Belle continued kissing Shawn after they entered her parents' townhouse, but he quickly stopped things from progressing further. Feeling embarrassed, Belle joked that in addition to being a bad mother, a bad daughter, and a bad wife, she was also apparently a bad seductress.
Unamused, Shawn started to head to the kitchen to make a pot of coffee for Belle, but she stopped him and stressed that she wasn't oblivious to the fact that their relationship had started going downhill after she had cheated on him. Belle tearfully added that she would feel guilty about that mistake for the rest of her life because it hadn't just hurt Shawn; it had hurt her and Claire, as well.
"And I've just hit a new low: getting drunk and making out with my one-time husband. And it would be funny if it wasn't so cliché, and it would be sad if -- no, it's just sad. It's just really, really sad...kissing someone who doesn't want anything to do with you," Belle continued between sobs. Insisting that wasn't true, Shawn apologetically acknowledged that he was partially responsible for Belle's low self-esteem, since he had been too hard on her at times. Shawn added that Belle was the mother of his child, and that was a gift he would always be grateful to her for giving him -- and a bond that would keep them connected for the rest of their lives.
Belle appreciated Shawn's kind words but maintained that she had been messing up Claire's life lately, despite warnings from him -- and even Philip -- about the dangers of spoiling her and setting unrealistic expectations for her. Shawn stressed that he was just as responsible for Claire's mistakes as Belle was, but Belle insisted that wasn't true. "But it needs to be. I can't do this all by myself; I need to do this with you," Belle added before kissing Shawn again. Belle assured Shawn that she was no longer drunk, and she begged him not to leave, promising that she knew exactly what she was doing and would have no regrets about it the following morning.
At the Horton Town Square, Rafe walked away after witnessing Hope and Aiden's kiss, missing his chance to see Hope put a stop to it. Aiden wondered if Hope was in love with Rafe, arguing that he deserved to know at least that much. Hope insisted that she didn't owe Aiden anything, but she admitted that she was indeed involved with Rafe. Guessing that the relationship was serious, Aiden sighed as he mused that he was in familiar territory, once again fighting another man for Hope's heart. "I was a fool to think that we could just pick up where we left off, [and that] I could win you back," Aiden sadly acknowledged.
Aiden started to walk away after apologizing for the mistakes he had made, but Hope stopped him and confirmed that she was indeed falling in love with Rafe, adding that things would never be the same between her and Aiden again. Nodding, Aiden mused that losing Hope to another man could be fate's way of telling him he needed to instead focus his full attention on clearing Chase's name. "Clear him? Have you forgotten who you're talking to? Your son is a rapist; that's never gonna change, no matter where you put your focus," Hope spat.
Aiden apologetically acknowledged that he probably sounded insensitive. "But if the situation were reversed --" Aiden started to argue. "But it's not reversed! Your son raped my daughter. He belongs in jail. Please...I'm begging you, okay? For Ciara's sake, don't do anything to change that," Hope tearfully requested. Aiden protested that Hope couldn't seriously expect him to just abandon his son, but she insisted that Chase was already right where he belonged.
Hope continued that Ciara had already been through enough and needed to feel safe. Aiden assured Hope that he still cared about Ciara, just as he always had. "Then you stay the hell away from her. That's not a request; that's an order," Hope warned. Admitting that he was running out of ways to apologize for everything that had happened, Aiden wished Hope a happy life with Rafe and promised to back off. "Good. Then we understand each other," Hope tersely replied before walking away.
Roman found Rafe at Edge of the Square, drowning his sorrows. Roman started to advise against doing that, but Rafe interrupted and promised that he was almost done. After knocking back another drink, Rafe began complaining about Aiden's return, but he soon segued into a preemptive rant about rules against fraternization, guessing that Roman wouldn't be happy to learn that he had feelings for Hope. Clarifying that he didn't have any objections, Roman urged Rafe to sober up and fight for Hope instead of continuing to drink shots and feel sorry for himself.
Later, Rafe went to Hope's house and pounded on the front door until she opened it. "I'm not losing you," Rafe insisted. "Who said you were?" Hope wondered. Ignoring Hope's response, Rafe continued that he didn't care about what Aiden had been through or wanted. Hope let Rafe ramble for a bit then stopped him with a kiss. Meanwhile, at the Martin mansion, Aiden drowned his sorrows while staring at an old photograph of him and Hope.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Deimos lurked in the foyer and eavesdropped as Kate and Nicole argued, accusing each other of having an agenda where Deimos was concerned. Once he had heard enough, Deimos entered the living room and feigned surprise when he spotted Kate, who informed him that she had finished packing then proceeded to tell Nicole about their plans to get married the following day.
Nicole excused herself so she could get dressed upstairs, and once she was gone, Kate reminded Deimos that he had previously been warned about what could happen if he ever tried to play games with her. Deimos insisted that he wasn't playing games, but Kate found that hard to believe, given what she had just witnessed as well as the fact that she could smell Nicole's perfume on his neck. Kate slapped Deimos, who made it clear that she was getting dangerously close to crossing the line. "You've already crossed it!" Kate spat.
Deimos wondered if Kate had ever considered the possibility that he might have been playing Nicole. "And for your information, I don't apologize for anything I do, so get used to it," Deimos added. Kate countered that the same could be said about her. As Nicole reentered the living room, Kate stormed off, snapping, "He's all yours. You can kill each other, for all I care!"
Nicole guessed that the impending nuptials were off, and Deimos confirmed that it certainly seemed that way. Deimos wondered if Nicole was also upset with him. Nicole admitted that she wasn't sure then posed the same question to Deimos, who chose to answer it with a kiss. "Let me take you upstairs," Deimos whispered. Nicole responded with a joke that Deimos took as mockery, but she assured him that she hadn't meant it that way. "Unlike Kate, I have a sense of humor, so you'd better get used to it. And the other big difference between me and Kate that you should know about? I prefer a commitment before I commit," Nicole added before showing herself out.
