After sharing a dance in the otherwise empty Brady Pub, Steve and Kayla started talking about Joey, whom they were planning to visit the following day.
Kayla was feeling anxious about the visit because she didn't know how to answer the questions Joey would probably ask about the double wedding. "A part of me thinks that maybe we shouldn't [mention what happened]. I mean, he's been through so much [already; do we really] need to tell him when every bad thing happens?" Kayla reasoned.
Steve understood Kayla's concern but argued that it was best to be completely honest about everything, if only to keep Joey -- who would probably find out about Ben's unexpected appearance at the double wedding one way or another regardless -- from feeling even more cut off from the outside world. Steve assured Kayla that Joey was tough enough to handle bad news.
Nodding, Kayla conceded that Steve was right. "We should be open and honest with [Joey]...just like I hope that you would be open and honest with me about Tripp," Kayla added.
Steve was confused, so Kayla elaborated, "Okay, saying that you're not being honest may be unfair, but I think sometimes you avoid talking to me about [Tripp]." Steve admitted that he had been under the impression that Kayla understood why he had been avoiding talking to her about Tripp -- and that she appreciated being spared from having such conversations. "I know you're very sad about Joe -- we both are -- [so], you know, why should I make it harder for you by going on about my other son all the time?" Steve summarized. "Because he's a part of your life, which makes him a part of my life," Kayla countered.
Conceding the point, Steve invited Kayla to ask questions about Tripp. Without hesitation, Kayla challenged Steve to explain why Tripp had skipped the double wedding. "I would think that he would want to be there to support his new family," Kayla reasoned. Shrugging, Steve reminded Kayla, "What's your mom always say? 'An invitation isn't an obligation.'" Steve jokingly added that the double wedding wouldn't have been the best way to introduce Tripp to family events, anyway, since it had ended up being a total disaster.
Unamused, Kayla countered, "Oh, stop it, okay? It wasn't Tripp's decision not to go, was it? It was yours. You asked him not to go, didn't you?" Confirming the suspicion, Steve explained that he had assumed it would be best to spare Kayla from having to see Tripp at a family celebration. "So, I'm guessing that you said something to him like, um, 'Hey, listen, man, don't go to the wedding, okay? Because I know that you're my son, but my wife is very fragile right now, and she comes first,' right?" Kayla concluded.
Steve clarified that he'd barely had to say a single word to Tripp about the matter because Tripp had instantly understood the need for delicacy. "Well, of course, because he's a sensitive guy," Kayla replied. Frustrated, Steve wondered what Kayla wanted from him. "I want you to consult me before you go reading my mind and telling your son that I don't want him around. That is unfair! Don't ever do that again!" Kayla demanded. Steve apologized to Kayla, stressing that he had simply been trying to protect her. Kayla quickly softened in response, assuring Steve that she loved him for that.
"[Look], I just can't open my heart to [Tripp yet]. I hope that's not always the case, but...it is right now," Kayla began. Steve interjected that he understood why Kayla wasn't ready to do that yet. Nodding, Kayla continued, "[But] this is bigger than me -- bigger than us -- and as much as we always have to think about what's best for Joey, you need to think about what's best for Tripp, [too]."
Conceding that Kayla was right, Steve promised that he would never second-guess her again. "I am such a lucky man," he added. "Yes, you are," she jokingly agreed. After giving him a kiss, she added, "I'm lucky, too."
Tripp was lounging on the couch, playing a video game while singing along to one of Claire's songs, when his roommates returned home from the double wedding. Somewhat embarrassed, he immediately stopped singing and turned off the portable speaker he'd been using. "Good song, [Claire] -- especially when it's sung by you, without me ruining it," he raved with a nervous chuckle. She assured him that he'd sounded fine.
Changing the subject, Tripp asked Claire and Theo about the double wedding. "It was a typical Salem wedding -- crashed by an escaped murderer," Claire reported. After hearing the whole story, Tripp wondered if Ben's claim about Will could possibly be true. Shrugging, Claire admitted, "I don't know, but I hope it is." Theo confidently added that Hope would figure out the truth one way or another.
After Claire retreated to her bedroom to change her clothes, Tripp decided to head to a nearby restaurant to get something to eat. Before letting Tripp leave, Theo hesitantly asked, "Is, um, Claire the reason that you didn't go to the wedding?" Scoffing, Tripp wondered how Theo had gotten that impression. "[Well], you like her, and she was my date..." Theo pointed out. Tripp insisted that he wasn't immature enough to skip out on a family event for such a lame reason. Tripp started to explain the real reason for his absence but soon stopped himself, dismissively claiming that it wasn't important. "But [Claire and I are] just friends, I promise," Tripp stressed.
Claire returned in time to hear Tripp's comment. "[That's] true. I mean, Tripp was just helping me out [by pretending to like me, and] I think we both owe [him] for that," Claire told Theo, who conceded that the ruse had given him the push he'd needed to admit his true feelings. "We're both pretty lucky to have you as a friend," Theo told Tripp. "Well, I, uh -- I feel really lucky, too. You guys have been pretty great to me," Tripp replied.
After Tripp left, Claire suggestively informed Theo that she wanted to take advantage of their alone time. Getting the hint, Theo gave Claire a kiss then followed her to her bedroom and shut the door.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Victor tiredly complained that Sonny and Brady were behaving like arrogant jerks. Sonny and Brady both denied the accusation then went right back to arguing with each other about who was most deserving of the CEO position at Titan. Victor seemed relieved when Paul entered the mansion and interrupted the argument to fill Sonny in on what Marlena had learned during her conversation with Ben.
Victor encouraged Sonny to head to the police station right away to find out if Hope had managed to get anything else out of Ben. "But before you go...look, I understand why you're [fighting with Brady] -- I mean, you're trying to process all of this -- but your family is not your enemy," Victor added before letting Sonny leave with Paul. "Wish I felt the same way," Sonny replied, glaring at Brady, who returned the look.
At the police station, Hope wondered why Clyde -- who had been the target of a massive manhunt at the time of his visit to Bayview -- had taken such a big risk to see Ben. "He was just being a good dad," Ben replied with a shrug. Ben couldn't remember much about Clyde's visit at first, but Hope managed to jog his memory when she guessed that something had happened during it that had convinced him that Will was still alive.
Ben remembered that he had expected to see his sister in the visitor's lounge because Clyde had signed in as Jordan Ridgeway. When Ben explained that Clyde had promised to break him out of Bayview and reunite him with his son, Hope pointed out that a paternity test had determined, with absolute certainty, that Thomas was actually Chad's son. "Who the hell are you to tell me that?" Ben snapped. "Stop trying to make me feel bad, please. Like I haven't had enough misery in my life..." Ben added after calming down. Hope assured Ben that she was more interested in hearing about how Will had factored into Clyde's visit, anyway.
