In Aspen, Brooke, Liam, and Steffy rushed into the room where Bill was sleeping next to a pill bottle. Liam shook Bill and implored him to wake up. When Bill wouldn't, Brooke splashed a pitcher of water on him. Bill sprang up as if he were ready to fight someone. "What's wrong with you people? Can't a guy take a nap around here?" the soaked Bill yelled.
After the foursome had a laugh at Bill's expense, they laughed at Brooke for running around yelling like "Lucy Ricardo." Brooke pointed to the pill bottle, and Bill explained that he was on blood pressure medication. He additionally said he'd been exhausted after two days of no sleep.
Brooke apologized for being overly concerned, and Bill asked if they'd heard from Katie. Steffy reasoned that there was little they could do until Katie was ready to be found. Steffy offered to watch the baby with Liam while Brooke and Bill went out for a break. Bill noted that the two had no experience with babies, but Liam was sure that he and Steffy could handle it for a couple of hours.
Once alone with Will, Liam and Steffy discussed Katie's situation. Liam couldn't fathom Katie abandoning her family permanently. He thanked Steffy for urging Brooke and Bill to get out. Liam felt that Brooke was one of the reasons Bill was holding up so well. Steffy said it was crazy of Katie to leave when she'd been the one determined to have a kid. Liam replied that it was as if Katie were forcing Brooke to pick up where Katie had left off.
Steffy and Liam recalled the memories that they had of Aspen, and Liam made fun of Steffy's "spooky, lacey thing" over her eyes at their mountain wedding. They admitted that they'd each changed, and Liam said he'd been kicking and screaming the whole way. They agreed that it felt good for them to be in the place where their marriage had first started.
While walking the streets of Aspen, Bill and Brooke pondered why Katie had led them there and then disappeared. As Brooke and Bill paused on a bridge over a creek, Bill decided that he'd spend a few more days in Aspen with Will, but Brooke could take the jet back home. "If you need me to stay..." Brooke replied. Bill said he hadn't wanted to ask that of her because she had a life of her own to live. "No, I don't. Not really," Brooke murmured, and Bill invited her to stay.
In the CEO's office, Caroline excitedly reviewed her pictures from the shoot. Hope entered, and Caroline hoped that Hope wasn't upset that Thomas had put Caroline's line into production over others. Hope called her own line "Forrester's folly," but Caroline felt Hope had given the company an in with the younger generation. Hope stated that it had gone well until she'd incorporated her personal life with it.
Hope felt that, with Thomas' backing, Caroline's line would be a success. Caroline sensed awkwardness and suggested that she and Hope clear the air. Hope admitted that she and Rick were protective of each other, and she didn't think it was cool to play Thomas against Rick. Caroline insisted that she was loyal to Rick, but Hope said that Caroline was working both ends against the middle.
Caroline insisted that she wasn't doing that. Hope replied that she could be wrong about Caroline; however, kissing up to the CEO wasn't the way to make it around there. Hope suggested that Caroline get by on her hard work and talent, and that way, no one would get hurt. In a restrained voice, Caroline replied that she'd keep in mind that Hope was just being protective of her brother. Hope left, and Caroline rolled her eyes.
In the Forrester guesthouse, Rick prepared for an evening with Caroline. Eric arrived, and Rick joked that his father didn't need a handwritten invitation to visit. Rick instantly apologized for being crass, but Eric said there was no way around the fact that Stephanie was dying. The men hugged each other, and Eric stated that he was glad that Rick had chosen to return to Los Angeles for good.
The men discussed how Eric was handling Stephanie's illness. Rick said his father didn't need to put on a brave face for him. Eric explained that he and Stephanie weren't dwelling on it, and they planned to celebrate life instead of death.
Eric asked about Caroline, and Rick grumbled about Thomas' new direction for Forrester. Eric liked being future forward, but he said Forrester wasn't a warehouse. Rick explained that Thomas was using his new position to make a play for Caroline. Eric claimed that the position was temporary, but Rick reminded Eric that he could step in and stop Thomas' unprofessional behavior. Deciding to give Thomas some latitude, Eric said he'd step in if things continued to go south.
"Don't you shave anymore?" Eric offhandedly asked. Rick chuckled, saying it was the new style. With a pat on the back for his son, Eric wished Rick a good time with Caroline, and then Eric strode out.
