THE BIG STORIES
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 Recaps for The week of September 3, 2012
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Monday, September 3, 2012

Due to Labor Day holiday, Days of our Lives did not air today. This pre-emption was planned for, and there will be no "lost" episodes as a result of the change.

Regular programming will resume on Tuesday, September 4, and pick up where the Friday, August 31 episode concluded.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Rafe and Gabi were eating at the pub when Gabi commented on Rafe's chipper mood. Rafe thought about when he overheard Sami tell her grandmother that she was not dating E.J. Smiling, Rafe commented that he was on the fast track for a promotion at the police department and that he was excited about work. When Gabi mentioned how pleased she was that Rafe was not leaving town, Rafe countered that he had no plans to leave town after what had happened to Gabi.

Gabi assured her brother that she was fine and that he should not worry about her. Gabi asked Rafe how he was feeling since Carrie had left town. Nodding, Rafe said he was fine. Gabi suggested that Rafe move out of the loft so that he was not reminded of Sami. Rafe assured Gabi that he was over Sami.

E.J. stopped by Sami's apartment and asked her about her trip to the water park with the children. When Sami was gruff, E.J. raised an eyebrow. "Were you going to tell me that you're a DiMera?" Sami asked. When Sami demanded to know why E.J. had not informed her that he was still a part of the DiMera family, E.J. countered that he was a part of the family he had with Sami and the children. Sami noted that she was worried about Stefano's influence.

"He is gone, and even if he wasn't gone, I don't want anything to do with him," E.J. said. Sami argued that Stefano would not listen to E.J. and that Stefano would do whatever he wanted. E.J. jokingly asked if Sami would like him to kill Stefano. Shrugging, Sami told E.J. he should not have lied to her. With a disarming smile, E.J. walked over to Sami. Softening, Sami admitted that she knew that E.J. had not lied to her about Stefano.

As E.J. stood close to Sami, she pulled away and said that she would get the kids from the other room. E.J. asked Sami not to leave, because he wanted to spend some time alone with her. When Sami gave an impatient sigh, E.J. asked what was wrong. Sami reminded E.J. that she was not ready for a relationship, and E.J. said he understood. With a groan, Sami noted that E.J. was a little "handsy" with her. With a grin, E.J. said he thought Sami would not mind his affection, since she had admitted that she liked him.

Sami admitted she liked E.J. but that that she had just ended her relationship with Lucas, and her divorce from Rafe was still fresh. When Sami mentioned that she needed to concentrate on her court hearing, E.J. offered to help her locate a lawyer. Smiling, Sami thanked E.J. for his offer, but she noted that she preferred to handle her legal issues on her own.

With a seductive grin, Sami asked E.J. if he would watch the kids for her while she went to the courthouse. Chuckling, E.J. agreed to watch the children. As E.J. wrapped his hands around Sami's waist, he asked her to process her feelings for him.

"I'm not saying no, but I'm not saying yes either. I'm a mess, E.J., and I don't know how this is gonna turn out," Sami said. As E.J. leaned in to kiss Sami, she pulled away and thanked him for his help as she ran out the front door. E.J. went into the children's bedroom and played board games with them until there was a knock at the door. When E.J. answered the door, he found Lucas in the hallway.

Lucas walked into the living room and noted that E.J. had moved in on Sami fast. E.J. called Lucas a twit, but Lucas brushed aside the comment and asked for Sami. E.J. explained that Sami was in a meeting and that she had left him to watch the children. While Lucas stewed on the couch, E.J. checked on the children. When E.J. returned to the living room, he noted that Allie was collecting her things.

Lucas threatened to sue for full custody of Allie. Surprised, E.J. asked Lucas if he wanted to take Allie away from Johnny and Sydney. Shrugging, Lucas countered that Allie's siblings were the only reason he let Allie stay with Sami. E.J. accused Lucas of allowing Sami to have visitation with Allie so that Lucas had a reason to visit Sami.

Shaking his head, Lucas told E.J. that he was finished with Sami and that E.J. could have her. Lucas advised E.J. to remember that Sami only wanted what she could not have. With a smirk, Lucas noted that Sami would dump E.J. quickly and move on to her next challenge.

Sami went to meet with her lawyer, Joanne, at the police station. Joanne explained that Sami's case would be helped if the arresting officer put in a good word for her. As Sami thought about when Rafe had handcuffed her, she muttered to herself, "I'm so screwed." After Joanne left to meet another client, Sami dropped her head onto the table.

Rafe entered the office and, spotting Sami, asked aloud, "What have you done now?" Sami asked about Gabi, and Rafe admitted that he was not sure how she was doing. Sami offered to speak to Gabi for Rafe and see if Gabi would open up to her. Rafe thanked Sami for the offer and asked her why she was at the station. Sami explained that she had met with her lawyer.

When Joanne returned to retrieve a file, she was surprised to see Rafe talking to Sami. As Joanne asked Rafe if he was going to vouch for Sami, Sami interrupted to explain that she was talking to Rafe about other matters. Nodding, Joanne left. Curious, Rafe asked Sami whether she wanted him to put in a good word for her at the trial. Sami denied the accusation and explained that her lawyer wanted Rafe to testify that she had been cooperative.

When Rafe argued that Sami had attempted to run from him at the safe house, Sami countered that she had shot someone to save Rafe's life. Frustrated, Rafe argued that Sami had offered to talk to Gabi in order to curry his favor at her trial. Sami heatedly denied the charge, but Rafe noted that Sami was looking out for herself. Overwhelmed by Rafe's response, Sami was at a loss for words.

Upset, Sami chased after Rafe and caught up with him in the park. When Rafe urged Sami to back off, she argued that she would help Gabi even if Rafe threw Sami in jail. "When did you decide that I had become a total monster, Rafe? That I can't help anybody but myself? Actually, I'm pretty sure that's how I just got into trouble, helping someone else," Sami said.

Rafe noted that he would not lie to the district attorney, then walked away. Frustrated, Sami threw her purse down on the bench and folded her arms. Behind Sami, a man in a hoodie stared at her. As the hooded man ran over and grabbed Sami's purse, she spun around and grabbed the other side of the bag. The man and Sami struggled for control of the purse, and when Rafe called out, the man let go of the purse and ran away. Caught off-guard, Sami fell backward onto the ground, on top of Rafe.

