Episode 67: Pool of Bethesda

The Channel 5 Eyewitness News van parks behind Lana’s red Volvo in Rolf’s drive. Cassidy Meadows gets out and her cameraman films her walking up to the door. Lana opens the door a crack, and puts a stopper behind it.  Please state your business, Lana says through the door.  I want to interview you.  No thank you, Lana says.  Please leave now.  But I helped you when you were blind, the reporter complains.  Lana opens the door and steps out and closes it behind her. She’s wearing baggy overall cutoffs over a pink tshirt and sneakers.  Lana surprises the reporter by giving her a hug.  Thank you for helping me, Lana says softly when she lets the reporter go.  You can pay me back by answering a few questions, Cassidy Meadows responds.  I’m sorry, but I cannot invite you inside. It’s not my house, and my instructions are specific.  Lana turns to go back inside.  What do you do here?  I’m not at liberty to disclose that.  Vaya con Dios, Lana says in Spanish, and closes the door.  Cassidy Meadows signals Ted to stop filming and they leave.

It’s the closing segment of the local evening news.  And our very own Cassidy Meadows got a surprise today, as she went to interview Lana Radley.  The clip shows Lana giving her a hug.  “Thank you for helping me”.  What’s not a surprise is that she refused to be interviewed, the cohost says.


At sundown, Rolf comes upstairs and sees Lana’s note on the fridge.  I hope you’re feeling better.  He sees a drawn heart, and she’s signed her name. He sniffs and goes over to her work station and finds a halved onion.  He chuckles.  He looks over the daily activity log, and sees that Cassidy Meadows stopped by.  Interview request.  Tried using reciprocity on me.  The alarm beeps.  Rolf sees Bettina’s Mustang pull up; Simon behind the wheel.

Simon gets out and bounds up the concrete steps, as Rolf opens the door and stands in the doorway.  Everything alright?  Rolf asks.   We need to talk about Jax, Simon replies.  I’m feeling cooped up, Rolf announces.  Let’s go for a ride.

You don’t look rundown, Simon comments as he pulls out on Highway 90.  A good day’s sleep works wonders, Rolf says with a grin.  Did you get to talk to Lana?  No, she’d already left by the time I woke up.  She really worked him over, Simon says. Rolf stretches and yawns.  And get this - this is after she learned that Sam’s uncle is forcing Raul to forswear any claim on her.  Rolf thinks about this.  Who was the bearer of the bad news?  His aunt.

Lana tells Bettina.  Bettina tells you.  You tell me, in the hope that I will do…what?

I’m here to make peace between you and Jax, Simon says, not answering.  He got jealous and screwed up.  He’s not proud of how he acted.  I’m not mad at Jax, Simon.  Just disappointed.  But once is more than enough.

Simon doesn’t say anything for awhile and just drives.  You said that you’re in. Don’t send me back empty-handed.  I want your check for 10k to give to Jax.


How did it go?  Bettina asks Simon when he gets back.  Mission accomplished, Simon responds, and reaches into his shirt pocket and hands her a check.  She looks at it.  Wow. That is the most unique penmanship I’ve ever seen.  She hands it to Jax.  He sees that the check is drawn on a company that he’s never heard of - PrivateBank.  Let me see it again, Bettina tells him. I’m going to take a picture of this on my phone and send it to Toni.  Thanks, Jax tells Simon, and heads off to get his laptop to find out more about the bank in question.

Bettina sends Toni the picture in a text.  I’ve heard the FBI does handwriting analysis.  Lemme know what you’re able to find out.  Toni texts her right back. What is Winsome Capital?  It’s Jax’s startup hedge fund. When he gets one hundred investors, he’s launching.  Put me down, Toni replies.  Another investor, Bettina tells Simon over her shoulder.  Good job, he tells her as he hugs her from behind.  Mmmm, she purrs.

What did Rolf have to say?  Jax asks, when he comes back into the living room. He’s feeling better, Simon says, dodging the question.  Jax, can we talk to you for a minute?  Bettina asks. Of course, he replies, shutting his laptop and sitting across from them.

Lana won’t talk to me about what happened and you won’t talk to Simon.  This puts Simon and I in an awkward position.  We love you both.  Now, that said, I want you to sit with us at church tomorrow.  Will you join us?

And look more pathetic than I already do?  Jax retorts.  I don’t know where that is coming from, Bettina says as she gets up and sits by him and takes his hand in hers.  You are a catch, Jaxton Ayers; you’re going to draw the ladies like bees to honey now that you are a free man.  You mark my words, she says, giving him an emphatic look.


