At Sharon's house, Nick tried to explain to an angry Sharon why she couldn't turn her back on Mariah. Sharon admitted that she'd already thrown Mariah out on the street. Sharon cried, "Give me one good reason why I should ever want to see that girl again." Nick said, "There are things we didn't know about Mariah -- things she doesn't even know." Sharon told Nick that he didn't know who Mariah really was. Nick replied, "She's your daughter!"
Sharon, shocked and confused, told Nick that he wasn't making sense. Sharon was stunned when Nick said, "Cassie and Mariah are sisters. Sharon, you had twins." Nick explained that he'd looked into Mariah's history and had discovered that Helen Copeland, an obstetrical nurse, had once been a member of Ian's cult. Nick added that Helen had assisted the doctor when Sharon had given birth. Helen, Nick added, had taken one of the twins and given the infant to Ian.
Sharon learned that Nick had pieced together what had taken place after he talked to Grace. Sharon still didn't believe Nick and maintained that she would have known had she been carrying two babies. Nick explained that Dr. Hill's confession confirmed that Sharon had delivered twins. Sharon recalled that she'd begged to see her baby, but that the drugs she'd been given had clouded her memory. Sharon broke down sobbing and cried that Mariah looked just like Cassie because they were twins.
Sharon felt remorse for having failed to sense that Mariah needed her mother. Nick assured Sharon that she wasn't at fault. Sharon cried that she'd abandoned her child twice and had told Mariah never to return. Sharon told Nick about Mariah's plan to seduce him. Nick insisted that Sharon had to have misunderstood.
Nick was taken aback when Sharon explained how Mariah had dressed in sexy lingerie for him. Sharon noted that Mariah believed she and Nick shared a connection. Sharon cried that she'd felt betrayed by Mariah. Sharon added, "Of course she acts out like that and makes those choices. She was abandoned and unloved. I told my daughter to leave and never come back."
At the Genoa City Athletic Club, a sobbing Mariah looked to Ian for comfort and said she couldn't wait to leave town. Ian tried to discourage Mariah from leaving Genoa City. He reminded Mariah that Sharon had opened her heart and that Sharon's love for Mariah was real and honest. Mariah admitted that she'd donned lingerie and had planned to seduce Nick. Mariah added that while wearing the lingerie, she'd greeted Sharon and not Nick.
Mariah, angry, noted that Sharon had a secret that could destroy Nick. Ian again insisted that Sharon truly loved Mariah. Mariah remained unconvinced and sighed heavily. Ian added that the world would soon see Mariah's joy and wisdom. Mariah cried, "You have always been the only person I could trust."
At the Genoa City Athletic Club, Devon sat alone in a corner, sipping whiskey. Cane stopped by and said, "You know, sitting here staring at drinks has become a thing for you." Cane added that he was headed to Neil's house to enjoy a take-out dinner Lily had picked up from the kitchen. Cane urged Devon to join the family. Devon replied, "Neil and Lily don't need me crowding him." Cane insisted that Devon not sit alone in the dining room all night.
After Cane left, Devon ran into Hilary. She admitted to having stopped by to see Devon because they'd never had a chance to talk after Neil had gotten home from the hospital. Devon recalled that Hilary had made herself clear when she'd told him that the progression of their relationship would have to wait. Hilary noted that Neil might never regain his sight. Devon worried that Neil might find out that his son was in love with his wife.
Devon noted that it would be awkward for him to join Neil and Hilary during family functions. Hilary said, "Maybe if we ignore it, it'll go away." Though Hilary had spoken the words, her pained facial expression betrayed her true feelings. Devon agreed that he and Hilary would be stabbing Neil in the back if they revealed the true nature of their relationship. Hilary nodded and sighed.
At Neil's apartment, Lily cowered in the distance while Neil felt his way through the living room and yelled that he didn't need anyone's help. Neil guided himself along the wall and opened the front door when Jack and Kelly stopped by. Jack immediately began tearing into an envelope and announced that he'd brought Sketches for Neil to see. Neil interrupted and said, "I can't see the sketches. I can't see anything!" Jack, puzzled, paused and turned to face Neil.
After the initial shock, Jack gave Neil time to explain. Neil told Jack and Kelly that he'd lost his eyesight during an electrical malfunction at a house he'd purchased. Neil insisted that he would soon regain his sight. Jack noticed the look of concern on Lily's face. Kelly asked how Neil was adjusting to his surroundings at home. Neil said that Lily and his wife were helping him.
Hilary and Devon arrived and greeted Jack and Kelly. Devon explained that he'd offered to drive Hilary home. Neil kissed his wife and thanked his son. Hilary tried but failed to keep her eyes trained on Neil. Devon bit his lower lip. Jack noticed the uneasiness.
Jack and Kelly agreed to join Neil and his family for dinner. Neil and Lily briefly argued when Neil said he had no intention of selling the house he'd purchased for Hilary. Tension rose to the boiling point when Neil accidentally pushed the serving dish filled with pasta onto the floor. Devon snapped at Lily and said she should have dished out the food in the kitchen. Lily replied, "You could have helped me instead of sitting there sulking."
Lily and Kelly went to pick up another take-out dinner. Neil left the room, so Jack had a talk with Hilary. Jack explained that he'd once been told he'd never walk again, so he understood Neil's impatience. Jack added that Neil's natural instinct was to act out of fear and frustration. Jack said that Hilary should always bear in mind that her husband loved her.
Neil and Devon returned to the living room. Neil told Jack that something good would result from his misfortune. Hilary seemed uneasy when Neil explained that his other senses had sharpened and allowed him to hear subtle nuances in people's voices. Neil added, "In between words and the quiet, I can hear what people are thinking." Devon and Hilary exchanged tense glances.
After Jack left, Jill phoned Devon about Katherine's remembrance ceremony. After the call ended, Devon said he'd rather stay with Neil, but Neil insisted on attending, too. Devon explained that only family had been told about Neil's blindness. Devon offered to contact Jill to let her know, so Neil wouldn't have to respond to questions. Neil remained insistent that he could carry on without assistance.
At the Genoa City Athletic Club, Kelly told Lily not to worry about the uncomfortable situation that had taken place at Neil's apartment. Kelly assured Lily that her family would muddle through and overcome their difficult circumstances. Lily noted how unusual it had been that everyone but Hilary had snapped at her. Kelly encouraged Lily to lean on her for support whenever needed. Lily said she'd be fine and told Kelly to meet up with Jack.
After Kelly walked away, Nick and Sharon arrived. Anxious, they asked for Lily's help. After Lily went upstairs, she returned and told Sharon and Nick that Ian had checked out. Nick and Sharon grew concerned when Lily explained that Ian had left with a young woman. Frantic, Sharon cried, "Ian's gone, and he took Mariah with him."
At Katherine Chancellor Park, Colin met with Mr. Kurtz. Colin said it was time to discuss terms. Kurtz replied, "The plan is simple enough. Meet your new partner in your wife's clothing business." Kurtz raised his hand to indicate that he was the new partner. Kurtz added, "Move cash through nice and clean." Colin refused and said, "My plan is for you to leave my family out of this."
Colin explained that the husband of Jill's business partner was the former district attorney. Colin added that his extended family maintained a close friendship with the chief of police. Both Kurtz and Colin threatened to murder each other before Colin reminded Kurtz that they were business colleagues. Colin again asked Kurtz not to involve Jill. When Cane showed up, Kurtz abruptly left.
Cane demanded that Colin explain what had been going on. Colin lied and said that the man he'd been talking to was involved with the celebration to remember Katherine. Cane said he knew his dad was lying, which caused concern because he'd let his dad back into his life. Colin insisted that he wasn't in trouble. Cane recalled that he'd taken a risk by defending his father to Victor.
Cane pleaded with Colin to be truthful. Cane added, "You need to tell me, and I will help you, but you need to tell me now." Colin said that everything was right with his world. Cane warned Colin the he'd suffer the consequences of his unfortunate decisions. Colin refused to utter a word, so Cane left.
Kurtz returned. Addressing Colin, Kurtz said, "You don't want junior to know that you're in deep to me." Colin sternly said that his wife and family were not part of the deal. When Colin said he didn't have the cash to pay off his debt, Kurtz insisted that Colin allow him access to Jill's boutique. Cane covertly listened.
