In their hotel suite at the Grand Phoenix, Summer and Kyle made love. Summer reminded Kyle that it was his big day, so it was time to get his head in the game. Kyle asked Summer if she believed Theo had used Kendra to spy on him. Summer said she couldn't be certain, though she noted that desperate people might do diabolical things. Summer assured Kyle that no matter what, his proposal would be a winner.
Lola phoned Theo at Jabot and wished him good luck. Theo told Lola that all he needed was a killer pitch and her in his corner. Theo said he'd tell Lola all about his triumph after she returned to town. After Theo hung up, Jack arrived, checked his watch, and said they had a little time before the presentation. Theo seemed nervous and admitted that he needed time to warm up. Jack assured Theo he'd do fine and reminded him it wasn't a popularity contest. Jack added that the goal was to determine which proposal would best promote Jabot.
Kyle and Summer entered the conference room. Kyle and Theo brought up their rival presentations just before Jack prepared to hear the pitches. Theo was the first to present his pitch, titled "Back 2 Basics." Theo explained that his campaign would focus on Jabot's core products, which would appeal to their long-term customers. Jack rose from his chair and asked Theo to explain his thoughts behind his concept. Theo replied, "Good old inspiration, intuition, and creativity." Jack noted that Theo's presentation wasn't unique because it wasn't his.
Jack told Theo that it was a word-for-word pitch he'd made 15 years earlier in that very same room. Theo swallowed hard when Jack asked, "Did you really think I wouldn't notice?" Jack asked Theo to explain himself. Theo replied, "Kyle and Summer set me up." Kyle admitted that, though he and Summer had set the bait, Theo had proceeded on his own by logging into Summer's account. The color drained from Theo's face when Kyle explained that Theo had actually taken what he'd thought had been Kyle's idea and had pretended it was his own. Jack demanded details. Kyle explained that Theo had persuaded Kendra to act as his mole. Kendra, Kyle added, had spied on Kyle in an attempt to steal his pitch.
Summer told Jack that she and Kyle had decided to turn the tables on Theo. Kyle added that it had really been Summer's idea to load Jack's old pitch onto the server and set the bait by openly discussing it. Theo said he'd simply used the idea as inspiration and had seen nothing wrong with taking a shortcut, as other Abbotts had done in the past. Summer proclaimed that Theo had cheated and acted dishonestly. Theo said he knew from Abbott history that almost every family member had done something shady. Jack replied, "That was your takeaway from Traci's book? Not the lessons we learned, but a how-to-book on cheating? If that's the case, you missed the point, and I feel sorry for you."
Theo insisted he deserved a second chance and an opportunity to redeem himself like other members of the Abbott family had. Jack turned to Kyle and asked him to determine whether or not Theo deserved a second chance. Kyle told Theo that he'd proven himself to be unethical, though Kyle added he'd thought Theo would have been savvier. Theo claimed he'd operated on the same principles he had as an influencer. Kyle explained that at Jabot, honesty, integrity, and creativity mattered. Theo said, "Lesson learned. It will never happen again." Kyle agreed it wouldn't because Theo was fired. Theo sought Jack's help, but Jack allowed Kyle's decision as co-CEO to stand.
After Theo left, Kyle pitched his plan, which he said involved a pivot back to listening to their customers' demands, thus empowering them and giving them a sense of company ownership. Jack, impressed, said, "Riveting. Absolutely fantastic -- fresh, financially feasible, and fun." Jack told Kyle and Summer that they made a terrific team. Kyle asked Jack if his proposal had won by default. Jack assured Kyle that he and Summer had done an incredible job.
After Jack left, Kyle told Summer that their triumph was monumental. Kyle and Summer celebrated with Champagne. Summer expressed pity for Theo. Kyle reminded Summer that Theo was responsible for his own downfall and had gotten what he deserved. Kyle assured Summer that she shouldn't pity Kyle. Summer nodded.
At the Abbott mansion, Dina sat on the sofa, sipping tea, while Theo defended himself. Theo said he'd thought he'd win Jack over and force Kyle to come up with something new on the fly. Theo admitted he'd been an idiot. Dina seemed to not be tuned in to Theo's discussion, even when he said he wished Dina could have known him when he'd worked in New York, where he'd been the guy with the Midas touch who'd thrown the best parties with the most beautiful people. Theo admitted he was nothing like Dina and had reverted to his worst instincts. Dina stared straight ahead when Theo expressed regret for having lost his job and perhaps even his place in the family.
At the clinic, Amanda stopped by to visit Nate. Amanda flirted with Nate, and he suggested they have lunch together. Elena arrived, greeted Nate and Amanda, and informed Nate that an emergency case was headed their way. Amanda asked about the patient. Elena explained that she'd witnessed a four-year-old boy fall from a slide at the playground. Amanda left so Nate and Elena could attend to their patient.
After Elena successfully treated her patient, Nate congratulated her. Nate recalled how the little boy had considered her to be a superhero, as had the boy's mother for not having to pay a huge medical bill. Elena changed the subject and asked Nate about his date with Amanda. Nate said he'd had a good time on their first date. Elena recalled that Nate and Amanda had been flirting for weeks, so they both deserved happiness in a relationship that had gone beyond a first date.
At Society, Nate joined Amanda for lunch. Amanda learned that the little boy who'd sought treatment at the clinic would fully recover. After Nate mentioned Elena's comment about him and Amanda having been cultivating their relationship slowly over time, Amanda said that after being freed from the threat Ripley had posed, she was ready to seize her life to the fullest. Nate and Amanda opted not to play pool after Nate said Amanda would outscore him again. The couple opted to head elsewhere.
At Society, Lily excitedly told Billy she'd made contact with an award-winning writer. Billy didn't share Lily's enthusiasm when she noted that people had begun to take notice of their company. Lily asked Billy why he was distracted. Billy avoided the subject and announced that he hoped he might have found their new chief content officer. Lily persisted and asked Billy to share what was really on his mind.
