Jacqueline "Jackie" Payne arrived in Los Angeles when her son, Dominick "Nick" Payne, a captain for a Marone Industries, was injured in a tanker accident. Jackie was upset when her former paramour, Massimo Marone, claimed not to recognize Jackie, especially since Jackie was harboring a secret: Massimo was Nick's father. Jackie took a job as a buyer for Fenmore's department store chain and moved into Taylor Forrester's old beach house just as Eric Forrester came to the house for solace in the wake of his estrangement from his wife, Stephanie Forrester. Eric and Jackie became friends, while a jealous Stephanie told Jackie to stay away from Eric.
Massimo decided to woo Jackie with a ride on his private jet. During the flight, Jackie and Massimo cleared up a misunderstanding: Jackie's then-husband, Frank Payne, knew Jackie was having an affair with Massimo, and blackmailed Massimo into staying away, while Jackie was under the impression that Massimo had abandoned her. The plane hit bad weather, and, just before it crashed, Jackie admitted that Nick was Massimo's son. Jackie lay in a coman while Nick and Massimo came to terms with their newfound connection. When Jackie recovered, Massimo proposed to Jackie. Eric kissed Jackie and tried to convince her not to marry Massimo, but Jackie was happy to finally be able to give Nick a family.
Massimo had recently discovered he had also fathered Ridge Forrester, making Nick and Ridge half-brothers. After Ridge married long-time love Brooke Logan in South America, Ridge was kidnapped by villainess Sheila Carter. In the melee that ensued during the rescue attempt, Ridge was believed to have died by falling into a furnace. Nick and Brooke had "grief sex," but Ridge turned up alive. Brooke was pregnant, and Jackie realized that Nick could be the father, which a paternity test confirmed. However, no one knew that the test had been fixed by a vengeful Sally Spectra. When Jackie discovered that there had been a mistake in the original test, she kept this knowledge to herself so that Nick would have a chance with Brooke.
Deacon Sharpe discovered Jackie's secret and wanted to tell Brooke the truth. When Jackie refused, Deacon blackmailed her into securing him a job with Massimo, who was controlling Jackie in their marriage. But when Jackie started spending more time with Deacon, a spark ignited between them. Jackie drank heavily over withholding the original paternity test results from Nick, so Deacon had a second test run, after which Jackie and Deacon made love. Deacon burned the test results and told Jackie that Nick was the father. But when Deacon later admitted that Ridge was actually the father, Jackie confessed to Nick and Massimo, who shunned her. Jackie soon received divorce papers from Massimo.
Jackie and Deacon resumed their relationship and almost moved in together, but Massimo relented and asked Jackie to come home, even buying Jackie a chain of clothing stores he renamed "Jackie M." Massimo made Deacon vice president of Jackie M, but had a stroke when he learned of Jackie and Deacon's affair. Jackie blamed herself and confessed her love for Massimo to a priest, not knowing that silent Massimo could see and hear everything.
Deacon flaunted his relationship with Jackie in front of Massimo, even drugging Jackie with antianxiety pills, not realizing that Massimo was aware of everything. Jackie was hesitant to continue things with Deacon, but, when she did, she was caught by a horrifed Nick, who took Massimo to a specialized clinic without Jackie's knowledge. Massimo regained the use of his faculties and snuck out of the clinic, catching Jackie and Deacon together. Massimo divorced Jackie, who was ready to move on with Deacon. Jackie and Deacon announced their relationship to the public, but Massimo sought revenge by spiking recovering alcoholic Deacon's drink. Deacon fell off the wagon and embarrassed Jackie by arriving drunk to a Jackie M meeting. Jackie and Deacon tried to make things work, but ultimately Deacon pushed Jackie away and left town to go to rehab.
Jackie was not pleased when Nick moved on with Brooke's daughter, Bridget Forrester. Later, when Stephanie had a heart attack and said her dying wish was for Ridge to remarry psychiatrist Taylor Hayes, Jackie suspected Stephanie of faking the malady and wooed Stephanie's doctor, Mark Maclaine, to get answers. Jackie got Mark's confession on tape and exposed Stephanie's scheme. Jackie and Eric again grew close, but Jackie was heartbroken when Eric remarried Brooke to keep Brooke away from Nick. Eric asked for forgiveness after he annulled his marriage to Brooke, but Jackie was jealous of the continuing connection between Eric and Stephanie.
