At Chancellor Park, Chelsea was talking to Kevin and Bella when the youngster mentioned that she was going to see her Mommy. Kevin attempted to brush it off and said, "She always says that." Bella had taken a flower from a vase, and Kevin gave her permission to place the flower in the grass. After Bella walked away, Chelsea said, "Kevin, what is Bella talking about? Why does she think Chloe is still alive?" Kevin claimed that Bella was referring to visiting Chloe's grave. Kevin added that he didn't have the heart to correct the child.
Chelsea seemed satisfied with Kevin's explanation and said she'd faced similar issues with Connor. Chelsea noted that she'd often heard her son talking aloud as if speaking to his dad just before falling asleep. Kevin apologized and noted that if not for Chloe's actions, they wouldn't be discussing Connor losing his dad. Chelsea said she'd moved on and suggested they arrange a play date for Bella and Connor. Kevin said the play date would have to be postponed because he and Bella would be moving to Portland, Oregon. Chelsea was surprised, but she expressed hope that Kevin would find the happiness he deserved.
After Chelsea left, Paul approached Kevin and asked about the abrasions on his face. Kevin replied, "I was hiking. There was a cliff. I don't want to talk about it." Paul noticed that Kevin had a new phone. Kevin claimed he'd been eligible for an upgrade. Kevin quickly slid the phone into his back pocket. Paul mentioned that he'd been worried after Kevin had neglected to return calls and failed to show up as planned in Tahiti. Kevin changed the subject and announced that he and Bella would be moving to Oregon. Paul expressed his concern about Kevin finding employment and a place to live. Kevin assured Paul that everything would work out well. Kevin and Paul shared a tender moment, and Paul said he'd really miss Kevin.
At the Chancellor mansion, Gloria showed up after Esther summoned her. Esther, sobbing, said that Kevin had suddenly decided to move to Oregon with Bella. Esther added that Kevin also hadn't traveled to Tahiti as he'd planned. Gloria was miffed because Kevin hadn't shared his news with her. Gloria vowed to talk some sense into Kevin. Gloria and Esther greeted Kevin and Bella when they arrived. Esther took Bella to the kitchen to enjoy cookies.
Gloria asked Kevin why he planned to move far away from family. Kevin replied, "If you care about me, Mom, you'll accept this." Gloria demanded an explanation she could live with. Kevin said he was tired of dealing with bad memories. Kevin noted all the places in town that had been special to him and Chloe and said he yearned for a fresh start. Gloria replied, "Liar." Gloria noted that Kevin hated changes and wallowed in the memories he claimed caused him pain. Kevin cried that he'd repeatedly made the same mistakes and had earned the right to step out of his comfort zone and seek happiness.
As Kevin and Bella prepared to leave town, Esther sobbed. Kevin promised to phone often. Gloria told Kevin she loved him, and they both began sobbing. Kevin collected Bella's suitcase, took his daughter by the hand, and walked out. After Gloria closed the door, Kevin knelt down and told Bella that she, her mother, and Daddy would finally live together as a family.
At the tack house, Nick talked to Faith on the phone and informed her that he'd sent a care package filled with snacks to camp. Faith mentioned that she'd be returning early to attend Nikki's concert, but Nick insisted his daughter remain at camp. Nick assured Faith that he'd give Grandma a good-luck kiss from her. Chelsea later stopped by and told Nick that Kevin and Bella would be moving to Oregon. Nick asked why, and Chelsea explained that Kevin hoped to make a fresh start. Nick wished Kevin well, kissed Chelsea, and noted that he'd had a fresh start with her.
Nick said his mom had returned to town after traveling to Colorado to seek holistic therapy at her favorite spa. Chelsea was surprised to learn that Nikki had suffered a flare-up of M.S. symptoms, which had affected her ability to play the piano. Nick noted that Nikki had kept her setback a secret from Victor. Nick said Nikki wanted to prove to Victor that she could perform and didn't want to let down her supporters. Nick expressed concern and said he'd welcome a sudden storm to cancel the concert. Chelsea encouraged Nick to trust Nikki to make the right decision.
At the Newman ranch house, Victor surprised Nikki with an evening dress from Chelsea's collection. Nikki reminded Victor that she'd asked him to refrain from making "grand gestures." Nikki winced in pain, but she did her best to hide her suffering from Victor. When Nikki turned to face Victor, he presented her with a stunning necklace. Victor said, "I just thought that you deserved this, you know. I mean, overcoming your M.S. to give this performance. That is very courageous on your part." Nikki insisted on trying on the necklace without assistance. Victor walked to the bar to pour a drink and didn't notice Nikki struggle and wince painfully as she clasped the necklace.
Nikki admired the necklace in a mirror and insisted that the gown and necklace were too much. Victor replied, "No. It's not." Keeping her back to Victor, Nikki's hand contracted in a spasm as she warned him that nothing had changed between them. Nikki explained that she intended to perform solely to support others with M.S. and to raise funds for a cure. Nikki stepped out of the room briefly and later returned to model her sequined gown for Victor.
Nikki noted that she feared tripping on the hem of her dress. Victor phoned Chelsea and requested that she alter the hem of Nikki's dress. Nikki noted that Victor seemed to solve all problems so easily -- except those involving his family. Victor vowed never to give up on reconciliation. Victor left.
Chelsea arrived and admired the dress on Nikki. Chelsea added, "Victor really does know you well." Nikki seemed to dwell on the meaning of Chelsea's comment. After Chelsea pinned up the hem, Nikki said she couldn't wait to wear the gown to the concert. Chelsea said she'd have to take the dress to her studio to stitch the hem. Chelsea noticed Nikki struggling to unfasten the dress and rushed to help. Chelsea pretended not to notice that Nikki was experiencing difficulties.
Victor stopped by the tack house to visit Nick. Victor asked about Faith, but Nick noted that he'd summoned Victor to talk about "the ludicrous concert." Victor replied, "This concert is not ludicrous, son. I know you hate my guts, but you show up at the concert on your best behavior. You will not ruin this event for your mother." Nick said, "This concert is not for her. It's for you. If you weren't so self-absorbed, you would see how miserable she is and cancel it."
Victor insisted that Nikki wanted to perform. Victor said that if Nikki had wanted to cancel, she could have. Nick said Nikki feared displaying weakness. Victor replied, "Are you forgetting that your mother suffers from multiple sclerosis? She wants to give this concert to help people who suffer the same dreadful disease. If I called off this concert now, she would be devastated." Nick said it was better to suffer from emotional pain than from physical pain.
Nikki was transporting an arrangement of flowers when Victor returned home. Victor startled Nikki when he greeted her. Victor said, "You still want to perform this concert?" Nikki was taken aback that Victor would inquire the day before the concert. Victor said he realized how stressful it had been for Nikki to prepare for the performance, and he offered to call off the concert and host a fund-raising party.
Nikki said, "Where is this coming from?" Victor said he'd thought Nikki would enjoy performing but feared it was too stressful. He offered to phone the dean and cancel. Nikki said she'd initially believed that Victor's motivation had been to humiliate her, but she understood his true motivation and wished to carry on with the concert as planned, but only for herself.
Chelsea returned to the tack house. Chelsea told Nick that though Nikki had tried to hide her pain, she was struggling. Nick said he hated what his mom was going through just to prove a point to Victor. Chelsea said she believed Nikki wanted to prove herself to Victor and to everyone else. Nick expressed concern about the concert triggering another serious flare-up. Nick vowed not to let Nikki's willfulness jeopardize her health. Nick added, "For her sake, I can't let this happen."
At Cane and Lily's house, Cane stepped in the door, and Lily greeted him. Lily told Cane that Mattie had suspected that he was having trouble at work. Lily said it was time to share what was going on with Mattie and Charlie. Cane said he'd rather wait to hear the results of the paternity test. Lily replied, "So you really think that you're not the father?" Cane recalled how Chloe had lied about him being Delia's father. Cane added, "Victoria just fired me." Lily said she wasn't surprised because of the lies and the lawsuit.
