Two weeks later
"I think this is it – look at these numbers." Robin pointed at the computer screen. She was cautiously optimistic that she may have stabilized the compound.
Even though he didn't need to, Daniel leaned down close to the screen. He gently placed his chin on Robin's shoulder. Robin shivered internally, keeping her revulsion for the man hidden. "Yes, it looks like this may work. Do you want me to put it together?"
Robin pulled away and stood up and headed over to the table that contained all the elements she needed to finish the protocol. "That's okay – I've got it."
The truth was she did not trust the man. He had a huge ego that was completely unearned; he wasn't even half the doctor Patrick was. All of Daniel's attempts to "help" her had actually been hindrances to her work, so much so that Robin constantly had to go back and redo the simplest task Daniel had completed.
"Well," Daniel smiled at her as she worked, "why don't I see about putting together a celebratory dinner for us?"
"That's really not necessary." She was trying to politely turn him down. He had made it very clear that he was attracted to her and she had tried to make it clear that she was not interested. There was only one man for her and while Daniel may have Patrick's face, he didn't have Patrick's heart or soul. No matter how hard he tried, Daniel was not Patrick.
"I know it's not," he walked up behind her once again and put his hands on her shoulders, "but I want to do it."
Robin knew she really didn't have a choice. "Sure, sounds great."
"Great – I'll have a dress brought to your room." Robin turned around and looked at him questioningly. "I want to have a real celebration, dressed up and everything. Wait until you see me in a tux."
Robin's heart broke a little bit. She had seen her Patrick in tux before and it was a great memory. "Okay. Let me finish putting this together, get it in the centrifuge and then I'll get ready."
"Perfect – I'll have the guards bring you to the dining room in two hours." He picked up Robin's right hand and softly kissed it. "Until then."
She smiled back at him and watched him walk out the door. One good thing would come out of this dinner, Robin would finally get to see more of where she was being held and may even be able to see where they were holding Patrick. She knew he had to be close by.
This was also her chance to get to know Daniel a little better. The more she knew about the man, the better her chances of escape. She knew he was here willingly but she needed to know why. If she could figure out why he was doing this maybe she could use it to help facilitate her and Patrick's escape.
Finishing up the protocol, Robin put it in the centrifuge and headed out the door. Her guard took her from the lab to her room just down the hall. She entered to find a strapless black evening gown on the bed along with matching shoes and a satin wrap. She was in shock – how long had he been planning this?
The guard led her down the stairs and into the dining room. She was surprised to find that she was in an actual house, she had been certain she was in a hospital or medical facility of some kind. Daniel stood there in his tux smiling at her. "You look amazing Robin."
She smiled at him. "Thank you. You look very nice yourself."
Daniel pulled out her chair for her and then sat down at the table for two. Candles sat in the middle of the table providing the only light in the room. Wine was already poured and there were two place settings. In the middle of the little table was a silver serving tray with a crown of lamb. Beside it sat a bowl with steamed asparagus, another bowl with cheese potatoes and a plate full of beignets.
Robin smiled. This was proof that Daniel was talking to Patrick. This was a specific, special meal that Patrick and Robin had on very rare occasions, one she only ate with him. Daniel was pleased with her reaction.
"Do you like it?"
She nodded. "Yes, very much."
Daniel quickly fixed their plates and then sat down to eat with her. After the food was gone, they sat at the table talking. Robin was carefully monitoring her alcohol intake, she had only had a glass and a half of wine and the bottle was almost empty. It was time to start questioning Daniel.
"Daniel, I'm curious – did you always look like Patrick?"
He laughed. He was a little drunk and looking for any excuse to keep the evening going. "No, I mean we had similar features and the same color hair but I had plastic surgery to look exactly like him. He is also a couple of inches taller than me but," he stage whispered to her, "I have lifts in my shoes."
Robin nodded and gave her best giggle. "But why, I can't imagine it is your life long desire to look like Patrick?"
"Absolutely not. That jerk was the bane of my existence all through college – all the ladies wanted him and the men wanted to be him. I had to watch him use Lisa for years. Do you know he wouldn't commit to her?" Robin nodded her head. After all these years, Lisa was once again a part of her life. "Of course you did, sorry."
"I was her best friend you know. I held her every time she cried over him, listened to her talk about how much she loved him and how she knew that their future was together. Patrick and I were both pre-med with a focus on neurology so I got a front row seat to how little he cared about her. She was devastated when he chose to go to medical school across the country from the school she and I got in to."
This was all news to Robin and she was certain Patrick had no idea that Lisa's obsession with him started all those years ago. Everything was falling into place for her now.
"When I learned what happened with Lisa and you, I immediately took Lisa's side and vowed revenge against both of you." Robin's face betrayed her fear. Daniel grabbed her hand. "But then I got to know you and realized that Lisa was wrong. You are amazing and I cannot blame Patrick for changing his ways for you. I do blame him for cheating on you with her though."
He stood up and gently pulled Robin from her chair as "Where or When" by Harry Connick Jr. filled the room. He pulled her against him and began dancing with her. "None of this would have happened if he hadn't slept with Lisa. She would have eventually given up and gone on with her life. She would be alive and you and Patrick would probably be at home right now with your daughter. But he did and you are here with me." He stopped and gently raised Robin's chin until he was looking her straight in the eyes. "Maybe I should be thanking him."
He decided this was the time to make his move. He quickly leaned down and kissed a startled Robin.