The Harem of Jason Morgan
V runs a comb through her wet hair. She feels refreshed, whether from the workout, the shower, or her heart to heart with Brenda she didn't know, but she was calmer and surer of what she wanted to do. First, she had to go see Jason and tell him she was leaving.
A short time later V walks into Penthouse A. "Morning Renaldo, good to see you up and around. How are you feeling?" she inquires.
"Good morning V. I'm feeling much better thanks. I still have to take it easy but I was getting bored so Jason is letting me work some on a limited basis."
"That's great! Hey, is he in? I need to have a word with him"
"Sure thing V, hold on a second", Renaldo knocks on the door.
"Yeah, what is it Renaldo" V hears Jason ask.
Renaldo enters the room shutting the door behind him, "V's here to see you, boss"
Jason looked up from the books that are giving him a headache, "V? Any idea what she wants?"
Renaldo shakes his head, "No, she doesn't seem upset or anything so I don't think it's trouble"
"Okay, send her in"
Renaldo opens the door and motions V to enter. He leaves, closing the door behind him.
Without looking up from his task Jason asks, "So? What was it you wanted to see me about, V?"
"Well, as you know, I came here to see that Robin was okay and now that I'm confident of her recovery well-- my job here is done. It's time for me to go."
Jason looks up her. After a few seconds he puts his pen down leans back In his chair and studies her, "You're getting out aren't you? You're leaving the Bureau." He says more as a statement than a question. "You know, V, you're welcome to stay on here. You could work with Dara on the WSB stuff. In fact, she'd love it."
V shakes her head, "Thank you. I really appreciate the offer but, Dara doesn't need my help. She'll have that area well under control in no time. I talked to Jerry. He filled me in on what took place and I think he's going to take the job. Dara and Jerry will work well together. Well, eventually anyway. They have some personal issues to work out but once they do it'll be great. Besides, I discovered that I have a lot of other options to choose from not to mention that I'm employed by the PCPD."
Jason smiles at her, "Face it, V, the PCPD is a waste of your talents."
V gives Jason a look that says no uncertain terms "Don't go there".
Relenting, Jason throws his up in mock surrender, "Okay, no pressure. Now, speaking of Jerry and Dara's personal problems, I think they can be worked out too. BUT, it's gonna take some time. Would you at least consider staying on through the transition, or at least until things are somewhat under control between them? I was sort of hoping you'd keep an eye on things and make sure they don't kill each other before they get the operation up and running."
V's jaw dropped.
Jason looks at the expression on her face, "What? WHAT!"
V starts to laugh, "I NEVER would have pegged you of all people to be sentimental and romantic! You think that they are in love don't you?"
Disgruntled Jason rolls his eyes, "Carly's got this idea in her head."
V raised an eyebrow, "Carly's idea? I should have known." V laughed. "Whatever you do, Jason, keep that one around. If you can keep her from acting on anger in situations, she'd be even more valuable to you than she already is."
"What goes on between Carly and me is none of your business." Jason snaps.
"Hmm, looks like I struck a nerve on that one. I wonder what kind of an effect Robin's presence is having over here?" V thinks.
"So will you stay on for a little
longer?" Jason inquires shaking V from her thoughts.
She sighs, "I suppose so, yeah, why not? I told Jerry that IF he took over for Connery I'd help him clean house anyway so I may as well, but that's it. After that I'm out. Just one thing though, I want to stay off the premises. I miss my own place. I want to go home. We can communicate by email, phone, what ever. Can you live with that?"
"I prefer that you stay here but if you feel strongly about it then yeah, I can live with it. Just make sure that Dara and Jerry can work together before you bow out totally.
"I'll do my best. Listen-- about Jerry, don't push him too hard, Jason. It'll backfire on you if you do. He's not Connery. He won't be controlled, bribed, and won't tolerate being threatened. I know that some may question his actions and his ethics but you won't be able to push him into making the WSB a front for ANY illegal activity. He won't do it. If you threaten him expect to get as good as you give."
"That is precisely why I chose Jerry to take over, V. And you seem to have things backward. The WSB is not a front for MY illegal activities... I am a front for theirs."
"Fine, another reason for me to put some distance between me and them." V offers her hand which Jason takes. They shake on it.
"So, when do you plan on moving out?"
