In a Forrester office, Brooke picked up her mail, and Oliver entered. From his goofy smile, Brooke deuced that he and Hope had reunited. Oliver confirmed it, and Brooke became ecstatic. He asked if Brooke still had the "hope" necklace that Hope had discarded. As Brooke handed it over, she noted that she'd fixed the clasp. Since Hope had forgiven Oliver, Brooke anticipated that Hope would forgive her mother, too, someday.
Hope entered, and Brooke congratulated her on reuniting with Oliver. Brooke guessed that the young couple had spent a romantic evening together, and Oliver described it as "moon-derful." Hope explained that with the help of his telescope, Oliver had hung the "hope" symbol on the moon. Hope said all the bad dreams and visions had gone away when he'd kissed her that night. "Almost all of them," Hope corrected, looking at Brooke.
Hope apologetically said things couldn't return to what they'd once been between her and Brooke. Understanding that Hope needed more time, Brooke said she was happy for the couple.
Brooke left, and Oliver and Hope joked about "Pose" blaring during their romantic evening. A giggling Hope thought it was hilarious and remarked that nothing could have spoiled the night for her. Oliver whipped out the fortune cookies that the couple hadn't opened the other night. Cracking open her cookie, Hope saw the "hope" symbol on the fortune slip inside it. Oliver presented the "hope" necklace and asked if she were ready to wear it again.
Oliver tried to put the necklace on her, but she declined to wear it, because it was still too soon after what had happened. Oliver understood that the symbol's meaning had been tarnished for them, but he was determined to change that. He decided to hold onto the necklace until she was ready. He told her that he loved her, and they kissed.
In Ridge's office, Thomas talked with his parents and sister upon his arrival from Forrester International. They filled Thomas in on Bill buying Donna's shares in Forrester, and Ridge informed Thomas that Taylor had given her stock to Steffy. Steffy cooed that she was ready to kick butt as part owner, but Thomas questioned Taylor's decision. Taylor explained that she'd given the stock as a show of support during the tribute ordeal that Steffy had gone through. Ridge and Taylor assured Thomas that he'd own a portion of the company someday.
Thomas said the news would take some getting used to, and Steffy decided that Thomas deserved a raise and a promotion. She deemed him the new vice president of development, and Ridge wished he'd thought of it himself. Ridge remarked that they'd gone a long way since just the other day, when Bill had tried to get his hands on Steffy's stocks. Steffy assured Ridge that as long as she had her father's support, he didn't have to worry about Bill. As Steffy and Ridge hugged, Brooke peeked into the room. Steffy glared at Brooke and grinned when Brooke wordlessly left.
Steffy decided that she'd call Bill later to see if he'd blown his stack. Taylor figured that Bill would want the lawsuit to go away, and Steffy said that they could easily prove the network tampering with Liam's help. Ridge, however, didn't trust Liam. "He's a weird kid. And get this, he's actually claiming I'm his dad," Ridge revealed. Taylor, Thomas, and Steffy expressed their shock about the claim, and Thomas wondered if it were a shakedown. Ridge replied that he couldn't figure Liam out, and he had no idea what Liam was really after.
Later, Brooke entered Ridge's office to find him alone. Ridge explained that Thomas had returned to town, and Brooke announced that Hope and Oliver had reconciled. Though Ridge was happy for Hope, he expected Oliver take things slowly. Brooke was relieved that Hope was finally moving forward. Though she knew it would take time, Brooke looked forward to receiving Hope's forgiveness. Ridge remarked that love could do extraordinary things.
At Spencer Publications, Bill reviewed a legal filing, and Justin and Liam rushed in to learn that Justin's antics and Liam's big mouth had caused the Forresters to slap Spencer Publications with a lawsuit over the tribute tampering. Bill rasped that Justin had gotten them into the mess, and he'd get them out-whatever it took. Justin left with the legal papers, and Liam tried to duck out behind him. "Hold on, Slick. I'm not done with you yet," Bill snapped.
