Days of our Lives Recaps: The week of November 20, 2023 on DAYS

Xander and Sarah decided to co-parent. Ava killed Gil. Sarah asked Konstantin to stay. Theresa told Brady about her fling with Alex. Chanel worried about Holly's crush on Johnny. Holly convinced Tate to help her break up Johnny's relationship. Abe comforted Nicole. E.J. refused Stefan's offer to help Gabi. Ava stole Harris' keys for Clyde. Clyde forced Stefan to partner with Ava. Abe and Paulina kissed. Chad hid his deal with Gwen from Stephanie. Melinda delivered Nicole's baby to Sloan. Nicole saw Eric with his baby. Leo was charged with murder. Dimitri returned to Salem.
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Ava killed Gil. Nicole saw Eric with his baby. Leo was charged with murder. E.J. refused Stefan's offer to help Gabi.
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the week of November 20, 2023
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Ava shoots Gil after he tries to rape her

Ava shoots Gil after he tries to rape her

Monday, November 20, 2023

At the Brady Pub, Harris chatted with Ava by phone. Harris and Ava agreed to meet for a drink later that afternoon. Rafe entered, and he told Harris to look into Li's murder. Rafe added that he didn't believe Gabi had stabbed Li, and he reeled off a list of reasons why. Rafe said that there was no reason why the police couldn't continue the investigation discreetly. "Oh, yes, there is," Paulina said as she approached.

Paulina demanded that Rafe drop the matter immediately. Rafe tried to protest, but Paulina noted that, because she was mayor, Rafe reported to her. Paulina said that she would be forced to hire a new police commissioner if Rafe refused to comply with her order.

Paulina stated that another case needed Rafe's attention, and she said that there had been a recent increase in drug trafficking in Salem. Paulina added that she had heard rumblings of a new cartel that might be setting up operations somewhere in town. Rafe and Harris agreed to focus on learning who was behind the cartel.

Paulina promised to follow up with Rafe later in the week. When Paulina left, Rafe admitted that what he had asked of Harris had been against police protocol. Even so, Harris offered to pursue other suspects in Li's murder.

Rafe thanked Harris for the offer, but he said that he couldn't put either of their jobs in jeopardy. Rafe added that Paulina was right in her belief that there was a new cartel in Salem. Harris agreed to investigate, and he promised to do whatever it took to earn Rafe's trust, given that Rafe had taken a chance when he'd hired Harris.

At the Shin apartment, Gil demanded that Ava steal Harris' key to the evidence room at the police station, due to the arrest of a drug dealer the previous night. When Ava hesitated, Gil threatened to tell Clyde that she had refused an order. Gil made a thinly veiled threat to shoot Tripp if Ava didn't follow his orders.

Gil then made unwelcome remarks and advances toward Ava, and he accused her of "sashaying around" the Bistro. Gil claimed that Ava enjoyed seeking attention from other men. Ava said firmly that nothing she did was for Gil's pleasure. When Ava told Gil to stop advancing toward her, Gil physically grabbed Ava. "This is not optional," Gil said. Gil proceeded to tear Ava's blouse, and he pinned her against her wall.

As Gil prepared to assault Ava, Ava managed to distract Gil by feigning that she and Gil could be "more than just business associates." When Gil proceeded to touch Ava, against her wishes, Ava quietly grabbed a gun from Gil's waistband. "You sick bastard. Who's playing now?" Ava said as she pointed the gun at Gil's chest.

Gil asked what Ava was doing. Ava said that she was making sure that Gil didn't rape her. Gil feebly claimed that he wasn't a rapist. "Let me clarify something for you here, Gilly. When you say to a woman that sex with you isn't optional, and then you rip her blouse while she's trying to run away from you, you are a rapist," Ava said as her breath grew rapid.

Gil called Ava "pathetic," and he asked if Ava was going to shoot him. "I don't know. Depends on whether you make a move. Why don't you go ahead? Try me. Test me. See how much I want to blow you away," Ava said as she gripped the gun tighter.

Gil said that Tripp would die if Ava shot Gil, and he began to approach Ava again. Gil taunted Ava when he said that he didn't think she would shoot him. At the same time, Harris appeared outside the apartment. Harris knocked on the door, and he called out that he was early for his date with Ava.

Just then, Harris heard a gunshot ring out from inside the apartment. Harris drew his weapon as he burst in. Harris discovered Ava with a gun in her hands. Nearby, Gil had been shot in the chest, and his body had fallen backward onto a table. Ava and Harris stood shoulder to shoulder with their guns drawn in the direction of Gil's body.

At the Kiriakis mansion, Maggie was upset when Konstantin kissed her. When Konstantin asked Maggie to forget the kiss had ever happened, Maggie agreed. Konstantin claimed that he had disgraced himself and that he should return to Greece at once. Konstantin added that he needed to pack his bags.

Also at the mansion, Sarah was touched when Xander offered to rescind his court petition to seek custody of Victoria. Xander said that he had been primarily motivated by his anger at Sarah for having kept Victoria's paternity a secret from him. Sarah and Xander agreed that they wanted to raise Victoria together.

Sarah and Xander admitted they were both sorry that things had escalated, and they leaned in to kiss one another. Just then, Maggie appeared. Sarah and Xander told Maggie about their decision to work things out amicably. Sarah credited Konstantin for being the reason that Victoria was safe.

Konstantin appeared with his luggage, and he said that he was leaving Salem. Sarah, Xander, and Maggie all praised Konstantin, who agreed to stay in Salem through the holidays. Konstantin said that he would unpack.

Upstairs, in the guest room, Maggie visited Konstantin to ensure that he was settling back in. Konstantin sought reassurance from Maggie when he asked if she truly wanted him to stay. When Maggie said that she had been delighted when Konstantin had agreed to stay, Konstantin grinned widely.

