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Reed and Nikki find themselves on a collision course
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Tuesday, December 11, 2018

As Nick listened to music on his headphones, Phyllis arrived home, wrapped her arms around him, and kissed his neck. He said he'd been missing her, since he hadn't expected dropping off a contract to take that long. She mentioned tying up some loose ends, and she declared that she was fully available to lavish her attention on him. They kissed passionately.

At the Abbott mansion, Billy stared at Phyllis' rings in his hand. Abby wondered if Dina had left them out, but Billy revealed that they were his. Billy suggested that they go out and do something fun, but they quickly realized that their options for nightlife in Genoa City were severely lacking. He figured that the last thing he needed for his "crappy mood" was to pour alcohol down his throat, and she offered to split the last piece of Mrs. Martinez's apple pie with him. He replied that he wasn't very hungry, and she headed upstairs.

A shaken Nikki showed up at Victoria's house and revealed that the person who'd been tormenting them had been in her house and her bedroom. Nikki pulled out the clothing that she'd found on her bed, and Victoria recognized the clothes that they'd buried J.T. in. Victoria ordered Nikki to put them away, and Nikki shuddered in horror at the memory of turning on the light and finding the outfit sprawled out on the bed. Victoria considered it proof that the same person who had been framing Victor had also moved J.T.'s body from the park.

Nikki suspected that the culprit had been someone they trusted who lived close by, but she couldn't think of anyone that brazen and twisted. A key turned in the front door, and Nikki rushed to hide. Victoria was surprised to see that Reed had returned home from boarding school, and he explained that he'd arranged to take his finals early to have a longer holiday break. Relieved, Nikki gushed that it had been wonderful to see him walk through the door. Reed said he'd wanted to surprise them, and Nikki muttered, "You certainly did that."

Victoria fretted that she hadn't stocked the fridge because she hadn't known Reed would be home, and he assured her that he could get whatever he needed. Nikki reminded him that he had a suspended license, and he said he planned to take the bus or call a ride. Nikki noted that he'd become very self-reliant, and she inquired about what he planned to do with the extra time on his break. Reed announced his intent to find out how his dad had died.

Victoria swore that she'd tried to keep Reed informed about the investigation. Reed acknowledged that his mother didn't like talking about it, but he needed answers. Nikki proposed that they talk the next day, and Victoria took Reed upstairs to get his room ready. Nikki's smile faded as they left the room, and she stared at Victoria's unfinished glass of wine on the table. Nikki grabbed it and took a gulp.

The next morning, Jack provided an off-the-record quote over the phone, not denying the possibility that Rebekah Barlow and the Jaboutiques had formed a partnership. Billy entered, and Jack congratulated him on the Barlow deal. Billy was surprised that word had gotten out because it had just closed, and Jack mentioned that he'd heard legal had been up late to put the contract to bed. Jack raved about the partnership's potential to build new buyers into loyal Jabot customers, and he thought the timing couldn't be better with Ashley about to launch her new line. Jack imagined that Phyllis was ecstatic, and Billy replied that they both were.

Jack surmised from Billy's mood that "the talk" hadn't gone well, and Billy reported that Phyllis was moving on without him. Billy swore that he hadn't been drinking the night before, since it had been part of the reason he'd ended up in the mess to begin with. Billy recognized that he hadn't shown that kind of restraint a few months earlier when he'd lashed out at Phyllis, but the damage had already been done. Jack guessed that Phyllis couldn't forgive whatever revenge Billy had enacted on her, but Billy thought she didn't want to punish him as much anymore. Jack wondered what was holding her back.

Billy figured that Nick was a safe port in the storm, but he wasn't sure whether what Phyllis had with Nick was real or if she was just trying to convince herself that she'd made the right choice. Billy recounted a comment she'd made about what it would say about her if she took Billy back. Billy was sure that she still loved him and missed him, but she'd hate herself too much for taking him back. Billy worried about pushing too hard when she needed more time, and Jack warned Billy not to make the same mistake Jack had by waiting around for something that was never going to happen. Billy understood that Phyllis might never take him back, but he refused to give up.

Jack cautioned that pushing too hard might put a strain on Billy and Phyllis' working relationship, but Billy groused that he'd have nothing left if he gave up his job. Jack reminded Billy that he had two kids who thought their father had hung the moon, and he suggested that Billy pay them a surprise visit and watch their faces light up. Jack doubted that Victoria would mind Billy dropping by more often, and Billy turned the topic to what was going on between Jack and Kerry. Jack indicated that Kerry had been sending him mixed signals. Jack read a text message from Nikki, asking if they could meet. Billy implored Jack to get back out there and find a mate.

At Dark Horse, Jack called Kerry and referred to the wonderful time he'd had with her on Thanksgiving. They made plans to meet for breakfast the next morning.

