Diagnosis Murder
Suspicious Minds
By Lucky_Ladybug


"You know, I'm kinda worried about Amanda's new boyfriend," Dr. Jack Stewart said to fellow doctors Mark Sloan and Jesse Travis.

"Come on, Jack, you say that everytime Amanda finds another boyfriend," Jesse said, laughing.

"I know, and remember Greg?" Jack persisted.

"Yes, I remember him," Mark said.

"Remember what a creep he was," Jack insisted. "I just don't want Amanda to get hurt. She deserves the best!"

Before anyone could say anything more, Dr. Amanda Bentley appeared, on the arm of a handsome young man.

"Hello everyone!" Amanda greeted them. "I'd like you to meet Spencer Morris. He just started working at the grocery store down the street as a checker. Spencer, these are doctors Mark Sloan and Jesse Travis. I believe you've already met Jack Stewart." She gave Jack a withering look. When he had first met Spencer, he had proceeded to give him his famous "be nice to Amanda or you'll have to answer to me" introduction.

Jack shrugged, ignoring Amanda's glare. "Yeah, we've met. Hello again, Spencer."

"Hello, Dr. Stewart," Spencer returned the greeting.

"Remember what I said," Jack said in an undertone.

"Uh, don't worry, Dr. Stewart," Spencer said. "I'll always be good to Amanda. She's a very wonderful woman."

"Dr. Amanda Bentley to pathology," the intercom called.
"Uh oh, I'll have to get back to work," Amanda said. Turning to Spencer, she smiled and said, "I'll see you tonight for dinner, right?"

Spencer smiled back. "I wouldn't forget."

With that, the two went their separate ways.

Jack turned to Mark and Jesse. "Well, what do you think of him?"

"I think Amanda's found a very nice young man," Mark said.

"Well, I still think I should check him out," Jack muttered.
****
Later that day, Jack went to the police station to talk to Steve.

"Hey, Steve, I was wondering if you could do something for me," Jack said.

"What, exactly is that, Jack?" Steve asked warily.

"I was just wondering if you could do a check on a guy named Spencer Morris," Jack requested.

Steve frowned. "Spencer Morris? Isn't that the guy Amanda's dating?"

"Yeah," Jack said. "Please, Steve. I just want to see his background, make sure Amanda's getting a good guy this time."

Steve smiled slightly. "Still playing big brother to Amanda, huh?" He sighed. "Yeah, I'll do it. But Jack, you have to promise you won't stir up a lot of trouble after I do."

"That depends on what you find out," Jack replied.
****
Later that day, Jack got a call from Steve.

"Hey, Steve, what's the report?" Jack asked.

"Well, actually, Jack, there's nothing to report," Steve replied. "There's no listing for a Spencer Morris anywhere."

"What? Oh man, Steve, you have to admit, that's pretty weird," Jack said. "Somethin's gotta be up!"

"Now, Jack, it doesn't necessarily mean that Spencer Morris is just an assumed name," Steve broke in.

"But it's a good possibility," Jack insisted.

After Jack and Steve hung up, Jack declared to himself to find out once and for all what was up with Amanda's new boyfriend.
****
Over the next few days, Jack followed Spencer home from a date with Amanda to see where he lived, and began to question the neighbors. He wasn't getting anywhere; no one seemed to know anything about him.

Until finally he stumbled upon a very gossipy lady who lived in back of Spencer's apartment complex.

"Spencer Morris?" the lady said when Jack asked about him. "Well, he moved here from Beverly Hills. He had a little place over on Walker Street. He moved here kind of suddenly."

"Sounds suspicious to me," Jack muttered to himself.

"Suspicious?" The lady's ears perked up, anxious for more gossip. "Is he in some kind of trouble?"

"I don't know," Jack replied. "I hope not. But I intend to find out!"
****
The following day after Jack's shift at Community General ended, the dark-haired doctor got his car and took a drive out to Beverly Hills. After getting confused with the directions and winding up on Walker Street three hours later, he finally resumed his search. The first person he talked to was very helpful.

"Why, that's Cornell Beasley," the woman declared after looking at a picture of Spencer that Jack had somehow managed to swipe from Amanda's desk.

"Cornell Beasley?" Jack repeated.

The woman nodded. "He was rather on the crooked side. He embezzled lots of people's money and was even suspected of helping smuggle diamonds out of the country. He was wanted for attempted murder on someone who knew too much about him. That's when he disappeared."

Jack shook his head in disbelief. He had hoped that Spencer wouldn't be a criminal.

"Uh, that guy who Sp . . . er, Cornell tried to kill," Jack began. "Is he around here?"

"Why, no," the woman replied. "Rumors are that he went into the Witness Protection Program. Heaven knows where he is now."

Jack nodded. "Well, thank you, ma'am. You've been very helpful." He turned to go.

"Are you trying to capture Cornell?" the woman called after him.

"We'll see," Jack answered.
****
He hurried back to the hospital, hoping Amanda was still there and hadn't gone on her date with Spencer yet.