Back in the living room of the mansion, Xander accepted Sarah's offer to get better acquainted with Victoria. Xander cradled Victoria. "Hi. I'm your dad, and I'm so looking forward to getting to know you. But I already love you with all my heart," Xander lovingly told Victoria before he and Sarah gazed warmly at one another.

At the Titan office, Brady asked what Theresa had meant after he had overheard her say that things could blow up in her face. Theresa said that she had slept with Alex in Greece and that she hadn't wanted anyone to know.

Brady chuckled when Theresa said that she had only slept with Alex once. Theresa asked if Brady was jealous. Brady scoffed at Theresa's suggestion. Alex entered, and he said that he and Brady needed to discuss Basic Black.

A short while later, Brady learned by phone that Xander had dropped the custody case against Sarah. Alex was stunned to learn that Victoria had been abducted earlier. "Man, I hope when they find him, they nail his ass to the wall," Alex said of the kidnapper as Theresa's face showed a pained expression.

Nicole asks Eric why God allowed her child to die

Nicole asks Eric why God allowed her child to die

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

At Wendy and Tripp's apartment, Ava held Gil at gunpoint to prevent him from sexually assaulting her. As Gil advanced on Ava, she warned him to back off. Harris knocked on the door. When he heard a gunshot, he kicked open the door with his gun drawn. Gil was on the ground, and Ava stood over him with the gun still pointed toward him. "What happened?" Harris asked. "He's dead. I killed him," Ava said. Harris checked for a pulse, and he confirmed Gil was dead. Harris led a shaken Ava to the couch to sit down.

"This is the second body I found in this apartment. Am I right to assume this is not connected to Li's death?" Harris asked softly. "You're right to assume," Ava said. Harris asked what had happened. With her eyes still focused on Gil and the gun in her hand, Ava stammered that Gil had arrived unannounced. Harris carefully took the gun out of Ava's hand.

When Harris asked why Gil had shown up at the apartment, Ava thought about Gil's request for Ava to secure a copy of the key to the evidence room. "He wanted something from me," Ava whispered. "What did he want?" Harris asked. Ava explained that Gil had "gotten handsy." "I can see that your blouse is torn. Did he try to assault you?" Harris asked. Ava nodded yes.

"I tried to push him away, but he wouldn't, so then I just, I grabbed his gun," Ava said. "Why did he have a gun?" Harris asked. Ava shrugged, and she said that Gil had attacked her. Ava gasped and said, "What have I done?" Harris pulled Ava into his arms as she started to cry. "I'm so glad you're here," Ava whispered through tears. Harris lamented that he had not trusted his instincts about Gil. "As soon as I met that guy, I knew he was trouble," Harris said. "You have no idea," Ava countered.

After Harris escorted Ava to the police station, she paced the interrogation room until he returned. "You don't have to worry about Gil. He can't hurt you anymore," Harris said. Ava thought about Gil's warning about Tripp. "You're wrong. Gil can still hurt me. Badly," Ava said. Confused, Harris asked how. Ava argued that given her history, it was unlikely that anyone would believe she had acted in self-defense. Harris assured Ava that CSU would find evidence to back up her story.

"What if they don't?" Ava asked. "Then you're going to have to trust the legal system," Harris said. Ava groaned and dropped her head into her hands. Harris vowed to prove that Ava had told the truth. "I believe you," Harris said. "Gabi trusted the system. And her brother, the commissioner, he made promises, too. Where did it get her?" Ava countered. Harris reminded Ava that Gabi's case had not gone to trial yet.

"Not with our new D.A. E.J. hates her guts. And he is going to exploit his power to keep her locked up forever. And you want to know who E.J. hates even more than Gabi? Spoiler alert, it's me," Ava said. Harris reminded Ava that she had the truth on her side. Ava rolled her eyes. With a smirk, Harris informed Ava that he had researched Gil and learned that he had a criminal record.

"Sexual assault?" Ava asked. "Drug offense, which could lend you credibility, obviously," Harris said. Ava laughed. CSU texted Harris, and he left to follow up with the team. Ava's phone rang with a call from Statesville. Reluctantly, Ava answered the call.

In the DiMera living room, Johnny was talking to Sydney on the phone about the baby. Johnny assured Sydney that she would not be intruding if she reached out to E.J. As Johnny ended the call, Chanel walked in. "Surprise!" Chanel said. "I am very glad to see you. I missed you," Johnny said. Johnny asked about Lani. Chanel said that Lani was on track to be released at the end of the year.

"How was your dad's wedding? I'm so sorry I missed it," Chanel said. Johnny averted his eyes. "The wedding was fine, but I have some pretty bad news. Something terrible happened to my dad and Nicole last night," Johnny said. Johnny told Chanel about the baby. "The only thing you can do in times like this is just be there, right?" Chanel said. Johnny nodded in agreement. Chanel suggested that they make dinner and deliver it to the hospital for E.J. and Nicole.

"Thank you. You just got back, and you're already jumping in to help my family," Johnny said. "You're important to me, and so is your family. I'm happy to do it," Chanel said. Johnny told Chanel that was one of the many reasons that he loved her.

In the hospital, Nicole stared silently at the wall. E.J. told Nicole that he had spoken with Rafe. "They still haven't found Dimitri, which is of no surprise, given the shameful incompetence of the Salem PD," E.J. said. E.J. promised Nicole that he would make sure that Dimitri paid for his crimes. "What difference does it make, E.J.? Nothing matters now. My baby is gone, and nothing is going to bring him back," Nicole said.

When Holly arrived with Nicole's favorite pizza, Nicole turned away. "I'm not hungry," Nicole said. "But I heard you haven't eaten since yesterday," Holly said. E.J. agreed. When Holly insisted that Nicole eat a slice, Nicole yelled, "I said I'm not hungry!" E.J. took Holly aside. "I think she just needs to rest. Maybe you can come back another time," E.J. whispered. Holly nodded yes. Nicole sniffled back tears as Holly walked out.