Kate went to Edge of the Square and ordered a martini. Roman tried to make conversation with her, but she insisted that she couldn't talk at that time because she had some things to think about. Meanwhile, in a secluded section of the town square, Nicole placed a phone call to Victor. "[Everything's going] exactly as I planned so far, so you can call Justin and whoever else you have waiting in the wings and tell them to back off Deimos. I've got it covered," Nicole assured Victor before ending the call.
This episode featured Vincent Irizarry (Deimos) playing Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata." To find out why Vincent found the experience "nerve wracking," click here.
At the Horton house, Jennifer paced the foyer, groaning in pain. Looking in the mirror, she saw that she was disheveled. Jennifer started to cry. "It hurts so bad," she muttered. Jennifer grabbed her purse and started to leave, clad only in her pajamas. As she opened the front door, Lucas stopped her in the doorway. Lucas asked Jennifer if she wanted help. Breaking down into tears, Jennifer hugged Lucas and thanked him for not giving up on her.
Lucas walked Jennifer back inside the house and noticed that the living room was trashed. With a shrug, Jennifer commented that she did not know what she had broken in her search for her stash of drugs. Lucas noted that the hiding was an instinct to exert control over her addiction. Jennifer admitted she had thrown out her pills but had been overwhelmed after J.J. had been quarantined at the hospital. Crying, Jennifer told Lucas that Abigail had refused to see her family anymore.
As Jennifer cried out in pain, Lucas rushed to her side and helped her stand up. Jennifer said that she had offered to take Thomas for the night to relieve Chad and that Chad had said no because he believed that Jennifer was a danger to Thomas because of her addiction. Lucas commiserated that news like that would make him want to drink. Jennifer said she had rooted out all the pills in her house and flushed them down the toilet instead.
Jennifer told Lucas how she had attempted to get more painkillers from the pharmacy after cleaning out the house, but she had failed. When Lucas chuckled, Jennifer smiled in embarrassment. Lucas noted that pharmacists knew all the tricks of addicts. With a sigh, Jennifer admitted that she had torn the house apart, looking for pills. In the midst of her frantic search that evening, Jennifer had called Lucas and begged him for help.
"You've done enough for tonight. You've done the hardest thing. You've said no to the pills, mostly. You called me over to help you, and I promise I'll help you. You'll never, you know, deal with this alone again," Lucas said. Lucas looked down at a photo of him with Jennifer, and the frame was broken. Frowning, Jennifer picked up the shattered item.
"I thought I could handle this. I did," Jennifer whispered. "We all think that," Lucas countered. "Who is we? Junkies?" Jennifer asked. Lucas asked Jennifer if that was how she saw him. Jennifer apologized for the meanness of her comment. With a nod, Lucas agreed and added that Jennifer should not think poorly of herself either. Lucas reminded Jennifer that addiction was a disease and that she should think of it like any other disease. Collapsing into a chair, Jennifer said she was tired. Lucas advised Jennifer that she would sleep better without the pills.
Jennifer reminded Lucas that she was in pain and needed the pills. Lucas noted that the pills had served a purpose but that Jennifer's use of the pills had mutated into something else. Jennifer wondered aloud if she needed to stop taking the pills fully or if she could instead manage her dosage better. Shaking his head, Lucas suggested that they talk to Maggie, who had been dealing with pain since her fall. Lucas urged Jennifer to go to a meeting with him. Jennifer resisted but eventually agreed.
Lucas promised to never let Jennifer go through her addiction alone again. Taking Jennifer's hand, Lucas stared into Jennifer's eyes until she nodded yes. Jennifer said she felt weak and ashamed. When Lucas asked about Jennifer's past, Jennifer said she had never had any indication of addiction in her past. Lucas noted that anyone could develop an addiction under the right circumstances.
Jennifer recalled Carly's past struggles with painkillers, and she noted that she had never judged Carly for her addiction. Lucas advised Jennifer to treat herself the same way. Lucas urged Jennifer to get some sleep, and he promised to stay nearby. While Jennifer slept on the couch, Lucas cleaned up the mess.
Jennifer dreamed that Abigail returned home and asked about Thomas. When Jennifer looked in the playpen, Thomas was gone. Abigail said that she had found Thomas alone in the driveway, crawling around, while Jennifer had been asleep inside the house. Upset, Abigail told Jennifer that she did not want her around.
"I needed you! Where were you? You of all people, you should understand what I was going through! You should've understood what was happening to me. Where were you?" Abigail cried out. Abigail grabbed an empty pill bottle and told Jennifer that she knew about the pills. Abigail blamed Jennifer for J.J.'s situation. When Jennifer asked what had happened to J.J., Abigail shook her head in disgust. Abigail walked out.
In her dream, Jennifer went to the jail to visit J.J. On a nearby table was a bottle of pills. Jennifer grabbed them and took one. J.J. entered the room in an inmate jumpsuit and asked Jennifer if she was going to share the pills. J.J. said he had been jailed for possession of drugs with intent to distribute. J.J. asked Jennifer to share the pills with him. Fighting tears, Jennifer asked J.J. not to throw his life away over drugs.
"So you're the only one that gets to do that?" J.J. asked. J.J. blamed Jennifer for his trouble. When an officer put a hand on Jennifer's shoulder, Jennifer realized that J.J. was gone. The officer told Jennifer that it was time for her to return to her cell. Jennifer spun around and saw that Jack was the police officer. Jailer Jack asked Jennifer if she was sure was not locked in jail herself.