At the police station, Bo was reviewing Nick's case file when Hope entered the office. Hope assured Bo that Nick was a different person than the man who had entered prison.

At the prison, Jessica fretted over Nick, but he cautioned his mother not to get her hopes up about his parole. As Nick wondered aloud if Maggie would go to his parole hearing, Maggie entered the visitor's room with a smile on her face. Jessica asked Maggie to speak to Melanie, but Maggie refused. Nick asked his mother to check on Bo and Hope. Once Maggie and Nick were alone, Nick apologized for his mother's request. Maggie noted that she realized how much Nick had changed since he entered prison and said that she was proud of him.

"Melanie has every right to want me locked up. I get that. I would never ask you to try and change her mind," Nick said. Maggie explained that she wanted the best for Nick but that she had to stand by Melanie. Nodding, Nick countered that Maggie had always supported him. Fighting tears, Maggie said, "It was always easy to love you."

In Chad's apartment, Melanie wrote a letter to the parole board. As the letter required notarization, Chad left to find a notary while Melanie continued to write the letter. In her letter, Melanie requested that the parole board deny Nick's request for parole. With a sigh, Melanie dropped the letter on the desk, grabbed her purse, and left the apartment.

At the hospital, Nicole was unnerved by Daniel's suggestion that she move into Victor's mansion. Nicole argued that she and Victor would kill one another. As Nicole wondered aloud whether there was anywhere else she could live, Jennifer walked up behind Daniel and offered Nicole a place to live. Jennifer explained that she had talked to Maggie and learned that E.J. had been harassing Nicole.

"He is so disgusting that he would go after a pregnant woman. I promise you, he wouldn't get past my front door," Jennifer said firmly. When Nicole mentioned that Jennifer did not like her, Jennifer countered that Nicole was growing on her. Jennifer mentioned that she had seen Nicole apologize to Abe, and Jennifer apologized for being cold to Nicole when she delivered flowers to the house.

When Nicole noted that Jennifer did not need a stranger in her house, Jennifer argued that she needed someone in her house that did not repeatedly ask her how she was feeling. Jennifer explained that her house was empty and that she would like to have someone else in the house to keep her company. Nodding, Nicole agreed and said she would call Jennifer.

After Nicole left, Daniel thanked Jennifer for providing Nicole a place to live. Jennifer explained that she had learned that life was short, and she wanted to help Maggie, Victor, and Nicole. As Daniel talked to Jennifer, he received a panicked call from Chad. When Chad explained that Melanie had disappeared from his apartment, Daniel left the hospital and met up with Chad in the town square.

Chad explained that he did not think Melanie had been kidnapped, and Daniel agreed. Daniel noted that Melanie had likely gone to the parole hearing to testify in person. Daniel urged Chad to return to the apartment and wait for Melanie while Daniel went to the parole hearing.

Down the hallway at the hospital, Nicole ducked into an empty exam room. Frustrated, Nicole screamed into a pillow. "Life lesson number one: do-gooders always screw everything up," Nicole muttered. After composing herself, Nicole returned to the nurse's station and learned from Jennifer that Daniel had needed to leave the hospital on an errand. Jennifer suggested that they go to the hotel and retrieve Nicole's belongings. Feigning excitement, Nicole joked, "Let's get me all moved in, roomie!"

After picking up Nicole's things, Jennifer and Nicole went back to the Horton house. Jennifer directed Nicole to the guest room, and Nicole thanked Jennifer for helping her. When Jennifer said that she had learned about Nicole's situation from Maggie, Nicole countered that Maggie wanted to help Nicole because of Daniel. Jennifer nodded and said that she understood.

With a questioning look, Nicole asked if Jennifer knew about Nicole's relationship with Daniel. Nicole explained that she had grown close to Daniel when he saved her baby's life. "It's a pretty great way to start, wouldn't you agree?" Nicole asked as she headed up the staircase.

As Gabi paid for breakfast, Melanie entered the pub and asked why Gabi had not returned Melanie's phone calls. Stammering, Gabi explained that her phone was off. Melanie asked Gabi for advice. Melanie explained that Nick was up for parole, but she was unsure what to do. When Melanie commented that the letter she had written felt wrong, Gabi nervously stood up and said she had to leave.

Melanie begged Gabi for help. When Gabi said she could not help Melanie, Melanie countered that Gabi did not know Nick, so she could provide an unbiased opinion. Melanie added that because Gabi had been stalked, she could understand how Melanie felt. Gabi thought about when Chad had confronted her about her part in Melanie's kidnapping. Shaking her head, Gabi noted that she could not help Melanie.

When Melanie pushed Gabi to help her, Gabi noted that she needed to tell Melanie something. As Gabi mentioned Andrew, Chad entered the pub and called out to Melanie. When Chad asked what had happened, Melanie explained that she had sought out Gabi to ask her advice about Nick, since Gabi understood how she felt. "That's not true," Chad countered. Chad urged Melanie to write the letter to the parole board, and Gabi agreed. "I think you deserve to be safe," Gabi added.

At the parole hearing, Bo testified to the parole board about the facts of Nick's case. Once Bo was done, Jessica testified about Nick's childhood and how he had been extremely shy. "If he had not been given those drugs, I know in my heart that none of us would be sitting here today," Jessica said. Outside in the hallway, Bo, Hope, and Maggie paced. When Bo asked about Melanie, Maggie admitted that she had not seen Melanie. Hope noted that Melanie might have decided not to attend the hearing.

After Jessica testified for the parole board, Hope testified. When Hope remarked on the change she had witnessed in Nick, a board member asked Hope what her relationship was to Nick. Hope noted that she was Nick's cousin, but that she was also Nick's arresting officer. Hope testified that she believed that Nick was ready to be released from prison.

When Hope concluded her testimony, she returned to the hallway and announced to Jessica, Maggie, and Bo that she hoped her testimony had helped Nick. An outraged Daniel entered the hallway and demanded to know why Hope had helped Nick. When Bo urged Daniel to get a cup of coffee with him, Daniel said that he would not leave until Melanie had finished her testimony. Confused, Bo asked Daniel what he meant. Daniel explained that he assumed Melanie was testifying to the parole board because she had left Chad's apartment. Hope noted that Melanie had not stopped by the hearing.