"Today." she replies, "I've already spoken with Brenda but I do want to say goodbye to the others before I go."
Jason is quiet for a moment. "V, I really appreciate all you've done for me. If it weren't for you I could have lost my son." He pulls open a drawer, pulls an envelope out and hands it to V, "Please accept this with my thanks."
"Jason, I don't know what to say! Um Thank you, but I'm afraid I can't a accept this."
"Why not? It's not a bribe, I don't expect any special treatment when you're back to work at the PCPD although I'm sure gonna hate having you back on the job there. I like it better when you're on my side."
"I was just doing my job, Jason. I was here to find and protect Robin and I did that as a favor for Mac so, this really is unnecessary."
"V, take it. If you won't take it as my gift of gratitude then at least take it for services rendered. You did more than keep Robin safe. You didn't sign on for the whole Moreno deal and you worked every bit as hard as anyone on my security team. Harder! Now take it. I won't take no for an answer."
"Yes, you will take no for an answer. I can't take it, Jason. It's against my code, my ethics, my choice-- and forcing the money on me is against yours. By the way, I don't plan on being on the PCPD for much longer either."
Jason gives her a look of astonishment.
"Don't look at me like that! It's just that I've gotten to know you now and add to that the fact that Dara is working for you now, and Jerry will also have an involvement with you and well, I feel that would be a conflict of interest. Then there's the fact that Emily is dependent on you, Carly and Michael need you let's just say that you're not the only one that doesn't' want to be on opposite sides. This doesn't mean that I approve of everything you do, mind you. It's just that I know another side of you and what goes on here than Garcia does and I don't want to be in a position where I am forced to either betray my job and my partner or betray friends."
"Understood. My offer stands. Anytime you want, there's a position in my organization for you" Jason replies.
"Again, thank you Jason, but working for you on a consistent basis would put me in the same position. It would be a conflict of interest. However, if you ever need my services on an occasional basis, I'd be happy to work something out with you." she says as she gets up to leave.
"So you'll be freelancing then?"
"No, not exactly. As I said before, I have a lot of options. The one that intrigues me most is to join Felicia in her detective agency."
"What about Mac?"
"I'm going to buy him out. " She replies with a smile and a twinkle in her eye. "Things might be tight for awhile but it will be great to not have to deal with some stubborn macho man... no offense."
"None Taken, Good luck V. When you get all settled and are in business, let me know. I often have need of a good PI. I can trust to be discreet." At the warning look he sees on V's face he quickly adds, "I swear, it'll only be for legitimate ventures!"
Again V flashes one of her brilliant smiles, "I'll do that, Jason, I'll be in touch. Soon," she starts to back up toward the door, "if there isn't anything else I'm gonna go pack and say my good-byes."
"No, that's it. Remember no cutting out completely until Dara and Jerry are situated." Jason waves and picks up where he left off with the books.
V leaves the office, shutting the door behind her. She stops short at the vision of chaos going on around the living room. Emily and Liz are spilling through the door of the penthouse giggling and laughing with a very tired looking Gianni on their heels laden with bags and packages from what looks to be every department store and boutique in Port Charles. At the same moment Carly storms in from the kitchen. From the look in her eye, Carly's NOT a happy camper.
"ARGH!" Carly screams, "I've had it! I can't take it anymore! I need some air!" And with that Carly was out the door slamming it shut behind her.
V and the girls look at each other for a minute and in unison chime, "Robin!"
V sighs "Well, I guess I better go see what THAT was all about. I'll come see you two later. I have something to tell you and I want to see all the gorgeous stuff you bought!"
"Sure V! So, are you going after Carly?" Liz asked, "Or Robin?" asks Emily.
"Tough call but I think maybe Carly first. Why don't you two go put your stuff away. I'm sure Gain would appreciate being able to put those packages down."
The girls turned and laughed at the sight of poor Gianni who was standing there forgotten holding all their stuff, "I'm sorry, Gianni! C'mon, follow me" Emily motions to the bodyguard to follow her. When they leave the room V pops open the panel to the secret room. Flipping through all the different camera shots, V locates Carly on the rooftop taking out her frustrations on the body bag they'd put up.
A few minutes later, V comes through the door of the rooftop, "Hey Carly, what happened?"