At the Abbott mansion, Jack and Kelly relaxed in bed. Kelly ate bites of cut-up mangoes Mrs. Martinez had prepared and left in the refrigerator. Jack noted that it wasn't the evening he'd planned. Kelly said, "It's home, and it's heaven." Jack said, "Did you just call this home?" Kelly laughed and said that she had.
Jack noted that he and Kelly were lucky. Kelly agreed, and the couple kissed. Jack mentioned Neil. Recalling his own health crisis, Jack noted that after the denial stage, Neil might fall into an emotional sinkhole. Jack added, "Eventually, you have to accept that you can't control everything, and you just put the pieces back together any way you can."
At the Chancellor mansion, Jill became emotional as she read Katherine's letter about leaving Jill everything that Katherine had valued. Colin entered and reminded Jill that they had to get to the party, and Jill sobbed that she missed Katherine. Colin recognized that it was a difficult day for Jill, despite Katherine's intent for everyone to be happy, and Jill realized how ungrateful she'd been to feel betrayed because Katherine had left her out of the will. Jill marveled that Katherine had left Jill what she'd valued the most, and she had the letter, a house full of memories, and a treasured piece of jewelry. Jill showed Colin that she was wearing the necklace, which she'd hidden underneath her blouse, and while she knew it was risky, she wanted to feel Katherine near her.
The doorbell rang, and Esther let in Murphy, who thanked Jill and Esther for putting together the party. Murphy asked if they were expecting a big crowd, and he was pleased when Jill and Esther confirmed that they were. Colin was surprised when Jill stashed the music box in her bag to take to the party, and she hoped that the day would help her make sense of why Katherine had given the music box to her. Esther and Colin headed to the door, and Murphy told Jill that there was something he needed to do at the party, since Jill hadn't been the only one who had received an envelope with instructions.
At the police station, Lauren and Michael informed Kevin that they'd been on their way to the park for Katherine's celebration, and they'd taken a detour to see if Kevin was still around. Kevin coolly replied that he'd changed his mind about leaving town, and Michael admitted that he was glad Kevin was still there. Lauren asked if Kevin intended to go to the party, and Kevin pointedly stated that he wouldn't miss it, since Katherine had always rooted for Chloe and Kevin. Michael recognized that Kevin was hurt, but he hoped that Kevin wouldn't leave town. Kevin pointed out that he was still there that day, but he had no idea what would happen the next day. Lauren steered Michael toward the elevator.
Courtney informed Paul that she'd checked the local motels and hotels, but there had been no sign of Ian or Mariah. Paul added that they hadn't been spotted at the airport, bus station, or any car rental agencies, and he decided to broaden the search. Paul asked Kevin to perform a full search on Ian and Mariah, and a surprised Kevin blurted out that he and Mariah had made plans to meet the prior night, but she'd never showed up. Kevin asked if she was in danger, and Paul said that there was no reason to believe that, but he asked Kevin to get as much information as possible.
In the park, Michael and Lauren admired a portrait of Katherine, and Michael mused that things hadn't been the same without her. Lauren noted that Katherine had gone out the way she'd lived, by making every moment count. Lauren said that Katherine had been vibrant and beautiful, and Michael stared at Lauren and called her the most exquisite, incredible woman he knew. He promised that he'd make more time for them, and he announced that he had planned a special surprise. She begged for a hint, and he kissed her.
Kevin arrived and hugged Murphy, who said that he'd been dividing his time between the cabin Katherine had left him and his old hometown. Michael sympathized that the first year without Katherine had been difficult, and Murphy replied that he missed her, but he also felt blessed for falling in love and getting married again at his age. Michael commented that the right woman made all the difference, and Kevin wished that they'd had more time with "her." Murphy left to go over some details with Esther, and Michael inquired whether Kevin had been talking about Katherine or Chloe. Kevin noted that both women were gone for good, and he might also be gone soon. Michael pointed out that Kevin's problems would remain unsolved even if he left town, and Kevin encouraged Michael to focus on Katherine, since it was her day.
Lauren asked how Jill was doing, and Jill confided that she missed Katherine a lot, but she was determined to throw the party that "the old broad" had wanted. Jill inquired whether Lauren's romantic rendezvous with Michael had spiced things up, and Lauren said that it had fallen through, but they were as in love as they'd ever been. Jill sensed that there was more to the story, and Lauren complained that they'd never had to work hard for intimacy before. Lauren added that she hadn't thought much of it until the day before, when literally nothing had happened. Jill thought that Katherine would have advised Lauren not to make something out of nothing.
Kevin remembered being there the prior year, when Delia had made the invitations to Katherine's memorial service. Esther said that she liked to picture Katherine and Delia together, but Kevin replied that he only saw a big empty space where they both should be, and he'd lost too many people to feel whole. Esther reported that Chloe had sent a sweet text message about Katherine, and Kevin growled that Chloe had sent him divorce papers. He testily added that all that counted was what was best for Chloe, and Michael watched as Kevin went to grab a bottle of champagne.
Colin told Lauren that he was excited to be working together, but Lauren snapped that it wasn't the place to discuss business. Colin said that it meant more to him than she could ever know, and Lauren walked off. Jill applauded Colin's enthusiasm, and she expected that they would get the new shop up and running soon.
Murphy praised that everything looked great, and Jill said that she'd just been following her marching orders. Jill continued that she didn't dare disappoint Katherine, and she wondered if Murphy had felt the same way when he'd received his instructions. Jill prodded him for details, but he wouldn't tell her anything Katherine had planned until the other guests arrived then he'd let Katherine tell all of them herself.
At the ranch, Nikki read Katherine's letter that had encouraged Nikki to find her firstborn child, and Nikki cried that she still felt alone as she eyed a bottle of vodka. Victor called out for Nikki, and he asked how she felt about the day. She proclaimed that she was ready to celebrate like Katherine had wanted, and she and Victor embraced. Nick arrived and insisted on talking to Victor and Nikki about Mariah. Victor expected Nick to accuse him of egging on Mariah to seduce Nick, and Nikki was shocked.
Nick reported that Mariah was gone and that they needed to find her, but Victor grumbled that she should have left a long time before. Nick divulged that it was no coincidence that Mariah looked like Cassie, since the women were twins, and Mariah was Sharon's daughter. Nick explained that Sharon had given Cassie up for adoption, and Helen had stolen the second child, but he had no idea what Ian's motivation had been or why Helen had raised Mariah.
Nikki felt sorry for Sharon, and she remarked that she knew exactly what Sharon was going through. Victor warned that Mariah wasn't Cassie, and he cautioned Nick not to embrace Mariah as his prodigal daughter. Nick pointed out that Mariah was Noah and Faith's sister, but he doubted that Victor cared. Nick mentioned that Sharon had caught Victor talking to her psychiatrist, and Victor claimed that Sharon had jumped to the wrong conclusion. Nick said that he just wanted Ian to pay for what he'd done and Mariah to be home with her mother.
Paul arrived, and Nikki asked about the search. Paul disclosed that neither Ian nor Mariah had used their credit cards or made withdrawals from bank accounts, and there had been no activity on their cell phones since they'd left the Athletic Club. Victor huffed that Paul had told them nothing, but Paul swore that the police were doing everything possible to ensure that Ian was incarcerated. Nikki wanted to tell Dylan what had happened before he found out another way, and Paul offered to go with her to help keep a lid on Dylan's temper.
Paul said that he'd keep Victor apprised of developments in the search, but Victor haughtily stated that he might find Ian and Mariah first, since he expected Ian to contact him. Victor recalled that Ian had mentioned that he'd known about something that would affect Victor's family, and he'd thought it had been Dylan's paternity, but he suspected it was something else. Nikki asked if Victor was talking about Mariah, and Victor replied that it was possible, but he was sure he'd hear from Ian.
