John and the DiMera guard have each other at gunpoint while Marlena visits a sick Stefano. She demands to know who E.J. really is. Stefano's shaky hand points to a photo of Susan Banks with her newborn son. Marlena realizes E.J. is Elvis Jr., Stefano's son! Stefano grabs Marlena's hand and they struggle. John is forced to shoot his way in to free Marlena. He then gets a moment alone with Stefano and demands to know what he has ordered E.J. to do next. Stefano drops a tarot card on the floor -- the death card. Police sirens are heard, and Marlena and John rush out. Meanwhile, Rico calls E.J. with orders from Stefano: E.J. must kill John Black!
Sami overhears angry E.J. on the phone, and realizes he's working for Stefano. When he hangs up, Sami covers and swears she didn't listen in. E.J. wants to take Sami up to his room to celebrate their new partnership. Nervous Sami convinces him she'll meet him there. Sami calls Lucas, who soon arrives. When he hears E.J. is working for DiMera, Lucas insists on getting Sami out of there. Sami protests: she can't walk out on E.J. without raising his suspicion. She comes up with a plan involving an urgent call from Will. The plan works, and Sami leaves E.J. saying she has to tend to her son.
Belle agrees to let Victor see Claire, which upsets Shawn. Roman soon arrives and tells the two that Max and Mimi are missing and the cops suspect Victor. Roman warns them not to let Victor take Claire. Belle agrees. Later, Victor arrives and Shawn and Belle tell him he can't see Claire. Furious, Victor leaves empty-handed. Meanwhile, Roman goes to the Kiriakis Mansion and is surprised to see Kate there. She tries to make Roman leave, but he's determined to search the mansion. He almost discovers Philip, but Victor returns in the nick of time and Roman has no choice but to leave. Victor tells Kate he's ready to fly Philip to Montreal for his face transplant. Kate insists on going with him. As they prepare to leave, Victor promises Philip will be with Claire very soon.
The Brady family is keeping vigil, anxiously awaiting word about Max and Mimi's disappearance. Bo learns Steve has his memory back and enlists his old friend's help. The two disable the Kiriakis security system, break into the mansion, and find evidence that Philip was there. Bo and Roman later theorize that Max and Mimi were getting close to blowing Victor's secrets so he had them put on ice somewhere. Meanwhile, we see Max and Mimi tied together, imprisoned in a church basement.
Abby is sick with worry about Max's abduction. Chelsea insensitively teases her about her feelings for Max. Abby explodes and admits she's in love with him. Later, Chelsea asks Nick to get busy finding her dreamy internet boyfriend, "Lonely Splicer." Smitten Nick promises he'll do his best.
John and Marlena are en route to Salem from Italy. Marlena discovers the death card Stefano dropped at John's feet and worries her husband is the next target. She begs John to drop the investigation. John lovingly assures her she will always come first -- he'll do as she asks.
Hope is stunned to discover that Steve regained most of his memories while he was away with Kayla. She questions him to make sure he isn't still faking, but he assures her he's on the level. Hope asks Steve if he's told Billie and he admits he hasn't. He isn't looking forward to breaking her heart.
Billie shows up in her mother's office, dying to tell Kate about Steve choosing her over Kayla. Kate would love to hear all about it but she's leaving for Montreal with Victor. Billie suspects Kate is up to something but she isn't forthcoming and exits in a rush.
Max and Mimi are tied up together in the basement of an abandoned church. While trying to get free, they're in extremely close quarters and their intimacy breeds a lot of sexual tension. When they finally manage to escape their bonds, they look for a way out, but there's no escape. They realize they've been left some food and some very basic necessities. The heat between them rises.
Roman tells to Bo and Hope that John and Marlena discovered that E.J. is Elvis DiMera, Jr., and he's doing Stefano's dirty work in Salem. Bo wants in on the investigation, but Roman is hesitant, until Hope agrees that her husband should be part of it. Roman eventually agrees.
E.J. orders Patrick to come to Talladega where he reveals that the police are on to them. Patrick wants to make a quick escape, but E.J. refuses; he has a job to finish in Salem and so does Patrick. Patrick needs to get Hope out of town and wait for instructions on what to do with her. Patrick objects, but E.J. won't hear it. They must destroy the Bradys. Later, E.J. drops a bomb when he reveals that he plans to personally kill John Black.