Ben recalled that he had objected to his father's plan, fearing that he wasn't capable of being the kind of parent Thomas deserved -- and that Thomas would never be able to look him in the eyes, anyway, since he had killed three people in cold blood. "Actually, that's not true. You only killed two," Clyde had clarified. "You killed those two women in order to frame Chad DiMera, but Will..." Clyde had begun to add. Ben had interrupted, regretfully recalling that he had been forced to add his friend Will to his list of victims after Will had discovered his secret. "I know that's the way it looked, but things aren't always the way they look," Clyde had cryptically countered, but a guard had ended the visit before he'd had a chance to elaborate. Clyde had left after promising, "I'll explain everything when I come back and get you out of this hellhole."
After Hope finished questioning Ben, she emerged from the conference room and shared what she had just learned with Sonny and Paul. Paul dismissively concluded that Clyde had simply lied about Will in an effort to alleviate Ben's guilt, but Sonny and Hope both disagreed, reasoning that if that had been the goal, Clyde would have claimed that Ben hadn't killed anyone.
Sonny wanted to talk to Ben again, but Hope thought it would be better to talk to Clyde next. "What if he won't talk to us?" Paul asked. "Then I know someone he will talk to," Sonny replied.
Eric was stunned when Nicole, still wet from the rain, revealed that she knew why he had really left Salem. He handed her a blanket as he reluctantly confirmed everything she had learned earlier. She offered to quit her job as a way of trying to convince him to return to Salem, but he clarified that sharing a relatively small town with her was just as hard as sharing an office with her.
"You can't just live out here on your own and become some kind of hermit! It'd be like going back to prison, and you deserve so much more than that! Eric, this is wrong! Everything about this is so wrong!" Nicole tearfully insisted. Eric promised that he would be okay because past experience had taught him how to deal with unrequited love.
Recalling how she had selfishly chosen money over love years earlier, Nicole wondered if she had driven Eric out of Salem then, too. He confirmed that he had taken that as his cue to start a new chapter of his life elsewhere. He added that he had thought about her often after moving to Colorado. She admitted that she had thought about him often back then, too. "I will always hold you close to my heart and take you wherever I go," he promised. "What if I don't want you to go?" she countered.
Eric insisted that Nicole needed to leave right away -- before he did something he would live to regret. "Like what?" she asked. He grabbed her and kissed her passionately in response.
Meanwhile, at the Kiriakis mansion, Brady impatiently wondered why Nicole hadn't returned home yet. "Maybe [she went] to see Eric," Victor helpfully suggested.
NIcole tells Eric she loves him
At the DiMera mansion, Sonny asked Kate to meet with Clyde to learn what he knew about Will. Kate said she did not believe Will was alive, and even if she talked to Clyde, he would not be honest with her. Sonny begged Kate to speak with Clyde, but Kate said no. When Sonny mentioned how upset Lucas had been after he and Paul had suggested they should exhume the body, Kate gasped in shock. Kate grabbed her keys and left to find Lucas.
Abigail and Chad fooled around in their bedroom, celebrating their new marriage. Laughing in each other's arms, the two made love. After, the couple went downstairs to make a sandwich, and they were surprised to find Sonny standing in their living room, texting on his phone. Sonny explained that he had stopped by to talk to Kate, but she had refused to help. Sonny offered to leave, but Abigail and Chad encouraged Sonny to join them for a sandwich. Reluctantly, Sonny sat on the couch with them.
Sonny told the newlyweds that Clyde had told Ben that Will was alive. Sonny wondered aloud if Clyde knew something about Will. Shaking his head no, Chad said he did not believe that Will was alive. Sonny admitted that he was not sure what to believe, but he needed to investigate in case Will was alive. Abigail asked about Paul. With a sigh, Sonny said he did not know where to find Paul. Sonny added that he wanted to marry Paul, but it would not be valid if Will were alive.
"I love Paul. I want to spend the rest of my life with him; I do. But I can't if there is a possibility that Will is still alive. I have to see it through," Sonny said. Sonny asked Chad to convince Kate to talk to Clyde, and Chad agreed. Abigail told Sonny that they loved him and were there for him. Sonny thanked Abigail and Chad for taking time on their wedding night to talk to him. With a sad smile, Sonny left.
At Club TBD, Paul looked around the empty room. Chloe entered with baby Holly, and Paul offered his services to help Chloe clean up the abandoned reception. Smiling, Chloe thanked Paul but told him she had already finished. Paul admitted that he was antsy for something to do. As Paul stared at the wedding toppers on the counter, Chloe asked Paul if it was possible that Will was alive. Paul said no. When Chloe asked what Paul planned to do, Paul said he would investigate the claims to put the issue to rest.
Paul said he wanted to believe that Will was alive for the sake of all the people that had loved him, but he did not believe Will could have survived. Paul said he was worried that people were getting their hopes up. Holly started to cry. Curious, Paul asked why Chloe was watching Holly. With a shrug, Chloe said that Brady and Nicole were having problems, and she was giving the couple space to talk. Chloe said she hoped the couple would reconcile.
In the cemetery, a despondent Lucas talked to his son's grave, and he promised not to let anyone dig up Will's body. A vision of Will appeared. With tears in his eyes, Lucas exclaimed, "Oh, my God! You are alive!" Lucas noted that he had cried over Will's body in the morgue. Crying, Lucas said it was hard to move on when Sonny was attempting to exhume Will's body. Will warned Lucas that he had been too hard on Sonny.
"He has no right. He left you. He abandoned you so he could marry Paul," Lucas said. Will asked Lucas to look after himself rather than guarding Will's grave. Will told Lucas that the people that had staged Lucas' intervention had been looking out for his best interests. Will urged Lucas not to walk away from his family and friends. Grabbing his liquor bottle, Lucas complained that rehab would not return Will or Adrienne to his life. Will countered that rehab would restore Lucas back to life. Will took Lucas' bottle and poured out the contents as Lucas feebly objected.
Across the clearing, a brokenhearted Kate watched Lucas yelling at someone who was not there. Lucas turned and saw his mother. Lucas asked where Will had gone. In tears, Lucas yelled that he had been talking to Will. Quietly, Kate assured Lucas that Will was gone.
Lucas swore he had not hallucinated Lucas. When Lucas grabbed his bottle to show that Will had emptied it, Lucas was surprised to see the bottle was still half full. Through tears, Kate pleaded with Lucas not to throw his life away. Lucas crumpled to the ground. Kate sat next to her son and apologized for handling the situation poorly. Kate said she regretted giving Lucas tough love, and she said she needed Lucas to fight for his life.
"I don't have a life! I don't have anything left!" Lucas cried out. Kate stressed that Will was gone. Lucas wondered aloud if Will was out there, alone, hoping to return home. Kate promised Lucas that she would do whatever she could to investigate Ben's claims. In exchange, Kate asked Lucas to swear he would not drink any more that evening. Lucas poured out the rest of his liquor bottle on the ground then put his head in his mother's lap as they both wept.
