At the Kiriakis mansion, Xander confirmed that, aside from a minor complication, the business matter that had drawn him to Salem in the first place had basically reached a successful conclusion. Xander started to elaborate, but Victor interrupted, reiterating that he didn't want to know the details. Noting that Xander had been utterly lost as a little boy, Victor said he was glad he had been able to give Xander's life some direction and purpose.
Xander stressed that he was grateful for Victor's help. "I wouldn't be the man I am today if --" Xander started to add. "If I didn't have a use for a man like you," Victor concluded for Xander, referring to Xander's willingness to get his hands dirty. Xander tried to ask for more details about what Victor needed him to do, but Victor insisted Xander would do what he was told to do when he was told to do it, regardless of what it was.
Xander gritted his teeth and forced a smile as he confirmed that he understood. Xander started to add that he had simply been concerned about Brady, but Victor insisted Brady's problems were none of Xander's business. "Just keep your eyes open and your mouth shut. And when the time comes, be prepared to do what I ask," Victor instructed Xander.
Xander nodded and pledged to be at Victor's beck and call. "You'd better be," Victor replied. Victor added that there was more to family than just blood. Xander agreed, acknowledging that Daniel was like a son to Victor and meant just as much to him as Sonny, Brady, and Philip did. Victor confirmed that he would do anything for the four of them, and Xander said he felt the same way.
Maggie interrupted and wondered what Victor and Xander were talking about. Victor replied that he had just been telling Xander about some business opportunities in Salem. Victor dismissed Xander, but as Xander was leaving, Maggie stopped him and invited him to a family dinner she hoped to host soon after Brady returned home. Xander started to thank Maggie for the invitation, but Victor rushed him along with another dismissal. Xander scowled as he exited the mansion.
Maggie wondered why Victor hadn't told Brady about sending people to keep an eye on things in Italy. Victor said he had kept that a secret for Brady's safety -- and because it had been important for Brady to take care of the matter on his own. Victor stressed that he never would have allowed Melanie or Marlena to be put in harm's way if he had known about their involvement ahead of time. Victor grudgingly said the same about Theresa, although he admitted he did wish the Italian authorities had been smart enough to lock her up and lose the key.
Maggie knew it had been hard for Victor to let Brady handle the matter on his own. Maggie guessed Victor had done so because he loved Brady and was perhaps starting to realize he couldn't shield Brady from the world. Victor objected that he had never tried to do that -- or even claimed it could be done -- but Maggie maintained that he had always been ready to run to Brady's rescue.
Maggie said it wasn't necessarily good for addicts to have that sort of safety net available, since it was important for them to learn how to deal with the natural consequences of their actions. Maggie thought Brady was at the point where he was ready to do just that. "Yes, well, I'm afraid he has some other consequences that he has to face, ready or not -- and he's gonna need all the help he can get," Victor replied. Victor declined to elaborate, believing it would be better to let Brady explain the details to Maggie.
Maggie knew Brady appreciated everything Victor had done for him during the past year, which had been quite difficult, but she predicted that he would also be very grateful if Victor took a step back and realized it was time to stop managing loved ones. "My God, why would I do that? Sonny, Justin, Brady, Daniel -- they're all a mess! What would happen to this family if I left it up to them?" Victor wondered. Maggie laughed and assured Victor that everyone would be just fine, but he didn't seem convinced.
In Daniel's apartment, Daniel complained about the vicious cycle of arguments he and Nicole had been trapped in lately. Eric advised that Daniel was just going to have to accept Nicole for who she was because she was never going to change. Eric stressed, however, that he wasn't trying to trash Nicole, and he really did want her to be happy -- with Daniel, if that was what Daniel and Nicole wanted, too.
Daniel admitted he was having trouble believing Nicole was truly over Eric. Eric said he had seen Nicole earlier and was positive she had moved on. Eric stressed that Nicole's ability to love was one of her best qualities, and he explained that she simply had trouble letting things happen naturally because she had a tendency to panic during the waiting process, fearing the delay meant that what she wanted to happen might never happen at all.
At Club TBD, Serena complained that she was sick of Nicole's petty accusations and manufactured drama. "You think I'm manufacturing drama? Wait till you see the drama from his family when you try to take Eric away from Salem," Nicole replied with a laugh. "You mean away from you?" Serena countered. Serena insisted Nicole's constant attacks were just proving to everyone -- including Daniel -- that Nicole was still hung up on Eric.
Later, in the town square, Nicole fretted about her predicament. Nicole believed Eric deserved to know the truth about Serena, but she didn't even know what the truth really was, and she feared she would just lose out to Serena again if she tried to go to him with the tiny bit of information she had managed to gather, since Serena could easily feign innocence, and he would definitely take her word over Nicole's. Nicole thought she might be able to enlist Xander's help, but she wasn't sure how Daniel would feel about that.
Daniel spotted Nicole and informed her that Melanie and Brady were okay and were on their way back to Salem. Nicole wanted to know what had happened, but she guessed Daniel wouldn't be able -- or willing -- to tell her. Daniel clarified that he couldn't share the whole story with Nicole because he didn't even know the whole story himself yet. Daniel apologized for the fight he'd had with Nicole the previous night, explaining that he had simply been worried about Melanie and had taken his frustrations out on Nicole. Daniel hoped he and Nicole could start over again, but after spotting Xander nearby, she loudly stated that she wasn't willing to do that.
Eric went to the hospital to see Serena, who told him about her job offer in Hawaii. Eric was happy for Serena but didn't want to leave Salem at that time because he was worried about Marlena and Brady. Eric wanted to know why Serena was in such a hurry to leave, so she claimed she had wanted to give herself some time to get settled in before her first day of work. Eric suggested Serena could wait a few days to see if she received any other job offers, since a job closer to Salem would work better for him. When Serena conceded that she could do that, Eric hugged her and thanked her for understanding, failing to pick up on her reluctance.
At the DiMera mansion, Stefano contacted someone in Italy and requested every available piece of information about Kristen's death. Elsewhere, Chad surprised Abigail with an emotional embrace, but when she tried to find out what was wrong, he insisted he couldn't talk about it -- and she couldn't just wave a magic wand and make everything better, anyway.
Chad's cell phone rang while Abigail was apologizing for inadvertently upsetting him, so he interrupted her so he could answer the call. Stefano assured Chad that he was safely out of sight, and he stressed that it was important for Chad to remember that no one else in Salem could know about Kristen's death yet. Stefano ended the call after Chad confirmed that he understood.
Abigail wanted to know who had contacted Chad, but he dodged the question and apologized for snapping at her earlier, explaining that he simply had a lot on his mind. Abigail persisted, so Chad finally claimed that the call had been about a business matter, prompting her to conclude that it was none of her business. Chad knew Abigail was just trying to help, but he stressed that he was under a lot of pressure, and she guessed she was just making things worse for him.
Abigail started to excuse herself, telling Chad they could talk later instead. Chad stopped Abigail and wondered what was left to talk about, since he had told her how he really felt about her the previous night, and she had still gone straight back to Ben afterward. Abigail explained that she had felt bad about the way she had left things with Chad the previous night, although she admitted she hadn't expected it to affect him quite as badly as it obviously had.
