Thanksgiving Roundup 2014

November 28, 2015


I’m sorry real life stopped me from getting Thanksgiving posts added this year, but check these out and stop back next year for more Thanksgiving in Springfield.

Originally posted on Glmanny's Blog:

Rounding up the Thanksgiving posts, check back next year for more. 1-Wood-LighthouseI have a couple of links I didn’t get written up for next year, so look for new episodes next year and if you find anything I should add to next year’s Thanksgiving Week on GLManny or any fanfic you want to write set in Springfield, please let me know.

Episodes Through the Years

Thanksgiving 1983

Thanksgiving 1985

Thanksgiving 1986

Thanksgiving 1991

Thanksgiving 1997

Thanksgiving 1998

Thanksgiving 2006

Sermons and Toasts

Dr. Ruthledge’s Thanksgiving Sermon 1937

Alan Spaulding’s Thanksgiving Toast 1998

Meta Bauer’s Thanksgiving Toast 2001

Nancy Hughes’s Thanksgiving Prayer 2010

Big Bang Theory Grace


Beth Chamberlain’s Rolls


Manny Fanfic set just before Thanksgiving 2001 – Being Thankful

Thanksgiving in Springfield 2010


The 2008 Cast Talks Thanksgiving

A Thanksgiving…

View original 101 more words

Guiding Light Cast Round Up 74

November 23, 2015

This is the seventy-fourth in an irregular feature where we will report updates on what cast members of Guiding Light are doing now. I’m playing catch up on some soap magazine news. So as a reminder you can buy back issues:

In the Halloween spirit check out costumes featured on Guiding Light and other soaps through the yearsthrough the years in the February 3, 2014 issue of Soap Opera Digest.

The 10 years ago flashback of the April 6, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth focused on Sandy Foster being revealed not to be Jonathan Randall after all. :(

The 10 years ago flashback of the September 21, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth focused on Beth Raines’s efforts to save Lizzie Spaulding from making a mistake by marrying Henry “Coop” Cooper. Read more in the issue.

Richard and Edmund Winslow is featured as a series of feuding siblings feature in the September 7, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth.

The All-Star Scrapbook for the September 21, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth features photos from the final official Guiding Light fan luncheon and a banner brought by one fan getting signed.

A feature article suggests 3 soap operas that should come back. Guiding Light makes the feature including 3 Bauer-centric photos including one of my all time favorite Manny photos. See them in the April 6, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth.

Scribbles is a book by former All My Children Head Writer Wisner Washam. He wrote for a variety of soap operas. Winning a writing Emmy for Guiding Light in 1993. Washam’s book is somewhat autobiographical. Find it here:
Read more about it in the October 11, 2015 issue of Soap Opera Digest.

Jordi Vilasuso (Tony Santos #1) is joining the cast of Days of Our Lives.

Chelsea Reardon, Maureen and Nola’s little sister was the feature of a character history in the Ask Us section of August 31, 2015 issue of Soap Opera Digest. Chelsea was played by Kassie DePaiva. De Paiva was featured in an article about her Days of Our Lives character’s affair with her rival’s son. Read about it in the March 9, 2015 issue of Soap Opera Digest.

Rick Hearst (Alan-Michael Spaulding #3) took part in a dual interview with Michelle Stafford (Phyllis Summers #1 on The Young and the Restless) where he talks about their long term friendship and their new pairing on General Hospital. Read more in the July 27, 2015 issue of Soap Opera Digest.

Vincent Irizarry (Lujack/Nick McHenry) and Jordi  Vilasuso (Tony Santos #1)  are both coming to Days of Our Lives in new roles. Read more in the October 5, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth.

Laura Wright (Cassie Layne Winslow) will be one of the soap stars appearing at Soap Star Weekend on Nov. 28-29, 2015. Read more details in the September 14, 2015 issue of Soap Opera Digest.

Rebecca Budig (Michelle Bauer #3, part of the Messe pairing) was featured in the Red Carpet Rewind (hairstyles through the years) in the March 9, 2015 issue of Soap Opera Digest.

Daniel Cosgrove (Bill Lewis #4, part of the wonderful Bizzie pairing) is most likely heading towards the end of his character, check out an interview about his pairing with Hope on Days of Our Lives about their Haiden pairing in the October 13, 2014 issue of Soap Opera Digest.

Karla Mosley (Christina Boudreau, part of the great Christina and Remy pairing) received a gold star in the September 7, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth. It was focused on her work as Maya Avant Forrester on The Bold and the Beautiful as she was reduced to tears on the morning of her wedding to Rick Forrester. Mosley was also featured in the “Take Five” in the September 14, 2015 issue of Soap Opera Digest. Mosley talks about getting to pitch hit as a substitute Barker’s Beauty on The Price is Right in the April 6, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth. Mosley describes her first love scene with Lawrence Saint-Victor on Guiding Light as her most memorable love scene. Read about it in the May 25, 2015 issue of Soap Opera Digest.

Lawrence Saint-Victor (Remy Boudreau, one of the last great couples on the show with Christina) was interviewed as part of a round up of set secrets for his role on The Bold and the Beautiful. Find it in the August 30, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth. Saint-Victor talks about his family connections in the October 5, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth. Saint-Victor talks about his becoming a script writer for The Bold and the Beautiful in the April 6, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth.

Scott Bailey (Sandy Foster, who started with the Mole puppet & then was falsely revealed to be Jonathan Randall) will be making an appearance with his wife Adrienne Frantz (Amber Moore Forrester on The Bold and the Beautiful) after their sad news about a miscarriage news in the last post. They announced that they are once again expecting and the baby is due December 1st. Read more in the July 27, 2015 issue of Soap Opera Digest.

Kim Zimmer (Reva Shayne Lewis) recently played Rose in Pittsburgh CLO Theatre’s production of Gypsy. See a photo in the September 21, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth.

Terrell Tilford (David Grant #3, brother to Gilly, son of hospital administrator Charles, friend to Bridget, coupled with Vicky Spaulding his real life wife Victoria Platt) is now Dr. Barton Shelby on The Young and the Restless. He gave a feature article about his Y&R role plus appearances in Switched at Birth and Castle. Find it in the Nov. 2, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth.

Brian Gaskill (Dylan Lewis #2 – the sad recast) was in a car crash. Read more about it in the Nov. 2, 2015 issue of CBS Soaps in Depth.

Robansuefarm is the handle of one of Manny and Guiding Light‘s biggest fans following in her family’s footsteps of Guiding Light fandom since 1939. This blog is an effort to make it easy to find Guiding Light and especially Manny online. Check back here for her blog, find fanfic previews and fake WSPR newscasts on her YouTube, find podcasts that look back to old shows and audios of her fanfics on Blog Talk Radio, and finally follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Marriage of Convenience By ‘J’ Chapter 9

November 23, 2015

Republisher’s Note: Still in the present Danny and Michelle aren’t talking, so they don’t know that each one of the individually want to make their marriage real. There is a Manny wedding tonight, but sadly we don’t see much of it.

Marriage of Convenience By ‘J’ Chapter 9

Michelle showered and was brushing her hair in the bedroom the next morning when Rosa knocked on her door. “Come in,” Michelle called. Rosa entered carrying a cup of coffee.

“Thanks,” Michelle said, accepting it. “I didn’t know you were coming in this morning.”

“I thought I’d better stop by and see how things were going,” Rosa said nervously.

“Have you seen Danny?” Michelle asked, her eyes meeting Rosa’s over the rim of the cup. Rose nodded. “Where is he?”

“Waiting in the living room. He’s all dressed.”

“Already? How does he seem?”

“He seems tense. He looks gorgeous.” Michelle shook her head and smiled. “You look beautiful, ” she said to Michelle, who stared at herself in the mirror.

“Too bad this is such a farce,” Michelle said, applying her lipstick.

“You’ll get through it,” Rosa said firmly.

