Hayden Barnes – initially a money-hungry villainess – this General Hospital favorite matured into the type of woman that the Webber family was proud to claim as one of their own.
Who Is Hayden Barnes?
Hayden, – birth name Rachel Berlin – is the daughter of Naomi Dreyfus and Jeff Webber, though she spent the majority of her life believing that her mother’s husband, wealthy banker Raymond Berlin, was her father.
At some point prior to 2015, Hayden married and divorced Jared Preston Jr., the son of a family friend who wound up taking the fall for Hayden when she struck and wounded a young dog walker while driving drunk.
In the crime’s aftermath, Hayden also lost her father, who was arrested for swindling billions of dollars from his clients. Alone, purposeless, and desperate for a fresh start, Hayden found herself contemplating a proposition from Port Charlesian Ric Lansing – claim amnesiac Jake Doe as her husband and usher him out of town.
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Though she debated the merits of the con, Hayden did indeed accept the challenge and she accompanied Ric back to his old stomping grounds – with a cache of diamonds safely tucked away inside her luggage!
Scheme and Scheme Alike
For a time, the ruse was successful. However, Jake Doe refused to leave town with his “wife” and Hayden began to lose her resolve when she caught the eye of Nikolas Cassadine.
When the truth was outed, a vilified Hayden’s only recourse was blackmail. She had discovered that Nikolas had pilfered a DNA test that seemed to confirm that Jake Doe was Jason Morgan (though he would eventually be revealed as Jason’s twin, Drew Cain) and she used that to secure the promise of a cash payoff.
Instead, Nikolas hired an assassin to rid him of Hayden once and for all! The bullet lodged in its intended victim’s skull… but Haden survived. She lingered in a coma for months before awakening with no recollection of the previous few months – but Nikolas was still suspicious.
He moved a recuperating Hayden into Wyndemere where, despite his better judgment, he began to fall in love with her. Hayden began to develop similar feelings, but she found herself blackmailed into working against her would-be lover by Tracy Quartermaine.
At Hayden’s urging, she and Nikolas exchanged vows in Las Vegas’ Camelot Wedding Chapel but the marriage would prove short-lived. First, Curtis Ashford – whom a suddenly-recovered Hayden had hired to prove Nikolas’s guilt in her shooting – and budding enemy Elizabeth Webber discovered Hayden’s true identity.
Hayden planned to divorce Nikolas and collect the $5 million guaranteed in the prenuptial agreement but her husband revealed he knew about her hoard of diamonds and then he swiped them before faking his death and going on the run.
Love and Family Gained
With Nikolas gone, Hayden found herself growing enamored with Finn Hamilton, a terminally ill physician at General Hospital. They stood together and supported each other through numerous trials and tribulations – from his drug addiction and wrongful imprisonment (for serial murder) to her uncovering her parentage.
For a few agonizing weeks, it appeared that they would both die, owing to Hayden’s being exposed to the same virus slowly killing Finn. However, they were able to concoct a permanent cure.
They learned they were soon to become parents but thanks to the machinations of Liesl Obrecht (whose wrongdoings had been exposed by the duo), their happily ever after was about to be postponed.
Parting Is Such Sweet Sorrow – And So Is Reuniting
Jared, fresh out of prison and still stinging from Hayden’s insistence on a divorce (and his inability to get a payoff for services rendered from Raymond), insisted to his ex that she either cough up $250,000 or he would reveal to the world her involvement in that long-ago accident.
In a bid to rid herself of Jared, Hayden embezzled the necessary funds from the GH accounts and before she could reimburse the institution, she was found out. Desperate to avoid prison, Hayden abandoned Finn on their wedding day and set sail for parts unknown.
Finn eventually received two Dear John letters. In the first, Hayden claimed to have lost the baby she was carrying and in the second, she asked that he join her in Rome for a private face to face.
Finn ignored the request, much to his later chagrin. In truth, Hayden had actually given birth to a healthy baby girl, a fact that became painfully clear when she returned to Port Charles in a bid to both acquaint Finn with said child and to help Nikolas Cassadine and Jasper Jax acquire a codicil to Mikkos Cassadine’s will.
That partnership dissolved when Nikolas purposefully frightened Hayden into leaving town. But now that Nik is firmly ensconced back in Wyndemere and the villainous Valentin Cassadine has been neutralized, why hasn’t Hayden returned home? General Hospital airs weekdays on ABC. Check your local listings for airtimes.