Tessa strummed her guitar in the bedroom of their tiny apartment while Mariah worked at a dining table near the kitchen. Tessa stepped out, approached Mariah, and asked if her practicing was interfering with Mariah's work. Mariah insisted Tessa's music wasn't distracting and bragged about enjoying a private concert. Mariah mentioned that her workload had increased after the merger of Jabot with Marchetti, though she looked forward to having Kyle, Harrison, and even Summer staying in town. Mariah admitted she was also concerned about Diane staying so she could be close to Kyle.
Mariah sighed heavily and told Tessa that Diane's presence would be complicated for a lot of people in Genoa City. Mariah acknowledged that because she knew how it felt to be reunited with one's mother as an adult, she was in a position to support Kyle. Tessa seemed distracted. Mariah noticed that Tessa was searching for something in the kitchen. Tessa explained that they were out of tea with honey because she had been drinking warm tea to soothe her irritated throat. Mariah, noting that Tessa's throat condition had lingered for a time, became concerned and insisted Tessa visit a doctor.
Nick stopped by Crimson Lights to talk to Sharon. Sharon mentioned Victor and Adam's press conference. Nick told Sharon his dad had kept him in the loop, knowing that Victoria had packed her bags, said goodbye to the family, and left with Ashland. Nick admitted he did not agree with Victor's decision to appoint Adam as CEO of Newman Enterprises. Nick added, "Victoria's reign may be over, but trust me -- the second round of games is about to begin." Nick told Sharon that his dad and Adam only thought about themselves. Sharon said she hoped Victor and Adam would at least agree to work together to ensure that Newman Enterprises succeeded.
Nick praised Adam for having developed the skills required to do the job, though it seemed clear that Adam's desire to ascend to the throne stemmed from a selfish desire. Nick told Sharon that Adam did not care about Victoria and had been patiently waiting to swoop in and grab the CEO title for himself. Nick acknowledged that Victor had chosen Adam, though his mom or even his dad could have stepped back in. Nick admitted to Sharon that Victor had installed Adam as CEO to send a message to Victoria and provoke a reaction.
Sharon asked Nick what would happen to Adam if Victoria returned. Nick replied that Adam would still want to prove to Victor that he was the right man for the job, whether or not Victoria changed her mind. Nick was adamant that everyone involved would be acting on emotion instead of thoughtfully considering the situation. Sharon replied, "And who's going to get them to do that?" Nick acknowledged that he had no role in the company other than sitting on the board of directors and was not considering throwing his hat back into the ring. Nick told Sharon he was rethinking his options, considering how the situation had evolved with family members competing for control and concern about the public's perception.
Tessa and Mariah greeted Sharon and Nick. Sharon remarked that she had barely seen the newlyweds since they had returned from France. Mariah assured her mother that she was fine, though she indicated that Tessa might not be. Tessa explained that all she needed was tea with honey. Mariah explained that Tessa had drunk all the tea in their apartment to soothe a sore throat. Sharon, noting that Tessa's condition had not improved, suggested she visit her doctor. Nick agreed, noting that Mariah would not let up until Tessa saw her doctor. Tessa agreed to visit her doctor as soon as possible.
After Tessa left, Mariah sat down with Sharon and Nick and recalled that before the interruption, they seemed to have been engaged in a serious discussion. Mariah asked Sharon and Nick if anything was wrong. Nick mentioned the press conference. Mariah said she was aware that Victoria was out and that Adam was in. Mariah, sympathetic, wished Nick luck with whatever he was going through with his family. Nick acknowledged Mariah's concern for him and his difficult position.
After Mariah left, Sharon admitted it was shocking to hear Nick consider stepping back in at Newman Enterprises in a formal capacity. Nick acknowledged that he was not ready to commit. Nick admitted that had he stayed, he would have been in a better position to protect Victoria and prevent Victor from pitting his sister against Adam, while at the same time supporting Nikki. Nick said he had at least managed to maintain a position of neutrality by having been somewhat distanced from the company for a long time. Sharon advised Nick to trust his instincts, and she offered to support his decision. Victor phoned and requested a meeting with Nick immediately.
After Tessa underwent an exam by her doctor, she returned home. Tessa seemed stunned as she slowly walked in the door. Mariah sensed something was wrong the moment she saw Tessa's face. Tessa explained that her doctor had found nodules on her vocal cords. Struggling not to tremble, Tessa said her physician had referred her to a specialist for confirmation and to discuss options for treatment, which might require surgery. Tessa admitted she was scared and expressed fear that her condition might interfere with her upcoming tour and impact her career. Mariah tried to set Tessa at ease and advised that they should take things one step at a time. Mariah assured Tessa that after her condition was successfully treated, she would be singing at future tours and performances for years to come. Tessa remained uneasy about what might lie ahead.
Jack was at home with Diane lurking behind him when he read a text message from Phyllis. Phyllis had written that she had returned home and wanted to meet and talk. Noticing Jack's hesitation, Diane asked Jack if everything was all right. Jack assured Diane everything was fine. Diane asked Jack if she could take Harrison to the park. Jack told Diane that Harrison would like visiting the park with her because Kyle and Summer were tied up. Diane went upstairs to get Harrison ready and let the nanny know she could take a break.
Jack replied to Phyllis' message. He wrote, "What is there left for us to say?" From her suite at the Grand Phoenix, Phyllis phoned Jack. He hesitated to answer. Phyllis was relieved when Jack finally accepted her call. Phyllis told Jack she would like for them to talk about unresolved business. Jack reminded Phyllis that he had already made it clear that there was nothing more for them to say. Phyllis begged Jack not to let "the thing" involving Diane interfere with the progress they had made. Jack clarified that "the thing" involved him and Phyllis, not Diane.
Phyllis agreed that Jack was right. Phyllis asked Jack if they could at least talk about it. Jack told Phyllis he would meet with her at her place. Diane was bounding down the stairs, giddily announcing to Jack that Harrison was excited about their playdate, when Jack, distracted, was heading toward the door. After Diane told Jack she would pack snacks for the park visit, Jack coldly replied, "Good. Have fun." Diane seemed disappointed after Jack's abrupt departure.
Phyllis greeted Jack when he arrived at her suite and offered to pour him a glass of wine. Jack declined the wine and told Phyllis that their relationship would not work. Phyllis admitted she had flaunted their relationship in order to "stick it" to Diane and hated that Jack felt he had been used. Phyllis apologized and acknowledged that Jack had a right to be furious with her. Phyllis admitted her behavior had been outrageous and immature and that she could not justify it. Jack seemed unfazed by Phyllis' remorseful attempts to defend her actions.
Phyllis blamed her behavior on old wounds and insecurities. Jack told Phyllis he had heard all her excuses before and recalled that she was a master at faking sincerity. Phyllis, her voice rising with emotional distress, replied, "You think I'm faking it right now? Is that what you think? You think I'm being cavalier about this?" Phyllis cried that she was "losing it inside." Phyllis admitted she could not believe she had ruined everything when she and Jack had begun to grow close. Jack recalled that he and Phyllis had had a couple of passionate encounters prompted by Diane's return. Jack cried that Phyllis' only regret was that her plan had backfired.
Jack insisted that Phyllis had not changed, so whatever fleeting moment they had had was over. Phyllis replied, "I have changed. I have, and I will prove it to you." Phyllis cried, "I extended an olive branch to that woman. I told her that I'm putting the past behind me. There's no resentment." Phyllis insisted she had come to realize that making amends was the best path for all of them. Jack replied that Phyllis' real reason had to do with Summer. Phyllis assured Jack she had acted for the greater good of everyone. Jack replied, "Including us? There is no us."
