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Tuesday, September 08, 2015


‘Dr. Manning, can I talk to you for a few minutes?’
It’s been more than a week since Alice Horton’s death. Like the Hortons and the Bradys, Carly still felt a dull ache in her heart; her eyes filling up whenever she thought of the woman they all missed very much. Marcus was still in Salem, staying with her at the loft and helping out as a visiting consultant at the hospital. Daniel found in Marcus Hunter a kindred spirit and most of the nurses, including Maxine, sighed over the six foot handsome African-American despite being in his fifties, wishing he could stay permanently. Even happily married Lexie mildly flirted with him and he jokingly responded. Carly was yet to see or hear from Bo but she knew it was only a matter of time before he showed up.
‘Of course Melanie, come in.’ Carly waved her to a seat. ‘What’s on your mind?’
Melanie sighed, staring at her fingers. ‘It’s about Philip and me… mostly me. I can't go through with it, marrying him I mean.’
‘Oh?’ Carly wondered if it was because she had a change of heart or if Nathan Horton had finally plucked up the courage to let her know he loved her. ‘Why do you say that?’
‘I… I have feelings for someone else. And I feel more connected to him than with Phillip.’
‘But you love Phillip, don’t you?’
  ‘Phillip’s everything exciting and he has that princely charisma.’ Melanie replied. ‘And we’re so much alike, that was the main thing that attracted me to him. But this other guy’s different. We like the same things but we’re different and that makes me feel more connected with  him, does that make sense?’
   ‘Of course it makes sense- that’s the thing about “opposites attract”.’ Carly knew that all too well, falling in love with Bo Brady; a man exactly like her in thought but her aristocratic parents would’ve been horrified since Bo was what they would’ve called a “peasant.” But their different backgrounds had only drawn them closer. ‘But it’s not just this connection you’re talking about, you're in love with this other man?’
    ‘Yes.’ Melanie’s voice was low. ‘But I thought he didn’t want me and I mistook infatuation for love in Phillip’s case. How am I going to call off the wedding without hurting him?’  
    ‘You’re just going to have to find a gentle way of breaking it to him, Melanie.  There are different types of love but no one must ever settle for second best. I made that mistake a long time ago and paid for it, believe me. You have to explain that to Phillip.’
   Melanie nodded, smiling gratefully and Carly smiled back; already fond of the young woman.
    ‘Thanks, Dr. Manning.’
    ‘My pleasure. And from now on, call me Carly, okay? No more formality between us.’
 Melanie’s smile widened. ‘Sure, I will.’
 True love wins, Carly said to herself as she thought of Nathan. He obviously stepped up at last and now Melanie knew where her heart lay, preventing her from making a big mistake. She was happy for both of them. Nathan was rather shy but mature and he would be a steady influence to Melanie. Melanie; lively and vivacious, in turn would help him shed off his reserved nature and be more open.  They were perfect for each other.
 She thought about herself and Bo. They both had hot tempers, Bo’s worse than hers but she was always able to stand up to him.  Accustomed to being the protector, her independence had constantly exasperated him but found it refreshing at the same time; gently making her realize protecting her now and then didn’t make her a weakling or a damsel in distress.  Lawrence had scathingly described Bo a simple man with a simple life, with no idea of her as a person. But he was wrong, so very wrong. Bo did know her and he loved her then, just like he loved her now. All she had to do was drive down the station and tell him she loved him… before telling him the truth. But once again, her courage failed her and the reminder of how the truth will hurt him.
Melanie found Nathan and immediately dragged him into an empty room, closing the door behind them. Nathan pulling her hard against him and the young couple kissed passionately.  ‘I can’t take it.’ he whispered against her lips.
‘Oh… me neither.’ Melanie ran her hands over the beloved face, kissing him deeply again; her body aching for him. Until she talked to Phillip, she and Nathan weren’t going to make love but it was getting more difficult to quell their desire for each other. After Alice Horton’s funeral, Melanie went to see Nathan at his apartment and after a long talk, they reconciled.
‘I love you, Mel; I want you… now.’ Lifting her nurse’s tunic, he fondled her breasts and Melanie moaned.  Nathan’s mouth moved down her neck and his fingers began unhooking her bra.
‘No sweetheart, not yet… not yet.’ Melanie pleaded, stopping him but not without some regret. ‘I’m talking to Phillip tonight, after work. I want us to start on a clean slate, okay?’
