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Saturday, September 05, 2015


That evening, Bo wasted no time confronting Caroline over what Ciara told him and she reluctantly confirmed it.
‘And you didn’t think it was strange Carly behaved like that?’
‘Of course I thought it was strange but I didn’t think it was that important to tell you.’ as she said those words, Caroline immediately realized how heartless she sounded.
Mum!’ Bo exclaimed, appalled.
‘She was probably thinking of what might have been and no wonder,’ his mother snapped defensively. ‘She made her choice to leave you for Lawrence!’
‘I’m going to say this one more time,’ Bo said coldly,  ‘ What happened that last day was a mutual decision, a very painful one but mutual. It’s not like Carly heartlessly dumped me because she didn’t. Of everyone, it looks like the most hostility towards Carly’s been coming from you and Victor. I still can’t believe you would be this way to her. After everything she meant to this family, what she meant to me.’ And what she still means to me, he wanted to add. But Bo was not going to let the family know he was in love with Carly, not until he got through with her. She refused to take his calls and wasn’t at the loft when he went to look for her, after dropping off Ciara at the mansion.
‘You can defend her all you want but I don’t trust her, she came back here with a hidden agenda. For all I know, she was just putting on an act and from what I see, you’ve fallen for it. You should be concentrating on putting your marriage together, not keep trailing after that woman. It’s about time you realize your priorities.’
‘Carly cries at the very sight of my daughter, and all you can do is stand her and accuse her of a hidden agenda. Your hatred for Carly’s just making you a person I don’t recognize.’
‘I don’t hate her.’ Caroline denied hotly.
‘Oh yes you do Mum,’ Bo said harshly. ‘You pretty much confirmed it just now; you don’t care why she reacted that way or care to know. All I can say is this; tell Frankie the same thing when the time comes. If you can talk about his flesh and blood that way to me and mean it, then you can say that to him as well.’
Caroline’s face went red at the mention of Frankie, biting her lip. But it was too last to take back her words. She could only turn away and disgusted, Bo left the Pub, slamming the door behind him. Carly wasn’t at the hospital nor was she at home. Bo then called Adrienne in the hope she was visiting her but drew a blank there too. Where could she be?
Bo dialed her number again, and after ringing went into voicemail. ‘Princess, it’s me. Where are you? Please call me; we still got a lot to talk about. I meant what I said. I love you, very much.  Call me okay?’
I lost you once princess; I’m not going to lose you again. With every breath in me, I’ll defend you to the death.
Carly’s mind and heart was too full of worry and misery. Even with the lingering doubt Bo was over Hope, she believed his declaration of love. And yet so many things stood between them. She was on the roof where she and Bo danced on years ago; they were young and happily in love back then. She could still remember their song playing and Bo’s arms round her, their lips locked in passionate kisses, gentle hands caressing each other. She also remembered the terrible period Bo hid his illness from her, not wishing to burden her at first until he got so ill he confessed it all to her, begging her forgiveness for pushing her away. And she too had kept secrets from him and he’d given her love and understanding. But the present situation was far too different; it stood like a hard, granite obstacle between them.
I should never have come back here, Carly thought. Instead of peace, my life’s even more complicated. What do I do now… leave Salem- my home – again? How could I have known Bo will fall in love with me again… when I’m no longer the woman I once was and what I’m keeping from him? So near… and yet I’m so far away from Bo; just like Lawrence said. When will the nightmares and inner torment end?
Her iPhone rang again, the caller I.D revealing to be Bo, again. She let it ring and when it ceased, checked her voicemail. Princess, it’s me. Where are you? Please call me; we still got a lot to talk about. I meant what I said. I love you, very much.  Call me okay?
‘I love you too, Bo.’ Carly whispered, tears rolling down her cheeks. ‘More than you’ll ever know. If only I could let you know how much I love you.’ She turned off the phone.  Even if she accumulated enough vacation time and hid at the lake house, she couldn’t avoid Bo forever. Telling him the whole truth was a no brainer but hurting him by telling him they can’t be together was a scene she wasn’t looking forward to. And there was still that nagging doubt Bo wasn’t completely over Hope. If she didn’t have her secrets and her affliction, that alone would stand between them, she would constantly be uncertain Bo was really happy with her and not yearning for Hope at the back of his mind. And there was Hope too, she’ll be furious and will never forgive them both. And the Brady family will never accept her; while the Hortons, except Alice, will lay all the blame at her door if Bo divorced Hope. Carly bit her lip, closing her eyes. She couldn’t let Bo leave his wife for her. Therefore she will have to have to choose the lesser of two evils… let him down brutally enough to make him forget about her and stay with Hope. It was the only way.
