Liz arrived at the police station to beg Ric to abandon his heavy workload and join her for dinner. He was about to agree, but a rabid Luke interrupted and insisted that Ric look at the videotape he had with him. They popped in the tape and saw Scott Baldwin on it, very much alive. Scott told Luke that he had used the fire to escape an Internal Affairs investigation of his wrongdoings and that he had planned to make off with the treasure, but it had been stolen. He promised to stop in to see Laura before he took a tour of the world, angering Luke and prompting him to warn Ric that he'd kill Scott if Laura were disturbed. Ric reopened an autopsy on the body from the hotel and prepared Liz again for it to be Zander.
Carly blackmailed Alexis into representing her in the custody fight for Michael and Morgan. Alexis balked at the idea, but Carly promised to tell Sonny the truth about Kristina's parentage unless Alexis got her the boys. Alexis told Carly she would only do it if Carly played by Alexis' rules, and Carly agreed. Alexis then promptly told Carly to get rid of Alcazar. Carly sadly relayed the news to Alcazar upon his return, and although he resisted at first, he understood and promised to help her in any way he could. Alcazar returned later with an additional offer to help Carly win back her kids: he was giving up his illegal business for her.
Sonny told Sam that he was ending their relationship before he hurt her. Sam protested that she wasn't looking for a commitment and that she liked him but was not interested in love. Sonny believed her and agreed to contact her later on the boat. They kissed in the hall out of sight of the boys, but Justus walked up on them and was not thrilled at what he saw. He warned Sonny that the custody battle would get ugly and that Sonny would be fighting for his life. He demanded that Sonny end both his relationship with Sam and any illegal business activities if he had any hope of getting his sons.
Jason told Alcazar that he would not work with Alcazar under any circumstances, even for the sake of Michael and Morgan. Jason blamed Alcazar for the mess the Corinthos family was in. Once Alcazar left, Jason yelled at Meyer because of the delayed shipment on the docks and was told that the dock leasing agreement was having problems. Jason went to the penthouse to discuss the matter with Sonny and said he thought Faith was behind it. Sonny wasn't so sure. He considered that Alcazar might be behind the problems and ordered Jason to go to the dock leasing company and find out who was in charge.
Emily was disgusted by Helena's continued attempts to break her and Nikolas up. Helena insisted that Emily and Nikolas split up and warned them both that Cassadines destroyed those they loved. While Emily thought Helena was being melodramatic, Nikolas knew she spoke the truth. Emily decided that she didn't care about a potential curse on the Cassadines; she would be with Nikolas no matter what, but it was clear that Nikolas was not convinced. A call from Lucky interrupted them. Lucky revealed that Zander was the body that had been found in the hotel. Despite Emily's protests, Nikolas decided he had to tell Ric about his part in Zander's death.
Maxie begged Georgie for money to fund her trip to Canada. She said that she was going after Zander, who was wounded and could only be helped by her. Georgie thought she was crazy, but Maxie said she had to do it. They carried their argument to Kelly's, where Tom, Dillon, and Sage were watching a report of Ric telling the public that Scott Baldwin was alive and that Zander was the body that had been found in the hotel.
A devastated Maxie refused to believe that Zander was dead. She raced to the police station to get information and happened upon Nikolas turning himself in for locking Zander in the furnace room. Nikolas made it clear that he had only detained Zander, so Ric had no problem with letting him go. Maxie ran out of the station to be comforted by Georgie. As Nikolas and Emily began to leave, however, Ric stopped them and told them the autopsy report had just been delivered with the information that Zander had been killed by a blow to the head from a blunt object before the fire even began. Nikolas swore he hadn't struck Zander with anything, but Ric arrested him for murder.
Jax found Sam on the docks, and the two began to argue again about her relationship with Sonny. Jax told her that she was so afraid of commitment that she only went after things that were just out of reach and that couldn't possibly work out, Sonny included. She asked how he could know anything about her relationship with Sonny, and he told her he knew she was in it because it couldn't work out, and if it did, she had slept with Jax the night of the fire, so she could sabotage it to save herself. He warned her again that Sonny destroyed people's lives, and he left her alone on the docks.