Phyllis reminded Jack about the deep connection they had formed when they had traveled to California to meet Allie. Jack replied, "As friends, Phyllis. We should have settled for that." Jack told Phyllis he feared he might have destroyed their friendship. Phyllis assured Jack that he had not destroyed their friendship, nor was it the end of their story. Jack recalled that Phyllis' relationships with Billy and Nick had been disasters before she had sabotaged theirs. Jack cried that no matter who Phyllis was with, it was never enough. Jack asked Phyllis why she could never fully embrace happiness and instead focused on the chase. Frustrated, Jack abruptly left. Phyllis, appearing defeated, slowly sat down, picked up her wine glass, and sipped alone.
Noah met up with Allie at Chancellor Park so the pair could jog together. Diane and Harrison arrived. Diane greeted Noah and Allie and told Allie it was good that she had found another young person to hang out with. Diane suggested that Noah might know others their age he could introduce to Allie. Noah curtly replied, "Yeah, I do, but I don't see why that's any of your concern." Allie told Noah that Diane was only being friendly. Diane recalled that Noah had seemed to be fine about her having returned during a previous encounter. Noah told Diane he should not be expected to forget the past and make small talk like nothing had ever happened.
Noah recalled that Diane had done serious harm to people he cared about. Allie defended Diane for wanting to reconnect with her family. Noah added that the way Diane had gone about making the connections through Jack had been sketchy. Allie agreed, though she acknowledged that Diane had changed from the person she had been in the past. Diane acknowledged she had had to face up to what she had done in order to spend time with her son and grandson. Diane stepped away to check on Harrison. Later, sitting alone, Diane paused and recalled having told Allie how she had ached to reconnect with Kyle since the day she had left him. Diane smiled, feeling certain her plans would play out as she had envisioned.
Allie and Noah entered Crimson Lights through the patio entrance. Noah apologized for having made Allie feel uncomfortable in front of Diane, admitting he regretted having gotten worked up. Noah explained that when he had encountered Diane, all the things she had done and all the chaos she had caused had flooded back in his memories. Noah expressed fear that Diane might cause problems again. Allie defended Diane, claiming that she wasn't at fault for the way others were reacting. Noah asked Allie why she thought Diane deserved a second chance without knowing what she had done. Allie explained that had her father forgiven Jack long before, it would have greatly altered the lives of her whole family.
In the Grand Phoenix lobby, Michael thanked someone over the phone for their help. Lauren approached and overheard as he promised to set up a meeting with Victor in return and swore that he never went back on his promises. After he hung up, she asked what the call had been about, and he vaguely stated that it had been business stuff. She assumed from his slick tone that he'd been doing something squirrelly for Victor. Michael sent a text message to Victor to let him know all systems were go.
Michael contended that he was always slick, and he denied that he used a different voice when he conducted business for Victor. Lauren mimicked her husband issuing orders to get something done, and Michael argued that he'd just been doing his job right. She reminded him that it was the nature of the job she had an issue with, and he reiterated that there was no danger of him landing in a foreign prison again. Lauren grumbled that he could never say never while working for Victor.
Michael proposed that he and Lauren hop a plane to somewhere tropical to spend a few nights in a luxurious hotel. She was tempted, but she felt compelled to stay in town with all the big things going on at Jabot and Fenmore's. He argued that they didn't have to wait for another vacation to find time for romance, and he asked if she had free time to have lunch back at their place -- perhaps in the bedroom. She fretted that she didn't have enough time to go all the way back home before getting back to work, and she seductively implied that they could get a room upstairs.
In a hotel suite, Michael and Lauren shared a romantic dance. "We still got it," he declared. "Baby, we never lost it," she responded. He noted that they hadn't played hooky like that in a long time, and she purred that it felt a little naughty, pulling off his shirt. He respected that she was on a tight schedule, but she told him not to rush. He replied that what the lady wanted, the lady got. They kissed passionately.
Later, Michael twirled Lauren around as they reentered the lobby. She exclaimed that they should do that more often, and he said she didn't have to ask him twice. She kissed him goodbye and headed back to work.
At Crimson Lights, Chelsea thanked Billy for the kindness he'd shown her in the park when she'd been having a moment. He pointed out that they all had them, and he inquired whether she was feeling better. She replied that life kept rolling along, and she mentioned that she'd finally had the chance to listen to his podcast. He wondered if she'd enjoyed it, and she honestly replied that she hadn't enjoyed it at all.
Billy inquired whether Chelsea hadn't liked his podcast or if she didn't like podcasts in general. She named his podcast specifically, although she admired what he was trying to do. He recognized that it wasn't for everyone, but he defended that she was in the minority because most people had responded positively to it. He invited her to share constructive criticism about why she'd found it off-putting. She hesitated to elaborate, but he pressed to know what it was about his inner thoughts and dreams that had been that awful.
Chelsea explained that Billy's first few podcast episodes had been too mired in self-incrimination and pain from the past, and she'd found it difficult to continually listen to the darkness. She said she preferred to hear something uplifting and entertaining. He was taken aback that he'd made her feel miserable. She contended that people needed to be lifted up by being told they could all get through it and enjoy life. Chelsea called Billy one of the funniest people she knew, and she felt that the audience was missing out on his humor. Billy swore that he wasn't walking around with a dark cloud over him all day, but Chelsea thought he knew she was right. He murmured that he'd forgotten how well she'd once known him.
Billy appreciated Chelsea's candor, and he conceded that his podcast could use a little lightness. Lily joined them, and Billy informed her that Chelsea had been giving him a not-so-glowing review of his podcast. Lily guessed that Chelsea thought it needed more levity and less misery. Lily assured Billy that he'd done a great job with his podcast, and it was his way of working through things, but it could be a little dour. Billy contended that it was more about connecting with people who were going through similar things, but he thought he should listen when two smart, savvy women were giving him the same advice.
Lauren arrived at the coffeehouse, and she and Chelsea stepped out to the patio. Billy asked Lily why she hadn't mentioned that his podcast was miserable, but she found his tone refreshing and real compared to the many chipper podcasts out there. She encouraged him not to let the criticism send him down a rabbit hole, since people were listening to his podcast because they liked it.
On the patio, Lauren apologized for being late and blamed her husband for the delay. Chelsea considered Lauren lucky for enjoying some love in the afternoon, and Lauren gushed that she was married to the love of her life. Lauren turned the topic to fashion, and Chelsea inquired about the trends Gloria had seen while in London. Lauren revealed that Gloria had seemed more concerned about the tension between Chelsea and Chloe.
Chelsea chalked it up to Gloria just being Gloria. Chelsea asserted that she and Chloe were professionals who sometimes had disagreements, but they always got through it. Lauren expressed relief and inquired whether Chelsea had heard from Summer. Chelsea indicated that she and Summer were meeting later that day, and she begged for a hint as to what it was about. Lauren replied that Chelsea would know soon enough, and she turned the topic to Chelsea's fabric choices. As Lauren raved about the selections, Chelsea stared at Lily and Billy talking inside.
At Newman Enterprises, Sally contemplated how she should refer to Adam. She considered "Your Honor" or "Your Royal Highness," but he pointed out that those titles were reserved for judges and kings. She suggested "Newman Media's secret weapon" based on a quote from one of the glowing stories about their press conference. She looked up the article on her tablet and read a comment about Adam's bold and confident performance. He was concerned that things had gone too well, and he couldn't help but have the feeling another shoe was ready to drop.
Sally reminded Adam that he was on top of the world, and she was sure he could handle any crisis that popped up. Adam explained that he wasn't worried about things at the company, but he had to be on his toes around the man who had built it. Adam anticipated that Victoria would call Victor to admit she had made a terrible mistake and ask for her job back, and Victor would kick Adam to the curb because it had been the plan all along. Sally disagreed, citing the bold statement Victoria had made by walking away because she loved Ashland. Sally doubted Victoria would throw it all away just to spite Adam. Adam clucked that his sister was much more complicated than Sally knew.
