After returning to Salem, Steve tracked down Justin and Adrienne at the Brady Pub and asked them for an update on the search for the missing Kiriakis jet. They sadly informed him that there was nothing new to report yet.
Eager to talk about something else, Justin and Adrienne asked Steve to tell them about his trip to New York. When Steve revealed what he had learned about Sebastian Howard, Justin and Adrienne concluded that Anjelica Deveraux was out for revenge because she blamed them for the fact that Alexander wasn't on speaking terms with her, even though they'd had nothing to do with his decision to cut her out of his life.
"Is it too much to expect people to get a little wiser with age? Or kinder? Or mellow just one little iota? My God!" Adrienne said, shaking her head in disbelief. Justin thought those were unreasonable expectations -- at least when the person in question was a sadistic narcissist. "Ain't that the truth," Adrienne agreed with a sigh.
Justin started to apologize to Adrienne, but she insisted that it wasn't his fault that Anjelica was suddenly out for revenge. Justin abruptly excused himself, telling Adrienne that although he had no doubt that she could handle Anjelica on her own, he wanted the satisfaction of being the one to contact her and "set the record straight."
After Justin stepped outside, Steve assured Adrienne that he was going to find something in Anjelica's "colorful" past that could be used as leverage against her. Adrienne started to complain about Anjelica but quickly stopped herself, remembering that she had more important things to worry about. "Until [Sonny] is found, I am not -- I am not -- gonna think about anything else," Adrienne vowed.
Adrienne soon received a phone call from her oncologist, who cleared her for travel. Relieved, Adrienne stepped aside to make the final preparations for her trip to Greece to join the search for Sonny and the others. Meanwhile, Justin returned and told Steve, "Anjelica wouldn't take my call." Steve was surprised to hear that, having assumed that Anjelica would jump at the chance to talk to Justin and mess with him a bit. "So did I...which makes me even more concerned. I mean, I know Anjelica better than anybody [else does]. I think we're in for a real fight," Justin predicted with a worried sigh.
While Tripp was shadowing Kayla at the hospital, she learned that a patient had died the previous night. Sighing, Kayla admitted to Tripp, "You know, no matter how many times it happens, I...I never get used to losing a patient." After telling Tripp a bit about the patient, Kayla warned, "The reality is that our treatments don't always work, and if you're gonna become a doctor, you have to develop thick skin; you have to learn to live with loss."
Tripp watched with interest as Kayla approached a nearby nurse and ordered an immediate review of the patient's chart to confirm that the hospital had followed the proper protocols when treating him, since he had died while under the hospital's care. After the nurse walked away, Tripp observed, "I guess it's all on you, the doctor, to make sure you did everything right by your patient." Nodding, Kayla confirmed that doctors often had to make tough decisions -- decisions that could mean the difference between life and death. "Mistakes are costly," Kayla stressed.
Later, as Kayla was wrapping up her shift, she told Tripp that she had really enjoyed having him with her throughout the day. He returned the sentiment, adding that he was grateful for her willingness to mentor him and help him find his place in the world. When he expressed concerns about being in the way, she assured him that he was actually a pleasure to work with.
"You have the distinction of being our only child that has any interest in medicine, and just the fact that you would want to learn from me and maybe have a career as a doctor -- well, that makes it all the more special for me," Kayla continued, adding that although she didn't mind the fact that neither Stephanie nor Joey was interested in medicine, it would be really nice to have another doctor in the family. "Yeah, well, uh...it might happen," Tripp replied. Kayla gave Tripp a hug and told him that she was looking forward to their next shift together. Smiling, Tripp admitted that he was, too.
Later, Tripp met with Jade in the Horton Town Square and told her about his day with Kayla. Tripp admitted that he had actually found himself buying into Kayla's act for a while but had eventually remembered that it was just that -- an act. "God, it makes my skin crawl just thinking about it. 'Cause if she's so devoted to healing, how could she murder my mom in cold blood?" Tripp wondered.
Jade encouraged Tripp's hatred of Kayla, declaring her "a coldhearted bitch." Admitting that he wasn't satisfied with just hating Kayla, Tripp vowed, "I'm going to take action; I'm going to do something about it." Intrigued, Jade wondered what Tripp was planning to do. Revealing that he had learned earlier that the death of a patient always triggered an investigation into the treatment that patient had received from the hospital staff, Tripp explained that he was going to start altering the medical charts of deceased patients to make it look like Kayla was making mistakes -- mistakes that were killing people.
"I'll have to start small at first, you know? Like, you know, change the name of the meds or the dosage here and there for the first few cases. But then I'll up my game, and I'll make it where it looks like Kayla is the Doctor of Death," Tripp continued. Jade warned that it might be hard to convince people that Kayla was killing patients, given how beloved she was, but Tripp was confident that he would eventually be able to plant enough seeds of doubt to sell the story. "[And] in that final chart, I'm gonna make it very clear that what Kayla does goes far beyond negligence," Tripp added.
"You're not actually gonna kill any of her patients, right?" Jade asked. Tripp insisted that he could never do that because he was nothing like Kayla. "The thing is, I may never be able to prove that Kayla killed my mom, but I'm [at least] gonna make damn sure that her career is over. She'll be ruined," Tripp vowed. Jade promised to do whatever she could to help Tripp; she warned, however, that their plan would have to be set in motion slowly and carefully so no one would realize that Kayla was being framed -- and that they were the ones who were framing her.
Nodding in agreement, Tripp assured Jade, "We're gonna bring down Kayla slowly but surely. She's in for a big surprise." After finishing the statement, Tripp noticed that Steve was standing nearby.
Chad and Gabi awoke in each other's arms at the start of another day on the island and agreed that they were right where they were meant to be. J.J. and Lani soon stumbled upon the couple. Still naked under a blanket, Chad and Gabi rushed to get dressed as J.J. and Lani announced, while turned away from them, that a meeting was about to take place at the campsite.
Meanwhile, at the campsite, Sonny again considered freeing Paul. Maintaining that he needed to remain restrained, Paul added that he wanted Sonny to kill him if necessary so he wouldn't be able to hurt anyone else. Sonny refused, certain that Paul wouldn't succumb to the effects of jungle madness again. Eli, who was helping Sonny watch Paul, said nothing.
When J.J. and Lani arrived a short time later, Eli wondered if they had managed to find Chad and Gabi. "Yeah. They were resting," Lani replied. Noticing J.J.'s reaction, Lani pulled him aside and observed that he seemed upset about what he had just seen. J.J. assured Lani that he was fine, adding that Chad and Gabi were adults and could make their own choices.