In the Kiriakis living room, Brady stared at the liquor cart and paced nervously. As Brady started to reach for a bottle, John entered the living room and asked about Sonny. John told Brady that Ben had claimed that Clyde believed Will was alive. Brady shook his head in disbelief. John said he did not believe Will was alive, but after all he had seen in his life, he did not feel like he could discount the claim outright.
John mentioned Nicole, and Brady admitted that he did not know where Nicole and Holly were since he had fought with Nicole about Titan. Brady admitted that he had been harsh on Nicole for not making him a priority and supporting him. When John asked Brady if he had reached out to Nicole since, Brady said he had left multiple voicemails for her. Curious, John asked Brady if his fight with Nicole had also been about Eric. Brady nodded yes.
Brady told John about what had happened with Eric and the real reason he had left town. With a groan, John asked why Brady had confronted Eric. When Brady talked about getting advice to fight for what he loved, John accused Brady of listening to Victor. Brady nodded yes. John warned Brady that manipulation would not save his relationship. John urged Brady to tell Nicole the truth. "You've got to save your family before it's too late, son," John advised.
After John left, Chloe arrived at the mansion with Holly. Confused, Brady asked why Nicole was not with Holly. Chloe said she'd thought Nicole was at the mansion. Chloe explained that Nicole had asked her to watch Holly for a bit. Suspicious, Brady asked for details, but Chloe said she did not know where Nicole had gone. Brady accused Chloe of lying, and he demanded the truth.
In the town square, John talked to Paul about the Will news. John said he believed that the Westons were stirring up a mind game to mess with the people they felt had wronged them. Paul confided that he worried Sonny was using the revelation as an excuse to avoid marrying him. "That's not true," Sonny exclaimed as he overheard Sonny. John left the two men alone to talk. Sonny said he needed answers, but he still wanted to marry Paul.
Across the square, Sonny saw Kate. With a sigh, Sonny approached her. Kate informed Sonny that she had found Lucas at Will's grave. With a sigh, Kate said that for Lucas and Sonny's sake, she would talk to Clyde. Kate promised to tell Sonny everything after. Emotional, Kate ran off. Paul told Sonny that he hoped Kate would get the answers that Sonny needed. "The answers that we need. I want you to know that no matter what happens, I still love you," Sonny whispered. "I love you too," Paul said.
At the cabin, Nicole and Eric kissed passionately. Eric pulled away and said that they should stop. Nicole said she did not want to fight her feelings, and she told Eric that she wanted him. With the storm raging outside, the kissing grew more heated. Nicole pulled away and wondered aloud what she was doing. Nicole noted that she should be with Brady instead of betraying him with someone that she should hate. Eric encouraged Nicole to leave before they did something they would regret.
"I can't go. I can't fight it anymore. Eric, I'm in love with you. All I know is that I'm in love with you. I'm in love with you," Nicole said. Eric pulled Nicole into his arms and kissed her. Gently pulling away, Eric said, "You have no idea how long I have waited to hear you say that." Eric told Nicole that he loved her, too, but she had a family with Brady. Nodding, Nicole said that she was grateful to Brady for all he had done, but she could not confuse gratitude with love. Eric asked Nicole if she was sure.
"Brady caught on to my feelings about you before I could even admit them to myself. That's why he wanted you to fire me," Nicole said. Shaking his head, Eric countered that Brady had wanted Eric to fire her because Eric had been in love with Nicole. With a smile, Nicole said that no matter what, Brady had been right. Nicole told Eric that she wanted to be with him. Nicole kissed Eric again. The two stumbled into the bedroom and made love. After, Eric told Nicole that he had repeatedly dreamed of being with her again. Nicole said she had thought about it as well.
"What do we do? Where do we go from here?" Eric asked. Nicole said she wanted to be with Eric. With a gasp, Nicole said she had not told Brady that she had left Holly with Chloe. Nicole grabbed her phone and saw that Brady had called and texted multiple times. Softly, Eric asked Nicole what she intended to tell Brady.
When Nicole called Brady, he said he had been worried sick and that Chloe had returned to the mansion with Holly. Lying, Nicole said she had needed to leave town to check on her brother, Brandon, but he was fine. Nicole added that she had driven to Chicago, and her phone had not been working well. Fighting tears, Nicole said she would stay overnight in Chicago. As a relieved Brady said he had been worried that Nicole was still mad about their fight, Eric leaned in close to Nicole and kissed her shoulder.
"I don't want to fight with you anymore," Brady said. Nicole agreed. When Brady said he loved Nicole, she responded, "Me too." After ending the call, Nicole started to cry. Nicole said she felt terrible. Eric hugged Nicole tightly to comfort her, and he whispered that he was sorry that Nicole had been forced to lie to Brady. Eric turned Nicole toward him and said he was not sorry that she was there with him.
"Being in your arms feels so right tonight," Nicole said. Nicole said they could worry about letting go of one another in the morning. Eric kissed Nicole, and the two made love again.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Brady apologized to Chloe for grilling her about Nicole. As Chloe started to leave, Brady asked her to stay and talk. When Chloe rambled, Brady asked her why she was jumpy. Chloe explained that she was nervous about her new club. With a wave goodbye, Choe hurried out. Brady raised a suspicious eyebrow.
Kate tries to get answers out of Clyde> Kate tries to get answers out of Clyde
Eric and Nicole woke up in each other's arms and agreed that what had happened the previous night had been incredible. "But now it's morning, and...it's back to the real world," Nicole fretted. Acknowledging that Brady deserved total honesty, Nicole decided to head back to Salem and give him just that -- then start a new life with Eric and Holly at the farmhouse, where Brady wouldn't have to worry about running into them all the time.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Sheila cornered Bonnie in the foyer and demanded her promised payoff. Bonnie reminded Sheila that patience was a virtue. Sheila countered that "money buys happiness" was a better saying, prompting Bonnie to point out that there was no such saying. Sheila was skeptical -- about that and every other claim Bonnie had made lately -- so Bonnie reluctantly agreed to start being more transparent with her.
Sheila was surprised to learn that Bonnie was planning to blackmail Victor with incriminating information she had gleaned while listening in on one of his recent phone conversations. Bonnie clarified that she wanted Sheila to blackmail Victor, but Sheila refused to cross a man who, just a few months earlier, had considered having his own brother murdered. "Plus, this is your mess," Sheila pointed out, threateningly adding that she would be happy to show Bonnie how to properly blackmail someone if necessary. Getting the hint, Bonnie promised to start blackmailing Victor that very day.
Meanwhile, in the living room, Brady again tried to convince Victor that Sonny wasn't fit to be Titan's CEO. When Brady argued that Sonny wasn't in the right state of mind to handle such a demanding job after what had happened at the double wedding, Victor countered that Brady hadn't exactly been in the best state of mind himself lately.