Cane admitted to his slip-up in Japan, sighed, and said, "Oh, if only Victoria had fired Billy." Lily told Cane he should stop blaming others because he was the one who'd gotten drunk, slept with Juliet, and lied about. Cane agreed and said he was ashamed of what he'd done because he'd hurt Lily and their family. Cane reached out to take Lily's hand, but she recoiled and turned away from him. Cane promised to stop making excuses, but he expressed regret that Victoria's decision to settle the case hadn't ended the ordeal completely.
Lily asked about the terms of the agreement. Cane explained that Juliet had signed a nondisclosure agreement, which also meant that the part he'd played wouldn't become public knowledge. Lily replied, "Right, unless the baby is yours and becomes a part of our lives, and then your 'drunken mistake' affects us for years." Cane asked Lily if she would ever trust him again. Lily admitted she wasn't sure if she could ever trust him again. Lily left.
After Charlie and Mattie arrived at home, Cane greeted them. Cane noted that due to extenuating circumstances, Victoria had fired him. The children were surprised and shocked. Cane assured his children that everything would be all right. Mattie and Charlie vowed to support their father emotionally. Cane warmly embraced his children.
In Victoria's office at Brash & Sassy, Billy was surprised when Victoria told him that she'd fired Cane. Billy said he'd thought Victoria might have given Cane another free pass. Victoria noted that Cane's reckless behavior with Juliet had cost the company a small fortune. Victoria, frustrated, cried that she was struggling against time to catch up after losing two employees. Billy offered to help, and Victoria requested that he work additional hours plus weekends. Billy said he would.
Lily arrived at Brash & Sassy while Victoria and Billy were away. She saw a packing box with Cane's name on it. Victoria and Billy returned and greeted Lily. Victoria explained that she'd had to fire Cane and hoped Lily would understand why. Billy said he hoped Lily would stay on as brand ambassador for the men's line. Lily said she loved her job and agreed to stay. Victoria glanced at the packing box and said she could either arrange for a courier to deliver it or let Lily take the box. Lily said the courier could deliver the box.
After Lily left, Billy said he'd scheduled additional photo shoots with Lily. Billy noted that Lily seemed to have moved past her feelings about Cane's firing. Victoria said she regretted losing a valuable colleague and added that the nightmare had just begun for Lily and her children. Victoria told Billy that Reed had a crush on Mattie.
Billy later studied the company's finances and noted losses. Billy said that the factors leading to the losses had been beyond Victoria's control. Victor cried, "Yeah, but these numbers prove that the company is in trouble, and I have to take sole responsibility for this, Billy." Billy said he'd help. Victoria said she'd have to find a way to keep her company afloat.
Lily met with Neil at the Genoa City Athletic Club. Neil was shocked to learn that Cane had lost his job. Neil noted that Cane could have handled the issue when Juliet had first filed the lawsuit. Lily added that if Cane had, Victoria could have settled for less money, and Cane would still be employed.
Neil asked what Lily might do if Cane was the father of Juliet's baby. Lily replied, "I don't know. I didn't think I would ever be in this situation." Lily said she hadn't yet mentioned Juliet's pregnancy to Mattie and Charlie. Lily added that her children knew about the charges against Cane and the legal consequences, but little else. Neil told Lily that she had serious decisions to make.
Juliet gets the paternity test results
At the tack house, Nick vented to Chelsea that despite suffering another serious flare-up, Nikki was insisting on going through with the performance instead of telling Victor that she couldn't do it. Chelsea argued that no one could make Nikki do anything that she didn't want to do, but Nick thought his dad was the master of pulling his mother's strings. Nick vowed to protect Nikki, noting that there was only one way to do it.
Nick griped that Nikki had been under constant pressure for months, causing irreversible damage to her health. Chelsea doubted that playing a couple of pieces on the piano would be that strenuous, but Nick contended that the stress was also emotional. Chelsea asserted that Nikki was a grown woman who knew her limits, so it wasn't up to him to stop his mother. Nick recognized that he should back off, but he remained worried. Chelsea called him a kind, caring son for worrying about his mom, and she assured him that everything would be okay. Chelsea left to take the altered dress back to Nikki.
Jack stopped by to see Nikki at the ranch and scolded her for scaring him by taking off. She explained that she'd had to get away for some self-care to be proactive about her condition but that she was fine. Jack mentioned that Victor had gone to him to find out where she'd been, and he dryly remarked that he didn't think Victor liked their friendship. Jack added that Victor knew that Nikki had always gone back to Victor and always would.
Jack inquired about the kind of treatment Nikki had received, and she referred to massages, yoga, and acupuncture. She marveled that she felt like a new person, but he recounted the agony she'd been in, and he thought she'd needed more than a fancy resort. She sat down at the piano to convince him, and he smiled as she began to play. She declared that she was more than ready for the following day's performance, and she expected him to write a big check afterward because he was a loyal friend.
Nikki inquired whether Jack still intended to take Dina to the concert, and he grumbled that his mother planned to leave the bulk of her estate to her boy toy, Graham. Jack maintained that he didn't want Dina's money, but he didn't understand why Dina would leave it to a guy they knew nothing about. Nikki noticed Jack was staring at her. He explained that he was reading her face, and she was always beautiful.
Nikki asserted that she looked well and rested, and Jack jokingly told her to sue him for being worried. Nikki remarked that she didn't know what she would do without him, and Jack replied that she never had to worry about that. He prepared to leave, and he promised that he'd be in the front row the next day. After Jack left, Nikki applied a salve to her hands and grimaced.
Chelsea arrived at the ranch and reported that it had been a piece of cake to fix the hem. She suggested that Nikki try on the gown, but Nikki was sure it was perfect. Chelsea hesitantly mentioned that Nick was worried about Nikki, and she noted that Nikki had seemed to be in pain earlier. Chelsea hoped Nikki would tell Victor about her medical issues rather than put her health at risk, but Nikki maintained that she could take care of it on her own. Chelsea called Nikki a brave, incredible woman, whether she played the piano or not, and she encouraged Nikki to do what was best for herself.
Victor summoned Hilary to his office to discuss her show covering the charity concert. Hilary said she'd love to support a worthy cause, but she requested freedom with how to handle the piece. He offered her the opportunity to interview VIPs and celebrities, but he was adamant that the focus be on Nikki. Hilary gushed that Nikki was a role model for all of them, and Victor complimented Hilary's interview with Julie Chen.
Hilary mused that the trip to L.A. had been life-changing on many levels, and Victor referred to her running into Victoria there. Hilary recalled that she'd snagged a front-row seat when heads had started to roll, and she hoped Victoria was holding up okay. Hilary imagined that settling the lawsuit had been the last thing Victoria had wanted to do. Victor contended that the Newmans always bounced back.
At Brash & Sassy, Billy blamed Cane for their abysmal sales numbers. Victoria grumbled that she didn't want to think about Cane ever again, and she stressed that they had to find a way to turn things around. Billy rambled that he was glad she'd kicked Cane to the curb so they didn't have to see his smug face, but Victoria snapped that Billy didn't get to dump all of it on Cane. Billy questioned whether she blamed him for all of it, and he vowed not to let the competition kick them while they were down.
Victoria requested that Billy keep the sales figures under wraps until they regrouped. He received a text message from Jill, and Victoria suggested that they wrap up and start fresh the next day. She clarified that keeping things private meant keeping them from Jill, since she didn't need Jill to itemize Victoria's failures. Billy asserted that Victoria hadn't failed anyone -- they'd failed her. He headed out, but he ran into Victor outside the door and asked what he was doing there.
Victoria told Billy it was okay, and he departed. Victor declared that the separation Nikki had ordered on their family had gone on too long, and Victoria asked if he'd rather Nikki tell the police that he'd arranged to get Chloe back in town. Victor mentioned Victoria having to settle a lawsuit, and she confided that she'd made a mistake by trusting Cane, so she'd had to give in to avoid going to court. Victor contended that she'd taken charge and shut it down, but Victoria bemoaned that she'd lost. Victor urged her to always go to him with any business problems so he could help her, but she insisted that everything was under control.