Inside the parole hearing, one of the board members reviewed statements from those who were not able to attend the hearing. The board member asked Nick if he wanted to make a statement for the record. Nick explained that he, and not the drugs, was to blame for what he had done. Nick swore that he would do whatever he could to make amends for what he had done, even if he were denied parole.

Bo checked in on the hearing and notified Maggie, Hope, and Jessica that the board had adjourned and that Nick felt optimistic about his chances for parole. Relieved, Jessica left to make a phone call, and Bo went back to the police station. When Daniel returned from making a call to Chad's voicemail, Maggie wondered aloud where Melanie had gone.

Inside the hearing room, the parole board reconvened. The board announced that they had reached a unanimous decision. Before the board members could explain their decision, Melanie marched into the hearing room. Melanie asked if she could make a statement.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

At Alice's, Nicole inspected the décor of the house with mildly repulsed wonder. "Needlepoints, Hummels, and me -- not quite what I expected, but we'll figure it out, kiddo," she said to her belly with a chuckle. Abigail returned home and was quite taken aback to find Nicole there. Nicole was equally surprised that Jennifer hadn't informed Abigail that Nicole had moved in.

While Nicole was out of the room, Jennifer called her mom, who informed Abigail that she'd left a note. After Abigail hung up, Nicole returned and offered a brief explanation as to why Jennifer had invited her to stay there. Abigail wondered whether E.J. would really do anything to harm Nicole if he truly believed the baby she was carrying was his. Nicole assured Abigail that Jennifer and Abigail weren't in any danger, and added that hers was a high-risk pregnancy.

Abigail continued asking questions, which Nicole promised to answer some day. Nicole then suddenly remembered that she had a doctor's appointment, and she headed for the door. She stopped on her way out and thanked Abigail for her hospitality, and noted, "Daniel was right when he said there's no place safer than Tom and Alice Horton's cozy little home, sweet home." Abigail was stunned to learn that the living situation had been Daniel's idea, because she hadn't realized that he and Nicole were friends. Nicole explained that Daniel had promised to do whatever was necessary to protect her baby from E.J.

In the park, Sami fought with an attacker who wanted Sami's purse. Rafe quickly returned and intervened, but pulled Sami down in the process -- and on top of himself. After asking her to get off of him, Rafe chased off after the mugger.

Rafe returned shortly with a uniformed officer, who was escorting the handcuffed perpetrator to the police station. Once they were alone, Rafe noticed that Sami was rubbing her wrist, the same one that had been hurt when she'd grabbed for the gun to save Rafe's life at the safe house. Rafe took a quick look at Sami's tender wrist, and insisted that they go to the hospital so she could have it checked out. Sami somewhat reluctantly agreed to go.

At the hospital, Cameron treated Sami's wrist. He put her in a brace and warned her not to remove it, lest she end up in a cast, because she had a ligament injury. After Cameron left the room, Sami thanked Rafe for getting her purse back and catching the bad guy.

Nicole suddenly appeared in the doorway and noted the closeness between Rafe and Sami. "Well, well, well. What do we have here?" Nicole asked curiously. Rafe explained what had happened with the mugger. "That's our Rafe, isn't it, Sami? Always looking to help someone out," Nicole noted. She then left for her obstetrician's appointment. Sami wondered why Rafe wasn't going with Nicole to the doctor. Rafe reminded Sami that he and Nicole weren't together.

Sami remembered how attentive Rafe had been when she'd been pregnant with Sydney, and asked point-blank if Nicole's baby were really his. "Would I lie to you?" Rafe asked. Sami pointed out that it was out of character for Rafe to answer a question with a question. Rafe insisted that Nicole had asked for space, so he was giving her space. While the two of them were talking, Nicole returned and eavesdropped from outside the door as Rafe reminded Sami that Nicole's last pregnancy had ended in a miscarriage.

Sami noted that it wasn't really like Rafe just to be supportive from the sidelines. Rafe declared that he didn't want to discuss it any further, so Sami agreed to drop it. She announced that she was going to call a cab and left before Rafe could remind her that they still needed to go to the police station to file a report about the mugging.

Nicole entered and informed Rafe that her appointment had been cancelled -- and accused him of nearly blowing everything for her. She admitted that she was really worried that Sami might find out the truth about the baby, but Rafe reassured Nicole that he would not betray her. "The question is will you betray yourself for the woman you love?" Nicole wondered.

Rafe was utterly flummoxed. Nicole pointed out that he had sworn that Sami was out of his life, but it hadn't appeared that way to Nicole just then. "Please, do not let Sami stomp all over your heart again!" Nicole implored. Rafe declared, "Listen to me: I promise you, I will never, ever, ever fall for Sami Brady again."

At Sami's, Lucas cautioned E.J. that Sami only wanted what she couldn't have, so Lucas didn't see much of a future for Sami and E.J. before she moved on to her next challenge. After Lucas recounted Sami's failed relationships, he took credit for having been the first man Sami had fallen in love with, but added, "I guarantee you, you won't be the last."

E.J. accused Lucas of being jealous, but Lucas confidently denied it. Lucas asserted that E.J. was even dumber than the other guys who had gotten trapped in Sami's web. "Do you really think you're the right man for Sami, when you and I both know that there's only one man she's made happy for more than two seconds -- and he's not even in this room," Lucas noted. E.J. reminded Lucas that Rafe was still hung up on Carrie and was about to have a child with Nicole.

Smirking, Lucas guessed that it had to be driving Sami nuts that Rafe was having a baby with the woman she hated most in the world. Lucas then stuck his head in the bedroom and asked if Allie was ready to go.

After Lucas and Allie had gone, E.J. and Johnny played with building blocks. Johnny declared about his parents, "I like it when you guys are friends again." E.J. agreed.

Johnny was back in his room when Sami returned home. E.J. was alarmed when he saw the brace on Sami's wrist, but she shrugged off the mugging and credited Rafe with rescuing her. Sami then divulged that she'd run into Nicole at the hospital. She continued that while she might have been suspicious that Nicole had lied about the paternity of her baby, Sami did not believe that Rafe would lie to her about such a thing.