"Are you joking? Did you honestly think that when you walked in here, that it was -- what, it was all about you?" Chad asked incredulously. Abigail tried to deny the accusation, but Chad was certain he was right, since she always made everything all about herself -- his dinner with Zoe being a prime example of that fact. Abigail said Chad wasn't being fair, and she stressed that she cared about him and wanted to know what was wrong with him. "Well, I don't want you to know because it's none of your damn business. Now, will you go?" Chad demanded, turning his back on Abigail.
After Abigail left, Stefano rejoined Chad in the study to say goodbye to him. Chad protested that Stefano's visit had been too short, but Stefano explained that he needed to leave Salem before anyone realized he was in town, and he added that he had an important matter to deal with, anyway -- and he needed to do so in person. Stefano said Chad needed to grieve but also needed to focus his energy on the task at hand. Chad seemed to understand what Stefano meant, and he promised he wouldn't let Stefano down.
At the Brady Pub, Clyde told Ben about the article Will was writing. Ben wondered why Will hadn't just told him the truth instead of lying to get Clyde's phone number. "Because the little snake in the grass knew it was the last thing I'd want him to do," Clyde guessed. Ben didn't understand why Will would want to write an article about Clyde, of all people, in the first place. Clyde agreed it didn't make much sense, and he predicted that the article wouldn't just highlight the fine array of entertainment available at his establishment in Branson.
Clyde knew Will had a reputation for digging deep, and he warned that Will might try to question Ben during the research process. Ben assured Clyde he wouldn't tell Will anything. Clyde hoped that was true, since Ben was hiding things he definitely didn't want to see exposed in a magazine article. Ben offered to try to get Will to drop the idea, but Clyde didn't want Ben to get involved -- he just wanted Ben to remember to be careful when choosing who to trust.
In Will and Sonny's apartment, Will was on the phone with Zoe, complaining that the confidential information she had sent him about Paul had been useless. Will assured Zoe he was focused on the article about Clyde, although he added that he had decided it would be a waste of time and money to travel to Poplar Bluff as part of his research process. Someone knocked on the apartment door, and as he opened it to let Kate in, he reluctantly changed his tune, agreeing that he would make the trip -- but wouldn't go anywhere without discussing it with Sonny first and would fly there and back in one day.
After Will ended the call, Kate questioned him about the trip, and he explained that he was unfortunately headed to the middle of nowhere to write an article about her boyfriend. Kate said that was exactly what she wanted to talk to Will about. Kate tried to convince Will to abandon the idea, arguing that Clyde's story wouldn't appeal to the general public. Kate added that Will had more important things to do, anyway. "Like what?" Will asked.
"Like hanging on to your husband," Kate replied. Will insisted he was focused on fixing his marriage, but he added that he still had a job to do, too. Kate continued to argue that an article about Clyde would be a bit of a letdown after Will's previous subjects, but he explained that the article hadn't been his idea -- it had been Zoe's, and it wasn't just an article, it was a cover piece. Will admitted he had balked at the idea himself at first but had realized, after talking to Clyde, that he would probably be able to find plenty of things to write about. Will added that if he refused to write the article, Zoe would just get someone else to do it instead.
Will assured Kate that he wouldn't do a hatchet job on Clyde, and he promised to take into account the fact that Kate was a friend of Clyde's. "Just the way Abigail is a friend of yours?" Kate countered. Will protested that he had been new to the world of journalism at that time and had given Zoe too much editorial control. Will said he had learned a lot since then, and he reminded Kate that he had handled the article about Paul differently, despite knowing how it could have made or broken Paul's legacy. Kate conceded that Will had indeed made Paul a national hero. "Yeah. Wish I could take that back," Will muttered.
Kate wondered why Zoe wanted Will to write an article about Clyde. Will admitted he wasn't sure -- he just knew Zoe had recently been promoted, and the magazine was under new ownership. Later, Will ran into Ben in the town square and suggested they could get coffee somewhere and spend some time catching up with each other. Ben declined the offer and walked away, stating that he'd only had time to say hello to Will.
Kate met with Clyde at Club TBD and told him about her earlier conversation with Will. Kate suspected Victor had acquired Sonix, since he had a history of publishing acquisitions, but Clyde was sure Victor would never be foolish enough to cross him again. Kate soon received a phone call from someone, and after a brief conversation, she hung up and informed Clyde that Stefano was the new owner of Sonix.
Nicole made a bold move
At the Brady Pub, Hope and Rafe talked about Gabi. Rafe said that Gabi was concerned about Will and Sonny's marriage. Hope suggested that Rafe find Gabi an attorney to look after her interests in case there was a divorce. With a nod, Rafe mentioned that E.J. had fought for Gabi, and he hoped someone else would do the same. Hope said she could talk to Aiden, but then she rescinded the offer. Hope explained that she was experiencing professional conflict with Aiden. Hope urged Rafe to talk to Aiden on his own.
The discussion turned to Clyde. When Rafe asked if Hope was investigating Clyde, she politely declined to answer. Rafe then asked if Hope was hypothetically investigating Clyde. Hope nodded and asked Rafe if he, hypothetically, knew anything. With a shrug, Rafe noted that Clyde was playing the part of a down-home guy. Rafe added that he believed Clyde was actually a mean person. When Hope asked about Victor's relationship with Clyde, Rafe noted that Clyde had pushed Victor out of the trucking business. Rafe described Victor's feelings about Clyde as "wary."
In Aiden's office, Will asked Aiden to comment on Clyde for an article he was writing for Sonix. Citing client confidentiality, Aiden refused. Will noted that Aiden could use a loophole to answer questions, but Aiden was not interested. Curious, Aiden asked Will if Hope had recommended Aiden as a source for the article. Will said no. Will asked about the hospital donation, and Aiden directed Will to talk to Abigail. With narrowed eyes, Will said that Aiden and Clyde's behavior made it look like Clyde had something to hide. Annoyed, Aiden ordered Will to leave.
While walking home through the park, Will called Gabriel at Sonix and asked if there were any more negative stories or reactions about Paul in social media. When Gabriel asked about the Clyde article, Will promised that he was headed to Poplar Bluff to ask questions. As Will hung up the phone, Rafe rounded the corner into the clearing and asked Will why he was going to Poplar Bluff.
Will explained that he had been assigned an article on Clyde, and he could not decline the assignment. Rafe warned Will to steer clear of Clyde. "Don't do it, okay? Think about your daughter. Stay way from Clyde. I'm telling you, he is bad news," Rafe said.
At Club TBD, Kate and Clyde talked about Will's article. Kate explained that Stefano had purchased the magazine and had likely assigned the article to Will to annoy Kate. Clyde wondered aloud whether Stefano was over Kate. With a shrug, Kate commented that Stefano was likely acting out over his hurt pride and his anger. Leaning closer, Clyde asked Kate if she was over Stefano.
