Alarming Developments

Sweet dreams turn to nightmares as tragedy strikes General Hospital's Luke, Laura, Lucky, and Liz

Ah, to be young and in love. Such is the rose-colored world of General Hospital's Lucky and Liz as they plan their future together in the Big Apple. In direct contrast, however, are the sour relations between another pair of L's -- Lucky's parents, Luke and Laura, whose nearly 20-year marriage continues to deteriorate before their very eyes. Happy or sad, together or not, though, the lives of these four Port Charlesians will become even more inextricably interwoven by the end of this week, when a catastrophic event engulfs them all....

It's been a heady time for General Hospital's Lucky and Elizabeth, whose decision last week not to given in to their raging hormones in a New York hotel room has brought their relationship to a new, and perhaps more profound level. "They've made love in many ways already," smiles Liz's portrayal, Rebecca Herbst, "mentally, emotionally ... all that good, old-fashioned lovemaking."

And so this week, having returned to Port Charles, respective virginities intact, the couple sets about relishing the blissful existence they're now leading and their rapidly approaching sweet hereafter in New York. "They are totally linked and planning a future with each other," states Head Writer Robert Guza, Jr. "A lot of times for a couple this age, not making love could cause a rift. But this does just the opposite. It brings them closer than eve, if you can imagine."

"Lucky is having a good time now," concurs his portrayer, Jonathan Jackson. "He was always enjoying his time with Elizabeth, but there was [her] rape and the conflicts with Nikolas and his parents. And now all that's gone."

Gone for Lucky, perhaps, but not for Luke and Laura. "At this point, Luke is trying to pick up the pieces of his life," relates Guza. "Meanwhile, Laura is moving full-steam ahead with hers. She and Stefan have basically committed to one another, so we're counterpointing Luke, who is incrementally getting his life back together, with Laura, who's truly moving forward."

As are her two sons, Nikolas and Lucky. On Tuesday, the half brothers bond even further as Lucky invites Nikolas to a small dinner party he and Liz are throwing at Kelly's later in the week, and shares what happened (or rather, didn't happen) in New York. "They've both had to deal with their own stuff and they've helped each other through that," notes Jackson of Lucky and Nikolas's increasing camaraderie. "[Their relationship] is probably more like friends than brothers, but they do have things in common, and that's what helps them understand each other better."

The next day, Lucky attempts to make Bobbie better understand the importance of the father/son bond (read: Tony and Lucas's). "It sort of resonates his own situation with Luke," notes Guza. "He has a conversation wtih Tony, and out of that he says to Bobbie, 'Look what happened to me and Dad. Don't let that happen to Tony and Lucas.' It's really kind of nice." Though touched by Lucky's concern, Bobbie opts to remain guarded when it comes to Tony's time with Lucas.

The theme of family relations continues into the Spencer hone on Thursday, when Laura comes downstairs to find Nikolas and Lucky playing with Lulu. "It's like a dream come true to Laura," smiles her portrayer, Genie Francis, of the rapport between her sons. "It's huge, absolutely huge. [It's] something that really seemed impossible, but Lucky surprises her with his big heart and his maturity.

Even more so when Lucky makes clear to his mom that he never stopped loving her throughout their recent crises, and presents her with a painting done by Liz. "This is a really, really good place for Laura," confirms Guza. "Lucky and Nikolas are finally acknowledging each other as brothers, and then friends, and Lu has been folded into this, too." Adds Francis, "I don't think there's anything more important to Laura than her children."

Following that visit, Nikolas and Lucky head over to Kelly's for the special dinner for four with Liz and Emily. "It's very sweet," says Guza. "It's really just kids bonding and talking about the future." Agrees Herbst, "Is it a special occasion? In one of her past scenes with Lucky, he asked Liz if it was a special occasion and she said, 'There's always a special occasion. Whether it's applying to art school or just having friends and being together.' Liz is very colorful."

As is the evening, which turns into a festive potluck dinner for the quartet of close friends. Afterward, Nikolas heads to Laura's home to baby-sit Lulu so Laura can go to Wyndemere for supper, while Liz and Lucky clean up at Kelly's. Just then, Luke happens by the diner, so Lucky invites his father in and they wind up sharing a heart-felt bonding moment similar to the one Lucky enjoyed earlier in the day with Laura.

"This means everything to Luke at this point," relates his portrayer, Anthony Geary, "because he's lost his foundation, which is his marriage, which is on the rocks at the moment. Lucky's always been Luke's hero, so to be able to mend fences with him at a time like this.... Luke's in desperate need of feeling relevant, and Lucky does that for him, so [this visit] is very important."

Which is not to say that the Spencer men have reached their final healing point yet, states Guza. "They still have a ways to go," allows the scribe, "but the important thing is they're making the inroads now. They're reaching out to each other. It really started when Luke grabbed Lucky and took him up to that cabin in the woods. So I wouldn't say it's the final resolution between them, but they're well on their way toward it."

Laura arrives at Wyndemere and delightedly reports to Stefan about the harmonious relations between her children. Stefan, hoping to make Laura even happier, surprises her with an offer to take her to Paris next week. Completely unaware of this fact, Luke makes his way to the Spencer house for a visit with Lulu. Once there, baby-sitter Nikolas gracioiusly heads upstairs so Luke can enjoy some private time with his daughter.

Meanwhile, Lucky, who's now at home in his room over the motorcycle shop, calls Liz at Audrey's houst to wish her sweet dreams before they both head for their respective beds. "This is the happiest time in Liz's life," beams Herbst. "She has goals and things she wants to do in her life now, and somebody to share them with." Naturally, sleep comes easily to the teen. "She has a very idyllic dream about her and Lucky dancing," reports Guza.

If all this sounds too good to be true ... well, it is. Liz's dream is interrupted. "The sound of sirens breaks into her dream," continues Guza, causing Liz to wake up "With a vague sense of uneasiness. It's almost like she has a very vague premonition of something ... like the other shoe is about to drop. And then she goes back to sleep."

It might be the last good night's sleep Liz has for some time. "Something happens that fundamentally changes the lives of probably a dozen characters on the canvas," previews Guza. "It's another one of those beats that we do like the shootout at Luke's ... incidents that take four or five different stories in 180-degree turns. What happens," promises the scribe, "will fundamentally alter the lives of core characters in a dramatic way."

by Kristin Gallagher
Additional reporting by Tom Stacy

Thanks to Lou for this article!