"When is the last time you laughed? You really laughed? You ran a good scam working a source for a story? When is the last time you rode in a fire truck against your will? And played a little shipboard truth or dare? Have you forgotten?" Jack asked. Jennifer thought about when Jack had proposed to her when they had been shipwrecked on the island. "Where's the girl that grabbed all the fun to be had?" jailer Jack asked with a smile.
"She stayed here and raised a family because you ran off. That girl died when you died, and you took her with you," Jennifer said angrily. With a grin, Jack reminded Jennifer that he had not planned to die, but he had returned home before he had passed on. Jennifer said that the fun girl she had been had died because she had needed to grow up and raise the children. With a smile, Jennifer said she had believed that she would have a happy ending with Jack.
"I loved you completely. I kept nothing back. Didn't you feel that?" Jack asked. "Yeah, I did, and then you were gone," Jennifer said, fighting back tears. Jennifer said that she was glad for the time that she and Jack had had together. Tired, Jennifer fell back into her chair. Jack slid into the chair across from her. Jennifer admitted that the house was quiet and empty. With a sad smile, Jennifer said that her children no longer needed her.
"Now they're gone. And you're gone. So I feel like I'm gone," Jennifer said sadly. Jennifer admitted that she felt alone. With a grin, Jack said that everyone was alone. Shaking her head, Jennifer said it was different. Jack told Jennifer that she was in good company. Jack gently pushed Jennifer's hand off the pill bottle. When Jennifer asked Jack why he was there, Jack whispered that he remembered the Jennifer deep inside. Jack advised Jennifer to explore the possibilities by looking at herself as a story.
Overwhelmed, Jennifer reached for the pill bottle again. Jack told Jennifer that she did not need the pills because they would make her more tired. Jack encouraged Jennifer to look around her for help. With a smile, Jack said all of her family, living or dead, would be there for her. Jennifer woke from her dream with a start.
Julie rushed to Jennifer's side and told her that everything was fine. Jennifer started to sob into the couch cushion. Standing at the foot of the couch were Doug, Julie, and Lucas. Julie gently stroked Jennifer's head. When Jennifer said she was embarrassed, Doug waved his hand dismissively and told Jennifer not to be embarrassed. While waiting for the 6:00 a.m. A.A. meeting, Jennifer sat wincing on the couch while Doug, Julie, and Lucas talked in the foyer. Doug and Julie said they would move back into the house until Jennifer was doing better.
Jennifer stumbled into the foyer and announced that she was going to rest upstairs. Julie escorted Jennifer upstairs and tucked her into bed. Sleepy, Jennifer thanked Julie and told her to get some sleep. With a smile, Julie said she would be there for Jennifer. Julie sat in the rocking chair. Once it appeared that Jennifer was asleep, Julie went back downstairs. Lucas thanked Doug and Julie for their help.
Upstairs, Jennifer groaned in pain. Jennifer looked over at the chair and saw that Julie was gone. Jennifer slid out of bed. When Jennifer dropped her phone on the floor, she saw an errant pill bottle under the bed. As Jennifer eagerly took a pill out of the bottle, Julie returned to the room. Jennifer mumbled that she had fallen, but Julie did not buy her excuse. Julie asked Jennifer if she had found a stash of pills. Crying, Jennifer begged for one pill. Julie demanded that Jennifer hand over the bottle.
As Jennifer turned and started to pop the pill in her mouth, Julie grabbed Jennifer's wrist to stop her. Jennifer lashed out and smacked Julie across the face. Horrified, Jennifer apologized. Jennifer hugged Julie tightly. Julie stoked Jennifer's hair and told her that everything would be all right. While Jennifer slept in her bed again, Julie fell asleep in the chair. When Julie awoke, she was upset to see that Jennifer was gone. Julie rushed downstairs and found Doug helping Jennifer into her coat.
"We're not going to let you fall. Not today, not this morning," Lucas said. "Not ever," Doug added. Doug, Julie, and Lucas collectively hugged Jennifer. When the group arrived at the hospital for the A.A. meeting, they saw Maggie and Brady. Jennifer said she did not believe Maggie and Brady normally attended the 6:00 a.m. meeting. With a sheepish shrug, Lucas admitted that he had called them. Jennifer thanked Lucas for his support.
Jennifer sat behind Maggie and Brady, and they turned around to smile at her. Maggie spoke first at the meeting, then Lucas. When Jennifer rose to speak, Maggie grabbed Brady's hand and squeezed it. Jennifer announced her name. As Jennifer started to cry, she looked across the room to the corner and saw a vision of Jack smiling through his tears at her. Struggling to say the words, Jennifer smiled at Jack. Jennifer sniffled then said, "And I am an addict."
At the hospital, Kayla nearly collapsed while talking to Fynn about her discharge papers. Fynn fretted that Kayla was in no condition to be released yet, but she dismissively assured him that she simply had a tension headache because she had just finished a phone conversation with Steve, who was still searching for Joey in Los Angeles.
Fynn guessed that, like Kayla, Joey was tough and knew how to take care of himself. Kayla wasn't sure she was as tough as Fynn was implying, but he reminded her that she had treated patients from her sickbed during a quarantine. "You have no idea how afraid I was that I was -- that we were -- gonna lose you," Fynn added.
Kayla reasoned that being tough meant also being well enough to leave the hospital. Kayla pointedly added that she was still Fynn's boss. Admitting defeat, Fynn encouraged Kayla to go home and get some rest. Kayla casually clarified that she actually intended to go home and pack. "I am gonna go to Los Angeles and help Steve find Joey," Kayla continued.
Fynn protested that Kayla couldn't fly to Los Angeles because the cabin pressure could cause her hematoma to destabilize. "I'll drive, then," Kayla said with a shrug. Fynn sarcastically agreed that setting out on a thousand-mile jaunt across the country while weak and dizzy would be a great idea. "Fine, I will take a train, but you're not talking me out of this," Kayla insisted, seizing the discharge papers from Fynn.
