At Club TBD, Serena confronted Xander about the conversation she had seen him having with Nicole Walker. Xander explained that he had simply been talking to a beautiful woman. Serena warned that Nicole was bad news. "Then she's bad news wrapped in a very attractive package," Xander replied.
Serena insisted that if Xander wanted their arrangement to work, he needed to keep Nicole out of it. Eric arrived in time to hear the warning, and he wondered what Serena and Xander were talking about. Serena claimed that one of the women at Xander's company -- Nicole Fuentes -- was a high-maintenance, interfering know-it-all, and she had just been telling Xander she would only agree to help him if he kept Nicole out of the picture.
Eric spotted Maggie and excused himself so he could talk to her about something. After Eric left, an impressed Xander admitted he had forgotten Serena was such a cool liar. Eric soon returned and said goodbye to Serena and Xander. Xander wondered if Eric was still interested in getting together for dinner sometime soon, and Eric confirmed that he was.
As Eric walked away, Serena quietly told Xander the dinner was never going to happen. Xander reasoned that it would be awkward to back out of the dinner, but Serena countered that he had never cared about niceties, anyway. Serena wanted Xander to leave town right away, so she wrote down some account details and promised to give him the diamonds as soon as he transferred two hundred thousand dollars to the account.
Xander said he wasn't sure he could trust Serena. "Oh, yes, you [are], because you know that I know what happens to people when they double-cross you...and it's not pretty," Serena replied. Xander said he was touched that Serena seemed to remember a lot of things about him. Serena countered that there were a lot of things about Xander that were hard to forget.
Xander said he remembered some things about Serena, too, because that was what happened when two people shared a past. Serena insisted her past with Xander had been a mistake -- and she had learned her lesson. "Well, you'd better be sure of that. You'd better be sure you do the right thing with me, because you and Eric will be very sorry if you don't," Xander warned before leaving.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Nicole accidentally found a small gift box while rummaging through a desk drawer. "What a surprise -- you're invading someone's privacy," Brady lightheartedly observed when he found Nicole in the study. Nicole explained that she had been looking for a pen, and she excitedly wondered if the gift was for Melanie.
Dodging the question, Brady snatched the gift box from Nicole and wondered what she was doing at the mansion. Nicole opened her tablet computer as she explained that she had wanted to soften the blow. Brady stared at the screen -- which displayed pictures of Will, Sonny, and Paul alongside an article headlined "Narita Off Base: Baseball Star Caught in Love Triangle" -- as Nicole added that the television station was buzzing about the story.
Nicole said she knew the guy who had written the article, which was a total hatchet job -- his area of expertise. Brady assumed Nicole's unexpected visit was about digging up more dirt, but she assured him she wasn't going to cover the story -- she was simply worried about him. Brady said he thought Paul was a jerk and a user. "Mm. Well, I don't like to judge people until I know the whole story," Nicole deadpanned before cackling hysterically.
Changing the subject, Nicole tried to get Brady to tell her what was in the gift box, although she had already reached her own conclusion. Brady insisted it was none of Nicole's business, but when she persisted, he reluctantly clarified that it wasn't an engagement ring. Brady explained that he had simply wanted to get Melanie something special because he had recently been reminded again that life could change in an instant.
Brady added that he had arranged for Maxine to give Melanie the day off -- although Melanie wouldn't know that until she showed up for work later -- so he could swoop in and suggest Melanie could join him for coffee, since she was suddenly free. Once Melanie agreed, however, he planned to take her to the airport, where they would board a private jet and go somewhere else in the world to have coffee there, instead.
Nicole warned Brady that, like her, Melanie might assume the gift box contained an engagement ring. Brady wasn't worried, since he knew Melanie wanted to take things slowly. Nicole joked that she had always been the same way. Nicole observed that Brady obviously had it bad for Melanie, but he countered that there was actually nothing bad about it -- Melanie was funny, sexy, smart, and adorable, he loved her, and their relationship was the easiest, calmest one he had ever been in. Brady added that he and Melanie had only fought once, and that fight had been about Theresa.
"That Theresa is a real bitch. God, you dodged a bullet on that one," Nicole told Brady after silently recalling how Melanie had sought her help with a matter involving Theresa a few months earlier. Nicole said she was glad to see that Brady was happy, and she thought it was great that Brady and Melanie had been friends first. Brady pointed out that the same could be said about Nicole and Daniel, but she clarified that she didn't really have anything more than a friendship with Daniel -- and she wasn't sure she would even have that much when all was said and done.
Brady suspected Daniel simply didn't want to get hurt again. "And I don't want to be alone. I'm not built that way. And if we don't have a future together, I will hate it...but I will move on," Nicole replied.
Later, in the town square, Nicole tried to contact Daniel, but the call went to voicemail. Nicole started to leave a message but quickly changed her mind. "To hell with it," Nicole muttered as she ended the call. A few minutes later, Xander bumped into Nicole as she was leaving the town square.
Eve contacted Cole, who greeted her as his new best friend. Through gritted teeth, Eve insisted she wasn't Cole's friend -- they just shared a common cause. Cole assured Eve he was handling the matter. "You better be," Eve replied before ending the call, muttering that Cole was a sleazeball but was at least better than J.J.
Eve soon received an unexpected visit from Theresa, who entered the apartment and flopped down on the couch with a groan. "Man, I have never felt this way in my life. I don't know what's wrong with me," Theresa said, prompting Eve to wonder where to start. Unamused, Theresa insisted she was being serious. Theresa added that drinking annoyingly only seemed to make things worse, and it was kind of depressing that Eve was basically the only person she could talk to about the matter.
Realizing Eve wasn't even listening to her anymore, Theresa changed the subject, guessing Eve was up to something. Eve feigned innocence, but Theresa could tell she was right because she recognized the look in Eve's eyes -- a look that said Eve was determined to bend fate to serve her will. Theresa wondered if Jennifer had somehow angered Eve again. Eve denied the suspicion, but Theresa wasn't convinced. Theresa said she understood, since Jennifer drove her crazy, too -- and she wasn't joined to Jennifer at the hip like Eve was.
Eve objected to the observation, but Theresa insisted it was pretty accurate. "Not only do you share a history of having the same husband, you share his book, and now you share J.J. and Paige. God, it's kind of like The Thorn Birds. Hey, maybe Paige and J.J.'s kid will fall in love with another Horton or Donovan," Theresa mused. Eve told Theresa to shut up, which actually cheered Theresa up a bit -- she admitted she kind of felt like her old self again because she had managed to make Eve angry.
Eve insisted Theresa would have to follow a few ground rules if she wanted to cry on Eve's shoulder -- namely, there would be no discussion of Paige's relationship with J.J., and there would definitely be no discussion of Jennifer Horton. Satisfied, Theresa concluded that she had been right earlier -- Jennifer had done something to tick Eve off. "She exists. That's enough to tick me off. God, I don't think I've ever hated anybody as much as I hate that woman," Eve replied through gritted teeth.
Theresa suggested she and Eve could go out and have some fun together -- perhaps at the church's clothing drive. Eve sarcastically agreed that sounded like loads of fun, and she wondered if she and Theresa could bake pies for the church's bake sale afterward. Theresa told Eve it wasn't the event itself that was important, just their reaction to it. "Hey, you know what? We could, uh -- we could go, and we could make fun of all the tacky clothes and steal anything that isn't," Theresa added.
Eve could tell Theresa was up to something, so Theresa admitted that going to the clothing drive would get her out of work for the day -- and Anne wasn't really giving her a choice in the matter, anyway. Theresa added that if Eve accompanied her, the event would at least be bearable -- and Eve wouldn't have to worry about running into Jennifer, since Jennifer wasn't going to be there. "Well, guess it beats sitting around here, just waiting for --" Eve started to say before stopping herself. Theresa concluded that she had been right again earlier -- Eve was up to something. Theresa suspected a guy might somehow be involved, but Eve insisted that wasn't true.
Theresa shrugged and changed the subject, assuring Eve there would be some hot guys at the clothing drive. Eve sarcastically agreed that every hot guy she had ever known had loved hanging out in church basements and rooting through piles of used clothing. Theresa clarified that Maggie had recruited some strong guys to do all the heavy lifting. Theresa tried to call dibs on any guy she and Eve shared a common interest in, but Eve protested that she would never go after the same type of guy as Theresa, anyway. "Oh, please. Eve, everyone's your type," Theresa countered.