Brady grew defensive when Victor started questioning whether Nicole had really spent the night in Chicago with Brandon. "Nicole's helping her brother out there, and you spin it that she's cheating on me?" Brady asked incredulously. "I didn't say that...[but] if I were you, I'd make sure that she's not pulling a fast one," Victor replied.
Brady wondered if Victor was ever going to acknowledge that Nicole was no longer the woman she'd been years earlier. "I don't care how many good deeds she does or how many lullabies she sings to Holly; Nicole Walker will always be Nicole Walker," Victor insisted. "Until she's Nicole Black," Brady countered.
Victor warned that although Brady had done a lot for Nicole -- and she was certainly grateful to him for all of it -- gratitude and love were two entirely different things. Brady insisted that Nicole would never betray him, but Victor still had doubts. "You're a good person, Brady -- sometimes too good. I'd hate to think that Nicole would take advantage of that," Victor mused.
After Victor walked away, Brady went to the bar and poured himself a shot of whiskey. Before Brady managed to gulp down the drink, Bonnie entered the living room and asked, "Aren't you the one who's supposed to be on the wagon?" Brady claimed that he had been about to take the drink to the kitchen for disposal -- something the maid should have done the previous night.
After promising to talk to Sheila about the oversight, Bonnie changed the subject, wondering where Victor was hiding. Brady reported that Victor had gone to the Horton Town Square for breakfast. When Brady started asking questions about Sonny's state of mind, Bonnie abruptly excused herself, claiming that she was worried about her baby boy and wanted to check on him.
As soon as the coast was clear, Brady gulped down the shot of whiskey then contacted Brandon and casually asked if Nicole was still with him in Chicago. Confused, Brandon clarified that Nicole hadn't visited him recently. Brady laughed off the matter as a misunderstanding then quickly ended the call and contacted Nicole, who was still in bed with Eric. Brady tried to get Nicole to tell him more about her spur-of-the-moment trip to Chicago, but she dodged his questions and promised him that she would be home soon. He started throwing things in frustration after she hung up on him.
Bonnie found Victor in the town square and cheerfully pointed out to him that it was a beautiful day. "Not anymore," he dryly replied. She took a seat at his table, seized a sausage from his plate of food, and bit into it before trying to start a conversation with him. He abruptly excused himself, muttering that he had suddenly lost his appetite -- and had other things to do, anyway.
"Some people would think you're being rude," Bonnie noted. "Some people would be right," Victor countered. He started to leave, but she stopped him and cut to the chase, revealing, "I know what you did last summer."
At Statesville, Adrienne, who had finally finished her second round of solitary confinement, breathed a sigh of relief when she spotted Hattie in the recreation room, reading a magazine. "Marlena! Oh, thank God you're here! I knew someone would figure it out!" Adrienne excitedly declared, hugging her friend tightly. When Hattie complained that she was having trouble breathing, Adrienne released her -- and realized that she was wearing a prison uniform. "Oh, my God! Oh, Marlena! Did that Hattie Adams do to you what Bonnie Lockhart did to me? Did that bitch Hattie switch places with you?" Adrienne asked.
"Hey! I'm that bitch Hattie!" Hattie defensively clarified. Confused, Adrienne wondered how Hattie had wound up back in prison so soon after being released. Hattie wasn't eager to discuss the matter but agreed to do so after Adrienne pointed out that nothing ever remained a secret for long inside the prison, anyway. "I was impersonatin' Dr. Marlena Evans," Hattie revealed.
Realizing that Hattie and Bonnie had teamed up to take over their look-alikes' lives, Adrienne accused Hattie of being the mastermind, reasoning that Bonnie was too stupid to formulate such a complicated scheme on her own. Hattie clarified that Anjelica had been the brains of the operation. "She was after Justin...'til she dropped dead," Hattie explained.
Stunned, Adrienne wondered if Hattie and Bonnie had killed Anjelica. Hattie defensively clarified, while performing a dramatic reenactment, that Anjelica had suffered a heart attack. "God, I hated that woman...but I never wished her dead," Adrienne muttered. "Well, I'm not so sorry she's dead," Hattie stressed, adding that Anjelica had shown her true colors in the moments leading up to her death.
Adrienne didn't understand why Anjelica had seen her as an obstacle that had needed to be removed in order to clear a path to Justin, so Hattie helpfully explained that Anjelica's plan had been to let Bonnie seduce Justin, posing as the love of his life, then break his heart so he would be left vulnerable to a rebound relationship with an interested ex who had never gotten over him. "And then Anjelica dies, and Bonnie goes rogue," Adrienne realized. Adrienne assumed that Bonnie was after Justin's money, but Hattie clarified that Victor was Bonnie's true target. Hattie apologized to Adrienne and promised never to hurt an innocent person again.
Adrienne insisted that Hattie needed to help her get out of Statesville, but Hattie wasn't particularly interested in plotting yet another prison break. Hattie advised Adrienne to hope for an early parole instead. Adrienne grabbed Hattie and angrily protested, "You're part of the reason I'm here, [so] you're gonna help me get out of here [and] back to Salem -- before that woman destroys my family!"
Meanwhile, Clyde was led into the warden's office for a meeting with Kate. "I don't suppose this means that the warden's now allowing conjugal visits from ex-lovers, does it?" he asked hopefully.
After ensuring that Clyde was securely handcuffed to a chair, the warden left Kate in the protection of a guard who had perched himself in a corner of the room. "Still gorgeous," Clyde told Kate. "Still a murderous, low-life, lying piece of psycho trash," she countered. "Nice to see you haven't lost that mouth, either," he continued, prompting the guard to intervene.
Clyde assured the guard that there was nothing to worry about then turned his attention back to Kate, guessing that she hadn't traveled all the way to Statesville just to let him know that she missed him. Kate explained that she actually wanted to talk to Clyde about Ben. Surprised to learn that Ben had escaped from Bayview and had crashed the double wedding to announce that Will was still alive, Clyde proudly declared that his son had clearly inherited his knack for shaking things up. Clyde tried to hint that he wasn't going to answer Kate's questions about Ben's claim without some sort of incentive, but she made it clear that she wasn't going to negotiate with him.
"If I ever meant anything to you, please...please tell me what you know," Kate begged Clyde, prompting him to observe that in such moments, he could still see the woman he'd fallen in love with -- and the heart she usually hid from the world. "[But] the reality is...you are a bitch on wheels," he continued. She calmly agreed, "Especially when it comes to protecting my family, 'cause then I'll do anything...which is why I'm here."
"Lucas is clinging to the hope that he's going to see Will again, and if that turns out to be nothing but a lie, then it will destroy him," Kate explained. Clyde claimed that he had simply said what had needed to be said in order to ease Ben's pain, but Kate found that hard to believe, reasoning that if that had truly been the goal, Clyde would have claimed that all of Ben's victims were still alive instead of singling out Will.
