Then Steal It
The following morning, after the Spencers' maid Pamela, helped her dress, Victoria headed downstairs to the parlor. Sitting on a leather couch together, was Steffy and a black woman she didn't know.
"Good morning, Victoria," Steffy smiled brightly.
"Good morning," she smiled back, sitting across from the women.
"This is Maya Avant-Forrester," Steffy introduced, "my aunt by marriage. This is Victoria Newman."
"How do you do?" Maya smiled prettily. She was dressed immaculately. Her slender frame wrapped in a light pink silk dress with a white sash around her tiny waist. Her black hair was curled in the style of the times.
"I'm well, Miss Maya. How do you do?" Victoria answered.
"Oh, Maya is reveling in the scandal she causes daily," Steffy laughed, grabbing her aunt's hand.
"I do not revel," Maya said shaking her head, smile plastered on her face; eyes shining.
"What scandal?" Victoria questioned interested.
"Marrying my Uncle Rick," Steffy informed her. "My father almost lost his mind when he got word of their engagement."
"Only because no one know of our courtship," Maya said.
"Are you not from Pentacites?" Victoria asked.
"No, not originally. I'm from Bay City by way of Port Charles," Maya told the Newman girl.
"She worked for Reneé Buchanan while living in Port Charles," Steffy said.
"Oh," Vicki said, eyes wide.
"No, no," Maya laughed, "I was just a singer."
"Oh, I didn't mean..." Victoria blushed.
"It's alright," Katie said joining the women, "Maya's got a tough skin."
"Good morning, Katie," Maya smiled.
"Good morning," Katie smiled back as she took a seat beside Victoria. "What are we talk about this morning?"
"The scandal Aunt Maya revels in," Steffy chuckled.
"I do not revel," Maya protested, a smile etched upon her countenance.
"You do too," Katie laughed. "I would too if I shook up the Forresters daily."
"Was it because of your skin color?" Victoria asked.
"That was the least of it," Maya said.
"It was more about the fact that she worked at Bordello du Rouge and that a Forrester lowered himself to cross the threshold," Katie explained.
"But Miss Maya was a singer, right?" the young Newman questioned.
"Yes, but there was no one to say so that Eric, Stephanie or Ridge would believe," Maya said.
"Not at first," Steffy said squeezing her aunt's delicate hand.
"That's right," Katie nodded, "those Forresters were all up in arms until Reneé turned up at Forrester Manor to set the record straight."
"It was something to see," Steffy said. "Miss Reneé stood right up to my grandfather and told him she didn't appreciate him or my father spreading rumors about a very good friend of hers," Steffy told Victoria. "She said that what Rick and Maya say is the truth and that she would hope that they would be gracious enough to see the love between them and not just the assumptions they've made."
"Wow," Victoria said impressed by all of the strong women that resided in Pentacites.
While Dylan was having a cup of coffee with Liam and Wyatt in the office, Bill entered the room with Rick Forrester.
"Boys, Rick would like to speak with us," he announced as he took his place behind the desk. Rick tossed a glance toward Dylan, Bill spoke again, "Rick Forrester, this is Dylan Newman. The newest member of the Pentacites Auxiliary. Now, what do you want?"
"It's nice to meet you," Rick said offering Dylan his hand.
"You as well," Dylan said, shaking the man's hand.
"I need to make a deal with the Auxiliary," Rick stated.
"What kind of a deal?" Bill asked.
"My father is going to be retiring soon and I fear that he will leave Forrester Creations in the hands of my brother," Rick explained.
"Is that a bad thing?" Dylan asked. "Is he not the oldest?"
"Yes, he is the oldest and yes it is a bad thing because while I have spent my entire life at my father's side learning the business, my brother has been at our mother's side learning how to draw and sew," Rick said. "It does not seem fair that a dressmaker should run a business."
"Does your father know how you feel about this?" Wyatt questioned.
"Of course he does but he assures me that he will not make his decision lightly and that whether he chooses Ridge or I, we will both always have a place at Forrester," Rick answered, "but I do not want a place. I want to be in charge. I have so many ideas."
"That's fine and dandy but what do you need the Auxiliary to do?" Bill inquired. "Forrester is as successful as ever."
"For now," Rick stated plainly.
"Meaning?" Dylan asked.
"Meaning that if my father names Ridge as CEO then Forrester Creations will fall into ruin," Rick told the room at large. "So please, if that happens, please say that the Auxiliary will step in." The Spencer men were silent. "I know that the Spencers and the Forresters have not always gotten along but please. I beg of you."
"Hmm, give me a week, Forrester, I will call on you then," Bill said.
"Thank you," Rick said rising from his chair. He shook hands with men in the room before exiting.
"What are you going to do now?" Dylan asked as Bill reached into his desk drawer and pulled out parchment and a quill. He quickly scrolled out a letter and slide it into an envelope.
"Here," he said handing it to Dylan. "Take this to Sonny. Wait for a reply." Dylan nodded his understanding and quickly ran from the house.