Danny rose as Michelle entered the living room. His eyes moved down, taking in her outfit, and up again to her face. “You look nice”, he said briefly. So did he. He was wearing a dark suit. His hair was wet with recent combing and his shoes were polished to a high gloss. “Be right back,” he said and went to the kitchen. When he returned he was carrying a florist box. “Here,” he said, handing it to Michelle. She took it, surprised. “I thought you should have that,” he said obviously uncomfortable. Inside was a small arrangement of irises and carnations.

“This is the same bouquet I had for my father’s wedding,” Michelle said in wonderment, lifting the spray out of the tissue paper and holding it to her nose.

He nodded. “You chose them before, so I knew you would like it.”

Michelle glanced at Rosa, who raised her brows. He had remembered a detail like that all these years?

He cleared his throat. “We better go,” he said.

The drive to the municipal building was brief, and Danny and Michelle signed the necessary papers in minutes. She had brought her blood test results with her, and the license was issued. Two clerks were the witnesses, and afterward their congratulations rang hollowly in Michelle’s ears. Her expression must have shown what she was thinking, because Danny said as they left, “Not exactly what you had in mind for your wedding, was it?” Michelle didn’t answer. “I’m sorry,” he said.

“It’s all right”, Michelle replied. “I understood what was going to happen when I came out here. It’s just that it all seemed so…”

“Cold?” he suggested.

“Yes, it did,” Michelle replied.

She left her flowers on the passenger seat and followed him into the restaurant. When they were seated and had ordered. Danny said, “There’s a problem you should be aware of in connection with the ranch. A couple of developers, Citrus Farms, and Sun City Homes, have been competing to buy it for a while.”

“Why do they want it?”

“The property around here has become very valuable in the last few years. The town is within commuting distance and the scenery is pretty. The schools are good. The developers have been moving in quick. They want to put subdivisions of tract houses on ranch land.”

“My father would have hated that,” Michelle said softly.

“He always refused to sell. The developers started in on me as soon as he died. When they find out about this wedding , they’re going to be after you, too. They’re offering a lot of money.”

“And you don’t want to sell?” Michelle asked.

“Do you?” Danny replied.

“I don’t know, I just got here, I really don’t know what’s going on,” Michelle said.

He lifted one shoulder. “This ranch is my life, but you may feel differently. You may want to take the money and go back to Springfield. In any case, once we inherit, they’ll have to deal with us together. One parcel is no  good without the other.”

“So you want us to stick together, is that it?”

“Do you want to see a bunch of stucco bread boxes sitting on your Dad’s place?” he countered.

“Ross Marler didn’t say anything about this to me,” Michelle said as the waitress brought their coffee.

“He doesn’t know.”

“But you said you had spoken to him.”

“I didn’t tell him,” Danny replied, taking a sip of his drink.

“Why didn’t you tell me before the wedding?”

“I didn’t want you to change your mind,” he said evenly.

“In other words, you tricked me.”

“How did I trick you?” he replied equably. “The terms of the will would have been the same. I just didn’t inform you that there were buyers out there waiting in case you wanted to sell.”

“You should have gone to law school,” Michelle muttered, and the trace of a smile flickered across his lips.

The waitress brought their food, but Michelle had no appetite. She cut her pancakes into little sections and rearranged them on her plate until Danny said,”You really should eat some of that.”

“Now you sound like Rosa.”

“Rosa’s right. You’ve gotten skinny.”

Michelle stared at him, annoyed. “Haven’t you heard that it’s chic to be thin?” she demanded, somewhat misleadingly. A desire to be stylish was not the reason for her slenderness. Since learning about the will, she hadn’t been able to eat much in anticipation of this reunion.

“Where? In Springfield?” he said the word as though it were a disease.


“You weren’t’ always so skinny,” he said, biting into a piece of toast.

“I was chubby ten years ago.”

“I don’t think so.”

“Really?” she said, holding his gaze, and he looked away.

“How did you get the time to come here?” he asked after she had returned her attention to the decorative placement of her food.

“I took a leave of absence.”

“On such a short notice?”

“They owed me several vacations.”

“You work for the D.A’s office?”


“Prosecuting murder cases.”

“They’re not all murder cases, but the one I just finished was…How did you know?”

“Marler told me.”

Ross Marler seems to have developed a sudden case of bigmoutitis, Michelle thought. He had babbled quite a few details to Danny, who in return had apparently told him nothing.

“Did you win?” Danny asked.


“Why not?”

She looked at him. That sounded like a challenge.

“It’s complicated,” she said.

“Try me,” he said tightly. “I may surprise you by being able to comprehend more than you think.”

Michelle hesitated. She hadn’t meant to insult his intelligence. He was certainly prickly.

“Well, we wanted a conviction on murder one, premeditation. That carries the maximum penalty,” she explained. “Frankly, I thought the guy deserved it, he seemed to have planned it all and taken his time setting it up. But his lawyer was able to get the charge knocked down to third degree, with a sentence of fifteen to twenty, eligible for parole after five. The defense hit heavily on the defendant’s service record and his work history. The guy had an honorable discharge from the navy and had held the same job for ten years, but that didn’t convince me he couldn’t have killed his girlfriend.”

“He must have convinced the jury,” Danny said.

Michelle shook her head. “No. He was a poor witness.”

“Then what happened?”

“The evidence made his girlfriend , the victim, sound like a tramp, and the jurors didn’t like what they heard about her. They decided that a tart like that deserved to die, so they weren’t going to sentence her boyfriend to death for finally getting fed up with her.”

Danny stared at her, shocked.

“It’s the truth, “Michelle said shrugging. “I tried to control the jury during voir dire…

“What’s that?”

“The questioning of prospective jurors, the jury selection process. The people I liked kept coming up with reasons to be excused from duty, and I was discounting too many possibilities. The judge censured me for wasting time, so I wound up with an unbalanced jury. It was bad from the start.”

“Does that happen often?”

“Too often.”

Danny shook his head.

“It isn’t always like that,” Michelle amended quickly, “There are good moments too.

Danny nodded.

“I wish we could do more, but we do what we can,” Michelle said.

“My mother always wanted to be a nurse,” Danny said softly. “But after my dad died, she gave it all up.

“I didn’t know that. By the way, you’ve done wonders with the place,” Michelle said grudgingly. “I can tell just by looking around that it’s very successful.”

“We’re doing all right,” he said shortly.

Michelle smiled, making a pancake dam to contain a burgeoning river of syrup. “Remember when you taught me to ride?”

He grinned, the first genuine smile she’d seen since she arrived. “How could I forget?” he said. “The first time you sat on the horse you fell off into the dirt.”

“Lightning. He was old and slow.”

“Lightning was slow when he was a year old. He lived to be twenty. Miguel was always talking about putting him down, but we both knew we’d never do it. He died in his sleep. After a huge meal, of course.” He drained his coffee cup. “Did you keep up with the riding?” he asked.

Michelle sighed. “I’m ashamed to tell you this, but I haven’t been on a horse since I was last in Europe.”

“I can’t believe it,” he said. “I never saw anybody who wanted to learn so much.”

“It did mean a lot to me, and I always appreciated your help, but when I got to school other things became more important. You know how it is.”

He nodded slowly. “Want to do something about it?”

“What do you mean?”

“We can go for a ride when we get back, I’ll take you around the place, and show you some of the changes.”

“Danny, I’d fall off the horse again, I know it.”

“No, you won’t. It’s just like riding a bike.”

“I don’t have any riding clothes.”

“I’ve got some.”

“To fit me?”


Michelle tried to think of another objection and couldn’t. “You’d better call the paramedics and tell them to be on the alert,” she said as he called for the check.

“You’ll be fine”

“Only if you resurrect Lightning.”

“I’ve got another one just as slow.”

“Impossible. What’s its name?”


Michelle laughed. “Are you kidding me?”

“I am not.”

They went back to the car, and on the drive home Danny outlined the changes he’d made in the ranch operation, how he’d streamlined the purchasing and hired new vets to supervise the breeding of the horses. It was clearly a subject he loved, and Michelle just let him talk, wondering how any developer in the world thought he was going to get this man to sell to him.