With a raised eyebrow, Kate assured Clyde that she felt nothing but contempt for Stefano. Kate reasoned that the article was an attempt to annoy her and would not be an issue for Clyde. When Kate promised to push Will to put Clyde in a positive light, Clyde thanked her. After Kate left, Clyde muttered, "Stefano better be worried about crossing me." Clyde left the club and made a call to a contact in Poplar Bluff. Clyde ordered the contact to roll out the welcome wagon for Will.
After work, Hope and Aiden met at Club TBD for a drink. Hope asked Aiden if they could agree not to discuss their work lives with one another. With a grin, Aiden said yes. Aiden kissed Hope, and the two lovers laughed happily.
In the town square, Nicole rebuffed Daniel's offer to start over when she saw Xander watching her from across the square. Nicole complained that Daniel did not listen to her and blamed her for everything. Daniel apologized. With a smile, Daniel asked Nicole to meet with him privately so they could hash things out with one another. Nicole refused. Taken aback, Daniel asked Nicole why she did not want to stop being mad at him. Nicole ordered Daniel to leave. As Daniel walked away, Nicole stared at Xander, and then she headed over to work.
Pacing her office, Nicole said, "Okay. You let Xander think that you are available, that's good. But you did it by unloading on the man that you love. You just may be available, honeybun." When Nicole thought of the phone call to Xander that she had heard Serena make, Nicole muttered to herself that something bad had happened. Nicole growled that the only way to learn the truth was to get closer to Xander. Nicole hoped aloud that she had not driven Daniel away for nothing.
Xander stopped by the office and asked Nicole if she was okay. Xander commented that he had seen the argument, and he gently pushed for details. Nicole avoided the question. With a smile, Nicole asked Xander to distract her and take her out for a drink. Xander declined, citing his loyalty to Daniel as a family member. With a nervous smile, Xander left.
"So, I said all these things to Daniel for nothing? What have I done?" Nicole asked in a panic. Worried, Nicole drafted several texts to Daniel in the hopes of repairing their relationship. As Nicole wondered aloud if she should send the text, Xander called her on the phone. Xander said he was worried about Nicole. When Xander asked Nicole to meet him privately and in secret, she readily agreed.
At Daniel's apartment, an angry Daniel dropped a box, which knocked a glass to the floor. As he cursed under his breath while he picked up the shattered glass, Maggie arrived and asked Daniel what was wrong. Daniel said he had broken a glass. With a nod, Maggie informed Daniel that Melanie and Brady had cleared customs in Italy and that their plane was due to land soon. Worried, Maggie urged Daniel to talk to her about what was bothering him. Daniel explained that he had yelled at Nicole because she had helped Melanie with some research, which had led to the trip to Italy.
Daniel stressed that he had overreacted with Nicole because Nicole had not known that the research would have spurred Melanie to travel to Italy. When Daniel mentioned that Nicole had refused his apology, Maggie wondered aloud if Nicole was the right person for Daniel because Nicole had refused to forgive him. Daniel said that he believed Nicole loved him. With a sheepish grin, Daniel said that Nicole was "the one." Daniel said he believed Nicole was venting and that she would need time to cool off.
While Sonny was puttering around his apartment, Justin surprised him with a visit. When Sonny asked Justin why he was in town, Justin admitted that he had stopped in San Francisco first to talk to Paul. Justin asked Sonny if Paul was in his past. Upset, Sonny looked away from his father. Justin expressed his anger that Will had kept Paul's paternity from him. When Sonny asked how Justin had known about John, Justin admitted that he had talked to John directly when he had been in San Francisco.
Sonny stressed that it was his decision to stay with Will. Justin countered that Sonny deserved to make a clear choice. Shaking his head, Sonny said he had made his choice, and it was Will. Sonny added that Justin's affair was no different than Will's or Adrienne's. Justin said he wanted Sonny to be happy with the right partner and no regrets. Sonny insisted he wanted to be with Will and work on their marriage.
After Justin left, Sonny thought about when Paul had told him he still loved him and when Will had recited his wedding vows. Will returned home and informed Sonny that he planned to tell Sonix he would not do the story on Clyde. Will explained that he wanted to spend time with his family instead. Sonny left for the bank, and Will played with Arianna. "You and Sonny matter. Zoe is just gonna have to accept that," Will said softly. Will answered a knock at the door and was surprised to find Clyde. Clyde asked to talk.
While he walked to the bank, Sonny's phone rang. Sonny looked at the phone and frowned when he saw that Paul was calling.
At Lucas' request, Adrienne met with Lucas in a hotel room. Adrienne asked Lucas if he had been shaken by Kate's comments about Adrienne. Lucas swore that his heart was not as easily broken as Kate believed it to be. Confused, Lucas asked if he and Adrienne were growing serious. Adrienne said she wanted to "take things as they come." Convinced that Justin would return to Salem, Lucas wondered aloud if they should break things off.
Lucas said he knew from his experience with Sami that it was hard to move on. With a smile, Lucas added that he had become good friends with Sami. When Adrienne asked Lucas if they should just be friends, Lucas said yes. Lucas said that if things were destined to end for them romantically, then he wanted that to happen before his feelings for Adrienne grew deeper. With a smile, Adrienne noted that men were not likely to invite a woman to a hotel room to dump them.
Adrienne kissed Lucas. Overwhelmed, the lovers tumbled into bed and made love. After, Lucas joked, "That's the best way anyone has called me an idiot." Lucas said he did not want to end things and that he did not want any regrets. Adrienne agreed. As the couple dressed, Lucas asked Adrienne to join him for dinner in public. Laughing, Adrienne nodded yes then asked him how he would pay for dinner, since he was unemployed.
Lucas admitted that he had been offered a job but had turned it down because he did not want to leave Salem. Lucas and Adrienne opened the hotel room door, and Adrienne pulled Lucas in for a kiss. As the couple kissed, Justin stopped outside the door, stared at them, and rolled his eyes.
Paul decided to return to Salem
Over coffee at the Brady Pub, Roman asked Caroline how her trip to see Sami and the kids had gone. Caroline declared that Roman would be very proud of his daughter, who was doing well in California. Both Roman and Caroline wished that Sami were back in Salem, but Caroline especially wished Sami could be there for Will. Caroline was worried about Will and Sonny's marriage and about Arianna.
As she expressed her fears, Caroline's thoughts became jumbled, and she confused Will and Sonny's problems with the situation involving Sami and Lucas when Will had been a baby. Roman reassured his mother that it was only "déjà vu" and not her Alzheimer's. "Will is reminding me a lot of his mother these days," Roman pointed out. Caroline finished, "Not in a good way."
While Lucas and Adrienne were kissing in the open doorway of his hotel room, Justin showed up. Justin interrupted to announce that he'd stopped by to talk to Lucas -- but Adrienne should stick around. Justin gave his wife and Lucas a hard time for their public display of affection. Adrienne bristled, but Lucas maintained that the three of them were adults who could talk about things without throwing punches.
Justin reminded Lucas of their last conversation, when Lucas had criticized Justin for spending too much time away from his family. Justin continued, "Now I remember that conversation more from what you left out: the part about how your son cheated on my son. You also forgot to mention how you've been helping yourself to my wife." Lucas warned that if Justin kept that up, they might end up throwing punches, after all. Lucas pointed out that he and Adrienne would never have gotten together if Justin hadn't spent the previous few months "doing the Baroness Von Trapp."