Later, while Sonny was chatting with J.J. and Lani, Paul quietly warned Eli, "It's starting again. I can feel it." Shaking uncontrollably, Paul continued, "I need you to do what Sonny and the others won't -- kill me." Eli promised that he would do just that if necessary -- and he would make it a quick death. Eli stepped away when Sonny returned to check on Paul.
J.J. and Lani soon decided to refill the group's water bottles. Eli seized the opportunity to try to talk to Sonny about the importance of respecting Paul's wishes, but Sonny insisted that Paul wasn't in the right state of mind to be making such serious requests. While Sonny and Eli were arguing, Paul managed to free himself from his bindings.
En route to the campsite, Chad and Gabi paused to collect fresh fruit and nuts. While eating, they laughed about the awkwardness of what had happened earlier. As they were debating whether to take some food back to the campsite for a later meal, they heard voices -- voices they had never heard before, at least during their time on the island.
Sonny and Eli were still arguing when J.J. and Lani returned to the campsite with freshly filled bottles of water. "You guys, we're saved!" Gabi happily announced as she and Chad rejoined the group. John and Marlena soon appeared and started accepting hugs from the relieved castaways. Paul took advantage of the distraction, lunging toward Eli in an effort to seize his gun.
A brief struggle ensued. J.J. and Chad soon stepped in to help Eli, and the trio managed to pin Paul to the ground before he could fire the gun. Paul lost consciousness as Sonny was explaining to John and Marlena that mosquitoes on the island carried jungle madness. Familiar with the disease, Marlena insisted that Paul needed to be taken to a hospital immediately.
Chad wondered how John and Marlena had managed to find the island. "We got [the] jet's last location and started going island to island, [doing air searches]. But the cover of this island was too dense, [so we] dropped in by foot, and it's just dumb luck that we found you guys," John explained. Meanwhile, Marlena administered a sedative to Paul to keep him asleep during the flight back to the mainland.
Chad and Gabi went to get some things they had left at the spot where they had spent the previous night. Gabi admitted that she was a bit nervous about the idea of being with Chad back in Salem. Chad confidently assured Gabi that everything was going to be just fine, insisting that they could handle anything as long as they stuck together.
In Salem, Justin and Adrienne were overjoyed to learn, during a phone conversation with the pilot of John and Marlena's plane, that Sonny and the others had been found alive and well.
Meanwhile, back on the island, Gabi helped Chad bury the amulet. Chad found it a bit painful to say goodbye to something that was worth twenty million dollars, but he admitted that his time on the island had finally convinced him that the concepts of fate, luck, and even cursed objects weren't necessarily as ridiculous as he had once believed.
After a moment of hesitation, Chad headed back to the campsite with Gabi. Once the coast was clear, Sonny emerged from a hiding place, his eyes focused on the conspicuous mound of dirt Chad and Gabi had left behind.
Chloe tells Nicole she is leaving town
In the town square, Steve overheard the tail end of Tripp's conversation with Jade about ruining Kayla's career. Steve asked Tripp what surprise he had planned for Kayla. With a grin, Steve said he wanted to be in on Tripp's surprise. Tripp looked nervously over at Jade. Tripp said he did not want to spill the beans, but Jade jumped in and said Tripp should be honest. Jade told Steve that she had suggested that Tripp take Kayla out to lunch as a thank you for letting him shadow Kayla at the hospital.
Steve offered to split the tab, but Tripp refused. Steve volunteered to get Kayla to Club TBD for the surprise, and Jade said that lunch was at one. Steve left to arrange things with Kayla. When Tripp groaned about planning for a lunch, Jade instructed Tripp to call Club TBD and ask for them to set up a table for five with balloons and a cake. Jade said she would pick up Joey and see Tripp at the lunch.
At the hospital, Steve told Kayla that John had found the survivors of the plane crash. Steve offered to take Kayla out to lunch, but she claimed she needed to do paperwork. Steve pushed Kayla to go, and she agreed.
When Tripp arrived at Club TBD, he scheduled the lunch with the bartender. The bartender balked at the last-minute request, but Tripp handed over money up-front, and the bartender got to work. The rest of the group arrived, and Steve cheerfully told Kayla that the lunch was Tripp's idea. When Jade arrived, Kayla frowned. Jade wished Kayla well. Tripp asked Jade to stay, and he added that Jade had helped him plan the lunch. Kayla told Jade she could stay. Tripp thanked Kayla for helping him, and he talked about how impressed he was with Kayla at the hospital.
"You've been kind to me from the start. You've really made me feel like I belong," Tripp said. "You do belong. With us," Kayla said as she squeezed Tripp's hand. Tripp looked over at Jade, and he announced to the group that the lunch had been Jade's idea. Jade said she wanted things to work out for the Johnson family. Jade thanked Joey for letting her stay for the lunch. When Jade put her hand on Joey's, Kayla squirmed in her seat.
When the bill arrived, Steve offered to split it with Tripp, but Tripp declined the offer. Kayla thanked Tripp for the special lunch, and she said that she hoped she had inspired Tripp to follow his dreams. "It's already done that," Tripp said with the hint of a smile. Tripp left and then Steve. Jade announced that she was going to a job interview, and she asked Joey to accompany her for support. Kayla icily noted that it made a better impression to go alone. Jade thanked Kayla for the advice and left.
Kayla asked Joey what was going on between him and Jade. Joey said he had made it clear that things were over, but Kayla did not think Joey had been successful. Jade sneaked back into the club and ducked into the corner to eavesdrop on the conversation. Joey argued that Jade did not have anyone, but Kayla countered that Jade had Tripp at her beck and call. With a shrug, Joey said it had just been lunch. Kayla warned Joey not to get involved with Jade again. When Kayla stressed that Joey needed to cut Jade out of his life for good, Jade narrowed her eyes with anger.
At the Horton Center, Jennifer told Eric the good news about the plane crash recovery and Abigail's decision not to fly to the Dominican Republic to get a divorce. When Jennifer apologized for ruining their evening, Eric asked Jennifer to reschedule. Eric's phone rang. After the call, a grim-faced Eric informed Jennifer that the call had been from Nicole's probation officer telling him that the officer had assigned Nicole to the Horton Center. Visibly upset, Eric apologized and left.
In their bedroom at the Kiriakis mansion, Brady read a book while Nicole napped. Nicole dreamed of walking through the park and running into her daughter as a teenager. Dream Holly did not know who Nicole was and insisted that Chloe was her real mother. When Nicole explained that she was Holly's biological mother, Holly called Nicole a liar. Nicole woke with a start. When Brady comforted Nicole, she worried aloud that she had lost her daughter forever.
