David's presence didn't keep Liza from tending to her chores. David followed Liza about her condo like a puppy---popping out from behind corners and other knickknacks. All the while David was sputtering out words of warning for Liza. Liza smiled wryly and asked David if he was going to give her a "full disclosure of imminent doom." David shook his head at Liza's exaggeration and told her that he'd come with a serious warning about Adam. Liza had seemed willing to listen to David's caveat, but when the doctor uttered Adam's name, all bets were off. Liza became irritated with David's continued obsession with Adam. She told David that she's already been acquainted with the best and worst of Adam. Perhaps, she shrugged, that's why she loves Adam. David told Liza that she'd never be happy with Adam. "If you had a smoking gun or a severed head you dug up from his backyard, I'd still tell you to go to hell," Liza growled. It became clear that Liza was not going to listen to a word David was saying. It was not as if David didn't have the opportunity to blurt out his findings about Liza's baby's paternity. For reason, David simply dragged out his big announcement. He turned his attention to Marian's wedding, taking several minutes to ask Liza to pass along his good wishes. David remarked that the timing was "not right" for his warning about Adam and left. Seconds after the door shut behind David, there was another knock. Liza rolled her eyes and stomped towards the door. When she opened the door, she didn't find David as she'd expected. "Oh, you're going to kill me," moaned Liza upon seeing Dixie. Dixie invited herself into Liza's condo. It took a few seconds, but Dixie assured Liza that she'd come on a mission of peace. Dixie smiled and told Liza that she and Tad were once again communicating. Liza smiled happily. Dixie went one step further and flashed her engagement ring. Liza jumped in the air slightly and told Dixie how happy she was for them. Dixie thanked Liza for stepping in to show Tad the videotape. Had it not been for Liza, she and Tad could still be avoiding each other. "I've been shouldering guilt for years," Liza said softly. Dixie looked down at the floor momentarily and apologized for making Liza feel that she was solely responsible for her breakup with Tad. "Three of us [were] involved," stated Dixie. She admitted that she should have let Liza off the hook long ago. When asked if she could forget about the infamous affair she'd had with Tad, Dixie smiled and said, "I can---and I have." She pursed her lips together and with a chuckled added, "Just don't do it again!" Dixie asked Liza if there was anything that she could do to pay her back for helping her get back together with Tad. Liza didn't have to think for more than a few moments. She asked Dixie if she could find it in her heart to forgive Adam for blabbing the news of her illness to Junior. That was too much to ask. Dixie said that she is unwilling to believe that Adam has changed. Adam, she snapped, will always be Adam. Dixie warned Liza that if she agreed to marry Adam, she'd once again find herself wrapped up in Adam's trickery.
Once Tad arrived at Cortlandt Manor, he eagerly awaited his mother's arrival so that he could share his good news. Opal thought that Tad was being coy and overstating his good news. "Dixie and I are back together," he smiled proudly. Opal's heart melted. She reached out to embrace her son and told him that she was glad he'd been able to forgive her. Tad pulled away from Opal and looked at her crookedly. He didn't quite understand what his mother had done that needed forgiving. Opal stumbled for her words. She thought that Tad already knew that she'd knew about Dixie's hospitalization. Since she'd opened her mouth, Opal was almost obligated to admit the truth. The admission that she knew Dixie was sick for several months hit Tad like a ton of bricks. He scolded his mother sharply for keeping silent for so long. Adrian wandered into the room and told Tad to stop yelling at Opal. Tad looked towards the former secret agent and rolled his eyes. "Give me a second alone with my-our---mother. Opal explained that she'd been sworn to secrecy by Dixie. Tad hugged his mother and told her that he forgave her. After all, he had told her to butt out of his personal life. Adrian was confident that Dixie would make a full recovery, saying that she was a class act. Tad was surprised by Adrian's "good judgment" and the two men shook hands for the first time. Opal smiled proudly and commented that she'd like to see Adrian stand up as Tad's Best Man. The two brothers exchanged glances. They both agreed that they could learn to "tolerate" one another---but a friendship was not in the cards. They bickered back and forth over their musical tastes as Opal smiled proudly.
Ryan wondered how Braden had slipped past the police officer stationed outside his room. Braden chuckled and commented that the officer was not a challenge. Ryan was still not in the best of spirits. He bowed his head and told Braden that he was in a lot of trouble. Braden smirked and told Ryan that he was there to help him. There was still no explanation of how the two men knew each other. Braden claimed that Kit's checkered past would greatly help Ryan's case. Ryan agreed that Kit's days as a con artist might lessen her credibility. Ryan commented that Kit had a run-in with Tad in the past. Braden closed his eyes and stated that he knew Tad Martin well. Ryan realized that Braden must have been in town a long time. Braden scurried out of the room unobserved. On his way towards the exit, he crashed into Gillian. Gillian smiled warmly at the man and asked him what he was doing at the hospital. He informed Gillian that he was there to help her husband. Without saying anything more---except for introducing himself as "Braden"---Braden left. Gillian hovered outside Ryan's room. The officer walked over with his hands held in the air. He asked Gillian why she remained insistent on violating Jack's orders. Gillian said that since she loved Ryan she would do whatever she felt she had to do to be near him.