Alexis paid Sonny a visit and informed him that she was Carly's new attorney. She tried to get him to reason on the kids and keep things out of court. She told him Carly was willing to work out a joint agreement, but Sonny wasn't interested. He shouted that the boys would not be separated from him and that the mother was no object in the life of his children. Alexis drew in her breath at his reaction and knew that she had to win the court case for Carly if she wanted to keep her own daughter. She told Sonny that he'd better find a way to compromise because she would win the case, and he stood to lose his children for good.
Courtney assured Jax she was starting a new life with her money, but he warned her to have a plan or she'd fall back into Jason's life. She paid off her dad's gambling debts and began to take control of her life. When Mike asked her about the money she had been given, she hesitated and wanted to keep things quiet for a while. Later, Jason went into the office of the dock leasing company and demanded to speak to the CEO. Courtney spun around in her chair and was puzzled that he was looking for her.
Luke arrived at the casino and found a drunken Skye wallowing in her misery. He assumed that Edward had died, but she announced that Edward was fine and had made her the sole heir to the Quartermaine fortune. She was drowning her sorrows before she screwed things up. Skye told Luke that she was more afraid of being the favorite than being the unwanted, because then she had more to lose. He responded that not a single one of the Quartermaines was worth the grief she was going through and suggested that she tell them to take their company and go to hell.
Courtney told Jason about the reward that she had been given for saving Mrs. Phillips and the dog. She told him that she was the CEO of the company and was willing to give him the same agreement he'd always had on his dock space, but with some additional stipulations. He could not be involved in any violence or illegal activity, or she would take away his leases. When Jason responded that she was putting him in an impossible situation, she told him that it wasn't for a legitimate business.
Jason and Courtney continued to argue, with Jason assuming that Courtney's actions were to punish him, but she said they had nothing to do with him or their failed marriage. She simply would not hurt her chances of success by dealing with illegal activity. Jason said he needed to think things over, and he left. He returned with a description of his first shipment, proving its legitimacy. Courtney thanked him for returning and said they could find a way to work out an agreement, but Jason wasn't so sure.
Carly told Alcazar that he couldn't just leave the business when he wanted to. He responded that she was confusing him with Sonny, who couldn't or likely wouldn't, leave the business, but he would do it because he loved her. Faith arrived at Carly's house, and Alcazar offered her all of his local holdings. Faith agreed but warned him once he sold to her, it was a done deal -- even if Carly didn't work out. Carly continued to worry about Alcazar's safety if he left the business, and while he was touched by her concern, he voiced that he knew she didn't yet love him. Carly told him she didn't know how to feel about everything, but he assured her he was willing to wait for her to fall in love.
Sonny warned Alexis that if she went after his children for Carly, he would treat her like an enemy and take her down. She asked him why he wouldn't reason with Carly and why he'd hurt his children by allowing them to grow up without a mother. He told her that he wouldn't let his sons be raised by a woman whose mind had been turned by a horrible man, the way his mother's had been. Justus walked in on the two of them, and Alexis warned him to get Sonny to agree to joint custody of Michael and Morgan. Sonny asked her why she was helping Carly, and an angry Alexis told him she was sick and tired of watching him bribe and bully everyone to get his way.
After Alexis left, Justus railed at Sonny to start thinking clearly and realize how unreasonable he was being. Sonny replied that he loved his children more than his own life, and he had loved his wife like that, too, but he had lost her in an instant with a bullet, and he couldn't lose his kids as well. Justus asked him if he knew what he really wanted -- custody of his sons, or to win his wife back.
Ric arrested Nikolas for the murder of Zander Smith as Emily and Liz watched. Nikolas swore that he was innocent, and Emily demanded to know why Ric was rushing to judgment. Alexis heard the news and rushed to the station. She told Emily and Liz that she would find Nikolas the best attorney, and when they questioned her, she admitted she was already representing Carly and couldn't do both. Emily was stunned and wanted to know why Alexis would pick Carly over her own nephew. Later, Liz informed Ric that she had no intention of sitting by and watching him put Nikolas away for a murder that he had not committed.
