Episode #540

- Unable to go through with the threesome with Sabrina, Alex ended his relationship with Seth for good.
- Josh reported to Jason, Courtney, and Lauren that he walked in on Seth and Sabrina in an intimate situation.
- After Danielle introduced her song at Open Mic Night as being about something personal and painful, Diane impulsively recorded the performance.


Yanking out her ear buds, Diane Bishop stares at the lyrics scrawled on the yellow pad in front of her. She has watched the video of Danielle’s performance several times, enough to have transcribed most of the lyrics, but she still doesn’t have a damn clue what the song is about.

“It’s based on something painful in my life that I recently had to come to terms with.” That is how Danielle introduced the song before she played it, and it was that introduction--with its promise of a juicy scandal--that provided Diane with the adrenaline-fueled idea to record the performance. Now, however, she isn’t sure that there is much for her to mine here.

When Samantha walks into the room, Diane closes the imported video on her computer and returns her attention to the notepad.

“What’s wrong?” Samantha asks, grabbing a cookie from the kitchen.

“I’m trying to figure out this... poem,” Diane says. “For a compilation Vision is considering.”

“You’re writing a poem?”

“No, someone else did. I’m trying to see whether it’s any good. I suppose it would help if I had any idea what it’s about.”

Samantha eagerly takes a seat beside her mother at the dining room table. Maybe she’ll have better luck, Diane thinks. Samantha is a smart kid, pulling good grades and constantly reading.

She gave a gift you’ll never even see,” Samantha reads off the yellow pad.

“Which I take to mean that ‘she’ did something for someone, but that person will never know what she did,” Diane says.

“Like a big sacrifice.” 


Samantha stops and looks at her mother. “Wait a second. Vision doesn’t publish poetry.”

For once, Diane is annoyed at her daughter for being so perceptive. “We’re looking to diversify. Rough economic climate. You know the drill.”

Shrugging, Samantha returns her attention to the lyrics. Pushing her glasses up on her nose, she reads another line: “She can’t let go of letting go.

If this stupid song is about Katherine Fitch’s son, I’m going to be pissed, Diane thinks. Her cell phone rings, and she reaches for it. She is relieved to see Sarah Fisher’s name on the caller ID; at least it is no one obnoxious.

“Hello there,” Diane answers.

“Hey,” comes Sarah’s voice over the line. “How are things going?”

“Oh, fine. Just working on a little project with Samantha. What’s up with you?”

“I got a call from one of my contacts. Graham’s records are being faxed over to my place any minute. So if there’s anything to know... I’ll have it.”

“Good. This has gone on for too long.”

“I think I’ve got it!” Samantha says suddenly.

“She sounds pretty excited,” Sarah’s voice says in Diane’s other ear.

“Um, yeah. She just cracked a big part of her project.”

Samantha wrinkles her nose. “It’s about letting go of someone, because ‘she’--the person who wrote it, I guess--isn’t good for them.”

Diane mouths, “Thank you” to her daughter and then says, for Sarah’s benefit, “Good work, kiddo. Your teacher is going to love this.”

Apparently Sarah can not only see right through her, but hear, as well. “What’s going on over there?” she asks.


“Diane. What are you up to now?”


“Place looks good,” Jason Fisher says as he pokes his head into what used to be his bedroom. Since he moved out, Alex Marshall has converted it into a home office, with a large desk and an armchair for reading.

“You don’t know how long I’ve wanted a workspace that wasn’t in my bedroom,” Alex says. “Best part of you moving out.”

“I’m glad to know I can be replaced by a big table and an ottoman.”

They laugh and walk back to the living room, which is more or less the same as Jason remembers it. Jason sits down in his old spot on the couch.

“So what’s going on?” Alex asks.

“I’m not allowed to just drop in?”

“I told you, I have an ottoman now.”

Jason smiles at the joke, but he is afraid it is not very convincing. He came here with a very specific mission: to find out what is going on with Alex and Seth Ashby and, if need be, break some difficult news about Seth and Sabrina Gage.

The next thing Alex says is, “Seth and I are officially broken up.”

Breathing an enormous sigh of relief, Jason asks, “Why didn’t you tell me sooner? What happened?”

