7th of September , the old farm
"It's even worse than I thought, Mr. Roselli" the doctor told Tony when they went upstairs to Laura's room. "She gets healthier day by day, but mentally... I fear there's more to her breakdown than just the stress of travelling and being pregnant. There's something else on her mind, something like a trauma."
"Yes. A great shock, or pain... or a loss of a beloved person can provoke such a trauma and often leads to amnesia."
Tony stood for one moment when they reached the bedroom door. <It was his own fault Laura couldn't remember him!>
"And how can we help her, doctor?"
"We have to find out what caused her trauma. Do you have an idea?"
Tony looked down at his feet. "No, no... I don't have an idea."
The doctor looked at him suspiciously. <Something about this Roselli guy was really strange.> "We have to be careful, Mr. Roselli. She's about to fall into a deep depression if we don't help her. And that really not very good in her situation. It might affect the children."
They entered Laura's room. Laura had heard their last words. She had thought about getting to Danielle all night. She even tried to get up, but at the first step out of the bed the pain down in her stomach had returned. Oh, how she hated to be so weak! But otherwise she would lose her children... Maybe this would be a better chance. When they entered her room Laura started to cry. To her surprise it wasn't even hard to let tears roll down her face.
"Mrs. Roselli? What's the matter with you?" the doctor asked when he saw her tears.
"Oh, doctor, I... I don't know. Something's missing... I'm so sad." Laura stammered.
Tony and the doctor looked at each other. "What's missing, Laura, darling?" Tony asked when he sat down at her bed and held her hand.
"It's not a thing I'm missing. It's a person... My daughter." She started to cry anew.
"Your daughter?" the surprised doctor looked at her.
"Yes, I remember her... Where's Danielle? Where's my daughter?"
The doctor looked angrily at Tony. "Why didn't you tell me that there is another child? Is it the baby that I've seen on Miss Desmond's arm the other day?"
"Well, I..." Tony stammered. "Mr. Roselli, I just told you how important it is to find what's causing her trauma, and you knew all the time?" the doctor was really upset.
"I thought it would cause too much trouble. Felicia is Danielle's godmother," he lied. "She loves to take care of Danny...I just thought it would be better for Laura, if..."
"I'm the doctor, right. Now bring Danielle to her!" Tony looked at the still crying Laura and nodded. Then he left the room. <Felicia was out and Danielle had fallen asleep a while so if he was lucky, Felicia wouldn't notice...> he thought.
Laura smiled at the doctor. "Thank you, doctor. Thank you so much." This was the first time Laura was alone with the doctor. The first time she could show him how thankful she was.
The doctor sat down at her bed. He noticed the change in her when Tony left the room. "I don't understand why he didn't bring you your child..."
"But I do! He hates me... and I hate him!"
"But he's your husband!"
Laura laughed a bitter laugh. "No, doctor... he isn't! He..." but she couldn't speak on, because Tony entered the room once again, Danny was on his arm and cried.
Laura sat up in her bed and hold out her arms for her child. "Danny, oh, baby..." Tony laid the baby in Laura's arms. Laura cried along with Danny, holding her as tight as possible.
The doctor looked at Tony angrily. "I want you to bring her the child as often as she wants to see her, Mr. Roselli. Do you understand?" Tony nodded. He knew this would be totally against Felicia's will, but whenever she would be out of the town he would bring Danielle to Laura. What use would there be if Laura was depressed all the time, even lose her children... that was not the way Tony wanted to start their life together. He wanted her to be happy. Maybe it wasn't too late.
20th of September, same place
Time went by so slowly. Laura just didn't know on which side she should lie next. Everything hurt. She became weaker day by day. Her labour-pains were gone for days now, although she told the doctor they were still there, so that he would tell Tony that she still needed to rest.
Tony had been with the doctor all the time and Laura couldn't talk to him. Laura hoped Tony had no idea that she hadn't lost her memory, but she knew he was suspicious, and therefore he never left the two of them alone. Laura played weak and ill all the time, that at last she really thought she still had those pains. At least Tony brought Danny from time to time to her...