"Was that my brother I just saw run by?" Victoria asked as the Spencer men entered the parlor.
"Yes, he's on an errand for me," Bill informed her.
"I thought we were leaving today," she said.
"This supersedes your leaving," he told her. Victoria was curious as to why but she remained silent.
Over the next couple of days, Nick and Adam became more acquainted with Liam and Wyatt. The two Newmans took in everything they could from Wyatt and Liam about the people of Pentacites and some of the citizens they may encounter.
On the fifth day, Dylan returned. He handed a note to Bill and gathered his siblings and took them out to the gardens.
"What is it, Dyl?" Adam asked once they were far away enough from the house.
"Miss Carly told me that Jack was looking for us," he told them.
"For what?" Nick asked.
"He had some business questions and he wanted to talk about bringing you, Nick on at Jabot," Dylan said.
"Like hell," Nick spat. "I'd rather be kicked by a horse than work for him at a company he stole from us."
"Anyway, he hates Dollar Bill so we're safe here but there is no telling what the people of Forrester City will tell him," Dylan explained.
"Then we must leave soon," Victoria said.
Before any of them could speak they heard Bill calling for them. They headed back toward the porch to find him standing in the open doorway, waiting.
"In three days time, you will be initiated in to the Pentacites Auxiliary." he announced. "Tomorrow, the initiation begins."
"What do we have to do to get ready?" Adam asked.
"Just be ready," Bill said before turning from them. The four of them looked at each other. Dylan had filled them all in on the who's who of the Pentacites and Ladies Auxiliaries. They were all interested and nervous about the next day.
By lunchtime, Sonny, Michael, Morgan and Carly Corinthos, Neil and Drucilla Winters, Michael Baldwin, Todd and Blair Manning and their daughter Starr, Asa and Reneé Buchanan, Brooke Logan and Luke, his wife Laura, Lucky and Lucas Spencer had arrived. The Newmans were introduced to all of them.
"You grew up good, boy," Neil said pulling Dylan into a tight hug.
"It's been too long, Mr. Winters," Dylan said, his arms wrapped tightly around the man who rescued him and his siblings all those years ago. Dylan, while grateful to Katherine for taking them in, had often wished that he and his family could have stayed with Neil. He was and is the closest living, breathing reminder they have of their late father.
"Yes, it has been too long," Neil said pulling back to look Dylan over.
"Mr. Winters," Victoria said tears springing to her eyes. Neil held his arms to her. She ran to him and wrapped him in an air tight embrace. "I've missed you," she whispered into his shoulder, tears dampening his jacket.
"Shh, I'm here now. I've missed you too," Neil said softly.
"Nicholas?" Drucilla asked, stepping in front of him.
"Yes ma'am," he smiled. She pulled him into her arms and squeezed. He hugged her back.
Adam stood off to the side. He didn't know if the Winters would remember him or not so he didn't want to invade their space.
"Adam, my man," Neil said once he released Victoria. "You've grown up so much."
"I'm fifteen now, sir," Adam beamed. "I didn't know if you would remember me."
"Of course we do, son," Neil said as he hugged Adam. The youngest boy hugged him back tightly.
"Alright," Neil said releasing him, "it's time to get down to business."
"We can't begin yet, Neil," Bill said handing him a tumbler containing a bronze liquid. "Everyone's not here yet."
"Well, then we must find some way to entertain ourselves!" Neil chuckled.
"I've got it," Liam smiled as he sat down at the piano and began to play a popular song that everyone began to sing and dance to.
"Miss Newman," Wyatt said with a slight bow.
"Victoria," she smiled. "What do you need, Mr. Spencer?" she asked coyly.
"Wyatt and would you like to take a walk with me?" he asked.
"Of course," she blushed slightly.
"Nick? Would you please chaperone your sister and myself on a walk?" Wyatt asked. Nick smirked and nodded. Wyatt held his arm out for Victoria and she placed her hand on his forearm.
They exited the parlor and entered into the perfumed gardens. They walked in silence for a while before Wyatt broke it,
"I hope that this is not too forward, but I fancy you, Victoria," he said, his eyes on hers.
"I was not unaware, Wyatt," she blushed again.
"Then why have you not returned any of my flirtations?" he asked. Victoria stopped walking. She didn't know what he wanted her to say.
"I..." she began but the words just wouldn't come.
"Do you fancy me as well, Miss Newman?" Wyatt questioned, his tone soft as he stepped in front of her.
"Yes," she said quickly. "Very much so," she said as she stepped around him and started walking again.
"Then I do not understand your hesitance," he said catching up to her. "We have known each other for four years now and I have yet to win your over."
"Mr. Spencer, please," she said stopping again, "I am not like other women."
"That is for sure," he smiled. Victoria kept herself collected even though his smile threatened to melt her.
"No, I mean I have views and opinions that I never share because it is not my place and that infuriates me," she explained.
"You would not have to hold your tongue with me. You do not," he told her.
"Do you mean that?"
"Yes, Victoria. Say what you must."
"Fine. You said before that you have yet to win me over," she said reminding him of his prior words.
