DISCLAIMER: All My Children is the property of ABC. No infringement intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

By Rudeboy


Chapter 4

It had been over a week since those unfortunate events on the couch that had led to a night of soul searching for the former Pine Valley residents. They were working their way back into the groove of everyday life, with small things like the return of their good night kisses, but with a new twist… they were given in bed.

While nothing had progressed past the kissing stage, they were switching off nights between Bianca's room upstairs and Maggie's room just off the kitchen. Miranda was a big enough girl, now she had a bed instead of a crib, and could sleep through the night on her own, though Bianca still always had a baby monitor not very far out of reach.

The comfort was returning, and the trust and ease were making their way back too. It was Maggie that was the hold up. She would move in for a kiss, then pause, uncertain if her approach was too sudden, too aggressive and predatory. Bianca would give her a soft smile and finish closing the physical, as well as mental, gap the shorter girl had left.

Guy Kachel's latest offensive in his war on all things Cambias had begun with the salvo of pictures from their night enjoying BJ's on the patio of a French bistro. The story had been a scathing essay on the frivolous spending of the super-rich, with an estimation of how much each plate of nachos had cost. Maggie had read this while sitting at the newly purchased BJ's table in their kitchen and dining on a plate of nachos from the left over ingredients. The irony was not lost on them.

The problem seemed to be more that Guy had somehow figured out a way to predict their movements. Patrick was trained in eluding perusing cars, and from the way Bianca and Maggie sometimes got thrown around in the back of the limo as Patrick would make sudden lane changes and turns, they knew Guy wasn't following them. Somehow he still always found them and their pictures were becoming a regular feature on the gossip pages of the tabloids.

With Maggie's summer break quickly drawing to a close though, Bianca was determined for them to enjoy their last week together before the rigors of school tore her away again.


July 27th – 8:15 PM

Back at the Roadhouse they got some bungalows
Said at the back of the roadhouse
They got some bungalows
And that's for the people
Who like to go down slow

Bianca sprayed off the dishes from dinner, finding herself humming along to the song against her own will. Jim Morrison's sultry voice seemed to be a permanent fixture as of late coming from Maggie's room.

Let it roll, baby, roll
Let it roll, baby, roll
Let it roll, baby, roll
Let it roll, all night long

On some level it drove her mad as she heard it so often, but on another level she found it oddly endearing… and somewhat dirty.

Back at the roadhouse they got some bungalows
Said at the back of the roadhouse
They got some bungalows
And that's for the people
Who like to go down slow
They like to get it down slow
Like to get it way down

Ok, not somewhat dirty, dirty for sure.

The music clicked off, and the door to Maggie's room opened. Bianca turned to look at her, and Maggie paused, staring at her. After a moment she grinned that lopsided grin that always spelled trouble. She lifted her right arm and pointed with her index finger, singing the next line of the song she had just turned off. "Ashen lady, Ashen lady."

Bianca rolled her eyes, shook her head, and smiled all at once.

Maggie started walking towards her, still pointing. "Give up your vows, give up your vows."

"I wasn't aware I had taken any vows, seeing as I'm not a nun."

She reached Bianca, placed her hands on either side of her waist, and started swaying them back and forth as she continued. "Save our city, save our city."

"I wasn't aware the city was in trouble, perhaps you should alert the police?"

"Right now."

"Yep, you better get on that then."

Maggie playfully slapped her back. "You're no fun."

"I'm oodles of fun… who beat you at Monopoly last night?"

"You did… but you cheat!"

Bianca's jaw dropped as she placed the last plate, placing it in the dishwasher. "How does one cheat at Monopoly?"

"You do all that stuff for a living, it gives you an unfair advantage! You understand it all!"

"Oh, so we should find a game that gives you a leg up then?"

"Yes! I was thinking of Operation!"

Bianca closed the door to the dishwasher and turned it on as she shook her head. "You have to be kidding me."

"Well, at least it would be something to do! I'm so bored! We haven't gone anywhere in days, and in my almost professional medical opinion, I think I have Cabin Fever!"

"I know, I know, I've been swamped at work, but we're all done with the quarterlies now, how about I take tomorrow off and we go somewhere? Your choice!"

"Really? Well, there's some place I've been wanting to go for awhile now, but I was afraid you might find it a bit… odd?"

"Why would I find it odd?" Bianca asked, her eyebrows knitting together.

"It's a graveyard."

"Ok, yeah, that is a bit odd," she said with a nervous giggle.

"No, no, it's the Père Lachaise Cemetery, where Jim Morrison is buried along with a bunch of other famous people like Oscar Wilde."

"Oh, okay! I thought for a second maybe you had gone all goth on me!"