But something had to happen! Soon, or she would go insane. Slowly she sat up and got out of the bed. Fearfully she looked to the door. She hadn't heard a single noise in the house for hours... maybe she really was a good actress, so that they even left her all alone, because they thought she couldn't flee. Very slowly and carefully Laura walked to the window and looked outside. It was raining.
But they were right! Where should she go? The doctor lived ten miles away and in her condition she would need days to get there. And Danielle... Laura sighed. She went back to her bed and put on her dressing-gown.
She sneaked towards the door and opened it slowly. If Tony would see her now, she still could tell him that she needed to go to the toilet. So she went outside, still hearing nothing in the house. She was so curious about this old house... She smiled. Typical me! Slowly, a hand at her slightly swollen belly, she walked along the corridor. Nothing moved in the house. She was alone - nobody was there to disturb her sightseeing tour through Daniel's house.
She opened the next door and found herself in the nursery. Felicia definitely knew how to decorate a nursery. In the middle of the room stood the bed. Empty. Of course, they had taken Danielle with them. Laura sighed. She took Danielle's pillow and inhaled her daughter's smell.
"Oh, Harry. Come on! We miss you..." she whispered, a tear rolling down her cheek.
After a few moments she recovered, wiped away her tears and went to another door.
It was a big bedroom with lots of paintings at the walls. Next to the bed there stood a big desk. Laura sat down at the chair in front of the desk and looked at all the paintings. One showed a man and a boy standing in front of this house. Somehow the man reminded her of Daniel... And than she saw it. For one moment she couldn't breath. A big painting over the head of the bed showed a beautiful young lady with black hair and beautiful blue eyes. Laura cried once again... She knew who this woman was, she'd seen her on the photo Harry found in the attic in France.
Laura stood up and went to the painting. "You're my mother-in-law,
Rachel. Can't you help Harry to find us?" The lady on the
painting smiled at her in the same way she did before. Laura sighed
and nodded as she turned to the desk once again. She went around
it and sat down on the other big leather chair. When she looked
at the bin she noticed a photo that was rent into pieces. Carefully
she took the pieces out of the bin and tried to stick them together
again. When she had finished she tenderly touched the face that
was shown on the picture. It was a boy, maybe sixteen years old,
but there was no doubt: this boy was Harry!
"LAURA!" a voice screamed from outside. Tony! He was back. As fast as possible she collected the pieces of the photo and took them into her pocket. Tony entered the room and looked suspiciously at her.
"What are you doing here?" he screamed. Laura stood and started to cry.
"I... I... oh, Tony!" She went to him slowly and embraced him. "I'm so glad you're back. I woke up and... nobody was here. I was so afraid!" weakly she fell into his arms. Tony was so surprised about her embrace that he forgot all about his suspicion. He lifted her up to his arms and carried her to the bed.
"You shouldn't have gone up, darling!" he said in a worried tone. Laura laid down. Now that she was resting again, she felt that she was really tired. This little adventure was enough for the start.
"I know. "she said guiltily. "But I was so afraid. Don't leave me Tony." Tony pulled the sheets over her and kissed her forehead. "No, I won't leave you, darling. Now, sleep. I will bring you to your room later."
"No, please. Let me stay here." Tony looked suspicious once again. "I mean, my room is so boring... when you have to stay in bed all day it's nice to have pictures at the walls. And here are a lot of pictures." Tony looked at them. He had searched the room before if there where any photos of her husband. The only picture he'd found he had torn in thousand pieces. It wouldn't be wise to let her see a picture of him... maybe she would remember him. Now there were only pictures of this lady, Daniel and the other man in this room. No danger, he decided.
"Oh, please, darling. I need something new around me."
"Okay. You'll stay here."
"Thank you." Laura smiled and closed her eyes. She didn't want to but after a few seconds she was asleep again.
21st of September, old farm, in Laura's new bedroom
When Laura awoke she felt sick again. She just hoped her little excursion hadn't cause any troubles for her children. She opened her eyes, when she noticed that someone was holding her hand. For god's sake it was the doctor and not Tony. She felt tired and weak.
