The Bed You Make
Chapter 21
~ 2 Steps Forward, 2 steps back ~


Dara Jensen Cassadine steeled herself for the quiet refusal she knew would follow her announcement. After much thought and deliberation, she'd decided on what would undoubtedly be an unpopular course of action. The hours following her decision had been occupied anticipating and countering every possible response.

“Very well. If that is what you desire,” Stefan replied.

Dara's eyes flew to her husband's face. “Very well?”

“Yes. I will have Mrs. Landsbury begin the arrangements immediately.”

Stefan exited the room to make good on his word. Dara sat back in shock. Of all the reactions she had expected from him, compliance was not one of them.

Instantly she began to review her decision one more time. That was a common occurrence in her dealings with Stefan. Nothing could be taken at face value, nothing accepted as simple or straightforward.

With clinical precision Dara dissected every aspect of her decision. The lawyer in her mentally debated both the pros and cons of it and, when done, began to assess every possible outcome, no matter how unlikely. In the end, Dara could find no other alternative.

“Miss Dara?” Mrs. Landsbury stood just inside the doorway. Neat and compact, the ageless woman ran the Cassadine household with almost complete impunity. “Master Stefan informs me you wish to move to the adjoining suite?” The Cassadine housekeeper's face was a stoic mask.

“Yes, Mrs. Landsbury. I would like all my things moved there as soon as possible. Oh, not,” Dara hastened to say, “by tonight, of course! Tonight I'll just need fresh linen for the bed and maybe some bath towels.”

“I will have you moved into the new suite before bedtime,” Mrs. Landsbury replied.

Dara bit the inside of her lip. “Thank you,” she offered hesitantly. “I am sorry for all the trouble.”

“Will you be needing to supervise, Miss Dara?” The housekeeper's point came across loud and clear to Dara. It was Mrs. Landsbury's way of letting her know that far more would be accomplished without Dara underfoot.

“No.” Dara took a long look around the suite she'd spent the last two months occupying. “I am sure you will see to everything without me.”