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GH Fanworks/Fanfic/Fanart: We Do It Better

Chapter 15

“Ladies and gentlemen, I want to thank you for attending this benefit for the Stone Cates Memorial AIDS Wing.” Alan waited for everyone to finish applauding before he finished speaking. “For the first time ever, we are going to auction off dances. We have five lovely ladies who have agreed to participate, each representing a different part of our hospital. First, from the General Hospital board, Carly Jacks.” There was a smattering of polite applause as Carly stepped onto the stage.

Alan then introduced the next volunteer for the auction. “From the PCU nursing program, Michelle Soltini.” Robin hugged her daughter before the young woman walked onto the stage and stood next to Carly. The applause for her was much louder than for Carly and Michael happily led it.

Alan continued on with the introductions. “Maxie Jones from the volunteer program.” Matt whistled as his girlfriend climbed up on stage. “Senior OR nurse Elizabeth Spencer.” Lucky and Patrick both cheered her on. “And finally Dr. Robin Soltini.”

Robin climbed up on the stage as the whole crowd went wild. Robin’s connection to the Nurse’s Ball went back to the very first one and her speech after Stone’s death was something no one would ever forget. The fact that she was here, twenty years after her initial diagnosis, was proof that HIV did not have to be a death sentence.

“This is how this will work – there will be five dances. Highest bid wins the dance but you cannot dance with the same woman more than once – we want to give everyone a chance.” Alan winked at the audience and all the guests. “Let’s begin with Mrs. Jacks.”

Alan started the auction and Jax won a dance with his wife for a hundred dollars. Patrick got the first dance with Michelle for $200, Lucky with Liz for $150, Matt with Maxie for $201 and Keith paid $200 for the chance to dance with his date. After they danced, the women returned to the stage for the next round of bidding.

The second round had Carly with her son Morgan, Michelle dancing with Michael, Patrick with Liz, AJ with Maxie and Lucky stealing in for a dance with Robin. The song for the second dance ended and everyone came back up on the stage for the third round of bidding. This time Carly danced with Max, Michelle and AJ danced together, Matt took Liz for a spin around the floor while his brother danced with Maxie. Alan took advantage of a brief lull in bidding to steal away Robin for a dance.

“Alright folks, dance four.” Robin looked out into the crowd and saw Patrick straighten his tie. He winked at her and waited for Alan to continue. “First off, Mrs. Jacks.” Everyone stood there, unsure of what to do. Carly did not have many friends thanks to her many schemes and the three men who would actually bid on her already had. Alan cleared his throat. Finally Keith decided to bite the bullet. “Fifty dollars.”

No one else bid so Keith walked over and offered his hand to a clearly offended Carly. She rolled her eyes and stepped off the stage. The rest of the bidding went smoother as Lucky got the chance to dance with Michelle, AJ got Liz, and Michael bid on, and won, a dance with his old friend Maxie. Alan was just about to announce the bidding to start for Robin when Patrick’s voice cut through the air. “I bid one thousand dollars for Robin.”

Robin shook her head in disbelief while Alan declared Patrick the winner of the dance. Patrick walked over and held his hand out to her. “Shall we?”

Robin took his hand and let him lead her out onto the floor. “Patrick…”

“I promised you a dance Robin.” He slid his hand around her waist and pulled her close. “You are still a perfect fit.”

The music started up and, before she had a chance to respond, he swept her across the floor to the song he had requested the DJ to play.


We've been friends for a long, long time
You had your lover and I had mine
One night I looked at you and I think we both knew
Some night I'd hold you in my arms

Maybe tonight we'll find each other
Maybe tonight you'll turn around and I'll be there
If the timing is right we could finally get together
We might just fall in love and it may be tonight




It was like the world disappeared as he twirled her out and back into his embrace once again. Neither one noticed the nasty glares being thrown their way by another couple on the floor or the man who entered the ballroom and stood in the back, just watching them dance.


Two hearts on fire can't live like this
A burning desire we can't resist
Who's gonna break the ice, who's gonna roll the dice
All it would take is just one kiss

Maybe tonight we'll find each other
Maybe tonight you'll turn around and I'll be there
If the timing is right we could finally get together
We might just fall in love and it may be tonight

Maybe tonight we'll find each other
Maybe tonight you'll turn around and I'll be there
If the timing is right we could finally get together
We might just fall in love and it may be tonight

Maybe tonight we'll find each other
Maybe tonight you'll turn around and I'll be there
If the timing is right we could finally get together
We might just fall in love and it may be tonight
We might just fall in love and it may be tonight



Patrick dipped Robin down in his arms and slowly brought her back up, reliving the final moments of their first dance together years ago. He took one last look at her and then leaned over and kissed Robin on the forehead. She was left speechless as he reluctantly led her back to the stage for the last dance.

Alan helped Robin back onto the stage and was getting ready to speak when the man who had just joined the party spoke. “Ten thousand dollars for the next dance with Dr. Soltini."


Song: Maybe Tonight by Vince Gill

Edited by cmahorror.
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Chapter 16

The man walked slowly to the stage, his eyes never leaving Robin. He put out his hand to Robin. “I’ll make it fifty thousand if we can be alone on the dance floor.”

Carly jumped down from the stage and hissed at him. “What the hell do you think you are doing?”

“Dancing with Robin, right Alan?”

Alan turned to Robin. “Robin, are you okay with this?”

She took a deep breath and nodded. “Yes.” She took his hand and followed him past Carly and out into the middle of the dance floor. “What are you doing?

He wrapped his arms around her. “Dancing with an old friend.”

Carly glared at the couple one last time, furious that Jason had once again chosen Robin over her, before she grabbed Jax's hand and stormed out of the ball.


Same bed but it feels just a little bit bigger now
Our song on the radio but it don't sound the same
When our friends talk about you, all it does is just tear me down
'Cause my heart breaks a little when I hear your name

It all just sounds like oooooh…
Mmm, too young, too dumb to realize

That I should've bought you flowers and held your hand
Should've gave you all my hours when I had the chance
Take you to every party 'cause all you wanted to do was dance
Now my baby's dancing but she's dancing with another man



Robin wasn’t sure what was going on right now. The last she had heard, Jason had moved to Europe with Sam to find a doctor to help him with his memory issues. “Jason…”

He gently placed his finger to her lips. “We’ll talk after we dance.”


My pride, my ego, my needs, and my selfish ways
Caused a good strong woman like you to walk out my life
Now I'll never, never get to clean up the mess I made, ohh…
And it haunts me every time I close my eyes

It all just sounds like oooooh…
Mmm, too young, too dumb to realize

That I should've bought you flowers and held your hand
Should've gave you all my hours when I had the chance
Take you to every party 'cause all you wanted to do was dance
Now my baby's dancing but she's dancing with another man



Patrick stood next to Michelle, practically seething with anger. Jason had hurt Robin horribly in the past and he couldn’t believe that the man had the nerve to even come near her again. Michelle gently touched his arm. “Mom doesn’t feel that way about him anymore.”

“How do you know?”

Michelle winked at him. “Trust me – I know.”


Although it hurts I'll be the first to say that I was wrong
Oh, I know I'm probably much too late
To try and apologize for my mistakes
But I just want you to know

I hope he buys you flowers, I hope he holds your hand
Gives you all his hours when he has the chance
Take you to every party 'cause I remember how much you loved to dance
Do all the things I should have done when I was your man
Do all the things I should have done when I was your man



“Thank you for the dance.” Jason led Robin off the floor and to a nearby table. “Now, can I ask you a question?”

Robin sat down and braced herself, fully prepared for him to question her about her decision to tell AJ the truth about Michael’s paternity. “Of course.”

Jason stared her straight in the eyes. “Why won’t you help me?”

“Help you?” Robin’s confusion quickly became apparent. “I’m sorry, I’m a little lost here. Help you with what?”

“I asked my surgeon to consult with you on my case, to review the protocol suggested by the doctor I found in Europe, but he said you were too busy to take on my case.” Jason had suspected that Dr. Drake was lying to him and Robin’s reaction confirmed it. “He never spoke to you about my case – did he?”

“Robin?” Patrick had arrived at the table just in time to hear what was going on. “Let me explain…”

“Explain?” Robin stood up, got in his face and began yelling at him. “How dare you interfere with a patient’s treatment! You had no right to tell Jason I wouldn’t help him.”

“You work in my department and I have every right to determine where you are best utilized.” Patrick glared at Jason. “Mr. Morgan’s case is not a good use of your time.”

“That is still my decision to make – I work with you, not for you Patrick and you need to remember that.” Robin turned around and smiled at Jason. “You can come by my office on Tuesday morning and we will go over your case together.”

“I can do that.” Jason smiled at his ex-girlfriend. “How about we make it lunch time so I can take you out for a bite to eat? I want the chance to talk about more than my medical condition.”

“No, absolutely not.” Patrick was livid. “This man is the target of a dozen different mobsters and…”

“And I can make my own decisions.” Robin nodded her head. “Lunch would be nice. Will Sam be joining us?”

Keith interrupted before Jason could answer. “Robin, I’m sorry to interrupt but I just got a page and I need to head to the hospital.”

“I can take her home.” Patrick was quick to offer to drive Robin home. He needed to get her alone so he could explain why he had turned down Jason's request.

Robin ignored him. “Keith, do you think you can drop me and Michelle off on your way? We need to relieve Molly of her babysitting duties anyhow.”

Michelle was already grabbing her and her mother’s coats. She leaned up and kissed Patrick on the cheek. “Thank you for bringing me tonight.” She gave him a hug and whispered in his ear. “I’ll work on mom for you.”

“Thanks.”

“I’ll expect Mr. Morgan’s files on my desk first thing Monday morning Dr. Drake.” Robin took her coat from Michelle and put it on, pulling her hair out of it as she spoke.

She linked her arm through Keith’s and, after a quick goodbye to the assembled guests, walked with him and Michelle out the door.


Song: When I Was Your Man by Bruno Mars

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Chapter 17

Patrick stormed up to the nurse’s station and threw his chart down in front of Elizabeth. “I thought I made it clear that I wanted my patient’s vitals checked every hour on the hour – why are my orders being ignored?”

Elizabeth rolled her eyes and calmly took the chart. She reviewed the notes and shook her head. “Doctor, we are following the notes you made yourself on the chart and they state that the patient’s vitals are to be taken every other hour on the hour.”

He grabbed the chart and reviewed his notes, feeling incredibly stupid. He had spent all day yesterday trying to get Robin to talk to him but she refused to answer his calls or texts. “I apologize.” His apology was short but sincere. “Please continue doing what I originally noted.”

“Yes doctor.” Liz took the chart back from him and filed it away. “Just talk to her Patrick – help her understand why you did it.”

Patrick shook his head. “I have been trying to but she won’t even talk to me. I know she starts her shift in ten…”

“Dr. Soltini won’t be in today.” Epiphany walked over to the nurse’s station.

“Why?” Patrick’s anger turned to worry instantly.

Michelle, who followed Epiphany up to the desk, answered. “Because she is helping me out. Rylee has strep throat and mom didn’t want me to miss my first day here with Nurse Johnson.” As part of the nursing program she was shadowing the head nurse.

“Of course she didn’t.” It was typical Robin – think of others before herself.

Michelle took a chance and smiled at Epiphany – the nurse had a soft spot for her mom and daughter. “Might I speak to Dr. Drake for a moment in private?”

“If it will stop him from barking at my nurses, go for it.” Epiphany began reviewing charts to see if there were any changes in medicines or treatments her patients needed while Michelle dealt with the cantankerous doctor.

“Thanks Nurse Johnson.” Michelle led Patrick over to the couches and sat down with him. “We need to talk – she is furious with you.”

“I know but…”

“Do you even understand why she is so mad?” Michelle and her mother had talked while waiting to get Rylee seen at the clinic yesterday and then again at home so she understood exactly where Robin was coming from.

“Look, Jason is…”

“Jason Morgan is her past and she would never get involved with him again for many reasons but that doesn’t mean she can’t treat him. She prides herself on remaining objective and being a great doctor no matter who the patient is.” Michelle was trying to get Patrick to understand so he could mend his relationship with her mom.

“But what he did to her…” Patrick was trying to defend his decision but Michelle quickly cut him off.

“Was years ago – she has made her peace with it.” She shook her head. “You need to understand that my mom is a strong, independent woman who has been making decisions for herself for years. You treated her like a first year intern, not a staff doctor who has been practicing medicine for years.”

He flopped back on the couch. “Can I fix this?”

“Yes but you need to make her understand that you were never doubting her abilities or judgement.”

“I would never do that.” Patrick was offended that Michelle even thought that was possible.

“I know you wouldn’t but that is what mom thinks you did.” Michelle stood up. “Look, I have to get back to Epiphany but mom is waiting for me to bring Jason’s file home with me. Maybe you could take it to her along with some lunch?” She pulled her keychain out of her pocket and took a key off it. “We keep the door locked – just make sure you leave it on the table by the door before you leave.”

Patrick took the key and hugged the young woman. “Thank you Michelle.”

She hugged him back. “I want her to find someone to spend the rest of her life with, to be there for her no matter what, and I think you might be that man. Don’t prove me wrong.”

Patrick let out a small laugh. “That sounds almost like a threat.”

“Just remember that my mom is an excellent shot and my grandmother has taught me some of her best moves. You hurt my mom and you will find out just how good a student I was for both of them.” Michelle let her words sink in as she headed back to the nurse’s station.

Patrick stared at the key in his hand and sighed. He didn’t have any surgeries scheduled for the day and the only consults he had could wait until tomorrow. He walked back over to the nurse’s station. “Liz, please clear my schedule for the day – I have a house call to make.”

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Patrick quietly unlocked the door and walked into the house quietly. “Robin?”

There was no response so he set the bag of food on the floor and file folder containing Jason’s medical records on the table. He softly shut the door and walked into the living room. He heard the soft sounds coming from the television of Joy, Anger, Sadness, Fear and Disgust – they were watching Inside Out again.

“Robin?” He was trying to announce himself without scaring her or Rylee. He walked into the living room and saw why neither one of them was responding to him – they were passed out cold on the sofa. He walked over and took in the sight for a moment before he gently laid a blanket over their sleeping bodies.

Patrick started to walk out of the room when he heard a small voice say his name. “Uncle Patrick?”

“Hey little one.” Patrick turned around and was by Rylee’s side in a flash. “How are you feeling?”

She pouted at him with big, brown eyes. “Throat hurts.”

“I know.” He knelt down and the little girl slid off the couch and into his arms. “What would you say to some mint chocolate chip ice cream?”

Rylee nodded her head. “Thank you.”

“Okay, I have a bag by the front door with a big carton of ice cream just for you and some burgers for me and grandma. Want to help me get them?”

Rylee slid out of his embrace and ran to the front door. “Let’s go.”

“Be right there baby girl.” He turned around and covered Robin with the blanket. “Get some rest Soltini – I need you healthy if we are going to work together on Jason’s case.”

“Uncle Patrick I need help.” The little girl was dragging the bag down the hall.

Patrick smiled at the sight before walking over and picking her and the food up. “Let’s go into the kitchen and see if we can figure out where grandma hides the Sprite.”

Edited by cmahorror.
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Chapter 18

Robin stretched out her arms and sat up on the couch. She rolled her neck around and yawned. She had needed that nap and Rylee…

Where was Rylee? She had been lying with Robin when they fell asleep but the little girl was not in the living room now. Robin jumped off the couch and began calling for her. “Rylee?”

“In here grandma.” Robin heard her granddaughter call to her from her bedroom. She ran towards the voice and was surprised to hear Rylee admonishing someone. “No, they have to be the same color.” Frustration filled her voice as she hollered for help. “Grandma!”

Robin shook her head and walked in, fully expecting Michelle to be in there with her daughter. She was shocked when she saw Patrick sitting on the floor of Rylee’s room instead. “What are you doing here?”

“I came by with burgers, ice cream, Jason’s file and an apology.”

“An apology?” Robin leaned against the side of the doorway and crossed her arms.

Patrick stood up and walked over to her. “I should have never told Jason you wouldn’t work with him. I should have presented you his case and let you make the decision on your own. You are a brilliant and compassionate doctor who deserves to be treated with respect and I didn’t do that.”

“And…”

“And what?” Patrick wasn’t sure what she wanted him to stay.

“And you need to explain to me why you did it but not until after you tell me why you are arguing with a four year old.” Robin brushed past him and sat down next to her granddaughter. “What’s going on baby girl?”

“Uncle Patrick was trying to match Olaf on the blue square with Olaf on the red square.” Rylee stuck her lower lip out in a full pout.

“He didn’t!” Robin gave the little girl the shocked reaction she was looking for before playfully glaring at Patrick. “You can’t do that.”

“I know and I tried to tell him but he didn’t listen.” Rylee crossed her arms and sighed dramatically.

Patrick watched the two of them and was once again amazed by how much like Robin Rylee was. He sat back down on the floor and smiled apologetically at the little girl. “I am so sorry – I won’t make that mistake again.”

“Okay.” The little girl was quick to forgive the doctor. She looked at her grandma. “Uncle Patrick and I had ice cream and it didn’t hurt my throat.”

Robin rolled her eyes but decided she would chastise Patrick later. “That was very nice of Uncle Patrick but next time you need to wait until mommy or I tell you it’s okay.”

“Sorry Robin.” Patrick did feel bad, he hadn’t thought that Robin or Michelle might not have wanted her to have the ice cream. “It’s just that Michelle said she had strep throat and I thought that…”

Rylee climbed into her grandma’s lap and kissed her cheek. “I’m sorry grandma.”

Robin sighed. “It’s fine – I know your throat hurts and I bet the ice cream tasted really good. Did you tell Uncle Patrick thank you?”

“Yes she did.” Patrick leaned over and gently tickled the little girl’s belly.

She giggled in response. “Grandma, do you want to play with us?”

“Sure baby girl.” Robin hugged Ry close and then winked at Patrick. “Shuffle them up Drake and try not to cheat this time – we are both watching you.”

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


“Michelle?” Carly approached the young woman as she was getting on the elevator. “May I speak to you for a minute?”

Michelle resisted the urge to roll her eyes as she answered the woman. Michael had warned Michelle that his mother had no problem using anyone, especially Robin’s daughter, against her. “I am actually in a hurry to get home.”

“This will just take a minute – I wanted to talk to you about your stepmother.”

Michelle glared at the woman. “My mother,” she emphasized the word mother, “is at home taking care of my daughter who is sick.”

“Isn’t that a little dangerous?” Carly would never willingly leave one of her children alone with Robin.

Michelle had already heard about how hateful Carly was from many people but this was ridiculous. “Still safer than living with a mobster.”

