Rate: Not sure yet...
Disclaimer: Written with love, not for money..
Summary: I have no clue just yet...
Kevin leans a little closer to show his interest and Candace slowly puts down her coffee-cup. She looks from Kevin to Scotty, obviously wondering if she should talk or not.
“I… I don’t know… It doesn’t really matter anymore, I guess, because Cherry is dead, but at the same time I do feel weird about talking about it…
But you’re friends of Chad. I could hear in his voice that you two mean a lot to him. So I presume that you both know how sometimes it’s hard to just talk about others, knowing that you can hurt their reputation…?” She looks up again, hoping to see understanding in Kevin and Scotty.
“We’ve kept more of Chad and Jason’s secrets than you can imagine.” Kevin says with a nod. “I’m sorry. Of course I have no right to tease you into spilling the beans about your friend. I wouldn’t talk about Chad’s secrets or private affairs with just anyone either… I apologize.” Kevin says resignedly.
Scotty raises an eyebrow. Kevin giving up on a juicy gossip? When did he stop being a Walker? But when Candace relaxes and seemingly surrenders, he understands that Kevin had only been trying to create trust between them. No wonder he’s such a good lawyer, Scotty can’t help but smile lovingly at his husband.
Misunderstanding Scotty’s smile as a sign that he agrees with Kevin that they are asking too much, Candace’s shoulders sink.
“I’ve never talked to anyone about what she told me.” She says softly.
“Of course not. You’re a good and dependable friend.” Kevin agrees in a casual tone.
Candace hesitates just a little more, takes another sip of her coffee, plays with the cup and then slowly takes the last bite of her apple-pie.
“She got married when she was 17 years old and still living in Oklahoma.” Candace suddenly starts out of nowhere.
“Right.” Kevin says, slightly startled, but ready for what Candace has to tell.
“I didn’t know her then.. I only got to know her when she came living here with her husband. That was a few years later.”
“Was that the guy she was divorcing when she died?”
“No, that was husband number three….” Candace answers.
“So, who exactly was husband number one?” Kevin asks.
“His name was Derek Lockhardt. That is where she got her last name from.”
“I see.” Scotty nods, he’s become more interested in the former owner of this house.
“It was apparently a match made in heaven. Derek had seen Cherry in her first movie, Dance little girl, from 1965. She was only 15 then. The movie was a complete flop and it’s a good thing that she acted under her maiden name then. Cherry Blue.”
“Cherry Blue?” Scotty repeats. Candace sighs.
“I know. She knew it too. Her name sounded like the name of an exotic dancer. No surprise she played the part of a chorus girl in the theater, who breaks her ankle and she made quite an impression with how hard she could cry…
It should have been an unimportant part, but she made the most of it and she made an impression on Derek. She had been given the part, because people thought she was 18. She was tall and she wasn’t a giggly kid, instead she was very focused. She wanted to be in movies, but not at every price, unlike others. She stood out.
Anyway, Derek Lockhardt came from a good Oklahoma family. At the time, they had companies all over the United States, mostly agricultural. Their company no longer exists. Got taken over in 1980s and dissolved, but in the 60s and 70 they had a good life...
So Derek saw here and he wanted to find out who this Cherry Blue was. They met a few months later at a party and they immediately liked each other. I’m not sure if it was love at first sight, Cherry never talked about him like that, but she always spoke with great love about him.
So, whether love-at-first-sight or something that grew slower, they got married in 1967, when she was just 17 years old and he was 20. Getting married could have wrecked her career, but it seemed that the combination ‘being married’ and carrying the Lockhardt name suddenly made her seem more of a ‘serious actress’.
She got some good parts and, in the background, there was Derek who was getting a good income from his family’s company. They bought a house here on the island in 1971. I think it was somewhere in June. Carlin and I moved here in May of 1971 and they came after us. This was such a wonderful place way back then. We were all young people with money to spend. We came from all over the US, but we had our own little community here.
