Tag Archive | Reva Lewis

Flashback: Clone Reva

dollyjoshreva

Arguably one of the most bizarre (not to mention what I think is completely dumb) storylines to come out of the 90s had to have been Clone Reva.  Written by James Harmon Brown and Barbara Esensten this story was universally panned by critics and went on to make Guiding Light something of a laughing stock of the industry.  This storyline is very polarizing with Guiding Light fans; some look back on this story with a grimace and others seem to like the campy feel.

So here’s a flashback to what I personally consider a groan-worthy storyline.  Included within are links to various clips in order to relive the story that Guiding Light fans wish they could forget and here is a playlist of Clone Reva clips.

To begin this storyline you have to start with the exit of Annie Dutton.  Annie Dutton has lost everything.  She had Josh and his love, but that ended with the return of Reva.  She plotted and schemed to no avail.  Josh’s love for Reva would be the victor in that triangle.  Annie “moved on” with Alan only to have Reva ruin her wedding.  Enough was enough, Annie was going to take Reva out once and for all.

Drugging Reva one night Annie brings her aboard a plane.  Taunting Reva with her plan Annie video records her distress before calling Josh to taunt him with Reva’s predicament.  Then Annie Dutton bids Springfield adieu (for now) by parachuting out of the plane, leaving Reva to die.

When Josh arrived in Florida, he searched desperately for Reva until the Coast Guard stopped him.   Distraught over the death of Reva (again) hired Dr. Michael Burke to clone his supposedly dead wife from the eggs she’d left. Within two weeks Josh is holding a cloned Reva Shayne baby.

Meanwhile, Reva washed up on a deserted island and soon discovered that she was not alone. A man named Sean McCullough was sharing the island with her.  She attempted to build a raft to get home but it sank.  Sean being the altruistic gentleman he is, then showed her a boat he had stored away and agreed to take her home.

With an aging serum Josh was rapidly aging his Reva Clone.  Soon she was a free-spirited teenager played by Bethany Joy Lenz (which was the only real bright spot in this tale).  Though Josh should have prepared for this after all he and Reva were high school sweethearts and Reva was spirited even back then.

Calling home Reva hears a voice on the other end of the line, and she suspects something is going on.  Once back in Springfield a shocked Reva thinks Annie changed her appearance to look like her.  Instead she meets her double, who knocks her out and locks her in the lighthouse.

revadolly

In her absence Dolly had fallen in love with Josh and Reva’s return was not happening! Reva convinces her clone to let her teach her how to get Josh to love her.  Though Josh does sleep with the clone he cannot bring himself to love her since she lacks “Reva’s spirit”.

The clone eventually locks Reva up in the pool house at the Lewis home, and Josh resigns himself to marrying the clone. Reva, realizing that the clone was preparing to leave her to die, talked the clone into bringing her a camcorder so that she could watch tapes of the kids. Reva made a videotape telling Josh that she was locked up in the pool house.

The clone returned to the house and popped in the tape, stopping it just in time to realize that Reva had conned her. Josh overheard a part of the tape, but it didn’t really hit him what he was hearing. On the way to Cross Creek, the clone began to ask Josh how it felt to starve to death. Her guilt was getting the better of her and as she asked more questions.

Josh began to put the pieces together and remembered hearing Reva’s voice on the videotape. He turned his car around and sped home to save his dying wife. Running into the pool house, Josh was shocked to see two Revas! After saving Reva from the clone Josh tenderly bathes his Reva, happy to have the love of his life back. They had to figure out what to do with the clone. After the excitement of their reunion began to settle, Reva had a lot of unresolved anger with Josh for cloning her, and for giving up on their love.

Reva bonded with the clone out of pity and made her over into her long-lost cousin, Dolly. With her new identity, the clone finally had a name of her own. She began to settle into her new identity, and Josh and Reva decided to give her a new life in Italy.

reva-dolly

Dolly, still very much in love with Josh, decided to take a different route. She overdosed on the aging serum so that she would die, and Josh and Reva would be able to move on with their life together. On their way to Italy, she asked Josh to take her to Cross Creek one more time, so that she could say goodbye to the memories. After Dolly’s death, Reva forgave Josh.

photo-guiding-light-reva-clone

And thus the ending to one of the worst storylines in Guiding Light history.  Though like I said, there was one bright spot: Bethany Joy Lenz was certainly fun to watch as teenage Reva.  She was spirited and fun, like a teenage Reva would be.  Bethany Joy Lenz was so good as Clone Reva that she was brought back as a recast Michelle Bauer in the fall of 1998 and whose romance with good-hearted mobster Danny Santos was one of the most popular stories (and romances) from that era.  And the Manny romance continued to be popular until the end of Guiding Light itself.

 

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A Soft Place to Land: Chapter Twenty-Eight

Tony stood so quickly the patio chair fell backwards, “Separate?  You can’t be serious!” He raked furious hands through his hair as he paced back and forth across the patio before finally coming to a stop in front of Marah, “You don’t think I’ve learned my lesson?  My God Marah I have fought for us from the moment you woke up in the hospital with years missing from our life together.  I let you hold me and our daughter at arm’s length and I did all that while trying to make you see that our life together was worth remembering.”  Tony punctuated each point with a thumb towards himself.

Surprisingly calm Marah just shook her head softly, “It’s not about teaching you a lesson Tony.  It’s about both of us.  Our relationship hasn’t been easy from day one.  There have been ups and downs, miscommunication, rash decisions, and lies.  I just think we need to take a step back and regroup.”

