“Okay Jessica, everything looks good,” said Dr. Meadows as she pulled off her gloves and washed her hands. “Have you been having any more occurrences of the Braxton Hicks?”
Jessica nodded as she shifted on the exam table. “I have, but they aren’t really intense – just frequent.”
Dr. Meadows nodded as she made a note on Jessica’s chart. “And you’ve been keeping up with your fluids? And resting?”
Again, Jessica nodded and looked down at her fingers, twisting them around each other.
Dr. Meadows noticed this. “Is there something else?” she asked, looking at Jessica over the tops of her glasses, causing her to tuck her chin to her chest.
Biting her bottom lip, Jessica sighed, glad that Jason had not been able to come with her. She knew he would freak out – especially with Faith still on the loose. “It’s just that I have been feeling a lot more tired than usual . . . and at times my vision has been blurry . . ."
“When did this start?”
Jessica thought about it a minute before answering, trying to pinpoint exactly when these symptoms started. Then it came to her, “Just after the shooting at The Cellar.”
After making another notation on the chart, Dr. Meadows closed the binder and removed her glasses. “The fatigue and vision problems are a result of the high blood pressure.”
“Okay, I understand that because of what was happening, but it’s over and I have spent days doing nothing but resting.”
“Unfortunately, at this stage, it’s not going to make much difference how much you slow down,” explained Dr. Meadows, holding up her hand to hold off Jessica’s questions. “I am ordering bed rest for the remainder of the pregnancy. This means no driving. You can get up to use the bathroom and stretch your muscles – but only for a very short time. Otherwise, you are to stay in bed. I will set up a home care nurse who will be checking your blood pressure twice a day. And any further examinations will be done at home.”
Jessica took it all in. “What about when I do go into labor?” she asked.
“Then whoever is home with you – and you are to never be alone – will call an ambulance and you will be transported here.”
Trying not to get too nervous, Jessica nodded, indicating that she understood. “So I guess the bed rest goes into effect immediately,” she said.
“Yes. Now, I know that Jason did not come with you today, but I want you to call him, Diego or your father to come and get you.”
“Actually, Ramon is with me, so he’ll be able to get me home without a problem.”
“I’m sure that’s true, but I would rather Jason or a family member pick you up as one of them will be able to help you get settled.”
Jessica knew that Jason was meeting with Sonny about what they discussed over breakfast and she didn’t want to interrupt. Her father was still recuperating, so she didn’t want to bother him. That left Diego.
Pulling out her cell phone, she speed-dialed her brother’s number. Diego answered after a couple of rings.
“Hey Diego, its Jess.”
“Jessica? Are you okay?” he asked, alarm evident in his voice.
Jessica rolled her eyes. ,i>Great, if he’s already on high alert over a phone call, wait until he hears about the bed rest, she thought before replying. “I’m fine Diego. Look, I just need a ride home. Can you come and get me?”
“Yeah, sure. What about Ramon? Isn’t he there?”
“He’s here, and I’ll explain when you get here,” she said. After Diego promised to be there in five minutes, Jessica let Dr. Meadows, who had returned with a wheelchair, know who was coming to get her.
“You are unbelievable,” said Carly, shaking her head. “But then again I shouldn’t be too surprised huh? You have this need to control everyone and everything around you Sonny and when you can’t you start making threats. Look where it’s gotten you!”
“Carly, I really don’t want to get into this right now,” Sonny said, knowing it was futile. Carly could be as stubborn as him and it often caused them to butt heads more than once.
“No Sonny, we are doing this right now!” Carly exclaimed, pacing back and forth in front of the couch. “Sonny, Jason is the closest person to you, how can you treat him like this?”
“I don’t know Carly, okay! But you’re right; Jason has always been there no questions asked. He has always done what I asked no matter how ridiculous he thought it was. Jason always thinks with a clear head and is on top of everything. But answer me this Carly, what do I do now? How do I go on knowing that I no longer have that support from him?”
Carly stopped pacing and looked at her husband, realization coming to her face. Sonny was scared. He was afraid he wouldn’t be able to run his organization without Jason by his side. “Sonny, you’re not losing Jason. He just has new priorities and responsibilities, but that doesn’t mean he won’t be able to do his job.”
“I know that Carly, but I can’t have him going to the enemy. I can’t have him stuck in the middle!”
“The middle of what Sonny? You and Lorenzo have been peacefully coexisting for months now. Any problems between the two of you are imagined on your part Sonny! Lorenzo has been more concerned with tracking Faith and keeping his family safe than trying to move in on your territory!”
Stopping, Sonny thought about what Carly said, trying to remember the last time he and Alcazar had a confrontation. He found that he couldn’t actually pinpoint a recent occurrence.
Carly saw the various emotions playing over his face. He was seeing that she was right. Giving him another minute to work things out with himself, Carly sat on the couch and waited. Sonny soon joined her.
“I don’t want this to go to your head Carly, but you’re right.”
Carly’s eyes lit up and a smile spread over her face. It was rare when it was actually admitted that she was right. “So, what are you going to do to fix things with Jason?” she asked, instead of gloating over Sonny’s admission.
Sonny sighed and wearily rubbed a hand over his face. “I honestly don’t know,” he said. “But what I do know is that I have to really try to understand what Jason is dealing with in order to fully accept it.”
Carly nodded in agreement, knowing that Sonny would be able to work this out. His eyes were finally open and he was thinking.
“You’re half-sister?” Skye asked, sitting up and leaning against the headboard. “I thought it was just you and Luis?”