Nicole told Brady about her dream. Brady assured Nicole that Holly loved her. Brady added that they needed to back off of Chloe and let her realize that Nicole should be a part of Holly's life. As Nicole nodded, Brady asked Nicole to help him raise Tate until Holly could rejoin their family.
In the police station bullpen, Rafe told Hope that he intended to talk to Rory about Halo. Before Hope could weigh in, Jennifer arrived and rushed into Hope's arms. Rafe suggested that they throw a party to celebrate the return of the plane crash survivors. While Rafe left to find Rory, Jennifer updated Hope on the Abigail situation. Talk turned to Eric, and Jennifer shared her fear that she and Eric were not ready to date. Hope suggested that Jennifer take it one day at a time.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Eric stopped by to talk to Brady while Nicole was out of the house. Brady said he would talk to the judge. Eric countered that he had already talked to the judge, and she had refused to change Nicole's assignment. Eric said he had told the judge that there was a conflict of interest over Daniel's death, but the judge had not let him give her the details of the conflict.
In the park, Chloe was cooing over baby Holly on the bench when Nicole walked into the clearing. Nicole stared at Holly. Steeling herself, Nicole said hello and commented on Holly's outfit. When Chloe mentioned that Holly had attempted to crawl earlier, Nicole chuckled and told Chloe that she would need to start babyproofing. Nicole apologized for overstepping. Shaking her head, Chloe said she understood that Nicole cared about Holly. When Chloe told Nicole that she was leaving Salem, Nicole's face fell.
Nicole promised not to interfere in Chloe's life, but Chloe said her decision was about Nancy, not Nicole. Chloe said that in New York, she would be able to rely on Nancy's help to raise the kids. Chloe added that she wanted the custody situation to be easier on Nicole as well. Nicole thanked Chloe for thinking of her and for talking to the judge. With a sad smile, Nicole said she was going to help Brady raise Tate. Chloe wished Nicole happiness with Brady. Nicole said goodbye. Chloe asked Nicole if she wanted to hold Holly.
"More than anything, but it is probably not a good idea because I will never be able to let her go," Nicole said as she held back tears. Chloe promised to send Nicole updates about Holly. With an eager light in her eye, Nicole suggested that Chloe could send pictures. Chloe nodded yes. Nicole thanked Chloe, and she said she knew that Chloe would take good care of Holly.
"I know that you love her, and I promise you that she will grow up surrounded by love," Chloe said as her eyes filled with tears. Fighting her emotions, Nicole took a deep breath and said goodbye to her daughter. Nicole told Holly that she would always love her. Chloe said goodbye and pushed the stroller away. Once alone, Nicole cried.
Rafe retrieved Rory and escorted him back to the interrogation room at the police station. When Rafe pressed Rory for information about Halo, Rory said he did not use Halo. Rafe asked if he knew any dealers, and Rory said he might know someone. When Rafe said he would have the gratitude of the department, Rory said he would look into it for Rafe.
In an alley, Deimos talked on the phone to one of his henchman about producing more Halo. As Deimos hung up the call, Eric passed him in the alley. Deimos asked Eric why he was not in jail. Eric quipped that Deimos did not need help avoiding jail time and could answer his own question. With a smirk, Deimos said that since Eric had killed Daniel, he was glad he was not him. Deimos argued that Nicole was only interested in Brady because he had Daniel's heart. Eric asked Deimos to leave town and leave Nicole and Brady in peace. Shaking his head no, Deimos refused to leave Salem.
As Eric walked away, Deimos asked why Eric was working for forgiveness when he could not even forgive himself. Eric stopped in his tracks. Eric said he would live with his guilt just as Deimos would live the rest of his life, knowing that Nicole hated him. Smirking, Deimos told Eric to lighten up. Eric warned Deimos to stay away from Nicole or answer to him.
As Deimos walked down the alley, Rory spotted him and followed. After following Deimos, Rory reported back to Hope and Rafe at the police station. Rory said he had followed a tip and found the Candy Man. Rory said he had worked with the Candy Man before. When Hope asked for details about the lab and the Candy Man, Rory showed Hope and Rafe a photo of the man. The photo was a picture of Deimos.
In the town square, Joey handed Jade a bag of leftovers from their lunch. With a guilty look, Joey told Jade that she should not have asked him to go with her to her interview. When Jade asked why, Joey said he did not want to lead Jade on. Jade asked Joey if that was his mother's idea. Joey shook his head and said that they could not get back together. After Joey walked away, Jade met up with Tripp. Jade told Tripp that Kayla had said awful things about her to Joey.
"She can't do that from prison," Tripp said. "That's what I'm counting on. Kayla is the only thing standing between me and Joey," Jade grumbled. Tripp assured Jade that Kayla would pay for what she had done to Ava. Over in the park, Kayla talked to Steve about their lunch with Tripp. Kayla said they were blessed. When Steve asked Kayla if Tripp had a chance at being a doctor, Kayla said Tripp had been attentive and that he had a shot.
At the Horton Center, Jennifer answered the phone as she waited for Eric to return. The caller asked for a file. When Jennifer searched the files on the desk, she knocked over a box. Jennifer hurried to clean up the spilled contents, and she saw that inside the box had been bundles of unsent letters meant for Nicole. After Jennifer cleaned up the mess, Eric returned to the office. Jennifer asked what had happened, and Eric explained that Judge Duncan had refused to change Nicole's assignment.
With a nod, Jennifer confessed that she had accidentally stumbled across Eric's bundles of unsent letters for Nicole. Eric explained that the letters were amends. Jennifer said the number of letters appeared to be more of an obsession than amends. Shifting his eyes down, Eric asked Jennifer if she had read his letters. Jennifer said she would not invade Eric's privacy like that.
"I was trying to find words to express my deepest sorrow. They just, they just never came," Eric said. Jennifer asked Eric if he had found the right words for Parker and Maggie. Eric nodded yes. "So it was just Nicole?" Jennifer asked quietly. Eric nodded yes. With a sad smile, Jennifer said she did not think their relationship would work because Eric was not facing how he felt about Nicole. Eric stressed that the letters had nothing to do with love or attraction. Jennifer said she remembered how hurt Eric had been when Nicole had chosen Daniel. Shaking his head, Eric said that Nicole was with Brady, and his feelings did not matter.