Fynn maintained that Joey was eighteen years old and could surely manage to take care of himself until Steve -- a professional investigator -- found him. Kayla argued that she knew Los Angeles better than Steve did because she had actually lived there at one point. Realizing that he wouldn't be able to change Kayla's mind, Fynn insisted on driving her to Los Angeles himself, pointing out that he, too, knew the area well. Kayla protested that Fynn couldn't just drop everything to drive her across the country because he had patients to attend to. "So do you," Fynn countered, adding that he had recently requested vacation time, anyway.
In Los Angeles, Steve was relieved to learn that Joey and Jade hadn't been seen at any of the local police stations or hospitals. Karl fretted that the bad news was that there were plenty of other places in the city that the teens could have gone, and it would probably take approximately one million hours to check all the surveillance cameras in the area for signs of them.
"Then you're gonna need all the help you can get, aren't you?" John reasoned as he entered Karl's office. Steve introduced John as the other half of Black Patch Investigations. "The better half," John jokingly added as he shook Karl's hand. Steve gave John a pity laugh then wondered if he was fit for duty, given the fact that he had recently been quarantined in a hospital due to a deadly viral infection. John assured Steve -- and Karl, who had immediately reached for some hand sanitizer after hearing about John's ordeal -- that he had received a clean bill of health from his doctor.
Steve started filling John in on everything he and Karl had already learned, explaining that Jade had an aunt who lived in the area but was no longer staying at her last known address. Meanwhile, Karl went back to poring over surveillance footage of recent crimes, knowing that Joey and Jade didn't have a lot of money at their disposal. Steve happened to look over Karl's shoulder just as Karl was watching footage of a getaway car speeding away from a gas station robbery. The driver's face wasn't visible, but Steve knew it was Joey because he recognized the jacket the driver was wearing -- his jacket.
Steve contacted the owner of the gas station, who soon arrived to answer questions about the robbery. Steve explained that he was interested in the incident because he had reason to believe that his son might have been involved. The man was only able to offer a vague description of the robber at first, but when he was pressed for more details, he revealed that there was one thing about the robber that he hadn't remembered until after his interview with the police: a scorpion-shaped scar had been visible on the top of the guy's hand. "It looked like a brand. Your son's part of a gang, isn't he?" the man guessed.
Steve thanked the man for his help and promised to provide restitution if it turned out that his son had indeed been involved in the robbery. After the man left, Karl revealed that the description of the scar seemed to match up with the mark that members of a commune in the Mojave Desert sported. As John started to probe for more details about the group, Steve received a phone call from Kayla, who informed him that she planned to head to Los Angeles to help him locate Joey.
"No way in hell," Steve insisted, protesting that Kayla wasn't well enough to travel. Kayla complained that Steve always wanted to do everything on his own, but he countered that he wasn't acting alone; in fact, he had enlisted the help of an old ISA friend, and John had also just flown in to help out. "Oh, well, John had the virus, too, and he gets to fly, and I don't?" Kayla asked incredulously.
Steve reminded Kayla that the virus hadn't been her only recent medical concern. Steve guessed that Kayla would never clear one of her patients to fly in her condition, but she assured him that she wouldn't be flying; she would be traveling with her personal chauffeur, Fynn. "That doesn't make me feel any better," Steve muttered. Kayla wondered what that was supposed to mean, but Steve dodged the question, maintaining that she wasn't needed in Los Angeles. "Well, too bad. You're gonna see me in a few days," Kayla replied before hanging up.
At the commune, Joey told Jade that he wanted to head back to Salem. "Today's our sentencing hearing. I never paid for what I did to Ava, and now our friends are gonna be in court, answering for what we all did," Joey pointed out. Jade reminded Joey that she didn't have a home to return to in Salem because her parents had banished her to Florida after her arrest. Jade added that she and Joey would be thrown in jail if they returned to Salem. Joey assured Jade that the judge was not yet aware that they had skipped bail, but she argued that it would be impossible to make it back to Salem in time for the hearing.
"I just can't keep breaking the law," Joey explained with a sigh. Jade reasoned that she and Joey hadn't intentionally committed a crime, but he pointed out that they wouldn't be able to continue claiming ignorance in the future. "I thought you wanted to live a life of adventure, like your dad," Jade reminded Joey, who countered that sitting in the middle of a desert, doing nothing but arguing with her, wasn't exactly what he'd had in mind.
"I know why you want to stay: it's that guy Dirk, isn't it?" Joey guessed, but Jade denied the suspicion. Unconvinced, Joey started to grab his things, maintaining that he was leaving the commune -- with or without Jade. Jade begged Joey to reconsider, pointing out that the commune really wasn't the worst place to live; in fact, all the other residents seemed to love it. "Because they're high!" Joey quietly countered.
Failing to see the problem, Jade reminded Joey that they had moved to Los Angeles in search of fun. "If that's your idea of fun, I'm out," Joey muttered while stuffing some things in his backpack. Jade begged Joey to give the commune one more week, promising to talk to Simone about more legal ways they could help out. "I don't want to lose you, Joey. I won't," Jade stressed before giving Joey a kiss. As Joey sprawled out on a nearby couch with Jade and continued kissing her, Dirk watched from the other side of the room.
Later, Jade shared Joey's concerns with Simone, who justified the commune's actions but promised to find some other way for the teens to do their part. Satisfied, Jade thanked Simone and gave her a hug. After Simone left, Joey started to say something to Jade, but Dirk interrupted and wondered if they had decided to stick around. Joey remained silent as Jade confirmed that they planned to remain with the group, prompting Dirk to flash his scorpion scar and wonder if they were ready to make their membership official.