When Eve and Theresa arrived at St. Luke's, Eric and Maggie were already hard at work. Eve started flirting with Eric, but Theresa quickly put a stop to it, stating that Maggie needed his help with something. After Eric walked away, Eve pointed out that he wasn't related to her, but Theresa insisted that it was still weird for her sister to hit on her cousin -- and besides, he was obsessed with some redhead who worked at the hospital, so he wasn't available, anyway. "Not that that's ever stopped you before," Theresa added.
"Well, I'm gonna give men a rest for a while after --" Eve started to respond before stopping herself. Bragging that she had been right once again, Theresa urged Eve to give her all the details on the guy, including how good he had been in bed. Eve ignored Theresa's questions and started looking through boxes of clothes as Maggie approached to get Theresa to help with something.
Eve found Daniel's old coat in one of the boxes, and she recognized it as the one J.J. had been wearing the first night she had slept with him. Eve thought about her multiple sexual encounters with J.J. as she held the coat in her hands. Later, Theresa returned from helping Maggie and noticed Eve was gone. Meanwhile, Eve carried a brown paper bag into her apartment and removed the coat from it.
Serena paced her hotel room, trying to assure herself that Xander would never do anything to hurt her because he wanted the diamonds too badly. Serena suddenly realized nothing was stopping Xander from hurting Eric, so she grabbed her coat and started to rush off -- just as Eric was arriving to see her. Relieved, Serena said she had something to tell Eric about Xander.
As Melanie was preparing for work, Daniel told her he had noticed that someone had used his laptop to do research on plasma and pregnancy testing. Melanie claimed she had just been doing research for her Continuing Education class. Melanie left Daniel's apartment and went to the hospital, where Maxine informed her she no longer had to work that day. Melanie protested that she didn't want the day off, but Maxine insisted the matter had already been decided. Maxine started to say something else about a cute little outfit in Melanie's locker, but Melanie interrupted and abruptly excused herself, claiming she had a lot of things to do.
Melanie went to the blood bank and told Jorge she had gotten him a belated birthday gift but hadn't been able to carry it into the hospital because it was really heavy. Melanie persuaded Jorge to go to her car to get the gift, and after he left, she used his computer to look up information about Theresa's plasma sample. Melanie located the sample and placed it in a bag -- just as Brady entered the room, following a tip from Maxine about where to find Melanie.
At the Horton house, J.J. told Jennifer he had confirmed Daniel's suspicion about his relationship with Eve the previous night. J.J. explained that he had confided in Daniel because Daniel was his friend and had promised not to judge him. J.J. added, however, that Daniel had seemed pretty upset about what J.J. had done. "I mean, I don't know -- maybe I screwed up again," J.J. admitted.
Jennifer feared that might be true, since Daniel's involvement just increased the chances that something would eventually go wrong. Jennifer thought it would be necessary to rethink her and J.J.'s plan in light of the development. J.J. wondered if Jennifer was saying he had to tell Paige the truth because he had chosen to get Daniel involved. J.J. insisted he couldn't -- and wouldn't -- do that.
Jennifer assured J.J. she wasn't going to back out of their agreement to keep the truth from Paige. Jennifer added, however, that she would need to talk to Daniel and find out what he intended to do with the information. J.J. offered to handle that task, since it was his mess to deal with, but Jennifer insisted she wanted him to let her handle it.
At Salem University, Paige was helping Cole prepare for a test. Cole wondered if Paige was sure J.J. wouldn't mind, reminding her that J.J. hated his guts. "Hey, you know, you're not always wrong," J.J. said as he arrived and took a seat next to Cole. J.J. said he wanted to talk to Paige privately. Paige started to protest that she was busy helping Cole study, but he assured her she had already helped him enough.
After Cole left, Paige complained about J.J.'s rude behavior. Pointing out that he knew Cole better than Paige did, J.J. insisted that Cole wasn't the kind of guy she should be hanging out with. Paige reiterated that she and Cole had been studying, not hanging out. J.J. suggested Paige needed to stop helping Cole study.
Paige insisted that, while she loved J.J., she wasn't going to allow him to tell her what to do or who to see. Paige added that J.J. might want to think about his own mistakes before getting all high and mighty about Cole's. J.J. tried to respond, but Paige interrupted him, continuing that Cole didn't have a lot of friends. J.J. managed to interject that there was a reason for that.
Paige repeated the things she had just said, since they obviously hadn't sunk in the first time. Paige warned that if J.J. wanted their relationship to move forward, he would have to be willing to let her make her own decisions. J.J. grinned and shook his head, admitting that from the very beginning, he had always liked the fact that, despite being incredibly nice, Paige wasn't a pushover at all.
After playfully warning J.J. not to forget that, Paige rushed off to take care of some things, promising to meet up with J.J. a bit later that day. After Paige left, Cole returned and observed that J.J. really had her snowed. Cole predicted that wouldn't last. J.J. wondered why Cole couldn't just ask a professor or teaching assistant for help instead of Paige. "Because someday, Paige is gonna figure out the truth about you, the kind of player you really are. If I'm lucky, it could be today. And then, let's face it, J.J. -- someone needs to be around to pick up the pieces when you rip her heart out," Cole replied.
Jennifer went to Daniel's apartment and demanded to know what Daniel planned to do with the information he had learned about J.J. and Eve. Daniel observed that it looked like Jennifer wasn't planning to do anything with the information, and he wondered if she was really content to just let J.J. live a lie for the rest of his life. Jennifer insisted that exposing the truth wouldn't do anyone any good, but Daniel said that was just a liar's first line of defense. Daniel pointed out that it wasn't like Jennifer to keep secrets, and he reminded her of all the other times secrets had blown up in their faces or the faces of their loved ones.
Jennifer understood Daniel's point but insisted her son's happiness was her main priority and concern. Jennifer added that she wasn't interested in getting a lecture from Daniel, especially since he wasn't saying anything she hadn't already told herself over and over again. Daniel wondered why J.J. had decided to tell Jennifer the truth and drag her into the mess in the first place. Jennifer insisted that didn't matter, adding that the only thing that did matter was that Eve had gone after every man Jennifer had ever loved -- including, most recently, Jennifer's son -- because Eve hated her that much.
Jennifer said Eve was a monster who had been sleeping with J.J. at night and seeking her out during the day to gloat about it. "Wait a minute -- 'sleeping' with your son? This went on? It wasn't -- it wasn't just once?" Daniel asked. Jennifer realized J.J. had left out that part of the story, and Daniel admitted he could understand why. Daniel said the situation was scary and much worse than he had initially believed, but Jennifer insisted it wasn't scary, it was sick and horrible. Jennifer argued that Paige was still innocent and needed to be protected from Eve's depravity, and J.J. was just the guy to do that because he loved Paige and would never hurt her again.
Daniel realized Jennifer was the one who had concocted the plan to get J.J. back together with Paige and pretend nothing had ever happened between him and Eve. Jennifer insisted it didn't matter who had thought of the plan -- the only thing that mattered was ensuring that everyone kept quiet so the plan could work and J.J. and Paige could be happy together. Daniel suspected that might not really be the point of the plan, after all. "It's a dandy way to make Eve miserable for the rest of her life. Payback's a bitch, isn't it?" Daniel mused.
Jennifer warned Daniel not to go there, insisting she just wanted her son to be happy, and she wasn't going to let Eve -- or Daniel -- ruin things for him. Daniel's cell phone chimed, and when he checked it and realized Nicole had tried to call him earlier, he excused himself so he could track her down. As Daniel opened his apartment door, Jennifer insisted she wasn't going to let him leave until they finished their conversation. Jennifer refused to let Daniel ruin J.J.'s happiness. Daniel assured Jennifer he didn't want to do that. "Okay, then just tell me -- are you gonna keep your mouth shut or not?" Jennifer demanded to know.
Before Daniel could answer the question, he noticed Paige was standing in the doorway.
In the blood lab at the hospital, Melanie lied to Jorge and asked him to get his birthday present out of the back of her car while she covered the lab for him. While Jorge was gone, Melanie looked up Theresa's blood records on the computer. As Melanie retrieved Theresa's plasma sample from the fridge, Brady arrived. Brady asked Melanie what she was doing.