At Crimson Lights, Dylan wrote in his journal, and Avery hesitantly approached him. She noted that two nights had gone by without talking about the trial, and he replied that she'd been sleeping when he'd gotten home and that she'd already left when he'd awakened. She understood that he was upset with her for helping Austin, but he said that he hadn't thought much about it. She asked what he was writing in his journal, and he remained silent. Avery questioned whether they were going to keep avoiding one another or if they would deal with it.
Dylan griped that Austin had barely received a slap on the wrist, and part of him wished Avery and Paul hadn't let it happen, but he didn't want it to get between him and Avery. Dylan added that he would always believe that Austin should have gone to prison, but he couldn't argue if Austin's victims had supported the deal, and he had to respect Avery's decision. Avery understood that Dylan had wanted to protect her, and he recognized that she'd had to fight for what she believed in, even if he didn't agree with her. He declared that he loved her, and nothing would ever change that. They kissed.
Avery announced that she had some interesting news, and Dylan asked if she planned to run for mayor, but she said that she was busy enough already. Nikki and Paul entered, and Avery asked if something was wrong. Dylan concluded that Ian had done something else, and Paul asked if Dylan had seen Ian, but Dylan hadn't. Nikki revealed that the police were looking for Ian, since they'd found out that Mariah was Sharon's daughter and that Ian had stolen Mariah at birth. Paul added that Ian and Mariah had disappeared, and he suspected that they were together.
Dylan and Nikki lamented that Sharon had lost years with a child who she hadn't even known had existed, and Dylan asked how Nikki was holding up. Nikki declared that there was nothing more Ian could do to hurt her, and she didn't want Dylan to worry about her when Sharon was the one who needed support. Paul vowed to find Ian, and Nikki said that she needed to get ready for the party, since what she needed most was to feel close to Katherine. Paul vowed not to sleep until he gave Sharon and Mariah the chance to make up for the years they'd missed together.
Noah told Sharon that he'd sent Faith off to camp, and he demanded to know what was going on, since Sharon was desperately trying to find Mariah after she'd kicked Mariah out. Sharon insisted that she had to get Mariah home because she was family, and she revealed that Mariah was her daughter and his sister. Sharon explained that her family hadn't had enough money for her to see a doctor, and she hadn't known that she'd been pregnant with twins. She recalled that the birth had been a blur because she'd been doped up, but Grace had remembered that Helen Copeland had been the nurse, and Nick had forced the doctor to admit someone had paid him off.
Sharon said that they had to track down Ian, but he and Mariah had left the Athletic Club, and no one had heard from them since. Nick returned home, and Noah said that he needed time to process everything before it would feel real. After Noah departed, Nick informed Sharon that Paul had said that there had been no word about Ian and Mariah, but Mariah had planned to meet Kevin the prior night and hadn't shown up. Sharon wondered if Ian had forced Mariah to go with him, but Nick suspected that Ian hadn't taken Mariah against her will. Sharon had a terrible feeling that Mariah was in trouble.
Sharon couldn't imagine why Ian had targeted her, since she'd been a scared teen with no ties to the Newman family at the time she'd given birth. She contemplated why Ian had given a child to a woman who hadn't wanted one, forcing a young girl to live in a cult and to feel abandoned. Sharon wished that Mariah had been with a family who'd wanted her, and she imagined that Cassie and Mariah could have been adopted together and would have had one another. Sharon ranted that Ian had stolen a future from all of them, and he'd taken Mariah yet again.
Noah tracked down Courtney at work, and he informed her that he'd heard the news about Mariah. Courtney told him that she was part of the search team, but she'd thought he'd needed to hear about Mariah's identity from his parents. She said that the police hadn't found out anything yet, and Noah recalled that he'd never liked or trusted Mariah, and he'd objected to Mariah living with his mom, but Mariah had been where she should have been the entire time.
Noah recounted that he had been born prematurely, and no one had thought he'd make it, so his mom's best friend had searched for the child Sharon had given up for adoption. Courtney recognized that Noah had loved his big sister, and Noah said that it had torn his family apart when Cassie had died. Noah imagined what it had been like for Sharon to learn that she'd had another little girl and to face the possibility of never seeing her daughter again. Courtney promised that they would find Mariah.
Ian took Mariah to a storage unit, and he claimed that he hadn't been able to afford a proper office after Victor had destroyed his business. Ian prepared to collect a few things for their journey, and he picked up a bottle of wine and said that they shouldn't let it go to waste. Mariah thanked him for getting her away from the mess with Sharon, and he swore that they'd figure things out together. He preached that change was healthy, and they should celebrate. He handed her a glass of wine and toasted to the next phase of her life. He smiled as she sipped the wine.
Victor stopped by to inform Sharon and Nick that his own security team was looking for Mariah and Ian, and Nick agreed to use Victor's resources, but he stressed that he wouldn't forget everything Victor had done. Victor pledged to make Ian pay, and Sharon said that she didn't care why Victor was helping, but she was glad more people were searching. After Victor left, Sharon answered a phone call, and Ian asked how she was doing. She demanded to know where her daughter was.
Ian chuckled as he realized that Sharon had put together the pieces, and he taunted that it was a shame that Sharon had kicked Mariah out of the house. Sharon warned Ian not to hurt Mariah, and Ian told her to wait for instructions if she ever wanted to see Mariah again. Sharon pleaded to hear Mariah's voice to know that she was okay, but Ian snickered and said that everything was going according to plan. He declared that it would be a special day that he'd waited for, and he turned to an unconscious Mariah, who was dressed in a white wedding gown and veil.
Victor returned to the ranch, and Nikki relayed that Dylan had been strangely calm. She asked if Victor was ready to go to the park, but he wanted to get an update from his security team about the search first. Victor kissed her goodbye and said that he would see her at the party, and he left. Nikki opened her purse and took out Katherine's letter. Katherine had written that her waning days had given her clarity to see what truly mattered, and Nikki looked heavenward and recalled that Katherine had put her on a quest to find her son.
Nikki considered it a gift to be given another son, but having Ian involved had caused unbearable pain to everyone she knew and loved. She flashed back to the evil things Ian had done, and she stared at the vodka bottle again. Nikki crossed the room, opened the bottle, and sniffed its contents. She poured a bit of vodka into a glass and downed it, and she poured another.
At Genoa City Memorial, Billy ran down a corridor and burst into Victoria's room. She had sent him a text message urging him to meet her at the hospital as soon as humanly possible. Victoria was upset that she was going to miss Johnny's preschool orientation because there had been a delay with her discharge paperwork. When she said that she was a prisoner of bureaucracy, Billy smiled and suggested they stage a prison break.
Billy left but returned a few moments later. He was wearing surgical scrubs and a facemask, pushing a wheelchair. Victoria chuckled as he sat her down in the chair and quickly disguised her -- he gave her a pair of glasses, placed a surgical cap on her head, and handed her a large book so that she could mask her baby bump. Victoria was thrilled as he wheeled her from the room to freedom.
After Johnny's orientation, Billy and Victoria returned to what had been their shared home. Victoria talked about how Johnny's face had brightened when Johnny had seen her. She was happy that Johnny had made a new friend, Colton -- and said that before they knew it, Johnny and Colton would be graduating from high school.
Victoria grew somber as she remembered that it had been a year since Katherine had passed away. Victoria wished that she could be at the remembrance ceremony for Katherine, but Billy assured her that Katherine would have understood why he and Victoria weren't attending.
Billy nervously asked Victoria if he could stay. She replied that it was fine -- as long as he made her something to eat. Victoria went upstairs to change clothes. After making sure that she was out of earshot, Billy phoned Abby and asked her to do him a favor -- a favor that he never thought he would be asking for.
At their kitchen table, Billy and Victoria enjoyed the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches that Billy had prepared as they talked about Johnny's upcoming first day at preschool. Victoria said that it had been difficult walking into Johnny's classroom that day -- she had noticed a pink toy tea set that had reminded her of Delia. Billy began reminiscing about Delia's faux tea parties. Victoria apologized to Billy for making him sad. He said that there was no need for Victoria to be sorry for rekindling his fond memories of Delia.
Victoria began clearing the table, but Billy insisted on taking over. He urged her to get some rest. She said that wasn't going to happen -- Johnny was about to return home with his sitter. Billy said that he would stay -- if Victoria wanted him to. Victoria said that it had been a good day, but Billy needed to leave. Billy said that he would return for every important day in Johnny's life. He told Victoria that she could count on him -- and he wanted a chance to prove it to her. Victoria stood silent as Billy left.