"You've gotta be kidding me," Joey muttered, shaking his head in disbelief. Joey assured Jade that she didn't have to prove anything to Dirk or any of the other members of the commune, but she offered up her hand willingly and winced in pain as Dirk branded it with a scorpion-shaped piece of searing metal. "Cool! That hurt way less than a tat. It's your turn. Do it for me?" Jade urged Joey as he inspected her wound.
Claire entered John and Marlena's townhouse and called out to Belle, pointing out that they needed to head to the courthouse soon. Belle, who was in bed with Shawn, answered that she had overslept but would be ready soon. Shawn guessed that Belle didn't want Claire to know about what had happened between them the previous night, and Belle confirmed the suspicion, reasoning that the timing wasn't great. Belle stressed, however, that she had no regrets, and Shawn returned the sentiment.
Later, Belle and Claire joined Hope and Ciara at the police station. As Belle was coaching the teens on how to behave during the sentencing hearing, Shawn arrived and apologized for his tardiness. Belle smiled at Shawn as she assured him that he wasn't late, prompting Claire to comment on the sudden change in Belle's mood. Claire also noted that Shawn was wearing the same clothes he had worn the previous day, but he claimed that he had pulled an all-nighter at the forensics lab.
Shawn went to grab a tie from his desk, promising the women that he would catch up with them soon. Once the coast was clear, Lani wondered what was going on between Shawn and Belle. Shawn claimed that he and Belle were simply trying to act like a united force where Claire was concerned. "Then we're still on for tonight?" Lani asked.
Shawn said he'd get back to Lani with an answer later, once he knew that Claire was going to be okay. Nodding skeptically, Lani wondered if she and Shawn were okay. "Yeah. Yeah, we're good. Yeah," Shawn stammered in response. Satisfied, Lani gave Shawn a passionate kiss and wished him luck at the hearing.
At the prison, Chase was shocked to receive a visit from Aiden. After explaining everything, Aiden promised to get Chase out of prison, suggesting that Ciara had probably blown things out of proportion. Chase insisted that he didn't deserve to be released because he had done exactly what Ciara had accused him of doing. "She said no, and I didn't listen to her; I didn't stop. I raped her, and I hate myself for it," Chase tearfully admitted.
Aiden reasoned that Chase was a good kid who had simply lost his way for a while, and he needed professional help instead of prison time. Chase countered that he had lost his way because he had realized that he had never really known Aiden at all. Aiden tried to protest, but Chase interrupted, adding that he couldn't help wondering if the old rumors about his father killing his mother had been true all along. "You're an evil son of a bitch, and I turned out exactly like you," Chase spat.
Aiden maintained his innocence, insisting that he wasn't capable of murder -- and that was precisely why Stefano and Andre had replaced him with someone who had possessed no such qualms. "Do you really expect me to believe that crap?" Chase asked incredulously. Undeterred, Aiden reasoned that Chase simply needed time to absorb the shocking news. "But, thank God, we have that; we have time. We both have a lot to answer for -- to make up to the people we care about -- but we can. We will," Aiden assured Chase.
At the police station, Claire jokingly wondered if running Mark out of town would count as community service. Unamused, Belle warned Claire and Ciara to take their punishment seriously, stressing that they had been lucky to receive such light sentences. Ciara wanted to know what was going to happen to Joey and Jade, so Shawn explained that there was a warrant out for their arrests because they had failed to appear in court.
Shawn, Belle, and Claire soon headed off to the Brady Pub for lunch, but Hope and Ciara declined to join them. As Ciara was preparing to return to the DiMera mansion to watch Thomas, Aiden arrived and told her and Hope about his earlier conversation with Chase. Ciara wondered if Aiden still planned to help Chase get released from prison, even after having just heard a full confession in his own words.
Without waiting for a response from Aiden, Hope assured Ciara that Chase would never be released. "Aiden, if you loved me -- if you ever truly loved me -- then you will let justice be served, and you will not talk to my daughter about this ever again," Hope added. Aiden stressed that he was truly sorry about everything that had happened. Aiden asked to talk to Hope privately, but she denied the request and rushed off with Ciara.
Later, at the DiMera mansion, Ciara pointed out that Aiden hadn't exactly promised not to represent Chase. Hope tried to keep Ciara focused on the fact that Aiden had finally acknowledged Chase's guilt, but Ciara didn't find that comforting, since Aiden's job was to prevent guilty people from paying for their crimes. Ciara admitted that she didn't know what she would do to Chase if he managed to get released from prison.
While alone in his room at the Martin mansion, Aiden received a phone call from Andre, who wondered if Aiden had forgotten what they had recently discussed. "I'm working on it," Aiden promised, but Andre expressed skepticism. "I don't want to tell Hope that you're lying to her -- still -- [but] the choice is yours: you get me out of here...or you face the consequences," Andre warned.
While having lunch with her parents at the Brady Pub, Claire realized that they had gotten back together. Belle told Claire not to get her hopes up about what that might mean for the future, but Claire refused to let the warning ruin her good mood. "You guys are both happy again, so just try not to screw it up, okay?" Claire advised before rushing off.
"I think she might be onto something," Shawn whispered to Belle, unaware that Philip was eavesdropping nearby. Belle reminded Shawn that one great night of sex couldn't magically solve all their problems. Shawn protested that it had been more than just a night of great sex; in fact, for the first time in ages, he had actually felt a real connection with Belle again.
"You were vulnerable, and you were beautiful, and you were the Belle that I fell in love with all those years ago. And it made me realize just how much I love and miss her," Shawn added. Belle took that to mean that Shawn only wanted to be with her when she was frail and vulnerable, but he clarified that he was simply saying that the girl he had fallen in love with had been honest and real. "As opposed to now?" Belle asked defensively.