When they got back to the house, Danny took her to the storage closet next to the garage and said, “There’s a box of riding clothes on the floor. See if you can find something to fit you.” He went to change.

Curious, Michelle took the container he had indicated to her room and sifted through it, amazed to discover an assortment of pants and shirts in various sizes, even a couple of leather belts. Where on earth had he got this stuff?

She selected a loose shirt and a pair of pants that were a little too big and cinched them with one of the belts. Danny was waiting for her in the living room when she emerged. “Whose clothes are these?” Michelle asked.

He shrugged. “I don’t know.”

“Danny, is the stuff in that box your bimbo bin?”

He stared at her. “My what?”

“Castoffs from your old girlfriends, things they left around that you just didn’t bother to return.”

He shook his head. “Michelle, I told you that Miguel runs a riding school now. Sometimes the students leave things behind and don’t come back for them. We save everything in there in case they come looking for what they left. That’s all.”

Michelle could feel herself flushing. “Oh,” she said in a small voice. Why on earth had she made such a big deal about it?

“There are boys clothes in there, too,” he said gently.

Michelle looked down at the shirt she was wearing. It had seemed odd when she was dressing, the buttons were on the wrong side.

“Ready”? he said looking at her. Michelle followed him to the stable, where he led her to a horse that looked almost as phlegmatic as lightning. He was methodically swatting flies with his tail and surveyed her with exquisite boredom.

“I take it this is Thunderbolt,” she said.

“Well, yes it is,” Danny said.

“Maybe I can handle something a little more lively,” she ventured bravely.

“You could?” Danny said looking down at her.

“I’d like to try.”

“Fine with me,” he readied another horse, named Melody, and helped Michelle into the saddle. His hands lingered at her waist no longer than necessary, and she felt perversely disappointed.

He followed Michelle out on his own horse and took her on a tour of the ranch, ending at the old stable where Miguel gave lessons. Michelle had done pretty well riding up until then, but Miguel had neglected to tell Danny that he’d been teaching Melody how to jump. When the horse saw a stanchions, she charged forward through the open gate and ran for the jump. Michelle hung on, but she had never jumped an obstacle in her life. When the horse went over, she went down, landing in a undignified heap on the ground.

Danny pulled up and leaped off his horse while it was still moving. He ran to Michelle’s side and took her face in his hands. “Are you all right?” he demanded, his expression anxious. She nodded. The wind was knocked out of her and she couldn’t talk, but otherwise she felt okay.

“Just stay here” he said. “I have to get the horses.”

She nodded again, and he took off. She watched as he tied the horses to the tress.

He returned and knelt next to Michelle in the grass.

“How are you doing? Can you try to walk?”

“All right,” she said breathlessly. He helped her to her feet, but when she tried to put weight on her left foot she cried out in pain. “Guess not,” she gasped. He scooped her up in one smooth movement and carried her to a huge tree that that bordered the ranch property. He held her for a few seconds, but it was enough for all the sense memories of the last time she was in his arms to come rushing back. The sensation was the same, but intensified.

Even his smell was familiar. She closed her eyes. Oh, Danny she thought.

He knelt and set her own the ground. “Better?” he said. “That sun was too hot?”

“This is fine.” She looked around her. “I used to picnic under this tree.”

“Let me see your ankle,” Danny said. He removed her shoe and sock and manipulated the joint. “Does that hurt?” he asked anxiously.

“A little. Not bad.”

“I don’t think that it’s broken,” he pronounced. “Just sprained. It may bruise, we better put some ice on it when we get back.”

She nodded.

“So,” he said, sitting next to her with his back against the tree, “I guess Melody wasn’t such a great idea, Huh?” His expression was teasing.

Michelle smiled ruefully. “I didn’t know she was trying out for the Olympic equestrian team.”

“Miguel must have been using her in his classes. I’ll have to talk to him. Apparently she’s too undisciplined for that.”

“Now you tell me,” Michelle said.

“I thought she was all right for you,” he said, turning his head to look at Michelle. “She always seemed pretty docile.”

“I guess she just likes to jump.”

“Horses can be like women that way,” he said softly. “They seem restrained, but when they see what they want, they go for it.” He was very near, close enough for her to see the gold flecks in his eyes.

“I tried once,” Michelle said. “It doesn’t always work.”

He dropped his eyes and stood. “We should go back to the house. Dr. Jensen can take a look at that ankle.”

“Dr. Jensen is a vet.”

“So, a doctor is a doctor, he can tell if the bone is broken, your father was a people doctor, and that didn’t stop him from taking care of the animals when he couldn’t get in touch with a vet.”

“You said it wasn’t broken,” she said.

“I said I thought it wasn’t. I’m not a doctor. I’ll get my horse, we can ride back double. I’m not taking any more chances with Melody, I’ll send somebody out for her later.”

I guess I brought that conversation to an abrupt end, Michelle thought morosely as she watched him walk away. Obviously any reference, no matter how oblique, to that last night ten years earlier was going to be met with silence. He returned with the horse and mounted, pulling her up behind him. Michelle remembered the last time she had traveled this way, but this trip was a lot more sedate. He kept the horse at an even canter all the way back and carried her into the house. “Just stay there, don’t try to walk,” he said as he deposited her on the living room sofa.

“Yes, sir,” Michelle replied and saluted.

“I will see if Jensen is still in the stables. He was supposed to give the horses their shots today,” he said and left.

Michelle’s ankle was beginning to throb, and she was contemplating disobeying ordered and hobbling to the bathroom for aspirin, when she heard voices. Danny entered the back door followed by Dr. Jensen. “She’s in here,” Danny said, leading the way. Dr. Jensen, a handsome man in his fifties, surveyed the patient with a critical eye.

“George,” Danny said. “This is my wife, Michelle.”

Michelle almost fainted. She glared at Danny while Jensen bent over her foot, saying. “Congratulations, Mrs. Santos. What a terrible thing to happen on your wedding day.”

Danny, who was pretending not to notice Michelle’s reaction, said, “It isn’t broken, is it?”

“No, no. But its a pretty bad sprain, and once the shock wears off it will be painful,” the doctor said. “Are you feeling it yet?”

“A little,” Michelle said. “Do you have any painkillers here?”

“This is an opiate, ” the doctor said. “People take them all the time. You won’t be able to sleep without them.” Michelle swallowed two of the pills. “Make sure she takes two every four hours,” Jensen said. “And put some ice on that foot.”

“I will,” Danny assured him. “It’s a sorry night to spend your wedding night,” the doctor said sympathetically.

“There will be other nights,” Danny said, and Michelle wanted to hit him.

After the doctor left, Michelle hissed, “Why did you tell him that we were married?”

“We are married.”

“You know what I mean. I thought we agreed that we were going to handle this discreetly.”

“What was I supposed to do?” Danny asked. “He knows that you are staying here with me.”

“Danny, I remember my father talking about that man. Dad said that he’s a nice guy, but he spreads information around. Everybody for miles around will know we’re married now.”

“Maybe that’s better. How could you live in this house without an explanation? What would people think?”

“What would people think?” Michelle repeated, staring at him.

“Danny Santos, you’re talking to me, the person who put you back together after more drunks and fights that I care to remember. You were the scandal of the community for years. You expect me to believe that you suddenly care what people think?”

“Maybe I’m changing my image,” he said mildly, propping her leg on a pillow. Michelle eyed him narrowly as he fussed over her.

There was a reason for what he had done, and she was certain it had nothing to do with his concern about their reputations.

“I will get the ice,” he said and rose to go to the kitchen. She listened to him emptying the ice trays and opening cabinets, and by the time he returned she was feeling spacey. “Here you go,’ he said, putting her foot into the dishpan and packing it with ice bags. “This should work. Now just lie back and try to take a nap.” Michelle found that advice easy to follow, and when Danny came back later on to give her more pills, she wasn’t sure if she was awake or dreaming. She swallowed dutifully and closed her eyes again. He hesitated, then kissed her lightly on the mouth, certain that she wouldn’t remember it.

As the World Turns Finale

November 22, 2015


Let’s look back at “As the World Turns.”