Adam reported to the gallery immediately after receiving an urgent message from Marian. He feared that some aspect of the wedding preparations had fallen flat. Marian assured him that everything was wonderful. There was a concern, however. Marian was anticipating a "hidden trap" or some other devious deception by her soon to be brother-in-law. Adam swore that he had no tricks up his sleeve. He understood why Marian doubted his sincerity---he said that he often doubted his own ability to be honest and loving. That had all changed, he asserted. One day, Adam said, he hopes that Marian will be able to trust him. Until then, he vowed to do everything in his power to make up for the horrible way he'd treated Marian. Marian began to sob. She believed that Adam might actually have a heart. She thanked him for helping plan her wedding and listened intently as Adam told of his desire to have one big happy family---and that included Marian, Stuart, Liza, Baby Colby, and all his other loved ones. David strolled into the gallery. Marian walked over to the doctor and sassily told him that the gallery was closed. David claimed that he was there on personal business and extended his hand to Adam. Adam looked at David and asked him what he was doing. David claimed that he wanted to congratulate Adam on winning Liza. Adam didn't approve of Liza being likened to a prize. Besides, Adam felt that David had never been a contender for Liza's affection. Marian was appalled to learn that David had sought Liza's attention and urged Adam to shake David's hand to get rid of the doctor. "Nobless oblige," said Marian. She backed away from her urgings when David tried to weasel a wedding invitation out of her. David left and Adam headed off to wash his hands.
The headline of the Pine Valley Bulletin said it all: Alleged Rapist Still Claims Innocence. Kit entered the room an immediately voiced her disapproval of the headline. Dimitri calmly folded the newspaper and asked Kit if the headline was really that far away from the truth. The question blindsided Kit. "What if in some way [Ryan] did not technically rape you?" asked Dimitri. Kit's eyes widened. Tears welled in her eyes as she worked herself to near hysterics. She claimed that she'd smelled her attacker and heard her attacker's voice. She was certain that Ryan was the man who had raped her. Dimitri was becoming angry, even resentful, for the way that Kit's allegations were tearing apart the lives of those he cared about. Hayley and Mateo were moving out of Wildwind, Gillian was in trouble of her own, and Edmund was in over his head as well. Kit claimed that she was sorry that Mateo and Hayley were moving out and badmouthed Hayley for her friendship with Ryan. Dimitri wondered if he wasn't overlooking something. Hayley, he said, was a remarkable judge of character. If she believed in Ryan, maybe he should too. Kit out her hands on her hips and angrily asked Dimitri if he was trying to imply that she was trying to wheedle her way into Edmund's life and therefore needed to get rid of all of Edmund's friends. "The thought had crossed my mind," replied Dimitri. He wondered if there was some other reason that Edmund had such blind faith in the relative newcomer. "Why not ask me?" Edmund snapped from his perch in the doorway. Upon Edmund's arrival, Kit resurrected talks of moving out of Wildwind. Edmund silenced her and asked for a few moments alone with his brother. Edmund lashed out at Dimitri for acting as his "protector." Dimitri claimed that by asking questions of Kit he was trying to determine if she was on the level. Edmund felt that that question had already been answered. There was DNA evidence that linked Ryan to the crime. Dimitri quickly noted that Ryan was only a seventy percent match to the supposed attacker. Where had Edmund's objectivity gone? As a reported, Edmund once required indisputable proof before reaching a conclusion and now he was simply taking Kit's word. Dimitri claimed that he understood why Edmund was acting the way he was. He had a chance to help a "vulnerable woman," where he'd failed to save Maria. Dimitri wanted Edmund to admit once and for all that he had romantic interests in Kit.
Tad and Dixie met up at Brooke's house. Tad headed upstairs to check on the kids. While he was gone, the doorbell rang. No one else was around, so Dixie opted to answer the door. Braden entered the house like a man on a mission. Dixie was surprised that Braden knew Brooke. Braden shook his head and explained that he hadn't stopped by to see Brooke, he'd stopped by because he'd "tracked down" Dixie.