Tony had to admit to himself that Marah had a point, their relationship had never been easy.  But nothing worthwhile ever was, and what they had together was worth all the struggle and pain the world could dish out. “So you think that to help our relationship we should separate?”

At the sad and dejected tone in Tony’s voice Marah questioned her choice.  It wasn’t the first time, she had rethought her decision at least a million times between coming home from Michelle’s and now.  But it all came back to one single point of contention for her, that Tony didn’t trust in her love.  Not to handle the truth and not to be strong enough for the both of them. “I just think that we need to regroup and decide if this marriage is strong enough.  We have been through a lot in the past couple of years and maybe we need a time out to see if we can just…be.”

Tony righted the chair that had fallen and sank into it.  Lowering his head into his hands he tried to calm himself, and it took every ounce of his self-control to not take Marah in his hands and shake some sense into her.  But above that he wanted Marah to be happy and if this would make her see that what they had was what mattered most than he would do what he could to make her see that. “Fine.  I don’t want to do this but I will, for us.”  He raised his head and looked sad eyes towards the only woman he had ever loved, “And how do you suggest we do this?  We have an infant daughter we need to think about.”

Wringing her hands in her lap Marah had to admit she hadn’t thought this far ahead.  All she knew is that she needed a time out to gather her thoughts. “Well, maybe you can stay at Towers for a little while-”

“Absolutely not!” Tony’s face and voice took on a furious note, “Just because you woke up today remembering you are Lanie’s mother doesn’t mean you get to push me out of her life.  I have been the one to change the diapers.  I have been the one to walk the floor with her on nights when she wouldn’t sleep and wonder what I was doing wrong.  I have been the one who did the midnight feedings without a clue as to what I was doing.  Me.  Not you.”  At Marah’s wince Tony wanted to take his words back.  he knew they were harsh but damn it, she would not deny him their daughter. “Sorry, but it’s true.”

“I know it’s true.  And that is part of the reason I think we need a time out.  We need a chance to deal with the pent-up anger we have.  At each other and everything else.”  Marah thought about it for am moment and conceded, “I can move into the extra bedroom.”

Tony laughed humorlessly, “So you want to separate into separate bedrooms?  And we are supposed to coexist yet we are technically separated.”

Marah shrugged, “It’s the best I could come up with.  You don’t want to leave Lanie and I don’t blame you.  You a great father Tony.  And I don’t want to leave the daughter I just remembered I wanted more than anything in the world.  I want to be there for her now in the way I should have been from the beginning.”  She shrugged again, “I don’t want to hurt you Tony. I just have to do this.”

“Fine.  I’ll agree to this asinine plan of yours but just remember this.” Tony stood and walked over to where Marah was sitting and leaned down.  Reaching out he cupped his wife’s face and his hands and pulled her lips towards his.  And after a searing kiss he look into her eyes, “I have fought for you and the life we could have together for most of my life.  And I would fight until my dying breath to make you see what we have is beautiful and forever.  But when you see it, well I just might make you fight for me for a change.”  Standing up he began walking towards the house but not without calling out over his shoulder, “I am your soft place to land Marah.  And you are mine.”

Marah watched Tony enter the house before lifting her fingers up and touching them to her lips.   That kiss was like electricity that shot off sparks like a live wife through her.  And there was a secret part that wanted to just say ‘the hell with it’ and just go on living as they had been before.  Unfortunately, she wasn’t the same person she had been before the accident.  But damn if Tony didn’t call out to every single molecule in her body.

Marah picked up the phone and pressed the number for the one person who knew about time outs more than a baseball umpire.  “Mom.  You busy?”

***

Reva hung up the phone and turned worried eyes to Josh, “Our daughter and Tony are separating. Well kind of.”

Josh dropped the magazine he had been reading, “What do you mean kind of?”

“Well they are living together but technically taking a time out.” Reva couldn’t help it, she smiled, “Bud that is the most ridiculous thing I have head in awhile.”

Josh shook his head, “Do you think she has any idea what she set herself up for?”

“Nope.” Reva joined Josh on the couch and snuggled into his side, “But I have a feeling it is going to be interesting to watch.”

***

Danny hung up the phone and turned to his wife in their bed, “Tony and Marah are kind of taking a time out.”

Michelle sat up in bed, clutching the sheet to her chest, “What do you mean?  I just saw her today and she said that she has always loved Tony.  Hell, we know she has always loved Tony and vice versa.”

“They are separated but still living in their home”, Danny smiled slyly to his wife and slowly pulled the sheets from her hands and kissed her deeply, “How long do you think before one of them cracks?”

Michelle wrapped her arms around Danny and sank back down on the pillows, pulling him with her, “Not long.  You Santos’ have been known to be charming when you want to be.”

Danny gave his wife a wolfish grin, “And I am about to show you just how charming I can be wife.”

A Soft Place to Land: Chapter Thirteen

At nine o’clock on the dot Marah flipped on the lights and took a good look around.  Nothing about the space was familiar but yet she could see herself everywhere.  The bright colors, the art on the wall, the comfy furniture…it was all her.   Marah couldn’t imagine anything making her want to leave Paris, it had been her dream for so long.  But it was clear that she had made a new life for herself here.

The tinkling of the bell above the door brought Marah out of her musings.  It was too early for her mother to arrive, she had been filled in by Tony that her mom was rarely on time which didn’t surprise her much. Turning she saw a delivery man carrying a vase filled with a huge bouquet of flowers. “Delivery for Marah Santos.”