Jennifer countered that things had been different between them since Eric had returned from Greece. With tears in her eyes, Jennifer said she only wanted to be friends with Eric. Eric took Jennifer's hand and said she had been his best friend. Jennifer advised Eric to read the letters and think about the feelings behind the words. Jennifer cautioned Eric to be honest with himself. Once alone, Eric opened the box of letters and stared at them. After a deep sigh, Eric opened the first one and read it.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Nicole returned home just as Brady learned that Victor had reunited with Sonny and the group in New York. Seeing the look on Nicole's face, Brady asked what was wrong. Nicole told Brady about her run-in with Chloe. Brady was upset with Chloe's decision to leave Salem. Nicole said she was scared that Holly would never know her. Brady promised that things would get better in time. Someone knocked on the front door. Brady opened it, and Chloe stood on the porch with Holly in her arms.
The castaways return to Salem> The castaways return to Salem
Chloe insisted that she had something important to say, so Brady and Nicole reluctantly agreed to hear her out.
After entering the Kiriakis mansion, Chloe told Nicole, "I had every intention of taking [Holly] away from here forever -- getting her as far away from you as I could; [finding] someplace where me and Parker and Holly, we could just shut out the rest of the world, [and] I could shut out that voice in my head, telling me..."
Fighting back tears, Chloe continued, "So, I was driving, and I was hearing Holly in the backseat, making those sweet little noises she makes, [and] it just made me think of Parker, and how much I love him, [and] how becoming a mom just changes you -- it changes your life; it gives you a home. And I suddenly realized that I was driving in the wrong direction."
After apologizing for everything she had put Nicole through, Chloe tearfully concluded, "Holly belongs with you, Nicole. You are her mother." Shocked, Nicole wondered why Chloe was suddenly willing to hand over a child she, too, had grown to love. Chloe explained that the same love that had once clouded her judgment and made her do crazy things had also ultimately inspired her to do the right thing. "You are [Holly's] mother, Nicole. You're her only mother," Chloe repeated, adding that she would do everything in her power to repair the damage she had caused, including naming Nicole as Holly's legal guardian.
Nicole thought she was experiencing another miracle, just as she had a few weeks earlier, when Brady had suddenly started getting better after being on the brink of death, but Chloe insisted, "This isn't a miracle; this is just me doing what I should've done all along." After handing Holly over to Nicole, Chloe started to head out to her car to get the rest of the child's belongings. Nicole stopped Chloe and made it clear that there were no hard feelings between them, adding, "You've given me a gift -- the greatest gift anyone could receive. Without you, Holly wouldn't exist. And you can be a part of her life -- always."
Brady followed Chloe outside and said that he was proud of her. Sobbing, she pointed out that she had caused a lot of trouble and could even be held at least partially responsible for his near-death experience, depending on one's perspective. He assured her that none of that mattered anymore. She accepted a hug from him and broke down in his arms, knowing that her son was going to miss having a sister -- and that she was going to miss having a daughter. He promised her that they would still see each other often.
Later, Brady and Nicole lounged on the couch with Holly, pleased to finally be a family again. Elsewhere, Chloe broke down again while holding a blanket she had forgotten to give to Nicole.
J.J. sent Abigail a text message to let her know that he was back in the United States and would be home soon -- along with everyone else who had been aboard the Kiriakis jet when it had vanished. While Abigail was sharing a celebratory hug with Dario, she received another text message, this time from Chad. Dario seemed disappointed when Abigail said that she didn't think it was the right time to talk to Chad about their plan to get married. Sighing, Dario watched as Abigail excitedly prepared Thomas for a trip to the DiMera mansion to see Chad.
Rafe took Arianna to the DiMera mansion to see Gabi, who had also asked him to pack a few of the child's things in an overnight bag. Gabi could tell that her request had confused Rafe, but he seemed reluctant to ask her the obvious question, so she initiated the conversation herself, explaining that she was with Chad again. Rafe forced a smile as he absorbed the news.
Meanwhile, at the police station, Hope reviewed Dario's file, which she had asked a trusted coworker to discreetly retrieve for her. Later, while Hope was on the phone with someone, trying to get access to Dario's email account, Rafe arrived and greeted her. Hope set Dario's file aside with a few other files and quickly ended the phone call, allowing Rafe to believe that it had been about the pending search warrant for Deimos' drug lab.
When Rafe revealed what he had learned during his visit to the DiMera mansion, Hope wondered how he felt about the situation. "Not good, actually. I mean, I want [Gabi] to be happy, [but] this could get messy, you know?" Rafe replied. Shaking her head, Hope insisted, "This isn't going to get messy; this is already messy."
Hope wondered if Chad and Gabi were already aware that Abigail and Dario were planning to get married. Rafe said he wasn't sure about that -- and he also wasn't sure if Chad was really over Abigail yet. Having seen how Chad had reacted to Abigail's request for a divorce, Hope confidently declared, "No, he's not over her -- not by a long shot."
While Arianna was napping, Chad and Gabi talked about how comfortable the child seemed at the DiMera mansion. "She was almost as happy to see you as she was to see me. She thinks of you and Thomas as her family," Gabi told Chad, who insisted that they essentially were one big family. Having deduced that Rafe hadn't exactly been thrilled to hear their big announcement, Gabi and Chad decided that it was simply going to take time for people to get used to the idea of them as a real couple. Chad admitted that although he didn't miss the island, he would endure being stranded over and over again if it meant he would end up with Gabi every time.
While Chad and Gabi were kissing, Abigail entered the mansion with Thomas, who started fussing before she could sneak back out. Chad rushed over to greet Thomas and give him a hug. Meanwhile, Abigail and Gabi awkwardly began their own exchange of greetings and hugs. When Abigail reported that Dario had been really worried, Gabi took the hint and rushed off to see her brother so Abigail could have some time alone with Chad.
After putting Thomas down for a nap, Chad rejoined Abigail in the living room and wondered if she wanted to talk about what she had walked in on earlier. "[You] locking lips with Gabi? Yeah, well, I guess your time on the island [wasn't] all bad, huh?" Abigail somewhat bitterly replied. Chad wanted to leave snarky comments out of the conversation, but when Abigail added that she had simply been surprised to see him kissing Gabi, he countered that he knew the feeling well because he had experienced it when he had received divorce papers while out of the country.
"You seem to be handling it just fine," Abigail observed, prompting Chad to point out that she had ended their marriage and had told him to move on with his life. She wondered if he had signed the divorce papers yet. "No, I was busy being stranded on an island," he replied. She asked him to sign them as soon as possible, vaguely adding, "There is a bit of a...situation...with Dario."
Taking that as Abigail's way of saying that she was with Dario, Chad wondered just how long she had been "hooking up with" the new man in her life. Abigail insisted that Chad was jumping to the wrong conclusions, adding, "Dario and I are getting married." Chad thought that Abigail was kidding at first, but when he realized that she was being serious, he quickly dialed his lawyer's phone number. Abigail listened in shock as Chad arranged for the divorce to be finalized right away. After ending the call, Chad assured Abigail that she would be a free woman by the end of the day.