Bo called Carly after giving her a week’s grace and once again, his call immediately went to voicemail. Exasperated, he hung up. Enough’s enough!  He thought. He understood Carly’s doubts and worries but he was going to convince her she was the woman he wanted. Everyone can say what they liked but eventually they’ll simply have to get used to the idea and realize his happiness was what counted. He’ll protect Carly from their slights and sneers, make her as happy as she made him. The wheels were already in motion to end his marriage. Opening a drawer, Bo pulled out the divorce papers he got a few days ago, scanning through them once again and feeling no guilt or regret. He’ll always care about Hope but he was no longer in love with her and she was right, they hadn’t been happy with each other for a long time. He was the one always waiting for her to think things through and come back home, because of his love for her. Now that love has changed and he was the one who wanted out and start again. Carly Manning was his future and his future was with her.
Slipping them back in, Bo put his phone into his pocket and found his car keys. First stop, the florist’s to buy a bouquet of flowers and then to the hospital to give them to Carly and talk it out with her. He’ll promise not to rush her and take it slow if she wanted but he wasn’t going to leave without hearing a ‘yes’ and ‘I love you too,’ from her.
With a spring on his step Bo opened the door, almost colliding with Hope who was about to ring the doorbell. ‘Hey.’ She said quietly. ‘Were you on your way out?’
‘Actually yes. What’s up? Did Ciara forget something?’ Bo asked, forcing down his impatience.
‘No, nothing like that.’ Hope entered the house and Bo closed the door, wondering what she wanted. Since his return from California, they hardly spoke except for talks about Ciara and work. ‘What’s going on, Hope?’ he asked.
Hope turned to him, her face pale and eyes suddenly damp as though she’d been forcing them back. ‘It’s Grandma… Bo. She’s very ill… and the doctor said she’s… she’s…’ she burst into tears.
Shocked and saddened Bo drew her into his arms, impatience immediately  gone. ‘Oh no, no… not Mrs. H!’ Alice Horton was the very pillar and strength of the family and he couldn’t imagine their lives without her. Alice was loving, warm and always supportive. Of course she was in her nineties but she’s always been physically strong, her mind safe from the ravages of time. Bo drew Hope to the couch, sitting next to her. ‘Is it really bad, there’s no hope for her?’ he asked, passing her a box of Kleenex.
Hope sniffled, taking one and dabbing her eyes. ‘There isn’t, nothing can be done for her. Aunt Maggie’s already ringing up the family out of town to come home. Bo, what are we going to do without Gram? She’s always been larger than life… always there for us to turn to. I love her so much, I can’t bear losing her!’
‘I know, I love her too, Hope.’ Bo hugged her, tears filling his eyes at the thought of Alice, a woman he loved so dearly, leaving them forever.
‘Will you come to the house with me? She wants to see you.’
‘Of course… of course I will, you don’t have to ask. We’ll go now.’
His business with Carly can wait, in the meantime.
Bo saw Alice Horton alone and it took a huge effort from him not to weep at the sight of her looking so pale and frail against the pillows. Sitting on the chair next to her bed he took her hand , forcing his tears back. Her hand was frail and hot from the fever raging in her. ‘Mrs. H… it’s Bo.’ He said softly.
The old woman opened her eyes, a faint smile on her lips on seeing him.
‘I’m so sorry.’
‘Don’t be sorry, darling. Death is inevitable and I’m moving on to be with my Tom… and Addie. For a person my age, it’s the next great adventure.’
‘What will I do without you?’
‘You’ll move on and be as strong as you’ve always been, Bo. Strong, loyal and loving. You’ve always managed to find strength in anything you do. I know you’re going to be alright.’
Bo pressed his lips against her hand. Alice was dying, leaving them all behind. There was never going to be another woman like her. Blinking back his tears, he said, ‘It’s not going to be the same without you, Mrs. H; especially with how things have changed between Hope and me.’
‘It’s different this time, isn’t it?’
Bo nodded. There was no sense beating round the bush, something he never did with Alice. ‘I’ve fallen in love with Carly again, Mrs. H.’  
Alice squeezed his hand in reply.
 ‘You’re not angry with me?’
‘I can never be angry with you. Have you told her?’