Groaning, Shawn reminded Belle that he had never been able to argue a case as well as she could because he wasn't a lawyer. "Ever since we came back here, you've been a different Belle. I mean, you've been toying around with Philip, you've been spending money like crazy, you've been indulging Claire's fantasies --" Shawn continued. Belle interrupted to protest, but Shawn pointed out that even Claire had recognized the changes.
"I don't know if you just were trying to get back what you and Philip had all those years ago, or you were just looking for an escape, but you've gotta start being honest with yourself. When push comes to shove, Philip will always be the self-absorbed Kiriakis that he has always been, Belle. He's always going to put himself before you," Shawn warned. Belle admitted that she had actually been thinking the same thing lately.
Hurt, Philip slinked off to the town square and ordered a drink. An attractive young woman soon joined him for a job interview, and when he tried to hit on her, she made it clear that she was only looking for a job at that time. Philip claimed that she had gotten the wrong impression then promised to contact her soon to let her know if he was interested in hiring her.
At the police station, Lani traded shifts with someone, explaining that she had big plans for the evening. Later, Shawn arrived with Belle, and while they were talking privately, he invited her to have dinner with him later. Belle wondered if Lani was still in the picture. "[That] could turn into something...unless I have another chance with you," Shawn replied, admitting that he wanted that more than anything else.
Belle left after teasingly telling Shawn she would think about his offer and get back to him later. Belle headed to the town square, where she ran into Philip, who was dismissive of her at first but soon apologized and asked about Claire. Belle reported that the judge had been pretty lenient. "That's great. I'm glad that things seem to be working out for you...and that you and Shawn are moving in the right direction," Philip replied.
Taken aback, Belle wondered what had led Philip to that conclusion. Philip explained that he knew Belle well enough to recognize when she was in a good mood, and he also knew he wasn't the reason. "You know, don't you, that I really do want you to be happy?" Philip added. Nodding, Belle thanked Philip then walked away. Later, at Edge of the Square, Philip flirted with the bartender while continuing to drown his sorrows.
In a secluded section of the town square, Ciara received a text message from Theo, who wanted to see her. Ciara assured Theo that the sentencing hearing had gone well but added that she needed to be alone for a while. Meanwhile, Hope arrived and started complaining about how Ciara had rushed out of the DiMera mansion in the middle of their earlier conversation. Ciara explained that she had just needed to get some air.
"I meant what I said. If Chase gets out, I'm gonna hurt him before he hurts me," Ciara vowed. Hope understood that urge but stressed that Ciara had nothing to fear because even if Chase did manage to get released from prison, she had a family of cops to protect her from him. Ciara didn't find that comforting, pointing out that Chase would still be a danger to other women. Hope said it wasn't Ciara's job to worry about that.
Ciara got defensive when Hope encouraged her to talk to Marlena. "Chase raped me, [but] I'm the one that's crazy?" Ciara asked incredulously. Hope clarified that she hadn't meant to imply that; she simply wanted Ciara to talk to Marlena because she believed that Marlena could help. "God knows [that] what I'm doing [isn't] helping," Hope conceded.
Ciara tearfully insisted that wasn't true. "Fine, just call her," Ciara added, but when Hope made an appointment with Marlena for later that day, Ciara protested that it would have to be rescheduled because she had already agreed to watch Thomas then. Hope reasoned that Ciara could just ask Claire to cover for her, guessing that Chad would surely understand, but Ciara argued that Thomas wouldn't feel comfortable with Claire because he didn't know her. "I'm the only one that can take care of them!" Ciara stressed.
"Them? Are you worried about Thomas or Chad?" Hope asked suspiciously. Ciara reasoned that it was natural for her to worry about Chad because he had been through a lot lately. "Or maybe you have a crush on him," Hope suggested, but Ciara scoffed and insisted that she and Chad were just friends.
Claire ran into Theo in the town square and told him about what had happened at the sentencing hearing. When Theo reported that Ciara had declined to meet with him to talk about it, Claire revealed that she had just received a last-minute request to cover Ciara's babysitting duties for the day. Claire guessed that Ciara was probably dealing with an urgent matter, but Theo suspected that something else was going on.
Later, at the DiMera mansion, Ciara told Claire about her scheduled therapy session with Marlena. "So, since you're so stressed that Chase might get out, is that why you've been staying away from Theo?" Claire wondered. Ciara explained that she liked Theo but was worried about hurting him. "Then you should tell him how you feel before you do hurt him...badly," Claire advised.
At the police station, Hope filled Rafe in on what had happened at the sentencing hearing then happily revealed that she had finally managed to convince Ciara to talk to Marlena. Rafe wondered if Ciara had changed her mind because Aiden was back in town. Hope admitted that she wasn't sure, and she proceeded to tell Rafe about her earlier encounter with Aiden.
Rafe wasn't happy to hear that Hope had tried to bargain with Aiden. Rafe insisted that Aiden was playing Hope, and she allowed for that possibility but reasoned that she had to at least try everything she could think of to convince him not to get Chase released from prison. Rafe conceded the point, and Hope quickly changed the subject, revealing that she had ordered lunch but would only let Rafe have his share if he promised to stop talking about Aiden. Unable to resist the bribe, Rafe accepted Hope's terms.
While Hope and Rafe were eating in one of the conference rooms, Aiden barged in and wondered if he was interrupting something. Hope demanded to know what Aiden wanted, so he explained that he had been hoping to continue their earlier discussion over lunch. "We just ate," Rafe pointed out. Nodding, Aiden apologized for interrupting then walked away. "That was him letting you know that he is not giving up on you," Rafe warned Hope.