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A glowing Dixie brought Braden up to date on her whirlwind trip to Manhattan with Tad. Braden smiled happily for his friend, but this would not be the only information Braden elicited from Dixie. Dixie thanked Braden for bringing up the idea of the videotaped farewell. Had it not been for the tape, Dixie realized that she'd probably be sitting on her Uncle Palmer's couch worried that Tad was seeing other women. Speaking of other women, Braden gently asserted that he'd heard rumors that Tad either had been seeing or was still seeing a woman by the name of Kit Fisher. Dixie shook her head and walked Braden to the couch. After sitting down, Dixie told her friend that there was no possible way that Tad had any interest in Kit. Dixie recounted the tale of how Kit had falsely accused Tad of rape. Braden claimed to be surprised. It was difficult to determine how much of Tad and Kit's history he really knew. He listened intently as Dixie told him that Tad would have gone to jail had Nola Orsini not stepped forward to pay off Kit. Dixie clenched her hands into a fist as she told Braden that Kit was up to her tricks again. Braden feigned ignorance as Dixie told him that Kit was accusing Ryan of rape. At one point, Braden actually asked Dixie to tell him about Ryan, adding further mystery to the yet undetermined relationship between the two men. Braden asked why Tad hadn't stepped in to alert the authorities to Kit's nefarious ways. Dixie explained that Tad had informed the police about his past dealings with Kit, but that didn't satisfy Braden. He encouraged Dixie to urge Tad into using his position at WRCW to alert the public to what Kit was doing. Dixie thought it was a great idea, but the talks broke off when Brooke returned to the room. Braden told Dixie to remain optimistic---and maybe the whole mess would go away. After Braden left, Dixie and Brooke exchanged lengthy stares. It wasn't long before the two women got into a disagreement about Kit's allegations. The argument wasn't heated, nor was it nasty. In fact, neither of the women even raised their voice. Tad walked down the steps and overheard a large chunk of the conversation. He told Dixie that he and Brooke had decided "to agree to disagree"---at least for Jamie's sake. Dixie told Tad about "her" idea to have him use The Cutting Edge as a soap box. Tad and Brooke both agreed that it was inappropriate for him to take to the airwaves over a personal vendetta.
At the hospital, Gillian managed to wheedle her way back into Ryan's room with the help of a new---and female---police officer. Ryan demanded that Gillian be removed from his room, but the policewoman told Ryan to pipe down and show his wife some respect. Gillian told Ryan that she'd bumped into Braden in the corridor. She asked Ryan how he knew Braden and how this unknown man could help him. Ryan commented that Braden could be the only person capable of helping him. His face tensed as he ordered Gillian to stay away from Braden. Gillian pressed for details, but Ryan was insistent that Gillian not even talk to Braden. Gillian blamed Ryan's crankiness on fever and gently pressed her lips to his forehead to check his temperature. The officer watched from the doorway with a smile on her face. Ryan called out to her and asked that Gillian be removed. If the officer failed to comply with his request, Ryan said that he'd call Jack. That lit a fire under the woman's feet and she quickly escorted Gillian out of the room.
Hayley returned to Wildwind and found Raquel sprawled on the sofa. Raquel yawned as she asked Hayley how her "friend" was doing. Hayley knew that Raquel had no interest in Ryan. She plopped down next to Raquel and offered to play a game----one known as "let's tell the truth." Hayley urged Raquel to come clean with her true feelings and thoughts. In return, she promised not to run to Mateo and tell him about their chat. Raquel didn't apologize for anything that she'd done. Instead, she asked Hayley if she wouldn't go to the same lengths if she were in her shoes. That was as close to an admission of guilt as Hayley thought she'd hear from Raquel. Hayley smiled and thanked Raquel for finally admitting that she was trying to break up her relationship with Mateo. Raquel's mouth gaped and she quickly moved to deny ever saying that she wanted to break up Hayley and Mateo. Max burst into the room and chirped that he and his father had found two condos on their house hunt. Mateo entered moments after his son and teased Max about squealing. The condos, which they interchangeably referred to as apartments, were located across the park from each other. Both were close to Max's school, had top-notch security, and even a pool. Raquel flipped out about the pool because she feared that Max could fall into the pool and drown. She was assured that the pools were gated and padlocked. Raquel knew that she had to appear pleased. Raquel explained that she did not have the money to afford a new apartment and claimed that she did not want Mateo to fork out money on her account. Matt smiled and told Raquel to think of the apartment as "retroactive child support." Raquel smiled and voiced her approval, but it was obvious that she hated the idea of having to move out of Wildwind. Hayley enjoyed toying with Raquel and watching her squirm. She turned up the heat by suggesting that they head out to look at the apartments immediately. Hayley offered to take Max to the park while Mateo showed the condo to Raquel. Raquel sighed and agreed to see her possible new home.
Kit lurked outside of the office area and eavesdropped on Edmund and Dimitri's tete-a-tete. Dimitri knew that Edmund had designs on Kit because he's seen the way Edmund looks at the woman. Edmund tried to deny the claim, but there was no way out. "Fine!" He shouted. "I want to have sex with her. Are you satisfied?" Dimitri sighed and commented that they'd finally had a breakthrough. Outside, Kit smiled and placed her palms over her heart. Edmund felt it was infantile to discuss his feelings with Dimitri. Dimitri, however, felt there was much to be gained from Edmund's honesty. The declaration bolstered Dimitri's claim that Edmund might be "blinded" by his feelings for Kit. Edmund told his brother that he was not "dead from the neck down." Sure, he certain urges when he kissed or held Kit, but that was not the same as wanting to have a relationship with her. Edmund explained that he was not "ready, willing, or able" to have a meaningful relationship with a woman because he was still not over Maria. Kit's heart broke into a thousand little pieces as Edmund proclaimed that a relationship with Kit was not in the cards. Kit raced away before she could hear the progression of the two men's discussion. Dimitri listened as Edmund anguished over allowing Maria to fall to her death. Dimitri asked his brother to imagine for a moment that he'd been the one who perished in the crash. How, Dimitri asked, would he want Maria to live her life without him. Edmund softly noted that he'd want Maria to move on and find love. That said, Dimitri wondered why Edmund was not allowing himself to follow his own advice. Grudgingly, Edmund agreed that Maria would want him to go on with his life. That said, was Kit the woman that Edmund wanted to start over with?