Just as Jackie and Eric found their way back to each other, Eric's daughter, Felicia Forrester, was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Felicia wanted her parents back together, so Eric agreed to remarry Stephanie, telling Jackie that they themselves would be married after Felicia's passing. But Felicia recovered, and Jackie again found herself without Eric. Soon after, Jackie was arrested for tax evasion, tax fraud, and money laundering. Massimo, who had framed Jackie as revenge for her affair with Deacon, offered to free Jackie if she helped separate Nick and Brooke. Jackie refused, but Massimo got Jackie out of jail after Nick uncovered Massimo's plot and disowned him.
Jackie enjoyed a brief affair with Brooke's father, Stephen Logan. Jackie was upset to learn that Stephen had also romanced Taylor to obtain Taylor's 2% share in Forrester for Brooke, but Jackie then decided she found Stephen's roguish behavior a turn-on, although their relationship went no further. Jackie and Stephanie's argument over which of their sons belonged with Brooke ended with Jackie falling over a second-story railing at the Forrester mansion. Jackie experienced bleeding on the brain and seizures in the hospital, but when she weakly nodded that Stephanie had pushed her (which Stephanie hadn't), Nick blackmailed Eric into signing over control of Forrester Creations and made Jackie president of the company.
After Jackie recovered, Nick explored his anger in therapy with Taylor and recalled a suppressed memory of Jackie accepting money for sex. Jackie admitted she had once prostituted herself to support Nick and was hurt by Nick's disgust. But Stephanie, anxious to boot Jackie out of Forrester, found one of Jackie's former johns and brought him on stage during a fashion show, exposing Jackie's past to the world. Stephanie later left town and arranged for her sister, Pam Douglas, to keep an eye on Jackie. When Jackie did arrive to seduce Eric, Pam prevented Jackie from doing so.
In an attempt to reunite Nick and Brooke, Jackie worked with Brooke's sister, Donna Logan, to cause trouble between Ridge and Brooke, making sure that Ridge found his daughter, Phoebe Forrester, with Brooke's son, Rick Forrester. Later, Jackie became Donna's confidant as Donna tried to get revenge on Stephanie by marrying Thorne Forrester. But the friendship was short-lived: while Jackie waited for Eric in a bathtub, Donna arrived to likewise work her wiles on Eric, and a furious Jackie threw Donna into the bathtub.
After Nick agreed to sell Forrester Creations back to the Forresters, Nick bought Spectra Fashions and gave it to Jackie, who renamed it Jackie M. Jackie was briefly a suspect when Stephanie was shot, but Jackie was innocent. Jackie continued trying to influence Nick's love life, first insisting Nick should be with Brooke when he moved to Taylor, then offering opinions when Nick was torn between Brooke and Bridget. Later, when Bridget's marriage to Nick was ruined by Brooke's sister, Katie Logan, who had gotten pregnant by Nick, Jackie got Bridget to put a stop to Nick and Katie's wedding.
Jackie M hit hard times, and Jackie brought Bridget on as mysterious designer "Madame X." Jackie also hired Owen Knight as a model on Bridget's recommendation. But Jackie was truly surprised when Stephanie, her nemesis, jumped ship to Jackie M and helped dig the fashion house out of its financial crisis, after which Jackie and Stephanie became fast friends. Jackie and her team rallied around Stephanie when Stephanie suffered a mini-stroke, and also accepted Pam into their "little family."
Jackie and Owen began flirting, and soon Jackie bought a penthouse loft for their intimate encounters. Owen wanted to date Bridget, which Jackie didn't mind, but Jackie told Owen that if he wasn't available to fulfull her needs on demand, she would fire him. Eventually, Jackie and Owen's relationship took a more serious turn, which infuriated Nick. Owen took Jackie on a trip to Hawaii, where they were married.
