The Bed You Make
Chapter 18
~ Can't Get Next to You ~


The view from the launch was really rather impressive. Port Charles lay spread out directly ahead, its rising buildings framed by the docks and the clear blue sky.

Nikolas Cassadine took in the view through new eyes. These days, Port Charles was not the ‘promised land'… not his escape from the stone walls of Wyndemere and the sometimes crushing weight it bore. Nowadays, Nikolas felt less need to escape his day-to-day life. And he had Dara Jensen to thank for that.

Dara's days were spent becoming familiar with the many aspects of the vast Cassadine holdings. At first Nikolas had chosen to just observe her progress. But as days went on, he'd found himself offering up tidbits of information he believed long forgotten. With each remembered detail, Nikolas felt less like a pretender to the Cassadine throne. He'd always marveled at his uncle's ability to retain so many tedious – but necessary – details about their financial empire. Perhaps such an ability lay dormant in Nikolas as well.

The young prince smiled softly. Dara's daily sessions had quickly become his favorite part of the day. It was obvious that her intelligence both pleased and challenged his uncle Stefan. Dara gave and took no quarter in their often rapid-fire discussions. Nikolas was as likely to be the lovely lawyer's ally in a debate against Stefan as he was to be her target.

‘My Prince.' The head guard's whisper drew Nikolas' attention from his thoughts. He followed the other man's gaze across the choppy waters of Spoon Lake to where a late model black limousine sat parked near the exit from the launch. Anyone departing Spoon Island would have to make his way directly past it.

Nikolas sighed. It was his grandmother Helena, taking advantage of Stefan's absence to press her agenda and remind the young heir of her undying ‘devotion' to him.

Her visit was not unexpected. Before leaving for New York, Stefan had warned Nikolas to prepare himself for an appearance by Helena. She had been far too quiet since Dara's appointment as Cassadine Trustee. Contrary to conventional wisdom, Helena's visible presence was somewhat of a good thing. It meant that she had set her latest plan into action and was moving into position to see it play out. Helena in action could be protected against; Helena silent and scheming was deadly. Still, after watching countless skirmishes between his grandmother and uncle, Nikolas was curious to see what her latest campaign for power would entail.