At John and Marlena's townhouse, Ciara admitted to Marlena that she had been dealing with a lot of anger issues lately. "I feel like if I stop being mad, that I'm just gonna start crying, and I'm not gonna be able to stop," Ciara explained. Ciara fretted that she might not be able to handle seeing Chase get released from prison, prompting Marlena to point out that his release wasn't a foregone conclusion. Marlena wondered if Ciara was worried that Chase would hurt her again if he got released. "No, that I'll hurt him," Ciara clarified.
"Could you do that?" Marlena asked. Shrugging, Ciara admitted that she wasn't sure anyone realized just how much anger she was carrying around with her every day. Ciara added that she wasn't just angry at Chase; she was also angry at herself because she had known about his dark side long before he had raped her -- and she had liked that side of him. Ciara thought that could mean that she had a dark side, too.
"[That's] why I can't be with anyone like Theo. Maybe I can never get serious with any normal guy," Ciara mused. Ciara admitted that even after what had happened with Chase, she still had trouble picturing herself being with a guy who wasn't unpredictable. "Like your father [was]?" Marlena guessed. Ciara confirmed the suspicion and conceded that her desire to find a guy like Bo was probably creepy.
Marlena disagreed, recalling some of Bo's best qualities and concluding that he had been a wonderful man. "Yeah, but now he's gone," Ciara muttered. Ciara mused that her true fear might be that she would fall in love with someone then lose that person, just as she had already lost Bo. Before Marlena could respond, Belle entered the townhouse, prompting Marlena to decide that it was a good time to end Ciara's first therapy session.
After Ciara left, Belle apologized for the interruption then told Marlena about what had happened at the sentencing hearing. Marlena revealed that she had already gotten a report from Ciara earlier. Struggling to understand what had motivated Claire to vandalize a car, Marlena eventually settled on one theory: Claire had acted out because her life had been in upheaval lately. "You mean because I had an affair, brought her here, and divorced her father?" Belle guessed. "That's what I mean," Marlena matter-of-factly confirmed.
Belle started to reveal that she had been giving her divorce a lot of thought recently, but Marlena received an important phone call while asking Belle to elaborate, so Belle agreed to pause the conversation so Marlena could take the call. After Marlena stepped into an adjacent room for some privacy, Belle contacted Shawn and wondered if he still wanted to have dinner with her later.
Lani overheard Shawn's end of the phone conversation, and after he hung up, she guessed that he and Belle had decided to give their marriage another try. Shawn admitted that he wasn't sure what his date with Belle would lead to, but he didn't bother to deny Lani's suspicion that he wanted it to be a new beginning. "No worries," Lani replied, assuring Shawn that she had never taken their relationship seriously, anyway. Lani forced a smile then sighed after Shawn walked away.
Theo went to the DiMera mansion to see Ciara, but Claire informed him that Ciara hadn't returned yet. Claire guessed that Theo was in search of answers. "Yeah. I do not get [Ciara]. I don't get her. Today, she doesn't want to see me; tomorrow, she could text me and say, 'Hey, let's hang out,'" Theo complained.
Theo revealed that Ciara had recently let him spend the night in bed with her, but he quickly added that nothing had happened. "But I was just so happy...and then she started acting weird again," Theo muttered. Claire gently advised Theo to try not to let his feelings get hurt if Ciara decided that she couldn't be more than just his friend at that time.
When Ciara returned to the mansion, Theo claimed that he was there to see Thomas. Claire quickly excused herself to check on the child, leaving Ciara and Theo alone so they could talk privately. Guessing that Ciara knew he was really there to see her, Theo wondered if she thought he was being too pushy. "No! Actually, I think I've been kind of a bitch to you," Ciara replied.
Theo tried to insist that wasn't true, but Ciara stopped him and hesitantly admitted that she wasn't ready to be more than just his friend at that time. "You're just not what I'm looking for," Ciara regretfully explained. "You don't even know what you're looking for!" Theo countered, fighting back tears. Meanwhile, Claire returned to report that Thomas was still sleeping. When Claire offered to leave, Theo told her to stay then stormed off without saying another word to Ciara.
After sending Arianna off with a babysitter, Gabi received a visit from Eduardo, who was disappointed to learn that he had arrived at the Hernandez house just a few minutes too late to see his granddaughter. Eduardo also wasn't pleased to learn that Gabi only needed a babysitter to watch Arianna because she had made plans to spend the evening with J.J.
Eduardo warned that it was risky to date someone who was in such a dangerous line of work. Gabi scoffed at the idea of an ex-assassin declaring that a cop's job was too dangerous, and she also accused Eduardo of having a sexist attitude about the matter, guessing that he would never dare to tell his son to let being a cop stop him from having a love life.
Eduardo unapologetically argued that fathers had a natural tendency to be more protective of daughters than sons because women were vulnerable in a way that men simply weren't. Realizing that she wasn't going to change Eduardo's views about gender, Gabi thanked him for looking out for her but made it clear that she planned to continue dating J.J. because he was a great guy.
Later, while Eduardo was passing through the town square, he received a text message from a private number, asking how he planned to make amends to Patrick Johansson's family as well as the families of all the other people he had murdered during his time as an assassin. Eduardo replied to the message, challenging the sender to stop hiding or leave him alone.
A cop escorted Rory into the police station and informed Hope and Rafe that he had been apprehended during an earlier drug bust. Rafe and Hope led Rory into one of the conference rooms and began to interrogate him, with Hope playing good cop to Rafe's bad cop. Rory explained that the five kilos of White Rhino marijuana he had been caught with actually belonged to some friends. "I was so stoned I had no idea what was going on. They tricked me into holding their stash, and then they left me there," Rory continued. Rory refused, however, to reveal any names.
Rafe and Hope wanted to enlist J.J.'s help with the interrogation, assuming that Rory might feel more comfortable talking to him, and although Roman had reservations because J.J. was a rookie who had not yet received any training in interrogation techniques, he reluctantly agreed to go along with the plan.
