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It's late at night, Robin and Jason sleep in his bed in his apartment as the rain pours outside. They spoon, with Jason wrapped around Robin, his front to her back. A knock sounds at the door, and Jason moves a bit in his sleep, clutching Robin harder. Then the knocking comes again, louder, and Jason jerks awake. He looks down at Robin, still sleeping, and gently slides out of bed, trying not to wake her. He walks silently to the desk and pulls out a gun from a drawer as the knocking turns to pounding. Robin stirs.

R: Jason?
J: Shhh, go back to sleep.
R: (still half asleep) What's going on?
J: (walks over to her side of the bed and sits, stroking her hair) It's fine, don't worry about it.

Robin sees the gun and sits up a bit, confused, rubbing sleep out of her eyes. The pounding continues downstairs.

R: (blearily) Is someone at the door?
C: (calls through the door downstairs) Jason? Are you home? Answer the door! Please!
J: (groans, puts the gun down on the bedside table) Carly.

Robin falls back down against the pillows. More pounding and shouting.

R: (mumbles, already falling back asleep) You'd better go and see what she wants, you know she won't leave.
J: (nods) Just stay here, ok? Sleep. You were up too late studying anyway. I'll get rid of her.
R: Mmm.

Robin curls into the covers and her breathing deepens. Jason leans over and kisses her cheeek, rubbing her back.

C: Jason!!

Jason reluctantly leaves Robin and goes downstairs to the building's front door. He sighs as he opens the door and sees Carly there, dripping wet.

J: Hello, Carly.
C: Jason, I need your help.

***

Jason and Carly are now in Jason's living room, and Carly dries herself off with a towel.

J: Ok, you're dry, now will you please tell me what the hell you're doing here?
C: (loudly) Thanks, Jason, your concern warms my heart!
J: Keep your voice down. Robin needs her sleep.
C: Oh, well, if Saint Robin needs her beauty rest, then excuse me for disturbing her.

Jason walks to the apartment front door and opens it wide.

C: I'm sorry, I'm sorry, I shouldn't have said that.

Jason just stares at her, holding the door open.

C: I said I'm sorry! Really.
J: One more comment like that and you're out.
C: Ok, ok. I'm done, I swear.

Jason closes the door and walks back over to Carly, sits on a chair across from her on the couch.

C: I'm really sorry, ok? It's been a long day, a long night, and I just don't know what to do.
J: (sighs) What's going on, Carly?

(Carly tells Jason her whole sob story, everything with A.J. and Tony, and ending with Tony telling her he wants custody of her baby. As she finishes, Jason stands.)

J: This is nuts. You are nuts.
C: Don't say that, Jason!
J: (stops and looks at her in disgust) You know I hate lying, and this...this is so much more than that. How could you do that to A.J?
C: I was scared.
J: Of A.J.? Aren't you guys friends?

Robin enters from the bedroom, behind Jason.

R: (still sleepy) What about A.J.?

Jason turns and walks over to her, his hand going to the back of her neck and massaging. She moans a little and leans into him, and Carly watches, uncomfortable and not exactly happy. Robin is wearing one of Jason's t-shirts, and Carly makes the connection that they're probably sleeping together. She doesn't like it.

J: It's ok, I'll tell you later. (concerned, focused completely on her like Carly isn't there) What are you doing up?

R: (rubs her face) I couldn't sleep with all the talking, so I wanted to see what was up, maybe make some tea.
J: I'm sorry, we'll keep it down.
R: (smiles, leans up on tiptoes to peck him on the lips) Don't worry so much, it's no big deal. (she turns to Carly, her face kind and tired) Hey, Carly.
C: Robin.
R: Is everything ok? You look soaked. Do you need a change of clothes?

Carly looks uneasy at how nice Robin's being. She opens her mouth to respond, but Jason beats her to it.

J: (shortly) No. She's fine.

Robin gives him a look, but doesn't push it.

R: Ok, well I'm gonna head to the kitchen and make that tea. You two want any?
J: (smiles) No, I'm good.
C: That'd be nice, actually, thanks.
R: Mm-hmm.
J: I'll come with and help.
R: (amused) You will?
J: Yeah.
R: I can do it myself, you know.
J: I know.

Jason puts his hands on Robin's waist from behind and gently pushes her with him to the kitchen. Carly watches.

R: (laughs a little) Alright, alright.
J: C'mon.
R: So pushy.

They talk softly as they walk to the kitchen and start making tea. Carly listens, jealous of their easy intimacy.

***

Jason and Robin come back from the kitchen, Robin holding two steaming mugs. She hands one to Carly.

C: (genuine) Thanks, Robin. Sorry for barging in so late like this.
R: It's no problem, Carly. (turns to Jason) I'm gonna go back to bed, try and sleep or get some reading done.
J: I vote sleep.
R: I'll try. Goodnight, guys. Carly, I hope everthing works out, whatever it is.
C: (touched despite herself, and a little ashamed) Thank you.

Robin nods, turns back to Jason, who holds her face in her hands and kisses her tenderly.

J: (murmurs) Thanks for being understanding.
R: (quietly) Of course. (raises her eyebrow) Good luck.

Jason grunts, then leads her to the bedroom door with his hand on the small of her back, and closes it behind her. He sits back down across from Carly.

C: Sometimes I don't get how she can be so nice to me.

J: She's Robin.
C: Yeah.
J: And she knows what I feel. (pointedly) And what I don't feel.

Carly has nothing she can say to this. She takes a sip of tea to give herself a moment.

J: So?
C: So what?
J: What exaclty do you want me to do about all this?
C: I need you to help me.
J: Yeah, so you said. How?
C: (takes a deep breath) I need you...to pretend to be the baby's father.

Jason's eyes widen and he stands up again.

J: Are you insane? What makes you think I would ever do that?

Carly stands up too, her voice urgent.

C: To save me, Jason, to save my baby! Or Tony and A.J. will try and take it away from me!
J: They can't do that, Carly, you're it's mother. And even if they could, why is that my problem?
C: Well...I kind of already told Tony that you're the father.
J: (his voice hardens) You did what?
C: I told him you're my baby's father.
J: You really are insane. (he shakes his head in disbelief) It doesn't matter anyway, because I won't lie for you.
C: I thought we were friends!

Jason just stares at her.

C: We are, we're friends! And this is what friends do for each other!
J: No it's not, Carly. I'm not stupid. This is what crazy liars do for other crazy liars.
C: Gee, thanks.
J: (shrugs) It's the truth.
C: Don't you care about me at all?

Jason doesn't respond. Carly puts her tea down and steps closer, trying to persuade him. Jason stays silent, wanting to see just how far she'll go.

C: I just need some time, to figure all this out, to figure out what I'm going to do. Tony and A.J. don't get to have this baby. You don't have to lie for me, just let everyone assume! And, and people will believe you're the father, because they'll understand why you would sleep with me.
J: (quietly outraged) What?
C: Well, you know, since you can't have sex with Robin because of the HIV, and--
J: Don't finish that sentence.

Carly looks a little scared at Jason's cold expression, and shuts up.

J: Listen to me, and listen to me closely, because I don't want to say this twice. I would never tell a lie like that, especially one that would make people think I'm cheating on Robin. I would never hurt her like that. Not for you, and not for anybody. And even if I would, A.J. needs to know that he's going to be a father.
C: What?! No, Jason, you can't tell him!
J: Yes, I can.
C: I told you this in confidence!
J: Too bad. He deserves to know.
C: No he doesn't! What do you care, you don't care about A.J.!
J: A.J. and I are good. And even if we weren't, I would still tell him.
C: Why?!
J: Because it's the right thing to do.

Carly gets in Jason's face, her fear now changed to anger. Jason doesn't react.

C: (vicious in her desperation) And when have you ever cared about doing the right thing? Huh? You may have forgotten about when you came to my bed time after time, going straight from sweet Robin's arms to mine, but I haven't. She may be trying to change you into some boring version of the perfect boyfriend, but I know better. You're rotten to the core, just like me.

Slience.

J: You done?

Carly struggles to get her angry breathing under control, then a wave of realization at what she's said comes over her. She scrambles to fix it, but Jason is unmoved.

C: Shit, I'm sorry, I'm so sorry, I didn't mean any of that!
J: Yes. You did.
C: No, I didn't, Jason, please, please don't do this! You're my friend! Don't punish me like this!
J: You don't get it, Carly. This isn't about you.

This stuns Carly for a moment. Jason walks to the door.

J: You need to leave. Now.
C: Jason, please!
J: Get out, Carly. You really don't want me to make you.

Carly walks to Jason, almost in a daze at how wrong this has all gone. She tries one more time.

C: Jason, you don't want to do this. You hate the Quartermaines, do you really want my son growing up in that house?
J: At this point, they're looking better than you.
C: You don't mean that.

Jason doesn't respond. Carly walks through the door, but turns around and stops Jason before he can close it.

C: Jason, think about this.
J: I don't need to. (he leans closer) And don't ever come to me with a favor like this again. You think you can manipulate me, but you can't.
C: It's not like that! (she starts to cry) Please!
J: Goodbye, Carly.

Jason shuts the door in her face. He sighs and rubs his hands through his hair.

***

Jason enters the bedroom, and smiles softly at the sight of Robin sitting up against the headboad, dozing, a book open on her lap. He goes to pick up the book and set it on the bedside table, and she wakes up.

