This update was written by Daphne.
"Well, Ryan," Vanessa said, pressing her hands to his broad shoulders, leaning impossibly close to him. He could smell her hot, fetid breath. Dragon breath. Dragon lady. "The moment of truth has arrived… Which one of your three lovely damsels in distress gets to live and which two will die today?"
Ryan's fingers knotted into fists, his muscles straining against his bindings. He felt everyone's eyes on him but refused to meet anyone's gaze, lest he betray his thoughts somehow to Vanessa and get people killed. Of course, he knew who the love of his life was. Of course, he knew who his soulmate was. He'd loved others, he'd been emotionally tethered to others, but never the way he was to his Princess. She was always the only one truly in his heart. The only one who owned his soul. Losing her had nearly killed him and he'd become a man he frankly didn't recognize in the mirror; much less like. Making love to her this afternoon, it had been like coming home again, and he wanted more of that. He wanted an eternity more of moments just like that.
Gillian, beautiful heart that she had, would want him to exhaust every option before making any choice, even though it was very difficult with high-powered rifles trained on all of them. The one aimed at the back of Gillian's brunette head was the worst sight of all. If he lost her again, when he had just gotten her back… No, he really wouldn't survive it this time.
"Vanessa, I don't want to play your sick game," Ryan said in a low, hissing voice. "I refuse, actually. But if you want a victim so badly, if you want a body on the ground; if you want bloodshed, then do it okay - shoot me. Shoot me. Kill me!" He bellowed at her.
Vanessa cackled as screams of "noooo!" rippled throughout the place. Ryan did look at Gillian's face this time. Tears of panic and fear rolled down her face. "No, Ryan, no!" she gasped out. "Please. I don't remember you, maybe, but I also don't want to lose you either. Please, please don't do this. Say my name actually, alright? Say I'm your greatest love. I'll take the bullet. You lost me once. It won't matter if I die for real this time."
Ryan's eyes filled with tears - hot, emotional tears. "Are you kidding, Gillian? It won't matter? It won't matter? Are you serious? It will destroy everything left that's good in the world. I love you - you're not … I am not letting you die... Vanessa, kill me. Dammit, just do it, you old, twisted bitch!"
Vanessa laughed as if this was the most fun she'd ever had in her life. Leo stared at her in disgust. "Pull yourself together, Mother. Your dementia is showing."
"I'm not addle-brained, Leo," she said. "I'm just amused. Look at all of you - so willing to throw your lives away for the ones you claim to love. Fine, have it your way. You all want to die so badly? Then I will grant your collective wish. I'll kill you all, one by one. Say your goodbyes. Starting with you Greenlee - the number one thorn in my side. It's not enough you fucked one of my sons, you had to fuck a second one, and mess with his head too."
"Don't you touch her!" Leo spat at Vanessa. "Don't you fucking dare. I will kill you. I will haunt you." He was clawing at his bindings, just as Greenlee and Ryan were, but they were getting absolutely nowhere. All they had to show for it was bruised, raw, and bloodied skin. Silent tears dripped down Greenlee's cheeks.
"I want the pleasure of killing this one myself," Vanessa said. "It's been a long, long time coming." Leo was bellowing at Vanessa, caught between cursing at her and pleading with her - and cursing and pleading. Greenlee shook almost imperceptibly in her seat.
Vanessa held out her hand to one of her henchmen. "Give me your knife," she commanded him. "I want to make this hurt. I very much want her to feel every cut of the blade."
"No!" Leo screamed. "No. Vanessa, don't do this!"
"Yes, Leo, I have to. She's a virus, don't you see, and I must eradicate that virus." Vanessa stepped behind Greenlee and grabbed her roughly by the hair. "Any last words, Greenlee?"
Greenlee nodded slowly, drawing in a long breath. She looked at Leo. "I love you, Leo DuPres. I will always love you. And when you get out of here - and I know you will - live okay?" She cried. "Just live." Tears ran down Leo's face. He was shaking his head in disbelief. Then Greenlee looked up at Vanessa. She squared her tiny shoulders. Fire shone in her eyes now. Determination. "One last thing, Vanessa - burn in hell!"She spat.
Vanessa grinned. "I'll see you there, Greenpea. Now, let's begin this."
Vanessa brandished the knife, and to her credit, Greenlee sat there as stoically as possible, just staring at Leo and offering him a weak, watery smile. Vanessa placed the blade at Greenlee's throat, just as the door to the room slid open. She broke into a maniacal smile as she spotted Trey standing there. "Ah, Trey, you've come just in time to see -" She broke off as she noticed seven armed, burly, and tattooed men standing right behind him. "Who - who are they?"
Trey didn't answer. He just squeezed off a shot from his pistol that hit Vanessa square in the shoulder. She dropped the knife with a scream and the room turned to immediate chaos as gunfire broke out.
"What the hell is going on?" Greenlee asked Leo in a stage-whisper as she took a brief sigh of relief.
"Hell if I know," he said. He looked towards the doorway. "Trey. Vanessa called that muscly guy Trey."
"I can't believe your little stuff shirt brother-"
"Prison obviously changed him."
"Obviously," Ryan huffed as a bullet sailed over his head, taking out one of Vanessa's guards, dropping his body to the floor with a heavy thud. "Now are we going to just sit around gossiping like a bunch of school girls or are we going to get the fuck out of here?"
"Let's get the fuck out of here," Gillian said. She looked at Ryan with a smile. "Was I a big one for cursing?"
"In the bedroom? Hell yeah!" Ryan said. Gillian blushed.
Trey moved to them in a crouch after shooting one guard after another like he'd been a sniper in training since his Pampers-years. He reached Leo and picked up the knife from the ground and handed it to him. "Cut yourself and Greenlee free," he said. He withdrew another knife from his ankle boot and handed it to Ryan. "And you get yourself and Gillian free. I am going after mother dearest."
Leo looked around the compound. Sure enough, during the ensuing struggle, Vanessa had managed to escape.