Chapter 5

“Good morning sleepyhead.”

The warm, inviting voice broke through to Ellen’s consciousness as her eyes slowly fluttered open. The sight of very high ceiling with distinctive crown molding and an ornate light fixture told Dr. Burgess that she wasn’t in Port Charles anymore. Before her brain was fully functional, her eyes instinctively closed when a face touched hers and teased her mouth with butterfly kisses.

“Mmmm. Good…” was as far as Ellen got with verbal expression when a skillful tongue deftly parted her lips and brought all conversation to a halt. Kevin moved from lying prone on his side to placing his body completely on top of Ellen’s while he continued to kiss her senseless. Using his forearms to prevent Ellen’s petite, but incredibly curvaceous body from bearing his weight, he settled his hips between her thighs and threaded his hands through her soft hair locs. Part of Kevin was embarrassed beyond measure because Ellen literally hadn’t even opened her eyes before he initiated another round of lovemaking. However after watching her sleep soundly for the past 2 hours, her slight movement drained him of any remaining restraint and willpower, and he gave into his desires.

A brief break in the kiss for air allowed Ellen to asked, “Is it morning?” The answer was obvious as the bright sunlight peaked through the thick curtains. “What time is it?”

“Maybe 10:00,” Kevin informed her, after unsuccessfully attempting to capture her full lips again.

“We were going to leave the hotel last night for an evening tour of Rome,” Ellen grinned sheepishly. “Then it got changed to a midnight tour after we decided to get room service for dinner. And then…”

“Umm mmm” Kevin agreed while he nuzzled Ellen’s neck. “And I ordered a breakfast tray, which arrived while you were sleeping.” “We have to keep up our energy, don’t you agree Dr. Burgess.”

“I admire your foresight in planning Dr. Collins, and,” Ellen gasped loudly when Kevin stroked one of the particularly sensitive erogenous zones he had discovered the previous night. Momentarily back on point she moaned, “We are going to actually see Italy while we are here, aren’t we?”

Kevin pulled himself up to look directly in Ellen’s eyes and he kissed her while he whispered, “Rome has been here for thousands of years; it can wait another hour , or two don’t you think?”

“Absolutely,” Ellen agreed in a breathless response.

Kevin leaned in and was on the verge of claiming Ellen’s lips again when he heard her murmur, “It’s finally gone.”

Puzzled and slightly amused with her unexpected comment, he drew back his face to look at her again. “What’s gone?”

“The faint apprehensive look sometimes I’d see you give me, or at least you used to give me. I think it’s gone now.”

Slowly Kevin raised himself off of Ellen and twisted his body to lie on his back next to her, taking in the words that came so lightly from her. As a very good psychiatrist Kevin prided himself on his ability to keep his thoughts to himself and only himself, and it stunned him that despite his best efforts Ellen was able to discern his fears about their relationship. He knew Ellen was not the type of woman who loved lightly or often. Sam Burgess had been her first love and probably would have been the love of her life barring his untimely early death. And Matt…Kevin’s conscious mind often refused to focus on Ellen’s feelings for Matt because those thoughts actually scared him. It seemed childish in a way for Kevin to hope that eventually Ellen could love him more than she loved Matt, but that was exactly what Kevin wanted and needed. Ellen was with him now because she couldn’t marry Matt knowing she had these strong feelings for Kevin, and she was still in the process of sorting out these feelings.

Ellen turned towards Kevin and used her small hand to cup his chin and gently stroke his cheek as they gazed at each other. “When you told me at GH several month ago that your feelings for me when beyond friendship, well, I don’t think I’ve ever been more shocked in my life. I hadn’t seen it at all and I realized I had no clue to what you thought or felt until then. So I began to really see you Kevin, and tried to understand what you felt, even as you would try to keep things to yourself. This I know and understand, because we’re alike in that way. We’re very private people who are selective when it comes to letting people in. You’re like this beautiful house with many rooms but there are a few rooms with locked doors, and through those doors you let virtually no one enter."

After pausing a few seconds and biting her bottom lip, Ellen continued, “I know you have apprehensions about Matt and my feelings for him. But I have apprehensions too, about those locked rooms. It’s going to take some time for both of us to work through these things together. I’m ready to start, not just here in Italy but back home in Port Charles also.”

With one smooth movement Kevin placed his hand under Ellen’s hip and used both hand to guide her to a sitting position on top of him. Gliding his hand from her hip and up her smooth back, it finally settled with his fingers threaded in her hair as he pulled her face within inches of his. Kevin literally swallowed his fear in anticipation of sharing more and more of his life with the woman in his arms.

“I thought you had to catch up with me in our feelings for each other, but I was wrong,” he softly stated. “We’re at the same place and yes, I couldn’t be more ready to make this journey with you...” Whatever else Kevin was going to say was postponed when Ellen effectively silenced him with a deep, sensuous kiss.


Shocked to find a cold, empty spot on the bed next to her, Carly turned on the nightstand lamp and looked around. It was 1 a.m. she thought, “Where the hell is Sonny?” Over the years Sonny had bouts of insomnia but usually it was brought on by some stress in his life. Jumping out of bed, her bare feet padded across the bedroom floor and she headed downstairs. At the top of the stairs she heard voices from the den downstairs and deliberately slowed her pace. Sonny’s voice was immediately recognizable to her but the second male voice was unknown, which slightly troubled Carly since she made it her business to know everyone Sonny knew, and especially associates he brought to the penthouse. In Carly’s mind it must be pressing business for Sonny to have the man come to the penthouse at this time of night and she strained to hear the conversation.