Nathan sighed heavily but nodded. ‘Okay. After tonight… you’re mine, that’s all that matters.’
‘I’m already yours,’ Melanie promised, nestling in his arms.
Carly obtained Marlena’s address from Brady and sent her an email; asking when she was coming back to Salem with John. If she was going to resume therapy, she would rather have someone she could trust. Marcus approved, feeling sure it will help in her emotional recovery and motivate her to confide in Bo. He was not pleased she was yet to deal with the anonymous letters, urging her to report it. Carly finally assured him if a fourth one appeared she would but begged him not to tell Frankie. It was no sense worrying her brother who was fiercely protective of her.
Carly glanced at her watch. It was almost time to go and she and Marcus had dinner plans. He was leaving in two days’ time, as his leave drawing to a close. He was a supportive friend and companion and she was going to miss having him around.
As she took off her doctor’s coat, her door was suddenly flung open; startling her. Phillip Kiriakis barged in; his handsome face flushed, eyes blazing with anger and Carly could smell whisky on him. Amazement turned to anger. ‘How dare you barge into my office like this?’
‘How dare you turn Melanie against me?’ Phillip snarled. ‘Thanks to you, she called off the wedding. Ruining my brother’s marriage wasn’t enough for you, was it? You had to stick your nose into my personal life too… you meddling, conniving bitch!’
‘Get out of here right now or I’ll call security!’ Carly threatened.
Home wrecker!’  spat Phillip, lurching at her. Carly was shoved against the wall, causing her to hit her forehead. Before she could move away, Phillip grabbed her by the neck and viciously slapped her across the face, then slapped her again; alcohol adding fuel to his anger, the only thing in his mind was punishing the woman who poisoned Melanie’s mind against him. In sheer terror, Carly began to scream.
 Daniel and Marcus were in deep conversation when they and a few nurses heard the commotion. They all ran to Carly’s office in time to see Phillip’s hands on Carly’s neck. ‘My God!’ Daniel exclaimed in horror at the sight before them. But Marcus got to Phillip first, rushing over. Pulling Phillip by the hair, Marcus savagely punched him. ‘You think this proves you’re a man, beating up women?’ he snarled. ‘I could kill you right now!’
‘Marcus, maintain.’ Daniel stopped Marcus from hitting a dazed Phillip a third time. Marcus flung him away in disgust at the security guard who suddenly appeared with more staff members. Daniel went over to Carly who was on the floor. ‘Carly…are you alright?’
‘No... no… get away!’  Carly screamed, recoiling from his touch and cowered against the wall. Daniel stared at her in alarm but Marcus pushed him aside and knelt in front of her.  ‘Carly, look at me. See… it’s me, Marcus. It’s okay.’
Carly barely heard him. Alamainia, the cellar…she was back in the cellar…. Lawrence ready all over again for a fresh round of torture….
‘Carly, can you hear me?’ she heard a familiar voice and she forced herself to focus on it, pulling out of the looming darkness and opened her eyes to her brightly lit office and Marcus and Daniel’s concerned faces. ‘M…Marcus?’ she whispered.
‘Yeah, it’s me. You’re safe now, come on...’ Marcus helped the trembling woman up, hugging her tightly as she held on to him, sobbing. ‘It’s okay.’ he soothed. ‘I hope somebody’s called the police.’
 ‘I did,’ Maxine said, still shocked by what happened. ‘They’re on their way.’
‘Good. Come on, Carly; let’s get you checked out.’ Marcus shepherded her out, amidst shocked murmurings from everyone over the incident.
Carly adamantly refused to do an X-ray and baffled Lexie and Daniel even more by refusing to let them examine her, insisting Marcus do it. ‘It’s not standard procedure, Carly.’ Lexie protested. ‘Let one of us take a look at you.’
Carly’s  eyes met Marcus’s; he was the only one who knew the reason behind her odd request. He saw the desperation and immediately took charge. ‘It’s alright Lexie, I’ll handle this.’
Daniel made his own objection but Marcus was firm. ‘It’s her prerogative, so indulge her, please.’
The two doctors, though bewildered, let Carly have her away; not having the heart to argue with her further.
