Tears of Betrayal

Chapter 9

Susan smiled as she finished taking the dirty coffee cups into the
kitchen of her shop. The afternoon had been a little frightening for her
but things seemed to be calming down and getting back to normal. Angela,
who had recovered herself after "Dick" had left the shop, had decided to
return to the apartment for some rest. Susan was grateful for that. The
whole incident with "Dick" was, in her opinion, enough for anyone to
lose it, especially a person with a mental handicap like Angela.

She began to wash each cup individually, just as she did every day,
taking care to make sure each one was clean. When she had finished that
task, she put everything in its proper place before picking up her purse
to leave for the day. She was halfway to the door when the telephone
rang. She sighed in frustration, tempted to just let it ring. However,
she feared that it could be Angela calling for her help. She quickly
went to the counter and answered the phone.

"Cafe' Delight."

"Susan, it's S... Dick."

She frowned with a hint of anger. "What do you want?"

"Well, I... I want to apologize for what happened this afternoon. I hope
you can forgive me for over-reacting to the situation."

She blinked slightly in a bit of surprise. "You're sorry?"


She hesitated, her eyes wide with wonder. Dick has never expressed
anything but contempt for Angie, she reminded herself. Why now?

"What do you want, Dick?"

"Dinner. Just the two of us?" He paused for a moment. "I want to talk to
you about how we can help your sister."

She huffed in disbelief. "You want to help Angie? How? By locking her up
in a mental hospital? I told you before, Dick. I won't do it."

"No, that's not what I mean. Please, can we discuss this over dinner?"

She exhaled. "All right, Dick. Dinner it is. But if you mention anything
about a hospital to me, I go out the door. You got it?"

"Deal. Pick you up at eight?"

She nodded slightly. "Sure."

"Okay." He sounded very happy with her answer. "See you tonight." With
that, the line went dead as he hung up.

Susan slowly put the receiver back in its place, a curious look on her
face. She was convinced that he was up to something that she wouldn't
like but she also suddenly and desperately wanted to make up to him.
After all, it was her sister that caused the incident. Why should Dick
be apologizing when she herself should be the one doing it? It made her

At the very least, I'll get some answers, she thought as she left the


Sam stood at Susan's apartment door and rang the bell, waiting for an
answer. Even though Al hadn't yet returned to tell him the information
he requested, he knew that he had to keep an eye on Susan somehow and
taking her out to dinner seemed to be the best way. In addition, he
figured that it also would be a good way to get as much information as
possible about Angela's condition from Susan, if he asked with caution.

Angela opened the door, giving him a smile. 

"Hello," she told him, looking at him with tender eyes. "You must be the
young man who's taking my Susan out to dinner. Oh, that is so kind of
you. I worry so much that she won't ever find a nice gentleman and that
scoundrel she's been dating really frightens me." She held the door open
for him. "Please, come on in and take a seat and I'll let Susan know
that you're here."

Sam's eyes were wide with a bit of surprise. Has to be another one of
Angela's personalities, he thought with a realization. She certainly
isn't acting like any of the ones that Al and I witnessed at the deli. 

He obeyed the gesture to come in and sat on the couch at the insistence
of the new personality.

"Susan, honey!" Angela called out towards the bedroom. "Your date is

Susan came out of the bedroom, affixing an earring into its place, a
look of surprise on her face. For a moment, Sam thought that he had
arrived too early but then he noticed that the look was directed at
Angela as she headed towards her sister.

Angela smiled at her in an almost maternal manner. "It's about time you
found a truly nice man, Susan. I thought you'd never find someone
suitable after you and Albert broke up. Such a wonderful man he was. So
kind. You'd better hang on to this one. He's quite a catch."

Susan frowned even more at her words. "I thought you didn't like Dick."
Angela gave her a tolerant look. "Susan, honey, do you think I'm talking
about that wretched excuse for a man?" Her voice got conspiratorial.
"I'm talking about him." She pointed towards Sam.

Susan frowned again. "Whatever you say, Belinda," she said quietly, as
if to keep Sam from hearing her. 

Nevertheless, Sam did hear her, only confirming his theory that he
wasn't talking to Angela but rather one of her personalities.

"Belinda" patted Susan's cheek. "Don't stay out too late. A lady doesn't
do such things."

