Elizabeth just couldn't help herself from nervously fidgeting as she sat alone, waiting to meet Robin for lunch at Kelly’s. The nurse had been released from Shadybrook over two weeks ago, but hadn't found the courage to venture out into public, till now that is. Oh, she had visited her co-workers at their home, arranging play dates with Emma. Her boys loved to dote on the young, little Drake, and Elizabeth felt very relaxed with Robin and Patrick. Both had been extremely supportive during the outing of her affair with Nicolas as well as during her breakdown which prompted her stay at the mental institution. But, other than those encounters with the married couple, the petite brunette had pretty much kept to herself.
It was during her last visit though that Robin insisted they go out to lunch. She said it was time for Elizabeth to face the world again. The single mother knew she was right, especially since she was heading back to work in a few days and needed to get used to being around people again, but the lingering fear that she would be judged for her actions was still there. However, Robin would not take no for an answer. So, it was arranged. Patrick would take the kids to the park while the women had their "girl" time. Later, he would bring the munchkins to Kelly’s to join the women for dessert.
Now that the day had finally arrived, Elizabeth was once again questioning the merits of this idea. She tried not to look around and imagine everyone talking about what a slut she was. She began to focus on what the therapist at Shadybrook had taught her, to feel strong and confident. Nodding her head to no one in particular Elizabeth remembered what the counselor had said, "Everyone makes bad choices. It's what you do with those life lessons that helps you grow as an individual, as well as a woman."
Taking a deep, calming breath the brunette closed her eyes and continued to concentrate on those very words.
Soon feeling more relaxed, Elizabeth re-opened her dark, sapphire orbs and noticed Robin entering the restaurant. But her friend was not alone. No, she had brought along another brunette, and if Elizabeth's eyes weren't deceiving her, it was one Brenda Barrett. The single mother hadn't had any contact with the super model the last time she was in town; well, except for the fact that she married Jason right after the two had "broke up." Although it was hard to say they ended a relationship that had truly never gotten started.
The younger brunette wasn't quite sure how she felt about meeting the woman right now, but it would be rude to just get up and walk out. Plus, it wasn't really fair to Robin who had been such a good friend to her for so long.
As they approached Elizabeth put on her best bright and enthusiastic smile.
"Elizabeth, hey." Robin cheerfully said as the two women pulled out their chairs to sit. "I think you know my friend, Brenda Barrett."
Trying to be gracious, the younger woman held out her hand and said, "Not officially, no; but, it's nice to finally meet you."
Brenda smiled as she reached out to accept Elizabeth's hand, "Like wise. Robin has been catching me up on all of the ins and outs around Port Charles since I've left, and she couldn't stop talking about you and your two beautiful children."
Thinking about her boys caused a true smile to blossom across the single mother's face as she replied, "My kids, they are definitely something to talk about that's for sure."
Laughing outright Brenda said, "I'm sure they are. Robin here says your oldest Cameron, right?" Nodding to her friend but not waiting for confirmation continued, "He’s got a big head of curly hair, and your youngest Jake has spiky blond hair and some amazing blue eyes."
Smiling even larger the petite brunette concurred. "Yep, those are my two."
Wanting to take the direction of the conversation away from her Elizabeth asked, "So where are you staying while you are here? I'm pretty sure I would have known about your arrival before this if you were staying with Patrick and Robin."
Nodding while she smiled thinking about her husband, Robin answered for her friend. "Yes, Patrick probably would have had a lot to stay about Brenda's presence, I'm sure."
Laughing again, Brenda said, "I'm actually staying at......"
But before the model could finish, their waitress came to take their orders...
Robin ordered a grill cheese, stating that ever since Emma had started eating them she constantly had a craving for one all the time. Brenda chose the Cobb Salad, saying that her break from modeling wouldn't last forever and she needed to watch her figure, garnering eye rolls from the other two women; and Elizabeth, well, she decided on chili.
Once the young girl left to place their orders, Brenda turned her attention back to Elizabeth and answered her question, "I'm actually staying in Sonny's old penthouse."
Elizabeth trying not to choke on the sip of water she just drank exclaimed, "Really! Across from Jason?"
"Sadly, yes. It was available," and winking added, "I have to admit you can't beat the security."
Elizabeth laughing said, "No I can't argue with that. So, how did Carly take the news.”?
"Ah, Carly. So I take it you are familiar with the harpy blond."