At the Newman ranch, Nikki lost her battle with the bottle. She poured herself a glass of vodka and, with tears streaming down her face, gulped it down.
At Chancellor Park, preparations were underway for the ceremony commemorating the one-year anniversary of Katherine's death. Jill was miffed that Murphy wouldn't reveal the instructions for the memorial that Katherine had left him "from the great beyond." The arrival of some of Katherine's dearest friends rescued Murphy from that conversation. Murphy ignored Jill as he greeted the guests.
Nina arrived, and everyone was thrilled to see her. Paul hugged his old friend and Jill and Esther walked over to say hello to her. Jill was disappointed that Chance couldn't make it, but Nina said that Chance was planning to do something that day that would make Katherine proud.
Hilary escorted Neil, who was sporting sunglasses, with Devon not far behind them. Hilary and Nina exchanged introductions. Jill began making snarky comments about Hilary and how she had rushed Neil into marriage. Neil became upset and told Jill to stop insulting his wife -- he wondered if it made Jill feel good to belittle Hilary. Jill became defensive and told Neil that if he wanted to engage in a battle of insults, he needed to take his sunglasses off and look Jill in the eye. Neil replied that he couldn't look Jill in the eye -- he couldn't see.
Neil told the guests how he had received a severe electrical injury that had caused him to lose his sight. Jill hugged Neil, and when some of the other guests expressed their sympathy, Neil became combative and told them to stop, insisting that his vision loss was temporary. Victor told Neil that he would fly in the best doctors to help Neil regain his sight. Neil thanked Victor but added that what he really needed was for everyone to stop treating him like a child.
Out of sight from the other guests, Nikki popped a breath mint into her mouth. Jill told Murphy to begin, but Victor told Murphy to wait a moment -- Nikki wasn't there yet. Nikki said, "Yes, she is," and joined Victor, turning her head so that he wouldn't be able to smell her breath.
With the guests all seated, Murphy began the service. He removed a letter from his jacket pocket and told the group that instead of him expressing his thanks for them all being there, he would let Katherine do it. Murphy began reading the letter that Katherine had written for the occasion. In the letter, Katherine asked the guests to humor "the dead woman" and carry out a "little ritual." Katherine's letter stated that the ritual had been inspired by a ceremony she had witnessed on her bucket list trip with her "dear, sweet husband," Murphy. Murphy became teary-eyed and stopped reading.
Michael volunteered to continue. Katherine had written that she wanted the people at the memorial service to write her a letter -- expressing their ideas, hopes, dreams, and troubles. After they were done writing, the guests were to put their letters in a bowl and light them on fire -- the smoke would deliver their words to Katherine. Snidely, Jill remarked, "This is why we are here? To play pen pals with a ghost?"
Michael read more -- Katherine hoped that the act of writing down their feelings would help her friends clarify their feelings -- and maybe even manage them. Katherine hoped that everyone would find the answers they were looking for. Jill, clutching the music box, said, "That'll be the day." Kevin began distributing clipboards, paper, and pens.
The guests began writing their letters. Paul wrote about how much his life had changed since Katherine's passing -- that because of her letter to Nikki, Katherine had helped Nikki and Paul find their son. Nikki began writing that everything was good but then admitted that she was lying -- Nikki was drinking again. Lauren wrote that she had done something stupid the previous year that had nearly destroyed her marriage but she and Michael had been able to put things back together, although, for some reason, things suddenly didn't seem right, and Lauren didn't know why.
As Paul folded his letter and placed it in the bowl, Colin wrote that he was sure that Katherine still hated him -- particularly since he was planning to launder crime syndicate money through Fenmore's. Continuing, he wrote that he didn't have any choice -- it was the only way he could keep Jill and his family safe. Colin admitted that he would do anything to protect his family.
Murphy wrote that he was doing what Katherine had asked -- he was living life to the fullest, even taking up ballroom dancing. One of these days, he wrote, he was going to take Katherine in his arms and "trip the light fantastic."
Nina told Katherine that Nina's writer's block was gone, and she was working on a novel about a woman who sounded suspiciously like Katherine. Lily thanked Katherine for Lily's incredible Parisian wedding -- but implored Katherine to help Neil. To his grandmother, Devon wrote that he knew that Neil needed Hilary, but Hilary was everything that Devon wanted.
Hilary asked Neil if he wanted to dictate his letter -- Hilary would write it down for him. Neil said that he could still write. He handed his clipboard to Hilary and asked her if his handwriting was legible. Hilary read, "Dear Katherine. I miss you very much. You must have met a lot of angels in heaven, but I've got one of my very own right here." Overhearing that, Devon tore up his letter. When Lily and Neil asked Devon why he had ripped it up, a defensive Devon said that he didn't like what he had written, so he was going to start over.
As more of the guests placed their letters in the bowl, Kevin wrote that the key Katherine had left to him had opened his mind to the many possibilities in life. Jack asked Katherine to say hello to his father John, then wrote that he had finally said goodbye to Phyllis. Victor wrote that he knew Katherine would never have approved of his "current project" involving Phyllis, adding that he missed Katherine every day.
Jill handed Murphy a blank piece of paper, telling him that she had nothing to say to Katherine -- since Katherine had had nothing to say to Jill about the music box. Sighing, Murphy folded up Jill's blank paper and placed it in the bowl. Neil tried to place his letter in the bowl but accidentally knocked the bowl to the ground. The letters scattered, but the guests collected them and replaced them in the bowl. Jack happened to notice the letter that Victor had written and surreptitiously placed it in his coat pocket.
Having second thoughts, Jack rolled his eyes, looked skyward, and said to himself, "Only for you, Katherine." He then placed Victor's letter in the bowl. With everyone's letters accounted for, Murphy announced that Nikki, as Katherine's closest friend, would have the honor of setting the letters on fire. Murphy handed a box of matches to the nervous Nikki, who staggered up to the bowl and, hands shaking, lit a match and set the letters ablaze. Murphy finished reading Katherine's letter, thanking the guests and hoping that they were at peace. She urged them to live life to the fullest. Victor received a phone call and walked to a secluded area.
Victor's phone call was from Dr. Cutler, who was with Phyllis in her nursing facility in Georgia. Victor asked Cutler what Phyllis' prognosis was. Cutler said that he was planning on beginning Phyllis' treatment within the hour. Victor wanted to know when they would know whether or not the treatment was successful.
Cutler reminded Victor that there were no guarantees that the treatment would awaken Phyllis. Victor hung up. While Dr. Cutler injected a syringe into Phyllis' I.V. bag, he told his comatose patient that there were a lot of people hoping that Phyllis was going to wake up -- they evidently wanted to hear what she had to say.
Hooking up a digital music player to speakers, Murphy reminded the guests that Katherine had wanted a party -- not a wake. He turned on the player, and swing music blared from the speakers. Murphy and Esther began dancing, and other couples soon followed suit. Hilary asked Neil if he wanted to try to dance. Saying that he had stumbled enough for one day, Neil asked Devon to dance with Hilary.
As Devon and Hilary danced, Jack sat down next to Neil. Neil asked Jack how Hilary looked on the dance floor. Jack looked at Hilary and Devon and realized that there was more between them than a stepmother-stepson relationship. Jack told Neil that Hilary looked radiant.
Nikki staggered a bit, and Paul asked if she wanted to sit down. Victor rejoined Nikki and asked her if everything was okay. Nikki began sobbing, said that it had been an emotional day, and ran off to the jogging path. Stitch happened to jog by and startled Nikki. She snapped that he shouldn't be running around scaring people. Stitch wondered if she was feeling okay -- she didn't seem like herself. Nikki replied, "That's rich -- coming from someone who stole another person's identity."
Stitch told Nikki that something about her seemed a little off -- and he didn't think it was her multiple sclerosis. Victor walked up and asked Stitch if there was anything wrong with Nikki. Nikki asserted, "Absolutely not," but Stitch said that Victor should probably take her home. As Stitch jogged off, Nikki had some rather unkind words for him. Nikki and Victor said their farewells and left the park.
