Vivian made an unforgettable entrance when she arrived in Salem in 1992. Lawrence was being held at gunpoint by Alphonse LeBeque at the Alamain Mansion. Vivian simply strolled in, shot Alphonse, casually stepped over his lifeless body, and then embraced Lawrence.
It was soon revealed that Lawrence had summoned his aunt to Salem. He suspected that John Black was a master thief named Romulas who had stolen precious heirlooms from the Alamain Family nearly a decade before during a ball. Vivian and Lawrence hoped that jarring John’s memory would be the key to having their lost treasures returned. To do so, Vivian decided to throw a masquerade ball, recreating the similar event from eight years earlier when the heirlooms were stolen.
Vivian’s plan seemingly worked. John was arrested for being Romulas. However, her plans soon came back to bite her. When Romulas’s safe deposit box was opened, Vivian recognized a locket as the one that was stolen from her. Vivian then convinced her Lawrence to open the casket of his brother, Forrest, who died as a child. When the coffin was opened they discovered it was only filled with sand. Soon after DNA tests verified that John was actually Forrest Alamain. Vivian vowed revenge against her newly reunited nephew when he claimed his inheritance that she had taken.
During the summer of 1992, Vivian’s “adopted” son Nikki arrived in Salem. In reality, he was Lawrence’s son with her sworn enemy, Dr. Carly Manning; a son which neither Lawrence nor Carly knew was still alive. A lawyer, Lisanne Gardner, discovered the identity of Nikki's real parents and attempted to blackmail Vivian.
During a confrontation between Vivian and the lawyer, Nikki pushed Lisanne. She hit her head on a stone cat and was killed instantly. In order to protect Nikki, Vivian and Lawrence hid Lisanne's body in a car and Vivian's manservant Ivan staged a car crash in which the body was cremated. However, Lawrence started to have his suspicions about his aunt and Vivian suffered a heart attack when he turned on her. Soon after, when Lawrence had pieced together the truth about Nikki's parentage, Vivian kidnapped Nikki. Lawrence ran to get Carly and the two worked together to find their son.
After Nikki learned the truth about Lawrence and Carly, Vivian became determined to kill Carly in order to keep the boy. Around this time it was discovered that Vivian had a fatal heart disease. Vivian decided to use her fading heath to her advantage and frame Carly for her murder. At Shawn-Douglas's birthday party in 1993, Vivian set her plan into motion. She goaded Carly into an argument on the terrace. Vivian then fell on purpose, trying to frame Carly, but, ironically, it ended up being Carly who saved her life in surgery.
While in the hospital recuperating from her fall, Vivian started taking herbs that she thought would heal her heart condition. Instead, they had an alternate reaction and she went a little more insane each day. To continue her crusade against Carly, Vivian disguised herself as a nurse and began killing Carly's patients with cleaning fluid, trying to frame her foe.
After several murders, Carly caught Vivian about to give Caroline Brady a lethal injection. The two struggled and Carly got the heavy dose of morphine instead. Once Carly was unconscious, Vivian took the opportunity to drug Carly with herbs that induced deathlike paralysis, and Carly was pronounced dead.
Vivian was not satisfied. She knew Carly was still alive. To further torture her enemy, Vivian situated Carly’s casket with a walkie-talkie. Using the device, she taunted Carly once she awoke and realized she was six-feet under. Carly begged for release, but that only encouraged Vivian’s wrath. Vivian even rolled around on Carly’s grave in delight. However, when Vivian’s head cleared, she confessed her mayhem to Lawrence who dug up Carly just in time. She also confessed to the murders of Carly's patients and she was institutionalized in Pine Haven Sanitarium.
Even while committed, Vivian continued to scheme when she spotted Kate Roberts, her rival for Victor Kiriakis’ affections, making mysterious trips to see Laura Horton, another patient. Kate discovered Vivian sneaking out of the asylum and notified the hospital. A lobotomy was scheduled to subdue Vivian. As surgery was about to begin, a fire broke out and Vivian's ever faithful servant Ivan rescued her and Laura. While hiding out and recuperating, Laura told Vivian the link between Curtis Reed and Kate. Vivian could now win Victor from Kate.
