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Melvin knew by now that Bette had very influential clients and supporters, but Peggy Peabody was in a league of her own. When she learned that Melvin was contemplating treatment options for Prostate cancer, she immediately picked up the phone and called the best Oncologist in Los Angeles who happened to be a friend. Although he had a waiting list a mile-long Dr. Millikan agreed to see Melvin the next day.
However what impressed Melvin most about this sophisticated eccentric woman was the reason she was at the Planet that day.
“Melvin, you can’t know how heartbroken I was to hear of my daughter’s outrageous behavior this past year. I know she’s been prone to using bad judgement and she can be heartless, but I never suspected that she’d stoop so low and if what I’ve heard is true then some of her activities are criminal in nature.
“I don’t know what she’s involved in, but my concern is her influence on the CAC board, this campaign she has to get my daughter fired and threatening her standing in the art world.”
“You need not worry about any of that Melvin. I’ve already spoken to the board. Franklin is cleaning out his desk as we speak. If Elizabeth chooses to leave her position as Director of the CAC on her own volition, she will be fully compensated for the two years left on her contract plus bonuses.
She has an impeccable reputation. She’s got backers of the highest caliber that want her to succeed. The Bette Porter Gallery is months away from its grand opening and already there is a buzz. Getting Allyn Barnes to agree to a permanent exhibition is a real coup that only your daughter could have pulled off. I understand she is also planning a retrospective of her mother’s work.”
“Yes, she has all of Maxine’s watercolors in a collection.”
“You should be very proud… of both of them.”
“I am. Indeed I am. Thank you for taking care of our little girl. It was a promise that I made to Maxine, but I failed them both in so many ways. I never even considered the impact of losing her mother at such a young age. I’m happy to know she has someone like you looking out for her. From what Katie and Christina have told me, you’ve been a godsend to her.”