Brady, Chloe, Victor and Nicole arrived in Puerto Rico just as the hurricane had left.
Victor and Nicole were sharing a room, as were Brady and Chloe. However, neither couple knew that the others were in the same room. Had Victor known how close Brady and Chloe had become he would be sure to have another stroke.
After getting settled Brady and Chloe went to the lobby, there they found Kevin and Mimi talking with Mr. Woods.
"Hey," Chloe greeted them. In turn, Mimi greeted her with a glare.
"Chloe," Mr. Woods turned towards her. "What are you and Mr. Black doing here?"
"We heard that Belle, Shawn, and Philip were missing. We came to help them," Brady answered.
"We came as soon as we found out with Philip's father," Chloe added.
"Like you even care about Philip," Mimi said under her breath.
Brady looked at Mimi disapprovingly before turning his attention to Mr. Woods. "Do you know anything?"
"That's what I would like to know," Victor said, approaching them.
"Well, Mimi says that it's something to do with the captain of the boat, Paul Garcia. She said that they were looking for a ruby."
"The ruby?" Chloe's eyes grew wide.
"You know about that?" Mimi stood in front of Chloe.
"Yeah, I was there when they found the key and the map. So, they went to the island to get it?"
"Yeah, I think that Paul wanted to have the jewels for himself and they got into some trouble. The night the storm hit I saw Belle go after Shawn. I thought they were going to just fool around or make out. But then they didn't come back and neither did Philip. Then Paul was missing too."
"So, then Mimi told me what was going on when we got back here," Mr. Woods finished.
"We're going out to the island. Where can I get a boat. Mimi, you're coming with Chloe and I," Brady said.
"Like hell," Mimi protested. "I'm not going anywhere with her."
"Mimi, stop hating me for just a little bit. At least long enough to save Belle and the others," Chloe sighed.
Mimi looked at her. "Don't you mean Philip and the others? That's why you're here. Just to sink your claws back into Philip. Or have you moved on to Belle's brother? You're just going to break Philip's heart and he doesn't deserve it. He's spent the entire time on the island talking about how much he screwed up with you and no matter how many times I tell him Jan and I are the ones to blame he still hates himself for it."
"This isn't your business, Mimi. And this is not the time for you tear into me about my love life," Chloe said.
"And she is certainly through with Philip and will be staying away from Brady," Victor growled.
"Come on. Grandpa, we're going out to the island. We'll take a cell phone for contact," Brady said.
"I'm going with you," Kevin said.
"Whatever, let's go," Brady ushered for Chloe to move in front of him and they walked out the door headed towards their loved ones.
The boat ride was tense. Brady drove the small craft with Chloe at his side, while Kevin and Mimi stayed toward the back. They arrived at the island quickly and stepped ashore. After calling Victor to let him know they were fine Brady gathered the group on the beach.
"Where should we start?"
"We should follow the clues they had," Chloe suggested. "What was the last one they found, Mimi?"
"It said something about a belly button. They thought it might mean a mountain. And there was something about a bird."
"Okay, so we'll look for the mountain," Brady said, turning toward the center of the island. "I'm going to load the equipment off of the boat."
Brady turned back to their little boat with Kevin following.
"So, what's going on with you and Brady?"
"That's not your business, Mimi."
"Look, I'm just looking out for my friend."
"I'm here to help them. Philip and I may be over and done with, but that doesn't mean I am completely heartless and don't care about them. Belle and Shawn are two of my best friends and I do care about Philip."
"You just don't love him."
"I don't have to talk about this with you."
"Just tell me if you love Philip or if you ever did."
"Then you'll back off?"
"But you aren't going to say anything to Philip until I get a chance to talk to him."
"So, you don't love him."
"No, I don't. Listen, Mimi, I hope that everything that's happened since the dance has helped you realize that I never had the intention of taking Belle away from you. There isn't any reason she can't be friends with the both of us."
"I do, I know that, deep down. I just need time to realize it and your breaking Philip's heart isn't getting you any points."
"Would you rather me stay with him and make both of us miserable?"
"Guess not," Mimi said as Kevin and Brady returned.