Originally posted on Glmanny's Blog:

A gathering of last press on the end of As the World Turns.

Rather than trying to get a few more episodes in, CBS has filler scheduled for a month after As the World Turns ends. Exact list of repeated Young and the Restless episodes is available here:

Eileen Fulton (Lisa Miller Hughes etc.) interview. Another quote from her on the last years.

Colleen Zenk (Barbara Ryan Steinbeck Munson Coleman) interview. (Part 1) (Part 2)

Don Hastings (Dr. Bob Hughes) is interviewed in 3 parts.

Maura West (Carly Tenney Snyder) is going on to The Young and the Restless.

Michael Park (Jack Snyder) is interviewed.

Park will soon appear in a Broadway play about life in small town America.

A collection of ATWT cast photos through the years from TV Guide.

Share your memories of

View original 288 more words

Marriage of Convenience By ‘J’ Chapter 8

November 22, 2015

Republisher’s Note: Michelle’s flashback to what happened years ago has ended and she heads back to Spain.

Marriage of Convenience By ‘J’ Chapter 8

The doorbell rang and Michelle snapped back to the present, glancing at the clock as she got up to answer it. She had spent over an hour thinking about the past, remembering her relationship with Danny Santos. And now, God help her, she was expected to marry him. She opened the door to admit her neighbor, who had accepted a package for Michelle that day while she was at work. Michelle chatted with her for a few minutes and, when the woman left, tossed the box onto her coffee table. She’d lost interest in the sweater she’d ordered two weeks earlier. She had more important things to consider now.

The burning humiliation of the last night with Danny had stayed fresh in her mind all through the years. She’d experienced other painful and embarrassing situations since then, of course, but her age at the time, combined with the depth of her feelings for Danny, always made her remember it with special chagrin.

She fixed herself a sandwich and called Bill Lewis to arrange to meet him for lunch. She had to persuade him to take over her files once she completed her current case so that she could go to Europe.

The restaurant was a little cafe that catered to the legal crowd, with glass topped tables and lots of hanging plants. Bill was already seated, and he stood when the hostess showed Michelle to their table. “Hi,” he said as she slipped into a chair. “Whats up?”

“I need to ask you a big favor,” Michelle said.

“Shoot,” Bill replied.

“I have to go to Europe, and I’d like you to cover my cases while I’m gone,  “Michelle said quickly, wincing.

He stared at her. “Europe? Now?”

“To settle my father’s estate.”

“I didn’t think you’d have to go there to do that. When did this happen?”

“Just yesterday. The will is a mess, and I really should be there in person to straighten it out.”

“How long will you be gone?”

“A couple of months.”

His mouth fell open. “A couple of months! Honey, what’s going on?”

For some reason Michelle didn’t want to tell Bill the whole truth about the situation. Probably because it might lead to a discussion of Danny and the past, a subject she heartily wished to avoid. “Its actually kind of a combination leave and vacation,” Michelle said weakly.

“When are you leaving?”

“As soon as my case wraps up.”

“Not wasting any time are you?” Bill said.

“Well, there is a certain urgency because my stepbrother is involved, too,” Michelle replied uncomfortably.

“Oh, right.”

“He runs the ranch, and he has to know this is going to be handled.”

“I see,” Bill brushed back a lock of medium brown hair and gazed at her with medium blue eyes. Everything about him was medium. Maybe that was the problem Michelle thought. Her response to him was medium, too.

“I sure am going to miss you,” he added.

“I’ll be back before you know it,” Michelle privately thought that some time away from Bill might be a good idea. He had been dropping hints about marriage lately, and she was far from ready to take such a step.

She packed and closed her apartment, booking a direct flight. On the way to the airport she sent a telegram to the ranch, announcing her arrival. She avoided calling preferring to deal with Danny in person rather than a disembodied voice on the phone. Danny was aware of the will and would know that Michelle’s arrival meant that she accepted its terms.

The flight to Europe was a long one and Michelle had plenty of time to think. She was dreading the reunion but at the same time felt a sort of resignation about it. In a very real sense she had been heading toward this for a long time.

Sunlight streamed into the glass fronted arrival lounge as she left the covered walkway that connected the plane to the terminal building. She was fishing in her purse for her baggage tickets when she realized that someone was standing off to one side, watching her. She turned her head and looked at Danny Santos.

Any hope that he might have become unattractive were dashed immediately. She had been wishing for a fat or bald, but neither was true. If anything, he was more compelling than she remembered. Her heart sank.

He walked toward her with the measured stride she recalled so well. He had filled out a little and looked, not heavier, but broader. His brown eyes met hers as he stopped in front of her. “Hello, Michelle,” he said quietly. They examined each other for several seconds in silence. His gaze was riveting.

“Eyes of gold and bramble dew,” she thought, it was a romantic description, but accurate.

“How did you know which plane to meet?” she finally asked.

“Is that all you can say to me after ten years?” he countered, his expression sober.

“Well, this is hardly a conventional reunion,” Michelle said stiffly.

“Hardly,” he murmured, watching her face.

“How did you know which flight?” she repeated.

“I checked around,” he said vaguely.

“What?” she replied.

“I knew the day you were arriving, so I checked the flights coming from Springfield,” he explained inadequately. She saw that he wasn’t going to elaborate, so she didn’t pursue it. She didn’t need any further evidence of a determination she remembered vividly. “It would have been easier if you had just told me,” he suggested, falling into step beside her and taking her overnight bag.

“Did it ever occur to you that I might not want to be met?” Michelle inquired.

“It occurred to me,” he said mildly, shooting her a sidelong glance that Michelle ignored. She marched beside him in silence until he added,”You cut your hair.”

“I cut my hair eight years ago,” she replied crisply.

“I know. I saw the pictures.”

“My father showed them to you?”

“I asked to see them,” he answered.

She let that pass. “How are things at the ranch?”

“All right. The place isn’t the same without your dad.” His voice was tinged with sadness, and Michelle realized that he was grieving, too, perhaps more than she, because he had seen her father every day.

“So you’re a lawyer now,” he said, still trying to make conversation.

“That’s right.”

“Do you like it?”

“I like it well enough.”

“I just can’t picture you doing that,” he said, shaking his head.

“Why not?”

“You were so…delicate,” he said as if that explained his attitude.

“I”m no longer the impulsive child you remember,” Michelle said crisply, not looking at him.

“What a shame,” he said softly. “I liked her quite a lot.”

Michelle stopped short and faced him. “Is that right?” she said tightly. “Funny, that’s not the way I recall it.”

He dropped his eyes. “Michelle, let’s not do this. I get the message. You resent being here and you clearly don’t want to see me. Okay. But there’s no point in denying reality.”

“Which is?” Michelle responded.

“You’re here because we’re getting married. Do you think we can pretend that isn’t true?”

“I’d like to pretend it isn’t true,” she muttered.

He sighed as they got to an escalator to descend to the baggage area. “You don’t have to be so defensive.”

Michelle looked at him, and he met her gaze squarely.

“Oh, this whole thing is so bizarre, ” Michelle mumbled irritably, looking away. “I feel like giving the ranch to a tuna cannery.”

“Gotta marry me first,” Danny said.

Michelle refused to smile.

He waited a moment, then touched her arm.

She stared up into his face. “Michelle look, I know I’m the last man on earth you would marry if it were your choice, but all we have to do is tolerate each other long enough to get through the formalities. That lawyer, Marler, called me, and if we don’t do this, we’re going to spend a long time in court untangling the mess. You understand that better than I do. Let’s take the easy route, okay? I’ll stay out of your way, I promise, and in a couple of months it will be over.”

The easy route? Michelle thought. Easy for him, maybe. “Why did my father set his will up this way?” she asked as they walked to the baggage carousel. “Do you know?”

“He wanted you to be settled, and…” He stopped.

“And?” Michelle replied.

“He always remembered the good influence you were on me that summer our parents got married,” he concluded quietly.

“So he was thinking of you?” Michelle said.

“He was thinking of both of us.”