Bo stepped off the elevator with two uniformed officers at his heels, his face rigid as he purposefully strode across the hospital floor. He was yet to forgive Justin for his despicable behavior, hearing his own brother physically assaulted the woman he loved had sent such a huge wave of anger within him that he was almost afraid he would strangle Phillip with his bare hands once he saw him. Phillip’s hot temper had gotten him into scrapes in the past but he was never known to be violent with women. He was going to be very sorry he ever laid his hands on Carly by the time he was through with him. Daniel led them to where Phillip was being detained by the security guard. Glaring at Phillip was stared back sullenly, Bo turned to his men. ‘Read him his rights and get him out of my sight. I’ll deal with him later.’  
‘Yes, sir.’ They said.
Bo turned back to Daniel. ‘Where’s Carly, is she alright?’
‘A little banged up but she’s going to be fine. Marcus is with her right now.’ Daniel wanted to add that Carly displayed textbook signs of PTSD but stopped himself on time; he will ask her about it instead because it really worried him.
Daniel gave him the directions to Carly’s room. Bo found it easily and through the glass window on the door saw Marcus sitting on the bed beside Carly, his hand on her shoulder and saying something to her, his expression very serious. Carly nodded her head and they exchanged hugs. Forcing back a sudden stab of jealousy, Bo entered the room. Marcus rose from the bed while Carly peered at him.  ‘Good God…’ he whispered, appalled at Phillip’s handiwork. Her cheeks and the side of her neck spotted pink bruises and a blackish one surrounded her left eye. Marcus watched as Bo hugged her tightly, the expression on his face speaking volumes.
‘Are you okay?’ he whispered, pushing back her hair. She nodded. ‘What the hell could’ve made him do this to you?’
Before Carly could reply, there was a knock on the door and Melanie and Nathan entered, both anxious and worried.
‘Oh my God…’ Melanie exclaimed tearfully, rushing to Carly’s side and flung her arms round her. ‘Daniel told us what happened! I’m sorry, this is all my fault!’  
‘What does this have to do with you?’ Bo  asked, sharply.  
‘Melanie broke her engagement to Phillip and apparently he holds me responsible,’ Carly said quietly before the girl could reply. Bo’s cold eyes moved to Melanie for confirmation.
Melanie swallowed. ‘I told Phillip I couldn’t marry him and… I made the mistake of saying Dr. Manning advised me to follow my heart. I honestly didn’t mean to bring her in all this, I had no idea Phillip would do such a thing to her! Carly, I’m so sorry!’ she held on to Carly who patted her back consolingly.
‘If you’re going to blame Mel Bo, you’re going to have to blame me too; I went to Dr. Manning for advice as well.’ Nathan said quickly, moving to stand beside Melanie, his arm coming protectively round her shoulders.  
‘You had no way of knowing it would come to this. Neither of you are to blame, so don’t worry about it. I’m fine.’ Carly reassured them.
‘I hope you’re going to press charges for assault.’ Marcus said to Carly then turned to Bo. ‘I don’t care if he’s your brother or that he was drunk. He was like a wild beast; just look at Carly’s  face. When Daniel and I got there, he  was on the verge of strangling her.’
Nathan cursed while Melanie  covered her mouth with one hand, shocked.
‘Don’t worry about it, Phillip’s already under arrest; my guys are escorting him to a cell as we speak.’
‘Serves him right!’ Nathan spat angrily, glad about Melanie’s narrow escape.  
‘No, no…’ Carly protested, thinking of how Victor will have a fit.   
‘Carly, he could’ve killed you. Trust me, I’m not going to let him get away with this, drunk or not.’ Bo vowed darkly. ‘Leave us alone , please.’
‘Sure.’ Marcus smiled fondly at Carly who smiled back. Melanie and Nathan hugged her before following Marcus out of the room. Bo sat beside her on the bed, gently running his fingers over her face. ‘I’ve missed you.’ he said softly, looking deeply into the green eyes he loved so much. Every day not seeing Carly was pure agony but with the passing of Mrs. Horton, he had to be there for Hope, who was yet to get over her grief; the main reason why he was yet to tell her he’d filed for divorce, something he had every intention of going through with.
‘No Bo, we can’t,’ Carly murmured, turning her face away when he moved towards her for a kiss, despite longing for it.
Bo sighed in frustration. ‘How long are we going to be apart like this?  I can’t take this anymore, princess. I love you, why won’t you see that?’