Victor huffed that he was there to offer assistance, but Victoria had decided to treat him with the same contempt Nick had. Victoria suspected that Nick wouldn't get over his anger anytime soon, but she expected that they would still look like a family to the rest of the world. Victor insisted that they were a family, and Victoria suggested that they focus on supporting Nikki at the concert. Victor invited Victoria to take a look at the venue and let him know what she thought. He started to head out, and she called him "Daddy" and thanked him for stopping by.
Victor found Nikki at the ranch and saw that Chelsea had finished the gown. He wanted things to be perfect the next day so the world would see Nikki as resilient and beautiful. Nikki hoped she didn't disappoint him, and he envisioned her pure happiness on the stage. Nikki admitted that she'd never wanted to do any of it, but she refused to walk away from the challenge. Victor asserted that their family wasn't a sham, no matter what she thought. He mentioned that he'd helped Victoria with a business problem that day and that she'd thanked him because she knew he'd never give up on their family.
At the park pavilion, Abby inquired whether a contractor had substantial experience in lighting and audio. He replied that it was why he was there, and she indicated that she expected everything to go perfectly. Abby implored the contractor to get everything set up quickly, since the safety inspector would be there that day. Nick overheard as he arrived, and Abby explained that they had to prove the venue was up to code, or they'd have no permit to hold the event. Nick mentioned that he'd dealt with safety inspectors at the Underground, and he volunteered to stick around and help. Abby rushed off to check on something.
Victoria visited the pavilion, and Abby cattily wondered if her sister had suddenly felt like helping out. Victoria said she would have stopped by sooner if things hadn't been so hectic, and Abby haughtily stated that despite everything else she had going on, she'd managed to prepare for Nikki's performance. Abby implied that Victoria wouldn't have time to make it the following night, but the safety inspector interrupted them. Abby gushed that she couldn't wait for him to see what they'd created for the event, and she led him away.
Nick greeted Victoria, and they agreed that they needed to present a united front for Nikki's sake. Nick complained that the whole thing was just a big power trip for Victor, but Victoria suspected that their father was trying to make amends because he missed them. Nick suspected that she'd caved in, but Victoria anticipated only playing the big, happy family in public. She remarked that it was too late to cancel the event, so they might as well enjoy it. Victoria headed out as Nick stared at the audio-visual equipment.
At the Ashby home, Cane informed Lily that he'd told the twins that he'd been fired from Brash & Sassy, but he'd made it clear that there had been no sexual harassment. Lily revealed that Billy and Victoria had just assured her that she still had a job with them, and Cane looked away. Lily demanded to know if he had a problem with it, and Cane said he was relieved that she still had a job. He apologized for putting their family in a fragile position, and she was grateful that they weren't both losing their paychecks.
Cane expected to find another job soon, and he pledged to help Lily and the kids any way he could to avoid letting it affect them. Lily argued that it already had affected them, since the kids knew he'd been fired, and they might have a little brother or sister soon. Cane suggested that they take it one step at a time, and his phone chimed with a message. Lily assumed it was Juliet, but he informed her that it was a job contact. Cane invited her to go through his phone, and Lily admitted that she already had.
Lily confessed that Cane hadn't left his phone behind but that she'd taken it to see his correspondence with Juliet. Cane figured that Lily had seen that it had been nothing but one drunken night. He swore that he loved their life together, and he thought they could get through it just like they'd gotten through things before. She pushed him to go to his meeting, and he asked if she would be there when he got back. She softly replied that it was her home, and he left.
Later, Jordan stopped by and asked Lily if she was doing okay. She informed him that she hadn't been able to wait for the DNA test results with Cane around, and she relayed that Cane had been let go that day. She struggled to pull herself together before the twins got home, and she didn't know what she needed except to talk to someone. Lily pointed out that she still had a job, and Jordan thought that should make her feel better. Jordan offered to help Lily talk through her decisions, but she couldn't make any until she knew whether Cane was the baby's father.
At the Chancellor mansion, Jill told Colin over the phone that he didn't have to pick her up at the airport, since they weren't going to reunite in the backseat of a town car. After she hung up, Esther requested that Jill warn her to wear earplugs the next time Jill talked like that, but Jill crowed that she'd be halfway across the globe with her husband the next time. Esther stated that she'd checked Jill's medication and uploaded healthy recipes to her tablet, but Jill pressed to know how Esther was doing. Esther replied that she was fine, but Jill called her a hideous liar. Esther understood Kevin's decision to move because the memories were too painful, but she couldn't leave for the same reason he hadn't been able to stay -- she felt Chloe there.
Jill handed Esther a business card for a therapist, since Jill wouldn't be there for Esther to blather to. Esther countered that anyone would be more helpful than Jill, and the women hugged. Esther went upstairs to make sure Jill had everything, and Jill answered the doorbell. Jill hugged Billy hello, and he inquired about her checkup. She reported that she had a clean bill of health to travel all over the world with her husband, and she promised not to nag Billy about his reunion with Phyllis. Jill expected that the debacle would soon be over without any help from her, unlike the Brash & Sassy nightmare.
Billy revealed that Cane had admitted to Victoria that he'd lied about what had happened in Tokyo, so she'd fired him. Jill wondered how Cane had been that stupid when he loved Lily, and Billy conceded that people did reckless things when they were drunk, but Cane had been sober for every lie that he'd told ever since. Jill reconsidered leaving, but Billy insisted that she continue on her recovery mission. Jill ordered him not to do anything idiotic while she was gone, and he knowingly replied that he loved her, too.
Later, Cane stopped by the mansion after his meeting had been canceled. Jill revealed that Billy had told her that Victoria had let Cane go, and Cane recognized that the lawsuit had cost Brash & Sassy a lot of time and money. Cane wished Victoria had settled earlier, and Jill lectured that it would have been convenient for him if Lily had never found out that he'd had sex with another woman in Tokyo. Jill asked how Lily was doing, and Cane reported that his wife was handling it better than he'd expected, so he had hope they'd get through it. Jill imagined that Lily wasn't about to throw away everything they had over a one-night stand, and Cane realized that Billy hadn't told Jill everything.
After Cane told Jill about Juliet's pregnancy, Jill blasted him for not using protection. Cane countered that if he'd been sober enough to do so, he wouldn't have slept with Juliet in the first place. He maintained that the lawsuit had been a joke, and he had yet to find out if he was the baby's father. Jill didn't know how his family would recover if he turned out to be the dad, and Cane wasn't sure they would. Jill recounted that she'd always managed to claw her way back after she'd messed up, and she encouraged him to do the same thing. He pledged to do whatever it took to make things right.
Billy returned to Brash & Sassy and found Jack there. Jack said he wanted to discuss the company's sales figures with Victoria or someone in a senior position. Billy surmised that Jack was there to gloat because Jabot's numbers were up, but he insisted that Brash & Sassy wasn't going anywhere. Jack noted that Brash & Sassy was already down, and he imagined how it would sink when the lawsuit dragged on. Billy announced that the lawsuit was over.
Jack figured that Victoria would have fought it if she'd had a chance, so it meant Cane had screwed up. Billy divulged that Cane didn't work there anymore, and Jack taunted that Victoria had written a check and lost a high-level executive, so he'd be happy to take the company off her hands if it became too much of a burden. Billy proclaimed that he and Victoria would be crushing Jabot again soon. Jack stated that he expected the rent check to be paid on time, and he left.
In her hotel suite, Hilary begged Howard over the phone to fly in from L.A. to help her cover the concert. Juliet arrived, and Hilary said it wasn't a good time, but Juliet wailed that waiting for the paternity results alone was killing her. Hilary wondered why Juliet was nervous if she was sure Cane was the father. Juliet reiterated that she knew what the results would say, but she was worried about Cane's reaction. Hilary recalled that Juliet had been sure that Cane would step up because he was such a good guy, but she warned Juliet not to expect to be welcomed into the family.
Juliet realized that Hilary really was mean. Hilary snapped that she'd helped with Juliet's case, but she hadn't signed up for the baby-mama drama. Hilary refused to lose Jordan just because Juliet had no other friends in town, but Juliet countered that she wouldn't have filed the lawsuit if it hadn't been for Hilary. Hilary contended that she was the only one who knew Juliet had admitted that no sexual harassment had occurred. Juliet received a call from the clinic, and she sank to the couch as she found out the paternity test results.