Later, Caroline finally arrived and apologized for being late. She kissed Rick and thanked him for all the romantic touches he'd set up. Rick poured them some champagne and toasted to her success -- even if it were happening on Thomas' agenda. Caroline said Rick was being awfully good about it. Rick explained that Thomas was putting Rick and her one step closer to their goals. Caroline loved that Rick never gave up. Rick said that persistence won, and that was why she was there with him.
Rick doubted that Thomas had a salient plan for revealing Caroline's line. Rick said that Eric agreed with him that the inexperienced Thomas was biting off more than he could chew. Rick noted that Thomas was too arrogant to draw upon Eric's experience, and Thomas only cared that Thomas' side was finally in the driver's seat. Caroline asked what that meant, and Rick pointed out that for a long time, there had been an inner struggle between Brooke's children and Taylor's children.
Rick changed the subject back to celebrating Caroline, and the two kissed. Rick's phone chimed, and when he checked it, he saw that Hope had sent him something. Rick grimaced and held up the phone so that Caroline could see the picture of her and Thomas hugging. Caroline quickly stated that she could explain it.
At Forrester, Rick accused Caroline of falling for Thomas because of a text message that Hope had sent him that included a photo where Caroline had given Thomas a hug. Caroline explained that Thomas had promised that he would donate five percent of all sales of her line to her charity for cancer. Caroline said that it was a wonderful donation especially because Stephanie had cancer.
Rick noted that Thomas had been charitable as a self-serving thought. Caroline disagreed. Caroline said that she believed Thomas was sincere. Rick wondered if Caroline wanted to relive her aunt's legacy -- falling for Thomas, who was the spitting image of Ridge -- Caroline's great love. Caroline said that she had grown up hearing their love story, but she would make her own decisions in love.
Caroline said that Rick was the one for her. She said that she loved Rick. Rick said that he loved her too. They made out. Caroline said that her mom had told her she would know when the right person came along, and she would know when she met him. "I know," Caroline said. She kissed Rick.
In Aspen, Liam and Steffy watched will while Brooke and Bill took a break. Liam marveled at Steffy's maternal instincts. Brooke and Bill returned. Bill told Steffy and Liam to take off and have some fun. Liam said that they would be happy to watch the baby so that Brooke and Bill could relax. Bill declined the offer. Bill said that he felt bad that Liam and Steffy had not had the vacation they had planned in Hawaii. Liam and Steffy left.
Brooke and Bill chatted about how Brooke believed that Katie has some mental health issues that had a lot to do with Katie's fear of dying. Bill said that he understood Katie's fear, but he was concerned that Katie had walked out on him and the baby. Brooke said that she worried about many things in addition to Katie. Brooke couldn't understand how Katie could walk out on Bill, Ridge had walked out on her, and Stephanie was dying. Bill was sympathetic.
Brooke's phone rang, and it was Donna, who said that she was standing in the Spencer home. Donna said that Katie had taken everything, and it appeared she had never lived in the house. Katie had apparently returned to the house and removed all of her belongings after she had sent Bill and Brooke on a wild goose chase to Aspen. Brooke thanked Donna for her call.
Bill said that Katie had been very methodical in her ruse to get them out of town. Bill told Brooke that he had been concerned about Katie's attitude. He wasn't sure he wanted Katie back even if she came to her senses. Bill couldn't believe that Katie could dump a newborn and not return. Brooke said she was concerned that Katie was mentally unstable.
On a mountaintop, Liam and Steffy stood and looked out over the scenery. Liam told Steffy that they were going hang gliding. Steffy was excited because she had never gone hang gliding but had always wanted to go. Liam confessed that he had been a professional hang glider where he grew up. Steffy was in disbelief. Liam teased that Steffy had said she knew everything there was to know about Liam.
Liam asked if Steffy, who he called "biker mama," was ready to take a leap of faith and put her life in his hands. "I already have," Steffy said. Liam and Steffy connected to one hang glider and flew across the valley. Steffy marveled at the beauty, and she flashed back to the wedding she and Liam had enjoyed on the mountaintop. From the hang glider, they enjoyed the view and landed softly in a field. Steffy jumped up and down and then jumped into Liam's arms. They made out and smiled.