“Remember that whole threesome thing I told you about? Well, we went to do it, and--I don’t know, it was weird. All of a sudden, it just became completely clear to me that Seth and I are never going to want the same things. So I left.”

“You just left him there?”


Alex seems more resigned than anything. Jason lets the news land for a few quiet seconds before saying, “Not a bad reason for a breakup.... How are you doing now?”

“Fine. Not awesome, but... fine. I just wish I’d realized it a lot sooner.”

“Maybe all of this had to happen for you to realize it.”

Alex nods and then abruptly shifts his tone. “There’s something else. It’s kind of gossip, but given everything you and Courtney are going through... the woman Seth wanted us to do it with--it was Sabrina.”

Jason could swear that he actually gasps at the news. It all makes sense, of course: Seth wanted them to have a threesome with Sabrina, and when Alex cut out, Seth stayed behind and... did whatever with Sabrina. Still, the circle of connectedness takes him by surprise.

“I’m so glad you told me that,” Jason admits in a rush. “Because there’s something I felt like I had to tell you, but I was worried about ruining things for you...”

“What did you have to tell me?”

“About Seth and Sabrina.” Jason pauses to gather his thoughts but realizes that his silence only makes things worse. “Don’t worry. They weren’t doing anything while you guys were still together, at least not as far as I know. But Josh caught them together--it must have been after you left.”

Alex takes a moment to absorb the news. “Yeah. So he stayed and slept with her anyway, huh?” He sighs. “I guess we don’t know that they had sex...”

“Either they had sex or they were having a sex-toy scavenger hunt in their underwear. I’m really sorry about all of this, Alex.”

“Don’t be. It’s--it confirms that it was the right choice.”

“You know I’ve never been a huge fan of Seth, anyway.”

A light smile breaks out over Alex’s lips. “You’re the one who still has to work with him.”

Jason groans. “Yeah. And Sabrina. This is gonna be so awkward.”

“They don’t know that you know, right? Maybe it doesn’t have to be awkward.”

“Yeah, but... even I have to admit that this is all adding up to something weird. She’s fought with Courtney, slept with Josh and Seth and almost you--”

“That doesn’t really prove anything...”

“No, but it keeps getting sketchier,” Jason says. “I wanted to give her the benefit of the doubt, but the more I learn...”

“Are you starting to believe Courtney more?” Alex asks.

As much as Jason does not want to own up to it, he nods. Maybe Courtney has had a point about Sabrina all along. Not that this will make the situation any easier to handle...


“I told you, it’s nothing,” Diane says into her phone. “Sarah, don’t worry about it.”

There is a contemplative silence on the other end, as if Sarah is trying to decide whether to accept Diane’s empty reassurances or call her on her crap. Usually, Diane values her friend for the latter, but today, she hopes that she opts for the former. She doesn’t need anyone getting involved in this--not even Sarah--until she knows what she is working with.

“My fax is coming in,” Sarah says abruptly. Diane hears the screeching to confirm this.

“All right, you go look at all that stuff. Call me if you find out anything good. Or bad.”

“Bye.” Sarah ends the call, and Diane does the same, setting her cell down on the table.

“Was that Aunt Sarah?” Samantha asks.

“Mm-hmm. So what did you figure out?”

Samantha ignores the pad of lyrics in front of them. “Why didn’t you want her to know what you’re really doing?”

“Because Sarah has very firm opinions about literature, and she doesn’t think that poetry should ever mix with it. In fact, she thinks most poetry is crap. I didn’t want to get her all riled up with the possibility that Vision might be stepping into--”


“It’s none of her business, okay?” She hates that look Samantha gives her: like she knows what Diane is up to and doesn’t approve. She has no way of knowing that the ‘poem’ she is analyzing is really Danielle Taylor’s song, and that Diane hopes to dig up something to make that miserable woman a little more miserable, but still... it’s as if Samantha can tell what is going on in her mother’s brain.

“It’s about a break-up,” Samantha says, returning her focus to the lyrics. “She had to let someone go, even though she’ll always be in love with them. Something along those lines.”

Diane figured as much. But who did Danielle let go? She has no leads on who the lucky guy might be, if it isn’t Ryan or Andy Fitch.