"Unh!" Carly hit the bag with such force that she sent it swaying. V catches it and holds it still.
"Carly, what has you so upset?"
Carly, panting heavily from the intense activity put her hands on her hips and turned to face V, "Why couldn't things be like they were?"
"Like they were when?" V prompts.
"Before." Carly replies tersely biting her tongue to stop from saying more.
V winces, "Carly, I am sorry. I know Robin's not your favorite person."
"Ha! Now there's an understatement!" Carly again clamps down on what she might say.
"Look, you know how much Jason cares about you. Robin can't change that. You are Michael's mom right?"
Carly finally succumbs to her frustrations and a torrent of words pour from her. "That's just it V, I don't KNOW what he thinks anymore! Ever since little Miss Goody Two Shoes St. Robin showed up, he's totally focused on her and her needs and her feelings. I mean, she can say and do anything, ANYTHING! And it'd be okay with Jason, but I even THINK about standing up for myself well, he's all over me about not disrespecting Robin."
"Give this some time, it'll pass."
Carly shakes her head, "I don't know, V-- I really have a bad feeling about this. I mean, there's never been any love lost between Robin and me."
"But Carly, she's never truly accepted his business, you on the other hand support him in it. I knows that and he knows that he can count on you. He takes the things you say to heart, for example, I was just talking to him about my leaving and he asked me to stay on until Dara and Jerry are back on at least working terms if not back together. He said that my working with them and helping them find each other again was YOUR idea."
"God, can this day get any worse? You're leaving? V! Please don't go! I can't deal with Robin by myself! Without you who will take care of her? I can't do it anymore! I'll wind up killing her or back in the funny farm!"
"Carly, it'll be all right. Brenda and Emily will handle it. I'll talk to them both before I leave okay? Besides, I'll be around a little while longer, at least until Dara and Jerry are up to working together. I'm just not going to be staying here is all."
"I understand V, really. I'm just
being selfish. So, are the Keystone Cop s happy to be getting you back?"
"They're not getting me back, Carly. I'm leaving the bureau and the PCPD. I've pretty much decided to throw in with Felicia in the PI Agency."
"Really? That's great! I'm happy for you"
"Hey, no problem. And, thank you V."
"For letting me vent. It wouldn't do me any good if Jason saw how upset I was about her. He would tell me I'm being unreasonable just like he always has where she's concerned."
V chucks Carly's shoulder, "Don't mention it. Look, I'm going to go pack now and then I'll have that talk with Emily and Brenda okay? Don't you worry about it. There's no need for you to be anywhere near her. Now then, why don't you go take a nice hot shower and I'll see you later."
Carly nods, "yeah, I guess I'm done here."
As V follows Carly out the door she thinks, "One down, one to go. I guess I better go talk to Robin"
A short time later, V knocks on Robin's door.
"Come in" Robin calls out.
When V enters the room Robin breaks into a smile, "Hey! Hi V!"
"Hi Robin, got a minute?"
"For you? Of course I do V!" Robin gives her one of those "Don't be silly" looks that she's so known for. "What's up?"
"I just wanted to let you know that I'm moving back to my apartment. You're doing just fine now and you don't really need me here and if you would pick up the phone and call Mac once in awhile, he wouldn't need me here either!"
"I know. I'll call him. Just as soon as I have a few things settled."
"Yeah? Like what?"
"V-- you know that I've decided to accept Jason's lifestyle and every thing right? I plan on moving in for good. I just need to move, I mean work, a couple things out that's all."
"I see. So when do you plan on moving Carly out?"
Robin looks closely at V trying to decide where her sympathies lie, "What are you talking about, V?"
"C'mon Robin, you've never liked Carly and constantly throw it in her face that you and Jason are in love and flaunt his attentiveness in her face well, I figured you to be above those games. She's not going to leave quite that easily, kiddo. She's Michael's mother, Robin and nothing you can say or do is going to change that. Better to accept it now before you push people into corners. It's amazing what can happen when a person has their back up against it." V admonishes.
"Oh, so she complained to you?" Robin sneers.
"Actually, no she didn't. She didn't have to. You're being manipulative, Robin and it's not becoming."
"Listen! She and Jason are NOT an item and the sooner she realizes that t he better." Robin's body language screams unreasonable and defensive to V.