Before things could escalate any further, Adrienne intervened and insisted that she and Justin needed to talk, just the two of them. Justin sarcastically asked if that were all right with Lucas. Lucas stroked Adrienne's arms as he declared, "Adrienne knows exactly how I feel about her, and whatever decision she makes, I'll respect it -- even if it's the wrong one." He grabbed his suit jacket and headed out, and Justin told Adrienne that he'd rather continue their conversation at home.
Back at the Kiriakis mansion, Adrienne found a brochure from San Francisco and concluded that Justin had gone there because Elsa had also been there. Justin explained that he'd stopped in San Francisco on the way home so he could see Paul and try to convince him not to give up on Sonny. An incredulous Adrienne argued that Sonny and Will were trying to work things out. Justin contended that Adrienne had been right from the beginning: Will Horton was not good enough for Sonny.
"This isn't about Will, is it? It's about Will's father," Adrienne concluded. She insisted that Sonny was entitled to make his own decisions about his life, even if that meant trying to work things out with Will. Justin countered that Will would soon make another mistake, but Paul had never stopped loving Sonny. "Will screwed around on my son, and I don't like it," Justin declared. "If that's really true, what does that say about you and me, Justin?" Adrienne demanded.
Justin said that the two situations were completely different, clarifying that he knew if he'd been there, Adrienne would never have turned to Lucas. Although she agreed with that point, Adrienne pointed out that Justin had slept with Elsa, and he'd said when he had returned to Dubai that he would probably do so again. Adrienne added that she had absolutely no regrets about sleeping with Lucas. She left to tell Henderson to make up a room for Justin in another part of the house -- and before she or Justin said anything they couldn't take back.
In the study at the DiMera mansion, Chad spoke on the phone to his father, who was on the family jet to Italy to investigate Kristen's death. After Chad hung up, there was a knock at the door, and he was a bit thrown when Kate entered. "Were you expecting someone else -- perhaps someone from Sonix magazine?" Kate asked. Chad countered a bit irritably, "Is this your cute little way of telling me you know DiMera bought the magazine?" Kate guessed that Chad had advised Stefano to make the purchase, but she could tell from Chad's reaction that she'd been wrong.
Warning Kate that he wasn't in the mood for her games, Chad acknowledged that he'd heard she'd gotten her job at Mad World back. He indicated that she should leave. "I'm curious about something. Why are you so sad?" Kate asked. Chad made a joke about the stock market then he implied that Kate really didn't care about him. Kate asserted that she knew Chad wasn't a "complete cynic" like his father. She urged Chad to stay out of the crossfire and lie low when Stefano and Victor inevitably went to war.
Chad wondered why Kate hadn't included her boyfriend, Clyde, in that battle. Kate maintained that Clyde didn't mind people underestimating him, but Chad didn't get why Clyde would send his girlfriend to tell everyone how tough he was. Kate said her visit had been her idea -- and her concern was real. Chad insisted he was fine, but Kate reminded him how long she'd known him. After assuring Chad that she wasn't the enemy, Kate left.
When Lucas arrived a little later, Chad declared that he had an interesting proposal. Chad explained that he and his father agreed that Lucas would be the perfect person to run Countess Wilhelmina since he'd worked there before. Lucas seemed to think that the idea to hire him had been Stefano's, but Chad insisted it had been his decision. Lucas suspected that Chad and Stefano were using him to get back at Kate. "So -- what's in it for me?" Lucas asked. Chad produced the offer, including an "insanely generous pay package." He guessed that Lucas would love to get back at his mother, as well. "So, what do you say?" Chad asked.
Tori found John in the park in San Francisco and admitted she was glad that he was still in town so they could talk. Tori admitted that her father had contended that she was being unfair to Paul. John asserted that Tori had done an excellent job raising their son. Tori confessed that spending more time around John had highlighted the qualities that Paul had inherited from John, such as standing up for what he believed in. Tori added that she believed it was time for Paul to get to know his father.
Paul was surprised when he called Sonny and Sonny answered. Sonny admitted that he'd been thinking about Paul because the baseball season had just begun. Paul said the team had invited him out to help the new pitcher, but Paul hadn't been ready for that. When Paul sounded skeptical about getting to know his newfound father, John, as John wanted, Sonny encouraged Paul to make the effort. Paul pointed out that it would mean he would probably return to Salem.
"Are you ready for that?" Paul asked. Sonny avoided the question and changed the subject back to John. Paul admitted that it was hard not to blame John for not being there while Paul had been growing up, but Paul had started to realize it had been his mother's choice, since she hadn't told John she'd been pregnant. Sonny said he knew that his dad had been to see Paul and that Justin thought Paul should return to Salem.
Paul urged Sonny to be honest if he didn't want Paul to return. Sonny maintained, "This is your decision. It's about whether or not you want to get to know your father." Paul asserted that it would be about more than that for him. Sonny cautioned that he and Will were trying to work things out. Paul acknowledged that he couldn't return with any expectations about his relationship with Sonny. He promised to let Sonny know what he decided.
When Paul joined John and Tori in the park, Tori said she'd realized that she'd been unfair to both Paul and John. John added that he didn't want Tori to take any of the blame for what had happened. Paul crossly pointed out that his mother would have tried to contact John, but she had believed John had become a priest. Tori urged her son to try to see things from John's point of view. "I don't know what you want from me," Paul admitted to John. John replied simply, "A chance."
Tori encouraged Paul to get to know John, who was a good man. Paul noted that he couldn't get to know John from San Francisco. Tori reminded Paul that things had changed since she'd tried to keep him far away from Salem. "I can't tell you who to love or what to do about it. I can only trust in the honorable son that I raised -- and at least, if you find yourself needing advice, your father will be there," Tori said. John said whether or not to go to Salem would have to be Paul's decision -- but John would like very much to have Paul close so they could get to know each other.
Tori began to cry, so Paul reassured her that he was just going to Salem for a visit. John said, "My flight's going to leave in a couple of hours. I'd like it if you could be on the plane with me." Paul promised he would be there. After Paul headed to the house to pack, John expressed his gratitude to Tori for changing her mind. Tori said she just wanted what was best for her son. Stroking Tori's face tenderly, John agreed that was what all good parents wanted for their children.
When Clyde showed up at Will and Sonny's apartment, Will answered the door with Arianna in his arms. Clyde made a fuss over the baby, noting to the tot in a childish voice, "I bet your daddy takes real good care of you, doesn't he? Well, I hope he takes just as good care of himself. With Mama in prison, having Daddy around is more important than ever, isn't it?" Clyde's words seemed to send a chill down Will's spine.
After Will put Arianna down for a nap, he found Clyde looking at a photo of Arianna with her daddies. Will said he'd done a lot of thinking about the article and had decided to ask his editor to assign it to another writer. Clyde said that would be a mistake. He explained that he hadn't known when they'd discussed it before that the editor had assigned the story to Will, which meant that even if Will turned it down, the article would still get written -- and Clyde wanted Will to write it.