Cherry was a bit of an outsider, because as an actress she was often not here, whereas Derek had made this his permanent house. Two months after they had moved in, Cherry had a movie to make and had to leave. That is when Bob Jefferson moved in with them. He was an old friend of Derek's and had lost his house in a fire.
It seemed like a good thing. Bob needed a home and Derek could use some company. It was supposed to be for just a few months until the insurance paid Bob his money for the burned-down house, but, well, Bob became a part of us.
He was funny, smart, kind and always willing to help. Together with Derek he built a greenhouse, where Derek could grow his vegetables. See, it’s still there.” She points to the side of the house, where Kevin and Scotty can see a glass dome they hadn’t notice before.
“It’s mostly overgrown now, unfortunately. You can barely access it these days, but until Cherry sold the house it was first Derek and later a gardener who looked after the place. I guess Chad never did anything about it. Or didn’t know about it. I don’t know… No one looks after it anymore….”
She looks sad and Scotty quietly offers her some more coffee and another slice of apple-pie, which makes her smile return to her face.
“You two are so sweet, listening to the ramblings of an old woman you don’t even know.”
“Actually, I’m fascinated.” Kevin is honest in his words. If at first he had just been curious for gossip, he’s now quite interested in Cherry Lockhardt. This woman had lived here all her life and had sold her house to Chad to prevent it from getting into the hands of her cheating husband.
She had shown restraint in dealing with the deceit until she had had her paperwork and her possessions organized and put safely where her soon-to-be husband couldn’t put his hands on it. She must have been methodical and that is a trait that Kevin respects in people.
“Where was I? Oh, yes, Bob… He would stay only a while, but he became a part of the family… About two years after he came to the house, Cherry got her first chance at this new soap-series called “Tempest Bay”.
It would be just a small part at first. She would play Joyce, the best friend and confidant of the daughter of the leading character…. She did the best she could, made the most of it again, as always.
About a year into the show, the actress who played the daughter wanted to leave. The writers and producers liked Cherry a lot and they didn’t like losing Joyce as a character. So, they decided to turn her into the long lost daughter of the lead-actress.
The story was that the mother had to give up her first-born child and that the reason why the original daughter had been so close to her friend was because of the blood they shared and all that blah-blah. Cherry had so much fun this. She taught it was a joke, but it paid her bills and she could do what she wanted.
She thought her part on the show would last 1 or 2 years… She would end up staying there 42 years, even when the part got smaller the last few years, she would still get paid handsomely….. She could do whatever she wanted…” Scotty is surprised to hear a pinch of bitterness in Candace’s voice.
“But, that was not what we talking about… Cherry and Derek were very happy. Happiest couple ever I’ve seen or will ever see. They had fun when they were together, they looked at each other with so much love and care… And Bob was a part of that happiness. She had complete faith in him and trusted him with her life.
But that happiness ended early 80s. Bob got sick. Couldn’t shake a cold he had, started losing weight, went to a doctor and according to Bob, the doctor said he had a persistent virus… Nothing that couldn’t be killed off with some strong antibiotics … He said he was feeling better after that.
So, to celebrate, one Sunday-morning, Derek and Bob decided to celebrate by going sailing. Something they often did. But when evening came, they still weren’t back and Cherry got worried… She called the police, who contacted the coast-guard and the coast-guard searched and found the sailing-ship floating aimlessly in the water.
They got on board and found Derek and Bob. Both had been shot dead. There was no gun on board. They found nothing of value on the boat either. Everything was gone. Money, IDs, jewelry, a radio, everything. The police and the coast-guard had no choice but to conclude that the men had been attacked, killed and left to bleed to death.
It had to have happened earlier in the day, because both men were terribly sunburned. It was so awful to see. Cherry was devastated, just completely lost when she got the news. She collapsed and after the funeral of both men, she withdrew from everything and everybody for months.”
“That’s awful.” Scotty says, feeling sorry for the woman he had never met.
“It was… When Cherry finally resurfaced she was a different woman. Lost her zest for life, she was more guarded. Almost as if she strengthened herself for more harm that would come her way.”
END OF PART 05/???