Kit saw alone in a room at Wildwind trying to decide what she should do next. She wanted to tell Edmund that she loved him---and that if given the chance she could make him forget about Maria. But he knew that it was neither appropriate nor practical to tout herself as a cure all for broken hearts. The only thing she felt she could do to help was to tell Edmund goodbye.
Hayley and Max headed to the park hoping to get in a good play session before a snowstorm hit. While they played, Gillian showed up and begged Hayley for a few minutes of her time. Max permitted Hayley to have a five minute coffee break. The two women sat down on a park bench. Gillian told Hayley that she'd failed to make any headway with Ryan. Hayley assured Gillian that Ryan still loved her. She said that Ryan needs time to realize that his life is better with Gillian (and all her faults) than without her. Gillian nodded and announced that she was going to go back to the hospital and make Ryan see that he needed her. Hayley laughed slightly and begged Gillian to calm down. She said that she cannot be a "spoiled princess" and expect things to happen when she wants them to happen. Mateo arrived and told Hayley that Raquel had given her thumbs up to the apartment. Mateo looked around and asked Hayley where Max had gone. Hayley and Gillian pointed to a nearby pile of leaves---but Max was nowhere in sight.
Ryan tossed and turned in his hospital bed, his sleep haunted by the voices of small children. Trevor entered the room and plucked Ryan from his dreams. He broke the news that he'd come up with a plan to help his client beat the rape charge.
Kit returned to the hunting lodge and packed her bags. As she opened the door and prepared to flee, Kit found a stranger on her doorstep. She asked the man who he was and what he wanted. Braden smiled and introduced himself as a fortune teller that had insight into what Kit should be doing.
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"The name's Braden," said Braden through clenched teeth. Kit looked around nervously and asked the stranger if he was a reporter. Braden shook his head and told Kit that he'd dropped by to offer her "the deal of a lifetime." The deal, said Braden, was an offer of serenity---the chance to "ease [her] troubled conscience." Again Kit looked around the room. She had no idea what the man wanted from her. Braden told Kit that he heard about her past ordeals as a con artist. He paid careful attention to drumming home the fact that he knew that Kit had "cried rape" in the past. Kit was stunned that this still unknown man knew the intricacies of her past. The next words out of his mouth caught Kit off guard. He offered to pay off Kit to get her to recant her allegations. Kit flat out refused to be bought off and promptly told Braden to go to hell. Braden hoped that he could tighten the screws and convince Kit that backing off was her best bet. He warned her that if the case when to trial, she'd be torn apart. The media, he grinned evilly, would have a field day reporting the tales of the "woman who cried rape---again!" Kit's eyes squinted together. She looked at Braden and found herself wondering who he was and why he had shown up at the lodge. Braden said only that he was a friend of Ryan and that he was a guest at The Crystal Ball. Kit ordered Braden to leave, threatening to call the police. Braden agreed to leave, but that didn't stop him from asking Kit if she planned on accusing him of rape as well. Surprisingly, Kit didn't slap the man and Braden simply walked away.
"It is not your job to watch over Kit," said Dimitri sternly. Edmund flashed a half-smile and scolded his brother for doing the same thing to him. Dimitri, however, felt that their blood ties required him to look out for Edmund's best interest. "She's falling in love with you," Dimitri said loudly. Edmund nodded and told him that Kit had practically told him that herself. Obviously there was a conflict of interest. Every day that passed with Kit at Wildwind was another day for her feelings for Edmund to grow. Meanwhile, Edmund knew that he was unable to become involved in a relationship with Kit. Kit suddenly burst into the room and told Edmund of her encounter with Braden. Dimitri stood in the background and observed the exchange between Edmund and Kit without saying a word. Kit explained that she feared that the media would descend upon Wildwind if Braden broke the news of her mired past. Claiming that the media presence would not be good for Edmund, Sam, or Maddie, Kit again offered to move out. Edmund stepped towards Kit and told her that he wanted her to stay. Finally, Dimitri broke his silence. "It's her decision," noted Dimitri. Edmund flashed Dimitri a look that was presumably designed to silence him. He smiled warmly at Kit and told her that he wanted her to be his escort to Stuart and Marian's wedding.
And the wedding was fast approaching. Brooke hosted Marian's shower at her house, but the shower itself was never shown on-camera. After the shower, Brooke gushed endlessly about the wonderful gifts that Marian had received. When she looked up, she noticed that the bride-to-be was sobbing buckets. Brooke sat down on the sofa next to Marian and asked her if she'd said something to upset her. Marian shook her head and wiped tears from her eyes. Brooke assumed that Marian was having the usual pre-wedding jitters, but that turned out not to be the case. Marian told Brooke that marrying Stuart was not the problem---it was becoming a wife that had her in a tizzy. Marian feared that she would "tarnish" Stuart's image by signing on to be his mate. The doorbell sounded and Marian scurried upstairs so that no one would see that she'd been crying. Brooke opened the door and found Stuart, a refugee from his own bachelor party, waiting for her words of wisdom. As Brooke escorted Stuart to the sofa, Marian appeared at the top of the steps. She slowly made her way downstairs as Stuart told Brooke that he thought of Marian as a "fragile flower." He worried, however, that he might get "confused" from time to time and "do wacky stuff." Brooke assured Stuart that he would never let Marian down. Marian made her presence known. She was nervous about admitting what she thought her role would be as a wife. She once thought that Donna Reed was the perfect role model, but that was no longer the case. Marian vowed to make Stuart laugh at lest three times and called him "a dream come true."