Nick sabotages the hospital benefit> Nick sabotages the hospital benefit
At the ranch, Nikki slowly descended the stairs, dressed for the concert and in obvious pain. Victoria arrived, and Nikki, hiding her pain, greeted her daughter warmly. Victoria told Nikki that Nick was opposed to her going ahead with her performance. Victoria got the feeling that Nick felt it would lead to Nikki allowing Victor back into her life. Nikki asked what Victoria's reaction would've been if that had happened. Victoria advised Nikki she wouldn't go there because her own life was a mess, and she was in no position to judge Nikki's.
Nikki asked if Victoria was talking about the lawsuit. Victoria said she'd had to settle in order to avoid an embarrassing loss in court, and she had to fire Cane. She said it had been difficult but necessary, and her company was suffering. Nikki wondered if Victoria had taken on too much. Victoria scoffed and told Nikki not to go there. Victoria said that Jill was in town, and Jill wasn't the most subtle person. She was sure that Jill wanted Victoria to rely heavily on Billy, but it wasn't going to happen because she didn't need anyone. She'd handle everything herself.
Victor entered and suggested they go to the concert as a family. He also said that he had a surprise for Nikki. Hilary and her cameraman arrived. Victor said he had invited Hilary in for an interview with Nikki, who had been afflicted with multiple sclerosis. He wanted the world to see what someone who suffered with MS could achieve. Nikki was annoyed. She and Victor bickered, but in the end, Nikki agreed to do the interview.
Hilary asked Nikki to sit next to Victor and suggested that everyone turn off the ringers on their phones. As a result, Victor missed an urgent call from Abby. Victoria approached to speak with Hilary. Hilary was sure there were a number of issues Victoria wanted to talk about regarding Juliet's lawsuit, and Hilary said she was open to that, but it wasn't the time.
Victoria apologized for blaming Hilary during Juliet's lawsuit. Victoria said that she couldn't give Hilary the details of the settlement because they were confidential, but there had been some truth to Juliet's allegations -- at least those that could be proven. Hilary was sorry that some of Cane's lies had hurt Victoria and her company.
The interview began, and Hilary stated that Nikki had a very inspiring story, one that viewers would love to hear. Nikki stated that her hope was that the Genoa City University Medical School would become a leader nationwide in MS research. Hilary asked if they would be looking for a cure. Nikki said she hoped it would ultimately happen. Victor suggested that the viewers would like to hear how Nikki had managed her MS and how the proof would show in her performance later that evening.
Hilary said she was sure there had to have been a time when Nikki had thought she'd never play the piano again. Nikki said that the onset of the disease had seemed to take away her ability to do something she loved very much -- her music. Hilary asked if Nikki had any pain or discomfort. Nikki stated that there was very little. There had been many advances made, and hopefully with more research, the pain would be eliminated entirely.
Hilary gushed over Victor and Nikki's union and the generous donation that Victor had made. Hilary wanted to hear more about their love story. Victor said they'd had their ups and downs, like everyone else, but they'd persevered. He felt it was a testament to true love.
Hilary invited Victoria to join the interview. Hilary introduced Victoria as the founder and owner of Brash & Sassy Cosmetics and the proud daughter of Victor and Nikki Newman. Victoria felt the interview should be about Nikki, not her. Hilary said there were probably a lot of sons and daughters out there who were coping with parents who had MS, and they'd love to hear Victoria's perspective.
Hilary wondered if, given the longevity of her parent's marriage, Victoria ever took their enduring devotion for granted. Victoria said no. She admitted that there had been times when she'd believed that her parents wouldn't find their way back to one another, yet, there they were. Hilary asked if there were times when Victoria compared their relationship to her own. Victoria said it would be hard not to because they had set the bar very high. Nikki rubbed her hands in obvious pain.
Chelsea arrived at Nick's, and he was blown away by her dress. Chelsea seemed uncomfortable and told Nick that it was weird going to the concert, knowing what they knew about Nikki. Chelsea said that when she'd dropped off Nikki's dress, she'd tried to convince Nikki that she didn't need to push herself, and Chelsea had tried to persuade her to talk to Victor about her MS flare-ups. Unfortunately, Nikki was determined not to let anyone know how the stress was affecting her.
Chelsea was worried about Nikki. She was aware that Nikki was in terrible pain when she played the piano. Nick told Chelsea not to worry about it because he'd taken care of things. Chelsea asked Nick what he'd done. Nick said all that Chelsea needed to know was that the concert wasn't going to happen.
Nick was worried that if Nikki performed, it would make things worse for her. He stated that Nikki's health was at stake, and he'd had to take matters into his own hands. Nick shocked Chelsea when he told her he'd sabotaged the soundboard. He explained that it had been a simple malfunction, but it would take hours to pinpoint the problem. It would take long enough for the inspector to cancel the concert.
At the concert venue, Abby had been putting the final touches in place when she saw Mr. Pittman, the inspector. He advised her that he was there for the final inspection. When the soundboard was tested, it began to spark and smoke. Abby became frantic, but she assured Mr. Pittman they'd have it fixed shortly. Mr. Pittman advised her that it could be a number of things, and if they couldn't find the cause, he'd have to shut them down. A short time later, no one had been able to locate the problem, and Mr. Pittman shut the venue down.
Abby approached Mr. Pittman and asked if he knew who her father was. Mr. Pittman did, but he was still shutting the venue down. Abby pleaded with him, stating that hundreds of people would be arriving shortly -- people who'd paid large sums of money toward the cause. Mr. Pittman explained that his concern was for the safety of the people.
Abby asked him to pass the venue if they found and fixed the problem. Mr. Pittman advised her if the problem wasn't fixed, he'd shut her down. He walked away. Abby begged the technician to fix the glitch and get the concert back on track. Abby called Victor but got his voicemail.
Nick and Chelsea arrived. Abby told them Mr. Pittman had shut them down. Nick advised Abby that when he'd had the same situation at the Underground, it had taken a lot of time to find and fix the problem. Abby was determined to get the glitch fixed and walked away. Chelsea asked if Nick was enjoying the situation. Nick said he hated it, but Victor had left him with no choice.
Victor, Nikki, and Victoria arrived. Victor was happy to see Nick was there. Nick stated that he was there to support Nikki. Victor left to find Abby. Nikki told Nick that in spite of what Nick thought, she'd perform, and people would know what she was capable of. Nick assured Nikki he believed in her, but the situation was far more complicated than that.
Victor found Abby. Abby asked why Victor hadn't returned her calls. Victor didn't know what Abby was talking about. Abby said that all their hard work had been for nothing because they'd been shut down. Victor wanted to know what the problem was.
Victoria told Abby that she didn't understand how Abby could have let everything get out of hand when all she'd had to do was call a master electrician. Abby was insulted, thanked Victoria, and then lit into her. Abby said she'd already done that, but the problem could have been electrical, or in the walls, or under the pavilion. They didn't know, so they couldn't just jump the gun and plug in another soundboard because if that started to smoke and flicker and the inspector saw it, it would be the end of the concert. She asked Victoria to give her a bit of credit and stormed off.
Lily arrived at home and told Cane that Mattie and Charlie had asked a lot of questions about Cane. They wondered how Cane was really doing. Cane griped that he couldn't provide for his family. He told Lily that he'd received an email from a headhunter about a job.
At that moment, Juliet arrived with the paternity test results. Cane read the report and asked if it was real. Juliet assured him the hospital would send him a copy of their report. The results confirmed that Cane was the father. Cane apologized to Lily and promised they'd get through it. Juliet said she intended to keep the baby, and she didn't expect anything from Cane. She said that with her settlement, she'd be able to make a good home for the baby.
Juliet admitted that she and Cane had made a mistake, and she apologized to Lily. Juliet said that Cane and Lily had their own family and kids, and she had no intention of disrupting their lives. Juliet said that when she'd filed the lawsuit, she'd done what she had felt she'd had to do. She'd never meant to hurt Lily. Juliet advised them to move on with their lives, and she'd move on with hers. She left. Lily looked at Cane sadly and retreated into the bedroom. Cane broke down in tears.