Carly smirked at the young woman. It was obvious that Michelle had inherited her mother’s sanctimonious attitude even without there being a blood tie between them. “I see that Robin has told you about what happened years ago with Michael.”

“Actually Michael told me. He wanted me to know how much he appreciated my mom telling everyone who his dad was.” Michelle took great pleasure in the look of shock that crossed Carly’s face. “We have a class together at PCU.”

“Michael has been misled by AJ and the Quartermaines and you might want to remember that I am on the board of this hospital. A little respect might be in order.” Carly straightened up as she spoke, taking advantage of every inch she had on the young woman.

“And you might want to remember that you have to earn respect, at least with me.” Michelle wasn’t about to let this blonde bitch push her around. “Now, if you are done threatening me…”

Michelle went to push the elevator button but Carly stepped in front of it. “Let’s start over – I was hoping to make amends with Robin and do something special for her and her family. I understand that your father passed away a few years ago – a firefighter who died in the line of duty?”

“Yes.” Michelle was not going to willingly give this woman any information about her father.

“Here’s the thing – I want to create a scholarship in your father’s name but I need more information and I cannot find it online.” Carly tilted her head as she questioned Michelle. “In fact, I can’t find a record of a firefighter with the last name of Soltini in Oregon at all. Strange, huh?”

“Maybe you are just looking in the wrong place.” Michelle’s phone went off and she smiled at the message waiting for her. It was a picture of Patrick and Rylee playing Memory sent from her mom’s phone. The fact that her mom hadn’t kicked him out was a good start. “Look, I really have to go but if you really want to do something for my mom and our family then just leave us alone to live our lives.”

“But…”

The elevator doors opened and Michelle pushed past Carly to jump onto it. Before the blonde could move, the doors were shutting. “Bye.”

Michelle waited until the doors shut before she texted her mom and asked her to watch Ry for a little bit longer so she could go over her notes for her Bio test the next day. Fortunately her mom instantly agreed and Michelle texted Michael to tell him she was on her way over to see him. She didn't believe for one second that his mother wanted to mend fences with her mom.

No, Michael’s mom was up to something and, working together, they would figure out what it was and how to stop it.

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Chapter 19

“Michelle?” Michael was waiting at the door of the Quartermaine mansion for the young woman as soon as she pulled up the drive. Her text had worried him. “What’s wrong?”

“Your mom approached me today.” Michelle let him lead her into the living room and she sat down on the couch with him. “She wanted to know about my dad.”

“Your dad?” Michael was surprised. “Why?”

“I think to cause problems.” Michelle knew that she could trust him. “You see…”

“Hey guys.” AJ walked in to see Michael and Michelle sitting together on the couch. He had sensed that there was more to their relationship than either one was letting on and he was thrilled about it. From what he had seen, Robin's daughter was a good match for his son. “Good to see you two getting along.”

Michael took Michelle’s hand in his. “Michelle is here because she thinks that Carly is up to something.”

AJ sat down in one of the armchairs. “It’s Carly, when isn’t she up to something?”

“Something involving Robin, maybe a little payback for telling the truth about my paternity?” Michael hated that his mother couldn’t let this vendetta against Robin go. He squeezed Michelle’s hand. “What were you saying?”

Michelle knew that her mother was friends with AJ and decided to take a chance. “Okay, but what I am about to tell you cannot be repeated outside of this room. There are only a few people who know the truth about why we moved to Port Charles.”

“I thought you came here for nursing school?” Michael was confused.

“That’s why we decided on Port Charles but we needed to leave town.” Michelle took a deep breath. “My mom was being stalked and the guy attacked her one night.”

“Is Robin okay?” AJ would always be protective of Michelle's mom.

“Yes, he was caught and put in jail for assault but we knew we needed to start over. PCU offered the perfect excuse to move.” Michelle was working up to the important part of the story.

“Well at least he is in jail but I don’t see what that has to do with your dad?” Michael was confused. “I mean, your dad has passed away long before this guy came around.”

“Carly came to me today and started asking about my dad, about how she was wanting to create a scholarship in his name as a way of mending fences with my mom.” Michelle rolled her eyes at the very notion. “Apparently she was under the misconception that I was born yesterday if she thought I would buy that line for one second. I quickly cleared that up.”

“Yeah, Carly really isn’t the altruistic type.” AJ was in agreement with Michelle, Carly was up to something. “So she was asking questions about your dad…”

She took a deep breath. “She made a comment about how she couldn’t find any record of a firefighter with his name.”

“There must be a reason for that – maybe an error in the database or a misspelling?” Michael could think of several reasons right off the top of his head.

Michelle shook her head. “There could be but the truth is that there is only one reason and that is because his last name wasn’t Soltini – we changed our names so that this guy couldn’t find us after he got out of prison.”

“And Carly must have figured out that you changed your name which is why she is digging into your past.” AJ shook his head. “She knows that Robin has a secret and wants to pay her back for revealing Michael’s paternity.”

“You would think she could let this go after all this time.” Michael stood up and began pacing the floor. “I mean, it was almost 20 years ago and I have a great life.”

“One that doesn’t include her or Sonny.” AJ reminded him. “Carly can’t see that though, she just sees that Robin has something to hide and she wants expose her – to hell with the fact that Robin has a very good reason for hiding this.”

“That doesn’t matter to her – all she cares about is revenge.” Michael sat back down and wrapped his arms around Michelle. “We will do everything in our power to stop her and protect all of you.”

AJ picked up his phone. “There is one more person we need to include in this though.”

“Who?” Michelle couldn’t imagine who else needed to be told the truth.

“My brother.“ AJ made the call. “Jason, I need you to get over here to the Quartermaine mansion ASAP. It’s about Robin.”

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Robin sat on the bed and smiled as she listened to Patrick reading Rylee her bedtime story. The little girl had begged him to try and do a princess voice and he was making a valiant effort. “Belle pulled the Beast to safety. ‘Please don't leave me,’ she sobbed.”

“You don’t sound like a princess.” Rylee cuddled in closer to Patrick on the bed and pointed at the book. “Try again.”

“Rylee…” Robin was trying to rein her granddaughter in – Patrick was a pushover for the little girl.

Rylee looked up at him with pleading eyes. “Please Uncle Patrick?”

Patrick shook his head but raised his voice an octave. "’Please don't leave me,’ she sobbed. ‘I love you."

Rylee yawned and smiled, finally satisfied with the voice now that the story was almost over. “Thank you.”

“As she spoke, the last rose petal fell. Then a shower of sparks filled the air. The Beast began to transform...,” Patrick turned the page, “...into a handsome prince!” He turned the last page of the book and finished the story. “The enchanted objects were filled with joy as they too turned back into humans and watched their prince and Belle fall in love anew. The end.”

“Thank you Uncle Patrick.” The little girl gave Patrick a kiss on the cheek. “Good night.”

“Good night little one – I hope you feel better tomorrow.” He kissed her on the forehead and smiled at Robin. “I’ll get Jason’s file and meet you in the living room with some wine, if that is okay with you?”

Robin nodded as she tucked her granddaughter into bed. “I’ll be right there.” She waited until Patrick was out of the room before she kissed Rylee good night. “How are you feeling?”

“Uncle Patrick’s ice cream made me all better.” Rylee yawned once again.

Robin smiled at her. “I'm sure it did. You really like Uncle Patrick don’t you?”

Rylee nodded her head. “I love Uncle Patrick – he’s the best.”

“Yes he is.” Robin sighed and headed out of the bedroom. “I love you Ry.”

“Love you too Grandma.” The little girl closed her eyes and started drifting off to sleep as Robin turned out the light and headed to the living room.

She walked in to see Patrick sitting on the couch with the promised wine and file. “Now I have had a chance to…”

“Why did you try to keep me off Jason’s case?” Robin sat down next to him and took a glass of wine off the table. She sipped it slowly while she waited for his answer.

Patrick took a moment to sip his own wine before he answered her. “I want to make it clear – my decision to not tell you had absolutely nothing to do with my belief in your abilities. You are the most gifted doctor I have ever had the pleasure of knowing and working with. Your compassion, intelligence and ability to connect with your patients, to try and find the best option for them, even if it is surgery, is something that amazes me more every single day. You are the first doctor I think of whenever I want a consult.”

“Except for Jason?”

“Except for the man who broke your heart and turned his back on you.” Patrick clarified. “The man who put your life in danger dozens of times and then had the nerve to act like you were a horrible person for having the courage to tell the truth. I didn’t do it because I don’t trust you – I did it because I don’t trust him.”

Robin just nodded her head, choosing not to interrupt him as he spoke.

“Robin, Jason Morgan is a dangerous man who has chosen to spend his life being a criminal. I can’t do anything about the past but I will do my damndest to protect you now and in the future.”

She took a moment to consider what he was saying. “I understand what you are saying but, in the end, it is my decision to make. I appreciate your concern but I am a doctor and a damn good one at that. To me Jason is just another patient and one who desperately needs our help.”

“So you forgive me?” Patrick asked her hopefully.

She smirked at him. “This time but don’t let it happen again.” She set down her wine glass and picked up the file. “Now, about this protocol…”

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Chapter 20

Robin couldn’t help but laugh as she and Jason talked at the restaurant. The actual discussion of the protocol had gone quickly and they had gone to Mr. Chang’s for some cheap Chinese food and to reminisce about old times. “I still can’t believe that you jumped into that lake fully clothed.”

“I still can’t believe that you stripped down in front of some girl you hardly knew and didn’t even blink.” Robin took a bite of her beef with broccoli and laughed. “Though you were enough of a gentleman to not look when I changed into your t-shirt.”

“I didn’t know any better at the time – I was still recovering from a brain injury.” Jason smiled at her. “If it had been a month later…”

Robin swatted at him jokingly. “Stop – you wouldn’t have and you know it.”

Jason sighed. “You’re right, I wouldn’t have because I respected you too much. I still do.”

Robin needed to change the subject. “So where is Sam?”

“Sam is with her mom in Europe doing some shopping before she heads home.” Jason had just spoken to his wife before he met with Robin. “She can’t wait to meet you.”

“Really?” She was surprised given her and Jason’s history.

“Yes.” He took a deep breath. “I owe you a huge apology. I should have never asked you to lie about Michael’s paternity.”

Robin fell back in her seat, completely caught off-guard by his confession. “Jason…”

“I couldn’t see it back then – how much it hurt you to be a part of that lie. How my decision to put Carly and Michael first hurt you.” Jason looked away for a moment and then back at her. “I also know that I was wrong to turn my back on you when you told AJ the truth.”

“Jason, I wasn’t completely innocent in this – I should have never let it go on as long as it did.” Robin shook her head. “I made the decision to tell AJ partly out of anger with Carly and partly because it was the right thing to do. The truth is that I should have told the truth the moment I found out about Michael but I let my feelings for you stop me. And, even though I regret how I did it, I don’t regret telling him – especially when I see him and AJ together.”

“I agree and I understand it even more now that…” Jason hesitated.

“Now that…” Robin encouraged him to continue.

“Sam and I are having a baby, a son.” His smiled filled his face. “That’s why she and Alexis are shopping – Alexis is having a blast spoiling her first grandchild.”

Robin smiled back at him. “I understand the feeling. Congratulations – that is wonderful news! You are going to be wonderful with him, just like you were with Michael.”

“That’s why I needed to see you – to let you know that I understand now why you did it. That AJ deserved the chance to be Michael’s father. If someone tried to keep me away from my son…” Jason reached over and patted Robin’s hand. “Thank you for doing the right thing when no one else would.”

“Thank you for forgiving me for doing it.” Finally, after all these years, Robin felt a sense of closure regarding the whole situation. “So, have you told Alan and Monica about this?”

Jason laughed. “Monica has a room at the Quartermaine mansion ready for him and Alan has his first stethoscope hanging on the wall. It’s strange to think that my son will know them as his grandparents even though I still can’t think of them as my parents. But now that I am working with them…”

“Wait – what do you mean you are working with them?” Robin hadn’t really had a chance to speak to anyone about Jason since her return.

“I am the new head of security for ELQ.” He loved the sound of her laughter at the news. “I know how it sounds but I realized when Michael turned his back on Carly and Sonny that this kid was smarter than I was. I contacted Alan and have been working overseas while I was meeting with this doctor on my memory issues. No one knows about it yet but Sam will be home next week and then it will all be out in the open.”

“I am so proud of you.” Robin was thrilled that Jason was reconnecting with his family. “You know I told you once that I had faith in your future – thank you for proving me right.”

“Thank you for being there for me no matter what.” He looked at his watch. “I have a meeting to get to but I would love to have you, your daughter and granddaughter over to meet Sam. Maybe even bring that doctor boyfriend of yours with you?”

“Keith and I just friends.” Robin stood up and reached for her coat. Rylee had another day before she would be allowed back into the daycare so she needed to relieve the sitter.

“I’m not talking about Keith,” Jason took her coat and helped her put it on, “I’m talking about Patrick Drake.”

“Patrick and I are just…”

“Robin, you can lie to everyone else but don’t lie to me.” He winked at her. “I know you Robin and I can see how much you care about him. Don’t let what I did to you or losing your husband or even Stone stop you from taking a chance on the man, even if he is an arrogant son of a bitch.”

Robin smiled at Jason’s description of the man. “That is only part of Patrick Drake.” She coughed and saw a look of concern pass over Jason’s face. “Just a dry throat, calm down.” She looked at her watch. “I really need to get going too but I will talk to you later.”

“Count on it.” Jason hugged her goodbye and waited for her to walk out the door before he pulled out his phone. His face turned cold as made the call. “I’ll be there in 20 minutes.”

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


“I was so happy to hear from you.” Carly had been watching the door at Jake’s, waiting for her old friend to come in. She pushed a beer towards Jason as he sat down at the table. “I know that I was a little rude to you the other night but…”

Jason ignored the beer. “Leave her alone Carly.”

“What?” Carly was incredulous. “Oh my God – you cannot seriously still be hung up on little miss perfect? What about Sam?”

“Sam is on her way home and she cannot wait to meet Robin and her family.” Jason leaned over on the table and stared Carly straight in the eyes. “Robin and her family are off limits. She has built a wonderful life and I will not let you or anyone else hurt her.”

“She ruined our lives Jason. Her telling AJ the truth about Michael’s paternity…”

“He deserved to know the truth and Michael’s life is only better because AJ is in it.” Jason’s time away from Carly and Sonny had given him some clarity about the past few years. “AJ has his faults but he loves Michael.”

“Since when do you defend the Quartermaines? And why haven’t you checked on Sonny since your return to Port Charles?” Carly’s ex-husband was bi-polar and, during a manic episode, had attacked his oldest son when the young man came over to check on him. Dante was fine but he had his father committed while they tried to find the correct combination of medications to help him.

“I told Sonny before I left that I was out. Sam and I are building a life together free from the mob,” he finally took a drink of his beer, “and your craziness.”

“Excuse me?” Carly was fast moving from upset to pissed off. “I am the only one who has had your back over the years.”

“You destroyed one of the best things in my life and used your son to do it – I won’t let you do to Sam what I let you do to Robin.” He stood up.

“She brought whatever happened onto herself. She told a truth that wasn’t hers to tell.” Carly stood up and glared at him. “Besides, little miss holier-than-thou has a few secrets of her own that she is hiding from us.”

Jason slammed his fist down on the table. “Enough!”

Carly jumped back from the table. “Jason…”

“No Carly – it has been years and it is time to let this go. I didn’t have the courage to do the right thing before but I do now.”

“What do you mean?” Carly didn’t like the look in his eyes.

“You and me Carly, we’re done. Don’t call, don’t stop by my house and, if you see me coming your way, get out of my line of sight.”

“Jason, you don’t mean that.” She began to cry and reached for his arm.

Jason quickly pulled away. “I have never meant anything more. You are dead to me Carly.” He stepped forward and glared at the woman. “And if anything happens to Robin or her family, there will not a place on this earth you can hide from me.”

Having said what he needed to, Jason threw a twenty on the table and stalked out of the bar, leaving Carly behind for good.

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Chapter 21

Robin took another drink of water as she reviewed the file, hoping to stave off her cough. Rylee was finally back in daycare and she had a lot of work to catch up on from being off work to take care of the little girl.

“Knock, knock.” Keith popped his head in the door and smiled at Robin. “I take it Rylee is better?”

Robin nodded her head. “Yes, she is back at daycare and doing much better thank you.”

He sat down in the chair across from her desk and smiled at her. “Great – then maybe I could convince Grandma Robin to take a night off and have dinner with me?”

Robin sighed. As much as she hated to admit it, Jason had been right about her feelings for Patrick and it was time to end things with Keith before they went too far. She had no intentions of leading the man on to a future that didn’t exist for them. “Keith, I have enjoyed our time together but…”

Keith sat up in the chair. “But what?”

“But I am afraid that you and I are just on different pages regarding how we feel about each other.” She stood up and sat down in the second chair next to him. “I like you but only as a friend.”

“Come on Robin, you can’t deny that there is something between us more than friendship.” Keith had never been dumped before and Robin certainly was not going to be the first.

“I just don’t see you that way. I’ve tried but…”

“This is about Drake, isn’t it?” The words came out a lot snarkier than he had intended but there was no denying he meant it.

“No,” Robin shook her head, “this is about me and how I feel. Whether or not I am interested in Patrick has nothing to do with my feelings for you. I told you…”

“You told me that you would give me a chance and you haven’t done that.” Keith stood up and began pacing the office. “You think I haven’t noticed the way you and Patrick look at each? The way you light up when he comes around? The time he spends with you, Michelle and Rylee? When did you ever invite me to do something with your family?”

Robin's guilt overwhelmed her. Unfortunately, Keith was right and she knew it. “You’re right and that is why I never should have dated you – it wasn’t fair to you.”

“He’s going to break your heart. To him, you are just a challenge, another woman to bed.” He sat back down in the chair and took her hand in his. “Give me a real chance Robin, let me prove that you deserve better than a womanizing, egotistical jerk who will never put you first.”

Robin shook her head. “I’m sorry but no.”

He studied her for a moment before he stood back up and headed for the door. He turned around to look at her one last time before leaving. “Fine – I’ll back off for now but I am not giving up. I will give you some time and I know you will see that I am the better man.”

Keith slammed the door behind him as he left and Robin finally relaxed. Although it was hard, it was the right thing to do. Keith deserved the chance to be with someone who would appreciate him.

She went back to her desk and grabbed the sweater off the back of her chair – it was freezing in her office. She checked the thermostat and was surprised to see it was set at 70. “Must be broken.”

She sat back down at her desk and briefly considered calling maintenance but her phone rang before she could do it. “Hello?”

“Hey short stuff – got time for a consult?” Patrick was reviewing the MRI for a bicycle accident.

Robin laughed. “Of course. Your place or mine?”

