There was a coldness here that she hadn’t felt elsewhere. She wanted to leave there as soon as possible.
“Mrs. Jensen, if you’d like, I’m sure Det. Garcia wouldn’t mind waiting here with you,” Marcus offered.
Alex stiffened at the suggestion, but judging from Mrs. Jensen’s reaction maybe it would be better if she didn’t go to the main house. If Cassadine did have anything to do with Dawn’s disappearance, Alex didn’t want her mother to do anything to jeopardize their getting her back safely.
“No, thank you, Detective,” she replied. “I’ll be just fine. Lead the way.”
The four headed up the stairs which led to the main house.
“Nickie, hurry up!” Dawn laughed. “I think it’s about to pour.”
“A little rain won’t hurt you,” he smiled, lifting his face up to look at the dark clouds.
They had taken the long walk back to Wyndemere at Nikolas’ suggestion. And now, that they were almost there, he walked at a snail’s pace.
“Mm…I know what this hesitation is all about,” she said with a sly grin.
He was so happy to see her playful side again that he couldn’t help but to play along.
“Why am I hesitant?” he asked with a crooked smile.
“Because you want to see my t-shirt get all wet,” she laughed. She saw the blood rush to his face and laughed even more as she release his hand to run away from him. Oh, my God, she thought, I can’t believe I just said that.
Nikolas was stunned by her words. How did she know? He wondered. He had never been so embarrassed before in his life. He chased after her towards the pier. He stopped in his tracks when he saw the disturbed expression on her face.
“What’s wrong?” he asked, placing a hand on her shoulder.
“I just saw my mother, Dara and two guys headed for your house,” she said. “How did they know I was here?”
“Uncle,” Nikolas whispered, trying to control his anger.
“I can’t go back there, Nickie,” she said, shaking her head. The unshed tears shone brightly in her eyes.
He grasped her shoulders, forcing her to look at him.
“Listen to me. You don’t have to.”
“But where can I go?” she asked. “I bet those guys were cops. If they find me, I’ll have to go.”
“No,” he said as he cupped her face with gentle hands. “I won’t let them take you. I can get you off this island. You won’t have to go back until you’re ready. If ever.”
“But if we get on the launch, they’ll hear us. They’ll come running back.”
“Ssh,” he said, placing a finger to her lips. “I know a different way. We’ll be gone before they even realize it. Do you trust me?”
“Yes,” she whispered.
He pulled her towards him for a quick embrace. Then, he released her and grabbed her hand, leading her to his secret getaway.
The air was damp. The surroundings were so dreary that even the rats and roaches refused to hang around. With a long sigh, Simone sat on her make-shift bed on the floor. Covering herself with the scraps of the rags and tattered clothing she had been allowed to save over a period of time, she reclined onto the dirty, torn mattress.
Silently, she prayed to herself that her dear, precious son was okay. He had been gone for a little over a week. His escape had been risky, but necessary.
She hadn’t wanted to send her son out there alone, but Tommy had insisted. She couldn’t remember the last time they had been separated. Well, except for those times when she had been summoned. She shivered. She couldn’t allow herself to think of those times. The shame she felt regarding those times would live with her forever. There was no reason for her to dwell on them now.
She prayed that her child would return soon. With help. She didn’t know how much longer she could hold on. She prayed to a god that she forced herself to still believe in that she would live to make it out of this hell. That she would have a life again.