E.J. declared that he had been thinking about it, and he believed he'd made a terrible mistake. He explained that after losing Lexie, he had desperately wanted the baby to be his, but he had since begun to believe that neither Daniel nor Rafe would put their futures on the line to fake a paternity test for Nicole. Sami went into the bedroom to lie down, and E.J. smiled to himself.

After Nicole had left the house, Abigail read the note from Jennifer, then wadded it up and dialed Cameron. She apologized for canceling their date. Cameron understood, and asked if Abigail would like some company. Abigail invited him over.

When Cameron rang the bell a bit later, Abigail had changed into a skimpy dress. "Wow," was all Cameron could say. As Abigail led Cameron into the living room, she offered to explain why she'd cancelled their date. She quickly filled him in about the situation with Nick's parole, and about Steve and Kayla's divorce. "I'm sorry. I wish there was something I could do," Cameron said. "There is," replied Abigail, grabbing Cameron and kissing him fervently.

Soon, Cameron's shirt was off, and he and Abigail had moved their make-out session to the couch. He began unzipping Abigail's dress, but she stopped him. "I can't do this," she stammered uneasily. Cameron asked what was wrong, but instead of explaining, she asked him to leave. Although clearly confused, Cameron complied. Covering herself with her hands and seemingly on the verge of tears, Abigail stood with her back to him as he left.

Inside the hearing room at the prison, Melanie introduced herself to the board, and told them that she wanted to make a statement. The parole board offered to have Nick taken out of the room if his presence made Melanie uncomfortable, but she declared that she wanted Nick to hear what she had to say. After the board got the formalities out of the way, they questioned Melanie about the nature of her relationship with Mr. Fallon.

"I am -- I was one of his victims," Melanie stated. She explained that Nick had tracked her down in Europe through her brother, and had then taken her back to Salem. She thanked Nick for that, as well as for taking a bullet for her when they'd first met. Melanie then recalled how Nick had convinced her that she had killed Trent, and how she'd learned that Nick had been lying to her and terrorizing her to keep her with him -- and how she'd tried to escape from him by going over the balcony at the airport motel. Upset, Melanie excused herself from the room for a few minutes.

In the hallway outside, Daniel and Maggie wondered and worried about where Melanie could be, especially when Daniel couldn't reach Chad by phone. A frustrated Daniel acknowledged that the Hortons cared for Nick, but Daniel only wanted to keep his daughter away from the man who had terrorized her and murdered a man. Jessica assured Daniel that Nick had paid for his crimes -- and he deserved a future.

Jessica left, so Hope followed to make sure Jessica was all right. Daniel apologized for upsetting Nick's family. Maggie explained that Jessica felt responsible for what had happened with Nick. "She was dealing with mental issues of her own during his childhood, so she regrets all the time she wasn't there," Maggie elaborated. Daniel argued that Nick was responsible for his own behavior, and if Maggie -- Nick's aunt -- didn't believe that Nick had been rehabilitated, then neither should the parole board.

Privately, Jessica admitted to Hope that she was glad that Melanie hadn't finished her letter to the parole board, because the board might be less favorably disposed to let Nick go if they heard what Melanie had to say.

Daniel received a text message from Chad, who had arrived at the prison. Daniel hoped that Melanie was with Chad. Hope offered to hurry the two through security, so she and Daniel left for the entrance. Jessica fretted about why the board was taking so long to decide, and whether they would take it into consideration that Nick had been under the influence of prescription drugs when he'd committed his crimes.

Maggie comforted Jessica with an embrace. Jessica declared tearfully, "I just love him so much, Maggie." Maggie agreed, "I do, too, with all my heart." Just then, Melanie rounded the corner from the restroom and spotted the two distraught women. She ducked back around the corner before they saw her.

Melanie returned to the hearing room just as the parole board was about to give up on her. After apologizing, Melanie assured the board that she was ready to give her statement.

In the hallway outside, Hope and Daniel returned with Chad. Maggie asked if Chad knew where Melanie was. Nodding toward the hearing room, Chad replied, "She's in there. She's talking to the parole board about Nick." The others wondered why they hadn't known Melanie was there, and Hope informed them that there was another entrance to the hearing room. Hope then got a call from the station and had to leave.

Jessica believed that the only reason Melanie would show up in person was to ask the board not to release Nick, so she left to call and warn her mother, Marie. Chad, Daniel, and Maggie were still waiting anxiously when Melanie emerged from the hearing room. Daniel rushed to his daughter and hugged her, while Maggie stroked Melanie's back. Daniel asked if Melanie were all right. "I just did what I had to do," Melanie replied.

Chad reassured Melanie that she had done the right thing by ensuring that Nick would stay behind bars for another eighteen months. Before Melanie could answer, Jessica returned, so Maggie introduced Melanie to Nick's mother. Just then, the head of the parole board exited the room, and announced, "We have made a decision: Nick Fallon has been granted parole."

Thursday, September 6, 2012
by Mike

At the Brady Pub, Sami and Will discussed Sami's desire to return to her normal routine, which included running Countess Wilhelmina. Gabi approached Will and Sami's table and offered to refill their coffee cups. Sami was surprised to learn that Gabi was working at the pub.

Sami said that she was sorry that Gabi had been forced to find a second job. Gabi explained that she and Chad had recently decided to end their modeling careers. Sami wondered why no one had bothered to tell her about that decision. "Well, I guess when you don't check on the office for a month or two, you might miss some things," Will dryly stated, stifling a laugh.

Sami wondered if Gabi was worried about attracting another stalker. Gabi claimed that Sami's suspicion was correct. Sami revealed that she had recently improved the company's security measures, and she urged Gabi to reconsider. Gabi noncommittally stated that she would give the offer some thought.

At the prison, Chad and Daniel were shocked to learn that the parole board had approved Nick's early release. Chad urged the board members to reconsider, and he wondered why they had ignored everything that Melanie had said about Nick. "I didn't ask them to deny Nick's parole. I told them...if they felt Nick was ready to be released...that I would support them," Melanie announced. Jessica thanked Melanie.

Melanie's loved ones expressed their concerns, but she assured them that she was all right. Chad and Daniel offered to take Melanie back to Chad's apartment. Maggie decided to stay at the prison with Jessica and Nick, but she offered to accompany everyone else to the exit. Chad rummaged through his pockets, claiming that he had misplaced his parking pass, and he promised to meet everyone outside.

