matthew ashford homepage general hospital synopsis

  chapter x: the next morning after tom's attack he
has heart-to-heart conversations with various people.


Scene One: It is the next morning. Tom is in his robe and is shaving, he stops and seems to be

thinking about something and does not notice that Tommy is at the bathroom door.

Tom and Tommy talk about what happened;
1:10 Min; 2.5 Meg

Tommy: Hi, Daddy!

Tom is startled. He shots off the water, and tries to pretend everything is fine.
Tom: Morning, Slugger! (Wiping the remaining shaving cream) How are you doing?
Tommy looks at him,  obviously concerned after what happened last night.
Tommy: Are you okay?

Tom: Well.... it.... ah.... it looks like some.... (leading Tommy) assurances are in order. (Tommy and Tom sit on the floor) I.... I am fine son. Really, I am. But, I do owe you a big apology for that big scare I gave you last night. I also owe you a big thank you.... you were an awfully big help to me!

Tommy: (Frowning) I was?

Tom: Sure you were! (Smiling) Suurreee! I mean yo.... you were grown-up! You were steady! And I honestly don't know how I would have managed without you.

Tom's expression sobers. Tom reaches over and caresses his father's cheek.

Tom looks on. Tom sighs and takes Tommy into his arms, holding him tightly.

Tom: (Under his breath) I need you soo much! (On the verge of tears) I need you!
Felicia calls out.
Tom lets Tommy  go and then stands up. Tom tries to look like everything is normal.
Tom: YEAH! AR.... YEAH RIGHT BACK HERE IN THE BATHROOM. COME ON BACK. (Talking to Tommy) Ah, yo.... you need to get some breakfast or you're going to be late for school. Alright? Food's right there on th.... the table. Cereal.  Juice (wiping his face).

Tommy: (Walking out) Okay. (To Felicia) Hi, Maxie's Mom.

Felicia: (Patting him on his head) Hi, Tommy.

Tommy: Bye!

Felicia: (To Tommy) Bye! (Walking over towards Tom) This is  a bad time, I could come back later?

Tom talks about Africa, Felicia wants him to get help;
2:40 Min; 6 Meg

Tom: (Wiping himself, chuckles) There's no time like the present, they always say.

Felicia: (Looking at Tom, seeing how he is) How do you feel?

Tom: (Tom is continuing to dry himself, apparently more out of nervousness than need) O.... I.... I'm alot better. Thank God! And you....   for your able assistance.

Felicia: (Smiling) I'm glad I was here. I'm going to tell you something, and I think it's going to make you mad.

Tom: If you need to say it, I need to hear it.

Scene Two: Felicia and Tom are walking into his bedroom, she has just told him that she has to tell him something which he might not want to hear.


Felicia: I was frightened for you last night.

Tom: I suppose that's a perfectly appropriate response.

Felicia: Please don't try to minimize it.

Tom: I'm not. To be truthful, I frightened myself. And Tommy. I could just see the fear in his eyes just now.

Felicia:  Well, that should tell you right there, Tom, you need help. Please go see Kevin.


Tom: (Gesturing and walking around) He is not going to tell me anything that I don't already know. What I am experiencing (putting his arms on the bed post and resting his head) is.... i.... is known as Post-Traumatic Stress Syndrome. I.... It's fairly common after (turns and gestures) one goes through a fairly cataclysms event. It strikes Vietnam vets, (walking towards her, gesturing) rape and abuse survivors an.... (trying to make a joke for levity) and doctors raging medical battles under Third World conditions.... (Looking at her) like Africa.

Tom:  (Cont.) Ha..... It was a mind altering  experience for me, quite literally (slight crocked smile).

Tom: (Cont.) I.... It took me out of the Tom Hardy I always perceived myself to be into the heart and mind of a man I didn't know or like. (Continues his pacing, touches  his lips).

Felicia follows him with her eyes, frowning listening to and comprehending what he is saying.

Tom: (Cont.) That man had no soul! Couldn't.... (not finishing that thought, starts pacing again) But when I came home I was....(gesturing) I was able to look back with perspective and distance. And I allowed myself to be appalled as I should have been all along. I was in a bad way. I'm not going to deny that. I think in a way I even reached out for help, subconsciously.   I.... I tried to leak a few things to Simone. (Frowning) My folks. (Standing in front of Felicia) But everybody got alarmed I just decided to let the physician heal himself. And, it's working! I am getting better. So, I hope you understand if I'm a little resistant (smiling) to going to my boss. "Phfft, Kevin,  (chuckling) by the way, did you know (gesturing) that when you hired me I was teetering on the brink of a nervous breakdown?"

Felicia: Oohh, Tom!--

Tom:  Now, listen to me! The night sweats have ha....  ha....ha.... have virtually disappeared. The panic attacks only come once every couple of weeks. I'm on that road to recovery: Living my life, spending time with my son.That will take me the rest of the way home.