Bill, who deplored stool pigeons, warned that Liam would get worse than a tongue-lashing if Bill saw him in the building again. Being fired from an unpaid internship suited Liam just fine, because he'd rather not work for a company that had readily reaped the benefits of Hope's pain. "Got yourself a puppy crush, Romeo?" Bill derided.
Bill suggested that Liam get a job flipping burgers or try to get the Forresters to adopt him. Liam asserted that his father was a Forrester. Liam started to say that he'd first thought that his father was Ridge, but Bill cut him off. Bill wasn't interested in Liam's sob story, because everybody had one. Liam insisted that before his mother had died, she'd said he could find his father at Forrester Creations. "Beat it, you little con artist!" Bill roared.
Liam dropped his bag on his way out, and Bill rolled his eyes as Liam scurried to gather his things off the floor and leave. Alone, Bill murmured that it was no wonder Liam's father wanted nothing to do with him. On the floor, Bill spotted a photograph of Kelly. He retrieved it and suddenly looked rattled. He crumpled the photo up, but when he returned to his chair, he still seemed shaken.
Brooke, in disguise, was eating lunch at a rooftop restaurant when Nick spotted her. They commiserated on the turns that their lives had taken. Brooke shared that she worried about Bridget. Brooke said that she knew Bridget had hurt Nick, but Brooke hoped that Nick could someday forgive Bridget.
Nick agreed, but he said that Bridget's current living arrangement with Jackie and Owen was destined for failure. He worried that someone was going to get hurt. Brooke agreed. A photographer raced over to the table and shot photos of Brooke and Nick, but Nick managed to get the camera away from him. Nick handed the photographer cash and insisted that he leave, or Nick would have him thrown out.
Nick asked about the scandal with Hope's boyfriend and called it kinky with masks and costumes. Brooke admitted that it was supposed to be kinky, but it was supposed to be with her husband. Brooke lamented that Hope was having a tough time forgiving Brooke, but Hope had made progress and had forgiven Oliver.
Nick asked Brooke about how the Forresters were taking the news of her recent mistake. She admitted that they were trying to get rid of her, but she knew she had Ridge's support. Nick asked why she continued to put up with the treatment at Forrester, and she said that she knew Ridge would always take her side.
They talked about when they were married, and Nick joked that he didn't remember. Then, he said that it was the best time of his life. They hugged and parted company.
In Ridge's office, Stephanie, Steffy, and Taylor ranted about how Brooke's scandalous behavior had driven down sales and hurt the company's image. Steffy insisted that she had tried to talk to Ridge about it, but he had ignored her. Taylor tried to console her daughter. Taylor told Steffy to remember to make it about business when she spoke to Ridge, rather than a personal vendetta against Brooke.
Steffy said that she had tried to get through to Ridge, but felt she had not made any progress. Stephanie and Taylor offered their support and they called everyone together for a meeting. When Ridge, Eric, Thomas, and Thorne entered, they asked why Steffy had called an emergency meeting. Ridge wanted to know why Brooke wasn't attending, and Steffy said that Brooke was at lunch.
Steffy said that Ridge had to face the fact that Brooke was destroying the company. Thorne reluctantly agreed. He said that he had run the numbers, and it showed that the scandal had affected the company's buyers and the customers. He added that focus groups indicated that people weren't going to buy Forrester because if its scandals.
Stephanie piped up and said that Ridge had to listen to reason. Stephanie, Taylor, and Steffy tried to persuade Ridge that if any other employee had such a negative impact on the company, the employee would have been fired. They insisted that Ridge had to use the same logic when it came to Brooke. Eric suggested that they were joking, but Stephanie and Steffy reminded the family that Stephanie and Steffy controlled 50 percent of the shares while Ridge and Eric controlled only 37.5 percent of the shares. Steffy and Stephanie said that they were not happy with Ridge's decision to keep his wife on staff.