R: Hi.
J: Hi.

Jason leans forward and kisses her. She responds and he deepens the kiss, needing to escape in her for a moment. The kiss ends and they lean their foreheads together.

R: Wanna talk about it?
J: Not really. But we should anyway. Tomorrow. After you've slept.
R: No, come on, now I'm curious. And I can tell you need to talk about it.
J: Robin...
R: (wheadling) I won't be able to sleep if I'm worried and wondering what's going on. We can sleep once you tell me.
J: You promise? You need your rest.
R: Promise. Cross my heart.

Robin cutely crosses her heart and Jason kisses her again. He starts to lean her back across the bed as the kiss turns passionate. Robin playfully pulls away and Jason groans.

R: Oh, no you don't. No distractions. C'mon.
J: Ok, ok. It's just....Carly.
R: Yeah, I know.
J: Sometimes I hate her.
R: Jason...
J: I know you feel sorry for her, but you really shouldn't. She's not worth it.
R: I can just tell she's really lonely, and I know how that feels. So do you.
J: Yeah, but what she does with that...it's not right.
R: Tell me.

They sit up next to each other, both leaning against the headboard. Jason takes Robin's hand, and they interlock their fingers.

J: Carly came to talk to me about her baby.
R: Her and Tony's baby? What about it?
J: It's not Tony's. It's A.J.'s.

Robin's eyes go wide.

R: Oh, woah.
J: Yep.
R: Does A.J. know?
J: Nope. Carly was hoping to keep passing the baby off as Tony's.
R: (sighs) What a mess.
J: That's Carly.
R: Wait, so what changed? And why did she come to you? Just to talk?
J: I wish. Carly said that she and Tony had a fight, they broke up, and he's threatening to sue for custody of the baby. She panicked, and she told him that I was the father.

Robin is shocked.

R: (softly) Oh my god.

Jason watches her, afraid of her reaction.

R: Are you kidding me?
J: No.
R: (closes her eyes) Oh, Jason.
J: (soberly) Yeah. (then, earnestly) Robin, you gotta know that I would never let people think that. She wants me to lie for her but I would never ever do that.

Robin squeezes Jason's hand and looks him in the eyes.

R: Jason, Jason, it's ok, of course I know that. I'm just...stunned, that's all.
J: Yeah, tell me about it.

Jason keeps observing Robin, trying to read her face.

J: Robin, I know....I know that this might...bring up some stuff for us. I don't like to think about it, but I am so sorry that I was ever involved with her. That I slept with her when we were together.

Robin swallows hard, and she tears up a bit.

R: You really hurt me when you did that. Probably more than I let on.
J: I know.

Robin holds his face in her hands, makes him look at her.

R: But I haven't been holding onto it, Jason. It's in the past.
J: Are you sure?
R: Would you ever do it again?
J: Never, Robin. Never.
R: Then we're fine. I promise. I love you.
J: Not as much as I love you.

They kiss deeply, both a little teary, but coming together and healing the only way they can.

J: I don't deserve you.
R: Let me decide that, ok?
J: Ok.

They kiss again softly, then Jason situates Robin so that she's sitting in between his legs, leaning back against his chest. She plays with his hands as they talk.

R: So what are we gonna do? We have to tell A.J., Jason.
J: (sighs) I know, that's what I told Carly. She didn't take it well.
R: I'm not surprised. God, how's he going to react? And poor Tony, he must be so attached to that baby by now.
J: I'm just glad we're not involved. Not once we tell the truth, anyway.
R: Why don't we invite A.J. over for dinner tomorrow night and break it to him then?
J: Ok. Can we order Chinese?
R: (laughs) Deal.

They settle into bed and under the covers, getting ready to finally go back to sleep.

J: At least you don't have any morning classes tomorrow, so you can sleep in.
R: You know, sometimes I think you're more obsessed with my sleeping and eating patterns than Uncle Mac is.
J: (smiles, kisses the tip of her nose and hugs her close) I have no idea what you're talking about.

Robin snuggles closer, and Jason strokes his hand from the top of her head and all the way down her back, over and over.

J: Can you promise me something else?
R: Mmm, what's that?
J: Don't let Carly get to you.
R: What do you mean?
J: I know how she works, she's probably gonna find you, try and convince you to keep the secret.
R: Jason, you know that would never work.
J: I know that, but she doesn't. And I don't want her around you. She's dangerous when she's cornered.
R: Jason, it's going to be fine. But if it makes you feel better, I'll make sure to steer clear.

They kiss again, and it starts to heat up. Jason moves on top of Robin, his hand sliding under her hair and holding her head, tilting it for a better angle.

R: (breathy) Jason...
J: (softly) You know you always sleep better when you--

Jason moves his other hand downward between their bodies, and Robin arches up and gasps as he reaches his target.

J: --let me make you feel good.

He moves his hand strongly between them as he bites at her jawline.

R: Jason!

Jason covers her mouth with his, swallowing her gasps as they move together. Fade to black.

Chapter Text

It's 3am at the Scorpio house. Suddenly knocks sound at the back door of the kitchen. After a few moments of the continued knocking, Mac comes down the stairs and walks to the door.

M: (calling) I'm coming, I'm coming! (muttering) Who the hell--

Mac swings the door open, glaring, to find Jason standing in the rain like a drowned rat, eyes haunted.

M: Jason, what--
J: I'm done. With the mob, with everything.

Mac's eyes are shocked and wary. Jason looks incredibly lost.

J: Can you teach me? Teach me another way to be?

There's a moment as they look at each other, Jason soaked to the skin. Then Mac wordlessly steps back, holding the door open. Jason enters and Mac closes it behind him.

***

Jason sits at the kitchen table, dripping on the floor. Mac enters and throws a towel at him, then starts making coffee.

M: Dry off, you're soaking wet.

Jason silently dries his hair with the towel, pats himself down.

J: Where's Robin?
M: Sleeping on the couch in the living room. The pain meds really knock her out.

Mac turns to Jason and sees him staring through the kitchen doorway into the living room.

M: (sighs) Go ahead. (warningly) Just don't wake her up.

Jason rises and walks to the living room. Mac steps to the doorway and watches as Jason crouches next to the sleeping Robin, brushing her hair out of her face. He stares at her for a long time, then stands and starts to tuck in the edges of the blanket, covering a foot that she's kicked out in her sleep. Mac stops watching, not wanting to be caught, as he realizes Jason's coming back in. He busies himself with the coffee and sets down two mugs as Jason sits back down. They sit in silence for a while, Mac sipping his coffee and Jason just using the mug to warm his hands, looking down at it.

J: I'm afraid.
M: (calmly) Afraid of what?
J: (looks up) Afraid I can't be the man she needs me to be.
M: Robin isn't. (simply) And neither am I.

Jason looks surprised, but doesn't say anything. 

M: You love her, don't you?
J: Yes.
M: Then you can do anything.

Jason thinks about this. Mac rises.

M: Look, it's late. You should crash here tonight. We'll talk more tomorrow.
J: (surprised again) You sure?
M: Yeah.
J: Thanks.

Mac leaves for a sec, comes back with a pillow and a blanket.

M: I assume it's useless to offer you the guest room?
J: Pretty much.
M: (smirks) Well, I hope the living room floor isn't too hard.

Mac studies Jason, who stands.

M: Robin's gonna be ok, Jason. The doctors wouldn't have let her come home if she wasn't.

Jason looks slightly reassured as Mac hands him the pillow and blanket. Mac starts to head back up the stairs to bed.

J: Mac?
M: (turns back) Yeah?
J: Thank you.
M: You're welcome. Good night, Jason.

Mac continues up the stairs. Jason goes to the living room, setting down the blanket and pillow next to the couch. He lies down, taking Robin's outstretched hand at the edge of the couch cushion. He rubs it softly with his fingers, gazing at her, then slowly drifts to sleep.

***

Chapter Text

Patrick enters the GH locker room. When he hears Liz, Emily, & Robin talking, he stops in his tracks to listen in.

L: Well, I think he's hot.
E: For sure. It's nice to have eye candy like him around while we work.
R: I don't know...
L: C'mon Robin, you have to admit he's good-looking.
R: Okay, he's handsome!

Patrick smiles.

R: It's just that he's so damn cocky! It makes it hard for me to appreciate his pretty face.

Now Patrick looks disgruntled.

L: You have a point.
E: I think the cockiness is kinda sexy.
R: Not when he won't even listen to you about what you think your patient needs.
L: (teasing) You're just annoyed that you have to work with someone as stubborn as you are.
R: I'm not stubborn! (off their looks) Ok, maybe I'm a little stubborn.

They laugh.

E: Ok, enough, I gotta get out of here so I can make it to the benefit tonight. You two gonna be there?
L: Wouldn't miss it.
R: Of course! I have one more patient I want to see, so I might be a little late, but I'll see you both there.

Patrick quickly leaves the locker room before they can catch him eavesdropping.

***

Luke's. The hospital benefit is in full swing. Patrick stands at the bar, Bobbie and Liz nearby. He sees Robin arrive, looking beautiful, and the look on his face is more than smitten. He watches as she makes her way through the room, greeting and hugging people. He sees her stop and say hi to Alan, then rise up on tiptoe to kiss him on the cheek. Irritated, Patrick turns to Liz.