When Clyde continued stonewalling Kate, she revealed, while fighting back tears, that Lucas was drinking again -- and had nearly died recently as a result. "You know what he said? He said that he's a drunk because of me -- [that] I did this to him. So now I watch him suffer, and I hate that I couldn't be the mother that he needed. I can't go back -- I can't change the past -- but I'll be damned if I won't do absolutely everything I have to do to make up for that -- to ease his pain now," Kate vowed, getting more emotional with each passing second.
"How many times did you take a belt to Ben when he was a boy, huh? Because I know you regret that, Clyde. I know you love Ben just as much as I love Lucas. But they're broken. And we blame ourselves for it. And we want to fix them...but we can't. So...sometimes we say to ourselves that we can tell that lie that's gonna make everything better, you know? Just for the moment, at least," Kate continued. Assuming that was what Clyde had done for Ben at Bayview, Kate stressed, "I know that you meant well, but there's a whole lot of people now who are living for that false hope, and I really think we have to make it right."
Somewhat moved, Clyde hesitantly confirmed, "I, uh...I have a world of regret...for the damage I did to my boy. And you're right -- I'd do anything to fix what's been broken."
"But...when I told Ben that Will is still alive...I did so because it's the God's honest truth," Clyde continued. Stunned, Kate wondered why Clyde believed that. "I have it on good authority," Clyde explained. "I struck up a conversation one day with another inmate. When I introduced myself, he asked me if I was related to Ben Weston, the Necktie Killer. I said that was my boy, and that's when he told me that Ben didn't kill Will -- that Will is still alive," Clyde continued. Kate tried to dismiss that as nothing more than prison-yard small talk, but Clyde insisted, "No, no, no -- I looked in his eyes, and I saw the truth. This man was sincere."
"Who is it? Who is this sincere inmate who says that Will is alive?" Kate asked.
At the Brady Pub, Marlena explained to Roman that Ben was convinced that Will was still alive because Clyde had told him that during a conversation they'd had at Bayview. "Now this is starting to make sense -- it's just more of [Clyde's] crazy!" Roman mused. Roman got upset when Marlena revealed that Kate had gone to Statesville to question Clyde. "He tried to kill Kate more than once! Whose bright idea was it for her to confront him?" Roman demanded to know. Marlena admitted that Sonny had asked Kate for help but was quick to add that it had been Kate's decision in the end. "Well, of course it was. That woman..." Roman grumbled.
"Yeah. Well, 'that woman' was somebody you, uh -- you kissed recently," Marlena pointed out. Roman tried to dismiss that as nothing more than a misunderstanding, but Marlena suspected that he had genuine feelings for Kate. "[And that] really is okay, you know. I mean, it isn't like the two of you don't have a little history," Marlena noted. Roman reminded Marlena that Kate was married to Andre. Marlena countered that Kate and Andre didn't have a real marriage, but Roman maintained, "Real or not, Kate's not available."
Changing the subject, Roman worriedly asked, "Shouldn't Kate be back by now?" Marlena reminded Roman that Statesville wasn't exactly within walking distance. Maintaining that Kate never should have agreed to visit Clyde, of all people, on her own, Roman wondered what had compelled her to do so. Marlena explained that Lucas -- who had already fallen off the wagon after Adrienne had ended their relationship and hadn't really stopped drinking since then -- wasn't handling Ben's claim about Will very well. "Kate loves that boy so much. Of course she would walk herself into the lion's den [for him]," Roman conceded.
Kate eventually entered the pub and filled Roman and Marlena in on Clyde's story about the inmate who had claimed that Will was still alive. "It's someone we all know," Kate revealed.
A name from the past adds to a mystery
Julie and Maggie emerged from Doug's Place and discovered that Chloe had just finished covering its sign with a handmade one that gave the establishment formerly known as Club TBD yet another new name: Club Chloe.
Horrified, Julie demanded to know what was going on. Chloe explained with a shrug that she had simply made an executive decision to change the name of the club. When Julie protested that Chloe couldn't do such a thing, Chloe pointed out that Julie had done it first. "Tell [Chloe] she's being ridiculous!" Julie begged Maggie. "Tell [Julie] I'm right!" Chloe urged Maggie. "Have a nice day, ladies," Maggie diplomatically replied before rushing off.
Taking the argument indoors, Julie said she had been under the impression that Chloe had understood, back when they had decided to pool their resources and purchase the club together, that it would be renamed Doug's Place as a nod to Doug's former nightclub. Chloe insisted that Julie had never made that clear. Julie countered that Chloe had probably just zoned out during that part of their conversation. Chloe doubted that, guessing it was more likely that Julie had simply expected to be able to walk all over her after finalizing their deal. Outraged, Julie snapped, "You don't know who you're talking to!"
After calming down, Julie continued, "I know it was a bit...impetuous...when we bought this place -- it all happened so fast, there was no time to talk things through -- [so] Chloe, dear, if you have had a change of heart, I will find a way [to buy you out]. I'll be more than happy to!" Chloe rejected the offer, insisting that Julie wasn't going to take a dream away from her. "Then we're stuck with each other," Julie grumbled.
After Julie and Chloe realized that they were going to have to stop bickering with each other and start figuring out how to work together, they began discussing potential names for the club, hoping to reach some sort of agreement. Julie argued that Doug's Place was the best name for the club -- a no-brainer option, in fact -- because it had an aura of class and evoked beautiful memories of Salem's history. Chloe countered that it was better for the club's new name to have an aura of fun, coolness, and hipness, since that was where the money was in the present day, but Julie dismissively insisted that Club Chloe sounded like a name for a diva's vanity project. Conjuring up a few tears, Julie added that if Chloe was truly intent on changing the club's name, she'd have to be the one to break the news to Doug -- and break a true gentleman's heart in the process.
Chloe didn't fall for the act, knowing that Julie was simply trying to guilt her into changing her mind. "That would only work if you had a heart -- or a conscience," Julie grumbled. Scoffing, Chloe wondered if Julie truly believed it was appropriate to talk to a partner in such a condescending manner. "I'm a passionate woman! I'm passionate about this!" Julie unapologetically explained. "So am I!" Chloe countered.
"[This] doesn't even have to do with the name; it has to do with the fact that you think you can steamroll me! We bought this place together, fifty-fifty. It's just as much my dream as it is yours, and I won't be treated like I don't count!" Chloe continued. Sighing, Julie grudgingly conceded that Chloe was right -- and promised, even more grudgingly, to start treating her partner as an equal from that point forward.
Satisfied, Chloe turned her attention to a pile of fabric swatches on a nearby table and asked, "What's all this stuff?" Julie hesitantly explained that she was thinking of redecorating the back office. Having already received input from Maggie earlier, Julie forced herself to ask Chloe, "Which ones do you like?" Julie rolled her eyes and cringed when Chloe picked up a yellow swatch and started raving about it.