Steffy threw it in Ridge's face that Bill Spencer still wanted to purchase her shares, and she wanted Forrester to return to its glory days. Steffy threatened that if that wasn't going to happen, she might consider selling to Bill Spencer. Thomas was incredulous that Steffy could be so cruel and vindictive. He and Taylor left.
Brooke entered and realized that the "witches" were out to get her again, and Steffy started her mantra that it was time for a new Brooke-free era. Ridge started his mantra that Brooke had made valuable accomplishments. Brooke whined that it had all been a mistake. Steffy and Stephanie cited the numbers that proved the company was losing business. Ridge said that reporters would soon tire of the scandal and move on to something else, but Steffy and Stephanie said the company couldn't wait.
Brooke announced that she knew Ridge would stand by her. She reminded everyone that as CEO, Ridge could make the final decision. Brooke begged Ridge to stand by her, but Steffy made a case for firing Brooke because they were losing business and needed to cut their losses.
In another office, Taylor met with Thomas. Taylor tried to persuade Thomas that she was not playing favorites when she had given her stock to Steffy. Taylor reminded Thomas that Steffy had gotten the company back from Bill Spencer. Thomas countered that Steffy did not get the company back free of charge. Steffy had made it possible for the Forresters to buy the company -- for millions of dollars. He questioned why Taylor had given all her stock to Steffy free of charge.
Taylor said that she had to support her daughter. Thomas agreed Steffy needed help and support after being fired by Ridge, but he doubted that his mother understood how underhanded Steffy could be. He reminded Taylor that Steffy was threatening Ridge with selling her shares to Bill Spencer if she didn't get what she wanted. Taylor said that was all a bluff, but Thomas said that he wasn't so sure. He called his sister "a poker player."
Thomas told his mother that he was not happy about the situation, and that Steffy was out to get what she wanted at any cost. Taylor tried to appease Thomas, but he was clearly miffed at her.
At Forrester, Eric chastised Steffy for expecting Ridge to fire Brooke. Steffy argued that Ridge had no problem firing Steffy for embarrassing the company, and she wanted Brooke to get the same treatment.
Ridge eloquently waxed that the family had to pull together and survive the scandal as a team. Ridge stated unequivocally that Brooke was staying at Forrester. He declared the conversation over. Eric, Stephanie, and Steffy exited, but Steffy pouted that it was not over by any means.
When they were alone, Brooke thanked Ridge and apologized for putting him in such an awkward position. Ridge said that firing Steffy had been a mistake, and he wanted to move on. Ridge reminded Brooke that when they were raising Steffy, she was always a headstrong child. Brooke teased that she inherited that trait from her father. He remembered that Steffy's pouting was often a sign that all she really needed was a hug and some attention. Ridge suggested that Brooke try to reach out to Steffy. Brooke was doubtful, but promised to try to reason with Steffy.
Stephanie and Steffy met in another office and ranted about Ridge's undying faith in Brooke, no matter what she did. Steffy told Stephanie that she had watched Brooke steal her dad from her family her entire life, and had always been helpless as a child. But she added that she was no longer helpless because she was part owner of Forrester Creations.
Stephanie warned Steffy not to be foolish in wielding her newfound power. Stephanie said that meeting with Bill Spencer was not a smart move. Steffy disagreed, and promised not to blackmail her father because she said she didn't need to do that. Steffy proudly patted herself on the back for getting Brooke out of the company's "Brooke's Bedroom" line. Steffy planned to push Brooke out of the company next.
Brooke entered, and Stephanie said that she'd always known that Brooke would cause another scandal. Stephanie left. Steffy sneered at Brooke and surmised that Ridge had sent her. Brooke admitted that he did send her to patch things up with Steffy.
Steffy haughtily declared that she would never work with Brooke in harmony. Steffy said that they would never be friends and never get along. Brooke reminded Steffy that they had been very close at one time when Ridge and Brooke were raising the kids.
Brooke told Steffy that Ridge loved her. Brooke wondered why Steffy felt the need to get rid of Brooke in order to be successful. Brooke begged Steffy to work as a team and get along with Brooke and everyone. Steffy refused.