P: What is with the two of them? I swear to god, Dr Quartermaine's eyes practically sparkle every time Dr. Scorpio is close by. Is she teacher's pet or is there some kind of May/December thing going on? Does the other Dr. Quartermaine have a clue?

Liz almost chokes on her drink as Bobbie cracks up next to her.

B: Oh boy. Should you tell him or should I?
P: What?
L: Alan is Robin's father-in-law! Didn't you know?
P: Wait, what? Dr. Scorpio isn't married!
B: (still laughing) She sure is. 
P: To who?!

Patrick looks back over at Robin as she stands next to Sonny and Luke, Sonny's arm around her and her leaning into his side.

P: To him? The local mobster?
L: Sonny? No! 
B: No, no, no. To him.

Bobbie points and Patrick's gaze follows as Liz watches, amused. Robin moves from Sonny, whose hand on her back guides her past a few people before he lets her go, to Jason, who leans against the wall chatting with Mike. Jason smiles as she approaches and she glows as he frames her face in his hands and kisses her softly. Then she turns and leans back against him, his arms wrapped around her from behind. Patrick is not happy.

P: That's her husband? Who is he? I've never seen him at the hospital.
B: That's Jason Morgan. He doesn't particularly like hospitals, so he usually visits Robin on the down low.
P: What does he do?
L: He's a P.I. He works with Robin's uncle. And her mom.
P: So Robin works with his family and he works with hers? (bitter) Isn't that cozy.
B: (realizing) Are you jealous? (she turns to Liz) I think he's jealous.
P: I am not jealous! 
L: I think someone has a crush.

At that moment, Robin makes eye contact with Liz and Bobbie and waves. She heads over, Jason following with his hand in hers.

R: Hi, Liz! Hey Bobbie!
L: (still smirking a bit) Hi, Robin!
B: Hello, honey! Quite the turnout, huh? Hi, Jason.
J: (smiles) Bobbie. Liz.
R: Jason, this is the new doctor I was telling you about, Patrick Drake. Patrick, this is my husband, Jason.

They shake hands, Jason impersonally friendly and Patrick sizing up his rival.

J: Nice to meet you.
P: Likewise.

Jason notices Patrick's uneccessarily strong grip and raises an eyebrow as they let go.

P: So Liz was just telling me that you're a private detective.
J: Yep.
P: That's an interesting career choice. What kind of things do you....detect?
J: All kinds.

***

Robin and Jason slow dance as the live band plays and raffle tickets are called out periodically by Tiffany and Sean on mics to the side of the stage.

J: He likes you.
R: Who?
J: That doctor guy. Patrick.
R: What? No, no way.

Jason just looks at her.

R: He doesn't! He antagonizes me every chance he gets.
J: Yeah. Exactly.
R: Jason, I love you, but you are wrong. 
J: No, I'm not. It's ok, though.
R: Oh, it is?
J: Yeah, it's not his fault that you're wonderful.

Robin ducks her head shyly and rests her forehead on his chest. He smiles and kisses the crown of her head, rubbing his hands on her upper arms. She raises her head and he kisses her. They're interrupted by Brenda rushing up and pulling Robin away as Robin laughs out a token protest.

J: Brenda....
B: Give it up, Jason!

She tugs Robin into a huddle with herself, Ned, and Lois. Patrick has been watching all this from across the room, and his gaze follows Jason as he orders a beer. Liz has wandered off to find Lucky, but Bobbie is still around.

B: Take a picture. It'll last longer.

Patrick turns to her and shakes his head.

P: I still can't believe she's married. And to a PI? Really? She's a doctor, for god's sake. A genius researcher.
B: A genius researcher? You do have it bad.
P: I do not. 
B: Your father had a hard time admitting he really cared about people, too. 
P: Please, don't talk about him. I'm not my father.
B: Sorry.

Patrick takes a sip of his drink.

B: She has two kids, you know.

Patrick spits out his drink. Bobbie laughs.

B: I'm sorry, I'm sorry. But your face!

Patrick wipes his mouth.

P: With who?!
B: Who do you think? 
P: Why didn't I know any of this? 
B: Forgive me, but I wasn't under the impression that you and Robin have a lot of heart to hearts. 
P: Yeah, but--
B: But what? 
P: We work together. We save lives together!

Bobbie gives him some quality side-eye.

B: Patrick, maybe if you asked more questions instead of talking about yourself all the time, you'd know more about your co-workers. 
P: Wow. (sarcastic) Thanks.

Patrick turns to go. Bobbie takes pity on him.

B: Patrick.

He turns back.

B: You really want to know more about her? All you have to do is pay attention. Robin has lived here almost her whole life, she's close with a lot of people in this town. She's very loved. 

Patrick considers this.

B: But be content with being her friend. Her and Jason? They have something very few people do. I wouldn't get in the middle of it.

***

Chapter Text

The streets of Paris. Robin and Jason run as if they're being chased, because they are. Jason grips Robin's hand tighter as he turns and shoots at their pursuers. Robin lets out a tiny shriek.

Suddenly, a man rushes out of a side alleyway to tackle Jason. His gun goes flying as he fights back. Robin grabs the gun just as Jason knocks him out cold with a punch. Before he can make it back to Robin, another gunman appears behind him, raises his gun, and Robin shoots him in the chest, perfectly and without hesitation.

Jason, amazed, turns back to see the man fall to the ground. He reaches Robin in three strides and gently takes the gun from her.

J: Are you ok?

Robin nods quickly and Jason frames her face in his hands.

J: I didn't know you could do that.

Robin, shaken, shrugs, gives a little smile.

R: Raised by cops.

They hug in relief. Then more men appear.

R: Jason!
J: C'mon!

Jason grabs Robin's hand and they run until they can't anymore, surrounded. Jason pushes Robin into an alcove in the street and starts to fight them. After a minute, he sees an opening for her to escape.

J: Robin, go!
R: No, I'm not leaving you!
J: I'll find you, I promise. Now run!

Robin hesitates as Jason fends off the goons.

J: Run!

With a last anguished look at Jason, Robin makes a break for it, sprinting away.

A few blocks north, Anna and Robert fight their way through their own group of henchmen. They punch, kick, and karate chop through guy after guy, working together and separately, kicking ass like pros. The fight spills over onto the metro tracks, and in the middle of the brawl, a train appears in the distance.

A: Robert! Move!

We hear the train sound its horn, and everyone scrambles up off the tracks, fighting dirty the whole way. Anna and Robert end up on different sides of the tracks as the train screams by. They make eye contact across the divide, and Robert nods. They'll meet on the other side of the fray. They keep fighting, and Anna breaks away and takes off down a street, trying to lose the men on her tail.

Robin runs down street after street, turning corners and trying to evade the gunmen. It looks like she might have succeeded. Out of breath, she comes around a building into a side street, and she sees a woman at the other end of it. It's Anna. They lock gazes and stare. Robin can't believe it.

R: (voice small and shocked) Mom?

They stare at each other for another moment. Anna takes a step forward and Robin takes a step back. She shakes her head, trying to snap out of it.

R: (to herself) It's not real. She's not real.

Anna's face fills with joy and grief, amazed that she found Robin here of all places, a world away from Port Charles. She shouts down the distance of the street.

A: Robin!

Robin starts at hearing her speak.

R: No, it can't, it can't be.
A: Robin!

Anna starts to run towards her. In a daze, Robin can't help but start to walk slowly forward.

R: (voice breaking) Mommy?

Anna rushes towards her, pure emotion. Robin's steps pick up speed as they get closer, until they're both running full tilt into one another's arms. As they crash into each other, Jason appears at the end of the street behind Robin, and Robert appears at the opposite end, behind Anna. They're both winded and holding firearms, and they're both stopped in their tracks immediately by what they see. Jason's face is confused and worried, but Robert's is overcome and elated.

Anna is clutching Robin to her, crying and squeezing and kissing her. Robin is still in shock, hugging her mother back desperately but still feeling like she's in a dream, like she doesn't know what's happening.

A: Oh, sweetheart, oh my darling girl--
R: (starting to sob) Mom? It is really you?

Anna holds Robin's face in her hands, looking her in the eyes as tears stream down both their faces.

A: It's me, darling. I promise. I'm here and I'm alive. It's me.

Robin dissolves into tears, burying her face in Anna's neck. Robert runs towards them.

Rt: Robin!

Both Anna and Robin turn to look at Robert as he runs towards them. At this second shock, Robin almost falls, Anna catching her and holding her up. Robert reaches them as Jason slowly approaches, drawn to Robin like a magnet as usual but not knowing what's going on.

Rt: (softly, wonderingly) Robin.

Robert reaches out to take her from Anna, practically holding her up as his eyes trace her face. Anna stays close, rubbing Robin's back and stroking her hair.

R: Daddy?
Rt: It's me, sweetheart.
R: How? I'm dreaming, I must be dreaming.
Rt: You're not dreaming. Look at me. Have I ever lied to you? 
R: (choking back sobs) Only once. When you promised you and Mom would come back.
A: Oh, Robin.
Rt: (eyes teary) Well, here we are, eh? We came back.

He keeps eye contact with Robin, giving her shoulders a tiny shake for emphasis.

Rt: We came back.

He touches his forehead to hers.

Rt: And we're never going away again.

Anna wraps her arms around Robin, and Robert wraps his arms around them both. All three just soak in each other's presence for a moment. Jason finally reaches them, gun still out at his side.

