In Eric's office, Brooke and R.J. were together when Ridge charged in with a stern visage. He said he understood that R.J. was working with Eric. RJ. stammered that Eric had wanted to keep it between them. Brooke stated that they weren't keeping secrets. Ridge didn't think they'd wanted to tell him, either. R.J. braced himself as Ridge told his son that he had something to say to him: "I am so...so happy you're designing! Welcome to Forrester. Good luck to you!" Brooke smiled, and relieved, R.J. hugged Ridge.
R.J. asked if Ridge was upset that R.J. was working with Eric. Brooke said she didn't want there to be problems and asked if Ridge agreed that there wouldn't be. In Ridge's silence, Brooke decided that she'd leave the men alone to talk, designer to designer.
After Brooke had gone, R.J. said he wasn't sure he was ready for the designer title. Ridge believed that would soon change under Eric's tutelage. R.J. said Eric was letting R.J. express himself, too. Ridge didn't think his son could find a better mentor. R.J. hoped that meant that his father approved of the apprenticeship. Ridge affirmed it and said R.J. was lucky. Ridge was glad his son was following in his footsteps, but Ridge was worried about Eric.
Ridge said Eric had built the company so that his kids could stand on his shoulders, and it was time for Eric to take a break. Ridge wondered what Eric had to prove. R.J. corrected Ridge, saying Eric had something to offer, and it was a great vision. R.J. asked why Ridge wanted Eric to retire so badly. Ridge claimed it wasn't about that. Ridge wanted Eric to be happy and said it should be enough that Eric had made a bigger mark than any of them could hope to make.
R.J. said it wasn't enough. He'd spent a lot of time with Eric, and he said Eric wasn't ready to retire -- not even close. Ridge, who'd realized that, said Eric wanted to work, just with R.J., not Ridge. R.J. asked how Ridge felt about Eric and R.J. collaborating.
Ridge shared his belief that R.J. had more natural talent than any of them. "No pressure," R.J. joked. Ridge said he hadn't wanted to push R.J., but Brooke felt that Ridge had. Ridge said he'd done it because he'd seen what R.J. had been able to do as a kid. "There was emotion and movement, and you can't teach that," Ridge explained. Ridge was proud that R.J. had found his own way there to the building that bore his name.
Ridge promised that once things were squared away with Eric, Ridge and R.J. would do something together. R.J. said he'd be honored. Ridge wanted R.J. to always know how proud Ridge was of his son and how much he appreciated R.J.'s talent. The two hugged.
In the design office, Thomas and Hope were under a blanket on the settee, and she wondered if she'd locked the door. He said she had before she'd stripped off her clothes. The office would never feel the same again for Thomas, who wondered if it was really happening. He said he'd waited a long time for it. She asked if it had been worth the wait, and they kissed.
As Hope and Thomas kissed more, Hope wanted to make sure Thomas knew where her head was at. She said it wasn't love for her -- yet. She wasn't ready, and she wanted to make sure he understood that. Thomas said he knew. "I may never be," she added. Thomas replied that he was okay with that, and as long as she was in his arms, he was fine.
Later, Thomas and Hope got dressed. Unlocking the door, he remarked upon her newfound change. She said something had lit up within her, and it felt freeing. Thomas was glad to help her explore her newfound freedom. They began kissing against the desk.
Just then, Brooke entered, saying she had a sample for Hope. "Oh, my God! Hope!" Brooke shrieked. Scrambling to clean up the room and finish dressing, Hope said it was as if Brooke knew when Hope was with Thomas, and Hope admonished Brooke to work on her timing.
Brooke said she was looking for Hope because they had work. Brooke hadn't expected to find Thomas and Hope doing whatever they were doing. Hope snickered, saying Ridge and Brooke had done it. Thomas and Hope exchanged smirks. Brooke yelled that it wasn't about her and Ridge. Saying she had a right to be concerned, Brooke asked where things stood with them.
Hope claimed that she and Thomas knew what they were doing. "So, all of a sudden, you're in love with Thomas?" Brooke asked. Hope said, "No, actually, but Thomas, he knows where I stand. I haven't made any commitments or promises. We're on the same page." At first, Brooke asked how Thomas felt, but she figured he was fine with it because he'd been after Hope for years. Hope said it was her decision, and she'd made the rules and boundaries clear. Brooke asked about Hope's family and said she knew Hope loved Liam and missed her life with him.
At Eric's house, Donna said she loved seeing Eric that way. Eric said that designing made Eric feel fulfilled, as did having Donna in his arms. Donna was about to ask about Ridge, but Carter arrived with paperwork for Eric to sign. Carter noted that it looked like a real studio in there, and he asked if Eric was working on his grand finale.
Donna assumed Brooke had told Carter and said there was no reason for Brooke to be upset about it. Carter said he hadn't gotten that impression. Carter asked Eric why he wanted to design his final collection alone, and Eric replied that he wasn't doing it alone; he was doing it with his talented grandson. Though Carter was happy for Eric, as CFO, Carter believed his job was to make sure things ran smoothly within the company.
Carter believed that Forrester's image as a cohesive family-run business was as important as their product. He said it was by control and design talent being passed down from one generation to the next. Carter insisted that it was a huge selling point that made them unique. Eric assumed that the older generation was supposed to stand aside. He was sure it was what Ridge thought, and he wondered if Carter did, too. Carter said he didn't, and Ridge was just concerned.
Eric asked what Ridge would be concerned about and if it was Eric's abilities. Dismissing the idea, Carter said Eric's credentials spoke for themselves, but Carter believed that it was risky to start a new couture line that could be viewed as competing with the one Ridge was producing. "That was the whole beginning of my business, taking a little risk!" Eric beamed. Eric stated that they all chose their own paths. "I trust mine, and you can trust it, too," Eric concluded.
Carter asked if there was no way to collaborate with Ridge. Eric announced that he and Ridge would go head to head on the runway. Carter and Donna were surprised to hear it. Donna asked when that development had happened. Eric explained that he and Ridge had just decided to do it and to let the buyers decide. The winner would take all. Donna asked if Eric really wanted to put that much pressure on himself. Carter said on the company, too. Eric expressed confidence that his collection would prevail.
After Carter had gone, Eric was concerned about Carter's feelings. Donna said she'd have Katie investigate. Eric was sure Carter would have no doubts once he saw the collection. Donna asked if Ridge knew about the tremors. Eric said only she, R.J., and the doctor knew.
Donna expressed her love for Eric. She said she believed in him and his vision. Eric told Donna that even though he gave R.J. credit for what was happening, Donna was the muse behind it. He wanted her to never doubt what she meant to him. Donna replied that she was happy when he was, and it was impossible not to be excited about what was next. He told her that she was his beautiful, smart muse. He found her funny and sexy and felt that he could do anything with her behind him. He said they'd win and have time for a martini afterward.