"What can I do, darling?" E.J. asked. "I'm tired. I just want to sleep," Nicole said. Nicole turned away and cried into her pillow. E.J. whispered that he would be outside, and he left to give Nicole privacy. When E.J. went to the waiting area, Chad rushed over and hugged him. "I just heard about the baby. I'm so sorry," Chad said. E.J. told his brother that he was glad Chad was there. Chad asked if E.J. was okay.

"I just don't know if [Nicole] is going to be able to pull through this. She won't eat. She barely even looks at me. And poor Holly, she stopped by, only to have Nicole snap at her. I want to be there for her, but I also don't want to push," E.J. said. E.J. admitted that he did not know how to help his wife. Chad told E.J. that when he had lost Abigail, he had been in shock for the first few days.

"And there is nothing that anyone could have said that would have made any difference. And everyone was trying to help. I was oblivious. I just wanted to be left the hell alone. I was mired in grief, and I didn't want to be rescued from it. I just shut myself off from the world. From everyone. Even the people I love. That's what Nicole is doing right now, okay? So, you just need to give it time. And when she is ready, she will let you know. And you will be there for her," Chad said. E.J. nodded.

Chad asked E.J. if he was taking care of himself. E.J. fought back tears. "I'm fine," E.J. whispered. "You're not fine. You just lost your baby," Chad said. E.J. admitted that Chad was right. "But nor am I grieving. I don't know, maybe because I haven't fully processed that my son is gone. But it just seems too cruel that an innocent little baby could have his life taken away like that," E.J. said. With a shake of his head, E.J. noted that he was sad that he had never met his son before he'd passed.

"I went through the same thing with Grace. Before I even knew she was my daughter, she left us. I never got to be a father to her," Chad said. Chad admitted that he felt like it would have given him some comfort to have met her before she passed. "I would have given anything for that. To hold my son in my arms. Tell him I love him. No, that was a fantasy," E.J. said.

When Holly arrived home, Johnny was alone in the living room. "How's your mom?" Johnny asked. Holly sniffled back tears. "Awful. She barely acknowledged me when I came into the room today. She was just kind of staring off into space," Holly said. Holly told Johnny that Nicole had snapped at her, and E.J. had encouraged Holly to leave. "I'm really sorry," Johnny whispered. Holly admitted that it was difficult to see her strong mother in such a state.

"I don't know how to help her," Holly said. Johnny pulled Holly into a hug. After a few tears, Holly apologized. "I didn't mean to make this about me," Holly said. "Your mom loves you. And what you did with the pizza, it was very thoughtful and caring. Which is not surprising, because that is who you are," Johnny said. Holly thanked Johnny. "I don't know what I'd do without you," Holly said as Chanel returned to the living room.

"I'm not interrupting anything, am I?" Chanel asked. "Not at all!" Johnny said. Holly welcomed Chanel home. "Johnny told me about what happened with your mom. I'm so sorry," Chanel said. Holly thanked Chanel. Chanel explained that she and Johnny had planned to cook dinner for Nicole and E.J., and she invited Holly to help. Johnny suggested they cook another day. Holly thanked Johnny for the pep talk, and she went upstairs.

"Holly is so upset about her mom, I just, I hope I was able to help," Johnny said. "I think you definitely did," Chanel said. Chanel told Johnny that it looked like Holly had a crush on him. With a smirk, Johnny asked Chanel why she believed that. Chanel told Johnny that she was familiar with the look that had been on Holly's face when Holly had been staring at Johnny. Johnny joked that although he was irresistible, he disagreed.

"She's like my little sister. In fact, she is my little sister now that our parents are married," Johnny said. "But are you sure she sees you that same way?" Chanel asked. Johnny said he was certain, because Holly had told him about her crush on E.J. Skeptical, Chanel asked Johnny if he was sure that Holly's crush had been on E.J. and not Johnny. Johnny said he was certain.

Sloan called Melinda for an update on the baby. "Kid's got lungs like Pavarotti. Kept me up half the night," Melinda said. Worried, Sloan asked Melinda if the baby was sick. Melinda assured Sloan that crying was normal for newborns. "It's your first time being a mom," Melinda said. "And my first time stealing another woman's child," Sloan countered. Melinda stressed that Sloan needed to focus on the positive.

"Dr. Pierce. Did he say anything about Nicole? How did she take the news?" Sloan asked. Melinda winced, and she said she had no information about that. "I'm sure she is devastated about the baby. And it's all my fault," Sloan said. Eric returned home, and Sloan ended her phone call. Eric asked about the call, and Sloan explained that she had called Melinda about the baby.

"We still don't have an exact date yet for his arrival, but it should be soon. And I'm very excited," Sloan said. "Who's devastated? You said something about someone being devastated and it's all your fault," Eric asked. Sloan explained that the birth mother had been having a difficult time giving up her child. Sloan assured Eric that the birth mother had not changed her mind. "It's just difficult for her, as you can imagine," Sloan said. Sloan confessed that she felt guilty.

"You have nothing to feel guilty about. You and I are going to give this baby a wonderful life," Eric said. Sloan looked through the bags of items that Eric had purchased. When Sloan asked Eric if he could assemble the crib, Eric said, "I was thinking maybe I should go to the hospital, you know, check on Nicole." Sloan paled. Eric asked if she objected. "I'm okay. You should go. What happened to Nicole was really terrible," Sloan said. "A terrible twist of fate," Eric agreed.

After Eric left for the hospital, Sloan went to see Melinda and the baby. Melinda asked what had happened with Eric after he had interrupted their call. Sloan told Melinda her lie about the birth mother's emotional state. "And he bought that, huh?" Melinda said. Sloan nodded yes. Melinda asked Sloan if she and Eric were ready to be parents. Sloan explained that they would finish prepping the apartment after Eric returned from visiting Nicole at the hospital. Melinda asked if Sloan was jealous.