J: Robin.

Robert and Anna swiftly push Robin behind them.

Rt: Who are you?

Anna peers at Jason, then a lightbulb goes off.

A: Wait, is that...Monica and Alan's son? Jason? 
Rt: What?

Robin moves around her parents, almost in a daze, dodging Robert's arm as he tries to grab her and keep her back.

Rt: Robin!

She goes to Jason and touches a bruise on his cheek as he cups her elbow.

R: Are you ok?
J: Are you?

Jason looks over her head at Anna and Robert.

J: Robin, what's going on?
R: (shakes her head in euphoric bewilderment) I don't know.
J: Is that...
R: Yes.

Smiling, still in disbelief, Robin turns to face them.

R: These are my parents.
Rt: Robin, who is this man? Is your mother right? (to Jason) Are you Jason Quartermaine?
J: No.
R: Not quite.

Robin moves closer to Robert and Anna, drawing Jason with her.

R: Mom, Dad. This is Jason. Jason...this is my mom and dad.

***

Now outside the city, Jason, Robin, Robert, & Anna enter a small cottage.

J: This is a safe house, we should be good here for a while.
A: You're sure? 
J: Yeah, I called in a favor.

Robin makes eye contact with him, asking a silent question.

J: (gently reassures) Not that kind of favor.

She sighs in relief, Anna and Robert exchange glances.

Robin sits on a sofa and Jason crouches in front of her, looking her over for any injuries. Anna sits close to Robin, unable to move away from her, and Robert starts to methodically check the room to make sure it's safe.

J: You sure you're ok? 
R: I'm fine, I promise.

Her gaze drifts to her parents, wonder in her eyes. She lets out a this-is-crazy laugh that Anna returns. 

R: I'm wonderful. 

Robin focuses back on Jason and sees a cut on his arm.

R: Jason, you're bleeding.

He looks down.

J: It's nothing, I made sure you didn't touch--

Robin minutely shakes her head at him, a warning in her eyes. He gets it. Anna notices, puzzled, but doesn't comment.

J: I mean, I'll bandage it, don't worry. 

Jason strokes her cheek with his hand and she leans into it. Then he stands and goes to rummage through a drawer for a first aid kit.

A: Thank you. For finding us a place to regroup.

He nods.

A: Robert, any weaknesses or bugs?

Rt: No, we're alright. 

He looks at Robin and smiles.

Rt: Better than alright.

Robin stands and steps into his arms.

Rt: I still can't believe we found you.
R: (laughs, still dazed) You can't believe it? What about me?

Just then Anna notices the engagement ring on Robin's finger.

A: Robin, is that...

Robin sees where she's looking and blushes, proud. She steps out of Robert's embrace a bit and turns to face Jason, touching her ring with a soft smile on her face. His eyes shine back at her. Behind Robin, Robert's hands come to rest on her shoulders.

R: Yes. Jason and I are engaged. 

Robert steps back, stunned.

Rt: What?!
A: Engaged? But--
Rt: You're her fiance? Robin, you're way too young--

Robin is starting to look distressed. Anna cuts Robert off at the pass, recognizing that this is not the right time.

A: Robert! Not now.

Anna gives him a look and he stops himself.

Rt: (soothingly, to Robin) Ok, alright, we'll talk about this later. 

Robin reaches out to both her parents and they reach back.

R: I know there's so much to say, to catch up on, but I just want to be with the two of you. It feels too good to be true. 
J: Maybe it is.
R: Jason...
Rt: What's that supposed to mean?
J: How do we know that you're really who you say you are? And if you are, where have you been all these years? 
Rt: Excuse me? 
A: We ARE Robin's parents. (to Robin) And it's a long story, sweetheart. But please know, we did not stay away from you by choice. 
J: Prove it.
R: Jason!  Mom, Dad, he's just trying to protect me--
Rt: Who do you think you are?

Jason just stares at him challengingly. 

Rt: No, I mean, truly, who are you? You're Jason Quartermaine, but you're not? How do we know we can trust you? 
R: Dad, stop! Jason Quartermaine had an accident years ago and he woke up from his coma a different person. This, Jason Morgan, who I love, is who he is now.
Rt: That's insane! And he's still a Quartermaine. Which is not a compliment, by the way.
A: Robert! Alan and Monica are good people.
Rt: Of a sort.
A: And Lila hosted our wedding at the mansion for goodness sake!
Rt: What's that got to do with anything?

Robin's laughter interrupts them.

R: I'm sorry, I'm sorry, it's probably crazy, but I've missed even this. (starts to choke up) I've missed listening to your bickering. (crying now) I've missed you both so much.

Anna goes to her and embraces her, Robert follows, and Jason watches.

A: Oh, darling,
Rt: Sweetheart, it's ok. We're here, we're here.

Robin wipes her eyes.

R: Can we just stop arguing, please? I have my parents back and three of the people I love most in the world are with me and safe. Please?
A: Of course, Robin, of course. 
Rt: Whatever you want, love.

Robin reaches out a hand to Jason and he takes it, tabling his distrust and questions for the moment, happy that she's happy.

***

Robin has passed out on one of the beds, spent. Tear tracks line her face, but she has the tiniest smile on her lips. Anna tucks a blanket around her as Jason enters. He stands in the doorway, uncertain about interrupting. Anna sits on the side of the bed, gazing at her.

A: You can come in, you know.

Surprised she could tell he was there, he walks to the other side of the bed. In her sleep, Robin kicks out a foot out from under her blanket. He reaches to tuck it back in and Anna does the same thing. Jason pulls his hand back.

J: Sorry.
A: (smiles) No, it's ok. You do it.

Jason tucks her foot back in, his face loving and unguarded for a second. Anna watches him.

A: She still does that?
J: Yeah.
A: She's done that ever since she was a toddler.

Jason sits in a chair near the bed, wary but eager underneath to learn more about Robin as a child.

J: Really? 
A. Oh yes.

They both look at her, Anna stroking her hair.

A: She looks so young like this. She's grown so much, but like this....she still looks like my little girl.
J: What was she like?
A: As a little girl?

Jason nods.

A: Well, she was always a deep sleeper.

They share a cautious smile.

A: She was so precocious. So curious, so smart. And so brave. It was incredible. She saw so much danger, but she always had every confidence that she would be kept safe. (pause) Something tells me that isn't quite as true anymore. 

Jason looks down, unable to deny it.

A: But she seems happy. And I have to assume at least some of that happiness is because of you. So thank you, Mr. Morgan.
J: Jason.
A: Jason.

Robert enters. He nods at Jason.

Rt: You're on first watch, kid.

Jason's face closes off. He stands and gives Robin a kiss on the forehead, then goes into the other room and closes the door behind him.

A: You could be nicer to him, you know.
Rt: No, I couldn't.

Anna stands and goes over to Robert.

A: He's not the enemy. He's on our side.
Rt: No punk who thinks he's marrying my not even twenty year old daughter is on our side.
A: She's actually twenty-one, I think.
Rt: Same difference.

Anna gives him a look.

Rt: I don't trust him.
A: Well, neither do I, but we need to tread carefully here, Robert. A lot has changed--
Rt: Clearly.
A: A lot has changed and we don't have all the information.
Rt: We're still her parents!
A: Yes, we're her parents, (starting to get teary) but we have no idea what her life has been like.

Robert turns away, getting emotional as well.

A: We have to earn her love and trust again.

Robert turns back to Anna.

Rt: We already have her love and trust.
A: Yes, but it's different. We missed her growing up, Robert. We missed it!

Anna starts to cry in earnest and Robert pulls her into his arms.

Rt: Shhh, love, shh. We can't get those years back, I know. And that's a nightmare that I still haven't accepted. But we're together again. We won't lose any more time.

Anna composes herself a bit.

A: Ugh, I'm sorry. I got snot all over your jumper. 
Rt: Eh, I've had worse.

They pull apart a bit and look down at Robin, Robert's arm still around Anna.

Rt: God, she's beautiful. I mean, she always was, but now...
A: I know.
Rt: Can you believe we made her? 
A: Yes, I can. But only if I assume she got mostly my genes.

Robert pinches her side.

A: Ow.

They sit down on the side of Robin's bed, staying close to each other.

Rt: Look at her. Just...look at her.
A: We got her back, Robert. We got her back.

Anna leans her head on Robert's shoulder and they just look.

***

A little later, Robert emerges from the bedroom into the main room. Jason is standing next to the window, keeping watch.

Rt: Anna's asleep. She and Robin have been through a lot today.

Jason nods.

Rt: You don't talk much, do you? 
J: Only when I have something to say.

Robert looks at him consideringly.

Rt: Well, you've lucked out, because I am rarely at a loss for words.

Robert sits and stretches his legs out in front of him, then takes a gun from a nearby table and begin taking it apart and cleaning it.

Rt: You know, I remember you. Barely, but I do. The old you, I mean.

Jason doesn't respond.

Rt: I'm guessing by the expression on your face you don't like hearing about who you used to be. Well, too bad, because I don't care much about what you want. (pause) I remember when you were born. I remember when your biological mother was killed. Susan Moore. I led the investigation. I remember when you were just a runt of a kid, running around with your brother.  I remember when your parents shipped the two of you off to boarding school. I think I even remember you after puberty. I saw you a few times around town right before my much exaggerated demise, but I was a bit preoccupied trying to find my missing wife. Some kind of preppy jock type, yeah?

