Season 6 – Episode 12 – Stand by me
About: Brothers & Sisters (general)
Rate: Can’t go higher than PG-13, as this is American Television, but I may add a few ‘deleted scenes’ here and there. ;)
Disclaimer: Just escaping from reality here, not created for financial gain
Summary: It is my very own season 6, you guys! Go with it! ;) Don’t complain! If YOU can do better, post your own story! (I dare you!)
Also appearing: Daniel Walker-Wandell, Elizabeth Walker. :
***** Part 1/3 *****
“Kev? Kevin, wake up!” Scotty says, shaking Kevin a bit and Kevin jolts out of his sleep.
“I fell asleep?” He asks dumbfounded.
“Within a few seconds.” Scotty answers.
“Can’t believe it. I was so tired, but I didn’t think I’d fall asleep.”
He should have known though. After the delay of the plane, the temporary ‘displacement’ of the baggage and the fact that it seemed that half the world and their grandmother had chosen the same day to travel, Kevin had become exhausted and cranky and not in the mood to be friendly.
He had known however that the solution was right beside him. All he had to do was ask ‘How was your day?’ and Scotty’s wonderful, warm voice had filled the car, taken away Kevin’s stress and had made him drift to a wonderful, but too short sleep.
“Well, I’ll flatter myself by thinking it’s because of my careful driving.” Scotty jokes.
“Could it be anything else?" Kevin smiles, but after a quick kiss he’s more serious. “I wanted to talk to you before getting at my mom’s house…. And now it’s too late.”
“We can still talk, if…” But Scotty can’t finish his sentence, because the front-door opens to reveal Kitty and Sarah standing there.
Kevin and Scotty get out of the car, but before they reach the house, Kevin grabs Scotty’s hand.
“Scotty, will you stand by me? Regardless?” There’s a fear in Kevin’s voice that worries Scotty.
“If you need me, I’m here.” Scotty answers.
“I need you.”
“Then I’m here.” Scotty gently places his hand on Kevin’s back and together they enter Nora’s house.
“Finally! You’re here!” Nora says. Kevin and Scotty enter the kitchen.
“Yes.” Kevin replies, not too cheerful.
“Is everything alright?” Kitty asks and Kevin’s face turns even more serious.
“I don’t know.” He answers.
“Saul couldn’t be here. He’s looking after our kids.” Scotty apologizes for Saul.
“The same goes for Seth and Luc, I presume.” Nora says. Kitty nods, Sarah makes a throw-away movement with her hand, that signals that it goes without saying.
“So, what is so important that you asked us all here?” Justin asks of Kevin.
Kevin looks around at all the faces now staring at him, waiting for an answer. His mother, his sisters, Justin, Tyler and Brody… And Scotty. How he wishes he could have spoken to Scotty before he talked to his family, but it’s too late for that. He sits down and motions the others to sit as well.
His eyes meet Scotty’s, who looks worried, as if he knows that Kevin has a lot of doubts on his mind. Kevin gives him a quick and encouraging smile, that gets replied the same way. Kevin clears his throat and straightens his back, subconsciously taking up his air of a lawyer rather than a son/brother/husband bringing bad news.
“As you may have heard by now, I know that news travels fast in this family, I’ve been in Seattle to find out more about Tommy and Julia… And at the same time, Max Carter, has started a little bit of investigating of his own… Neither search has really lead to any answers that we can work with.
Tommy has left me in charge of his finances, through an lawyer in Seattle. And I’ve spoken to him, but he couldn’t give me any more information, other than the fact that Tommy planned to go to Canada, and didn’t seemed intent on coming back soon. It’s why he left everything up to me.
Tommy also gave a considerable amount to Rose, you may remember her,…” Kevin adds and Nora rolls her eyes. Does she ever! “But he didn’t contact her about it, not even to check out if she really had received it. It’s like he just didn’t care about whether she had gotten it or not.”
Kevin stops and waits for a reaction, but it remains quiet, so, a little reluctantly he picks up his story again.
“I’ve also spoken to the principal of Julia’s school. He didn’t want to talk to me at first, but when I explained to him what was going on he was shocked.
He told me that Julia had started to act out or character before the summer-holidays. It was actually his idea to let Elizabeth stay with us, the Walkers, for a while, to give Julia some space to be herself and be a single woman for a while and not just Elizabeth’s mom, who had to watch after her daughter all the time.