Billie confronts Steve about his renewed feelings for Kayla. She's angry that he didn't have the decency to let her know that he regained his memory. Steve knows he let her down, but explains he didn't know how to tell her. Kayla convinces Steve he needs to write Billie a letter explaining his feelings for her and how everything changed. Later, Steve propositions Kayla and she accepts with a kiss. Chelsea comforts a stricken Billie as she watches Steve and Kayla together.
Abby admits to Chelsea she's relieved that her feelings for Max are out in the open. Roman enlists Abby and Chelsea to help find Max and Mimi by researching what properties Victor owns and where they are. They're happy to help and to be part of a community effort to search for Max and Mimi.
John and Marlena tell Abe, Bo and Roman about their trip to Italy and their discovery that E.J. is Stefano's son. John reveals the death card Stefano gave him. At the same time, Lucas wants Sami to go to the police regarding E.J.'s phone call about finishing what he started in Salem. Sami is reluctant, but agrees. When she arrives at the police station, Marlena says that she and John were married in Italy. Despite Sami's rocky past with John, she wishes her mother well. Later, Sami is surprised when Bo, Abe and Roman ask her to con E.J. Sami agrees to do it, but Lucas is adamantly opposed.
Mimi and Max wake up next to each other. They almost kiss, but Mimi pulls back. They need to focus on their escape. A bum wanders into the church upstairs, and says he'll help Max and Mimi if they pay him. They send up some money, but the bum takes it and splits. Later, Max finds a hollow wall in the basement which he starts to destroy with a sledgehammer.
Belle, Shawn and Claire spend their first real "family day" together. At breakfast they run into a woman, Beverly, who subtly asks them questions about their relationship and Claire. She claims to be lonely for her son and grandchild. Her questions encourage Shawn and Belle to figure out how to spend E.J.'s dirty money in a positive way. They spend it on Christmas gifts for sick children. Meanwhile, we later discover that Beverly is from Child Protective Services and is investigating them at Victor's behest.
Patrick confronts Hope at the pub and demands she leave town with him. He threatens to have Bo put in jail ASAP if she doesn't. Hope, however, refuses.
Kayla and Hope share warm moments as they decorate the pub for Christmas. Steve arrives, having scored tickets to one of Kayla's favorite performers, Clay Aiken. Kayla is delighted, but tells Steve they can't go because the performance conflicts with the tradition of comforting sick children in the hospital. And this year they wanted Steve to be the main attraction. They compromise: Steve will read the Christmas story and then they'll celebrate at the Aiken show. Later, the two share a lovely kiss under the mistletoe, their life seemingly on track.
Lucas puts his foot down, forbidding Sami from being a part of setting up E.J., but she explains that helping the police will make her family proud. Lucas finally agrees, but insists it will be on his terms. Later, Sami meets with E.J. while Bo and Roman keep tabs outside. Playing her role perfectly, Sami "reveals" she has feelings for E.J., and she warns him that the police are going to arrest him the day after Christmas. Sami arranges to meet E.J. that night at a boathouse, where she will guide him down the river to safety. E.J. questions Sami's sincerity, just as Lucas approaches the table on a tear. As planned, he blasts Sami for meeting with E.J. and drags her off. Outside Dune, Sami and Lucas meet up with Roman and Bo. Meanwhile, E.J. calls Patrick and tells him "all debts get paid" on December 26.
At the abandoned church, Max and Mimi break through the fake brick wall and discover a small alcove. But that's not all they discover. They get quite a shock when they come across a skeleton wearing a Confederate Civil War uniform! Later, Mimi grows emotional at the thought of spending Christmas apart from her family. Max comforts her, and it leads to a near kiss.
Abby, Chelsea and Stephanie check Victor's land holdings, trying to find where he could have Max and Mimi stashed. The girls go to an abandoned farm on the outskirts of town and search for the captives but come up empty-handed. Chelsea and Stephanie want to go back home. After all, it's Christmas Eve. Abby gets upset with them for abandoning her and says she's not going to give up until she finds Max and Mimi.
Abe's vision loss intensifies, and he collapses in front of Marlena and John. They finally convince him to see an opthamologist friend of Marlena's who will keep the appointment confidential.