Sally conceded that Victoria had to be a complicated woman to get involved with a man like Ashland not just once but twice. Adam suspected that Victoria's need for power and their father's approval might prove to be stronger than her love for Ashland, so he couldn't write her off. Sally bet on love winning out, and Adam hoped she was right. She recommended that he enjoy his time in the big chair in the meantime, and he promised to try to not get deposed before he proved himself. She said she couldn't wait to watch him prove he was the best person for the job.
Nick joined Victor at Society and asked what hadn't been able to wait or be sent by text message. Victor assured Nick that everything was in good hands, although he doubted Victoria and Ashland would think so. Nick demanded to know what his father had done. Victor shared that he'd been thinking ahead, and he'd ensured that whatever venture Victoria and Ashland were about to embark on would hit a brick wall.
Victor divulged that he'd contacted the investors who had been about to fund the project Victoria and Ashland were starting and told them not to invest a dime. Victor added that he always thought a move ahead, so he'd had Michael get the word out to the investment community not to invest in any project with Ashland's name attached to it. Victor swore that he'd had no other choice, but Nick pondered whether it had been a test from Victoria, who had wanted to see if Nick would tell Victor about her plans. Nick worried that he'd failed her loyalty test when Victor had shut down her project before it had even gotten started.
Victor insisted that Nick had made the made the right decision by sharing his information about Victoria. Nick lamented that he'd lived to regret it before, but Victor swore Nick wouldn't that time. Nick pressed to know what Victor had done to make sure people didn't invest in Victoria's company. Victor boasted that he'd let them know that Ashland suffered from small cell lung carcinoma -- the same problematic cancer Ashland had told the world he had. Victor questioned who would invest in a company led by a dying man. Nick admitted the strategy had been clever.
Victor reasoned that Ashland's lies had simply come back to bite him, but Nick remarked that Victor was walking a fine line. Victor recalled that Nick had always complained about being left out of the loop, and he wondered if Nick wasn't happy about being included. Nick appreciated his father letting him in, but he felt guilty about betraying Victoria and was nervous about the blowback when it all hit the fan. Victor vowed to do whatever it took to save Victoria and the company.
Nick voiced concern that one of Victor's moves had already set Victoria off, since she hadn't returned Nick's calls or text messages. Victor figured that there was nothing more to do than sit back and give her some time. Nick relayed that Victoria had seemed unfazed by the press conference announcing Adam's appointment as CEO, but Victor doubted that was true because she still had Newman blood running through her veins. Victor pondered why Victoria had told Nick that she and Ashland had moved to New York to start a new venture, and Nick theorized that Victoria had known he'd tell Victor about it. Nick objected to the deception, and he questioned whether it was necessary to reunite the family. They noticed Adam and Sally enter the restaurant.
Adam and Sally stopped by Victor and Nick's table. Adam inquired whether the men were meeting about anything related to Newman, and Nick congratulated the couple on their promotions. Adam remarked that the way it had happened had been unexpected, and Sally voiced surprise that Victoria had walked away. Adam thought it was clear that Victoria hadn't considered the company to be her top priority, but Sally countered that it was obvious Victoria loved Ashland. Adam huffed that Nick only cared about Victoria and didn't "give a damn" about Newman, but Nick stated that things might be changing on that front. Adam looked forward to hearing more about it, and he steered Sally to the bar. Victor demanded to know what Nick had meant.
Nick claimed that his comment had just been a kneejerk response to Adam, but Victor noted that Nick had been showing more interest in the family business. Nick lectured that his father was reading too much into it, since he'd only been trying to get under Adam's skin. Nick complained that Adam only cared about running Newman and not about Victoria, so Nick had just wanted to give him something to worry about.
In New York, Ashland returned to his and Victoria's hotel suite and announced that he had fantastic Thai food and bad news. Victoria indicated that she had some bad news of her own. Ashland revealed that he hadn't been able to poach Newman's marketing genius, since the guy liked the security of a big company and didn't want to take the risk at a new one. Victoria was disappointed, but she understood the employee's concerns. She recognized that the marketing guru might have made the best call for himself, since the new company might have hit its first roadblock -- all the investors they'd approached had turned them down. Ashland was shocked to learn that the entire list of potential investors had declined, and he was certain that something wasn't right.
Victoria voiced surprise about the investors' reactions, given that she and Ashland had a solid business plan and strong proposal. Ashland pointed out that they both had proven track records, but Victoria grumbled that they weren't proven enough. Victoria reported that the investors had given vague reasons for turning them down, like other investments taking priority or having made prior commitments. Ashland argued that the investors wouldn't have met with them at all if that had been the case, and he maintained that something was off. He suspected that someone had reached out to dissuade them. Victoria recognized that it was exactly the kind of move her father would make.
Victoria called it Victor's superpower to find out the most private things about people, since his connections and reach were wider than anyone could ever imagine. Ashland condemned Victor for using his resources to prevent his own daughter from raising capital to start a new company. Victoria was sure her father had justified it by telling himself that she'd turned her back on her family. Ashland found it infuriating and insulting that her family wouldn't allow her to live her own life. Victoria gushed that it had taken Ashland entering her life to make her see she needed to push back.
Ashland contemplated how Victor had figured out what they were doing. Victoria swore she hadn't said anything to Nikki or Billy because she was still angry with them and needed time and space to calm down before she could even speak to them again. Ashland sensed that the situation was upsetting Victoria more than she was letting on, and he asked if she was sure she was able to leave her family behind to start a new life with him. Victoria refused to go back on her decision, and she reiterated that she couldn't stand being controlled and coddled one more second.
Victoria asserted that she didn't need her family's so-called protection, and she wanted them to see her as a person who couldn't be manipulated. Ashland supported her standing up for herself and said he wanted to stand by her while she did it. He groused that her family deserved whatever they got from that point on. She pointedly stated that in time, they would realize she knew exactly what she was doing. Ashland looked forward to the moment the Newman family finally admitted defeat, and he began to unpack the food. Victoria eyed him carefully.
Ashland planned to go back through his list of major players to find other investors, but Victoria expected that her father would be able to get to all of them. Ashland spat that Victor was a piece of work, since most fathers would support their daughters' choices and not sabotage them. Ashland anticipated that Victor's actions would only drive her further away, and he pledged not to let her father thwart their dream of starting a new company together. Victoria wondered if he'd given more thought to funding the venture themselves.
Victoria reasoned that she and Ashland wouldn't have to waste time and effort going back to the financial community to beg for money, and she preferred to save themselves the humiliation of getting doors slammed in their faces. Ashland worried that it would cast a shadow over everything they were trying to do if word got out that they were having trouble raising money. He realized that it would be a bigger thrill to start something entirely on their own, and it would mean the world to do it with her. He continued that if the investment capital was all theirs, so was the potential profit. He proclaimed that he and his money were all in.
Victoria suggested that Ashland open a corporate bank account for their newly formed company. He planned to call a real estate broker to look for a floor of office space to rent, but she opted to buy a whole building because they intended to grow at a rapid rate. He loved the way they both looked at the world as something to be devoured, and she quipped that she couldn't wait to savor every morsel. Ashland marveled that it felt like they were close to recapturing the magic they'd had when they'd first met. "Closer than you can imagine," she mused.
Over the phone, Ashland instructed someone to look at what buildings were on the market because they wanted to move quickly. Meanwhile, Victoria sent a text message to an unidentified party. "Everything's coming together," she wrote.