A short time later, Lily returned and asked Cane what he was doing. Cane explained that he'd been looking for a legal document he could take to Juliet. Lily asked what he meant. Cane said that Lily had heard what Juliet had said about taking responsibility for the baby. Lily asked if he was serious. Cane yelled at Lily, asking if she thought he wanted to abandon his own baby. He admitted that he'd messed up, and he was trying to fix the situation.
Lily stated that he couldn't fix things by walking away from his responsibility. That was what had landed them in their situation in the first place. Cane said he was trying to do the right thing and pleaded with Lily to tell him what to do. Lily insisted that Cane find Juliet and convince her to change her mind because it was his child, too. Lily said she wasn't stupid -- she knew that their family would never be the same, but he had to be there for Juliet and the baby.
Poolside on the roof at the Athletic Club, Billy told Phyllis that Brash & Sassy had taken a financial hit and that Victoria would have to work double time to get the numbers up. He stated that he'd have to help Victoria. Phyllis asked if the company would go under if they didn't get the numbers up. Billy assured her they would turn things around. He told Phyllis that Jack had already offered his brand of help.
Juliet arrived. Phyllis was surprised that Juliet hadn't run out of town because Juliet had so many enemies. Billy said it was hard to run when one was pregnant. They both greeted Juliet. Juliet was sure Billy wanted nothing to do with her, but she told him she'd always liked him and that Billy had integrity. She admitted she could've handled the lawsuit better. Billy admitted they could have believed Juliet sooner. Juliet confirmed the baby was Cane's, but she would be a single mom and raise the baby alone. She left.
In the dining room at the Athletic Club, Hilary spoke with Howard on the phone and asked him if he'd received the footage of the Newman interview. She provided him with instructions as Juliet approached. Hilary didn't look pleased to see her.
Juliet told Hilary that Cane had been ready to step up. She wasn't sure how far he'd have gone because she hadn't heard him out. She claimed she hadn't been interested in anything he had to offer. At that moment, she'd felt she had to make a stand about being independent. Hilary realized that Lily had been present. Juliet said that she'd seen that Lily had been devastated by the news. Even if Cane had wanted nothing to do with Juliet or the baby, Juliet knew that Lily wouldn't allow Cane to abandon his child.
In a motel room, Kevin put Bella down for a nap. When he walked back out to Chloe, she said that Kevin had never hesitated about them. Kevin said they were a family, and everything he'd ever wanted was there. Chloe said she was terrified that Dr. Harris would find them and that she'd be taken away forever. Kevin assured her that Dr. Harris wouldn't find them, and he couldn't talk to anyone without implicating himself.
Kevin said they had to get to Oregon without anyone recognizing Chloe. Chloe asked what would happen then -- and she wondered if she would have to stay inside. She asked what she'd do when Bella was in school. Kevin assured her they would have a normal life in Oregon.
Chloe confessed to Kevin. She revealed that Victor had arranged for her release from the psychiatric facility and into Dr. Harris' care. Victor had then enlisted her to help him frame Adam for Constance Bingham's murder. Chloe admitted that she'd been the mystery woman in the prison security videos.
Chloe said that after Chelsea had discovered what Chloe had done, Victor had arranged for Chloe to be returned into Dr. Harris' care. Kevin asked if Chloe had spoken with Victor since she'd left. Chloe said she hadn't, but Victor had money, power, and contacts all over the country, and he'd find her.
Chloe admitted to lying to Kevin about everything many times and said that if he wanted to walk away, she'd understand. Kevin said he wasn't going anywhere and promised he'd protect her. Chloe was concerned what would happen when Victor discovered she'd escaped. Kevin said he had skills that Chloe wasn't aware of. Kevin assured her that he'd beat Victor because Victor would underestimate him, but Kevin wouldn't underestimate Victor -- and that would give Kevin the edge.
At the concert venue, Victor told the inspector that he found the situation outrageous. He advised the inspector to stop throwing his weight around. Mr. Pittman said that when it was about the pavilion, he had the last word on what was permitted and what was not. Public safety was his priority. Victor stated that he had the best technicians and equipment in the business. Mr. Pittman didn't dispute that fact, but the solution to the problem had eluded them, and Victor knew where that left him. Victor informed his family that the concert had been canceled.
The concert goes on as planned. Sort of.
In Dina's hotel suite, Dina said she was sorry Graham wouldn't be with her at the concert, and he recalled that Jack had made it clear that Graham wasn't invited. Graham encouraged Dina to enjoy herself, since maybe an evening with her son was just what the doctor ordered. She worried about seeing faces from her past, but he expected everyone to marvel at her success and beauty. Graham answered the door to Jack, who coolly stated that he was sorry Graham wouldn't be joining them. Graham recognized that Jack wasn't sorry, and Jack confirmed he wasn't.
At the cottage, Sharon fawned over how great Mariah and Devon looked together. Sharon insisted on taking some photos, and Mariah imagined that Devon would be sick of photos by the end of the night. They smiled broadly as Sharon snapped photos, and Mariah then took pictures of Sharon and Scott. Devon and Mariah headed out, and Scott inquired whether Sharon had any tips for his first big Newman night out. She cautioned that such events were either glorious or horrifying, and she advised him to remember to duck.
Backstage at the park pavilion, Abby was on the phone, ordering the new technical team to break land speed records to get there. Victoria asked what Abby was doing, and Abby reported that Victor had been prepared to cancel the concert until he'd seen Nikki's face. Abby recalled that he'd told her to fire the old crew and hire a new one to fix the equipment, and Victoria thought Abby should have already done it the second things had gone south. Abby snapped that if Victoria didn't know how to fix the audio board, then she wasn't needed there.
Nikki wasn't sure what to say or think, since it seemed that she'd practiced and argued for nothing. Nick figured that they could direct the audience to the after-party before they even took their seats, but Nikki protested that people expected a musical evening. Nick anticipated that the guests would forget about the music once they had drinks at the party, and he thought it was what would be best, especially for her sake. Victor pulled Nick aside and declared that the concert would be starting on time, but Nick argued that the safety inspector had ruled the venue a safety hazard.
Victor reiterated that the performance would go on and that it would be perfect, since he'd made a promise to Nikki, and he'd "be damned" if he broke it. Victor asserted that he'd solved many problems over the years, and he promised that the performance would be magnificent. Nick warned that Victor was making a mistake that Nikki would end up paying for, but Victor retorted that the difference between him and Nick was that Victor wasn't a quitter. Victor walked away, and Nick told Nikki that Victor was just delaying the inevitable.
Later, Tessa stopped by to check on her equipment before her performance. She asked Abby what time she was scheduled to hit the stage, and Abby scowled. Abby filled in Tessa about the technical problems, and she said she'd keep Tessa posted. After Tessa left for the dressing room, Victor asked where things stood, and Abby indicated that a team from Madison was on the way, but there was no guarantee they would get there in time or have the system running. Victor growled that they'd better get there.
The safety inspector, Mr. Pitman, announced that he was leaving. Victor explained that they had a solution in progress, so Pitman would be making a big mistake if he left. Pitman argued that the equipment was unstable, and Victor questioned how much it would cost for the inspector to stay. Pitman incredulously inquired whether it was a bribe, but Victor simply repeated the question of how much it would cost if Pitman stayed.
Pitman maintained that no concert would take place without a safety permit, and they didn't have one. Pitman threatened to have the fire marshal shut down the entire thing if they moved forward, and Abby recognized that they were aware of the safety regulations, but they needed more time. She continued that her father hadn't meant to offend him, and Pitman agreed to stay for 30 minutes longer. Victor admonished Abby for not arranging for a new crew the moment she'd known the one she'd hired had been incompetent, and he demanded that she make it happen. Abby looked stricken.