Arriving back at the ranch, Nikki told Victor that Katherine probably wouldn't have liked what Nikki had written. Victor wondered why, and Nikki told him that she had gotten a little maudlin. Victor asked her if everything was okay. Nikki said that she would have rather had her best friend in the flesh. Victor told her that she would always have him and kissed her on the forehead. When he walked away, Nikki noticed that she hadn't put the cap back on the vodka bottle. She quickly replaced the cap and wiped her lipstick stains off the glass from which she had drunk.
Nina told Paul she was sorry that Cricket hadn't been able to attend. Paul told Nina that his wife was busy with a trial. Nina said that was good -- because if Cricket had been around, Paul wouldn't have been able to spend the afternoon watching Nikki. Paul said that Nikki had been through a lot recently. Nina told Paul that didn't change the fact that he and Cricket were married. Becoming angry, Nina reminded Paul that he had dumped Nina for Cricket -- so that Paul and Cricket had better be "the real deal." She turned and walked away.
Michael told Kevin that if Katherine were alive, she would have advised Kevin to stay in Genoa City. Kevin disagreed, saying that Katherine would have told him to "complete his destiny, steamroll over anyone who stood in his way, and not to worry about the consequences."
Colin told Jill that he had noticed her staring at one of Katherine's portraits and wondered if everything was all right. Jill wondered why Katherine had put all of them through the "ridiculous" exercise. She lamented that Katherine, even in death, made Jill jump through hoops and inevitably fail -- that nothing had changed. Colin told Jill that she was wrong -- that Jill had changed. He said that Katherine had sent Jill on a journey and, for the first time Jill hadn't finished where she'd started -- Jill had ended up with Colin. Jill suddenly grasped the meaning of the music box.
Jill invited the remaining guests to the Chancellor mansion. As they walked off, she asked Colin to help Esther welcome the guests -- she wanted to spend a private moment with Katherine. After Colin left, Jill had an obviously one-way conversation with Katherine. Jill said that she had been staring at the music box for months -- and it turned out that "the hunt was the treasure." The music box had merely been a catalyst for Jill and Colin to embark on a journey that they could take together -- and it was the journey that had mattered -- not the destination.
Jill said that because of Katherine and the music box, Jill was happier than she ever had been -- Colin was the true love of her life. She said that she didn't need the music box anymore -- she was giving it back to Katherine. Jill placed it on a table and said, "Whatever journey you're on right now, I hope you're having the time of your life." She opened the music box, listened to it play for a bit, then left.
A dark shadow covered the music box. When it passed over, the box was gone.
Sharon fretted that Ian hadn't been in touch again, and Detective Harding and another officer set up equipment to trace Ian's next call. Sharon and Nick reflected on the everyday moments with Mariah that had seemed familiar, and Nick recalled that the high-five Mariah had given him had started him thinking. Sharon credited him with following his instincts, or she never would have known that Mariah was her daughter. Sharon worried that she'd never get the chance to say the things she wanted to tell Mariah, and she commanded the phone to ring. Harding urged her to stay calm, and he instructed her to keep Ian talking to give them time to triangulate his position.
Sharon contemplated what would happen if Ian had left town with Mariah, but Nick reasoned that Ian wanted money. Sharon's phone rang, and Ian asked if she'd slept well. She replied that she'd been awake all night, and Ian taunted that the cure for her insomnia was a long-awaited reunion with Cassie's sister. He demanded a million dollars for each year of her long-lost daughter's life, and Sharon protested that she couldn't get her hands on that kind of money. Ian imagined that Nick was right there beside Sharon, and he insisted that she deliver five million dollars right away then wire the rest. Mariah audibly groaned in the background, and Sharon asked to talk to her, but Ian stated that Mariah was indisposed.
Ian provided an account number, and Sharon demanded to talk to Mariah. Ian ignored her request and instructed her to put the unmarked cash into a black backpack and to place it in a garbage can in Chancellor Park that afternoon. She asked if Mariah would be there, and he said that he would take care of Mariah. Harding signaled for Sharon to keep talking, and Sharon pleaded again to talk to Mariah. Sharon cried that she didn't even know if Mariah was still alive, and Ian swore that he would never harm someone that precious and valuable to him.
Sharon conceded that she knew Ian cared about Mariah, and she talked about how Ian had been there for Mariah when no one else had been. Sharon asked if Ian had told Mariah that Sharon was her mother, and Ian glanced over at a stirring Mariah and hung up. Nick asked if the police had gotten a trace on the call, and an officer stated that Ian had used a burner phone and that the call hadn't been long enough to pinpoint the exact location, but Ian was within 20 miles of Genoa City. Sharon panicked that her daughter was out there with a maniac, and they had no idea where Mariah was.
Sharon wanted to get money out of her account, but she complained that it wouldn't be enough, and she asked if they could turn to Victor. Sharon worried that Mariah was in pain, but Harding countered that Mariah might be in on the whole thing, since she had a rap sheet of her own. Sharon sensed that Mariah was in trouble, and Nick vowed to do whatever it took to find Ian. Harding said that two criminals were on the run, but he agreed to treat it as a kidnapping until they knew more.
Harding added that Paul would never agree to a real money drop, and he planned to arrange for a decoy. Sharon objected because it was too risky, but Harding envisioned taking Ian into custody and getting him to tell them where Mariah was. Nick said that they had to trust the police, and Harding cautioned that people who hadn't worked with the authorities had regretted it. The officers left, and Sharon refused to do nothing. Nick agreed.
At Crimson Lights, Avery asked if Dylan was okay, and she quipped that she felt like her day wasn't complete until she'd asked him that 20 times. He implored her to stop worrying, and she pointed out that she had good reason to worry, but she promised that she would stop after that morning. She volunteered to take him out for breakfast, and he offered her a doughnut, but she wanted to celebrate over omelets at the Athletic Club. Avery accidentally dropped a file, and she quickly snatched it away as Dylan picked it up. He asked what she was up to.
Jill rushed back to the park and bemoaned that the music box was gone, and Colin thought that she should have expected that someone had taken it. He wondered why she had left it behind, and she replied that she'd been caught up in the emotion of the day, but she'd realized that she'd made a terrible mistake. Colin suggested that the music box had served its purpose, and she asked if he meant their reunion. He pointed out that the trinket had led them back together, and she snickered and recalled that Katherine had despised him.
Colin argued that Katherine had wanted Jill to be happy, and he was sorry the box was gone, but they still had one another. Jill expressed her gratitude to Katherine, and she and Colin kissed. As Michael walked by while talking on the phone, he confirmed his plans to meet someone at the Athletic Club. Michael added that he expected to be together for a long time and that Lauren didn't suspect a thing. After Michael rushed off, Jill called him a "two-timing bastard" under her breath.
Jill burst into the club and looked around for the "hussy" who was trying to break up a marriage. Colin speculated that Michael could have been planning a surprise party for Lauren, but Jill countered that Michael hadn't called to invite her. Colin warned her not to jump to conclusions, but Jill proclaimed that she'd put together the pieces of the puzzle, and they fit perfectly after what Lauren had said about the state of her marriage. Jill thought that an affair explained everything, and she spotted Lauren across the dining room. Colin tried to stop Jill, who interrupted Lauren's business call and announced that Lauren had been right to be worried about her marriage, since Michael was having an affair.
Lauren insisted that Michael wasn't cheating, and Jill told her about the call she'd overheard in the park. Lauren said that Michael was meeting her there, and Colin chalked it up to a misunderstanding. Jill repeated Michael's words about being together forever and Lauren not suspecting anything, and Lauren assumed Jill had misheard. Jill thought an affair explained all that had -- and hadn't -- been going on, but Lauren was sure that Michael was too exhausted from work to have an affair. Jill contended that Lauren had managed to have one, despite her busy schedule.