At the casino, Luke convinced Skye to clean herself up and play hostess, which she did grudgingly. Tracy walked in, and Luke told Skye to go and face her rather than hide. When Skye approached Tracy, she was shot down immediately by the news that Edward's will was null and void due to his insanity and that Tracy had power of the estate and planned to kick Skye to the curb. Skye ran off, and Luke moved in to deal with Tracy at the gambling table. After he relieved Tracy of her money and gave her a warning, Luke joined Skye on the balcony. She let him know that she was sobering up to fight Tracy and wouldn't let the Quartermaines get to her.
Sonny went to the boat to find Sam and bury his sorrows in quick sex with her. She willingly agreed, and the two hit the sack. Sonny dressed quickly afterward, much to Sam's dismay, and he reminded her that he was not going to get emotionally involved with her because he had nothing left to give to her. He also reminded her that she had been okay with their arrangement, and if she had changed her mind, he would walk out the door. Sam told him she hadn't and that she wanted him to stay. She let him know that because he didn't ask anything of her, she wanted to give it. Sonny responded that he was just trying to get through the problems of his life, and it was clear that while he was using her for immediate comfort, she was feeling more.
Alexis showed up at Carly's house and was irritated to find Alcazar with her. After goading Alexis, he left, and she unleashed her anger on Carly. Carly would have none of it and defended Alcazar as a legitimate businessman. Alexis warned her that Sonny's lawyers would go after anything and everything they could to win the case for Sonny, and she began to inquire about his childhood trauma and his mental state. A shocked Carly refused to use Sonny's abusive childhood home against him and didn't want his mental breakdowns to be made public either. Alexis told her to wise up and realize that Sonny would stop at nothing to keep Carly's children from her.
Carly told Alcazar that she was concerned that Faith would act violently against Sonny, adding that she was worried for him too.
At the same time, Faith warned Sonny that since she controlled Alcazar's holdings, Sonny had better show her a little respect. Alcazar knew that imminent violence would work against Sonny during the custody hearing.
Jason carefully pointed out to Sonny that he was losing control of his actions. Alexis let Carly know the importance of Jason taking her side in court. With that in mind, Carly told him that she would divulge Sonny's shaky mental state in court unless Jason testified on her behalf.
Georgie relieved Tom of his duty to act as her boyfriend. Tom, however, started showing interest in her, which prompted Dillon to attempt to sabotage his efforts. Meanwhile, a troubled Sam got stuck in an elevator with Emily.
Emily and Sam started to hit it off while stuck in the elevator at General Hospital. Sam confided in Emily about her affair with Sonny. Emily said that she thought Sonny and Carly caused their own problems. Sam said that she was comfortable around Sonny because he didn't expect a lot from her and liked her for who she was. Emily and Sam were rescued from the elevator. Sam wished Emily luck and hoped Nikolas was found innocent soon.
Meanwhile, at the Port Charles Police Station, Nikolas asked Alexis why she couldn't defend him but was willing to help Carly so much. Alexis said that she could relate to Carly's situation and blurted out that she didn't know what she would do if Sonny took Kristina away from her. Nikolas asked her why she thought Sonny would do that. Alexis realized her slip and covered up her mistake by saying that she had meant that she wouldn't want the father of her child to take Kristina away like Sonny was taking Carly's kids away. She promised to get him a new lawyer and that if the case against him started to be bad in court, she would hurry over and take over the case.
Jen McNeil showed up and announced to Nikolas that she was his new lawyer. She asked him if he had any idea who could have killed Zander that night. Nikolas had no clue but knew it wasn't him. Emily arrived at the police station to see Nikolas. She met his new lawyer. Ric went into the visitors' room and offered a deal to Nikolas. He offered Nikolas a manslaughter charge to accept, a charge that would only keep him in prison for a minimum of five years.
Nikolas rejected the deal and claimed he was innocent. Ric said that he had a solid case against Nikolas for murder and tried to encourage Nikolas to take the deal. Emily told Ric that Nikolas shouldn't go to prison for something he hadn't done and asked Ric to investigate some more. Ric left the room and ran into Lucky.