Stephanie entered Ridge's office and started her usual rant on Ridge because he forgave Brooke and he was ruining the company. Stephanie accused him of making another mistake with Brooke that would land him in between his wife and daughter.
At Jackie M, Aggie quizzed Nick about where he had been for lunch and with whom. Nick seemed surprised, and he said that he had seen an old friend. Aggie said that she was sorry for inquiring. She knew that they had not made any promises to one another about a relationship. She hugged him
Jackie overheard Nick and Aggie's conversation and interrupted. She asked to talk to Nick alone, but Amber and Whip interrupted everyone. Nick started a pep talk to motivate the Jackie M staff to get back on their game after their own recent scandal.
Whip suggested that they preview their new line with models wearing masks, and everyone chuckled, but Nick forbade it. Nick said that Brooke and her daughter had enough problems.
Amber talked about making a scandalous campaign that looked racy but ended up really tame. For example, she said that Owen and Jackie were really sexy, but they were married. Nick suggested they build on Amber's idea.
Everyone left, but Jackie stayed to talk to Nick. She said that she knew he was never going to have a relationship with Aggie. Nick wondered why Jackie was so negative. Jackie suggested that he was rebounding after losing Bridget. Nick refused to discuss it. Nick said that no matter how hard he tried at marriage, something always seemed to ruin it. He guessed that he was meant to be single.
Nick said that he had seen Brooke at lunch, and Jackie inquired if Nick missed Brooke. Nick stopped her, and admitted that he missed the life he thought he would have -- a family life with Bridget.
In Ridge's office, Liam offered Ridge help with the Spencer lawsuit. Liam was willing to finger Bill and Justin in open court. Liam apologized for assuming that Ridge was his father without first showing Ridge the old news clippings that Kelly had kept. "Could be any of these guys, really," Liam remarked, looking at two pictures with Ridge, Thorne, and Bill in them.
Hope approached the threshold as Liam hoped that his impetuousness wouldn't keep Ridge from having an open mind about Hope. Liam stammered that he was interested in asking Hope on a date. Outside the door, Hope giggled to herself. Ridge snarled like a defensive father, and Liam guessed that Ridge didn't want Liam anywhere near Hope. "Glad we understand each other," Ridge said and answered his phone.
Liam left, and in the corridor, Hope said she'd overheard what Liam had said about her to her father. She called Liam a sweet guy and took him to the rooftop, where she explained that she and Oliver had reunited. Liam was disappointed, but remarked that he had other things to keep him occupied, like being canned by the biggest jerk on the planet.
Liam recalled Bill's callousness upon hearing about Kelly's death and Liam's search for his father. Pitying any "mini-me" that might spawn from Bill, Liam griped about Bill's insensitivity. Liam was glad that Bill had fired him, because he never had to listen to Bill again.
In Steffy's office, Brooke said she loved Steffy, whom she'd helped raise. Brooke admitted to the damage she'd caused and to not respecting Taylor's marriage enough. Brooke wanted to mend things, but Steffy felt that Brooke's remorse didn't change what she'd done. Steffy said it might help if Brooke would leave Forrester until the scandal died down.
Later, Thomas looked annoyed as Steffy prattled on about the Brooke issue. Steffy asked if Thomas were even listening to her. "Isn't that why you summoned me here?" he asked. Steffy thought Thomas should be happy that she had Brooke on the ropes; however, he replied that Brooke deserved a break for once.
Steffy told Thomas that the world was poking fun at Brooke. Steffy pulled up a web clip parody called, "Brooke, the Chaperone." It was a country song set to some stills of Brooke. The song said, "There's no reason to be alone-just pick up the phone and call Brooke, the chaperone." An unimpressed Thomas murmured that things were getting out of hand.
A water-splashed Marcus stormed into the office and agreed. He said that reporters, who still thronged the outside of the building, had been yelling insults about his aunt. When he'd tried to defend her, one of them slung the contents of a water bottle at him. Marcus figured that something had to be done. Steffy agreed and said that Marcus would help her.