Melanie lied and said she was covering the lab for Jorge. Jorge returned with a large stuffed bunny and asked Melanie why she had bought him a stuffed bunny. Confused, Brady remarked that Melanie had said the bunny was for Parker. Smiling, Melanie announced that she had bought one for Parker, but it had reminded her of Jorge, so she had bought one for him as well. With a wave, Melanie said goodbye and rushed out with Brady following behind her.
In her hotel room, Serena informed Eric that she had lied to him. Serena explained that she had not wanted Eric to know that Nicole was involved with Xander. Shrugging, Eric said he was not concerned. Serena added that her concern was that she was not fond of Xander, and since he was hanging out with Nicole, who hated Serena, she was worried.
Concerned, Eric asked Serena why she did not like Xander. Skirting the truth, Serena said that although Xander had worked with a charity, she had gotten to know him in the US afterward, and he was egotistical. Nodding, Eric asked Serena to join him for dinner.
In the town square, Xander ran into Nicole. Laughing, Xander commented that they were lucky Nicole was not holding a hot beverage that time. Xander laid it on thick with the compliments, but Nicole politely reminded Xander that she was unavailable. With a grin, Xander asked about "the competition." Xander added that if Nicole's man left the picture, he would be more than happy to pick up the pieces for her.
When Nicole asked Xander how Serena would feel about Xander spending time with Nicole, Xander countered by asking Nicole how Eric would feel. Nicole stressed that Eric was in her past, and Xander agreed and noted that Eric and Serena were in his past. Xander asked Nicole to hang out with him and ignore their pasts together. With a sigh, Nicole declined. Xander urged Nicole to call him, adding that he always got whatever he wanted.
Serena and Eric returned to his apartment. With a grin, Eric retrieved a jar from his desk and presented it to Serena as a gift. Noting that it was a jar from a priest friend's desk in Africa, Eric explained that though the elephant had been important to Serena, the jar had been important to him. Touched, Serena thanked Eric for the thoughtful gift. Eric said he hoped the jar would give Serena "good fortune." Serena told Eric that she did not deserve him, and the two began to kiss.
A knock at the front door interrupted the lovers, and Erica opened the door. A grinning Xander said hello and asked Eric if they could talk about setting up a dinner. As Xander spotted Serena across the room, he offered to leave. Serena said that Xander was not interrupting them. Xander told Serena he had sent her the information she needed then he left. As Eric started to ask Serena a question, she commented that she did not want to talk, and she started to kiss and undress Eric.
Eric and Serena adjourned to the bedroom and made love. In the middle of sex, Serena thought about her conversation with Xander at Club TBD. Unnerved, Serena tensed. Eric pulled away and asked Serena what was wrong.
In her apartment, Eve paced nervously and stared at Daniel's coat that she had stolen from the hospital clothing drive. Eve mumbled aloud that she did not know why she had taken the coat and that she was deeply pained by the mistake she had made with J.J. Upset by the coat, Eve grabbed it and threw it onto the top shelf of the closet. As Eve shifted items on the shelf, Jack's book fell out and onto the floor. Eve picked up the book and yelled at Jack's face. Infuriated, Eve threw the book to the ground. Eve wondered aloud how to remove J.J. from her and Paige's lives.
At the clothing drive, a furious Theresa called Eve and demanded to know why Eve had stolen Daniel's coat. Eve denied the accusation. When Theresa asked Eve why she had left in a hurry, Eve lied and said that Maggie had been hovering. Upset, Eve hung up abruptly. While Theresa stared into space, confused, J.J. arrived at the drive. J.J. asked Theresa about Maggie, and Theresa haughtily noted that Maggie had left because all the work had already been done. J.J. started to leave then he stopped.
J.J. told Theresa that he had gotten back together with Paige because of Theresa's meddling. With his chest puffed out, J.J. said that Theresa had been wrong when she had said things would never work out with Paige. Theresa reiterated her position and warned J.J. that things would not work out with Paige. Angry, J.J. asked Theresa about her love life. When Theresa was defensive, J.J. remarked that no one had ever loved or ever would love Theresa.
At Daniel's apartment, Jennifer asked Daniel to keep quiet. Paige overheard as she appeared in the open doorway. Jennifer asked Paige if they could meet at the pub to talk, and Paige agreed. Paige handed Daniel a toy of Parker's, and she left. After closing the door, Daniel informed Jennifer that he would not promise that he would not tell Paige the truth. Jennifer was furious and sighed in frustration. Jennifer said she would talk to Paige alone.
When Daniel asked Jennifer if she planned to lie to Paige on his behalf, Jennifer shook her head. Daniel asked Jennifer why she was not asking J.J. to take responsibility. Daniel accused Jennifer of only thinking of her son and not Paige. Upset, Jennifer swore that Eve was totally at fault. Daniel countered that even if J.J. had slept with Eve against his will, it implied that J.J. was not ready for an adult relationship. Daniel suggested that J.J. should take time to explore his emotions after what had happened with Eve.
"Don't talk about my son like that," Jennifer warned. "You mean honestly?" Daniel countered. Daniel stressed that the situation was the same as when J.J. had been involved with drugs. Daniel begged Jennifer to respond honestly like she had in that situation. Daniel warned Jennifer that Paige would figure out the truth, just as Daniel had done. When Daniel argued that the matter was a "ticking time bomb," Jennifer yelled that if Daniel refused to respect her wishes, they would no longer be friends. Jennifer cautioned Daniel that if he told Paige the truth, he would destroy the lives of everyone.
After storming out of Daniel's apartment, Jennifer met with Paige at the Brady Pub. Jennifer asked Paige if she was happy with J.J. Paige nodded. When Jennifer noted that Paige and J.J. deserved a second chance, Paige thanked Jennifer. Paige noted that Jennifer's comments about J.J.'s irregular behavior had given her hope. When Paige asked what had happened with the other woman, Jennifer thought about when she had found J.J. having sex with Eve at the hotel.
Shaking off the memory, Jennifer said that J.J. had reacted out of his sense of loss when Paige had left for California. Paige asked about Jennifer's fight with Daniel, and Jennifer promised that the argument was over nothing but a hospital matter. After Jennifer left, Paige wondered aloud, "I think you just lied to me. But why?"
As Paige walked through the town square, she called J.J. on the phone and asked him to meet her at Eve's apartment. J.J. was reluctant, but Paige promised that Eve would not be home. Paige told J.J. to talk to Jennifer because Paige had overheard Jennifer fighting with Daniel. Tense, J.J. asked about the fight. Paige said that she had overheard Jennifer tell Daniel to "keep his mouth shut." J.J. hung up the phone because he heard Jennifer arrive home.
In the square, Eve overheard Paige and asked about Jennifer's fight with Daniel. Paige said it was nothing, but Eve stressed that if Jennifer had said that to Daniel, it had to be serious. Noting that she was in a hurry, Paige rushed off.
Daniel arrived at the hospital and learned that his surgery had been canceled. Nicole overheard and asked Daniel if he would join her for lunch. Daniel declined. When Nicole asked Daniel what was bothering him, Daniel curtly said that he could not talk about it. Hurt, Nicole asked Daniel why he continued to refuse to talk to her. Daniel asked Nicole to "respect me for once."
Taken aback, Nicole stressed that she did respect Daniel. Nicole said that if Daniel was annoyed by her genuine concern, then she would stop asking. Nicole said she was no longer interested in being Daniel's punching bag, and she left. In the square, Nicole called Xander and asked to meet him for coffee.
Irritated by the day's events, Daniel returned home and chastised himself for taking his anger out on Nicole. Daniel stared at the toy Paige had dropped off at the apartment. There was a knock at the front door, and Daniel scowled as he opened it to see Eve. Eve noted that the look on Daniel's face proved that he knew what had happened with J.J. Across town, Paige went to Eve's apartment to pick up some items. As Paige looked in the closet, she moved a box, which caused Daniel's brown coat to fall to the floor at her feet.
Jennifer returned home to the Horton house and talked to J.J. about her fight with Daniel. Jennifer explained that Daniel was reluctant to keep quiet because it reminded him of the situation with Chloe when she had lied to him. With a sigh, Jennifer said that Daniel was angry, but he would not hurt J.J. and would likely keep the secret unless he was provoked.