"Yes, but it's not what's upsetting me now," Sloan admitted. "He's obviously just there to comfort her," Melinda argued. "Over something I did!" Sloan countered. Melinda reminded Sloan that it was toxic to dwell on her guilt. "What's done is done, and we made a decision, and there's no going back," Melinda said. Melinda argued that E.J. and Nicole were privileged and wealthy, and they would move on with their lives. "They have too much to live for," Melinda said. Melinda added that Nicole was not childless, because she still had Holly.

Sloan sat on the bed and bottle-fed the baby. "You're already in love with him, aren't you?" Melinda asked. "Totally. The way he is looking into my eyes right now, it's like he already knows that I'm his Mama," Sloan said. Melinda encouraged Sloan to stay positive. "This little one is now your son, and you and Eric are going to give him a wonderful life," Melinda said. Sloan told Melinda that she was grateful for Melinda's help.

"I did it because you're my friend. In fact, you are the only friend that I've had in a very long time," Melinda confessed. "Well, you're kind of my only friend, too," Sloan countered. Melinda chuckled. Melinda said she was glad that one of them was getting what they wanted. "Even it comes at the expense of others," Sloan said. Melinda made a motion to stop talking. Sloan apologized, and she promised to focus on the positive. "Thanks to you and this beautiful little baby boy, I do have everything that I want," Sloan said.

After Sloan left, Melinda chattered at the baby as she sipped a glass of wine. "[Your new mommy] is so excited to bring you home so you can meet your daddy," Melinda said. Melinda told the baby that they would make a beautiful family. "As long as mommy's guilty conscience doesn't torpedo the entire plan," Melinda muttered.

At the hospital, Nicole's back was to the door when Eric walked in. "Nicole?" Eric said. Nicole did not respond. "I can come back another time," Eric whispered. "Don't go," Nicole said. Eric sat next to Nicole, and she sat up in bed. "I'm so sorry for your loss," Eric whispered. "I asked you to stay because I know you're a man of God. And I need to know why. Why did this happen? Why would God bless me with a child and let me carry him for all these months, and love him and give birth to him, and then just rip him away?" Nicole asked. Nicole started to cry again. Eric shook his head as tears welled in his eyes.

"I know this isn't an answer, because there isn't one. We just got to believe that this is God's will. And we got to trust those who love us," Eric advised. Eric moved to Nicole's bed so that he could look her in the eyes. "It's not your fault. You're not alone. You, Nicole, are not alone," Eric stressed. Nicole hugged Eric and broke down in tears.

When E.J. returned to the room, Eric was still hugging Nicole. Eric stood up. "I just stopped by to check on Nicole. And offer my condolences. To you as well," Eric said. E.J. thanked Eric. With a nod, Eric walked out. "I hope you don't think --" Nicole started. "You don't have to explain. I want you to know that I'm here for you, too. If and when you need me," E.J. said. Nicole smiled sadly as a tear ran down her cheek.

E.J. told Nicole about Chad's visit, and he admitted that he had not told Chad about the baby because he had not wanted to be comforted. "I feared that talking about it would make it real," E.J. said. Nicole sniffled. "I know exactly what you mean," Nicole said. Nicole reached out her arms as she started to cry, and E.J. embraced her.

When Eric returned home, Sloan was struggling to make sense of the instructions for the crib. "How was Nicole?" Sloan asked. "Heartbroken," Eric said. Sloan said that she felt bad for Nicole. "Me, too. Honestly, as strong as she is, I don't know how she is going to get through this one," Eric said. Sloan took a deep breath. "I went to see Melinda, and there's something that you need to know," Sloan said.

Clyde makes an offer to Stefan

Clyde makes an offer to Stefan

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

In Horton Town Square, Abe congratulated Paulina on winning another term as mayor. Paulina thanked Abe, and she told him that she wanted Abe to attend a Thanksgiving dinner at her place the following day. Abe agreed to think about it, and he promised to be in touch. "Congrats again on the victory, Madame Mayor. Very well deserved," Abe said warmly as he left.

At Sloan and Eric's apartment, Sloan smiled widely when she said that she and Eric would have their baby in their arms for Thanksgiving. Sloan surmised that something was bothering Eric, who admitted that he couldn't stop thinking of Nicole losing her child. Sloan said that Eric shouldn't be focused on anything besides being a father to his and Sloan's child.

Sloan apologized, and she said that her words had come out wrong. Sloan and Eric agreed to talk about names for the baby. Sloan bristled when Eric suggested he and Sloan name the baby Samuel after Sami. Sloan recalled having heard that Sami and Nicole had been enemies. Eric told Sloan that Nicole had once switched Sydney with a baby that Nicole had planned to adopt.

Eric said that Sami had done terrible things in the past. Sloan pressed Eric to share more details about Sami. "Well, let's just say, back in the 90s, there wasn't a DNA test in my family that Sami didn't tamper with," Eric said. Eric added that Sloan knew better than anyone that desperate people did desperate things.

At the hospital, Stefan burst into Nicole's room to demand that E.J. drop the murder charges against Gabi. E.J. scolded Stefan for showing no compassion for Nicole. Stefan apologized to Nicole for his outburst, and he told her that he was sorry for her loss. Stefan pleaded with E.J. to stop Gabi's "suffering." Nicole asked E.J. to talk with Stefan outside, and she said that she needed some time alone.

After E.J. and Stefan left, Nicole rested with her back to the door. Abe entered. Nicole was touched that Abe had brought her a bouquet of pink roses. Abe recalled Nicole having said that she and Abe had once been close. Nicole managed to smile when she recalled that Abe had once referred to her as his "bonus daughter."

Nicole said that Abe had always been there for her during the worst moments of her life. Abe said that he wouldn't choose to be anywhere else. Nicole added that she had been thinking about karma before Abe had entered.