Elena exited the elevator at Chancellor Winters and bumped into Imani. Elena asked Imani how Naya was doing, and she offered to help Imani navigate Naya's treatment plan. Imani said that was the reason why having Nate around was so helpful. Imani told Elena that Nate was having lunch with Devon at Society. On the elevator, Imani commented that it was strange how she knew more about Nate's comings and goings than Elena did.
At the Grand Phoenix, Phyllis told Amanda that she'd ruined things with Jack. Phyllis said she'd taken responsibility for her past deeds, and she'd told Jack she was sorry for what she'd done and that she'd allowed all her old insecurities and past demons to take over. Jack had claimed she was insincere even after she'd told him she'd offered Diane an olive branch. Phyllis told Amanda that Summer had begged her to do it, and Phyllis had agreed, even though it went against every fiber of Phyllis' being to make nice with "that bitch."
Amanda was proud of Phyllis for putting Summer's feelings first. Phyllis admitted there was nothing she wouldn't do for Summer because that was what mothers did. Amanda woefully said it was a mother/daughter bond. Phyllis asked what was going on with Amanda.
Amanda told Phyllis that Naya had had a stroke, and she'd lost movement in half her body. Amanda said she'd gone to see Naya with the intention of staying for a while, but Naya was only permitted one visitor; Imani's dad had stayed with her. Amanda said Naya would have in-home care and in-home rehab; it would be a long process, and she and Imani would have to juggle work in order to see Naya.
Amanda told Phyllis that Imani had wanted her to see Naya first because she'd lost so much time with her, and every moment really mattered. Amanda said she felt Imani was scared, and she would have to prepare Imani before she saw Naya. Amanda said she didn't know what she would do without Devon's support.
Phyllis said Amanda was lucky having a supportive man by her side. Phyllis claimed she wished she'd done more to promote that in her life. Amanda stated that Phyllis was saying she loved Jack. Phyllis said it didn't matter because it was over, and she and Jack weren't meant for each other, especially with Diane living in town.
Phyllis told Amanda that Diane had arrived in Genoa City, thinking everyone owed her something, and Phyllis admitted that Diane infuriated her. Amanda told Phyllis to rein it in because if Phyllis did anything out of revenge, Jack wouldn't like it. Amanda suggested that Phyllis keep the peace for Summer and Jack's sakes. Phyllis said Jack had claimed she couldn't control her destructive tendencies and that she was only happy when she was chasing happiness. She confirmed it was too late for her and Jack.
Amanda said Phyllis needed to do the impossible: be patient because Phyllis couldn't take what Jack had said in a moment of hurt and allow it to determine their fate. Amanda said to give it time, and perhaps they would recapture what they'd been so close to having.
When Imani arrived, Phyllis left. Imani asked Amanda what it had been like seeing Naya in the hospital. Amanda admitted that it had almost broken her seeing Naya attached to all the machines and lying so still. Imani said Naya had to have been happy to see Amanda, but Amanda said it had been hard to tell because Naya wasn't communicating at that moment; however, Naya was receiving excellent care.
Amanda said that Imani's dad had taken care of everything Naya needed. Imani said she hadn't done anything for Naya, but Amanda said she would take care of work so that Imani could go and see her mother. Amanda said Naya wouldn't rest easy until she knew Imani was okay. Amanda said that Naya had been the strongest woman Imani had ever known. Imani worried she wouldn't be able to spend as much time with her mother as she wanted to. Amanda said she was sorry she couldn't provide Imani with the answers she wanted.
Imani asked if Amanda had been afraid to see Naya. Amanda admitted she had been; however, she'd been happy to see how stable Naya was and to see her excellent medical team in action. Amanda said Imani had to go and see Naya for herself. Amanda said Imani would never forgive herself if anything happened to Naya and Imani had never had the chance to talk to her mother.
At home, Diane told Jack that when she'd had Kyle, she'd never dreamed she would spend so much time away from him. She said she had a lot of leftover love to give, and she was lucky she could give it to Harrison. Diane told Jack she'd seen Allie and Noah at the park. Jack claimed the more friends Allie had in town, the more likely she would put down roots, and nothing would make him happier. Diane told Jack it had all happened thanks to her. She commented that Jack had smiled.
Jack told Diane not to read too much into his smile because his needle had barely moved from deeply suspicious and full of misgivings to cautiously trusting where Diane was concerned. Diane said she would take that as a win.
Diane told Jack it had been a promising day with Phyllis vowing to be on her best behavior and that Jack was cautiously ready to trust her. Jack claimed Diane was tenacious in her drive to turn things around. Diane reminded him that when she wanted something, she pursued it relentlessly.
Diane told Jack she might have overstepped with Kyle, and she wanted Jack's advice on how to fix it. Diane told Jack that she'd asked Kyle to help her find a job in Genoa City because she couldn't keep relying on Kyle's financial support, and she wanted him to know she intended to pay her own way. Jack asked about her life in Los Angeles if Diane was putting down roots in Genoa City. Diane claimed there was nothing she couldn't walk away from. She stated that she wanted a career in public relations.
Diane told Jack she'd suggested that Kyle could help her find that job, but as soon as the words had left her mouth, she'd regretted asking. She said Kyle had looked uncomfortable, and she'd put him on the spot. Diane said Kyle had enough to deal with without helping her find a job. She asked Jack if Kyle had mentioned anything to him. Jack said even if Kyle had, he wouldn't share it with Diane because he refused to intervene, especially on Diane's behalf.
Jack told Diane he'd supported Kyle taking on Marchetti because Kyle needed something to run on his own, and he wasn't about to tell Kyle what to do. Diane said it was probably for the best because Jack would probably tell Kyle not to consider helping her. Jack said that was between Diane and Kyle.
At Society, Devon chastised Nate for discussing the podcasts at the launch party without making sure they had 50 podcasts produced and ready to be released. Nate claimed he'd spoken to the team, and they had assured him they had 50 in the pipeline. Devon asked if Nate understood what a pipeline was. Devon explained that it went from projects they were interested in buying, to showing what was in development, to series that were being produced and ready to air. Devon said they didn't have 50 podcasts ready to go, and they were scrambling.
Devon told Nate that his job was to make sure Nate could do his job. Devon was aware that the COO's position was very different from anything Nate had done in the past. He urged Nate to get up to speed on how things ran. Nate said he'd met with department heads and sat in on planning meetings. Nate apologized for jumping the gun at the launch party. Devon said if Nate had any crowd-pleasing podcast ideas, Devon would love to hear them.
Elena arrived and told Devon she had an idea about a podcast. She suggested a medical podcast, proactive with significant measures and medical mysteries. Devon liked the idea. Nate said he didn't see how they could do it because she was the face of "Ask MD Now" and under contract with Newman Media. Elena said that was an obstacle, but it wasn't insurmountable.
Elena told Devon and Nate that there had been so much going on at Newman Media that they'd been putting "Ask MD Now" off, and it was on hiatus; however, a podcast was a more efficient way of reaching people. Elena said she'd thought of another segment for caregivers, where friends and family members could ask questions about the diagnosis, how to talk to doctors, and how to navigate the healthcare system. Devon said he was all in.
Nate asked Devon about Elena's contract. Devon was certain that Amanda or Imani could take care of it. Nate asked if Elena had the time to commit to the podcast. Devon left to take a call. Elena told Nate they'd both been very busy and barely saw each other, and she'd missed him; however, if she did the podcast, she would join Nate in his adventure, and she would be willing to step back from the clinic. Nate said it was everything he'd wanted. Elena said she loved the idea of being part of the family venture and supporting him in his new role. She said it would be a bonus if it meant they could spend more time together.
Devon returned, and Elena said she was excited to be part of the team. Devon welcomed her aboard.