Chad lingered near the entrance to the room where the parole hearing had taken place, feigning interest in the pile of receipts that he had retrieved from one of his pockets. Eventually, Jessica emerged from the room. "I'm really glad I ran into you, because I have something to say. You tell your son to stay the hell away from Melanie, because if he comes anywhere near her, he'll have to answer to me," Chad warned Jessica.

Elsewhere, Nick sighed as he thought about what Melanie had told the parole board earlier. "When Nick was first sentenced, as you are aware, I asked the judge for leniency. I thought I had put everything behind me. I thought I was at peace with everything that had happened, but then something happened to me recently that made me believe that I was not okay. But...when I got here today, I saw Nick's entire family just standing out there waiting, and I realized...they don't get to come in here and tell you that Nick skipped third grade, or that Nick was an Eagle Scout, or how much they love him, so why is it all up to me?" Melanie had asked.

One of the board members had pointed out that Melanie was one of Nick's victims. "But that wasn't a one-way street. I was terrible when I came here. I was selfish. I used people -- I used Nick -- so in a lot of ways, I got exactly what I deserved. I keep hearing, um, from Nick's family and the court psychiatrists...that he's changed -- that the guy I first met, who was goofy, funny, and sometimes very heroic, wasn't gone forever -- so if he's ready to be a productive member of society, then who am I to stand in his way? Because I'm the first person to tell you that everybody deserves a second chance. So to answer your question, sir...no, I do not believe that Nick should be denied parole," Melanie had stated.

Maggie entered the room, interrupting Nick's thoughts. Maggie informed Nick that Jessica had called Josh Fallon and Marie Horton earlier to tell them the good news. Nick knowingly stated that Melanie had only testified on his behalf because of her relationship with Maggie. Nick wondered if Melanie was going to be all right. Maggie found Nick's concern touching, but she advised him to focus on his needs.

At the Kiriakis mansion, Brady informed Kate that he was once again the CEO of Titan. Brady added that he was making Kate's position within the company his first order of business. Kate guessed that Brady was going to fire her, but he clarified that he planned to promote her. Kate wondered why Brady was offering her a promotion.

Brady said that Kate was irreplaceable, and he added that he was grateful that she had told him about Madison's final words. Brady explained that Kate would remain the CEO of Mad World, and he added that she would also be assuming a greater role in the general operations at Titan. Brady promised to discuss the details with Kate at a later date. Beaming with delight, Kate found it impossible to resist the urge to hug Brady.

Victor entered the room and guessed that Brady had given Kate the good news. Kate was surprised to learn that Victor had approved her promotion. Victor abruptly changed the subject and announced that Maggie had called him earlier to inform him that Nick's parole had been approved. Brady excused himself so that he could check on Melanie.

Kate wondered why Victor had agreed to give Kate a position of power at Titan. "Well, once upon a time, I hired you to run my company. Business was booming. It wasn't until I violated my cardinal rule that things went awry. I entangled foreign alliances -- fell in love with you. But now that I'm happily married to Maggie, it's no longer a concern. You'll do what you do, I'll do what I do -- it'll be just like old times," Victor predicted.

Victor wondered how Stefano would react when he learned that Kate was playing a prominent role in his archrival's company. Kate predicted that Stefano probably wouldn't care at all, but Victor could tell that she still cared. Kate conceded that Victor was right, and she wondered if she would ever see Stefano again.

At Common Grounds, Chad glared at Gabi as she hugged Melanie. Gabi abruptly excused herself, and Chad followed her to the exit. Chad quietly reminded Gabi to stay away from Melanie. Gabi said that Melanie had personally invited her to the coffeehouse, and she wondered what she was supposed to do in a situation like that. Chad told Gabi to lie, adding that it was one of her biggest talents.

Gabi changed the subject and started to tell Chad about Sami's earlier offer. Chad told Gabi to decline the offer, and she wondered why he wanted her to do that. "Here's what it comes down to. You love modeling, right? Okay, well, remember that time when you tried to take away what I love most -- Melanie? Now it's my turn to take away something you love," Chad explained.

Gabi insisted that Chad wasn't being fair. Gabi wondered when Chad planned to stop holding the kidnapping incident over her head. "I am a DiMera, Gabi -- don't you ever forget that. I'm going to hold this over you forever," Chad promised. Chad calmly walked away, and Gabi stormed out of the coffeehouse.

Elsewhere, Daniel wondered why Melanie had changed her mind about Nick's parole. Melanie admitted that she had testified on Nick's behalf for Maggie's sake. Melanie said that it wasn't fair to ask Maggie to choose between Nick and Melanie. Melanie added that she wanted to be more like Maggie, who was kind, generous, and fair.

Later, back at the Kiriakis mansion, Victor wondered where Nick would be staying. Maggie revealed that Nick was planning to leave Salem with Jessica. Victor could tell that Maggie was relieved, and she admitted that it seemed like the best possible scenario for everyone. Daniel entered the mansion and apologized for losing his temper at the prison earlier.

Daniel admitted that he couldn't argue with Melanie's reasons for testifying on Nick's behalf. Maggie realized that Nick's theory about Melanie's motives had been correct. Daniel explained that Melanie had testified on Nick's behalf as a way to pay tribute to an amazing woman. Maggie sobbed as she hugged Daniel. Later, Daniel excused himself, and Victor offered to accompany him to the exit.

Meanwhile, Brady entered the mansion through the back entrance. Maggie could tell that Brady was still worried about Melanie. Brady sighed and admitted that it was hard to give Maggie advice, since she was usually giving him advice. Brady started to compare Melanie's rationalizations about Nick to Madison's rationalizations about Ian, but Maggie insisted that Nick was nothing like Ian.

Brady gently suggested that Maggie had never known the real Nick. Brady acknowledged that he had been given his fair share of second chances in the past, but he added that it was going to be difficult for him to extend that same courtesy to Nick. Brady admitted that the combination of Madison's death and Nick's parole had caused a lot of bad memories to resurface.

Maggie guessed that Brady was talking about Arianna's death. "If you remember, she was murdered by a man who was out on parole. Maggie, I'm sorry -- I don't have a lot of faith in the system, and I think people go into prison and it does not change them for the better. Maggie, I think this Nick guy could be more dangerous than ever," Brady predicted. Meanwhile, at the prison, Nick sighed heavily as he signed his release forms.

