"You killed her sister?" Caroline tried to catch her breath. Rick, a killer? It didn't fit him quite right.
"I was pretty serious with her sister, Phoebe. She got mad because I was cheating on her with Steffy."
"You had an affair with your girlfriend's twin?" Caroline was appalled. How would Rick treat her if they were a couple?
"It wasn't like that. She was furious when she found out."
"She had the right to be!" Caroline interjected.
"Anyway," Rick continued, obviously aggravated. "We were driving to a party and she started hitting me and yelling at me. I told her to stop because I was driving and next thing I know I woke up to see her unconscious. I ran to Dad's house and get help. By the time we got back, it was too late."
Caroline's mind was whirling like a tornado. Could she be with someone who had an innocent girl's blood on his hands?
"I had better get to going," Caroline started to say.
"Caroline, babe, don't go anywhere. You have to understand, I'm not a killer."
"Don't call me babe," Caroline picked up her purse and stormed out of the office.
"Could you be anymore cliché?" Steffy asked Bill as they strolled through a park.
"Figured this time I better do it right," Bill told her.
Steffy laughed. "Hopefully your traditions work old man."
After a comfortable silence of intertwined hands, Bill said, "I noticed you're wearing it."
Steffy shrugged as she toyed with her Spencer necklace. "I thought it was appropriate for the occasion."
"And do you, William Spencer the third, take Hope Logan to be your lovely wedded wife? In sickness and in health and in dark and light?"
"I do," Liam said as he looked into Hope's eyes for the last time as her fiancé.
"With the power invested in me by the state of California, I now pronounce you man and wife. You may kiss the bride."
And for the first time in a long time, an image of Steffy wasn't branded to the back of his eyelids.
The birds chirping and the cars honking were the perfect mixtures for Steffy. This was her home, downtown L.A., Bill Spencer in hand. She had always kind of had a thing for the high life.
"So how's Katie," Steffy asked warily.
"Fine. Doctors say we'll have a baby in about two months." Bill didn't know what to think about his whole situation. Could he leave Katie with a part of him? Would leaving end up like the last time he attempted to?
"You ready to be a dad?" Steffy didn't want to hear the answer.
Bill started to say yes, but he caught himself. He didn't have to pretend to be someone else when he was with Steffy.
"No. I'm not the fatherly type. Look how screwed up Liam ended up with just my DNA. He'd be even worse if he was raised by me."
Steffy stopped, causing Bill to turn around. In the shade of the huge oak tree, Steffy looked straight into the eyes of the man she knew she had loved since the moment she laid eyes on him.
"Now you listen to me. You're always telling me what to do, it's my turn. You didn't ruin Liam. Liam is a great guy. I would know. This baby will be lucky to be a part of you. You're the most mysterious, most reliable, most brilliant, most loving man I'll ever know. And I mean it."
The two of them weren't going to have another honeymoon. 'Too much a hassle,' Hope had said. Liam and Hope ate together at Dayzee's as their wedding dinner. The sun was just beginning to set over the city. As they waited for their food, Liam vacantly stared out the window.
His eyes popped open as he saw what appeared to be his father standing underneath the oak in the park across the street. He was holding hands with a young woman smaller than him. The girl spoke and his father smiled. Liam could tell by the way she leaned in to kiss him who it was. Steffy Forrester.
Bill had never felt more belonging than he had in that moment. Love was everywhere. This was something he never got with Katie. Steffy was to a great extent more complicated than his wife, even at her younger age. And Bill liked that. He and Steffy couldn't be more alike, couldn't be more perfect for each other.
The sharp mint of her breath pulled away to allow him to see the sharp mint of her eyes. Bill decided that if he had to choose one word to describe her in that instant, his choice would have been flawless.
"You hear me?" Steffy's hushed voice asked.
"You're my kind of girl," Bill said. He put his arm around her shoulder and walked her back to his car.
"Mr. Sharpe, I'm afraid your session had timed out. You can visit me again sometime if you please."
"You're telling me that's all you got? No orders to come back again, no prescription to fix my screwed up mind?" Deacon stood up angrily.
Taylor sighed, "I need more time to examine your mind and discuss your issues before I put a label on what to do with you."
"Well then," Deacon straightened his leather jacket. "I'll see you tomorrow Dr. Hayes."
The second Deacon left her office and she watched his car drive away, she realized how much she enjoyed his company and how much she wanted to meet with him again. What was wrong with her?
It was well after midnight by the time Steffy got ready for bed. Major make out sessions in the backseat of the car really wore you out. She couldn't have been happier with how her day had gone. The best part was Bill hadn't pressure her into sex like he usually tried to. She thought she was ready to take the bull by the horns, but the more she thought about it, the more it frightened her. She was convinced she wasn't like Hope. She wasn't afraid of it and she didn't intend to use it to control her men. She just wanted to do things right this time around.
As she was lying in bed she remembered she was supposed to look through the file her dad gave her out the line. She reluctantly drew her cover back and retrieved the folder. She displayed the papers in front of her as she lay on her stomach, feet crossed in the air. As she pulled papers apart, she noticed a small one fall on the plum bedspread. Steffy picked it up and examined it closer. Steffy literally gasped when she saw what it was. A sonogram. Katie's sonogram. He flipped it over to read the loopy cursive on the back.
"Please don't abandon me Ridge. Your baby and I need you. I love you. -Katie"
Bill wasn't the only one in his marriage keeping secrets.
Steffy had to see Bill. After reuniting with him, she felt a constant craving to be around him. Had she felt like this last time they were involved? Stop thinking like that, she thought. They weren't just involved. They were united now, by a higher power or something of that nature. This time it felt right.
Except for the sonogram. Why was it with her dad's paper? And why did Katie write that note on the back. She had to tell Bill. But not before getting her daily dose of his not-so-pleasant presence.
"Knock knock," she taunted as she walked in.
"Uh, hi Liam," Steffy answered the last person she wanted to talk to now.
"What are you doing here?" Liam questioned.
"I was just," Steffy stuttered. That slip-up was going to cost her. "Nothing really, I-"
Liam cut her off. "Were you here to see my dad?"
Steffy didn't know what to say. She couldn't lie to Liam. Not to his face. Not after what all her lies had cost her before, especially the ones involving Bill.
"Answer me Steffy." Liam was getting angry, having a flashback of the last time she and his father had collaborated.
"It was about my line, for Eye on Fashion."
"Do you really expect me to believe that?"