Chapter 5

Robin and Brenda made it in time to meet Leora. Brenda thought she looked like a combination of Robin and Anna. Robin declared she couldn’t see the similarities. She and Robin agreed not to tell Anna about her pregnancy until later. It seemed just a short while later, and they were standing next to the smallest grave either of them had ever seen, saying goodbye to a little girl they had come to love deeply.

After the funeral, they took charge. They moved Anna out of her place and into the house they were currently living in. Tad Martin, who went from being a total stranger to a rock solid friend in a short amount of time, helped them find the house. He had helped them with any and everything they needed. One day, Brenda let curiosity get the best of her and asked Tad why he was being so helpful. He told her he and his deceased wife, Dixie, were once in the same position as Anna and David with their son J.R. From that day to this one, they never questioned Tad again.

In the new house, they made sure Anna didn’t brood too much; when she needed to cry, one or both of them were they to comfort her. They gave her time to herself. They were her friends, companions, comforters, and when they saw her run ins with David were getting to be too much they became her protectors.

Before Brenda knew it life, in Pine Valley had become normal. Breakfasting together in the morning when Anna went back to work, and dinner every night at 6:30, unless Anna was held up at work. She and Robin were known on occasion to drop in for lunch at the police station. Brenda had never spent this much time in a police station, and that was including her years with Sonny.

While their family life kicked into high gear, Tad made sure their social life was active. Between being the son of Pine Valley’s esteemed Martin family and being the once infamous Tad the Cad, he seemed to know everyone in Pine Valley. For the most part, everyone was friendly with a few exceptions.

She loved spending time with Palmer. He could have easily been Edward’s twin, if not in looks, then definitely in attitude and spirit. He was a man who acted tough and hard-hearted but loved his family above all else. They would stroll the estate or sit in the library and just talk. He told her about his only daughter, Nina, and her husband, Clint Buchannan. Clint was okay, except for the fact that he had his daughter and grandchildren, Palmer II, Daisy, and Olga, on some damned ranch in Texas.

He spoke of how he wished Bobby would take an interest in the business, the same way Franklin, he refused to call him Frankie, did. He talked about his niece Melanie, who worked for the government. And on quiet days, they spoke about deeply hurtful things. She spoke about not having a mother and being raised by a father who adored her older sister, yet hated her. He would tell her about going to bed hungry so his sister could eat. Occasionally, they would discuss the relationships that never worked, his with Daisy and hers with both Sonny and Jax.

She told him how hard it was to look Myrtle, Skye’s grandmother, in the face knowing that she had helped cause Skye’s marriage to end. Palmer told her about avoiding the sympathy and empathy in Olga’s eyes each time Daisy left him.

He held her and let her cry the first time she saw Nico, Cecily, and their kids at the Pine Valley Inn. She remembered Sonny talking about his cousin but had never given it a second thought when he said they looked a lot alike. Nico and Sonny could be twins. After a lot of ups and downs, Nico and Cecily were able to achieve something she and Sonny had never been able to: a happy family.

And on truly dark days, Brenda and Palmer would talk of the losses of Will, Dixie, Stone, and Veronica. On these days, Opal would be more over the top than usual to bring them out of those dark places. Oh, how easily she could imagine Lucy being just like Opal, when she reached that age, with better fashion sense, of course.

If Palmer had become a grandfather figure to her, then Anna became the motherly one. At first, it was difficult becoming close to Anna since she was hiding such a big secret from her. Brenda had never worn such loose fitting clothes in her life. Luckily, no one knew her style of dress here and the few people who remembered her as the face of Deception, she told them that that look was just her modeling look not her everyday one. Tad, who had somehow guessed her secret, advised her to just tell Anna, but she refused.

Everything was fine until one morning. She was ill in the bathroom and didn’t close the door properly. Rushing in concerned, Anna took in the sight in front of her eyes and her WSB/police chief mind started clicking; the gig was up. Instead of saying a word, she simply turned and walked out of the bathroom. A few minutes later she returned with Earl Grey tea. Anna wiped her face, helped her back into bed, then crawled into bed with her and held her. It was at the moment that Brenda felt for the first time that she truly had a mommy.

Brenda’s thoughts brought her back to the here and now. She watched these new people in her life, and as much as she liked it here, this wasn’t home. Home was lunch at Kelly’s and trying to decide between dinner at Luke’s or the Outback. She had a family now; all that was missing was home. And home was Port Charles.