Lucky wasn't pleased with Ric for not investigating Zander's murder enough and trying to pin the murder on Nikolas. Ric asked Lucky if he was afraid that Nikolas might have killed Zander and if that was why he was trying so hard to push Ric. Nikolas told Emily and Jen that he wondered what Ric was up to, since he seemed to be working so hard to make a deal with Nikolas when Ric already had a solid case against him.
Later, Ric showed up at the hospital and was late for Liz's sonogram. Dr. Meadows was concerned about Liz's blood pressure being too high and advised Liz to calm down and take it easy. Liz asked Ric to try to do whatever he could to prevent Nikolas from going to prison, since he was her friend and she cared about him.
Later Liz went home and read her mail. She found a letter addressed to her with Zander's name in the upper left hand corner. She quickly opened it and found a quick note inside the envelope. It said that if she had gotten the letter, it meant that he was probably already dead. He told her that Ric was the one who had killed him.
Jax paid a visit to Courtney at her new office. He tried to persuade her to let him help her in her new business. Courtney refused to accept his help and told him that he was underestimating her just like Jason and Sonny were and that she was going to prove them wrong.
At the penthouse, Sonny and Justus discussed the custody battle. Justus warned Sonny about the judge and how he might decide to put Michael and Morgan in foster care if he didn't like Sonny or Carly's behavior toward each other. Sonny threatened to take his boys out of the country before letting a judge take them away. Sonny complained to Justus that Alcazar was getting involved in the custody battle and was trashing him and that Sonny had to make Carly look unfit to the judge. He gave Justus permission to use her past against her in court.
Justus asked Sonny if he really wanted to do that to the mother of his children. Sonny said that he didn't want to have to hurt Carly, but she was not giving him much of a choice. Meanwhile, Jason got upset with Carly for trying to blackmail him into testifying on her behalf by threatening to expose Sonny's mental instability in court. Jason told her that by exposing that secret in court, she might as well sign his death warrant, since his enemies would use Sonny's vulnerability against him.
Carly told Jason she didn't want to expose Sonny's mental instability but that Sonny was pushing her into a corner by refusing to share custody of the kids with her. Jason told her she always had a choice and suggested that she talk to Sonny in person and tell him what she had just told Jason. Carly didn't believe that would help anything. She asked Jason not to let her or the children down and to tell the judge the children belonged with her. Jason didn't tell her yes, and he left.
Jason arrived at the penthouse and overheard Sonny tell Justus to provoke Carly in court and get her to lose it on the stand. Justus told Jason that they needed to talk and go over his testimony. Sonny ordered Justus not to worry about Jason's testimony, since he would be telling the judge the children belonged with Sonny. Jason asked Sonny what he was doing and suggested that he stand back a little and calm down. Sonny got upset with Jason for telling him what to do about the custody of the children. Sonny assumed Jason would be on his side in court. Jason didn't say no but was torn.
Carly went to see Courtney in her new office and asked Courtney to testify on her behalf in court and tell the judge the children belonged with her. Courtney said she couldn't do that and that she planned to tell the judge that Sonny and Carly should share custody. Carly said that Sonny wouldn't let her share custody and that he had never allowed her to explain what had happened with Alcazar. Courtney said that she didn't approve of Carly seeing Alcazar, who she felt had ruined Carly's life. Carly defended Alcazar to Courtney. Courtney wasn't convinced he was a knight in shining armor.
Courtney didn't give Carly an answer one way or another. Courtney suggested to Carly that she go back to Sonny and try to work things out. Carly thought that it was too late for that. Jason suggested the same thing to Sonny, who thought Carly would not go back to him, since she was sleeping with Alcazar. Jason said she had only done that when she'd found out he had slept with Sam. Sonny didn't believe Carly had started her affair after he had slept with Sam.
Sonny left the penthouse and went to see Sam. Sam returned to her hotel room and found Sonny there with a romantic candlelit table. He explained to Sam that Michael wasn't going to be happy seeing him smile when he was around a woman who wasn't his mother. Sonny told Sam that she could get out of the affair any time she wanted to.