At Crimson Lights, Summer told Chelsea they wanted her to design a new line for Marchetti. Chelsea said she'd signed a contract to sell her designs exclusively to Fenmore's. Kyle said Lauren didn't mind Chelsea working on both lines. Summer said they would call it Chelsea Lawson for Marchetti.
Summer told Chelsea they believed she was the right person to lead Marchetti into a new era. Chelsea said she had to talk to Chloe, her partner, but as far as she was concerned, she told them to start chilling the Champagne.
When Chloe arrived, Chelsea reported she'd been asked to design for Marchetti. Chloe was less than receptive. Chelsea asked if Chloe was undercutting her business judgment. Chloe stated she was being realistic about how time-consuming it would be and that Chelsea was spreading herself very thin. Chelsea claimed she knew what she was capable of, and she couldn't understand why Chloe disapproved when Lauren supported it. Chelsea claimed it was an amazing opportunity for everyone involved.
Chelsea told Chloe she was tired of Chloe looking for problems where none existed, and creativity required Chloe to say yes. Chloe claimed she was a realist, and her work began when Chelsea finished a sketch. Chloe said they had to make sure their existing obligations were fulfilled and that their line succeeded. Chelsea asked why Chloe would turn down the chance of having greater visibility and really being able to make an impact. Chloe said the only way to make an impact was when the work was done and the clothes were made.
Chelsea asked why Chloe always tried to manage her and why Chloe handled her by keeping her quiet in a tiny box as if everyone knew Chelsea didn't know what was good for her. Chelsea told Chloe to stop going into baby Zen mode every time they disagreed. Chloe said she'd been trying to look out for her best friend, but Chelsea accused Chloe of micromanaging her.
Chelsea claimed she was the creative engine, and Chloe was the brake that kept them from moving forward. Chloe said it kept Chelsea from crashing and burning, and she wasn't going to allow Chelsea to insult and disparage her for trying to keep their business on time, on budget, and on track. Chloe left.
Kyle and Summer returned home. Kyle told Diane he'd spoken to Summer about Diane's job request, and they wanted to offer her a job in the PR department at Marchetti. Summer said the reason that position had opened up was because not everyone wanted to leave Italy. Kyle said Diane would be an asset to the employees relocating from Italy because she spoke Italian. Summer said it wasn't a high-level job, but they wanted her to get her footing. Diane was grateful and promised she wouldn't let them down. Jack appeared concerned.
Diane told Kyle it meant "so much" to her to be working with him and Summer in her first job in town, and she invited everyone to celebrate. Jack said he would hang out with Harrison. Diane asked if Jack didn't want to raise a glass to the new CEO of Marchetti. Jack caved in, and he agreed to join them.
At a table at Society, Summer told everyone that she was very excited to sit down with Chelsea and map out their vision for Marchetti. Jack asked if Chelsea was locked in. Summer said Chelsea needed to discuss it with Chloe. Kyle said they were reinventing the PR division because they were working with a well-known luxury brand, and they wanted to make it accessible to the US market. Jack said it promised to be a profitable venture. Phyllis arrived, and when she saw the group, she didn't look happy.
Phyllis declined Diane's offer to join them, and she asked what was going on. Diane said they were celebrating her being hired at Marchetti. Phyllis stated she was there to see Abby. Jack said they hadn't seen her. Summer said she was happy to see Phyllis because she wanted to discuss hosting fashion shows at the hotel. Summer and Phyllis stepped away to discuss Summer's idea. Diane told Jack that a week earlier, she would have expected Phyllis to pour Champagne over her head. Jack appeared to chafe at Diane's comments.
Elsewhere, Phyllis asked Summer if the job they'd hired Diane for was the same job Summer had offered her. Summer said no and that she'd wanted Phyllis to be the head of marketing. She said what they'd offered Diane was a junior level PR gig. Summer explained it had been Kyle's idea, and she'd wanted to support him.
At Chancellor-Winters, Nate asked Imani how long it would take to get Elena out of a contract with Newman Media. Imani asked why she would want to do that. Nate said so that Elena could host medical podcasts for them. Imani said she'd heard Elena would be out of town. Nate confirmed that Elena would be attending a conference in Hawaii. He said he wanted Elena free of any Newman obligations, and he wanted her to sign their contract when she returned. Imani claimed their legal team was really swamped.
Nate told Imani it would be a personal favor. He said Devon had been giving him a hard time about jumping the gun on the podcast announcement at the launch party, and Elena's idea might help him regain himself. Imani said she would find a way. Nate asked Imani to confirm it would be done by the time Elena returned from Hawaii. Imani asked how long Elena would be out of town.
At Crimson Lights, Victor asked Nick if he'd heard from Victoria after Victor had blocked investors from putting money into Victoria and Ashland's company. Nick was certain that Victoria would know the information had come from him. Nick said Victoria had trusted him, and that trust had been destroyed. Nikki said she was worried the situation was going to push Victoria further away. Victor said to wait and see how things worked out.
After Nick left for a refill, Victor said he knew Nikki had asked Michael to find some dirt on Diane Jenkins. Victor said Nikki should have approached him first because he didn't want Michael to split his focus. Victor said Michael had been very helpful in creating roadblocks in Victoria and Ashland's plans. Victor said he knew things would work out sooner than anyone expected. Nikki claimed Michael would drag his feet finding information on Diane.
Nikki told Victor she couldn't understand how he could be so calm about Victoria and Ashland's situation. Victor asked Nikki to trust Victoria the way she trusted him. Nikki claimed something was going on because Victor was too calm, as if he knew his plan was already working. Victor hoped it was. Nikki asked if Victor had had any indication that Adam being CEO was pushing Victoria to return. Victor said he would have informed her if he had.
Nikki told Victor that the longer Adam was CEO, the more difficult it would be for Victoria to reclaim her position. Nikki asked if Victor was okay yanking Adam out of the CEO seat and putting Victoria back in, but she realized Victor had a plan. Victor said he wasn't sure if the plan would work because he didn't know what was going on in Victoria's head.
At the counter, Sharon asked Nick for any news about Victoria. Nick said he'd heard from her before he and Sharon had spoken. Sharon asked why he hadn't mentioned it previously. Nick said that when Victoria had told him about investors putting money into her and Ashland's new company, all Nick had wanted to do had been to get Victoria away from "that lying bastard." Nick said he'd told Victor everything that Victoria had said. Sharon said that Victor had done everything he could to shut down Victoria and Ashland's new venture. Nick said Victor had made sure the investors didn't go anywhere near Victoria and Ashland. Nick said he wasn't sure if he'd done the right thing.
Sharon told Nick that Victoria had put him in a difficult position, and she asked why Victoria had done that. Nick admitted that he'd wondered why Victoria had confided in him. Nick thought it might have been a test of loyalty. Sharon said if it had been, Nick had failed. Nick said it could be some convoluted game Victoria was playing with Victor. Sharon questioned whether Victoria had wanted Nick to inform Victor. Nick claimed Victoria knew he would do anything to make sure she didn't get in any deeper with Ashland.
Nick told Sharon he felt like he was either Victor or Victoria's pawn. Sharon said Victor had installed Adam as CEO, believing that would bring Victoria home, but it had failed. Nick claimed he didn't have much influence on the family dynamics, since he didn't have any skin in the game.
Nick told Sharon that if he was still involved in the company, he would have had more impact, and things could have turned out differently. Sharon asked if Nick was still second-guessing his decision about leaving Newman. Nick said it was difficult standing on the sidelines, watching his family deal with the power struggles, and he wanted Victoria to get through the situation unscathed.
In their suite, Victoria asked Ashland how his search for a new office building had gone. He claimed there was a building in Tribeca that would be perfect; it was state of the art, they wouldn't need to change much, and they could probably buy it for below market value. Ashland noticed Victoria's expression and asked if she was having second thoughts. Victoria assured him she wasn't.
