Jade Taylor arrived in Oakdale claiming to be the daughter of the late Rose D'Angelo. Jade sought out Rose's twin sister, the wealthy Lily Snyder, and told her that Rose became pregnant by a black man as a teenager and gave the child up. Jade claimed to be that child. Lily called the orphanage in Chicago and upon learning that Rose had given a birth to a baby girl, welcomed Jade into her home with open arms. Though both Lily's husband, Holden, and her mother were skeptical of Jade, Lily refused to have a DNA test done, taking Jade at her word. In the meantime, Holden was having concerns about their son, Luke. Suspecting that Luke was gay, Holden, in a roundabout fashion, asked Jade to find out what she could and report back to him. At the same time, Jade gained Luke's favor by covering for Luke when he was at a concert with his friend Kevin (a friend he was forbidden to be around). Later, Luke revealed his secret to Jade, the secret he'd been hiding from Holden for months--he was in love with Kevin. Jade tried to convince Luke to tell Kevin how he felt but he was reluctant. Convinced that his parents would hate him, Luke pleaded with her to keep his secret. She agreed and later lied to Holden that he was wrong about his son.
Meanwhile, Jade made herself right at home at the Snyder home, and ended up helping herself to Lily's charm bracelet. When Holden's mother, Emma, found her with the bracelet, Jade quickly lied that Lily gave it to her. Jade was caught in another lie when she told Lily that the nuns at the orphanage had taught her how to sew, since earlier she claimed to have been adopted as a baby. As the weeks went by, Lily became increasingly suspicious of Jade. Realizing the jig was up, Jade quickly sought out Luke and admitted that she was not Rose D'Angelo's daughter. Rose's real daughter was named Theresa. Jade knew her at the orphanage and, upon learning that Theresa had a wealthy family, Jade decided to take advantage. However, Jade wasn't ready to end her meal ticket and asked Luke to help her stay--or she'd reveal his secret. Luke complied and they set it up so his parents would find him in bed with Jade. Although Lily was set to throw Jade out, Luke covered and insisted that he was in love with Jade and if she left, so would he. As the weeks went by, Jade's presence put a certain amount of strain on Lily and Luke decided it wasn't worth it and finally told his parents that he was gay. The secret out, Jade was unceremoniously kicked out of the Snyder home.
Homeless, Jade at least had a job since before she was kicked out, Lily got Jade a job at a library at Oakdale Latin High School. There, Jade met senior Will Munson. Will was newly married and desperate to graduate so he and his wife, Gwen, could move out of his father's house. Noticing that Will was struggling to write a term paper that was due ASAP, Jade offered a solution--why not buy a term paper off the internet? With Jade’s help, Will found a paper and ended up passing his course. Unfortunately, the school quickly found out. Not only did Will not graduate but Jade wound up losing her job. On the night of graduation, Jade came across a distraught and drunken Will. Upset over an argument with Gwen, Will was comforted by Jade and the two made love on Mathers Bridge. The next day, Gwen and Will made up and he and Jade agreed to forget their tryst ever happened. However, Jade was still unemployed and she used the tryst to get Will get her a job at a new nightclub, Crash. At the same time, Jade was shocked when Gwen suggested that Jade stay with her and Will at her sister Carly's house. Extremely touched, Jade accepted the offer and assured Will that she would never reveal their secret. Unfortunately, the secret later came out when Maddie Coleman overheard Will and Jade talking. Maddie and Jade had clashed on numerous occasions and Jade told anyone who would listen that she thought Maddie was responsible for two recent murders.
The same day that a hostile Maddie confronted Will and Jade about the affair, she was attacked. Luckily for Maddie, Gwen saved her. In shock, a dazed Maddie let slip about the affair. After throwing Will out, Gwen was attacked by a crazed slasher but was saved by Will. Devastated that Gwen seemed unable to forgive him, Will sought comfort from Jade on more than one occasion. Later, Will and Gwen seemed to be on the road to reconciliation when he saved her from the slasher again. That was until Jade made a shocking revelation—she was pregnant. Jade informed Will that she would raise the child alone but was delighted when he offered to take up responsibility. Gwen, of course, was not happy and after a heated confrontation with Jade, left Will. Although she seemed to forgive him after they were stranded in a freak snowstorm, she couldn’t get over the fact that that Jade was having his baby. In the meantime, Jade and Gwen continued to clash. Finally, Jade discovered that Gwen and Maddie were investigating whether Jade was even pregnant. Jade was able to prove it, not only providing a positive test but also showing Will a sonogram. In the meantime, Jade maintained her friendship with Luke who took her to Memorial when she suddenly began ill. At the hospital, Luke was shocked to learn that Jade wasn’t pregnant after all! Jade confirmed that she was lying and Luke warned her to tell Will the truth or he would. Later, Jade asked to meet with Gwen, in the hopes of instigating a confrontation (and thus faking a miscarriage). Unfortunately, her plan backfired, and Jade was injured and rushed to the hospital where Gwen and Will were shocked to learn that there was no pregnancy. Realizing that Jade had lied all along, Gwen forgave Will and the two reunited.
At the same time, Theresa arrived in Oakdale and shocked Lily when she revealed that Rose was not her mother; she suspected that Jade was! Theresa stated that there was a mix up at the orphanage and a DNA test had already linked Theresa to her real birth mother. Luke then arrived, fresh from the hospital with Jade’s medical file in hand. When Lily saw that Jade’s blood type matched her own, she realized the truth and rushed to tell Jade. By now, a weak Jade realized that Will and Gwen must now the truth about her pregnancy and proceeded to tell Lily the whole sordid tale. To her astonishment, Lily forgave her for everything and welcomed her into the family. Soon after, Jade met Will’s older brother, Adam, a successful record producer, and the two struck up a friendship. At the same time, Adam also became impressed with Gwen’s singing, and offered her a record deal. The problem was that Gwen was leery of working with anyone who was friends with her rival. However, to Jade’s surprise, Adam stuck with her while Gwen opted to work with him anyway. Though Jade expected Adam to run when she confessed her whole story, he surprised her by being understanding.
Though the Snyders accused Jade of spending time with Adam to be near Will, she claimed that it was all about Adam. However, she couldn’t help but try to put a wedge between Gwen and Will. When Adam accused Jade of trying to get close to Will again, their arguing turned to passion and the two ended up making love at the recording studio. When Gwen discovered Adam and Jade in the record studio fresh from love-making, she blasted Adam and refused to work with anyone who was involved with Jade. Not wanting to lose the talented Gwen as a client, Adam agreed but saw Jade in secret. Afterwards, Gwen’s mother, Iris, mentioned to Jade that she spotted Adam kissing Gwen when they were in Los Angeles together. Jade lashed out at Adam and later realized how much she cared about him. Unfortunately, Adam’s obsession with Gwen turned violent and after attempting to rape Gwen, he was run out of town by his brothers.
Later, Jade happened upon a scheme to get Will for herself by hiring a woman named Cleo to impersonate Gwen. Jade hid Cleo away for weeks and taught her how to be Gwen. The plan was for faux Gwen to make love to Will. Unfortunately, Will caught on that Cleo was an imposter and suspected that Jade was behind it. Jade ordered Cleo to leave town but she refused. Things turned disastrous with Cleo having designs on Will herself and deciding to get rid of Gwen permanently. Not only did she cause Gwen's car to crash but she framed Jade for the crime. Jade admitted to the impersonation scheme but denied trying to kill Gwen. Jade rushed to stop Cleo but was quickly subdued and tied to a railroad track. Luckily, Will came and saved her life. After Cleo was arrested, Jade decided to leave Oakdale and return to her adoptive family.