"Let's get going," Brady said leading the way. Surprisingly it took them an extremely short amount of time to reach the mountain. Looking around they found a small cavern that looked as though it had recently been flooded, taking away the ledge.
Brady lay flat on his stomach and held a flashlight down, trying to see anything. From inside he could hear shrieks of delight that could only mean one thing: Belle.
"Tink!" He moved the flashlight around trying to find her.
"Brady, Brady, we're down here," she yelled.
"What about Paul?" Brady was getting strapped up to climb down there.
"He's dead," Shawn hollered.
"You guys are all okay?" Chloe peered over the edge.
"Chloe, is that you? I knew you'd come," Philip squealed like the twit that he was.
"Brady, I'm going down with you," Chloe said, getting a harness on.
"Chloe, it's too dangerous," he placed his hand son her bare arms. She was wearing a white sleeveless shirt and cargo shorts.
"Brady, please. Let me go down with you. It's dangerous for you too," she pleaded.
He looked at her, knowing that the woman he loved was just as stubborn as he and if he didn't relent they'd be standing there arguing for hours. Which is not to say he wouldn't have enjoyed some time on a tropical paradise with her, but they weren't alone and they had something to do.
"Stay right behind me, got it?"
"Yes. Thank you," she smiled at him, mouthing I love you.
"Kevin, can you handle that? You're going to have to make sure Chloe and I both get down their safely and then pull the others up," Brady said.
"Yeah, you'll be okay. You can trust me," he answered.
"Okay, Tink, we're coming down there," Brady yelled.
Brady and Chloe began climbing down the walls of the cavern, moving slowly and carefully. They were a mere five feet from the bottom when Brady lost his grip and fell to the ground with a thud.
"Brady! Kevin, let me down, let me down," Chloe screamed. She was down within seconds. There Belle was standing over him with Shawn and Philip looking on. Chloe kneeled down at Brady, he looked at her, then to Belle, and smiled.
"Did I scare you?" He laughed and stood up, brushing himself off.
"Are you okay?" Chloe had concern in her eyes, but no one but Brady seemed to notice.
"I'm fine. Tink, are you guys okay?"
"Yeah, Brady I'm so glad to see you," Belle lunged herself at her brother, hugging him.
Philip smiled and ran to Chloe, putting his arms around her, hugging her tightly.
"Chloe, God I missed you. I love you so much," he had his eyes closed and twirled her around so that she was facing Brady, who was still hugging Belle.
She looked into Brady's eyes as she reluctantly put her arms around Philip, albeit loosely and not the hug two young people in love should be giving each other. It was more like the embrace a young child gave the aunt that they hate and never want to see. Her eyes never left Brady's as she mouthed to him for the second time that day, "I love you, Brady." Seeing this he smiled at her and nodded his head slightly. He understood completely what she had to do right now. He knew that she couldn't yell at Philip and tell him to go away.
Looking for an excuse to get away form Philip, Chloe looked to Shawn and went to hug him.
"Hey, I'm glad you're okay," she said, hugging him far more happily than she had Philip.
"It's nice to see you too," he hugged her back.
"Hey, I hate to end this nice reunion you all are having down there, but I for one do not want to spend anytime on this island anymore," Mimi yelled from the hole in the ground.
"Meems, is that you?" Belle looked up and saw her friend smiling down.
"You didn't think I wouldn't come to rescue you, did you?"
"Let's get up there," Brady said.
They all got up safely, Shawn had the ruby safely in his possession and on the boat ride back they told their story. Apparently during the storm Paul got knocked in the cavern with the, during a fight Shawn turned the knife around and it went deep into Paul's stomach which caused him to bleed to death.
They were greeted at the boat by Victor and Nicole, along with the newly arrived John and Marlena and Bo and Hope. Hugs were shared all around and Philip was whisked away by his father to a private location. While being dragged away he could heard yelling sentiments of love and devotion of Chloe. She turned around to find Brady missing. Not knowing what to do, she began to walk towards the room.
Belle caught up with her, dragging Mimi with her.
"Okay, I know you two haven't always gotten along, but I want you to try for me, go it?"