Victoria told Ashland she was very excited about starting their new company and about the building. Victoria wanted to see the building. Ashland said he would be meeting the owners later that day. Victoria said she'd hired an attorney to handle the articles of incorporation, and they needed a name for their company. They decided to call their company Destiny Media.
Victoria told Ashland that she'd already put $250 million into the corporate account, and he should make his contribution as soon as possible. Victoria hugged him. Ashland said it was all he'd ever hoped for. Ashland agreed that funding the company themselves had been the right move because it gave them complete autonomy to do whatever they wanted.
Ashland told Victoria he had the banking information, and he would begin the process. Victoria said that once the transfer went through, they would be a united force, and they wouldn't have to answer to Victor or anyone else. Victoria said she would prove to her family that she could call the shots without them constantly hovering over her. Ashland said he couldn't describe what it meant to him. Ashland said Victoria had every reason never to trust him again, but they were about to renew their commitment to each other.
Victoria told Ashland it was what they both wanted. Ashland said he knew Victoria had left Genoa City to liberate herself from her parents, but she could have done that without him. Ashland vowed he would never give her a reason to doubt him again.
Victoria told Ashland she loved the photos of the building, and she wanted to see it in person. Victoria said it was the perfect location for Destiny Media. Ashland asked her to go with him to meet the owners, but Victoria said she had to meet with the lawyers. Victoria asked Ashland to arrange a walk-through for later. Ashland left.
Victoria opened her tablet and transferred $500 million from the corporate account to her personal account. With her suitcases packed, Victoria called for the jet to be sent to New York City immediately.
Ashland returned and was about to enter the suite.
At Society, Chloe told Sally she was supposed to have a business meeting with her absent partner; however, it was possible Chelsea had chosen not to attend. Chloe congratulated Sally on her new gig and said that Sally could handle it. Chloe admitted she was surprised that Sally had accepted the job offer, considering her love for fashion design. Sally admitted she'd had a few misgivings; however, it had turned out to be the best professional decision she'd ever made.
Under her breath, Chloe muttered that sometimes she felt like she could use a new calling. Sally said she was surprised because she thought Chloe and Chelsea had been killing it. Sally asked if their new line wasn't going the way they'd hoped. Chloe said they were adjusting to a new work environment. Sally commented that Chloe and Chelsea had been partners previously, and they'd had great success. Sally asked what was different "this time." Chloe claimed it was hard to say.
Sally said that Chloe and Chelsea had wanted to create a space where they could do their magic again, and it seemed like it was a dream situation working with Lauren. Chloe said Lauren was great, but when starting a new venture, there were different challenges. Chloe said she appreciated Sally's help. Sally said she was in a really good place, and she wanted them all to be friends. Sally said she'd been shocked when she'd seen Chloe and Chelsea having a blow-up. Sally said she'd known it had been something major.
Chloe told Sally that Chelsea had been hit really hard by Rey's death because they'd become close. Sally verified that it was true even though Chelsea had tried to poison him. Chloe said there had been some extenuating circumstances, but Rey had forgiven Chelsea -- then he'd been gone. Chloe said that since then, things had been very difficult.
Sally said she knew Chloe had recruited her for the fashion platform because Chelsea had been unavailable. Chloe stated that Chelsea had since gotten past all her issues. Sally suggested perhaps Chelsea had covered them up for Chloe. Sally claimed that Chelsea had treated her as if she was a threat. Sally said she didn't know if it had been because of her friendship with Chloe, because of her involvement with Adam, or both. Chloe asked Sally to see it from Chelsea's point of view.
Chloe told Sally that Chelsea had returned to town, hoping to pick up where she'd left off. Sally said Chelsea probably felt as if Sally had taken Chelsea's place, but Chelsea should have realized she'd burned every bridge with Adam. Chloe said it had been tough on Chelsea because even though she was her old self again, there were consequences for what she'd done when she hadn't been in her right mind. Chloe said it had been one of the reasons why Rey had meant so much to her; his forgiveness had paved the way for everyone in town to give her a second chance. She said that Rey had died, and Chelsea had been very emotional since.
Sally told Chloe that a loss like that could put a strain on a friendship. Sally said Chloe had been the driving force behind the collaboration with Chelsea, and it wasn't Chloe's fault the partnership was going through a difficult phase. Chloe said she would support her best friend. Sally said she'd had first-hand experience that it was a losing proposition to try to fix someone, but she hoped it would all work out for Chloe. Sally left.
At Newman, slightly agitated, Chelsea asked Adam to sign a permission slip for Connor to take a canoe trip and explained that he had to sign it because he was the parent on record. Adam asked if Chelsea was okay. Chelsea said she was fine, but things had become a struggle with Chloe. Chelsea claimed she was tired of being managed. Adam said he could relate. Chelsea claimed Chloe was reaching Victor's level.
Chelsea told Adam she wasn't sure if Chloe felt pressured, or if she felt she had to prove something. Chelsea said she'd tried talking to Chloe, but nothing changed. She claimed Chloe was obsessed with deadlines; it was all about efficiency and productivity. Chelsea claimed she needed creative spark, but there was no joy or fun. Chelsea said it had always been fun with Chloe. Adam said Chelsea walked a fine line with Chloe; sometimes they were best friends or partners in crime, and sometimes they were bitter rivals.
Adam said it seemed like Chelsea was about to blow up her career, and he suggested that perhaps he could help repair Chelsea's partnership with Chloe. Chelsea said she'd told Chloe not to worry because the work would get done, but Chloe was acting like it was her first lap around the track. Adam suggested that Chelsea would have to suck it up and deal with it. Chelsea said she'd received an offer from Summer and Kyle to design for Marchetti and that Jabot had acquired the label.
Chelsea told Adam that if she was going to accept the Marchetti job, she would have to do it on her own. She said Chloe didn't want to take it on because it was too big a deal, and Chloe thought they couldn't handle it. Chelsea claimed it would help her creativity. Chelsea said she'd been scattered lately, and the Marchetti job would ground her. Chelsea insisted she could handle it. Adam said he didn't believe she could.
Adam said he knew how hard Chelsea worked and that she was great at what she did, but the Marchetti thing was too much. Adam said it was like she was trying to latch on to something to fill a void. Chelsea said she loved creating beautiful things, and designing brought her joy. She said that was where she needed to spend her energy. Adam said not if she was using that as a crutch. Adam said when Chelsea had returned to town, she'd been positive and looking forward, but he felt she was backsliding. Chelsea shouted that wasn't the case.
Adam claimed Chelsea was getting caught up in petty grievances. Adam said she'd been upset with Connor's camp people because they were trying to do their job. Adam asked about the argument with Chloe. Chelsea was agitated, and Adam said he wasn't judging her, only commenting on what he'd noticed. Adam said that since Rey's death, she hadn't been herself. Chelsea admitted it had been difficult.
Adam asked why Chelsea wanted to take the Marchetti job, because it appeared like she was trying to steady her life by taking on more work. Adam said it never worked, and she couldn't avoid what was bothering her because eventually, she would have to deal with it. He said that what she was doing wasn't sustainable.
At Newman Media, Adam told Sally his COO didn't have an interest in his vision, much less helping him realize it. Adam said he had an idea that would impress the hell out of Victor, but he had to move quickly and show Victor he was indispensable because, with each day, Victoria was closer to imploding her life and running back to Daddy.
Adam told Sally he'd done some research, and there was a major retailer who was having trouble moving networking capital in the southwest. Adam said they needed to move in, take over operations, and replace their locations with stores under the Newman brand. Sally said it sounded like an idea Victor would have had.