He knocked on the door. “Yours?”

Robin hung up the phone. “Come in.”

Patrick walked in and approached the desk, films in hand. “So…” He stopped and studied her for a moment. “Cold?”

“Yeah, I was about to call maintenance – I think my thermostat is broken.” She shivered and a covered her mouth as she coughed. “Sorry, dry throat.”

Patrick dropped the file on the desk and quickly went around it to her. He placed his hand on her forehead. “Damn it Robin, you have a fever.”

“No, it’s just…”

Patrick cut her off by picking her up off her chair and carrying her to the door. “Shut up – you’re my patient now and you will do what I say.”

Robin leaned her head into his chest. “Aren’t you the forceful one?”

“You have no idea.” He kissed her forehead and carried her to the nurse’s hub. “Epiphany, do we have a free exam room? Dr. Soltini is running a fever.”

Epiphany didn't even hesitate. “Exam room 5 is open and I will be right in to do a blood draw and anything else you need.” She had grown to love Robin and her family in her short time here at GH.

“I want a throat culture – she was taking care of Rylee while she had strep throat.” Patrick carried her into the exam room and gently set her down on the cot. “You stay here and rest.”

“But your patient…”

“You’re my patient.” He pulled his cell phone out of his pocket and made a call. “Matt, there is an MRI on the desk in Robin’s office. Could you please get it and take over the case for me?”

“Of course but…” Matt knew his brother would not just give him a case for no reason.

“Robin’s sick and I am getting her checked out.” Patrick ran his hands through his hair as he noticed that Robin’s eyes were closed and she seemed to be napping. His voice got soft. “She’s got a fever Matt.”

“Say no more – I will take care of this as long as you let me know how she is doing.” Matt knew that Patrick’s fear for Robin was not unfounded. Because of her HIV status even a minor infection could be dangerous.

“Thank you.” Patrick hung up the phone and got out the ear thermometer. “102 – damn it Robin.”

“Your bedside manner stinks.” Robin had closed her eyes because she had a headache, not because she was napping.

“Robin…”

“I have taken care of my girls for years and I will always take care of them.” Robin opened up her eyes and smiled at him. “Though it is kind of nice to have someone take care of me once in a while too.”

Epiphany came through the door with the equipment and smirked at the couple. “Enough with the mushy stuff. Let’s figure out what is wrong with you Dr. Soltini so we can get you better and back to work.”

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Chapter 22

Patrick stood at the nurse’s desk tapping his pen. “Do you have those labs back yet Epiphany?”

The nurse rolled her eyes at him. “Not yet but I will be sure to tell the lab that everyone else’s labs need to stopped so that you can get yours done first.”

He ignored the sarcasm in the nurse’s voice. “That would be great.”

“Help!” Both of them looked up to see Dante running up to the desk carrying his wife in his arms. “I was meeting her here and found her in her car.”

Patrick grabbed a cot and pulled it over to the man. “Here.” He began doing a quick exam and noticed that the young woman was burning up. “Has she been sick at all?”

“No – she was just fine this morning.” Dante had been shocked to find his wife passed out in her car. “I knew she was coming here to see Robin…”

Patrick’s heart stopped. “Wait – she was coming to see Robin?”

“Yes.”

Patrick looked at the nurse's hub. “Epiphany...”

Before he could say another word, an orderly pushed another cot down the hall. “Dr. Drake – overflow from the ER.”

He reviewed the chart - it was an elderly man with a high fever, body aches and a sore throat. “What do you mean overflow?”

“We have had eight patients come in over the last two hours with the same high fever, complaining of sore throats and body aches.” The orderly quickly made his way to the elevator. “Dr. Quartermaine said that a representative from the Medical Rescue Agency is on his way but all patients with these symptoms are being brought to your floor.”

“Dr. Drake?” Epiphany had been on the phone while he was examining the patient. “Dr. Quartermaine is requesting hazmat suits, gloves and masks for all hospital personnel. He is on his way in and has requested your brother and Nurse Webber join us. I told him about Dr. Soltini so he has requested another doctor from Mercy.”

“Who?” Patrick was pretty sure he knew the answer.

“A Dr. Gwen Miller.” Epiphany saw him cringe. “Another one of your playthings?”

Patrick shook off her question. “Make sure she is up to date on all the patients but Dr. Solitini – I am her doctor and that is not negotiable.”

Epiphany could see he meant business. “Yes doctor. Speaking of, Dr. Soltini is being moved to a room in just a few minutes – do you want to tell her what is going on?”

Patrick nodded his head and made his way to her room. He needed to speak to Robin before the next wave of patients made their way to his floor.

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


“Epiphany is getting you a room.” Patrick was holding Robin’s hand while he spoke with her. “Lucky picked up Ry from the daycare and Michelle is headed home as we speak.”

“This is silly.” Robin attempted to sit up in the bed but Patrick gently pushed her back down. “I just need an antibiotic, fever reducers and I can go home to rest.”

Patrick shook his head. “I need to ask you a question – did you see any patients today?”

“No, I was in my office all day. The only people I saw besides you were Keith and Lulu.” Robin reached for the cup by her bed.

Patrick handed it to her. “Lulu Falconeri?”

She took a drink. “Thank you. Yes, she wanted to talk to me about a fundraiser they are doing at the bar – why?”

“When did you see Lulu?” He took her cup from her. “It is very important that you remember when it was?”

“A little before noon.”

“And did you see anyone after that? Go to the cafeteria for lunch?” Patrick prayed she hadn’t gone to visit Rylee at the daycare center.

“No, I stayed in my office. The only person I saw was Keith and he, uh, he didn’t stay very long.” Robin closed her eyes. She was getting tired again.

Patrick relaxed. “Thank God.”

“Patrick…” Robin could see that something was wrong.

“Lulu was just admitted with a 103 fever. She is one of 10 patients, including yourself, who have been admitted to the hospital with the same symptoms, high fever, sore throat and body aches.” He sighed. “Alan is considering that this may be an epidemic.”

“Rylee and Michelle are safe?” Tears filled her eyes as she asked the question.

“I promise you, on my life, they are safe.” The door to the exam room opened up and the orderly came in to take her to her room. “Now this nice man is going to get you all settled in and I will be in to check on you in a few minutes.”

“Patrick?” Robin squeezed his hand tight. “Thank you.”

“We’ll figure this out and get you back home to your girls Robin.” He reluctantly stepped away from her bed to allow the orderly in. “I’ll see you soon short stuff.”

She managed a weak smile and nodded her head before allowing herself to be moved to the cot and then to her room.

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Chapter 23

“Dr. Drake.” Mac walked into the chaos with his hazmat gear on. “How is she?”

“She’s doing okay – we have her on fever reducers and IV fluids. Because of her HIV status I have her in a private room and, for now, I am limiting her visitors but you can go see her.” Patrick and Mac had become friendly ever since his brother began dating Mac’s daughter. “Are Rylee and Michelle okay – I promised her they were.”

“Yes, they are coming over to my place and staying with Maxie and Georgie.” So far his two younger daughters were healthy and he had every intention of keeping them that way. “They are under strict orders to stay as far away from here as possible.”

“Good.” Matt and Robin had both told him about Maxie’s heart transplant – the hospital was the last place she needed to be.

“What the hell are we dealing with Drake?” It had been four hours since the first patient had been admitted and Mac wanted to get a better idea about what they were dealing with.

“We have a total of 22 patients now – all with the same symptoms. It’s presenting as a flu virus but there is something off in the blood work.” Patrick had been able to review several of the cases, including Robin’s, and the results were like nothing he had ever seen. “We have been trying Tamiflu but it will be at least 24 hours before we can see if it is having any effect.”

“You may as well stop it now – it won’t.” Both men turned around to see a man walking towards them with a mask on but no other protective gear. “This isn’t your typical flu.”

Patrick stared curiously at the stranger – his eyes looked familiar. Meanwhile Mac straightened up and walked over to the man. He stared him straight in the eyes and punched him. “You son of a bitch!”

Patrick jumped into action and grabbed Mac, pulling him off the man. “Mac, what the hell are you doing?”

Mac ignored him. “You want to tell me why the hell you have been playing dead for the last 25 years?”

The man rubbed his jaw but never attempted to defend himself. “I had my reasons.”

“Reasons? My God Robert, do you have any idea what you did to her?” Mac was trying not to punch him again.

“Robert?” Patrick looked at Mac and then back at the man in the mask. “As in Robin’s father?”

“Yes Dr. Drake – as in Robin’s father. I am also the representative from the MRA sent here to help you out.” Robert had been able to check in on his daughter from time to time and knew that Patrick Drake was a friend of his little girl’s. “And let’s keep the anger in check until after the crisis is over.”

Patrick fell back against the wall in shock as Mac continued to rant. “We will deal with anger right now Robert.”

“You mean the would’ve, could’ve, should’ve?”

Mac shook his head. “Is that what you think I’m about? How about thanks for raising my daughter Mac?”

Robert stepped forward and stared at his brother with full sincerity. “Thanks for raising my daughter Mac.

“I was in over my head Robert, this amazing girl looking to me for answers. Half the time I got it wrong and the other half I screwed it up.”

Robert tried not to act affected by his brother’s words. “I’m not going to try and make excuses but I had a few circumstances that were beyond my control.”

“You’ll just never get it through your thick skull. When you died, you gave me a life, you and your buddy Frisco Jones, and it was my privilege to raise those girls. I’ve got a real family Robert, what do you have?” He didn’t wait for an answer. “You know what, you don’t have to apologize to me, apologize to your daughter, Robin. Remember her?”

Mac stalked away, leaving Robert alone with Patrick. “So Dr. Drake…”

“Stay away from her.” Patrick glared at Robert. “You can help me with anything we need to know about this epidemic but you stay the hell away from her. The shock of seeing you may do more damage to her immune system and I will not have it.”

Robert was surprised by the pure venom in the man’s voice. His sources had said that Patrick and Robin were good friends but it was obviously much more than that. “Look Drake, I haven’t been able to see my daughter in person in years and I know you don’t understand why but I have always loved her and wanted the best for her. I know that she is sick and…”

“Then respect my decision.” Patrick ran his gloved hand through his hair. “I believe that you love her so do what is best for her and stay away for a little bit longer. You’ve been gone for 25 years, what’s a few more days?”

Robert considered what the man was saying. As much as he hated to admit, the cocky surgeon was right. What was important right now was finding the cure for the virus. “Fine – let’s go meet with Dr. Quartermaine and I will tell you everything I know about the influenza strain we are dealing with and exactly why the medicines you have on hand won’t work to combat it.”

Patrick was practically running down the hall as he spoke with Robert. “What the hell are we dealing with?”

“It’s a man-made virus concocted by a group called Cryllium. They are a medical research think tank with connections to the Cassadine family. I believe that Lulu Falconeri was purposely infected along with Emily Cassadine.” Emily had been brought in with the first wave of patients. “All patients can be traced back to having contact with either one of them today.”

“Why infect Emily?” Her husband, Nikolas, was a Cassadine prince.

“Nikolas separated from the family years ago, a real disappointment to his grandmother Helena. Emily was never her choice of a wife for him.” Robert had had many dealings with the Cassadine family over the years and was well aware of Helena’s feelings towards Emily.

Patrick stopped in front of Alan’s office. “Is there an antidote?”

Robert sighed. “Not that I am aware of.”

“And our best researcher is one of the patients – damn it.” Patrick took a moment to glare at Robert. “You got here fast, did you know that it was coming?”

Robert considered lying but decided the truth was more prudent. “I was on my way here because I got some intel that Helena was releasing the virus and that she was targeting Port Charles.”

“And you didn’t think to warn Robin?” Patrick couldn’t believe what he was hearing. “You know that she is…”

“HIV positive, yes.” Robert interrupted. “I had hoped that I would get here before the virus was released.”

Patrick knocked on Alan’s door. “Well that didn’t happen, did it?” He reached for the knob but leveled Robert with one last glare. “If she dies,” he got choked up for a moment but quickly recovered, “you will wish you had died 25 years ago – I’ll make sure of it.”

Robert nodded his head in understanding. “Trust me Drake, if she dies you won’t need to do anything to me – I’ll do it to myself.”

Patrick nodded his head, opened the door and led Robert into Alan’s office. They could fight later, now it was time to find a cure for this disease.

Edited by cmahorror.
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Chapter 24

Patrick walked into Robin’s room and smiled as he heard her on the phone. “Really? You beat Georgie four times at Memory? That’s my girl.” She saw Patrick standing at the end of the bed. “Ry, Grandma has to talk to Uncle Patrick but I love you baby girl.” She smiled. “Yes, I’ll tell him – good bye.”

Patrick sat down next to her on the bed. “Tell him what?”

“That she loves you and you better fix Grandma right up.” Robin bit her lip and sighed. “Judging by your lovely hazmat outfit I am guessing that is easier said than done.”

“Yeah. First off I want you to know that Keith is fine. I knew you would be worried since you saw him right before you got sick.” Keith had been rather upset that Patrick wouldn’t let him see Robin yet.

“Good to know – now tell me what we are dealing with. I know you stopped the Tamiflu.”

He ran his hands through his hair. “Because this isn’t a known strain of influenza – the representative from the MRA said it was manufactured and there is no known cure.”

Robin considered what he was saying. “How many cases?”

There was no reason to sugarcoat it. “Twenty seven.”

“Do they know who…”

“The Cassadines, not Nikolas of course, but his grandmother.” Patrick knew that Nikolas and Robin had been friends years ago.

“Helena, although this seems like a major step down from trying to freeze the world.” Robin couldn’t help but giggle at the look on Patrick’s face. “A story for another day.”

Patrick decided to redirect the conversation. “How are you feeling?”

“Pretty good all things considered. My fever is down and I have been getting plenty of rest.” Robin sat up. “So, when do I get to meet this MRA person?”

Patrick tensed up at her question. “You don’t.”

“But Patrick…”

“Robin, your immune system is already compromised and I am not going to let some guy who has been traipsing around the world chasing diseases anywhere near you.” Patrick was happy to have a legitimate reason to keep Robert away from Robin. He knew from the recent experience with Jason that she would probably be furious with his decision but he didn’t care – her health was the important thing right now and he would risk her anger later to protect it.

“But I could help figure out a way to fight this.” Robin took a deep breath. “Patrick I’m sick, not dying, so please don’t treat me like I am. I’m not asking to go to the lab or for you to bring samples in here, just put the lab results on a laptop and bring it in to me so I can review them.”

Patrick considered what she was saying. Normally, he wouldn’t even consider her request but she was one of the top researchers in the nation and bringing her the information would keep her in her room and lessen the chance that she would run into her father. “You’d have to be monitored closely – even the slightest hint that your health is declining and I will personally pull that laptop from your bed and restrain you to it.”

“Aye aye captain.” Robin was happy to finally be able to do something. “Now go get my stuff while I take a nap. I want to be well rested before I dive into those labs.”

“You got it short stuff.” He leaned over and pulled down his mask, kissing her softly on her forehead. “I’ll see you in a little bit.”

_________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Patrick was in the lab going over what was to be put on Robin’s laptop when he felt a hand on his shoulder. “If you will just wait a minute…”

“Certainly Dr. Drake.” Gwen stood behind him and shook her head. “I just wanted to see what I could do to assist you?”

“Continue to monitor your patients and let me know if there are any that show a sudden decline.” Patrick walked out of the lab with Gwen close on his heels.

“I was wondering if you needed any help with your HIV positive patient?”

“What?” Patrick couldn’t believe that she knew about Robin.

“Come on Patrick – don’t hog all the glory for yourself. She’s the most susceptible to this disease – if we can find a cure and keep her from dying than we could ride that wave of publicity to a ton of speaking engagements and funding.” Gwen all but panted with excitement as she spoke.

“And what if she doesn’t make it?”

She shrugged. “Well, with her compromised immune system it’s not like we would be blamed for her death.”

Patrick spun around and stared Gwen straight in the eyes. “Let me make this clear to you – you will not go anywhere near Robin. I am the only doctor on her case and, if I am not available, then my brother will step in.”

Gwen stepped back in shock. She had never known Patrick to be this passionate about a patient. “I take it you know her?”

“She is an amazing doctor and a wonderful person.” Patrick stepped closer to her. “Do you know that she is currently waiting for me to bring her a laptop with all the lab results so that she can analyze them in hopes that there may be a way to manufacture a cure? Not because she wants it for herself but because she wants to save other people. She isn’t in it for the glory or the money, she’s in it to save lives.”

Gwen sneered at him. “How noble.”

“You wouldn’t understand so I won’t even bother trying to explain. Just stay away from me and stay away from Robin.” Patrick’s pager went off. “I have to go – please go check on your patients and if you can’t do that then I suggest you tell Alan so he can bring in a doctor who gives a damn about them to take over.”

Gwen didn’t say another word, just turned on her heel and stormed off.

“Bitch.” Patrick shook his head and walked up to the nurse’s station. “You paged?”

Epiphany shook her head and pointed to the man sitting in the lounge. “He did.”

“Great.” Patrick walked over and sat down. “What do you want Robert?”

“How is she?” Robert had been at the hospital for hours now and it was killing him to be so close to Robin and unable to even see her.

“Her fever is down and she is insisting on helping us review the blood work and throat cultures.”

“Is that wise given that she is sick?”

Patrick nodded his head. “She and I have already discussed this and the moment I think her health is being impacted she will lose her laptop. Until then, it can’t hurt to have someone as brilliant as Robin working on this. She has a wonderful way of analyzing things and noticing the little details other miss.”

“You’re in love with her.” It was a statement of fact, not a question.

Patrick didn't respond to the man's statement, he just stood up. “I need to get back to the lab and check on that laptop. We have several older patients as well as a lupus patient who are declining rapidly.”

Robert nodded his head. “Then go and Drake, take care of my little girl.”

“I will sir.” Patrick ran back to the lab to retrieve the laptop. It was time to consult with the brilliant Dr. Soltini.

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Chapter 25

“Close the laptop Robin.” Patrick waltzed into the room. “We had a deal.”

“But…”

“Your fever is up – stop working.” He sat down on the bed and gently closed the computer.

She flopped back on the bed. “Only two tenths of a degree.”

“You found the antibodies in Dillon’s blood and he is currently going through the process to extract them.” It had been two days since the virus had first struck and Dillon had begun spontaneously recovering. Robin had discovered an antibody in his blood that they could use to create a serum. It would take weeks of treatments but they should be able to cure everyone using the antibody serum Robin and Patrick had created. “Kavi is ready to go as soon as the process is complete.”

“The test patients?” Robin knew that there were several patients worse off than her.