In Nick's office, Abby excitedly told Nick about an inspiration she'd had after a conversation about wanting to grab a bite to eat and go dancing the night before. She pointed out that since the Underground had closed, there was no local place with a cool vibe and great food to hang out after hours. Abby commended Nick for running the hottest spot in town, and she wanted to do something similar with the building she'd just purchased. She envisioned opening a hip eatery that turned into a club after dinner, but he listed the various downsides and warned that most restaurants failed. She bragged about her building's location, and she thought all she needed was someone with real-world experience to guide her.

Abby enthused that she and Nick would have a lot of fun, and it wouldn't take much time for him because he'd only be advising her. Nick anticipated that it would take more time than she thought, and he declined because he barely saw his kids as it was. She understood, and he urged her to get a strong business plan in place. He saw an incoming call from Summer, and Abby stepped out. Arturo asked what Nick had thought of Abby's pitch, and she grumbled that Nick had thought as much about it as he had about her last idea. Meanwhile, Nick promised Summer that he would find Victor.

Arturo agreed that the restaurant business was tough, but Abby thought it wouldn't be a problem to get the word out with her huge online following. He questioned how she'd turn them into repeat customers, and he encouraged her to consider a steadier business like an upscale grocery store or a salon. Abby scowled at the thought of Mia wanting to be involved, and she resolved to stick with her idea about a late-night spot. She reflected back on a festive place in Miami where Arturo had taken her, and she wanted to provide a place like that in Genoa City. She pledged to find an objective person with experience who wasn't a Newman or an Abbott to help her, and she realized that she knew the perfect person.

At Victoria's, Reed was sorry that he'd missed the kids, who had already left for school. He asked if Nikki had stopped by for breakfast, but Nikki claimed that she'd stayed the night to spend time with him before he rushed off to be with his friends. Reed proclaimed that his first stop would be the police station to meet with Rey about his dad's death. Victoria insisted that she could tell Reed what he needed to know, and Reed pressed to know why she hadn't.

Victoria reasoned that she hadn't wanted to say anything that might upset Reed without being there to help him through it, and he sympathized that it was hard for her. He swore that he didn't mind getting the information from the police if it would be easier on her, but Victoria preferred that he turn to her first. He requested to see a copy of the autopsy report, and she informed him that there hadn't been an autopsy because the police had never found a body. Reed brightened at the possibility that his father was still alive as Victoria and Nikki squirmed.

Reed was skeptical that the police had been able to determine that J.T. was dead from a soil sample, and he theorized that his father had been mugged and hurt. Victoria advised him against getting his hopes up, and Reed questioned how J.T.'s DNA had been in the park when his body hadn't been. Nikki explained that the police believed J.T.'s body had been there but that someone had later moved it. Reed protested that it made no sense that someone wouldn't have been caught, and he asked if the police had a suspect. The doorbell interrupted them.

Nick hugged Reed and regretted that Reed had just missed Summer. Nick griped that she'd taken off for Dubai to work with her grandfather, but things hadn't worked out that way. Nikki asserted that Summer was just fine, but Nick considered it crummy that Victor had lured Summer over under false pretenses. Nick asked when Nikki had last talked to Victor, and Reed panicked that his grandpa had gone missing, too. Victoria insisted that Victor was just on a business trip but hadn't done a good job of staying in touch.

Nikki prepared to run some errands, and Reed requested a ride to the coffeehouse. After Nikki and Reed departed, Nick apologized for not thinking about how Victor's disappearing act would sound to Reed. Victoria informed Nick that Rey considered Victor a suspect in J.T.'s murder, but she didn't want Reed to know. Victoria revealed that the arson investigator had found a man's shirt with J.T.'s blood in the stables, and she suspected that someone was doing a "damn good job" of setting their father up.

Phyllis stopped by after learning that Nick was at Victoria's, and Nick informed her that he understood why his father hadn't returned home. Victoria clucked that Victor wasn't hiding from Rey, and Nick told Phyllis that Victor was a suspect in J.T.'s homicide investigation. Nick thought it didn't sound crazy, since Victor had been mad enough to kill J.T. Victoria argued that going through with it was another thing, but Phyllis contemplated the possibility that Victor had killed J.T.

Phyllis stressed that Rey had found incriminating evidence, and she thought Victoria had high hopes for Victor's innocence. Victoria contended that she would know if the guilt was weighing on Victor, but Nick suspected that their father might feel good about it. Victoria ordered them to stop talking as if Victor was guilty, and Nick insisted that his main concern was Summer. He prepared to get to work, and Victoria claimed that she wanted to pick Phyllis' brain about something. After Nick left, Victoria chastised Phyllis for trying to turn Nick against his father. Phyllis reasoned that no one could prove that Victor had killed J.T. because he hadn't, but Victor being a suspect took heat off them.

