In the Colonnade Room's private dining area, Jill commented to John that Victor's return from the dead had been a shock to all of them. John was glad Victor was alive, but he considered the whole episode bizarre. He questioned whether they were supposed to turn back the clock and return everything to the way it had been, and she assumed he was referring to whether Jabot would go back to Newman Enterprises. Jill sympathized that it would be a terrible blow to John.
John admitted that it had been wonderful having Jabot back in the family again, but he was more concerned about his son. John recalled the fight he and Jack had waged to convince a judge that Jabot belonged to them, resulting in Jack moving into Victor's job and carving out a new life for himself -- only to have Victor resurrect himself and take it all back. "Damn that man!" John ranted, blasting Victor for playing with people's lives.
John got angrier the more he thought about it, since Victor had surely known that the world had believed he was dead. John cited the news stories on every television station and radio broadcast and the headlines in the newspapers, and he thought that Victor would have needed to be living on another planet not to see it. John questioned why Victor had put his family and friends through that -- even allowing his will to go to probate. John bristled at the perverse pleasure Victor had probably gotten from it.
John imagined that Victor knew the Abbotts had their company back and that Jack was running Newman. John thought the latter in itself should have sent Victor storming back to Genoa City -- unless the entire ploy had been deliberate. John contemplated the possibility that it had been Victor's plan all along to give Jack everything he'd ever wanted, just to have Victor return from the grave and take it all back. Jill didn't believe Victor would go that far for revenge, but John questioned what kind of man would play a charade like that on the people who loved him most in the world.
At Jabot, Blade imagined that Ashley had been shaken to see Victor walk through the door, and she exclaimed that she'd never experienced anything like it in her life. Blade wondered if Victor had explained why he'd been away that long, but Ashley indicated that Victor had kept it a mystery. Ashley believed that Victor had known they'd all thought he was dead, and she didn't know what had possessed him to let them go on thinking the worst. Blade considered it cruel if Victor's actions had been deliberate, and Ashley couldn't wait to hear Victor's explanation. Blade didn't think anything could justify the way Victor had handled things.
Blade surmised that Victor meant a great deal to Ashley. Ashley admitted that she'd once loved Victor deeply, and even though they'd divorced, they were still very close. Blade worried about seeming insecure, but he wondered how Victor's return affected their own marriage plans. Ashley refused to deny that she'd once had feelings for Victor, and she expected that part of her would always love her ex. She called Victor a man she couldn't easily forget, but she insisted that their relationship was in the past.
Blade asked if Ashley was sure. She said he couldn't fathom what it had been like for her to think a man she'd once shared her life with had been killed in a tragic auto accident, only to have him suddenly reappear before her eyes. Blade supposed that everyone had fantasized about someone they'd lost walking back into their lives one day, and he recognized that Ashley had just lived that fantasy. She mused that the fantasy was a reality, since Victor was alive and back. Blade pulled her into his arms.
In her office, Lauren perused a newspaper article about Fenmore's snatching Newman's top executive. Brad entered, and she cheerfully greeted her new partner. She guessed that he'd seen the paper, and he asked if she'd warned her husband. Lauren confirmed that she had, but Scott was upset with her, anyway. Brad hoped it hadn't raised "too much hell" in her marriage, and she assured him that she would handle it.
Lauren asked if something was wrong, since Brad looked like he'd seen a ghost. He remarked that she didn't know how prophetic a statement that was, and he advised her to sit down. He informed her that he'd received an unsigned invitation to the private dining room at the Colonnade Room, where he and a few others had shown up. He revealed that the invitation had been from Victor Newman, who was alive.
Lauren called the idea absurd, but Brad swore that he'd seen Victor with his own two eyes. Lauren struggled to absorb the implications, and she wondered how Jack had taken the news. Brad reported that Jack hadn't been there, and Lauren was shocked that Victor hadn't invited his archenemy to his "second coming." Brad explained that Jack had been invited but that he'd been called out of town. Lauren realized that Jack still didn't know, and Brad tried to picture Jack's face when he found out. Brad quipped that if ever a man had set himself up to be castrated, Jack had.
Lauren imagined that Victor knew Jack was sitting in Victor's old office, but Victor was probably unaware of how much Jack had shaken up Newman Enterprises. Lauren expected "all hell" to break loose, and Brad wanted a front-row seat to watch. Brad expected Victor to be blown away by the changes Jack had made while on a power trip, undoing everything Victor had done. Brad crowed that it was sweet that the man himself was back from the grave to toss Jack out on his rear.