"Robin, Carly is Michael's mother NOT you. Jason shares Carly's bed not yours-- the sooner YOU realize THAT the better. Now, I didn't come here to fight with you. I came to say goodbye. I'll be around a bit during the day but I'll be pretty busy. I'm going to ask Emily and Brenda to help you out during the rest of your recovery."
"Sounds good. Anyone but Carly sounds good to me" Robin says disgustedly. Changing the subject, "I bet Garcia will be glad to have you back on the job"
V gives Robin a wry smile, "Maybe but I'm not going back. In fact, I'm buying Mac out of the agency and I'll be teaming up with Felicia just as soon as I get my P.I.'s license."
"You mean you're leaving PCPD? You're leaving Jason open to those vultures?"
"Alex isn't so bad, Robin. "
"Uh huh and pigs fly!"
The two laugh. V looks at her watch, "Ohmigosh! Look at the time! I really have to go Robin. Take care and please, think about what I said okay?"
"Yeah, right. No problem V. And I
promise, I'll call Uncle Mac tomorrow. Say hi to Felicia for me okay?"
"Will do. Bye"
With that, V takes off. As she leaves Robins room she shakes her head. "This is not pretty. I hope Jason figures it out in time or he may just have more on his hands that he can handle."
V spends the rest of the afternoon talking to Liz, Emily and Alexis, telling them of her move. She makes plans with Emily and Liz to join her and Brenda in their training. Finally it was time to find Dara. She checks Dara's room but she wasn't there, nor was she on the rooftop, V headed for the secret room to see what the cameras would tell her. As she walks into the penthouse Dara's just coming out of Jason's office.
"Oh! Dara! There you are. Listen, we need to talk. I need to tell you "
Dara interrupts her, "That's okay V, I already know. Jason filled me in. Can't say I'm surprised you're leaving. I AM surprised that you support Jason's idea of Jerry in charge though. There's NO way I can work with him!"
"Dara, that's ridiculous! Face it,
you and Jerry STILL have feeling for each other and the sooner you admit and
deal with it the sooner this mess will be cleared up and the sooner I can move
"V, it's not quite as simple as that and you know it!"
"Yeah, I know it. But Dara, avoiding the problem is not going to make it go away is it. Besides, you need to get that under control so you can be ready to tackle the next World War."
Dara looks at her quizzically, "what are you talking about?"
"You mean you haven't noticed?"
"Noticed what? If this is about Brenda and Renaldo... "
"It's not, although I am curious about that. No, this is about Carly and Robin. Dara, get ready cuz it's not going to be real pleasant around here. The worst part is Jason is totally oblivious. When it comes to Jason's business, Robin's a liability and it'll be due to her and her machinations to get rid of Carly. Make no mistake, she wants Carly gone and with the hell that will be going on around here Jason can and probably WILL be taken down. You need to get things settled with Jerry so you can devote your attention to keeping things from getting too out of hand here."
"Oh great. And of course YOU won't be here to help will you?"
V shrugs, "Nope, sorry. I don't have the same kind of influence on Jason that you have. Look, I have to go. Think about what I said huh? Give Jerry a call. He really feels terrible about what went on between you two. Talk to him."
Dara nods, "Okay, I'll think about it. So, you all packed?"
"Yeah, my bag is already in my car. Last night made me realize that it's time for me to go. I'm not really needed any longer. Well, not here anyway."
"I understand. Good luck V. I'll see you tomorrow?"
"Yeah, and Dara, don't worry. I'm not going anywhere. I'm just a phone call away."
The two women hug and V heads out the door. She couldn't wait to get home and move on with her life. First thing tomorrow she'll pick up the books she needs to prepare for the test for a Private Investigator's license.
"V. Jones Investigations here I come!" she says aloud as she punched the button for the garage level.
Carly glances over the club's books as the other women take their places at the breakfast table. Things had slowly gotten back to normal in the past week, since Moreno's demise and Jason clearing the air with the WSB. At least as close to normal as once could get with a house full of strong minded women. As Graciella begins setting out plates of hot food, Carly looks at her plate critically. "Graciella, I thought we were having french toast this morning?" Chewing on the end of her pencil, she silently recalls the conversation she had with Graciella the previous evening, it was Rinaldo's birthday, and his favorite breakfast was french toast. It wasn't like Graciella to forget something like that.