Sighing, Abigail admitted that her conversation with Chad wasn't going the way she had hoped it would go. He wondered if she had expected him to congratulate her -- or perhaps beg her not to marry another man. "Maybe it's just not even about you at all," she spat. He questioned how much being married to him had really meant to her, given that she had walked out on him twice and had already decided to jump into a new marriage with a man she had only been dating for a few weeks at most. "Unless you've been sleeping with him the whole time," he added, prompting her to storm off in anger.
While Gabi was catching up with Dario in a secluded section of Horton Town Square, she revealed that she was with Chad. Dario admitted that although he wasn't exactly Chad's biggest fan, he was happy for Gabi -- and the timing was actually perfect. Confused, Gabi wondered what Dario was talking about. Dario happily explained that he was engaged to Abigail. Gabi was suspicious at first, knowing that Abigail had previously claimed that she was only interested in being Dario's friend, but he eventually convinced her to just accept that the universe was on their side and had made everything work out the way they wanted it to.
Later, Gabi returned to the DiMera mansion and joined Chad and Thomas in the living room. After getting Chad's assurance that Arianna was still sleeping peacefully, Gabi wondered how his conversation with Abigail had gone. Chad reported that the divorce was already in the process of being finalized. "I'm sorry. I know that's not easy to say," Gabi said. "It's okay. It's just, uh..." Chad began. After staring at Thomas for a moment, Chad continued, "Uh, yeah." Realizing that Chad had said everything he wanted to say about the matter, Gabi offered him a supportive hug.
Meanwhile, at the Martin mansion, Abigail told Dario, "The divorce is gonna be final very soon, so, um...hey, the hell with it -- let's just get married!"
At the hospital, Sonny told Marlena that Paul was still recovering but was already doing much better, thanks to the antidote he had been given earlier.
A short time later, Sonny ran into Deimos, who wondered how Paul was doing. "None of your business," Sonny spat, adding that Deimos deserved to be rotting in prison for everything he had done. Deimos feigned innocence, claiming that everything that had happened had simply been one big misunderstanding.
Unconvinced, Sonny vowed to make Deimos pay, adding, "Soon, I will be in charge of Titan, and when I am, I am going to crush you." Chuckling, Deimos dismissively insisted that Sonny would need "a hell of a lot more" than control of Titan to pose a threat to him. "I am building something bigger and more dangerous than you ever could've imagined," Deimos teased.
Sonny asked for details, but Deimos refused to supply them. Changing the subject, Deimos hinted that it wasn't wise for Sonny to be taking on more responsibility at Titan while Paul was inflicted with jungle madness -- a disease that would probably kill him soon. Sonny angrily grabbed Deimos, who calmly assured onlookers that they were witnessing a simple family disagreement.
"You're gonna regret this," Deimos quietly warned Sonny before shoving him away. The amulet fell out of Sonny's pocket as he hit the floor, but he quickly retrieved it then stood to face Deimos again, unsure if Deimos had seen the amulet or not. Deimos walked away after dismissively insisting that Sonny was a little child who wasn't fit to run Titan -- and that Sonny and everyone else would soon realize that.
Later, Marlena rejoined Sonny and quickly realized that something was bothering him. Sonny said that he was simply worried about Paul. "[This whole ordeal] made me realize just how much I love him, and I never thought I could feel that way again," Sonny continued. "You mean the way that you felt about Will," Marlena guessed.
Nodding, Sonny admitted, "I feel like a different person now than when I was with Will. [I think] I was just more naīve about how the world works [back then]." Marlena advised that it was important for Sonny to ensure that the tragedies he had endured wouldn't end up changing him into an unkind, uncaring person. "Do you think Will would think that's happening to me?" Sonny asked.
"I think Will would think you still have the wonderful, loving heart he fell in love with -- the same heart that Paul fell in love with," Marlena answered. Sonny admitted that he had resisted his feelings for Paul for quite a while out of fear that giving in to those feelings would be like cheating on Will, but he no longer felt that way about the matter. Marlena assured Sonny that Will would want him to be happy, adding, "And if we learned anything from losing [him], it was to embrace every moment."
As Deimos neared his drug lab, he received a text message from someone: "Factory raided by cops. They know ur the Candyman. APB out for ur arrest. Run. Now!"
Later, in a secluded section of the town square, Deimos contacted the person and confirmed that he had managed to evade the cops and was planning to leave town as soon as he got his hands on some cash. After ending the call, Deimos grumbled, "Now I really need that amulet."
Claire makes a confession to Theo
While Eli was with Lani at the police station, he noticed that he had missed a call from his mother.
Lani wondered if Eli was going to return the call. "Sure. Later," Eli replied, setting aside his cell phone. Unconvinced, Lani acknowledged that the situation was none of her business then forged ahead anyway, telling Eli that her earlier reunion with her father had made her feel like she was really home again. "I really think it would be good for you to see your mom," Lani advised.
"I know I should call her. It's just..." Eli began with a sigh. At Lani's prompting, Eli continued that he had been in a bad place with his mother before the trip to Greece. Pointing out that Valerie hadn't let that stop her from reaching out to him, Lani wondered if Eli really wanted to hang on to his anger forever. Lani guessed that Valerie had been worried sick about Eli since the Kiriakis jet had vanished, and Eli agreed, admitting that despite his recent issues with his mother, he had never once doubted that she loved him. Lani urged Eli, "Then for God's sake, call her back."
Theo knocked on Claire's closed bedroom door and tried to convince her to join him in the living room so they could talk, but she insisted that she had nothing more to say to him. The two teens soon received an unexpected visit from Marlena, who asked to speak with Claire privately. After Theo left, Claire braced herself for a lecture, suspecting that she knew exactly why Marlena wanted to talk to her.
Marlena wondered how Jade had known that Claire and Theo were sexually active. "Girls talk about that stuff," Claire explained with a shrug. Marlena guessed that Theo would probably prefer for Claire to keep the details of their sex life to herself. "Sorry. I made a mistake," Claire somewhat tiredly replied, leading Marlena to conclude that Claire wasn't taking the matter very seriously -- and therefore wasn't ready to be having sex in the first place.
Claire defensively insisted that she and Theo had, in fact, had very serious conversations about sex before deciding to take that step. "And it was...wonderful. It was. It was everything I thought it would be," Claire continued, perhaps less convincingly than intended. Marlena didn't doubt that the experience had been special; she pointed out, however, that she knew Claire quite well. "What does that mean?" Claire asked.