In Los Angeles, Katie cried in the rundown apartment she had rented in a noisy building. Katie continued to see freaky images in the pictures on the walls. She focused on the too-loud beat of a heart. A dripping faucet made her freak out. She also picked food out of the garbage and started to eat it. Katie overheard people talking in neighboring apartments, and she heard a baby screaming. She covered her ears, and she sat in a corner and cried. Katie continued to hear people partying, and she talked to herself and cried.
In Aspen, Brooke and Bill discussed that it was unlike Katie to abandon everyone and disappear. They worried that they had no idea where she had gone. Bill said that it was time to call Justin to track her down. Bill called Justin and demanded that Justin find Katie. Bill told Justin to track her credit cards and use everything he could to find her. Bill hung up.
Steffy and Liam entered and excitedly shared that they had been paragliding. They thanked Brooke and Bill for encouraging them to get out of the house.
Liam stopped talking because he could see that something was wrong.
Bill told Liam that Katie had moved out of the Spencer home and left no note. No one knew where Katie had gone, and Bill and Brooke were worried about what had happened to her. Liam hugged Bill.
Bill wanted to return to Los Angeles immediately, but Liam tried to get Bill to understand that it would take time for Justin to track Katie. Bill lamented that Katie had abandoned her family. Liam and Steffy suggested that Bill relax and enjoy the scenery at least for the day.
In Los Angeles, Katie made a call to schedule a balloon ride for Bill in Aspen. A loud heartbeat could be heard in the background as Katie made the arrangements.
In Aspen, Oliver joined Brooke and Bill and said that someone from Spencer had arranged an excursion for Bill. Oliver said that someone had ordered a balloon ride for Bill, who wanted nothing to do with it. Bill refused to take his balloon out when he wanted to return to Los Angeles. He wanted arrangement to return home. Brooke asked about the balloon ride, and Liam pointed out that it might be fun for both Bill and Brooke to get away from the house. Bill relented and said they would go.
After Brooke and Bill left the Aspen house, Liam told Steffy that they had the house to themselves, but Steffy teased that they had a baby to take care of.
Steffy said that she was a master at taking care of babies, and Liam said that he was also. Steffy teased that Will had cried when Liam had held him. Liam teased that little brothers were supposed to fear big brothers. Liam and Steffy discussed that they would have babies of their own someday. Liam asked if it would be a boy or a girl first, and Steffy replied that it had to be a girl because she could only handle one boy at a time.
Steffy and Liam discussed that Bill was concerned about Katie, and they hoped that the balloon adventure with Brooke would help him relax. Steffy laughed and said that she had enjoyed her paragliding adventure. Liam said that Steffy had clearly been scared. She laughed and said that she had depended on him for her safety and happiness. Liam teased that she was high maintenance, but he didn't mind. Steffy flashed back to how beautiful the ride had been with Liam.
Steffy said that she had never been in love with anyone the way she loved him. "Me either," Liam said. Steffy pointed out that they were back where it all began in Aspen. Liam added that they could have been on a beach in Hawaii. Neither of them minded being in Aspen. They kissed.
In Los Angeles, Katie showed up at Taylor's office. Taylor tried to get Katie to understand that everyone was looking for her. Katie wanted Taylor to notify her sisters that she was fine. Taylor encouraged Katie to call Brooke and Donna herself from Taylor's office. Katie said talking to her sisters was not part of her plan. Katie knew they would try to persuade her to return to Bill and the baby.
Taylor calmly noted that Katie's plan included leaving her family. Katie said that she felt Taylor was being judgmental. Katie said that she needed Taylor's approval. Taylor said that if Katie was so convinced that she was doing the right thing, she shouldn't need anyone's approval. Katie continued to say that it was best for her to stay away from Will and Bill because Katie was not a good mother.
Katie said that Brooke could raise Will because Brooke was a great mom and adored Will. Taylor asked if Katie had bothered to discuss the parenting arrangements with Brooke, who might not want to raise another child. Katie said that she had not talked to Brooke because everything had happened so fast. Taylor agreed, but Taylor said Katie had made some life-changing decisions for many people without asking what they wanted.
Taylor added that Katie had faced some life-changing challenges herself recently. Katie said she that was dealing with all of it, but Taylor disagreed. Taylor said that Katie was reacting to a situation with emotions and actions that did not make sense. Taylor noted that Katie's heart problems, premature delivery of Will, and surgery were traumatic physically and emotionally. Taylor said that Katie clearly had symptoms of severe postpartum depression.