Billy, responding to Lily, said, "Someone came to me with a story that could put Chancellor Communications in the spotlight, that could make us a powerhouse." Billy explained that he was torn because he feared he might be allowing his personal feelings to cloud his judgment. Billy added that what he knew could take down an empire, thus enabling him to exact revenge. Lily asked if the person sharing the story was a reliable source. Billy replied, "The most reliable -- Victoria."
Billy admitted to Lily that he wasn't certain about the details, though he was certain it involved Adam and also possibly Victor. Lily asked Billy if he believed that publishing Victoria's story would put him back on her good side. Billy said he couldn't pass up a possibility to be the good guy again -- while perhaps also taking down a rival at the same time. Billy invited Lily to rein him in if she believed he might be pushing the boundaries too far. Lily recalled how she'd screamed while watching a scary movie with Billy and said she would make her screams sound like whispers if Billy did anything without running it by her first. Billy thanked Lily for convincing him to take a step back.
Lily spotted Nate and Amanda as they entered the restaurant, and she called out to them. Lily asked Billy to convince Amanda to join the company while she visited with Nate. Nate and Amanda walked over to greet Billy and Lily. Lily hinted about Amanda's job offer. Amanda told Nate that Lily had extended a generous offer to join Chancellor Communications as an attorney. Lily said she hoped Billy might convince Amanda to accept the job.
Lily and Nate moved to a table near the bar, so Billy and Amanda could talk. Billy explained to Amanda that though Chancellor Communications was just getting started, the company needed someone with expertise to keep it grounded, navigate legal minefields, and ensure that contracts were airtight. After Billy noted that Lily was Amanda's biggest supporter, she asked Billy what he wanted. Billy recalled that they'd been through a lot and had ended up as coffee buddies. Billy expressed concern that working together might set up a whole different set of circumstances. Amanda said they could keep direct contact to a minimum, as long as Billy would be amenable. Billy replied, "Oh, I am nothing but amenable." Amanda said, "Good. Then congratulations to both of us."
Billy and Amanda approached Nate and Lily. Amanda told Lily she'd accept the job offer. Lily was delighted. After Lily and Billy returned to their table, Nate and Amanda ordered drinks to celebrate her new job. Nate toasted Amanda's legal skills and her impeccable taste in doctors. Amanda was charmed. At their table, Billy and Lily also shared a toast for having hired the best lawyer in town. Lily expressed hope that Amanda would keep their competitors at bay and also keep the company in compliance with business regulations. Billy couldn't seem to keep his eyes off Amanda.
At Sharon's, Nick, Mariah, Tessa, and Faith greeted Sharon when Rey brought her home after her pre-surgical appointment. Sharon said it had gone well. Sharon observed the worried looks on her family's faces and insisted they not engage in a pity party. Nick volunteered to pick up food, Faith said she'd choose a variety of games, and Mariah and Tessa said they'd be in charge of decorations and music. When the music started, Sharon and Rey immediately began dancing.
Sharon took Nick aside and asked him to take care of Noah and Faith if anything happened to her during surgery. Sharon told Nick to make sure Faith knew how proud her mother was of her. Nick replied, "Okay. No problem. I'm going to make sure she has an amazing life." Nick assured Sharon that she shouldn't worry because she'd come through just fine and be with her family to share every moment.
Sharon met privately with Mariah to discuss her healthcare proxy. Mariah replied, "What is that?" Sharon explained that should something go wrong and cause her not to be in a position to make her own decisions, she would need someone to speak for her. Sharon told Mariah she knew what was in her mother's heart and how she'd wish to proceed. Mariah said she couldn't. Sharon said there was no one she could trust more. Mariah suggested Nick or Rey. Sharon insisted that Mariah was the one who should represent her. Mariah agreed. Sharon assured Mariah that the surgery wouldn't be a big deal.
Rey stepped out briefly to accept delivery of a gift basket from Phyllis. Sharon was delighted to find bath bombs, lotions, gift certificates to spas and salons, and a snuggly wrap. Faith asked to take the day off from school to be with Sharon. Nick agreed she could. Rey gathered everyone together on the sofa, set the timer, and snapped a photo to remember the occasion. Faith and Mariah kissed Sharon's cheeks just as the flash illuminated and captured the moment. After the guests left, Sharon seemed excited at the prospect of hearing good news after her surgery and resuming her life as it had been before the diagnosis. Rey promised they'd get to that point.
Victor reveals who really killed A.J.
At Newman Enterprises, Chelsea knocked on Adam's office door as he wrapped up a call. He considered it a nice surprise to see her, since he'd thought she was at Chloe's baby shower. Chelsea reported that she'd just finished setting things up for the event, so she'd decided to check in on him before she picked Connor up. Adam bragged that his phone hadn't stopped ringing with people calling to congratulate him, which had "shocked the hell" out of him. He thanked her for being in his corner and encouraging him to go after it, and she reasoned that Victor should have done the right thing by offering the position to Adam.
Adam mentioned that he'd received an interesting request from a news outlet that wanted an interview with him about his relationship with his father, and he hadn't been able to pass it up. Adam intended to keep up appearances to appease his old man until Victor put everything in writing. Adam recognized that his father was a good chess player, but Chelsea contended that Adam was every bit his father's equal. Adam griped that Victor would never acknowledge that, and Chelsea called Victor a sore loser.
Chelsea exclaimed that Adam had won, and all that mattered was what was standing right in front of him. She sidled up next to him, and he contemplated locking the door, but he knew she had a baby shower to get to. She reminded him that he had an empire to run, and she promised they'd continue the conversation later. She headed out. He answered a call and prepared to answer the question of how he intended to carry on Victor Newman's legacy.
At the Newman ranch, Victor asked how Nikki was handling everything, and she admitted that it was a lot to absorb. She understood why he hadn't fought back when Adam had accused him of murder, but she didn't see how it was possible to continue to lie, given that a reporter had gathered the facts and written about them. Victor argued that Alyssa had been wrong on several counts, but the whole story would never see the light of day if he had anything to do with it.