Later, Brooke entered Ridge's office with a long face. Ridge assumed that the talk with Steffy hadn't gone well. Brooke said Steffy wouldn't rest until Brooke left the company. Ridge didn't believe that Brooke's leaving was the solution, but Brooke worried that it was coming between him and Steffy. He asserted that Brooke deserved to be there, but Brooke reasoned that it was causing too many problems for the company and their personal relationships.
As Ridge tried to persuade Brooke that there was another way, Steffy entered, insisting upon showing them something. "This is what's to come," Steffy asserted, gesturing at Marcus. She explained that Marcus had been "physically accosted" for defending Brooke. Fearing that none of the Forresters was safe, Steffy urged Ridge to do the right thing for everyone.
Brooke and Ridge said they were sorry to Marcus, and Marcus left. Steffy insisted that they had to show the world that they were a family that "functions, not dysfunctions." Steffy stated that, as an owner in the company, she was asking Ridge to let Brooke go-at least until the scandal died down. "Brooke has to go today," Steffy insisted. Ridge thoughtfully looked at Brooke and then at Steffy.
At Spencer Publications, Jarrett handed Bill background checks on Liam and Kelly. As Bill thumbed through them, Jarrett wondered why Bill had never mentioned his prior relationship with Kelly. Bill denied the relationship, but Jarrett expounded upon the notion. Jarrett assumed that Kelly and Bill had been an item, but they'd parted after graduation. Jarrett figured that her son had coincidentally become an intern at Spencer. "Or is there more to it?" Jarrett wondered.
An inquisitive Katie arrived, and Bill explained that Jarrett was reporting on a reconnaissance mission regarding Liam Cooper. Katie was surprised to hear that an intern had registered on Bill's radar. Looking over Liam's file, Bill remarked that Liam was a computer geek. Bill reasoned that Liam was nothing like the adventurous Bill Spencer.
Katie asked for the whole story about Liam, but Bill said he was still trying to flesh it out. Katie wondered why they were even thinking about Liam, especially since he'd been fired. "He's a weasel, and I don't like weasels," Bill griped. Jarrett assured Bill that William Cooper wouldn't set foot in the building again. Bill asked Jarrett why he'd called Liam that name, and Jarrett said he'd just assumed that Liam was short for William. "No way. Can't be," the nervous Bill said.
Jarrett left, and Katie implored Bill to open up to her. She glanced at the crumpled up photo of Kelly, and Bill relayed that Kelly had been Liam's mother. "He may be my son," Bill added, and Katie's mouth dropped open.
In the basement at Forrester, Thorne asked Stephanie about Liam and Ridge. Thorne figured that Ridge had a lot on his plate and didn't need a paternity scandal, too. Stephanie said that the Liam situation had been resolved, and she doubted that Liam would pursue Ridge any further. Thorne asked who the mother was, and he blanched upon hearing Kelly Hopkins' name.
Thorne stated that he'd hired Kelly as a fit model. He doubted that his mother or brother had met Kelly, because she'd taken off after only a few months. He admitted that he'd gone on a few dates with her, and they'd made a connection. "Did you sleep with her?" Stephanie asked. Thorne shrugged and frowned in answer. "I could be Liam's father," Thorne realized.
On the Forrester rooftop, Hope offered to check employee records to compile a list of possible fathers for Liam. She reviewed Kelly's news clippings, and Liam searched for Kelly's photo. He realized that he'd left it in Bill's office, and Hope offered to go with him to retrieve it.
In Bill's office, Bill explained to Katie that he'd casually dated Kelly during his last year of college; however, Kelly had left for Los Angeles after receiving a job at Forrester that following summer. Bill said that Liam had arrived in town under the impression that Ridge was his father. Katie suggested that Bill solve the mystery by contacting Kelly. "That would require a sťance. She's dead," Bill responded.