Meanwhile, back at the penthouse, Courtney showed up to visit the children and found Jason in the living room, putting together a swing for the baby. She told him about Carly's visit and how she expected Courtney to testify for her. Jason told her that Sonny assumed the same thing for him -- and so did Carly -- and that he wanted them to share custody and had planned to tell the judge that, but somehow, he would be betraying both of them. Courtney agreed with Jason that Carly and Sonny should share custody.
Courtney moved to hand Jason a screw for the swing, and he grabbed it at the same time. They found themselves touching hands and were reluctant to pull away. Michael went downstairs and told Jason that Morgan was crying and Leticia couldn't get him to stop. Jason went up to help with the baby.
Michael asked Courtney if she and Jason were getting back together. She told him that they weren't. Michael asked her why she and Jason got along so well when they weren't together anymore but his parents were always fighting. Courtney told him that she and Jason still cared about each other and that they had no reason to fight. Jason heard what she told Michael as he carried Morgan downstairs with him.
The phone rang, so Jason handed the baby over to Courtney so he could answer it. It was a call about the custody hearing. Sonny received a call from the judge while he was at Sam's room. The judge said that he was going to ask Michael who he wanted to live with. Carly and Alexis were at her house when Alexis received the call from the family court, and she told the person on the other end that they would cooperate fully.
Liz received a letter from Zander stating he was probably dead if she had received it, and Ric had killed him. Liz asked Ric to drop the charges against Nikolas, and she'd have less stress in her pregnancy. She told Nikolas that everything would be fine, and she knew he was innocent. Liz questioned Lucky about Ric's investigation into Zander's death, but Lucky brushed her off. Nikolas made bail. Lucky told Nikolas that Ric was pushing for Nikolas to be found guilty, but Lucky was still looking for the real killer.
Dillon surprised Sage at Kelly's with birthday pancakes. They compared childhoods and old birthdays. Dillon admitted that he had set Tom up to kiss Georgie in public so that Georgie would hate Tom. Georgie and Maxie were at the hospital, as Mac's condition had taken a turn. Monica told them that there was fluid in his lungs and to give him time. Maxie called Dillon so he could support Georgie during that time.
Tracy took flowers to Georgie and Maxie and said she wanted to help in their time of need. Georgie told them to go away, and Maxie revealed she had heard the electrician tell Edward that the wiring was faulty. Tracy tried to cover by saying Edward wasn't in his right mind, while Justus had already warned her about possible wrongful death suits. Justus said Tracy needed to protect the family and not hide from all responsibility.
Sage ran into Tom at Kelly's, and Tom revealed that Georgie had just wanted him to pretend to be her boyfriend to make Dillon jealous. Dillon arrived at the hospital and was horrified that his mom had been there to "talk" with Georgie.
Michael was going to be questioned by the court as to whom he wanted to live with. He tried to play sick with Jason, who told him to tell the judge the truth. Michael said he wanted to live with Sonny and Carly. Sonny told Sam that he hoped he did not have to do the things he might to keep the boys. They compared childhoods to the current custody situation.
Sonny told Michael to choose living with him, so that Sonny could protect him from all the bad men that Carly might drag into Michael's life. Sam went to Carly, stating that she felt Sonny would agree to shared custody if Carly dumped Lorenzo. Carly called Sam a convenience in Sonny's life and said that Sam would never know what had made Sonny who he was. Carly said she would agree to Sonny's terms if he dumped Sam.
Michael told the judge he wanted to live with both parents. Carly was offered shared custody with Sonny, but on his terms. She declined, as Sonny was trying to have power over her life, where he had kicked her out of his house, so there was no deal. Jason told Courtney to let him know if Faith approached her, which Faith had done earlier. Jason told her that Faith would use that time to start a war, and there couldn't be any violence during the custody fight.
Faith had wanted to be partners with Courtney, while Courtney had said no. Faith went to see Mike at Kelly's and realized he was the ticket to getting Courtney to cooperate.