Walking over Marah accepted the flowers with a smile and placed them on what she assumed was her desk.  It did have framed photos of her and Tony after all.   Plucking the card from the envelope she read the messy script she knew so well.  “Marah, Hope you have a great day back at work.  Love Always, Tony”.  Marah touched the flowers lovingly.  Tony could have gotten her generic roses like most husbands but instead he got her an array of colorful blooms.

She picked up the cellphone she had spent weeks re-learning how to use and fired off a text. “Thanks for the flowers.  They are beautiful.”

As if he was sitting right beside his phone she got an instantaneous reply. “You’re welcome.  Hope they make your day a bit brighter.”

Marah’s fingers paused over the screen as she thought about what she wanted to say.  Nothing really sounded good to her.  She was saved by the twinkling of the bell above the door.  Her mother rushed in carrying a white bakery bag and a carrying case with two large coffees.

“I am so glad to have you back!  Between your father and Collin I was going stir crazy.”  She placed the bag on her desk beside the flowers, “I didn’t know if you had eaten so I got you a few croissants.  Nice flowers.  Are they from Tony?”

Marah’s eyes widened at the rapid fire questions coming from her mother.  “How many coffees have you had today?”

Reva just smiled as she passed over a coffee to her daughter.  “Just one thank you very much.  I am just excited.  You know how I can get.”

All too well.  Marah took a sip of the steaming brew and sighed in delight.  Liquid heaven.  “Yes the flowers are from Tony.” Marah took another sip of her coffee before she looked at her mother.  “Who is Collin?”

Reva looked like a deer in the headlights.  “Um, well, damn my big mouth!  There is no easy way to say this but to just tell you.  Collin is your brother.”

***

Danny briefly knocked on Tony’s office door before entering.  Sitting in one of the chairs in front of the large desk he grinned in delight, “I know the timing sucked but I got to say, I’ve missed seeing you here at the office.”

Tony looked up from the paperwork he was going over, “Give it a few weeks.  It will wear off.”

“Yeah probably,” Danny laughed before sobering, “So how did everything go today?  I know Michelle was a wreck when we had to put Danielle in daycare and she was our third.”

“Not going to lie, it was tough leaving her with a virtual stranger.  Though it seems like Tristan knows what she’s doing.”  Tony tapped his pen against the desk as he thought back to that morning.  How he had watched Tristan cooing to his daughter and how he wanted to snatch the baby back yelling “Mine!”.  It had been so foreign an emotion yet the impulse was so strong he had been forced to hold himself back.

His cellphone sitting on the desk glowed with the arrival of a text message.  He smiled as he read the message and fired off a quick response.

“Marah?”

Tony looked at his cousin and smiled, “I sent her flowers this morning for her first day back.”  Once again Tony lost himself in thought.  At how he had acted towards Marah since she announced she wanted to return to work.  At how he had basically called her a bad mother who didn’t care for her child, “How did you do it?”

Danny raised his eyebrow in confusion, “Do what?”

“Fight for Michelle when she fought you the entire way?”  Tony roughly pushed his hand through his hair, “It’s so damn frustrating.  The other day I basically told her she didn’t care about Lanie.”

Danny winced before leaning forward in his chair.  “Yeah that was not good.” He eyed his cousin with intent. “It is frustrating when you watch the woman you love so lost and you can’t help her no matter how hard you try.  You just want to shake them and make them see what is in front of their face.  But you deal with it because you know if the situation was reversed they would be fighting just as hard.”

“Worked out with Ray after our meeting the other day.  He basically told me I should show her why she fell in love with me in the first place.”

“Our Ray sure has some good ideas for someone who has never been in love.”

“He’s been in love before.  Remember Rachel Thomas from the neighborhood?”  When Danny nodded in affirmation Tony continued, “He told me once if he couldn’t have her than he was not going to have anyone.”

Danny snorted, “Yeah Ray chose a life of celibacy and devotion to God because his high school girlfriend married someone else.” When Tony just looked back at him Danny waved his hand in front of his face, “Okay we are getting off topic.  So your plan is to woo your wife into loving you again?”

Tony shrugged, “I can’t hurt.  Not like anything I’ve done so far has worked.”

Danny rubbed his chin thoughtfully. “Well you’ve gotten her to love you again after worse.  Just one word of advice, don’t make her feel pressured.  That is what drove Michelle and I apart, the pressure she felt at remembering drove us so far apart I thought we would never be whole again.  I don’t want you to go through the same thing that we did.”

***

Finished with her morning appointments Michelle waltzed into the main entrance at Cedars and headed towards her father’s office.  She hadn’t seem him or Rick in a while and she hoped she could lure them away for a quick brunch at Company to catch up.  She stopped dead in her tracks when she saw the bane of her existence holding court at the nurse’s station.  Hoping to make it past him without alerting him to her presence Michelle ducked her head down and quickened her step.  She had nearly made it when Lillian Cooper called out, “Good morning Dr. Santos.”

Busted.  It would be rude to ignore Lillian so Michelle stopped and turned toward the older woman, “Good morning Lillian.  I was hoping to meet with my father.  Is he in?”

Lillian nodded. “Just got in a few minutes ago.”

“Thanks.”  Michelle nodded at the man smirking at her, “Dr. Dick.” Okay so it was a bit petty and childish but it felt good.  Especially when she watched the smirk slide off the jerk’s face. “I mean Dr. Salas.”  Michelle mentally fist bumped as she continued towards her father’s office.  She knocked on the opened door and waited until her father looked up and smiled.