At the Horton Town Square, Bonnie revealed that she had eavesdropped on Victor's recent phone conversation with Xander -- and knew, as a result, that Xander had nearly killed Deimos at Victor's request.
Victor assumed that Adrienne was just lashing out because she was upset about the fact that Sonny had been a suspect in Deimos' murder investigation, so Bonnie played along, insisting that Victor should have done more to help her baby boy during that whole ordeal. "So this is your misguided idea of revenge? I don't care how much Sonny and Justin love you; if you mention one word of this to anyone..." Victor began. "You'll...what, send Xander after me, too?" Bonnie concluded. Sighing, Victor wondered what had gotten into Adrienne lately. "I apologized for Sonny. I apologized to Sonny. Give it a rest!" Victor added.
Bonnie assured Victor that she would never share his secret with anyone because they were family. "Loyalty is very important to this family," Victor stressed. "And you have mine," Bonnie sweetly replied. "There's just one tiny thing I need you to do for me in return -- divorce Maggie and marry me," Bonnie continued.
Stunned, Victor declared that Adrienne had gone completely around the bend and needed to seek professional help immediately. Bonnie insisted that wasn't true, adding that Victor had simply captured her heart. "A few months ago, you were gonna marry Lucas. Then you didn't know what you wanted to do. Then you were gonna marry Lucas again. Then you were gonna marry Justin. Now you and I are the match of the century. Maggie was right about you -- you're a fickle, heartless wench," Victor concluded. "Well, Maggie does know a thing or two about being heartless, now, doesn't she?" Bonnie countered.
Victor insisted that he loved Maggie and wasn't going to divorce her. Bonnie warned that Victor needed to keep her happy in order to avoid having to pay for plotting to kill Deimos, but Victor dismissively countered that no one would believe Adrienne's claim without proof. "All I need to do is take it to our shiny new police commissioner, Hope Brady, and let her prove it. I bet she'd just love a new lead in this high-profile, unsolved murder case," Bonnie mused, adding that Hope wouldn't be able to give Victor a break, despite the fact that they were family, because people were watching closely for any signs of further corruption within the Salem Police Department. "Really think about it, Victor -- do you want to spend the rest of your life in Statesville Prison...or would you rather spend your life in wedded bliss with me?" Bonnie continued.
"What's going on here?" Maggie asked as she approached Victor and Bonnie's table. Bonnie cheerfully replied that, coincidentally, she and Victor had just been talking about Maggie. "[I'm] getting the feeling that it wasn't a pleasant conversation. You two look so serious," Maggie observed. Bonnie dismissively insisted that Victor was always serious, and she added that they had simply been talking about Sonny and the "Will nonsense."
Bonnie abruptly excused herself, guessing that Victor and Maggie had a lot to discuss. "What on earth is going on?" Maggie asked Victor once the coast was clear.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Brady approached the bar and started to pour himself a shot of whiskey -- just as Nicole entered the living room. "Welcome home. We were worried about you last night," he said as he casually returned the open decanter of whiskey to its place and stepped away from the bar. She took note of where he had been standing but said nothing about it, instead apologizing for having been gone the previous night.
When Brady started making pointed remarks about Nicole's trip to Chicago to see Brandon, she stopped him and hesitantly admitted that she had actually spent the night at Eric's farmhouse. She quickly realized that wasn't news to Brady, who confirmed that he had reached that conclusion after talking to Brandon earlier that day. "You dumped your daughter off with Chloe -- a daughter that we fought really hard to get back -- so you could go have a romantic rendezvous with my brother?" Brady asked incredulously.
"It wasn't like that," Nicole insisted, adding that she had simply gone to the farmhouse to convince Eric to return to Salem, a place he never should have left in the first place. "What did you do to convince him?" Brady demanded to know. "I slept with him," Nicole hesitantly admitted.
Not particularly surprised, Brady angrily pointed out that Nicole had repeatedly assured him that nothing was going on between her and Eric. Nicole said that had been true until the previous night, when Eric had admitted his true feelings to her. "And then you hit the sack, right? That's when you did it? All that passion just overwhelmed the two of you, [and] you had to do it?" Brady bitterly concluded.
Brady assumed at first that the conversation had reached the point where Nicole was going to beg for him to forgive her and give her another chance, but he slowly realized, to his dismay, that it was heading in another direction. "I want to be with him. I love...Eric, and I -- I want to be with him," Nicole hesitantly confirmed.
Nicole stressed that she had never meant to hurt Brady and would always be grateful for the many things he had done for her. "Like covering up the fact that you murdered Deimos," Brady pointed out, adding that he was probably lucky she hadn't killed him, too, instead of just cheating on him.
Nicole encouraged Brady to direct every bit of his hatred and anger at her, insisting that Eric wasn't to blame for anything that had happened. Brady didn't find it particularly comforting to know that his brother was already feeling guilty enough about sleeping with his girlfriend. Brady bitterly admitted that he had dreamed of building a life with Nicole and their kids -- the kind of life he'd always wanted. "And the joke is on me -- it's on me -- because you're just another lying bitch!" Brady spat, comparing Nicole to Kristen and Theresa.
Nicole insisted that she had owed Brady the truth, even if it had been painful for him to hear. He sarcastically agreed that she deserved a gold star for the integrity she had shown when she had gone straight from his brother's bed to his place to confess her sin to him. Ignoring the dig, she tearfully stressed that she would always remember him as a kind, courageous man who had made her feel safe. She revealed that she was planning to take her daughter and move to the farmhouse so he wouldn't have to worry about seeing her around town with his brother all the time. "So thoughtful of the ex-porn star and the ex-priest," he mused.
Nicole pointed out that Brady deserved a woman who could love him with her whole heart and soul. "The way you love my brother?" he concluded. "Damn, it, Nic, you're right -- I deserve someone much better than you. Now get out of my sight!" he added, shooting her a look of total disgust. She started to say something else to him then changed her mind and walked away.
Alone in the foyer, Nicole contacted Eric to let him know that she had just finished talking to his brother. "It was awful...but it's over, thank God, and now we're free to be together," she assured him.
Meanwhile, in the living room, Brady seethed with rage -- until an odd smirk suddenly stretched across his face.
John entered the Brady Pub while Roman and Marlena were waiting for Kate to identify the inmate who had convinced Clyde that Will was still alive. "John, thank you for coming over. I wanted to -- well, before I talk to Sonny about the possibility that Will could be alive, I wanted to run what I learned by you...because you have history with the inmate that Clyde spoke with -- a long and unpleasant history," Kate explained.
"I don't like the sound of that," Marlena fretted. "All the more reason not to trust [this guy]," Roman added. After allowing for the possibility that the inmate could indeed be lying, Kate revealed, "[It's] Stefano's old cohort in crime -- Dr. Wilhelm Rolf."
