About: Kevin/Scotty and there's Chad and a hint of Jason too!!! :)
Rate: Not sure yet...
Disclaimer: Written with love, not for money..
Summary: Yeah! I finally have a clue where this is going! ...
Chad shakes off the rain from his coat and searches for his keys. Kevin had told them that they’d be up in the attic, so they might not hear him and he should use his own key to get in, which he does. Without much sound the door clicks open and Chad enters the house.
He can hear voices in the dining-room and he’s about to shout out to Kevin and Scotty that he’s in, when the words that are spoken reach him.
“Tie him up. I don’t want either of you to make problems… And I warn you, if you try anything foolish, I’ll kill you!”
Chad silently puts his keys on the doormat, afraid they may make a sound if he holds them any longer. He then takes off his shoes and coat, figuring he’d be better able to move and be more quiet. He carefully approaches the door, ready to hide in the shadows if anything happens.
He sees Candace’s back and he can see Kevin tie up Scotty to a chair. What is it with those boys that they keep getting into trouble? And why is Candace holding a gun? He had met her before and he had always considered her a kind and gentle person. What the hell is going on?
“Sit down!” She orders Kevin to sit down on the chair. With surprising ease she throws a rope around him and it takes Chad a few seconds to realize that she has created some sort of lasso that she can use to tie up Kevin to the chair with one strong pull. She throws the rope around Kevin with quite some knowledge of how to tie someone up.
“I hope it’s not too tight?” She asks, and it sounds ludicrous to Chad. She’s tying Kevin up and then concerned about his inability to move? “When I was young I used to help my dad to catch cattle. I guess that there are some talents that once acquired you don’t forget.”
She puts the gun on the table and sits down.
“I’m sorry… I keep saying that, don’t I? I mean neither of you any harm. I just want you to stay put for a few hours. I will tell the police that you need help, I swear, but I just need some time.
You see,… this is it. I thought it was all just talk. I never thought that she’d actually done it.” She shoves the dark blue suitcase into view and Chad frowns. It triggers a memory he can’t quite put his finger on. She can see that Kevin and Scotty have no idea what’s she’s talking about, so she rubs her face and explains:
“You see, Cherry always hated the way Carlin treated me. When we were all just married, we were good friends. But Carlin changed. He made a lot of money and he became too focused on status. He considers himself to be superior to almost everyone else. Definitely superior to me.
When we just moved here, we didn’t have that much money, but we were happy and he used to treat me like a queen. But as we slowly become richer, his love for me faded. I wasn’t good enough for him anymore. I was a good wife. My house was and is impeccably clean and I take care of it.
I tried my best to know his friends, their wives, their families. I tried so hard to maintain the idea of the perfect house, the perfect wife and the perfect life, but … he continued to make me worthless and mock me and my efforts. And it hurt, it hurt so much.
Cherry knew I wasn’t happy anymore. She knew I wanted out, but… what was I supposed to do? I never worked a day in my life…. I used to have some money of my own. Not much. About ten thousand dollars, money my father had put aside for me, money he had worked hard for.
But when I went to the bank, because I was seriously considering leaving Carlin, I found out that the money was gone. He had needed it for some investment and our local bank-manager knew he was my husband, so they gave him my money, assuming it would be alright with me.
And Carlin saw no reason to put it back on my account. After all, it was our money, he said. I didn’t dare to explain to him why I wanted it, but I also knew I could never get that much cash without making him suspicious. If I would withdraw bigger amounts he’d be told. The bank manager and Carlin play tennis together…
I felt completely trapped. Cherry felt sorry for me. She felt I should get out, but she could see why I couldn’t. Then Cherry found about that her third husband was cheating on her… Cherry first got very hurt and then she got very mad. She had already reached a point where she no longer really enjoyed playing in Tempest Bay.
She was done with the soap-opera. I mean, her character had been through so much. She lost a baby, found a baby, fallen in love, fallen out of love, gotten married 8 times, gotten divorced 4 times, became a widow twice and the show was about to wreck her last marriage too, despite the fact that Cherry wanted some stability for her character.
She had raised a family, lost her family, been through a fire, had been left for dead, been abducted. She’d been rich, poor and everything in between. But Cherry felt like every tear had been wrung out of her character. The storylines seemed increasingly more far-fetched to her. She was done. So completely done.
She wanted to quit. As a birthday-gift to herself, for her 65th birthday, she would hand in her resignation. She planned to retreat here with her husband and live out her life in peace and quiet, reading books, writing her memoires…. And then she found out about the cheating and all her happy pink bubbles just popped at the same time.
Cherry realized that now she couldn’t react too impulsively and she started to re-think all her plans. She owned two things that she was worried about losing. This house and her parents’ house in Oklahoma. She had bought that one once she earned enough money, in the 70s, and though her parents were dead, she still owned the place.