“Well hello daughter.  What brings you by today?”

Michelle entered and gave her father a hug, “Just thought I’d come and see if you could get away for a bite to eat.  I feel like I haven’t talked to you in weeks.”

Ed Bauer grabbed his coat by the door, “You know I would never turn down an invitation from my favorite daughter.”

***

“You and dad had another child?” Marah was confused.  And angry.  She didn’t know what she felt right now but she wanted to know about this mysterious brother she had.  She couldn’t believe that everyone had kept it from her.

“Well…no.” Reva hedged.  Walking over to her desk she picked up a framed photograph and brought it over for Marah to see.  “Your father formally adopted him a couple of years ago.  But no he is not Collin’s biological father.”

Marah looked at the photograph in her hand.  It was a formal proto of all of her brothers and herself.  Probably the only one of its kind to ever be taken.  And there front and center was a little blonde-haired little boy with a mischievous grin. “If dad isn’t his father who is?”

“Well…um…his father is JefferyONeill.” Reva rushed together and winced.  Waiting for the inevitable reaction.

Marah held up a hand, “Wait.  Did you say Jeffery O’Neill.  As in my ex Jeffery O’Neill.” Marah trust the photo back at her mom as if it scalded her hand. “That’s so….twisted.  Sick and twisted.”

“It happened years after you left honey.  He was there for me when I felt so alone.”

Marah stalked over to her desk and plopped down on her chair. “I just don’t know what to do with this.  It just seems so…gross.”

“I understand.” Reva looked down at the photo she still held in her hand, “But believe it or not you two took to each other like a duck to water.”

“Yeah I bet.” Marah snorted as she rubbed her temples, she could feel a migraine coming on, “Lord this was a hell of a first day back.”

A Soft Place to Land: Chapter Four

Tony flinched at Marah’s statement.  He already felt like he was treading in uncharted waters with no sign of land in sight.  Her quest for answers added a whole other level of danger, like sharks circling below the murky depths.   “The doctor warned us about taxing you with memories.  That it could actually be detrimental to your recovery.”

Marah crossed her arms across her chest and pinned him with an incredulous look. “Cut the crap Tony.  Right now I am married to man who the last thing I remember of him is that he broke my heart.  The man I remember then spent months, months, showing me that the love we had was indeed over.  Then I got the call from my mom telling me that you had died.”  She took him in from his dark hair to his feet, and every impressive inch along the way.  “You certainly look alive to me.  And those people,” She pointed behind her to the portrait on the wall, “They look happy.  So let’s start there.  How did Tony Santos rise from the dead?”

Tony took a deep breath and began. “It begins with Romeo Jones.”

***

Michelle was going over patient charts when she was interrupted by a brisk knock on the door.   Looking up to issue a greeting she was surprised to see her father standing at the door.  She quickly moved to the door and embraced him in a tight hug.  “Dad!  I am surprised to see you here.”  Surprised was really an understatement, her father never came over to the woman’s clinic, especially since he became chief of staff at Cedars.

Ed nodded absent-mindedly. “Can’t a father come visit his daughter at work?”

“Oh course he can.  You just never do.  So what is going on?”

Instead of answering Ed looked around the room, anywhere but at his daughter.  Curious.  “Dad?” Michelle prompted, worry filling her voice.

Finally Ed looked at his daughter and began, “I don’t know how to say this other than to just say it.  Dr. Salas visited me today.  He had some concerns about the treatment Marah Santos received last month.”

She should have known it would come to this.  That condescending windbag had the audacity to question her ability at administering care to her patients.  Her hate for him just rose to new levels.  “Dad I did everything in my power to save Marah and her child.  And they both pulled through.  There’s not much I could have done differently without risking either one of their lives.”

Ed nodded at her defense and continued, “I understand Michelle, and I can’t say that I wouldn’t have done things any differently.  But when one of my doctors calls into question the actions of another I take it seriously.  This time he came to me with his questions, next time he may call you before the board.  Just be advised that’s all I am saying.”

“Duly noted.” Inside Michelle was seething.  How dare that man go and tattle to her father like she was a child when she did nothing wrong.  Which she was sure was exactly his objective.  To see her get the talking to that he thought she deserved.  Well if he thought this would knock her down he had another thing coming. She calmly gathered her charts-clearly paperwork wasn’t going to be done now that this was laid at her doorstep.  “If there isn’t anything else dad I have patients to see.”

“Michelle I know you are upset just like I know you are a brilliant doctor.  You come by it naturally of course.”

Michelle knew her father was trying to lighten her mood and she couldn’t help smiling at his lame joke. “Fishing for compliments dad?”

“Just stating the truth.” He engulfed his daughter into another tight embrace. “Welcome to the life of a doctor.  Having everyone question your actions, even when you did everything right.”

Michelle supposed he was right, even if she hated it.  “Thanks for the pep talk dad.  I really do have patients though.  Babies don’t just birth themselves.”

After her father left Michelle thought about all her father had said.  Yes Richard Salas was a jerk but did he have a point?  Did she do everything right?  Her father seemed to believe in her abilities, but then again, he had once found her childhood artwork brilliant enough to display.  Not exactly the most unbiased opinion.  Then Michelle thought about the grateful hugs the Lewis family had bestowed up on her after Marah’s surgery.  They certainly thought she did the right thing.

Damn Richard Salas anyhow.  Making her question her abilities as a doctor.

The buzzing from the intercom interrupted her musings. “Dr. Santos your eleven o’clock is here.”