Victor figured that Adam had gotten what he'd wanted, which should stop things from going any further. Nikki referred to how far things had gone already, with Victoria suffering the consequences. Nikki stressed that Victoria was upset and confused because Victor wasn't fighting for the company or for her. Victor reiterated that he would do right by Victoria when it was time, and he urged Nikki to trust him. He suddenly said he had to be somewhere, and he stepped out.
A moment later, Victoria entered and explained that she'd slipped in through the side door when she'd seen her dad leaving. She bitterly assumed that he'd gone to see the CEO who had proven himself in a way she hadn't. Victoria implored Nikki to tell her that she was wrong, since she'd love to hear that her dad was doing something to give her back what was rightfully hers. Nikki shared that Victor had assured her that the situation was temporary, but Victoria refused to accept it. Victoria surmised that Adam had passed the ultimate test and that Victor couldn't be prouder of one of his children.
Victoria told Nikki not to defend Victor, since his actions had spoken for him, and she suspected that it had been his plan all along to let Adam steamroll over her. Nikki swore that nothing had been premeditated, but Victoria didn't believe it because Victor would have otherwise told her the truth instead of putting her "through hell." Victoria recognized that Nick wanted to punch Adam's lights out, but she'd decided to stay focused by undoing the damage Adam had done. Nikki demanded to know what she meant.
Victoria revealed that she'd met with Alyssa, who had found out about Adam's lies and was willing to help dig into the evidence and expose Adam's dirty tricks. Nikki protested that it couldn't happen, and Victoria questioned why her mother would try to stop her. Victoria refused to stand by and let Adam get away with it, but Nikki cautioned that there was a lot Victoria didn't know, and the situation with Adam was much more delicate than they'd realized. Nikki prepared to share what had really happened.
After Nikki spilled everything, she recognized that it didn't change everything Victoria had been forced to go through. Victoria realized that the whole story explained a lot, and Nikki pushed Victoria not to dig any deeper. Victoria replied that she had to think, and she walked out.
At the Chancellor mansion, Chloe gushed that everything looked good, and Kevin commended Chelsea for doing an amazing job of organizing the baby shower. He wondered where Chelsea was, and Chloe explained that Chelsea was picking up Connor from karate because she hadn't wanted to disrupt his normal routine. Kevin grumbled that living with Adam again had been a major disruption, but Chloe warned him not to spoil their special day by mentioning Adam. Kevin pledged that their boy would be surrounded by only positive thoughts, and he didn't consider Adam to be a problem anymore.
Lauren and Michael arrived with armloads of gifts. Lauren admired how gorgeous Chloe looked, and she asked how Chloe felt. Chloe reported that her checkups had been stellar and that the morning sickness had ended, and she was grateful to them for helping her through her Braxton-Hicks scare. Lauren marveled that Chloe was about to have a beautiful baby boy enter the world, and Michael declared that he loved babies -- and being able to give them back to their parents.
Chloe offered her guests something to drink, and Lauren complimented the adorable decorations. Chloe praised Chelsea for outdoing herself, and she mentioned that "they" would be there soon. Michael worriedly questioned who "they" were, and Kevin steered him aside and cautioned that while Adam wouldn't be attending, he was a sore subject. Michael assumed that Kevin had heard the announcement about Adam becoming CEO of Newman, and Kevin scoffed at the idea of it being a family decision.
Chelsea and Connor arrived, and she asked if everyone was ready to party. Chloe rubbed her belly and replied that her little guy was, and Esther led Bella in. Bella handed over a gift for Chloe and the baby, and Chloe suggested that the kids go play until it was time to open presents. Bella and Connor ran off, and Esther couldn't help thinking about how much Delia would have loved it. Chloe fondly recalled how Delia had loved tea parties, and she felt her late daughter's spirit and joy with them that day.
Michael asked if Kevin and Chloe had settled on a name. Kevin indicated that they hadn't, and Michael jokingly volunteered to handle the negotiations. Chloe reported that they'd whittled it down to a short list of 24 names.
Chelsea led the guests through a game where everyone had to guess whether Chloe wanted her baby to inherit certain traits from her or from Kevin. After the guests debated about each trait, Chloe disclosed that she wanted her son to have her eye color and creativity and Kevin's sense of humor, academic abilities, and dancing skills. Michael teased that the child would have a father who couldn't dance, but at least the tot would be loaded with talent and surrounded by love. The group toasted, and Esther went to check on the kids.
Chloe took a private moment to thank Chelsea for everything, and she said there was something she wanted to ask her friend. Chelsea's phone rang with a call from Adam, and she stepped aside to take it. She wondered if he was calling about the interview, and he crowed that he'd nailed it. He inquired about how things were at the shower, and he offered to hear all about it when they got home. He suggested that he pick up takeout, but she informed him that they hadn't even opened gifts yet.
Adam suggested that Chelsea stay at the party, and he'd pick up extra food in case she and Connor got hungry later. He recognized that he was a source of tension between her and Chloe, but he was glad Chloe was getting over it because he loved Chelsea. Chloe overheard as Chelsea cooed that she loved him, too. Adam told Chelsea that he didn't want his actions to hurt her in any way, and she didn't see how they could.
Chelsea requested that everyone gather around to open presents. Bella plopped a shiny paper crown on Chloe's head and handed over the gift she'd gotten for her mom. Mother and daughter ripped open the wrapping paper, and Chloe pulled out a stuffed animal mobile. Chloe called Bella the best big sister, and Connor presented his gift to Chloe. Chloe found a stuffed dinosaur inside. Chloe thanked him and was glad that he'd be around to teach her little guy lots of cool stuff, like how to dribble a soccer ball. Chloe added that she'd heard Connor had been taking good care of his kitty, and she had the feeling that her little one would look up to Connor and Bella.
Chloe fawned over a tiny baby vest Lauren had given her, and Esther anticipated that her new grandson would be the best-dressed baby she'd ever seen. Chelsea proclaimed that that was it for the gifts, but Kevin pulled out one last box. He explained that it was a charm bracelet for Chloe and the baby, and they could add a charm every time they marked a different milestone. Chloe asked him to help her put it on, and Chelsea welcomed everyone to enjoy the refreshments that were left.