Lauren was appalled that Jill had referred to Lauren's fling with Carmine, but Jill thought that a man's ego wouldn't let him forget a betrayal. Lauren called the accusation ridiculous, and she questioned who Michael would be sleeping with. Avery and Dylan approached, and Avery asked where Michael was. Jill suspiciously inquired whether Michael had arranged for Avery to meet him there, and Avery suggested that she and Dylan wait at the bar until Michael arrived. Dylan noted that Avery had been acting weird all morning, and Jill accused Avery of being the one Michael was having an affair with. Everyone stared at Michael as he walked in.
Jill told Michael not to bother denying that he was having an affair, and Lauren explained that Jill had overheard him on the phone. Jill ranted that it was obvious that he was cheating on his wife with a "bleached-blonde succubus," and Avery suggested that she and Michael tell all. Michael said that he hadn't wanted to do it that way, and Jill ordered them to admit they were partners. Michael clarified that he and Avery were law partners, and he displayed a press release on his tablet computer about the law firm they'd formed together.
Michael ordered mimosas and said that he'd hoped to celebrate over breakfast, and Jill admitted that she'd jumped to the wrong conclusion. Dylan prompted Jill to apologize to Avery, and Jill said that her succubus comment had sounded better in her head, but Avery understood that Jill had been looking out for her sister. Colin suggested that he and Jill leave the foursome to celebrate, and Avery revealed that after Leslie had accepted an A.D.A. position, Avery had been left with too much office space and too few clients. Michael added that he'd wanted to reduce his workload to spend more time with Lauren. Nick called Dylan and asked for his help.
After Dylan and Avery left, Lauren theorized that Jill had been projecting her fear about Colin onto Michael. Michael asked if Lauren had considered whether Jill might have been right, especially since Michael and Lauren hadn't been close lately. Lauren swore that she hadn't thought for a second that he'd been unfaithful, and he confirmed that their marriage was too important to ever jeopardize. He explained that he'd partnered with Avery to have more time to concentrate on his relationship with Lauren, and she suggested they celebrate by getting a hotel room, but he had to see a client. He promised to be home early, and they tenderly kissed, but she still looked worried after he left.
At the bar, Jill regretted attacking Michael, and she realized that she'd turned into a paranoid, suspicious woman who didn't trust men. Colin sarcastically stated that he couldn't imagine why, but she insisted that he'd been nothing but open and honest lately, and he looked guilty. Lauren sauntered over to the bar and barked that she could strangle Jill. Colin tried to defend Jill, but Lauren told him to shut up, and he stepped outside.
Jill acknowledged that she deserved Lauren's wrath, and Lauren scolded Jill for not leaving well enough alone. Jill said that everything had turned out fine, but Lauren ranted that Michael had believed that Lauren had bought the garbage about him being unfaithful. Jill was skeptical that Lauren hadn't thought about it, and Lauren blasted her for making a tense situation worse. Jill guessed that Lauren and Michael still hadn't made love, and she bragged about how often she and Colin had sex. Jill recognized that even if Michael wasn't having an affair, Michael and Lauren's marriage had a serious problem.
Later, at the Chancellor mansion, Colin encouraged Jill not to worry about Lauren, and he assured Jill that she had just been an overprotective big sister. Jill said that she wished that simple concern had made her accuse Michael of cheating, and Colin commented that her cynicism was sexy. Jill expressed disappointment in herself after all Katherine had tried to teach her about trust and love. Jill looked up at the sketch of Katherine, and she promised to take Katherine's advice. Jill hoped that whoever had taken the music box was doing the same thing.
Sharon and Nick updated Dylan and Avery about what was going on with Mariah, and Sharon wailed that she just wanted her daughter back. Nick remembered that Dylan had been able to track down Ian once before, and he asked if Dylan had any clues about where Ian might have taken Mariah. Dylan said that he wasn't aware of any ties Ian had to Wisconsin, and Avery suggested contacting Ian's ex-wife, but Nick reported that Willa had refused to provide any information. Dylan remembered that he'd met a man who had worked with Ian, and Avery pulled out Clarence's card from her purse.
Nick called Clarence's number while Sharon contacted Harding. Dylan asked if Avery was okay, and she said that the situation made her wonder how much a relationship could survive. She pointed out that her relationship with Dylan had started with her cheating on Joe, and she promised that she'd never do that to Dylan. Dylan assured her that he knew she wouldn't, and they pledged their love.
Sharon vented to Dylan that it had been enough just to learn that Mariah was her daughter, and Dylan empathized that it was a lot to take in, just like when he'd found out Nikki was his mom. Sharon lamented that she hadn't even known that Mariah had been out there, and Dylan remarked that it had been tough to find out that he wasn't biologically related to the parents who had raised him. Sharon noted that he'd accepted Nikki and Paul into his life, and she asked if he regretted knowing the truth. Dylan said that he was very grateful to have a new family, and he was sure Mariah would feel the same way.
Avery imagined it had been a shock for Nick to find Cassie's twin, and he said that he might need legal help once Mariah was home safely. Nick informed Sharon and Dylan that Harding was tracking down Clarence, and he snarled that he was tired of Ian hurting his family and getting away with it. Dylan vowed that Ian would pay, and Nick said that Ian should have been locked up the entire time. Sharon realized that if Ian had been, she never would have found out that Mariah was her daughter.
Dylan and Avery returned to Crimson Lights, and he closed the coffeehouse to celebrate her new partnership. He started unbuttoning her blouse, and she asked if that was just an excuse. He amorously inquired whether she objected, and he added that she was overruled. They kissed, but her phone rang, and she said that it was her new business line that she'd just set up that morning. She insisted on checking voicemail, and her expression turned sour when she listened to the message. She revealed that the call had been from her ex-husband.
At the police station, Gloria dropped by to see Kevin, who was cursing at his desk. She concluded that things had gone from bad to worse, and she asked about his motorcycle helmet. He grumbled that he'd been moonlighting for NASA, and she allowed him to take out his anger about the divorce papers on her. He said that her "mom-dar" was a million miles off, and he explained that his friend, Mariah, had been kidnapped and that he hadn't been able to track her down. Gloria assumed that Kevin had chosen to move on rather than to leave town because of the divorce.
Gloria surmised that Kevin had decided to move on with Mariah, and she declared that she'd been afraid he'd pine over Chloe forever. Gloria thought it would have been a waste for Kevin to throw his own life away, and Kevin informed her that he wasn't moving on. She asked if he still planned to leave town, and she insisted that Genoa City was his home. Kevin countered that it was filled with painful memories and annoying people, and she urged him to consider Michael, Lauren, and his job. She noticed a document on his computer, and he tried to keep her from seeing it, but she looked stunned and asked what he was up to.
Kevin snapped that Gloria shouldn't be looking at his computer, but Gloria read a passage aloud about a faceless, decomposing body with vultures picking away at its flesh. Kevin claimed that his work was confidential and that he had to get back to it, and she begged him not to leave town. He wouldn't make any promises he couldn't keep, and Gloria acknowledged that Chloe had hurt him. Gloria reminded Kevin that she'd been there for Michael when Lauren had cheated on him, and she pledged to be there for Kevin after his crazy wife had dumped him. "You are my rock," Kevin deadpanned.
Gloria said that she and Jeffrey were planning to go on a cruise, and she invited Kevin to join them. Kevin didn't want to be a third wheel, but she announced that it was a trip for singles, since she and Jeffrey liked pretending that they were strangers meeting for the first time. She agreed to spare Kevin the details, but she suggested that Chloe would have stayed if Kevin had spiced up his own relationship. Michael entered, and Kevin congratulated him on his partnership with Avery. Gloria questioned whether it was a good idea, since it would cut into Michael's profits, but Michael asserted that there were more important things than billable hours.
Gloria told Michael to talk sense into his brother, and she departed. Kevin coldly thanked Michael for blabbing to their mother about Kevin leaving town, and he griped that Gloria had given him tips about his sex life. Michael knowingly replied that sometimes a sex life was a difficult thing to manage, and Kevin asked if everything was okay with Michael and Lauren. Harding interrupted and ordered Kevin to look into a lead on Mariah's case. Later, Kevin offered to be there if Michael wanted to talk about what was off between Michael and Lauren, and Michael said that he'd thought Kevin was leaving town. Kevin replied that maybe he had some reasons to stick around.
