Chapter Four: 1986

    It was a difficult decision, but Betty had made it.  Last week, she refused to live as a refugee any longer.  She refused to live her life always on the run, just because she had compassion for one young man named Tom.  A man who had gained her trust in the beginning as well as her heart.  He was a criminal.  He had borrowed her money and paid for transactions she was better off not knowing about.  He had stolen a car and even though she was unknowing to that fact, she was an assessory to it.  She spent the past year with him running around the country, fugitives from the law.  At first she thought she was in love with this young rebel, but recently she understood her true feels: she felt sorry for him.  She felt he needed the correct guidance.  That's why this decision was very difficult.
    Last week she had made the phone call to the police, telling them the situation and their whereabouts.  Doing this, she knew that she would most likely serve some time in jail as well, but that was acceptable.  Like him, she must pay for her mistakes, and set an example.
    However, today, she was unprepared for the offer the police made her.  As Tom sat in a jail cell, she sat comfortably in a room as police officers and detectives made her a deal: for all the information to convict him, she would be allowed to go free.
    Betty Hapschatt thought about it carefully, and then asked how long he would be in prison.  They suggested several years.  She thought of Tom and the way he looks at her with those "I'm a victim" baby-blue eyes.  With some difficulty, she agreed to their terms, asking to see him one last time.
    As Betty was escorted to Tom's cell, her mind drifted back to the past several years of her life, studying them to understand her accomplishments and mistakes as well.  Her mind reflected to Oliver Wright, the older man whom she had fell in love with.  The same man she left behind in a hospital room, unable to deal the the situation at hand.  Oliver Wright.  Now that was true love.  Sure he was older, but compared to Tom -- which she had confused LOVE with COMPASSION -- she understood her feels for him as genuine L-O-V-E.  She wondered what had happened to him.  Was he okay?  And with a small amount of jealousy she asked herself, "Does he have another woman now?"
    Betty looked into Tom's cell and saw that he was sleeping quietly.  Perhaps this was best.  He was sure to be mad at her for calling the police.  She decided to let him sleep and walk away from him.  It would be best.
    As she walked away quietly, she heard him speak to her: "I'm going to kill you."
    Betty stopped in her tracks and stood motionless for a second.  She was too afraid to turn around and face him. My god, she realized, he was only pretending to be asleep.
    Tom sat up from his bed inside the cell and spoke louder to her: "Did you hear me, bitch.  When I get out of here, I'm going to find you.  And then I'm gonna slice your throat open."
    "Go back to sleep!" the guard shouted to him, and nudged Betty to continue walking.  As she walked away, she could hear him making more threats about finding her and making her pay for putting him behind bars.
    For the first time, she felt no compassion for him.  Aside from a slight amount of genuine fear, she felt anger.  She felt dislike.  She hated him.
    She walked out of the holding area and into the next corridor.  Her mind thought of Oliver again, and she told herself she would set out to find him.  "Oh, Oliver," she said, "Where are you?"

    Oliver Wright sat in his hotel room, staring out the window.  Occasionally, he would look over at the digital clock.  1:07 in the morning.  Yet he could not sleep.  His mind was heavy, but his eyelids were not.
    He took the opportunity to reflect on his life, particularly the past few years, and the one image that kept coming back over and over again was Betty Hapschatt.  Ever since she left him in that emergency room, his life has not been the same.  He stayed in that god-awful city for another 7 or 8 months before moving on.  As a retired judge, he had plenty of money in his savings to keep in going, but his life was just unfulfilled without her.
    He tried various efforts at making conversation with other women, but they all did not have the same effect on him as she did.  Was he in love?  Perhaps, but what good was it? She left him and that was that.
    That's a fact that would have sent other gentlemen in the same situation to "moving on" in their lives, but not him.  No way.  In fact, the more he thought about her, the more he realized he loved her -- the more he realized he needed to find her.  That's why 3 months ago, he set out to find her.  He knew she had a sister in New Jersey ... or was it New York?  Hmm ... for all he knew it could be New Mexico.  Regardless, he has traveled ever since trying to find her, visiting friends from her past, hoping for some kind of clue as to her whereabouts.
    And that's how he ended up in this dark and lonely hotel room in Maryland.
    "Betty," he said to no one in particular, "I know you're out there.  It's only a matter of time.  And let me say this: I love you so much.  So much, in fact, that I promise you I will never give up searching for you."
    He continued staring out the window at the dark morning sky.