Sally told Adam if he wanted to make a splash, he had to do something different. Sally said Victoria had already done that, and it might have worked for her; however, he needed to be Adam. Sally said Adam needed to surprise Victor with something to set the business world buzzing. Sally said retail in the southwest was nice, but it was something he should do when his CEO job was a little more secure. Sally said she didn't think it would have the impact Adam was looking for. Sally told Adam to shoot for the stars. Adam said that Sally should be COO of Newman because he would never receive that kind of advice from Nikki.
Sally told Adam she had an idea about who should be her COO: Chloe. Adam said he didn't think that would work because she was tied up in the Fenmore's deal. Sally said she'd had a talk with Chloe, and it appeared Chelsea was getting on her nerves and that their partnership might be on the outs. Adam said he'd met with Chelsea earlier, and he didn't disagree with Sally; however, Chloe had no experience. Sally reminded him that he'd hired her with no experience.
Sally told Adam that she and Chloe had previously worked well together. Chloe got the work done, and she was an effective manager. Sally thought Chloe would be great for the job, and she wanted to make some overtures to get Chloe over to Newman Media. Adam had one objection; he said Chloe hated him with every fiber of her being.
Chelsea arrived at Society and apologized to Chloe for being late. Chloe said she'd received Chelsea's text messages. Chelsea looked confused because she hadn't sent any. Chloe said she'd been waiting for Chelsea to arrive. Chelsea said that after the way things had ended the previous day, she wondered why Chloe would want to be eager to communicate with her. Chloe claimed that was all the more reason Chelsea should have kept her updated -- so the tension between them wouldn't get worse.
Chloe stated that it had been very inconsiderate of Chelsea to not show up for their meeting, and she'd had it because things weren't working between them.
At Crimson Lights, Victor received a text message from the pilot. Victor told Nikki and Nick that a flight plan had been filed to New York and a return to Genoa City for Victoria only.
Billy arrived and asked the Newmans if they'd heard from Victoria. Nikki said no one had spoken to Victoria. Billy said he was thrilled that Victoria had finally broken free of Victor. Nick told Billy they'd been discussing a family matter, and he told Billy to leave.
Nikki told Victor she wanted to believe Victoria had realized she'd made a terrible mistake, or perhaps she was returning to confront Victor about discouraging the investors. She said Victoria had been very clear about Victor interfering in her life. Nick suggested perhaps Ashland had had enough of constantly facing that kind of hostility.
Victor told Nikki and Nick that he was going to assume Victoria was in control of the situation and that it had been her decision to return home. Nikki asked if Victor had made a decision about Adam and where he fit into the company. Victor refused to make any decisions until he'd spoken with Victoria.
Ashland returned to his hotel suite and saw Victoria's luggage. Ashland asked if she was planning to sneak off without him. Victoria asked why he'd returned so soon. Ashland claimed he'd forgotten his tablet that had the information he needed. Ashland asked why Victoria wasn't on her way to see the lawyer. He saw the text from Victor on Victoria's phone, and he asked about it.
Victoria told Ashland she had no idea, and as she reached for her phone, Ashland grabbed it and said he was interested in what Victor had to say to her. He read out loud; "Jet is on the way. Are you alright?" Ashland realized Victoria had planned to sneak off, and he asked her not to lie to him. Victoria said she wouldn't lie. She said she had her reasons for asking the jet to be sent because it was taking her to Genoa City.
Ashland asked if Victor had threatened her with an ultimatum. Victoria said Victor had nothing to do with it; the decision had been hers alone. Victoria said she regretted some of the things she'd said to them, but they'd been necessary. Ashland said it had been to prove her independence, and he asked if she was having second thoughts about walking away from her family. Victoria said she could never leave her family; it showed how little he knew her.
Ashland asked if Victoria was returning to her family to ask forgiveness without telling him. Victoria said she'd had every intention of telling him everything, but he'd caught her off guard by returning so soon.
Victoria told Ashland her plan had been to have her bags packed and to decide exactly what she'd wanted to say to him. Victoria said they wouldn't be forming a new corporation together, and the move to New York hadn't been about starting a new life with him -- it had been a calculated move to cut ties with him and to end his connection with her and her family for good.
Victoria said Ashland had done everything exactly as she'd hoped. He'd agreed to invest his own money, he'd transferred what was left of the 500 million dollars that Victor had given him into the corporate account she'd created, and she'd transferred that money to her account. Victoria said Ashland had exactly what he deserved -- nothing. Victoria said Ashland had a clear understanding of who she was and who he'd been dealing with.
Victoria asked if Ashland had believed she was so completely under his spell that he could do whatever he'd wanted, and she would forgive him. Victoria said from the moment they'd been together, it had been a lie and a massive betrayal; she'd loved and cared about him while he'd pretended to be overwhelmed by his illness. Victoria said she'd suffered at the prospect of watching him die over that non-existent disease, and she'd felt the dread daily in the pit of her stomach. Victoria said when she'd learned the truth of what he'd done, it hadn't only broken her heart; it had crushed her.
Victoria acknowledged that Ashland had saved her life by pulling her from a burning car, but she wasn't sure it had been a selfless act. Ashland said he'd saved her life because he hadn't been able to bear the thought of losing her. Victoria stated that hadn't been enough to erase what he'd done to her and her entire family. Victoria said he hadn't deserved that money from Victor, and giving half the money to Nick had been a transparent act; he'd done that to impress her or to ease his guilt, but she doubted he was capable of feeling guilt.
Victoria told Ashland she'd decided she wouldn't let him take anything from her family, so she'd devised a plan to get the money back by lying and deceiving him the same way he'd done to her. Victoria said Ashland was incapable of feeling remorse or love. Victoria showed Ashland the corporate account with a zero balance and said that his fortune was gone.
Ashland claimed it wasn't what Victoria wanted, but Victoria asked "how the hell" he knew what she wanted. Victoria said she'd been able to pull off her plan so easily because he was so arrogant and believed he had a hold on her that no one could break. Ashland claimed their love had been real. Victoria agreed it had been, but only on her part. Victoria stated that every word she'd said to him since she'd returned from Switzerland had been a lie. Ashland said he should have realized something had been wrong when she'd insisted on taking things slowly.
Victoria said Ashland had believed all the bull she'd fed him about starting over again; it was the secret of any successful con. Ashland said Victoria had gotten him. Victoria asked him how it felt to be so completely wrong about her, to be bested and stripped of his ill-gotten gains. Ashland claimed Victoria had just committed fraud. Victoria laughed and said that had been uttered by someone who'd lived their entire adult life under a fraudulent name, who'd built his entire fortune on a stolen inheritance, and who'd defrauded everyone into believing he'd been dying from cancer.
Victoria dared Ashland to try to accuse her of anything because she would let the world know exactly what he was capable of and the levels to which he would stoop -- with proof to back it up -- and she could destroy his life with one phone call. Ashland asked if she felt satisfied and if it had been worth it. Victoria said, "Yes."
Ashland said if that was who Victoria wanted to be, Victor would be "so proud." Victoria said it was predictable that he would use her relationship with Victor as a way to make her second-guess herself, but the plan had been hers alone -- and the satisfaction of crushing Ashland the way he'd tried to crush her had been hers, as well. Victoria said Ashland had masqueraded his way into her life, and he'd tricked her into loving him. Victoria reminded him that his company had been absorbed into Newman Enterprises, and his name and presence had been completely wiped from the building. Victoria said Ashland was what he always should have been, nothing and no one.
Ashland told Victoria he'd loved her with his heart and soul. Victoria said she knew he had neither. Ashland asked what Victoria expected him to do. Victoria stated that Ashland hadn't grasped the situation because he'd continued to see her as someone he could manipulate, someone who believed they couldn't live without him. Victoria told Ashland to disappear because they were through. Victoria said she never wanted to see or hear from him ever again, and she gathered her luggage and left.