Chloe again approached Chelsea and recounted that she'd wanted to ask something before Adam had called earlier. Chelsea hoped there wasn't an issue. Chloe admitted that she'd initially seen the call as a sign when Adam had interrupted them, but she'd realized that it was just the opposite. Kevin declared that it was time for a toast, but Chloe led him out to talk to him about something in private.
Later, Kevin asked everyone to grab a glass to toast with, and Chloe thanked them all for being there that day. She added that it had been truly special, and she felt incredibly loved and supported and knew the baby did, too. She considered it their goal to give their baby a world full of unconditional love, and she thanked her best friend for making it a special day. Chloe added that being able to share it together with their kids meant a lot because it was a glimpse of what the future looked like.
Chloe referred to the question she'd wanted to ask Chelsea earlier, and she asked if Chelsea wanted to be their baby's godmother. A stunned Chelsea cried that nothing would make her happier than being the boy's godmother, and she and Chloe hugged.
Alyssa was taken aback when she found Victor at her hotel room door. He surmised from her expression that she knew who he was, and she snapped that she had nothing to say to him. He advised her to listen, or it would impact life her very negatively. He issued a warning not to publish the story about her father's murder because, if she did, he'd ruin her life -- and he offered to tell her why. Later, Alyssa hurriedly packed her suitcase.
Adam returned home to an empty penthouse and thoughtfully picked up a baseball mitt. The doorbell rang, and Victoria burst in when he opened the door. She blurted out that there was a lot he didn't know, and she hadn't been the only one their dad had been lying to. Victoria imagined that Adam had wondered why Victor had made it so easy for him, but Adam thought she couldn't be serious after what their father had put him through. Victoria stated that Adam had no idea, and Adam contended that Victor had put her in charge, even though he'd known Adam had been the best choice as CEO.
Adam taunted that it was hard for Victoria to hear because it was easier for her to delude herself and act superior, but he'd always needed to play by a different set of rules. Victoria retorted that he'd blackmailed their father, and Adam didn't expect her to understand. He added that it didn't matter, since she had to accept how things were then. Victoria huffed that things wouldn't end well for him, and she might feel sorry for him if he wasn't such a "vindictive bastard." She sauntered out. A moment later, Adam grabbed his keys and left.
Over the phone, Alyssa booked a plane ticket for that evening. There was a knock at the door, and Victoria called out to say that she'd heard Alyssa's voice and knew she was in there. Alyssa opened the door, and Victoria said they needed to talk. Victoria spied the suitcase and realized Alyssa was leaving. Alyssa disclosed that Victor had been there.
Victor returned home and informed Nikki that the matter had been dealt with, since there was no longer any possibility that the story would be published. Nikki pointed out that Alyssa had seen the evidence, but Victor maintained that the reporter had written a false story and would keep her mouth shut. He revealed that he'd gone to see Alyssa and told her that it would reflect badly on her credibility as a journalist if she defied him and published the story. Victor intended to deal with Adam and Victoria next. Nikki warned that Victoria hadn't been able to let it go.
Nikki shared that Victoria had also met with Alyssa, who knew Adam had manipulated her and had agreed to help Victoria. Nikki informed him that Victoria hadn't trusted that things would work out in her favor, so she'd resolved to find the truth on her own. Victor was confident that Victoria could try all she wanted, but she wouldn't find it. Nikki turned away. Victor demanded to know what she'd done.
Victor was appalled that Nikki had revealed what he'd told her in confidence to someone else. Nikki assured him that she understood why he'd kept the truth about A.J.'s death quiet. Adam stormed in and asked what Victor had cooked up with Victoria, who'd told him that things wouldn't end well for him. Victor despondently shook his head.
Adam had no idea what Victoria had meant, and he had no interest in pulling it out of Victor. He barked that he was done with the games, and he refused to leave until he had an ironclad contract. Adam cautioned Victor not to test him, and he threatened to release the article and let the whole world know Victor had killed a man and covered it up. Adam snarled that Victor wouldn't screw him over again, but Nikki swore that Adam had no idea how wrong he was, since his father was trying to protect him. "From what?" Adam spat.
Victor indicated that he'd been protecting Adam from the truth about what had happened the night A.J. Montalvo had died. Victor explained that he hadn't wanted Adam to know, but Adam had to be told. "It was you, son. You killed Alyssa's father. It was you all along," Victor divulged.
Adam refuses to believe the truth about A.J.
In Alyssa's hotel room, Victoria asked Alyssa if Victor had threatened her, and if he had, she would protect Alyssa. She said that Alyssa didn't have to leave Genoa City because of Victor. Alyssa claimed she was leaving because she knew the truth. Victoria asked what Victor had told Alyssa, but Alyssa refused to talk about it.
Victoria told Alyssa that Victor had covered up what Adam had done. Alyssa was shocked that Victoria knew because Victor had said Nikki was the only other person who knew. Alyssa admitted that her story had implicated the wrong person. Victoria couldn't understand why Alyssa was walking away because it didn't change anything, but Alyssa claimed everything had changed. She had believed that the story had been a cover-up.
Victoria told Alyssa that Victor had gone to extraordinary lengths to cover for Adam his entire life. Alyssa claimed it didn't matter because, in her mind, Adam was still an eleven-year-old boy and her friend. Victoria asked if Alyssa was giving Adam a free pass, because the Adam Alyssa had known was gone. She said that Adam had used and manipulated Alyssa, and he'd almost trashed her career. She asked if Alyssa still wanted to defend Adam, and she asked if Alyssa believed that he couldn't remember the incident.
Alyssa claimed that Victoria had her own issues with Adam. Victoria said that what she felt for Adam went beyond issues. She said Adam was a "lying bastard" who would do and say whatever it took to save his own skin. She said she'd lived it, and that cute little boy Alyssa remembered was gone -- if that little boy had ever been real. Alyssa asked why Victoria wasn't moved for an eleven-year-old boy who'd committed an unspeakable act to protect his mother. Alyssa asked if they shouldn't have compassion for Adam, who had erased the incident from his memory.