“It was until I was 10. My parents had been separated for a few years and my father had become involved with a woman named Evelyn. The result of that union was Samantha,” said Lorenzo, as small smile coming to his lips. “Boy, she was a little spitfire. Fearless. Wanting to get into everything.”
Skye watched him, a smile pulling at her own lips. “So I take it she chased after her big brothers?” She could almost see it, a toddling little girl chasing after two dark haired, blue-eyed boys, wanting to be a part of what they were doing.
Lorenzo shook his head. “Not really. Samantha wasn’t raised with us. After she was born, Evelyn took her and left Venezuela – saying she did not want to raise her daughter in my father’s world. But we did see her every now and then. You see, Samantha was a mixture of both me and Luis. She was impulsive but had a sharp mind and an intense beauty.”
“How close are the two of you?”
“As we’ve grown up, Samantha wanted to be a part of our lives and would pop in here and there. When she was 15, she became my shadow of sorts.” He laughed slightly as he remembered her visit to him while he was studying at Oxford. “In fact, it was because of Samantha that I met Elaina.”
“Your wife?” Skye asked, her interest peaked. Skye knew about Lorenzo having been married to Jessica’s mother, but didn’t know the details of their relationship or what happened, but she was intrigued. Elaina was Lorenzo’s life; she could see it in the way he looked at Jessica at times. She had even seen a picture of Jessica and her mother together.
Lorenzo let out a breath and nodded, an image of Elaina flashing in his mind. She had been so beautiful with her thick black hair and large chocolate brown eyes that always looked at him with love and trust – at least that was before she found out, the hard way, who he really was.
~ Flashback ~
Lorenzo was shaking. “What do you mean Elaina is gone?” he asked his brother. Although Luis was older than Lorenzo by two years, the two men looked a lot alike. They both had thick black hair, although Lorenzo’s was longer, reaching his collar, and they both had light blue eyes inherited from their mother. But that was where the similarities ended. Lorenzo was quiet. He loved with his whole heart and soul. He was intelligent and had a passion for history and literature – always striving to better himself intellectually. He was never one for material things, although he grew up never wanting for anything. Lorenzo was passionate, whether in love, academics or business. Although a student at Oxford, Lorenzo had been part of the “family business” since he was 18 years old. He was not proud of a lot of the things that he had done, but he knew that even though he wanted a different life for himself, he couldn’t turn his back on his family. Luis, on the other hand, was cold and calculating. He was ruthless in his business associations and as a result, feared. Lorenzo wasn’t sure if his brother had ever really been in love. Luis treated woman as possessions and used them until he was bored and then moved on. Luis surrounded himself with the best that money could buy – whether it be clothes, cars, his yacht or women who were more attracted to his name, power and wealth than for who he was.
Luis sighed and looked at his brother. He knew that getting married was not a good idea, but Lorenzo claimed to be in love with this woman. Luis couldn’t blame him though, Elaina Gutierrez-Alcazar was definitely a beautiful woman, but Lorenzo had to be fooling himself if he thought he could have it both ways – a loving wife who had no knowledge of the man her husband really was, and the power and prestige of the Alcazar name. Luis knew it wouldn’t work and he was proven right.
“This just arrived,” Luis said, tossing the envelope at his brother.
Lorenzo picked up the envelope and pulled the contents out, his breath catching when he saw his beautiful wife bound and gagged, a gun pointed at her head. “Who did this?” he asked, not taking his eyes off the photo.
“Martinez,” Luis said, sitting in the chair across from Lorenzo.
“What are their demands?”
“Same as usual. I told you this was a bad idea Lorenzo,” he began.
“I don’t want to hear it Luis! I want my wife found!”
~ End Flashback ~
Elaina had been rescued and Lorenzo revealed to her who he really was. It hadn’t been pretty.
~ Flashback ~
“How could you lie to me Lorenzo?” Elaina asked anger and hurt flashing in her eyes.
“Elaina, please, I am sorry. I just wanted to protect you,” Lorenzo said, reaching out for her, but she would have none of that as she moved away from him.
“Protect me? Yeah, you protected me alright Lorenzo! I was kidnapped from our home, tied up and told that if you didn’t follow through on a deal that I was going to be killed. How is that protecting me?”
“Please Elaina, I’m sorry. I was trying to keep my life with you and my life in the business separate.”
“Well it didn’t work. How can you lie to me like that Lorenzo?”
He didn’t know what to say. The next morning, she was gone, leaving a letter saying that it was against her religion to divorce him, but that she could no longer live in his life. That was the last he ever saw of her until he came face to face with his nine-year-old daughter.
~ End Flashback ~
“Wow,” said Skye as Lorenzo finished telling her his story. “I’m sorry she didn’t get the chance to see the man that you are deep down.”
“I never stopped loving her Skye. After she left, I knew I couldn’t go after her, so I respected her wishes and shut down. I merely existed, but didn’t really live. During that time, I met Maria. . . I felt nothing for her, but then I wasn’t feeling much of anything. I never knew about Jessica. I used Maria for what I needed at that moment and moved on.” He shook his head, disgusted with himself. “So I understood why Diego wanted nothing to do with me in the beginning.”
Skye smiled sadly and turned Lorenzo’s face to hers. “And you were able to get through to him Lorenzo. You are a good father and you will make a great grandfather to that precious baby your girl your daughter is carrying.”
Lorenzo smiled and pulled her close. “Yeah, that makes me feel a lot better – old – but better,” he said, kissing her gently.
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