Elizabeth smirking as she thought of Carly said, "Let's just say Carly and I are not friends."
Raising her water glass in a salute, Brenda said, "Something we can all agree on." And then the three girls toasted to their utter dislike for the shrieking blond.
As they placed their glasses back down Brenda asked, "I hope you don't mind me crashing your lunch with Robin? When she told me this morning she was coming to Kelly’s to meet you I pretty much insisted I tag along, and I wouldn't take no for an answer."
Robin chiming in said, "And if you know Brenda, no, is never in her vocabulary.
Giggling at the two, Elizabeth took her napkin and placed it on her lap said, "No it's fine." Then raising her eyes to meet the Brenda's, she cautiously asked, "How much has Robin told you about me?"
Reaching out and grabbing Elizabeth's hand, giving it a quick squeeze before releasing it, she said, "Nothing that I didn't already know."
Lowering her head to reposition her silverware and take her gaze away from Brenda's asked, "Like what?"
Waving her hand in the air, "Oh, that Lucky Spencer is a jerk and you deserve better than him. Something like that."
A small smirked formed on Elizabeth's face as she raised her eyes once again meet the older brunette's and said, "Or something like that......"
Soon Robin and Elizabeth were asking Brenda a ton of questions about Europe and what she had been up to. Elizabeth fixating on Italy of course. After a short time, the younger brunette began to relax and actually enjoy her afternoon out. Brenda was a ball of energy that just kept going and going, and Robin, mindful of what the woman had recently been through carefully eased Elizabeth into the conversation, knowing what she was comfortable and not comfortable talking about.
Once their food arrived the conversation slowed a bit as the three dug into their meals. After just a minute of relishing their home cooked meal, as only Kelly’s could make, the bell above the door rang, singling a new arrival to the establishment. Out of habit from her waitress days, Elizabeth looked up to see who had entered, and quickly tried to mask her emotions as she watched Sam and Jason enter through the door.
Brenda had moved her attention away from her food to ask Elizabeth a question just as the bell on the front door to Kelly’s rang, and she instantly noticed the sadness that crossed over the young woman's eyes as Elizabeth gazed upon the new patrons who entered the diner. Oh, the young woman was quick to hide it, and if Brenda hadn't been looking directly at the brunette at that exact moment, she never would have seen the look cross the pretty nurse's face. Curious, the model turned towards the door to see who had arrived, and watched as Jason and Sam entered the room. Her interest peaked, Brenda watched as Jason became aware of the three women sitting there. Yet, even more intriguing was that he didn't even seem to notice Brenda and Robin in the room. No, all the blond enforcer's attention was pointedly fixed on Elizabeth. Which Brenda observed caused his "girlfriend" some extreme discomfort.
Fascinating was all Brenda could think. Although, it wasn't unusual for Sonny's right hand man to ignore the model directly. It was definitely odd for him not act the slightest bit annoyed that they were even in the same vicinity together. Brenda began to wonder what exactly was the enforcer's history with the pretty single brunette.
Not wanting Elizabeth to suspect she had noticed any type of reaction to their arrival took another bite of her salad before asking, "So, Elizabeth," tilting her head towards the couple, "do you know my ex-husband at all?"
Watching as the nurse used her spoon to carelessly stir her chili over and over again, Elizabeth said, "we used to be friends."
Absently thinking, Brenda knew there was more to it than just friends, and she was determined to find out what that was continued her questions.
"Used to huh." the brunette responded. "I guess you got the "danger" speech over and over again when you were friends."
"Exactly," was all the girl would say.
Taking another careless bite Brenda forged on, "so, what do you think of Sam?"
The model then watched as Elizabeth raised her now darkened blue eyes to meet her own, venom dripping from her voice as she replied, "Let's just say I don't like to think about Sam."
And with that the subject was dropped. Well, for now..., in Brenda's mind.
Still though, even though the topic of Jason and Sam was no longer discussed, Brenda watched as Elizabeth and Jason tried to hide the quick, longing glances the two gave one another, neither catching the other as they continued to play their cat and mouse game. Continuing to observe, watching as Sam disgustingly draped herself over her ex-husband, staking her claim, Brenda tapped her forefinger on her chin knowing she was going to have to get to the bottom of this. She then noticed Robin eying her, slightly shaking her head no, knowing she was warning her best friend not to get involved. Well, too bad for Robin, this was too good an opportunity to pass up. She lived to get under Jason's skin, and it seemed like Elizabeth was most definitely the ticket to do that. Plus, she really hated Sam, and wanted Jason to dump that bitch on her lazy, conning ass.