To make sure that her third husband, Larry, wouldn’t be able get it, she gave me the house. I was stunned when she told me that she wanted me to have it. I had no idea what to do with another house, but she wasn’t crazy. She told me get out while I still could. That I wasn’t too old to start anew.
She knew I wasn’t happy. She wanted me to be happy. She wanted me to have the house, she wanted me to go back to Oklahoma, where I came from too, even though I came from another part of the state. I had been at her parents’ house when her father died and I just loved the place. She felt I should start a new life there.
I laughed her idea away, explaining that I couldn’t do that. I had no money. I had never had a job, where would I get one at my age? She said she’d get me the money I needed. I didn’t really believe her. But whatever made her happy was good with me. I loved to daydream with her, they were my escape-pods.
Now, she had to find a solution for this house, because she wasn’t going to lose this one either. It was the house where she’d first been happy with Derek and Bob and later on with Lorne. So, she decided to put her trust on Chad, with whom she’d gotten rather close. He was sort of the son she never had.
She sold him this house and a part of the money had to paid in cash….” Cherry’s voice is soft, but Chad can hear her and he remembers now where he had seen the suitcase before. Cherry had the suitcase when he bought the house from her. And he remembers asking her what she needed the cash for.
“Operation Free Candy.” Cherry had laughed. And Chad had thought that it had been some charity thing to buy candy for kids or something, he knew of her interest in many children’s organizations. He had shrugged it off. He had trusted Cherry. Indeed, they had had almost an mother-son relationship.
Though he had to pay a handsome price for this house, the house and the ground it stood on was worth millions, so it could never be considered a bad investment. He can now also understand why Candace wanted the money and does remember Cherry discussing her best friend, who was way too much under her husband’s thumb.
"And with the most important things in her life now in safe hands, she started to make plans for her own freedome and mine. She told me and I just played along. Like I said, I didn't think she'd pull it off, but she did. She actually did."
Candace sounds kind once again and Chad truly believes that she would never hurt Kevin or Scotty on purpose, but that she’s desperate to get out of a marriage that has turned loveless and pointless. Desperation is a bad advisor, Chad knows, it makes you do things you will regret in the long run, once you’ve had time to think things through.
He feels caught between loyalty to Cherry, understanding Candace and wanting to protect Kevin and Scotty. He’s not sure what he should do next. Call the police? Or should he do something himself? Before he can think it over any further, Chad slowly moves closer and he enters the room.
Candace hasn’t seen him yet, but Kevin and Scotty do. Noticing something in Scotty’s expression, she turns around and she’s face-to-face with Chad. Her reaction is slower than Chad’s. In one big swoop, he managed to take the gun from her. She makes an effort to get it back.
However Chad is much bigger and much stronger than her and he pushes her back on the chair with one big shove.
“Stay there!” He barks with so much authority that even Kevin and Scotty don’t move. “It will be alright, just,… don’t do anything stupid.” He warns her.
All her fighting spirit leaves her at once and her shoulders sink. She knows that she’s physically no match for Chad. Keeping the gun on her, Chad manages to loosen the rope around Scotty who can now first free himself and then Kevin.
“Are you two alright?” Chad asks.
“Yes.” Kevin nods as does Scotty. “Shall we call the police?” He asks. Candace lifts her head with a jolt.
“No! Carlin will be so furious!” she cries out.
“Should’ve thought about that before putting a gun in our faces.”
Though Chad can’t completely disagree with Scotty, he doesn’t take any action to call the police either. Instead he takes a long look at Candace, then he turns to Kevin and Scotty.
“Are you sure you two are alright?” He asks again. Both men nod. “Good. I think you two have been through enough today. Let’s have an early dinner.”
“What?” Scotty asks.
“I believe that there’s a good restaurant here on the island. Cherry used to rave about their food, so I want to give it a try.”
“Chad,…?” Kevin gives Chad an inquisitive look, but Chad’s too busy looking at Candace.
“I wish you good luck, Candace.” Chad says quietly, putting the briefcase on the table. “I hope you’ll find what you’re looking for. Because that’s what Cherry would have wanted for you…. If, however, I’ll ever see you pointing a gun at my friends again, you’ll be in deep trouble. I will destroy you. Is that understood?”
Candace looks at him with big eyes.
“I’m taking Kevin and Scotty to dinner in my rental car. You leave in your car. And what you do, once we’ve gone our separate ways, is none of our business.”
Though neither understands what is driving Chad to do what he does, Kevin and Scotty follow Candace to the front-door, where she turns to Chad.
“Are you sure? You’re letting me go? After everything I did?” There’s so much desire to belief that she's actually this lucky, that it nearly breaks Scotty’s heart. Chad nods and he caresses her face.
“Cherry loved you. She wanted you to be free. She could see that you were systematically being destroyed, losing more of your self-confidence and your desire to live. I had no idea what she meant then, but I do now. ‘Operation Free Candy’ was her attempt to save you.”