“Holding on.” Patrick and Robin had come up with a number of criteria to determine who received the serum first. The hope was that they would be able to cure at least a quarter of the patients with this first dose. It would take a few days to determine if it worked and, if it did, Dillon would be ready for a second extraction. If all went well everyone would be cured within the next two weeks.

“And you are agreed on maximum incubation period?” Robin had noted that there had been no new patients in the last 24 hours. Based on what they were seeing, this virus has an extremely short incubation period.

“Ah, you noticed.” Patrick had lost the hazmat suit an hour ago. “No one at the hospital has come down with the virus and we have had no new patients so the MRA representative agreed with you that the maximum incubation period for the virus is 36 hours.”

She nodded her head. “Thank God – maybe we can get out of this without any casualties.” She studied him closely. “You look like you are about to collapse.”

“I’m tired but…”

“Patrick – you can’t help anyone if you are sick.” Robin was concerned that he would run himself down.

“I know and Alan is insisting I take advantage of this down time while he oversees Dillon’s extraction to lay down and take a nap but I can’t get comfortable in the on-call room.” He winked at her. “The best nap I have had was with you and Rylee the other night.”

“Really?” Robin smiled at him. “Do you think it would help to try it again? I mean, I have plenty of room here and I am a little tired myself.” Robin was tired of hiding from her feelings for Patrick.

She didn’t need to ask twice. Before she could even move, Patrick was laying down with her. He wrapped his arms around her and laid with her side by side, his chest against her back and his cheek against her cheek. “This is the best idea you have ever had.”

Robin gently stroked his arms. “Patrick…”

“Rest now Robin.” He kissed her cheek. “We’ll figure everything else out later.”

Robin relaxed into his embrace as they fell asleep together.

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


“I have finished the antibody serum and given it to Dr. Quartermaine.” Kavi was quickly getting annoyed at the blond doctor from Mercy who stood at his desk.

“I thought I made it clear that I was administering the serum.” Gwen had volunteered for this crisis because she saw it as an opportunity to advance her career but so far she had taken a back seat to this damn Dr. Soltini. “I wanted to…”

He rolled his eyes. “Dr. Quartermaine is my boss and I answer to him. I need to be ready for the next set of labs so if you don’t mind…”

“Fine, just tell me where Dr. Drake is so I can discuss this with him.” Patrick had been avoiding her since their first encounter two days ago but she was certain that, now that a cure had been discovered, she could get him to spend a little time with her.

“Dr. Drake was taking a break.” Kavi turned back to his computer, already done with the conversation.

“But he wasn’t in the on-call…” Her voice trailed off as she realized exactly where he was. “Nevermind – I’ll find him myself.”

Gwen stormed out of the lab and headed down the corridor to Robin’s room. She was about to walk in when she looked through the window and saw that Patrick was lying in Robin’s bed with her sleeping.

She studied the scene closely. His arms were wrapped tightly around the little brown haired doctor, almost as if he could protect her from the virus with his touch. He had a look of pure contentment on his face and Gwen finally realized what his tirade when she first arrived was about – he was in love with the woman.

Gwen turned to leave and was shocked to find a man standing behind her. “Excuse me…”

“They look cute together, don’t they?” He smiled at her.

“Yeah, whatever.” She tried to move past the man but he stopped her.

“I take it you are not a fan of Dr. Soltini’s?”

“I don’t know the woman.”

“But you were hoping to cure her and use the notoriety from saving an HIV positive patient from an unknown virus to advance your career.” He looked up and down the hall. “Is there somewhere we can speak privately?”

Gwen nodded and led him to a supply closet. “What is this about? Dr. Soltini isn’t even one of the worst cases.”

He produced a syringe from his pocket. “But what if her virus were to mutate? After all, she is HIV positive – who knows what effect that might have on this strain of influenza?”

Gwen considered what he was saying. “I don’t want to hurt her.”

“Of course not.” Given the look on Gwen’s face while she stared in Robin’s room he wasn’t sure he believed her. “All you are doing is creating an opportunity to help her – showing Dr. Drake that you can be just as altruistic as Robin is.”

“What’s in it for you?” Gwen couldn’t believe she was even considering this but she was a brilliant doctor and she had no doubts she could find the cure for whatever was in that syringe.

“My boss is looking at the various ways that this virus can affect people with different immune systems – a strong, healthy HIV positive woman is the best test case.” He placed the syringe in her hand. “She also has contacts as some of the most prestigious hospitals in the world. You do this for her and you can write your own contract to work at any of them.”

Greed and arrogance overran every other emotion and Gwen shoved the syringe in her pocket. “Thank you very much mister…”

He smirked at her one last time before he left the closet. “Craig, James Craig.”

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Chapter 26

Patrick stood at the nurse’s station and reviewed the results from the first set of labs with Robert and Alan. It had been 24 hours since the first doses of the antidote had been administered and they were all anxious to see if the serum was working.

Fortunately, it was. “This is great work Patrick.” Alan slapped the younger man on the back. “If all goes well, the first set of patients should be able to leave in a couple of days.”

“Don’t look at me – Robin was the one who figured it out.” Patrick was thrilled. Robin had been stable so far but her HIV status pushed her to the top of the list for the second group of patients to receive the antidote.

“Never took you as one to shy away from a compliment Drake.” Robert had been watching the man closely over the past few days and was impressed by his skills as a doctor. He was even more impressed by the man's devotion to his daughter. No man would ever be good enough for Robin but he was certainly close.

“When it’s deserved, no, but this is Robin’s success and I wouldn’t dream of taking it away from her.” Patrick finished making notes on the last chart. “In fact, I can’t wait to tell Dr. Soltini the good news. Gentlemen, if you’ll…”

Patrick was cut off by an explosion of alarms coming from behind the nurse’s desk. “Epiphany? Whose room is that?”

Epiphany began running down the hall. “Robin’s!”

The group ran in to Robin’s room to find the woman in the throes of a grand mal seizure. Patrick quickly ran to her side while Alan began barking out orders. “Get her rolled over onto her side and get me a CT and blood draw stat!”

Patrick managed to do as he was told and rolled Robin onto her left side, making sure to keep Robin from rolling off the bed and holding her carefully so as not to cause her any injury. It took almost a full minute but Robin finally stopped convulsing and slid into a shakier, postictal state. Patrick didn’t let go of her, instead he took advantage of the calm to speak softly to her as he stroked her hair. “That’s right babe, just relax into my arms.”

Robert watched in amazement as Robin’s body stopped shaking completely and her breathing became more regular. He moved over to the side of her bed and was surprised when she opened her eyes and looked at him. “Daddy?”

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Alan stood outside Robin’s room going over her lab results from the day before when Gwen walked up to him. “I have no idea what happened.”

“I heard what happened to Dr. Soltini." Gwen tried to act concerned. "May I take a look at her lab work? I may not be a researcher but…”

Alan shook his head. “No, Patrick has made it clear who he wants working on Robin’s case and I will defer to his judgment. If he wants your opinion, he’ll ask for it. Until then, please check on your patients and I will let you know if we need anything else.”

Gwen stuck her fakest smile on her face before turning to walk away. “Fine – just let Dr. Drake know I am here if he wants me.”

“I will doctor.” Alan sat down in a chair, basically ignoring the woman. He flipped through the chart again. “What the hell happened?”

“Dr. Quartermaine?” Epiphany had been in Robin’s room doing the blood draw when something caught her eye. “Can I show you something?”

Alan looked at the head nurse and knew that she had an idea about what had happened. He jumped up and followed her into the room. “What is it Epiphany?”

“Look at the IV line – I think it’s been tampered with.” Epiphany had her gloves on and pointed to a section in the line. “There’s condensation in the line.”

Patrick had been barely listening to what they were saying, he had been concentrated on Robin and seeing how she was doing following her seizure, but hearing that someone may have purposely hurt Robin instantly pulled him into the conversation. “What?”

Alan studied the line without touching it. He looked at Robin and quickly pulled the IV from her hand. “Get me a new bag and get a new line started in her opposite arm.”

“Why would someone want to…” Patrick glared at Robert. “You – this is about you.”

“No, I would never do anything to hurt Robin.” Robert was still in shock at seeing Robin having a seizure. “Besides, no one knows I’m alive.”

“Two days ago you show up here and suddenly people are trying to hurt Robin – it doesn’t take a brain surgeon to make the connection.” Patrick continued to hold Robin protectively in his arms. “Why the hell did you come back?”

“I was just about to ask the same question.” Mac pushed past Robert to get to Robin’s side. Tears came to his eyes as he saw the state his niece was in. “What happened?”

“We are still trying to piece it together but we think somebody injected Robin’s IV line with an unknown substance.” Epiphany picked up the IV bag while Alan spoke to the police commissioner. “My best lab tech will analyze her blood samples and the IV fluids so we can see what it was.”

Mac shook his head as he watched over the girl he considered his oldest daughter. After all the hell she had been put through over the years he had been thrilled to see her happy and looking forward to the future. Now, because of his brother’s return from the dead, she may lose it all. “Patrick, I’m going to work with the hospital to figure out what happened.”

“Don’t worry Mac, I’m not going anywhere.” Patrick settled back down on the bed. “Right Alan?”

“I think you’ve earned a few days off and I wouldn’t trust this little girl’s care to anyone else.” Alan placed a comforting hand on Patrick’s shoulder. “I will put a rush on the blood tests and they should be in here shortly with the portable CT. Just stay with her and we will take care of everything else.”

Mac leaned over and kissed Robin’s cheek before grabbing Robert and dragging the man out of the room with Alan nipping at their heels. “I want to see all the surveillance footage from this floor for the last 24 hours. I want to know the name of anyone who was anywhere near my girl.”

“You’ve got it Mac.” Alan headed down the hall and left a furious Mac alone with his brother.

“Mac…”

“Don’t say it Robert.” Mac ran his hands through his hair and shook his head once more. “If anything happens to her because of you…”

Mac had barely got the words out when a boot connected with the side of Robert’s head. The man hit the floor but bounced back up to confront his attacker. He stopped when he saw who it was. “I guess I had that coming.”

Anna’s rage was rolling off of her but she refrained from hitting him again. “Oh baby, you’ve got more than that coming but it will wait until after my daughter is well.” She stepped past him and hugged Mac. “Thank you for calling me – how is our girl?”

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Chapter 27

Michelle sat by her mom’s bed talking to her. “Ry is very mad at me right now – she said it’s not fair that I get to see you and she doesn’t.”

Robin didn’t even stir at Michelle’s comment. The visitor’s restriction had been lifted earlier that day and Patrick had contacted her immediately so she could sit by her mom’s side while he worked on a cure. “She is with Grandma Anna, Maxie and Georgie right now drawing you at least a dozen different get well soon pictures.”

“Is she sleeping?” Michael walked in with AJ and Jason right behind him.

“They sedated her after the seizure so she should be out for at least a couple of hours.” Michelle stood up and hugged Michael. “I just keep hoping she can hear me.”

Michael rubbed her back as he held her close. “She can.”

AJ smiled at his son’s girlfriend while Jason made his way to Robin’s bedside. “How are you doing? Do you need anything?”

“Just for her to get better.” She turned around and leaned back into Michael. “I don’t understand – why would anyone want to do this to her?”

“Maybe they thought she was close to a cure.” Jason took Robin’s hand while he spoke. “They didn’t realize she had already found it and wanted to get her out of the way.”

“I don’t know, maybe.” Michelle sat back down in the chair and leaned back. “She has to get better,” she felt Michael’s hand on her shoulder and she reached up to hold it, “she just has to.”

_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


“You wanted to see me Dr. Quartermaine?” Gwen had been just about to leave the hospital when she was paged to the Chief of Staff’s office.

“Yes, please have a seat.” He pointed to the chair in front of his desk. “This may take a couple of minutes.”

“If this is about my patients…”

“Actually,” Patrick walked into the office with Robert right behind him, “this is about one of my patients. Do you want to explain to me what you were doing in Robin’s room earlier today?”

“I just wanted to tell her how impressed I was with her research.” Gwen spoke with almost no emotion in her voice. “I stopped in but she was sleeping so I left.”

“Seriously? You expect us to believe…”

“Patrick,” Alan quickly interrupted the man, “we need to listen to what Dr. Miller has to say.”

“As I was saying,” Gwen let her voice take on a note of disdain, “I simply wanted to congratulate Dr. Soltini on her achievement.”

“And you say she was sleeping you went in?” Alan knew that they couldn’t prove that Gwen had done anything to Robin but he was hoping to get her to slip up. She nodded her head. “So why even go in the room? She was sleeping after all.”

“But I couldn’t tell that until I got in the room, her back was towards the door.” Gwen stood up. “I really need to check in with my superiors at Mercy but I am more than willing to come back and work on Dr. Soltini’s case with Dr. Drake.”

“No!” Patrick slammed his fist down on Alan’s desk, startling everyone in the room. “You will not go near her ever again.”

Gwen was shocked by the absolute fury in Patrick’s eyes. She had known the man for years and never seen him look like that. Nervously, she stumbled to the door. “Very well, I will be going then. If you need my assistance with anything else…”

“Thank you Dr. Miller.” Alan waited until she had shut the door behind her to address Patrick. “Dr. Drake, I understand your feelings…”

“With all due respect Alan, I don’t think you do.” Patrick was breathing heavily as he tried to regain control. “The woman I love, the only woman I have ever loved, may be dying and the person responsible just walked out that door.”

“Look, we don’t know for sure that Dr. Miller did anything.” Robert felt the need to interject. “We have reviewed the security footage and there are several people that we still need to question, including the gentleman that Dr. Miller spoke with outside my daughter’s room. Plus there was a person in scrubs and a mask that entered her room not long after Dr. Miller left that we still have not been able to identify.”

“But she wanted to work on Robin’s case, thought curing the HIV positive woman would be a feather in her cap.” Patrick sat down, tired and frustrated.

“Still not proof that she would inject her with something to make her worse.” Robert was trying to think like a spy and not a father at this point. “We need to be concentrated on what we can control – are you any closer to figuring out what was injected into Robin’s IV?”

“Kavi says it was a mutated version of the virus. The good news is that he was able take Robin’s notes and figure out a way to counteract it so we can keep Robin on schedule to receive the counteragent.”

“And the bad news?” Robert could hear the trepidation in Patrick’s voice.

“It’s going to be at least another two days before we can perform the extraction on Dillon again and all we can do until then is keep her comfortable and pray that her viral load doesn’t go up suddenly.” For the first time in his professional life, Patrick felt truly useless. As brilliant as he was, he couldn’t help Robin right now and it was killing him.

Robert understood the doctor’s frustration, he had felt the same way when he discovered Robin was HIV positive. Part of the deal that kept Robin safe from the WSB was that he disappear from her life. Although he had been forbidden to contact her, Robert had been able to at least get occasional updates on how Robin was doing through the years. He would never forget that day over 20 years ago when he was handed a copy of Robin’s test result showing she had HIV and was told that her boyfriend had died of AIDS.

He had sat in his office staring at the file for hours, half convinced that he could change the positive to a negative by sheer willpower. Everything he had done was to protect her and now she had contracted a virus that would, in all likelihood, kill her.

“Dr. Drake…”

“I’m going to go check on my patient.” Patrick turned and ran out of the office. He needed to see Robin.

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


“Epiphany has decided that Rylee needs to have all five emotion dolls from Inside Out movie.” Michelle had been talking to Jason while Michael and AJ went to get them supper. In a few minutes she would head out to meet them at Mac's house to eat with Rylee and the girls.

“What’s Inside Out?” Jason knew he would need to familiarize himself with all cartoons now that he was going to be a father.

She laughed. “Only Rylee’s favorite movie. Mom has sat through it with her so many times.” She reached over and picked up her mom’s hand. “I couldn’t ask for a better mom or grandma.”

“I always knew that she would be a wonderful mother.” Jason reached over and gently brushed a lock of hair behind her ear. “She was so good with Michael when we were taking care of him.”

“She told me about that.”

“Did she and your dad ever talk about having anymore kids?” Jason was surprised that Michelle was Robin’s only child.

“At first Mom thought it wasn’t possible given her HIV status. I know that they talked about it with her doctor after they got married and mom said they decided they were happy with just me.” She sighed and leaned back in her chair. “I think it was because she was convinced she was going to die first.”

Jason regarded Robin’s daughter curiously. “What?”

“I overheard her and dad one night talking about it. Dad was trying to get her to understand that no one is guaranteed a future even if they are perfectly healthy.” Her face clouded over. “Unfortunately, he was right.”

“What happened with your dad, if you don’t mind me asking.” Jason knew Robin was widowed but didn’t know the circumstances surrounding her husband's death.

“He was on a call – house fire. He started having chest pains while he was on the roof of the house and…” she bit her lip, “…he didn’t even make it to the hospital.”

“Did he have a history of heart problems?”

“Because of the gear and the heat of the fire, firefighters are at a higher risk of heart attacks than an office worker or a doctor. Heat causes the blood to thicken and even the slightest blockage becomes deadly.” Michelle wiped away a tear that came to her eye. “He died doing what he loved – helping other people.”

“I am so sorry.” Jason really didn’t know what else to say.

“Me too.” Patrick had been listening to Michelle’s story from the doorway. Robin had never really elaborated on what happened to Roger, just that he had died in the line of duty. “How is she doing?”

“The same I think.” She stood up. “I need to go and check on Ry. Will you…”

Patrick sat down in her chair. “No place else I would rather be. Give Ry a hug from me.”

“I will.” Michelle walked to the door with Jason right behind her. “She is going to get better, right?”

Jason looked back at Patrick and nodded his head. “He may be an arrogant jerk but he is also one of the best doctors I have ever met – he will save her.”

Less than a minute after they left the room, Patrick heard a soft sound coming from the bed. “Patrick…” Robin’s voice was weak but clear.

“Hey you.” He sat down on her bed and gently stroked her cheek. “How are you feeling?”

“Been better.” She opened her eyes and then shut them again because of the pain in her head. “I think I’m dying.”

“Like hell you are.” Patrick ran his hands through her hair. “We already have the counteragent figured out so you just need to wait until Dillon is ready to do the extraction in a couple of days. Don’t give up on me now Robin.”

“But I saw my father. It was almost as if he were here to…”

Patrick leaned over and kissed her forehead. “I can’t explain it right now but your father isn’t here to usher you to the other side I promise you. All he wants is what I want – for you to get better.”

“I don’t understand.” She was confused as to what Patrick was saying.

“You don’t need to right now – just know that we want you to get better. We will deal with everything else after that.” He laid down next to her on the bed, taking a moment to wrap his arms around her. He was unhappy with how warm she still was but he knew that he was doing everything he could for her. “Now you need to rest and if you need any strength, you take it from me. You’re going to be fine Robin, I promise.”