In the blood lab at the hospital, Theresa rifled through the folders on the desk. Jorge returned and asked Theresa why she was snooping. Theresa explained that she was looking for the performance reviews, and Jorge testily remarked that he was not done. As Jorge sat at his desk, he noticed that someone had been using his computer. Jorge accused Theresa, but she denied the accusation. After Theresa left, Jorge groaned and said, "Melanie."
As Melanie walked through the town square and texted her contact about the plasma she had taken, Brady caught up with her and explained that he had arranged for her day off from work. Melanie noted that she was busy with errands, but Brady countered that if the errands could have waited while she'd been at work, they could wait a little longer. With a smile, Melanie agreed to join Brady on his planned adventure. When Brady mentioned he had planned an overnight trip, Melanie fidgeted.
Melanie and Brady returned to the Kiriakis mansion. While Brady went upstairs to pack, Melanie mumbled to herself about getting Serena to create a diversion so she could drop off the plasma before leaving with Brady. Brady returned to the living room and noted that China had called about urgent business. Relieved, Melanie urged Brady to take his business call. Smiling, Melanie asked for a rain check on their plans. After Brady left, Melanie grabbed her phone to reach out to Serena.
Eric and Serena were about to have sex in his bedroom when memories of her latest conversation with Xander intruded on her thoughts. Eric noticed Serena's sudden distance and asked what was wrong. She confessed that she was afraid of hurting him. Eric guessed that Serena was referring to the possibility that she would have to move away for her job. Serena admitted that if she'd known how crazy her life would get after she'd moved to Salem, she would never have gotten involved with Eric, but she hadn't been able to help herself because he was so good to her and for her.
"You're the best thing that's ever happened to me," Eric declared. He assured Serena that they would work things out where her job was concerned, but Serena was worried that things could get very complicated. She told Eric that their time together in Africa had been the happiest days of her life. "I don't think that I appreciated what we had back then, but I do now. I love you so much," Serena declared. She assured Eric that she would do everything she could to make sure they could stay together.
When Eric left the room to take a phone call, Serena got a text message alerting her that two hundred thousand dollars had been deposited into her account. "Xander actually kept his word. Maybe this will work out, after all," Serena said hopefully to herself. Remembering the diamonds she'd stashed in Daniel's chimney, Serena called and left a message for Melanie. "We need to hang out soon, have some fun," Serena said.
Eric returned and apologetically explained that his phone call had been about some work for a guy who wanted another meeting with Eric. Serena urged Eric to meet the man, since she had something she needed to deal with for work, as well. They kissed goodbye and promised to talk when Serena was finished. As Eric was heading out later, he spotted the little clay pot from Africa and optimistically told himself that Serena didn't have to worry because they were going to be fine.
Nicole called Xander and invited him to meet her for coffee. Pleased, Xander suggested they meet at Club TBD, since he was just about to head into the club. After Nicole hung up, she muttered, "To hell with you, Daniel. I get to have a life, too, don't I?"
Inside TBD, Theresa was at the bar and paying for her coffee while complaining on the phone with Anne about never being able to meet a great guy. Just then, Xander walked in and interrupted Theresa's conversation to return some cash she'd dropped. Theresa's eyes lit up, and she quickly ended the call with Anne to thank Xander. Theresa introduced herself, as did Xander. Noting that neither of them was wearing a wedding ring, Theresa proposed that they get a table together.
Although he seemed flattered, Xander informed Theresa that he was meeting a date there. When Theresa mentioned that she worked at University Hospital, Xander said his friend Serena Mason worked there and asked if Theresa knew her. Theresa hedged, "Kind of. She's dating my cousin Eric." As she walked away, Theresa encouraged Xander to look her up if his date didn't work out.
When Nicole arrived, she and Xander got a corner booth so they could get to know one another, although she stressed that it was not a date. Xander worked his charms on Nicole, and even though she could see right through him, she couldn't help but find it pleasing. Xander proposed a movie, if he could get her to agree to an actual date, pointing out that it would give him an opportunity to sit next to Nicole in a dark room and put his hand around her shoulder or hold her hand.
Xander demonstrated by reaching across the table to take Nicole's hand in both of his. Theresa spotted them on her way out the door and gazed at them longingly, clearly wishing a handsome man would pay that kind of attention to her. Nicole admitted that the idea of going to a movie with Xander was appealing, but it wasn't a good idea because she was seeing someone -- plus he would only be in town until he'd gotten Serena to write an article.
Just then, Xander got a text message from Serena that read, "Got the $. Bringing U something soon..." Xander said his business with Serena could possibly end that very day, but he would be in town a while longer because he had other projects there. Curious, Nicole asked what those projects were. Xander playfully promised to tell Nicole more as soon as she agreed to a date with him. Nicole hesitated, and Xander acknowledged that she was seeing someone.
As Xander was gallantly kissing Nicole's hand and saying goodbye, Serena showed up. Xander merely grinned and strolled out. "You two know each other?" Serena asked. Nicole retorted, "Maybe. What's it to you?" Serena said it just seemed weird that Nicole would be interested in Xander, especially since he wouldn't be in town much longer. "I guess you haven't heard. Xander is sticking around. You're not the only reason he's here in Salem," Nicole smugly informed Serena.
Outside the club, Xander made a phone call. "So would now be a good a good time? Yes, sir. I'll see you soon," Xander said before hanging up and walking off.
In Eve's apartment, Paige was digging through a closet for some textbooks and found Daniel's old jacket, which she recognized as belonging to the man with whom Eve had hooked up the previous autumn. When J.J. showed up to help Paige move the box of books, Paige said, "I think my mom's still seeing that guy she slept with last fall." A little too quickly, J.J. assured Paige that wasn't the case. He covered and asked why Paige thought that.
Paige produced the jacket, but J.J. pointed out that he'd seen a lot of similar coats the previous winter. Paige was still fretting and curious about who the guy had been, since it obviously hadn't been Daniel, so she started to search the pockets for clues. J.J. stopped Paige, urging her to respect her mom's privacy. Paige sent a text message to her mom to ask about the box that Paige hadn't been able to locate. Paige noticed that J.J. looked uncomfortable and asked what was wrong.
J.J. reminded Paige that most of his memories of that apartment weren't good, but he assured Paige that he just wanted to be wherever she was. As Paige and J.J. moved to the couch and began kissing, he flashed back to having sex with Eve on the very same sofa and suddenly jumped up. J.J. explained that making out in Eve's living room was probably not a good idea because Eve could walk in at any moment.
Paige admitted that J.J. had a point, and she was relieved he hadn't pulled away the same way he had the previous fall, when he'd made it seem like he hadn't wanted to be with her. J.J. reassured Paige that he'd gotten past his guilt about what his dad had done, so he and Paige could be together whenever she was ready -- but only if she wanted to. J.J. had to leave for his study group, so he kissed Paige goodbye and headed out.
In the doorway of Daniel's apartment, Daniel confirmed to Eve that he knew about her and J.J. As she strolled into the apartment, Eve asked what Daniel intended to do with the knowledge. "First, tell me something, will you? How in the hell could you sleep with your daughter's boyfriend?" Daniel demanded. When Daniel accused Eve of seducing J.J., she pointed out that J.J. was an adult with quite a checkered past. Daniel countered that J.J. had since turned his life around and would never have betrayed Paige if Eve hadn't manipulated him.
Eve insisted that nothing that had happened with J.J. had been planned, but Daniel pointed out that Eve rarely did anything that wasn't calculated. He reminded her that she had demonstrated a "sick obsession" with going after the men in Jennifer's life since their high school days -- but none of those men compared to the "ultimate trophy," Jennifer's son. Furious and defensive, Eve ordered Daniel to shut up.
"What happened with J.J. had nothing to do with Jennifer," Eve insisted, adding that, if anything, J.J. had taken advantage of her vulnerable state the night she'd just learned that she would never sing again. Daniel didn't buy Eve's excuses for a second. Eve contended that nothing that had happened was Daniel's business because J.J. wasn't even his family. Daniel argued that he loved and cared about J.J., who would always be important to Daniel, as would Abigail and Jennifer, so Daniel refused to let Eve destroy J.J.'s life. "Spare me the speech. Are you going to keep my secret or not?" Eve demanded.
Daniel said he knew how it felt to be cheated on, and he wouldn't wish that kind of pain on his worst enemy. Eve pointed out that Daniel would be inflicting that pain on Paige if he told her the truth, and Eve believed that he would not tell Paige for that reason. "I wouldn't bet on that," Daniel warned Eve. Eve asserted that Daniel would also be destroying J.J.'s entire family, so if Daniel loved them as much as he'd claimed, he would keep it secret forever. As Eve headed for the door, Daniel called after her, "First and final warning: you stay away from J.J."