By Felicia's expression, she is not so sure Tom is right, and is worrying about him.

Scene Three: A little later, Felicia is sitting in a chair near the fireplace, there is a fire going. Her head is resting against the back of the chair, and she is obvious thinking about what happened to Tom and what he has told her about getting better. After a few moments, Tom walks in, dressed; he walks towards her.

Felicia: I'm starting to make the connection between what you went through in Africa.... and your behavior towards Tommy and Simone.

Tom stops and looks at her.
Felicia: (Cont.) And, well (it appears she does not know if she should comment, she touches her chest) I mean I'm.... I know its way out of my league to.... to give a shrink psychological observations, but from the way I see it,.... it seems like you're looking at  them like they're your connection to humanity.

He sits in a chair next to her.

Felicia: (Cont.) As some kind of.... affirmation.... that you're not reallly the kind of person that could possibly be responsible for all those people's deaths. And if that's the case, no wonder you're having trouble letting them go.

Tom: I.... I don't think you're out of your league at all!  I.... I recognize alot of truth in what you just said.

Felicia: (Biting her lip) Then don't you think it's time to realize what a terrible burden you are to them?! You have to resolve this, Tom....

Tom frowns, is he realizing, finally it is time to stop.

Felicia: (Con) ....for your own sake. (Leaning forward) It's too big a problem for you to handle by yourself, you really need to see Kevin.
Tom Frowns. Just then, Simone class out from the hallway.
Simone: TOM?! ARE YOU HERE?!

Tom: I.... I.... I.... RIGHT.....  YEAH.... BACKHERE IN THE BEDROOM. COME ON BACK. (Talking to Felicia) I'll think about it. Will that do for now?

Felicia: I guess it'll have to.
Simone walks in and is surprised seeing Felicia -- could she be a little jealous.

Simone:  Oh, hello.

Felicia: (Getting up, making a joke) This isn't the way it looks (smiles).
Tom gets up.
Simone:  I.... It's really  none of my business.

Felicia: (Getting and laughing) No, (patting Simone on the shoulder) I was just joking (she goes to leave).

Simone: You don't have to go on my account.

Felicia: No, I wasn't and I won't. I  have to go pick up my girls off of Bobbie's living room floor. (Leaving) I'll see you later.

Tom: (To Felicia) Thank you (tapping his chin).

Simone: Tommy said you were sick last night?

Tom: Ha....  I suppose you can spin it that way. Ah.... however....

Tom: (Cont., he clears his throat, frowns, it seems he is having a hard time to tell her what really happened).... Ah.... sick is somewhat better what really went down.

Simone: Well, why don't you tell me what happened! And why I didn't hear about this last night?

Tom looks at her, obviously still hoping he does not have to explain what happened.

Scene Four: A couple of minutes later, Simone is sitting down, and Tom is pacing around his bed. He is finally in the process of telling her what happened.
Tom talks to Simone about what happened;
1:50 Min; 4.2 Meg

Tom: Bu.... I.... it was so late that we thought if we called you it would it would upset Tommy (plops down opposite her). So that's the whole story. Luckily Felicia was here, I found her influence very calming. But.... I think you better know that Tommy was pretty rocked. You'll probably hear more about this.

Tom looks serious as she talks. Unlike in the past he no longer looks as if he is manipulating the situation, or faking it.
Simone: Well, I'll simply reinforce what you already said: "That things happened to Daddy in Africa that made him very sad. But he's better now, and he is getting better all the time."

Tom: It is true, you know.

Simone: (Looking worried) I hope so.

Tom: (Getting up, laughing) Come on, get that worried look off your face. I know (walking around gesturing) the reason I am on the other side, (leaning against the bed post) is because.... because I'm starting to come to a realization!  You.... you can't  analyze motives when you're swept up in the middle of them. It takes a detached eye.

Simone: Well, what have you come up with?

Tom: How alot of my negative reactions to you and Justus (walking around) are based on my own needs.... for, ah, stability (sitting down).... for family, and as Felicia astutely pointed out, exoneration.


Simone: (Is it a bit a case of jealous) My goodness, Felicia is everywhere. I hope that you realize that my marrying Justus has no baring on your relationship with Tommy. I would never let anything come between you and your son. So please don't waste energy agonizing over that.


Tom: I appreciate your saying that.

Simone: (Getting up) I better go get him or he'll be late (about to leave).

Tom: (Getting up) Simone! I.... I'm.... I'm glad you came (slight nod).

Simone: Take care of yourself!

Tom: (Slight smile) I promise!

Simone: And if it gets bad again, please remember that I am still your friend!

Tom:  Thank you!


Simone leaves and Tom has a content look on his face. Though it no longer seems as though he is smug over fooling Sione, as he was in the past, but that he is finally able to move on, and stop forcing her for them to get back together.


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