Lauren pointed out that Brad had left Newman Enterprises because of Jack, but Brad was close with Victor. She wondered what Brad was going to do. Brad asked if Victor's return had changed things, but Lauren assured Brad that he still stood to have a fabulous future at Fenmore's. She rattled off a list of his exceptional qualities, including his good looks and sex appeal.
Lauren understood that Brad had had it pretty good at Newman, but she encouraged him to think about what he could accomplish at Fenmore's before making a decision. Brad swore that he was just trying to process everything that had happened, and he felt that he couldn't make any decisions until he talked to Victor. Lauren requested that Brad talk to her again before he committed one way or another, and he agreed.
In the waiting room of Harold Hodgekins' office, Paul griped that Hodgekins had forgotten that he and Christine were waiting. Christine figured that it was Hodgekins' way of playing the one-upmanship game, and Paul hated the thought of her having to beg the creep for a favor. She conceded that she was desperate, and she hoped Hodgekins had one shred of decency or compassion. Christine hoped to convince him to stall the Rainbow Gardens sale by delaying the close of escrow, but Paul thought she was dreaming. Hodgekins emerged from his office and invited them in.
Hodgekins said he was surprised to see Paul and Christine, since they'd concluded whatever business they'd had. Christine acknowledged that they'd never see eye to eye on the situation at Rainbow Gardens, but Hodgekins called it water under the dam. Christine understood that he was in business to make a profit, but she protested that there were decent people being displaced from the homes they'd lived in for years. Paul added that the seniors were having a difficult time finding other housing. Hodgekins huffed that it wasn't his problem.
Christine questioned whether Hodgekins cared at all about what happened to the people, and he wished the tenants luck. She appealed to him to delay the sale of the building for the sake of the seniors on fixed incomes, and she proposed that he give them a little more time to relocate. Hodgekins sensed a note of desperation, and Christine begged him to help. Hodgekins taunted that selling the building hadn't been on his mind until the "renegades" had staged a rent strike under Christine's guidance. He contended that she'd backed him into a corner by giving him no choice but to sell.
Paul argued that Hodgekins could have followed the court order to fix the building to make it a safe place to live. Christine pleaded with Hodgekins to persuade the buyers to delay the closing in order to give the seniors more time to find housing and avoid eviction. Hodgekins snapped that it was too late, and there was nothing more he could do. He excused himself for other appointments and coldly told them that they knew the way out.
Christine and Paul stopped by to see Rainbow Gardens tenants Margaret and Miles, an elderly couple. Christine bemoaned that Hodgekins had refused to consider giving them more time. She saw that the couple had been packing, and Miles accepted that they needed to move. Miles recognized that Christine had done the best she could, and Paul insisted on continuing to try to help.
Christine spotted a picture that Margaret was packing, and Margaret explained that it showed her and Miles in better days. Christine examined the photograph and recognized the building in it. Miles confirmed that it was the same building they were living in then, and he recalled that it had been really something back in the day. Christine looked thoughtful.
In Nathan's office, Olivia set down baby Nate to play on the floor. Nathan inquired about how things had gone in New York, and she regretted that they hadn't gone as well as she'd hoped. She lamented that her mom was slipping deeper into depression, and Nathan asked what the doctors had said. Olivia shared that her mother hadn't been keeping her appointments, and Nathan noted that it sounded like her mom wasn't making the effort.
Olivia groaned that it made things worse when her mother just sat there all day long. Nathan assured her that she was doing the best she could and that her dad and the doctors were there to help. Nathan recalled that Olivia had asked him to observe her mother when they were alone to see if he noticed any difference, but Olivia swore that her mom wasn't faking. Nathan understood that it had been difficult to say goodbye, but he insisted that she'd done the right thing. She seemed perplexed, and he had the feeling there was something else she wanted to tell him.
Olivia informed Nathan that her mother had returned home with her and was staying at their apartment. A speechless Nathan turned away, and she pressed him to try to see her position, since her mother was terribly depressed and getting worse. Nathan argued that Olivia had precious little time for their family as it was. Olivia swore that their family was the most important thing in her life, and she was confident that they would manage somehow. Nathan asked how long she saw the arrangement going on, but she didn't know. She begged him not to be upset because it was important to her.