Jackie hired PR whiz Whip Jones, who created the provocative Indulge fashion line. Jackie and Owen modeled the clothes themselves in racy poses, much to Owen's chagrin. Whip capitalized on Jackie's status as a "cougar" by arranging for her to be photographed with the real thing, but when the cougar cornered Jackie in her office, Owen saved her from it. Jackie took no notice when Whip flirted with her, but after Owen appeared on television and dismissed his marriage to Jackie as a "wild ride", Jackie found comfort in Whip's arms. However, it turned out that Owen had a twin brother, Casper Knight, who had "punk'd" Owen by appearing on TV in his place. Owen was upset to learn that Jackie had turned to another man so quickly.
Jackie attempted to prove her devotion to Owen by parasailing over his beach house with a banner. But when she ran into a flock of seagulls and plunged into the ocean, Owen was there again to save her. Jackie wondered if Owen wouldn't be better off with a younger woman like Steffy Forrester, but when Steffy showed an interest in Owen, Jackie warned Steffy to stay away. Owen took the news of Jackie's prostitute past in stride, but was less understanding when Jackie wasn't keen on interviewing surrogate mothers, since he wanted to have a child. Ultimately, Owen gave up his dream up being a father so he could be with Jackie.
Nick and Bridget hired their own surrogate, Agnes Jones, since Bridget had a history of miscarriages. When Agnes miscarried Bridget's baby, Bridget turned to Owen for support, which turned sexual. Bridget discovered she was pregnant and guiltily confessed to Jackie, who shocked Bridget by insisting Nick should be named the father. Jackie also shocked Owen by forgiving his one-night stand with Bridget, finally agreeing they would tell Nick after they knew Bridget's baby was all right. But Agnes found out first and squealed to Nick, who turned his back on Jackie, Bridget, and Owen. The trio decided to raise the baby together in a Three's Company arrangement, which Jackie defended to the scandalized fashion press.
After Bridget gave birth, Jackie upset Bridget by referring to baby Logan as "my baby" and suggesting that they change Logan's name. Rick decided to romance Jackie in order to clear the way for Bridget and Owen. Jackie was intrigued, but stayed true to Owen, even after Rick proposed and attempted to seduce Jackie by donning the same "statue" costume as Owen after a fashion show.
When doctors found a spot on Nick's lung, Jackie and Stephanie staged an intervention on Nick to get him to stop smoking cigars. Later, Jackie sold her loft to Steffy, prompting Jackie and Owen to move in with Nick at the Marone mansion. Bill Spencer, Jr. wanted to buy half of Jackie M for his wife, Katie; although Jackie M needed the capital, Jackie refused to sell, declaring she would rather succeed or fail on her own.
Jackie sent Owen and Bridget on an extended vacation with baby Logan, and, when they returned, Jackie told Owen he belonged with Bridget. Owen reluctantly agreed. Meanwhile, Jackie and Eric renewed their friendship, particularly since Eric was having intimacy issues with Stephanie, who wasn't feeling very loving between her advancing age and ongoing cancer treatments. Jackie and Eric kissed, but neither wanted to hurt Stephanie. When Ridge found out, he demanded an end to Jackie and Eric's friendship and tattled to Stephanie, who turned her back on Jackie. Angry, Jackie recruited Pam to steal designs from Forrester, promising affection from Nick in exchange for the sketches.
Pam came through with the designs, and Jackie M's showing was very successful, but Bridget recognized Eric's work and blew the whistle on Jackie. Eric was furious, and Stephanie slapped Jackie, who felt bad that Forrester intern Beverly was being blamed for the theft. Some time later, Owen returned and told Jackie he wanted her back, saying that Bridget had given them their blessing. Jackie resisted because she felt Logan should have both his parents, but soon Jackie agreed and had a joyous reunion with Owen.Jackie and Owen seemed to disappear from the canvas, and weren't mentioned again for over a year until Bridget, who had moved to New York, came home for a visit and revealed that Jackie and Owen were living in an apartment next door to Bridget's and helping to raise little Logan.