Katie angrily disagreed and said that she had total control of her life. Taylor said that Katie had suffered a panic attack in Taylor's office recently. Katie argued that she was fine. Taylor warned that running away from everything and everyone was another symptom of depression. Taylor tried to get Katie to talk to her. Taylor understood that Katie wanted to run away because she was a danger to her baby and husband. Katie insisted that Bill and Will would be better off without her.
Taylor explained that hormone levels and Katie's health problems had impacted her mentally and physically. Katie said she was not cut out to be mother, and she was no good to her husband and baby. Katie needed to run away and escape. Taylor tried to convince Katie that she could run away from her family, but she could not run away from the depression and health problems. Taylor insisted that she could help Katie, but Katie refused.
Katie said that she was living on borrowed time and didn't want to be plucked out of her son's life after he'd had time to bond with her. Taylor said that Katie was missing out on critical moments every day. Taylor said that time was slipping away from Katie, but it didn't have to happen. Katie could take medications that would help her. Katie said that medications would only allow her to hide from the truth.
Taylor said that many mothers felt the same as Katie. Taylor said that anger, frustration, fear, sadness, and guilt could be overwhelming and debilitating. Taylor reiterated that hiding would not make those feelings go away. Taylor said she could work with Katie to recover and make it go away. "Let me help you recover," Taylor said. Katie cried and turned away from Taylor.
Bill and Brooke drove past farms and out to a hillside where Ramona met them. Ramona asked about Katie, but Bill said that Katie would not be joining them. Brooke mistakenly thought that Alison had arranged for the balloon ride and said they needed to thank her. Bill lamented that Katie was not with them.
In the Aspen countryside, Brooke and Bill prepared for their hot air balloon ride. Brooke was nervous, but Bill asked her to trust him because it wasn't his first rodeo. Bill had flown dozens of times and joked that people around "those parts" called him "Wild Bill." They boarded the craft, he pulled a lever, and she shuddered as they ascended over the hills. "You're in very good hands, Brooke," he said.
The balloon floated through the serene air, and Brooke said that it was amazing. "It's freedom," Bill uttered. A song played, and the two seemed tranquil as they pondered the amazing scenery.
At the Aspen compound, Steffy and Liam looked at trip pictures. She hit him when he said he'd posted some online. They checked on Will, and Liam wondered if the boy had picked up on the family drama. Steffy reluctantly said Brooke had been great with Will and Bill, and Steffy didn't think Will felt neglected. Liam stated that caring for the baby was great practice for "someday."
Liam and Steffy thought Brooke seemed focused. Steffy noted that Brooke hadn't hassled them about Hope, but Steffy was sure it would happen. Liam thought Brooke might have accepted things, and he joked that Brooke and Steffy could do lunch. Steffy quipped that the altitude had gotten to him.
The conversation turned to Stephanie's party, and Steffy hoped that, as Stephanie's namesake, she could keep part of Stephanie in the world. Steffy thought about Katie again and couldn't believe she'd left her family. Steffy couldn't imagine Bill with anyone else. Liam was worried about Bill, but Steffy said Bill had survived a long time without knowing Katie. Steffy assured Liam that Bill would be fine because he had Liam, and Liam had her.
Steffy said Liam owed her a trip to Hawaii. Liam called her high maintenance, and she said to get use to it. They flashed back on their relationship and kissed.
In Taylor's office, Katie denied needing Taylor's help, but Taylor could see through Katie's façade. Katie claimed she'd had issues, but she'd solved them by providing for her son. Taylor guessed that meant leaving Will with Bill and hoping Brooke would be a surrogate mother.
Taylor could see that Katie was in pain, but Katie claimed to be doing fine after finding herself a place to stay. Taylor asked where that was, but Katie refused to say. Katie again claimed she was fine, but Taylor knew that wasn't true. Katie stated that she couldn't be a mother to her son, but Taylor insisted that, with some therapy, Katie could get her life back.
Katie was adamant that she didn't need help; she felt she just needed to get as far away from her family as she could get. Guessing that Katie felt isolated, guilty, and inadequate as a mother, Taylor explained that the feelings were classic symptoms of postpartum depression. "I don't have that," Katie bit out and claimed that she just wasn't cut out to be a mother.