Sonny commented, “You have a reputation for being good in seeing a job through.”

“It’s well earned.” Modesty was not one of Rafael Sabatini’s attributes but fortunately in his case his actions usually lived up to the hype.

“Well don’t break your record with this job, understand? I want to make sure that Moreno makes it back to federal prison. No detours, no delays.” Sonny handed him a briefcase containing an obscene number of small denomination bills. “You’ll get the rest when Moreno is back home – in prison.”

“No problem.” This was a crazy job in Sabatini’s opinion. The feds and local police will be all over Moreno like white on rice. Why the hell was Corinthos willing to pay him a small fortune just to watch the cops do their job?

The smug smirk on Sabatini’s face gave his thoughts away and Sonny leaned closer so that their faces were almost touching and cautioned, “You WILL earn this money. If Moreno slips through the fingers of the cops, it had better be a short-lived escape because I don’t want this deposit back if he gets away. Either you come back to get the rest of the money or I will find you right after I find Moreno. Once again, do you understand?”

“As I said, no problem. Well, I have to go now to make it in time to *accompany* Moreno and the feds as they do the transfer to the Albany hospital.”

“Call me once you’re in Albany.” Sonny’s final instruction was met with a raised eyebrow by Sabatini as he departed from the penthouse. Being a top professional, Sabatini was accustomed to giving updates only once the job had been completed. Corinthos was not known as someone who watched every move of competent underlings, and Sabatini considered himself much more than competent. Once Moreno was back in prison, Rafael Sabatini planned to use his own initiative and find out what triggered the latest battle between Corinthos and Moreno, because nothing obvious came to mind and it might be worthwhile to him to find out.

Upon crossing the living room on his way to the bar, Sonny gave a brief side glance to the staircase and murmured, “Come on down Carly.”

Not surprised Sonny was aware of her presence, Carly sauntered down the stairs and plopped herself comfortably on the leather couch. “O.K. I’ll ask what that goon was too smart and scared to ask.”

In frustration Sonny pinched the bridge of his nose. Because Moreno was due to be transferred from prison within a few hours it was unavoidable bringing Sabatini to the penthouse tonight to give him last instructions, but he was not in a mood for a cat-and-mouse verbal exchange with Carly. Giving her a warning stare he shot back, “And obviously you are not too smart or scared to ask it, right?”

Carly didn’t get to be Carly Corinthos by heeding warnings and minding her own business, so she continued with her interrogation. “Why are you paying good money to keep Moreno in jail? You two have been on each other’s list for years and if he get out, so what? He’s still running his operation from prison with his sons in charge of most things. Why are you so intent on keeping him in jail…or to have him dead?”

Carly watched as Sonny stood at the bar and poured himself a scotch. From his demeanor she knew he would not tell her the truth but she watched closely just in case he inadvertently gave himself away.

“Go on upstairs Carly. I’ll be up in a minute.”

Sonny downed the glass of hard liquor in single gulp and stared at the Waterford glass until he could no longer hear Carly’s footsteps after she went upstairs and back to the bedroom. Leaning heavily on the bar, he ran his fingers through his head while Carly’s queries weighed on him. For a few minutes he allowed his mind to drift back to a scene several months earlier at Moreno’s sentencing hearing. Life without parole was the expected sentence and that is exactly the sentence Moreno received. Sonny had watched from the back of the courtroom when Moreno heard the sentence. From that moment until when he left the courtroom a few minutes later, Moreno’s eyes were locked on the A.D.A. who was instrumental in taking away his freedom. Dara refused to be intimidated by Moreno and focused her attention on accepting the well-deserved congratulations from many in the courtroom, including Mac Scorpio and Marcus Taggert. It was an interesting scenario if there was someone in the courtroom observant enough to see it – Sonny Corinthos intensely watching Moreno who glared at Dara as he was taken from the courtroom. Sonny had no doubt that Dara was safe as long as Moreno was behind bars. The hired help had failed to eliminate Dara during the trial, and from the look on Moreno’s face it was crystal clear that he had plans to meet Dara Jensen in the future.

Sonny bought his mind back to the present day and to a question Carly hadn’t asked but most certainly would have if she had had a clue – why did Sonny care about what Moreno might do to Dara Jensen, a woman who most likely would put him away just as she did Moreno if she was able to get the evidence? Another drink would do nothing to answer that succinct question or bring him out of his brooding melancholy mood. So Sonny set aside the bottle of scotch and the empty glass on the bar and headed upstairs. He knew he wouldn’t answer the question unless he absolutely had to – too many lives could be affected by it.


Mac placed his cellphone in his jacket pocket. He had just finished saying goodnight to Dara as he and Taggert drove the last 80 miles to Albany. The smile he had on his face after speaking to her and hearing her voice slowly disappeared as he remembered the fury he felt for the federal agents he would soon meet. Even though Moreno was in prison due to state murder charges, the FBI pulled rank because of pending federal charges against the mobster and insisted on having only federal agents escort Moreno from the prison to the hospital in Albany. Normally only bruised egos were the outcome of these occasional pissing contests between local and federal law enforcement officials, but with Moreno’s previous threats and the attempt on Dara’s life, Mac was not about to let the feds handle this alone. He and Taggert would virtually live at the hospital as long as Moreno was there, and the feds would have no authority to remove them. Moreno and the feds weren’t due at the hospital for several hours, yet Mac told Taggert to accelerate the car’s speed and get them there as soon as possible. Marcus Taggert nodded silently in response since he had the same nagging, uneasy feeling that all may not go well with this routine hospital visit.

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