"Yes Bianca…" she stood on her tip toes and made a move towards her neck "I vant to suck your blood," she added in a horrible Dracula-like accent. And with that, she did plant a serious enough kiss on her neck to leave a small 'love bite'.


July 28th – 12:30 PM

"I always read this was one of the busiest tourist spots in Paris, how are we the only ones here?"

"'Security sweep' I believe was the term they went with."

"Meaning Cambias paid off the cemetery," Maggie said with a knowing grin.

"Perhaps," Bianca replied with a sly grin.

"You really have to stop doing that you know."

"Maggie… the majority of the Cambias fortune was made in underhanded, dirty schemes, and while I'm trying to do good with it now, I still don't mind spending it in frivolous ways that make the people I love smile."

"Well… thank you."

"Not a problem… now, go pay your respects."

Bianca stood back a little ways from Maggie, watching as she walked over and knelt down next to the man she had learned, just that morning, was known as 'The Lizard King'. She figured there was more to this then she knew when Maggie had walked out of her room wearing her Tiger's jersey.

"Aren't you ready to go?" she had asked.

"Yeah, whenever you are," the shorter girl had replied.

"But… that's your sleep shirt," Bianca had stated.

"Correction… it's my Frankie shirt," Maggie had replied.

On the way to the cemetery, which was not outside of the city as one would suspect a 109 acre cemetery to be, Maggie had Patrick stop at a book store and she had hopped back in the limo with a newly purchased copy of Shakespeare's collected sonnets.

Now she stood there, watching as her friend knelt beside the grave of a singer who had died at an age not that far removed from their own. Maggie had given her quite the education on the ride over.

"He still was able to speak to people of all ages, including those who weren't even born yet when he died. He spoke to the disenfranchised, the lost, and he spoke for those who had no voice," she had said.

It was starting to dawn on her what the connection might be as she saw Maggie place the book on top of the pile of flowers that she understood to be a permanent fixture on his grave. She watched as Maggie lifted the fingers of her right hand to her lips, kissed them, and then pressed those same fingers on to the book.

A security guard approached Bianca. "Ma'am, I'm afraid we can't keep people away much longer, they are growing restless and starting to question."

Bianca looked up at him. "Just give us a few more minutes?"

"It's okay, Bianca, I'm done… we can go… I did what I came to do."

Bianca looked down at Maggie and could see the obvious track marks of tears on her face, but said nothing of them. She turned back to the security guard. "I guess we're done, please thank all the other staff for us."

The guard smiled and nodded, and the crowd that had been standing off at some distance began to filter through the maze of tombstones to the one they were all there to see. The book of sonnets was quickly hidden from view by more flowers being thrown onto the ever growing pile.

"It's oddly beautiful here," stated Maggie. "I mean… I know it's all dead people, but some of these tombstones are gorgeous… let's go for a walk." She looked up at Bianca. "Want to?"

"Alright," Bianca said, unsure of how else to reply. She folded her arms in front of her, her purse dangling from her right elbow, and she followed Maggie. The shorter girl seemed to just wander aimlessly through the forest of granite, her hands shoved deep in her jean pockets.


July 28th – 1:15 PM

Patrick was following them from a respectful distance as they walked through the seemingly endless rows of headstones. His eyes were constantly scanning, searching for interlopers in brown leather jackets.

Ahead of him, Bianca walked a step behind Maggie, who would occasionally stop and read a tombstone, but hadn't said anything in quite awhile.

"Maggie… you do realize how big this place is right? Do you plan on walking every aisle? Because if you want to, we will, but I'll need to run home for better walking shoes."

Maggie smiled. "Naw, I just… just didn't feel like leaving yet. You don't have to walk with me if you don't want."

"Why don't we do this… there's a nice tree over there, and we can sit down and rest for a few minutes, and I can take off these stupid heels I decided to wear."

The shorter girl laughed. "Okay." She turned and looked back at Patrick. "Come on Frenchie, let's go sit under the tree!"

Even at this distance, it was easy to spot him rolling his eyes.


July 28th – 1:30 PM

Bianca's heels were off and lying on the ground next to her, her legs pulled back and to the side, her hand behind her, rubbing her feet. Maggie sat cross legged, playing with a blade of grass, while Patrick leaned against the tree, his jacket off, still scanning for roaming photographers.

None of the trio spoke, they just enjoyed the light breeze of the summer day, and the thankfully cool weather.

"So…" Maggie finally threw into the silence, "when are one of you finally going to ask me all the questions I know are swirling around in your heads?"

Patrick grinned and looked down at the ground, kicking it with his shoe.

Bianca tried to act innocent. "Questions? What makes you think we have questions?"