He pulled her bags from the carousel as they passed. Michelle handed him her stubs as he shouldered her carryall and grabbed a bag with each hand. He showed her tickets to the attendant, and they passed into the throng of milling travelers. “Wait here,” he said abruptly. “I’ll come back for you.” Michelle had no choice but to obey, since he strode away immediately, blending into the crowd.

When he returned her bags were gone and he had a bunch of keys in his hand. “The car is at the door,’ he said and she followed him outside. Michelle climbed in the car when he held the door for her and sat staring straight ahead as he got in beside her, shifted gears and pulled out into the airport traffic. The freeways sped by as he drove efficiently, glancing over at her several times during the ride. As they were approaching the entrance to the ranch he said dryly, “Your spine will snap if you don’t relax.”

“It’s my spine,” Michelle replied evenly. But she did change positions as he drove up the road that wound between the corrals. She leaned forward, looking closely at everything. The redwood fencing she remembered had been replaced by expensive locust wood. The number of horses had doubled, and the whole place looked extremely prosperous. Her father had always made a comfortable living, but this was something else, and Michelle knew it was Danny’s doing. He had, indeed, “taken hold” as her father had said.

“I had Rosa prepare your old room,” he said as they entered. The living room had been redecorated in a breezy patio style, with painted wrought iron tables and white wicker furniture.

“Is Rosa still with you?” Michelle asked, delighted at the prospect of seeing an old friend. They walked down the hall to her old room.

He nodded. “She’ll be in later.” He set her bags on the floor. “I should tell you,” he went on,”we tore down the old guesthouse last year. I’m sleeping across the hall.”

Wonderful, Michelle thought sourly. Well, at least the guesthouse was gone. She had no desire to revisit that scene.

She looked around. The decor in the bedroom, unlike that in the rest of the house, was as she remembered it. She felt a wave of nostalgia for the four poster with the lumpy mattress and the maple rocking chair and the Priscilla curtains at the window.

“I’ve set the civil ceremony for tomorrow morning,” Danny said.

Michelle whirled to face him. “Not wasting any time, are we?” she said sarcastically.

“I thought you would want to get it over with,” he said obviously startled. “We can put the will into probate as soon as the marriage license is certified to the court.”

Michelle put her hand to her forehead wearily. “Yes, of course, you’re right. I’m sorry. I’m afraid this has been a bit much for me.”

“Maybe you’d like to be alone for a while, to get settled in,” he said.

“That’s a good idea,” she replied quickly. “Well, I have some work to do, I’ll ask Rosa to stop in and see you when she comes okay? Thank you,” Michelle listened to his footsteps recede down the hall.

It was obvious that Danny wasn’t going to make reference to the last time they’d seen each other, when she’d crept into his bed and thrown herself at him. Maybe he didn’t remember it as vividly as she did. Maybe he didn’t remember it at all. There must have been a lot of beds and a lot of women since.

Michelle heard a knock at the door. “Michelle, it’s Rosa.” Michelle ran to the door and pulled it wide, embracing the older woman as she stepped in from the hall.

“Rosa, oh, its so good to see you,” she said, standing back and taking a look.

“As beautiful as ever, ” she pronounced. “And you’re too thin,”Rosa replied. “Chili con carne tonight. And my special enchiladas encantadas.”

Michelle laughed. She had kept in touch with Rosa through cards and letters over the years, but had missed her practical no nonsense presence. “How is Pilar?” she asked.

“Raising cain, She starts high school in the fall.”

“High School”, Michelle said wonderingly. When she last saw Rosa’s daughter she was about to enter kindergarten. “I bet she’s gorgeous.”

“Hmmph,” Rosa said, but her pride shone through. “She is. And she knows it.” Rosa glanced over her shoulder. “Did you see Danny?”

Michelle nodded. “He picked me up at the airport.”

“How did that go?” Rosa asked in a low tone. Michelle shrugged and sat on the bed, gesturing for Rosa to join her.

“I don’t know. It’s impossible to tell what he’s thinking. At least we didn’t come to blows in the arrival lounge.”

“I”m relieved to hear it.”

“I suppose you know about the will”, Michelle said, Rosa nodded. “Can you believe my father did that? ”

“What I can’t believe is that you’re going along with it, ” Rosa said frankly.

Michelle threw up her hands. “What can I do? Challenging it would be worse. Do you think I’d be here if there were any other way out of this?”

Rosa fingered the design on the bedspread. “There was a time when marrying Danny Santos would have been your heart’s desire,” she said slowly.

“That time has passed”, Michelle said dryly. “Rosa, can you imagine how I feel? The last time I saw Danny I made a complete fool of myself. Now Dad’s will is compelling me to marry him, a prospect no more pleasing to him than it is to me, I’m sure. It’s just awful.”

“Are you sure? That it’s awful? To him I mean,” Rosa said carefully.

Michelle stood and began to pace the room. “Rosa he doesn’t want me. He made that clear the night I left here ten years ago.”

“Look at this place,” Rosa said making a sweeping gesture to indicate the whole ranch. “Danny did this. After Carmen died, your father didn’t care what happened. The bills wouldn’t even have been paid if it weren’t for Danny. He took over did everything. Gradually your father regained  interest, and when he saw how well Danny was doing, Ed just let him keep on running things.”

“I knew Dad took Carmen’s death hard,” Michelle said thoughtfully. “I always felt bad that I missed the funeral. I was having final exams when she went into the hospital, so Dad didn’t tell me. He didn’t want to disturb my concentration. By the time Exam week was over, she was dead and buried.”

“There was nothing you could have done. Ed and Danny went around this place for weeks like a couple of wounded animals in a cave. The difference was that Ed couldn’t work and Danny did nothing else but. He drove himself to exhaustion every night.”

“I would have thought he’d drink himself into bed,” Michelle said.

Rosa shook her head.”No more. Michelle, your relationship with him ten years ago was special, and for Danny, very unusual. Even I could see that. You affected him, he listened to you when no one, not even his mother, could get his attention. Maybe it ended badly for whatever reason, but I don’t think you can go from that to the emotional indifference of a business relationship just because you’re both a little older.”

She spent the dinner hour with Rosa, and as expected, Danny did not appear. After Rosa left, Michelle felt as though she was rattling around in the house with the ghosts of her father and Carmen whispering in the shadows, so she went outside and sat on the patio. The last time she was on the terrace it had been strung with lights for a night barbecue over the Labor Day weekend. Her father had cooked burgers with long handled tools, wearing an apron that said Too Mangy Broths Spoil the Cook. Carmen had made her Lemon-lime iced tea, and Michelle had worn her sky blue bathing suit with the navy trim.

It was so hard to accept that they were both dead now and that she was here on this fool’s errand. Her eyes filled with tears and she wiped at them awkwardly, ashamed of her weakness.

She went to bed around 11. Sleep would not come. She dozed fitfully for short intervals and finally gave up after a couple of hours. She rose and put on a bathrobe to go to the kitchen for a cup of tea. She stopped on the threshold. Danny was sitting at the table, his shirt off and draped on the chair back, a half empty glass cradled in his hands. Michelle hadn’t heard him come in and had assumed that he was out somewhere enjoying his last night of “freedom”.

He looked up as she entered and then stood, kicking the chair out of his way. “I’ll go ” he said shortly.

“That’s not necessary,” Michelle replied, determined not to let him see how much he still got to her. “This is your house too. If we can’t learn to coexist in it, this arrangement we’ve planned will never work.” He didn’t reply but sat down again, leaning back and taking another sip of his drink. Michelle went to the stove and got the kettle, filling it with water and putting it on to boil. When she turned to look at him, he was sitting with his head bent, staring into the portion of amber liquid that remained in his glass. She was facing his back. His hair, which she remembered as curling against his neck, was cropped shorter now. She was seized with he sudden urge to touch it, and she shoved her hands into the pockets of her robe.

“Couldn’t sleep?” he said without looking at her.

“No, I couldn’t”.

“Is that because you were worried about me?” he asked flatly.

“Worried?” Michelle said uncomprehendingly.