Mimi and Chloe laughed at Belle's enthusiasm and optimism. After what she'd just been through she was still as happy as she ever was.
"I'm willing to try if she is," Chloe relented.
"I'm game," Mimi agreed.
"Good, because I have so much to tell you," Belle jumped in delight.
"Belle, I'm going to take a shower, then we can talk all you want, okay?" Chloe smiled at Belle, but looked around for Brady.
"Fine, fine. I could use a shower too, I guess," Belle said. She and Mimi headed to one of the rooms John and Marlena had rented, leaving Chloe to head to the elevator. Staring at the doors she could feel his breath behind her. She turned, smiling at Brady.
"Where did you go?"
"Well, I have something planned for us," he winked coyly.
"Yeah, come with me," he said taking her hand, leading her to a small and secluded part of the beach.
He began laying out large blankets, "You see, the hotel owns this part of the beach. They have this thing where you can rent certain portions that are very private and no one will bother you." He smiled and stood in front of her. He looked into her blue eyes, something he loved doing. He kissed her, exploring her mouth with his tongue.
She moved away form him, smiling.
"Mr. Black, are you trying to seduce me?"
"Yes, I am."
"You don't even have to try," she said kissing him. They laid on top of the blankets, their lips never parting except for a little air for only a second.
"Brady, did you bring protection?" Her eyes were closed as he kissed down her neck, cupping her left breast in his hand.
"Yes," he answered between kisses. She pulled his wife beater from his body, running her hands down his chest, kissing along his collar bone to his chest. Her hands found their way to the button on his shorts. She undid the button, then the zipper, slipping her hands around him, feeling his want for her, actually feeling it grow more when she touched him, moving her hand along his distance. Wanting to get things started he pulled her shirt off, then her shorts, both now in the underwear. He slipped his fingers underneath her panties, feeling her. She arched her back and moaned in pleasure. Not wanting to wait anymore she pulled his boxers off, looking at his nude body. Her cheeks grew a rosy shade as her body got warmer. He undid her bra and threw it aside, next removing her panties from her body. Now, both completely naked she put the condom on him and he moved a blanket over them. He rubbed his thumbs over each breast as he entered her slowly. This time she felt no pain, only pleasure. Looking into her eyes for reassurance he quickened the pace. They came together, a slight layer of sweat on their bodies.
"I love you, Brady," Chloe said, breathless.
"I love you. Don't forget that."
"I won't," she smiled.
He turned so that they were facing each other. "How did you feel when you saw Philip?"
"Brady, I'm not giving up on you to be with him."
"After what we just did I think I could tell," he laughed. "But what did you feel when you saw him.
"I felt more and more in love with you. Seeing him reminded me just how easily he seems to have forgotten how he didn't believe in me. I felt nothing for Philip and only love for you," she answered.
"That's good to hear. When are you going to tell him?"
"I'm going to try and tell him tonight. Your grandfather took him away, but knowing Philip he'll find a way to get to me."
"Should we head back and shower?"
"Yeah, that's a good idea," she answered, sitting up and looking for her clothes. She found them and began putting them back on. She turned to him and grinned, "Want to join me in the shower?"
"I was beginning to think you'd never ask," he grinned back, kissing her.
They headed back to their room, making love again, once on the bed, then in the shower.
Downstairs in the hotel lobby Philip went to the front desk.
"What room is Chloe Lane in?"
"We have no Chloe Lane registered here, Mr. Kiriakis," the man answered.
Philip pulled out a picture of Chloe from his wallet and showed it to the man, "This is her."
"Oh, yes. She came with Mr. Black. They are on the eighth floor, room 832," the man smiled.
"Brady Black?" Philip clenched his fists.
"Yes, sir. They seemed to be quite the happy couple."
Without hearing another word Philip was in the elevator, followed by Belle and Shawn.
"Where you going Philip?" She leaned on the elevator wall.
"Your ass of a brother is stealing my girl," he answered as they got off the elevator.
"Philip, what are you talking about?" Shawn and Belle were struggling to keep up with him.
