Episode 278, scene 5.

     Chris Webber is on the witness stand testifying for the prosecution.

JF:  Mr. Webber, what was your reaction when you realized that your 
     brother had concealed his responsibility for causing your accident? 
CW:  I was bitter.  I thought of all the years he had gotten away with it.  
     And I was bitter at first.
JF:  You say at first?
CW:  Well, I finally realized I wasn't the only one that had 
     suffered.  I had professionals to teach me how to live with my 
     blindness.  My brother had to learn to live with his guilt alone. 
JF:  You speak of your brother's feelings of guilt.  This is a natural 
CW:  It is not an assumption, Mr. Fowler.  

CW:  Your honor, you see, before my accident, Lee ignored me.  But after 
     the accident, he was different.  He put me above everything, even 
     his wife.  He was always one step behind me, hovering, protecting 
     me, fighting my battles for me.  Even when there were none to fight.  

     Our first real argument was when I wanted to go away to law school.  
     Lee wanted me to stay here.  He wanted me to hang around his neck 
     like a living albatross, dependent on him for every need every 
     decision.  I had become his whole world, his life.  All he wanted in 
     return was that he should become my life.  That's why I say that 
     neither one of us escaped what happened on the bluff. 
JF:  There were two tragic incidents on the bluff, Mr. Webber.  Which one 
     are you referring to now?
CW:  The first one.  Ann Howard's death is another matter.
JF:  Do you separate these two incidents in your own mind?
CW:  Yes, I do.
CW:  Completely?
JF:  Completely.

JF:  Mr. Webber, on the morning of Ann Howard's death, when your brother 
     struck you, was this a usual or an unusual occurrance.
CW:  It had never happened before.
JF:  Was anyone else present?
CW:  My sister-in-law. 
JF:  The defendant's wife? 
CW:  Yes, Sandra Webber. 
JF:  Now, when your brother left the house, when was it that you 
     encountered him again? 
CW:  In front of the drug store on the square.
JF:  You stated that he said that he couldn't trust you.  That he felt he 
     had to protect himself.  Do you recall your reply to this? 
CW:  Yes, I told him he had to be stopped.  Whether he liked it or not, I 
     had to go to Steven Cord. 
JF:  And did he make any further effort to detain you?
CW:  No.
JF:  How do you explain that?
CW:  Well, there were witnesses on the square that saw what was 
     happening.  Norman Harrington, Mrs. Elliot Carson.  Others, I suppose.
JF:  Did either of them speak to you or to the defendant?
CW:  Not at that time.
SC:  Objection.  The witness obviously can have only hearsay awareness of 
     their presence.
JF:  Your honor, I have already indicated my intention to call Mrs. 
     Carson to the stand.  I expect to establish her presence there from 
     her own testimony.
JC:  Objection over-ruled.  Continue, Mr. Fowler.

LW:  [softly]   You're letting this guy walk all over you.

JF:  What did you do next, Mr. Webber?
CW:  I stepped off the curb in front of a car.
JF:  Without any warning?
CW:  Maybe my brother was too excited to notice it.

CW:  Anyway I went over to the bank building to Mr. Cord's office.  But 
     he wasn't there, so I dictated my statement to his secretary and  
     signed it.  When I came outside Lee was waiting for me.  And I 
     told him it was done.
JF:  What was his reaction?
CW:  Angry.  I could tell by his voice.  He said, "You're coming with 
     me."  And that's when I knew that it wasn't the threat of public 
     exposure or even punishment he was afraid of.  He was afraid of 
     losing the hold he had over me all those years. 
JF:  And did you go with him?
CS:  No, Norman Harrington was suddenly there.  And he told Lee that he 
     and I were supposed to go sailing that afternoon.  Later, Norman 
     told me that Mrs. Carson had asked him to rescue me.  I asked Norman 
     then to drive me up to Dr. Rossi's cottage. 
JF:  Why there?
CW:  I wanted to warn him.  I wanted him to convince Ann Howard that the 
     real danger wasn't over.  It was just beginning.  I even thought 
     maybe Ann should leave Peyton Place because I knew as long as she 
     was here, she wasn't safe. 
JF:  Why Dr. Rossi?  Why not miss Howard's own lawyer?
CW:  Because I wann't convinced that Mr. Cord was sufficiently involved 
     to take the danger seriously. 
JF:  Did you find Dr. Rossi at home?
CW:  No, he wasn't there.
JF:  Mr. Webber, the statement that you made on the day of miss Howard's 
     death, you said that you left Dr. Rossi's cottage, and you walked 
     three miles down the beach to the Stuyvesant caves, where you were 
     trapped by the tide.  If you were so anxious to see Dr. Rossi, I 
     don't understand why you didn't wait for him. 
CW:  I did wait.
JF:  At the caves?
CW:  No, not at the caves.  
JF:  But.
CW:  I never went to the caves.  I lied.  I was trying to protect my 
     [Crowd rumble]
JF:  Are you saying that you waited at the cottage.  No, I didn't wait at 
     the cottage.  I was afraid, afraid they would find me there.  So I 
     went down a trail that leads down below the bluff and I hid on a 
JF:  How long were you there? 
CW:  Long enough.  I finally heard voices.
JF:  Whose voices?
CW:  Ann Howard's and my brother's.
JF:  What were they saying?
CW:  I couldn't make out much of what they said because of the wind and 
     the tide.
JF:  If you couldn't hear them, how can you be sure you can you be sure 
     you can identify them?  Because my hearing is sharper than most 
     people's. I use my ears like people use their sight. Go on. 
CW:  I heard what sounded like a blow.
SC:  Objection.  This is the witness's own conclusion.
JC:  Sustained.  Proceed.
CW:  I heard Ann scream.  I wanted to run to her.  I stayed on the bluff, 
     hiding.  And I heard the rocks start to go above me rocks pouring 
     past me down to the surf.  I knew more than rocks went by.  I knew 
     she was down there, too. 

Episode 278, scene 5          HOME