Tears fill Candace’s eyes as she hears Chad confirm what she knew to be true. She looks at Kevin and Scotty. She can see the tug between anger and sympathy in their eyes.
“I’m sorry. I would never have hurt either of you. But I just saw that money, and I knew… This is my last change. The very last one.… I just had to take it.”
And while she apologizes once more, Scotty slowly gets a change of heart. He can see the same thing that Chad had suspected before. Desperation. Scotty’s eyes meet Kevin’s and he shrugs, signaling to Kevin that he’s willing to let it go.
“We’ll be alright.” Kevin says with a rough voice.
He’s not entirely ready to let go, but if Scotty is alright with it and Scotty is safe, then nothing else matters so Kevin. Chad locks up the door behind them and, after a final hug for Candace, he runs through the rain to open his car. After a moment of hesitation, Kevin and Scotty follow his lead.
They hug Candace. On a whim Kevin gives her his business-card and makes a run for the car, following Scotty, to get out of the rain as fast he can. As he gets in, Kevin takes one last look at the woman, who’s still standing at the front-door, suitcase at her feet, and he has the idea that he’ll never see her again.
“You guys must think I’m crazy.” Chad eventually says, when they finally have food and drinks on the table and the pretty waitress no longer has a reason to drop by.
“I felt sorry for her. Back when we met Carlin, I was ready to take her away from that horrible man, but I never expected her to put a gun in my face…”
“I know, Scotty. Are you sure you’re alright?” Chad asks, knowing that Scotty had suffered quite some traumas before.
“Yes. Actually, I feel fine. It’s weird, but … letting her go felt like the right thing to do. For me anyway.”
“And you, Kev?”
“As long as Scotty is safe… I don’t care one way or the other, I was angry at her for threatening us, but she was so desperate…”
“Desperate.. Yes, that’s the right word.” Scotty nods.
“I hope I never get like that.” Chad sighs.
“I don’t think you will.” Kevin smiles. “You won’t let anyone run your life for you. You’ve always been very independent. Unlike Candace. It was weird how her entire being changed.. The impact on her life must have been enormous…”
“Yes, when she was with us, she would laugh, gossip, be quirky and actually very entertaining. And when we saw her at her house, she was just a quiet grey mouse, so completely different from the person we had met before….” Scotty agrees. Chad is about to open his mouth, when a sound hits their ears.
The owner of the restaurant has taken the microphone that is used for karaoke-nights and announces:
“We've been informed that due to the weather taking a turn for the worst, the last flight will leave in 30 minutes. It is not clear when the next plane will land here again.
Considering that it might be a few days, we suggest that, in case you need to return the mainland, that you take this flight…. Please, contact our waiting staff if you have any questions… Thank you.” The shrill sound of a microphone being too close to a loud-speaker makes the patrons of the restaurant cringe.
Kevin, Scotty and Chad look at each other. Their first thought is for Candace. Would she be on that plane or not? Then comes the second thought.
“Will you stay or will you leave?” Kevin asks. Chad takes a few seconds before he answers.
“If you guys don’t mind, I’d like to stay. I have a lot to do and to think about.”
“I hope you don’t mind?” Chad asks. He can hear Jason on the other side of the line.
“No, of course not, babe, do what you must do.” Jason answers. “I just wish I was with you.”
“I wish you were here too. It sure is cold in this bed without you.”
“Good, just keep your hands above the blanket and let me take care of you when you get back.” Jason teases.
“No chance. It’s way too cold, so I’m sticking my arms under the blanket and keep myself warm.”
“Mhmmm, will you at least think of me, while you’re ‘warming up’.”
“Who else would I think of?” Chad teases. Jason laughs, and though he should hang up, it still takes a while before he eventually hangs up, but at least he has the knowlegde that Chad is now comfortably warm.
“Are you really sure you’re okay?” Kevin asks, maybe for the tenth time this day. Scotty can’t quite hide the annoyed frown.
“Yes, baby, I’m fine! I really am. It was no fun to be face-to-face with a gun, but I’m alright… Are you?” He returns the question.
“I don’t know. I’m still angry, because I trusted her. I mean, I know where she’s coming from and why she did what she did, but… And I don’t want her to go prison, but… I don’t know.”
“I just hope she’s on that plane and on her way to God-knows-where and that she’s happy.”
“Yes, me too.” Kevin sighs. He gets in bed. “The rain is really loud. I can feel the chill all over.”
“I know. I can’t wait to get under those blankets and just be in your arms…” Scotty smiles and then his smile fades and he adds with a serious face: “… and be safe.”
Their eyes meet and a loving smile passes between them.
“I love you so much. I would lose you…” Kevin says.
“You haven’t. And you are still here with me. And we will be alright.” A long tender kiss reassures Kevin of this. “.. And I love you too.”
END OF PART 15/??