Jason keeps his mask in place.

J: What's your point?
Rt: My point is, none of that matters if it's not you. I don't know you. And even if you were still Jason Quartermaine, I wouldn't know you, beyond vague memories of you chasing Robin around the hospital at Christmas-time. I have no idea what kind of man you are. 
J: The feeling's mutual.

Robert raises an eyebrow.

Rt: Robin never spoke about her parents? 
J: She has a picture of the two of you on our bedside table. She gets sad when she talks about you. But happy at the same time.

Robert reacts to this.

J: Mac talks about you too sometimes.

Robert is silent, waiting for him to go on. Jason's voice gets soft and dangerous.

J: But how do I know you're still the man they talked about? Six years is a long time. And nobody who loves Robin would ever abandon her for that long.
Rt: I did not abandon my daughter! Just because things are happening around you that you don't understand, little boy, doesn't mean that you get to decide anything about Robin's life!
J: It's my job to protect her, and I'll do what I have to do.
Rt: Well, I'm here now. You can step down. She has me, and she has her mother. She doesn't need a civilian butting in.
J: A civilian?
Rt: Oh, I'm sorry. Did I miss something? Are you a cop? A soldier? A trained agent of the government? 

Silence.

Rt: Didn't think so.
J: Like you said, you don't know anything about me. 
Rt: Well, you've obviously had some type of training, you don't hold a gun completely like an amatuer, at least. But trust me, it doesn't compare.
J: We'll see.
Rt: (chuckles) So young, so naive. 
J: What I am is here for Robin. Always. And unlike you, I've been here.
Rt: Things change, young man. 

Robert finishes cleaning the gun and stands up with it. He walks into Jason's personal space. Jason is undaunted.

Rt: Things change.

Robert puts the gun into it's holster and after a bit of a stare down, turns away and goes back into the bedroom. Jason takes out his own gun, looks at it for a second, then puts it back and continues to keep watch.

***

Robert enters the bedroom. Anna is curled up on the bed next to Robin, arm around her. Robert sits on the other side of the bed. He reaches out and strokes Robin's cheek. 

***

The next morning, Robert makes tea as he pores over a map, plotting their next move. Robin sits nearby at the kitchen table, and Jason leans against the kitchen counter, watching Robert and absently massaging Robin's shoulders. Anna sits down across from Robin and puts a gun on table in front of her.

A: Off you go.
R: Mom....
A: Unless a lot has changed, I know you don't care much for guns, but this is necessary Robin.

Robin sighs.

R: Ok.

Robin pulls the gun apart and checks the chamber, then begins to put it back together and load it, all expertly.

A: Good. Now let me see your form. Aim at the window over there.

Robin stands and aims the gun gracefully.

Rt: Not bad.

He goes over and adjusts her stance a bit.

Rt: Hold your arm a little higher, there.

Jason watches all this, not sure he likes it. 

A: Perfect. 

Robin hands the gun back to Anna, who inspects it, then hands it back.

A: I think this one will work fine for you. Keep it close, alright, darling? Hopefully you won't have to use it.

Robin nods. 

J: She won't have to use it.

Anna raises her eyebrows.

A: I'm glad you can afford to be optimistic, but we like our daughter to be prepared for all eventualities.
J: Robin doesn't like violence.
R: It's fine, Jason, really. 
Rt: We know what our daughter does and doesn't like, Morgan. We don't need you to tell us.

Jason starts towards him, but Robin's hand on his chest stops him.

R: Stop, ok? Both of you. 
Rt: (all smiles and reassurance) Of course love, don't you worry. Now let's see you pick a lock.

***

Chapter Text

***

Robin sits at the kitchen table at Mac's in the middle of the night, a cup of tea clutched in her hand. She looks up as Jason enters from the living room, rubbing his eyes.

J: Robin?
R: (tiredly) Hey.
J: What are you doing up?
R: Couldn't sleep. I can't stop thinking about Michael.

Jason sits next to her and takes her hand. They weave their fingers together and Robin sighs.

J: (gently) You making yourself sick isn't going to help Michael.
R: (almost in tears) I'm just so worried, Jason. He's only a little baby! What is A.J. going to do if--
J: Don't think like that. We'll find him.

Robin looks at Jason as the tears spill over. He cups her cheek and rubs one away with his thumb.

R: I know I have no right to ask you this, but...do you promise?

Jason smiles a little as he lets his eyes roam over her face.

J: I promise.

Robin leans closer, seeking comfort, and their foreheads touch. Jason's hand moves to the back of her neck.

J: And you always have the right.

***

 

Chapter Text

***

Luke's Club. Nikolas sits at a table with Emily, ignoring Luke's glares from the bar. Robin enters, supported by Jason on one side, and Mac hovering close by. When he sees them, Luke comes out from behind the bar to greet them, a huge grin on his face.

L: Robin!
R:  (smiles) Hi, Luke.

They hug, Luke taking care not to squeeze too hard.

L: I'm thrilled to see you sweetheart, but should you really be out and about yet?
M: That's what I said.
R: Oh please, don't get them started. I'm fine, I promise. 
L: Well, either way, it's good to see your smiling face looking so safe and happy.

Jason looks down at Robin, full of private relief that she's ok, and the world narrows to just them for a moment as she takes his hand. Mac has his own soft smile for his niece. Finally, Jason looks back up at Luke.

J: Can we get a table, Luke?
L: Coming right up.

Nikolas watches as Luke seats the three of them.

N: Who's that?
E: (still looking at the menu) Hmm?
N: That girl over there.

Emily looks up and turns to see what Nikolas is talking about.

E: Oh, that's Robin! (sighs in relief) She looks so much better than the last time I saw her.
N: What do you mean?
E: She was shot about a month ago. It was really bad, Jason was so scared.

Nikolas tries to recall, nods a bit.

N: I think I remember reading about that in the news. (realizes) Wait, Jason? Your brother?
E: Yeah, they're together. They make a cute couple, don't they?

Nikolas stares at Robin as Jason whispers something in her ear and she laughs.

N: Yeah.

Over at their table, Jason strokes Robin's back as she sips her drink.

J: You sure you're up for this?
R: Jason. I'm fine.
J: Just let me know if you get tired, cause I can bring the car around right away--

Robin gives him a fond but exasperated smile.

R: Stop. You sound like Uncle Mac.

Mac sits back down at the table as Robin leans back against Jason and he kisses her temple.

M: I heard that.
R: Good. (glances towards the bar) Luke does not look happy right now.
M: I'd imagine that has something to do with Nikolas Cassadine over there.
J: Probably.

Robin turns towards Nikolas and Emily.

R: You know, I've heard a lot about him, but this is my first time seeing him in person.
M: It's probably best if you steer clear of him and Stefan.
R: Mac...
M: I'm serious, Robin. You know the history between our families.

Jason looks curious.

J: What history?
R: Uncle Mac is being a little over dramatic.
M: (to Jason) You know what went down with Luke and Laura and the Cassadines.
J: The basics, yeah.
M: Well, let's just say Robin's father was in the thick of that feud back in the day. And Cassadines have a long memory.

Jason looks over at Nikolas warily.

R: I'll be careful, I promise.
M: That's all I ask.

Jason turns back.

J: Don't worry about it, they won't bother you.
R: Oh, they won't, will they?
J: Nope.

Robin rolls her eyes and steals one of Jason's fries. He smiles and kisses the back of her neck.

M: I'm starting to like you more and more, Morgan.

Emily comes up to their table.

E: Hi, Robin! You look wonderful.
R: (smiles) Hi to you too! And I feel pretty good.
E: (smiles back) Good. Hey, Jason. Mac.
J: Hi, Emily.
M: Wanna join us?
E: No, I'm here with a friend, but I just wanted to see how Robin was doing.
R: Much better.
E: I'm really glad. I know Jason is too.

Jason squeezes Robin's waist.

J: You have no idea.

Nikolas is at the bar, waiting to order more drinks and food for him and Emily. Luke has stepped away, but Lucky sees him from the back room and approaches. Nikolas is still staring at Robin and Lucky notices.

L: Don't even think about it.
N: (sighs) Think about what?
L: Do you know who that is?
N: As a matter of fact, I do. Emily said her name was Robin.

Lucky smirks.

L: Didn't get her last name though, huh?
N: So?
L: It's Scorpio. Robin Scorpio. She's Mac's niece. And Robert Scorpio's daughter.

Nikolas stiffens in recognition, but as he looks at Robin again, it doesn't seem to erase his fascination with her.

L: Yeah. So stay away from her.
N: You don't tell me what to do.
L: You're in my family's bar, so yeah, I do. Spencers and Scorpios stick together, always have, always will. And we don't have any use for Cassadines.
N: She can tell me that on her own.

Lucky nods towards Robin's table.

L: You do see the guy next to her, right? Jason Morgan? Former Sonny Corinthos employee? I wouldn't mess with him if I were you.
N: Well, you aren't me, are you? Thank god.
L: Look, man, you're already spending time with Emily and sniffing around Sarah. I'm telling you, Robin's off limits.

Lucky walks away, and Nikolas keeps watching Robin. 

***

It's a little later in the evening and Luke's has filled up. Lots of people stop by the table to say hi to Robin and see how she's doing. After a while, Robin yawns big and leans against Jason a little more heavily than usual.