He turned. “Worried about having me in this house, that I might bother you,” he said.

It was the last thing she had expected him to say, and she was to startled that she replied frankly, “Danny, I’m not worried. I remember all too well that where I’m concerned, your self control is second to none.” She saw his face the impact of her careless statement. If she’d thought he might not remember that night in the guesthouse ten years earlier, she saw now that she was wrong. He flushed a dull red, and he stood again, his half naked body looming large and formidable in the small kitchen.

“Good,” he said huskily. “Because I want to make something clear before we go ahead with this. I was going to tell you in the morning, but I might as well say it now.”

Michelle waited, her fingers clenching inside her pockets.

“I’m not going to take advantage of this situation”, he said. “You’ll stay in your own room, and I’ll keep away from you. I realize that a beautiful, successful woman like you has her own life, and I won’t interfere. The only thing between us is the piece of paper we’ll get tomorrow, and when all this is over you can go right back to what you left.”

“Fine,” Michelle said softly. He finished his drink in one gulp, as if glad to have that speech behind him. He walked past her to the sink and set the glass on the drain board.

“I’ll see you in the morning”, he said. “The appointment as city hall is at nine o’clock.” He left the room, and a second later she heard his door shut down the hall.

So he wasn’t as cool about all of this as he’d seemed at the airport, she thought. It gave her some satisfaction that he was losing sleep over the situation, too, that it wasn’t some minor annoyance he could dismiss. Rosa had said he changed, and maybe he had. Michelle went back to bed, passing Danny’s door quickly. She didn’t lie awake this time, but fell into a dreamless slumber.

Danny listened to the faint sounds Michelle made as she settled into her room and tried not to picture what she was wearing or not wearing under her robe when she removed it for bed. This was going to be even more difficult than he’d thought. When he had first heard about Ed’s will he wasn’t exactly surprised. He always suspected that Ed knew he’d fallen in love with Michelle all those years ago and respected him for letting her go. Maybe this was Ed’s way of paying him back, giving him another shot at the prize. Except the prize wasn’t entirely in the mood to cooperate. Danny couldn’t blame Michelle for being angry. The terms of the will were weird, and on top of that she had the memory of his behavior toward her on the night before she left for home. She didn’t know how much he’d wanted her to stay, all she recalled was the bitterness of rejection. But did she have to be so beautiful, he thought, in agony at the prospect of trying to keep his hands off her for the next couple of months. The puppy prettiness of her teen years had matured into a fine porcelain loveliness that took his breath away. He’d recognized her immediately at the airport, she was the Michelle he remembered, and then some. And now, of course, she was old enough to love. Had he spoiled that chance forever? he wondered. Did she have someone back in Springfield? Probably. He couldn’t picture her spending her nights with frozen dinners and metromedia movies. That thought did not comfort him, and he punched the pillow behind his head, abandoning the idea of sleep.

Soap Opera Gift Wrapping

November 21, 2015


Have you ever noticed soap opera gift wrapping?

Originally posted on Glmanny's Blog:

Every Friday night I try to post a term of soap opera jargon. I haven’t gotten many posted lately, but I thought this might be a good start. Look for more on the Soap Opera Jargon page.

Gift Wrapping – Gift wrapping is very different on soaps compared to real life. It’s always done a particular way. In real life presents are often either wrapped just around the item itself or around any box. The presents are often odd shapes. On soap opera presents are always wrapped the same way with two exceptions. 1. sometimes jewelry cases just have big elaborate bows 2. sometimes if the goal is to show a kid tearing open the wrapping paper, especially on a really big gift, they are wrapped like in real life. However, normally they follow this pattern.

1. Find box with separate removable lid. (No flaps or clam shell style boxes…

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Michelle’s Wardrobe Red Outfit

November 16, 2015
Michelle waiting for Danny 1st day

Michelle waiting for Danny 1st day

One of the things that I really appreciate about the wardrobe at Guiding Light was that they really acted like characters had a wardrobe. Quite often you see characters wearing clothes repeatedly. This was even true across actresses. Wardrobes changed, of course, but they made an effort to keep some clothes the same. I decided it might be fun to put together some cases where I think they are trying to match clothes. Tonight is my first entry.

This is one of my all time favorite outfits. It looks gorgeous on both Joie and Nancy. I’d really like to have one of these myself. The photo of Joie is on the day of the Water Glass scene. The photo of Nancy is from the beginning of Danny’s trial for killing Carmen. Danny Trial

Robansuefarm is the handle of one of Manny and Guiding Light‘s biggest fans following in her family’s footsteps of Guiding Light fandom since 1939. This blog is an effort to make it easy to find Guiding Light and especially Manny online. Check back here for her blog, find fanfic previews and fake WSPR newscasts on her YouTube, find podcasts that look back to old shows and audios of her fanfics on Blog Talk Radio, and finally follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Soap Town

November 14, 2015


We revisit the definition of soap town.

Originally posted on Glmanny's Blog:

Every Friday I define a new soap term. Find more of them on the Soap Opera Jargon page.

Soap Town – Soap operas are sometimes set in a real town like Washington, D.C. (Capitol), Los Angeles (The Bold and the Beautiful), or Santa Barbara (Santa Barbara) and sometimes in a soap town. Soaps set in a real town tend to do better in the ratings internationally than those set in soap towns. A soap town is a made up town. Normally it’s the size of a small city, large enough that anything the writers may want to put there (factories, airports, corporate headquarters, yacht clubs) is viable, small enough to that a small group of people can easily make up the ruling elite of the town. Sometimes these towns are tied to a particular state and sometimes not, for example, All My Children is…

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Danny Trial Part 1 July 10 – 11 2001

November 13, 2015

Tues., July 10, 2001 – At the Courthouse: Gus arrives at the courthouse and sees Danny and Michelle sitting on a bench outside. He calls them Bonnie and Clyde. Danny tells Gus he has faith in the system if not some of the people in it, so he is looking forward to the trial. Gus turns to Ray and tells him he better pray for his cousin. Ray, Danny and Michelle go inside. DA Doris Wolfe makes her opening statement and tells the jurors that she plans to show that Danny killed his mother when she refused to let him take the family business into another direction. She goes on to tell them that Danny has a violent history and would take his mother out just like any other person. She says that the defense will try to paint Danny as a family man but his mother’s body was recovered with a bullet that perfectly matched the gun Danny kept in his bedside table. She passes to Ross who tells the Judge that he will wait until later to do his opening statements. Both the judge and Doris think this is strange. The judge reminds Ross that this is a capitol case, but Ross holds firm. Doris thinks Ross knows his client is guilty. Michelle and Ray are startled as well. After the judge calls a recess, Ross: “Do you trust me?” Danny: “Yea, I do.” Ross tells Michelle and Ray to trust him, Danny tells them that he already does. When court reconvenes, Gus is called as the first witness. Danny Trial