Trevor proudly told him client that he had a plan that might keep him from going to trial. Jack entered the room and scolded Trevor for getting his client's hopes up. Trevor argued that there was a legal precedent that might help Ryan. The manner in which Jack got Ryan to agree to a DNA test had already been called into question. Trevor asserted that Ryan had been forced to comply without the ability to talk to legal counsel. That, Trevor said, should be enough to get the DNA test tossed out of court. Jack argued that Ryan had been given the opportunity to talk to a lawyer and warned Trevor not to seek the court order. Jack stormed out of the office, but Trevor would be seeing him again. Ryan was pleased by Trevor's legal wrangling and asked if he stood a "snowball's chance" in getting the test results thrown out. Trevor was confident. Even if he failed, there was still another spin. Apparently "very little" DNA evidence had been recovered from Kit's dress. After the initial test, Trevor was gambling that there was no genetic material left to test. Trevor left and Ryan drifted off to sleep, finally having something to look forward to. Outside, Jack pulled Trevor aside and blasted him for trying to get the DNA test discarded. "You came to me as a burned out cop," Jack growled. The District Attorney's calm demeanor had faded away. He was now an angry, borderline violent, man with a definite agenda. "I taught you everything you know," Jack continued. He also reminded Trevor that he'd given him a at job at his law practice. Trevor nodded. He was not about to bow out because of feelings of loyalty. He noted that he'd helped Jack's practice grow---and made Jack a great deal of money. As far as Trevor was concerned, they were even. "Back off!" Jack hollered. Still, Trevor wouldn't budge. Jack warned Trevor that his motion would never be granted. He might have spoken too soon. Trevor had already filed the motion and all indications showed that his motion would be granted. Gillian raced into the hospital and told Trevor that Hayley and Mateo needed his help in finding Max. Jack initially thought that Gillian was trying to create a diversion so that she could slip into Ryan's room. He soon realized that she was telling the truth. Trevor asked Jack to let Gillian see her husband, warning that he'd seek a court order to allow the visits. Gillian was permitted into Ryan's room. Ryan was fast asleep, but Gillian didn't seem to mind. With Ryan asleep, he was unable to boot her out of the room. Gillian stepped out momentarily to get some hot chocolate. As she walked down the corridor, she once again ran into Braden. She asked Braden how he knew Ryan and what he planned to do to help her husband out of his jam. "My duty is to see [that Ryan] is not railroaded."
In the park, Hayley insisted that she'd been keeping a close eye on Max. Raquel showed up moments later and panicked when she learned that her son was missing. She angrily blasted Hayley for not paying closer attention to Max. Mateo and Raquel headed off to see if they could find the boy. Hayley was asked to stay put just in case the boy returned. Janet happened to wander by and immediately reached out to comfort Hayley. Janet did what she could to ease Hayley's fears, but nothing she said really made Hayley feel any better. Hayley sobbed uncontrollably and scolded herself for having turned her back on Max. Raquel returned and asked Hayley what she was doing to have "lost" Max. "We were having fun," Hayley sniffled. "I trusted you," Raquel snarled. "Were you drinking?" Janet stepped in and ordered Raquel to settle down. Raquel was upset about Max's disappearance, but her attitude was, well, bizarre. She headed out again to find Max. When Mateo returned, he asked Janet to take Hayley back to Wildwind. Hayley wanted to stay and help, but Mateo told her that her presence would hamper the search.
Meanwhile, back on the Wildwind grounds, Raquel escorted Max to the hunting lodge. Max hadn't run away after all. There, she told her son that they were playing the biggest game of hide-and-seek ever. The rules of the game were relatively simple. No one-not even Mateo---was to know of the game they were playing. Max smiled and told his mother that he'd keep her secret.
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The game of hide-and-seek carried over for a second day as the sun rose over the hunting lodge. Hoping that her son would not attempt to recreate her plan at a later time, Raquelreinforced that Max was never to wander off on his own for any reason. Mother and son then sealed their vow of silence with a "pinky swear." Max smiled innocently and told his mother that if anyone asked how he found his way back to Wildwind, he'd say that he saw a map.