She placed her forehead on his chest and sighed. Maybe it was the fever or the drugs she was on but, for some reason, she believed Patrick when he said she was going to be okay. A sense of peace came over her as she fell back to sleep.

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Chapter 28

Robert sat with Mac and Anna reviewing the information gathered from the cameras outside Robin’s hospital room. An old friend of Jason’s, Spinelli, had managed to clean up the footage and give them a clearer view of the different people going in and out of the room. Mac pulled out some photos. “Here are the two people we didn’t know and it looks like our mystery man talking to Dr. Miller and this man in the scrubs is the same person.”

It took only a moment before Robert realized exactly who was in the photo. “Damn it – that is James Craig aka Jerry Jacks.”

“As in Jasper Jacks?” Jax had been a good friend of Robin’s years ago when she was first diagnosed with HIV. Married to Robin’s good friend Brenda for a short period of time, the couple had helped her through her first break up with Jason. Mac couldn’t believe that he was involved in making Robin sick. “Jax would never…”

“I don’t think he would but Jerry really doesn’t have anything to do with his brother. Jerry works with an old friend of mine – Helena Cassadine.”

“The Cassadines?” Mac glared at his brother. “So Patrick was right? This is about you?”

“This is exactly why I have played dead for the last 25 years – I was trying to keep my daughter out of the line of fire.” Robert began pacing the floor. “My guess is that he approached Dr. Miller about giving Robin the mutated virus.”

“Then why go to her room?” Mac wanted to try and understand the timeline. “Do you think she turned him down but, if she did, why wouldn’t she tell us?”

Robert shook his head. “I don’t think she turned him down. My theory is that he just wanted to make sure she did her job. He didn’t go in until after Dr. Miller did.”

“By that time the mutated virus had taken effect.” Anna sighed. “He probably had a second dose ready to go in case Dr. Miller had a crisis of conscious and didn’t go through with it.”

“So we still have no way of proving that Dr. Miller injected Robin with the virus?” Mac was frustrated and worried about his little girl and the tension was starting to show in his voice. “She just gets away with it?”

“I will take care of Dr. Miller.” Robert’s voice turned cold as he spoke the woman’s name. “Her and that damn Jerry Jacks.”

Anna stood up. “While you do that, I am going to go check on my daughter. Have you both donated blood?” Patrick had asked anyone who had been exposed to the virus to get their blood checked for the antibodies Dillon had – he was hoping to find someone to go through the extraction process and get the cure to Robin quicker.

“I’m on my way to the lab right now.” Robert stood up and walked over to the door. “Our girl is going to get through this.”

“Of course she will.” Anna wiped away a tear that had come to her eye. “She’s a Devane.”

“She’s a Scorpio-Devane.” Robert had been told about Robin’s name change but he still wasn’t clear about the circumstances – they would deal with that later. “Come on Anna, I will walk you down to our girl’s room.”

The former spouses walked down the hall silently for a moment. Finally Anna broke it. “Did you know about me?”

“About the amnesia – yes.” Robert stopped walking and took Anna’s hand in his. “You need to understand that every decision I made was to protect you and Robin. The agency was convinced that you were a double agent – you were slated for elimination.”

“But what about later - after I cleared my name and got my memory back?” Anna was still angry with him but she was starting to get a better idea of what had happened. “Why didn’t you let us know you were alive after that?”

“They still were watching Robin. I wasn’t able to protect her from that damn virus but…”

“No one could protect her from that.” Anna shook her head. Like Robert, she felt guilty for not being there for Robin when Stone died and she was diagnosed HIV positive. “She is going to be furious when she finds out you are alive. She has been through a hell of a lot over the years and she really could have used her father there with her.”

“I know and I will be more than happy to listen to her yell at me for the next 25 years as long as she is healthy.” Robert looked through the window of the room at his little girl laying in the arms of the man who loved her. “At least I know that she has someone looking out for her. I think he may make her happy. He’s in love with her.”

Anna smiled at the couple. “I know. I thought after losing Roger and Stone she might never find it again but Patrick, he’s good for her.” Michelle had been texting Anna with updates on the Patrick and Robin story. “Have you met our granddaughter and great granddaughter yet?”

“I’ve seen pictures but haven’t had the pleasure yet.” Robert wasn’t sure he was ready to be called Grandpa yet. “Go see our daughter. I need to get to the lab.”

________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________-_


“She really is amazing, isn’t she?” Patrick had been listening to stories about Robin from her mother while he held her in his arms. He had heard most of the stories before from Robin but it was interesting to hear them from her mom’s point of view.

“The best.” Anna smiled at the man. “How long have you been in love with my daughter?”

“What makes you think…”

Anna waved her hand. “Please – you don’t need to be a spy to see how much you love her.”

“Does it really matter? All that matters is getting her better so we can finally go on our first official date.” Patrick stroked her arm. “Although it seems kind of anti-climatic at this point given how much time we spend together.”

“And Keith?” Anna knew Robin had been dating another doctor at the hospital.

“Robin ended things with him right before she got sick.” Patrick was about to say something else when Kavi came running into the room.

“Dr. Drake – I have good news.” Kavi was literally jumping for joy. “We have another match.”

Patrick sat up as the lab assistant handed him the test results. Carefully sliding his arm out from under Robin, he reviewed the lab and shook his head. “Well I’ll be damned.”

“Patrick? Who is it?” Anna couldn’t quite get a read the look on his face.

“Can you stay with her?” Patrick was off the bed and headed out the door before Anna could get an answer from him.

“Patrick?” Anna watched as Kavi followed the doctor out the door. She reached over and stroked her daughter’s cheek. “He's in love with you sweetheart. He's in love with you and he is going to save you."

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Chapter 29

“Have we got it Kavi?” Patrick was nervously drumming his fingers on the lab counter waiting for Kavi to finish putting together Robin’s protocol. Although the donor had been more than willing to go through the extraction process, it had taken hours to finish it and Robin was getting worse with every passing minute. She had had another seizure and her temperature had gone up another degree since he had left her. Patrick was scared that she might pass the point of no return if they didn’t get her the antidote now.

Kavi filled the syringe and handed it to Patrick. “Done.” He stopped the doctor before he could leave the lab. He handed Patrick a set of soft restraints. “Inject it into the catheter instead of the IV line and be prepared for another seizure.”

Patrick stared at the restraints and shook his head. “I don’t think I can…”

“Then I will.” Kavi took the restraints from Patrick. “I’ll get a mouth guard too.”

“But…”

“Hopefully we won’t need them but better safe than sorry.” Kavi headed to the door. “Let’s go.”

The men ran down the hall to Robin’s room where they were surprised to see Michelle, Michael and Jason sitting with Anna. Michelle ran over to Patrick and smiled at the syringe in his hand. “Is that the cure?”

“Yes.” Patrick walked over to Jason. He knew that Jason would have no problem helping him get Robin ready for the injection. “I need your help. We aren’t sure how Robin will react to this and Kavi feels that it would be best, for her, to be restrained.”

Jason nodded his head in understanding. “And you can’t do it.”

Patrick blinked back a tear. “No, I can’t.”

Jason didn’t say another word, just took the restraints from Kavi and began to gently restrain Robin to the bed. He knew that the goal was to protect Robin from injury and he was willing to do whatever was needed to do that.

“Michelle, Anna, I’m going to ask you to please step out of the room while we do this.” Both women instantly began to protest but Patrick stood his ground. “I’m sorry but I have to insist.”

Michael took Michelle’s hand. “Patrick needs to focus all his attention on your mom and he can’t do that if he is worried about you too. Let’s call Ry and see how she is doing. I know Dr. Drake will tell us the moment we can come back in.”

“Of course I will.” Patrick hugged Michelle tight. “The very moment.” He gave the young woman a fatherly kiss to her forehead and then let her go. “Now go check on that beautiful little girl of yours and tell her that Uncle Patrick is making Grandma better.”

Michelle nodded her head and allowed Michael to pull her out of the room. Anna took a moment to stroke Robin’s hair before addressing Patrick. “You take care of our girl.”

“I will, I promise.” Patrick watched as Robin’s mom finally walked out the door and Kavi shut it behind her, taking a moment to close the curtain in front of the window so no one could see in. He reviewed Robin’s chart, upset to see her temperature was still rising. Her CD 4 T-cell count had dipped to 550 which was low but still not at a dangerous level and he relaxed a little bit – he wasn’t too late to save her.

Patrick looked over at Jason and saw that he had Robin safely secured to the bed. He put down her chart and picked up the call button. “Epiphany, could you please bring Dr. Hunter and a crash cart down to Dr. Soltini’s room? We’re ready to administer the antidote.”

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Anna walked into the donor’s room and sat down next to his bed. “How are you feeling?”

“Like I had my life sucked out of me but it will be worth it if she is okay.” Robert kept his eyes closed. He was exhausted from the extraction process but he really didn’t care. “Was Dr. Drake able to create the antidote?”

“Yes, he kicked us out of her room while they administer it.”

Robert heard a slight nervousness in her voice. Anna could usually cover her feelings very well but he knew the woman like he knew the back of his hand. “What is it Anna?”

“She had another seizure.” Tears fell from Anna’s eyes as she remembered that horrible moment in Robin’s room. “I, I didn’t know what to do. She was just lying there one moment and then she was thrashing around and...”

“Oh Anna.” Robert had seen Robin’s first seizure and it had horrified him. He finally opened his eyes and reached out to her.

“I felt so damn helpless. My little girl was in pain and I couldn’t fix it.” She allowed him to grab her hand. “She is so strong and to see her like this is just killing me. What’s worse, someone did this to her on purpose.”

“And they will pay for it, I promise.” Robert had already called Frisco to let him know what was going on with Robin and who was responsible. “Now, since we have a little time to kill, why don’t you catch me up on what is going on with our daughter? For starters, why is she using Filomena’s last name instead of ours or her late husband's?”

Anna had expected him to ask her about this eventually. She sighed and gave him the Cliff Notes version of the tale. “Robin and Michelle moved to a small town in Vermont after her husband passed away. While they were there a man began stalking Robin. He attacked her one night and was put in jail. They changed their names and moved to Port Charles.”

“And this son of a bitch is still breathing?” Robert was furious. Not only had his daughter been attacked but the WSB had not told him about it. “Why the hell didn’t you exterminate this bastard with extreme prejudice?”

“First of all, I didn’t find out about it until after it all happened, I was on a deep cover assignment in Africa. Secondly, Robin would never allow anyone to be hurt in her name. She asked me to let the local police take care of him and I honored her request.” Anna glared at Robert. “Unlike us, she has dedicated her life to saving people, not eliminating them.”

“Yeah, still not sure where that altruistic side comes from.” Robert closed his eyes again. “I would love to hear more about our little girl – why don’t you start with the first time you saw her after the explosion?”

Anna knew he was trying to keep her mind off of what was going on in Robin’s room and she appreciated it. “Alright – I was living in Pine Valley with my twin sister Alex…”

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


“Her vitals are stable Dr. Drake.” Epiphany was watching Robin carefully as Patrick finished administering the serum.

“Good.” He withdrew the syringe and took it over to the sharps container. “I want her monitored closely…”

“Patrick!” Jason watched helplessly as Robin began thrashing around on the bed.

Patrick ran to her side while Matt got the crash cart ready and prayed he wouldn’t need to use it. Jason turned away, unable to handle the sight of his ex-girlfriend in a full seizure.

Suddenly the monitors went crazy. Patrick began barking at his brother. “Damn it! Matt, get over here.”

Jason turned back around to see Matt getting the paddles off the cart as Patrick did chest compressions. Epiphany grabbed a mask with a bag attached to it off the wall, attached the oxygen line to it and then placed it over Robin’s mouth. She began squeezing the bag as Matt placed the paddles to Robin’s chest. “Clear!”

Patrick and Epiphany both put up their hands and waited for Matt to shock her. Matt administered the shock and backed off, allowing the nurse and his brother to resume CPR. “Still in v-tach.” He waited for the machine to charge and then ordered everyone off again. “Clear!”

Jason backed slowly up against the wall and just stared at the monitor. The line was barely moving and then suddenly it jumped back into life. He looked at Patrick. “Is she…”

“We have a normal sinus rhythm doctor.” Epiphany got out an oxygen mask and placed in over Robin’s mouth and nose. “BP is stabilizing.”

Patrick nodded at her. “I want her monitored closely. Vitals checked every 15 minutes and a blood draw in an hour.” He turned to Jason. “Thank you for your help.”

“Anything for Robin.” Jason headed to the door. “I want to call Sam and give her an update on Robin’s condition.” What he had just seen had shaken the man to his core and he needed to talk to his wife as soon as possible.

“Go – I’m going to stay here with her and make sure she is okay.” Patrick sat down next to Robin and took her hand in his. “It shouldn’t be too long now and she’ll be lecturing me on my lousy bedside manner.” He kissed her hand.

Jason smiled at them. “Well it has certainly improved since you were my doctor or maybe you’re just nicer to the female patients.”

“Not just any female patient,” Patrick was quick to correct the man, “this female patient.”

Matt walked over and patted his brother on the shoulder. “I’m going to tell the family what is going on – I’ll be back in a few.”

Patrick smiled at his brother. “Thank you.”

“Just take care of her or you’ll have to deal with Maxie and, trust me, you don’t want that.” Matt winked at Patrick and headed to the door with Jason. “Come on, I’ll show you where to find the best cell reception in this place.”

Patrick leaned over and undid the restraints, gently removing them and setting them to the side. “Maybe we can find a better use for those after you get better.” He leaned back in his chair and sighed. “Okay Soltini, now that I have you as a captive audience it is time you learn all about NASCAR. This first thing I'll explain to you is the points system.”

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Chapter 30

“Her temperature is down to 100.6.” Epiphany smiled at Patrick as she finished taking Robin’s vitals. “I’ll finish the blood draw and…”

“I’ll do it.” Patrick took the tray from the nurse.

Epiphany nodded her head. “Of course doctor.” She had known Patrick Drake for years and never seen him like this over a woman. “You did wonderful work here.”

“It was Robin.” Patrick expertly finished the blood draw. “I just followed her lead.”

“Well I’ll be damned – I never thought I would see the day.”

“What?”

“The day you showed even the slightest bit of modesty.” She favored him with her kindest grin. “I’ll get these right down to the lab and have Kavi put a rush on it.”

“Thanks Epiphany.” Patrick watched the nurse leave the room and then turned back to Robin. “Okay, we need to talk Soltini. I gave you this antidote over 12 hours ago and you are still not awake.”

“What,” her voice was soft as she finally spoke, “just because you administered the antidote I’m supposed to be instantly healed?”

He jumped onto the bed and took her hand in his. “Something like that.” He reached over and stroked her cheek, happy that she was finally getting better. “How are you feeling?”

“Tired but hopeful.” She squeezed his hand. “You, on the other hand, look terrible. You need some rest.”

Patrick wasn’t surprised in the least that, even though she was sick, she was concerned about him. “Here’s the thing – the woman I am crazy about has been sick and I can’t rest until she is better.”

“Could you rest if she promises that she is feeling better?”

He cocked his head to the side. “Maybe a little bit.”

“How about if she asks you to hold her for a little bit and take a nap with her?” Robin winked at him. “Come on Dr. Drake, we could both use a nap.”

Patrick didn’t need to be asked twice – he slipped off his shoes and laid down on the bed with Robin. “If you insist.”

“I do.” Robin wrapped his arms around her and sighed contentedly. “This is nice.”

Patrick kissed the back of her head and closed his eyes. “Yes it is. Go to sleep Robin and, if you are good, I’ll bring you a fudge mocha ice cream bar later.”

“Really?” She sounded exactly like Rylee in her excitement and Patrick laughed.

“Yes so shut your eyes and get some sleep.” He softly stroked her arms. “The sooner you get better, the sooner I can take you out on our first date.”

“You think you’ve earned a date?” Robin snuggled in closer to him. “That’s presumptuous.”

“I saved your life – that earns me at least one date.”

“Maybe.” She coyly answered. “But if you are too exhausted to…”

“Shut up and go to sleep Soltini.” He kissed her cheek this time and hugged her closer. “We can work out the details later.”

Keith stood outside Robin's door and watched the two of them together. There was a familiarity between the two of them, a comfortableness that he had never had with Robin. Shaking his head, he turned and headed back down the hall. It was time to go.

__________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Gwen walked into her apartment and headed straight to the bar to pour herself a glass of scotch. It had been a long week at GH and all she wanted to do was get drunk and forget it had ever happened.

She sat down on the couch and took off her shoes before lying back and taking a drink. In a million years she had never thought she would do what she had done but she didn’t regret taking Mr. Craig up on his offer. Dr. Soltini was recovering and would be perfectly fine and Gwen now had no doubts where she stood with Patrick. The only reason she had stuck around Port Charles was for him and now that it was obvious that he was head over heels for Robin there was no need to stay anymore.

She pulled out a card from her pocket and made a call. “I did my part – now you do yours.”

Jerry smiled at the woman’s audacity but a deal was a deal. “Of course Dr. Miller – where would you like to work?”

“Somewhere warm – how about Greece or Spain?” Gwen was a loner with no family to keep her in the states.

“I think I know the perfect place for you.” Jerry looked around the lab on Cassadine Island. “I’ll make the arrangements and have you here by the end of the week.”

“Perfect.” Gwen knew that Patrick was going to make her life difficult now that he had figured out that she had injected Robin with the mutated virus. Luckily for her, he had no way of proving it. She had deposited the syringe in a sharps container down in the ER and she had worn gloves every time she touched it. Gwen was smart and she had covered her tracks well.

She closed her eyes and was just about to drift off to sleep when she heard a pounding on her door. “Just a minute.” She waltzed over to the door and opened it to find a man standing there with two other men behind him. “May I help you?”

“Dr. Gwen Miller?” The sandy haired man had a straight forward manner as he addressed the doctor.

“Yes?”

He pulled out a pair of cuffs and quickly turned her around, pinning her to the door as he slapped on the cuffs. “Homeland security - you are under arrest.”

“For what!” Gwen didn’t fight him as he cuffed her – her hands were too valuable.

“Aiding and abetting a known terrorist.” He held up a picture of James Craig. “This man committed an act of biological terror on Port Charles and you were spotted assisting him.”

“Wait – he was just asking me for an update on a patient.” Gwen was shocked at the turn of events.

“Do you do all your updates in the supply closet?” He turned her around and shoved her to the other men. “Please take Dr. Miller down to the station and I will wait here for crime scene team.”

Gwen continued to protest as the men dragged her out of the building. The man walked into her apartment, closed the door, and walked over to the bar. Moving deliberately, he poured himself a glass of scotch and took a drink before pulling out his phone and making a call. “Dr. Miller is in custody and on her way to a WSB safehouse as we speak.”