Will maintained that he was far too busy, especially since it would require a trip to Poplar Bluff. "I said I want you to write it," Clyde reiterated sternly. He reassured Will that Poplar Bluff was a wonderful place full of very friendly people. "The truth is, Will, I'd feel more comfortable knowing that whoever's behind that keyboard really gets it. You get it?" Clyde said pointedly. Will assured Clyde that he understood.
Zoe returned Will's call just then and apparently informed him that she not only wanted the story on Clyde to go in the next edition but also that Will had to go to Poplar Bluff right away. Will hung up and relayed the information to Clyde. Will hoped he would be able to leave that night and conduct all the necessary interviews the next day. He asked if Clyde could give him a list of people to talk to in Poplar Bluff.
Clyde said everyone there knew him, and he expected Will would have a lot of questions when he returned. As he headed out, Clyde said he wished he could say goodbye to Arianna, adding a bit ominously, "Then again, she's not going anywhere. I get the urge to see that pretty little thing again, I know just where to go." Clyde said he was really a boring guy, and he thought Will's editor would be disappointed with what Will uncovered. As he shut the door behind Clyde, Will gazed with fear in his eyes at the picture of himself and Sonny with Arianna.
Kate met Clyde at Club TBD and informed him that she'd canceled her meeting and had visited Chad instead. She continued that she'd concluded that it had been Stefano's idea to buy the magazine in order to have the article written about Clyde. Clyde understood that Kate had gotten involved because she'd been sure Stefano was trying to get back at her. Clyde firmly cautioned Kate, "That's over now. From here out, this is between me and Stefano." Kate expressed her wishes to keep Chad out of things.
Kate explained that she cared about Chad because he wasn't a DiMera through and through like his father, plus he was Will's friend. Kate also wanted Clyde to find a way to keep Will from writing the article. Clyde said he'd already spoken to Will and assured him that Clyde trusted Will to do the article justice. "I really hope that's not your way of telling me that you just threatened my grandson," Kate said. Clyde reassured Kate that he would never hurt anyone in her family. "We are so much alike, you and me. We just see what we want, and we go and get it. We don't let any fools like Victor Kiriakis or Stefano DiMera stand in our way, do we?" Clyde purred.
When Sonny returned to the apartment, he found Will packing for his trip to Poplar Bluff. Will said he shouldn't be gone for more than a day, and the sitter would be there the next morning before Sonny had to leave for the club. Will explained that things had changed since he'd said he was passing on the article about Clyde. Sonny was far from pleased, but Will didn't offer more of an explanation. Will promised to work from home and get the article finished quickly.
As Will headed into the bedroom to finish packing, he asserted, "I know that this seems like the same old, same old from me, but it's different. I don't have a choice." After Will left, Sonny muttered, "Right. You never do."
Sonny got a text message from Paul that read, "Wanted to give you a heads up. Coming back to Salem tonight." As Will returned from the bedroom with one small suitcase, his cab honked outside. "Sonny, please, I need you to believe me. I'm doing this for us," Will reassured his husband. "Keep telling yourself that, Will," Sonny said skeptically. Will tried to kiss Sonny goodbye, but Sonny turned his head away, so Will just grabbed his things and left.
Stefano arrived at the villa, where police tape still covered the window Kristen had fallen from. Devastated, Stefano gazed out the window to the bay below, tears of anger and grief filling his eyes. The agent from the government arrived, and Stefano showed him a photograph of Marlena. In Italian, Stefano asked the man, "This woman was standing right here when my daughter went out the window and fell to her death? The man confirmed it. Stefano angrily ripped the picture to shreds and hurled the pieces to the floor.
Cole tries to set a trap for J.J.
Aiden and Chase approached Hope and Ciara while Hope was talking to someone on the phone about Clyde. Hope and Aiden stared at each other tensely as she ended the call, but an oblivious Ciara excitedly urged them to hurry over to Club TBD, where Doug and Julie were waiting for them.
When the group arrived at the club, Hope sent the kids inside so she could talk to Aiden privately about what he had overheard. Hope started to stress that the phone call had not been connected to what she had learned about Clyde through Aiden, but Aiden interrupted and acknowledged that it was none of his business. Aiden and Hope went inside and caught up with Doug and Julie, who had just returned from yet another cruise.
When the kids finished their sundaes, Julie went to order them another round, and she took Hope with her so they could talk privately about Hope's relationship with Aiden. Julie -- still on her New Age kick -- observed that Hope and Aiden seemed very namasté together -- relaxed and natural. Hope confirmed that things were mostly that way, although she admitted she and Aiden had butted heads over work differences a few times.
Quoting the teachings of her Zen master, Julie advised Hope to search for her inner harmony when things got a bit out of balance. Hope promised to keep the advice in mind, but she reiterated that, overall, her relationship with Aiden was pretty wonderful. Later, as Hope, Aiden, and the kids were saying goodbye to Doug and Julie, Doug told Aiden he was thrilled to see how happy Hope was.
Once they were alone again, Julie told Doug she had been thrilled to see him getting along with Aiden. Doug admitted that Aiden seemed to make Hope happy, and he added that Hope and Aiden just exuded good spiritual vibrations together. Julie grimaced and good-naturedly told Doug he was terrible at trying to sound like her.
While the kids were playing in the town square, Hope told Aiden about her earlier conversation with Julie. Hope suggested to Aiden that it might help for one of them to make a change so things would be a lot easier. Aiden assumed Hope was talking about quitting her job so they would no longer be in conflict with each other, but she clarified that she had been talking about him dropping Clyde as a client.
Aiden reminded Hope that they had been having a nice day together and had agreed not to let work ruin it. Hope explained that she didn't like avoiding things because that strategy almost never worked out in the end. Aiden insisted he wasn't going to drop a client just because Hope had a hunch about the guy. "Because it's so important for you to represent a criminal?" Hope countered.
Annoyed, Aiden called out to Chase and said it was time for them to leave. Hope tried to object, but Aiden refused to listen, stating that he was really sorry such a wonderful day had ended the way it had. After Aiden and Chase left, Ciara asked Hope what had just happened. "Your mother put her foot in her mouth. That's what happened," Hope replied with a sigh.
Nicole was in her office at the television station, staring at her cell phone and urging it to ring, when it actually did just that. When Nicole answered the call, Xander explained that he had just been thinking about her, and she rolled her eyes as she sweetly replied that she had coincidentally just been thinking about him, too.
Xander really wanted to see Nicole but didn't want to hurt Daniel in the process, so he suggested she could meet him at the Salem Inn -- discreetly, and just to talk, of course -- so Daniel would never have to find out about it. Nicole ended the call after agreeing to the meeting. "Okay, Xander -- whatever you're up to with Serena, your place is where I start digging," Nicole muttered as she left her office.
When Nicole arrived at the Salem Inn, Xander let her into his hotel room and asked to know where things stood between her and Daniel. Nicole dodged the question, admitting she was surprised Xander seemed particularly protective of Daniel, since she had been under the impression that the men didn't really know each other that well. Xander explained that he owed his life to the Kiriakises -- particularly Victor, who had literally saved his life after he had gotten off to a very bad start as a youngster.