In the Newman Media office, Sally told Adam that Chloe didn't need to like him to be an amazing right-hand for her. Adam agreed and said she could have whatever she needed, and if Chloe was a good fit as COO, she should bring Chloe on board. Sally said if Chloe wanted to end her partnership, Sally wanted to scoop her up before anyone else did.
Adam told Sally that Chelsea had stopped by his office earlier, and he could tell she was struggling since Rey's passing. Sally said Chloe had mentioned that Chelsea was having a difficult time. Adam added that Connor was, too. Adam said Chelsea was using work as a crutch, avoiding her emotional well-being, and it had triggered a rift between Chelsea and Chloe. He said it would become a bigger issue if Chelsea accepted a gig with Marchetti.
Adam told Sally that Summer wanted to hire Chelsea as their designer. Adam said Chelsea claimed that Chloe was trying to micromanage her, and Chloe didn't want Chelsea to take the job because Chelsea couldn't handle the workload she already had. Adam agreed with Chloe. He said he'd shared his thoughts with Chelsea, but Chelsea had accused him of criticizing her.
Sally told Adam that perhaps parting ways would be the best thing for Chloe and Chelsea. Adam said dissolving the partnership would be good for Chelsea in the long run, and Chelsea could then take on the job at Marchetti.
Adam received a text message informing him the company jet was on its way to New York. He told Sally he'd booked the jet to take Connor to a hockey game in Pittsburg. Adam called the pilot and asked who'd requested the jet to go to New York. Adam told Sally that Victoria had sent for the jet for herself, and Victor had signed off on it. Adam said it could only mean one thing; Victoria was in, and he was out. Sally said they didn't know that was what would happen, but Adam claimed they did.
Sally said that based on the way Adam had described the blowup between Victoria and the family before she'd left, it didn't sound like the plan of a woman who'd planned to look back. Adam said he wanted to know what had changed. Sally said perhaps Victoria was returning to make peace with her family.
Adam said there could be a lot they didn't know. Sally said they shouldn't panic because it would cloud their thinking when they needed to be at their sharpest. Adam said they needed to figure out what they were dealing with and act accordingly.
Adam arrived at the coffeehouse, and he heard Victor say the jet would land in Genoa City in a couple of hours. Adam told Victor he'd booked the jet to take Connor to Pittsburg, and he'd been surprised when he'd been bumped by Victoria, who wasn't an employee or part of the family. Nikki suggested Adam fly commercial, but Adam claimed all flights had been booked. Adam said Connor was going to be crushed. Victor said Victoria had requested the use of the jet to bring her to Genoa City. Adam asked Victor what the purpose of Victoria's visit was or if it was more than a visit.
At Society, Chelsea said Chloe had accused her of being inconsiderate and ungrateful for not sending a hundred text messages because she was five minutes late. Chloe said Chelsea was over an hour late. Chloe said all Chelsea did was "bitch" and pick fights with her. Chloe mentioned that she had to tap dance daily around the people who made the clothes because Chelsea had decided deadlines were optional.
Chelsea claimed she'd been under a lot of stress. Chloe said she'd tried every which way to help Chelsea navigate her emotional ups and downs, and all she'd received from Chelsea had been snarks and putdowns. Chloe said Chelsea was impossible, and things couldn't go on that way. Chelsea asked if Chloe was quitting, abandoning things at Fenmore's, and leaving Chelsea in the lurch with Marchetti. Chelsea asked if Chloe was considering dissolving their partnership.
Chloe told Chelsea she wanted to find a way their partnership could work and that they were operating at their best, as well as a better way of communication that didn't involve Chelsea becoming angry and defensive. Chelsea claimed things didn't always go smoothly; it was the nature of collaboration.
Chelsea told Chloe it wasn't easy coming up with new ideas constantly, and she was sick of Chloe not appreciating what she brought to the table. Taken aback, Chloe said she'd covered for Chelsea as a result of her medical issues, which hadn't been Chelsea's fault because she'd gone down a dark path and had made Chloe a co-conspirator. Chelsea claimed Chloe still held a grudge against her for that, but Chloe denied it and said Kevin worked for the police, and if her involvement had become part of the original investigation, they would have been in a lot of trouble.
Chelsea told Chloe the reason she'd gone along with Victor's plan had been to protect Chloe by confessing to everything. Chelsea told Chloe not to act like it was a one-sided friendship. Chloe said Chelsea had said she'd needed time to heal and recover. Chloe said that even at Chelsea's lowest point, Chloe had been there for her.
Chloe told Chelsea she'd bent over backwards to buy Chelsea time; she'd worked for Adam and set up the fashion platform so that Chelsea would have a safe place to land and do the work she loved as soon as she felt well enough, but Chelsea had left her dangling and claimed she hadn't been sure she'd wanted the job. Chloe said she had practically begged Chelsea to work with her because she'd known it would be good for Chelsea and because she loved working with her.
Chelsea told Chloe that lately, it hadn't seemed that way. Chloe found it incomprehensible that Chelsea would suggest that Chloe didn't appreciate her talent and that she wasn't a good enough friend to Chelsea. In tears, Chloe said she'd tried to find a way to make their partnership work while trying to preserve their friendship and solve the work problem. Chelsea claimed Chloe meant Chelsea was the problem.
Chloe said every time she expressed her concern or offered advice, Chelsea lashed out and insisted on taking it personally. Chelsea claimed it was personal because Chloe made it personal, and she'd asked Chloe several times to back off and to trust her and the process. Chelsea said designing for Marchetti would be a dream for her, but Chloe wouldn't even consider the idea. Chloe said that as someone who knew Chelsea and knew how intensive and time-consuming the creative process could be, Chloe wanted Chelsea to consider the possibility she might be taking on too much.
Chelsea claimed that Chloe always wanted to manage her, but Chloe claimed she was being a responsible partner. Chelsea accused Chloe of believing she knew what was best for Chelsea and how much Chelsea could handle. Chelsea claimed it was patronizing and controlling, and she couldn't take it anymore. Chelsea said when she'd insisted that she knew her limits, Chloe had thrown Chelsea's past in her face like she didn't have the emotional fortitude to do her job; it was insulting. Chelsea claimed Chloe's attitude was what wasn't working for them, and if Chloe wanted out, then Chloe should go for it. Chelsea stormed out right past Sally, who'd just entered.
Outside, Billy asked if Chelsea was okay. Chelsea said not by a long shot, and she kept walking. Billy followed her.
Chloe told Sally she was in a lousy mood. Sally said she'd seen Chelsea storm out. Sally said when they'd spoken earlier, it had been obvious that things were strained between Chloe and Chelsea, in work and in their friendship. Sally said there might be an alternative.
Billy caught up with Chelsea in the park. Billy said he'd followed her because she'd said she wasn't okay. Chelsea claimed she was fine. Billy asked if something had happened at Society. Chelsea said Chloe had been getting on her last nerve lately. Chelsea said she and Chloe had been disagreeing a lot, and the professional partnership had become very personal. Billy said that happened when one worked with someone one cared about. Billy said he and Lily disagreed at times, but they talked things through to find common ground.
Chelsea told Billy it had been that way with Chloe before, but lately, Chloe had constantly been pushing her buttons. Billy said as only the ones that knew them best did. Chelsea agreed and said perhaps it was her projecting her stuff on Chloe, who was the best friend she'd ever had.
Billy told Chelsea that he'd taken to heart what she'd said about his podcasts because he'd known she'd been right. Billy asked Chelsea what they'd learned that day. Chelsea said what Chloe had said made sense, but she hadn't wanted to admit it. Chelsea said perhaps she wasn't good at gauging her limitations, and maybe she needed to face reality.