"Yes ma'am, but Senorita Robin requested that we have Strawberry Crepes; she thought Mr. Morgan would enjoy them." Graciella responds before heading back into the kitchen.
Brenda cocks an eyebrow at Alexis, who merely shrugs her shoulders. Carly is silent as she stares at the plate of crepes in front of her.
Breaking the silence, Liz smiles at Alexis. "Is it still cool for me to come to work with you today? I've only got a half day of classes today."
"Sure, so you've decided to stay at the high school?" Alexis inquires before taking a bite of her breakfast.
"I guess, I mean I know I could pass the GED and all, but school isn't so bad right now. My grades are up, and I'm actually kinda enjoying the classes I have with Lucky and Em."
Emily smiles at her knowingly. "Right, and the fact that you scored higher than Sara on the English test has nothing to do with it right?"
Carly interrupts the conversation by mumbling a shocked "What the hell?" as she stares open mouthed at the stair case. The other women turn to find Jason following Robin into the room.
Robin stares at them dumbfounded. "What?"
Jason appears uncomfortable as he picks anxiously at his tie. Gone is his usual casual, yet business like suits that Carly picked out, and instead a tailored Armani suit, light gray, with a designer tie, drapes over his chiseled body. He seems almost lost in the fancy threads, as Brenda begins to giggle uncontrollably.
Dara is the next to succumb to the laughter, followed closely by Em, Liz, Keesha and Alexis. Only Carly sits stone faced as she takes in the new look.
Jason folds his arms across his chest and glares at the giggling girls. He casts a withering look at Robin, who appears oblivious as she takes her seat next to Jason at the table. "Jason, wait until you try these, I gave Graciella a batch of Recipes that I picked up from my stay at the Sorbonne."
As Jason takes his seat, Carly rises from the table, tossing her napkin on her untouched plate before walking out of the room.
Jason stabs a fork full of crepes and looks around the table at his women. "What's with her?"
Now in control of her laughter, Brenda replies sarcastically. "Probably lost her appetite, Sonny."
Carly eases into the couch with a steaming cup of tea , settling in, she begins flipping through a magazine lazily. Something catches her eye above the mantle as she looks up from the article she's reading...something is different..
"Isn't it great? It's a Van Gogh."
Robin replies as she takes another seat on the couch.
Carly studies the new painting and frowns. "Has Jason seen it?"
"You know how Jason is, he doesn't see the point of art anyway." Robin says with a soft laugh. "The place seemed to, I don't know, just too.." Her voice trails off as she searches for the right word.
Carly supplies one for her.
"Homey?" Tossing her magazine down, she rises from the couch. "Where did you put
the painting that was up there?"
"It's in the other penthouse, why?"
"I was just curious, since it was a Benson.. A Virginia Benson original. Excuse me." Carly turns on her heel and walks crisply out of the room, slamming the door behind her.
Robin shrugs her shoulders as she picks up the magazine that Carly had been reading.
Carly strides into the club and takes a stool at the bar, without meeting Luke's questioning gaze, she hits the bar with her hand. "Bourbon, line them up and don't waste my time with chasers."
"Bad day, cupcake?" Luke asks, in his usual charming way. Placing the shot before her, she downs it easily and motions for another. "At this rate, Uncle Luke is gonna have to carry you home."
"Don't count on it, I have Spencer
genes, a bottle of bourbon hasn't been made that can outlast me. Keep them
"OK, but only if you join me in the office, I think you need a chat with your older and wiser, Uncle." He offers as they make their way to the back room.
Carly laughs at him as she falls
lazily into the plush leather couch. "Older, yeah, wiser? I haven't had THAT
much to drink yet. Save the lectures, Unc, I just want to get sloshed."
Pouring her a big coffee cup of his finest bourbon, Luke settles into his captain's chair, his feet propped up on his desk, and sips at his own cup. "Have you ever known me to save the lectures? What's the problem? Moreno is dead, I figured life would be peachy for you right now."
"Ever have someone just come into your home and change everything?"
"I'm married, aren't I?"