Wed., July 11, 2001 – At the Courthouse: Doris questions Gus and he tells her that he had been investigating the Santos family for over 4 years and through bugs placed at the home of Danny Santos he learned about the inconsistencies of his mother’s death. After an anonymous tip he went to the docks and recovered the body of Carmen Santos along with a bullet that was embedded in the remains. The bullet that was recovered from the body was fired from Danny’s gun. Gus continues making prejudicial remarks  and the Judge is surprised Ross didn’t object. Ross tells him that Gus’s prejudicial remarks can be seen by him and the jury so there is no need to object. DA Wolfe insists that Gus is in no way biased in this case. During cross-examination, Ross asks Gus if he is in charge of all aspects of the Santos case. Gus tells him that he is. Ross asks if certain details aren’t usually left to the local cops. Gus says usually but in this case, he handled all the evidence and double-checked it himself. Ross wants Gus subject to recall and then dismisses him. Gus: “How does it feel to defend a lost cause?” Michelle hears the crack and Ray has to restrain her. (Gus doesn’t realize it, but he’s made a BAD mistake.) He goes to sit directly behind Blake and whispers to him that he is having a great day so far. Doris calls the medical examiner and asks about the body. He tells her that it was mostly skeletal remains but with the jewelry and dental records she was positively identified as Carmen Santos. Ross tells them he has no questions.
Doris has a forensic expert on the stand talking about the ballistic report on the bullet retrieved. He tells her that it was a perfect match to Danny’s gun. Again Ross has no questions and everyone in the gallery is surprised. Michelle questions Ross and Ross asks Danny to take a look at the jury and tell him his impressions. Danny said they look like they want to throw him in jail. Ross asks if they look curious and Danny tells him they do. Ross tells him that is what they want. Geraldo (name from summary, I don’t know his name) is a Santos flunky with a big mouth who has copped a plea. Doris questions Geraldo about Maria telling Danny where Michelle was at the dock and he had better get to her if he wants to save her. Doris: “Did you or did you not overhear Maria Santos telling Danny Santos that he would find his wife, Michelle, down at docks. In fact that Michelle was there praying he’d get there in time.” Again, Ross has no questions. Doris tells the judge that she has ran out of witnesses and will have to ask for an adjournment until the morning. The judge grants it. Gus tells Doris that Ross realizes he has a lost cause. Doris tells him that Ross doesn’t play that way and he had better be sure that they have the right man on trial. Blake tells Ross that whatever he has on his mind is making everyone keep guessing. He tells her that is what he wants. Blake wonders why Gus has such a vendetta against Danny. Ross tells Blake to stay away from Gus, but Blake has her own plan to investigate and help Danny.

Michelle returns home to find that Phillip has let himself in waiting for Rick. Phillip is reading Danny’s pregnancy and infants books he was looking at before the trial. I think the Phillip-Danny relationship is more fully developed, but occasional nice little scenes like this underline the fact that Phillip sees Michelle as his little sister too. (Part 1) (Part 2)

My Comments: I still can’t get over Gus waltzing into the Bauer-Santos house during the Bauer BBQ. I’m still livid about it. I know he’s chasing Harley, but honestly there SHOULD be limits. I wish we’d gotten a shot of what Gus saw coming off the elevator before they moved. I bet Michelle and Danny were great on that bench. Gus really is an idiot. Danny is trying to to exert his full power and let the system work, but he’s ticked off Michelle. Did you see that look she shot him? Michelle is done being afraid. She furious now and he’d better watch out.

Doris is right about weighting down the body, but Danny had his reasons. Someone killing to take over an organization and then totally walking away though that’s a hard case to prove. Plus it’s always dangerous to say something is a perfect match because the smallest imperfection then is room for doubt.

Ross reserving his opening statement forever is a classic Perry Mason move and not something strange, but you would have thought he’d have discussed it with Michelle first. Ross really has got the jury wondering and he’s definitely giving Gus enough rope to hang himself and get Danny off. I really love how Ross is always making notes on his legal pads like he really needs to remember what the witnesses said and doesn’t have it all spelled out in a script. I’m really glad that Blake is involved in exposing Gus because Michelle and her are step-sisters and I like it when they play that connection even if they never talk about it.

Is it just me or would Doris’s question to Geraldo about Danny going to rescue his wife support what she assumes the defense’s case would argue and counter her argument that Danny killed Carmen out of cold-blooded ambition? Doris is finally showing her well-known brains by questioning whether Danny is guilty after all because Ross has something.

As a last thing I want to point out Michelle is wearing one of my all time favorite Michelle outfits. Look at it, it’s gorgeous.

Robansuefarm is the handle of one of Manny and Guiding Light‘s biggest fans following in her family’s footsteps of Guiding Light fandom since 1939. This blog is an effort to make it easy to find Guiding Light and especially Manny online. Check back here for her blog, find fanfic previews and fake WSPR newscasts on her YouTube, find podcasts that look back to old shows and audios of her fanfics on Blog Talk Radio, and finally follow her on Twitter and Facebook.

Marriage of Convenience By ‘J’ Chapter 7

November 13, 2015

Republisher’s Note: We finish up the flashback tonight and find out why Michelle is so horrified at the thought of marrying Danny.

Marriage of Convenience By ‘J’ Chapter 7

Things changed after that night. Danny’s drinking and fighting tailed off to nothing, so much so that Ed remarked on it, but Michelle couldn’t enjoy his new pattern. Danny had told her that she was riding well enough now to go out on her own, and he restricted the lessons to once a week in the area of the ranch where they were always observed. Michelle, of course, was in love.

Danny had unwittingly done the one thing that was guaranteed to intensify her feelings for him, expose her to his personality, which in non-threating circumstances was his old, winning one, without any physical involvement, for which she was not ready. Her life became their rides together, the intervals between them a time of waiting.

Michelle was amazed a Danny’s tenacity. He had made up his mind about their relationship, and he stuck to his resolution. Before she met Danny, honor had been an abstract concept, but his behavior with her gave new meaning to the word. She knew intuitively underneath his distant exterior he wanted to carry things further between them, but it was clear that he never would. Which gave her the idea that she might have to take matters into her own hands.

One evening at the end of August, Michelle talked Danny into a ride up into the foothills just as the sun was setting. She knew that he gave in because she was leaving in just a few days, but she planned to make the most of their time together. Danny had been working all day, and he was tired. He led the way up the scrubby path they had followed before to a small mesa where they stopped to rest. They tied the horses to a locust tree and sat admiring the view. The whole valley was spread out like a carpet at their feet, the crimson sky fading as stars appeared and lights blinked on below them. “I never get tired of this sight,” Danny said with satisfaction, lying back with his arms folded beneath his head.

“I know what you mean. There’s nothing like it back in Springfield, that I can tell you,” Michelle glanced over at him. “Will you miss me when I go home?” she asked softly.

“We all will,” he replied noncommittally.

“I wish I didn’t have to go,” she said.

“You shouldn’t bypass college. Your father and brother agreed that you would live with your brother for the first couple of years.”

“You seem to know a lot about it,” Michelle commented.

“Your father told me.”

“Have you two been discussing me?” Michelle asked suspiciously.

“A little.”

“What does that mean?” Michelle asked.

“It means that we’re both concerned about you.”

“Well, don’t be concerned about me,” Michelle said huffily. He sounded like a guidance counselor.

“You should be glad that people are interested in you.”

“I don’t want people interested in me, I want YOU interested in me,” she replied. There, she had said it.

“I am.”

“You know what I mean,” Michelle said.

“It’s getting late,” he said, standing up. “We’d better go back.”

“Danny, I’m going to be gone next week. Can’t you sit here for once and listen to me?”

He sat. “I’m listening,” he said.

“Will you write to me when I leave?” she asked.

“I don’t think that’s such a good idea, Michelle,” he replied.


“The purpose behind going to college is to meet new people, guys your own age, and I think you should concentrate on that.”

“I thought the purpose of college was to get an education.”

“That too,” he said stretching out.

“Are you telling me that I won’t hear from you after I go?” she asked disbelievingly.

“That’s probably best.”

“Best for who? For you, because you want to get rid of the kid and go back to chasing people like Eloise Randall?”

He looked at her, then away. “You don’t’ know what you’re talking about,” he said flatly.

“You like her better than you like me. I’m sure she’s mature and grown up and responsible, right? You won’t be packing her off to college.”

“Shut up”. Michelle stared at him, amazed. He was furious, and she felt like crying.

“Why won’t you write to me when I leave?’ she said desperately.

“Drop it.”

“Why are you always in charge?” she demanded. “Why do you always make all the decisions?”

He wouldn’t answer, just sat looking out over the valley. The moon had risen and his clean profile was etched in silver as she watched him.

“You were the last thing I expected to happen to me this summer,” he finally said thoughtfully. “When I came here I was running away. From the life, from the past. From the pictures in my head…”

“Pictures?” Michelle asked.

“Memories.” He looked back at the view. Michelle nestled against him, and to her surprise he allowed her to remain. They sat still for a long time, and she inched closer, pressing into him. Finally, he stirred, sighing, and nuzzled her neck. She leaned back and he bent his head, opening his mouth against her breasts, wet heat burning through the cloth that covered them in a gesture that was frankly sexual. Michelle gasped aloud and he pulled away.