Ah yes.  Alan-Michael and Lucy Spaulding.  She picked up their chart and smiled.  She always did have a soft spot for her cousin Alan-Michael and she couldn’t wait to tell him and Lucy the good news.

***

The minute Reva crossed the threshold she was greeted by the hardened stares of three very anxious Lewis men.  “Marah is fine.  She is home with her husband and daughter.  We just have to give her time.  You know what the doctor said, we need to let her come back to herself naturally.  Not try to force her to remember.”

Billy threw down the magazine he had been pretending to read for the past couple of hours. “That damned quack!  Why are we even listening to him?  To him he is just a patient, we love her.  Marah needs her family right now.”

“I agree with Billy.” Josh looked so forlorn.  And Reva knew this was really getting to him, Marah was a daddy’s girl through and through.  “Surely we,” He indicated the family assembled in the room, “won’t be a detriment to her healing.  We love her and are familiar to her.”

“I know that but right now she needs to be with Tony.  To remember the life they had together.  Jonathan went to welcome her home and she had no idea who he was.  He looked shattered and the look on her face was just full of pain.  Hell Bud, she asked me if you were still married to Cassie.”

Shayne pushed off the wall he had been leaning against,  “Well to be fair, that is still a little hard to believe.  No offense dad.”

Time to change the subject.  “Like I said, we need to give her time.  And hope she comes back to us when she is ready.”

A Soft Place to Land: Chapter One

One Month After Marah Woke Up…

Danny watched his cousin with no small amount of amusement.  The other man was like a whirlwind tornado moving from room to room picking up everything that had accumulated since Marah had been in the hospital.  Judging by the decent amount of pizza boxes being shoved into the large trash bag Tony had really let his personal habits slide the past month.  His cousin was normally pretty fastidious about his living space as well as his own personal hygiene,  the presence of clutter told Danny all he needed to know about how well Tony was holding up.  And that wasn’t well, not at all.

“Tony!  Slow down.  You are going to wear yourself out.”  Danny glanced at the dog who was watching his master with curious eyes. “Yeah Toby, he may have just crossed over to the other side of crazy.  Not that he was ever really on the right side of sanity to begin with”

Tony barely spared him a glance, he threw the trash bag towards the corner and moved on to the vacuum.  Over the roar of the machine he called out, “Har har.  You’re so funny.  You want to help? How about you dust the furniture?  And I thought you were bringing the dog back tomorrow.”  Tony refocused on his vacuuming as if he were being tested over his success.

“Had to bring him early.  The kids have been in dog heaven the past month, especially Robbie.  If I didn’t bring him over as soon as possible I had the feeling I would have been guilted into making a trip by the pound for our own four-legged companion.”  Danny glanced at the living room table, which Tony had dusted twice already, that was gleaming in the afternoon sun. “Now I am more than willing to help you but I think it’s already been done.  Twice that I know of, probably a few dozen before I even arrived.”

Tony switched off the vacuum cleaner and sighed deeply. “I think I might be going out of my mind.  I just keep thinking that everything has to be perfect.  If it’s perfect it will help Marah and I get back on track.”

“I am sure Marah loves you for more than your cleaning skills.  Though you are awfully good with a vacuum Daisy Maid.  Have you ever thought of doing this professionally?”

“Well aren’t you just the funny guy today.” Tony surveyed the room and let out another frustrated breath.  “I always seem to mess up where Marah is concerned. I just want her to walk in our home and feel at ease.  Safe.  I want that for both of my girls.”

Danny noticed that Tony’s sudden cleaning rampage wasn’t the only thing new about the place. “Nice tree”  Yeah that was a lie.  The Christmas tree, using that term loosely, that Tony had placed in front of the large picture window was mostly bare, and crooked.  Charlie Brown had a better tree than his cousin.  “I wouldn’t suggest plugging in that strand of lights, this whole place may go up in flames.”

Tony grabbed one of the accent pillows off the couch and began to fluff it roughly.  “And the witty repartee just keeps on coming.  And just so you know, it was the last one left on the lot.  You know how Marah loves Christmas, hell the whole Lewis clan is big on the holiday.  So even though she missed it being in the hospital I was hoping it would bring back some good memories.”  He moved to put away the vacuum.

Danny could understand his cousin’s dilemma, he had been there himself.  And he knew no amount of encouragement would help.  They were simply just words at a time like this so he moved on.  “Speaking of Marah she’s getting released today isn’t she?  Her and Lanie?  Shouldn’t you be getting to the hospital?”

Tony wrapped the vacuum cord vigorously.  “That neurosurgeon, Dr. Salas, he  seems to think it would be best if I didn’t pick her up.  Says it agitates her and could hamper her recovery.”

“Since when do you listen to advice?”

Tony scoffed. “Since my past came back to haunt me and nearly killed my wife.”  He was silent as the truth of those words hit him hard.  He had nearly lost everything because he had withheld the truth, the truth that could have saved Marah and him so much heartache.  “Now enough talking.  We still have work to do.”

Danny didn’t know what else Tony could possibly clean but he knew it was more about keeping busy than completing actual chores.  “Fine.  But if you think I am scrubbing your toilets you are sorely mistaken.”

***

Sitting up in her hospital bed Marah stared into the blinking unfocused eyes of her daughter.  Her daughter.  She had no memory of being pregnant or giving birth, but yet the proof was literally staring her directly in the face.  The whole situation was surreal and a bit daunting.  As though she should keep pinching herself to make sure all this wasn’t some huge dream or one colossal joke.  But no amount of self-abuse changed the reality.  She actually was a wife and mother.