J.J. was in the Salem University student union when Daniel called him from the hospital because he wanted to talk to J.J. in person about the situation with Paige. J.J. promised to send Daniel a text message when he was free. As J.J. tried to study later, he wondered how Eve had ended up with the coat -- and why she would have even wanted it.
When Eve got back to her apartment, she was happily surprised to find Paige there. Paige explained that she'd sent text messages to her mom about trying to find the boxes, and Eve realized that she'd turned her phone off. Eve went to the closet to retrieve the boxes, but Paige said she'd already looked there -- and had found the leather jacket. "Is the guy you hooked up with back in your life?" Paige asked.
Eve admitted that she'd seen the guy a few more times, but it was over because it had been a mistake. Paige asked why her mom had kept the coat, and Eve claimed that she just hadn't gotten around to getting rid of it. Paige offered to listen if Eve ever wanted to talk.
Daniel was at the nurses' station, studying some x-rays, when Theresa got off the elevator. Unable to resist the urge to needle him about Nicole, Theresa remarked that Daniel and Nicole had to have broken up, because from what Theresa had just seen, Nicole had obviously moved on. Daniel guessed that Theresa had simply misinterpreted something, but Theresa informed him that the guy had said he was meeting a date, and she'd seen him holding Nicole's hand. "Oh, and did I mention that he was really hot?" Theresa concluded.
Marlena went to Will and Sonny's apartment and found Will's editor, Zoe Browning, pounding on the front door and demanding to talk to Will. When Sonny opened the door, Zoe charged inside, still calling for Will, and Marlena trailed in after her. Sonny explained to Marlena who Zoe was and informed Zoe that Will was running errands. Zoe wanted to know why Will wasn't answering his phone.
Sonny explained that the two of them had been trying to stay "off the grid" because of that day's newspaper article about Will cheating on Sonny with Paul Narita. Sonny assumed that Zoe was there to fire Will. Ignoring Sonny's obvious pain, Zoe clarified that Will's sleeping with Paul had been a great thing. Sonny demanded to know if Zoe had told Will not to wear his wedding ring while interviewing Paul because she'd hoped something would happen. Zoe insisted that she'd had no idea Paul was gay, but Will had gotten the best scoop in years out of it.
Zoe explained that she was there to get the new article that Will had been writing, which he'd told her would be a real "bombshell." Zoe continued that Will had told her he only needed confirmation of a couple of facts, but otherwise the story was cover-worthy and ready to go. Zoe wanted to take a look on Will's tablet for the article, but a stern Marlena put her foot down and ordered Zoe to leave. "Sonny and Will are having a hard enough time. Their marriage is far more important than some magazine article," Marlena declared.
With a shrug, Zoe said that was a matter of perspective. As she headed for the door, she told Sonny to have Will call her right away because she needed the article -- as well as a follow-up about what had really happened between Will and Paul. "Are you serious?" an incredulous Sonny demanded. Zoe nonchalantly countered that despite Sonny and Will's problems, she still had to run a magazine -- and perhaps the new article would help the guys work things out.
As soon as the door had closed behind Zoe, Marlena exclaimed uncharacteristically, "What a bitch." Sonny wholeheartedly agreed. He noted wryly that instead of firing Will, Zoe had practically given him a bonus for sleeping with a big sports star and increasing sales. Marlena maintained that Will knew what he'd done had been wrong because his marriage was very important to him. She gave Sonny the business card of a counselor who she said was quite good with couples and emphasized the importance of talking to someone soon.
Sonny remarked that he thought it was odd that Zoe had kept talking about a story, since Will had never mentioned writing one. Marlena urged Sonny to forget about it and focus on his marriage. Sonny agreed but noted, "She said it was a real 'bombshell.' That's just what we need."
A goon with a gun approached Will in the park outside Horton Square and dragged Will away by the arm to the Kiriakis mansion. The thug deposited Will in the living room with Victor and stood guard at the door until Victor gave him a signal. Will started to try to explain what had happened, but Victor ordered Will to shut up and listen. He flung that morning's copy of The Spectator at Will's feet and ordered him to read the headline.
Will reluctantly unfolded the paper, and the headline below the title blared, "Will Horton Takes One for the Team -- Gets the Goods on Star Player." Victor instructed Will to look further down the page. There was a smaller article tucked in a corner with the title "Happy Couple Celebrates Their First Anniversary" -- above a photo of Sonny and Paul. Will expressed outrage that the tabloid had shown such incompetence that they hadn't even used the proper photo with the article.
"Let me get this straight: you publicly humiliate my nephew without batting an eye, and you get upset over their publishing the wrong photograph! What the hell is the matter with you?" Victor demanded incredulously. Will tried to explain about Sonny and Paul's history, but Victor cut him off in disbelief, livid that Will actually seemed to be trying to spin his betrayal. Dialing back his anger for a moment, Victor explained that while he loved every member of his family, Sonny had always been very special to him, and Victor asserted that Will was making a mockery of the wedding ceremony that Victor had hosted.
"[Sonny's] sole goal was always to make you happy. And obviously you're on the same page, because everything you do is also to make you happy, and to hell with anybody else!" Victor declared. Will insisted that he wanted to make things right with Sonny, but Will believed that could never happen as long as Paul Narita stayed in Salem. Victor interjected, "Good God, you're a clone of your mother! Everything you do is somebody else's fault."
Over Will's protests, Victor declared that he'd obviously been wrong in believing that Will was someone Sonny could love. "If you ever -- ever -- hurt Sonny again, then the guy who brought you here today is gonna pay you another visit, and it's not gonna be to chat," Victor warned Will. When Will pleaded with Victor to hear him out, Victor refused to listen, ordering Will, "Get the hell out of my house -- and not a word of this to Sonny." On his way out, Will paused in the doorway to tearfully reassure Victor that he loved Sonny.
A little later, Xander paid Victor a visit. "It's been too long, Uncle. I'm so happy to see you again," Xander said. "It's good to see you, too, Alexandros . Welcome home," a beaming Victor declared, patting his nephew's arm.
Will was walking through Horton Square later when he ran into Marlena, who informed him that she'd just met his editor at the apartment. Marlena assured Will that he wasn't fired, but Zoe was eager to see his next article. Will admitted that since he'd learned that Paul wasn't really a DiMera, he had nothing to show Zoe. Marlena cautioned Will that Zoe and Sonny would want to know what was in the article.
Marlena began, "Honey, I was thinking about your situation --" but Will cut her off and ordered her not to tell John. Will reminded his grandmother that it was Tori's secret, not theirs, plus finding out that John was his father would only give Paul another reason to stay in Salem. Will warned Marlena that if she said anything, his marriage would be over, and it would be her fault. "Will, marriages are rarely destroyed from the outside," Marlena reminded her grandson before walking away.
While Sonny was cleaning the apartment, he called to check on Arianna. As he hung up, Sonny spotted Will's tablet and wondered aloud what article his husband had been working on. Worried that Will might still be into Paul, Sonny picked up the computer and searched through the documents. He found one with a photo of Paul and opened it, revealing the article that Will had supposedly deleted with the headline about Paul being a DiMera.
Chad received a phone call from Stefano, who instructed him to call Club TBD and tell the staff to transfer all his personal calls to the DiMera mansion for the rest of the day so he wouldn't miss a call from the Florida Bureau of Investigation. "They want to talk to you about a former employee, all right? A man named Kevin Reynolds. Only now he is calling himself Ben Rogers," Stefano explained.
Chad was intrigued, but Stefano warned him to handle the matter carefully and refrain from pouncing before the time was right. Chad agreed and thanked Stefano for the help. Stefano replied that, as Chad's father, it was his job to help Chad get what Chad wanted. "And it's perfect that the girl you want is Abigail Deveraux," Stefano mused with a laugh after ending the call.
As Ben and Abigail entered his apartment, he assured her he wasn't going to back out of his agreement to help her work on her charity project, despite the fact that he had two midterms to study for himself. Soon, the couple was more than halfway done with the work, and when Abigail suggested that a reward was in order, Ben happily agreed.