In Chad's apartment, Melanie assured Chad that everything was going to be all right. Chad joked that he was the one who was supposed to say that line. Chad admitted that he was glad that Nick was going to be leaving Salem. Chad hoped that Melanie would be able to get a decent night of rest. Melanie said that being with Chad made her feel completely safe. Chad kissed Melanie, and they started to make love.

Back at the Brady Pub, Sami was worried about Gabi. Will wondered why Sami cared. Sami pointed out that Gabi was an employee, Will's friend, and Rafe's sister. Sami said that Gabi was lucky to have Will as a friend. Sami abruptly changed the subject and wondered if Will had thanked Rafe for getting Will's charges dropped. Will admitted that he had not, but he assured Sami that he planned to do so.

Sami was pleased that Will and Rafe were still friends, and she reiterated that she was also glad that Will and Gabi were still friends. Sami noted that Gabi could really use some support, and she suggested that Will would be able to help her. Will silently recalled having sex with Gabi and said that he didn't think that he would be able to do that. Will claimed that he didn't want to give Gabi the wrong impression.

Sami noted the pained expression on Will's face, and she wondered if something else was going on. Struggling to hide his feelings of guilt, Will asked Sami to drop the subject. Will quickly apologized for snapping at Sami, and he admitted that he didn't want to fight with her and Lucas, who was still upset about the fact that Will had chosen to help Sami and E.J. evade the police.

Sami said that she was sorry for getting Will involved in that situation, but he assured her that there was no need to apologize. Sami offered to talk to Lucas, but Will jokingly reminded Sami that she had a habit of making matters worse. Sami agreed, and she laughed as she added that Lucas should have thanked Will for helping Sami and E.J., since that was the event that had convinced Lucas to finally give up on her.

"Yeah, I'm sorry that things have been so...crappy, and I'm sorry that I've been so disrespectful and nasty to you...for so long. You know, that night, um, of the explosion, when I -- when I saw you hanging from the catwalk, I've never been so scared in my life. I'm just sorry that that's -- you know, that it took something like that to, um -- to make me realize how much I do need you. And it's not -- you know, I'm not saying things are perfect, and they probably...won't...be, but, um, you know, it's nice to be talking again," Will admitted, and Sami agreed.

Later, outside the pub, Kate greeted Will with a hug, and she noted that she hadn't talked to him recently. After a brief conversation about Stefano, Kate abruptly changed the subject. "Actually, do you know -- there is this adorable intern at work that I want to set you up with. His name is Scott, and he is hot, and he is smart, and he has dimples to die for. I mean, unless you're already seeing someone," Kate said.

Kate's enthusiasm amused Will, who silently recalled Sonny's earlier attempt to kiss him. "Um, well, I was -- I mean, there was -- no. There was somebody, but he moved on -- not that I blame him, though. I think I kinda got some issues," Will admitted, but Kate disagreed. Kate said that Will was a great catch, and she insisted that the guy who was on Will's mind would have to be a complete fool to ignore that fact.

Back inside the pub, Gabi declined Sami's earlier offer, and she rushed off before Sami could question her decision. "Great! Number forty-eight on my to-do list -- find new models," Sami muttered, as Kate entered the pub. Kate wondered where hiring a new CEO ranked on that list. Sami assumed that Kate was about to nominate herself for the position, but Kate said that she wasn't interested.

Kate noted that Lucas was no longer around to clean up Sami's messes, and she predicted that it was just a matter of time before Sami ruined the company that Kate had created. Sami gloated that the company no longer belonged to Kate. Kate shrugged and said that Countess Wilhelmina was a small price to pay for the peace of mind that was associated with knowing that Lucas had finally escaped from Sami's evil clutches.

Changing the subject, Sami noted that Kate probably had mixed feelings about Ian's imprisonment, since it meant that she was out of a job. Kate happily revealed that she had just received a promotion, but Sami assumed that she was kidding. "No, I'm not. I'm also not kidding that this is war, Sami, and my guns are a lot bigger than yours, so prepare yourself, because I am taking you down," Kate warned Sami.

At the Horton Town Square, Sonny spotted T and rushed over to talk to him, innocently placing a hand on his shoulder to stop him. "I wanted to tell you that I'm sorry. I shouldn't have gone after you the way I did, and I was just kinda hoping that you'd accept my apology," Sonny said, extending a hand. T skeptically considered the offer for a moment before rejecting it.

Sonny reminded T that T was the one who had walked into Sonny's coffeehouse and thrown the first punch. Sonny added that he was just hoping that he and T could settle the situation like rational human beings. T claimed that Sonny was a total freak, and he wondered how it would be possible for a completely normal person to reach an agreement with someone like Sonny. T warned Sonny to keep his hands to himself.

Sonny assumed that T had to know other people who were gay, and he wondered if T treated all of them as rudely as he had treated Sonny. T claimed that Sonny was the first gay person he had ever interacted with. T said that Sonny had added a second gay person to the list when he had turned Will gay. Sonny wondered if T really believed that Will had once been straight.

T recalled that he and Will had once enjoyed cruising around in a car, looking for girls and rating them on a scale of one to twelve. "Twelve?" Sonny asked incredulously, but T ignored him. T said that he and Will had befriended each other at a young age, and he insisted that he would have known if Will had played for the other team. Sonny shrugged and suggested that T simply wasn't smart enough to detect the obvious signs.

T disagreed, and he theorized that Sonny had hit on and confused Will, the same way that he had once hit on T. Sonny wondered what T was talking about. T recalled that Sonny had once invited him to a baseball game. Sonny shrugged and clarified that giving T that extra ticket had been nothing more than a friendly gesture. Sonny firmly stated that he had never been interested in T.

T noted that Sonny was interested in Will, and he explained that he had overheard Sonny and Brian's earlier conversation at the coffeehouse. "Okay, yeah -- I'm interested in Will, and I'd love to be more than friends with him, but...you know what? He doesn't feel the same way," Sonny admitted. T wondered why Will wasn't interested, since he and Sonny were both gay. T sarcastically added that it sounded like a match made in hell.