At the main house, Janet and Hayley listened to the latest weather report. The forecasted snowstorm beared down on Pine Valley and the rest of the Northeastern part of the country. Mateo returned, his cheeks red from the freezing temperatures outside. He glumly noted that there'd been no sign of his son anywhere. A few minutes later, Dimitri, Edmund, and Trevor arrived. They'd spread out to canvas the area surrounding the park, but they'd had no luck either. Still feeling horribly guilty, Hayley apologized profusely to Mateo for turning her back on Max. Mateo was not receptive to her sentiment and turned a cold shoulder to her. The front door swung open and several snowflakes blew into the house. Raquel and Max appeared in the foyer. Matt ran over to his son and gave him a big hug. Raquel smiled proudly and announced that she'd found Max at the hunting lodge. Trevor looked doubtful of Raquel's explanation and asked the woman how she'd come to search the lodge. Something, she said, made her search her feel that Max was close. She noted that she'd happened to walk by the lodge and noticed that the lights were on. Kit wandered into the room and stated that she must have forgotten to lock the door when she left the night before. Trevor nodded his head slowly and commented that lady luck must have been smiling on Max. Raquel produced a wide smile, but Trevor remained unconvinced.
Time passed and Hayley returned downstairs sporting a grayish-silver dress. She told Mateo that he'd have to hurry to get ready for her Uncle Stuart's wedding. Mateo pulled Hayley aside and explained that he could not go to the wedding because he just wanted to hold Max and never let go. Raquel urged Matt to go to the wedding. She breathed a heavy sigh of relief when Matt declined the offer and announced that he wanted to stay with his son. Dimitri appeared and told Hayley that he was ready to go. Mateo kissed Hayley goodbye and headed back to the sofa. There, he and Max drew a family portrait---of Max, Mateo, and Raquel. Mateo looked his son in the eyes and told him never to forget that he loves him. Raquel smiled approvingly from the background.
With every storm comes an increase in injuries and accidents. As the Pine Valley Hospital staff prepared for the increased patient load, Joe and Jake noticed that one doctor was conspicuous by his absence. Dixie and Tad arrived at the hospital for Dixie's latest round of tests, but there was no sign of Dr. Hayward. Joe took time to brief himself on Dixie's case and offered to run the tests himself. A surprise visitor returned home despite the severe weather. Ruth had phoned earlier to tell her family that her flight to Pine Valley was canceled, but she somehow managed to sneak her way on to an earlier flight and beat the snowstorm. Ruth smiled broadly as she told her family that she knew Tad and Dixie would be together again. Everyone but Joe headed off to the examining room. He lagged behind to review a patient file. Vanessa Bennett whisked into the room and scanned the covers of the latest magazines. Joe told her that he was investigating the allegations that David had left her to die in the parking lot. Vanessa shook her head and smiled slightly. She proclaimed that David was a wonderful doctor even if he does have "his own way of doing things."
Dixie's test went off without a hitch, but as with any procedure, waiting for the results was nerve-wracking. Joe appeared some time later with a grin on his face. The expression was a harbinger of the good news Dixie was about to hear. While no medication was a miracle cure, the new pills David had prescribed seemed to be doing the trick. The inflammation surrounding Dixie's heart had lessened and it looked like David's prediction of a full recovery was on the mark after all.
The doctor hadn't gone AWOL. In fact, David was at the airport in New York trying desperately to find a flight back to Pine Valley. Unfortunately, the airport had canceled all flights and there appeared to be no way back to town. Across the terminal, Erica placed a frantic call on her cellular phone hoping to find someone to drive her back to town. Apparently, Erica was to film a commercial or other appearance when she returned---and the camera crew was waiting at her home. Even her famous name couldn't help her out because no one wanted to drive in the blizzard. By chance, David and Erica's paths crossed. David mused that they were more alike than Erica believed---simply because they were both trying to get home. Erica noticed that the car rental service was still open and scurried across the terminal to check on the availability of a car. Luck was on her side because there was one car left. Well, maybe luck wasn't on her side after all. David casually approached the counter and informed the man that he was a cardiologist and needed to get back to Pine Valley to check on a patient. The man informed Erica that medical emergencies are a top priority and gave the last rental to David. As David scraped off the windows to the rented four-by-four, Erica snuck into the truck. David refused to give Erica a ride, but he relented when she gave him the latest traffic bulletin. As they drive down the highway, Erica again voiced her disapproval of the way David had left his mother to die. David denied that Vanessa was his mother, but Erica explained that Adam had told her the whole story. Before they could get back home, the truck hit a snowdrift. Erica wasn't about to shovel away the snow, so David was left to do the work himself. Erica tried to place a call on her cellphone while David was outside, but the batteries in her phone were dead. She rummaged around for David's phone, but she couldn't find it anywhere. What she did find, however, was a bright yellow file folder in David's briefcase. Erica opened the file marked with Liza's name and carefully read the enclosed documentation. Her face froze when she read the results of Adam's DNA analysis. "I didn't know Adam Chandler had any DNA," Erica quipped.