Robert smiled at Anna who was sitting by his bed. “Thank you Frisco.”

“No one messes with our girl Scorpio – you know that.” Frisco had only recently found out about the number the WSB had pulled on Robert when he was promoted to Chief of the agency. Shocked and angered about what the agency had done to his old friend, Frisco was doing everything he could to help the man out. “Just get better and give the girls my love.”

“Will do.” Robert hung up the phone. “Dr. Miller will be detained indefinitely for her part in the biological terror attack on Port Charles.”

“We can’t keep her locked up for years Robert.” Anna was furious about what had happened to her daughter but she also knew that the doctor’s medical knowledge made her valuable.

“That’s true but we can offer her deal.” There was a twinkle in Robert’s eyes as he thought about what the WSB had planned for Gwen.

“The same kind of deal they offered you?” Anna had to admit that it was the perfect way to deal with the doctor.

“Look, the important thing is that she will pay for what she did to our daughter and never to be able to hurt Robin again.” Robert leaned back in his bed. “So, tell me more about this great-granddaughter of ours. Her name is Rylee?”

Anna’s mood instantly lightened. “Yes and she is the most amazing little girl. The other night we were watching a movie and she…”

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Chapter 31

“This is hardly what I would call resting Soltini.” Patrick strolled into Robin’s room and glared at her.

Robin glared right back, not the least bit intimidated. “And I am hardly doing something stressful.” She tickled Rylee’s belly and laughed. “Right Ry?”

“Right Grandma.” Rylee snuggled in closer to her grandma and pointed at the book in her hand. “We’re almost done and I haven’t seen grandma in forever.”

Patrick winked at Michelle. “In that case, carry on.” He sat down next to Robin on the bed. “Where were you?”

Robin patted Ry’s back and then turned the last page of the book. “Me, I’m the monster at the end of the book.”

Rylee giggled loudly at her grandma’s Grover voice. “You’re funny grandma.” She turned around and looked at Patrick. “When can she come home?”

He shot Robin an accusing glance. “You told her to ask, didn’t you?”

“Haven’t you learned by now that my granddaughter has a mind of her own?” Robin laughed as she hugged the little girl close. “Besides, she misses having me at home.”

“I love my grandma.”

“And I love my Ry.” Robin kissed Ry on the top of her head and then smiled warmly at Michelle. “In fact, I love both my girls.”

“And we love you which means that we should get going so that you can rest.” Michelle reached over and picked up her daughter’s book. They had been there for hours visiting and she was worried that her mom was getting worn out.

“But mommy…”

“No buts Ry.” Michelle picked up Rylee off the bed. “The more grandma rests, the sooner she can come home.”

Ry’s lower lip went out in a pout. “Fine.”

“Don’t worry Ry,” Patrick winked at her, “your grandma is doing so well that I may be able to release her in a couple of days.”

“Really?” Her dark brown eyes smiled at him.

“Really.”

Rylee leaned over and Patrick took her from Michelle. She hugged the doctor close and then kissed his cheek. “Thank you for helping grandma feel better.”

“It was my pleasure Ry.” He handed her back to her mom. “I will see you two tomorrow?”

“Just try and keep us away.” Michelle turned and gave Patrick a quick kiss on the cheek as well. “Thank you for taking care of my mom.”

“You never need to thank me for that.” He sat back down on the bed. “Now your mom on the other hand…”

Robin playfully elbowed him in the stomach. “Watch it Drake.”

“See how she thanks me for saving her life?” He wrapped his arm around her. “I swear that if she keeps this up I won’t take her on that date she wanted.”

“I wanted?” Robin was about to say something else but Patrick but his hand over her mouth.

“She’s still a little confused but I will clear things up for her.”

Michelle just shook her head. Her mom may be sick but she looked happier than she had in years sitting next to Patrick. “And on that note, I will see you tomorrow. I love you mom.”

“Love you too.” Robin watched them leave and then yawned. “It was so great to see my girls again. I feel better just knowing that they are okay.”

“And how about my girl?” Patrick placed his hand on her forehead, thrilled that she was no longer running a fever.

“I feel great.” She scooted a little closer to him. “You never did say what happened to me.”

“What do you mean?” Patrick had known that Robin would be curious about her sudden decline.

“I mean I was fine, a little sick, but fine and then suddenly I am one of the worst cases.” She sighed. “I, I don’t understand how that happened.”

“We are still working on that. The important thing is that you are recovering.” He didn’t want her to worry about anything else but getting better right now.

She didn’t believe him but decided to let it go for the time being. “And this mysterious donor? Will I ever get the chance to meet them?”

Patrick had been debating that question for the past two days. Robert had recovered from the procedure and wanted to see his daughter. Patrick had kept putting him off because he felt that Robin wasn’t strong enough to handle the shock of her father being alive but now she was almost ready to go home and it was time that she knew the truth. “Robin, do you trust me?”

“Of course I do.” She turned around so she was facing him and gently caressed his cheek. “I trust you with my life Patrick.”

“So you know that if I didn’t tell you something right when I found out, it was for your own good.”

“Patrick, you’re scaring me.” She did trust him but she didn’t like where this conversation was headed. “Who did the donation? It wasn’t Michelle?”

“No, God no. Michelle and Rylee were never exposed, I promise.” Patrick took her hands in hers. “Robin, I need you to understand that every decision I have made over the past week has been to protect you.”

“Okay…”

“Robin,” Patrick was trying to find the right words but couldn’t seem to come up with them for some reason. “Robin, the person who saved your life, uh, who donated the blood, it was…”

“For God’s sake man, just spit it out already.” Robert casually walked into the room as if he had just gone down to get a cup of coffee from the cafeteria, not been gone for a quarter of a century.

Robin gasped at the sight before her. She rubbed her eyes, unsure if she was truly seeing what she thought she was seeing. She saw her mom and uncle walk in right behind the man, both looking incredibly guilty and realized that she was not seeing things.

She studied the man. His hair was gray now and he had a couple of more pounds but the eyes, those steely blue eyes, gave him away. “Daddy?”

Robert smiled at his little girl. “Hello sweetheart.”

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Chapter 32

Robin stared in disbelief at her father. “It was all a lie, wasn’t it?”

“Robin…” Robert started to defend himself.

“You were alive this whole time?” She began shaking. “Was there even an explosion?”

“I need to explain what happened so that you can understand why I did what I did.”

“You let me believe you were dead!” She screamed it at him, anger overwhelming every other emotion flowing through her body. “Worse, you let me believe you had been horribly murdered. Why should I listen to a word you have to say?”

Patrick slowly began to stroke Robin’s back. “Maybe you should come back later when she is feeling better.”

“No. I want to hear what he has to say.” She looked at her mother and uncle. “Did you know he was alive?”

“Not until he showed up here after you were sick.” Mac needed Robin to understand why they didn’t tell her right away about her father. “We were worried that the shock would do more damage to your immune system so we decided to wait until you were well to tell you.”

“Until I was sick,” Robin began connecting the dots, “this was someone trying to get to you?”

“It didn’t start out that way but once I showed up, yes, you became a target and I am so sorry about that.” Robert took a couple of steps closer to her bed. “That is why I stayed away, I was trying to protect you.”

“Really?” She didn’t even attempt to hide her tears. “How much do you know about what I have been through over the past 25 years?”

Robert sighed. “I know that you are HIV positive. I remember receiving the report from the agency and just staring at it for hours. I also know that your first boyfriend died of AIDS after infecting you.”

“Don’t you dare stand there and judge me or my choices.” She glared at him. “I loved Stone and I will not have you say anything against him. My decisions led to my HIV status.”

“I know that you are a mother and a grandmother, a wonderful one at that.” He took a couple more steps so he was standing next to her. “I know that you married a wonderful man who adored you and died helping other people. I know that you are an amazing doctor and a better person than I could have ever dreamed of being.”

Robin leaned into Patrick, unable to stop the tears from coming. For 25 years she had prayed to see her father one last time and here he was. “Did you know about mom?”

“Yes, I bargained her safety, along with yours, into my deal.” Robert sat down in a chair.

“How did I know that this would come out with you being the hero?” Robin was trying to wrap her head around this latest development in her life. “Why didn’t you at least try and let me know you were alive?”

“I couldn’t.” Robert leaned over and tried to get Robin to look at him. “After the explosion I spent a few months in a coma. After I finally recovered, I was dragged to a WSB safe house. They had pictures of your mother lying in a hospital bed and told me about her amnesia. They had pictures of you too.”

“I was twelve years old – what were they going to do? Have a sniper take me out on my way to dance class?”

“Nothing that dramatic, just kidnap you and use you as leverage because that’s what you were – leverage. The daughter of a couple of suspected double agents is a great bargaining tool.” He leaned back in his chair and ran his hands through his hair. “So I took the deal. I agreed to play dead and do the agency's worst assignments so that you and your mother could have new, safer lives.”

“I want to believe you.” Robin buried her head in Patrick’s chest. “But you could have at least tried to let me know you were alive. You always had before.”

“Your mother had never been blacklisted before.” He had forgotten just how stubborn his daughter was. “She was slated for elimination and, no matter how crazy the woman drives me, I could never let anyone kill her.”

Patrick pulled Robin onto his lap and finally intervened. “I think that is enough for today. Robin is still recovering from her illness and I don’t want her to have a setback because of this conversation.”

“But I need her to understand…”

“You need to give her some time to think about what you have told her.” Patrick knew that Robin was trying so hard to not completely lose it while her father was in the room. “Please Robert, give her that time.”

Anna walked over and kissed the top of Robin’s head. “I think Dr. Drake is right. Robert, why don’t we go and check on that issue Frisco was working on and come back tomorrow if that is alright with Robin.”

Robin didn’t say anything – just nodded her head in agreement. Patrick continued to rub her back comfortingly. “I think that would be best.”

Mac came over and kissed Robin on the cheek. “If you need to talk later, just give me a call.” He turned to Patrick. “I take it you are staying with her?”

“Of course.” Patrick watched Robin’s parents leave the room before he spoke again. “Robin, I am so sorry that I didn’t tell you about your father but…”

She looked up at him, her face streaked with tears. “I understand why, even if I don’t like it. I was sick and the shock could have further compromised my immune system.” She laid her head back down on his chest. “I just can’t believe that he is not only alive, he knew where I was and didn’t even try to contact me. How could I matter so little to him?”

“Robin, he said he was protecting you and I believe him.” He set his chin on top of her head and pulled her in closer to him. “I know I would stay away from you if it guaranteed your safety. I would hate every moment of it but I would do it for you.”

“But…”

“Not only that but you and I both know that second chances are rare in this world. Do you know what I would give to have a second chance to even see my mother, let alone have her in my life again?” Patrick was hoping to give Robin a little perspective on the situation. “You don’t have to forgive him right away but I think you would never forgive yourself if you didn’t give him a chance to get to know the woman you have become.”

“But he is still doing it – playing super spy. How can I risk getting to know him when I know he is just going to disappear again?” Robin felt like one of the most important men in her life had abandoned her and that wasn’t going to go away overnight. “No matter what he says, he made a decision to leave me and I don’t know if I can forgive that.”

Patrick slowly slid down the bed, making sure that he kept her comfortable while getting them laid down. “And you don’t have to make any decisions tonight.”

She lifted up her head once more. “Thank you for being here and listening to me.”

“Thank you for letting me.” He reached over and gently caressed her cheek. “Matt and Maxie are sneaking us in some burgers from Kelly’s in a little bit but I think we could both use a little rest before their visit. Just close those beautiful brown eyes and get some rest.”

“You too Patrick.” She laid her head back down on his chest and wrapped her arms around him. “I don’t know what I would do without you here right now.”

A smile crossed his face and he closed his eyes. Laying here with her felt right. “No place else I’d rather be.

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Are we allowed to post links to pieces we have written and posted on fanfiction.net?

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1 hour ago, ulkis said:

That was great! I got the chills.

In a good way, I hope! 

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I was going through old crap I wrote and it turns out I may have accidentally written something tailor-made for you,  @TeeVee329 lol. It was a series of skits in which Obrecht adopted Rafe and John McBain was her bio son (before Nathan appeared on the show, thank you very much). Also it may be another reason why I can't take Nathan's death very seriously:

"Mama Obrecht!" Rafe ran up to Obrecht, who was on a lounge chair out in the yard. "Guess what!" He twirled. "I'm getting to stay with Sam McCall after all! They're letting her have my ward-ship!"

"Ach," said Obrecht. Her hands trembled as she held her newspaper. "I suppose you shall call *her* Mama Sam soon."

Rafe shrugged. "I haven't thought that far ahead." His eyes shone. "I'd be honored if she let me though."

"No, you don't sink at all, do you, you stupid little fool?" Obrecht tried to contain herself but couldn't, and quickly turned around and hid her face against the chair back as her body started to wrack with sobs. 

"Oh mama!" Rafe cried. "Don't be sad! I'll write you! And as soon as I don't need anyone to help me spell the *really* big words, I'll write you all the time!"

"Piss on deine letters!" Obrecht said as she turned around and produced a gun seemingly out of nowhere. She waved it wildly and then shot.

There was a grunt, but it wasn't from Rafe, who had ducked down just in time. 

"Oh no!" Rafe said. "Detective McBain!" He ran to John's side. 

"Ah, Scheiße," said Obrecht under her breath. She followed Rafe.

"Oh Detective!" said Rafe. "It's all my fault." He put his head on John's shoulder and cried.

"It probably is," whispered John. More so than usual, since he was dying and all. He patted Rafe's back comfortingly.

"Ah, Jan, I am so sorry. That shot vas not meant for you!" She raised her arms beseechingly to the sky. "But you peess me off only just a little less zan Rafuh does." She dropped her hands back to her sides. "So it is making very little difference really."

"It's all right, Doc," said John. "I know you didn't mean it."

"Zat is what I JUST said," said Obrecht in frustration. "Do you understand nuhsing?"

"Heeeeeeeeeey," said Britt, running up to the scene. "Y'all having a party without me or something?" She did a little dance.

"I'm . . . dying . . . " informed John.

"Oh, whoops," said Britt. "I mean, I always said I'd dance on your grave, but that was only after you'd be dead. I didn't mean to dance while you were still alive. I thought you guys were just having a barbecue or something. Sorry, sorry." She held her hands up. "Mah bad!"

"It's . . . alright. Always knew . . . it would end this way." He held up hand as if reaching for someone else's in return. "Come . . . sweet death. Come!" He held out his other hands towards Britt. "Whattaya say . . . sis? One last time . . . for the road?"

"That's okay," said Britt quickly.

"Jan, you are not dying, if we get you to a hospital in time you should be fine," said Obrecht impatiently. "And if you avoid having sexen with deine Schwester one last time."

"He's not! He's not gonna die!" Rafe shook his fists in anger. 

"Zat is what I JUST sai- " started Obrecht. "Ah, forget it."

"Noooooo," said Rafe. He grabbed John's arms and shook him. His breathing worsened. 

Obrecht bent over closer and listened. "Vell, *now* he is going to die, since you shook up all his organs."

"Listen to me . . . Rafe," John took his hand. "Worth it to me . . . saving your life . . . "

"Well, I ducked Detective," said Rafe, confused. "You didn't really save my life. But you totally saved my life a bunch of other times!" He paused. "I think."

"I totally . . . wasn't listening to you . . . " said John. "But don't worry . . . a little fall of rain . . . can hardly hurt me now."

"Uh, yeah it can't, cause it's not raining dumbass," said Britt.

"Whatever. Rafe . . . go to Pennsylvania . . . and take care of my son. Natalie's a good person . . . but only a woman. She can't handle . . . the task of . . . raising a man. 

"Um, I don't know Detective," said Rafe. "I'm only 16. Are you sure you want me raising your son?"

Britt showed him a picture of Natalie that she had looked up on her phone. "Oh well," said Rafe, peering at the picture of Natalie. "I guess I can handle it after all."

John nodded. "That's . . . what I thought. Now . . . bury me . . . no fuss. Just a stone . . . unmarked."

Obrecht laughed. "You think we are going to bury you? Jan, who here feels like digging a hole? No, the garbage is okay, ja? That is just as ignominious as an unmarked grave!"

"At least . . . I'm dying on sweet . . . American grass," said John.

"We're not in America, dipshit, remember?" said Britt. "This is Switzerland."

"Rafe!" John grabbed Rafe's shirt. "Don't let my body stay here in this foreign shithole! John McBain is an American hero! Get him to America!"

"Why are you talking about yourself in the third person?" asked Rafe. One tear leaked from his eye. But his question was never to be answered. John McBain, American Hero, was gone.

"I vaguely regret being mean to him," said Britt. She thought about it some more. "Wait. No I don't." She chuckled in relief. "Phew, for one minute I thought I was gonna feel bad."

Rafe sobbed with his head on John's chest. They heard the beeping of a vehicle in the distance. 

"I called a tow truck to take him away," explained Obrecht. She put her hand next to her mouth and called out. "Back it up so we can put Jan's body on it!"

"It's probably light enough for us to carry," said Britt.

"Jaaaa . . . but I don't feel like it," said Obrecht as the driver backed up . . . right over John's body. Then he drove over forward over it, and then back up once more for good measure, then drove away.

 "Even I think that was a little mean," said Obrecht.

 

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Things have been crazy for me lately but are finally calming down. I am so happy to see others posting their wonderful stories as well!

 

Chapter 33

“You better be decent in there.” Matt pushed through Robin’s hospital room door with Maxie right behind him.

Patrick rolled his eyes at his little brother. “Ha ha Matt.”

Robin winked at the couple. “Besides, I don’t put out on the first date.”

Patrick’s response was quick. “Good thing we have been on several dates already.”

“Anything involving the hospital or my granddaughter does not qualify as a date.” She was teasing him and loving every moment of it.

Maxie sat down in one the chairs laughing. “Gee Matt, I didn’t know I was getting dinner and a show tonight.”

“That’s me – always giving you more than you expected.” He leaned down and kissed Maxie. “But you already knew that.”

“Eww, I so did not need to see that.” Patrick began helping Matt get their dinner set up. “What did you bring?”

“I have 4 bacon cheeseburgers with fries and 4 chocolate milk shakes.” Matt handed Robin one of the shakes. “You get the first one as a reward for being such a good patient.”

“Thank you Matt.” She took a drink and sighed in contentment. “That is so good.”

“Although I think you may be pushing the definition of good patient a little far.” Patrick sat back down on the bed with his and Robin’s food. He handed her a box and then opened up his own. “She has been nothing but trouble this whole week.”

“Someone’s got to keep you on your toes.” Robin took a big bite of the burger and moaned happily. “This is exactly what I needed.”

Maxie was having the same reaction. “I know – so good.”