"Hey, Mark, have you seen Amanda?" Jack asked the older doctor in the hall.

"Yes, she's in her lab," Mark replied. "Why? You need to talk to her?"

"Yeah. She's in big trouble!" Jack took off down the hall before Mark could reply.
****
"Hey, Amanda," Jack said, peeking into the lab, where the pretty pathologist was looking at something through a microscope.

"Hi, Jack," Amanda replied. "What brings you here?"

"Do you have a date with Spencer tonight?" Jack asked.

"Yes," Amanda said. "So?"

"Well, Amanda, I don't think you should go."

Amanda looked up. She didn't look happy. "Jack, we're not going to go through that again, are we?"

"Look, Amanda, this isn't just me this time," Jack said. "I found out that Spencer Morris is really some guy named Cornell Beasley, a chronic embezzler and smuggler. He even attempted murder! Now that's not the kind of person you want to be dating!"

Amanda rolled her eyes. "I don't believe a word of it. Jack, you know that everyone has a double."

"Yeah, but also, Amanda, there's no records of a Spencer Morris anywhere!" Jack persisted.

"And how would you find that out? Jack, have you been snooping around?" Amanda demanded.

Jack averted his eyes.

"Well?"

Jack looked up. "I just don't want you to get hurt, Amanda. This guy is dangerous!"

Amanda came forward, her eyes flashing. "Look, Jack, I am so tired of you feeling like you have to be my big brother! I'm not some teenybopper! I'm a grown woman, for heaven's sake! I can take care of myself!"

"I'm telling you, Amanda, that guy's dangerous!"

"And I'm telling you, Jack Stewart, that I don't believe it!" Amanda snapped. "This Corny or whoever has to be Spencer's double! I know Spencer wouldn't be involved in any kind of stuff like smuggling or attempted murder! I am going out with Spencer tonight, and information about some lookalike of his—or even worse, gossip about Spencer which doesn't have the slightest bit of truth to it—is not going to stop me!" Her voice was raising with every word. "Now, if you would kindly leave, Jack," she said in a very quiet voice.

Jack backed toward the door. He knew he couldn't make her understand.

"Oh, and one more thing, Jack. My picture, if you please."

Jack slowly pulled Spencer's picture out of his pocket. Amanda snatched it away.

"I'm going to confront Spencer with what I know," Jack said as he left the lab.

Amanda glared at the retreating doctor. Before she could voice her thoughts, the telephone rang.

"Dr. Bentley." Amanda said coldly.

"Hello, darling," Spencer's romantic voice came on the line.

Instantly Amanda relaxed. "Spencer!" she exclaimed. "It's so good to hear you. We're still going to that show at eight, aren't we?" she asked, suddenly worried that Spencer had called to cancel.

"Of course," Spencer said. "I wouldn't dream of canceling. But I just couldn't wait till then to hear your beautiful voice."

They talked for a while longer. Just as they were about to hang up, Amanda suddenly remembered what Jack had said as he'd gone out the door.

"Oh, Spencer, remember Jack Stewart?" Amanda asked.

"Yes, I do," Spencer replied.

"Well, um, I really hate to say this," Amanda said hesitantly, "but I think you should be warned. Jack seems to think you're some kind of criminal and he says he's going to confront you with what he knows."

"Oh really?" Spencer sounded thoughtful. Amanda didn't notice this.

"You mustn't mind Jack, really," Amanda went on. "He seems to think he's my big brother. He's always monitoring my boyfriends. But of course, he always manages to hear some kind of gossip about them or something and think it's totally fact, when of course it's not."

"Yes," Spencer said. "Well, no harm really done. I imagine he just wants to protect you, darling, and I can understand why. You're such a sweet thing."

Amanda sighed dreamily at Spencer's romantic words.

"Well, Amanda, dearest, I'll see you at eight," Spencer said.

They said their goodbyes and hung up.
****
As Amanda walked down the hall, she met up with Mark, Jesse, and Steve.

"Hello, everyone," Amanda greeted them.

"Hello, Amanda," Mark answered for all of them. "Did Jack have a little talk with you?"

Amanda nodded. "Yes he did."

"What happened?" Jesse asked.

"He claimed he'd found out that Spencer is some kind of criminal named Cornell Beasley!" Amanda replied, getting mad all over again.

"Wait a minute," Steve said. "Cornell Beasley?"

Amanda nodded. "Yes, that's the name Jack mentioned. He said that Cornell was a smuggler, embezzler, and attempted murderer! Now, I believe that this Cornell does exist," Amanda went on, "but not for one minute do I believe that he's Spencer! Cornell must be a double or something!"

Steve looked serious. "Amanda, actually, you know the case I'm working on? About the missing criminal?"

Amanda nodded. "Yes."

"Well, several people from the Beverly Hills area have reported seeing Cornell down here in this area," Steve went on.

"Uh oh," Jesse said under his breath.