The reminder that she was married to Tony brought forth a whole other set of panic.  She was married to Tony Santos, the one man on this planet who had the power to break her heart into a million little pieces.  Which he had, a few times over, it was kind of the hallmark of their relationship.  And though she may have lost a lot of her memories she still remembered when her mother had called to tell her that Tony had passed away.  The deep-rooted ache that had filled her, the realization that they would never get another chance.  Nevermind that she was living in Paris, as long as both of them were breathing there had been a chance.  Yet here she was, married to a man who had broken her heart and was supposed to be dead.  The myriad of questions running through her mind made her head pound.

The knock on the door snapped Marah out of her pity party.  “Come in.”

The door opened and in breezed Reva carrying a large tote bag that almost threatened to tip her sideways. “Hey honey! How are you feeling today?”  She dropped the large bag on the visitor’s chair before leaning down and gazing at her granddaughter with a smile. “Tony and you sure make some cute babies.”

Marah ignored her mother’s comment and instead nodded to the chair. “What’s in the bag?”

Reva scooped up little Lanie in her arms and smiled, “Why my beautiful daughter you are getting sprung from this place today!  I figured you would like something to ride home in than that lovely paper gown that flashes your backside.”

For the first time in days Marah found herself laughing.  It felt good.  Mindful of the gown, which did  indeed show her backside, and her stitches, she gingerly got out of the hospital bed.  “So, um, why didn’t Tony come pick me up?  If we are married and all…”  Marah let her question trail off but if she knew her mother she would be spilling her guts any time soon.

Reva looked up from making funny faces at Lanie. “We all just thought that someone…familiar picking you up was best.  He’s at home, and if I know him he is probably cleaning up two weeks of living like a bachelor.”

“I don’t know when he would have the time.  He basically lived here at Cedars visiting Lanie.”

“Honey I have no doubt he visited his daughter.  That man flashed sonogram pictures for almost nine months so I know how proud he is of this little one.” She indicated the baby in her arms, “But make no mistake, you have been the first thing on his mind.  Always have been.”

Marah didn’t know how to respond to that so she simply grabbed the bag her mother packed for her and went to change.  For the ride home.  Home.  Marah wasn’t sure exactly what that entailed and the very thought threatened to send her into a state of panic.  Instead of letting it overtake her Marah rushed into the bathroom.  One crisis at a time.

***

Dr. Salas was silent as he studied Marah’s latest set of CAT scan images.  And that silence put Marah on edge even more than she already was.  Was he going to tell her that this amnesia was permanent?  That she would never regain her memories back? He needed to say something already!

Finally he turned around and gave her a reassuring smile. “I do good work if I do say so myself.” He moved to the side of the bed where she was anxiously sitting. “The good news is that I don’t see any permanent damage. ”

Marah sagged in relief. “That’s good news.  Though why can’t I remember anything?”

“Sometimes after great trauma our mind takes us back to a time when we last felt safe.  With some rest I am optimistic you will make a full recovery.  Of course you have a newborn baby and that is going to be tricky.  I suggest you get someone to help you, especially considering both you and your husband have busy careers.  Perhaps an in-home helper.” He pursed his lips as he looked over her chart once again,  “Are you still having headaches?”

“Just about every time I open my eyes.  And calling them headaches is like calling a hurricane a little rain storm.”

“That is normal with head traumas and should go away after a few weeks.” He pulled out his prescription pad and started writing. “But still I am also writing you a prescription for some pain medicine to help with those migraines.  I also want to see you in a month for reevaluation but Marah Santos you are officially cleared to get out of here.”

Marah took the script and tucked it into the purse by her side before gingerly moving off the bed. “Well Doc I guess I’ll be seeing you in a month.”

Guiding Light: Christmas 2002

I had already posted Marah and Tony clips of Christmas 2002 here.  But as a big Thank You to my readers, as well as other Guiding Light fans, I decided to upload the entire episodes from Christmas that year.

In 2002 a lot of characters, not to mention couples, were experiencing major changes.  Marah and Tony are a couple, and Josh isn’t happy.  Reva is getting threatening calls.  Danny is alive and eager to reunite with his family.  Alan discovers that Olivia and Phillip had a hot and heavy make out session before she married Alan.  Phillip relents and lets Harley spend Christmas with Zach.  Bill has a startling revelation about his friendship with Michelle. Ross and Blake have a new start.

December 19, 2002 (Part One) : The Lewis family is trimming the tree…But where is Marah?  Marah and Tony are up at the cabin enjoying some alone time until it begins to snow.  Alan wants to surprise Olivia by repairing a videotape he found.  Olivia and Phillip have words over the videotape of them kissing.

Josh Christmas 2002

December 19, 2002 (Part Two) : Tony joins the Lewis family for the trimming of the tree, which sets Josh on edge.  Olivia and Alan talk about having a baby.  Phillip has flashbacks of kissing Olivia. Someone on the phone calls Reva a “murderer”.  Alan plays the tape…and sees Phillip and Olivia making out in the elevator.

December 20, 2002 (Part One) : At the police station Harley and Carmen have words.  Blake runs into Ross at the Beacon. Olivia’s happiness is cut short when she sees Alan watching the tape of her and Phillip.  Phillip brings Zach to the Beacon for pictures with Santa. Danny arrives at the station to sign his statement against Carmen.

