Island of Fear!

January 1983
By Beth Sherman
Soap Opera's Greatest

[comments added by The Quint & Nola Homepagea]

After all her fantasies of exciting adventure with Quint McCord, Nola was involved in a real-life adventure with him, filled with romance, intrigue--and grave danger.

When Nola and Quint set off to find The Temple of Gold on an exotic island in the Pacific (Homepage: it was actually St. Croix in the Caribbean), they never dreamed their lives would be in constant danger. The first night they set up camp, Nola was greeted with an unexpected visitor. A large, hairy spider crawled into her sleeping bag! (Homepage: While viewers wanted a certain cute, blonde archaeologist to climb into her sleeping bag) Quieting her screams, Quint explained that the spider was perfectly harmless. This revelation prompted Nola to sarcastically name the spider "Silas Crocker" and keep it as a pet. Though the spider wasn't poisonous, a larger, deadlier presence lurked on the island, waiting to corner Nola alone.

The next morning, Nola, Quint and his assistant, Gunther, boarded a motorboat and headed out to sea. Their goal–to locate the Underwater Kingdom (Homepage: actually it was to find the sunken barge that contained the map which would lead to the Golden Temple). Donning diving attire, Nola and Quint sank to the ocean floor. They swam through underwater caverns, lined with coral reefs, aquatic plants and colorful rocks. Nola, striking out on her own, got caught in the opening of a cave when she spied pieces of wood she wanted to investigate. Fortunately, Quint rescued her before her air supply ran out and dragged her ashore to safety.

As the waves lapped softly at their feet, Quint held Nola tightly in his arms. "You're so precious to me. I thought I'd lost you." Pressing his lips to her upturned face, he kissed her passionately. It was a dream come true for Nola, a scene out of the movie classic, From Here to Eternity, but this time the kiss was real. Overhead, a tropical sun blazed down upon the pair, soaking their skin in warmth. A cool breeze ruffled their hair, as hundreds of strange birds chirped harmony in the background.

"If I hadn't seen those funny stone tablets in the cave, this never would have happened," said Nola serenely. (Homepage: that is the gist of what she said, but not nearly word for word.) At the mention of the precious stone scrolls, Quint sprang to his feet. "You've located the map to the Temple of God. We must go back for the tablets," Quint shouted. "Here we go again," thought Nola. "He's off on his quest and he'll forget all about me." (Homepage: again these "quotes" are just the gist of what was said and not even close to word for word.)

To their surprise, a disheveled, frightened Helena appeared when they got back to the camp. She begged her former employer for help. (Homepage: Helena worked with and dated Quint, but was never employed by him) Helena told them that Silas Crocker, the evil archaeologist, revealed in a drunken rage that he had murdered Professor Charles Taylor. Helena claimed that Silas would go to any lengths to get his hands on the Temple of Gold. "Don't help her," warned Nola. "It's a trick!" But McCord took pity on Helena's plight and offered to protect her.

"You're the one who's going to need protection," Nola muttered. She was not exactly thrilled to have to share her tent with Helena. To get even, Nola placed the spider in Helena's sleeping bag and sat back to watch the fun begin. Helena screamed when she saw the hairy creature. "Sweet dreams!" Nola laughed.

They all trekked back to the diving site bright and early the next morning. (Homepage: Actually the next day they did not go out diving, as they got rained out. But Quint and Nola did manage to get in a few more nice kisses, and he told her that he loved her. The following is two days later.) Nola dove down a few hundred feet. Suddenly, Helena swam up behind her and tried to grab the precious tablets from Nola's hands. The two ladies struggled in the murky deep. Helena, attempting to rip her rival's oxygen tank off, was sent flying though the water. Gasping for breath, Nola swam back to the boat. When Quint learned that Helena was in danger, he quickly came to the rescue. "Thank God," he cried, after he pulled her from the water. "She could have died. Perhaps there are some secrets better left untold."

The whole episode made Nola very angry. It was obvious (Homepage: to Nola only, not to the viewer) that he preferred Helena's company to her own. Despite their lovely kiss on the beach, the dark-haired beauty still had a magnetic hold on Quint. "You and your precious Helena," shouted Nola, as she stormed up the beach. "Why didn't you listen to my side of the story?" Nola decided she was through with the lot of them. She would sail back to St. Croix alone and then continue onto Springfield.

But her plans were altered when a sinister-looking man, dressed all in black, appeared before her. He wore a wide-brimmed cowboy hat and his eyes glinted meanly. "Nola Reardon, I presume," he said with a mock bow. (Homepage: Silas did not bow.) "Pleased to make your acquaintance. I'm Silas Crocker." Silas' plan was simple: to trade Nola for the map of the Temple of Gold. Only Silas didn't intend to play fair. Even if Quint gave him the map, he intended to kill Nola.

Meanwhile, back at the McCord campsite, Quint found the ransom note and quickly took off to find Nola, with Helena and Gunther in hot pursuit. In fact, it was Helena's job to lead the men through the dark jungle. All the while, Nola worked on the ropes that bound her, finally succeeding in freeing her own hands. Seeing that Crocker had fallen into a drunken stupor, she seized the opportunity to escape and crept quietly out of the tent. But before she could get ten paces, Davey grabbed her from behind and held a knife to her throat. The commotion awakened Crocker who decided to kill the girl an be done with it.

The evil pair placed Nola on a ledge in a pit that extended hundreds of feet downwards. "Heights make me dizzy," she pleaded. "Please don't leave me." Crocker only laughed at her tearful, terror-stricken countenance. Fortunately, at that very moment, Quinton McCord came to the rescue. "Come on, Davey. We can take these three boy scouts," shouted Crocker scornfully. The fight began. Two sworn enemies slugged it out, battling to the death. First, one gained the upper hand and then the other. Finally, Quint managed to burn Crocker's hand in the fire, and the man in black ran off, yelping piteously. From this position on the ground, Quint heard faint cries for help. "It's Nola. She's in danger," he yelled, as once again he sprang to her rescue.

Quint had to climb into the pit and bodily hoist Nola up to safety. Then Gunther tossed the rope back as the adventurer tried to save himself. Glancing downwards, he beheld a glowing luminous light. "It's the Temple of Gold," he cried. "I've found it." But he was already too late. Loud grumbling noises could be heard in the distance, and the rocky ledge soon disappeared beneath his feet. The volcano on the island was erupting and there was no time to be lost. McCord climbed out of the pit, and they all ran down to the water's edge. Molten lava exploded like firecrackers about their heads. Reaching the boat, they headed out to sea, while the entire island exploded before their very eyes. Quint McCord gazed sadly at the lost paradise. "This isn't easy for Quint," explained Gunther. "Watching what he's worked for go up in smoke." "I know the feeling," Nola replied.

Helena protectively wrapped Quint in a blanket and put her arms around him. As Nola watched them, she realized that Quint would never really love her alone. His work–and Helena–would always stand in the way (Homepage: Few, with exception of Nola, would have thought that Quint still felt love for Helena). She returned to Springfield, determined to start a new life for herself and her baby daughter, Kelly Louise. But danger followed her homewards. Silas Crocker had also escaped from the isle and plotted to get revenge against Nola. Would Quint be able to save her from his evil tricks?

And if he did, will they ever regain the love they shared in paradise?

(Homepage: This was a fun article with great descriptions, but almost all the quotes are completely off. But this article does give you a nice feel for what those scenes in St. Croix were like)

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