‘Yes but she doesn’t believe me. She’s come up with all sorts of reasons why we can never be together, Hope being the main reason.’
‘But this what you  truly want, a future with Carly?’
‘I want it more than anything, Mrs. H.’ Bo said frankly.
‘Then follow your heart, darling. Fight for her if you have to and be happy with her. And... keep being the wonderful person you’ve always been.’
Bo smiled through his tears. ‘You’ve always believed in me, Mrs. H. And for that… I thank you.’
Melanie saw Nathan making his way to the elevators, his face pale and grief stricken. ‘Nathan, wait up!’ she ran to him, taking his arm. ‘What’s wrong?’
‘I can’t talk right now, Mel.’
‘Please tell me,’ Melanie pleaded. ‘What’s going on?’
Nathan sighed heavily, rubbing his eyes. ‘I just got a call from Grandma. Gram Alice’s dying. The family’s at her house right now and I’m going over there.’
‘Oh Nathan… I’m sorry, so sorry!’ Melanie whispered, knowing how much Alice meant to the Hortons. She hugged him tightly,  feeling Nathan’s arms round her and a sudden rush of tenderness for him. Since her engagement to Phillip, there had been a lot of awkwardness between them, added with Nathan’s coldness towards her.
‘Thanks, Mel.’
‘Oh, you don’t have to thank me, you know how much I care about you.’
Nathan pulled away, his face now hard. ‘Do you?’
Melanie was very surprised by his question. ‘Of course I do.’
‘Then why are you marrying Kiriakis?’ Nathan spat, his anger and frustration finally let loose.
‘What has that got to do with anything?’ Melanie demanded.
‘You just don’t get it do you? You think it’s been easy for me watching you with him, wearing his expensive rock, knowing you’re going to be his wife and have his kids someday? You’ve been toying with me, probably wondering if I’ll ever speak up.’
‘I don’t know what you’re talking about!’ Melanie snapped back. ‘You started dating Stephanie all of a sudden so who’s been toying with who here? Why should me marrying Phillip bother you now?’
Because I love you, damn it!’ Nathan snarled, his eyes blazing. Melanie backed away, stunned.
‘There… I’ve said it, I love you with my heart and soul, Melanie Layton.’ Nathan said bitterly. ‘I might as well admit it. I know it’s my fault, for not seeing it sooner. But I have and you might as well know how I feel about you.’
He loves me… and this whole time  I thought… Melanie was speechless.
‘I have to go.’ Nathan pressed the button, feeling drained after his outburst.
‘Nathan wait…’ Melanie pleaded.
‘Just leave me alone. I’ve said it all and I don’t need to hear the pity speech.’
He stepped into the elevator, Melanie’s green eyes staring at him as  the doors closed.
Without looking up from the chart, Carly picked up the receiver after three rings. ‘Dr. Manning,’ she said, taking down some notes.
‘Hello Carly, it’s Julie Williams.’
Carly put down her pen, surprised to suddenly receive a call from her. ‘Hello, Julie. Is something wrong?’
 ‘It’s grandma. She’s…I’m afraid the end’s near for her.’
‘Oh no.’ Carly whispered, shocked. ‘I’m so sorry.’
‘She’s been asking for you; she really wants to see you, Carly. Can you come over right away?’
‘Of course, of course… I’ll be there, I’m on my way.’
‘Great, thank you.’ Julie hung up.
Carly discarded the white coat and reached for her purse, hands trembling and heart heavy.
‘What are you doing here now?’ Hope demanded on seeing Carly at the door.
‘Hope, now’s not the time or place; move aside and let her in.’ Maggie said, firmly.
In no mood to argue with Hope Brady, Carly neatly side stepped her without so much as a glance at her face, her mind only on Alice.
‘Are you kidding me? She’s not family, she has no right to be here.’ Hope protested.
‘For god sake Hope, show some respect and don’t make another exhibition of yourself!’ Julie hissed, grabbing her half-sister by the arm. ‘Do you want to make a scene here, in front of the family? Like it or not, Grandma asked to see her so please keep quiet.’
Hope glared at her and at Carly who wasn’t even looking at her direction. ‘Am… am I too late?’ she asked Maggie.
Maggie shook her head, her expression grave. ‘Nathan’s in there with her right now.’
‘But she looked so well the last time I saw her, how did this happen? When did she fall ill?’