Victoria informed Alyssa that Adam loved it when people saw him as the victim, a poor boy carrying a childhood trauma. It was another way he'd manipulated Victor into giving Adam what he'd wanted, and he'd gotten what he'd wanted again. Victoria said she despised what Adam had done to her family. Victor had protected Adam at the cost of his business, his legacy, and his family. It had always been that way. She said Adam had killed A.J., and he would destroy Alyssa if she let him.
Victoria reminded Alyssa that Adam had used her. Alyssa stated that she was aware of the role she'd played. Victoria reminded Alyssa that she'd gotten nothing in return. She asked Alyssa to give her more information. Distraught, Alyssa shouted at Victoria to stop, but Victoria continued. She suggested that Alyssa write the true story about the incident, and Victoria would make sure it got published worldwide. Alyssa refused.
Victoria said Alyssa didn't owe Adam anything. Alyssa spat back that she didn't owe Victoria anything, either. She said her father had been killed, and her childhood friend was responsible. Her family had been incredibly screwed up, but they didn't come close to the Newmans. Alyssa didn't want anything more to do with them. She grabbed her suitcase and handbag, and she left.
At the ranch, Adam said he'd known Victor would conjure up a story about A.J.'s death. Adam said he'd had enough because he'd only been an eleven-year-old child at the time. He warned Victor not to pursue it because Victor would suffer the consequences, but Victor said he had no choice but to pursue it.
Adam told Victor that as a child, he'd tried to win the approval of his mother's friend Victor, only to have it turn into something dark after he'd discovered that Victor was his father. Victor said that Adam had always resented the fact that he'd followed Hope's wishes not to tell Adam he was Adam's father. Victor said that he'd wanted to raise Adam and bring him to Genoa City, and he regretted that he'd stupidly followed Hope's wishes.
Victor told Adam that when Cliff had died, Adam had believed he'd had to be the man of the house. Adam accused Victor of manufacturing evidence to blame his eleven-year-old son. Victor denied killing A.J., and he stated that he had always tried to protect Adam. He'd never wanted Adam to know what had happened. Adam asked sarcastically if Victor had done all that for Adam's benefit. Victor said he had, but Adam claimed it was all bull.
Adam claimed that Victor was all about power and control and that, in the past, Victor had framed him for murder and then broken him out of prison. Adam stated that first Victor attacked then he rescued. Adam said it was Victor's way of forcing Adam to show his gratitude, but he'd had enough. He hoped that Victor had finally realized that Adam deserved the job. Adam claimed Victor had thrown that bogus story at him before he'd had a chance to get ahead of it. Victor said that wasn't the point. Adam asked what the point was -- to destroy his own son with a pack of lies by accusing him of being a cold-blooded murderer as a child.
Victor denied that Adam had been a cold-blooded murderer, but in fact, Adam had been scared out of his mind. Victor said that A.J. had threatened Hope because Cliff had owed him money. Adam interrupted and said that A.J. had hired someone to run Cliff off the road; however, the guy A.J. had hired had been drunk, and both men had been killed in the accident. Adam said Victor had wanted A.J. to pay for what he'd done, so, in order to keep A.J. away from Hope, Victor had killed A.J. or hired someone to do it, then Victor had paid the coroner to hide the evidence.
Victor told Adam that A.J. had been in prison, and while in prison, his anger toward Cliff and Hope had festered. After A.J had been released from prison, A.J. had gone directly to the farm and confronted Hope about Cliff's debt. Victor said that no matter how brave Hope had wanted to be, she'd been scared. When Adam had heard A.J. threaten Hope, he'd emerged from hiding to protect Hope.
Adam clapped and said, "Bravo." He wanted Victor to give his regards to whomever had concocted that story because it had never happened. Adam was certain that Victor had a trail of evidence to back him up, but Adam claimed he didn't remember any of the events as described by Victor. Victor said Adam had blocked it out.
Victor told Adam that Hope had called him about what had happened, and he'd flown out to the farm. When he'd arrived, he'd seen Adam had looked as white as a sheet and almost catatonic. Adam said it was too bad his mother wasn't there to confirm any of the details because he didn't recall any of it.
Adam told Victor that A.J.'s body had been found in the barn. Victor explained that he had called George and asked George to move the body so they could come up with a plausible story. Victor said that while Hope had been putting Adam to bed, Victor had told the coroner to say that A.J. had fallen from the loft. It hadn't been difficult to bribe the coroner because A.J. had done a lot of damage to a lot of people, and everyone had hated him.
Adam asked if Victor maintained that the little boy had slept through the night and woken up the next morning with no memory of what had happened. He accused Victor of bringing the incident up to save his "own ass," but Victor said that was what had happened. Incredulous, Adam asked why Hope had taken the time to bake a pie for Alyssa and her mom while she'd taken care of her traumatized, killer son.
Victor told Adam that Hope had baked the pie to do something for the family because Hope and Adam hadn't gone to the funeral. Hope hadn't wanted Adam's memory to be jarred while in the church. Adam claimed that it was despicable that Victor was using Hope, the woman he loved so much, to cover up his lies. Victor said he'd loved Hope, and he would never use her.
Adam asked why, if Victor had been telling him the truth and he'd killed A.J., things hadn't changed between him and Hope. He said she had never treated him differently or gotten him any help. He said Hope hadn't done any of the things a loving mother would have done, and Hope had been a loving mother. Victor explained that Hope had been happy Adam had blocked it out. She hadn't wanted Adam to remember or live with that guilt for the rest of his life. Victor stated that he had encouraged Hope to keep the truth from Adam.
Adam said that Victor had spun a wonderful yarn. He asked if Victor expected him to step down gracefully as CEO. Victor claimed that Adam had no choice. Adam retorted that he had solid evidence that Victor had killed A.J., and what Victor had told him had been a fairy tale. Adam said he had the coroner's confession, and he had the money trail that led to Victor. Victor stated there was no proof that he'd been involved.