Sonny started to wonder if T had a habit of hitting on every single girl who walked past him, but he quickly realized that he probably didn't want to know the answer to that question. T insisted that he wasn't like that. "Well, neither am I. You know, I think it'd be cool if Will felt the same way...but he doesn't. You know, maybe you've been there, T -- sometimes it just doesn't work out," Sonny explained.

T abruptly decided to end the conversation, noting that he was going to be late for a basketball game. Sonny stopped T, and he knowingly stated that T's friendship had meant a lot to Will. T wondered if that meant that Will was attracted to T, but Sonny assured him that he had misunderstood.

"I just know that he hated the way that things have fallen out, and I think maybe you should put some thought into why it got messed up in the first place, you know? Just try to be just a little more accepting of how people want to live their lives and stop worrying so much what people think about you, all right? Then maybe you'll understand that Will is still the same guy that he's always been," Sonny said.

T silently contemplated Sonny's advice for a moment before walking away. Sonny sighed heavily as he watched T exit the town square. Sonny grabbed his phone and considered calling Will. Meanwhile, Will entered the town square and spotted Sonny, whose back was facing him.

After a brief pause, Will sighed dejectedly and slowly walked off in the opposite direction.

Friday, September 7, 2012

At the Brady Pub, Rafe was surprised to learn that Gabi had stopped modeling. He assumed that Sami had fired Gabi, but Gabi insisted that she had quit. She refused to discuss it further, which only solidified Rafe's suspicions about Sami. He stalked out determinedly.

Marlena arrived at Sami's with bagels so the mother and daughter could visit, and also because Marlena wanted to warn Sami that Brady had offered Kate a job at Titan. Sami told her mom that she already knew about it -- and she was not pleased. Marlena asked Sami to please try to be supportive of Brady, and Sami reluctantly agreed.

Sami suddenly remembered her earlier run-in with Nicole in Horton Square, and muttered under her breath, "Bitch." She quickly explained that she had been referring to Nicole, because Nicole had been flaunting being pregnant by Rafe -- and Sami would never understand how those two had done what they'd done. Marlena completely understood Sami's feelings, but pointed out that the only thing Sami could change about the situation was the way she responded to it.

Sami then confided that she and Lucas had recently had a huge fight, during which Lucas had declared that he would never forgive Sami, and that the only reason Sami had helped E.J. was because she always wanted what she couldn't have. Sami confidently stated that she was going to change, and she refused to let any man distract her from her first priorities: her kids and her job.

After Marlena had gone, Rafe arrived to confront Sami about firing Gabi just to get back at him. Sami lightheartedly warned Rafe against jumping to conclusions without having facts to base them on. Rafe blustered that Sami had to have fired Gabi, who would never willingly have left the modeling job she loved. Sami asserted that Gabi had quit, although Sami had begged her not to. Rafe still didn't believe Sami, so Sami urged him to ask Gabi what had really happened.

"I get that you don't believe anything I say, but I can't believe you think I would do something so crappy just to get back at you," Sami said. Rafe countered that it wouldn't be the first time. Sami swore that she would never hurt Gabi just to get back at Rafe. Meanwhile, Rafe sent a text message to Gabi to ask what had happened, and Gabi replied, "Sami didn't fire me. I quit." Rafe admitted that he had been wrong.

Sami understood that Rafe had just been looking out for his sister, and she also understood how angry Rafe was with her. Sami assured Rafe, "I would never hurt Gabi. I like her, and I know you'd always look out for my kids -- because no matter what happens with us, we're all still family." Sami quickly backpedaled and clarified that she'd just been referring to the kids when she'd said family, and acknowledged that Rafe hated her. Rafe inched closer to Sami as he softly reassured her, "I don't hate you. I don't. I could never hate you."

When Chad awakened, he was surprised to see that Melanie was already out of bed and catching up on emails. As she got back into bed, Melanie said that she hadn't been able to sleep, and Chad guessed that it had been because of Nick. Melanie admitted that she had been thinking about Nick, but she no longer had to worry about him, because he was going back east with his mom. Chad got a text message from Sonny requesting Chad's help with taking a deposit to the bank. While Chad got ready to leave, Melanie gazed anxiously at a picture of Nick on her computer.

Abigail visited her cousin Nick at the prison so she could have a chance to see him before he left town with his mom. Nick explained that the conditions of his parole required him to stay in Salem. Abigail was worried about how Melanie would react when she found out. Nick hoped that Melanie would eventually see that he had turned himself around. "I swear, I'm not going to give Melanie a reason to regret doing what she did for me," Nick promised.

Will went to Common Grounds because he'd gotten a text message from Sonny. Sonny explained that he wanted to talk to Will about something. Will interrupted to say that he thought the two of them should clear the air, since Sonny believed that Will couldn't handle being gay. Will admitted that Sonny had made some good points, and Will was working on things, but he could use some encouragement from Sonny.

Before Sonny could say anything, Chad entered to pick up the bank deposit -- but first he told Will that the two of them had a lot to talk about. As they sat at a table together, Will apologized that he hadn't been the one to tell Chad that he was gay. Chad apologized for going after Will when he'd been accused of killing Chad's father.

"So we're good, right?" Chad asked, and Will concurred. Sonny approached the table, and the three guys joked around with each other -- until Sonny mentioned that he'd heard on the news that the terms of Nick's parole required him to stay in Salem. Although he tried to hide it, Chad's fury was evident as he mumbled an excuse and hurried out the door.

Sonny was trying to broach the subject that he'd wanted to talk to Will about when he got a phone call from Brian. Will frowned when he overheard Sonny say Brian's name, and rushed out the door while Sonny's back was turned. As Sonny hung up, he started to tell Will, "What I've been trying to ask you is, I've got concert tickets..." However, when he turned around, he was dismayed to see that Will had left.

Chad went to the prison to visit Nick, who had no idea who Chad was. "I think it's time the two of us have a little talk," Chad began, and then introduced himself as Chad DiMera. "If you know what's good for you, you'll stay the hell away from Melanie Jonas," Chad warned Nick. Nick stated that if Chad would just give him some time, Nick could prove that he had changed. Chad countered, "One thing I've learned, pal, is people don't change."

Abigail and Gabi met for coffee at Common Grounds, and Melanie walked in right behind them, so they asked her to join them. Gabi started to leave, but a bemused Abigail urged her to stay, so Gabi reluctantly sat back down. Melanie wondered if anyone had seen Chad, but Abigail said that she hadn't. Melanie asked if Nick had said anything about when he and his mom were going back east. Abigail broke the news that Nick had to stay in Salem.