‘A few days ago, the doctor thought her fever would break but her temperature just got higher. Then when he said there was nothing he could do, she said… she said she wanted to die in her own home.’
Carly shook her head. ‘I’m so sorry, Maggie.’ She turned to Julie who walked up to them. ‘I’m sorry, Julie.’
Julie patted her shoulder in reply. ‘This day had to come eventually but I guess we hoped Grandma would live to be a hundred. She’s always been so strong.’
‘Does Bo know? And what about Shawn Douglas, Bill and Jennifer, have you called them?’
‘They’re already on their way. And Bo came by to see her this morning.’ Maggie replied. ‘He left after getting a call from the station.’
Carly thought about Bo, her heart aching for him. He loved “Mrs. H”, as he affectionately called her, very dearly. She glanced at Hope, who was pointedly looking out of the window, arms folded; ignoring them.
Nathan came out, dabbing his eyes with a hanky. Maggie hugged him in silence while Julie touched Carly’s arm. ‘You can go in now.’
Alice’s room was surrounded by roses and on small tables, various framed photographs of the family. Carly walked up to the bed, staring down at Alice before sitting down beside her, taking her hand. Alice’s eyes opened slowly and peered at her, a faint smile of recognition on her pale lips. ‘Carly. Thank you for coming.’ She murmured, squeezing Carly’s fingers with the little strength she had left.
Carly nodded, unable to speak; her eyes blinking rapidly. 
‘No… no tears, dear. I’ve reached my journey’s end.’ Alice soothed. ‘But I… couldn’t go without seeing you one more time. ‘To tell you something.’
‘What’s that?’ Carly whispered, her voice shaking.
‘What happened to you, should never happen to any woman. It should never have happened to you. But I believe… fate brought you back at this time… for a reason.’
‘I don’t understand.’
‘Your future… is going to be wonderful; more than enough to make up for the past. But you must embrace it, when he comes to you.’
Carly shook her head, still not comprehending.
‘You and Bo…’ Alice squeezed her hand again, ‘belong together.’
Carly was stunned. ‘Mrs Horton…’ she began.
‘You belong together.’ Alice repeated, interrupting her. ‘You may not see it yet but in time… you will. I know what you’re thinking… Hope is my granddaughter. I love her very much but I can admit she’s been treating Bo badly. If her marriage was that important to her, she would fix it, not keep her husband dangling… or pass blame on you.’
‘But it still doesn’t mean…’ Carly was disinclined to argue with a dying woman but the prospect of her and Bo getting back together was unconceivable.
‘I know so, Carly.’ Alice interrupted again. ‘I just wish I could be here… to see you happy at last. But you must also tell him… what you told me, Carly. You have to… eventually.’
 Carly’s eyes welled up as she lowered her head to kiss Alice on the forehead. The old woman managed to turn her head to kiss Carly on the cheek. ‘I love you, darling girl.’ She said faintly.
‘I love you too,’ Carly sobbed, tears sliding down her cheeks as Alice Horton closed her eyes for the last time. Carly kissed the hand clasped in hers, feeling it go slack as the life left it. ‘God speed Alice,’ she whispered, looking at the pale face; serene and peaceful in death. ‘God speed.’
Tears streaming down her cheeks, Carly got up to inform the people outside that the matriarch of the Horton clan was dead.
Bo was told the sad news by Maggie over the phone and was instructed to inform the Bradys. After ringing them up, Bo went over to the Horton house to console Hope. Carly went back to the hospital and informed Lexie, feeling it was her duty to inform the hospital staff. She went back to her office and wept for the kind, warm-hearted woman whose passing had already left a void in her life, the tears she couldn’t shed for Lawrence coming out in wracked sobs.
There was a knock on her door. When she didn’t answer, there was another knock and she raised her head. ‘Come in.’ Daniel poked his head in, his expression sober, indicating Lexie had already told him. ‘You’ve got a visitor.’
He opened the door wider and a man entered. For a few seconds Carly was rigid with shock, unable to believe her eyes. Then she walked round her desk and ran into his arms, his enfolding her immediately. Daniel left them alone, closing the door behind him.
‘Marcus, oh Marcus, is it really you?’ Carly wept, hugging him tightly.
‘Of course it’s me… it’s me Carly.’ Dr. Marcus Hunter, her dear friend and former colleague, pulled back to look down at her, upset and alarmed by her tears. ‘I came hoping to surprise you and I find you crying. What happened?’
