Episode #505

- Sarah enlisted Diane to spy on her dinner with Graham, but she had no reason to be concerned: it was a pleasant meal with refreshing conversation.
- Claire and Brent did not tell their families that they would be traveling to South America together to investigate the possibility that James Robbins might be alive.
- Shannon Parish, posing as Sabrina, was overcome by the urge to hurt Courtney so that she could have Jason for herself.


The ride from the airport is nothing like Claire Fisher expected. What few memories she has of the region are of densely forested areas, and even those are complete blurs. The land around her now, however, is a cosmopolitan city. As she studies the buildings and the vibrant life all around, she attempts to conjure memories of her previous time here, but she remembers almost nothing besides that dank compound--the place to which she and Brent Taylor are now headed.

After some time, they turn off the highway and onto an access road. The city recedes into the distance behind them, and Brazil’s natural landscape rises upon all around. Buildings grow fewer and further between, and after what seems like an eternity in the car, Claire feels her insides tense.

“It’s going to be okay,” Brent says from his spot beside her, in the backseat of the car he hired. Claire nods, hoping to convince him that she believes his words, but in actuality, none of this seems right or okay.

Suddenly the terrain transforms again. It is still rustic, but it is clearer, more spread out, and the buildings come more closely together. They pass a shopping center. Without warning, the driver brings the vehicle to a stop.

“Here it is,” he says in heavily accented English.

Claire and Brent examine the area through the back window.

“You’re sure?” Brent asks. The driver holds up the slip of paper that Brent handed him with their destination’s location, and they confer over it.

“This is where my father brought us?” Claire asks. It seems so… normal.

“All new,” the driver says, indicating the simple but appealing homes all around them.

“I had a feeling this would happen,” Brent says, “but I thought it was worth seeing the spot.” He opens the car door. “Could you please give us a minute? Then we’ll be ready to head back.”

Brent gets out of the car and makes his way around to let Claire out. The air outside is less muggy than she expected, though there is a tangible dampness to it that seems to adhere to her skin the moment she exits the vehicle.

“I guess I’m not surprised they knocked it down,” she says as she stares at the place where her father’s compound once stood.

“It’s good, in a way. There will be property records. We’ll be able to learn more than if it were still standing. I just thought we needed to see the spot.”

Claire nods along, but she is transfixed by this place, even without the building itself. She has made such active effort over the years to block out what happened here. Her life has certainly helped her in that regard; with all the curveballs that she has been thrown, she has had more than enough to occupy her and to distract her from what she did here.

Killed her own father.

She allows herself to see it now. The crispness of the memories surprises her. She can see James, flinging Tim against the rail of the scaffolding… she can feel herself reaching out, grabbing James, and shoving him… she can remember her simultaneous terror and relief at watching her father crash through the railing and plummet to his death.

Or not, as the case might be.

“You know what’s weird?” she asks.

Brent quietly awaits the answer.

“I don’t feel bad about it,” she finally says. “I killed my own father, and I don’t regret it.”

“You didn’t have any other choice.”

She dips her head somberly. “I regret that I had to do it, but after what he did to Tim and Travis, and what he was about to do--”

“It’s not a choice anyone should have to make,” Brent offers weakly. Claire appreciates the sentiment; there is nothing anyone could say to make the situation any easier to handle.

“Do you think he’s still down here, hiding out?” she asks, though of course there is no way for Brent to know that.

Brent shrugs. “That’s what we’re here to find out.”

Claire’s fingers tingle with numbness. Has her father done all these terrible things to her and to the Fishers because of what she did to him? And if that is the case, what will he do when they find him?

Brent opens the car door. “We need to go to the police station,” he tells the driver.

Claire is all too glad to return to the car and drive far away from here.


Ever since she found out she was pregnant, the thought of giving birth has terrified Courtney Chase. Not the result--she is nervous about becoming a mother, of course, but she somehow knows that it will turn out all right--but the process itself. In spite of the books she has read and the classes she and Jason have attended, she has had enormous trouble imagining herself going through the experience of childbirth.

Today, however, she finds herself wishing that it would get here already. As she maneuvers her oversized body back into her office chair, she knows that the novelty of pregnancy is wearing off. Whatever fascination it held is fast expiring; she wants her body, and more importantly, her energy, back.

She is rubbing her lower back when Sabrina Gage enters the office.

“Vending machines are all stocked,” Sabrina says as she returns to her desk. “I watched the guy to make sure he didn’t miss anything like last time.”