Katie encouraged Bill to find out the truth, but Bill figured that he'd sense it if Liam were really his son. Katie, however, refused to let Bill abandon his son, as Bill's father had abandoned Bill. Hillary alerted Bill that Liam and Hope wanted to see him. "We're about to get some answers," Katie stated.
When Liam and Hope arrived, Liam saw the photo on the desk. He hurriedly retrieved it and he asked why the photo had been crumpled. Katie introduced herself and indicated that her husband had something to say. When Bill denied the need to speak, Katie suggested that the men patch things up, because Bill wanted Liam to return to work. "No, I don't," Bill objected.
Though Liam liked Katie, he stated that Bill made him sick. Liam and Hope tried to leave, but Katie deterred them. She handed Liam copies of Kelly's Forrester photos and asked whom he saw in them. Liam cited the Forrester brothers, but Katie asked him to look closer. "The clippings your mother gave you all contain photos of Bill," Katie pointed out. Liam stared at Bill's face in each of the photos and exclaimed, "Oh, my God, you? You're my father?"
In Ridge's office, Ridge refused to let Steffy pressure him. Steffy suggested that Brooke leave on her own to avoid forcing Ridge's hand. Thomas entered with Taylor. Thomas said that dumping Brooke could make their situation even worse. Figuring that Brooke's departure would cause the press to report on the instability within the company, Thomas asked Ridge to ride the press storm out until it died down.
Steffy cited that after a month, the fanfare had worsened. As an owner in the company, she wouldn't sit back while things deteriorated. "Do you see what you've done here, Mom? You've created a monster," Thomas declared. He asserted that 25% of Forrester stock had turned Steffy into a dictator. Accusing Steffy of guilt-tripping their father and power-tripping their step-mother, Thomas went on the record to oppose getting rid of Brooke.
Taylor tried to quell Thomas' anger by reiterating her reasons for bestowing her shares upon his sister, but Thomas claimed that he'd faced challenges, too. He and Steffy had equally suffered during the divorce and Phoebe's death. "There comes a point in time where you just gotta get over it, Sis. Divorce happens," he reasoned.
Steffy pouted, saying Thomas was being unfair. Thomas questioned Steffy's loyalty after she'd considered selling her stock to the man who she'd seduced the company away from in the first place. Steffy gasped, seemingly offended. She claimed that she'd beaten Bill at his own game, and they were back in control. "No, Dad's in control, not you," Thomas corrected.
Steffy insisted that she wasn't asking for anything unreasonable. She cited that she'd been fired when it had looked like she'd caused a scandalóand she hadn't even been responsible. Steffy continued that none of them was above reproach, but Thomas declared that Steffy had been using the "poor little me routine" ever since the divorce.
Thomas said he'd tried to be sensitive to his sister; however, the truth was that Ridge hadn't neglected Steffy, and he'd been a good father to them. Thomas cited that other people could also wear their hurt on their sleeves, but didn't. He wondered where the shares for him, Brooke, and Thorne were. "We've all done as much for Forrester as you have. But no, no, you're the only one that's hurting, so you get 25% of the company," Thomas griped. He wondered how fair it would have been if Eric had given his former 25% to Felicia or Kristen.
Ridge assured Thomas that he'd be taken care of. Having heard his son and daughter's points, Ridge cited that it was ultimately his difficult, but final, decision. He sadly turned to Brooke. She recognized the regret in his eyes and meekly strode out of the office. Thomas complained that Ridge had let Steffy pressure him, but Ridge uttered that it was done.
Ridge found Brooke sulking in another office. He apologized, but Brooke replied, "She's your daughter." Ridge explained that the company would rebound, but the scandal had taken a toll on his wife. He hated watching reporters bash her, so he wanted her to take a step back. In the meantime, he'd regroup and mend his relationships with his children.
Brooke stated that not many husbands would have forgiven her, and she knew that Steffy needed Ridge. Brooke believed that he'd never hurt her, and she respected his decision. Ridge sighed in relief and thanked her. "And I love you so much," he said. They kissed and hugged.