Gloria joined Lauren at the club, and they discussed Michael's partnership with Avery. Gloria warned that it was how things got started, and Lauren chided her for thinking that all men on the planet cheated. Gloria advised Lauren to steer Michael toward working with an old geezer instead, since working late nights with a blonde bombshell was asking for trouble. Lauren reiterated that she wasn't worried, and Gloria questioned whether she wasn't the least bit concerned.
Nick reported that Kevin had been able to trace Clarence's last address, but Clarence had cleared out a couple of days before. Sharon groused that things kept getting worse, and she couldn't lose her daughter when she'd just found Mariah. She imagined that Ian's disciple going missing at the same time as Ian and Mariah couldn't be a coincidence, and she tearfully wondered what they were doing to her daughter.
Ian reported to someone over the phone that everything was in motion, and it would be worth it in the end. He said that he had to go as Mariah started to wake up, and she complained about a headache. Ian told her she'd had too much to drink, but she'd be fine. She mumbled that she didn't feel fine, and she looked at the dress she had on and wondered where her own clothes were. Ian maintained that the wine had gone to her head, but she questioned who had put her in the dress. Ian encouraged her to relax, since it would all make sense soon, but she touched the veil and realized she was wearing a wedding gown.
Later, Clarence arrived at the storage unit, and Mariah remembered him from The Path. Ian informed her that Clarence presided over special occasions and that he was there for the wedding. Mariah asked if Ian thought she was marrying someone, and Ian assured her that he didn't expect her to make vows to a man she didn't care about. Ian announced that Mariah would marry a man she loved and cherished -- him. Mariah's eyes grew wide with horror.
Jack carried a large box into the Abbott mansion, and Kelly said that he could just put it back in the car if he wanted to postpone her moving in, but he declared that she was where she belonged. Jack answered a call from Summer, who invited him and Kelly over for lunch. Jack happily accepted, and he said they had a lot of catching up to do. After she hung up, Summer excitedly pondered whether to set out placemats or a tablecloth, and she gushed to Austin that it was the first time they'd have people over since he'd become a free man.
Kelly wondered if Jack intended to tell Summer about their moving plans over lunch, and she suggested again that Jack do it by himself. Jack said that Summer knew he adored Kelly and that Kelly had been supportive about Summer and Austin's marriage, and he thought it would help Summer to accept the idea if Kelly was there. Kelly expected Summer to be shocked, and Jack noted that Summer had her mother's fire, but once the flame burned down, he thought Summer would understand. Jack added that nothing would stand in his and Kelly's way.
Jack and Kelly arrived at Summer and Austin's apartment, and Summer hugged Jack hello. Kelly commented that everything looked pretty, and she handed Summer a bouquet of flowers. Jack remarked that Austin looked well, and Austin quipped that Summer had picked out his clothes, although he'd put them on by himself. Summer declared that she'd wanted everything to be perfect, since Jack and Kelly had been supportive of Summer and Austin as a couple. Jack thanked her, and he said that he loved the idea of spending time together, since they had a lot to talk about.
Austin told Jack that the first thing Summer had wanted to do after the trial was introduce Austin to her mom, and Jack was surprised that Austin had agreed to go to the clinic. Austin explained that both he and Summer had wanted Phyllis' blessing, and although it had been weird at first, it had become easy to talk about how much he loved Summer. Jack wished that Austin had gotten the chance to know Phyllis, and Austin relayed that Summer still had hope that Phyllis would wake up. Jack recognized that he'd been rough on Austin, and Austin said that he couldn't undo the damage he'd done, but he could work to repair it. Jack commended Austin for showing remorse, strength of character, and loyalty to Summer, and Austin vowed to make sure she never went through anything else alone.
Kelly was surprised that Summer had a vase, and Summer confided that she'd gone crazy at the store, finding the right balance of masculine and girly after she and Austin had moved in together. Kelly pointedly said that a couple had to do what was right for both of them, since a tough day together was better than any day apart. Kelly thanked Summer for involving her, and Summer said she wouldn't forget that Kelly had fought for Summer and Austin. Summer regretted making things hard for Kelly, since it wasn't easy dating a guy who was engaged to someone else. Summer recognized that Kelly and Jack had a right to enjoy a relationship until Phyllis got better.
Over lunch, Jack remarked that it hadn't been an easy year for any of them, since the bad times had been disastrous, but Summer countered that she'd gotten a new husband and a new dad. Jack added that he'd found a new daughter and someone in his life who meant the world to him, and Summer said that she'd invited Kelly because she'd thought there had been something Jack and Kelly had been trying to tell her. Jack announced that he and Kelly had decided to move forward together, and he'd asked her to move in with him. Summer looked stricken.
Summer said that she'd just introduced Austin to Phyllis, and she asked if Jack had told Phyllis about Kelly. Jack replied that he had been honest with Phyllis, whether she'd been able to hear him or not. Summer thought that Phyllis had heard all of them, and Jack recognized that the situation wasn't easy for any of them, but he asked Summer to try to understand and to accept it. Summer noted that Jack and Kelly had accepted her husband, but she became upset and ran upstairs. Austin followed Summer, and Kelly comforted Jack.
Austin and Summer returned downstairs, and she apologized for being impolite and immature, but she was still clearly upset. She offered Jack and Kelly some dessert, but Jack preferred to give Summer and Austin some time on their own. Kelly said that the newlyweds had a beautiful home, and she could see the love they'd both put into it. Summer thanked her, and Kelly and Jack departed as Austin hugged a tearful Summer.
Summer cried that Jack hadn't meant his promise to never give up on her mom, but Austin said that moving on didn't mean that Jack had given up, since people couldn't plan to fall in love. Summer said that whatever Jack felt for Kelly couldn't possibly be like what he'd felt for Phyllis, and she was certain that Jack wouldn't be with Kelly if he thought Phyllis could get better. Summer refused to give up hope, and she promised to be waiting for Phyllis when she woke up, whether Jack was or not. Meanwhile, Dr. Cutler observed Phyllis, and he said that her family wanted her back. He prepared to find out if she was on her way.
Jack and Kelly returned home, and he said that he'd expected Summer to be upset, but he hadn't been ready for the look on her face. Kelly said that it was hard to let go of the dream of wanting one's parents to be together, and Jack felt that he'd let Summer down by taking away her hope. Kelly pointed out that Summer had her own hope, but Jack questioned whether it was right to let Summer cling to something that wouldn't happen. Kelly suggested that he be there for Summer to prove that he wasn't going anywhere, since nothing would change what he and Summer were to one another.
Abby arrived at the Athletic Club, and Stitch stopped her and asked about Victoria and the baby. Abby spat that he could go to the hospital himself, and she feigned sympathy that he'd been banned from the facility. She noticed Tyler sitting at the bar, and Stitch thanked her for nothing. She acknowledged that Stitch had taken the high road when he'd told Billy about Victoria's condition, but she suspected that he'd done it to get back on Victoria's good side. Stitch grumbled that he should have let her keep walking, and he started to leave, but she suddenly grabbed him and kissed him.
Stitch pushed Abby away, and she claimed that she'd just wanted to find out why Victoria had been interested in him. He spotted Tyler at the bar, and he realized that the buss had been to get back at her ex-fiancé. Abby huffed that it hadn't been like Stitch had suffered, and Stitch warned her not to pull something like that on him again. Abby approached Tyler, and he wished her good luck with her new boyfriend, the murderer. He quickly apologized and said that what she did with her life was her business, and she agreed that Tyler's life was also none of her concern.
Abby assumed that Tyler had heard that Mariah had gone missing, and Tyler mentioned that Paul had questioned him, hoping to get information to track Mariah down. Abby imagined that Tyler was really worried, and Tyler coolly replied that he wasn't in love with Mariah. Abby said that she and Tyler hadn't been meant for one another, and Tyler asked if Abby and Stitch were. Abby revealed that she and Stitch couldn't stand one another, but she'd kissed him to get a rise out of Tyler, and it had worked. Tyler chuckled, and he realized that he and Abby wouldn't ever be best friends, but he hoped she ended up happy. He advised her to pick someone who knew exactly what he was signing up for.
