Chapter 4 Washington DC, June 16, 2000 8:24 AM Beth was hurrying around to leave for the airport, putting the last few things in her suitcases. As Beth was closing one of her suitcases, she paused for a moment to think about what might happen tomorrow. What will I say or do when I see him? What will he say or do? What do you say to a man that you thought was dead for the last 33 years? Will he still think I'm beautiful? Will he still like me? Fear started to seep through Beth's entire body, and she started to shake. I don't know if I can go through with this. Then Beth stopped herself. She felt angry with herself for thinking such negative things. "Be optomistic Beth." She said out loud. Beth finished closing her suitcase and picked it and another one up off the bed. She then continued out the door and headed towards the elevator where she pushed the down button and waited as the elevator came to her floor. When the elevator finally arrived, the doors opened; and she was surprised to see her ex-husband Dirk standing in elevator. He looked ragged and unshaven like he had been wollowing in the pits of depression. "Beth, I'm glad I caught you." Dirk stepped out of the elevator and the doors slid closed behind him. "Dirk, what are you doing here?! How did you find me?!" "Michael told me. He said you found out Al's still alive, and you're going to New Mexico to see him. Is that true?" "Yes, and why should you care?! You're the one that ran out on me, remember?!" Dirk ran his hand through his matted hair and looked at her apologetically. "REMEMBER?!" Beth repeated. "Yes, Beth, but Debbie threw me out. She never wants to see me again. I've learned my lesson, Beth. I want you back. I'm a changed man. I promise that I'll never to stray from your side again... if you just take me back." "Oh, Dirk, that's a bunch of bull and you know it! You didn't have any interest in me until our son, Michael, told you that my first husband is still alive; and I'm going to see him! How did Michael find out about it any way?!" "Christina told him." "Oh great!" Christina you should have known better than that! Beth thought to herself. Michael has always sided with his father. "Well, my answer to you is NO!" Get out of my way! I'm going to see Al whether you like it or not!" "Beth, I can't let you do that." Dirk said as he tried to grab the suitcases out of Beth's hands. Beth refused to let him take them away from her. She started pulling the suitcases away from his grip. "Dirk, let go of my suitcases!" Dirk let go, but instead grabbed Beth by the shoulders and kissed her hard on the lips. Beth dropped her suitcases in shock, pushed Dirk away, and slapped him across the face. "NEVER_DO_THAT_AGAIN! Do you understand me?" Beth said with anger in her eyes. She picked up her suitcases again. "Now get out of my way!" "I'm never going to let you go, Beth. You'll never be rid of me." Dirk said in a threatening tone. "You want to bet!" Beth tried to pass him but he kept standing in front of her to prevent her from getting by. "Let me by!" "No, Beth." An elderly couple came out of a room and pushed the button for the elevator. When the door opened, the couple entered the elevator; and Beth used this opportunity to push Dirk out of the way with her suitcase and then ran into the elevator. Dirk tried to follow her, but the door slid shut in his face. "Beth!" Beth sat the suitcases down and leaned up against the wall of the elevator to let out a sigh or relief. "What's the matter honey?" The older woman asked with concern. "It's a long, sad story. One I wish I didn't ever had to experience." Beth told her. The elderly couple looked at Beth with compassion as the elevator reached the lobby and the doors opened. "Well, we hope everything turns out alright for you dear." The old woman said as she squeezed Beth's hand and looked into her eyes with a smile. "I hope so too." Beth smiled back. The elderly couple left the elevator and looked at Dirk as he came up to the door. "Beth, I told you I'm not going to let you go." Seeing that Beth looked frightened at the sight of the man that approached her, the elderly woman went over to the security guard standing nearby. "That man in the tattered suit is threatening that woman on the elevator. She was trying to get away from him upstairs." The security guard walked over to Beth and Dirk. "Is this man bothering you mam'?" "Yes, he is." "Stand aside, sir; and let her by." Dirk reluctantly stood aside, and Beth practically ran past him towards the front doors, not looking back to see if Dirk was following her. "This isn't over Beth! I promise you!" Dirk yelled after her. "Hey! Do you want me to call the police?" The security guard threatened Dirk. "No!" "Keep it up and I'm gonna." Dirk watched in anger and jealousy as Beth ran out the front doors of the hotel. Beth was relieved when she was able to flag a cab down quickly. She got in and rode to the airport in silence, relieved that at least she won round one with Dirk. But then she thought. He knows where I'm going. Will he follow me? ***************************************************************************** Las