Later, while Ben and Abigail were lying in bed together after making love, someone knocked on the door. Ben got dressed while Abigail went to take a shower. When Ben opened the door, he found Chad standing in the hallway. Chad revealed that he had just talked to someone from the Florida Bureau of Investigation who was looking for a guy named Kevin Reynolds.
After his business meeting ended, Brady went to Daniel's apartment to apologize to Melanie for canceling her surprise getaway. As Melanie was insisting she understood, she received a phone call from Jorge, who ordered her to return Theresa's vial of plasma to the hospital immediately. Melanie ended the call and told Brady she had just been called back in to work due to an emergency.
At the hospital, Anne was delighted to hear that Theresa had seen Daniel's on-again, off-again girlfriend, Nicole Walker, with another guy earlier. Anne hoped that would make Daniel doubt his masculinity. Theresa assured Anne that Xander could make even Iron Man doubt his masculinity. Anne suggested Theresa could go after Daniel if he was indeed back on the market, but Theresa insisted he and his daughter were too obnoxious to handle.
Elsewhere, Jorge yelled at Melanie for stealing Theresa's plasma. Melanie assured Jorge she'd had a very good reason for doing so, although she couldn't say what that reason was. Melanie added that she couldn't return the plasma because, earlier, she had broken the vial containing it. Jorge was ready to tell Seth Burns what had happened, but Melanie begged him not to, pointing out that they had been friends for a really long time.
Jorge started to object that he could get fired if Melanie's theft were ever discovered, but Theresa interrupted to find out why he was taking such a long time to return the forms she needed. Theresa was rude to Jorge even before realizing that Melanie was in the room, and when she learned that Melanie and Jorge were friends, she started treating him even worse. After Theresa left, Jorge agreed to keep Melanie's secret.
Melanie was grateful but admitted that she needed another vial of Theresa's plasma, since she really had broken the previous vial. Jorge was sorry to hear Melanie wasn't planning to use the plasma sample to somehow hurt Theresa, but he agreed to hand it over, anyway. Later, Melanie returned to Daniel's apartment and contacted someone named Greg, who promised to have a full analysis of the plasma sample ready for her the following day.
Theresa told Anne about seeing Melanie with Jorge earlier. Theresa thought she might be able to use the information to cause trouble for Brady and Melanie, since she had already succeeded in causing trouble for Daniel and Nicole that day. Anne suspected, despite Theresa's firm denials, that Theresa really just wanted to cause trouble for Brady and Melanie because Theresa still wanted Brady for herself and would do anything to get him interested in her again.
At the Kiriakis mansion, Xander explained that he was in Salem for business reasons. "But it's always a pleasure to see you. I owe you everything, Uncle Victor. I owe you my life," Xander added. Victor said there was no need for flattery, but Xander nevertheless wanted to acknowledge that he would have spent much more time in prison if it hadn't been for Victor's help.
Xander confirmed that he had kept his nose clean lately -- or at least made it look that way. "Tell me something -- does the younger generation have their own term for money laundering?" Victor wondered. Xander said it was typically referred to as charity or his pharmaceutical company, and he stressed that every operation he had ever run had been there to serve Victor whenever necessary.
Victor said that was all he needed to hear, since it was better for him to not know much about Xander's shady dealings. Changing the subject, Victor suggested Xander could join the family for dinner before leaving town, and Xander happily accepted the invitation. Victor hinted that he needed to get back to work, so Xander turned to leave -- just as Brady entered the study.
Xander recognized Brady, but Brady didn't recognize Xander until Victor helpfully referred to Xander as Brady's cousin. Xander reminded Brady they had last seen each other the summer Victor had taken them to a private island off Mykonos. Xander explained that he had since started using the name Xander Cook -- professionally, anyway -- and that Cook was his mother's maiden name.
Xander said he had idolized Brady and Daniel as a youth, thinking of them as the older brothers he'd never had. Brady recalled that Xander hadn't stayed on the island the entire summer. Xander admitted he'd had some other stuff going on back then and had gone looking for trouble. "And you always seemed to know where to find it," Victor added.
Xander conceded that he hadn't been like Brady and Daniel, who had been able to do no wrong in Victor's eyes. Brady assured Xander things had since changed dramatically. "They've both had their moments since then, but they've faced their troubles like men. I couldn't be more proud of the two of them," Victor added. Victor once again hinted that he had work to do -- with Brady -- so Xander showed himself out.
Brady admitted he hadn't thought of Xander in a while. Victor reasoned that there had never been any need for Brady to think of Xander because Xander was just a distant relative. Brady thought Xander was more than just a distant relative, since he was, after all, Victor's brother's son. "I meant I like to keep him at a distance. He's bad news -- always has been," Victor replied.
Brady said he had heard Xander had been charged with killing a guy a couple years after they had vacationed on the island. Victor said the police had only been able to charge Xander with manslaughter -- or perhaps just assault and battery. Brady guessed Victor had played a part in getting the charges reduced. Victor confirmed the suspicion but claimed he couldn't remember exactly what he had done to help Xander.
At Edge of the Square, Xander scowled as he thought about the things Victor had said about Brady and Daniel earlier. After taking a gulp of whiskey, Xander slammed the empty glass down on the bar, shattering it in the process.
In Paul's hotel room, Tori complained about the photograph of Sonny and Paul the Salem Spectator had used for an article about Will and Sonny's first anniversary. Tori told Paul friends had been calling to find out why she had neglected to tell them he had gotten married, but he dismissively pointed out that it was obvious the newspaper had made a mistake, since the article referred to him as Will Horton. "There have been too many mistakes. The biggest mistake of all is that you came to this town in the first place," Tori countered.
Paul excused himself so he could deliver his donation to Aiden at Club TBD. Tori was concerned that Aiden might ask Paul to help with more fundraisers, but Paul assured her he would turn down any such requests because he was just as ready to leave Salem as she was. Tori understood it was going to be difficult for Paul to give up his chance at happiness with the man he loved, but she stressed that doing the right thing was sometimes painful. "Even if that sacrifice is enough to rip you apart," Tori added after Paul left.
At Club TBD, John told Marlena he had talked to Aiden earlier, and while the good news was that no one had canceled their benefit donation in light of the previous day's debacle, the bad news was that he had to personally accept Paul's donation check later that day because Aiden had been called out of town on business. "How am I supposed to act grateful to that little sleaze?" John wondered.
Marlena suggested John might want to try to find a way to cut Paul some slack. John challenged Marlena to give him one good reason to do that, so she pointed out that Will was equally responsible for what had happened with Paul. Marlena argued that Will didn't deserve a free pass just because he was family, but John countered that Paul's celebrity status had probably impressed Will -- and played a big part in the mistake Will had made.
After Marlena left, John had a tense meeting with Paul. Paul thought John should have had the decency to refrain from judging him before learning all the facts, but John countered that the facts were that Paul had slept with Will and had then been caught making a play for Sonny. Paul sarcastically agreed that everything was his fault, adding that life was definitely much simpler when people chose to only look at one side of things.
Paul handed over his donation check and said he would be leaving Salem for good later that night. "You know, Will talked about you while he was interviewing me, and you sounded like a good guy. But you're no different than those vultures who used to hang outside the clubhouse -- they put a person up on a pedestal, but the minute they walk in a run or act like a human being, you tear them to pieces," Paul spat before walking away.
When Will returned to his and Sonny's apartment, Sonny asked about the bombshell article Zoe had mentioned during her earlier visit. Will dismissively stated that Zoe thought all articles were bombshells, and he added that he was planning to shelve the piece, anyway. Will explained that he was front-page material for all the tabloids, thanks to what had happened the previous day, and he would never get his credibility back unless he delivered a solid piece of reporting as his next effort. Assuming Will meant the story he had been thinking of doing wouldn't qualify, Sonny wondered what it had been about.
Will claimed that the school district might be playing fast and loose with its budget, adding that he hadn't been able to get anyone to go on record, so all he really had to offer was his opinion about the matter. Sonny said that sounded like it would have been a really good article, and he wondered why Will hadn't said anything about it sooner. Will uncomfortably replied that he and Sonny had both been going through a lot lately. Sonny agreed and handed Will the business card for the marriage counselor Marlena had recommended earlier.