"Maybe this is a good time to clue you in on my relationship with good ol' Uncle Vic. Ha. A long time ago -- for a couple of heartbeats -- we were married," Nicole revealed. Nicole added that Victor hated her guts, which was why keeping her association with Xander a secret would probably not only be in Xander's best interest but also hers. Xander's stunned silence led Nicole to assume her past was going to be a problem for him, but he admitted that, while it might be best for her to leave in light of what she had just revealed, he didn't really want her to do that.
Xander reiterated that he couldn't hurt the people he cared about. "It's a rule I live by. It's a rule I'll die by," Xander stressed. Xander promised that, as Nicole's friend, he would be happy for her and Daniel if they managed to work things out. Xander added, however, that if Nicole and Daniel ended up closing the door on their relationship, another door might open in the process. "I could tell you how I feel about you, Nicole, but right now, I'd rather show you," Xander concluded as he closed the distance between himself and Nicole.
At the hospital, Daniel spotted Jennifer in the lobby and followed her to her office to welcome her home. Jennifer reported that Laura was doing just fine, and she proceeded to tell Daniel about her fear that Eve was going off the rails. Daniel was surprised to learn that Eve had taken the coat he had donated to the clothing drive. Jennifer admitted she was concerned that Eve had developed strong, unhealthy feelings for J.J.
Daniel was aware of Eve's history, thanks to Maggie, so he agreed Jennifer had good reason to be worried, especially considering how Eve had reacted when Jennifer had tried to discuss the matter with her. Daniel suggested that the only way to be sure about what was going on in Eve's head would be to tell Paige the truth about J.J.'s affair with Eve and get everything out in the open. Jennifer refused to even consider that idea.
Daniel decided there was something else he could try -- tricking Eve into thinking he would tell Paige the truth unless Eve agreed to get help. Jennifer wasn't sure that would work, but she agreed it was at least worth a shot. Jennifer hugged Daniel and thanked him for giving her some hope. Jennifer asked about Nicole, and Daniel said he had gone back and forth with Nicole but was finally starting to understand how she really felt about him.
When Eve entered her apartment, she saw J.J. and Paige having sex on the couch. Eve turned away in horror, and when she dared to take another look, the place was empty. Eve groaned as she picked up a pillow and started beating the couch with it. When Cole arrived and knocked on the wide-open door, Eve hurled the pillow at him, complaining that he was early. Cole said he had assumed Eve would want to get started right away.
Eve wanted to know if Cole liked Paige, so he confirmed that he thought Paige was the best -- and J.J. wasn't even fit to be in the same room with her. Eve loved that answer, so she encouraged Cole to take a seat on the couch so they could talk about how to eradicate J.J. -- permanently. Eve knew she and Cole could find a solution to their problem if they remained open to any and all possibilities. Eve wondered if Cole could think of anything in J.J.'s past that could be used against him, such as a weakness Cole was aware of. "Sounds like you want me to plant drugs on him," Cole guessed with a mischievous grin.
"You said this, not me," Eve pointed out. Cole agreed and assured Eve she had total deniability because he had never heard her say a word about the idea. Eve stressed that if she and Cole decided to go down that road, they would have to make sure their hands remained absolutely spotless so nothing could be traced back to them -- ever.
Eve started making plans to buy disposable cell phones and communicate with Cole only through those in the future, but he thought she was overthinking things. Eve insisted there was no such thing as being too careful, and she stressed that she didn't want Cole to do anything yet. After making sure the coast was clear, Eve ushered Cole out of her apartment, promising to get in touch with him later to finalize the details.
"How dumb do you think I am, lady? I can do this in my sleep," Cole muttered while waiting for the elevator. Cole placed a call to his dealer and arranged a meeting in the park, stressing that he was in a rush. Meanwhile, Eve received a puzzling text message from Theresa -- "Just landing. Meet me at the hospital. Urgent!" -- and reluctantly rushed off, somewhat annoyed with Theresa for the unexplained dramatics.
When Eve arrived at the hospital, she told Daniel about the strange text message she had just received from Theresa. Daniel assured Eve that Theresa was fine, explaining that he knew that because Melanie was with her. That just confused Eve even more, since Theresa and Melanie hated each other and would never want to travel anywhere together. Daniel said he didn't exactly know all the details himself -- he just knew it was a very long story.
As Daniel excused himself so he could meet Melanie at his place, Jennifer -- who had been standing nearby -- approached Eve and said she understood how frustrating it could be to wait for news about a loved one, especially at a hospital. "As if you care," Eve snapped, but she quickly apologized and admitted that reacting that way had been a reflex. Eve and Jennifer agreed they weren't in the mood to fight again. Eve added that she had actually realized that Jennifer's recent advice had been quite sound. "I need to stop fighting this Paige-and-J.J. thing and just let them work it out, you know? Let whatever happens happen," Eve reasoned with a shrug.
At Salem University, J.J. leaped over the couch Paige was sitting on and surprised her with a kiss. Paige laughed and observed that J.J. seemed happy about something, but he changed the subject, asking her about the letter she was reading. Paige explained that someone from Stanford had contacted her to see if she would be attending the college in the fall.
Paige was conflicted because going to Stanford would mean leaving J.J., and she didn't want to do that. J.J. agreed that California was far away from Salem, but he grinned as he added that Paige wasn't the only one who had received mail that day. J.J. handed his own letter to Paige, who squealed with delight when she read that he had been accepted to San José State, which was only about thirty minutes away from Stanford.
J.J. started imagining how life would be when he and Paige were living in California, far from the interference of outside sources, and he excitedly suggested they could move there right away instead of waiting until the end of summer to do so. J.J. wanted to leave Salem within the next week or two, and Paige agreed to give the idea some thought. J.J. was hoping to have an answer later that night, but he understood when Paige asked for a couple days to decide. J.J. explained that he wasn't trying to pressure Paige -- he was just really eager to start their new life together.
J.J. wanted to start looking for places to live right away, but Paige thought it would be silly to do so before knowing exactly when they would be moving. J.J. grinned as he said he trusted Paige to make the right decision in the end. Paige took that to mean J.J. trusted her to make the decision he wanted her to make, but he preferred to think of it as the decision that was best for them. "Getting out of Salem is what we both need -- a new start as soon as possible, away from everyone. I mean, I know that you love her, but you also know that the best thing for us -- and for our future together -- is to put some distance between us and your mom," J.J. argued.
Paige conceded that things with Eve had only gotten worse once she had learned that Paige and J.J. were having sex. Paige reasoned that all mothers probably had trouble dealing with that information and accepting that a child was all grown up. "And I think maybe it's harder for her, too, because she doesn't have anyone in her life right now -- I mean, except for that stupid loser she hooked up with a while ago," Paige added. J.J. nodded and quickly agreed when Paige suggested it would be best to stop talking about Eve for a while.