J: Hey, you getting tired?
R: Yeah, a little. 
M: Ok, time to go home.
R: But Mac...
M: No buts. I'll go get the car.
R: (yawning again) Ok.

While they wait for Mac, Jason shifts Robin's legs onto his lap. Worn out and fading fast, Robin lays her head on his shoulder.

J: Sometimes it still surprises me how little you are.
R: Who are you calling---(yawn)--little?
J: Shhhh, just you.

Robin murmurs unintelligibly and burrows deeper into Jason. A few moments later, Mac comes back.

M: Ok, I've got the car up front. Did she fall asleep?
J: Yeah. I think she overdid it tonight.
M: Yeah, no kidding. You got her?
J: Yep.

Jason stands, Robin in his arms. He follows Mac and carries her out the door, Nikolas watching from his table with Emily the whole time.

***

Chapter Text

Outback. Jason and Robin sit at a table, finishing up a meal. Nikolas is at another table with Stefan, and he can't help glancing over at Robin from time to time. Stefan notices.

S: Isn't that the Scorpio girl? 
N: Hmm?
S: (not fooled) The girl you keep looking at. 
N: (trying to seem casual) I think so, yeah. And I'm not looking at her. 

Stefan makes pointed eye contact with Nikolas.

S: Be careful, Nikolas. That family is not to be trusted. Her father was a very dangerous person. Her mother even more so.
N: But aren't her parents dead?
S: She's still a Scorpio.

Nikolas looks pensive, and he steals another glance over at Robin. Meanwhile, Jason rises and puts on his jacket.

J: Sorry I have to leave.
R: Don't worry about it, Uncle Mac is meeting me here later anyway and I can get started on my reading. We'll see you back at the apartment?
J: Sure, I think Mac wants to go over some case stuff before dinner.
R: Anything special you want me to order?
J: Mmm...those dumpling things. 

Jason leans down to kiss Robin, lingering.

R: (smiling) Done.

They kiss again.

R: I'm worried about telling A.J., how he'll react...
J: Don't. It'll be fine.
R: But--

Jason interrupts her with another kiss, deeper this time. She subsides, blushing.

J: I love you.
R: I love you, too.

With one last kiss on her forehead, he exits. Nikolas watches him leave, and so does Carly, who we now see lurking in a corner, obviously waiting for Jason to be gone. Robin takes out a book as a waiter refills her coffee.

R: Thanks, Jennifer.

Carly gathers herself and walks over to Robin.

C: We need to talk.
R: (surprised) Carly, what are you doing here? (realizing) Were you waiting for Jason to leave?

Carly sits across from Robin.

C: (desperate) Please. Please just hear me out.

Robin looks uncertain, but sympathy wins out and she sighs.

R: Carly, I don't know what you think talking to me is going to achieve.
C: You need to convince Jason not to tell A.J.
R: Carly!
C: C'mon Robin, please! It'll ruin everything. And it's not good for the baby!
R: You mean it's not good for you. 
C: It's the same thing!
R: No, it's not! Your baby deserves to know both of it's parents. And A.J. deserves to know the truth.
C: But he'll try and take my baby away from me, just like Tony!
R: (pointedly) But that's only because of what you did to him.

This silences Carly, who sits stewing in the truth and her own guilt. Robin softens a bit.

R: (gently) Carly, you had to know the truth would come out eventually. And why even lie anymore? You and Tony broke up.
C: Thanks for rubbing it in my face!
R: You know that's not what I'm doing. I'm just trying--
C: Of course not! Because you're perfect!
R: Carly...
C: (raising her voice) No, c'mon, admit it, you must be loving this! Once more, you get the guy who loves you more than life itself, and I get two men who hate me and want to steal my baby!
R: (incredulously) And whose fault is that?!

Carly suddenly stands up and slaps Robin hard across the face, whipping her head to the side. The whole restaurant goes silent, and the bartender starts to head over, but Nikolas shoots up in his chair and beats him to it. After a moment of absorbing the blow, Robin turns back to face Carly, eyes steely.

R: Did that make you feel better? 
C: (completely out of control) Screw you, you bitch!

Carly goes to hit Robin again, but Nikolas has reached their table and grabs her arm.

N: I wouldn't do that if I were you.
C: Get the hell off me!

The bartender joins them.

B: Ma'am, I'm going to have to ask you to leave.
C: Why? It's a free country, isn't it?

Robin stands up.

R: Get out, Carly. Yelling at me and hitting me isn't going to change my mind. Or Jason's.
C: Fine! (hisses) I hate you. I'm going to lose everything because of you. 
R: Because of me? Or because of you?

Unable to find a response to this, Carly storms out. Outside, she finally breaks down, looking sick inside at what she's done and at how her world's about to come crashing down.

Inside, Robin looks at Nikolas and the bartender, Ethan.

R: I'm sorry about that, Ethan.
E: It's no problem, that lady is obviously nuts. Sorry she bothered you. It's a good thing Mac wasn't here, he would have hit the roof.
R: No kidding. There isn't any chance he can maybe...not hear about it?
E: I'll try, but no promises. You know how he is.
R: Yeah, I know.

Ethan squeezes Robin on the arm and heads back to the bar. Robin turns to Nikolas.

R: Thanks for the help. You didn't need to do that.
N: Yes, I did. That's what friends are for, right? Or acquaintances hopefully on the way to friends.

Robin smiles.

R: Well, then I appreciate it. I had it under control, though. I can handle myself fine.
N: I'm sure you can.

Nikolas peers at the fading red mark on her cheek and raises his hand to lightly hold her jaw, turning it to get a better look.

N: That looked like it hurt. Are you ok?

Robin gently moves his hand from her face and nods.

R: I'm fine, really.
N: Promise?
R: Promise.

There's a pause, then Robin gestures towards her forgotten book.

R: I should really get back to my reading.
N: And I should get back to my uncle. 
R: Thanks again, Nikolas.
N: (smiles) You're welcome.

Nikolas walks back to his table and Robin sits, letting out a sigh.

***

Jason's apartment above the P.I. office. Robin sits at the kitchen table with a spread of books and notes, studying. Jason and Mac sit at the table as well with a couple case files. Robin rests her bare feet on Jason's lap, and he absently strokes her legs as he talks.

M: I'm not sure about this...
J: I'm telling you, Mac, it's the husband.
M: How do you know?
J: I don't know, I just know.
M: What, like your gut is telling you?

Jason shrugs.

M: We can't rely just on your gut, Jason, we need proof.
R: (without looking up from her books) You rely on your gut all the time.

Mac looks at Robin accusingly and Jason tries to hide a smile.

R: (still taking notes) So did Mom and Dad. And Frisco. And Felicia. And Sean--
M: Robin.
R: Just sayin'.

Jason squeezes her foot and she smiles into her textbook.

M: Okay, I can see we won't get any further today with you two ganging up on me.

Mac and Jason clear up their files as Robin stands and moves behind Mac, hugging him around the shoulders.

R: I'm just teasing, you know I love you.
M: Yeah, yeah.

Mac kisses Robin on the cheek and stands, getting ready to go.

M: What are you two up to tonight?
J: A.J.'s coming over for dinner.
R: Chinese.
M: Oh, really? Does this happen often?
J: No.
R: (emphasizing) But...that doesn't mean we can't start to make it a habit, right?

Jason grunts and Mac grins.

M: Just go easy on him. God knows A.J. could use a break.

Robin walks Mac to the door.

M: Don't study too hard, ok?

They hug.

R: I won't.
M: I'll believe that when I see it.
J: Uh-huh.

Robin turns and mock glares at Jason, then shoos Mac out the door.

R: Ok, get outta here. 
M: Jason, we'll talk more about that case later. And save me some sweet and sour pork!

Jason waves from the kitchen.

R: Bye, Uncle Mac.
M: Bye, sweetie.

Mac is heading out just as A.J. arrives.

A: Mac.
M: A.J.

Mac waves once more to Robin and Jason, and leaves. A.J. smiles at Robin.

A: Hey, Robin.
R: Hey, yourself.

They hug, and Jason comes up to stand behind Robin, his hands on her shoulders.

A: Jason, it's good to see you. Thanks for inviting me, it was a nice surprise.
J: Thanks for coming.

They shake hands.

R: Come in, come in!

A.J. enters and puts a bottle of sparkling cider on the table.

R: Oh, thank you!

Jason smiles at Robin and goes to grab a bottle opener and some glasses.

A: Well, I couldn't come empty-handed, now could I? 
R: It's not fancy though, we're just ordering Chinese.
A: I love not-fancy. And I love Chinese. I'm just glad to be here.
R: I'm glad you're here too.

Jason starts to open the cider and pour. He looks at Robin questioningly and she motions that she just wants a little.

A: Jason, how are your P.I. cases going? 
J: (nods consideringly) Good, they're going good. How's ELQ? 
A: Eh, it's going. Cheers.

They all clink glasses, Jason's arm around Robin's shoulders.

A: Things have been rough with grandfather ever since I fell off the wagon a while back, but I'm working on winning everyone's trust back.
R: About that...

The apartment buzzer goes off, interrupting them.

J: I'll get the food.

Jason kisses Robin on the head and then walks to the door.