"Yeah… right…" Maggie stuck a blade of grass in her mouth and leaned back, using her palms to support her, "Obviously The Doors meant something to me and Frankie, but neither of you want to be the first to ask."

"It's not our place," replied Patrick. "If you wanted us to know, you'd tell us."

"Well, you might want to sit down then, this could take a while."


April 26th, 1996 – 7:30 PM

"Yeah Mom! That's it! Just keep drinking! Drink it all down real good! Nothing like forgetting not one, but TWO fourteenth birthdays in one day!" Frankie slammed the door to hers and Maggie's bedroom. "Stupid witch," she mumbled.

Maggie laid on her bed, propped up by pillows, her knees drawn up with her American History book resting there for her to read. She looked up at her sister. "Done yet?"

Frankie looked down at her and snarled. "Go back to reading your government approved, sanitized version of 'history'," she said with air quotes.

"Thank you… I think I will." Maggie went back to reading about the 1848 gold rush in California, as Frankie plopped down on her bed, landing on her stomach. She pulled out some book, not a school text, that she had been engrossed in for days. Maggie kept glancing over at her, the anger still obvious in the way she held her body. "What did you expect, Frankie? Did you think that this year she'd miraculously turn into a real mom and bake us a cake?"

"Do… your… homework," Frankie said as she turned the page in her book.

Maggie shut her textbook with a loud thud. "Too bad," she set it aside and spun on the bed so she was now facing Frankie, her feet on the floor. "Come on Frankie… really… what did you expect?"

She looked over her shoulder at her sister. "Just what I got Mary Margaret, a drunken mother who could care less if we existed. Just what I expected…" she turned and looked at her book again, "but I had HOPED for more."

That hit Maggie in the gut. She had given up hope of their mother ever being more than a drunk ages ago - she couldn't believe Frankie ever still dared to hope. She sat there studying her feet, her arms out to the sides, palms flat against the bed. "Frankie… seeing as I didn't even hope, I… I got us something."

She hopped off her bed and turned around to kneel next to her bed, pulling something out from underneath. As she stood and turned, she held out a plastic grocery store container that held two frosted cupcakes. "I knew we had no hope of getting a cake from Mom, so I thought I'd take care of that."

Frankie looked over her shoulder again. She looked at the cupcakes… up to Maggie's face… back down to the cupcakes. "My respect for you will grow by leaps and bounds if you tell me you stole those."

"Sorry… cleaned out the Anders' gutters for the money."

"Damn it," Frankie said, closing her eyes and shaking her head. She got to all fours and spun around so she was sitting on the edge of her bed, tossing her book to the side. "Well… stolen or not, I'll still eat them."

"Excuse me? 'Them'? Two of them, two of us dear sister," Maggie said as she sat down on her bed to face Frankie. "One each, in other words, seeing as I know you don't like to do math and all." She opened the container, took one out for herself, and handed the container over to Frankie who took hers out and tossed the empty plastic to the side.

Frankie started peeling the paper wrapper back. "You do realize how utterly pathetic this is, right?"

Maggie rolled her eyes as she lifted the cupcake to her mouth. "I'm going to have to remember all this next time I try do something special for us."

"No, no, I… I appreciate it, I just… how sad is it we… I mean you, have to clean gutters to buy cupcakes for our birthday? Sure, mommy dearest out there may not have baked a cake, but she could have at least stopped and bought us one when she was buying another gallon jug of what ever booze was on sale this week."

"It's just you and me Frankie… we can only count on each other."

"I know," she said as they both finished their cupcakes in silence. After a few moments, Frankie smacked her hands on her thighs, brushing away the crumbs. "You know, if we have to throw our own birthday party, we should probably have some music!" She got on the floor and dug around under her bed until she pulled out a compact disc.

Maggie had learned long ago that if things came from under the other twin's bed, it was best not to ask where they had originally come from, because it usually involved a source she would rather not know about. "What is it?"

"I heard it over at Rick's house the other day and it just felt like it spoke to me, you know?" she said as she popped open the top of the CD player.

"Rick's, huh?"

"Shut it, Maggie."

Maggie did 'shut it', but it troubled her that her sister was hanging out with a known drug dealer, one she had warned her off of several times over the past year. While Maggie didn't suspect anything sexual, she did worry about what her sister wasn't getting involved in.

Frankie skipped a few tracks and hit play, quickly returning to plop down on the edge of the bed. She fell backwards where she sat, leaving her feet on the floor, but otherwise sprawled out comfortably. She folded her arms so that her hands were on her stomach, her fingers interlaced.

At first the music was so quiet, Maggie couldn't really tell it was playing, but then it sounded like some sort of helicopter flying over. The music hit her ear with an oddness she hadn't heard before. Then the man with the sleepy voice started to sing about what sounded so eerily like their lives. Frankie joined in as soon as he started, oblivious to anyone else in the world than her and the man.