In mid-1994, Vivian was back in Salem and up to no good. When Kate and Victor couldn’t conceive naturally, they decided to have a child together via artificial insemination. Vivian stole their embryo and had herself implanted with it in an attempt to win Victor.
Months later, at a wedding rehearsal for Kate and Victor (which Kate wasn't able to attend), Vivian tricked Victor into marrying her, although he wasn't aware of the fact. Kate figured out what Vivian was up to and confronted her. Vivian of course denied it and, when Kate said she was flying down to see Victor and tell him what she knew about Vivian, Vivian drugged Kate's coffee. Inadvertently, the pilot drank the coffee and the plane crashed, but Kate's body was never found.
A year later, just as Victor and Vivian were about to make love, Kate returned and told Victor everything. Vivian took the opportunity to let everyone know that she was really Victor's wife. She also told Victor that if he divorced her, she would file for custody of Philip, the child she gave birth to for him. The stress of the situation caused Victor to have a stroke and lapse into a catatonic state.
With Victor disabled, Kate tried to have Vivian thrown out of the Titian Publishing office, but Vivian was able to blackmail Kristen into voting for her to stay. However, after blackmailing Kristen, Vivian had no choice but to help Kristen with her schemes. More so, Vivian helped because she was afraid of Stefano’s wrath. Meanwhile, Stefano kept pressure on Vivian to and insured her that she would continue to help him and his family as long as he needed her too.
Eventually, Vivian began pursuing Stefano's shares in Titian. He had obtained 49% of Titan and she wanted the majority to help her destroy Kate for stealing Victor and her house. Vivian’s plans backfired again and she even lost her wealth because of her affiliation with villainess Kristen.
To recoup her fortune, a penniless Vivian married an eccentric old man known as Jonesy. On the surface he seemed like a poor bum, but Vivian had been to his townhouse and seen his art treasures. She assumed he was made of millions. Those millions actually belonged to Stefano, who had put everything in Jonesy's name to keep his name out of it. In fact, most of the art was stolen. But Vivian was none-the-wiser and soon delighted when she became a widow and heir to all of Jonesy’s fortune.
To reclaim his fortune, Stefano had super doctor and mad-scientist, Dr. Rolf implant a mood-altering device in Vivian’s tooth. With the device they made her appear insane. Then he married her to inherit the money Jonesy left her, which was his to begin with anyway.
Throughout June of 1998, Stefano continued to control Vivian's moods to his advantage. However, Vivian felt like she was dying and had her Chinese herbal physician, Dr. Wu, look at her. He discovered the implant. Vivian immediately vowed revenge by trying to take Stefano’s 49% shares of Titan. Vivian’s luck took another turn for the better when a now grownup Nicholas “Nikki” Alamain returned to town and began helping her get her revenge on Stefano.
Vivian also decided to get help from a man as powerful as Stefano – Victor! When she uncovered a problem with Victor's health care, she spent several weeks in Asia trying to find an alternative medicine that could "cure" him of his paralysis caused by the stroke and bring him back to her. Victor learned of her plans and said that he was willing to try alternative therapy. Although her intentions were to help Victor, and possibly snag him as her husband, things didn’t turn out well for Vivian once again. Even though his health had improved, Victor never rekindled their relationship and went back to Kate.
At first, Vivian decided to go after Kate once again. She even discovered that Kate was cheating on Victor with Nicholas! However, Vivian also discovered that not only was Victor paralyzed, but he was impotent. Even though she had the ammunition against Kate, she decided to take the high road once she saw the alternate therapy had worked and Victor was able to dance with Kate. However, she left a stern warning for Kate and Nicholas that they will pay if Victor gets hurt.