Although Melanie insisted that she was fine about it, she was clearly rattled. She told the other girls to let Chad know that she had gone back to his apartment, and then hurried out. Gabi then left to return to work. Abigail fretted to herself about what Chad might do when he found out about Nick.

Abigail and Sonny chatted about the situation with Nick, Melanie, and Chad. Sonny admitted that when Chad had learned that Nick was staying in Salem, he had stormed out of there. Abigail asked if Sonny had plans for that night. Sonny admitted that he had some concert tickets, but he didn't think the guy he'd planned to ask wanted to go. He offered the tickets to Abigail, who suddenly became emotional.

Sonny expressed his concern for what Abigail was going through. Abigail was grateful to know that he cared, but admitted that it was hard to talk about. Near tears, she got up and left. Outside, she sent a text message that said, "Cameron, I need to see you now."

When Chad returned to his apartment, he startled Melanie, who admitted she was feeling a bit "wired." She noted that Chad looked very serious. "Everything will be okay if you promise me one thing," Chad said, getting down on one knee in front of Melanie and taking her by the hand. "Marry me," Chad proposed. Stunned, Melanie could only reply, "What?"

Nick was dressed in street clothes when a guard escorted him into a room where a table had some papers spread out on it. "Your ride is waiting. As soon as you sign the papers, you can start your parole," the guard said. Nick wasted no time in sitting down to begin signing.

Will joined Marlena at the Brady Pub so the two could catch up. Will filled his grandmother in about Chad blowing up and taking off from the coffeehouse. Caroline overheard and wanted to know more, but Will didn't want to worry her with the details. After Caroline had gone back behind the bar, Marlena noted that someone should have told Melanie that most boards required that parolees stay in the same jurisdiction. Will and Marlena both hoped that their impressions were right and that Nick had truly changed.

Will thought it would be best for Nick if everyone just backed off and let him find his way. Marlena wondered if Will had really been referring to himself when he'd mentioned people backing off. Will confided that for some people, coming out solved all their problems, but it hadn't for him, because he wasn't ready to "do the whole dating scene." Marlena guessed that was because Will was interested in someone. Will confessed that there was someone he couldn't stop thinking about.

Marlena guessed that Will was talking about the man with whom he'd "messed up" and gently pressed for more details. As he recalled the night he'd slept with Gabi, Will hedged that it wasn't important, because the guy he liked had moved on with someone else. Will added that the new guy was, "Handsome, he's confident, he's secure -- he's basically everything that I am not." Marlena argued that the opposite was true about Will, and urged her grandson to go for it and step up. "Let this young man know how you feel about him. I think you'll be glad you did," Marlena declared.

At the Horton house, Jennifer poured tea for herself and Nicole. Jennifer guessed that Daniel saving Nicole's baby had forged a powerful friendship between the two of them. Nicole confessed that things with her and Daniel were a little more complicated than a friendship. She explained that while E.J. had been hard on her since finding out about the pregnancy, Daniel had just been a protective, "old-fashioned good guy."

Nicole added that Daniel had continued to be wonderful toward her, "And that's why I will want him in my life forever." Jennifer encouraged Nicole to be honest with herself and not make everything with Daniel into more than it really was. Changing the subject, Nicole offered to help out by making a scrapbook with pictures of Jack for Jennifer and Abigail. Jennifer somewhat abruptly assured Nicole, "You don't need to bother doing that at all. I'm just fine, thank you." Jennifer then hurried out because she was running late.

After Jennifer had gone, Nicole muttered to herself that she knew exactly where things were going with Daniel -- but she had to make Daniel see it as clearly as she did. Suddenly, Nicole recalled overhearing Maggie guessing that Daniel was still in love with Jennifer. A frustrated Nicole admitted to herself that Maggie was usually right about things.

Nicole told Jack's picture on the mantel, "We have a mission, and that is to make sure that Jennifer always remember her dearly departed husband, whether she wants to or not." Nicole fantasized about a happy life with Daniel and her child, who called Daniel "Daddy." She was determined to make the fantasy a reality.

At the hospital, Daniel congratulated Kayla on being reinstated as chief of staff. Kayla joked that she had accepted the position because the stress of working at the Brady Pub had been too much to handle. Kayla confided that she also planned to rehire Jennifer, because Jennifer had been so good at her job but also because it might help distract Jen from her grief. Daniel noted that perhaps Jennifer shouldn't return to work before she was ready, but Kayla thought it should be Jennifer's decision.

A bit later, Daniel bumped into Jennifer in Horton Square. He thanked her for letting Nicole move in and urged Jennifer to let him know if Nicole got to be "too much." Jennifer assured him that so far things had been fine, and she was about to talk to Daniel about Nicole's feelings for him when Kayla's arrival interrupted them. Kayla assumed that Daniel had spilled the beans, and a clueless Jennifer wanted to know what they were talking about.

Kayla offered Jennifer a job as director of communications at the hospital. Daniel pointed out that Jennifer didn't have to make a decision until she was sure about what felt right to her. After Daniel left, Jennifer noted that Daniel obviously didn't think her new job would be a good idea.

Kayla believed that it was only because Daniel was concerned that it was too soon after Jack's death and not because Daniel and Jennifer had once dated. Jennifer wasn't so sure, because she wasn't even sure whether she and Daniel were friends anymore, since he had seemed really distant ever since Jack had died. "I think that he is still really angry at me," Jennifer concluded.

Nicole went to the hospital to have an ultrasound. The obstetrician informed Nicole that she was having a boy. The doctor told Nicole that she could get dressed, and then left the room. A beaming Nicole told her belly, "Well, buddy, E.J. is out of the picture. Don't worry, because Mommy's going to make sure you have the perfect daddy."

When Daniel returned to the hospital, he overheard a female staffer gossiping negatively to a nurse about Jennifer. Nicole exited the exam room just in time to overhear Daniel strongly admonishing the staffer, "This hospital is nothing but lucky to have Jennifer Horton back, and we -- and by 'we' I mean 'you' -- will welcome her with gratitude and respect. She is one of the best, nicest people I have ever met, and you will treat her as such. Got it?"

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