‘We’re been through this already, Bo,’ Carly said quietly, with great effort. ‘This is not what you really want. If you and Hope weren’t  separated when I came back…’
‘Forget all that,’ Bo interrupted. ‘What matters is what’s going on between us now. What’s really going on here, princess?’
Hearing him address her by his old pet name for her was almost her undoing but Carly managed not to let her emotions get the better of her. ‘Nothing’s going on here, Bo. I already told you what I think about this and the answer’s no.’
Why? And don’t tell me it’s because you think I’m on the rebound because I’m not. What’s the real reason; I can’t help but feel you’ve been hiding something from me.’  Carly’s blood ran cold. Oh no. ‘Why would you think I’m hiding anything from you, I’ve got no reason to.’
‘Then what were you and Marcus talking about before I came in? I remember how thick as thieves you two are; you were talking about something important, weren’t you?’
‘We were just talking Bo; I don’t have a secret.’ Carly hoped she sounded convincing.
‘Famous last words coming from you,’ Bo got up from the bed, feeling angry and hurt she was doing this to him again. ‘What sort of secret is it that you can tell Marcus instead of me?’
‘Why are you yelling at me?’ Carly asked, upset by his raised voice.
‘Because this is the same road you travelled years ago; when you found it difficult to confide in me, your fiancé who loved you, who would do anything for you. I had to find out on our wedding day that Nicky was your son, the son that  took you ages to tell me about in the first place; who you couldn’t trust me to protect after he killed a woman; talk about over protectiveness!’
Carly immediately rose to her son’s defense. ‘And I imagine that was one of the reasons why you resented him being in our lives.’
Bo glared at her. ‘I didn’t resent Nicky for being in our lives; I resented him for deliberately disrupting our lives. That ungrateful brat of yours knew what he was doing the whole time but you were too blind to see it. But that’s not even the point. From the moment we first met, you kept secrets from me and shut me out when you should’ve trusted me! Just when I thought you’re still the same woman I fell in love with after all these years, you’re shutting me out when all I want is to help you get through whatever that’s keeping us apart, to love you! Why won’t you let me?’
Alerted by Bo’s raised voice, Marcus came back. ‘Bo stop it, she’s been through enough for one day.’
Carly turned away, unable to meet his eyes and Bo shook his head bitterly.
‘And here we are. It’s the still the same like before, when you make me feel there’s a part of you that I. JUST. CAN’T. REACH!’ he shouted before storming out of the room. Marcus hurried over to Carly who was now crying.
‘I can’t stand it anymore, I have to go after him…’ she attempted to get out of bed but Marcus stopped her.
 ‘No, no… let him go.’
‘No Marcus, I have to tell him the truth; he has to know the truth, right now.’ Carly tried again to free herself but Marcus held her in a firm grip. ‘He’s so angry with me… I have to make him understand…’
‘I don’t care about Bo’s feelings right now; I care about your health and besides, Bo had no right talking to you that way. You will tell him but only when you’re ready. If he truly loves you, he won’t stay angry with you for very long.’ Marcus assured her. ‘Don’t worry Carly; everything’s going to be all right.'  
Carly kept picturing Bo’s hurt, angry face, once again remembering Alice’s warning, eventually he’s going to realize you’re hiding something and that will really hurt him too. She felt drained and more miserable than she felt before. ‘All those things he said… he was right.’ She whispered.
‘But he forgot something, you kept secrets because at the time you had no choice and that about having and supposedly losing Nicky; you didn’t tell him at first because it was far too painful, no woman would want to talk about that. Bo’s angry right now but in time, he’ll cool off. You on the other hand, take it one step at a time. You have to be ready, not before. Okay?’
‘Okay,’ Carly quietly agreed. ‘Can you take me home now, please?’
‘Are you sure you won’t spend a night here?’
‘All I have is a headache, no broken bones; I want to rest in my own bed.’ And in addition nurse my heartache.
‘Fine. I’ll go tell Lexie.’ Patting her hand, Marcus left the room.

 ‘He hit Carly? You’ve got to be kidding!’ Roman exclaimed, shocked, following Bo into his office.  
‘You should’ve seen her face, Roman; he even gave her a black eye.’
‘My God. She’s pressing charges, right?’
‘Absolutely, I’m going to make sure that little brother of mine gets what he deserves for putting his hands on her.’
‘But… why aren’t you with her right now?’ asked Roman as Bo sat at his desk.
‘What do you mean by that?’ Bo snapped, ready to pounce on Roman.
