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'Love of Life'

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SOD Synopses - February 1977



For the first time in years, Felicia finds herself laughing and almost carefree, but she is unable to maintain her mood. The past comes back to haunt her. Eddie sees her turmoil and tries to understand, to help, but she shies away from his queries about the past.

Gradually he convinces her to confide in him and she does, to a limited extent. She alludes to a nervous breakdown, but shows by her demeanor that it is something she is deeply ashamed of. When she lets go enough to let Eddie see that her problems, her shyness, her lack of confidence stem from her great attachment to her father, she once again draws into herself. She has let Eddie see that she has an Electra complex. Embarrassed, she runs upstairs, to her room.

With the burden of guilt from the past, how will Felicia cope with the guilt that will come when she learns of Charles's condition?

Rick and Cal are enjoying a storybook honeymoon in the Caribbean. She does her best to distract him from the pressing concerns of making a living. To the naive Cal, such things are merely mundane.

Trouble Ahead for Rick and Cal?

Is Meg correct in her assessment of her daughter's maturity? Rick seems to be chafing at bit under the strain of wanting to keep Cal happy, but also needing to settle business matters. Bliss is not always total, even when it is hard won. Cal is distressed when Rick laughingly refers to himself as a workhorse and then expresses his determination to get back Beaver Ridge. He has not given up on that, not by a long shot.

Betsy will go back to work for Jamie full-time soon. She is trying very hard, still, to keep from worrying about Ben, but the continued lack of word from him is upsetting her. Yet she is reluctant to write him herself, afraid of encouraging him, leading him to think she would take him back.

She would be horror-stricken if she knew that in prison he has been beaten unmercifully by Duke and his minions, that Ben can look to no one for protection because even the guard, Solly, is under Duke's thumb.

Arlene does not know how to react when Ian tells her that she will be grandly rewarded for her "exclusivity" -- to him. His silken web is entangling her more and more, blinding her to the goodness and gentleness Tom is ready to offer her.

Love's Strong Intuition

Meg cries for Ben. There is something desperately wrong, she is sure of it. Betsy tells Meg she never intends to go visit Ben, but she, too, senses some trouble, and determines to go visit Ben right away.

The waves of love are very strong because Ben is in trouble, and it is big.

Solly, the guard, deliberately unlocks Ben's cell door so that Duke and Pearson can more savagely attack Ben. This time the knife is involved. In the guard's wardroom, Solly is bothered by whatever remnants of conscience he has. He tries to chain-smoke his worries away and finally, leaving a burning cigarette, goes to see if the battle is over. While a fire builds, Solly encounters a riot in the cell block. It is the smell of smoke and resulting panic that saves Ben's life. Ironically, it is Ben who saves Duke -- and many others -- from the fire.

The warden comes to see Ben in the prison hospital. Ben's attitude is truculent, he avoids telling of the beating he underwent, but the warden is not so easily deceived.

Meg and Betsy join forces when they learn of the fire at the prison. They rush to see Ben. After Betsy visits with Ben, Meg has great hopes that one day the two will be reunited.

Ben dares not hope for reconciliation, but he swears to Betsy that he has changed. Betsy does not confess her undying love, but she can see that Ben has changed.

Later, Ben is once again visited by the warden, who asks him to sign some papers, an application for parole. Ben is almost afraid to try for parole because of the fear of being turned down, but the thought that he could be out soon to prove to Betsy that he can provide for her and the baby gives him the courage to try. Ben has paid for his sins, and dearly.

It Is Too Late for Felicia

Felicia finally confesses to Eddie the true cause of her shame. She is a virgin. The thought of physical love is abhorrent to her, even though she knows that Eddie is the one man who could lead her into a happier and fuller life. She found the man of her dreams, the man she would not have to share, too late.

Carrie wants that man Ian out of her daughter's life. Arlene doesn't know what she wants, only that she resents Carrie's assumption that she is of very easy virtue.

If Arlene Could Care

Arlene is very much afraid that Joe will tell tom who paid Carrie's hospital bill. Although she has done nothing to be ashamed of, she is afraid what Tom will think. He is becoming special to her, and she dreads losing his good opinion. Every time they are together, she finds it easier to relax, to be herself. She sees the difference between Tom and Ian very clearly, and if ever she felt she could care for a man again, Tom would certainly fill the bill.

Joe, pressed by Tom, does let it slip that someone paid Carrie's bill in full, prompting Tom to check with the administration office at the hospital. He learns just who the someone is, and that night when he goes to pick up Arlene for their date and she sees that something is troubling him, asking if she can help, Tom tells her that he just might let her know.... Will he declare his feelings about her...or about the payment of Carrie's bill and all that it implies?

Van is scandalized when Meg asks for Bruce's intervention in the matter of Ben's parole. Meg has already approached one of the parole board members with an offer of a large contribution in return for his support of her son's release from prison.

Ben is Afraid

When word of her attempted bribery reaches the warden, he immediately asks Ben if he asked his mother to intervene. From Ben's reply and obvious distress at the news, the warden can see that Ben was ignorant of Meg's ploy.

Ben is now desperately afraid that his parole will be turned down. Afraid that he will turn into an animal, like the rest of the inmates. All he wants is freedom -- to prove to Betsy that he can take care of her.

Felicia, under the gentle tutelage of Eddie, is introduced to the wonders of love. For the first time in her life she feels whole. Her desire to freeze in her memory this time with Eddie may be the cornerstone of complete disintegration when she learns, as she soon must, that Charles is lying in a coma.

Back from their honeymoon, Rick and Cal are given Meg's wedding present -- she is dropping the lawsuit and wants to sell her share of Beaver Ridge -- if Rick will take the project in hand. Ray Slater has done his work well. Will Ian be the one to buy her out?

Return to Rosehill

Their idyll in Danvers at an end, Eddie and Felicia return to Rosehill determined to tell Charles, together, that Felicia plans to leave him. She feels strong enough now not to lose what she has discovered: true love and the ability to show it and share it.

The news of Charlie's condition is more than she can bear. She begins to crumble under the weight of guilt that she is again the cause of injury to Charles. And yet...she is not the same woman who ran away; but who can ever throw off the guilt that is the price of trying to escape?

Loving Mother, one side of Meg, takes umbrage at a decision Ben makes, when his parole is granted. He is able to overlook the fact that Meg almost lost him his freedom by her attempted bribery, but he is determined never again to become enmeshed in her intricate web of possessiveness. He will stay at an hotel until -- he hopes -- Betsy will take him back. After all, she did kiss him when the warden broke the news of his parole and she was there!

Betsy, frightened by that same kiss, is in turmoil. She is afraid that she is so weak she will take Ben back. Only she knows how much she still loves him, regardless of her attempts to dissuade herself. She even tries being a "new" Betsy and invites Jamie to a candlelit dinner. He is elated, but she cannot convince him anymore than herself that she is no longer in love with Ben. Jamie's growing interest in her, and his hurt -- although he tries to hide it -- that she tried to "use" him in a desperate effort to become interested in someone new, prompts him to accept a job offer in New York.

Arlene is prepared for Tom's disgust when he learns who paid Carrie's bill, but she is taken by surprise when he declares that he believes her totally. They kiss. After so long, they are very happy.

Meg is making sure that if she cannot, then business will come between Cal and Rick. If Cal's unhappiness is a gauge, Meg is succeeding beyond her dreams.

Lynn quietly hands Bruce her mother's name and address, a mother, the girl feels, does not love her.


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