Victor claimed that if Adam hadn't taken steps to control Newman Enterprises, and if he hadn't tried to stick A.J.'s murder on him, the story would have remained buried. He said Adam had no one to blame but himself. He said Chelsea had told him that Adam had been looking for his approval and unconditional love. Victor said that the fact that he'd kept Adam's secret all those years was a sign that he had always wanted to protect Adam. Adam asked if that was supposed to satisfy him. Victor said Adam had no choice, and the CEO position was no longer Adam's.
Adam said that Victor thought he'd won, but he hadn't. Victor said that Adam had always seen things as winning or losing, but it wasn't about winning or losing. He continued that if Adam mentioned how A.J. Montalvo had died, Adam's life would be ruined, and he would carry that incident with him for the rest of his life. He suggested that Adam think about it because there was no turning back. Adam said they would see, and he left.
At the Grand Phoenix, Phyllis was on the phone, dealing with an irate patron who was complaining about the construction noise, when Jack arrived. Phyllis told Jack that Abby had managed to have all her permits reinstated, and the construction continued. Jack offered to speak to Abby, but Phyllis declined his offer. Jack told Phyllis about the issues he'd been having with Theo and Kyle. He said Theo had stolen his pitch from 15 years earlier and had pitched it to him. Phyllis said she was sorry for what Jack had been going through, but she'd warned Jack that Theo shouldn't be trusted.
Jack defended Theo to Phyllis after she said that Theo was a hustler. Phyllis admitted she hadn't been happy when Summer and Kyle had reunited, but she was happy that Summer wasn't with Theo. Jack said Theo was talented, and he wished Theo would point that talent in the right direction. He said he didn't condone what Theo had done.
Jack said he was happy that Phyllis had found her niche, but there was more to life than the Grand Phoenix. He asked what was going on in her life. She told Jack that she and Nick had decided to give it another try. Jack said if she was happy, then he was happy. He warned her not to mess it up.
Jack received a call that there was a problem at the Jabot construction site in Washington. They'd had to close the site down because they'd found ancient bones, and it might turn out to be an archeological site. Phyllis asked if they were dinosaur bones, but Jack had no idea. He said they would have to do testing on the bones, and it might take weeks or months to get the results. That gave Phyllis pause for thought.
Phyllis told Jack she had to run, and, at the elevator, Phyllis appeared to have a stroke of inspiration about the bones.
At Jabot, Kyle and Summer congratulated each other about winning the rebrand competition. Summer noticed that Kyle didn't seem happy that Theo was gone. Kyle said that he and Theo had been friends, and he'd realized that he and Theo had always competed when they had lived in New York. He said that Theo had been the hustler, and he'd always felt like an outsider. Kyle said he had a family, which had been his safety net, but Theo didn't have one. Kyle felt sorry that things had gone down the way they had with Theo, but Summer claimed that Theo had done it to himself.
At that moment, Theo arrived. He told Kyle that he wanted to return his security card, and once he'd done that, Kyle and Summer could return to celebrating him being fired. Summer stated that they hadn't made him cheat. Theo claimed he had options, and he asked Kyle for a recommendation. Kyle asked if Theo needed one. Kyle left the room to take a call.
Summer told Theo that Jack had gone out of his way to make Theo part of the family and the company. She said that Theo had been given the opportunity, and he'd blown it. She accused Theo of wanting everything Kyle had -- his job, Lola, and once upon a time, even her.
When Kyle returned, he asked Summer if he'd missed anything. Summer said he'd missed some hot air and false bravado. Theo claimed he'd been suffocating at Jabot, and he'd tried to make it work. He said he was happy he was out. Kyle said that Theo would be successful in whatever position he found. Theo picked up his bag and left.
Alone in the reception area of Jabot, Theo called Lola and left her a voicemail message telling her he'd gotten fired from Jabot but would find something else. He told her not to worry. He said he missed her, and he could use one of her goofy pep talks. He asked her to call him because it was his birthday.
Summer and Kyle arrived in his suite. Kyle admitted that he'd let Theo push his buttons, and he regretted losing his friend. Summer said she wanted to look at Kyle, who was cool and classy. They began to kiss, and that led to sex.
Victor reinstates Victoria as Newman's CEO
At Society's bar, Mariah provided detailed instructions to a staff member about an order that she needed to have ready the next day. Theo overheard as Mariah rambled on about specifics, and he hoped she'd remembered the spinach empanadas if he was invited to the shindig. Mariah coolly informed him that it would be a private gathering, and he guessed that Kyle had put her in charge of a party to celebrate the fact that he'd fired Theo. Mariah considered making a biting remark about Theo losing another job, but she had more important things to deal with because the world didn't revolve around him. He apologized for bothering her and stepped away.
As Theo checked his phone, Mariah approached and apologized for being short with him. She acknowledged that it had sounded like he was having a crappy day, and she didn't want to add to it. She shared that she wasn't having the best day herself, and he asked if there were problems at home. She confirmed that things were fine with Tessa, and he wondered what had Mariah down.
Mariah admitted that she wasn't the most patient person, so anything set her off when things stressed her out -- especially if those things weren't about her. She hated not being able to do anything to fix it, and it was against her nature to let things play out and hope for the best. Theo mentioned that there had been a lot of that going around, since Lola had been worried about something going on with Rey. Theo realized that Rey was dating Mariah's mom, and he wondered if Sharon was okay. "She will be," Mariah replied.
Theo said he didn't need the details because it was Mariah's business, but he guessed the situation had been going on for a while. He recalled the time he'd harassed her about getting Tanner to hire her in New York, and she hadn't wanted to leave town because of her mother. Theo thought Mariah had made the right call to stay close, but she was sure Sharon had moments where she wished Mariah was phoning it in, since Mariah had a knack for saying the worst thing at the worst time. Theo bet that Mariah had agonized over it more than Sharon ever had.
Theo recalled that his mom had gotten ticked off at the smallest things when she'd been sick. He had known that his mother hadn't been mad at him, but her world had just been turned upside down when her kid had needed to take care of her instead of the other way around. Theo knew how much it had meant to his mom to have him there, and he wouldn't have traded that time with her for anything. He was sure that Sharon was glad that Mariah was close by.