Cole watched J.J. and Paige from an upper floor. After discreetly removing an overstuffed bag of marijuana from his backpack and tucking it in his jacket pocket, Cole interrupted the couple and observed that their smiles seemed to suggest they weren't the least bit concerned about finals. Paige explained that she and J.J. were happy because he had just gotten into San José State, meaning they would soon be moving to California together.
J.J. spotted a classmate nearby and excused himself so he could talk to the guy about their lab report. J.J. left his backpack behind, and Cole casually reached for it as he mentioned to Paige that he had missed his physics class the previous day and could really use J.J.'s notes. Paige took the backpack from Cole and informed him that J.J. had also missed that class. As J.J. returned, Paige added that they were headed to see a movie, anyway. "A nice, long movie -- perfect," Cole muttered after J.J. and Paige left.
While J.J. and Paige were passing through the town square, she checked her cell phone and learned that tickets for the movie they had been hoping to see were already sold out. J.J. suggested he and Paige could hang out at the Horton house instead -- and give Jennifer the good news about San José State if she happened to be there. A short time later, Paige joked with J.J. as she stood outside the house and waited for him to unlock the front door. On the other side, Cole froze at the bottom of the staircase, holding in his gloved hands the bag of marijuana he had been about to stash in J.J.'s bedroom.
Salemites meet the town's newest denizen
Cole heard J.J. and Paige about to enter the Horton house and quickly got out of sight. A puzzled J.J. found a plant that had been knocked over, and he wondered why someone would have just left it on the floor.
Upstairs, Cole searched for a place to stash the pot he'd bought to incriminate J.J. When he heard Paige and J.J.'s voices in the hallway, Cole dove under the bed. J.J. and Paige began making out on the bed, but before things went very far, J.J. stopped, noting that his mom would be home any minute. As soon as J.J. and Paige headed downstairs, Cole carefully slithered out from under the bed. He spied J.J.'s backpack and realized it was the perfect place to plant the drugs.
In the living room, J.J. and Paige lounged on the sofa, her head in his lap, discussing their upcoming move to California. Paige admitted that she felt a little guilty leaving her mom, but J.J. reminded her that Eve had been prepared for Paige to leave the previous fall. While J.J. was expressing his concern that Eve wouldn't be too thrilled about Paige living with him, Cole tiptoed down the stairs and silently let himself out the front door. Paige assured J.J. that no one would keep them apart.
Cole stopped in the park to make an anonymous phone call to the police tip line. "I was in Salem Park yesterday morning, and I saw J.J. Deveraux dealing drugs," Cole said.
In Xander's hotel room, Xander leaned in to kiss Nicole, but she backed away, stammering that she wasn't ready. Before Nicole had to offer more of an explanation, Xander got a phone call from his Uncle Victor. "Alexandros, drop whatever you're doing and get over to the house right now," Victor ordered. When Nicole learned that Xander had to leave, she offered to stay and wait for him, implying that she would be waiting in bed when he returned. While Xander admittedly found the idea appealing, he declined but promised to call Nicole when he was free.
As she left, Nicole muttered that she would have to find another time to snoop, because she was determined to find out what Xander and Serena were hiding.
Serena met Eric in Horton Square and produced a gift she'd just bought for him: a Hawaiian shirt. Chuckling, he noted that she was really focused on moving to Honolulu. Serena tried to talk up the idea, but Eric was too worried about what was going on with his mom to make a decision about moving.
Nicole showed up and informed Eric that she'd gotten a message from her boss, telling her that a scandal was about to break involving Brady in Italy, where Melanie, Marlena, and Theresa had also been. Nicole continued that she'd asked her boss to find someone else to cover the story. Eric thanked Nicole and stepped away to try calling his mom.
Nicole spied the aloha shirt in Serena's bag and asked what Eric had said about Serena's job offer. Politely pointing out that it was none of Nicole's business, Serena replied that neither of them had made a decision yet. Nicole wondered why Serena wanted to leave Salem so badly, although she urged Serena to take the job, even if Eric couldn't go to Hawaii with her. Refusing to engage with Nicole further, Serena left to see if Eric had found out anything about his mom.
John arrived at the Kiriakis mansion, and before he could get the story from Victor about what was going on, Marlena showed up. A grinning Victor admitted that he should be furious with Marlena, but he felt more like throwing her a party. John wanted to know what Victor was talking about. "Marlena finally did something right. She killed Kristen DiMera!" Victor declared. John was utterly floored. Marlena insisted that it had been an accident, which had happened during a struggle while Kristen had been trying to kill her.
Chuckling gleefully, Victor interrupted to finish Marlena's story, "All of a sudden, Kristen went out the window. Fell five hundred feet before she hit the water! They're still looking for the body." When Victor proposed opening a bottle of Champagne to celebrate, John and Marlena just stared at him, a bit appalled. "What? You're going to pretend you're sad about that bitch finally going to hell?" Victor grumbled. Taking a glass of bubbly with him, Victor left the room so Marlena and John could catch up.
Grasping Marlena by the shoulders with concern, John asked if she were all right after her struggle with Kristen. Marlena said she was upset, but at least no criminal charges had been filed. John asked what Marlena had been doing in Italy. She filled him in on how she'd ended up in Italy, concluding with, "Instead of finding you, I found Kristen -- and Brady and Melanie and Theresa." John wanted to know more. Marlena said it wasn't her place to tell the rest of the story, but she assured John that it was good news. "So where is Brady now?" John asked.
When Eric reached Marlena by phone, she asked him to get Serena and meet her at Club TBD. After Marlena hung up, she asked John what had happened with Paul. John indicated that it was too much to get into at that moment, but he promised to fill her in later. John headed out to meet Brady at the hospital.
Eager to please his uncle, Xander found Victor in the garden. Victor informed Xander that Brady had just learned he had a son, pausing in the middle of the truncated story to express his unfavorable opinion of the child's mother. When Victor said that the place had to be ready for the arrival of Brady and the baby, Xander assumed that there would be a family gathering to welcome the little one home and was flattered that Victor wanted to include him.
Victor clarified that he needed Xander to make sure the property was completely secure because there was a chance the DiMera family would try to get revenge for what had happened in Italy. "I would appreciate a good pair of eyes and a trained marksman protecting the house," Victor said, adding that Xander should keep a low profile. After Victor headed inside, Xander groused, "I'm not just some mall cop you hire for the day, Uncle. I'm family, too."
At Daniel's apartment, Maggie and Daniel welcomed Melanie home with relieved hugs. Melanie apologized for lying to her dad about going to visit Carly, but Daniel and Maggie just wanted to know what had happened in Italy. Melanie related the whole story about how Kristen had stolen Theresa's embryo and had it implanted, then Kristen had left town and had given birth to the baby in Italy, and Theresa hadn't had any idea what had happened because the drugs they'd given her had wiped out her memories.
After Melanie told the rest of the story, Maggie asked, "So Victor was in on it?" Melanie admitted that Victor had told Brady where Kristen had been. That news didn't seem to sit well with Maggie. Melanie said Theresa and Brady had gone to the hospital to have the baby checked out because of Christopher's medical condition. Daniel offered to give Melanie a ride to the hospital, but she said she didn't quite feel like it was her place. Daniel reassured Melanie that while a lot had changed, Brady still loved her.