“I’m beginning to think that Mike put something in your burgers that he didn’t add to mine.” Matt didn’t see the big deal with the burgers.

“I think it’s a townie thing – Maxie and I grew up here and these burgers just feel like home.” Robin continued to eat her burger as she held up her end of the conversation. “Anything exciting happen while I was in here – I mean besides my dad coming back from the dead?”

Maxie began choking on her burger and Matt quickly came to her rescue, patting her on the back until he could be certain that her airway wasn’t blocked. She reached over and took a drink of her milkshake. “What do you mean your dad is back from the dead?”

“I thought Mac would have told you – my dad was working for the WSB for the last 25 years instead of being here with me.” Robin couldn’t keep the bitterness out of her voice. “He said it was part of a deal he made to keep me and my mom safe but…”

“Damn them!” Maxie stood up and began pacing the room. “I hate the WSB. That damn agency stole both of fathers from us. Thank God we had Mac.”

Robin nodded her head in agreement. “I know but we can’t change it – just figure out how to deal with it. And you're right, Mac is the best and we could not have asked for a better father.” She got a small smile on her face as she noticed something shining on Maxie’s left hand. “Is there something you want to tell us?”

Maxie stopped pacing and a smile filled her face. She sat back down next to Matt and leaned on him. “Matt asked me to marry him last night,” she held up her hand to show Robin the ring, “and I said yes!”

Robin squealed in her excitement over her cousin’s good news. “Congratulations!”

“Yeah,” Patrick smiled at his brother, “that is wonderful news.”

“Well she is a wonderful woman.” Matt kissed Maxie on the cheek. “I am just thrilled that she has agreed to spend the rest of her life with me.”

Robin started giggling. “And Patrick is going to be your brother-in-law.”

Maxie turned to Matt with a deadly serious look on her face. “I’ve changed my mind.”

“Hey!” Patrick put on his best offended voice.

Everyone started laughing and Maxie put him out of his misery. “Just kidding – I couldn’t imagine a better brother-in-law now that you have finally gotten your head out of your ass regarding my cousin.”

“Point taken Maxie.” Patrick snuck his arm around Robin.

Robin laid back and put her head on his shoulder. “So tell me all about the proposal – did he get down on one knee?”

____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Keith signaled the bartender by putting up his hand. “Another beer please.”

Coleman shook his head. “I’m cutting you off buddy. You are already way too drunk to drive and I don’t want you getting alcohol poisoning on my shift.”

“But…”

“I’ve already taken your keys.” Coleman began wiping down the bar. “The only question I have for you is if you want me to call you a cab or get someone here to pick you up.”

“The only person I would want you to call can’t come and get me.” Keith started tearing the label off his beer bottle. “She’s in the hospital.”

“Then why are you here?”

“Because she doesn’t want me there.” He tore off the label in one smooth piece. “I mean, how could she not want me?”

“I don’t know man.” Coleman saw a group of ladies at a table needed another round of drinks and quickly began pouring. He set a cup of coffee down in front of Keith before heading over to their table. “Why don’t you drink this and think about a way to fix it with her?”

Keith stared at the black liquid as the steam rose off of it. “I can’t fix it – she’s in love with someone else.”

“Maybe you can change her mind.” Carly sat down next to him and smiled. “I know you love Robin, let me help you win her back.”

“I don’t understand.” Keith remembered what Robin had said about Carly and how much the woman hated her.

“I want to made amends for what I did to Robin all those years ago and I need to know more about what she has been through to do it.” Carly stood up and helped Keith off his stool. “Why don’t we go back to my hotel? You tell me what has been going on with Robin and I can get you another drink and a way to win her back.”

Keith was unsteady on his feet as he followed Carly out the door. “I really do love her.”

“I know you do.” She stared at the handsome man and shook her head. She would never understand why men were attracted to the mousy doctor. She helped him into her car and began driving. “So where was Robin living before she came home to Port Charles?”

“Jacksonville, Vermont – it’s a little town north of here.” Keith felt sick as he watched the street lights passing the fast moving car. “I think I am going to be sick.”

Carly quickly pulled to a stop and let Keith open his door. He emptied out the last couple of hours of alcohol and wiped off his now sweaty brow. “I think I want you to take me home. I need to sleep this off.”

“But…”

“Please drive me home.” He gave her his address and then shut his eyes.

Carly huffed for a moment but gave in. She had the town where Robin had last lived and that was a start. Only a little bit longer and she would blow little miss perfect’s world apart.

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Chapter 34

“This is ridiculous.” Robin couldn’t believe she let Patrick talk her into carrying her into the house. “I am perfectly capable of walking.”

“I never said you weren’t but you are still recovering and there is no reason to take any chances.” He leaned down so she could open the door. “Besides, Michelle is in class and I didn’t want you here alone.”

Robin rolled her eyes as he set her down on the couch. “Why - because I am incapable of taking care of myself?”

“I have no doubts you can take care of yourself.” Patrick took the afghan from the back of the couch and tucked it in around her legs. “But it won’t kill you to let someone else take care of you for once.”

Robin sighed and laid back on the couch. The truth was that she was enjoying being taken care of – it had been years since that had happened, not since Roger died. He had always made her health a top priority and would wait on her hand and foot if she had the slightest cold. Robin by nature was a caregiver so it had taken a lot to let Roger take care of her but she had no issue with Patrick doing it. “So how long until you get bored and run off to the hospital for some big emergency?”

“Not going to happen – Alan insisted I take a week off to tend to my favorite patient.” The reality was that Alan had been concerned that Patrick had worn himself out over the last week and wanted Patrick to take some time off to recharge. “So you are stuck with me Soltini.” He saw a look cross her face he couldn’t quite read. “What?”

“Nothing.” Ever since she started feeling better she had been trying to decide where she and Patrick stood. She didn’t doubt his feelings for her but she did worry that he would get scared again and run off.

“Robin,” Patrick reached over and took her hand in his, “I promise you that I am not going anywhere.”

She nodded her head. “Okay.”

“I’m serious Robin.” He scooted closer to her. “I almost lost you this week and it was the worst feeling in the world. I haven’t feel so scared or lost since my mom died but I didn’t disappear, I stayed and I fought for you, for us. I want you and I am not going anywhere.”

“You sound awfully sure of yourself.”

“You have every reason to doubt me.” He pushed a lock of hair behind her ear. “All I am asking for is a chance to prove myself to you.”

Robin’s eyes welled with tears, happy tears. The sincerity in his voice and the gentleness of his touch were getting to her. “Then you have it.”

Patrick leaned over and was just about to kiss her when they heard little feet run into the room. “Grandma!”

Rylee pushed Patrick out the way and jumped onto her Grandma’s lap. Patrick turned around to see Michelle standing in the doorway laughing. “Timing Michelle.”

“Sorry, someone couldn’t wait to see her grandma.” Michelle set down Ry’s book bag and joined the group. “Besides, I am making supper tonight and I needed to get a head start.”

“I can…”

Patrick interrupted her. “You are still on bed rest – doctor’s orders.” He stood up and took a deep breath. “Besides, we are having company for supper.”

“Who?” Robin looked at Patrick and then Michelle before shaking her head. “No, absolutely not.”

“Mom, he really just wants to make sure that you are okay.” Michelle had finally met her Grandpa Robert the other day and had been fascinated by the man. He had regaled them with stories of his many adventures and spoken proudly of his little girl and how much he had missed her over the years. Surprisingly, he and Rylee had instantly bonded and within an hour of their meeting she had him wrapped around her little finger. Robert was already planning to take it upon himself to personally train the four-year-old how to pick locks and untie knots in 30 seconds flat.

Robin was surprised to hear this news. “You met him?”

“Grandpa Robert is funny.” Rylee informed her grandma.

“He is, is he?” Robin glared at Patrick before turning around and smiling at Ry. “You know what would be great right now?” Ry shook her head. “A picture drawn by my favorite granddaughter.”

Rylee squealed in delight before hopping off the couch and running to her room. Robin waited until the little girl was out of earshot before she spoke again. “Rylee met my dad?”

“He came by the daycare center as I was picking her up. Grandma Anna asked me if it would be okay and I said yes.” Michelle stood her ground about her decision.

“Rylee is your daughter and you get to decide who she is around.” Robin leaned back in the couch. “I’ll just go in my room…”

“No.” This time it was Patrick who spoke up. “I kept Robert away from you while you were in the hospital because it was the right thing to do at the time. Now it is time for you to talk to him.”

Michelle knelt down next to the couch. “Mom, I know he hurt you but I also know that he loves you and you love him.” She couldn’t help but get a little choked up as she spoke. “I would give anything to have dad back again. This is a gift mom, don't turn it away. You can be mad at him, you can curse and yell at him, you can do anything you want to him but at least admit that you are happy he is alive and here.”

Robin tears flowed steadily down her cheeks as she listened to her daughter. She had been so caught up in her own emotions about her father’s return that she had missed completely how it affected Michelle and Rylee or how her father coming back from the dead would bring up painful memories of Roger’s death. She reached over and pulled her Michelle into a tight hug. “I didn't even...I am so sorry. Of course I am happy he is alive.”

Michelle started crying as well. “I know you are.” She leaned back. “I almost lost you mom and…”

“Okay, what time will he be here?” Robin wiped the tears from her cheek.

“6 – we wanted it to be early enough that Ry could eat with us.” Patrick was relieved that Michelle was able to get through to Robin.

“We?” Robin was surprised he was staying around for dinner.

“You didn’t think I would let you go through this alone?” Patrick headed to the kitchen. “Any requests for dinner?”

“Yes – that we order in some pizza and go casual.” Robin was not about to put on airs for her father.

“Sounds perfect.” Patrick winked at her as he went to check out the drink situation in the kitchen. “It’s going to be okay Robin – I promise you.”

“I believe you.” Robin watched him leave the room and then focused her attention on Michelle. “So, who else is coming tonight besides my parents?”

“Uncle Mac, Georgie, Maxie and Matt – we wanted a full support system in place for you.”

“I appreciate it.” Robin yawned. “Why don’t you check on Ry while I take a little nap? I have a feeling that I am going to need all the energy I can get tonight.”

Michelle nodded her head and headed towards Rylee’s room while Robin laid down and closed her eyes. She was definitely going to need to be well rested if she was going to deal with Robert Scorpio tonight.

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Chapter 35

Patrick watched Robin closely as she stared at the front door, anxiously awaiting her father’s arrival. It was 6:15 and Robert was the only guest missing. Moving carefully, he sat down next to her on the couch and wrapped his arm around her. “He’ll be here Robin.”

She shook her head. “I should have known better. He stayed away for 25 years without…”

Suddenly the front door flew open and Robert came running through the doorway. He ran to Robin’s side and instantly began apologizing. “I’m sorry that I kept you waiting.”

“Seriously?” Robin scoffed.

“I was in the middle of a debriefing about the epidemic and it took forever.”

“Yeah, well why should seeing me interfere with your work?” Robin couldn’t help but be hurt that her father’s work was, once again, more important than her.

“Robin, it’s not like that. This was about you, finding and punishing the people who hurt you.” Robert had been working with Frisco to finalize the deal that would be presented to Dr. Miller. Thanks to Robert, she would never be free of the WSB.

“Sure dad.” Robin turned to Patrick. “Could you let everyone know that my dad finally showed up?” It was a beautiful night and Mac had volunteered to do steaks on the grill instead of them ordering in pizza. Robin had stayed inside to wait for her father while Patrick fixed up a salad to go with supper.

“Are you sure?” He wasn’t quite sure Robin was strong enough to deal with her father on her own just yet.

Robin leaned over and kissed his cheek. “I’m sure. My dad and I need a few minutes alone.”

Reluctantly, Patrick stood up and headed out of the living room. “If you need me…”

“I’ll yell – I promise.” Robin threw him one last smile before turning stone faced back to her dad. “I understand you have met my daughter and granddaughter.”

Robert sat down in the recliner next to the couch and nodded his head. “Yes – they are amazing but that really isn’t shocking given their role model.”

“Thank you, I guess.”

“Still can’t take a compliment I see.”

“Just a little skeptical about the source. Let’s face it – what do you really know about me?”

“I know you’re are strong and smart. I know that you have done an amazing job of creating a great life even with all the obstacles thrown in your way.” Robert leaned over and smiled at her. “Robin, if I had been there…”

Anger overwhelmed her. “Don’t you dare blame Mac for my HIV status. He has been a wonderful father to me from the moment you left me behind. Mac loves me and has been the one constant in my life for the last 25 years.”

“But he couldn’t stop you from…”

“From being with the boy I loved – you’re right, he couldn’t. You couldn't have either. But I made the decision to have unprotected sex knowing the possible outcomes and that is not his fault. He has been by my side no matter what and it nearly killed him when he found out about my medical status.” Robin wiped away the tears that had come to her eyes. “Mac is a good man and a wonderful father and no one, especially not you, will badmouth him to me.”

Robert put up his hands. “I was out of line and I apologize. It’s obvious that Mac did a wonderful job raising you and I will never take that away from him.”

“Can I ask you a question?” Robin waited for Robert to nod his head before continuing. “If the virus hadn’t come to Port Charles, would I even know you were alive?”

Robert considered his answer carefully before responding. The truth was that he had been free from his deal with the WSB for over a year now and had not attempted to contact his daughter even once. “Honestly, no. You have built yourself a great life and I wouldn’t have wanted to disrupt it.”

“Disrupt it?” Robin’s tears flowed even faster. “Do you not understand how much it hurt when I thought you were dead?”

“But…”

“I have spent years just praying for another moment with you and you were willing to stay away from me?”

“Not willing just resigned to it.” Robert felt like he was failing miserably at explaining his decision.

Robin’s voice was small as she asked her next question. “Didn’t you miss me at all?”

“I missed you every damn day.” Robert reached over and took Robin’s hand in his. “You are the most wonderful thing I have ever had in my life and it killed me not to be able to tell you I was alive. To not be there when you lost Stone and Roger. To have not been able to walk you down the aisle or see you graduate from college. All of these things I heard about second hand and I wanted nothing more than to see you and be a part of your life.”

“Then why didn’t you fight to be here with me?”

“Because I would rather have you safe and believe I was dead than put you in the line of fire because you knew I was alive.” Robert reached up and gently tucked a piece of hair behind her ear. “I have been back in your life for only a week and you almost died because someone was trying to get to me.”

As much as she hated to admit it, Robin knew what he was saying was true. It still didn’t take away all the pain. “I guess I can’t deny that but still…”

“Sweetheart, I love you more than anything and I want the chance to be the father you need.” Robert stared Robin straight in the eyes. “All I am asking for is that chance.”

Robin could feel he was sincere but she wasn’t quite ready to risk trusting him. “This won’t happen overnight – it can’t.”

Robert got a small smirk on his face. “I understand.”

“And I’m not the only one you need to talk to. Mac deserves not only an apology but your never ending gratitude for being the father you couldn’t be, whatever the reason.” Robin would defend Mac until her dying day.

“My little brother is a good man who did the right thing. I don’t think I will ever be able to repay him for what he has done for you, Maxie and Georgie.” Robert had been impressed by his brother’s skills as a father.

“No you won’t but being good to my niece is a good start.” Mac walked in and sat down next to Robin. “Ready to come outside? Rylee is beating Matt at croquet.”

“Of course she is.” Robin laughed as Mac held out his hand to her. Robin took it so she could stand up and then turned to her father. “Shall we?”

“After you luv.” Robert watched as his brother helped his little girl out the back door and into the backyard. Following closely, he decided it was time to put his two cents in regarding his great granddaughter. “Now, we need to get that little girl into karate. I will, of course, be teaching her lock picking and I think your mother can handle teaching her some basic knots although I will want to take over the advanced methods…”

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Chapter 36

Robin leaned back in her chair and rubbed her belly. “I am stuffed. Uncle Mac that is best meal I have had in weeks.”

He smiled at the four young women sitting at the table. “Only the best for my girls, you know that.” Mac was busy cleaning up while Patrick and Matt played catch with Rylee. “Where do you guys want the leftovers? Fridge or freezer?”

“Fridge will be fine.” Robin nudged her cousin who was sitting next to her. “Matt’s really good with her.”

Georgie and Michelle were sitting across from them and both nodded their heads in agreement but Maxie quickly waved them off. “We just got engaged, children can most definitely wait.” She paused as she watched Matt pick Rylee up and swing her around. “At least until after the wedding.”

“Speaking of, have you set a date?” Georgie was worried that Maxie might second guess her decision to marry Matt and call the whole thing off. Georgie knew that Matt was the perfect man for her sister and didn’t want anything to stop them from being together.

Maxie smiled at her family. “3 months from today – Queen of Angels. I was hoping that Robin and Michelle would be my bridesmaids and Rylee the flower girl.”

“Oh.” Georgie was a little hurt that she wasn’t being asked to be a part of her sister’s big day. She quickly recovered – this wasn’t about her. “I’m sure they’ll be thrilled to.”

“And I won’t have to worry about them behaving since I’ll have the best maid of honor ever to make sure they do as they are told.” Maxie loved torturing her sister.

Georgie looked away from her sister. “Who would that be?”

“You of course.” Georgie lit up as she realized what Maxie was asking her. “Would you be my maid of honor Georgie?”

“Of course I will.” Georgie stood up and hugged her sister close. “That wasn’t very nice.”

“You’re the nice one, not me.” Maxie hugged her back. “So what do you say girls – do I have the best wedding party ever or what?”

“You do.” All three women agreed without hesitation.

“Let me get Ry over here so you can ask her yourself – it makes her feel like a big girl to get to say yes herself.” Michelle turned around and hollered for her daughter. “Rylee, could you come here please?”

Rylee came running over. “Yes mommy?”

Michelle picked up the little girl and set her down on her lap. “Rylee, Maxie has something she would like to ask you.”

Rylee instantly smiled at her cousin. “Yes?”

“Rylee, I was wondering if you would like to be the flower girl at my wedding.”

The little girl waited a moment before answering. “What would I have to do?”

“Well, you would walk down the aisle in pretty dress and throw flower petals.” Maxie was glad to answer any questions the little girl had. “Your mommy and grandma are going to be a part of the wedding too.”

“Really?” Ry looked at her mom and grandma who both nodded their heads. “I want to do it too!”

Maxie laughed. “That’s great.”

“Alright Ry.” Michelle hugged her little girl. “Time for bed. Give everyone kisses and hugs.”

Ry walked around the backyard and doled out kisses and hugs to all her relatives. Robin couldn’t help but laugh as Rylee grabbed Patrick’s hand and began dragging him into the house. “Read me a book? Please Uncle Patrick? You have the best princess voice.”

Patrick ignored his brother’s laughter as he followed the little girl into the house. “You’re right Rylee – I do.” He paused to check on Robin. “You’ll be okay?”