Nick and Chelsea asked if they could do anything to help Nikki, but all Nikki wanted was to know if she was going to perform that night. Nick privately asked Tessa to keep an eye on his mom, and Tessa approached Nikki and inquired about the technical difficulties. Nikki said she didn't know the details, and Tessa commented that maybe the universe was trying to cut Nikki a break so that she wouldn't have to play through her pain. Nikki massaged her hands.
Hilary bickered with Howard as they prepared to host the red carpet coverage of the charity concert. Hilary approached Reed and asked how excited he was about that night, and he became flustered. Howard gestured for her to cut, and Victoria joined them. Hilary introduced the founder and CEO of Brash & Sassy, and Victoria mentioned that Reed had inherited his grandmother's musical genius and that he performed regularly at the Underground. Victoria led Reed away, and Hilary moved on to Ashley and Ravi.
Ashley praised Ravi for appreciating all types of music from EDM to grand opera, noting that he'd turned her on to both. Hilary remarked that it was romantic, and she asked how Ashley felt to be there to celebrate her ex-husband's current wife. Ashley replied that she and Victor were united in supporting their daughter, who'd put her heart and soul into organizing the event, and they couldn't be more proud.
Victoria informed Reed that there was a mess backstage that Abby was trying to fix. Reed was surprised that Victoria wasn't also trying to solve the problem, and Victoria griped that Abby wasn't interested in her help.
Later, Nick insisted to Victoria that Victor wouldn't be able to fix things by the concert's start time. Hilary cornered Nick and called him the scion to the Newman dynasty, and she asked how he felt before watching his mother perform before a sold-out crowd. Nick said he had no words, and Hilary thought he might be honored or thrilled. He sourly invited her to use those terms, and Chelsea intervened and revealed that Nikki would be wearing a Chelsea 2.0 original gown for her concert debut. Nick thanked Chelsea for the save.
Mariah was stunned that Hilary was working the event without telling her about it. Hilary defended that Victor had begged her to do it at the last minute, and it was a one-woman job. Mariah noticed that Hilary had help, and Howard introduced himself as the original owner of GC Buzz. Devon and Neil joined them, and Hilary told her viewers that the men were the newest power players in Genoa City. Neil insisted that the night was all about Nikki, since he'd watched her battle the disease and fight back to become more confident and vibrant than ever.
Neil gushed that Nikki had helped him and inspired him to be better and stronger, and Hilary asked how Devon felt about the evening. Devon praised Nikki for giving back, and he cited Nikki serving as a mentor to Tessa, who was the opening act and the first artist that his company's streaming label had signed. Hilary suggested that Tessa visit The Hilary Hour for an in-studio session, and she complimented Devon's instincts about talent. Mariah seemed uncomfortable with Hilary and Devon's easy rapport.
Hilary jokingly told Jack not to even think about not saying hello, and he introduced her to Dina. Hilary apologized for not being available for Dina's interview at GC Buzz, but Dina praised Mariah for being charming and professional. Hilary invited Dina to stop by the studio again, and she asked how Dina felt about Newman's big night. Dina said she looked forward to the music, and Jack declared that he was Nikki's biggest fan.
Victoria asked Victor whether they were really moving forward. He insisted that none of the guests had to know there was an issue until they'd exhausted all possible resources, and he expected the concert to go on as planned. Victor greeted Ashley and remembered Ravi from the opera. Ravi went to get Ashley some Champagne, and Ashley told Victor that Abby had sacrificed a lot to put the event together and that their daughter wanted him to be proud. Victor haughtily stated that Abby didn't need her mother hovering, and he suggested that Ashley get back to Ravi before his curfew.
Victor was surprised to see Scott and Sharon together, and Scott revealed that they'd been seeing one another for a while. Scott credited Sharon with encouraging him to stick around Newman, and Sharon noted that Victor appreciated intelligence and loyalty. Victor asked Scott to go backstage to see if Abby needed any help, and Scott obliged. Sharon was confident that Nikki would play beautifully that night, and she congratulated both Victor and Nikki.
Later, Victoria asked Victor if there was any news, and he wondered if she'd known that Scott had been dating Sharon. Victoria said she hadn't known and didn't care, and Victor mused that Scott had a future ahead of him because he was clever and bright. Victoria was amazed that her father was matchmaking at a time like that, and she hoped he didn't intend to set her up with his protégé.
Neil told Victor that he wouldn't have missed the opportunity to see Nikki play for the world. Victor greeted Dina, who enthused that he'd outdone himself. Jack huffed that Nikki was the one with the command performance, and he thought Victor didn't even know what she'd put herself through. Jack escorted Dina over to Ashley and Ravi, and Dina suggested that the men find their seats. Dina complimented Ashley on her choice of escorts, and Ashley grumbled not to go there. Dina countered that Ashley had gone there by asking questions about Graham.
Nick asserted that someone had to say something, but Victor barked that Nick was only a guest there, so it was none of his concern. Nick taunted that Victor was kidding himself if he thought the equipment would magically fix itself, and Victor asked "how the hell" Nick knew that. Nick griped that the inspector had already ruled the event a lost cause, and he thought dragging it out was only putting more stress on his mom. Nick pushed to let it go and direct everyone to the food and drinks, but Victor was appalled by Nick's lack of support for his family.
Chelsea informed Nick that the nanny had called because Connor was running a fever, and Nick figured that she didn't need to stick around for an epic fail. She assured him that Nikki would be fine no matter what happened, and she headed out.
Noah arrived with flowers for Nikki and Tessa, and he asked Abby for directions to the dressing room. Abby testily questioned whether he couldn't follow the signs, and she admitted that she had a soundboard that didn't work and no one to fix it. She groused that the technical crew was stuck in traffic and that everyone was in her face, telling her what she'd done wrong. Abby suggested that Noah put the flowers on her grave because the event would kill her, and Noah offered to take a look at the equipment.
Over the phone, Abby demanded that the technical crew get around a pileup on the interstate. Ashley became concerned when she heard shouting, and Abby wailed that Victor was holding her responsible because the event was a disaster. Ashley asked what she could do, and Abby requested that she make small talk with the audience to make people think there was nothing going on. After Ashley departed, Noah told Abby that he needed to grab something at the Underground, but he wanted her to make sure that Nikki and Tessa got his flowers.
Tessa began to warm up in the dressing room, and she observed that Nikki was applying ice packs to her hands. Nikki explained that it helped with flare-ups, but Tessa questioned how Nikki could play after chilling her joints. Nikki bemoaned that she couldn't fight it anymore, and she wondered how she was supposed to do it. Abby burst in to deliver the flowers, but she spotted the ice packs and asked if Nikki was okay.
Tessa claimed that a pianist friend had sworn by ice packs, so she'd told Nikki to give them a try. Abby indicated that the flowers were from Noah, and she said she felt awful for leaving Nikki in limbo. Nikki insisted that Abby hadn't been responsible for the mechanical failure, and Tessa asked if they should make an announcement about the issues. Nikki thought that would never happen because Victor would never admit he wasn't the Almighty. Nikki anticipated that Victor would pretend nothing was wrong, adding that it seemed to be a Newman family trait.
Abby snatched some paperwork out of Scott's hands and snapped that he wasn't on duty. Scott mentioned that Victor had sent him, and Abby spat that she'd already gotten the message about how inadequate she was. Scott assured her that she'd work out anything that went wrong, and she groaned that everything had. He offered to stall the performance, but she questioned the point of dragging out the misery. Scott recognized that Abby had busted her butt to pull off the impossible, so he was impressed. She clarified that she almost had, and she urged Scott to go.
Noah returned, and Abby begged him to tell her he had good news. He said he had a soundboard from the club in his car, but she fretted that the other one had taken hours to set up. He pointed out that the contractors had been paid by the hour, and it shouldn't take long, but he'd never set one up before. Abby squealed when the tech team showed up, and she asked Pitman if he'd sign the paperwork when the equipment worked. Pitman agreed to grant the permit if everything was up to code.
A woman arrived at the dressing room and asked to speak with Mrs. Newman. Tessa left to give them privacy, and the woman presented Nikki with an orange ribbon. Nikki asked if the woman knew someone who had multiple sclerosis, and the woman confirmed that she had it. The woman explained that she'd panicked when she'd been diagnosed because she hadn't known what her life would be like, but she found it inspiring that Nikki was willing to perform to prove the disease couldn't hold people with MS back from having full lives. The woman thanked Nikki for giving them a voice, and the women grasped one another's hands.