She was apparently still in love with Tommy and she was hurt when she found out about Rose. The principal believed that, if she had some time to herself, it would help Julia be a bit more satisfied with her life, deal with her feelings about Tommy and Rose. But it back-fired. When Elizabeth came back, Julia had even more trouble adjusting to her life.
I’ve also gotten the telephone number of her friend, Diane. It was her house where Julia stayed when she returned here. Ahm… It seems that Julia felt more and more like an injured party. She felt it was unfair that Tommy had all the ‘freedom’, while she was the one taking all the burdens.
Diane said she feared that Julia was heading for a depression, because Julia took everything so personal, just couldn’t relax and kept on being incredibly negative about everything, especially her failed marriage to Tommy and the fact that she felt more and more ‘stuck with’ Elizabeth…”
He looks up once again, still waiting for someone to break the silence, but everyone seems to be interested for him to tell his story. His eyes meet Scotty’s, who gives him a gentle and loving smile and whispers ‘go on’ to encourage Kevin to continue. Kevin clears his throat again and focuses on the rest of his family again.
“Add to that that Max Carter, who’s with the police, did a quick investigation, and he found out that Julia never left on the cruise….”
“What?” Tyler asks.
“She texted the guy, whom she was supposed to meet, that she changed her mind.”
“But.. then…. Where is she?” Kitty wants to know.
“Your guess is as good as mine. We don’t know. She got out of the cab, but never got on board. She didn’t come back. She's simply … gone.”
“That’s ridiculous. People don’t simply disappear into thin air.” Sarah points out in an annoyed tone of voice.
“Well, no one seems to know where she is.” Kevin feels obliged to remind his sister.
“Her parents! She’s with her parents! It’s where she went, when she had her first depression, after Elizabeth was born! Why didn’t I think of it before? She’s in Phoenix!” Nora claps her hands, glad to have solved the riddle.
Kevin gives her an annoyed glance, momentarily wondering if she really thinks he’s that stupid.
“Of course. Her parents. Now why didn’t I think of that? How stupid of me to call a family conference on this topic and not consider Julia’s own parents…” Kevin’s voice droops with sarcasm.
Justin is surprised by Kevin’s sudden rather harsh voice. He sits up, sensing that something isn’t right. From the corner of his eye he sees Scotty’s attitude change as well.
“I suppose you mean to say that you talked to them?” Kitty asks icily.
“Of course.” Kevin replies, his emotions somewhat more restrained. “She spoke to them just before Christmas, telling them not to worry if they wouldn’t hear from her for a few days, because she would go on a cruise. She promised that she’d call for New Year’s Eve.”
“Did she?” Brody’s interference makes everybody look at him.
“No. She did not. In fact, they haven’t heard from her either since that last call…. What is weird is that, Julia’s mom is sick and, until Christmas, Julia would call her at least once a week.
But now that they haven’t heard from her in several weeks, they are both worried that something has happened to her. It’s not like her to be so inconsiderate and … I agree. I don’t think it’s normal that Julia doesn’t contact her child or her parents or any of us. It just feels wrong.”
“Well, Tommy didn’t contact any of us either when he left for Mexico.” Nora reminds them. “That is the reason why I went nearly crazy.”
“That was Tommy.” Kevin says.
“What is that supposed to mean?” Nora demands to know.
“Tommy is an irresponsible jerk who wouldn’t know how to deal with responsibility if his life depended on it.” Scotty is visibly surprised by Kevin’s angry words.
“Kev, I thought we agreed we’re past that point.” Scotty says softly.
“You may have forgiven him, but I haven’t.”
“So, what now?” Tyler looks at the Walkers, waiting for an answer.
“Well, the way it looks now, is that both Tommy and Julia are missing. Gone. I don’t know where they are. And I … I think it’s time we consider the possibility that something has happened to them.”
“Wow! I’d rather not, Kev.” Justin answers quietly, worry marks his face. Kevin places his hand on Justin’s.
“I don’t think we have a choice. Neither of them is responding to our calls, neither of them has given us a sign of life…. Something needs to be done.”
“What are you suggesting we should do?” Sarah asks Kevin and Kevin shakes his head, not sure if she’ll like the answer.
“Right now? Report them as missing.” Kevin answers.