Abe insisted that Nicole losing her baby wasn't punishment. "Nicole, you have a good heart. And you're not alone. You have your friends, you have your family, and that very, very happily includes me," Abe said. Nicole began to weep as Abe hugged her. "Thanks, Dad," she whispered to Abe.

A short while later, back in Horton Town Square, Abe told Paulina that he would love to spend Thanksgiving with her. Paulina agreed.

In the park, Stefan and E.J. argued over E.J.'s decision to prosecute Gabi. Stefan offered to have E.J. restored as CEO at DiMera Enterprises in exchange for E.J. dropping the charges against Gabi. Stefan added that he and Gabi had tried to outmaneuver E.J. and that they had failed. Just then, E.J. received a text.

E.J. said that one of Susan's tormentors had just been captured for attempted murder. E.J. used the news as a way to refuse Stefan's offer. "As tempting as your offer is, I've just grown bored of the constant battles to see who's going to run DiMera. I've come to realize that there are more important things in this life than stock prices and annual reports," E.J. boasted.

Stefan asked E.J. to clarify. "Well, making Salem safer for our children... by putting away hardened criminals like Ava Vitali and Gabi Hernandez," E.J. gloated. Before he left, Stefan had a parting shot for E.J. "I'd say that karma is going to come back and bite you in the ass, but it looks like it already has. Just ask your wife. Give her my best, by the way," Stefan said as he left.

In the lobby of the Salem Police Station, Wendy told Harris that she had decided to return to work instead of dwelling on Li's murder. Harris stunned Wendy when he said that Gil had tried to sexually assault Ava and that Ava had killed Gil in self-defense. Wendy left for the hospital to deliver the news to Tripp.

Nearby, in the interrogation room at the police station, Ava accepted a call from Clyde at Statesville. Clyde pushed Ava to steal Harris' key to the evidence room at the police station. "Or your son is going to pay the price," Clyde threatened.

Just then, Harris entered, and he asked if everything was okay. After hearing Harris' voice, Clyde vowed that he would be in touch soon. When the call ended, Harris told Ava that he would do everything in his power to make sure everyone knew that Ava had only killed Gil in self-defense.

Harris escorted Ava to his desk to take Ava's official statement on Gil's shooting. As Ava sat in an adjacent chair, she spotted Harris' keys. Ava gave her statement as Tripp and Wendy appeared. Harris asked Wendy to give Ava and Tripp some time alone together, and Wendy and Harris left momentarily.

Tripp was furious when he learned that Gil had tried to rape Ava. When Tripp turned his back to Ava to call a lawyer for Ava, Ava stared at Harris' keys. Tripp called Belle to ask for her help in defending Ava, but Belle refused. When Tripp called Justin to ask for help, Ava quietly grabbed Harris' keys before Harris returned.

Harris told Ava that Rafe had seen no reason to keep Ava detained overnight, and he said that she was free to leave. Ava hugged Harris. With her head on Harris' shoulder, Ava seemed remorseful that she had taken his keys.

At Statesville, Stefan received word that Clyde wanted a face-to-face meeting. Stefan demanded to know what Clyde wanted. Clyde claimed that he and Stefan had a lot in common. Stefan called Clyde a "hillbilly meth peddler," and he stood up. Before Stefan could leave, Clyde made a thinly veiled threat about Gabi.

Clyde said that he could offer Gabi protection for something in exchange. When Stefan asked what Clyde wanted, Clyde suggested that Stefan be his partner in exchange for Clyde's promise that Gabi wouldn't be harmed at Statesville. "I think it's time for the DiMeras to get back in the drug-running game," Clyde said.

Julie hosts an awkward Thanksgiving dinner

Julie hosts an awkward Thanksgiving dinner

Thursday, November 23, 2023

At the Brady Pub, Tate agreed to join Brady for Thanksgiving Day. Brady mentioned Nicole, and he said that he thought it would be a good idea for Tate to reach out to Holly. Tate said that he didn't think Holly wanted to hear from him, and he recalled having misread things when he had tried to kiss Holly.

Brady sympathized with Tate, and he encouraged Tate not to give up on Holly. Brady said that Holly could use someone to lean on, and he encouraged Tate to deliver pumpkin pie to Holly. Tate said that it was a good idea, and he left.

At Chanel and Paulina's penthouse, Chanel told Paulina that she was worried that Holly was trying to catch Johnny's eye. Chanel said that she didn't need "some angsty teenage girl staring daggers" at her. Paulina gave Chanel a pep talk in which she said that Chanel shouldn't hesitate to move on if Johnny returned affection for Holly.

Just then, Chanel received a call from Johnny, who said that he couldn't attend Thanksgiving dinner because Holly was upset about Nicole and E.J.'s baby. Chanel said that she understood, and she lauded Johnny for having a big heart. Chanel started to say something to Johnny, but she remained mum instead. Chanel told Johnny to send her condolences to Holly, and she hung up.

Abe entered, and he greeted Chanel and Paulina. The three were delighted to see one another and celebrate their Thanksgiving dinner together. Abe complimented Paulina and Chanel on a wonderful meal. When Chanel showed Abe recent photos of Jules and Carver, Abe grew upset that he couldn't remember his grandchildren or Lani.

Paulina asked Chanel to give Paulina and Abe a moment alone. Abe insisted that Chanel didn't have to leave, but Chanel insisted. Chanel hugged Abe, and she kissed him and Paulina on the cheek. Afterwards, Abe enjoyed pie that Paulina had made. Paulina flashed back to when she had kissed Abe in hopes of jogging his memory months earlier. Paulina admitted that she'd been tempted to kiss Abe again.

Paulina added that she had changed her mind and that she was grateful for Abe's presence at Thanksgiving. Abe surprised Paulina when he said that he'd wanted to kiss her moments earlier. "I did... and I still do," Abe said. Abe and Paulina kissed.