Hilary teased Victor for avoiding her, but he said he'd been showing the guests to their seats. Hilary admired his personal touch, and she imagined it would result in more donations for the research center. Victor pointed out that it meant getting closer to a cure, and Hilary guessed that he was eager for his wife to take the stage. Victor announced that things hadn't gone quite as expected, but he paused to read a text message from Abby, telling him to get backstage immediately.
Backstage, Abby crowed to Victor that Noah had saved the concert with a new soundboard that the new tech team had up and running, and the inspector had signed off. She added that she didn't blame Nick, but she thought he could have helped by offering the Underground's soundboard when he had been there during the safety inspection. She chalked it up to Nick thinking about fixing it and not replacing it, and she couldn't be happier that the concert was on. Victor applauded her for staying cool under pressure, and he said he was proud of her and that he wouldn't forget it.
Nikki informed Tessa that the woman who'd stopped by was an MS survivor who considered Nikki to be an inspiration. Victor entered and asked if the women were ready, since the audience was. Nikki inquired about the sound system, and Victor indicated that Abby and Noah had saved the day. Victor prompted Tessa to take the stage, and Tessa nervously noted that there were a lot of people there. Nikki was sure that Tessa would be wonderful, and Tessa asked how Nikki was. Nikki looked down at the ribbon in her hands, and she swore that she'd be ready by the time Tessa finished.
In the audience, Nick explained to Sharon and Scott that there had been technical problems, but Victor wanted to pretend all was well. Scott reported that Abby thought it was all her fault, and Nick flatly replied that it wasn't. Nick decided that someone needed to say something and that any Newman would do. The audience clapped when Nick stepped onstage, and he introduced himself and said he had an announcement to make.
Tessa appeared on the stage, and Nick covered by asking everyone to give her a warm welcome. Tessa apologized for the holdup, and she thanked Nikki, who'd been her first friend in Genoa City. Tessa called Nikki fierce and talented, and she commended Nikki for reminding her every day that music wasn't a gift but a necessity. Tessa dedicated her song to Nikki, and she began to play as Nick anxiously glanced around.
Nikki asked what was happening, and Victor swore that he'd never let her down. He mused that all he wanted was to show the whole town what she was made of, since he loved her, and he knew she loved him. She caressed his face and softly kissed him.
Nikki takes the stage at the concert
At Crimson Lights, Cane called Lily and told her that Charlie would be at the coffeehouse soon. Lily reported that she expected Mattie home any minute, and she stressed that she thought it was better to talk to their children separately. Charlie entered as Cane hung up, and Cane ushered him to the patio so they could have some privacy. Cane explained that Lily was having a talk with Mattie because there was something the twins needed to know.
Charlie sympathized that his dad had gotten a raw deal at work when he'd been fired, and Cane recognized that the lawsuit had cost a lot of money to settle. Charlie questioned why Cane hadn't fought the lawsuit because he'd done nothing wrong, and Cane divulged that he was no longer working at the company because he'd lied. Cane confirmed that Juliet's claims of sexual harassment hadn't been true, but the situation was more complicated than that, since there were things Charlie and Mattie didn't know that they needed to know. Cane confessed that Juliet was pregnant and that he was the father, and he lamented that he would change things if he could. Charlie stormed out of the coffeehouse.
Mattie arrived home and wanted to get started on a research paper, but Lily insisted on talking to her. Lily recounted that Mattie's father had been let go from Brash & Sassy, and Mattie realized that Cane was speaking to Charlie separately because something else bad had happened. Mattie guessed that the lawsuit was back on, but Lily stressed that it was over. Mattie wondered if her dad was in more trouble, and she pleaded with Lily just to tell her.
Lily acknowledged that people made mistakes, and she revealed that Cane had made a huge mistake that wouldn't go away. Mattie tried to put a stop to the conversation, but Lily forced her to listen. A devastated Mattie sank to the couch when she learned the truth. Lily wailed that she was sorry about everything, but Mattie asked what her mother was apologizing for. Lily regretted that any of them had to deal with it, and Mattie questioned how they'd do it. Charlie burst in, followed closely by Cane. The twins glared at their father.
Cane reiterated how sorry he was, and he contended that they didn't have to change anything. Mattie spat that things had happened that couldn't be changed, and Cane recognized that it was the right thing to do to take responsibility for the baby. Cane pledged to fix the damage he'd done, and he insisted that the four of them always had been and always would be a family. Charlie dryly commented that it was just getting bigger, and Cane conceded that he couldn't tell them how to think or feel.
Cane asked the twins to have faith that everything would be okay, but Charlie spat that it was too bad Cane hadn't been able to predict the future on the night he'd hooked up with another woman in Japan. Charlie rushed out, and Cane swore that he loved Mattie and her brother. He promised that he would always be there for them. Mattie followed Charlie out, and Cane hung his head in despair. He looked up at Lily, but she silently slipped out of the room.
Tessa finished her song at the charity concert, and the audience erupted in applause. She took a bow and waved to Noah and Reed before she walked offstage. Nick wanted to check on Nikki, but Noah said he was sure she'd take the stage in a second.
Victor informed Nikki that Tessa was finished, and he asked if Nikki was ready. Nikki figured that she had to be after the trouble Abby and Noah had gone through to fix the sound system, and Victor gushed that he was excited to introduce her. She insisted that it be nothing elaborate, and he told her not to worry about a thing, since she'd be wonderful. He headed out, and she grabbed her arm in pain.
Hilary instructed Howard to get shots of Victor and the audience. Howard noted that Victor hadn't seemed like the warm and fuzzy type, and Hilary recalled that Victor had been distracted during their interview, but his whole demeanor had changed when he'd received a text message. She wondered what it had been about.
Abby and Victor told Tessa that she'd been amazing, and Tessa thanked them. Victor approached a member of the replacement technical crew and asked if she'd found out why the original soundboard had malfunctioned. The technician reported that someone had spilled soda on it, which had fried the circuitry in an instant. Victor was surprised that no one had reported it, and the technician informed him that she always instructed her crew not to have liquid around the equipment, but accidents happened.
Abby told Victor he was on, and she handed him the microphone and wished him luck. The audience clapped when he took the stage, and he glowered down at Nick. Victor told the crowd that he couldn't express the deep gratitude he felt for their support, not only for his family but also for the magnificent university. Meanwhile, Tessa found Nikki whimpering in pain, and she realized that Nikki was having a flare-up. Tessa prepared to tell Victor to get a doctor and cancel the performance, but Nikki vehemently cried, "No, no!"
Victor was sure everyone was anxious to hear his wife perform, and he recognized that Nikki wasn't a professional but that she played like one. He welcomed Nikki to the stage, and the audience applauded as he turned toward where he expected her to be waiting in the wings. There was a long pause, and Nick anxiously looked around. Nikki finally joined Victor onstage, and they kissed.
Nikki situated herself at the piano, and the audience became silent. Nikki sat frozen with her hands poised over the keys, and her loved ones squirmed as the silence became awkward. Nikki began to play, and her friends and family smiled as her fingers seemed to move effortlessly over the keys. Victor closed his eyes and enjoyed the moment while Tessa stared nervously at Nikki.
Nikki completed the piece perfectly, and the audience members rose to their feet in a standing ovation. She took a quick bow and exited the stage, rushing past Victor, who glared again at Nick. Reed marveled that he'd seen Nikki play before but never like that. The audience excitedly chattered about how Nikki had exceeded all expectations. Ashley wondered if Nikki would perform an encore, but Jack suspected that Nikki was finished, and he excused himself to head backstage.
Scott searched for Abby, since she'd been stressed before the show, but he thought it couldn't have gone better. Sharon was surprised that Nikki hadn't taken another bow, and Scott figured that artists were never pleased with their work. Scott spotted Abby and commended her on a job well done, and she asked if she was dreaming, because he'd paid her a compliment. Scott insisted that Abby deserved the kudos, but Abby fully expected him to be back to his judgmental ways by the morning. Sharon said they'd see Abby at the party, and Sharon and Scott left.