    Irwin Lapsey, formerly of Lapsey Autos in Denton, was enjoying a peaceful night.  He sat out on his porch and watched the quiet street in front of him.  "Yes," he said to himself, "Mayberry is much different than Denton.  I love it."
    Suddenly the front door of his home opened, and out came the women he had "taken a liking to."  Her name was Martha, and she was the same age as him (43), a few months younger though.  She sat down on the porch swing next to him, and handed him a glass of lemonade.
    "Oh, thank you," he said, accepting the lemonade.
    "Irwin," she said to him, softly, "I have something to tell you, and I hope I'm not out of line."
    "What is it?" he asked.
    "Well," she began, "I ... oh, how can I say this other than just spilling it out.  Irwin, I think you're the nicest man I know."
    Irwin Lapsey smiled and put his arm around her, saying, "And I think you're great, too."
    "Irwin..." she said, uncomfortably, as she turned to look at him in his eyes, "I'm in ... I'm ..."
    Irwin laughed at her nervousness, and tried to coax her through it, "...Yes?"
    Finally she had the nerves to do it... "I'm falling in love with you."
    There was an akward silence between the two of them, and finally Irwin smiled and said, "I would consider this good news.  You see, I've been in love with you for some time now."
    Her eyes lit up as she smiled, and said, "Really?"
    He leaned in to kiss her and said a sentence that she would remember for the rest of her life: "Martha, one day I'm gonna marry you.  Mark my words!"

    Since leaving Denton in 1982, Brad Majors and his wife traveled and ended up living in Washington state.  Janet got a job in 1983 as a secretary at an insurance office, while Brad got a job at local library.  Both seem to enjoy their jobs, although money proved to be very tight.
    Today, at the library, as Brad put away some books, a young man, aproximately Brad's age, turned the corner and nearly bumped into Brad.
    "Oh I'm sorry --" the man apologized, "I wasn't really looking where I was--"
    And that's when the man stopped, staring at Brad as though he were looking at a ghost.  Suddenly he spoke in a small stutter: "Brad?  My god -- Brad Majors?"
    Brad smiled back and responded, "Peter Taylor!  Wow, how long has it been?"
    "Too long," Peter said, "But you're-- you're--"
    Brad laughed, "I'm what?"
    Peter said, "I'm sorry, I thought...  How can I say this? Someone told me you were dead."
    Brad and Peter sat down and continued talking about Brad's supposed "death".  Apparently, someone on a military base started some rumor that Brad had died -- committed suicide.  The man claimed to be Brad's brother, Steve Majors.
    "I don't have a brother named Steve." Brad said, "My only brother is Farley."
    Peter was positive the man's name was Steve, as Peter has friends on the military base.  Baffled, Brad scratched his head and said, "Well, that's a new one.  But trust me, I don't have a brother named Steve."
    Brad spent the next 10 minutes chatting with his old friend, catching him up on what he's been doing the past few years.  When it was over, Brad looked at the clock and anxiously waited for his shift to end.  He yearned to tell Janet about his old chum and the gossip he presented...

    Janet got home around 5:30 p.m. and took a long, hot bath.  As she lay comfortably in the tub, she closed her eyes and reflected on her marriage to Brad.  This kind of thinking only depressed her, as she knew her marriage was not what she dreamed it would be.  She couldn't count on her fingers the amount of times she and Brad argued over the past few months.  It only frustrated her more so that he was a wimp when it came to arguing, giving into whatever her demands were.  She didn't want a wimp for a husband, she wanted a strong, brave man -- the kind of man Brad was before that night... the night they met Frank N. Furter, the sweet transvestite from outer space.
    Prior to that, Brad was so strong and protective.  But ever since then, practically overnight, Brad's heroism had deteriorated.  She had chosen to be the strong one in the relationship, but now, after years of arguing, she found herself asking whether her marriage is a mistake.  YES, she admitted to herself, she loved him.  But was love enough?  How many more arguments would it take before she walked out that door forever?
    Janet got out of the tub, dried herself off, and then got dressed.  Shortly thereafter, a knock came to her door.  She looked out the front window and searched for an unfamiliar car.  There were no cars parked in front of her house.  She went back to the door.
    "Who is it?" she yelled through the front door.
    No answer.
    "Hello?" she yelled, "Who's there?"
    Still no answer.
    Janet walked back towards the window and stared out again, this time looking for a familiar vehicle.  None were in site.  Nervously, she knew she could not -- would not -- let this person in.  She would keep him or her locked out if they refused to answer her request for identification.
    That is when she remembered the front door was unlocked.  "Oh no," she mumbled, heading towards the door.  She stopped dead in her tracks, noticing the doorknob turning.
    Her heart raced as she saw the door open an inch, then another, and another.  Finally the door opened completely, and the visitor (make that visitors) entered her livingroom.
    Janet couldn't believe her eyes.  Standing in front of her was Frank N. Furter, Rocky and Columbia.