“Poor Elizabeth.” Kitty reacts with compassion.
“Yes, what about Elizabeth?” Brody asks.
“I’ve been thinking about trying to get custody over her….” Kevin wants to add the words ‘for now anyway, until we know more’, but doesn’t get a chance to finish his sentence. Nora jumps up.
“No way, Kevin Walker! You’re not going to steal away your brother’s child. I won’t let it happen!”
“Mom, …” Kevin starts, but again, he gets cut off.
“No! I think mom’s right. She’s Tommy’s child!” Kitty react angrily.
“I agree with mom and Kitty. This is absurd! I know that Tommy and Julia have their problems, but to try and take away their child is just cruel!” Sarah points out.
Scotty feels sorry for Kevin, who tries to get a word in between these three women. Justin frowns, he feels confused by the situation and doesn’t know what to do. Kevin gets up, feeling that he must take control of the conversation again.
“Someone is going to have to take care of Elizabeth!”
“And, of course, it has to be you?”
“Yes, mom, it has to be me, because it’s me that Julia dumped her child with and I’m the one that Tommy ordered to take care of Elizabeth. And I’ll do just that.”
“If taking care of Elizabeth is such a burden for you and Scotty, I’ll take her.”
“I’m sure you’d love that, mom, but I’m quite capable to take care of her myself. And she’s not a burden. She’s my niece who was supposed to stay over for two weeks, but now both her parents are beyond our reach. If anything happens to her…”
“… you want to control the situation because you’re her father?”
“I’m not her father. And I’m very well aware of that! I just want us…” And his hand moves in Scotty’s direction to explain the ‘us’. “… to be the ones in a position to make decisions for her.”
“Once you have her, you’ll never let her go.” Sarah states.
“…” Kevin doesn’t get a chance to say anything.
“Kev, Sarah’s right.” Kitty interferes. “This will all be too confusing for Elizabeth. She’ll start to see you as her father and that will undermine her relationship with Tommy.”
“What relationship?” Kevin asks.
“She’s Tommy and Julia’s child, if she gets too close to you and Scotty, she’ll start to see you as her parents…” Kitty starts.
“… which is exactly what Kevin wants.” Sarah mutters. Kevin shakes his head.
“She’s not stupid. She knows exactly who her parents are.”
“You will make the situation very confusing for her.” Kitty goes on.
“I’m sorry, but … what? Tommy runs away. Julia drops Elizabeth at my place and blightly announces that I’m her real father and that Tommy is her uncle – bye now, I’m on a cruise – deal with it on your own terms - and then it’s me who makes the situation ‘confusing’?!
You’ve got to be kidding me! Obviously Tommy’s stupid paranoia runs in this family, because I can’t see any other reason why I’m standing here trying to defend the most logical and easiest choice we should have to make.”
“Kevin…” Justin softly warns in a soothing voice.
“No!” Nora’s face betrays her resolution to not back down on this. “I’m going to make sure that you’re not getting what you want.”
“What I want?”
“Trying to become Elizabeth’s father.”
“Well, I am her biological father.”
“Yes! And who’s fault is that?”
“Sorry?” Kevin’s blood is starting to boil at his mother’s apparent memory loss.
“You were a sperm-donor out of your own free will. No one put a gun to your head.”
“I didn’t want this! I never wanted to be the sperm-donor! I had to! You all pushed me into doing my brotherly duty, so Julia could get knocked up, because my brother couldn’t do it! I told everyone from the start that this was a bad idea! But you guys called me selfish and you acted like I was a terrible person, so I changed my mind.
But that is all in the past and that child is here now! And someone is going to have stand up for her! And, yes, that person will be me, because it’s my fault that she’s here in the first place. I should have stuck to my principals, I should not have done it! But I did it anyway!
It’s my fault and I’ll take my fucking responsibility. Especially now that Tommy is too much of a douche-bag to do it himself.” Kevin yells and Scotty feels the punch again of being reminded that, he too, hadn’t been on Kevin’s side during the argument years ago and, once again, he feels a bit guilty.
“Tommy deserves to have his family, and that includes his daughter, on his side…” Nora replies trembling with anger.
“Can’t you see it? You’re doing the same thing as you did in Mexico. You’re still making excuses for him, when he no longer deserves them, mom!”
“You came around about Mexico…” Nora reminds him.