“Thanks,” Courtney says, trying her best to be genial despite her vast discomfort.

Sabrina pauses mid-movement and looks hard at Courtney. “You must be exhausted.”

“I look that good, huh?”

Courtney takes a drink from the water bottle on her desk. As soon as the water hits her stomach, she feels an intense craving for something salty. There is no predicting these things, she realized months ago as she starts thinking about what to have for dinner. Or a pre-dinner snack.

“How much longer are you going to keep coming in?” Sabrina asks.

“I keep telling myself that every week will be the last week, but who knows? I’ll just keep cutting back my hours, I guess. If I didn’t come in, I think I’d just sit around all day, and there’s still a lot to do before the baby gets here…”

“I mean, it can’t be good for you. Or for the baby.”

There it is again. That slight hint of accusation, in Sabrina’s voice and in her face, scrunched up in the most subtly critical way.

“The doctor says it’s fine,” Courtney says, an edge creeping into her voice. “As long as I’m getting rest, it’s good for me to be moving around a little bit. And keeping myself occupied.”

“As long as you’re sure.” Sabrina takes a few seconds to file away the vending machine inventory report. “You’re still planning to come back to work after the baby’s born?”

“Yeah. I am.”

“Do you think that’s necessary? I’m sure we could manage around here, and the baby needs to be your first priority, right?”

Sabrina’s tone irks Courtney, and she wishes she had some idea why the woman cares so much about every little thing she does. First she was nosing into Courtney’s decision to keep the baby, and now she’s trying to tell her that it’s a bad idea to work with a newborn at home. Whatever Sabrina’s motivations, the busybody act is rapidly tweaking Courtney’s nerves.

“Right. The baby will be my first priority,” she says, now unable to moderate her tone. “Do you see some problem with me working and being a mother?”

“I was just wondering,” Sabrina says. Mock-innocence creeps into her voice.

“Well, it’s none of your business.”

“It’s a little difficult not to speak up when I’m watching you disregard your baby’s health--”

“Excuse me?” Courtney struggles to her feet and points her index finger directly at Sabrina. “You have no right to--”

“Hey! Hey!” Jason interrupts as he sweeps into the office. “What’s going on here?”


“It’s bad,” Sarah Gray says flatly.

Across the table from her, Diane Bishop does something that Diane Bishop never does: hems and haws. She begins and then aborts a variety of statements, only to wind up escaping into a sip of her non-fat, no-whip, double-shot vanilla mocha.

“See? It’s bad. I’m terrible,” Sarah says. She does not need anyone else to confirm this for her, not after what she did.

“You had dinner,” Diane finally says. “Dinner is not inherently bad. You talked. That’s perfectly allowable.”

“With a man who isn’t my husband. Without my husband knowing.”

“To be fair, you aren’t even living with said husband, so…”

Sarah just groans and covers her face with her hands. She was too intrigued by Graham Colville--particularly by the strange way in which he turned up in King’s Bay and tracked her down--to decline his dinner invitation. The investigator in her had to know. She was able to justify it well enough before their outing. But now that it’s over, her curiosity has largely been replaced by guilt.

“You had a good time, right?” Diane asks.

“Of course. Graham is nice. Easy to talk to.”

“Have you spoken to him since then?”

Sarah shakes her head; it is a relief to be able to do so. One less offense on her plate. “He left me a message the next day, thanking me, but we haven’t talked.”

“You needed to talk to someone new. You’ve been stuck in this cycle of rehashing the same crap for--God, a year now. There is nothing wrong with sharing a meal and some conversation with another adult.”

Sarah wishes that she could accept that as fact and move on. But she can’t. She has already put Matt through so much.

“What am I doing?” she asks. It is not necessarily a question for Diane--certainly she could not possibly answer it, if Sarah herself cannot even do that--but a question for the world, the universe. There has to be some reason for all this out there somewhere. “Seriously, what am I doing? I miss my husband, but I can’t be with him. I can’t live at home because it’s too painful, but living someplace else makes me miserable. My daughter doesn’t even trust me anymore…”

“It’s the indecision,” Diane says. “It’ll kill you. You’ve got to make some decisions, lady, even if they aren’t perfect.”

“You think?”

“I know. In the immortal words of my grandmother--God rest her miserable, drunken soul: ‘Shit or get off the pot.’”