    In New York City, Oscar Drill and his sister stood inside the airport terminal, waiting to meet the person exiting the plane.  Trouble was, they had NO idea what the person looked like.  All they knew was Oscar's boss told him to pick up someone named "Mike" at the airport.  The reason: Mike was a physciatrist sent in from another state and needed someone to greet him at the airport.
    When the man named "Mike" stepped off the plane and into the terminal area, he immediately noticed Oscar and Brenda Drill holding the sign which read the word "MIKE" on it.  Mike approached the two sibblings and extended a hand.
    Two things made Oscar surprised when he saw Mike.  The first was that Mike was not alone.  He brought a woman with him.  But the second surprise shocked Oscar even more: Mike, with his completely bald head and thick mustache (which looked fake), seemed surprisingly familiar.  In fact, Mike looked like someone from his past.
    The man called Mike, escorted by a woman, looked like a man he used to know named Cosmo McKinley.  And the woman looked very much like Nation McKinley.
    Brenda looked over at Oscar, who was extending his hand in a handshake.  Oscar didn't say anything, although she could tell he was thinking the same thing: deja vu.

    Frank N. Furter, Columbia and Rocky didn't stay with Janet for long.  Their visit was brief.  They were brief and too the point.  First of all, they informed her that they had re-established themselves on a new planet in the galaxy of Transylvania.  A new queen has been established on that planet to reign over all 22 remaining planets.
    Columbia started to mention her sister who she has been searching for, wondering if she were still alive, but the conversation switched as Frank made a surprising announcement: "Janet," Frank said, "The main reason we're hear is to tell you something you deserve to know.  It's about your baby you gave up for adoption.  You see, there's no possible way that Rocky or I could be the father.  The baby you gave up is Brad's."
    That was an hour ago.  At this point, around 8:00 p.m., Janet was alone in her apartment.  She couldn't get her baby out of her mind ... which, to be totally honest, would no longer be a baby.  She gave birth in 1976, and the year now was 1986, ten years later.
    "My baby's ten years old," she said aloud.
    In the next few minutes of silence, she made a decision to find the child she gave up 10 years ago.  She remembered the loss of her younger brother to a U.F.O. abduction in the mid 1960s.  He never returned.  She knew that she couldn't go on living if she lost this child too.  She would have to find him.  She gave him up for adoption in New York City.  That is where she'd begin her search.

    Later that evening, Brad sat alone in his bed.  Janet had left him.  How exactly did it happen? When he came home, Janet was crying.  He tried to comfort her, to tell him what was wrong.  She had a secret -- a bad one -- and it was eating her alive.
    Then she proceeded to tell him that she had been pregant from that one night outside Denton.  At first she thought the baby's father was Rocky's but she now realized the baby was actually Brad's.
    That's when the arguing broke out.  "How could you keep this from me for so many years?!!!" he screamed to her.
    She tried to offer him excuses, but he was in no mood to hear them.  The fact of the matter was, she LIED to him.  By not telling him, from the start, she decieved him.  How could he trust her?
    There was more words and insults thrown.  She accused him of being a wimp.  I told her she was a slut, he thought to himself, in reflection, If only I could take that back. She started crying.  She said she was heading to New York City to find the child she gave up.  She wanted Brad to come with her.
    In the heat of anger, he told her no.  He told her to give the idea up.  The child was no longer theirs.
    "How could you not be interested in finding your OWN child?!" she cried.
    That's when he became even more angry.  It was her fault he never got to even see his child!
    "Get out of this house and don't come back!" Brad yelled, pointing a finger to the door.
    "You don't mean that!" Janet cried.
    Brad turned his back to her.  He said nothing.  A minute or two later, she whispered, "No matter what kind of problems we have, I love you.  I have always loved you."
    The Brad heard the front door open and close.
    Janet had left him.

What exactly is in store for Oscar Drill and his sister?  What will happen to the other ex-Dentoners?  Is Brad and Janet's marriage really over?  Find out in the next chapter!