He reached the door and began banging on it. Finally, Brady answered wearing a towel, his body glistening from just getting out of the shower.
Not knowing anyone was there, Chloe stepped out of the bathroom in a towel, "Brady, at the rate we're going we're going to have to buy more condoms."
"You son of a bitch," Philip said, punching Brady in mouth, knocking him to the ground.
"Dammit, Philip get out of here," Chloe yelled.
"How could you do this to me, you bitch!" Philip was about to take another swing at Brady while Chloe held him, his lip bleeding.
"Oh my God," Belle whispered, but everyone heard her.
"Shawn, please, get Philip out of here?" Chloe caressed Brady's cheek before he stood up. With a struggle Shawn got Philip out of the room. Brady looked at Belle while Chloe got a wet cloth from the bathroom. He sat on the edge of the bed while Chloe nursed his wound.
Belle looked on, still standing in the open door way. "What have you guys done?" Her eyes began tearing up as she left, closing the door behind her.
Chloe finished up with Brady and kissed his wound.
"Kissing and making it better?"
"Something like that," she smiled. "We need to talk to Belle."
"I know. We should put some clothes on."
"I thought she'd be the one person who would support this no matter what. I actually thought she knock me down in excitement."
"That makes two of us."
Within fifteen minutes they were knocking on the door to Belle's room. Shawn answered the door and ran his hand through his hair.
"She's pretty upset," he said.
"We need to talk to her though," Brady stated.
"You understand, don't you Shawn? It's not like I'm cheating on Philip. We haven't been together for a while now," Chloe explained.
"I think it's just that Belle spent a lot of time on the island telling Philip that she was sure you'd take him back when you saw each other again. And, she hasn't said anything, but I think that she's afraid Brady is going to get hurt," Shawn whispered.
"Shawn Brady, I can hear everything you're saying, just let them in," Belle said. She was sitting against the head board of the bed, clutching a pillow.
"Could you give us a few minutes, Shawn?" Chloe sat on the bed, facing Belle.
"Yeah, I'll go see if Phil's calmed down yet."
Shawn left, closing the door behind him and Brady sat on the bed next to Chloe, holding her hand.
"Why is this so hard for you, Tink? Why don't you like that Chloe and I are together?"
"Your brother makes me happy, Belle."
"But you love Philip," Belle insisted.
"No, I don't. I've come to realize that I never did. He and I were complicated. And our not being together isn't entirely his fault. He hurt me so much after the dance. Then, every time we talked afterwards he ended up calling me names. It hurt, a lot. But I never let him get to know me for me. I've shut people out, you don't even know me that well. Brady does. I can't explain, but something makes me want to not hide when I'm with him. I think that's going to help me not hide with you and with Shawn and maybe with Nancy."
"Philip didn't mean to say those things," Belle protested.
"He may have regretted it, but I can't walk on egg shells on the chance that I might say something that gets him mad. But all of this isn't the point."
"What is?" Belle held the pillow tighter.
"That Philip and I are over. I care about him, but I don't love him in any way. It would be wrong for me to be with someone I don't love."
"Do you love Brady?"
"Yes, I love your stupid brother, Belle."
"You never could tell Philip you loved him," Belle said, putting the pillow down.
"Because I didn't. See, I always thought something was wrong with me because I couldn't say it. Maybe I was scared of it, but with Brady I'm never scared of anything. He makes me feel alive."
"Brady, do you love Chloe?"
"Yeah, yeah I do, Tink."
"When did this happen?"
"Since the moment we met," Brady answered.
"Yeah, definitely," Chloe agreed.
"But we saw each other everyday this summer. We became really good friends," Brady added.
"He's one of my very best friends, Belle. Please, just be happy for us. I've never been happier than I have this summer with him."
"When did you guys finally get together?"
"Night before last."
"I'm sorry. I guess I was just so sure about you and Philip and then first thing I hear is that you guys need more condoms. I was surprised."
"We don't blame you," Chloe smiled.
