Once she was sure he’d gone upstairs, Nikki went to the phone and called Hope.
“Nikki, this is a surprise. What can I do for you?” Hope asked, not expecting to hear from Nikki at this point.
“Well, nothing really. But you can do something for Victor.” Nikki began gently.
“What are you talking about?” Hope asked confused.
“I don’t know quite how to tell you this, so I’m just going to say it. Victor’s sick, he’s very sick.”
“How sick?” Hope asked concerned.
“He’s dying, Hope.” Nikki’s voice betrayed her outwardly calm demeanor as tears welled up in her eyes.
“What are you talking about? He can’t be!” Hope exclaimed as she sat at her kitchen table for fear of her legs turning to jelly.
“It’s true. Listen, it’s a long story, the point is he’s dying. He doesn’t have much time left and he needs to see Victor Jr. before it’s too late. Hope, he needs to see his son before he dies. They need to get to know each other as father and son, even if it’s only a little bit, before it’s too late. ” Even through her own heartbreaking, excruciating pain, Nikki’s sole focus was her husband.
“What can I do?” Hope asked, her heart breaking for everyone involved.
“I was hoping you’d say that. Tell him, Hope, tell Victor Jr. about Victor being his father. Give them that one last gift before we all lose Victor for good.” Nikki couldn’t hold back her tears as she sunk onto the couch and let her tears fall.
“I will. You’re right, it’s time. It’s way past time. I’ll be in touch.” Hope still couldn’t believe what she just heard. ‘Victor’s dying? This can’t be happening, my son can’t lose his father!’ she silently railed against the injustice of it all.
“Thank you.” Nikki’s voice was small and choked by tears as she hung up the phone and said to herself fearfully, “I just hope I’m not too late.”
Meanwhile, back in Kansas, Hope had called Victor Jr. downstairs to tell him the truth.
“What’s going on Mom?”
“Sit down, I have to talk to you about something.”
“What am I in trouble for this time?” he asked defensively.
“Unless you know something I don’t, nothing.” Hope answered choosing, for the moment, to ignore his attitude.
“Then what’s going on?” he asked impatiently.
“Just sit down and listen.”
Sulking after having his phone call with a friend interrupted, he noisily pulled out his chair at the kitchen table and sank down into it.
“How much do you remember about a man named Victor Newman?” Hope began carefully.
“I know I’ve seen him a few times, but that’s it. Why? Should I know him? Should I remember him?” Victor Jr. asked, getting suspicious.
“As a matter of fact, yes, you should. But, it’s no surprise you don’t. Not after everything that’s happened.” Hope answered honestly.
“What are you talking about now?” Victor Jr. asked, starting to get impatient.
“Just listen to me!” Hope demanded before taking a deep breath and telling him, “There’s no easy way to tell you this. Victor Newman is your father.”
“No he isn’t! Cliff Wilson is my father! He’s the one who was there for me until he died! Cliff Wilson is my father, not some rich snob I don’t even know!” Victor Jr. answered petulantly, defensively and angrily.
“Just listen to me! Contrary to what you believe, you don’t know everything, so just sit and listen!” Hope shot back angrily.
“Fine, go ahead,” Victor Jr. pouted.
“Thank you. What you don’t know, is that Victor and I were married once.”
“So?” “So, during that time, I got pregnant with you.” Hope was finding it increasingly difficult to keep her temper in check in the face of her son’s attitude.
“What?” Victor Jr. asked, his voice the barest whisper as shock registered. “Why are you telling me this? Why do I need to know now?” he asked, refusing to see the logic in what his mother was telling him.
“Because, your father’s dying,” Hope said gravely, sombrely.
“Correction, my father’s dead! As for this guy, I don’t know him and I don’t want to! I don’t owe him anything! I don’t owe him anything so I don’t see why I should be concerned about anything here! Who cares what happens to him? I’ll be upstairs.” With that cold-hearted declaration, he turned on his heels and headed for the stairs.
“Victor Jr. you aren’t going anywhere! I can’t believe what I’m hearing! This is your father we’re talking about, not just some guy off the street. You’ll sit her and listen to what I have to say, understand me? You’ll sit here until I’m through!” Hope reprimanded him sternly.
“My father died years ago. As for this guy, what happens to him is none of my concern!” The boy stood his ground, determined to stay exactly where he was and have his life stay the same, regardless of what he might be missing out on in the process. ‘Who gives a damn about him? He didn’t care about me when I was growing up, fine! Two can play that game!’ he thought to himself bitterly.
“There’s a lot here that you don’t know. Now sit down and listen because we don’t have time to argue and I don’t want you waking up one day realizing that you threw away your last chance to get to know your father because you were too hurt and stubborn to listen to what I and everyone else who cares about you, including your father, had to say!” Hope stood steadfast in her conviction that her son needed to hear what she had to say, regardless whether or not he wanted to hear it.
“Like there’s any chance of that happening!”
“Sit down and listen! Stop trying to do all the talking and you might just learn something!”
Skulking back to the table and sitting back down across from his mother, Victor Jr. muttered angrily, stubbornly, “Fine, go ahead, but don’t expect me to change my mind!”
Satisfied that he was finally ready to listen, Hope told him everything he should have heard long ago.
When she was done, Victor Jr. sat there with his arms crossed across his chest as he had since the conversation started.
“Aren’t you going to say anything?” she asked eyeing him carefully, confused and surprised by his total non-reaction at what she would have thought would have surprised him, or saddened him, or at the very least upset him in some way.
“What do you want me to say? What am I supposed to say?” he asked honestly. “I don’t know this guy at all, I know you think I should probably feel something, be upset or angry or whatever it is you think I should be, but I’m not. I’m not because I don’t know him, Mom, I don’t know him at all.” Although he was a little calmer now, he couldn’t hide the hostile, angry edge that crept into his voice, even if he’d wanted to.
“That could change, you know?” Hope pointed out cautiously, hopefully.
“What do you mean that could change?” he echoed confused.
“It could change if you want it to, if you’re willing to work at it. He’s dying, Victor, your father’s dying and he needs to see you. He needs to see you one last time before it’s too late. Why don’t we go to Genoa City so you can at least see him one last time?” She explained, sounding as if she’d just made the most logical suggestion in the world.
“Why should I? The guy didn’t give a damn about me all these years, why should I give a damn about him? Give me one good reason why I should give a damn about him when he never cared about me? Why should I go anywhere just to make him happy?” He sat there, his eyes ice cold as he stared straight through her.
“Why are you being so stubborn? Why won’t you even consider this?”
“Because, I don’t see what good it’ll do anybody! I don’t know him, he doesn’t know me. What good is it going to do anybody to try to change that now? Why bother?” Victor Jr. was through listening, he had made his decision and wouldn’t be dissuaded. ‘He made his choice years ago, now I’m making mine! Victor Newman had his chance and he blew it! As far as I’m concerned the man can rot in hell,’ he thought to himself furious as his hands balled into fists so tight, his knuckles turned stark white.
“Do it for me, please.” Hope whispered pleadingly.
“Fine, I’ll do it for you.” Victor Jr. begrudgingly agreed as he stormed upstairs to pack.