At the DiMera mansion, Holly was touched by Johnny's gesture after he phoned Chanel to cancel his and Chanel's plans for Thanksgiving dinner. Johnny and Holly enjoyed turkey sandwiches. Holly had started to cheer up when Tate entered with pumpkin pie from the Brady Pub.

Johnny encouraged Tate to join Holly for dessert, and he left to visit Chanel. After Johnny left, Holly admitted that she was glad that Tate had stopped by. Tate asked if Holly had forgiven him for having tried to kiss her. "I do, but on one condition... I need you to help me break up Johnny and Chanel," Holly said.

When Tate tried to talk Holly out of her plan, Holly grew petulant. Holly said that she was no longer interested in being friends with Tate, and she yelled for him to never offer his opinion to her again. Tate said that he would help Holly if she apologized for having snapped at him. Holly apologized, and Tate accepted. Holly grew excited, and she bragged that she would have Johnny to herself by Christmas.

In Horton Town Square, Johnny told Chanel that she was the only one he wanted to spend Thanksgiving with. Johnny apologized that he hadn't been able to join Chanel and Paulina for Thanksgiving. Chanel said that it didn't matter and that the important thing was that she and Johnny were together again. Johnny and Chanel wished one another a happy Thanksgiving, and they kissed.

At Chad and Stephanie's apartment, Stephanie wondered why Gwen was calling Chad's phone. When Chad returned from having showered, Stephanie asked why Gwen had called. Chad played clueless, and he said that he didn't know. When Stephanie left the room, Chad phoned Gwen to thank her for selling her half of the Spectator to Chad, who demanded that Gwen remain silent about his reasons for buying the paper.

At Doug and Julie's house, Julie was startled when she found Everett in her home. Everett introduced himself as the new editor of the Spectator, and he said that Doug had agreed to allow him inside. Everett said that he had gone to the house to do a feature story on Doug and Julie as one of Salem's most prominent families.

Everett received an earful from an irate Julie, who vented her displeasure about the Spectator's leadership. Julie said that the paper had been on the decline and that a regime change was the only thing that could potentially save the paper.

Everett vowed that he would do his best to return the paper to being a respected institution. Julie said that she believed Everett. "There's something about your face. It makes me want to believe you," Julie said.

A short while later, after Chad and Stephanie had entered and made small talk with Julie, the couple was taken aback when Everett appeared. After an awkward silence, Julie said that she had invited Everett to join them for Thanksgiving.

After Chad and Everett stepped out of the room, Julie apologized to Stephanie after learning that Everett was Stephanie's ex-boyfriend. Things grew more awkward when Chad and Everett were both seated next to Stephanie at the dinner table.

Chad and Everett poured wine for Julie and Stephanie. Julie proposed that everyone make a toast, and she asked who wanted to go first. Chad daydreamed that he had toasted to firing Everett. After the daydream, Chad toasted to everyone gathered. Chad guzzled from a glass of wine after his toast.

Melinda delivers Nicole's baby to Sloan

Melinda delivers Nicole's baby to Sloan

Friday, November 24, 2023

At Wendy and Tripp's apartment, Ava listened to a voicemail from Harris on her phone. "I think I lost my work keys yesterday. And I was just wondering if you saw them while you were here," Harris said. Ava looked at the keys that she had stolen from Harris, then she pocketed them when there was a knock at the door. It was Stefan.

"I heard about your incident," Stefan said. Ava asked Stefan if he was a friend of Gil. Stefan said no. "Now that [Gil] is dead, you need a new business partner, and unfortunately, you're looking at him," Stefan announced. Confused, Ava asked Stefan if he had purchased the restaurant. Stefan clarified that he was referring to Clyde's drug ring. Ava played dumb, but Stefan said that Clyde had told him about Ava.

"And now, he's doing the same thing to me by threatening Gabi. And Gabi's a sitting duck up at Statesville, and that son of a bitch Weston has made it abundantly clear that he will not hesitate to kill her or have her killed unless I play ball. So, yeah, you and I are working together, whether we like it or not," Stefan said. Stefan explained Clyde's scheme to use DiMera to ship the drugs and then use the Bistro to sell them.

"You sure you want to be my partner?" Ava asked. "I don't think I really have a choice," Stefan countered. Stefan mentioned the evidence room, and Ava admitted that she had stolen the keys from Harris. Stefan offered to copy the keys and return them to Ava. Ava was reluctant to trust Stefan, but Stefan argued that the only way to keep their loved ones safe was to go along with Clyde's demands.

"And I'll tell you this: I'm not going to let Clyde use me like this for long," Stefan said. Reluctantly, Ava handed the keys to Stefan. "If I find a way out of this before you do, I will make sure to let you know," Ava said. "Thanks, partner," Stefan said. As Stefan opened the door to leave, he ran into Harris. Stefan lied and said he had wanted to talk to Tripp and Wendy.

"To let them know again that they misunderstood what they saw the night Li Shin died," Stefan said. "Sounds like witness tampering," Harris cautioned. With a sigh, Stefan argued that he would do whatever he could to get his innocent wife out of prison. Before Stefan left, he urged Harris to look for the real killer. "The D.A. thinks we already have," Harris said. Stefan argued that his brother the D.A. was biased.

After Stefan left, Harris said he understood why Stefan was upset. "Did you get my message? Because I got a little worried when I didn't hear back from you," Harris said. With a nod, Ava said she had intended to call Harris back, but Stefan had interrupted. "Is it hard to be back in here after what happened with Gil?" Harris asked. With a shrug, Ava said she was happy not to be in jail. Ava thanked Harris for his help with Rafe.