"Doctor." She finally managed to say.
"Ssh, Laura. Everything is fine. You've been a bad girl... I told you not to get up."
"The twins?" Laura asked horrified.
"They're fine. Don't worry. This time they're not the reason you feel sick, I assure you."
The doctor shook his head. "It's just a flu. You had very high temperature, when your husband called me. Now he's in town to get some medicine for you. And your friend Felicia is out, too, so I promised to take care of you." He smiled at her.
Laura sat up. Now or never...she had to tell him. But then she had to fall back onto her pillows, cause everything around her went dark again.
"Laura, I told you to rest. Everything's fine. Just relax, okay?"
Laura looked at him worriedly. It wouldn't make sense to tell him now. Maybe he just would think that she imagined things in fever. She tried to smile.
"Will you tell a story, doctor?"
"Yes, my dear."
"Please, do you know something about this house? It's so lovely and there are so many people in this room... I would like to hear about them... Did you know them?"
"Yes. I knew them. But I'm afraid it's a sad story..."
"That doesn't matter, doctor. Please tell me..."
"I know this house very well. When I was a boy always we played here. Daniel was my best friend. His father and he lived here." The doctor laughed. "Daniel Chalmers! He was really wily. His father never really got along with him. When his wife died, he was all alone with Daniel. When we were old enough our parents sent us to Dublin. We went to the same school, but Daniel wasn't interested in school. He wanted adventure, wanted to get rich immediately. Somehow, well... I never even noticed - he learned from a few guys in Dublin how to steal things, con people... And then one day, I lost his trace. He left school from one day to the other. His father was furious when he heard about it, but then, after a few years, I just started to study medicine, he suddenly was back. His father was so glad to have him back. It really reminded me of the story of the lost son in the bible. And he wasn't alone. There was this beautiful young lady," he pointed at the painting of Harry's mother. "Rachel was her name. I remember her quite well. Well, when Daniel left school I thought he made a bad decision... that he would be dead in two or three years. I told him that but I couldn't change his decision. But Rachel... somehow she managed to get him back home.
And after a few weeks we all could see how she managed it. She was pregnant. Oh, Daniel was so proud of his starting family and even Thomas, his father was proud. He really loved Rachel, and when they told him that her father had thrown her out of the house because of her pregnancy he invited her to stay in his house. For a few months the three of us had a good time back, then..." he paused. "And then...everything became worse. One day there came a man to Daniel. I could tell by his appearance that he meant trouble... and I was right. Daniel and this man drove to Dublin, and three days later Daniel's father was informed that his son was arrested. It was a shock for all of us... but for Rachel it was definitely too much. A few weeks later her labour-pains started... one month too early. We brought her to this bed, you're lying in now... I was just a student... I tried all I could... I rescued her baby, but she... she was too weak. She died two weeks later... pneumonia, you know..." the doctor paused again. "Her little boy nevertheless had a strong will to survive... it's still a miracle to me that he survived."
"He's always been lucky, right." Laura whispered. The doctor looked surprised at Laura. Tears ran down her cheeks.
"Yes, Harry... that was the name Rachel and Thomas choose for the boy, was lucky. Although I guess there were times when life was like hell for him."
"Why?" Laura wanted to know, although she knew the story from here on.
"You know, I wrote Daniel about Rachel and their child. But he was in jail... he couldn't do anything. When Daniel's father died one year later, I didn't know what to do. I was a student... I had other things to worry about than Daniel's child... If I just would have known what it meant to the child, when I brought him to his other grandfather. I thought that when he'll see the baby he would change his mind. But he was furious, he screamed, never even looked at the child... His wife tried to calm him, and after hours somehow she achieved that I could leave the child with them."
"When Daniel was released one year later and asked for his child, Rachel's father told him that after his wife died a few months later he gave him away... for adoption..." the doctor shook his head.
"I guess Daniel never forgave me that I didn't care about his child. I guess I will never forgive myself, too." the doctor was lost in memories.
"What happened than?" Laura asked to bring him back to his story.