Christmas 2002 3

December 20, 2002 (Part Two) : Carmen tells Danny that he is the problem, that he chose Michelle-fighting who he truly is.  Phillip tells Harley that Zach doesn’t pine for her.  Zach asks Santa for his mom for Christmas. Alexandra admits she knew about the video. Phillip lets Harley take Zach home. After her accident Olivia calls Phillip for help. Rick has words with Danny.

December 23, 2002 (Part One) : Bill and Beth are exchanging gifts at the Beacon. Danny is excited about spending the holiday with Michelle and Robbie. Cassie encourages him when he gets nervous. Ben and Marina interrupt Michelle’s gift wrapping. She admits she’s nervous. Phillip comes to Olivia’s aid. Danny and Bill have words over Michelle. Phillip calls Alan but there is a bad connection.

December 23, 2002 (Part Two) : Danny sticks around the Beacon, Cassie tells him to not feel sorry for her. Danny gives her his number saying he doesn’t have a lot of friends. Bill, Ben, Marina and Michelle have a snowball fight. Marina and Ben exchange gifts. Beth wonders why Alan isn’t looking for Olivia. Phillip takes an injured Olivia to Company. Danny is snowed in at the Beacon. Bill has a dream about kissing Michelle.

December 24, 2002 (Part One) : The Coopers get stopped in a snowdrift and are joining Alan for Christmas.  Bill helps Michelle build a train for Robbie. Reva calls Tony family and wants Josh to invite him to dinner.  A mysterious guest arrives at the Beacon. Blake gives Ross her gift, their wedding bands. Buzz’s words of wisdom prompt Alan to go find Olivia.

December 24, 2002 (Part Two) : Josh doesn’t think Tony has the same Lewis perspective on Christmas. Tony proves him wrong. Cassie finds clues on the mysterious Stanley. Blake and Ross share their news. Danny gets a surprise at the Bauer’s. The Coopers have a holiday hug. Alan arrives at Company for Olivia. Rick gives Cassie a gift. Ross makes a toast.

Manny Christmas 2002

What Matters Most~ Chapter Thirty-Four

The remnants of a nightmare startled Marah awake. Only it wasn’t a nightmare it was all too real. Laying on her side Marah surveyed her surroundings. The room was shrouded in darkened shadows so it wasn’t much and any movement brought an immediate throbbing pain to her head. The last thing she remembered was Carlos tying her hands then gagging her mouth, he must have knocked her out with something. She tested her arms and found they were no longer bound. She gingerly reached up and felt the back of her head and winced. He had definitely hit her with something, a large knot had already formed and when she brough her hand back down she caught the metallic scent of blood.

She listened for any movement to indicate if Carlos was nearby but the only sound she heard were of the vermin variety. Though logically she knew he was close, no one went through the trouble of kidnapping a person to simply abandon them, she let herself relax slightly. Where had Carlos taken her? He said they were going to the scene of the crime. What crime? She had just met the man a few months ago! Sure she thought something was fishy going on. For one small moment in time she even worried that Danny and Tony had gotten mixed up in the mob again. But this was a little extreme and never crossed her mind.

Tony.

Her husband’s face flashed before her and brought a wave of tears to her eyes. After that fight they had Tony probably didn’t even know she was in danger. The very idea made Marah even more determined to make it out of here alive. Yes, Tony kept secrets and had a nasty habit of letting that trashy Eden put her lips on him but Tony and Marah had always had a destino. They had been forever since the day they met, they just got delayed for a while. She silently vowed that when she got out of wherever in the hell she was that they would clear the air once and for all. Make a fresh start for them and for their baby.

Marah once again listened for any signs for Carlos but he still hadn’t returned. Ignoring the intense throbbing in her head she managed to push herself up into a sitting position.  Pausing to catch her breath she saw him, sitting in a nearby chair patiently waiting for her to make the first move. His smile was cruel and taunting. “Got tired of playing opossum? Sorry princess we are still waiting for our other guest to arrive. You know how women are, always making you wait. But I have been waiting years for this so a few minutes more won’t kill me.”

Marah was done playing his little games. She wanted answers and she wanted them now. “Why did you do this? What is it you want?  Money?”

He waved her off as if the very idea was ridiculous to him. “Don’t be absurd.  Your money is inconsequential.  I am afraid my motives were a bit more Machiavellian in origin.” Carlos leaned forward on his chair, his arms resting on his knees. Though his posture was relaxed, she knew he was just scrutinizing her and trying to intimidate. “Let’s see if this will help clue you in Marah Santos.  My real name is Carlos but it is not Riviera, it is Quesada, and I do believe you knew my sister.”

***

Tony looked at the stunned faces currently gathered in his living room and felt the same mix of bewilderment. What Frank was telling them was so beyond what any of them had imagined.  The more they tried to untangle the strings on this web the more messy it became.  “So let me get this straight, I was drugged?  That is why I can’t remember anything after leaving the bar that afternoon?”

Frank picked up one of the documents that had been tucked inside the envelope. “According to this letter John wrote he said that he was paid $1000 to slip you the date rape drug Lady Q, otherwise called Queen of Hearts, into your drink.  So you were correct Michelle, Tony was drugged.  Talked to one of the vice cops, he said Lady Q is quickly becoming a thorn in their side.  It’s quick acting and in less than eight hours completely out of the blood system.”

Michelle hardly looked satisfied knowing she had been right. “That is not exactly a good thing Frank.”

Frank continued explaining. “He didn’t ask why he was asked to drug Tony, he just did it for the money.  But when he saw Eden escort you out he had what he called ‘a feeling’.”  Frank took a breath before continuing, “John Anderson really wasn’t a bad guy.  A little misguided and he fell into the wrong hands.  You two know what that is like don’t you?”