When J.J. joined Rory in the conference room, Rory wondered why J.J. wasn't sporting his shiny new badge and uniform. J.J. explained that he had just ended his shift and was talking to Rory as a friend instead of a cop, but Rory found that hard to believe because J.J. had cut ties with him after joining the police force. J.J. conceded that being a cop meant no longer being able to hang out with people who were into the things Rory was into. J.J. stressed, however, that he still cared about Rory and wanted to help him.
Knowing that Rory's friends would never show him the kind of loyalty he was showing them, J.J. wondered if Rory really wanted to spend the next fifteen years in prison just for the sake of being able to say he had refused to rat them out. Rory conceded that his friends had taken advantage of him, but he decided to stick to his code of silence, reasoning that if he was headed to prison either way, it would be best to enter as a guy who knew how to keep his mouth shut. "What if you didn't have to do time? What if I can get you immunity?" J.J. asked.
Roman was outraged when he learned that J.J. had promised Rory immunity in exchange for the names of his friends. Roman refused to honor the deal, prompting J.J. to protest that Roman couldn't go through with arresting Rory's friends in that case. Roman made it clear that he was the one who gave orders for the police force, not J.J. After Roman stormed off, Hope explained to J.J. that immunity deals couldn't be made without prior approval from the district attorney. J.J. feared that Rory was going to feel betrayed, so Rafe promised to let Rory know that J.J. had made an honest mistake.
Later, in their room at the Martin mansion, J.J. told Gabi about what had happened, and she reasoned that Roman needed to be thanking him because they wouldn't have been able to get the real drug dealers off the streets without his help. "That part felt kind of good, you know? Like I was a badass cop," J.J. admitted. Declaring J.J.'s accomplishment sexy, Gabi gave him a passionate kiss, and he led her over to the bed as they continued making out.
After having sex, J.J. and Gabi joked about other duties of his profession that might get him even more turned on, like writing speeding tickets. As J.J. started getting dressed, someone knocked on the door, and when he opened it, Rory punched him, sending him falling to the floor.
At the prison, Chase received another visit from Aiden, who revealed that he planned to use a temporary insanity defense to get Chase transferred to a psychiatric facility. Chase guessed that Aiden wanted to stuff him in a mental institution so he could claim that he had at least tried to help, while also conveniently removing a major obstacle in his quest to win Hope back. Aiden insisted that he was only looking out for Chase's best interests. Chase remained skeptical but conceded that Aiden deserved another chance with Hope because their relationship had ended through no fault of his own.
Aiden argued that Chase also deserved a second chance, but Chase insisted that he was better off in prison. "If [a shrink] starts digging, I don't really want to know what's down there. I'm different. Maybe it's because I was there when the gun went off," Chase mused, referring to his mother's death. Aiden tried to protest, but Chase angrily warned him to drop the matter and stop visiting.
Later, while Aiden was in his room at the Martin mansion, talking to someone on the phone about the possibility of arguing diminished capacity instead of temporary insanity, he received a visit from Roman, who informed him that Chase had been stabbed with a shiv during a fight and was in critical condition. Aiden rushed to the hospital and said a few words to Chase before the doctors took him into surgery. Hope later arrived and hesitantly placed a comforting hand on Aiden's shoulder as he wept.
Fynn started having trouble with his car while he and Kayla were on their way to Los Angeles, so they left it with a mechanic then checked into a nearby motel to get some rest. Kayla complained that she should have just flown to Los Angeles instead, and when Fynn tried to remind her that she had a hematoma to worry about, she dismissively insisted that aside from fluctuating sodium levels, she was perfectly fine.
Fynn decided to go order some food from a nearby burger joint, reasoning that it would contain plenty of sodium. While he was gone, Kayla suffered a headache and blurred vision but didn't mention either during a phone conversation with Steve, who reported that he had gotten a lead on Joey and Jade's whereabouts, but he kept the details vague.
When Fynn returned, he realized that Kayla was in pain. She insisted that she'd be fine but accepted Fynn's offer of some strong painkillers he had packed for the trip, knowing she probably wouldn't be able to get any sleep without them. Later, Kayla awoke with a start after dreaming that Joey had died. Fynn comforted her with a hug, pointing out that the painkillers could cause terrible nightmares.
At the commune, Jade raved that it was really cool that she and Joey had been branded with the group's scorpion insignia, since it was proof that they belonged there. "What if now we have to, like, go around killing people, like the Manson family or something?" Joey fretted. Chuckling, Jade assured Joey that Simone was a vegan who didn't condone the killing of anything.
"Still, this place..." Joey muttered before letting his voice trail off. Jade understood that Joey had reservations about the commune's shady activities, but she reminded him that he had liked its vibe when they had first arrived there. "The vibe is fine. It's Dirk -- and his singing, which sucks," Joey complained as Dirk crooned in the distance. Jade protested that Dirk's singing was sad and beautiful.
Later, Joey admitted that he felt guilty about leaving his parents behind in Salem, guessing that they were worried sick about him. Jade dismissively told Joey to chill and take a pill or smoke a joint, but he insisted that he wasn't into those things. Dirk overheard and started taunting Joey, warning that Jade might dump him for a real man if he didn't stop acting like a whiny little boy and "grow a pair." Joey punched Dirk, and Jade watched the fight for a while before finally stopping it. Jade started to chastise Joey for starting the fight, but he interrupted and insisted that he was sick of the commune and wasn't going to stick around any longer.
As Jade chased after Joey, trying to change his mind, they ran into Steve in another part of the commune. Steve tried to talk to Joey, but he rushed off with Jade, and they hopped on his motorcycle and sped off before Steve could catch them.