"I know you tend to get caught up in things, and you make them seem...more than they are," Marlena clarified. Claire began to protest indignantly, prompting Marlena to cite examples to support her assessment, including Claire's vegan phase and her "free Tibet" phase. "Honey, you've got a big heart [that makes] you take things to extremes, and then you lose interest. I -- I just -- I think that, probably, you told yourself that you love Theo with all your heart and soul because it was...it was romantic. And I think that you thought having sex would be just like in the movies," Marlena continued.
"But I do love Theo," Claire insisted. Marlena wondered if Theo felt the same way. Claire admitted that she wasn't sure, adding that she had a feeling that he was actually in love with Ciara -- even though he had claimed that wasn't true. "So I had to do what I did," Claire continued. Marlena assumed that meant that Claire had slept with Theo in an effort to secure her relationship with him, but Claire clarified that she had been talking about something else. When Marlena asked Claire to elaborate, Claire sighed and grumbled, "God, this is such a disaster!"
Theo ran into Valerie at the Brady Pub, where he had previously arranged to meet Lani. While waiting for Lani to arrive, Theo somewhat awkwardly began talking to Valerie about the sex tape, knowing that Abe had shared some of the details with her. Valerie pointed out that Theo was lucky that the sex tape hadn't made its way onto the Internet. Nodding in agreement, Theo admitted that the experience had made him realize just how complicated sex could be. Valerie confirmed that sex was one of the most complicated things in the world -- and that was why so many books, movies, and songs focused on the subject.
"Yeah. I mean, I thought I was ready. I thought Claire was ready, too," Theo continued. Valerie assured Theo that everyone felt that way beforehand. When Valerie asked if Theo believed that Claire was in love with him, he admitted with a shrug that even if Claire had been in love with him before, she probably wasn't anymore, since he had doubted her when she had insisted that she'd had nothing to do with the sex tape. "She thinks that means I don't love her, but that's not true. I do," Theo stressed.
"But you didn't believe her. That's a really big thing, Theo. I mean, that can really hurt," Valerie gently countered. Sighing, Theo conceded that Valerie was right. Valerie warned that if Theo wanted Claire to start believing in his love for her again, he would have to work hard to prove to her that his feelings were genuine.
Valerie was thrilled when Eli contacted her and asked if she was free to meet with him. While waiting for Eli to arrive, Valerie continued chatting with Theo, telling him stories about Eli's childhood. Tearfully recalling how worried she had been when she had let Eli ride the bus to school for the first time, Valerie admitted that the news of the Kiriakis jet's disappearance had taken her right back to that moment.
Eli soon announced his presence and accepted a hug from Valerie. While Eli and Valerie were having a tearful reunion, Theo stepped aside with Lani and told her that he had been really worried about her. When Lani mentioned that she had heard from Abe that Theo and Claire were having problems, Theo confirmed the news then abruptly excused himself, hoping that it wasn't too late to fix things with Claire.
Meanwhile, Eli told Valerie that he had heard part of her conversation with Theo. He tried to apologize for worrying her, but she pointed out that it wasn't his fault that the Kiriakis jet had crashed. "When I was on that island, I thought about how I treated you," he admitted, adding that although it was probably going to take some time, he wanted to continue working on repairing his relationship with her so they could be a family again.
"We'll always -- always..." Valerie began before sharing another tearful hug with Eli. Meanwhile, Julie entered the pub. Eli was shocked to learn that Valerie and Julie had buried the hatchet while he had been gone. "Life is short -- too short to carry a grudge in this family, and a family is what we are, we found out," Julie explained. Coyly adding that she had a family surprise for Eli, Julie dragged him away, with Valerie and Lani in tow.
Later, after giving Eli and the others a tour of the Martin mansion, which his great-grandfather had built years earlier, Julie announced that she was planning a welcome-home party for him and everyone else who had been stranded on the island. "The owner rents it out for private parties?" Eli asked. "Well...that's up to you, Eli," Julie answered, excitedly revealing that the place belonged to him.
"When the property came up for sale again, Doug and I bought it...for you. Actually, we were working on this deal before you went to Greece. It's my heavy-handed way of just trying to keep you here in Salem," Julie continued. Stunned, Eli admitted that he was speechless. Valerie thought it was quite generous of Julie and Doug to give Eli such a lavish gift, but she was a bit confused because, as far as she was aware, the Martin mansion was still serving as a bed-and-breakfast. "Don't worry about that. We have somebody to take care of that," Julie vaguely explained.
Turning to Eli, Julie continued, "Darling, you don't even have to live here -- unless you want to. I just wanted you to have a piece of Salem history because...it's your history." Eli gave Julie a hug and told her that he couldn't think of a better gift to receive. Pleased, Julie abruptly excused herself, explaining that she was late for an appointment with a caterer. "I've got a party to plan!" Julie added as she exited the mansion.
Chuckling, Valerie admitted, "Wow. I did not see that coming." Eli acknowledged that Julie's welcome-home gift had been pretty amazing, but he quietly added that what she didn't know was that it wasn't the only amazing gift he had received that day. Touched, Valerie gave Eli another hug and stressed that she, too, viewed their reconciliation as an amazing gift.
Theo returned home and found Claire sitting on the couch. He started to apologize again for having doubted her, but she stopped him, admitting that he had been right to doubt her -- and that she was the one who needed to be asking for forgiveness. Confused, he wondered what she was talking about. She handed him an envelope and explained, "That is the letter that Ciara wrote you -- the one that you never got. Um...I took it -- and I kept it -- 'cause I was jealous of her. I'm not proud that I did what I did, and after you accused me of lying to you, um...I realized that there were some things that I've done that were not completely honest."
Theo stared at the envelope in silence. "After you read that...I don't know, you might hate me, but, uh...if you don't, you know where to find me," Claire added before exiting the apartment. Theo sighed as he hesitantly opened the envelope, removed the enclosed letter, and began to read it.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Victor reunited with Sonny, who was thrilled to receive confirmation that he was Titan's new CEO. Victor warned Sonny not to get too excited, adding, "It's sink-or-swim time, [and] you're going to be making decisions that go beyond Titan." Sonny insisted that he understood what Victor was talking about.
Unconvinced, Victor elaborated that Sonny would soon be faced with decisions that required "coloring outside the lines" -- and that would be just the beginning of what he would face as CEO of Titan. "I know you have a strong sense of right and wrong -- a code of ethics. And before you make some snide remark, I want you to know that I appreciate that in you -- your sense of decency. I just don't want to see you get crammed down a rabbit hole, because once you're down there, Sonny, it's very hard to climb out," Victor continued.