Taylor doubted that Katie had always felt that way. Katie replied that she simply couldn't give her son the life she wanted him to have, but she was making sure that someone else could. "I'm not changing my mind about this," Katie asserted. Though Taylor assessed that Katie was in denial, Katie insisted that she was in control and making the right choices.
Taylor reasoned that Katie had made very dramatic and abrupt changes in her life, and Taylor didn't think Katie understood Katie's own reasons for throwing her life away. Katie shot back that she was a terrible mother, who couldn't connect with her son. Taylor contended that Katie had also said she feared that death would cause her to abandon Will, and it was right around the corner.
"It is! For me, it is!" Katie exclaimed. Taylor argued that Katie couldn't stop living just because she'd eventually die, and Taylor feared that Katie's condition could turn into postpartum psychosis. Taylor warned that Katie could become a threat to herself and others if she didn't get a handle on it.
Katie rejected all of Taylor's claims and asserted that she'd taken the precautions necessary to avoid hurting people. Katie charged toward the door, and Taylor shouted that Katie didn't know what she was doing. "I know exactly what I'm doing," Katie said and walked out. In the hallway, she sobbed.
At the mansion, Stephanie grew winded as she made her way down the stairs to the living room, where Eric was on a call, checking on Ridge in Paris. Apparently, the concierge at Ridge's hotel didn't have any information for Eric, because she hadn't seen Ridge for days. After the call, Eric relayed what he'd learned to his wife, but he declared that Ridge wouldn't miss the party that evening for anything.
Kristen and Felicia arrived, and they hugged and joked with Stephanie, but they admitted that they really didn't know what to say to their dying mother. Stephanie suggested that they just say they loved her and that they not go more than six inches from her side the entire evening. She explained to her daughters that after the party, she and Eric would be going away to a secret location. Kristen and Felicia wondered if that night would be the last time they'd see their mother.
Just then, Pam interrupted by arriving on the doorstep with two ladies. Stephanie guessed the women were part of the string quartet she'd ordered, but she became suspicious of Eric as he hustled the women to the guesthouse without an explanation.
Later, Eric slipped into the house and told Pam that the others had arrived. "What others?" Stephanie asked as she rounded the stairs with her daughters. Pam and Eric nervously explained that they were referring to other guests, but Stephanie suspected that the two were plotting something.
Thorne arrived in time to break up the interrogation, and as he hugged his sisters, Stephanie asked why he was dressed so casually. He answered that he'd been informed to do so, and Kristen and Felicia said that they had been told to dress that way, too. Before the puzzled Stephanie could ask Eric about it, two more women arrived on the doorstep, and Eric hustled them out the door, too.
Stephanie demanded to know what was going on. She tried to grill her sister about the quartet and the caterer, but Eric returned in time to save Pam. Eric announced that he'd rather lick the pavement than listen to chamber music. He revealed that he'd gotten rid of the caterer, too. "Oh, my God, twenty-five pounds of cracked crab," Stephanie lamented. Eric quipped that Stephanie was all the crabby they needed.
Stephanie argued that she'd planned the party that she'd wanted. Eric replied that it was his turn, and he wondered what she could do about it. "Divorce me? Leave me? Ha!" he triumphantly quipped. Stephanie retorted that it wasn't too late for a quickie -- divorce. Eric bargained that he wouldn't interfere with the way she wanted to die if she didn't dictate the way he loved her.
Stephanie begrudgingly agreed, and Eric decided that they'd have cracked crab some other time. She doubted that, since it was the last party. He stated that it was also their last fight. Stephanie doubted that, too, and the family fought back tears as the couple held each other for a long time.
On the jet ride back from Aspen, Steffy tended to Will and learned from the pilot that it was sunny in Los Angeles. Brooke was preoccupied with thoughts of seeing Ridge again at Stephanie's party. She felt that Ridge would be devastated by his mother's condition. Bill replied that, if a boy had a mother's love, he could grow up decently without a father. Liam stated that he knew from experience that a father who wouldn't give up was a good thing to have when a mother wasn't around.
Brooke called to ask Donna to take Brooke's dress for the party to the Spencer house, so that Brooke could dress there after settling Will in at home. Having figured that Ridge was probably already in town, Bill told Brooke that he could handle the baby on his own, and he'd hired a car to pick Brooke up from the airport. Brooke said to give the car to Liam, because Ridge hadn't returned to see her.