“Are we done?” Samantha asks. “Travis and Elly are playing a game on Facebook, and I said I’d play with them.”

“Who’s Elly?”

“Travis’s girlfriend. The one who stays at Aunt Molly’s sometimes. She’s Danielle’s goddaughter or something.” Samantha returns to the pantry for another cookie.

“Don’t eat too many of those.”

“I’ve only had two.”

Normally, Diane would tell her that two is one too many, but a thought seizes her brain and directs her elsewhere. “Is Elly the one who ran away from home because she found out she was adopted? Something like that?” She vaguely recalls Tim telling her about it when Travis starting seeing the girl.

“I think so,” Samantha says.

No way, Diane thinks, consumed by her thoughts. “Go play your game. Thanks for your help.”

“You’re welcome.”

Samantha bounds from the room, and Diane wastes no time reviewing the lyrics again. Oh, this is too good to be true...


“Thanks for coming by,” Sarah says as she lets her younger brother into her apartment. “You didn’t have to.”

“I was on my way home from Alex’s,” Jason says, “so it was actually kind of on the way. What’s going on?”

Sarah picks up the pages of waxy paper that arrived via fax not long ago. She has been in a daze since she received them. Maybe it was wrong to call Jason--this is a private matter--but she needs to share her discovery with someone, and Diane has a big mouth...

“I don’t even know where to start,” she says. “I got this idea to do a little digging into Graham’s life, just to be safe.”

“Because that went so well when you did it to Matt.”

She ignores the jab. “I figured it couldn’t hurt to be safe, especially with everything Brent and Claire are going through right now. Better to know if there’s anything strange about him.”

“Did you try asking him?”

“Of course. And he’s been really vague about everything.”

She can see Jason working to hide his derision for the whole situation. She can’t really blame him; springing Graham on the family at Christmas dinner, with Matt present, was not exactly the gentlest way of revealing that she was seeing someone.

“I’m guessing you found something,” he says after a long, uneasy pause.


“How bad?”

She hesitates and looks at the telltale document again, wondering if she might have invented the whole thing. It is too bizarre, and yet, it fits with the little that she knows about Graham. And it certainly explains why he went to that particular apartment building on the day Sarah followed him.

“I don’t know if it’s bad,” she says. “It’s weird.”

“Weird like... he was once suspected of being the Boston Beheader?”

“Yes, Jason, I’m dating a serial killer.” She draws a deep breath. “No, he’s... Graham has a connection to King’s Bay. It isn’t an accident he wound up here.”

Jason lifts an eyebrow. “That sounds ominous.”

“It’s not. I don’t know. Graham told me he has never been a father, but as you can see...” She holds out the birth certificate and points to the line where Graham Colville’s name is clearly listed as Father. “...that’s a lie.”

She watches as Jason’s eyes scroll up and absorb whose birth certificate it is. “Holy crap,” he mutters.


After Jason leaves, Alex tries to settle down and do some work. He has some final touch-ups to do on his book before it officially goes for publication, and though they are easy fixes, he cannot bring himself to focus on them now. Not in the wake of all that has happened recently, and especially not after receiving confirmation that Seth slept with Sabrina after all.

He knows that he has no right to be angry about that. He broke up with Seth. But it feels like a harsh reminder of how much time he wasted trying to force a relationship that was never meant to be.

As his mind wanders, he ignores the Word document on his screen and navigates to the Photos folder. He clicks through to happier times: before Seth came to King’s Bay, before Alex made such a mess of everything. Before Trevor left.

Looking at these photos and remembering how wonderful things were back then, Alex finds it impossible to believe that it went south. They had something so good, and yet... it fell right through his fingers, no matter how hard he tried to grasp onto it. Like trying to hold onto water.

A knock on the front door jolts him out of his stupor. He realizes that he has no idea how long he has been clicking through photos and dwelling on memories that he has no way of reclaiming. He considers ignoring the knock but thinks better of it; a distraction is probably what he needs right now.

He crosses the apartment and opens the door to find a man who appears vaguely familiar, but in the most distant of ways.

“Alex,” the man says.

That this man knows his name troubles him. “Can I help you?”

“It’s me. Graham... your father.”


What will Graham’s connection mean for Alex and Sarah?
What will Diane do with her newfound suspicion?
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