Chuckling, Sonny argued that his morals had never seemed particularly high on Victor's list of things to protect in the past. Dismissively insisting that he was fully capable of making tough decisions without falling down a rabbit hole, Sonny added that it wasn't like no one was going to be around to help him if necessary.
Victor confirmed that he would be happy to help Sonny anytime he was able to -- and that Justin would be around for support, too. Victor warned, however, that there wouldn't always be time for Sonny to seek advice before making a decision. "I just hope that you don't have to make as many unethical ones as I did," Victor continued, acknowledging that many people saw him as a cold, calculating, heartless man because of the choices he had made throughout his life. Sonny dismissively insisted that he was going to do things differently. "Good luck with that," Victor skeptically replied.
Later, while Sonny was alone in the living room, he poured himself a celebratory drink and eyed the amulet as he vowed, "I will do things differently for this family. Titan will be stronger than ever. I am more than up for the challenge. I'm not afraid of a piece of jewelry. I'm not afraid of anything."
Kate and Andre entered the DiMera mansion and happily greeted Chad and Gabi, who had been in the middle of a conversation about Abigail and Dario's sudden engagement. Chad and Gabi were stunned when Andre and Kate announced, just moments into the reunion, that they had recently gotten married. Together, Andre and Kate explained why it had been necessary for them to go to such extremes.
Chad was grateful to Kate for being willing to marry Andre, of all people, to protect DiMera Enterprises. Chad was concerned, however, that Kate might not be prepared to stay "shackled to" Andre long enough to satisfy suspicious board members. "He's asking if you're ready to throw away your life," Gabi helpfully translated. Hurt, Andre pointed out, "I'm standing right here!"
Kate assured Chad and Gabi that the marriage was simply a business arrangement. Chad suspected that Andre thought of it as a way of getting closer to seizing control of DiMera Enterprises, but Kate insisted that wasn't the case. "I was looking out for you," Andre stressed. Still not entirely convinced, Chad excused himself so he could contact the board members and try to reverse the decisions that had been made in his absence.
"So good to have him back," Andre dryly muttered after Chad left the living room. Meanwhile, Gabi wondered what Kate was going to do if she met and fell in love with someone while stuck with Andre. Kate pointed out that she had already met and fallen in love with someone -- and she couldn't have him. "Seems to be a pattern with me. It's time to break that pattern, don't you think?" Kate added. Andre interrupted, sarcastically assuring Gabi that her invaluable contributions had been sorely missed -- especially when he had been struggling to choose the right tie to wear to the wedding.
Chad soon returned and announced with a sigh that, according to the company's bylaws, he was going to have to wait six months before he could reclaim control of DiMera Enterprises. Kate insisted that she was fine with the idea of staying married to Andre for six months, adding that she had established ground rules with him beforehand. "Have you established borders?" Gabi asked.
Realizing that Kate had made up her mind, Chad shook Andre's hand and told him, "Thank you...I suppose." Chad warned, however, that he would be keeping an eye on Andre for the next few months. Ignoring the warning, Andre insisted that Chad didn't have to thank him, adding, "Unlike past DiMeras, this is one family that will stick together."
While on the subject of people sticking together, Kate happily observed that it seemed like Chad and Gabi had grown closer during their time away from Salem. Chad and Gabi confirmed that they were together. Kate warmly congratulated the couple then nudged Andre, who forced a smile and told Chad, "I want you to be happy...and if she makes you happy -- truly happy -- then I am happy for you."
After joking that Andre had just made her feel warm and fuzzy inside, Gabi rushed off to check on Arianna. Meanwhile, Chad received a phone call from someone. While Chad was talking to the person, Kate praised Andre for being a supportive brother. "I aim to please," Andre dryly replied before excusing himself, explaining that he had a lot of things to unpack. "Shall I put them into your room, or shall you unpack and put your things in my room?" Andre asked, prompting Kate to remind him of the ground rules they had set. Chuckling, Andre admitted, "I was just hoping it'd slipped your mind."
When Chad ended his phone call, Kate teasingly observed, "I'm thinking that being stranded on that island wasn't quite the ordeal [for you] that we thought it was." Chad confirmed the suspicion with a coy grin then accepted a hug from Kate, who stressed that she was happy for him and Gabi. Changing the subject, Kate wondered if Chad had talked to Abigail at all since his return to Salem. Nodding, Chad revealed that Abigail had moved on with Dario, adding, "I didn't handle it the way I would have liked to." Kate was confident that Chad and Abigail would keep things civil for Thomas' sake. "But right now, I'm just hoping you can focus on Gabi," Kate stressed.
Meanwhile, Gabi ran into Andre in the foyer. Chuckling, Andre observed that Gabi and Arianna seemed comfortably ensconced in the mansion. Adding that he was very protective of his little brother, Andre warned Gabi, "I'm putting you on notice: watch your step, seņorita." Unfazed, Gabi insisted that she didn't care whether Andre approved of her relationship with Chad or not. Andre scoffed at Gabi's assertion that the universe had pushed her and Chad into a relationship with each other, but she remained convinced that was exactly what had happened. "If you think you can intervene or try to keep us apart, be my guest," Gabi encouraged Andre.
Later, Gabi rejoined Kate in the living room and revealed that she was planning to take things slowly with Chad. Kate understood but was a bit disappointed that Gabi and Arianna weren't going to be moving into the mansion right away. When Gabi suggested that Andre didn't feel the same way about the matter, Kate insisted that Chad's opinion was the only one that really mattered.
Meanwhile, in the foyer, Andre told Chad that things could have been a lot worse for him on the island if he'd had the cursed amulet with him. Chad admitted that he had lied about abandoning his plan to purchase the amulet; he added, however, that after everything that had happened on the island, he had decided to leave it there. Relieved, Andre hoped that no one would ever see the amulet again.
Later, while Chad was saying goodbye to Gabi and Arianna, Kate advised Andre to lose his disdain for Gabi. "'Disdain'? Eh, rather mild for the way I feel about that one," Andre replied. Kate insisted that it didn't matter how Andre felt about Gabi because the fact of the matter was that Chad adored her. "And if you make problems for her, he's going to make problems for you, because that's the kind of guy he is," Kate continued. Realizing that Kate was right, Andre vowed, "I shall be the soul of discretion -- completely neutral on the subject."
Unconvinced, Kate said that she could practically see the wheels turning in Andre's head. "Whatever you're thinking about doing, don't do it, because a move against her is a move against him -- and me," Kate warned before exiting the living room. Once the coast was clear, Andre raised a glass to Stefano's portrait and quietly promised, "This isn't over yet."