Carly sniffled. ‘Mrs. Horton died a while ago, Marcus.’
Marcus’ face crumpled up and he  shook his head. ‘No, oh no…’ he whispered.
‘She died peacefully, while I was there. I still can’t believe she’s gone, Marcus; she’s gone… gone forever.’ She sobbed and Marcus held her in his arms, unable to speak, very sad to hear of Alice Horton’s death.
‘It’s okay, Carly… hush.’ He stroked her hair. ‘She led a very full and happy life and she’s with Dr. Horton now. She wouldn’t want us to grieve so much.’
Carly sniffled and Marcus gave her a hanky to dab her eyes. ‘It’s good to see you again, after all these years.’ She said, trying to make an effort. ‘It’s too bad it had to be today of all days.’
 Marcus nodded, his face now sad. ‘Yeah, it is. I was in D.C for a conference and I ran into Frankie. Over drinks, he told me what happened between you and Bo and I said I wasn’t going back to New York without seeing you.’
‘I thought it was something you heard ages ago.’
‘I lost touch with everyone here, I’m afraid. You and I have a lot to talk about, if you’re up to it.’
‘Yes we do. I’m so glad you’re here.’ Carly hugged him again, more than thankful Marcus, who was like a second brother to her, was in Salem at this particular time.
Bo called Carly later while she and Marcus were having coffee at the loft. ‘I’m so sorry about Mrs. Horton, Bo. I know how much you loved her.’
‘A lot of us did, Carly. And she loved all of us, including you. Are you okay? Maggie told me you were the last person she saw.’
‘I’m fine. What about you?’
‘I’m holding up.’ Bo dabbed at his eyes yet again, quelling his overwhelming grief. ‘The funeral’s on Friday. Everyone will be here by then.’
‘Okay. Comfort Hope and Ciara as much as you can, Bo. They need you more than ever right now.’
‘I’ll do that. But when the time is right, you and I have to talk. Please stop hiding from me from now on, okay?’
‘We’ve said what needs to be said, Bo. Please don’t make this harder.’
‘No, we haven’t.’ Bo’s voice was soft but firm. ‘When the time’s right, Carly.’ He hung up. 
‘The funeral’s on Friday. Will you come with me?’
‘Of course, I will. I still got some time off; I can stay in town for a while. And from the little I heard over the phone, I came  at the right time.’
Carly nodded soberly, looking down at her hands. ‘You really did, Marcus. I came back here for a fresh start. But now I’m in the middle of a huge dilemma and on the verge of hurting Bo all over again.’
Marcus moved nearer to her on the couch and took her hand. ‘Why do you say that?’
Carly stared at her friend miserably. ‘Marcus, what I’m about to tell you… only Frankie, Nicholas and Mrs. Horton know. I haven’t told  Bo and I never will.’
‘My God, is it that serious?’ Marcus asked, baffled.  
‘It is.’ A tear slid down Carly’s cheek. ‘I don’t know how it happened because I didn’t do anything to encourage him, but Bo’s in love with me again. And my past is the reason why I can’t have a future with him or ever let him know I love him too.’
Marcus put his arm round her. ‘Tell me everything.’
‘It’s so hard… so terrible…’ she whispered, sobbing.
 ‘You can trust me, Carly, you know that.’ Marcus said consolingly. ‘Why can’t you ever be with Bo? What are you hiding from him?’

Clutching Marcus’ hand, Carly began her long and painful tale. 


  1. Wow, so much happened in this update! Bo continues to pursue Carly (yay!), Nathan confesses his love to Melanie (finally!) Alice dies (broke my heart) :( , and Marcus comes back! Plus, you ended on a cliffhanger. :) I really loved that you included conversations Mrs. Horton with Bo and Carly before she died. I hope they take to heart what she said to them. I love that she has always been a big supporter of them being together. :) Can't wait for what's to come!

  2. Oh, Amina, I am in love with this story! I think it's my favorite of yours so far. I've got my suspicions as to the extent of Lawrence's abuse, but I'll keep them to myself for now. I've really missed you all, and I feel like I've been away for so long, much like Carly. I'm still trying to muddle my way back to the land of the living, and this weekend has been a roller coaster, emotionally, and reading this story has helped me so much. I can't wait to read more!
    XOXO -Kat

    1. It's VERY nice to have you back, we really missed you too. Ah... please don't share your suspicions, lol- I want my readers to keep guessing! I'm glad you're enjoying FALLEN


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