“Thank you for those helpful words of wisdom.” Sarah turns the whole thing over in her head once more. She has been doing this over and over in the days since her dinner with Graham. “Maybe it isn’t so bad. We had dinner. Matt doesn’t have to know. Nothing happened. Nothing will happen.”

Whatever suit of armor Diane has had on for the length of their conversation suddenly turns to dust, crumbling and taking with it all auspices of the relentlessly supportive friend.

“It’s bad,” she says simply.


Brent already has his badge in hand as he and Claire enter the local police headquarters. He presents himself to the harried receptionist, using as few words as possible and instead allowing his credentials to speak for themselves.

“I’m here to see Detective José Carlos Abreu. Detective,” he repeats, trying to improve his accent, with little success.

The receptionist stares at him for a long moment. Finally she rises from her seat and motions for him to wait. When she disappears into a back room, Claire steps up to Brent’s side.

“I hope this guy will be able to fill in some blanks,” she says. What little they have done so far has already made her weary, though she knows it is the anticipation and anxiety more than the activity itself. Seeing the spot where her father’s compound once stood transported her to another time and to a world of what-ifs--but she knows that this is all necessary. She needs answers if she is going to mend her life, and especially if she is going to repair her relationship with Travis.

“He’ll be able to show us records,” Brent says. “This is the guy Sarah and I dealt with when we came down here to find you and Tim. I left a message that we were coming and wanted to talk about this case.”

The receptionist returns, with two uniformed officers flanking her. She points to Brent, who again holds out his badge.

“Brent Taylor. Commander--King’s Bay Police Department--in Washington--the United States.”

Claire cannot tell whether the officers even understand English. Their faces remain expressionless, their mouths thin lines.

“I’m here to see Detective Abreu,” Brent adds. “He’s expecting me.”

“Abreu?” one of the officers asks.

Grateful for the break, Brent says, “Yes. Si. José Carlos Abreu.”

The officers share a look, and the receptionist steps backward, as if to protect herself.

Claire wishes that she had the same forethought--if she had any idea what were going on at all. The next thing she knows, one of the officers has her arms pinned behind her back, and the other has taken hold of Brent.

“I’m policia!” Brent insists, to little avail. Claire sees the officer snap handcuffs around Brent’s wrists, and an instant later, she feels the same cold steel on her thin wrists.

“This is all a misunderstanding,” she tries to tell the officer restraining her, but all he does is lead her down a hallway.

“Brent, what’s going on?” she calls out.

“I wish I knew,” he says from somewhere behind her.


Jason glances back and forth between the two women. Immediately Courtney is ashamed of her outburst, though she still feels that Sabrina had it coming for being so intrusive.

“I think Courtney could use some rest,” Sabrina says, shaking her head. “She seems really on-edge.”

Courtney’s jaw tightens. Is she kidding?

“She just blew up at me,” Sabrina continues to Jason. “Understandable, with all the hormones, but you really should get her to stay home and rest.”

“That is not what happened,” Courtney says.

Jason makes his way over to her and, his voice quiet, says, “Just relax. It isn’t good for you or the baby if you get stressed out.”

“I’m only stressed out because of her!”

“Courtney, that’s enough,” he says.

She cannot believe this is happening. Sabrina picks a fight with her, and she winds up being the bad guy?

“Sabrina came in here and basically accused me of not caring about the baby’s health,” she says. “I’m only standing up for myself.”

Sabrina holds up her hands, palms forward. “I’m sorry if my concern came out the wrong way. I was just trying to be polite.”

“Oh, please.”

“Court! Relax!” Jason’s eyes bulge as he issues this warning. Gently, he places his hands on her shoulders. “We should get you home.”

“I’m fine!” she insists.

And then it happens. Jason stands in front of Courtney, his back to Sabrina. As he tries to calm Courtney, she sees Sabrina over his shoulder, sneering at her.

“I’m fine!” Courtney repeats, pulling away from him.

Jason moves with her. “Calm down.”

“She’s the one who started it!” Courtney says.

“I’m sorry,” Sabrina says, putting on her best Little Miss Innocent act. It makes Courtney want to charge across the room and throttle her.

And she might, if it weren’t so inappropriate--and if, at that very moment, she didn’t hear the faintest popping noise, followed by the sensation of something wet splashing down her legs.

“Oh my God,” she says.

Jason takes her by the arm. “What’s wrong?”

Courtney looks down, trying to be sure that it is what she thinks it is. “I think my water just broke!”


Will Sabrina interfere in the childbirth?
What is happening to Claire and Brent?
What should Sarah do about Matt?
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