Nicole loses custody of Holly
At the Kiriakis mansion, Justin confronted Sonny about firing fifty employees at Titan. Although Sonny justified his actions as removing all traces of Deimos from the company, Justin said it was a mistake. Justin worried aloud that there would be lawsuits for unlawful termination. Sonny argued that as CEO, he could fire whomever. With a groan, Justin told Sonny that he should have researched first to determine who was tied to Deimos.
Sonny said it would have been a waste of time to vet the fifty employees that had been hired by Deimos. With a nod, Sonny shoved his tablet into Justin's hand. The tablet showed a news headline announcing that Deimos was a drug kingpin. Sonny asked Justin to give him a chance before judging his actions. Justin said he wanted Sonny to succeed.
In an alley, Deimos met up with an employee. Deimos assured the man that he would do what he could to help the people that had been arrested at his Halo lab. The man handed Deimos a burner phone. With a scowl, Deimos said his first priority was to track down the amulet. Deimos growled that Sonny was his top enemy and that he would take his revenge.
Deimos said that the money from the sale of the amulet would be invested into his Halo business. On cue, the henchman handed Deimos a vial of Halo 2.0. With an evil gleam in his eyes, Deimos held up the vial of Halo and said that the new version was a less lethal type of the drug. Deimos said he planned to use the new test batch of Halo, since he had the formula to make more.
In the Brady Pub, Eric ate breakfast with Marlena. Eric explained that he and Jennifer had decided to just be friends. Eric added that he wanted to concentrate on his work at the Horton Center. Seeing the tension on Eric's face, Marlena asked what was wrong. Eric informed Marlena that the court had assigned Nicole to work for him at the center for her community service. Eric explained that he had not been able to get Nicole reassigned. Marlena urged Eric not to let anyone undermine his confidence in his work.
Eric said there was a lack of funding at the center and that it was in danger of closing down. Marlena suggested a fundraising event, but Eric said there was no seed money to start a fundraising effort. With a smile, Marlena suggested that Eric talk to Julie about using her celebration for the plane crash survivors as a kickoff for a larger fundraiser.
At the Salem Inn, Chloe stared at her custody agreement papers and thought about when she had given Holly to Nicole. Nancy called Chloe's cell phone. Chloe said she would not change her mind because Holly belonged with Nicole. Chloe's phone beeped, and she switched over to the other line. Chloe gasped.
In their bedroom at the Kiriakis mansion, Brady and Nicole marveled over Holly and how happy they were together. Overwhelmed, Nicole said she had never been so happy in her life. Brady checked his phone and told Nicole about the arrest warrant out for Deimos. Frustrated, Nicole said she was stunned that she had been involved with someone that had almost cost her Holly. Brady and Nicole agreed that they were lucky.
Talk turned to decorating Holly's room, but the conversation was cut short by a call from Chloe. Chloe told Nicole that Judge Thorpe had summoned her, Nicole, and Holly to meet at the courthouse. Panicked, Nicole asked what was wrong. Chloe said there was a complication.
At the hospital, John checked in on Paul as he was packing to leave. Paul announced that he had been cleared to leave the hospital. Paul thanked John for rescuing him from the island. With a grin, John said there was nothing he would not do for Paul. Paul offered to get baseball tickets as a thank you, but John shook his head no. John explained that he needed to return to the ISA and finish his case. Paul promised to look after Marlena for John while he was away.
Paul talked to John about Sonny, and he shared his fear that Sonny's position at Titan had changed him. Paul explained that Sonny had decided to fire everyone that Deimos had hired, without regard to whether they would be loyal to Sonny or not. With a shrug, John said Sonny would settle down. Paul worried aloud that Sonny was obsessed with showing that he was more ruthless than Deimos. John assured him that Sonny would find a balance in his life eventually.
When Paul returned to the Kiriakis mansion, he talked to Paul about the firings. Paul was disappointed to hear that Sonny had gone through with his plan. With a grimace, Sonny said he had not realized what a creep he would feel like for firing people. Sonny added that he had provided large severance packages for the fired employees. Paul said he had faith that Sonny would stay true to being a good person. Relieved, Sonny smiled. Paul credited Sonny with saving him when he had been sick. Sonny told Paul that he would never give up on him.
At the Brady Pub, John met up with Marlena to say goodbye. John gave Marlena an airplane charm for her bracelet as a reminder that he would always fly home to her. "I love it. I love you. I don't need a reminder. You're always on my mind. You are always in my thoughts," Marlena said. John said he felt the same way. Wiping away Marlena's tears, John asked her to join him for one last errand.
In Judge Thorpe's chambers at the courthouse, Justin, Chloe, Brady, Nicole, and Holly gathered to meet. Judge Thorpe explained that he would not allow Nicole to take custody of Holly. Panicked, Nicole asked Justin what was happening. Justin argued that Nicole was Holly's biological mother, but Judge Thorpe countered that Nicole was an unfit mother. Judge Thorpe noted that Nicole had previously been convicted of kidnapping. Justin argued strenuously that Nicole had every right to raise her child.
Nicole asked what would happen to Holly. Judge Thorpe said that he would place Holly in foster care. Nicole pleaded for help, and she asked if Chloe could take custody back. Judge Thorpe said Chloe was also unfit because she had stolen the embryo. A frustrated Justin vowed to file an appeal.
"Does this mean I'm never gonna see my child again?" Nicole asked. The judge clarified that the foster care situation would last sixty days then the judge would revisit the custody issue. Judge Thorpe warned Nicole to stay clean or lose custody forever. When Justin asked about contact, Judge Thorpe said Nicole could not have any contact. Justin asked if Maggie could visit Holly, and the judge agreed. Nicole and Brady said goodbye to their daughter.
As Nicole broke down in Brady's arms, Chloe apologized for causing Nicole to lose her daughter. Nicole said it was not Chloe's fault. Chloe said she would stay in town if Nicole needed her. Wiping away tears, Nicole said she would be fine. Justin told Nicole that he would file an appeal. Nicole hugged Chloe goodbye. When Nicole and Brady were alone, Nicole vowed to get Holly back. Nicole said she would prove to the judge that she was a strong, capable mother. Nicole said her first step to proving herself was to focus on her community service.
When Brady arrived home at the Kiriakis mansion, he met up with John and Marlena. John said Paul was healthy, and John was glad that both his sons were healthy and home. Brady's face fell. When Marlena asked what was wrong, Brady explained that the court had placed Holly into foster care. Brady said he was hopeful that they would regain custody in two months. Smiling, Brady said they should celebrate Paul's return home. John said the party would have to wait until he returned from his ISA mission.
At the Horton Center, Nicole walked into Eric's office and waited for him. Nicole stared at a photo of Holly on her phone. When Eric walked in, he and Nicole stared at one another in silence.