Liza and Marian prepared for the big wedding at Liza's condominium. Liza presented her mother with a gift. "A pen," groaned Marian. She was, in her words, "underwhelmed" by the gift. Liza explained that the pen fulfilled the blue portion of the "something old, something blue, something borrowed, something blue" tradition. Marian mumbled that refills for the pen could work as something new. Liza shook her head. She had another idea in mind. Liza smiled and told her mother that she wanted her child to have Marian as her middle name. Marian was overcome with emotion and reached for a box of tissues. Marian somehow sensed that her daughter had already decided what she was going to tell Adam. Liza nodded her head, but told her mother that she wouldn't tell her what she'd decided. Opal arrived a little while later. She'd taken it upon herself to fire the hairdresser that Marian had hired. After all, Opal did run the Glamourama! Opal really worked her magic on Marian. After she as done, Marian looked absolutely radiant. It was now just a little over an hour until the wedding. Marian asked Opal and Liza to run along without her because she wanted some time alone to think about how she'd been blessed.
At the gallery, Adam scolded Stuart for not being dressed in his tux. Stuart chuckled and told Adam that, as the groom, he was the one that was supposed to be nervous. Adam told Stuart that he wanted the wedding to be perfect because he knew that Liza was going to accept or decline his proposal after the ceremony. "My life hands on one word," he said. The reverend arrived and he and Adam headed off to discuss how the wedding ceremony would play out. Stuart spent time alone in the gallery talking to his late wife, Cindy. Stuart said that he wished she cold be there, but he knew that that would mean he would be unable to marry Marian. Stuart sobbed as he told Cindy that it felt so good to be in love again.
One by one the guests showed up at the gallery. Brooke and Jamie were one of the first to arrive. Brooke sensed that Adam was nervous about something, but Adam tried to play it cool. Jack arrived shortly thereafter followed by Janet, Tim, Trevor, Phoebe, and Myrtle. Dixie, Tad, and Junior entered next and all three voiced their approval of the beautifully decorated gallery. Adrian, Opal, and Liza made their appearance. Adrian mistook an attendee as Belinda, but the woman turned out to be noted local artist, Frannie Powell The woman seemed quite taken by the handsome secret agent who'd just entered the warmth of the gallery. In a sense, Adrian really was the spy who'd come in from the cold. Marian phone Stuart and informed him that she'd run into a major complication. That limo that was to have picked her up had gotten stuck in a snowdrift. Marian vowed to make it to the wedding even if she had to walk! Stuart told Marian to stay put because he'd make sure that when her head hit the pillow she'd be Mrs. Stuart Chandler. Stuart hung up the phone and placed a call to a man named "Sven."
The partygoers were becoming antsy. Myrtle held up her wrist and pointed to her watch. The wedding was to have started---and there was still no sign of the bride or groom. Phoebe smiled and commented that the bride always runs a little late because it teaches the groom to be patient. Brooke took hold of Myrtle's wrist and stated that she liked Myrtle's watch.
In Liza's condo, Marian paced back and forth nervously. She begged God to "part a few snowdrifts" so that she could make it to her wedding. Then came a knock on the door. Marian opened the door and marveled at the spectacle before her. Dressed in a huge, puffy, fluorescent orange jacket and fur hat, Stuart hoisted Marian into the air and carried her off.
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As his condition improved, Ryan was permitted a bit more latitude around the hospital. While still under the scrutiny of an armed police officer, Ryan walked to the sun porch. Jake accompanied the patient and gave him both good and bad news about his condition. The good news was that Ryan's lungs had cleared and he was getting better. The bad news was that once he no longer needed medical attention he would have to go back to prison. A muffled moan sounded from across the room. Ryan moved closer to investigate and found Gillian curled up on a chair. He rolled his eyes and complained about Gillian's presence, but the guard noted that "the little woman" had been camped out at the hospital ever since Ryan was admitted. Jake asked Ryan why he hated Gillian. Ryan bowed his head and said that "hated" was a bit strong for his feelings for Gillian. As he talked, it became apparent that Ryan really does still love Gillian---but he doesn't want anyone to know it. He quietly walked towards Gillian and placed his robe over her to keep her warm. Even in her sleep Gillian could sense the presence of her husband. She opened her eyes slowly and smiled as Ryan came into view. She thought she'd been dreaming, but her awakening was far better than any dream. "You still care," Gillian purred sappily. Ryan yanked his robe away from the princess and told her that she was mistaken. He never did explain why he'd given her his robe, but an explanation really wasn't needed. Jake was paged away and advised Ryan to go back to his robe before he overdid his exercise session. Shortly after Jake left, an elderly woman was wheeled into the room. A pileup on the highway created an overcrowded emergency room. The woman was forced to wait on the sun porch while her granddaughter, Cassie, was treated. The woman was noticeably upset. Ryan crouched beside her and took the woman's hand. He assured her that her granddaughter would be fine. He used himself as an example of the care given at Pine Valley Hospital. Meanwhile, Gillian ducked out to check on Cassie's condition. She returned a few minutes later and informed the woman that her granddaughter had been treated and would be okay. As the woman was wheeled off to be with her granddaughter, she thanked Ryan and Gillian for their help. "Bless both of you," she smiled. She then turned to Ryan and called him "a fine, young man." Gillian was saddened by the display she'd just observed. "I wish you'd hold my hand [and] speak with the same concern [like you did to] a total stranger," Gillian said softly. As the storm raged on, the power in the hospital began to flicker.