She knew Sonny and Jax had used the woman as a substitute for her when she left. How they could confuse that tramp with her was beyond her conception, but Jason, he was a different story. Why, would he be with Sonny and Jax leftovers? It made no sense.
Suddenly, the door to Kelly’s burst open as a tornado of energy entered the room.
Brenda watched as Elizabeth's children, Jake and Cameron rushed over to give her a big hug as they babbled away about their time at the park with Patrick. She was instantly enamoured by both, but was fascinated by the nurse's youngest, Jake. The model couldn't help but recognize the resemblance to the baby pictures of Jason she had seen when he had been Jason Quatermaine, and the two had been friends. She chanced a peek towards the enforcer's direction and actually noticed a look of longing across the usually stoic males face.
It definitely made Brenda take notice. Not wasting a moment, the model asked, "Elizabeth, where does Jake get those magnetic blue eyes. They are simply gorgeous."
Watching the young woman's obvious discomfort by the question as she drew her son in closer to her chest, the mother answered. "By…by Laura, Lucky's mother."
"Ah, that's right. Jake is Laura's grandchild. It makes perfect sense."
She watched as Robin suspiciously looked at her. Brenda quickly took the opportunity to glimpse at her watch and hurriedly stood as she said, "Oops, I didn't realize we had been here so long. I promised Edward I would come by and visit with him. Sorry to eat and run, but you never want to keep an old man waiting."
Reaching into her purse to grab some money, Brenda heard Robin say, "Forget it Brenda, it's my treat. You can pay next time."
"Alright, but how about Jakes the next go round?" Turning to the younger brunette, "Elizabeth, you in?"
"Sounds good to me. I never pass up an opportunity for Jakes. Just give me enough time to snag a babysitter."
Brenda nodded, "You got it. It was a pleasure meeting you. Hope to see you soon."
"It was great to finally meet you as well."
Robin, Patrick and Elizabeth watch as Brenda sauntered out of Kelly’s, childishly sticking her tongue out at Jason as she left, and the three couldn't help but laugh at her antics.
Once Brenda was out the door, she unsuspectingly turned back and watched, at how, as soon as she was gone, Jason instantly turned his attention back to the pretty single mother versus the woman he was actually having lunch with, interesting indeed.
Jason knew he never should have gotten out of bed today. First, he had Sonny calling and ranting about Brenda. His boss just couldn't understand how a woman he used to love could be back in town and not want to see him. Go figure. Oh, and then there was Carly, contacting her best friend and also giving him grief about his ex-wife. Complaining how that "two bit tramp", her words not his, better not try to sink her claws into Sonny and Jax again, even though she was divorced from Sonny and in the process of divorcing Jax. Thankfully, Carly had yet to find out the model had moved across the hallway into Sonny's old penthouse and their previous home together.
He shook his head thinking, rubbing his temples as the headache he had been fighting off all day resurfaced in full force, how a woman who didn't even live with him could once again cause such grief, and that wasn't even the worst of it.
Next, he had Spinelli, going on and on about the "new" goddess in town, and how the two of them should invite her over for dinner and share in some fine cuisine. What the hell did Brenda need fine cuisine for, what she needed was some gross, greasy fatty food to put some meat on her bones. He could never understand why women always strive to be so thin. It had always been one of the things he had loved about Elizabeth. Even though the brunette was petite, she always had curves in all the right places, curves that weren't made by silicone.
Which brought his thoughts to Sam, causing the man to rub his temples even harder. She had called begging him to take her to Kelly’s for lunch, insisting that they never spent enough time together, and that's when he ran into Elizabeth.
Elizabeth. Man, he needed to stop thinking about her. Unfortunately, after today, being so close to her and her kids was making it hard to distance his ongoing thoughts about the pretty brunette. God, he missed her. Usually he could bury his feelings when it came to her, but not today. She had looked so beautiful, and healthy. The last time the pair had encountered one another had also been at Kelly’s, but then she had been distraught over her affair with Nicolas and on the verge of a breakdown, that later happened.
He should have visited her in Shadybrook, but knew it would be too hard, mostly, on him, so he stayed away.
He now wondered if Sam had planned the whole thing knowing Elizabeth would be there. It wouldn't have been the first time his "girlfriend" had done such a thing.