Mariah compared her relationship with her mom to Theo's with the Abbotts, since they hadn't met until they were adults and hadn't known that they'd been related at first. Mariah recalled that it had taken a long time for her and Sharon to become close, mostly because Mariah had been an awful human, but Sharon hadn't given up on her. Mariah regretted that she hadn't had a childhood with Sharon. She'd thought she'd have decades to make up for it, but she might not. Theo encouraged her not to think that way, since her attitude was the one thing she could control, and staying optimistic could make a difference. Theo imagined that Mariah was the one person who could always make Sharon laugh, and he urged Mariah to keep it up.
Mariah presented Theo with a plate of food as a thank-you for being nice about her mom, especially when he was dealing with his own problems. She offered to hear him out about what had happened at Jabot, but he opted not to bore with his tale of self-sabotage. She declared it a judgment-free zone for that night, and he invited her to pull up a chair.
Mariah pressed to know why Theo had gone through the trouble of plagiarizing a pitch when he knew how to handle a marketing campaign. He groaned that he'd choked, and she imagined that he'd been scared to compete with Kyle. Theo pointed out that all he and Kyle had done had been to compete, and he'd figured that Kyle had had a built-in advantage because he was Jack's kid and had worked at Jabot for years. Theo recognized that he couldn't even get mad, since no one had forced him to steal the work and pass it off as his own. Mariah speculated that the silver lining might be that Jabot had never been the right fit, and Theo could find someplace where he really fit in.
Theo pondered what was really left for him in Genoa City. Mariah suspected that she'd underestimated how much his family meant to him. He thanked her for keeping an open mind, especially since he knew she was buddies with Kyle. Mariah accepted that she'd once been a truly awful person. She figured that it took morally ambiguous people longer to get their act together, but she warned him against hurting Lola. Theo recognized that he'd be a dead man walking if he did.
Across the dining room, Billy told Amanda that Lily's last meeting had run late, but he swore that they'd finish on time so Amanda could get to whatever she had planned next. Amanda indicated that her calendar was clear, and she looked forward to hearing about Chancellor Media's acquisition strategy in detail -- unless he had another commitment. Billy shared that the company had been taking up all his time, and Amanda admitted that she'd recently seen him and Victoria having a civil conversation. Billy mentioned that they'd been talking about Adam's coup at Newman, and he expected Victoria to stage a comeback that would leave Adam not knowing what had hit him.
Amanda observed that Billy seemed to relish the idea of Victoria putting her brother in his place, and she guessed that he and Adam had a history of their own. Billy admitted that it wasn't pretty, but he hesitated to go there. Amanda turned the focus to business as Lily arrived. Billy and Lily shared their vision of acquiring companies so that they'd be everywhere people were engaged online. Amanda remarked that they were starting small with a goal of global domination, and Billy asked what else she'd expected with him at the helm. Amanda joked that it would be an improvement on Billy's racecar driving, and Billy figured that there would be fewer accidents. Amanda explained to Lily that it was an inside joke.
Amanda expressed reservations about Traci leading the serialized fiction division and reporting directly to her baby brother. Billy pointed out that Traci had been around their family company her entire life, so she knew what she'd be getting into. Amanda inquired about their digital magazine, and Lily anticipated it would feature fun, noncontroversial celebrity stories that wouldn't invite lawsuits. Billy imagined that might cut into Amanda's overtime, but she insisted that the more peaceful her world was, the better.
Mariah wished Theo luck on his job hunt, and he appreciated the shoulder. She headed out, and Theo eavesdropped on Billy, Lily, and Amanda's conversation about gaining influencers. Amanda noted that almost everything Billy and Lily had proposed was geared toward younger audiences, and Billy confirmed that their demographic got most of their information from social media.
Lily stepped aside to take a call from Charlie. Billy asked what Amanda thought about their approach. Amanda commended them for targeting the younger demographic because they'd have customers for life. Billy intended to be nimble and plan for what would be popular six months ahead, since things changed quickly with younger people. Amanda applauded him for planning for it instead of fighting it. Theo listened with interest.
Victoria approached Adam on the Crimson Lights patio and asked how his talk with their dad had gone. "How do you think it went?" Adam snapped. She surmised that Victor had told Adam the truth. Adam was convinced that Victor and Victoria had conspired to find a way to neutralize him to avoid signing a contract. Victoria asserted that A.J.'s death had happened exactly the way Victor had said, and she believed that Adam knew deep inside that it was true.
Adam taunted that all Victoria cared about was who got to sit in Daddy's chair. Victoria retorted that Adam had started it by trying to steal the chair from her. Adam conceded that it had been a mistake not to accept the job when Victor had offered it to him, since it would have saved her the heartbreak. Victoria argued that Victor had wanted Adam to work for the company but that their father never would have given Adam full control. Adam crowed that Victor had told him that Adam was the only one who could truly follow in his footsteps. Victoria spat that Adam was the one who was most desperate to win their dad's respect, since he knew that he wasn't worthy of it. "Go to hell, Victoria," Adam hissed, and he stalked out.
Adam returned home, and Chelsea babbled about Chloe's baby shower. She was glad that Connor had stayed behind at the Chancellor mansion to finish watching a movie, since she was dying for some alone time with Adam to hear about his day. He remained quiet. Chelsea got ready to relax and open a bottle of wine, and she asked what Adam had picked up for dinner. He realized that he'd totally forgotten to get takeout, and she prepared to make plates of the leftovers Esther had sent home with her.
Adam stopped Chelsea, and she asked if something had happened at work. He didn't know where to start, and she realized something was wrong. Adam revealed that his dad had fired him, but Chelsea protested that Victor wouldn't have dared with the evidence tying him to a murder. Adam shared that Victor wasn't concerned about it anymore, since Victor and Victoria had put together a cover story that explained away Victor's involvement and pinned the crime on someone else -- him.
Adam relayed Victor's tale of not showing up in Kansas until after A.J. had died. Chelsea questioned whether Adam remembered the incident. Adam accused his father of taking the facts and spinning a new series of events to depict himself as a hero and Adam as a violent, impulsive killer with psychological issues from way back. Adam angrily asked what kind of man goaded his own son into believing that about himself, and he couldn't believe Victor had taken it that far. Chelsea said she was sorry it was happening.