At Wildwind, Mateo told his son how scared he'd been when he'd learned that he was missing. He made his son promise never to run away again---and if he did have to go somewhere he would have to ask a grownup. "Mommy told me..." Max said haltingly. Raquel appeared in the doorway with a terrified look on her face. Matt leaned closer to his son and asked him what his mother and told him. Raquel took a deep breath and strolled into the room. She told her son that it was okay to tell Mateo what she'd told him. Before the boy had a chance to blow the cover on their secret "hide-and-seek" session, Raquel offered an explanation of her own. She claimed that she'd told Max never to run away. Max smiled and stated that he always wants his parents to be together so that he can always keep his eye on them. "Your mommy and daddy will always be here for you," said Raquel with a smile. Max started to yawn and Mateo knew that it was bedtime. Mateo stepped in for "tuck in" duties and carried Max off to his room. When he came back downstairs, he found Raquel curled up on the sofa in tears. Mateo asked Raquel if she was okay. Raquel quickly sat up and wiped the tears from her eyes. She apologized for "losing it" in front of him, saying that she was still dealing with the emotional stress from her son's disappearance. "Our job is to protect him," said Raquel. She then started to chuckle as she referred to herself as a "bigger baby" than Max. Mateo reached out to comfort his soon-to-be ex-wife. As he did, the power in the house blinked on and off.
Somewhere between New York City and Pine Valley, Erica marveled at the findings in David's little yellow file folder. David returned to the car while Erica was still reading the file. Needless to say he was not at all happy to see Erica with his private file. He snatched it away from Erica and scolded her on the dangers of sticking her nose where it doesn't belong. Erica knew that David had no business with Liza's amniocenteses results. After all, he was a cardiologist, not an obstetrician. "We could play twenty questions all night," David snapped. He slammed his foot on the gas and the car sped off down the icy highway. Even with limited medical knowledge, Erica was able to determine that the DNA comparison showed that Adam was the father of Liza's baby. What Erica couldn't figure out was why Liza would willingly choose a manipulator like Adam to father her child. David reminded his passenger that Liza had gone to a fertility clinic. Erica nodded and commented that Liza wanted to raise her child by herself without any outside interference. David then asked Erica to extrapolate a possible explanation based upon what she'd just said. Within seconds, a little lightbulb went off above Erica's head. She knew that Adam must have somehow swapped the sperm samples at the clinic. Erica held on for dear life as David once again revved the car's engine. She announced that she would not tell Liza about the swap. Sooner or later, David said with a sneer, someone would break the news to Liza. Erica wanted David to slow down and told him that he would be of better assistance to his sickly patient if he were alive. David laughed and told Erica that she must have already figured out that there was no patient. He coldly explained that he wanted to had a wedding he needed to attend. Then everything became clear to Erica. "You want to drop your bomb in front of all of them," she gasped.
The reverend was becoming antsy and asked Liza if he should announce that the wedding was postponed due to the inclement weather. Liza begged Reverend Fowler to stick around for a few more minutes. Adam informed Liza that he'd called the police to ask them to look for the couple, but the accident on the highway had already tied up all available officers. Suddenly, a loud noise sounded from outside. The guests clamored to the door to see what was going on. A loud laughter cried out from the room as they saw the source of the noise. Stuart and Marian, huddled together, had made it to their wedding courtesy of a horse drawn sleigh! Marian entered the gallery and walked directly towards Adam. Without warning, she gave him a kiss on the lips. Adam cleared his throat and told the woman that she must have mistaken him for Stuart. Marian shook her head slightly from side to side and told Adam that she meant to kiss him. She thanked him for making her dream wedding a reality. The wedding began, with Amanda as the flowergirl and Junior as Liza's escort down the aisle. The wedding cake "topper" was a near-exact replica of the bride and groom! As the ceremony progress, the minister inevitably got to the "speak now or forever hold your peace" portion of the dialog. Marian turned towards the guests and chirped, "Don't even think about it, dahlings." The bride and groom wrote their own wedding vows. "A case of mistaken identity changed my life," said Marian. She called Stuart "all the magic [she'll] ever need." Marian, dressed in a bright red wedding dress, then crowed Stuart the King of her heart---literally. A king's crown sat on a nearby table and Marian actually placed the crown on Stuart's head! When it came time for Stuart's vow, he announced that he wasn't very good with words. "When I try to say things, sometimes it comes out the wrong end," Stuart remarked. A slight chuckled came from the guests. So as to avoid putting his foot in his mouth, Stuart sang his vows. The vows were apparently from a play and the song Stuart sang was called "My Cup Runneth Over With Love." Stuart then crowned Marian the Queen of his heart. The pair kissed and they were announced husband and wife. Even Adam smiled when the couple was finally united. Adam proposed a toast to the couple. While thankful, Marian urged Adam to forgo the usually post-wedding festivities so that he could get Liza's answer to his proposal. Adam approached Liza and asked her if she would accompany him to another room. There, Adam asked Liza if she had an answer for him. Liza toyed with Adam for several minutes, at one point asking him what question she was supposed to answer. Eventually, she came right to the point. "I have my answer," she said firmly. "Are you man enough to hear it?"
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