"From what I've seen, Rafe is a fair guy. And he said he believed you, and now, when the forensics back up your story and your statement, this is all going to be over," Harris said. "Then I guess E.J. has got no choice but to drop the charges, right?" Ava asked. Harris noted that E.J. was focused on Nicole and the loss of their baby. "So incredibly sad," Ava said. Harris noted that he had to return to work, and he asked Ava about his keys. With a shrug, Ava said no. "Before you go, I just want to tell you how thankful I am for you," Ava said. Ava kissed Harris.

After Harris left, Stefan returned with the keys. "Now I just need to fix it so Harris finds his keys," Ava said. "That's the easy part. See, the trickier part is getting into the evidence room and finding whatever they have on Clyde's associate," Stefan said. With a shrug, Ava asked Stefan if he could find a way to work with E.J. Stefan explained that he had already offered to give all his shares in the company to E.J., but E.J. had refused. "I got on his bad side," Stefan said. "And now he's gonna make you pay for it," Ava added.

In the hospital, E.J. informed Nicole that she could go home. When E.J. held up Nicole's bag, she noted that it was the one that she had packed in anticipation of the birth. "It's got the baby's receiving blanket, coming-home clothes, Bear Bear. That's Holly's first stuffed animal that she wanted her little brother to have," Nicole said. "I'm sorry, sweetheart. Not anymore. It just has your clothes in it," E.J. said quietly.

When Dr. Pierce entered the room, E.J. asked if he had any updates on the cause of their son's death. "I need to know what happened to our son," Nicole said. Pierce confirmed that the baby had died from injuries he had sustained during the accident.

"I don't understand. After I gave birth to him, I held him. And he was perfect. He was fine," Nicole said. With a nod, Pierce noted that the damage from internal trauma was often delayed. "There's no way that anyone could have known," Pierce said. "But I should have known. I'm his mother," Nicole said. E.J. warned Nicole not to blame herself. E.J. stressed that Dimitri was to blame for their son's death.

"[Leo Stark] will pay for this," E.J. growled. E.J. informed Pierce that he would be called to testify at the trial that the injuries from the accident had been the cause of death. "I'll do whatever I can to help," Pierce said. Nicole asked to see her son. Pierce advised against it, but Nicole insisted.

"I want to hold my son one last time," Nicole demanded. Pierce appealed to E.J. "You hear my wife, doctor. Bring us our son," E.J. said. Pierce agreed to arrange for a visitation. After Pierce left, a relieved Nicole smiled through tears at E.J. As Nicole held E.J.'s hand, she said, "If you don't want to do this, E.J., I understand." Nicole explained that though it would be painful to see their son, she needed to hold him one last time. E.J. said he understood. "And you never had a chance to hold him. And you should. I'm just so sorry that it has to be this way," Nicole added.

Sloan paced her apartment as she talked to Melinda on the phone about the baby. "I am excited. I'm just also terrified," Sloan admitted. "You got to stop with all the doubts and the guilt, okay? Everything is going really smoothly, and more so than I even expected," Melinda said. Melinda told Sloan to keep quiet.

"[What if] someone suspects that he's [Eric and Nicole's] biological son?" Sloan asked. With a groan, Melinda told Sloan not to think about the future. "Are you sure people aren't going to ask questions?" Sloan asked. Melinda assured Sloan that Dr. Pierce would explain that the child had succumbed to internal injuries and that no one at the birth would have realized the extent of the injuries.

"God, this is so dark. How can you be so matter-of-fact about it?" Sloan said. Melinda explained that she was being practical. "You wanted to give Eric a baby. And that's what I'm helping you do," Melinda said. Melinda urged Sloan to be grateful for the Thanksgiving gift. "I love Eric. I've wanted so much to give him a baby, raise a child with him. I just never thought it would happen like this," Sloan lamented. Eric returned home.

"Melinda, I'll see you soon," Sloan said. "You will. And when you hold your new baby in your arms, all of your worries will be behind you. And your guilt. You'll be too busy being a mom to this sweet little angel that you won't have time to think of anything else," Melinda said. Sloan ended the call, and Eric asked if there was an update on the baby.

With a grin, Sloan announced that the baby had arrived in Salem and that Melinda was on her way with their son. "Congratulations, Mama," Eric said. "No one has ever called me that before," Sloan said. Eric asked Sloan how she felt. "Amazing. Because the baby I'm going to be a mother to is yours," Sloan said. "And the baby that I'm going to be a dad to is yours. This is really happening," Eric said. Sloan admitted that she was not the maternal type.

"But I realized as I fell more in love with you that there was nothing that I wanted more than to have a family with you," Sloan said. Sloan said she did not care if she was the biological mother, and Eric said he felt the same. "All that matters is that he is ours, and we can love him with all our hearts," Eric said. With a sigh, Eric said he was excited to tell the world about their baby.

"What's stopping you?" Sloan asked. "Just want to wait for the right time," Eric said. Eric told Sloan that he did not want to celebrate so soon after Nicole had suffered a tragedy. Sloan's phone rang, and she took the call while Eric went into the bedroom to work on the crib.

As Melinda prepared to leave her hotel room, Pierce arrived. Pierce explained that he had attempted to dissuade the parents from seeing the baby after the "autopsy," but they had insisted. "What do we do?" Pierce asked. "You took the money. You figure it out," Melinda said. Pierce reminded Melinda that the scheme had been her idea. With a groan, Pierce said he had agreed to help when he had believed Melinda needed help with pills.

"No idea I'd be engaged in child trafficking," Pierce muttered. "And yet you didn't turn on your heels and walk out on me, did you?" Melinda countered. Pierce said he regretted his decision, and he told Melinda that if he were caught, he would take Melinda down with him. Frustrated, Melinda called Pierce stupid. "I have a brilliant idea," Melinda said.

At the police station, Harris informed Leo that E.J. had decided to charge Leo with murder. "Murder? Exactly whose murder is E.J. planning on charging me with?" Leo asked. "Nicole's baby," Harris said. Leo was stunned. "Are you telling me Nicole's baby died?" Leo asked. Harris nodded yes. In disbelief, Leo asked what had happened.