By the winter of 2000, Vivian’s lucked changed. Technically, it was Ivan’s luck that had changed – he won a $40 million lottery jackpot! Because of his newly acquired fortune, he offered Vivian a fresh new start and a life filled with globetrotting and luxury. She accepted his friendship, and money. On February 22, Vivian and Ivan climbed into a limo and waved goodbye to Salem.
Little was heard from Vivian after she departed Salem. In 2007 she paid for her adoptive nephew John Black’s funeral after he was presumably killed in a hit and run. Her generosity was appreciated by Marlena and the rest of her family.
On October 30, 2009, Vivian was shown mourning the loss of her beloved nephew, Lawrence. As it turned out, Carly had murdered Lawrence in self-defense, but Vivian was inconsolable and wanted revenge. While staying at Lawrence’s estate in “Alamain Land,” Vivian began searching for Carly who had fled the country. Eventually, she was able to track her down to her old home – Salem!
Accompanied by her new manservant, Gus, Vivian also returned to Salem. Once back, she ran into several of her old acquaintances, including Kate and Victor. Vivian and Kate’s hatred for one another still burned bright even after all of their years apart. Luckily, her run-in with Victor turned out better. After bonding over their mutual hatred of Carly, Victor offered to let her stay at the Kiriakis mansion. From her new home, Vivian continued to form a plan of revenge.
While at the mansion, Vivian also got reacquainted with Philip. She overzealously gushed and doted on him. She even called him her son, much to Kate’s chagrin. Philip remained hesitant of Vivian and repeatedly tried to remind her that she was not his mother; she only carried him to term because she had stolen Kate and Victor’s embryo. Vivian never seemed phased by Philip’s insults or rejections and she continued to fuss over “her son.”
In addition to trying to win Philip’s love, Vivian continued to plot against Carly during the winter of 2010. Her hatred was also fueled by her hallucinations and “conversations” with Lawrence’s “ghost,” who encouraged her diabolical plans. However, things became even more intense when she discovered that not only had Carly cheated on Lawrence, but she had a child with her lover as well. Vivian then decided on a plan – she would discover the identity of Carly’s bastard child and then kill him or her. She believed that would be worst revenge, citing Carly destroyed her life when she killed Lawrence and so she would take away one of Carly’s loved ones.
Vivian investigated the lovechild’s identity and was eventually able to narrow down the possibilities down to Mia McCormick and Melanie Layton. Vivian began associating herself with both girls until she could figure out which one was her newest target. As it turned out, Melanie was the child in question. But there was a snag – Philip was engaged to Melanie.
There was also another hitch. Victor warned Vivian not to hurt Melanie because it would crush Philip. Vivian promised him she wouldn’t, but secretly continued her revenge plans. Ironically, the more time Vivian spent with Melanie to gain her trust, the more she began to like the young, giggly girl. Vivian was about to abandon her plans when she was once again hallucinated and began talking to “Lawrence.” He encouraged her to follow through because that was the only way Carly would truly pay for killing him. Vivian felt compelled to follow through with her beloved nephew’s wishes.
With Gus’s help Vivian coordinated the construction of a poisoned hairpiece intended to kill Melanie during her Valentine’s Day wedding to Philip. On the day of, Vivian had Gus kidnap Carly and lock her in an old warehouse where she would force her to watch Melanie’s death on a live video-feed. Unfortunately, Victor caught wind of Vivian’s plan and thwarted it by replacing the hairpiece with one that wasn’t poisoned. To make matters worse, Carly escaped.
In an attempt to salvage her plans, Vivian invited Melanie to the roof the Kiriakis mansion to have a private conversation. When Melanie’s back was turned, Vivian raised a metal pipe and was about to strike. Just then, Carly burst through the door and shot at Vivian, but she accidentally hit Melanie instead. Vivian delighted in the fact that Carly had possibly killed her own child. That was also when nearly everyone in Salem discovered who Melanie’s mother truly was.
Vivian had little time to celebrate. Victor warned her if Melanie died he would make her pay, but, if she lived, he wouldn’t seek revenge on her for hurting Philip. Melanie lived, but Vivian once again visited by “Lawrence” who told her to finish the job.