"Funny, but what if the person wasn't Laura. What if some other guy just came into your house and starting changing things.. wait, let me put this into terms you can follow. What if I decided that doing the books wasn't good enough, so I asked Jase to give me his share of the club,.. then I just came in one day and took down all the paintings and put up warm, fuzzy flowers. Maybe some lace, and candles, change the interior from retro into home and garden..." Carly looks him straight in the eye as he shudders at the imagery. "I change the menus and offer Cappuccinos and Muffins, I take out the pool table and..."
Luke cuts her off as he holds up his hand in protest. "I get your point, so the little woman has moved in and started marking her territory right? I warned Jason about that...Robin wasn't just going to sit back and let you run things."
"She won't just sit back and let him run his own life. She put him in an Armani suit.. with a TIE." Carly spits out angrily. "How can she claim to know him, when she treats him like a child?"
"You know, the house hasn't been built that's big enough for two wives." Luke remarks as he takes a sip of his drink.
"I've never pretended to be Jason's wife. I have never asked him to forsake all others, but I also didn't ask to deal with Saint Robin. I don't know how long I can deal with this." Slamming half her drink, she grimaces as the hot liquor burns her insides. "I can't do anything though."
A knock comes at the back door as Luke yells for them to come in. Bobbie pops her head in and smiles at them both. "Is there a party going on that I wasn't invited too?"
Half drunk, Carly holds up her cup. "Please, have a seat and join us."
Exchanging a puzzled glance with Luke, Bobbie takes a seat next to her daughter as Luke checks his watch, in a bad attempt to escape.
"As much fun as this has been, I gotta motor and pick up some supplies for the club, I'm sure you ladies will do fine without me." Exiting quickly, Luke leaves them alone.
"Gee, could he have been more obvious?" Carly asks, with just a hint of a smile.
"Probably not, obviously he wanted us to have a talk, so anything you need to chat about?" Taking a look at her daughter's cup she sighs. "Or is the bourbon already working it's magic on you?"
"I'm still coherent, I suppose. I was just bitching to Luke about how powerless I feel at the penthouse right now. Look, this isn't your problem..." Her voice trails off as she takes another swig of her drink.
"No, but it's definitely yours. I'd like to help if I can." Bobbie offers kindly.
"I don't think it can be helped."
"Fine, then how about I listen while you rant and rave a little. Seems like that is something you could use right now."
"You mean speak my mind? Perish the thought! No, I am supposed to bite my tongue and not hurt poor little Robin's feelings. I hate that, you know. I can't stand having my hands tied behind my back. To keep my relationship with Jason, I have to follow these rules when it comes to Saint Robin. He treats her like this fragile little china doll. Like she'd break if someone said boo to her. She's not that way you know." Carly rises from the couch and begins pacing.
"NO, she is far from the weak damsel in distress that everyone pegs her as. I've seen first hand how well she handles herself. She can be as fierce, as ruthless as me and anyone else when it comes to something she believes in. But she comes across as this virtue of goodness, to have her blessing is like to have kissed the pope or something. All hail, poor little Robin. The orphaned, sick Robin. I'm so sick of it." Flouncing into Luke's chair she lets out a scream of frustration. "How can I expect you to understand this, you adore her too."
Bobbie is quiet for a moment as she absorbs Carly's words, flash backs of her own life come tumbling over her as she replies bitterly. "How can you compete with a image of perfection?"
Carly looks at her stunned. "Exactly."
"You can't, and to try to will drive you nuts. Laura Spencer, I can't believe I didn't see it before. Robin is Laura all over again. Everyone treats them like they are glass, no crystal, yes, crystal, like they are all knowing, yet breakable.." Bobbie Scoffs at the thought. "But they aren't...oh no they are tough as nails, and they are manipulative. See, they know how other's view them, and they twist it to their advantage, the real kicker is they'll stand over you, with their disapproving eyes and condemn you for the very things that make them who they are. No, you can't compete with that, because you're better than that. There is no competition."
Carly allows the words to sink in as she stares deep into her mother's eyes. "Thank you." She whispers before squeezing Bobbie's outstretched hand. "You've given me the perception that I needed."
The next day....
Carly descends down the stairs, diaper bag draped over her shoulder. She smiles down at Michael who is kicking happily in his play pen. "Renaldo, make sure you grab plenty of bottles of juice and cereal, he's been really hungry lately."
Rinaldo's voice carries over from
the kitchen as he laughs. "I know, plenty of grub, I have that covered, do you
have plenty of diapers??"
