- Jude got the shock of his life when Christoph showed up on his doorstep.
- Jude blasted his father for his wicked ways, blamed him for his mother’s mental condition and ran off after attacking him.
- A restless Astrid found Bridget’s body while on a walk in the woods.
- Damien was disheartened when Pearl told him she wanted Quinn to stay with her at the hospital after learning the two had yet another fight over her.
St. Mary’s Regional Center, 6 am
Damien Collins gently stroked Pearl Tyler’s cheek as she lay sleeping in her bed. He was sitting in a very hard and uncomfortable chair and he didn’t get much sleep either. He was still thinking about the argument they had earlier over his rival, Quinn Nightshade:
I want you to stop this childish nonsense. Quinn has every right to be here as you do and I want him here.
I just don’t like the thought of him being alone with you, especially when you’re so vulnerable Pearl.
What do you think he’s going to try to do to me Damien? He saved me earlier tonight. I don’t think he’s going to try and molest me in my hospital bed. He’s not like that anymore.
I still don’t trust him. I don’t think I ever will.
That’s your problem, not mine.
Pearl, can’t you see I’m only trying to protect you? I don’t want you to end up being hurt.
I know you’re looking out for me Damien and I appreciate that but you have to understand how I feel…
In all reality, he really had no right to tell Pearl whom she could and couldn’t see. But Quinn was a different kind of animal entirely. He had known him a lot longer and had witnessed his dark side more times than she did. If he had changed, as Pearl claimed, it was only temporary. His brother Jude had told Damien about how much Quinn was like his father—and after hearing some of the things about Christoph Nightshade, he knew he would never let go of his dark side—and he sure as hell wasn’t going to let Pearl suffer because of it.
The Nightshade Home, a half hour later
Quinn unlocked the front door and walked into complete darkness, which made him uneasy. The drapes were shut and Jude never closed them because it made him feel too claustrophobic. The porch lights hadn’t been turned on either. Then a frightening thought came to him—what if Bridget Walsh came here looking for him to complete her twisted plot of revenge and found Jude instead?
No Quinn, don’t even think that. Jude would have defended himself. He may not like to bring out his vampire side, but he would have done it fighting with Bridget. She would have been no match for him. Push it out of your mind.
Quinn felt along the wall for the light switch. He flipped it on and the overhead ceiling lights bathed the living room in a warm glow which eased the dread inside him.
“Jude!” he called out. “Jude, are you here?”
There was no answer from his brother and the uneasiness within him returned. “Jude!” he shouted more forcefully.
He could feel the panic rising inside of him. Calm down Quinn. Maybe Jude decided to go for a drive. Check out back to see if his car is missing.
Quinn hurried into the kitchen and turned the lights on. He went to the kitchen door that led into the rear of the house and opened it. Jude’s car was there—but so was another car. A black, sleek-looking BMW. Now Quinn was really worried about his brother.
Suddenly he heard a noise behind him. Quinn stood still as a petrified tree. “That better be you Jude. If you aren’t my brother, I advise you to leave this house or you will regret it,” he calmly threatened.
“I won’t regret it Quinn,” a posh voice replied, just as calm.
Quinn’s knees felt like they had turned into jelly. He knew that voice. It was a voice he hadn’t heard in a very long time. Waves of fear, anxiety and joy combined to form one large surge that coursed all through his body. He struggled to remain composed.
He slowly turned around and saw his father standing in the middle of the kitchen. Christoph’s handsome face formed into a wide grin. “Hello Quinn. I’m back.”
Tears formed in Quinn’s brown eyes as he looked at his father. It was an unbelievable sight to say the least. He never thought he would ever see him again. He opened his mouth to try to speak but he couldn’t.
Christoph inched closer. “I know it’s a shock but I had to find you and Jude. I wanted you to know that I hadn’t given up on you. You’re my flesh, my blood…and I love you so much.”