"Well, so?" Amanda shrugged. "They probably mistook Spencer for Cornell."

Suddenly Steve's pager buzzed. "Excuse me a minute," he said.

When he came back, he looked very grave. "That was the Captain," he said. "For a couple of days now, the police have been following this guy suspected of being Cornell Beasley. Well, Plainclothesman Peters and his partner followed the guy to his apartment earlier today. Someone came to visit him. The plainclothes detectives heard the conversation. Several times the visitor addressed the man as Cornell, and it sounded as though they were planning some kind of smuggling operation."

"Ooh, sounds bad," Mark commented.

"The Captain wants me to go investigate now," Steve went on. "The guy lives at 335 Beechwood, Apartment 2C." He turned to go.

"Wait a minute!" Amanda yelled. Steve turned back. "Did you say 335 Beechwood, Apartment 2C?" she asked urgently.

Steve nodded. "Yeah."

"That's where Spencer lives!"
****
Jack, in the meantime, was at Spencer's apartment, knocking on the door. "Mr. Morris!" Jack called.

Slowly the door opened. "Hello, Dr. Stewart," Spencer said. "I've been expecting you."

"Mr. Morris, we need to talk," Jack said.

"Come right in." Spencer held the door wide open and Jack entered.

"Mr. Morris, or should I say, Mr. Beasley," Jack began, but Spencer interrupted.

"I see you've found me out," he said. He didn't seem surprised. "You know a lot, don't you, Dr. Stewart?"

"I know all about your smuggling, and embezzling, and attempted murder," Jack said.

"Yes, well, you know too much." Spencer/Cornell said. "It's such a pity that you had to be so snoopy. After I've gotten rid of you, I'll be on my way back to my hometown of London, under another assumed name."

Jack held up his hands. "Now, come on, Mr. Beasley, let's not be rash . . ."

"Well, I can't have you telling everyone that Spencer Morris is actually Cornell Beasley, can I?" Spencer/Cornell replied. "That just wouldn't do. I don't intend to be caught. I'll do to you what I started to do to that other man. He was a lot like you, doctor. He knew too much."
****
Amanda had exited Community General and was in her car within twenty seconds. Before long, she pulled up at the apartment complex. Steve and the others were nowhere in sight. Amanda headed inside. "I can't wait for them," she muttered to herself.

Quickly reaching 2C, she knocked on the door. "Spencer! Jack!" she called. No answer. She tried the door. It opened. "That's strange," she thought.

She looked around. The whole living room looked like a disaster zone. Furniture was toppled. Glass was broken.

"There's been some kind of struggle here," Amanda realized.

She continued to look around. When she got over near the corner, she looked down . . . and gasped.

Jack was lying on the floor, facedown. He wasn't moving.

Amanda dropped to her knees next to the doctor and gently turned him to face her. His eyes were closed. He looked like he had taken quite a bad beating. Amanda shook her head, trying to block back the tears she felt coming and refusing to believe that the doctor who had driven her so crazy all the time but who she couldn't help liking in spite of it was dead.

"Jack, Jack, speak to me!" Amanda pleaded. "Speak to me! Tell me you're alright!" She received no response. Amanda knew Jack was lying too still. She could no longer hold her tears back. She let them flow freely.
****

Amanda was still kneeling next to Jack, thinking about all he'd told her about Spencer and how apparently he'd been right.

"I'm sorry, Jack," she said quietly. "I shouldn't have been so angry. You were only worried about me. You wanted to make sure I got a nice man." She blinked back more tears. "Now you're . . . you're gone, and I'll never get to tell you how sorry I am!"

"You can tell me now," a familiar Brooklyn-accented voice said quietly.

Amanda looked down in shock. Jack was looking up at her, grinning.

"Jack!" Amanda gasped. "You're alive!"

Jack laughed, then winced as he brought his hand up to feel a bump on his forehead. "Ouch. I feel like I was hit by a truck."

"More like a Spencer Morris," Amanda muttered.

Jack nodded. "Yeah. I was attempted murder #2. I tried to defend myself, but that guy was outrageously strong. He was beating me up, then came at me with a lamp. That's all I remember. I must've blacked out. I guess Spencer figured I was dead and skipped out."

"I can believe that," Amanda said. "I thought you were dead!"

Jack laughed again. "I know. Luckily, I'm not . . . yet. But who knows what'll happen in the future, the way we always get mixed up in mysteries!"

Steve, Mark, and Jesse appeared in the doorway. "Amanda! Jack! Is everything alright here?" Mark asked.

Amanda helped Jack stand up. "It is now," she said.

"Detective Peters called," Steve said. "He caught Cornell just as he was about to leave town."

"Well, that's a relief," Jack exclaimed.

As everyone walked out of the apartment complex, Jack said to Amanda, "Hey, I'm sorry about Spencer."

Amanda sighed. "Me too." Then she smiled. "Who needs creeps like him! I'm glad I have so many wonderful friends."