Victoria couldn't help but wonder if Phyllis had had something to do with the items that had shown up in the stables. Phyllis denied setting Victor up, but she thought it would be great if someone else was. Victoria told Phyllis about the clothes that had appeared in Nikki's bed, and she explained that Nikki wouldn't get rid of them because she thought they might clear Victor's name. Victoria knew that Nikki would never let Victor take the fall for something Nikki had done, and she advised Phyllis to think about that the next time she accused Victor of murder.

Jack met Nikki at the Athletic Club, and she confided that she'd consumed alcohol the night before. She explained how she'd taken a sip of wine from Victoria's glass, and Jack remarked that they were all one bad moment away from a slipup. Nikki lamented that she'd never been tempted despite everything she'd been through that year, but the fire in the stables had really shaken her up. She recalled that she'd decided to stay at Victoria's, and Reed had shown up suddenly at the front door. Nikki shared that Reed was trying to deal with the pain of losing his father like an adult, but she'd seen glimpses of a scared little boy who'd never had the chance to say goodbye, and it was breaking her heart.

Jack mentioned that he'd heard from Nick that Victor had been incommunicado, and he reminded Nikki that Victor had done it repeatedly before. Nikki revealed that Victor had just hired Summer to head Newman's new real estate division in Dubai, but Summer was still waiting to meet with him. Nikki worried that Victor hadn't even left a note, and no one on staff knew where he was or when he'd be returning. Jack pointed out that Nikki was spending all her time worrying about her children, grandchildren, husband, and horses, and he lectured that she knew what would happen if she didn't take care of herself. Nikki intended to go directly to an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting, and Jack volunteered to go with her.

Across the dining room, Arturo asked Abby how much longer he had to wait to hear her brilliant idea. She inquired how he liked the food, ambiance, and décor at the club, and he had no complaints. He wondered if she was on a research expedition about the kind of place she wanted to open, but she told him that it was a hint about who she intended to approach to be her mentor. Arturo realized that she meant Devon, and he wanted to kick himself for not thinking of it first.

Later, Nikki returned to Victoria's house and expressed doubt that Phyllis was the one framing Victor. Victoria hated how Phyllis had vilified Victor to Nick, knowing Victor was innocent. Nikki wasn't shocked that Phyllis would go that far to protect herself, and she contemplated taking a page out of Phyllis' book. Nikki recalled that she'd kept quiet and hoped for the best, but she'd been playing right into their tormentor's hands. Nikki pledged to take control of the situation by finding another way to prove that Victor was innocent by exposing the planted evidence as fake. Victoria asked how, and Nikki replied, "Watch and learn, my darling. Watch and learn."

Phyllis ran into Billy at Jabot and invited him into her office. She informed him that word about the Barlow deal was starting to get out, and she had the PR department working on a press release. Phyllis added that she'd noticed that he hadn't been in the office that morning, and he chalked it up to oversleeping after all the late nights he'd spent working. Phyllis wondered if he'd been avoiding her after their talk the night before, but he assured her that he wouldn't do that.

Phyllis reiterated that she enjoyed working with Billy, and she'd meant what she'd said about them making a great team, but she didn't want to put pressure on him. He insisted that it would be fine, although he'd thought she might be uncomfortable. She asserted that they both knew where things stood, so there was no reason they couldn't have a friendly working relationship. Phyllis said she'd send the press release his way, and he hurried out, clearly struggling with his emotions.

Phyllis returned home and pulled Nick into a kiss to thank him for dropping everything to look out for their daughter. He thanked her for backing him up with Victoria, but he questioned whether Phyllis had only taken his side out of loyalty. Phyllis maintained that it was plausible that Victor had killed J.T., and she swore that Nick could count on her to have his back. She acknowledged that from the outside, it seemed like they were together for the wrong reasons, but she knew she was right where she belonged. They kissed.

At Crimson Lights, Reed thanked Billy for meeting him. Reed pressed Billy to be honest about whether he thought J.T. was really dead, and Billy confirmed that he did. Billy empathized because he knew what it was like to lose a dad, but Reed argued that Billy had lost his elderly father who had lived a long life, so it wasn't the same. Billy advised Reed to be careful with the anger, since it could be explosive and might take over his life by clouding the things that were really important. Reed declared that there was nothing more important to him than finding out who had killed his dad and making them pay.

On the next The Young and the Restless...
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• Reed phones Charlie and tells him Nikki might die.

• Phyllis watches as Sharon comforts Nick.

• Nate encourages Nikki to keep fighting.

• While Nikki is unconscious, she experiences a vision of being reunited with Victor.

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