A: Thank you, Robin.
R: For what?
A: For this. I know it's because of you that I get to have dinner with my brother. 
R: Stop. Jason cares about you, you know he does. It's just...
A: Different.
R: Yeah. 
A: That's ok. I've made my peace with that, I really have.

Robin squeezes A.J.'s arm as Jason comes back with the take-out. They start to lay it out on the table, grabbing plates and utensils.

R: Mmm, looks good. 
J: Plus, you didn't eat enough lunch, I can tell.
R: A.J., please tell Jason that I am absolutely fine and that I always eat plenty.
A: I'm on Jason's side on this one, I've seen how you are with your tunnel vision when it comes to school work.

Jason holds his hands up as if to say "see?"

R: Traitor.

Everyone gets settled at the the table with their various cartons of food. They start to eat. Jason and Robin exchange a look and Jason takes a deep breath.

J: A.J., we actually asked you to come over because we need to tell you something.
A: Oh? 
R: Yes, and it's kinda big.
A: You're engaged, aren't you?

Jason looks completely thrown and Robin lets out a startled laugh.

A: (excited) Emily thought it was happening but I told her it was way too soon. I'm happy to be wrong. (confidingly) You didn't hear it from me, but there might be a pool going on up at the mansion. I put in for Christmas 1998, but--
R: A.J., stop, we're not engaged.
A: Oh. You're sure?
R: (laughs) I think we would know.

A.J. looks disappointed and Jason looks contemplative. Robin just thinks it's funny.

J: A betting pool? Really?
A: Just forget I said that. So what did you want to tell me if it wasn't that?
R: It's Carly.

A.J.'s face darkens.

A: What about Carly?
J: She came here late last night. To talk.
A: About what? 
R: About her baby.
A: (starts to look suspicious) What about her baby? 
J: A.J., when you drank and blacked out that night, it wasn't your fault. It was Carly. She did that to you.
A: (sighs) I know.
R: You do? 
A: (darkly) Yes. I've known for a while now, but I promised Carly I would keep it quiet so that she could be happy with Tony.

A.J. looks between Jason and Robin.

A: How do you two know? Is that what she told you last night? Why would she admit to that? 
J: Because she was explaining about how she had to get you out of the way so that she could lie. About the baby.

A.J. stands and starts to pace.

A: Goddamnit. I knew, I knew something wasn't right. That's why I finally got a court order to get a paternity test done. What else did she say? 
R: A.J....
A: Tell me.
J: The baby's yours. Carly told me.

A.J. sits down in shock.

A: Oh my god.

Robin reaches out to grasp his arm.

R: There's more.
A: More?

Robin looks at Jason.

J: The reason Carly came to tell me all this, is because she wanted me to lie too. To tell everyone that I'm the father.
A: What?
R: She and Tony broke up, and Tony wants custody of the baby. So...
A: So Carly lied. Again.

A.J. clenches his jaw and bows his head.

R: A.J., I'm so sorry. I'm sorry you had to find out like this. But at least now you know. And now you can be a part of your baby's life.
A: I can't believe it. I can't believe I'm going to be a father.
R: (smiles) Yeah. You are.

A look of joy spreads across A.J.'s face. Then it turns angry.

A: I have to get that baby away from her.
R: A.J., no.
A: Are you kidding me? She's a sociopath! After what she did to me, to Tony, to Jason, to you?! She's not fit to be a mother. 
R: She was just scared. I know what she did was terrible, but she just wanted to hold onto Tony. And now she's trying to hold onto her baby.
A: Robin, I know you always try and see the good in people, but come on.

Robin looks to Jason.

J: I'm sorry, Robin, but I'm not gonna defend Carly. She wanted to hurt you. 
R: Jason...
A: He's right, Robin. If she wanted Jason to claim to be the father of her baby, then she definitely didn't care about ripping your life apart to get what she wanted. Just like she's ripped all these other lives apart. Look at Bobbie, for chrissakes!

Robin sighs, and Jason reaches out to rub her back.

R: I know, I know. All I'm saying is that we all make mistakes. And if you try and keep Carly away from her baby, all you'll be doing is proving her fears true.

A.J.'s anger abates a bit, and he looks pensive.

R: (gently) Don't you want to be a better father than that? 
A: I'll think about it, ok? That's all I can promise.
R: Thank you.
A: But she's not going to keep playing these games with me like she has been with everyone else.
J: What are you going to do? 
A: For now? I'm going to confront Carly, and we're going to do that paternity test. After that I guess we'll see.

A.J. sighs and looks at them both.

A: Thank you for telling me. I owe you big time. If it weren't for you two, who knows how long Carly would have kept lying.
R: Of course. 
A: And I'm sorry that she dragged you both into all this. 
J: You deserved to know, A.J.
A: Thank you, Jason. That means a lot.

***

Later that night. A.J. has left and Robin and Jason are clearing up the food and dishes.

R: I still can't really believe all this. 
J: I'm just glad we're done with it. I don't want Carly in our lives.

Robin moves close to Jason, resting her hands on his stomach. He slides his hands up her arms and rubs her shoulders.

R: She isn't. But I'd like to think that we would be there to help A.J. if he really needed it.

Jason cups Robin's face in his hands and kisses her.

R: Mmm. What was that for?
J: For being you. Even if I do worry about you being too nice to people like Carly.

Robin hugs Jason close and breathes deep, resting her head on his chest. He strokes her hair.

J: Everything ok?
R: Yeah, this whole thing just made me think about my mom and dad. And how I didn't know they were my parents until I was a kid. I know my mom had good reasons for keeping it a secret, she was protecting me, but I missed out on a lot. I wouldn't want Carly's baby to miss out on being with it's real father. Or mother.
J: You can't fix everything, Robin.
R: I know.
J: Maybe a distraction would help.
R: A distraction?
J: Yeah...

Jason kisses Robin again, and after a minute she pulls away.

R: Jason, I have to study.
J: Study later.
R: But--

Jason cuts her off with another kiss, grips her waist, and lifts her up onto the counter. He moves between her legs and deepens the kiss, then breaks away from her mouth to start kissing her neck. Robin lets out a little moan.

R: I guess I--I have been studying all day--
J: Mmm-hm.

Jason threads his fingers through her hair, holding her head as he kisses her again, licking into her mouth. They kiss and kiss as Jason lifts Robin up with his hands under her thighs and walks them to the bedroom, her legs around his waist and her arms around his neck.

***

The next day. Jason is leaving Kelly's as Nikolas is entering. Nikolas sees him and stops.

N: Hey, Jason, right? We've met a few times.
J: Yeah.
N: I actually need to talk to you about something. Do you have a minute?
J: Uh, not really.
N: It's important. It's about Robin.

This gets Jason's attention.

J: (suspicious) What about Robin?
N: I, uh, was at the Outback yesterday, and Carly showed up. She attacked Robin.
J: What?
N: Yeah, she waited until you left and then she sat down at Robin's table. They talked for a few minutes, well, Robin talked, Carly mostly yelled. Then Carly slapped Robin. Hard.

Jason's face has gotten progressively more furious and stony through this. He now looks like murder.

N: The bartender and I broke it up and she got thrown out after that. Robin didn't tell you?
J: No.
N: Why wouldn't she?
J: Because she's protecting someone who doesn't deserve it. I'll handle it.
N: Ok, I just thought you should know.

Nikolas turns to enter Kelly's.

J: Nikolas.

He turns back to Jason.

J: Thanks for telling me.
N: Robin seems like a good person. She shouldn't have to deal with someone like Carly.
J: After I'm done, she won't.

Nikolas nods, then goes inside. Jason rages internally for a moment, then continues on his way.

***

GH. Jason gets off the elevator, looking around until he spots Carly and A.J. arguing in a corner.

A: Stop, just stop! We are having a child together, Carly, just deal with it.
C: Deal with it? Deal with it? There's nothing to deal with and you are not getting anywhere near my baby!
A: I'm sorry, did I miss the part where I turned into the anti-christ? For god's sake, we used to be friends!
C: Yeah, until you threatened to take my baby away! You and Tony should join a freaking club!
A: Well, maybe if you weren't such an insane, lying, manipulative excuse for a human being, you wouldn't be reaping the consequences!
C: Oh, that's rich, coming from you--

Jason interrupts their shouting match.

J: Carly.
A: Jason, what are you doing here?
C: Jason--
J: Shut up! You hit Robin?

A.J. rounds on Carly.

A: You did what?
C: I don't know what you heard, but Robin was exaggerating, she has it out for me, Jason--
A: (disgusted) What is wrong with you, Carly?
J: SHUT UP!

Startled, Carly and A.J. stop talking. Carly looks terrified, and A.J. is all exhausted anger. Jason gets in Carly's face.

J: We are done. Do you understand? Done. And if you EVER touch Robin again, I'll kill you myself. I may be living a different life now, but nobody comes after Robin. Nobody. Do you hear me?

Carly is mute, shocked tears in her eyes and self-hatred and fear on her face.

J: DO YOU HEAR ME?

Carly shuts her eyes and nods frantically. A.J. cautiously touches Jason's arm and Jason backs up a few steps, holding eye contact with a destroyed Carly.

A: (gently) C'mon, Jason, that's enough. She gets it.

Jason breaks eye contact with Carly and turns away.

A: Tell Robin I'm sorry, ok? 
J: It's not your fault.

With one final stone-faced look at Carly, Jason leaves. A.J. turns back to Carly.