"Of course." She replies easily as she continues to gather things to take with her to the club. "Luke is gonna skin me, I am so late."
Brenda emerges from the kitchen and replies sarcastically. "Yeah, cause Luke is known for his punctuality."
Rolling her eyes, Carly shrugs her shoulders. "Right, but he's Luke, he's allowed to be that way. Damn, I can't find his teething ring."
Liz and Emily join them in the living room as Brenda and Carly search for the ring. "Lose something?" Liz asks, despite it being obvious.
"Michael's teething ring, I keep it with his rattle." She replies. "Robin moved it to the freezer, she said babies need to teeth on frozen things." Emily points out.
Placing her hands on her hips, Carly cocks an eyebrow. "Really? And when did she do this?"
Exchanging uneasy glances, the younger girls shrug their shoulders before Liz finally continues. "Well, she was cleaning up the living room yesterday.."
"Where was Graciella?" Carly interrupts.
"In the kitchen, cleaning out the cupboards. Robin didn't like the way they were organized." Liz replies softly, waiting for the explosion to occur.
"Yeah, and Graciella didn't jump for joy at Robin barking orders at her. She mumbled something about Jason and you leaving her alone to do her job." Emily shuffles her feet uncomfortably as she looks up at Carly's annoyed expression. "I thought she would have said something to you and Jason by now."
"I see, and what exactly was wrong with the cupboards?" Practically seething, Carly paces back and forth over the carpet. "Were they not alphabetized and nice and neat and hell, just all around perfectly organized?" Calming herself, she flashes a semi apologetic smile to Liz and Emily. "I'm sorry, I'm venting to you, and it's not your fault. If you'll excuse me, I need some air."
Striding out of the room, she exits to the roof.
Liz lets out a low groan. "It's gonna get ugly around here, really soon. Carly is about to explode." Looking from Brenda to Emily, Liz smiles. "Sorry, Robin is your friend, I shouldn't be saying anything."
Emily shrugs as she sinks into the couch. "Yeah, but Carly is my friend too, heck, she's practically been my older sister. This place was running fine before Robin decided it needed a make over. I just don't get it."
"Nothing much to get, Em. Robin is treating Jason like she always does, but Carly isn't like the rest of the world, she can't stand to see him being condescended too. Where is Robin?" Brenda asks.
"Right here, and I really think you're out of line, Brenda. I don't condescend to Jason. I'm only trying to make things run smoother around here. There are so many of us here, that a little organization wouldn't hurt things." Robin enters the room and approaches the women. "If Carly is threatened by that, well it's her problem, not mine."
"Maybe Carly isn't the one who's threatened right now." Brenda retorts, before turning on her heel and walking out to the roof exit.
"What's with Brenda?" Robin asks.
"No clue, we're late." Liz replies as she and Emily leave the penthouse.
On the way to school, Liz groans as she leans back in the car. "I can't stand this, Em. I know your brother loves Robin and all, but she is going to drive Carly out of the house with all her neat and perfect little suggestions and ideas." Rolling her eyes she replies sarcastically. "It's like living with perfect, plastic Sara again. Things were going really great here before she barged in and started taking over."
Emily nods her head in agreement. "Have you noticed how many people are taken in by her? Guys practically trip over themselves trying to rush to her rescue. She orders them around, treating them like little children, and bats her eyes when someone dares question her about it."
"Um, Em, let me know if I'm wrong and all, but this sudden dislike for Robin isn't so sudden, is it?" Liz asks.
"I've just seen her push her way into controlling other people's lives. Nikolas still rushes over to her whenever she summons him."
Fidgeting at the mention of Nikolas, Liz changes the subject. "So, if Carly leaves, will you stay?"
"What choice do I have? It's either stay with Jason or move back home with my family." Emily stares out the window sadly. "I'd rather live with a thousand Robins than under the Quartermaine roof."
Later that night
Carly returns from the club, exhausted, as she makes her way to the dinner table. She freezes as her eyes focus on her chair. Robin takes a bite of her steak as she meets Carly's gaze.
Alexis and Dara exchange glances as V turns to Brenda and whispers. "I told you this wouldn't be good."
Brenda replies loudly. "Show hasn't started yet. How was your day, Carly?"
"Fine, where's Jason?" She asks, through gritted teeth.