"Daniel and I, we looked for the boy almost everywhere. Years had gone by, Daniel only returned rarely to this house. I can only guess that the police were after him. And then... one day he came to me with a little dirty boy, with bad manners and hatred in his eyes you really got frightened... But when I looked at him again, I realised why Daniel brought him here. He had black hair, wonderful blue eyes... he looked so much like Rachel that there were just no doubts that this little angry boy was Daniel's son Harry! Daniel was so glad. I asked him if he had told the boy, that he was his father. But to my surprise Daniel told me that he'd decided not to tell him. He told me that every time when he wanted to talk about Harry's father with him the boy got angry and wild, so he decided to be just his friend and mentor. Almost every year when Daniel and Harry returned to this place I told him, that he should tell him... but I guess he never did. Two years ago Daniel died. I don't know what has become out of Harry. I haven't seen him for at least ten years... The last time I met Daniel he told me that he's in the USA and it seems as if he's still lucky..."
"Oh, yes, doctor, he is. He's a wonderful man!" The doctor looked at Laura surprised, but when he wanted to ask her if she knows Harry, Tony returned.
"Here I am, doctor." Then he saw Laura's tears. "Darling what's wrong with you?" he asked her.
"Everything's fine, Tony. Really. The doctor just told me a sad story... that's all." Laura answered slowly. The doctor smiled at Laura and then stood up to leave.
two weeks later, same place
The doctor didn't know what he should do. Although Laura laid down for four weeks now, and the children seem to be healthy too, she still told him that she felt pain. He had more and more the feeling that something between Tony and Laura was wrong. Tony never left Laura out of sight when he visited her. Today was no exception. The doctor sighed as he pulled the blankets back over Laura's body. He looked worriedly at Laura.
"What's wrong, doctor? Is something wrong with the children?" Laura asked worriedly when she saw his look.
"No, no... everything is fine with them. But..."
"But?" Tony asked.
"I don't know what else I can do for you, Mrs. Roselli." The doctor replied in Laura's direction.
Laura looked deep in his eyes, sending him a message without words. The message was clear: she knew exactly that she wasn't ill anymore, but for a reason the doctor didn't know she didn't want her husband to know that fact. She only played the weak, and as long as he didn't know the reason, he had to play her game.
"What do you mean, doctor?" Tony asked.
"You're still very weak my dear. If you don't get some strength again very soon, I fear you'll have to stay in bed the next five months!" the doctor said, still looking straight to her eyes. Laura thanked him with a glance.
Suddenly the door swung open and Felicia went in. Laura and Felicia looked contemptibly at each other.
"Tony, I need your help. Would you mind to leaving Laura and the doctor alone for one moment?"
Tony looked at the two of them and said, "I won't be long." Laura smiled at him, and then, finally, the doctor and Laura were alone.
Laura smiled at him triumphantly. She had tried for weeks to be alone with him... now she could tell him.
"Why? "the doctor simply asked.
"You mean, why do I try to look weaker than I am?"
Laura whispered "I told you four weeks ago, doctor. He's not my husband. He pretends he his, but... well the truth is, Felicia and Tony, they kidnapped me."
"Kidnapped you? But..."
"I know, maybe you think I'm still fantasising...but I'm not. I never lost my memory, I know exactly who I am and who's my husband. I just pretend to have amnesia, so that Tony would do me no harm... He's dangerous. Please, believe me. I know there's not enough time before he'll return... Say you believe me!"
"I... I..." the look in his eyes told her that he didn't. She took the photo of Harry from under her pillow and showed it to the doctor.
"You know this boy, don't you?" The doctor looked at the photo and nodded. "Yes. That's Harry. Daniel's child. I told you about him." Laura took the picture again and put it where it has been before.
"This is my husband, doctor. I'm Laura Steele and his name is Remington Harrison Steele nowadays. We're private investigators from LA. Please, doctor, you have to go to the police and tell them that you've found me..."
The door sprang open, and Tony was back. Laura looked at the doctor once again with great urgency.
"Okay, Mrs... Roselli. I see what I can do for you, okay?"
"Yes, doctor. Thank you." They shook hands and then the doctor was gone.