"Yes," he nodded.
"Well, Wyatt, you have not won me over because I am not a prize to be won. I am a woman and while, yes, we have known each other for four years I have received nothing from you but flirtations. If you were truly interested in me then you would have asked Dylan if he would permit a courtship but you did not," she told him tightly. "You speak with a silver tongue yet all I ever hear is gainsay," she finished folding her arms across her chest.
"Are you finished?" he asked.
"I did not ask your brother for a courtship because Steffy said that Natalie Buchanan-Quartermaine said that you did not want a husband; much less a beau," Wyatt said trying to explain himself.
"Who is Natalie married to?" she asked.
"I do not see how that is important but AJ Quartermaine," he told her.
"Oh," Victoria said. She knew that Natalie had told her once that she fancied Jason Quartermaine but it seems it did not work out.
"Listen, Victoria. I have been trying to show you that you can be with me with no pressure to be the tame little flowers that most women are," he said. "That is not what I desire in a woman."
"What do you...um...mean?" she said, blushing, looking away from his stare.
"I mean I wish to have a strong woman like Katie or Miss Carly. A woman who takes charge of her life while unafraid to preform her wifely duties," he said in a husky tone as he moved close to her; his face a breath away.
"Mr. Spencer," she whispered, "I believe that my brother will have a problem with your new found closeness."
"He may, if he hadn't abandoned his post a little while back," Wyatt whispered back to her. Victoria glanced over her shoulder to see nothing but grass and the tall garden walls.
"Oh," she breathed. When she turned to face him again, Wyatt leaned forward and placed his lips on hers. Victoria froze. Her first kiss. She let her eyelids touch and gave into the pressure of Wyatt's lips against hers. He wrapped his arms around her and she did the same; deepening their kiss.
"I will ask for courtship, if that is what you wish," Wyatt said, breaking their kiss, his forehead pressed to hers.
"I do not desire courtship, Wyatt," she breathed deeply. "I am sorry."
"Do not be, Miss Newman," he said as he released her from his embrace. "Perhaps I should have asked sooner."
"Wyatt.." she began but he shook his head.
"Come, allow me to escort you back to the house," Wyatt said his arm held out to her. Victoria sighed and placed her hand on his forearm. He smiled briefly as they began to stroll silently back to the house.
By dinner time, Dorian Lord, Jason Quartermaine and a beautiful dark hair woman, the infamous Nikolas Cassadine and Dr. Ben "Stitch" Rayburn arrived. They all sat down to dinner and no one discussed business.
"Jason, why did you say nothing when I say in the city?" Dylan asked.
"I didn't know if you knew of the Auxiliary or my part in it," Jason said. "I've wanted to tell you for ages, my friend."
"I wish you would have," Dylan laughed.
"This is my wife, Samantha Quartermaine," Jason introduced.
"Call me Sam, please," she smiled.
"Of course. I'm Dylan Newman and these are my brothers Nick and Adam and my sister Victoria," Dylan said to her. She bowed her head to them and they continued eating.
"Excuse me," Adam said to man sitting next to him.
"Yes?" the man said.
"Are you Nikolas Cassadine?" the youngest Newman asked.
"Yes, I am. Do you know me boy?" Nikolas asked.
"Only what I have read in the paper and penny papers," Adam told him.
"And you want to know if what you've read is true?" Nikolas grinned. "You want to know if Nikolas Cassadine is truly the vicious killer those reporters make him out to be," he said loudly as more of a statement than a question, drawing the attention of the whole table.
"No," Adam said honestly.
"No?" Nikolas question.
"No, I would not ask such a foolish question; especially if I believed what those papers say, Mr. Cassadine," Adam told him. "If you are truly what they depict then my asking would be the end of me and I have work to do. So no, Mr. Cassadine, I do not want to know if you are what the papers say. I was merely hoping that I was putting a face to the name."
Neil clapped his hands and howled with laughter at Nikolas' impressed look.
"I like this kid, Neil," Nikolas laughed causing the entire table to erupt into laughter.
When the meal was over and everyone retired to the sitting room, Neil, Lawyer Baldwin and Bill stood in front of the fireplace, tumblers in hand.
"Mrs. Quartermaine, if you will," Neil said his hand out to her. She took it and joined the three men in the front of the room.
"My father, Julian Jerome, has a piece of the Newman fortune," she said. "I have told him for years to rid himself of it but he refuses because Jack Abbot sold it to him on the cheap."
"What is it?" Dylan asked.
"A large solid gold vase. I believe it's from..." Sam started.
"China," Victoria finished for her. "It's an antique. Our mother used to fuss when Nick and Adam would run in the house and jostle it."
"I remember that thing," Adam said. "I got a whoppin' from Pa for almost knocking it down one time."
"Why are you telling us this?" Dylan said.
"You have a job to do," Bill said.
"What's that?" Nick asked.
"That vase belongs to you," Lawyer Baldwin said, "and you say you want what's yours."
"Yes," Dylan said.
"Then steal it," Neil said with finality.
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