At the Spencer house later, Donna talked to Brooke and Bill. As Bill took Will from Brooke, Bill murmured that Katie had left her jewelry upstairs for him. "As though I would give a damn about that," he grumbled and then left the sisters alone in the living room. Donna asked how much of "that" Brooke had been forced to listen to on the trip. Brooke replied that Bill was very hurt.
Donna hadn't heard from Katie and didn't understand why she'd abandoned Will. Donna felt that leaving Bill was understandable, because Katie should have left him a while back. Brooke replied that Bill wasn't bad, but Donna claimed she'd heard all about Bill's heart of gold from Katie. Asserting that it existed, Brooke said Bill was hard on the outside, but in his heart, he was kind.
Brooke changed into a blue dress, and Donna assured Brooke that Ridge would love it. "Your husband needs his ass kicked," Bill said upon entering. Donna asked if Brooke would let Bill talk about Brooke's husband like that. Bill quipped that he'd talk any way he pleased about spouses who abandoned their spouses; however, he knew that it would be a tough evening for Brooke, and he wanted to help any way he could.
Donna went to check on Will's nurse, and Bill told Brooke that she was beautiful. Brooke shrugged shyly, and Bill decided that he'd go with her to the party. He hoped Stephanie wouldn't toss him out, and Brooke asked why he'd want to go. Bill claimed he had some things to say to Ridge -- things he doubted Brooke had said, and Bill also thought it'd be a hard thing for her to face alone. Brooke replied that she hadn't imagined that Bill could be so thoughtful.
Brooke asked if she could leave her things there until the next day, because she was sure that Ridge would probably want to use her house. Though Brooke said that she knew Ridge would be grieving for his mom, she secretly wished that Ridge would look at her and say, "Logan," and then their problems would magically melt away.
From a dank apartment where the weather was stormy outside, Katie called Taylor's office to see if Taylor had heard anything about Brooke and Bill. Taylor wanted to know where Katie was calling from, but Katie refused to say. Taylor decided that the only way she'd allow Katie to remain in contact with her was if Katie gave her a return phone number.
Katie complied, and Taylor informed her that Brooke and Bill were on their way back because Stephanie's celebration was that evening. Confident that Brooke and Ridge would both be at the party, Taylor said that the couple would most likely reunite, as they'd done many times before. "And when they do, then what, Katie?" Taylor asked. Katie wordlessly clicked off the line.
Later, Steffy and Liam arrived in Taylor's office, and as Taylor hugged her daughter, she guessed that being diverted from Hawaii hadn't been too terrible. Liam relayed that finding Katie's phone in Aspen hadn't been easy for his father, but he was glad that Taylor had been there for Katie.
Steffy explained that Brooke had been good for Bill and Will, and Liam went on to tell Taylor about the mysterious balloon ride reservation. Liam said that while some believed Alison had done it, his guess was that it had been Justin -- or someone else who knew Bill well.
Liam left to use a bank machine before he and Steffy took off to prepare for the party. Steffy announced that she had gone paragliding with Liam. "You did what?" Taylor exclaimed. Steffy said she'd told Taylor in advance of the party, so Taylor wouldn't flip out. "Because Grandma's gonna think it's awesome!" Steffy beamed. Taylor warned Steffy not to tell Stephanie a thing about it because Stephanie would probably decide that she'd do it, too.
Steffy found it unbelievable that they were losing Stephanie at the happiest time in Steffy's life. Taylor directed Steffy to be grateful for every happy moment in life and said one could never have too many of them. Taylor joked that she'd be out of a job if her patients would learn that from her. Steffy took off, and Taylor looked at the phone number she'd gotten from Katie.
Taylor called Katie, who griped, "What do you want?" upon answering. Taylor replied that they hadn't finished their conversation, and she'd figured out why Katie had been looking for information about Bill and Brooke. "I should never have given you this number!" Katie quipped.
Undaunted, Taylor stated that she wouldn't keep tabs on Bill and Brooke -- or any balloon rides they might have gone on. From that, Katie gleaned that the ride had taken place. Instead of confirming it, Taylor pleaded with Katie to go home because her plan with Bill and Brooke wasn't going to work. Katie again clicked off the call.