Footprints Home Episodes People King's Bay Step Inside Forum Episodes People King's Bay Step Inside Forum Episodes People King's Bay Step Inside Forum


- Graham admitted to having been behind Matt’s attack. He accused Sarah of having had an affair with Matt, which she denied.
- Matt intervened when Graham tried to strike Sarah.
- Graham collapsed and, shortly thereafter, was pronounced dead from a ruptured brain aneurysm. Alex arrived at the hospital just in time to hear the doctor telling Sarah about Graham’s fate.

KB Memorial Hospital


Your husband’s hemorrhage was fatal.

The statement assaults Alex Marshall as he steps into the doorway of what he thought was his stepmother’s room in the maternity ward. He feared that something might be wrong with his newborn sibling--and his skeptical side wondered if this might be some ploy on his father’s behalf to lure him to the hospital for “family time.” But never did he expect to hear anything like this.

For a split-second, he thinks he must have the wrong room. Then he scans the faces inside: Sarah. Matt. Diane.

“Wait. What?” he says as they all become aware of his presence. “My father is dead?”

“Alex…” Sarah’s eyes dart around the room before landing on the man in the white coat whom Alex has surmised is the doctor. “This is my husband’s son,” she explains.

The man’s face falls into what Alex can only describe as a sympathetic frown, an expression no doubt practiced thousands of times before.

“I’m so sorry,” he says to Alex, who registers the words as some distant utterance while the room spins around him.

“What happened?” he manages to ask. “Are you sure--?”

“Your father suffered a ruptured brain aneurysm,” the doctor says. “We tried to stabilize him, but the bleeding was too significant.”

“He went down really fast,” Matt says. “It was really sudden.”

Alex looks to Sarah. “Had he been sick? Were there signs, or…”

She shakes her head. There is a sluggish sadness about all of her movements, a tape delay in real life. Alex’s own short-circuiting brain remembers that they are not only talking about his father, but her husband--and the father of her newborn baby.

“Is the baby okay?” he asks without any kind of segue or reason.

“He’s fine. He’s in the nursery,” Sarah says.

There is something so wrong about this. They shouldn’t be discussing a newborn baby--a sibling whom Alex has yet to meet--in the same conversation as his father’s death.

Death. Dead. Graham is dead.

“Excuse me,” he says, and he bolts, nearly knocking over Tim as he hurries away from the room.


Minutes later, Diane finds Alex outside on a terrace just off the waiting area. Sunset has turned the sky a pink-purple gradient, one that will hover for hours until it finally settles into the dark blue of summertime nights in the Northwest.

“How are you doing?” she asks after observing him for a few silent seconds.

“I don’t know,” he admits. He has not shed a single tear, but his whole body is tingling with numbness. He feels dazed and not quite at home in his own being.

“I’m sorry about your father,” Diane says.


He gets the sense that there is more she came to say, more of a reason that she tracked him down than simply to check on him. But he is too shocked to pull it out of her--and how odd to have to pull anything out of Diane Bishop, anyway--so it takes almost a full minute before she comes out with it.

  Alex Marshall

“There’s something that you need to know,” she says. Her tone hints at something unpleasant, though Alex cannot imagine what could be more unpleasant than finding out his father suddenly dropped dead.

He turns away from the sunset. “What do you mean?”

“Your father--” She cuts herself off and recalibrates. “Before he collapsed, he admitted some things--he admitted that he was the one who had Matt beaten up and thrown into that building.”

What?” The accusation sounds even more ridiculous than what Alex heard when he walked into Sarah’s hospital room. “Graham isn’t--wasn’t--some kind of thug.”

“He thought Sarah was having an affair with Matt. I guess he started questioning whether the baby was really his--”

“Is it?”

“Yes! But he was jealous, and he tried to hit her, but Matt stopped him. There was clearly a lot going on under the surface that no one realized.” She falls quiet before adding, “Sarah wasn’t sure how to tell you this or what the right time would be. But I thought you needed to know. If her reactions seem off… not like you would expect… this is why.”

He wishes that he could be angry at her for sharing this, blast her for the insensitive timing, but none of this even seems real.

“I’m sorry, Alex.”

“Thanks,” he says, because he is supposed to say it.


“Oh, honey,” Paula Fisher says as she gives Sarah a hug. “I’m so sorry.”

“I don’t understand how this is happening,” Sarah says. She rests her head on her mother’s shoulder and hopes that the contact will somehow transport her back to her childhood and take her away from all of this. Of course, it doesn’t, but it still helps a little bit to know that her mother is here for her.

“Tim told us what happened,” Bill says. “About what Graham said before he collapsed.”