"Group hug?" Belle looked at both of them. Brady and Chloe looked at each other, they all hugged. "Great, now mom and dad want us all down to dinner with Shawn and his parents and Mimi and Kevin. So, lets go downstairs and eat. Chloe, we have to talk tonight. I want you, Mimi, and me to have a miniature sleep over and we can talk all about me and Shawn and Kevin and Mimi and you and Brady."
"What about Kevin and Mimi?" Chloe stood and grabbed onto Brady's hand.
"He sort of asked her out on a date when we go back to Salem," Belle answered.
Brady looked at Chloe and whispered something in her ear that made her blush.
"Hey, Belle, we'll meet you downstairs in a few minutes. I have to get something from the room," Chloe said. She and Brady walked out, hand in hand, as Belle made her way to dinner.
Brady and Chloe made their way to the table in the hotel restaurant about twenty minutes later, their hair a bit rumpled. Chloe gave Belle a half smile and Belle looked away knowing exactly what had just happened between her brother and best friend.
The adults of the group were engaged in happy conversation as Kevin and Mimi sat and sipped their drinks and Shawn and Belle giggled between kisses.
"Hey, Shawn, keep your hands off my sister while I'm around," Brady joked. Still, it made Shawn squirm.
"So, Chloe, maybe now you'll tell me. What's going on with you and Brady?" Mimi glared at Chloe. "I mean, we are supposed to be trying to be friends."
"Have you guys seen Philip?" Brady held Chloe's chair out for her.
"I saw Victor drag him away with Nicole following. They went back to Salem," Shawn answered. "He went through the roof when Philip said you and Chloe were in the same room. And what he'd heard Chloe say about, you know."
"What is this about you and Chloe staying in the same room?" John's attention had been turned to Brady and Chloe. "And what else made Victor so upset."
"Dad, grandpa has been upset ever since I started hanging out with Chloe," Brady tried to shrug it off. "He should just be glad she's not with Philip anymore."
"Son, you're avoiding the question and that's a fact. Now, what's going on between you two and why are you sharing a room. And don't try and tell me that there was only one room in the hotel because I know for a fact that there were plenty."
"Well, dad, Chloe and I are dating now," Brady explained.
"And how long has this been going on?" Marlena took a sip of her wine.
"Well, we became good friends throughout the summer, but we didn't decide to start dating until the night before last," Chloe answered.
"That soon and you two are sharing a room?" John raised an eyebrow.
"We're fine, dad. We're not going to get hurt," Brady tried to reassure them.
"Brady, do Craig and Nancy now about this?" John again raised his eyebrow.
"Yes," Chloe replied. "They know that Brady and I are together, that we're going to have a mature relationship that began as a friendship, and that I am very happy with Brady."
"They love each other, dad," Belle answered.
"I'm not sure sharing a room is such a good idea so soon in a relationship. Chloe is seventeen and you're nineteen, Brady and that's a fact. You two could get into trouble."
"Dad, trust me. We're going to be fine. In fact, we're having dinner with the Wesley's at Tuscany when we get back to Salem and they wanted you and Marlena to come too," Brady said.
"I trust you, son, I'm just looking out for you. You too, Chloe."
"I know, Mr. Black," Chloe smiled.
"What about Philip?" Hope looked down the table.
"He knows. I haven't had the chance to explain things to him. He was pretty angry when he found Brady and I together. Mr. Kiriakis took him back to Salem."
"So, that's why there's a cut on your lip, Brady," Bo remarked.
"Yeah, he didn't take too well at all," Brady chuckled.
"So, we'll be going back to Salem tomorrow," Kevin decided from the looks on Brady and Chloe's faces that it was time to change the subject. Chloe mouth thank you to him as their food was brought to the table.
"Yeah, and school starts," Mimi complained.
Dinner conversation went on completely uneventfully for the rest of the night. Chloe sent Brady to bed alone as she, Belle, and Mimi had some girl talk in Belle's room. Surprisingly Mimi and Chloe got along pretty well. They were actually becoming friends.
The next morning they were packed and ready to go back to Salem. The rest of Salem High headed out on a commercial airliner, but John, Marlena, Bo, Hope, Belle, Shawn, Kevin, Mimi, Brady, and Chloe headed home on John's plane.