I invited Jax to church, Bettina tells Lana the next morning.  Lana looks at her and doesn’t say anything.  They come downstairs twenty minutes later and walk out to her father’s Highlander.  Simon gets out of the front seat and holds the door open for Bettina, who thanks him. Good morning, daughters.  Good morning, sir.  Good morning, daddy.  No Jax, Bettina mentions.  He’s going to watch the livestream on Youtube.  Simon replies.  So I heard that you called off the engagement, Tom tells Lana.  Yes, Lana replies.  Why?  Tom asks. Daddy, Bettina cautions.  It’s alright, Bettina.  I promised him that I’d wear his ring until I had a chance to talk with my father.  You crushed him, Lana.  Simon tells her.  Lana looks out the window.  You shouldn’t have told him that, Simon continues.  What did she tell him, Simon?  Bettina asks.  Simon is silent.  Bettina looks at Lana.  That Plan A had been annulled, that Plan B was a no go, and that he needed to move on to Plan C.  You said a lot more than that, Simon says, looking out the window.  You’re fishing, mister.  Lana tells him.  Prove it, Simon responds.  I know that you’re a good man who would never embarrass me in front of my best friend and her father, that’s how.  Lana says smiling at him.  You had me going for a little while, she says laughing.  Don’t make me reveal what I know, Simon protests.  Tell away, Simon.  I’ll risk it.

You told him that you were in love with Rolf, Simon says.  Lana groans and brings a hand up to her eyes.  No.

Lana, just tell us.  Bettina pleads.  I gave you a synopsis; be content with that.  What are you hiding?  I told him a make-believe story.  Everyone likes a story, Bettina says, smiling at Lana.  And it worked, Lana says.  Otherwise I was going to have to show him my naked body.  Tom and Simon roar with laughter.  Lana Radley!  Bettina squeals.


Simon finds Jax laying out at the pool.  Pastor Larry is in.  We’re looking at leaving next Monday.  Are you still coming?  I told you I’d go.  What did Lana have to say?  She got us laughing so hard.  I was giving her a hard time for the way she treated you, and she just said, it worked, otherwise I was going to have to show him my naked body.  Jax takes this in silently.  C’mon.  That’s hilarious, Simon protests.   She told you what she said?  Jax asks. Just a broad outline, and only because I pretended like I knew what she told you.  She fell for it initially, but then she wised up and told me that I was fishing.

Bettina begged her to tell, but she told her to be content with the synopsis.  And what was that?  Plan A is annulled, Plan B is a no go, time for Plan C - move on.  Sound about right?  She didn’t tell you about our wedding night?  Hell, no.  Simon says, perking up.  Say on. Plan A.  We got engaged before the band went on tour.  Father Cory married us.  We booked a mansion for the reception, so everyone can celebrate with us. And we’re going to drink and dance till midnight, then we’re going upstairs to get it on.  She said that?  Jax nods.  Only I get pukey drunk, and you take me away to worship the porcelain god.  So I’m in this fantasy, Simon says grinning.  Meanwhile, she decides to play a prank on me.  She grabs a groomsman and brings him into the wedding chamber to wait for me.  Only she passes out on the bed.  He gets carried away and “does my husbandly duty” Jax says with finger quotes.  I walk in, all excited, and see him on top of her.  I throw him off her and threaten to kill him and he runs away shrieking in terror, his pants around his ankles.  Then I come back to the bed and see her wedding dress around her hips, a dark stain on the bedspread under her open thighs, and she’s snoring loudly as she drools.  Owww.  Stop.  Simon says putting his hands on his ears.  Jax ignores him.  She asked me if her pleadings the next morning would do her any good.  I was drunk and passed out.  He took advantage of me.  I don’t remember anything.  You shouldn’t have left me alone.  Then she looks at me and tells me that Plan A is now annulled, just like our marriage was, and that I want nothing to do with her.

But a couple months later, a guitar string breaks in a freak accident and blinds me.  And she’s there for me.  And she gets in good with my parents and my mom gives her grandmother’s ring.  And she tells me that she’s going to be my live-in nurse while she runs her PI business out of our home.  But my dying friend Rolf decides to give me his eyes… And I just couldn’t hear anymore.

That’s brutal, Simon finally says.  I wasn’t going to tell you this, but maybe it’ll make you feel better.  Raul broke up with her.  Yeah, right.  Jax mutters.  No, it gets better.  Sam’s uncle is forcing him to forswear Lana.  It’s his condition for Sam marrying Doc.  I think he doesn’t want the two of them on the same team.  He wants Lana for Levi is what that’s all about, Jax says vehemently.  When did all this go down?

Remember when Lana brought the Vaca Frita over to Tom’s, and spent so long in the bathroom, and wanted to leave right away with Tim?  Well, Raul’s aunt Tia had stopped by while Bettina was jetskiing with us.  She brought over the Vaca Frita along with the news.  Why didn’t you tell me earlier?

Bettina told me after you guys had your, ah, sitdown. She said that Lana showed her a letter that she started writing to Raul when she got back.  What did it say?  A statement of the facts as Tia related them to Lana.  Then just “I grieve”.

Makes two of us, Jax mutters.  She hides it so well, Simon says.  I was blown away when I found out; I would never have guessed.  Bettina says she sleeps all the time now when she’s home, and she hasn’t wanted to sing or play her guitar.