This is the end
Beautiful friend
This is the end
My only friend, the end

"Well that's perky."

"Shhhh," admonished Frankie.

Of our elaborate plans, the end
Of everything that stands, the end
No safety or surprise, the end
I'll never look into your eyes... again

"Seriously Frankie, could this be any more depressing?"

"Just listen, damn it."

Can you picture what will be
So limitless and free
Desperately in need... of some... stranger's hand
In a... desperate land

Maggie started to get it. Maybe it wasn't quite as depressing as she thought. The long musical interlude played, no lyrics being sung, she thought of saying something, but since Frankie made no move to get up, she figured it wasn't over yet.

Lost in a roman...wilderness of pain
And all the children are insane
All the children are insane

All the children are insane
Waiting for the summer rain, yeah

The voice trailed off, sounding as if the song ended, and forest creature sounds replaced the man with the sleepy voice. "Well that was interesting…" Maggie said, acting as if she was about to leave.

"Just wait a minute."

The sound did come back, harder, more intense, primal and animalistic. Frankie leaped from her bed and started spinning around in a circle. Her ponytail spinning out behind her as she threw her head back and let the music wash over her. As the drummer beat a signal the song was coming to an end, she collapsed to the floor breathless. "Isn't that just the best?"

"It didn't make any sense though!"

Frankie rolled her eyes. "You dork… you didn't listen to it," she said as she got up and walked over to the CD player again.

"Hello… I was sitting right here, of course I heard it."

"No, you didn't. You heard it, but you didn't hear it," she said as she hit the player again.

The second time it went much the same as Frankie danced for the entire length of the song, and Maggie tried to listen closer to the words this time and what they meant. The song kept repeating, and the girls kept discussing. Their drunken mother finally pounded on the door at one point, telling them to cut the racket, but they ignored her since they had long before locked it. She just wandered off, mumbling about 'those damned girls'.

They listened to the whole album that night, and on several other occasions, but it always came back to that song, and to one verse mainly:

Can you picture what will be
So limitless and free
Desperately in need... of some... stranger's hand
In a... desperate land

They would discuss their dreams, how they wanted to escape the life they knew, and mark this chapter of their life with "The End".


July 28th – 2:00 PM

"And so that's why I felt the need to come here at least once. It was one of the few things Frankie and I ever connected over in our teen years, and it allowed us to dream."

Bianca reached up and wiped away a tear with her right hand. Patrick smiled a proud, almost fatherly smile at Maggie, before he resumed scanning the tombstones for marauding photographers.

"So… come on," Maggie said as she stood up and brushed off the back of her pants. "Lets stop hanging out in a graveyard all day… what are we, goth kids or something?" she asked to no one in particular, but gave Bianca a wink.


July 28th – 8:00 PM

Bianca walked back into the kitchen as Maggie finished cleaning off the plates from dinner. "I think Guilia completely wore out Miranda today, she's already asleep."

"Not surprised, probably had her busy helping her cook the never ending supply of pasta. We have yet another restocked refrigerator, filled with carbohydrates as far as they eye can see!"

Bianca rolled her eyes. "She does it with love Maggie."

"Oh, I know, but man, I'm going to have to consider joining a gym soon, I have no clue how she stays so fit, let alone Patrick."

"Gee… what ways could a married couple work together to burn off calories? I wonder…" Bianca waggled her eyebrows.

Maggie closed her eyes and leaned forward at the waist, resting her hands on either side of the sink. "Just HAD to go there, didn't you?"


"Ugh… I feel… dirty now." She placed the last plate in the dishwasher and closed the door. "I need to go wash this filth off myself… meet you in the den in a bit?"

Bianca stepped forward and placed her left hand on Maggie's left hand, which still rested on the sink. "Actually, I was wondering… would you mind if I came in and listened to your Doors CD while you showered?"

Maggie's eyes glistened as she listened to her friend continue.

"It's just, I've never listened to them that closely and, after hearing your story today, I would like to really give them a listen now, and hear what it is you and Frankie heard...if I'm not intruding, that is."

Maggie looked down at their hands and choked back a couple of tears. "I… I think that would be a great idea, actually… I…" she looked back up at Bianca, "I imagine Frankie would definitely approve of me sharing it with you."

Bianca smiled as Maggie intertwined their fingers and led them off to her bedroom. She opened the door allowing Bianca to enter and closed it behind them. As she did, she could have sworn a pleasant, warm sensation was spreading outwardly from the tattoo she shared with her sister.

Part 5

Return to All My Children Fiction

Return to Main Page