“I went to Mexico, because Scotty talked me into moving my onw lines. Again! ... I love Tommy and I seriously wanted to believe he could change…. So stupid! I should have known he wouldn’t change.
We’ve all been protecting him way too long. The same way we did with Justin. Cover up every mistake with a blanket of love and apologies and not allowing ourselves to own up to our mistakes. There were always excuses. I’m done apologizing. I’m done looking for explanations.
I’d like to believe that Tommy has a good reason to do what he’s doing, and maybe the same applies to Julia, but I’m tired of trying to figure out what these all-mighty reasons could possibly be. Elizabeth wants to know why neither of her parents want to talk to her and … I’ve run out of excuses.”
“If it is that hard for you….” Nora starts her offer once again. Kevin won’t let her finish.
“She’s fine with Scotty and me.” He answers stubbornly.
“No, she’s not. Bring her here.” Nora’s voice is the voice of the mother who expects her child to behave and Kevin finds it unacceptable.
“NO! She’s staying with Scotty and me.”
“Fine, but don’t do anything about trying to take her away from Tommy.” Nora concedes and Kevin laughs with disbelief.
“If anything happens to Elizabeth, if she gets an accident…”
“…We’ll deal with it, when the time comes.” Nora tries to persuade Kevin.
“It will be too late then.”
“There’s no reason to start painting your brother off as a bad father.” Nora says.
“Somehow he doesn’t deserve “The best father of the year”-award either.”
“Justin, stay out of this.” Nora orders and turns back to Kevin. “You will not, I repeat, not step to a judge.. or I’ll… I’ll…” Yes, what could she do?”
“What will you do then, mom? Slap me, like you did Tommy? Well, go ahead! But I warn you… it won’t make me run to Mexico and abandon my family, like it did Tommy.
It will not make me back away from those I love, like Scotty and my kids. There’s nothing in this world that you can do to me, mom, that will make me walk away. And you want to know why? Because not only do I love them, I am responsible for them! And I plan to take that responsibility, like the man my dad never believed I could be!
Those are the commitments I made. To Scotty. To Daniel. To Olivia. To Mateo. And I’ll honor them!”
“By taking away your brother’s child?”
“I wouldn’t be able to do that, if he was here!”
“He trusted you to do what is right for Elizabeth!”
“And I’ll do just that!”
“If you continue with your plan…. You will no longer be welcome in this house.” Nora threatens.
Justin’s jaws drop. Nora has never before denied access to the house to any of her children. His mouth forms the word ‘wow’, but he’s smart enough to not say it out loud.
Kevin stares at his mother, who stares back at him. Nora is pretty much convinced that he’ll back down. He always did in the past.
And then she sees something happening to Kevin that she has never see him do to her before. She can ‘see’ him pull up the wall around him. That special thick wall he had build around him to protect himself from William. That wall that he had never, ever, before used for her.
“So be it.” Kevin says, with a throw-away wave of his hand. “If that’s the way you want it, I’m out of here.” Nora gasps and Sarah and Kitty give each other a quick shocked look. Scotty turns in his chair to grab his coat, sensing that Kevin will march right out the door and leave, whether Scotty is with him or not.
“Scotty! You talk to him!” Sarah orders.
“Yes, Scotty, talk to him!” Kitty backs her sister.
“I’m pretty sure that you don’t agree with him. You were always better than that…”
Sarah’s words aren’t that different from what she had said years ago, in the cabin. Scotty looks up at her and Kevin freezes, a horrible feeling of ‘been there, done that before’ coming over him, which gets voiced by Tyler when he hears her say softly:
“Wow, talk about a déjà vu.” Kevin’s eyes meet Scotty’s and fearing his husband won’t support him, Kevin smiles slowly as he shakes his head in defeat.
“I’m not going to tell you to shut up this time, honey.” Kevin’s voice is calm and clear. “I’m not going to fight with you and you have every right to agree with them….” They all know why Kevin says these words and all eyes are on Scotty now.
“Good…” Scotty starts slowly.
“Now, Scotty, you tell him....”
“Sarah?... Shut up!” Scotty doesn’t have to yell. His voice is as calm as ever, but with enough force that he conveys that he doesn’t wish to be disobeyed. Sarah shuts up and Scotty looks at the people around the table, aware of the tension that his silence is creating.