John, Marlena, and Roman were all equally stunned to learn that Rolf, of all people, was involved in the matter. "[He] saved your life once," John reminded Roman. "And almost ended yours in the process," Roman reminded John.
John wondered how Rolf had ended up in Statesville in the first place. "I don't have the details of that, but I do know it was [the result of] one of his mad-scientist experiments gone wrong," Kate answered. Kate explained that Rolf had told Clyde that Will was still alive after realizing Clyde's connection to the Necktie Killer during a casual conversation Clyde, not Rolf, had initiated. "Rolf claims that he's the one who revived Will," Kate continued.
Roman protested that Gabi had tried to revive Will herself but had been unable to do so, and Marlena added that Lucas and Sami had later seen Will's body in the morgue. Kate couldn't really explain away those facts -- or offer anything else -- because, according to Clyde, Rolf had never revealed how he had revived Will, when he had revived Will, why he had revived Will, or what he had done with Will afterward. Kate stressed that Clyde had sworn, at the end of their conversation, that he had told her everything he knew, and she added that he was absolutely convinced that Rolf had told him nothing but the truth.
"Well, it's outrageous!" Marlena declared. "And yet we want to believe it, right?" Kate countered. Roman wasn't ready to trust Clyde or Rolf just yet, but Kate pointed out that neither person really had a reason to make up such a tale. John conceded Kate's point but reminded everyone that Rolf had supposedly left Salem years earlier. "Why would he just happen to be back here when Ben attacked Will? I mean, [that's] highly unlikely," John mused. "And why would he take it upon himself to [revive Will]?" Roman added.
"Well, he wouldn't -- not on his own. [But if] he was still following orders from Stefano..." Marlena pointed out, adding that Stefano had, after all, still been living in Salem at the time of Will's death. Roman argued that if Stefano had figured out the Necktie Killer's true identity and had revived one of that person's victims for whatever reason, he would have also gone to the police afterward to identify the culprit, since Chad had been a prime suspect in those murders for most of the investigation. "Well, that's true to a point, Roman...but you've gotta remember, we're talking about Stefano here," John countered, adding that Stefano had always been obsessed with Marlena -- and had also always enjoyed playing God with people's lives.
"So Stefano had Rolf revive Will and then kept it a secret from everyone just to get revenge on Marlena?" Kate concluded. "That is not beyond the realm of possibility," Roman conceded. Fighting back tears, Marlena wondered if John truly believed that Will could still be alive and out there somewhere. Shrugging, John pointed out that Rolf had certainly proven, on more than one occasion, that he was capable of pulling off things that were seemingly impossible. Nodding, Kate agreed that Rolf had once revived John and therefore could have theoretically done the same thing to Will. "Do you think? Is our grandson alive?" Marlena asked Kate hopefully.
Roman remained skeptical, maintaining that Clyde and Rolf weren't exactly the most trustworthy people in the world. John urged Roman to think of all the things Rolf had managed to do for Stefano in the past. Marlena helpfully began the list with Hattie, the woman Rolf had turned into an exact replica of her, and Kate added Cassie and Rex, the twins Rolf had genetically engineered with Kate and Roman's DNA. Kate continued that Rolf had later brainwashed Cassie and Rex, prompting Marlena to add that Rolf had also brainwashed John more than once. John pointed out that Rolf even had a history of putting chips in people's brains, which was how he had managed to convince Hope that she was Princess Gina. "Okay, so this guy has pulled off some diabolically crazy stuff," Roman finally conceded.
John wanted to go to Statesville right away to question Rolf, believing that was the only way to figure out what was really going on, but Kate clarified that Rolf had actually been released from prison the previous year -- and the warden had no idea what had happened to him afterward. Nodding, John stepped aside to contact someone at the ISA, hoping they would be able to track Rolf down. Meanwhile, Roman went to the kitchen to finish getting the pub ready to open for another day of business.
Alone with Kate, Marlena tearfully asked again, "Do you think this is possible?" Kate admitted that she had been absolutely convinced that Clyde was lying about Will being alive -- until she had realized that Rolf was involved. "But we can't get our hopes up -- not yet," Kate stressed. "I can't help it," Marlena admitted, adding that she couldn't stop thinking about what it would be like to see Will again, hear his laugh again, and hold him in her arms again. Roman returned in time to assure Marlena that if Will truly was alive, they would never let him go again. Seconds later, John ended his phone call and announced, "The ISA has agreed [to help]. The hunt's on for Rolf."
Kate excused herself so she could track Sonny down and let him know what was going on. John decided to look for Paul, knowing that the new developments would be tough for him to hear. Roman and Marlena agreed that it was time to finally fill Sami in, too. Sighing, Marlena hesitantly dialed Sami's number and began, when Sami answered, "Hi, sweetie. It's Mom. Uh...I've got something important to tell you. I think you need to sit down."
Sami puts an end to Paul and John's plot plot
After Nicole went upstairs to pack, a heartbroken Brady marched over to the liquor cart in the Kiriakis living room. Brady gulped down a large glass of whiskey. When Nicole returned to say goodbye, Brady scowled. Nicole said she hoped that Brady would be able to see her in the future and not hurt, but Brady growled that he did not believe that Nicole cared about his feelings.
"I know all you care about is being with Eric. Go be with him," Brady said dismissively. With tears in her eyes, Nicole stressed that she would always care about Brady. Frustrated, Brady yelled at Nicole to stop talking. Nicole told Brady that she had been in denial about what she had wanted from Eric because he had killed Daniel. Nicole cried out that she loved Brady but only as a friend. Leaning close, Brady said, "Honey, I'm not your friend."
When Nicole suggested that Brady could eventually reconcile with his brother, a visibly angry Brady said, "Why don't we all sit down together at Thanksgiving? Hmm? I can tell my brother how grateful I am that he is fornicating with my slut of an ex-girlfriend. That would be a big laugh at the table. Well, don't bother because that's not going to happen, Nicole. Because you and Eric are never going to get together at Thanksgiving. Or ever again."
Confused, Nicole asked Brady what he meant. Brady said Nicole could leave with Eric, but she would pay a price for that choice. Nicole said she did not want to live a lie. Brady scoffed at the notion and said that Nicole had been lying for months. Brady told Nicole that she should follow her heart, but if she left with Eric, Brady would ensure that Nicole went to prison for murder. In shock, Nicole gasped and asked Brady if he was blackmailing her. Brady confirmed the charge.
When Nicole noted that Brady did not have proof, Brady pulled the cursed necklace out of the desk drawer. Brady reminded Nicole that the police believed the killer was in possession of the necklace. With a smirk, Brady added that Nicole's fingerprints were on it. Nicole countered that Brady's fingerprints were on the necklace, as well. With a shrug, Brady said Nicole's confession would prove she was the culprit. Nicole said she had only confessed to Brady. Brady held up his cell phone and played Nicole's confession that he had secretly recorded.
