"Lucky?," a voice calls. "Elizabeth?" Nikolas walks deeper into the woods, the light of his flashlight beaming across Lucky’s face.

Lucky shields his eyes. "Are you trying to blind me, man? Kill the light, would you?"

Nikolas approaches Lucky slowly, turning off the flashlight. "I dropped Emily off, and came back here to get you and Elizabeth. I figured you wouldn’t have gotten very far on foot. Where is Liz?"

Lucky stares off into the distance, fighting back tears. "Gone," he says softly.

Nikolas recognizes his tone of voice. "Did you two have a fight?," he inquires. Lucky says nothing. "Is this about what Emily said?" Lucky just stares ahead, lost in his own thoughts. "I can understand why you don’t want to talk about this—to me—but I can see that you’re very upset."

"It happened again." Lucky’s voice rings hollow in Nik’s ears.

"What did?"

"I hurt her." Lucky starts to cry. "I just keep hurting her."

Nik watches his brother curiously. I’ve never seen Lucky so defeated, he thinks. "How did you hurt her?"

"I kissed her," Lucky states, his voice coarse.

"I don’t follow."

"I followed her into the woods. She was angry—violently angry. She was clenching her fists and screaming into the night. In a way it was good to see," he muses. "A bit of the fiery old Liz coming out. I told her to hit me and---"

"Wait a minute—you told Elizabeth to punch you?" Nik starts to laugh. "I’m sorry, I just find it amusing that you’d ask someone to beat you up."

"That’s what she said. I just wanted her to get her aggressions out. I thought it would help her."

"Did it?"

"Well, if aching ribs and stomach are any sign, I’d say yeah."

"She hit you hard?"

"The girl was brutal!"

Nikolas laughs, mentally picturing Liz attacking Lucky. "You should learn to keep your mouth shut, Spencer."

Lucky’s face clouds over. "Yes, I should," he says darkly.

Nikolas turns, realizing he hit a nerve. "The kiss?"

He nods slowly. "The kiss."

"What happened?"

"After she hit me the last time, I fell backwards, and she fell down with me. She landed on top of me. I tried to make a joke about things, but it didn’t work. We were both worked up… She just looked so beautiful… she had this fire in her eyes…" He shakes his head. "I just wanted to kiss her, man. Nothing else."

"Did she think you wanted something more?," Nikolas asks slowly.

Lucky shrugs. "Things were…. intense. She was on top of me and I could feel her heart beating against mine… We were both short on breath and it just seemed right. So I kissed her. She kissed me back, and things got---"

"Intense," Nikolas completes. He fights back a smile.

"Yeah. I was just really into the moment. I wasn’t thinking, and I rolled us over and I was, well, you know," he says, giving Nik a look, "and she suddenly shoved me off her."

"I see."

Lucky stares at Nik, perturbed. "You see? You see what?"

"Why you’re so upset. I heard a little of what you and Liz were talking about in the boxcar. She pulls away every time things get ‘intense’ between you, and you think it’s because you make her think about the attack."

"Eavesdropping, Nikolas? How unlike a Cassadine." Nik glares at him. "Sorry," Lucky mutters.

"I couldn’t help but hear you two talking. If I understand this correctly, you and Elizabeth were high on adrenaline, you started to connect, and she suddenly flashed back to the night of her attack."

"That’s the way it goes. I caused her to relive it, and she ran away." Lucky pounds his fist into the ground.

"Maybe it wasn’t you that caused her to relive it."

"What do you mean?"

"She was attacked in the park, correct?"

"Correct," Lucky says, mimicking Nikolas’ tone.

Nik brushes him off. "She was attacked in the bushes, isn’t that right?" Lucky nods. "And your little interlude took place on the ground, in the woods."

"Are you saying it was the environment that caused her to freak out?"

"I think it’s a distinct possibility."

Lucky shakes his head. "It was my fault. I shouldn’t have kissed her, I shouldn’t have gotten on top of her… she probably thought I was going to rape her."

"No!," Nikolas cries. "Do you ever listen to a word she says?"

"Of course I listen to her!"

"Then you know that she doesn’t think you would ever or could ever do that to her or anyone else for that matter. She believes that and she wants you to believe that."


"It’s in my DNA, man! My father raped my mother. Elizabeth thought I was going to rape her. I’ve probably lost her forever."

"I think you’re being an idiot, Lucky."

"Did I ask for your opinion?"

Nik laughs. "Spencers don’t ask for anything." His face softens. "Look, Lucky, from what I’ve seen these last few days and months, you love Elizabeth, and she loves you. There’s no way she would believe that you were going to attack her."

"You know her so well," Lucky spits, his voice dripping with sarcasm.

"I know her—and you—well enough to see that you two are very much in love. She knows you would never attack her, and I think somewhere, you know it too." He stands up. "Face it—the only reason you’re going on about being like Luke is because you’re angry that your parents destroyed your idyllic little image of what their marriage is like."

"Actually I think your appearance in Port Charles helped destroy my image of their marriage," Lucky shoots back.

"Of course. Change the subject, blame it on the Cassadines. Some things will never, ever change." He starts to walk off. "I’m going to find Elizabeth. Are you coming?"

Lucky stares at him for a moment. Slowly he rises to his feet. Nik smiles, victorious. They walk off, separated by a wall of silence, their hearts heavy and their minds focused on a common goal.