At the Newman ranch, Douglas and Hope witnessed Victor's reunion with Victoria and Nick. Douglas called it the most wonderful surprise ever when he'd told the children about Victor, who cuddled with his kids on the couch. Nick compared it to having the best dream in the world come true, and Victoria considered it a miracle to have someone they'd loved and lost return to them. Victor gushed that his children had no idea what it meant to him to be with them again.
Victoria apologized for the cruel and hurtful things she'd said to Victor before he'd gone on his trip, and she recognized that he'd always had her best interests at heart. They hugged, and she reflected back on all the times she'd wished she could take back what she'd said. Victoria swore that she'd always loved him, and Victor held her close as Hope wiped a tear from her eye. Victor acknowledged that he and Victoria had both done and said hurtful things to one another, and he thought they should promise themselves that they wouldn't make the same mistakes again.
Nick wondered what would happen next, since everyone thought Victor was dead. Victor intended to make sure people knew the truth, and he mentioned that he'd already met with some people to tell them that he was alive. Victoria imagined that had "popped a few eyeballs," and Douglas confirmed that it had been one of the most intriguing days ever in the Colonnade's private dining room. Victoria realized that Victor had been behind the strange invitation her mom had received, but Victor disclosed that Nikki had chosen not to be there. Victoria asked when and how Victor would tell Nikki, but he didn't have the answer yet.
Hope felt that she was intruding on Victor's reunion with his children. He insisted that she wasn't, but she retreated to her bedroom to give them some time together alone. Victoria stared as Hope used her walking cane to navigate her way around. Victor asked what Victoria was looking at, and she again called it a miracle that he was alive. Victor said he'd missed Victoria and Nick more than he could tell them.
Victoria wondered what her father had been doing on Hope's farm, and Victor informed her that he'd worked there by helping with the animals and taking care of the place. Victoria surmised that he'd stayed because Hope had needed him, and Victor replied that it had been true at first. "And then?" Victoria queried. Victor admitted that he'd become very attracted to the simple lifestyle that had a purpose for everything. He figured that he'd needed time to regroup after all the stressful months he'd been through before he'd left.
Victor preferred to talk about what was going on with his children. He assumed that Victoria was going to the local university, since she wasn't at Northwestern, and she chose her words carefully as she stated that she'd decided not to go to Northwestern. Victor bet that her mom was happy she'd stayed home to attend university, and Douglas stepped in and pulled Nick aside to give Victor and Victoria a chance to talk privately.
Victoria had a feeling the trip had done a lot for Victor, since he seemed calmer. She pushed to know why he'd waited to call when they'd thought he was dead, and he wondered what she was really asking. She flatly inquired how much his absence had had to do with Hope. The phone rang, and Douglas answered it and seemed pleased to hear some news. Victor said it was an important call that he'd been waiting for, and he promised that he would be back soon. He headed out.
At Newman Enterprises, Victor appeared to be deep in thought as he flashed back to confronting Jack about trying to take over the company. Victor had sworn that he wouldn't let Jack use Victor's involvement with Ashley as a way to usurp his position. Victor had growled that Jack was there because Victor had tolerated him for John and Ashley's sakes, but it had been a mistake for Jack to take Victor on. Victor had ordered Jack to take his things and get out, since Victor had never wanted to see him again. Victor had turned to leave, but he'd suddenly collapsed on the floor. As Victor had gasped for breath and weakly pleaded for help, Jack had slowly stood and walked out.
Jack arrived in the Newman lobby and boarded the elevator. An attendant dialed the phone and informed Victor that he'd been instructed to call that extension when he'd seen Jack Abbott walk in. Victor thanked him, and his expression darkened.
Jack entered his office, threw his briefcase on the sofa, and crossed the room to pour a drink. He spotted the invitation to the Colonnade Room and wondered aloud "what the hell" it had been about. Jack tossed the invitation aside, grabbed his drink, and called Nikki. He asked if she knew what had taken place in the private dining room, since he hadn't been able to make it but couldn't get the invitation out of his head. He learned that she had left before anything had happened, and he figured that it would have to remain a mystery.
Jack suggested that he and Nikki get together to test the waters and see what was left to salvage, and they made plans for the following night. He hung up, and he jumped when he saw a chair begin to swivel around. "What the hell," Jack cried, and he blinked in disbelief when he saw Victor sitting in the chair. Jack dropped his drink, and the glass shattered on the floor as Victor glowered ominously at him.