Susan smiled at her. "Yes, ma'am," she told her before going over to Sam
with an indifferent look. "Shall we go?"

Sam nodded, standing up to escort her out of the apartment.

"You look very nice," he told her, noting her short sleeved blouse and
plain long skirt. It would have looked too plain but Susan added just
enough jewelry and other accessories to make it look very classy but

"Thank you," she answered without a smile. "This isn't a date, Dick.
We're just going to talk over dinner. That's all."

Sam nodded. "Of course. But that doesn't change the way you look."

This time, she did give him a bit of a smile. "You always knew how to
break the ice."

Sam gave her a smile but didn't answer as he led her to his car and
opened the door for her. He then got into the driver's side and drove
away from the apartment complex and towards the restaurant at which he
had made reservations.

Neither said much in the car. Whenever Sam tried to speak to Susan, she
reminded him that they were talking over dinner. It seemed to him as if
she were afraid that he might just leave her on the side of the road
with no means of transportation back to her apartment. Therefore, after
a couple of attempts to start a conversation, they both remained quiet
until both were seated in the restaurant.

"You said you wanted to help Angie," Susan said firmly, looking at him
with suspicion. "Well, I'm listening."

Sam exhaled slowly as he sipped on his water. "Susan, Angela... is a very
sick woman. She needs help."

She glared at him. "She doesn't need a mental hospital. That's what you
want me to do, isn't it? You tell me it isn't but I know it is. You want
her locked away!"

Sam raised his eyebrows at her vehement words. "It's not that. I

"Then what is it this time?"

"She should see a psychiatrist. Go into counselling," he told her as he
heard the Imaging Chamber door open.

"And they'll just recommend her being locked away," she told him with
conviction. "No, thank you."

Sam sighed, giving Al a side-glance of frustration. "Are you really
thinking about what is best for Angela? Or are you thinking about what
you think is best for you?"

She stood up quickly. "I knew this was a mistake," she growled as she
started to leave the table. At that very moment, Sam saw it. It was just
above her blouse sleeve, barely hidden by the length of the sleeve. He
frowned at the sight.

Al looked at her carefully, also seeing the purplish bruise on her upper
right arm. "Sam, she didn't have that bruise on her arm this afternoon,"
he commented with concern.

Sam quickly stood up and stopped her from leaving by gently taking her
forearm. "What happened to your arm?" he asked gently. Both he and Al
waited for an answer.

Susan covered her bruise with her hand, not looking at him. "It's
nothing. I just hit my arm against a shelf."

Al frowned, looking into her eyes. "She's lying, Sam. You don't get that
kind of bruise from a knock on the arm. More like from a vicious grasp." 

Sam gave him a glance, as such agreeing with him. "Susan," he said
gently, taking her hand. "I know you didn't hit your arm. Who gave you
that bruise?"
She pulled her hand away quickly. "Don't get into this again, Dick. It's
not her fault, you know. I can handle her, like I told you before, and
I'm not going to give her up to some hospital simply because you want me

Sam blinked for a moment, taking in all she had said. "I just don't want
to see either of you get hurt."
"Well, then, stay out of my business. Okay?" she replied angrily.
"Angela and I are going to do just fine without you butting in all the
time." She grabbed her purse. "You know, I should have listened to
Belinda." She glared at him. "All you care about is yourself. You don't
give a damn about either me or Angie. From now on, you can stay out of
my life." With that, and despite Sam's calling after her, she left the
restaurant just as the waiter came up to take the order.

Sam ignored the waiter's request and started to follow her when Al
stopped him. 

"You  can't reason with her when she's in that mood, Sam. It's
impossible. She needs time to cool down."

Sam sighed in frustration. "What did you see in that woman, Al?"

Al shrugged. "What I wanted to see." As he spoke, the handlink chirped
at him and he quickly took it out of his pocket and looked at it. The
expression on his face was not good.

The Leaper looked at the Hologram with concern. He knew that expression
well enough to know that there was something seriously wrong. He waited
with his own expression of mixed emotions, most of them negative.

"The time of her death is shifting," Al continued, knowing he had Sam's
attention. "We no longer can tell you when she dies."
Sam frowned. "Why not?"

Al exhaled sadly. "Because now her body isn't found for another five
years when a couple of kids stumble across it about ten miles outside
the city."