“Scared?” he said hoarsely. She couldn’t answer. “Isn’t that what you wanted?” he demanded. “Don’t’ play with me, or you might get what you’re asking for.” He stood up.


“No more, ” he said huskily. “Let’s go”.

“Danny, wait…”

“Michelle, I mean it. I’ll leave you here if you don’t get on that horse.” She obeyed meekly, still stunned by the impact of those few seconds when he had responded to her. They rode back to the house in silence, and Danny went immediately to the guesthouse.

Michelle knew that Danny would never lower his guard again, and she saw herself going back to Springfield and being cut off from him forever. She had to do something about it, but the opportunity didn’t present itself until the night before she was to depart. Her bags were packed and waiting at the door. Her father was planning to drive her to the airport in the morning, and they all had a family dinner at the house to say goodbye.

Danny was very quiet during the meal, and anyone could see that he wasn’t happy. Michelle allowed this to encourage her in her plans, and when he took her aside after dinner she played along.

“Well, I guess this is it,”he said. “You’ll be leaving tomorrow.”

She nodded. “I’ll see you in the morning.”

“Okay,” he agreed. He looked at her closely, as if surprised by her acquiescence. He was wearing a yellow shirt that set off his dark good looks, a  recent haircut had left him looking better than usual. “See ya,” he said and left by the kitchen door.

Ed and Carmen went to the store, and Michelle stayed to help Rosa clean up. When they left Rosa inquired “What are you going to do?” She didn’t have to elaborate, Rosa was Michelle’s confidante and had closely followed her developing relationship with Danny.

“I don’t know,” Michelle said, rinsing cups in the sink.

“You’ve got a plan?”

“I’m thinking about trying something,” Michelle replied. Rosa wiped her soapy hands on a dishcloth and took Michelle’s chin in her fingers. “You listen to me, be careful. I know how you feel, it wasn’t so long ago for me, but you could make a mistake now that could ruin your whole future.”

“But Rosa,” Michelle said. “You saw how he was tonight. He’s just going to let me go”.

“And maybe that’s for the best,” Rosa said, nodding. “Sometimes in life the timing is just not right”.

Michelle didn’t answer, and when her father returned she went to her room, saying she had some last minute packing to do.

By midnight, the house was quiet. Rosa had gone home without further conversation, and Ed and Carmen had retired early to prepare for the drive in the morning. Michelle took a shower and washed her hair, then dressed in her best nightgown and applied perfume to her wrists and throat. When she felt that she was ready, she slipped out of her bedroom, pausing to listen in the hall, her heart pounding, before she hurried out of the house and down the lane to the guesthouse for the last time.

The night was cool and breezy, with a full moon that illuminated Michelle’s path as she walked. The fresh scent of the citrus trees hung in the air, and the dew on the grass soaked her ankles, dampening the hem of her gossamer gown. She ran lightly up the steps to the guesthouse and opened the door.

Danny was asleep on his side in a shaft of moonlight, his bare torso visible above the muslin sheet drawn down below his waist. Michelle stood next to the bed and studied him, aware that this might be her only chance to do so. Michelle moved closer, her fingers itching with the urge to touch. She could see only one side of his face, the luxurious lashes, the strong nose, the full lower lip that still bore a faint mark from his last fight. His hair, wavy and curling inward at the tips, lay against the base of his neck in a series of elongated commas. She touched one of them gingerly. He didn’t move. Trembling, Michelle raised the sheet and crawled in beside him. His body heat, trapped by the cotton cover, radiated around her, and she could see beads of perspiration dappling his shoulder blades. He must have been asleep for some time.

Michelle put her arms around his neck and kissed his cheek. He stirred, murmuring in his sleep, and turned toward her, slipping his arm under her. He was naked. She had never felt a nude man all along the length of her, and she shuddered with the sensation as he took charge of the situation, pulling her on top of him. He ran his hands down her body, his eyes still closed, and searched in the dark for her mouth with his. She had dreamed of kissing him for so long that the reality was like a dream, too, the surprising softness of his lips, the vise of his arms binding her to him, his sigh of gratification as her mouth opened to admit his probing tongue. It was more wonderful than she had ever imagined. Before this, she had kissed only high school boys, who didn’t know what they were doing. Even asleep Danny knew what he was doing.

His mouth moved to her neck and he plucked at the folds of her gown, obviously searching for the way to remove it. Michelle shifted to accommodate him, and he moaned, clutching her tightly as he felt her slip into the cradle of his hips. He turned and rolled her under him, kissing her breasts through the thin batiste night dress, raising her nipples with his tongue. Michelle whimpered, throwing her head back as he pressed into her, and she felt him ready against  her thigh.

“Danny”, she whispered feverishly. “Oh Danny, I love you.”

Her voice seemed to trigger some sort of recognition within him, and he sat up abruptly, pushing her away from him.

“My God, Michelle, what are you doing?” he gasped, struggling out of the half sleep in which she had caught him.

“Making love to you,” she replied, trying to wind her arms around his neck again.

He held her off, trapping both of her wrists in one of his hands. “Go back to the house,” he said harshly. His breath was coming in short bursts, and she could see his pulse pumping madly in his throat.

“Let me stay,” she pleaded, kissing the only part of him she could reach, which was his left bicep. “You want me, I know you do. You can’t deny it now.”

Danny looked at her, so soft and pliant and scented in his bed, wearing two ounces of nothing, her pale hair aglow in the moonlight streaming through his window. He wanted her more than she could ever guess. He wanted her unstained soul as much as he wanted her body, but he was about to do the most unselfish thing he had ever done, though he knew she wouldn’t see it that way.

“Get out of here now,” he said turning his head. “I don’t’ want you and never have. You’re a baby, and I need a real woman. Go back home to school and play with your pencil box.”

Michelle stared at him, stunned. “But you just now….” she began.

“Just now you could have been anyone. I was asleep, you became part of my dream. You were a female body in bed with me like one of the whores I use to sleep with. I’m a man, what do you expect?”

“Then, you don’t….care about me?” Michelle asked, the threat of tears trembling in her voice. Danny steeled himself. He had to be convincing or she would never make a clean break.

“You were all right to pass the time,” he replied neutrally. ” I had nothing better to do this summer”.

Michelle tore away from him and bolted from the bed, her bare feet slapping the floor, her nightgown flying. Danny didn’t look after her, but remained staring at her abandoned slippers upside down on the floor, waiting for his heartbeat to return to normal. He would always remember the look on her face as she reacted to his cruel words. He felt his own throat tighten with unshed tears. God, he had hurt her. But, he had no choice. Or did he?

He stood abruptly, thrusting his hands through his damp hair. She had really worked him up, he was still charged, jittery. He went to the window and gulped the night air. If only she knew his real feelings. The truth was that he was desperate to keep her from leaving and had spent long hours that evening by himself in the guesthouse, wondering what to do. He had just gone to sleep exhausted when he couldn’t think about it anymore, and had awakened to find her in his bed.

He sat down again, dispiritedly. He shouldn’t deprive Michelle of her chance to get an education, see the world, perhaps meet another man far more suitable than himself. He was her first love, and he wanted to be her only one, but he knew that she couldn’t make an informed choice until she was older and more experienced. It wasn’t fair of him to pick her off the tree before anyone else got into the orchard.

All of these things he knew, but what he wanted was to run after her and keep her for himself. Instead he sat up until daybreak, feeling more lonely and bereft than he ever had in his life.

Michelle spent a sleepless night also, crying intermittently. She wound up putting ice packs on her eyes at six in the morning to reduce the redness and swelling before Carmen and Ed saw her. She dressed as the sun rose. She forced down some breakfast, said her goodbyes to Carmen and Rosa and the other people on the ranch and climbed into the car with her father. Her eyes filmed over again as they drove down the road that ran between the corrals, and she turned her head so her father wouldn’t see. She didn’t notice Danny standing just inside the stable door, watching her leave, his expression bleak.

She never saw him again……….


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