From behind Tony’s shoulder Danny muttered. “Yeah he was a real stand up guy.”

Frank pretended to ignore Danny’s comment and the looks he got from the group at large.  He knew John Anderson had made poor decisions, but he hated to see such a young life filled with potential cut down in its prime.  Instead he continued to search the contents of the envelope for clues.  Perhaps something that would further tie this case together.  He pulled out a photocopy of evidence checkout and suddenly he knew what John was trying to show him, it was right in front of his face.  He slid the paper across the table towards Tony, “Recognize this?”

Tony quickly scanned the sheet but he couldn’t say he really read a word of it.  They were wasting time, time Marah didn’t have.  “Get to the point Frank!”  He felt a restraining hand on his arm and he knew it was Reva holding him back.  “Frank please just tell us.”

“John was paid nearly 10,000 to get a specific piece of evidence out of storage.  Evidence pertaining to case number 041602.”

041602.  That number bounced around Tony’s brain frantically until it finally hit home.  April 16, 2002.  The day Catalina was murdered.  “Catalina.” Tony leaned forward and pinned Frank with a look so lethal even Frank cringed. “Are you telling me all of this is somehow connected to Catalina?”  At his master’s harsh words Toby raises his head and whined.   Sensing the tension in the room the dog had been restless all night, pacing from one room to the next.  Tony absent-mindedly stoked his soft head, reassuring him though Tony wasn’t certain if he was convincing himself or the dog more.  He looked back at Frank and continued, “She never really spoke of her family, not in a way that I would think they would come after my family or myself .  You think this is all about revenge?”

“I think they are connected somehow and frankly it is our best lead in finding where Mr. Riviera, if that is his real name, has taken Marah.”  He pointed to the envelope but didn’t take his eyes off of Tony, “All of this screams that it is personal Tony.  Say Catalina’s relatives came back for revenge where would they take her?”

From where he stood nearby Rafael growled. “Damn it man he’s not a detective.  You figure it…”

“The Santos mansion.” All eyes on the room flew to Tony and he continued. “That was where Catalina was killed.  If it is as personal as you say it is than you don’t get more personal than that.  And it is certainly secluded enough.”

Frank turned to Danny. “The Santos mansion still empty?”

“It has been on the market for years but no takers.  I have refused to set foot on the property since I moved back home.  Too much bad blood there.”  Danny winced at his poor choice of words.  Hopefully no more blood would be spilled that night.

Frank stood and opened his cell phone to mobilize a police unit to that location but stopped speaking when he saw the looks exchanged in the room.  “Don’t even think about it.”

Tony barely spared Frank a look as he stood and walked towards the door flanked by Danny and Rafael. “That is my wife and child damn it!  Don’t even think of stopping me or you’ll have to arrest me for assault.  Even then I would find a way to get to them so save yourself the time and hassle.”

Josh held Frank back when he moved to intercept the trio at the door. “Don’t argue with him Frank.  Just get your men moving!  Nothing matters except bringing Marah home safe where she belongs.”

Frank growled but he finally made the call he had intended to make moments ago. “I need all units to the old Santos place.  Let’s go in under the radar, no lights.”  He turned to the remaining members in the house and shook his head. “I doubt you will listen but this is police business.  You will be more help to Marah here than out there acting like cowboys.”  He closed the door behind him with a resounding click.

Reva stared at the closed-door and dropped her head.  After taking a few deep breaths she turned and faced her husband and grown sons.  Shayne had grown up along side Marah and they had always been close.  Even though he was younger he had always been protective of her and she could tell by his posture that he wanted nothing more than to run to her aid.  And Jonathan?  Though he had grown up away from the family fold he had built bonds with all of them on varying levels.  Since Marah had moved back home Jonathan and Marah had grown close and she knew he was no less worried than Shayne.  So it was with a heavy heart, knowing she was sending her men into a dangerous situation, like the cowboys Frank alluded to, when she simply said. “Go.  Help Tony bring Marah home.  We will stay here with the kids like good women folk.”

As if permission was what they were waiting for her stoic men moved towards the door, ready to do what was needed to bring back their little sister.  Josh paused by her side. “I trust Tony, but that’s our baby girl.”

She kissed him sweetly, “I know Bud.  Just keep the boys safe.  Keep yourself safe, and come home to me.”

He touched her face tenderly.  The face he had loved since they were teenagers in Oklahoma, the face he had always loved.  “Always.”

***

A hard nudge to her side brought Marah awake.  She must have passed out from the concussion.  The smell of sulfur filled the air and when Marah opened her eyes she saw that Carlos had lit candles, the room was filled with them.

Carlos crouched down beside her so that he was in Marah’s line of sight. “Rise and shine princess, our guest has finally arrived.”  He gripped her arm tightly and yanked her to her feet.  The room blurred before her eyes and tilted sideways and Marah stumbled forward.  Carlos stopped her with one of his strong arms. “Can’t have that Mrs. Santos.  Why we’ve barely just begun.”

Marah swallowed down her nausea and was about to tell him where he could shove his ‘fun’ when she caught sight of the newcomer to the room.  Her brain may not have been firing on all cylinders at the moment but she knew this wasn’t a welcome addition to the nightmare this night had become.  Carlos unceremoniously plopped her down in a chair and Eden slithered up to her like the snake she was.  “Why hello Marah.  Having fun yet?”