“Come again? You’re both going to be doing what?” Carson asked in disbelief.
They were all sitting in the visitors lounge and the twins and Carson all looked gobsmacked.
“I mean,” Carson started, “I know it’s all going to be ending soon and you’ll hopefully get your lives back but do you even comprehend the amount of danger you’re putting yourselves in?!”
Diaan sighed and said, “We’ll be protected. We’re going to be wearing bulletproof vests and there are going to be agents ensuring our safety.”
Carson ran his hands through his hair and said, “That does not mean you’ll be safe. I’m literally going to lose my mind for the entire duration of that disastrous reunion. What if Stacey’s people manage to take control of the situation? And then what? I can’t lose you both again.”
“Dad,” Zac called, “Aunt Samantha has a plan. She said doing this sort of thing is part of her job and that it will all go well.”
Carson pulled his face, “Forgive me for not taking Samantha’s word on this. She’s the reason we’re all in this mess!”
“If it makes you feel better…” Diaan trailed off in thought.
“Yes,” Carson probed, “If what makes me feel better?”
“Samantha mentioned a van that will be a couple of blocks away from the building we’ll be in. There will be drones flying across the building that will be linked to monitors in the van. I’m sure Samantha can allow you three access inside it. That way you’ll be watching the whole thing,” Diaan said in hopes of alleviating some of Carson’s frustration.
“You mean we’ll be getting a free front row ticket to a horror show?” Carson asked sarcastically while glaring into the distance.
“Why do you both have to be there?” Jane asked quietly.
Zac sighed when he said, “While she ruined all of our lives, she personally came after mom and myself. We want to be there when it all goes down. We want to watch the woman who ruined our lives finally disappear.”
Jake turned to their father and said, “Their resolve is firm, you’re not going to change their minds.”
Carson leaned back in his seat and looked Diaan directly in the eyes when he brokenly said, “I can’t lose you again, Jess. And now that I know I have another child, I can’t lose him either. If anything happens, I don’t know how I’ll survive. I can’t go through that sort of loss again. Not again.”
Diaan saw tears well in Carson’s eyes before he quickly leaned his head back and stared at the ceiling, trying to compose himself.
Diaan felt sympathy overtake her, “I understand where you are coming from, Carson. But understand this: that lady stole my life from me, she kidnapped me, she beat me, she forced me to constantly have to go out in a disguise for my safety, she coerced the man meant to protect me to betray me, she had Zac monitored while he was here in Drase and the list goes on.”
Taking a deep breath, Diaan continued, “I’m sorry about what you had to go through with Jessica. But Jessica died a long time ago. I am Diaan now and I will be there when Stacey gets what’s coming for her. I need this. I need to be there. I need to be there when the life drains out of her. I need to be there to watch this nightmare come to an end.”
Carson let out a loud sigh, “I understand. And no, Jessica did not die. She’s still in there, somewhere. And she better damn well come back when all of this is over!”
Diaan looked at Carson and smiled, “We’ll see. It will be quite difficult publicly coming out with my old name again. Being a celebrity, in addition to being in this situation, is seriously stressful.”
Jake looked at everyone before he said, “So it’s settled then? We’ll be in the van watching everything and hoping that all goes well.”
“I sincerely hope all goes well! I’d love for us to all live normally. Well, as normally as one can in such a situation,” Jane said, hope evident in her eyes.
“I hope so too, darling,” Diaan said with a sad smile, “This reunion with Stacey is long overdue and hopefully we’ll come out unscathed. The five of us have a lot to catch up on and a lot to experience, together.”
The twins grinned at their mother in excitement. Carson smiled at Diaan’s optimism but still felt dread fill his very being. He would only feel content once he saw Diaan and Zac standing in front of him with no serious injuries. Until then, he would just have to smile in the face of it all.
Zac looked at the time and gasped, “How is it that time already? How long have we been talking for?”
Everyone looked at the time and saw that it was already almost seven in the evening. They had been talking for almost three hours.
Carson begrudgingly got up and looked at the reluctant twins, “Come on. You have school tomorrow and I still have work, in case you forgot.”
“Hopefully next week this time we won’t have to always part ways like this,” Jake grumbled.
Diaan pulled him into a hug and said, “I hope so too. I’ll see you two tomorrow.”
Jane and Carson gave Diaan and Zac a hug before sadly saying goodbye. They knew that they would see each other the next day but that is not what they wanted. They wanted to all live in the same house. They wanted to wake up in a house where Diaan and Zac were also there.
“Next week,” they all thought. Next week they would all get the lives they have longed for - the life that was stolen from them.
Diaan and Zac watched as Carson and the twins pulled away and only re-entered the house once the vehicle was out of sight.
Zac sighed, “This situation is really becoming unbearable. Six days cannot come fast enough.”
Diaan wrapped her arm around Zac’s neck and pulled him into a side hug, “I know. It’s quite irritating, in fact. But like they always say: patience is key.”
“Patience is key, huh? We must not have been patient enough then.”
“Tell me about it.”