Chelsea couldn't fathom why Victor had said something so awful then instead of when Adam had presented him with the evidence. Adam assumed that it had taken his father that long to formulate such a disgusting explanation, and he recounted that Victor had said he would have taken the secret to his grave, like Hope had. Adam was livid that Victor had dragged Hope into it, trying to make Adam believe that his mother had thought of him as an enraged killer. Chelsea thought it sounded like Victor was saying Adam had killed A.J. not out of malice but to protect Hope.
Chelsea found it odd that Victor wouldn't just expose Adam as a cold-blooded killer if he was trying to frame Adam. Chelsea asked what Adam remembered from that time in his life, and he questioned why she would ask him that. He suspected that part of her thought it might be true. Chelsea claimed that she was just figuring out how to get through it and what their next steps should be.
Chelsea was stunned that Victor expected Adam to walk away from Newman after the press release and interviews, and she wondered if Victor planned to explain it by releasing the story about A.J.'s death. Adam expected Victoria to do it if Victor didn't, since she wanted payback, and there were no limits to how far she'd go to get it. Adam worried about Connor hearing about it, but Chelsea assured him that they would never allow that to happen. They hugged.
At the Newman ranch, Nikki inquired whether Adam's memory had been triggered when Victor had told him the truth about A.J.'s death. Victor replied that the event was buried too deep and that Adam had accused him of concocting the story to protect himself, and he held her partly responsible for it. Victor sternly reminded her that she'd asked him to trust her with the truth. He'd given it to her, but she'd told Victoria everything.
Nikki defended that she'd done it so Victoria would realize what a mistake it would be to act on her own. Victor countered that Victoria hated Adam with a passion and would use the truth as a weapon. Nikki pointed out that Victoria hadn't told Adam what had really happened, but Victor snarled that Victoria had dangled enough information to allow Adam to back Victor into a corner. Victor maintained that Nikki was responsible.
Nikki requested that Victor enlighten her as to how things would have worked out if she hadn't interfered. Victor contended that he'd dismantled Adam's leverage by getting Alyssa to kill the story, but everything had blown up because of Nikki. Nikki cited Adam's history of attacking their family with a sense of entitlement, and she accused Victor of allowing Adam to go after them with no consequences. She worried that it had become a dangerous pattern, and she wondered where it would end.
Nikki chided Victor for turning over control of his life's work, alienating his other children, and allowing Adam to believe Victor was a murderer. She insisted that it had needed to stop, but he barked that it hadn't been her decision to make. Nikki admonished Victor for continuing to enable Adam's behavior at the expense of the family Victor had sworn to protect. Nikki wondered if Victor thought that Adam would suddenly be healed if Victor forgave him often enough.
Victor encouraged Nikki to look at her own history, and she realized that he expected her to have empathy because she'd accidentally killed a childhood friend and buried the memory of it. Victor noted that no one had held her responsible, and the same thing applied to Adam. Nikki's heart went out to a damaged child, and she suspected that was who Victor saw when he looked in Adam's eyes, but Adam had become a dangerous predator. She added that if Victor couldn't face it, then he was in as much denial as Adam was.
Later, Victoria arrived at the ranch and mentioned that she'd just seen Adam, and she believed telling him the truth had been the right thing to do. Victor growled that it had been the last thing he'd wanted to do, and he accused Victoria of hanging him out to dry. Victoria figured that Adam had set things in motion, and she'd merely told him that things wouldn't end well. She argued that Victor had been letting Adam get away with blackmail, and she'd been the one paying the price. Victor stood by his commitment to reinstate her as CEO, but he lectured that there had been no need to shatter her brother's life. Victoria huffed that if Victor expected her to apologize for defending what was rightfully hers, he'd be waiting a long time.
Victoria firmly stated that when Victor reinstated her, it would be because she'd earned it. Victor voiced his disappointment with how she'd handled the situation, but she pointed out that she'd believed Victor's claim that he hadn't killed A.J. He appreciated the support, but she testily surmised that he wished she'd gone further by continuing to be the collateral damage in the struggle between him and Adam while being kept in the dark about everything. Victor maintained that there had been no need for her to know because he would have taken care of her.
Victoria stressed that it had been her job to fight off the threat to the company, and she should have been empowered to do so. Victor objected to her using the information as a weapon against her brother, since the tragic memory could be powerful enough to destroy Adam's life. Victoria understood that Victor wanted to think Adam was capable of redemption, but she believed that Adam had hurt too many people she loved, including Victor. She insisted that Victor share responsibility for how things had turned out, and she asserted that it was impossible for her to feel anything but threatened by Adam.
Victoria complained that she was tired of relying on other people to keep her safe, and she pledged to do whatever it took to protect her family, herself, and Newman and not make any apologies for it. Victor looked thoughtful for a moment before reinstating her as CEO and imploring her to continue running the company because she'd earned it. She thanked him, but he added that what she'd lost was his respect. Victoria replied that she could live with that, and she walked out.
Victoria entered the CEO office at Newman. She looked up at the empty wall where Victor's portrait had once hung, and she closed the door and sat behind the desk. Meanwhile, Nikki returned to the Newman living room and peered in on a devastated Victor. She gently touched his arm, and he silently reached for her hand.
ENCORE PRESENTATION: Paul and Christine's honeymoon (1996)
Due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, The Young and the Restless opted to broadcast special throwback episodes every Friday in April 2020. The move was designed to help stretch out the supply of new episodes until it was safe for the cast and crew to return to work.
Today's episode originally aired August 21, 1996. In the episode newlyweds Paul and Christine Williams honeymoon in a tropical paradise, blissfully unaware their nemesis, Phyllis, is also vacationing there. Determined to have the island to herself, Phyllis finds a slimy way to spoil their trip. Back in Genoa City, Sharon and Nick Newman plan a family dinner to share their baby news. You can read the full recap of that episode here or in our Daily Recaps Archive, which has comprehensive Daily Recaps dating back to 1981.