Quinn again tried to talk but he was only able to get out one tearful word:
St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center
“Mrs. Tyler, you’re doing very well so we’re going to release you,” Doctor Harvey told Pearl and Damien.
“Wonderful!” Pearl happily said.
“I prevented the police from coming in to question you about what happened last night, but they will want to talk to you, the doctor explained.”
Pearl nodded. “They can come to the Lawrence’s where I’m staying.”
“As soon as I sign the paperwork, you’ll be out of here. I want you to continue to stay on bed rest as much as possible. Despite what’s happened, you and your baby are both extremely healthy and we want to keep it that way.”
“Believe me, so do I,” Pearl agreed.
Doctor Harvey smiled at Damien. “You’re lucky to have found people who care about you Mrs. Tyler. I remember when you were in here a few weeks ago you said you didn’t have anybody, and now you do.” He straightened his white lab coat. “Well, let me get your discharge papers ready. I know you want to be back in your own bed.” He smiled again and left the room.
Damien turned to Pearl. “I can’t wait to get you out of here. It’ll be wonderful, just the two of us, riding alone together back to Haven.” He tenderly stroked her cheek with his index finger.
“Once we get back to the Lawrence’s I’m going to stay with you for a while. We really haven’t spent any time together and we need to do that.”
Pearl smiled at him but deep down she knew Damien was determined to keep her away from Quinn at all costs. And while she was happy to have Damien for company, a big part of her wanted to be with Quinn as well.
The Nightshade home
Quinn rushed to his father and the two men embraced each other tightly. “I can’t believe you’re really here,” Quinn said through tears. “I thought you would never come back…not after what happened with Mother.”
“I was always going to come back. I never forgot you or Jude. But your mother was strong…stronger than I anticipated. I wasn’t almost going to be destroyed a second time.”
Quinn pulled away from his father and looked at him intensely. “You don’t have to worry about that anymore. Mother is locked away and won’t ever get out.”
Christoph frowned. “I went and visited her in the hospital.”
Quinn was surprised. “You what?” he almost shouted.
“I hired a private detective to track you and Jude down. He also discovered that Josie was in the sanitarium. So I went and saw her. I wanted to make sure she wasn’t going to try and stop me from seeing you.”
“She’s lost her mind Father. She isn’t a threat to you anymore,” Quinn gently reminded him.
“Well apparently she’s gotten it back because she was ready for me. She somehow sensed that I was coming,” Christoph explained.
“She still can’t do anything, not while she’s in that loony bin,” Quinn forcefully insisted.
“You hate her, don’t you?” Christoph said knowingly.
Quinn nodded fiercely. Quinn glanced down at the floor, growing uncomfortable. His mother had been a sore spot with him for a very long time. “That’s true, but it’s not that important right now,” he replied softly, lifting his head to look at his father. “What’s important is having you back again, and my brother.”
Suddenly he grew pale. “Jude…do you know where he is? He didn’t answer me when I called for him.”
Christoph smiled reassuringly. “Jude is sleeping.”
Quinn still wasn’t so sure. “I hope you’re not joking. I know Jude would have majorly freaked out if he was here when you arrived.”
“He did, freak out, as you said. He even attacked me and ran away. He came back and tried to fight with me again. I calmed him down and put him to bed.” Christoph grinned like an ornery little boy who was keeping a secret. “I used one of my powers to settle him. It’s one of the many benefits of being a vampire.” He grinned again and this time, he revealed his long sharp fangs.
“I’m going to see if he’s okay,” Quinn said. He turned and headed for the hallway which led to the bedrooms. Christoph silently followed him. The two men approached Jude’s room. Quinn quickly but quietly opened the door. The room was dark except for a small table lamp on a bed stand that was lit. Sure enough, Jude was in bed, sleeping soundly.
Quinn left the room and closed the door. “I’m sorry I doubted you,” he apologized to his father.