Victoria praised Abby for doing a good job pulling it off, and Abby credited Noah for helping. Abby wondered where Nick was. Meanwhile, Howard suggested that he and Hilary get some footage in the dressing room, but Hilary wanted to give Victor privacy to congratulate his wife. Nikki made it to the dressing room and collapsed on the sofa. Victor discovered her writhing in pain and asked what was wrong.
Victor realized that Nikki was having a flare-up and that it was why she'd taken the trip out of town. He wondered why she hadn't told him, and she explained that he would have canceled the concert. He swore that he'd never wanted to see her in agony, but she accused him of doing it all because he'd wanted her to need him and depend on him. Victor insisted that he'd meant every word of his speech, and Nikki sobbed that she hadn't wanted to show weakness by admitting that she couldn't do it. She recalled that she'd had a visit from a woman with MS who'd told her she was an inspiration, and she'd wanted to feel like she'd earned the praise. Victor assured Nikki that she'd been wonderful.
Jack entered and asked if Nikki was all right, since he'd seen what it had taken out of her to be onstage. Nikki promised that she'd be fine, and she thanked Jack for checking on her and told him that she'd see him at the party. Jack stepped out, and Nikki told Victor that there had been a world of misunderstanding and mistrust about the concert, but she was grateful that he'd made her go out there and do it to prove to the world and herself that she could. She added that she'd never thought she'd be able to admit that to him, and she took his hand in hers and thanked him. Nick entered and asked what had happened out there.
Victor stepped out, and Nikki conceded that she'd struggled as Nick had expected, but she thought the important part was that the recital was over. Nick wanted to take her home, but she was adamant about celebrating what she'd just done. Nick inquired about Victor, and Nikki reported that Victor had figured out that she'd been having flare-ups, but she told Nick to keep it to himself. Nick worried that she was making things worse for herself, but she told him to stop being angry with his father because it had been her decision to perform.
Nick was skeptical, but Nikki asserted that she'd learned that she had to stand up to MS to live with it, and it was what she'd done that night. Nick indicated how proud he was of her, but he was concerned because she'd be on her feet all night at the party. Nikki thought it would be fun, and she pointed out that he'd be right there with her. Victoria, Reed, Noah, and Tessa entered, and Nick slinked out as Nikki accepted everyone's accolades. Victor stared daggers at Nick outside the dressing room.
At the after-party at Top of the Tower, Hilary told Howard to get money shots of major contributors and the Newman family to keep Victor happy. Howard preferred to follow the pretty single ladies who wanted to be on television, but Hilary snapped that she wasn't running a dating service for him.
Devon posed for photos with Mariah and Neil, and he observed that Hilary and Howard had gotten there fast. Devon found it funny to see the guy who he'd booted from GC Buzz sticking tight to Devon's ex, and he said it made him miss working at the studio. The room filled with applause when Victor and Nikki arrived. Hilary moved in to get shots of the Newman family, and Victor tried to gather everyone around. Victoria, Noah, Reed, and Abby stepped up, but Nick hovered in the back of the room. Nikki called out for Nick, and he reluctantly joined the rest of the clan.
Hilary interviewed Dr. Miller, the dean of the medical school, and he thanked Nikki for the electrifying performance. Nikki credited Victor with having the idea, but Victor insisted that the evening was all about her. Dina told Jack that she thought he was wrong, since Nikki seemed perfectly fine. Dina mused that it was a shame that Graham hadn't been included because he would have enjoyed the evening. Jack grimaced.
Nick was surprised when Abby hugged him, and she gushed that she owed him because the concert wouldn't have happened without him. Confused, Nick said the last thing he'd heard had been that the inspector wouldn't sign the permit before Tessa had walked onstage. Abby recounted that Victor had been furious with her, but Noah had retrieved a soundboard from the Underground to help out. Abby gave Nick credit for owning it, but she considered Noah to be the superhero.
Mariah approached Tessa and Noah and declared that a star had been born. Tessa said she'd been pretty nervous, but Mariah assured her that she hadn't looked like it at all. Tessa showed off the bouquet that Noah had given her before the show, and Noah stepped aside to let the women talk. Tessa confided that no one had ever sent her flowers before, and Mariah pointed out that Tessa had never had a guy like Noah before. Mariah glanced over at Hilary and Devon talking, and she admitted that she didn't know how to feel about seeing them together.
Tessa was surprised when she ran into Zack, since she'd expected their last conversation to be their final one. He revealed that Abby was his business partner, and he walked away. Noah asked Tessa who Zack was, and Tessa simply stated that Zack was Abby's date. Ashley asked Abby if she was dating Zack, and Abby confirmed that they'd been out a couple of times for business. Ashley voiced concern, but Dina told Ashley not to be a prude, since Ashley worked with Ravi. Ashley and Ravi both insisted that they were only friends, and Dina mumbled that they could keep telling themselves that.
Abby introduced Zack to Ashley and Dina, and Ashley referred to him as the genius behind the dating platform. Zack clarified that he left the genius up to the software developers, since he was all about business and marketing. Abby suggested that Ashley let Zack borrow Ravi's computer skills sometime. Nikki approached and thanked Dina for attending. Dina mentioned that Ravi had given her tips about what to listen for, and she thought Nikki's performance had been marvelous.
Nikki said she'd heard that Ravi was very well educated about music, and Ravi declared that it had been an honor and a privilege to hear her play. Jack pulled Nikki aside to find out how she was really doing, and Nikki replied that she felt like a weight had been lifted from her shoulders. Jack grumbled that Victor had backed her into a corner, but Nikki urged Jack to enjoy the party just as she intended to do.
Ashley told Victor that she didn't appreciate him putting pressure on Abby, who had been a nervous wreck. Victor admitted that he'd been hard on Abby but that she'd done a wonderful job. Ashley implored him to express that to Abby, and Victor agreed that he would.
Nick confronted Noah about saving the day, and Noah confirmed that he'd substituted the soundboard from the Underground for the one having problems. Nick seemed irritated, and Noah defended that he'd had to move fast to avoid the concert being shut down. Nick scolded Noah for not running it by him first, and Noah argued that he'd just been helping his grandmother. Nick said he'd overheard that there had been dangerous conditions, and he lectured that Noah had to be more careful. After Nick stepped away, a stunned Noah relayed to Tessa that it had seemed like his father had disapproved of what he'd done with the equipment.
Victoria waited in line to order a drink, and Zack noted that it could be awhile. He ordered two drinks from a waiter, and he and Victoria introduced themselves. He asked if she was there alone, and she joked that she was there with her 16-year-old son and his phone, so she was essentially alone. Abby approached and coldly stated that she saw he'd met her half-sister, and she bragged that Zack was part of the tech incubator project.
Zack handed Victoria her drink, and she wished them luck with the project and sauntered off. Zack hoped Abby was done working so they could get a dance in, and she requested that he stay away from Victoria. "Who's Victoria?" he asked, and he moved in to kiss Abby's cheek. Sharon was happy to see that Abby had found someone new, and Scott hoped it got Abby to lighten up at work.
Victor called for everyone's attention, and he announced that the funds raised that evening had exceeded expectations. He thanked everyone for being gracious and generous, since their contributions would help eradicate MS. He proclaimed that the star that evening was undoubtedly his wife, but all of those who had contributed were stars in their own right.
Victoria asked if Reed's phone had died, and he bemoaned that he'd given up trying to get in touch with Mattie. Victoria wondered if something was wrong, and Reed reminded her that she'd fired Mattie's dad. Reed indicated that he'd only received one response from Mattie to say she couldn't talk, but there had been no reason why.
Victoria told Nikki that she was happy for her mother, since the concert had turned out well even though Nick had been against it. Nikki wondered where Nick was.
Nick took the elevator down to the garage. He opened the door to his vehicle, took off his jacket, and threw it inside. Victor suddenly slammed the door shut and barked that Nick wasn't going anywhere. "You and I aren't finished yet," Victor ominously stated.