Vegas, Nevada, April 21, 1955 7:46 AM Sharon Tyler was getting around to go to breakfast with "Norman" when a knock came on the door of her apartment. "Norman, it sure didn't take long for you to get over here!" It's bad enough that he called me to go to breakfast when he knows I've been up for most of the night. But can't he give me more than 15 minutes to get ready! Sharon said to herself as she went to the door with only a robe on and her hair rapped up in a towel. She threw the door open with disgust. "Norman!" Sharon paused when she saw the person standing out in the hall. "Hi Sharon." "Bob? Bob Gordon?" "Yeah, it's me." "Oh, Bobbie, how have you been?!" Sharon said as she through her arms around his neck. "Please come in." "I'm sorry, for dropping in on you on such short notice. I guess I should have called first." He said as he pointed to Sharon's robe. "Oh, that's okay Bob. As long as you came to see me. So what have you been doing with yourself these days?" "I've been working as a mechanic in a garage in Tucson, Arizona. I came here to Las Vegas with an old army buddy of mine and saw you working at the Horizon Casino as a waitress. I tried to talk to you last night; but I saw you talking with Randy Johnson and then later with that lounge singer, what's his name." "Oh, Norman?" "Yeah... Hey, isn't that who you thought was going to be at the door when you answered it?" "Yes, he called me this morning, all excited, wanting me to go out to breakfast with him. He said something about my life depended on it. Isn't that silly?" Sharon said with a snicker. "Yeah, that is kind of bizarre. So are you dating this Norman or something?" "Kind of. I wouldn't actually call it dating because we haven't actually gone out on a formal date as you call it. It's more like just hanging around each other after work. Actually, I was quite surprised when he called me this morning." Another knock came on the door. "Speak of the devil. That must be Norman now." Sharon got up and went towards the door. ----------------------------- Outside Sharon's Door ----------------------------- "Al I sure hope this works." "Me too." Sharon opened the door still in her robe and hair in a towel. "Norman, please come in." Sam and Al walked through the door. "Norman, I'm sorry I'm not ready yet; but an old friend of the family stopped by. Norman I'd like you to meet Bob Gordon. Bob this is Norman Stanley." "Uh, oh Sam." Al said. "This isn't good. You have to get rid of this guy some how." Sam looked at Bob and tried not to act like the fear that was building up inside him was choking the breath out of him. "Nice to meet you... Bob." Sam said as he half-heartedly grined at Bob and held out his hand. Bob took his hand and shook it. "Same here." Bob said while giving him a look that made Sam's spine turn to ice. "Well, I can see that I should go now, Sharon. You have to finish getting around so you can go to breakfast with Norman." "Yeah, that's a good idea, you sicko." Al said. "No, Bobbie, please stay. You can join us for breakfast." "Oh no, Sharon. Ahh! Sam do something" Al said in response to her request for Bob to come with them. Sam was feeling a sinking sensation and couldn't say anything. "Okay, I think I will." Bob answered Sharon. Sam still couldn't say anything. The fear was almost paralyzing him. "Norman, is that alright with you?" Sharon said turning to Sam. "NO Sam! Say NO!" "Sure." Sam responded. "SURE! SURE! Sam, are you crazy?!" "Uh, Sharon, can I use ah, ah your bathroom." "Sure, it's down the hall, second door on the right." "Thanks." Sam weakly smiled at her and turned to go down the hall. Al punched buttons on the handlink and met Sam in the bathroom. "What's going on Sam? Why did you tell them it was okay for Bob to come along?" "Because I want to stay on this guy's good side. I don't want him to start thinking about killing me any sooner than what Ziggy is predicting. In fact, if I can help it, I don't want him thinking about it at all." "Okay, well, I can see your point. But how are you going to keep this guy away from Sharon and you?" "I don't know Al. Go see if you can find out anything more about this Bob Gordon. Sharon said that he was an old family friend." "Okay Sam, but are you sure you don't want me to stay." "Don't worry about me. I'll be alright at least until tomorrow night, right?" Al checked the handlink again. "Yeah... it still happens tomorrow night." "Okay, so you just go see what you can find out for me, alright Al?" "Alright kid. I sure hope you know what you're doing." Al said as he opened the imaging chamber door. "So do I." Al looked at Sam with fret and then shut the door, leaving Sam to face the lion alone. Sam flushed the toilet so Sharon and Bob wouldn't get suspicious and then returned to the livingroom where they both stood waiting for him. "Ready?" Sharon asked him. "Ready as I'll ever be." Sam answered with a weak smile. "Well, lets get going then." Sharon replied with eagerness. And Sam, Sharon, AND Bob left the apartment to go to breakfast. Sam prayed that he wouldn't say or do anything to get Bob upset before Al got back. Please God. Don't let me die.