‘You can stop playing, Bo; I know you’re in love with Carly. And you’ve been in love with her for quite a while, haven’t you?’ Roman snapped back.
Bo glared then nodded, sighing. ‘Yeah… I do, very much.’
‘So why aren’t you over there, taking care of her?’
‘We… we had a fight at the hospital. She doesn’t want us to start again and I know she loves me too, even though she won’t admit it out loud.’
‘Why?’ Roman asked, stunned.
Anger now abated and feeling ashamed of his outburst at the hospital, Bo told him what happened. ‘It’s more about Hope or what the family will say about us. If only I can figure out what’s she’s hiding. It’s bad enough Hope shut me out now…’
Stop, don’t go comparing Carly with Hope,’ Roman interrupted. ‘Whatever secret she has, it’s her business.’
‘But it’s the reason why she doesn’t want to be with me, I’m sure of it and I don’t want to lose her again, Roman!’ Bo said urgently.
‘I know you don’t. All I can tell you is try to show a little patience and understanding and give her time.’
‘I think I’m all out of that right now, I gave her enough time.’
‘Then give her more time, you’re the one who wants a second chance with her. Carly will open up to you in due time and explain herself, you will listen to her and the two of you will work it out; whatever it is. I just hope you didn’t upset her too much.’
Bo shifted in his seat, feeling very remorseful for lashing out at Carly and all the things he said. He hadn’t meant to but seeing her put on that damned aloof mask and her obvious lie about not having a secret made him see red. All what he mentioned were forgiven a long time ago – it wasn’t like she kept secrets to hurt him, she would never deliberately do that. And dear God… why did he say all that about Nicky, whom he’d forgiven too? He will find a way of apologizing to Carly and reassure her of his love.
Marcus stirred the marinara sauce and checked on the pasta. Lexie wasn’t pleased Carly insisted on going home instead of staying the night under observation but reluctantly gave in after Carly assured her other than a throbbing headache, she was fine. Besides Carly had two days off, ample time for her to rest.
The bell rang and Marcus went to answer it. It was Victor, his lined face grim and forbidding. ‘Where’s Carly?’
‘In the shower. What do you want?’
Victor barged inside. ‘Call her out; I want to talk to her.’
Marcus couldn’t believe the man’s gall but then again, he shouldn’t be surprised. ‘First of all, I don’t take orders from you.’ he slid the steel door shut angrily. ‘Second, your son hit her so he’s going to be held accountable for it.’
‘I’m not here to waste my precious time arguing with you, Hunter. Get Carly out  here right now!’ Victor raised his voice.
Carly emerged in a robe, her hair damp from the shower. ‘What is going on?’ she demanded. ‘What are you even doing here?’
‘Phillip’s in jail because of you,’ Victor snarled. ‘First you sink your claws in Bo then you interfere with Phillip’s life!  You’re poison, Carly Manning!  You always have been; tarnishing every thing you touch!’  
‘Don’t you talk to her like that!’ Marcus shouted, standing between him and Carly.
‘Listen, I suggest you keep out this if you know what’s good for you, it’s none your business.’
Marcus went rigid and for a second Carly was afraid he would punch Victor out. ‘Wait a second… you’re actually pulling that old gangster crap on me? Just who do you think you are, Victor?’
‘Someone you don’t want to mess with.’ Victor growled.
‘Oh.. so we’re playing it like that, are we?’ Marcus moved closer until the two men were eye to eye. ‘Just so you know you old bastard, I can be gangsta too. So take yourself out of here, right now before I put my foot in your ass and drag you out of here by the scruff of your neck myself.’
Victor glared at him before moving his malevolent eyes back to Carly. ‘You’ll be sorry for what you did to my sons, Carly. I won’t rest until I make you pay, count on that.’
Get out!’ Marcus shouted. With one last baleful look at Carly, Victor left the loft. 


  1. Wow! This was probably the most drama filled chapter yet! Phillip becoming violent & abusive to Carly totally surprised me. It was freakish how much he resembled Victor in that moment! I loved the Carbo time, but oh wow, the angst, like usual. :) Oh, and I love that Carly helped Melanie & Nathan get back together. You've really been cranking out the chapters, and I'm so addicted. :)

    1. Lol, thanks! This chapter is the heart of FALLEN. Next comes the resolution, going towards the ending. So... stay tuned :D


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