"You never had any intention of letting me go, did you?" Nicole asked. "You're not a hostage, Nic. You want to go be with Eric, there's the door," Brady countered. Brady continued, "I literally had my heart ripped out of my chest because of that son of a bitch. And it's happening again to me." Nicole told Brady that he was not being fair to Eric. Brady argued that he and Deimos had proven that Holly was her daughter, and she had repaid Deimos by murdering him.
Nicole argued that Deimos had been a monster. Brady countered that he had nearly given up his life to help Nicole stay with Holly. Quietly, Nicole said she was sorry. Brady told Nicole that he did not know how to tell his son that Nicole and Holly were leaving. Nicole asked Brady if he was blackmailing her to stay even though she was in love with another man. Brady said he was not interested in a relationship with her. When Nicole asked Brady what he wanted, he said that he wanted Nicole to break Eric's heart like Nicole had broken his.
When Nicole asked how, Brady told Nicole that she was not allowed to tell Eric the truth. Brady told Nicole to dump Eric and leave town with Holly. "My God, Brady. Who are you?" Nicole said as she stared at Brady in horror. "I'm exactly who you turned me into. You, Kristen, Theresa, and every other whore who said they loved me and then did nothing but lie to me," Brady said. Brady told Nicole to obey or go to prison. Nicole's phone rang, and she saw Eric's name on the caller ID. Brady noted that her lover was waiting for her. As Nicole stared at her phone, Brady asked for her decision.
In the DiMera living room, J.J. visited Abigail to give her a wedding present. As Abigail fussed over Thomas, J.J. congratulated his sister on her marriage. Abigail worried aloud about Sonny. With a nod, J.J. said that he'd seen how pained Sonny had been when he had confronted Ben at the station. As talk turned to Ben, J.J. told Abigail that Hope had suspended him from his job. J.J. explained that he had lost his temper and pulled his gun on Ben. Shaking his head, J.J. said he had acted stupidly, and Hope had done the right thing. J.J. added that as Hope had dealt with her first disciplinary case in her tenure as commissioner, she'd been within her rights to make an example of him.
Hoping to cheer up her brother, Abigail opened her present and found a toy train inside. J.J. explained that he had not been able to decide on a gift for the couple, so he had instead decided to give a gift to Thomas. Smiling, Abigail asked J.J. if it was the same train he had carried around as a child. J.J. explained that grandpa Bill had given it to him, and Bill's grandfather had given it to Bill. Thankful, Abigail hugged her brother. Abigail said she would hold the toy on loan until J.J. had his own children. J.J. declined stating that Thomas was the next generation of their family.
In the town square, John informed Paul that there was credible information to support Ben's claim about Will. When John told Paul the details, he said the story sounded far-fetched. John said that the story was similar to things that Dr. Rolf had done in the past. John explained that Dr. Rolf had resurrected him in the past. The smile fell away from Paul's face. "Never say never where the DiMeras are concerned," John said.
Paul worried aloud about Sonny's reaction. Frustrated, Paul argued that they could settle the question if Lucas would give permission for the exhumation, but John countered that it was a lot to ask of a grieving parent. Paul suggested Sami, but John said that Sami was a loose canon, and it could get ugly with Lucas. With a nod, Paul said their only option was to exhume the body without permission. John disagreed. John explained that unlike Stefano, Will's family objected. Upset, Paul did not want to wait because he was worried it would drive a wedge between him and Sonny.
"As strong as I know our love is, I can't compete with a ghost," Paul whispered. Paul begged John to help him. Paul added that they would be respectful of the body and that the family deserved to know the truth. As John silently thought about it, Paul added that they did not need to tell anyone until after they learned the results of the test. "When do we do this?" John asked.
At the police station, Lani congratulated Hope on her promotion to commissioner. Hope told Lani that the ISA was working to track down Dr. Rolf. When Lani asked if the story was possible, Hope said she knew Dr. Rolf enough to know that the story could be true. Lani changed the subject to J.J. Lani said she understood why Hope had suspended him, but because he was her partner, she needed to tell Hope that J.J. regretted his actions with Ben. Lani told Hope that Ben had said horrible things to J.J. to provoke him. Lani urged Hope to give J.J. a second chance.
As Hope started to respond, J.J. walked in and apologized for interrupting. J.J. apologized for threatening Ben and putting Hope in an awkward position on her first night as commissioner. As Hope stared at J.J., he told her she had made the right decision, and he promised not to make the same mistake again. As J.J. turned to leave, Hope stopped him.
Hope warned J.J. that he would be fired if he did not follow the rules. Hope added that she did not want to be accused of favoritism. As J.J. nodded, Hope said that the department was short-handed, and they needed J.J. reinstated. Hope handed J.J. the case file for the Deimos Kiriakis murder. J.J. promised Hope that he would do his best. "Don't make me regret this decision," Hope said.
At the farmhouse cabin, Marlena visited with Eric to talk about Will. Marlena told Eric about her call with Sami, and she worried aloud that she had called Sami too soon to tell her about Will. Eric assured Marlena that she had done the right thing. Marlena informed Eric that Sami was on her way home. Smiling, Eric said he would be waiting at the farmhouse for Sami if she wanted to visit. Marlena encouraged Eric to visit Salem for dinner to celebrate his and Sami's birthday. Eric thanked Marlena, but he declined. Eric explained that he and Nicole were back together.
With little enthusiasm, Marlena congratulated Eric on his reconciliation with Nicole. Marlena said she knew that Eric had been fighting his feelings for Nicole. With a sad smile, Eric said he was happy with Nicole. His smile fading, Eric said he was upset that they had hurt Brady. When Marlena asked about Brady, Eric said that Nicole had explained that Brady had taken it fairly well. Eric said that he hoped that Brady knew that Eric loved him.
With a nod, Marlena remarked, "We just can't ever control who we love. Just how we behave. You and Nicole, I mean you've been in love for a very long time. Believe me, I do understand those feelings." Eric thanked Marlena for understanding. Marlena said she hoped Eric and Brady could work things out eventually. Eric countered that he hoped his relationship with Nicole would not hurt Marlena's relationship with John. Marlena told Eric to be happy and not worry about her relationship.
With a frown, Marlena noted that the situation was similar to the love triangle between Sonny, Will, and Paul. Marlena said she wanted Sonny and Paul to be happy, but she could not help but hope that Will was alive. As Marlena teared up, Eric hugged her tightly. Marlena promised Eric that she would keep him updated on the news about Will.
At the cemetery, Paul and John stood over Will's grave, preparing to exhume the body. Marlena called John's phone. With a sigh, John declined the call. Paul apologized to John for placing him in an awkward position with Marlena. John noted that Marlena would find out soon enough, and he handed a shovel to Paul. Paul apologized to Will for disturbing his grave. As John started to dig, Sami grabbed the shovel handle. "Don't even think about it," Sami growled.