Sighing, the male looked around his home, that really didn't feel like home any longer after Maxie's redecorating and was inwardly glad that no one was there. Relishing in the peace and quiet, the enforcer went to the kitchen, grabbed a beer and sat down on his couch to attempt to drink away today's events.
No sooner had he sat down and taken a hefty sip of his alcoholic beverage that the door burst open and a loud voice interrupt his solitude, the sound echoing forcefully along all four walls.
"So, ex-husband of mine, how's it going?" Seeing the beer in Jason's hand she replied to her own question, "I take it, it's going well then."
Using his free hand, Jason rubbed his temples once again, annoyed at the interruption. Displeasure dripping from his voice, he said, "What is it you want Brenda? Tell me quickly. Because, the sooner you do, the sooner you can leave!"
Smiling as she plopped herself on the coffee table across from her ex-husband, patting his knee, the brunette replied, "Aw, has someone had a bad day?"
Not having any patience at this point, Jason, pointedly stared at the brunette and directly said, "Just tell me what it is you want and leave."
"Now Jason, that's not a very nice way to speak to your ex-wife." Pushing out her lower lip in a pout, Brenda continued, whining as she did, "I just wanted to tell you about my day."
Seeing instantly how Brenda's actions resembled Sam's, the blond enforcer quickly closed his eyes so not to think about the comparison. Resignedly, the male took a sip of his beer, his eyes still closed, as he leaned back on the couch and said, "Just get it over with."
Brenda now excited that Jason had opened the door for her to put her plan in motion, patted the blonde's knee and excitedly jumped up, and while keeping her eye on the man said, "Well, you know I had lunch today at Kelly’s." Not waiting for a response because, knowing Jason as she did, she would never get one. "I thoroughly enjoyed meeting Elizabeth and her children. She told me you two were once friends."
She watched as the blond opened his eyes and looked at her, not saying a word.
"She said the "danger," Brenda then held her hands up quoting with her fingers, "got in the way."
"What's your point?"
Shrugging her shoulders, the brunette casually said, "no point. Just a comment. All things considered I guess it's good you are with someone like Sam. Someone who can handle your life and the constant danger. It's just a shame Elizabeth hasn't found someone that fits her as well as Sam fits you."
Continuing to watch the blond, Brenda noticed even as he closed his eyes to try and tune her out, he had a notable reaction to her words. The male started to slightly clench his jaw and grip his beer bottle a little tighter. Seeing the response, Brenda progressed on, "It's a wonder that such a gorgeous, sweet woman really is still single. I mean I know she's been divorced and all, from Lucky and Ric, but come on, with those men as husbands it's not really a surprise that she is now unattached. Ric, well, enough said; and Lucky, he is probably just like his father, self-centered and self-absorbed. It's a wonder she had a child with that man. Speaking of which, I know sometimes a woman having children is a turn off, but that fact has only seemed to enhance her beauty. You can definitely tell she is a great Mom. Still, it's such a shame she has to do it alone."
As the model kept rambling on and on, she was careful to monitor Jason's actions. His jaw now clenched so tight it was a wonder she couldn't hear his teeth grinding against his enamel, and his knuckles were so white the contrast against the dark beer bottle make it significantly noticeable.
Seeing the not so understated acknowledgment of her words only fueled her to continue.
"I was thinking there had to be someone I knew I could introduce her to. There's the actor Murphy I recently broke up with. He would be perfect. He's wanting to settle down and have a family. Only, he's on the rebound so that might not be the best choice. Now there's Jagger, he hasn't found anyone since Karen died and he's good guy. Or maybe...... Hmmm, I'll just have to keep thinking about it."
The room soon became quiet as Brenda stopped talking and waited impatiently for a reaction, any one, from the blond enforcer.
After several minutes of no noise the model decided Jason just needed a little more incentive to speak up.
"So I guess it's good you and Elizabeth aren't friends any longer. I mean, you would scare away anyone she might get involved with. Besides she is just a part of your past, and a woman as young as her really needs to look towards her future."
Finally, Brenda watched as Jason rose, his body so tight she thought his black t-shirt might rip to shreds just from the movement, and proceed to throw his beer bottle against the wall by the front door. She then smiled wide as she observed the bottle shatter just as Sam walked in, getting sprayed with yellow liquid and Jason yelling, "Elizabeth is not my past!"
Yep, just what she thought.