Thanks for the replies. I really, really, appreciate them, and they definitely serve as a motivator. Which is why I'm sort of...rewarding you. So instead of waiting extra long for a long chapter, you get a shorter one sooner.

Oh, and I suspect you won't be happy with the Sexis contact in this one. The next chapter's gonna make up for that. :) I'm such a tease, heh heh.

Her first thought was that this was some horrible nightmare. Perhaps she had fallen asleep on the couch, tired, and dreamed some sort of incredibly lucid dream. It was more plausible than the sight of him actually standing on her doorstep.


He spoke, and it sent the truth swimming through her veins, pumping ice-cold shock through her body, until she was frozen to the spot. Unable to speak. Unable to breathe.

She swallowed, blinked. Her thoughts were floating buoys on an ocean of anxiety. She struggled to grab one long enough to speak.

"Sonny? What are you…how did you…"

"It's good to see you, Alexis."

She could barely comprehend what he was saying.

She studied his face. Found a peculiar sense of sincerity there. Dismissed it. "What are you…" She began again. But the question answered itself, and the heavy weight of dread descended upon her. "You want Kristina." She deducted, her voice surprisingly controlled. "You're not getting within a foot of her. I suggest you turn around and head directly back to Port Charles."

"I want to talk to you."

"You don't just talk. You manipulate. You destroy. Simply talking is not within your range of capabilities."

He didn't speak for a moment. Sonny closed his eyes, breathed in a deep breath. "Please, Alexis. Be reasonable. I came all this way, don't shut me out."

"Reasonable is not something I have a record of being in your presence, but this is the exception. I want you to leave."

"I know I'm her father."

Her eyes held nothing. She had suspected as much the moment she saw his face. She had just prayed to God it wasn't the case… they both understood the implications. Now that he knew Kristina was his, he would never let go.

"I want to work something out."


He exhaled as he reached inside his coat pocket. "You change your mind, you can find me here." He handed her a folded piece of off white paper. He turned, walked to his car, drove away.

As he disappeared around the corner, she found herself musing on control, fate, and the other aspects of life that she could never get a handle on.

"So he murdered your sister."

"Indirectly. It's complicated."

"Understatement of the year."

Alexis absently swirled the glass of soda leftover from dinner in her hand. "Century." She replied. Jake shrugged. She cleared her throat. "So now I suspect you're thinking a myriad of things, one of which being, 'What is the easiest way to explain to this woman she is a nutcase and I have no desire to associate with her whatsoever?'"

He laughed lightly, softly, the candlelight near him flickering. "Actually it was closer to, 'How can I get a book deal and publish this story while still remaining friends with aforementioned nutcase?'" She chuckled. "Oh, you don't think I'm serious? Listen to this: The Lawyer and the Mobster. Change the names; advertise it to the soap opera watching crowd, and before you know it I'm on the beach sipping Pina Coladas." She rolled her eyes. "C'mon, no one would even for a split second think it was true."

"You certainly have a point there."

Silence fell between them briefly.

"Alexis?" Jake asked. His gray blue eyes darkened, seriousness replacing familiar carefree irreverence.


"You going to talk to him?"

"I don't really see how I have a choice."

"What? Are you kidding me?"

"A part of me is afraid of him and what he is capable of. But you should try and understand that there's a larger part that knows, logically, he would never physically hurt me. Well, directly physically hurt me."

"You must not be thinking rationally here. Were you not present for the last half hour of conversation?"

"Fine, Jake. Think of it this way. If he wanted to kill me, he could have accomplished that much more efficiently by sending someone out here to do it for him."

"Gee, thanks. All my fears have been alleviated. Good luck with the cold blooded killer, I guess I'll see you around."

"Stop being melodramatic."

"Melodra—" He stopped himself. Took the tinge of outrage out of his voice. "You're not being dramatic enough."

"You weren't there. You can't possibly understand the dynamic between Sonny and I. We can barely understand it ourselves."

"You're right. I wasn't there. Yeah, I'm young and stupid and naïve, blah, blah, blah. I can't say this with sounding like it. But ever since I met you…I've kind of thought of you as, you know, some mysterious person with a past they were running from."


"You were running for a reason, Alexis."