“Don’t ever presume again, that you know what I think, Sarah, because you’re wrong. I completely agree with Kevin, that is the best for Elizabeth. And I’m sorry, Nora, that you feel that poor precious Saint Tommy is threatened by bad, bad Kevin, but maybe Tommy should have thought about that possibility before he ran off to God-knows-where.
Kevin is right. Both Tommy and Julia have taken their hands off Elizabeth and someone will have to be there for that girl. That is Kevin’s responsibility… As it is mine. I remember very well what happened that night in the cabin at Ojai. Kevin felt he had good reasons to reject Tommy’s request, but we pushed him into this.
So, this is my fault as well and I’ll stand by Kevin all the way, even if this means that we will no longer be welcome here,….” Scotty answers. Nora, Kitty and Sarah are dumbfounded. Nora clenches her fist in powerless anger.
“Fine. Then get out. Both of you.” She says, feeling more hurt than she imagined possible.
Scotty’s eyes meet Kevin’s and he knows that Kevin’s heart is breaking. Scotty can feel anger flare up inside him. He’s furious about the way that Kevin is treated. His coat is firmly in his hand as he walks up to Kevin and gently gives him a push towards the door. Scotty’s touch break’s Kevin’s immobility.
Without an another look at his family, and afraid they’ll see his tears, Kevin walks out of his mother’s house, with Scotty a few steps behind him. In the kitchen it all remains quiet for about 30 seconds and then everyone starts to speak at the same time, creating an explosion of sound.
Justin listens the cacophony of voices, all sniping at Kevin and he feels awkward. He grabs his own coat and gets up.
“Are you coming, Tyler?”
“Yes.” She answers and she seems to be happy to leave.
“You’re leaving?” Nora asks.
“I got a bit of a headache.” Justin tries to apologize.
“That’s not so surprising, considering what happened here today. But, please, you have to stay and discuss with us about how we’re going to stop Kevin.”
“I don’t want to get involved.” Justin deflects.
“Tommy is your brother!” Kitty points out.
“So is Kevin. In fact, Kevin is more of a brother to me than Tommy, especially if you consider that Tommy is kinda… never there when you need him?”
“Tommy has problems….” Nora starts pleadingly.
“So do I. So does Sarah. Or Kitty. … What bugs me to death is that he keeps running away from them and lets us deal with the mess he leaves behind. And it’s not just Kevin, it’s all of us.…”
“You’re taking Kevin’s side?” Kitty asks dumbfounded.
“I don’t want to take sides. I love both my brothers, and, yes, I get that Tommy is in a bad place. I know what that feels like. I’ve been there. I’ve made stupid mistakes. So, I’ll be the last to judge Tommy. But… I can also see where Kevin is coming from.
I was there the night that Julia left Elizabeth and it was heart-breaking. You know, it wasn’t only Kevin’s sperm they used, but also mine. That girl could have mine. And what if she had been mine…? How would I have felt? How would I have reacted? I don’t have answers to my questions … I can’t choose a side in this!”
“You don’t have to chose between Kevin and Tommy.” Nora answers softly. “And I do understand that it’s hard for Kevin too. Which is why I think it’s better that Elizabeth comes here and stays with me.” She announces. Sarah and Kitty look at each other and Kitty nods.
“I agree. Like that there will be no further conflict between Tommy and Kevin. Kevin is no longer responsible for Elizabeth and Tommy can see her whenever he comes home. Problem solved.” Justin stares at Kitty, wondering how this usually so smart woman, can be so narrow-sighted now.
“Let me get this straight… You don’t want Kevin to get control over Elizabeth, because it would be an admittance that Tommy isn’t a good father, but it would be alright if you got control over Elizabeth, even this means that you have to tell the whole world that neither Tommy nor Kevin would be a good father to your granddaughter….?
And the logic behind this is… If it’s you doing the claiming than it’s alright, but heaven forbid it should be someone else…?” He laughs sarcastically and he shakes his head.
“I’m out of here, before I get a real headache. Tyler? Are you coming?”
“Ready.” Tyler replies, by now she’s grateful to get out of the house.
“Justin…?” Justin turns to Nora, when he hears her mention his name. He’s usually not the one ready to fight, but he feels too confused.
“I’m sorry mom. I need to think things over.” Justin says and he leaves Nora’s house, his arm around Tyler.
End of part 1/3
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