“I’ll be fine.” She hugged Ry one last time. “Love you baby girl.”

“Love you too grandma.” She turned around and smiled at everyone in the yard while still holding onto Patrick’s hand. “Good night!”

Robin yawned as she sat back in her chair. It had been a long night and so far everyone had behaved but she suspected that was more for Rylee’s sake then her own. Robert, Anna and Mac had spent the night by the grill while Robin and the girls had sat with Matt and Patrick just talking and laughing. Now that Rylee was out of earshot, all bets were off and Robert proved it by heading straight over to Robin. “Have a good time tonight luv?”

“Did you Uncle Robert?” Sarcasm filled her voice as Maxie scooted over closer to her cousin, trying to protect her. Robin had helped her out many times over the years and she had every intention of doing the same for her. “I mean, I know we aren’t as exciting as chasing bad guys all over the world.”

Georgie and Robin both cringed at Maxie’s words. Robert, however, took it in stride. “Actually this is far more fun than anything I have done in years.”

“Did you run into Frisco during any of your adventures?” Maxie had no illusions about her birth father and was proud that Mac would be walking her down the aisle in three months. “You know he abandoned me and Georgie to go and work for the WSB full-time?”

Robert wasn’t surprised that Maxie was the confrontational one – she had been that way all her life. He thought about his answer carefully. “First off, I didn’t choose to leave Robin – the WSB blackmailed me into it. Secondly, Frisco is the only reason I am able to be here today. He got me out my deal and is doing wonderful work - work that keeps you safe.”

Maxie rolled her eyes. “No, he does work that allows him to have fun without having to deal with the boring day to day life of being a father.” She stood up. “Do me a favor and don’t tell him about my wedding. He wasn’t here for the bad times and I don’t want him here for the good times. Mac is walking me down the aisle and that is what I want.”

Robert hated that Maxie felt the way she did about Frisco but he understood why she did. “If that’s what you want.”

“It is.” Maxie looked at Georgie. “Matt and I need to get going. Are you coming with us or waiting for Mac?”

Georgie stood up. “I want to get some work done on my thesis so…” Georgie was currently going for her Master’s in English while waiting tables at Kelly’s. The young woman was on her last step – her final thesis. Her work had impressed her advisor so much that he had already recommended her for a position at Port Charles University - one of the professors in the English department was retiring at the end of the school year. Thanks to her academic record and a few friends on the hiring committee with the last name of Quartermaine, the job was hers as soon as she got her degree.

“And I need to go tuck my daughter into bed.” Michelle joined her cousins as they left the table. “Uncle Patrick can only do so many stories before he deserves a break.”

Robert watched the women leave the table before turning back to Robin. “How are you feeling?”

“Okay, a little tired but okay.” Mac and Anna were still talking by the grill and everyone else had left. “So where are you headed off to now that your assignment is over?”

“I am staying here in Port Charles. I convinced the agency that I deserved a little time off since I have been in their constant employ for the past 25 years.” Robert had made it clear to Frisco that he needed to stay and reconnect with his daughter. “I want to ask you a few questions, really get to know you.”

Robin steeled herself. “What kind of questions?”

“Let’s start with something simple and happy. Maxie talking about her wedding had me wondering about yours. How was your wedding day? Could I see pictures?” Robert reached over and squeezed Robin’s hand, tears coming to his eyes. “I bet you were beautiful.”

“She was gorgeous.” Patrick, Mac and Anna approached the table. Patrick sat down next to Robin. “She was so happy and Mac here cleaned up pretty good too.”

“My pleasure, I can assure you.” He sat down next to his brother. “Robin lit candles for both of you during the ceremony.”

“You did?” Robert couldn’t help but be a little surprised.

“I thought you were dead and it was my way of honoring my parents.” A yawn escaped her lips and she shook her head. “Sorry.”

Patrick went into hover mode. “I think that is enough for tonight. Robin is still recovering from being sick and I don’t want her to relapse because she wore herself out catching you up on the last 25 years in one night.”

Once again Robert was impressed with Patrick’s protectiveness of his daughter. “Of course.” He smiled at Mac. “Why don’t you take me to the local watering hole and we grab a couple of drinks – along with my lovely ex-wife of course.”

“Why the hell not.” Mac stood up and kissed Robin on the cheek. “I will check in on you tomorrow.”

“Me too.” Anna hugged her goodbye.

“I would like to see you again too.” Robert smiled at her. “How about lunch tomorrow?”

Robin nodded her head. “Okay dad.” She waited for the three parents to leave before she leaned into Patrick. “Thank you – I am exhausted.”

“I know.” He got out of his chair and swiftly picked Robin up out of hers. “Which is why we are going to go inside, sit down on the couch and watch tv.”

“So you think you are staying?” Robin wrapped her arms around his neck as he carried her into the house. “That’s presumptuous.”

“I’m your personal physician Robin and I am not going anywhere.” He kissed her softly on the forehead. “Besides, I have a feeling you are ready to watch something other than cartoons for a night.”

She grinned at him. “That does sound great.”

“Of course it does, I suggested it.” He set her down on the couch and sat down next to her. It took a few minutes but they eventually got settled into a comfortable position with her firmly lying in his arms. He picked up the remote and began going through the channels. “Let’s see what’s on.”

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Chapter 37

Robin paced the front hall as she debated her next move. She stopped, took a deep breath and took her phone out of her purse. “I need to call this off – it has disaster written all over it.”

Michelle snatched the phone from her mom’s hand. “No, you are doing this.” She took her mom by the hand and gently pulled her towards the couch. After they both sat down, she handed the phone back. “Mom, why are you so nervous? You guys have been basically dating for the last two months.”

Robin sighed. “But this is our first official date.” Robin and Patrick had spent plenty of time together as friends and colleagues but, aside from the kiss in her office after she starting seeing Keith, they had done nothing more than hold hands and kisses on the cheek. Robin had wanted to recover from her illness and she needed a little time to deal with the fact that her father had returned from the dead and Patrick had respected her enough to wait and just enjoy their time together as friends.

This last month with Patrick had been wonderful. No pressure, just really getting to know the people that they had become and enjoying their time together. She had met with her father several times a week to get to know each other again and, so far, it was going great. They were never going to get the years back they had lost but they were rebuilding their relationship slowly. Not only that but Robert had become a popular figure at their house and was actually babysitting Ry tonight while Robin and Michelle went on their respective dates. Right now they were out at a movie with Grandma Anna and then he was bringing her back home for ice cream and games.

Michelle and Michael were going strong and he had finally met Rylee last week. He had instantly loved the little girl and was more than happy to arrange dates that included her. Today they had spent the day at the zoo and enjoyed the sea lion show, the train and seeing all the animals but tonight he was taking Michelle out to celebrate their three month anniversary with dinner out at Chez Matisse.

“Do you really think that this being your first official date is going to change anything?” Michelle really didn’t understand where her mom was coming. “Uncle Patrick is in love with you – even dad knew that.”

“What?”

Michelle took a deep breath. “Remember when you got into that car accident about a year before dad died?”

Robin nodded her head. She had been on her way into work and a kid came around a curve going way too fast and lost control, slamming into the side of her car. Robin had been knocked into a ditch but she had not been hurt too bad thanks to her seat belt and the air bag. A few bruised ribs and a concussion but all she needed was some rest and she was good as new. “Yes.”

“While we were in the waiting room I asked dad if he wanted me to call anyone. Keep in mind that all we knew at that point was that you had been in a terrible car accident and had no idea how serious it was.” Michelle remembered this conversation well, it was one of the last long talks she had had with her dad before his death. "He told me that he wished he knew how to get in touch with Patrick because he knew that Patrick would want to be there for you. Then he started talking about something he saw, some dance class, I don’t know, anyway, he said that he knew by the look in Patrick’s eyes as he was dancing with you that he had fallen in love with you.”

“Wait, if your dad knew…”

“Dad said that Patrick was an honorable man and would never try to steal you away from him.” Michelle began tearing up remembering her dad. “And he was right.”

Robin was crying too. “I want you to know that I have always and will always love your father. Whatever I feel for Patrick has nothing to do with my love for your dad.”

“I know mom and he did too.” Michelle smiled through her tears. “Dad wanted you to find love again and I think he hoped that, if anything happened to him, it would be with Patrick.”

“I’m scared.” Robin whispered.

“I know you are mom but that man would not have spent every day by your side, through everything that has been thrown at us over the last two months, if he had no intention of sticking it out with you.” Michelle stood up and helped her mom off the couch. “Now we need to fix our make up before our dates get here.”

Robin nodded her head. “Yes we do.”

______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________


Carly sat down in the café and threw her purse on the table. She had spent all day trying to get anyone to acknowledge that Robin had even lived there but so far everyone was claiming ignorance regarding the doctor and her family. She pulled out her tablet and opened up her file on Robin. “Someone in this damn town knows something about you.”

The waitress walked up to her booth and smiled widely at the blond. “Good evening darling. What can I get you?”

“Some clean silverware and a cup of coffee.” She handed the waitress her fork, spoon and knife.

The waitress didn’t say another word, just took the silverware and walked back over to the counter. She returned a moment later with coffee. “Here you go ma’am.” She looked down at the table as she set down the coffee and smiled at the picture on the screen. “It’s the doc – you a friend of hers?”

Carly’s mood instantly brightened. “Yes I am. Do you know Robin?”

“Sure - the doc and her girls ate here all the time.”

“Do you have a moment to talk to me?” She smiled sweetly at the waitress.

“I can’t – I’m on shift and I…”

A man slid into the booth across from Carly. “I can.” He put out his hand and offered it to Carly. “Damien Russo.”

She eyed the man before taking his hand. “Carly Jax. How do you know Dr. Soltini?”

“Soltini? Is that the name she is using now?” Carly nodded her head. “Did she get married?”

“No.” Carly relaxed – this man was exactly who she had been looking for. “What do you mean the name she is using now?”

“When she lived here, she was Dr. Scorpio-Collins.” He took the tablet off the table and smiled at Robin’s picture. “We lost touch after I went away for a few months and I have been trying to get back in touch with her. Where is she living now?”

“I’m sorry Mr. Russo…” Carly was getting a bad feeling about this guy and the way he was looking at Robin’s picture.

“Damien, please.”

“As I was saying, I’m sorry Damien but I really need to get going – my husband is going to start wondering where I am.” She grabbed the tablet from his hand as she stood up and quickly shoved it in her purse.

“Could you at least tell me where I might find Robin?” He stood up to follow Carly out of the diner and to her car. “I really would love to see her again.”

Carly thought about her answer for only a moment. “Miami.” She jumped in her car, wanting to put as much distance between her and Damien as possible. “Her daughter got into school there.”

Carly slammed shut the door and hit the gas. She would get her revenge but Damien Russo would not be a part of it.

Damien watched Carly’s car speed off. He jumped back up on the sidewalk and got out his phone. “I need you to find someone for me. Her name is Dr. Robin Soltini.”

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Chapter 38

“I cannot believe how rude you were to him.” Robin rolled her eyes as she unlocked her front door.

“Rude? The guy was flirting with you while you were on a date with another man.” Patrick stood his ground. At least the waiter hadn’t ruined their night together.

Their date had been wonderful. The food was great and the conversation had flowed easily. The truth was that to an outsider who didn’t know any better, they looked like they had been together for years, their connection was that strong. After dinner they had taken a walk down by the docks while Robin filled him in on some of Port Charles’s more colorful moments in history. They sat on a bench and just enjoyed each other’s company until Robin made the decision that it was time to head home and relieve her father from his babysitting duties.

“He was telling us the specials, not slipping me his phone number.” She pulled the key from the lock and turned around to find Patrick right behind her. She took a deep breath. “And I wouldn’t have noticed anyway because the only man I could see was you.”

He nodded his head as his hand reached up and around her neck, gently caressing the back of her head as he pulled her closer. “Good answer.”

“I thought so.” She tilted her head up and wrapped her arms around his neck, pulling him closer.

A moment later their lips met and they kissed for the second time in their lives. Intense didn’t even begin to describe it as they finally gave in to every emotion they had been fighting for the past two months. After several minutes they stopped and took a breath.

Robin was breathing heavily. “Wow.”

“You said it.” Patrick had never experienced a kiss like that in his life. Robin brought out a passion and tenderness in him he never even knew he was capable of.

“Do you want to come inside?” Robin saw the lustful look in his eyes. “For a drink?”

He leaned down to kiss her again. It was quick but still full of passion. “Yes.”

Robin reached for the doorknob but the door flew open and Robert stood there glaring at the couple. “You coming in or what?”

“Hi Dad.” Robin grabbed Patrick’s hand as she entered the house. “Was Rylee good for you tonight?”

“Yes.” He followed the couple into the living room. “She crashed out a couple of hours ago.”

“And you got Michelle’s message?” Michael had surprised Michelle with a night away in New York City for their anniversary and Robin had told her to go. Her daughter had been through so much heartache and pain; she deserved a night of fun.

It was Robert’s turn to roll his eyes. “That her boyfriend whisked her away for the night? Yeah I got it.”

“Good.” Robin sat down on the couch with Patrick right by her side. “Thank you again for watching Ry tonight.”

“Not a problem.” He sat down in the recliner and leaned back. “Did you two have a good night?”

Patrick put his arm around Robin. “Yes sir.”

“Good, good.” He smiled at Patrick. “Would you like a cup of coffee before you hit the road?”

“Dad!” Robin had been relaxing into her date’s embrace but her father’s comment made her sit up straight.

“What?” Robert sat back. “I’m trying to be nice but maybe that isn’t the right tactic with your date here so I’ll be blunt – what are your intentions towards my daughter?”

Robin stood up. “Okay, you have now officially crossed the line.”

“I think that I have every right to ask exactly what Dr. Kildare here has planned for you. After all, he isn’t exactly known for his faithfulness.” Robert glared at Patrick. “My little girl deserves better than how you have treated the other women in your life.”

Robin’s hand slapped her forehead. “This is not happening.”

Patrick took Robin’s other hand and pulled her back down on the couch. “You’re right but Robin is different than any other woman I have ever had in my life. My feelings for her have been there for years and I have no intention of hurting her.”

“Well the road to hell is paved with good intentions so I hardly see that as a mark in your favor.” Robert leaned over and stared Patrick straight in the eyes. “Robin is special and deserves more than good intentions.”

Robin had had enough. She stood up once more and smiled down at Patrick. “Would you mind excusing my father and me for a few minutes?”

“But…”

“Please?” Robin pleaded with him to do this for her. “Go check on Ry for me. Make sure my father actually put her in her pjs and didn’t just let her wear whatever she wanted to bed.”

He kissed Robin one last time. “I’ll be back in a few minutes – play nice.”

Robin waited until he was out of the room before she addressed her dad. “You want to explain to me exactly why are you trying to destroy my life?”

“I am just trying to make up for lost time.”

“Well you don’t have to do it all in one night.” Robin flopped back down on the couch and took off her shoes.

“Overcompensation has always been a failing of mine.” Robert couldn’t help but smile as she rubbed her feet once they were free from her high heels. “You see, I still see you as a little girl sitting on the living room floor eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.”

“That’s very sweet and all but I am not that little girl anymore. I’m a grown woman with a daughter and a grandchild.” Robin paced the floor. “I am a successful doctor who has been in love several times.”

“Including Drake?” Robert raised his eyebrows at her but Robin didn’t bite. “I mean are you sure that you want your first foray into dating after all this time to be the hospital heartthrob?”

“First off, Patrick is not my first foray into dating – I dated a very nice man before him.”

“Please, you and Dr. Basal were just hanging around together. You never slept with him.” Robert instantly regretted saying that to her.

“I’m sorry – did you just bring sex into this?”

“Well, Roger has been gone a long time and…”

“Oh my God – I am not discussing my sex life with you.”

“Look, I wasn’t around for Stone and besides,” Robert smirked at her, “is there really anything to discuss?”

She took a few deep breaths, attempting to calm herself. “Whether there is or not has nothing to do with you. You are my father, not my therapist.”

“Look, I know you are scared about falling in love again…”

“I’m not scared – just cautious and I have earned that right. I have loved three men in my life before Patrick and two died, one from AIDS and one as a hero. Excuse me if that makes me a little scared.” Robin felt the tears coming but didn’t try to hide them. “Not to mention that I thought my father was dead for the last 25 years.”

Robert winced. “Is there any chance that you won’t keep bringing that up?”

“No because it proves a point. As much as I love you, I can’t depend on you. I can’t trust that I won’t be left behind again for another mission or…” Robin saw a look in Robert’s eyes that she didn’t like. She sighed heavily as she asked the question. “When do you leave?”

“It’s not like that.”

“When do you leave?”

“It’s only for a few weeks, I swear.”

Robin glared at him. “When do you leave?”

Robert sat back down in the chair, defeated. “Tomorrow.”

“Same mission as mom?” Anna had told her she was leaving town in a few days for a covert mission and would be unreachable for at least a month.

“You know I can’t tell you that.” He shook his head, trying to deny that she had hit the nail on the head. The truth was that Robert had always been impressed by his daughter’s intuition as she was usually right.

“Just try and let someone here know you are still alive.” Robin stood up and headed to the front door. “Right now I want you to leave. I’m tired and I have to get up with Ry in the morning.”

He followed her to the door reluctantly. “Sweetheart, I love you.”

“I know you do even if you have a lousy way of showing it.” She reached over and hugged her father. “I love you too.”

“I will check in with you as much as possible.”

“Thank you.” She opened the door for him. “Take care of yourself and mom and try not to come back all beat up.”

“Maybe just a little bit?” He winked at her.

Robin laughed in spite of herself. “Maybe a little bit. Good night Dad.”

Robert kissed her on the forehead before heading out the door. “Good night luv.”

She watched him get into his car and pull out of the driveway before shutting the door and locking it. She walked back into the living room to find Patrick sitting there with two glasses of wine. She sat down next to him and leaned on him. “I’m sure you have better things to do than...”

“The only thing I want to do is be here with you.” He slid his arm around her back and held her close. “He’s leaving again?”

Robin nodded her head as fresh tears filled her eyes. “Tomorrow.”

Patrick laid back on the couch and pulled Robin on top of him. He gently began stroking her back. “He’ll come home Robin.”

“But…”

“He’ll come home.” He kissed the top her head and then picked up the remote. “Now what are you in the mood for Soltini?”

“Something funny.” Robin sighed, feeling completely comfortable in his arms.

“I think I can do that.” He turned on his side and placed her in front of him so they could both see the television easily. “Oh – Young Frankenstein!”

Robin closed her eyes and smiled. “That’s perfect.” Emotionally exhausted, Robin began to drift off to sleep. She always slept better in his arms. “Absolutely perfect.”

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