Sarah slowly pulls away from Paula’s hold. “I suspected that he was behind what happened, but the way he admitted it--”

“We’re just sorry you have to deal with this,” Bill says.

Sarah leans back into the flimsy pillows stacked behind her. “He tried to kill Matt. And he tried to hit me, and he said he wished he had thrown me in there with Matt, and… I married him. I was stupid enough to marry someone like that.”

“You aren’t stupid,” Paula says, squeezing her hand.

“But I didn’t realize it until it was too late.”

“Because no one suspects anything like this,” Bill says.

“I’m supposed to.” There are so many emotions swirling in her stomach that she feels full, like she might burst in anguish.

“Why don’t we have the nurses bring the baby up?” Paula suggests. “Have you thought about a name yet?”

All Sarah can do is shake her head. “How am I supposed to do this? He’s dead, and he did all these things, and I’m raising his son now. I have a baby to raise.”

“And we are here to help you,” Bill says. “You’ll get through this. We’ll all get through this.”

Sarah stares up at the ceiling, but the utter blankness of it does nothing to help her process any of this. “I don’t know how I’m even supposed to feel,” she admits.

“There’s no way you’re supposed to feel,” Paula says, leaning in again to embrace her daughter. Sarah accepts the hug, but she remains stiff, too petrified to move for fear of having to deal with the future.


Some time later, Bill heads to get some hot water with lemon for his daughter. In the hallway, he runs into Matt, who is on his way back to Sarah’s room.

“I owe you a big thank you,” Bill says. “If you hadn’t been in there, God only knows what Graham might’ve done to Sarah.”

“I never thought I’d see him lose his cool like that. You wouldn’t have believed it.”

“I hardly believe any of this.” Bill pauses as a nurse passes them. “I also owe you an apology. I never should have doubted your word. You said you weren’t taking drugs, and I should’ve believed you.”

“You gave me a job. I think that’s a pretty good apology. So thank you.”

“Sarah’s really the one responsible for that.”

  Matt Gray

“That might be the biggest relief--that she believed me the whole time. She knew Graham was behind what happened. She was just trying to prove it.” Matt glances toward the open door of Sarah’s room, a few yards away. “Just stinks that she has to deal with all this now. She doesn’t deserve it.”

“No. But we’re going to help her. All of us. She’ll get through this. And I probably shouldn’t say this, but… it’s a good thing that bastard is dead, or I would have killed him.”

“You and me both,” Matt says, and he can’t even bring himself to feel the slightest bit bad about expressing the sentiment.


Diane leads Alex back in from the terrace, and they return to Sarah’s room, where they find Paula, Tim, Jason, and Matt all keeping Sarah company.

“Hey, bud,” Jason says. He approaches Alex and pulls him into a hug. “I’m sorry.”

“Thanks.” Alex allows himself a moment to bury his face against his friend’s shoulder. When he looks up, he sees Matt right at Sarah’s bedside, handing her her cell phone.

“Was my father right?” Alex blurts out. The whole room goes silent. Alex takes a step back from Jason.

“What do you mean?” Sarah asks, her voice tinged with discomfort.

“You two--” He points to her and Matt. “Were you having an affair?”

“That baby is your father’s,” Sarah says.

“That isn’t what I asked.”

“Alex--” Jason comes forward to try and calm Alex down, but Alex pushes him away.

“Something made him crack,” Alex says. “He wouldn’t have done the stuff you say he did for no reason.”

“He obviously had a lot of issues,” Matt says. “Issues no one knew about--”

“And then he just dropped dead out of nowhere? That’s really convenient.”

“Not the time for this!” Matt warns him.

Jason makes another move toward Alex, and this time he gets a hold on him. “Come on. Let’s go home.” He motions for Tim to help him out.

“He had a condition that none of us knew about,” Sarah says. “Probably not even him. It had nothing to do with the rest of this--”

“Except that it just happened to burst while he was trying to find out if your baby was really his,” Alex says.

Tim gets an arm around Alex’s torso, and he and Jason maneuver Alex to the door.

“Let’s get you home,” Jason says again. He mouths, “Sorry” to Sarah just before he and Tim get Alex out of the room.

Paula goes to shut the door. “He’s in shock,” she says reassuringly.

Sarah knows that she is telling the truth. She and Matt have not slept together since well before their divorce. She never cheated on Graham. But she cannot shake the sense that Alex has a point--that she should have known better, that she set all of this in motion by marrying Graham in the first place.


Will Alex soften toward Sarah once he calms down?
Will raising Graham’s child be difficult for Sarah?
Was Diane right to tell Alex the truth about Graham?
Discuss all this and more in the Footprints Forum!

Next Episode



Tuesday, August 07, 2012

For a printable version,
click here.

Home / Episodes / People / King's Bay / Step Inside / Forum