At Club TBD, Marlena told Eric and Serena everything that had happened in Italy. Acknowledging that she had battled with Kristen many times, Marlena noted, "Although I never wish anyone dead, this will mean an end to all that hatred... She can't hurt the people I love now." Serena remarked that, from everything she'd heard, it sounded like Kristen DiMera had been "a real psycho." Marlena said, "I suppose death was the only thing that was going to keep her away from my family." Serena concurred, "For some people, death is the only real solution."
At the hospital, Eve assured Jennifer that she would stay out of things concerning Paige and J.J. Eve admitted that she had no idea why Theresa had wanted to meet her at the hospital. Just then, Brady walked in with Theresa, who was carrying the baby. Beaming, Theresa told her sister, "Eve, say hello to your nephew. This is my son -- mine and Brady's." Eve's jaw dropped.
Brady and Theresa took baby Christopher into an exam room so a pediatrician could check him out. Dr. Williams said the boy seemed to be thriving. Brady gave the medical records from Italy to Dr. Williams, who asked the parents to step out so he and a nurse could finish the exam.
When Theresa and Brady returned to the waiting area, Brady asked to speak privately with Jennifer, while Theresa filled Eve in on everything that had happened. Brady took Jennifer to a private waiting room so he could break the news to her about Kristen's death. Jennifer sadly reminisced about the Kristen she'd known when they'd been best friends, adding that she'd seen glimpses of the old, sweet Kristen when Kristen had been with Brady. Brady admitted that part of him hated Kristen, but part of him had loved her.
Eve asked if Theresa had called their dad or Kimberly yet. Theresa asserted that if she did that, Kimberly would just show up and point out everything Theresa was doing wrong. Eve gently urged Theresa to call her mom.
Maggie and Melanie accompanied Daniel to the hospital, and Daniel headed into the exam room to check in with the doctor. Brady embraced Melanie and said he was glad she'd shown up because he'd missed her. Theresa's beatific smile fell as she watched them together.
When Daniel returned, he announced that the baby was in no immediate danger, although Christopher would have to stay in the hospital for observation. Theresa interjected that the baby would not be keeping the name Christopher. She explained to those who didn't know in the assembled group -- Eve, Jennifer, Maggie, Brady, and Melanie -- that the baby had severe combined immunodeficiency, or SCID, but he should be fine after a bone marrow transplant, for which Theresa would be the donor.
Theresa announced that she had something to say that she wanted everyone to hear. As she began, it sounded as if Theresa was about to bash Melanie, but instead, she thanked Melanie for continuing to dig for the truth, even though Theresa had ordered her to butt out numerous times. Theresa continued that Melanie was the only reason Brady and Theresa had their son. Her eyes filling with tears, Theresa declared, "I can't tell you how grateful I am. Thank you so much, Melanie." Theresa embraced Melanie, who looked skeptical.
Daniel wanted to take another look at the baby. Theresa and Eve went with Daniel, but Brady wanted to talk to Melanie first. Brady led Melanie to the private waiting room, and as soon as the door closed behind them, he pulled her into a passionate kiss. "That was my way of saying 'thank you,'" Brady explained, adding, "My life has changed. It's because of you. I don't think I can ever repay you." He fretted that he wasn't prepared to be a father, even though it was something he'd always wanted. Melanie reassured him that he would do just fine.
Brady and Melanie joined Eve, Theresa, Maggie, and Daniel in the exam room, where everyone had gathered to meet Christopher. Melanie kissed Brady goodbye and left with Maggie. Brady got an impatient text message from Victor, demanding an update, so Daniel volunteered to go to the house and catch Victor up. Eve and Theresa left to get something to eat while Brady stayed behind to introduce the baby to John.
As Eve and Theresa waited for the elevator, Eve remarked, "You know, Theresa, ever since you showed up here with that baby, you've been nothing but sweet. Either motherhood has completely changed you, or you're up to something." The two women went to the Brady Pub, where Theresa began hungrily wolfing down a sandwich. Eve questioned her sister about the show Theresa had put on with Melanie at the hospital. "At least I got through it with a straight face -- barely. Of course, I still hate her guts. You know what they say: keep your friends close," Theresa quipped. "My gosh, sometimes we are so much alike," Eve remarked.
Back at Daniel's apartment, Melanie admitted to Maggie that seeing Brady had made her feel a lot better. Maggie reassured Melanie that Brady loved her, but Melanie pointed out, "He loves his son, too, and Theresa's going to be in his life forever now." Maggie remarked that Theresa had seemed very grateful to Melanie. "Yeah, 'seemed' being the operative word," Melanie noted.
Unable to wait any longer for Brady to get home with the baby, Victor arrived at the hospital to meet his great-grandson. When Victor learned the boy's name, he exclaimed, "You're not seriously going to keep that name? The bitch named him after herself!" Brady said he was fine with the name Christopher, but Theresa wanted to change it as soon as possible. "Isabella would have been proud. I wish she could be here for this," Victor said softly. Brady agreed.
When Jennifer returned home, Paige watched while J.J. showed his acceptance letter from San Jose State to his mom. Jennifer seemed very proud of and happy for her son. J.J. explained that he'd applied because the college was about thirty minutes away from Stanford -- and he and Paige planned to get a place in between the schools so they could live together. Although she was taken aback, Jennifer assured J.J. that she was fine with wherever he wanted to go to school.
J.J. admitted, "I don't ever want to be separated from Paige again, not after all the stuff we've been through." Paige said she hadn't told her mom yet but planned to do so soon. Suddenly remembering what had happened, Jennifer urged Paige to call her mom. Paige had to leave anyway, so J.J. and Jennifer walked her to the door. As they were all saying goodbye in the foyer, Roman knocked on the front door. "I'm sorry for interrupting, but this is police business... I just need to talk to J.J.," Roman said.
When Daniel arrived at the Kiriakis mansion, he was surprised to find Nicole instead of Victor in the study. She explained that she was leaving a note for Brady to let him know that she wasn't going to cover the story -- whatever it was. Nicole asked if Daniel knew what had happened, but he said he would let Brady explain.
Xander started to enter from the terrace, but when he saw Daniel and Nicole, he stopped and hid to eavesdrop. Nicole headed for the door, but Daniel stopped her and asked if she wanted to get some coffee and talk. "I miss you," he added. Seeing Xander out of the corner of her eye, Nicole turned Daniel down. "Daniel, I told you -- no, I made it abundantly clear: this is over," Nicole declared. She started to storm out, but Daniel grabbed her by the arm. Her voice breaking, Nicole ordered Daniel, "Don't touch me, and don't call me." In the foyer on her way out, Nicole whispered to herself, "Oh, Daniel, I'm so sorry."
Cradling a sleeping Christopher in his arms, Brady softly apologized for not being there when the baby was born, but he promised, "I'm going to spend my whole life making sure that you're happy. Is that a deal?" Just then, John burst through the door, but he stopped, stunned, when he saw Brady holding a baby. "I'd like you to meet somebody: my son," Brady said, beaming.