A: Are you kidding me with this shit? Robin has been the only one defending you in all this. She's defended you to me, to Jason. She told me I shouldn't fight you for sole custody, that we should be parents together. And now, I can't see a single reason why I should listen to her.
C: (trying to get it together) Go to hell, A.J.
A: Lady, I'm already there. (points a finger at her) Stay away from Robin.

A.J. exits, leaving a broken, impotent Carly alone in the hallway.

***

Later that afternoon, Jason comes home to the P.I. office. He walks in the door to see Tony Jones sitting in one of the chairs and Mac sitting behind his desk.

T: Hello, Jason.
J: Dr. Jones. Hey, Mac.

Jason takes his jacket off and Mac looks between him and Tony, curious.

M: Tony says he has something important to talk to you about...anything I should know?
J: No, Mac, it's ok. Can you give us a minute?

Mac nods and stands, gathering up a few folders.

J: Oh, and Robin and I are good for family dinner tonight. She said she wants to make some dessert thing first, so we'll come over after that.
M: Good. Uh, I'll be in the back office if you need anything.

Mac heads to the back, clasping Jason's shoulder on the way. Tony stands up.

T: So, I'm sure you know why I'm here.
J: I have an idea.
T: Carly's told a lot of lies about you, and I'm sure she's told some lies about me too. She's using you, and that's gotta stop. I understand that you and Carly are friends, but-
J: We're not friends. Not anymore.
T: (sighs in relief) Good. I take that to mean that you were never involved with her in the way that she said you were? Romantically? Sexually?

Silence. Tony fills it.

T: I was just under the impression that you had more respect for Robin than that. 
J: Don't bring up Robin. She's got nothing to do with this.
T: You think Robin's not a part of this? I've known her since she was six years old, and I sincerely hope you wouldn't hurt her like that. Or get her mixed up with someone like Carly.
J: My relationship with Robin is none of your business.

Silence again as Tony tries to figure Jason out. 

J: But what you really want is an answer about Carly's baby. It isn't mine.
T: I knew it, I knew she was lying. I knew it was my baby.
A: No, it's not.

Jason and Tony look over to see A.J. standing in the open front door.

T: What? What are you talking about? 
A: I'm the father of Carly's baby.

Tony looks incredulous and Jason looks like he'd rather be anywhere else.

T: Is this a joke? Just how many men did Carly sleep with? 
A: Look, Tony, I know this is hard to take in. Carly's been lying to me too. But the timing was suspicious from the beginning, and--
T: No. No, this is my baby. Did Carly put you up to this? Jason refused to lie for her, so she turned to you?
A: No, it's not like that. I mean, at first, yeah, I agreed to keep our one night stand quiet, because I thought Carly was my friend and she told me there was no way the baby could be mine, but the lies kept piling up--
T: (sarcastic) Ohh, so it was a one night stand? And you were lying for her, but now you're not?
A: No. Yes. But--
T: How am I supposed to believe any of this is true? If Carly has been lying to you just like she's been lying to me, then you don't know that it's your baby.

Frustrated and wanting this to be over, Jason intervenes.

J: It is his baby. Carly told me.

Tony turns to Jason.

T: How do you know she wasn't lying to you, too?
J: Because she was trying to get me on her side. She thought I would help her, so she told me the truth. She wasn't hiding anything.

Tony shakes his head.

T: This is ridiculous. Carly has obviously manipulated both of you in order to steal my baby away from me, and I'm not going to let it happen.

Tony turns to leave.

A: It's not your baby!
T: (angry, starting to get unreasonable) Yes, it is! Stay away from my child, A.J.!
A: No way in hell. Not if I'm the father, which I am!

Tony rushes A.J., pushing him against the wall. Mac, hearing all the shouting, comes in from the back office and hurries over, trying to break it up. Jason helps and between the two of them they separate Tony and A.J., Mac holding Tony back and Jason standing with A.J.

Mac: What the hell is going on here?
T: Stay out of it, Mac!
A: Just accept the truth, Tony!
M: Stop! Does someone want to explain to me what this is about?
J: They were just leaving.
A: Jason....
J: A.J., take it somewhere else. 
A: You're right, I'm sorry. Tony--
T: I don't want to hear anything else you have to say. Sorry for the commotion, Mac.

Tony storms out, and with an apologetic glance at Jason and Mac, A.J. follows.

M: (bewildered) What was that?
J: (sighs) It's a long story. Do we still have beers in the fridge?

***

Jason is lying asleep on his living room couch, an empty beer on the coffee table next to him. Robin lets herself in, a messenger bag slung over her shoulder and a bag of groceries in one arm.

R: Jason?
J: Mmm.

Robin smiles and puts her bags and keys down on the kitchen table as she kicks off her shoes and pads over to the couch.  She carefully lies on top of Jason, resting her head on his chest and snaking her arms around his waist. She sighs in contentment as he stirs awake.

J: (with a sleepy smile) Hey.
R: Hey.

She raises her head and they kiss.

J: How was your day?
R: Long. Yours?
J: Same.

They kiss again.

J: Don't you have to bake or something before we go over to Mac's?
R: Mmmm...yes.

Robin groans good-naturedly as she reluctantly rises off of Jason and sits up, straddling him. Jason cups her cheek, stroking it.

J: (gently) Why didn't you tell me Carly hit you?

Robin's face gets serious and she looks down.

R: I'm sorry. I should have told you. I just didn't want to make the situation worse. And I handled it, I didn't see the point.
J: The point is that we tell each other everything.
R: I know.

Jason sits up with Robin still straddling him and kisses her softly.

J: Are you ok?
R: I'm fine, I promise.

They kiss again.

R: I'm tough, remember?
J: (laughing) Tough, huh?
R: Yes!

Jason tilts Robin's chin up, looking for any kind of mark or bruise.

R: I told you, I'm fine. (pause) I'm really sorry I didn't tell you. Everything was so messed up already, and I...wasn't sure what you'd do.
J: (firm, sincere) Don't worry about it. What did she say to you?
R: (shrugs) She just tried to convince me to convince you not to tell A.J., and when I refused, she got really angry really fast.

Jason's face darkens.

J: Sounds like Carly.
R: I know it's crazy, but I still feel bad for her.

Robin climbs off of Jason and moves in front of him, hands on his cheeks.

J: She won't bother you anymore, I promise. I took care of it.
R: What does that mean?
J: Nothing bad. I just made sure she knew where I stood.

Jason rises, kisses Robin again and rubs her arms.

R: Ok, I guess that's a good thing.

Jason bends his knees a little to look right in Robin's face.

J: It definitely is. Now, I want to have another beer and watch you get flour all over the kitchen.
R: Hey! That was one time.

They go into the kitchen area and Jason starts unbagging groceries as Robin hands him a beer and starts to get stuff out for making cookies.

R: So you said your day was long. What else happened?
J: Tony came by the office. Wanted to know about Carly's baby.
R: Oh, no.
J: Yeah.
R: Did you tell him?
J: No. A.J. did.
R: Holy crap.
J: Exactly. He just showed up out of nowhere and then they started fighting. Mac and I had to break it up.
R: God, poor Tony.
J: Yeah, he didn't sound like he'd be accepting the truth anytime soon.

Robin pours ingredients into a mixing bowl.

R: I still can't believe Carly did this.
J: I can. I just don't understand why there's all this fuss over a baby.
R: (smiling) Well, people can get pretty attached.

Jason leans on the counter next to Robin, watching her contentedly.

J: Do you want a baby?

Robin lets out a surprised laugh.

R: What? Where did that come from?
J: Well, do you? 
R: What, right now?

Robin is amused but flustered and Jason is decidedly not flustered.

J: Now. In the future. Whenever.
R: Do you want a baby?
J: (with a flirty smile) I asked first.
R: (smiles shyly) I love babies. And I always thought, you know, one day....
J: Then we should have one.
R: Just like that?
J: Just like that.

They stand there smiling at each other for a moment, Robin's baking forgotten, and then Robin shakes her head a little, her smile fading as she comes out of the fantasy in her head. Jason misinterprets.

J: I mean, you know, we can have a baby whenever you want to, I was just teasing about having one right now. I mean, unless you want to--

Robin turns away, focusing on the cookies.

R: Jason, stop.
J: What's wrong?
R: Nothing's wrong, it's just...I always dreamed about having kids, and now, with the HIV, we don't even know if I'll be able to, and there's risks to the baby, and--

Jason takes Robin's shoulders and turns her to face him, rubbing her arms.

J: Hey, shh, shh, it's ok. We don't have to think about it right now. 
R: (really quietly, confessing) I know, I know. It's just, it's actually something I really want, and I don't want to get my hopes up if...

She trails off, sad.

J: Shhh, it's ok, it's ok.

Jason draws her into his arms, tucking her head under his chin.

J: Just know, that when the time is right, we'll make it happen, I know we will.
R: Why? 
J: Because I believe it. And because if it'll make you happy, then I want to give it to you.
R: Jason, we shouldn't have a baby just because I want one. You should want it too.
J: I want what you want.

He kisses her.

J: Plus, when I think about a little person made up of me and you, that sounds pretty cool.

Robin grins, unable to help herself.

R: Yeah. I think so too.
J: Is it time for the flour yet?

Robin throws her head back and laughs, then pulls away to finish baking, Jason smiling and finishing his beer.

***