Later, Stitch arrived at Crimson Lights, and Abby remarked that it had taken him long enough to get there. She informed him that she'd learned his routine when she'd tried to fix him up with Ashley, and he groused that he had a stalker. She told him to relax, since she had a message, and she told him that Victoria was home from the hospital and that Victoria and the baby were both okay. A relieved Stitch thanked her for relaying the message, and she clarified that it hadn't been from Victoria. She added that Billy had considered it to be a return favor for Stitch telling him that Victoria had been in the hospital, and the men were even.
Over a call on speakerphone, Sharon ranted that Ian was sick and unpredictable, and Nick said that Clarence was the key to finding Ian. From the police station, Paul said that he was pushing the judge to grant a warrant to search Clarence's records, and the manhunt for Ian was still underway. Paul added that the police were looking into Ian's other followers, and the fake money drop was all set. Sharon said that Mariah didn't trust anyone besides Ian, and she worried that Mariah's life would be turned upside-down once she realized that Ian didn't care about her.
At the ranch, Nikki picked up glass of vodka, but she set it back down, and Victor appeared behind her and asked if Katherine's ceremony had been too stressful. Nikki admitted that she missed Katherine every day, but she wasn't suffering from a multiple sclerosis flareup. Nick and Sharon arrived, and they reported that they knew nothing new, but every moment waiting had been nerve-wracking. Nick announced that they needed to do more, and he asked for Victor's help. Victor offered to add manpower to the search for Clarence, and Nick was grateful that more resources were on it.
Nikki recognized that Ian was sick and twisted, but she couldn't believe that he had taken Sharon's child, and she hugged Sharon. After Nick and Sharon thanked Victor and left, Victor chided Nikki for embracing Sharon, who could still hurt Nick. Nikki sympathized that Sharon's child had been stolen years before and that Ian had taken Mariah again the prior night, and she called Ian a plague on their family that would never go away. She contemplated how much more a woman could take without breaking into a million pieces and never being whole again, and Victor inquired whether she was talking about herself or about Sharon.
Nikki questioned how Victor could have no concern for Sharon after he'd taunted her with her own child's look-alike, and she admonished Victor for not caring about the effect it had had on Nick. Victor pointed out that Nick had asked for his help, and Nikki argued that Nick had asked for a powerful man's help because Nick cared about Sharon and her child. Victor asked when Nikki had started caring about Sharon, and Nikki contended that Sharon had indicated that she was vulnerable when she'd sought professional help, but Victor maintained that Sharon had the power to hurt their son.
Nikki and Victor bickered about Sharon's secret, and Nikki stated that she didn't want to fight. She added that their family needed to band together to help one another, and Victor apologized. He said that he was tired of always being the bad guy, but he only wanted to help their children and grandchildren, and he promised that they would get through it and be better for it. Nikki said that she was late for an appointment, and she left. Dr. Cutler called Victor and reported that Phyllis had shown remarkable brain activity. Victor asked when the doctor thought Phyllis would awake from the coma.
Nikki sat in an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting and listened to the attendees share their stories. Nikki confided that she'd had two drinks the day before, and the last time she'd consumed alcohol had been on Christmas Eve in 2011. She realized that she could remember the precise moment when the only thing in the world that had mattered had been that drink, and the day before had been a stressful day, but that day was a new one. She pledged to take one day at a time, and she hadn't taken and wouldn't take a drink that day.
After the meeting, Nikki listened to a voicemail from Victor, who had said that he had to go out of town on business, but he loved her and would call when he could. A woman from the meeting commented that it was tough to shove the beast back in the cage once it had been opened, and she asked if Nikki had a sponsor. Nikki replied that she'd had a wonderful friend who had talked sense into her, but the friend was gone. The woman inquired whether Nikki had other friends or family, and Nikki said that she had incredible people in her life, but their plates were full. Nikki refused to whip her loved ones into a frenzy over a one-time thing, and she swore that she had a handle on it.
Nick and Sharon waited at home for an update about the money drop, and Sharon looked at a childhood photo of Cassie and mused that both Cassie and Mariah should have been in the photo. Sharon contemplated what would have happened if Grace had found both Cassie and Mariah, and she wondered if the twins would have spoken their own private language. She recalled stories of twins aching when the other one wasn't there, and she imagined her girls aching and not knowing why. Sharon sobbed that Cassie might not have gone to the party or driven Daniel home, and Nick said that nothing would have changed what had happened on the night of Cassie's accident, but they would get Sharon's daughter back that day. Sharon bellowed that Ian had stolen years from her and Mariah, and she wanted him to suffer.
Sharon fretted that they should have heard something, and Nick assured her that Paul would call with news. He said that it was out of their hands, and the police would make the drop and grab Ian. Sharon rambled that she felt like she had no control over anything, and Nick got a call from Victor's security team.
At the police station, Paul pulled out a black backpack filled with fake cash, and he instructed Courtney to act like a mother about to save her kid and not a cop making a bust. Nick called Paul and reported that Clarence had rented a storage unit near an industrial park just outside town. Paul promised to check it out, and he assigned Detective Harding to check out the unit. Nick prepared to go to the unit to see it for himself, but he warned that Sharon couldn't go with him, since she was supposed to be making the drop. She contended that Ian was at the park and not at the unit, and Nick cautioned that they had no idea what they would find, but she insisted on going with him.
At the storage unit, Mariah incredulously asked why Ian had set up a wedding, and he preached that the path had presented it, so it was their duty to follow it. He reasoned that they'd always been a family with a past, and they also shared a future with entwined fortunes. Mariah murmured that she didn't understand, and Ian told her to trust him, since it would make sense in time. She tried to stand up to leave, but he commanded her to stay. He ominously stated that he was her path, and he warned her not to disappoint him.
Mariah concluded that Ian had drugged her wine, and Ian requested a water bottle from Clarence and urged her to stay hydrated. She sipped the water, and Ian acknowledged that the wedding was a surprise, but she replied that she needed to get out of there. Mariah pleaded that Ian was like a father to her, and he proclaimed that he wasn't her father, but he was her family and her protector. Mariah said that she had loved him, and Ian reasoned that the wedding would just be an extension of their love.
Mariah sobbed that Ian was acting like a lunatic, and everything that people had said about him had been true. He lectured that fate was evolving, and the path was too profound to see all at once, so they could only take in bits and pieces at a time. He assured Mariah that she'd reached a new level of enlightenment, and she asked if he'd done the same thing to Nikki. Ian said that Nikki hadn't been the believer Mariah was, and he ordered Mariah to take the next step with him. Clarence began the wedding ceremony.
Mariah realized that the water had also been drugged, and Ian said he'd done it to help her relax and embrace the moment. She protested that none of it was real, but he asserted that it was as real as anything, since Clarence could perform legally binding marriage ceremonies. Mariah begged Clarence to consider what he was doing, but he resumed the nuptials. She yelled at Clarence to shut up, and Ian pulled her close and hissed in her ear not to diverge from the path, since it would only lead to pain and suffering.
Mariah reluctantly said her vows, and Clarence pronounced the couple husband and wife. Ian crowed that Mariah had made him the happiest of men. Ian and Mariah signed the marriage license to make their union legal, and Ian asked Clarence to stay there with his bride, since there was somewhere he needed to be.
Later, Nick and Sharon arrived at the storage unit, and he whipped open the door. Sharon rushed to Mariah's side, and Clarence barked that it was private property. Sharon asked what they had done to her daughter, but Clarence claimed that Mariah was just tired. Nick grabbed a crowbar, but Harding and the cops entered and told Nick to put it down. Nick demanded to know where Ian was.
Nikki pulled out a recovery brochure and eyed the liquor bottle. There was a knock at the door, and she found Ian standing there. "Hello, Nicole," he greeted with a grin.
Victor arrived at the clinic in Georgia and sat at Phyllis' bedside. He said that Dr. Cutler had administered a treatment for coma patients, and it had achieved a success rate of over 90 percent. He informed her that her change in brain activity had indicated that she might be waking up, and he was sure that he wasn't the first one she'd like to see, but there was something important he had to speak to her about. He mentioned that she was the only one who knew about a secret, and it would help a lot of people if she talked about it. Victor called her name, and Phyllis opened her eyes.