"You know, I have a feeling that things are gonna start getting a lot better for us -- and soon, without a therapist. But if, you know, they don't, then of course we can see this person. I just -- I want -- I want a chance to, you know, fix things. I want to earn your trust back," Will stressed. Will added that he thought it would be much easier to do that with Paul gone. Sonny wondered how Will knew Paul was leaving town. "Well, I mean, after yesterday, I mean, why wouldn't he? As far as I know, they're already gone," Will replied.
Sonny wanted to know why Will had used a plural pronoun, so Will explained that he had been talking about Paul and Paul's mother. When Sonny wondered how Will had known Paul's mother was in town, Will claimed that Marlena had told him. Sonny asked if Will had ever met Paul's mother, and Will said he hadn't. Sonny explained that he had met the woman recently, and she hadn't been very thrilled to see him. Will reasoned, based on what Paul had said during their interview sessions, that Paul's mother was probably just mortified about everything that had happened.
Will predicted that Paul's mother was probably pestering Paul to leave Salem right away. Will thought that would be best for everyone, and Sonny nodded and admitted Will might be right. Sonny abruptly excused himself, claiming he had some stuff to take care of at the club. Will gave Sonny a quick kiss and urged him not to be gone too long. "You're lying to me again!" Sonny angrily whispered after he left the apartment.
Later, Will received a visit from John, who wanted to see how Will and Sonny were doing in light of the previous day's events. Will apologized for what had happened, and John assured him the benefit hadn't been ruined as a result. Will admitted the whole situation was a mess, but John was confident Will and Sonny would work things out, since that was what they seemed set on doing.
John reported that Paul was planning to leave Salem later that day. Will breathed a sigh of relief, admitting that was the best news he had heard all day. John wondered if Paul's blood donation could have somehow made Sonny and Paul closer to each other. "They didn't have far to go," Will replied, and he proceeded to fill John in on Sonny and Paul's history.
Will explained that Paul was still in love with Sonny, prompting John to wonder if Paul had gone after Will out of jealousy. Will clarified that Paul hadn't known he was married to Sonny until after seducing him. "And you believe the bastard?" John asked incredulously.
Will replied that, while Paul presented himself as a sincere and genuine guy, the truth was that Paul had started reaching out to Sonny and making it clear that he wanted Sonny back even before starting the interview process with Will -- and even after Sonny had revealed he was married. Will added, however, that Paul had sworn he'd had no idea who Will really was until after they had slept together. Will said he had to take Paul's word on the matter, but John countered that he didn't have to. John hoped he would never have to see Paul again, and Will agreed.
Marlena went to Paul's hotel room to talk to Tori, who feigned ignorance when Marlena said she knew Tori had been to Salem before. Marlena wasn't convinced, so Tori reluctantly admitted she had once worked for Stefano DiMera, stressing that she had been young and had not known who he truly was at that time. Marlena pointed out that Tori had also known another man back then -- John Black. "He had an affair with you when you were here in Salem. You left town. You gave birth to a son. You named him Paul," Marlena added.
After receiving a text message from Sonny -- "You still in town? I need to see you. IMPORTANT!!" -- Paul waited in Sonny's office, thinking about what had happened when they had met there the previous day. When Sonny arrived, Paul confirmed that he would be leaving town later that day, adding that he was glad Sonny had arranged for them to see each other one last time before then.
Paul apologized for what had happened the previous day, and he told Sonny the bellboy, Derrick, had to have been the person who had blabbed to the press. Sonny had reached the same conclusion, and he reasoned that it might be better to have everything out in the open, anyway. "There's just one thing -- I'm afraid that may have ruined any shot that you and I may have had," Paul replied.
Paul said that when he had been alone with Sonny the previous day, it had been obvious that Sonny still cared for him. "And if John hadn't come in --" Paul started to add, but Sonny interrupted. "Nothing would have happened. I am a married man, and I'm committed to my marriage," Sonny stressed. Confused, Paul wondered if Sonny had arranged their meeting just to rub that in.
Sonny insisted he would never do that, and he explained that he wanted to talk to Paul about Tori. "She hasn't been honest with you...about a lot of things," Sonny added.
At Ben's apartment, Chad informed Ben that he'd gotten a call from the Florida Bureau of Investigation regarding a man named Kevin Reynolds, who fit Ben's description. Since the call had been forwarded to him from Club TBD, Chad explained that he'd told the caller he couldn't help them because he'd been away and wasn't involved with the business anymore. Ben wondered why Chad had lied for him. Chad claimed that he'd only done it because neither Sonny nor Abigail needed to be bothered with it.
Just then, Abigail emerged from the bathroom, fresh from the shower and clad only in Ben's bathrobe. Startled, Abigail asked why Chad was there, and he reminded her that she'd told him she would be working on her project. "I am working. I was working here," Abigail stammered. Ben explained that Chad was there because the Florida Bureau of Investigation had called the club, looking for Ben, and Ben intended to find out why. Chad gave Ben the name and number of the man who had called. Chad left after apologizing for interrupting. In the hallway, he smirked to himself.
Ben assured Abigail that he really wasn't sure what the cops wanted. "All I can tell you is that the place [where] I worked down there had a lot of shady people coming in and out," Ben explained. Abigail suggested that he shouldn't call the investigator until he'd talked to a lawyer, and Ben agreed. He apologized for the way their day had turned out. "This has been the most fun I have had working," Abigail reassured him playfully. Ben kissed her goodbye and headed out. As soon as Ben had gone, Abigail sent Chad a text message: "I need to see you!" Chad replied that he was at home.
Abigail entered the study at the DiMera mansion a few minutes later and demanded to know the real reason Chad suddenly seemed to want to protect Ben. "You think I have an ulterior motive? These people called to track down your boyfriend, and I'm the bad guy for not giving him up?" Chad asked, chuckling incredulously. Chad said he knew Abigail was in love with Ben, but Chad reminded her that she'd recently told him that she cared about him -- and he cared about her, too.
While Chad could complain that he just couldn't win with Abigail, Harold entered with a rolling cart. "Dinner for two, as requested, Mister DiMera," Harold announced. "You are unbelievable -- but very predictable, Chad," Abigail said, lifting the cover off the plates to reveal sushi, something he knew she loved, but he hated. Abigail grabbed a pair of chopsticks and began eating, lest the food go to waste. "I know what you're thinking, Chad, but you couldn't be more wrong," Abigail cautioned.
Hope and Rafe caught up over coffee at the Brady Pub. After some chitchat about the goings-on in the police department and how Gabi was doing, Hope asked Rafe what he knew about Clyde Weston, but Rafe claimed he didn't know anything beyond Clyde being Jordan's stepfather. Hope explained that a new trucking company -- owned by Weston -- had taken over Victor's territory, and Victor had done nothing to stop it. Hope wanted to know what Victor was up to.
Rafe insisted that he didn't know anything more about Clyde than Hope did -- and Victor wasn't sharing whatever he might have known. "[Clyde] wants everyone to believe that he is a harmless hillbilly from Poplar Bluff, Missouri, but that is not who he is. Not at all," Rafe asserted. Hope agreed that Clyde was much smarter than he appeared, because his trucking business seemed "squeaky clean."
Rafe wasn't surprised. "Maybe it's time for the bad guys to deal with the bad guys," Rafe suggested. Hope asked if Rafe meant that he'd become one of the bad guys. Ignoring the question, Rafe got up to fetch more coffee.
Lucas and Adrienne were having coffee at Club TBD when Kate and Clyde entered, but neither Adrienne nor Lucas noticed. Kate wanted to go over and say hello, but Clyde didn't think the other pair would appreciate the interruption. In hushed tones, Adrienne cautioned Lucas that Victor had been furious when he'd learned about Will's affair with Paul Narita.
Lucas maintained that he was worried about Adrienne, not Victor. Keeping his voice barely above a whisper, Lucas declared that he hadn't felt that way in a very long time, and he didn't think there was anything wrong with him and Adrienne being happy.
As an obviously displeased Kate watched her son and Adrienne, Clyde observed that she didn't seem very happy to see the two of them together. "Have you ever considered giving your son a little more space?" Clyde suggested. "No," Kate replied flatly.
Adrienne assured Lucas that she was happy, too, but she was also still married. Lucas asked if Adrienne would have had sex with him if Justin hadn't been having an affair. Adrienne said she wouldn't have, but she also hadn't slept with Lucas just to get back at Justin. "Then there's nothing wrong with what we did, and wherever we decide to go, I hope we can decide it together," Lucas said, taking Adrienne's hand.