"They believe it had been internal injuries from the crash," Harris said. "But I didn't have anything to do with that," Leo protested. Leo insisted that the baby had looked healthy when he had delivered him. "It was the delay in getting him medical treatment that apparently resulted in his death," Harris explained. Confused, Leo asked why there had been a delay. Harris yelled that they would learn why if they ever located Dimitri.

"If a death happens in the commission of a felony, in this case, you and Dimitri fleeing jurisdiction in Detective Hunter's stolen vehicle, the perpetrators can be charged with what's called felony murder," Harris said. Leo asked for his lawyer.

At Sloan's apartment, she talked to Leo on the phone. Leo told Sloan that the police planned to charge him with felony murder. "Did you know that Nicole's baby died?" Leo asked. "I know. It's awful," Sloan whispered. Leo agreed that it was awful, but he was adamant that it was not his fault. Leo demanded that Sloan help him get out of jail.

"I'll be in touch. I am going to help you fight the charges," Sloan said. Leo thanked Sloan and asked about her case strategy. When there was a knock at the door, Sloan hung up on Leo. Eric exited the bedroom and looked at the front door. "Is that?" Eric said. With a smile, Sloan said, "I hope so." Eric opened the door. Melinda stood in the hallway, cradling Eric's baby. "Happy Thanksgiving," Melinda said. Melinda handed the baby to Sloan, and he started to cry.

Eric thanked Melinda. "It's a pleasure to help a friend make this happen. I'm just so glad that everything worked out," Melinda said. Sloan whispered thank you, and Melinda left. "Maybe he's hungry or tired," Eric said. Sloan handed the baby to Eric so that she could fix a bottle, and the baby stopped crying. "Hey there, big guy. I'm your daddy. And I love you with all my heart," Eric said. With the baby quiet, Eric handed him back to Sloan. The baby started to cry again.

"I think he knows that I have no idea what I'm doing," Sloan said. "Well, neither do I," Eric countered. Eric said that their son would have to be patient with both of them. "I'm going to get a pacifier when I step out," Eric said. "Out? You can't leave me here with him alone," Sloan said. Eric explained that he intended to take the baby out in the stroller. Sloan opted to stay home to wait for a delivery. With a smile, E.J. assured Sloan that she would be a great mom. "Thank you for making all of this happen," Eric said.

At the hospital, Nicole packed her things. When E.J. returned to the room, Nicole's face fell. "I thought you were the doctor coming back with our baby," Nicole said. E.J. assured Nicole that their baby would be there soon. "And then we can go home. Holly will be glad to see you," E.J. said. With a groan, Nicole said she hoped that Holly could forgive Nicole for having snapped at her. E.J. told Nicole that Holly understood.

"I'm so grateful to have her. She's my sweet daughter," Nicole said through tears. Pierce returned. "Where is our son?" Nicole asked. The doctor explained that the baby had accidentally been cremated. "I'm going to kill you! How could you let this happen?" Nicole screamed as she reached out to attack Pierce. E.J. held Nicole back.

"It's standard practice at this hospital that, after an autopsy is done, the decedent is sent directly to the funeral home. And I'm afraid your son's body was mislabeled. I'm terribly sorry," Pierce said. "How could anyone make such a horrible, heartbreaking mistake? And why weren't you there to stop it?" E.J. yelled. "I wish I was. It was done without my knowledge. I'll arrange to have the ashes delivered to you as soon as possible," Pierce said. "Get out," Nicole growled. After Pierce left, Nicole started to sob.

"I'm sorry you never got to hold him," Nicole said. "Me, too. So, now we'll just have to hold him in our hearts," E.J. stammered. E.J. and Nicole hugged one another fiercely. E.J. promised Nicole that he would have anyone involved fired. Nicole said no. "When I said I wanted to hold him one last time, you want to know what I really wanted? I wanted to hold him in my arms and see him smile and hear him cry, but no one can make that happen," Nicole said. Nicole started to sob again. Nicole begged E.J. to take her home.

At the police station, Leo thought about his last conversation with Dimitri on the side of the road before Dimitri had left with the baby. "I miss you, Dimitri. And I wish you could tell me what the hell happened to that adorable little baby," Leo said.

As Melinda packed up her things at the hotel, Pierce returned again. "E.J. and Nicole buy your story?" Melinda asked. "It was your sick idea, not mine. And yeah, they bought it," Pierce confirmed. Pierce demanded more money. Melinda explained that she had only gotten involved in the scheme because she did not have any money after she had lost her job. "Things got more complicated than I expected, and I stuck my neck out. Mostly out of the goodness of my heart," Melinda said. Pierce laughed. Melinda gave Pierce the rest of her money. "I just hope to hell that this doesn't backfire on us," Pierce said.

At Sloan's apartment, Sloan said to herself, "It's almost as if the baby could tell that Eric was the real father and that I wasn't the real mother." Sloan wondered aloud if she was not cut out to be a mother. "What if I just made the biggest mistake of my life?" Sloan said. There was a knock at the door. It was Dimitri.

Outside the Brady Pub, Nicole told E.J. that she had reconsidered picking up food from the pub because she did not want to talk to anyone. "What if I ran in and grabbed [the food]?" E.J. asked. Nicole nodded yes, and E.J. left her on the bench outside. Nicole looked at her stomach. "God, I miss you, baby boy," Nicole whispered. Eric rounded the corner with a stroller, and he locked eyes with Nicole.

"I thought you'd still be in the hospital," Eric said. Nicole looked in the stroller at the baby. "Is this your baby? I didn't realize you had him yet," Nicole said. Eric explained that Melinda had delivered the baby that morning, and he had wanted to introduce the baby to Roman. "Would you mind if I held him?" Nicole asked.

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