Vivian snuck into Melanie’s hospital room and attempted to smother Melanie with a pillow. However, Melanie woke up, but, ironically, begged Vivian to kill her because she was in so much physical and emotional pain because of everything that happened. Vivian finally gave into her newfound sympathy and admiration for the girl. She spared Melanie’s life. She also reveled in the fact that Carly had shot her daughter and her daughter hated her. Later, Vivian saw “Lawrence” one more time and told her that she would make Carly pay, but would not kill Melanie while doing so.
Although Carly remained in Vivian’s sights, Vivian and Victor reached a new deal; he would give her something she always wanted and marry her if she stopped trying to destroy Carly. She was delighted and seemingly agreed, but secretly continued with her war against Carly, working even more covertly than before. A short time later, Vivian heard Chloe Lane discuss her hatred for Carly and she decided to recruit her as a pawn in her plans.
Victor kept his word and married Vivian on May 28, 2010 in front of his very suspicious family. But, their marriage was not a happy one. Victor soon developed feelings for Maggie Horton- a revelation that did not sit well with Vivian. She drafted a master plan to imprison Maggie in a sarcophagus to get Maggie away from Victor. However, Brady discovered Vivian's plan and put Vivian in the sarcophagus instead.
Victor found out what Brady had done and helped Brady cover up the crime. Victor believed that he and Salem were better off without Vivian. When Vivian's assistant, Gus, finally rescued her from the sarcophagus, Vivian set her sights back on Maggie.
Vivian buried Maggie alive, leaving Brady, Victor, and the rest of Salem wondering what happened to Maggie. Victor finally figured out where Maggie was and rescued her. But as the story came out that Victor had had a hand in keeping Vivian prisoner, Vivian was able to blackmail Brady to keep him from revealing her plot to the police.
Vivian set out to get revenge on Victor by orchestrating a take over of Titan. Vivian was able to buy a controlling share of Titan and threatened to throw the whole family out of their house and the business. In retaliation, Brady arranged a business meeting in China for the head of Titan. Vivian got on the Titan jet and headed for Hong Kong, but Brady had bribed the pilot to drop Vivian and Gus onto a deserted island where he kept them for several weeks. Finally, at Maggie's urging, Brady and victor agreed to rescue Vivian. But, the terms of her rescue were that she signed papers divorcing Victor and handing over control of Titan.
Just when Vivian was set to execute her next revenge plot, a person from her past showed up in Salem, her son, Quinn. Quinn hated Vivian, saying that she abandoned him as a child and always favored Lawrence and Nicholas over him. Vivian tried to make things right with Quinn and was thrilled when he offered to help her get revenge on Carly.
Vivian found out that Carly had been abusing prescription pills and enlisted Quinn's help to make sure that one of his dealers gave Carly a stash of pills. Then, Vivian set it up so that Carly would see Jennifer and Daniel together, hoping it would drive Carly to go on a drug binge. Vivian's plan worked. Vivian impersonated a maid and entered Carly's room. Vivian gave Carly even more pills and then took a picture of the strung-out Carly surrounded by even more pills. Vivian uploaded the picture and sent it out to everyone in town. Delighted that her latest scheme worked, Vivian celebrated by thanking Quinn for all of his help.
But Vivian had no idea that her relationship with Quinn was causing problems in other aspects of her life. Jealous of the attention Quinn was getting, Gus sent out to get revenge. Gus found out that Quinn ran a prostitution ring in Salem. So, Gus began attacking prostitutes. After the third attack, with the police hot on the train, Gus planted evidence that implicated Quinn at the attacker. Quinn was arrested and Gus tried to convince Vivian to leave Salem with him.
As Bo and Hope questioned Quinn, they became increasingly convinced that they had the wrong man. As they were going over the evidence, Chloe woke up from her coma and identified Gus as her attacker. Gus was arrested and sent to jail. Vivian wanted nothing to do with him again and left town with former manservant, Ivan.