Adrienne said she needed time to think. Lucas acknowledged that since she was married and he wasn't, it made things easier for him. "It doesn't change what's between us," Lucas added.
As Adrienne was leaving, Kate shot her an obviously disapproving look. Clyde told Kate that he had to leave to take care of something, so Kate strode over to join Lucas. Refusing to engage with Kate, Lucas left, but she followed him out and caught up with him in the park outside Horton Square. "I understand that the heart wants what the heart wants, and I do believe that your feelings for Adrienne are very real," Kate stated.
Lucas asserted that he wasn't comfortable talking to Kate about it, but Kate reminded him that he had very few other people to talk to. Kate guessed that, based on things she'd witness, Lucas' relationship with Adrienne had gone past friendship into adultery. Lucas irritably pointed out that Justin had been having an affair with a coworker for months. Kate assured her son that he didn't have to justify anything; all she wanted was for him to be happy, although she didn't want to see him hurt. Lucas insisted that his eyes were wide open.
Clyde met Ben in Horton Square, and Ben filled his dad in about the Florida Bureau of Investigation's phone call to Chad. Ben admitted that there had been "shady people" where he'd worked in Florida, as well as some drugs, but he suspected the agency was looking for him because of his involvement with gambling there. Clyde suggested that the investigators were only going after Ben to get to someone bigger. Clyde asked for the number of the man who'd called and promised to take care of it for Ben -- and he warned Ben never to trust Chad DiMera.
Hope went to the Kiriakis mansion to see Victor. An obviously downcast Adrienne informed Hope that Victor was out. Hope became concerned when she learned that Justin hadn't been in touch with Adrienne since his return to Dubai. Adrienne noted that her husband had been on the other side of the planet for almost a year, except for his brief return after their son had nearly been murdered. "You're a detective; I bet you can figure it out -- especially since you, Hope, know better than anyone how Justin is a man who doesn't like to be alone," Adrienne added.
Adrienne quickly apologized for the cheap shot, but Hope insisted she understood -- and she knew how hard things had been for Adrienne. Acknowledging that Hope had moved on with Aiden, Adrienne asked if Hope ever felt guilty. Hope admitted that she had at first and sometimes still did. Taking Adrienne by both hands, Hope emphasized, "You need to be true to what's in your heart, no matter what anyone thinks or says. Be true to yourself." She embraced Adrienne, who let out a relieved sigh.
At Will and Sonny's apartment, Will was filling John in about how Paul had been making excuses to stay in Salem, and Will assumed it was because Paul wanted to be near Sonny. Will insisted that he knew what he'd done was wrong but didn't think it would be possible to save his marriage if Paul were still in Salem and still in love with Sonny. Will agreed with John that Paul's arrival in Salem hadn't really been a coincidence. Will theorized that Paul had shown up with the intention of destroying Sonny's marriage to Will.
John admitted that he'd found Sonny and Paul together in Sonny's office, and Paul had clearly been putting the moves on Sonny. Will started putting together what he believed were the pieces to a puzzle: all-star pitcher Paul had offered a huge story to Will, and Paul had insisted on holding their meetings in his hotel room and had often answered the door, wearing only a towel.
While visiting Tori in Paul's hotel room, Marlena recounted what she believed had happened when Tori had been in Salem years earlier: "You had an affair with John when you were in Salem. You left town. Months later, you had a child. You named that boy Paul. So John is Paul's father. I think they both deserve to know the truth." Tori insisted that, upon discovering that she was pregnant with Paul years earlier, she'd returned to tell the father, but she'd learned that he was dead. Marlena assumed the man had been from Salem, but Tori denied it.
"Then you won't have a problem if I tell John that you're Paul's mother, right?" Marlena asked. Tori didn't see the need to tell John anything. Marlena pointed out that Tori had lied to John by leading him to believe that her last name was Simpson and claiming to be in town on business for Sonix. Tori claimed that the last name had been Stefano DiMera's idea. "My family has already suffered enough embarrassment. Can't you and your grandson just leave us alone?" Tori implored.
Tori declared that she and Paul were leaving Salem in a few hours, and then Sonny and Will would be able to repair their marriage. Marlena argued that it had nothing to do with Will and Sonny. "My son is still in love with your grandson's husband. Think about it. If Paul stays in Salem for any reason, I'm afraid there's nothing that you or I or Will can do to keep them apart," Tori cautioned. Marlena believed that Tori was really worried that Paul would figure out who his father was.
"Paul's father is dead!" Tori reiterated firmly. She pointed out that Paul was going to have enough to handle with the end of his baseball career and the beginning of a new life in the public eye as a gay man. Tori stressed that as a mother, Marlena had to understand how important it was to do what was best for one's child. "I absolutely understand that. But I also know from experience...you can't make people's decision for them. Not even your own children," Marlena said. She left without another word.
In Sonny's office at Club TBD, Paul got defensive about his mother when Sonny said Tori hadn't been honest with Paul. Sonny explained gently that Tori had lied when she'd told Paul that she'd never been to Salem before. Paul was dubious, so Sonny told him about the picture of Tori that had been taken on the lake outside Salem, with the DiMera boathouse in the background. Although Sonny was reluctant to say more and urged Paul to talk to his mother, Paul demanded to know what else Sonny knew.
Sonny revealed that the time stamp on the photo was from nine months prior to Paul's birth. Paul didn't understand why his mother would have lied to him about where his father had been from. Sonny said he'd found an article Will had been writing but hadn't submitted to Sonix, and that was where Sonny had found the photo. Paul believed that Will had made it all up to try to get rid of Paul, but Sonny pointed out, "How would that get rid of you?"
"Paul, I am so sorry. I know how upsetting this is. I just thought you had the right to know," a remorseful Sonny said. Paul called his mother, who said they should leave for the airport right away. Paul asked Tori to meet him at Club TBD on the way. Tori hesitated but agreed. After Paul hung up, Sonny said he would have discussed it with Will before talking to Paul, but Will had lied about the article he'd been writing. Paul requested that Sonny ask Will to go to the club. "I need to know the truth, and this may be the only way to get my mother to tell it," Paul explained.
When Sonny called Will and asked him to head to the club, Will eagerly agreed. After Will hung up, John praised Will for not trying to blame Paul for everything. "I'm really glad that you came over. I feel like you're the first person that I've been able to be totally honest with," Will said. Since Sonny had some gifts from the benefit for John to pick up, John offered to go with Will to the club.
Before Sonny and Paul left Sonny's office, Paul said, "I know that you and I have no future, but you have no idea what it means to me to know that you still care." There were almost no customers when Paul and Sonny went out into the main part of the club. Sonny explained that he'd sent everyone but one barista home because it was never busy at that time of day.
Sonny had returned to the bar when Tori arrived. She was in a hurry to get to the airport, but Paul asked her to sit down so they could talk first.
Marlena arrived outside the club just as Will and John showed up. After giving his grandmother a hug, Will headed inside to find Sonny. When Marlena learned that Will and John had been talking about Paul, she was curious about what Will had said. John elaborated that Paul had seduced Will to break up Will and Sonny's marriage, although Will had not said so in so many words. John added that Will had taken responsibility for his own actions.
Inside, Will went behind the bar to greet his husband but paused when he saw Paul and Tori across the room. "I thought Paul and his mom were already gone," Will complained through gritted teeth.
Tori reluctantly sat down, and Paul began questioning her about her previous time in Salem. Tori rose to leave but recoiled when she spotted Will and Sonny behind the bar -- and at that moment, John and Marlena walked in. "Hey, Tori. What are you doing here?" John asked curiously. John demanded to know why Paul was still in town -- and why Tori was talking to Paul. "Because she's his mother, John," Marlena explained.
Puzzled, John asked Tori, "Why didn't you tell me?" While Tori kept repeating that they needed to leave for the airport, Paul demanded of John, "How do you know my mother? Did you meet my mother when she was in Salem before?" Paul informed Tori that he was aware she'd lied to him about never being to Salem before. He reminded her that for his whole life, she had told him that his father had died before Paul had been born. "But you met him here in Salem! Didn't you?" Paul shouted.
Finally, Tori blurted, "Yes!" More quietly, she admitted, "Yes, I met your father here." She turned and looked John in the eye at last. "Oh, my God," a stunned John exclaimed as his eyes and Paul's filled with tears.