Christoph put an arm around his oldest son. “Don’t worry about it. I know you’re just looking out for Jude and I’m glad. I haven’t been here to be the father I should have been. But that’s all going to change, starting today.” He narrowed his blue eyes. Nothing or no one is going to stop us from being a family again.”
Quinn was surprised at his father’s intensity but realized how he felt. He had been pushed out of his children’s lives and forced to stay away for twenty years. He missed out on everything. And even though he was a vampire, a ruthless creature of the night, he still had the right to be with and love his sons. Just like I have the right to be with and love Pearl, Quinn thought silently.
Then it dawned on him—he never spoke with Pearl after his confrontation with Damien Collins at the diner. After killing and feeding on the bum he met outside the hospital, he went straight home. He didn’t even go back to check on her. He began to feel extremely guilty for abandoning her. He was sure Damien had taken advantage of his absence and was hovering over like a bothersome bumblebee.
Christoph couldn’t help but notice his son’s downtrodden expression. “Quinn, what’s wrong?” he asked with concern as the two headed into the living room.
Quinn happened to glance at a clock mounted on the wall. “It’s after six Father. You should be sleeping.”
Christoph chuckled. “I’m fine as long as there’s no sun streaming through these windows. But I want to find out what’s bothering you.”
“It’s a long story Father…a very long story,” Quinn began, sitting on the sofa. Christoph joined him, anxious to hear what his son had to say.
“I’ve met someone,” Quinn said. Immediately warm tingles sparked through his body as he thought of Pearl and pictured her face.
Christoph frowned. He prayed he wasn’t going to say it was that awful little blonde he did away with last night. He was widely relieved when Quinn began to describe the pretty redhead he saw in the Lawrence’s now burned-down stable almost three weeks ago. He didn’t mince words when he explained how he held her captive. When Christoph asked why he did so, he told him about Megan Manning….and his heated rivalry with Damien Collins.
When he was finished, Christoph smiled knowingly. “I wouldn’t worry about Damien. He’s no match for a Nightshade’s charms…or pedigree. Pearl will be yours, and I’m going to help you make sure she’ll be yours.”
Quinn was hesitant. “I don’t want her to be forced Father. I tried that and it backfired on me. Now she enjoys being with me more and more since she knows I won’t do anything to hurt her. I know you only want to help me and I appreciate it but I don’t want to scare her away and into Damien’s arms.”
“You don’t have to worry Quinn. I wouldn’t do anything to jeopardize your romance. After what you’ve been through in the past year, you deserve to be happy. But I would like to meet her…she may be my future daughter-in-law you know.” Christoph winked at his son.
“You’ll meet her Father. She just needs to recover from what happened to her last night,” Quinn replied. He yawned loudly. “I need to get to bed like Jude.” He cast a loving gaze towards his father. “I still can’t believe you’re right here next to me. We have so much to catch up on.”
“I know, and now we have all the time in the world. We’re going to be a real family again Quinn—you, me and Jude. And hopefully in the near future, Pearl and her little bundle of joy.” He stood up and went to hug his son. “I love you Quinn, more than anything in this world.”
“I love you too Father.” The two stayed in their embrace for a few seconds and then Quinn let go. “Come on, it’s time for sleep, or you won’t be able to stay up tonight looking for warm blood. There’s a spare bedroom next to mine.”
The two headed back down the hallway. While Pearl was on Quinn’s mind, Christoph could only think of the things to come now that he was back in his sons’ lives. The Nightshades were back together again—and he was going to make sure Haven would never forget it.
Coming up next:
- Damien again proposes marriage to Pearl but she turns him down, fearing Quinn will go after him if she accepts.
- Damien wants to take Pearl away.
- Bridget Walsh’s body is collected by police but they refuse to accept Astrid’s claim she was killed by a vampire.
- Pearl gets the news that Bridget tried to kill Duncan and that she is dead; she realizes another vampire is loose in town, knowing Quinn couldn’t have killed her because he was with her.