Robin cocks an eyebrow at her. "Out, do you need something?"
"Yeah, I need you to get your bony butt out of my..." Clamping down hard on her lip, she stops herself from finishing her statement. Smiling at her son, she carries him up the stairs and into his room, where she stops dead in her tracks.
His bed has been moved to the opposite of the room, his furniture completely rearranged. Placing him in his crib, she closes the door before rushing down the stairs angrily. "Who changed his room around?" She asks bitterly, already knowing the answer.
"It's better for him to sleep closer to the side of the wall that faces the sunlight. I was reading a baby book.." Carly turns on her heel and begins climbing the stairs, two at a time. Reaching her room, she tosses her suitcase on the bed and begins tossing clothes into it angrily. Quickly gathering her things, she doesn't look up until she hears Jason's puzzled voice.
"What's going on?"
Trying to control her temper, she throws up her hands in disgust. "I won't do this anymore. I won't live someplace that I have to constantly watch what I say in fear that I will step on someone's toes. I did that once with Tony, and look how that turned out. You yourself pointed out that Tony didn't treat me right by trying to make me into someone I wasn't. How is it so easy for you to see that when it comes to someone else, but in your own life, you're blind? I am taking Michael and getting out of here, while I still have some sense of sanity left. You can call me on the cell phone at any time, and I'll let you know when we get settled." Taking her bag, she calls out for Graciella.
"Please have Renaldo come up for my bag and have him meet me in the car." Without a word from Jason, she carefully picks up her son and his diaper bag. "I'll send for the rest of his things later."
Turning to walk out the door, Jason wheels her around by her elbow. Confusion clouds his face as she jerks away from him. "You expect to just tell me that you're leaving and taking Michael away from his home, and just walk away without an explanation?"
"His home? No, Jase, it's her home and we're all unwanted guests here. You honestly don't get why I have to leave, do you?" Dropping her bag, she folds her arms across her chest. "I have tried to play by your rules, no, make that her rules. You constantly take her side over mine."
Interrupting, Jason throws up his hands in frustration. "What sides? I don't see what the problem is, Carly. Everything seemed fine this morning."
"God Jason, you have the perception of a frog. You haven't noticed that I've had to walk around our home, constantly biting my lip, just so I wouldn't hurt your precious Robin's feelings?" Raising her voice louder, she lets loose some of her anger. "I turned the other cheek when she started rearranging the menus. I bit my lip when she put you in that ridiculous suit, and hell, I even walked away when she removed my mother's painting from over the fireplace."
"She moved your painting?" He asks.
"Jason, it's not about the painting, hell it's not even about her moving Michael's things around. It boils down to I can't speak my mind whenever she is around. I have to sit with my hands on my lap and smile politely while she edges her way further into the life I have created for us. No more, I won't go down this road again. I won't keep Michael away from you, but I won't subject him or myself to this anymore."
"Where are you going?" He asks, still not totally understanding the why or her leaving, but realizing it's for her own self preservation that she's doing so.
"I don't know, maybe to Bobbie's. I'll find something." Picking up the bag, she looks at him firmly. "I can make it on my own, Jason. You don't have to worry about that."
"You aren't on your own though, Carly. Michael needs to be someplace that both of you can be happy. I have a farm house that no one goes to anymore. It's yours, no questions asked. Take Johnny with you."
"OK, that will be fine, but Jason, I have always tried to do everything in my power that you've asked me too, so I need something in return from you. Keep her away from me."
"Done." He replies as she walks out the door. "Call me when you get there."
"Wait, I'm going with you." Liz replies, suitcase already in her hand. "Before you say anything, just hear me out. I can't live with perfect, plastic Robin. Sara part deux, will drive me batty. Carly, you've always said I was great with Michael, and I think I can be a big help to ya."
Carly smiles as she nods her head. "OK, can you take my bag so I can pick up Michael?"
Jason follows her into the nursery and picks up his son, smiling sadly at him. "Carly and you are going on a trip, Michael, but I will be in touch very soon." Handing him over to her, he lets out a sigh. "Call me, tonight."
Fighting back a tear, Carly nods. "You don't even have to ask. I'll talk to you soon." Lifting him up, she helps him wave his little fist at his father. "Say bye-bye Daddy, see ya soon."