IN THE MAISON BLANCHE ATTIC:
“While we’ve built this friendship that seemed like there could be something more… have your feelings been genuine with me?” E.J. asked. “Or have you just been seducing me to get my help in getting out of this place? Seducing me to get what you wanted… like all those times before.”
Sami bit her lip and looked away catching a glimpse of Lucas who was listening to their conversation and judging her with his eyes.
“Oh, don’t look at me, Sami,” Lucas said. “I want to hear the answer, too. Have you ever really loved either one of us or has it always just been about seducing us to get what you wanted?”
“That’s not fair, Lucas,” Sami snarled.
“Fair? HA!” Lucas said, pausing to chug more brandy. “Fair like you marrying me and telling me you loved me when you obviously still had feelings for E.J.”
Sami hung her head in shame.
E.J. gently lifted her chin with his thumb and index finger.
“Is that true?” E.J. asked. “Is that what happened?”
Sami began pacing as she tried to make sense of all the crazy things that had happened.
“The truth is E.J. that I don’t know what happened,” Sami said. “I did love you, but Lucas and I had all that history and I wanted to do what was right for my son and I wanted my family to accept me after all the horrible things I had done and… and… and…”
“And what, sweetheart?” E.J. asked.
“And I was afraid,” Sami admitted. “All right? I was afraid of what I felt for you. I was afraid of the fact that you could have any woman in the world if you wanted her. I was afraid of your crazy family. And I was afraid of my family and what they would think about me if I was with you after I found out you were a DiMera.”
“But were you afraid of me?” E.J. asked.
“No,” Sami said meekly. “I guess not. You didn’t scare me. I mean I always knew because you had that thing for me that you wouldn’t, that you couldn’t really do anything to me. But oh there were times you made me hate you. You just wouldn’t give up and I hated you for it. And there was the way that you made me hate myself… for wanting you.”
“Do you still want me now, Samantha?” E.J. asked. “Because even though it doesn’t make any sense and even if I don’t understand it and even though you’re quite possibly the most maddening and difficult woman I’ve ever met, I still want you.”
Sami smiled as her eyes welled up with tears.
“Yes, E.J.,” Sami said whispering and leaning in to face E.J. “I still want you.”
E.J. grinned and leaned in for a long, soft kiss that curled Sami’s toes, but the amorous display also sent Lucas beyond the edge with jealousy.
Lucas hopped up from his drunken heap on the floor and charged toward E.J. tackling him to the floor. Rolf and Lexie began yelling at the two of them to stop, but every time E.J. pinned Lucas and then released him thinking he had settled down he would lunge at him once again.
“STOP IT!” Sami screamed as she watched the increasingly tense situation unfold with Rolf pulling out a gun and threatening to shoot both E.J. and Lucas if they didn’t settle down and be quiet.
Sami grabbed her stomach and collapsed in pain while Lucas, at the sight of the gun, tripped backward knocking over a candelabra and setting the wine-colored plush drapes adorning the Jacobean four-poster bed ablaze.
IN THE SECRET PASSAGEWAY OF MAISON BLANCHE:
“Antony, are you out there?” Stefano said coughing behind the curtain.
“Just a minute, father,” Tony said. “I’ll be right in.”
“Oh, Stefano,” Celeste said in a whisper as she felt shivers down her spine. “Listen, Tony. I don’t know what you are planning to do to me or Alexandra or Samantha for the sake of your father, but I wish you wouldn’t. Don’t you know he’s betrayed you?”
“Betrayed me?” Tony said with a laugh. “I’m well aware of the differences I’ve had with my father in the past, but he is still my father. And I am going to prove my loyalty to him by saving his life just like he is going to prove his loyalty to me by handing me the reins of the DiMera dynasty.”
Tony grabbed Celeste’s arm to drag her with him inside the curtain, but Celeste pushed him back and stopped him from going inside.
“Don’t be so sure of that,” Celeste said.
“What do you mean?” Tony asked. “What bad news did you forsee for me in your crystal ball, pray tell?
“It is not the spirit world that has told me that you are not going to inherit the DiMera legacy,” Celeste said sneering. “It was Alexandra.”
But Tony did not hear the last word because of the loud chaotic screams he heard coming from the other part of the mansion. He sniffed the air.
“Do you smell smoke?” Tony asked.
“It’s happening,” Celeste mumbled to herself as she remembered her tarot prediction before she left for New Orleans and the frightening Tower card the spirits revealed.
“Oh no, not again,” Tony said. “The mansion’s on fire! C’mon, Celeste, you’ve got to help me get my father out of here.”
“Help Stefano?” Celeste said. “I don’t think so.”
“Don’t do it for him, or for me,” Tony implored her. “Do it for your daughter. Do it for your grandson.”
“It is for Alexandra and Theo that I hope he dies,” Celeste said. “I must go find Alexandra before it’s too late.”
Celeste ran down the corridor and back toward the fireplace passageway leaving Tony to try to help his father out of the mansion on his own.
“Father, can you get up?” Tony asked as he helped Stefano gingerly stand on his feet and lean against him. “That’s good. That’s good. We’re just going head out the back this way. Nice and easy.”